A couple of days ago I mentioned in my stories that we’re currently living on one income. I suppose it was a cliff hanger of sorts. I really just wanted to save all of the details for this little blog of mine so I could fully explain why we’re living this way.
We are DINKs (dual income no kids). I work full-time for a major food company and Stephen is in the Air Force. We feel very fortunate that we’re both able to work where we’re stationed currently, especially at this point in our lives before we have a family.
Right now, all of our expenses except the house and savings come out of one income (mine, which is the smaller of the two) and the other goes entirely to the house. It’s certainly not necessary but we do have some specific reasons as to why we’re living this way. I’m sure some people could think, “Well yeah, living on one income isn’t bad if you make a boat load of money.” I’m here to tell you that while I am really thankful for my job, I don’t make boat loads of money. It isn’t anything more than average and it’s certainly not enough for us to live carelessly and buy extravagant things. Sure, we have to make sacrifices and save up our money for when we want to make big purchases but we are able to live comfortably. We will 100% say though that we wouldn’t be able to do this if we didn’t stick to a monthly budget.
The reasons why we live on ‘one’ income:
- We want to pay our house off early. I mean… Super early. Like in less than 5 years early. For this reason, all of Stephen’s income goes towards our mortgage/the principle on the house. It might sound crazy especially considering this is not our forever home and it honestly feels a bit crazy writing this big goal of ours on paper for whoever wants to read it but there are a couple of specific reasons we want to do this:
- We started to imagine a life without a mortgage/rent payment. CAN YOU IMAGINE THAT? Living a life with a roof over your head and only utility bills and repair costs to worry about? As soon as we imagined that life, we both agreed that we wanted to start doing everything we could to reach this goal.
- Along with that, we want to start a mortgage-free cycle ASAP. We know that we’re going to move in a few years and then a few years after that and probably a few years after that etc. etc. so we’re trying to set ourselves up for financial success despite our many moves in the future. That way, we can sell this house, pay for the next one with cash or the vast majority of it at least, sell that one, buy the next one with cash, etc. Eventually we hope to settle down in our dream home when Stephen retires from the Air Force someday and to save up enough to buy that house mortgage-free too.
- We want to cash flow our children’s (God willing) college education. So many kids nowadays are finishing college with tens of thousands of dollars in debt that they are forced to pay off for years into their career. We’re trying to avoid that from happening to our own.
- We want to build wealth and GIVE. Live like no one else so that later you can live and give like no one else, right?
- We know we can do it. Since we have proven to ourselves that we are able to live on one income while we are DINKs, then worse comes to worse if I can’t work wherever we move to in the future, we know we’ll be just fine living entirely on one income. It might sound crazy considering there are quite a bit of families living that way but we never have since we’ve both always worked. Of course we wouldn’t be able to contribute as much towards the house if only one of us is working but we know that we’d be comfortable either way.
- We’re fairly certain this won’t last forever. We don’t know where the Air Force will send us next let alone if I’ll be able to make a full-time income there so we’re taking advantage of this DINK time that we have now.
We are able to live this way because we follow a budget. We aren’t able to frivolously buy things left and right. Here’s the thing though… This works great for us! By living this way we have learned that most things are really just that- WANTS. They are not necessary to live a joyful life. We’re at the point where we just want to focus on our home, surrounding ourselves with what and who brings us joy, and doing what we love. If we really think something will elevate our lives, we budget it in or save up our money until we can afford it.