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Would You Give Up… To Gain Back 10-15 Hours a Week?

Would You Give Up… To Gain Back 10-15 Hours a Week?

coastal maine

We all want more time to enjoy life, but are you willing to give up something to get time back?  I am going to just jump into some examples.

I will use the mean income per family in Maine as an example for hours / pay.  The mean income in the state of Maine for a family is $48,000 / year, which breaks down to about $23/hour.  Of course this means for a family, so one person could be making $10 and the other $13 / hour.

Taxes tend to be around 35%, so I will that number in other calculations to assist in helping with pay and time.   Different countries and states will have different numbers.  Using 35% that makes the mean hourly income in Maine at $15/hour.

If you work 40 hours / week and you subtract 15 vacation days and 8 holidays, we work approximately 1,896.  If you work longer hours, go ahead and put those into your numbers, especially if you are salary and do not get paid extra for anything over 40 hours.

Phew, a lot of numbers!  Numbers do not lie though, which is why they are great to use as long as you look at the whole of the results.

Car Expenses:  350 Hours per year for one car.

Average car payments for a family.  The Experian study from 2015 had data that the average car payment was $437.  This number was for a used vehicle, new was even higher.

New cars also have higher taxes, registration fees, which you need to take into account, but I won’t even consider these.

Now since we do still need a car, it is unfair to take the full amount out for not having a car payment.  Even used cars require maintenance and you should be saving enough aside to get a $3,000 – $5,000 car every so often.

Used car ownership tends to run about $1,000 annually with less money at the start and usually a little more near the end.

Annual cost for one car = $5,244 (make sure you add registration and taxes)
$5,244 / $15 = 350 hours

Paid for car = $1,000 (which includes fixes and saving for another)
$1,000 / $15 = 67 hours

Corrected time saved = 283 hours

Cell Phone Expenses:  112 Hours per year.

The cell phones have an average cost of $70/month for a single person and up to $200/month for a small family.  JD Power had survey results where 13% of families pay over $200.  For this, I will use $140/month as an example to keep it simple.

Annual cost for phones = $1,680 (modify for your phone bill)
$1,680 / $15 = 112 hours

Trak phones only cost about $100 for a full year, so it only subtracts a couple hours from our numbers.

Credit Card Expenses:  320 Hours per year.

The average household has $15,762 in credit card debt.  That equates to over $315/month on average just to pay the interest on the cards.  Let’s say we want to at least make progress on our payments, so I will use $400/month.

Annual cost for credit cards = $4,800 (modify if your payments are higher/lower for your calculations)
$4,800 / $15 = 320 hours per year.

I have not even gotten into buying  a smaller home yet and we are already up to 782 hours!  If you cut out just these simple things you can give yourself 20 weeks of vacation a year on top of what you already have!

Some other areas where you can save:

  • Eating out
  • Daily coffee
  • Mortgage
  • Additional toys (boats, ATVs, etc…)
  • Cable television subscription

When you see people living minimalist lives, this is exactly why they do it.  When you see people buying homes that were average size for a family in the 1950s, you see why they do it.  Mortgage on a small 900 square foot home is a lot less than for 2,000+ and you can use the same formulas I used above for that data.

Do you really need these things?  What is more important your time or things?  Feel like working part-time or even retiring early?

Have an amazing day!

{ 3 comments… add one }
  • Karen Macnamara April 2, 2016, 4:49 pm

    I am so excited to see you blogging more. I thoroughly enjoy your posts and looked forward to reading them every time.

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