I've been rather quiet lately -- there's a lot going on here. Specifically, I'm moving to a new apartment in the first week of August. I'm not looking forward to burning a week of vacation moving all my earthly possessions in the sweltering, 100-degree, 100% humidity Texas summer.
Part of preparedness means living within your means, and that sometimes involves making hard decisions. When you are looking at your budget, wondering what you can cut so that you can increase your savings or free up funds to purchase preps with, sometimes the only choice is to look at your "fixed" or "hard" expenses -- the ones that are not easily varied. For me, that meant acknowledging that my apartment, while once affordable for me, is not within my means at present.
The circumstances precipitating the move may be familiar to many of you. Last fall, I experienced a forced job change, and was on an involuntary vacation for two months while I lined up new (and much improved) employment. While the time off work was wonderful, it consumed nearly all my savings -- and when I did find a new job, the pay was 2/3 of my former salary.
Consequently, I opted not to renew my lease and found a less expensive place to live. It's slightly smaller but, I hope, not lacking in most of the amenities that I've grown used to. I should be able to save several hundred dollars a month on rent, and that will free me up to rebuild my savings and eliminate more debt. The move is also providing sufficient motivation for me to finally throw out, donate, or sell all those useless items that have been cluttering my home for years now.
So, as much as I hate the stress and disruption of moving, I hope that it will pay dividends both financially and preparedness-wise. If you find yourself contemplating similar decisions, know that you are not alone.