New “Low Income” in King County

By Mrs. Song Finance

New low income

There was an article published recently that $72,000 is now considered “low income” where I live (King County) for a family of four. Compare that to last year, when the low-income limit was $69,300.

Those are some surprisingly high numbers, especially when the median household income in U.S. was only $56,516 (according to 2015 data from the U.S. Census Bureau).

But median income in Seattle has been rising at a rate faster than any other major U.S. city. The current median household income in King and Snohomish counties is $96,000. Part of the reason is due to creation of a lot of high-paying new jobs by tech companies. The other not-nicer-part is low income people are being pushed out due to higher living costs.

Since the number stated is the median income, it means half of the households in King County earn higher, half earn lower. Not everyone is benefiting from the massively increased income, and people who are falling in the lower half may be finding it hard to make ends meet.

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FY 2017: 1st Quarter Expense Report

By Mrs. Song Reports

2017 1st quarter expenses

I want to start off by saying, we’re by no means frugal. We’re trying to cut down expenses, but as you might see we have quite a ways to go.

Since I’ve been reading many different financial blogs, I definitely feel the numbers I’m about to put here feels like a mega outlier. I debated whether I should do this at all. But I’m going to because these are the real numbers, and the blog is as much for our own sake as for our readers to get another data point.

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Goals for 2017

By Mrs. Song Goals

Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss you'll land among the stars.

It’s not the beginning of the year anymore, but I say it’s never too late to set goals. Goals can help us reach our highest potential and motivate us to go that extra mile.

And as Norman Vincent Peale once said, “Shoot for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll land among the stars.”

I like the saying a lot, and I take it as an encouragement in that even if I don’t succeed in a goal this year, I am at least getting myself closer to achieving that goal.

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Europe Trip Booked!

By Mrs. Song Travel

Europe Travel

Yes, we did! We’re flying to Europe for 2 weeks.

$1,622 per person for flight, accommodation, and transportation.

I’ve been dreaming about going to Europe since I was in high school. Unfortunately as a student you don’t really have much money, and my parents were pretty protective of me so solo backpacking on a budget was not an option.

Between school happening and life happening, we finally said it’s now or not until a long time later, especially if we were to have kids in the near future.

It’s a lot shorter than I wanted since Mr. Song doesn’t get a lot of flexible vacation days in a year, but it’s probably for the best as it helps keep our expenses at a modest level.

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How Not To Splurge At IKEA

By Mrs. Song Life

IKEA Cafeteria Line

IKEA Renton opened its newly renovated two-story store back in February. We’ve been wanting one of those VIDGA curtain panel to cover our laundry nook, so we planned a trip to check it out last weekend.

We made the newbie mistake of underestimating the power of IKEA. The weather was great, hence many families and shoppers were out. Coupled by the fact that IKEA was still in midst of constructing a new parking lot, parking was a NIGHTMARE. We had to park in the overflow parking lot. Shuttle service was provided but we chose to walk.

If you can, definitely try to go during weekday work hours, or weekend right before store opens.

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