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    Hello.
    Me and my partner are planning on moving in together, however as only one of us are currently working we would be living off £20,000. (And around £3,500 student loan, on too of the £20k)

    We live in the NW of England, so the cost of living is reasonable, relative to that down south.

    However, we also have a car to run (around £300 a month), and then would have to budget for food,bills, and rent ect.

    We are looking to spend between £500-£550 on rent per month.

    Are we being totally unrealistic here? Or is it possible for us to live off this wage reasonable?
    Would love to hear what other people are earning, and affording rent-wise. Any insight into other peoples wage vs outgoings and lifestyle would be great.

    Thanks in advance !
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    Have you had a benefits check-up to see if you're entitled to Working Tax Credits or any other kind of in-work benefits?

    Apart from that, it's do-abole, but it's a bit of a squeeze. Your take-home pay is about £1,400 a month on a salary of £20K. There are no student loan deductions because you're earning under the £21K threshold (or is there more to this, e.g is it a Plan 1 loan?)

    So, £1400, minus £550 rent, plus council tax of, say, £120 a month. Utilities could be another £50 a month, plus internet/phone etc I think your basis bills are going to easily be £800 per month. Add in the £300 for the car, and you're up to £1100 - leaving about £300 for everything else. So feasible. But not necessarily what I'd describe as 'comfortable'.

    You need really to do a proper income and expenditure breakdown - doesn't have to be a formal thing, just a list of your committed expenditure and income, so you can really see where you stand.

    Unfortunately, there's a lot of up-front costs involved in renting a house. You will need at least a month (and usually one-and-a-half month's) rent up front as deposit. Then there's referencing and application fees (soon, thankfully, to be banned) - this can cost several hundred pounds. Unless you have no furniture or possessions, there'll be a charge for moving your stuff (even if it's just hiring a van and doing it yourself), so all in all, you will need to set aside roughly £1000 for the entire moving in process (including the deposit).

    I don't want to sound like I"m trying to put you off, but I'm trying to be realistic for you.
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    It's possible with budgeting and money management. Any wastage or random fees such as car repairs etc. could throw you in a hole without savings or a second income
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    (Original post by Reality Check)
    Have you had a benefits check-up to see if you're entitled to Working Tax Credits or any other kind of in-work benefits?

    Apart from that, it's do-abole, but it's a bit of a squeeze. Your take-home pay is about £1,400 a month on a salary of £20K. There are no student loan deductions because you're earning under the £21K threshold (or is there more to this, e.g is it a Plan 1 loan?)

    So, £1400, minus £550 rent, plus council tax of, say, £120 a month. Utilities could be another £50 a month, plus internet/phone etc I think your basis bills are going to easily be £800 per month. Add in the £300 for the car, and you're up to £1100 - leaving about £300 for everything else. So feasible. But not necessarily what I'd describe as 'comfortable'.

    You need really to do a proper income and expenditure breakdown - doesn't have to be a formal thing, just a list of your committed expenditure and income, so you can really see where you stand.

    Unfortunately, there's a lot of up-front costs involved in renting a house. You will need at least a month (and usually one-and-a-half month's) rent up front as deposit. Then there's referencing and application fees (soon, thankfully, to be banned) - this can cost several hundred pounds. Unless you have no furniture or possessions, there'll be a charge for moving your stuff (even if it's just hiring a van and doing it yourself), so all in all, you will need to set aside roughly £1000 for the entire moving in process (including the deposit).

    I don't want to sound like I"m trying to put you off, but I'm trying to be realistic for you.
    Thanks for such a detailed reply, really appreciate your honest insight.

    We have savings for upfront rental costs (but the ban you mentioned sounds interesting..!) and the first months deposit ect, and luckily we wouldnt have to pay to move our furniture, so it's just the montly cost of living we're concerned about really.

    We are also eligible for 25% council tax discount, so it would be no more than £90 a month (max.) but even so, it's still tight.

    I'm hoping that by renting a 2 bed flat, rather than a house, we'll bring the cost of our bills down a little, hopefully anyway..!

    It's definitely something we'll have to consider carefully, but a little outside insight is very useful.
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    (Original post by PippaStu)
    Thanks for such a detailed reply, really appreciate your honest insight.

    We have savings for upfront rental costs (but the ban you mentioned sounds interesting..!) and the first months deposit ect, and luckily we wouldnt have to pay to move our furniture, so it's just the montly cost of living we're concerned about really.

    We are also eligible for 25% council tax discount, so it would be no more than £90 a month (max.) but even so, it's still tight.

    I'm hoping that by renting a 2 bed flat, rather than a house, we'll bring the cost of our bills down a little, hopefully anyway..!

    It's definitely something we'll have to consider carefully, but a little outside insight is very useful.
    The ban on agency fees really should help you, though the exact date from which it will become effective has yet to be announced. You can read more about it here:

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-38065249

    I think you're right in suggesting that a 2-bed flat rather than a house is going to cut down somewhat on utility bills, and the 25% single person discount is going to help (is this because one of you is a full-time student?).

    I'm sure it's possible, but as I say I think you'll only know for sure once you've done a semi-detailed budget. Just let me know if I can help further
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    I pay that in rent and im on NMW. You will be absolutely fine. Can your partner not get a job alongside his studies if your worried?


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