Our NYC Budget Changes

Our NYC Budget Changes

We’re here in the city! Getting out here was a little hectic with all our luggage and a toddler and kitty in tow, but we survived! Sally slept the entire plane ride, and Persie… well, she meowed the entire time. But neither had any accidents, so we’ll still call it a win. The past few days have been chock full of unpacking, more unpacking, remembering to eat, and then unpacking some more. But this is the easy part… it was everything leading up to this that about had us going crazy. It was so incredible to finally sleep on our own bed again this week after two weeks without it.

While unpacking and breaking down cardboard boxes, Johnny and I have been discussing the changes our move to NYC will bring to our budget. Here are a few of the items that will change:

Rent: Uhh… yeah.

Transportation: Goodbye gasoline, hello public transportation! While we won’t have gas or auto insurance anymore, we will have a monthly subway pass, which will cost Johnny about $112. I don’t plan to get a monthly pass, but I’ll still be adding money to a subway card as I need it, so we’ll see how much that ends up costing. How often I ride the subway vs. walking places will be totally dependent on how confident I get with hauling a stroller and Sally down subway steps. 🙂

Cable: Cable and Internet are more pricey out here than they were in Utah, so we’ve decided to nix the cable and rely on Netflix, Hulu, etc., for our TV show watching needs. This was a tough decision to make since cable has always been splurge-worthy for us, but we’re trying to keep our expenses as comparable as possible to our costs in Utah. So it had to be done.

Food: Groceries are expensive out here. I went to grab milk for Sally two nights ago, and the *cheapest* gallon at the local grocery store was $5.30. Ack! Just like last time we lived out here, we plan to do most of our grocery shopping via grocery delivery. We plan to keep our grocery budget the same for December, but we may need to raise it if things end up costing more than we think. There’s a Costco about a 30-minute bus ride away that we plan to take full advantage of, too!

Insurance: We had to switch medical insurance (again!) when we moved out here. We’re still not sure how that will affect our monthly premium (which was covered by Johnny’s company before we moved), so we’ll keep you posted.

Medical: Our little bundle on the way is going to be a bit more pricey to birth in NYC than she would have been in Utah. (If you missed my Instagram announcement, we’re having another GIRL! Sally is thrilled, or possibly still clueless.) We’ve guesstimated the cost, and we think we’re looking at at least a $2k increase in our baby bill out here. Ouch! Luckily, my supplemental insurance will help to cover most of that, but it will still be more than we were planning!

We’ll do a detailed budget breakdown soon, once we have our exact costs in NYC nailed down a bit better. What would it take for you to consider moving yourself (and your budget) to a big city? We were convinced we’d never live in NYC again, and yet, here we are!

p.s. We should be back to our regular posts next week! Thanks for standing by and TGIF!

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  • Reply Laura December 5, 2014 at 7:38 am

    Congrats on the move! More pricey for sure, but NYC is one of my favourite places in the world! You’ll have so much fun with Sally and the new little one there!


    • Reply Joanna December 12, 2014 at 3:10 pm

      Thanks! Those are words I need to hear… with it being so cold right now, sometimes I forget what an amazing city we’ve moved to!

  • Reply Yvann December 5, 2014 at 7:52 am

    Wow – moving is always such a saga. Good luck; we’ll wait patiently for normal programming to resume!

    (also – it must have felt AMAZING to be back in your normal bed – I’m not sure you could have convinced me to sleep on a temporary bed at 20 weeks pregnant!)

    • Reply Joanna December 12, 2014 at 3:11 pm

      It was incredible to get our own bed back. I didn’t sleep well at all those two weeks. Thank goodness that part is over!

  • Reply Petrish @ Debt Free Martini December 5, 2014 at 8:57 am

    I was born and raised in New Jersey so I am very familiar with the New York life. Its not for everyone and very different from Utah, but there is so much to do there it is impossible to get bored. Have fun….and good luck with buying milk.

    • Reply Joanna December 12, 2014 at 3:11 pm

      Very different from Utah, that’s for sure! We’re hoping to make the most of it, and we’re especially excited for the weather to warm up a bit in a few months!

  • Reply Tarynkay December 5, 2014 at 9:29 am

    Question: Do you feel like it is easier to move as a Mormon? I feel like the hardest part of moving anywhere would be leaving behind our church/neighbors/family/friends. It seems like the LDS church is especially committed to providing this kind of community through very involved wards and such pretty much instantly that ordinarily takes years to build. But that is just my outsider perspective and maybe it is wildly inaccurate?

    • Reply Joanna December 12, 2014 at 3:14 pm

      No, I think you’re spot on. Having a support network through our church has been a huge help in making the transition to a new place easier. For Johnny and me, it wouldn’t be a big deal since we have each other, but it’s great knowing there’s a weekly play group for Sally and a familiar class for her at church. That’s been very helpful during this process!

