As my dear readers who have followed me through the past few months will know, I recently moved from un-named place in the Midwest to Kansas City! I am finally past the “training” portion of my life and for the first time in my entire life I have a “grown up” job.
Before I was a post-doctoral researcher in a Chemistry lab. I also worked part time at Tutor.com and taught part time at the local community college. I was making (at the height of the money flow) $2556/month from my “main job” – i.e. being a researcher. Then $904/month at the community college. And when I was teaching at the community college I only made typically $30-80/month tutoring. When I wasn’t teaching at the community college I would make around $300/month tutoring. All told my “steady” income from these 3 jobs was ~$3490 per month. I was also getting a pretty sweet instant 10% retirement savings on top of my salary with 0% matching contribution. However, I was absolutely miserable in my job and in the town I was living in.
So I applied for a new position at a few different schools and low and behold I am now a PROFESSOR at a University! My salary is increased from what I was making before. I negotiated up from $49,000 for a 10-month contract to $51,000 for a 10-month contract. I’m free in the summers to pursue outside income if I so desire. However I’m paid twice a month regardless if I get the extra money – so I’m paid LIKE I get $51,000 per year. Which works itself out to be about $3,600/month in take home pay after taxes, ect. That’s right – I moved and took a new job to make about $200 more a month. BUT I make it from ONE job, not 3. So I have a lot more free time and (to be honest) I have a lot more joy!
The biggest change for me has been switching to budgeting every two weeks instead of every month. At first I thought it would be difficult, but I’m learning to love it. Fresh money in every two weeks is pretty nice. I pay my rent with one paycheck and then all my other bills with the other. Which is pretty sweet to get the rent paid two weeks in advance of its due date. I’m slowly trying to get the financials back in order, as I’m sure you’ll see progress of in the next few weeks. I’ve decided to “punt” on new goals for now and just focus on getting in to a rhythm with my new life. I may decide in November or December to change this, but I have a feeling that 2011 will be a good time to start defining what my new life goals are and what I can do to obtain then. Until I’m just going to keep saving $100/month in to my Emergency Fund, $190/month in to my Yearly Savings account and pay $700/month on my debt.