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Summer Budgeting

June 8, 2011

T negotiated his summer hourly rate from the initial offer, and increased it by over 50%!  Isn’t that wild? (Note:  I originally said 150%.  What I mean is, say his salary was originally $10, it is now > $15.  It is 150% more, but just a 50% increase.)

Granted, the first offer was pretty extreme low-balling.  I made roughly that much (+ benefits) with just a BS and 18 months experience when I moved here.  He almost has his PhD & has had some industry experience.  (We are in similar enough fields that the comparison makes sense.)  The HR lady who put it together didn’t have accurate information on his qualifications, as he was hired resume unseen based on a research talk he gave awhile back.

No benefits, but it is a regular payroll position, so he isn’t responsible for the costs of the employer portion of social security or anything.  No paid vacation, no medical, no 401k…   (My company likes to remind me how that is a portion of my salary, but they haven’t even updated the data in well over a year – probably because then we’d all CLEARLY see that they are paying less in benefits!)

Most importantly, he’ll have another taste of pure industry work, and this will help him get perspective on what he wants to do when he graduates.

Anyway – I’m super proud of him.  And we’ll be able to save so much this summer!  YES!  He wouldn’t let me disclose his actual salary, but if he were to work all year, it would be close to $115k.  You do the math, I guess.  (He’s only working 3 months, so it will be a small fraction on that.  Plus we are taking 2 weeks vacation in August.)   I’m not going to lie, I’m dying to make a new budget!

We discussed what to do with it.  His mom told him to be sure to put some away for retirement, and he was happy to tell her we already max out our retirement accounts, including my 401k.  We think he’ll have an option for a 401k through his work (no match), but since we are still unclear on what he’s doing next year, we’ll probably focus on cash.  We’ll see.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. June 8, 2011 8:44 am

    Congrats! An increase of 150% is huge even if he was initially low-balled.

    I’d say focus on cash savings and don’t worry too much if he doesn’t have access to the company’s 401k. Those extra cash reserves can provide some desperately needed peace of mind in case something goes wrong in his job search later. Hopefully everything will go smoothly, he’ll get an even better paying and rewarding job, and you’ll be left with a nice chunk of change to put towards other goals or investments in a year from now.

  2. June 11, 2011 2:25 pm

    I’ll leave a random reply here.. : D

    Thanks so much for your nice comment on “An unhurried life”! And no, it isn’t totally shallow to ask about the shoes — good shoes are hard to find! They are suede ballet flats from J. Crew. They’re the best, most comfortable basic ballet flat I’ve ever found, but I bought them about a year-and-a-half ago and J. Crew no longer carries them. I used to work there, though, and J. Crew generally has the best, cutest ballet flats out there. They’re like $98 to $150, but I have pairs that have lasted 2-3 years. Worth it!

    Great blog you have here! I, too, love Passive Aggressive Notes. : D

  3. June 12, 2011 11:37 pm

    Woohoo! Go T! That’s amazing he was able to make so much more. Yay for summer savings!

  4. spiffikins permalink
    June 13, 2011 11:30 pm


    on the retirement side – maxing out your 401k is awesome, but personally, I also have other retirement investments, outside of my 401k – I don’t think the 401k is going to be enough

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