Len and Leslie Marma's Blog
Americans spend a little more than 25 minutes a day commuting to work. Add in the time that it takes to get home and Americans are spending nearly an hour a day getting to and from work. To improve your commute, you could join city transportation committees and push for roadway upgrades and public transportation expansion. But, it takes time to see the results of those efforts.
Measurable big city residence savings
Moving into a house in a big city is a quicker path to a shorter work commute. Time and auto maintenance savings aren't the only ways that you can save money if you move to a big city. Other money savings that you could enjoy after you take up residence in a big city are:
- Auto expenses - It's not just auto maintenance costs that you can save if you rent or buy a house in a big city. You can forego a car in many big cities. Instead of paying monthly auto payments and auto insurance, you can pocket that money. You can also use the money to build your savings.
- College tuition - Respected colleges and universities are located in major towns. As a big city dweller, you can save on college tuition, because you'll qualify for the lower in-state tuition rates.
- Thrift shops and consignment stores - Forget shopping at upscale stores, designer shops and malls. Take advantage of lower prices at thrift shops and consignment stores.
- Roommates - Split the cost of renting an apartment or renting a house in a big city. Take in a reliable and a safe roommate. College students living in a big cities regularly take advantage of this housing savings.
- Exterior house costs - Yards are often smaller in big cities. Save on yard equipment if you take up residence in a big city. For example, you can save on fertilizer, snow blowers and hedge cutters.
- Higher paying jobs - Fortune 500 companies are often headquartered in big cities. You could earn thousands more a year if you work in a big city.
- Work from home - Open a home business. Reserve space at a temporary office to conduct meetings with potential clients. Attend networking and social events in the city to find new clients. There are plenty of opportunities to network with financially successful prospects in big cities.
Don't rule out moving to a big city during your house search. Ask colleagues, friends and relatives to recommend realtors that charge reasonable commissions. You could also try out big city living by closing on a rent-to-own home. Try to get it written into your rent-to-own contract that you'll be refunded a certain portion of your rent should you decide not to buy the house. Also, put the price you agree to pay for the house, should you decide to buy, into the written contract.
Continue to save for a down payment while you rent. Another thing to do if you rent,instead of buy a house, in a big city is to take actions that strengthen your credit. Do this and not only can you save by living in a big city, you'll position yourself for greater savings when you do buy a house.