This website, as you all know is about trying to live a more sustainable life. I try to offer tips to sustain your finances by telling stories of lessons that I have learned (typically the hard way) and ways to save money. From personal experience, I can say that once your finances are in a sustainable position, you’ll feel a lot better about the way that things are going for you. Along with finances, I tie in tips for how to get healthy and how to go easy on the environment (if you’re into those things, if not, there’s probably a better place online for you).
When I was in school, I was able to walk everywhere, I got so used to it that I didnt even own a car for almost 6 years! It was an awesome time, and considering that I spend almost 1/3rd of my income per month on my car, I know that part of the reason that I enjoyed those years was because I could use that money elsewhere. When I did get a job, along with it came a 100 mile per day commute. Then my old car died and I needed a new one. After so much trouble with the old one, I just wanted something that wouldn’t be in the shop all the time. I was tired of all the repairs, so I made the decision to double down on my debt and buy a new vehicle. Even though this is against my premise of getting rid of debt, I think most of you readers understood where I was coming from, if you didn’t agree with me.
Where I really incensed readers (I think) is with my choice of vehicle . I knew how much I drove everyday, and yet I still got a vehicle that’s not all that great when it comes to gas mileage. Lots of people have said in comments (even my fellow blogging budddies Mr & Mrs SPF) that I should have chose something that got better gas mileage and was more sustainable. I know that they made good points, and I knew that when I did it, it was going against the whole premise of the blog. From reading finances blogs so often, I changed my view of money – and this was probably one of the first times where I used my coin to help advance (or work toward) my life goals. I was glad I did it then, and I’m still glad now.
The reason that I’m going over all this is because there’s been quite a few changes in my life recently, and this plays into them quite a bit. After countless 60+ hour weeks with me driving ~800 miles per week, it has changed. I’ve driven almost 45,000 miles since I bought the truck in December 2009, and now I can finally walk the walk – literally.
As you know from mondays post, I have secured new employment (I start next monday) – I’ll now be working 1 job that is in my home city. Not only that, I can walk to work! No more driving (except to the gym), and I can save money on gas too! That’s an extra $400 dollars per month I can pay towards my debt. That’s not counting the recent price increases that we’ve seen – the $400 per month was based on gas at $2.50 – $2.60, not $3.00 – $3.15 where it’s hovering now.
I can now walk to work, and continue working on my 2011 goals – though I probably wont be making extra progress because my monthly take home will probably be the same. Where I will really gain is the commuting time (45-50 minutes to 5-10) and in the gas savings. I’m excited, and I know that this will help me live a more sustainable lifestyle. Im glad that I get a chance to “walk the walk” now.