Expected Budget Changes from Moving

I’ve talked about the benefits to us moving in general, but what are the real budget changes we’re expecting once we move?  I know the first few months will be all over the map on how much we spend because we’ll still be settling in, fixing things in a new house, etc.  But I have a pretty good idea of how much extra we’ll be saving.  This isn’t all of our budget, but the items I think will be changing.  The rest, like how much we spend on clothes or groceries might change a little, but not really drastically.    Our income isn’t changing significantly (I’m getting $2000 less per year – about $150/mth), and Dad’s is staying exactly the same.

Overall, we’ll be spending a little less in food and clothing purchases because of Pittsburgh/Allegheny county sales tax (0% clothes and basic food vs the 6% on clothes and 2.55% on food in VA).  We’ll also theoretically be paying less in income taxes,  VA has a 6% on Federal AGI tax, but PA taxes ~3% of all income (very few deductions), and 0.5-1% local income tax – depending on where we live.  We shelter a lot of income from the feds (and therefore VA), and it won’t be sheltered from PA income tax, so I don’t know how the raw numbers will work out. I don’t *think* we have enough sheltered to make up the 3% difference, but we might.

Bills that will go up:

VA PA Difference
Auto insurance 75 110 -35

Bills that will go down:

VA PA Difference
Mortgage (including property taxes & insurance) 2700 1700 1000
Daycare 1300 500 800

Just among those three things, we will be able to save an extra $1765 per month beyond what we’re saving now.

Definitely looking forward to seeing how all the expenses play out.  We are also likely to save more in fuel as I’m planning on taking the bus to work on a regular basis (and I get a free bus pass as a perk of employment, but I have to pay for a parking pass).  That’s a decision that hasn’t been made yet though, so we’ll see how it plays out.

We’re also going to have at least one month with no mortgage – just as part of the buying and selling process (and we’re living with my mom during that time).

Update July 21: I just found out that I’m also getting an $80 “communication allowance” per month to pay for cell and Internet service.  That’s about 90% of our entire family cell phone bill – an “extra” $80 per month 🙂

Have you ever made a significant move to lower your expenses?

12 thoughts on “Expected Budget Changes from Moving

    1. Mom Post author

      You moved more or less within the same city though didn’t you? I’m sure there are some differences based on the neighborhoods, but taxes, food costs, etc are likely to be the same.

      Reply
  1. plantingourpennies

    While lowering costs has never driven a move (though avoiding higher costs has stopped me from relocating), we did realize a pretty significant benefit when we moved to our current town in FL. While our spending is about the same, or maybe just a little less, our lifestyle inflated pretty dramatically (from 400 sqft apartments to home with pool in nice neighborhood, etc). All in all, it feels like a good decision.

    Reply
    1. Mom Post author

      We were planning on moving to a lower cost of living area closer to retirement anyway – but we were also expecting to have lower salaries to go along with that move, so we wouldn’t be able to save as much. We’re getting the best of both worlds right now, salaries from a high COLA, living in a lower COLA. Means we can save that much faster 🙂 Once we get settled and our bills and savings have evened out, I plan on updating our goals spreadsheet/page.

      Reply
  2. impersonalfinanceroboto

    That’s great that you’re going to be able to save so much money in just mortgage and child care! We’re moving to PA next summer from TN, and anticipate most of our expenses will go up, but so will our incomes. I haven’t done as detailed of a tax implication analysis as I need to though. I’m going to have to get on that one.

    Reply
    1. Mom Post author

      PA has some high taxes (especially property/school taxes). Ex: my mom lives in a 90k house on .25 acres and pays almost 8k in property taxes (she’s in Allegheny county). Right now in northern VA, we have a 550k house on .25 acres and we pay a little over 5k in property taxes. I don’t know how it compares to TN though. Pittsburgh is a much lower cost of living area than the DC metro area – yet, we’re getting to keep our DC level salaries (and we’re going to take advantage of that while we can!).

      Reply
  3. femmefrugality

    Ahhh welcome (back?) to Pittsburgh! Township taxes are usually pretty low, but city residents pay a whopping 3%. We used to only pay 1% ish for state, but that changed in 2013. Cost of living is pretty amazing here, though! 7% sales tax in Allegheny, other than the statewide basic clothes and food you mentioned. But Beaver and Butler counties were only 6% last time I checked…the real reason to move to those counties is the real estate tax, though.

    Reply
    1. Mom Post author

      I only lived there (in Squirrel Hill) for two years while I was in grad school, but my parents are from McKeesport. In fact, we’ll be living with my mom in McKeesport until our house here in NoVA sells and we buy a place up there. We’re looking in the North Allegheny school district, but I think Beaver and Butler are too far north for us to live! (But we can certainly drive to Cranberry to go shopping!)

      Reply
      1. femmefrugality

        If you’re looking at the North Hills, North Allegheny, Hampton and Pine Richland are the best for sure. I have the same problem with Butler and Beaver! Cranberry had blown up in the past decade… retail overload!

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  4. donebyforty

    I didn’t realize (or forgot!) that you were moving to Pittsburgh! I grew up in the South Hills, and miss it terribly. So jealous! And happy for you guys, too. It’s a good place to live and raise a kid.

    Reply
    1. Mom Post author

      It’s gotten a lot better than the depressed area it used to be. I haven’t spent too much time in the South Hills, just driven through. We’re mostly looking up in North Allegheny – don’t want to have to go through a tunnel to get to work – and the Liberty tube southbound was closed this past weekend – not my idea of a good time!

      Reply

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