  • Reply Little House December 5, 2014 at 9:36 am

    Wow! Sounds like it’s been a very hectic few weeks for your! And Yikes! on the cost of milk. Though NYC is expensive, there are so many great things to do there. My favorite FREE activity when I visit NYC is going to Central Park. I love that place.

    • Reply Joanna December 12, 2014 at 3:15 pm

      Central Park is my favorite place, too. It proves I’m really not a city girl that my first instinct is to go straight for the trees and ponds, haha. We’re excited to introduce Sally to all the sights out here!

  • Reply Lili December 5, 2014 at 10:54 am

    We moved to Boston about 5 months ago and the milk was a shock to me!! Glad your move was successful!

  • Reply Alysia @ Slim Sanity December 5, 2014 at 12:43 pm

    It was always a dream of mine to live in NYC. Never made it out there though (only a senior class trip), but I”m happy with Dallas! It’s actually a pretty affordable place to live…technically we’re in Plano 🙂 What is the reason for the grocery delivery? Just in NYC? I guess it’s hard to haul groceries without a car!

  • Reply Miranda December 5, 2014 at 4:34 pm

    I’ve always wondered if our expenses would net the same if we lived in a bigger city. Based on this it sounds like they wouldn’t. We’d probably save on transportation but lose on higher food costs. Real estate is a whole other story. =)

  • Reply Rob December 5, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    “What would it take for you to consider moving yourself (and your budget) to a big city?”

    Well guys, back in the day, when we moved from one big city (Montreal) to another big city (Toronto), as part of a Head Office move, we had to weigh the pros and cons. Incomes in both cities were comparable but expenses differed – Montreal housing was half the cost of Toronto housing, Toronto taxes and gas prices were lower however. Fortunately my employer at that time provided us with both tax-free moving and housing assistance which made it all possible. Hopefully Johnny’s employer is financially helping you guys so that your New York budget is overall not too drastically bottom-line different from your Utah budget.

  • Reply Kristin December 5, 2014 at 8:02 pm

    Yay for arriving in NYC in one piece (each)! It is an expensive area for sure, so I hope the employer is paying better, even relative to what it was in Utah! We’ve moved for jobs. For us the draw was a better job, bigger salary and benefits, a moving bonus, and PACKERS and MOVERS (never, ever want to do it ourselves again!) and for us they subsidized the loss on sale (35%, ouch) of our old house that we would have had trouble selling otherwise. We moved close to NYC, and the price of everything made me feel like I needed to carry a cheat sheet in my wallet to calculate the exchange rate! When you wrote your post about “how much is enough” to live comfortably/ideally, I was thinking of the vast difference in cost of living.

  • Reply 1MansMoney December 7, 2014 at 1:11 am

    Congrats on the move! We moved 3 years ago from the busy city we were in to a quieter area. Pros and cons to both and it really is what you make of it. Enjoy!

  • Reply Jayson @ Monster Piggy Bank December 8, 2014 at 6:40 am

    That’s a good decision to cut the Cable. I also did that months ago. Instead of paying our money to Cable, it just goes straight to savings. Netflix and others are really helpful to keep us updated with our all-time-favorite TV series.

  • Reply Rina December 9, 2014 at 1:10 pm

    Congrats on your move!! I have to ask why do you have to switch insurance if Johnny is with the same company, wouldn’t it still be the same? I have never had a company move me so I have no idea what that entails 🙂

    • Reply Joanna January 2, 2015 at 12:40 am

      Good question! We were with a local insurance company that only worked in Utah (boo!), so that’s why we had to make the switch. Normally, if we’d been with a national insurance company, we could have kept it the same.

  • Reply Angie December 9, 2014 at 7:05 pm

    My thoughts:

    1. SO HAPPY you’re here!
    2. There is an elevator at the 96th street 1/2/3 station! Possibly worth the 9 block walk.
    3. I live on the same line as you, and I do my grocery shopping at Fairway and Trader Joes, both off the 72nd street stop (where there is ALSO an elevator). Could be cheaper than fresh direct, just sayin.
    4. My milk secret is Rite Aid and CVS Pharmacy. Their milk is usually like 3.49 or 3.99 a gallon. And while we’re talking about CVS, they also have awesome cereal sales all the time. When I’m picking up milk I often grab a box of cereal or two for like $1.88 or $2.

    • Reply Joanna January 2, 2015 at 12:41 am

      I went to Trader Joe’s before Christmas, and it was a delight! I’ll have to try Fairway, too. And fun fact I learned at Trader Joe’s: their milk is only $4.00 a gallon. Hooray! Never thought I’d be cheering about $4/gallon milk!

  • Reply Angie December 9, 2014 at 7:19 pm

    Oh and there’s an elevator inside TJ’s. And your stroller is basically a shopping cart with a kid on top. I’M JUST SAYING. Haha also know that I won’t judge you AT ALL for ordering groceries. I will probably be doing it five months from now. 😉 I should do some price comparing, I haven’t checked in probably four years, but I always assumed ordering costs way more.

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