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cost of living?

Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
OK, I'm moving out in a couple of weeks (hopefully!) and sharing a house with 4 other people. Rent is £40 a week, however it is dawning on me that I haven't a clue how much it costs to stay alive. My mam will be buying some of my food but I will get the majority I would think, and I will also need to put money towards the gas and electric - we are using the top up card system. Then there'll be other stuff like council tax, water rates. How much can I expect to pay for all of these things? Particularly the gas and electric?

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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Council tax where i live is about £85 a month, we don't have gas & electric is about £10 a week.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    gas is about a fiver a week, electric is a bit over that, maybe £7. food it all depends if you want to buy good stuff or not. At asda on cheap stuff I got by with £15 shopping a fortnight. Water I don't pay, it's inclusive in the rent. my rent at full is £66 a week but it's furnished so it's about £20 more expensive than it should be, which is why I want a transfer, but it is a two bedroom flat, so i suppose £33 each a week is cheap.


    edited to say: I'm on income support so I don't pay council tax, and my rent is like £7 a week.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I notice you're from Sunderland (me too, hello!)... where are you moving to?
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I am! You live in Washington, right? I am moving, lol, less than 5 minutes away from my current (parents) house. I will literally be able to run home if the bathroom is busy or anything. And it's Eden Vale type area :)
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by dominatrix
    I am! You live in Washington, right? I am moving, lol, less than 5 minutes away from my current (parents) house. I will literally be able to run home if the bathroom is busy or anything. And it's Eden Vale type area :)

    I do live in Washington, yes. :)

    I would love to move out and only live a few minutes away, you've struck lucky there m'dear!
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by J
    I was paying £500-450 a month for a room in a house with bills and food (including internet access) - The joy of living near London eh?

    Blimey!!! Hope you had a big room :-S
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    if you have gas/electric on a card system you have less bills to face as you are pay as you go.
    food ...cheap crap food is cheap crap food.
    good quality food can be even cheaper than crap ...if you know what to look for ...where to look for it ...and how to cook.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by morrocan roll
    food ...cheap crap food is cheap crap food.
    good quality food can be even cheaper than crap ...if you know what to look for ...where to look for it ...and how to cook.
    :yes: avoiding fast food saves so much money!
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Re: cost of living?
    Originally posted by dominatrix
    How much can I expect to pay for all of these things? Particularly the gas and electric?

    depends how much gas and electric you use.

    might find yourself getting a bit mental about switching all the lights off to save on the electricity, or only putting the heating on for an hour a day in the middle of winter to save on gas. sigh. the student life. how i will (not) miss it.

    and don't forget water bills. i believe yorkshire water are still chasing us with an outstanding £500 bill.

    also remember the hidden extras that you never think of - stuff like disinfectant, washing powder, bin bags, washing up liquid. house insurance? might want that in a shared house. can be some dodgy dealings.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Key card meter is the most expensive way to buy gas/electric. Its over 30% more expensive than having bills sent to you. Although there is the advantage that you don't get any surprises through the post.

    How come your rent is so damn cheap?!
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by barbie
    Key card meter is the most expensive way to buy gas/electric. Its over 30% more expensive than having bills sent to you. Although there is the advantage that you don't get any surprises through the post.

    Well it can't be that bad, we use £10 a week if that & we are ALL electric.
    Believe me the washing machine never stops so i don't think its bad. Plus no bill is great. :D.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    chaos_insomniac; You lived on £15 worth of food for two weeks?!

    When I lived by myself I used to spend at least £30 a week and now between me and my mrs we usualy spend about 80 a week.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by bongbudda
    When I lived by myself I used to spend at least £30 a week and now between me and my mrs we usualy spend about 80 a week.

    Where do you shop?:eek:
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Waitrose, I like good food.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by bongbudda
    Waitrose, I like good food.

    We normally spend £20-30 a week. We can't afford to spend more. Thats two of us & a baby whos now on solids!
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blimey, that makes it sound like I have some sort of super opulant life style, but I dont think I do.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by bongbudda
    chaos_insomniac; You lived on £15 worth of food for two weeks?!

    he forgot to add that he shoplifts the other thirty quids worth.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by barbie
    Key card meter is the most expensive way to buy gas/electric. Its over 30% more expensive than having bills sent to you. Although there is the advantage that you don't get any surprises through the post.

    How come your rent is so damn cheap?!

    Well... there's 5 of us @ 40 a week, which is 820 a month (hopefully, or I'm gonna look dumb), not including bills or anything, so it's not really cheap, just there's a lot of us :) It is a nice house though, lovely garden, converted loft.

    Thanks for everyone's help, got a bit of an idea now :)
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    As a student, I currently have been paying £69 a week self-catering in uni accommodation including electricity & water (no gas in the house). On top of that I have to pay my internet access (set fee £50 for the year) and food (about £20-£30 a week).

    Next year I'm in a house, £52 a week inc. water. Hoping not to pay more than £2 a week gas, £2 a week elec, £2 a week broadband and £2 a week phone line rental. No council tax cos we're students.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Kath2003
    Next year I'm in a house, £52 a week inc. water. Hoping not to pay more than £2 a week gas, £2 a week elec, £2 a week broadband and £2 a week phone line rental. No council tax cos we're students.

    Ah, now see... I'm a uni student, one of the others will be starting college in September I think, and the others work full time. So I'm not too sure how that works out re council tax :confused:
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by dominatrix
    Ah, now see... I'm a uni student, one of the others will be starting college in September I think, and the others work full time. So I'm not too sure how that works out re council tax :confused:

    only students are exempt. the people who work will have to cough up. and you students will have to prove your student-ness.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    And if you live in a couple one of whom is a student and the other works then you get a 25% discount.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    I've always found, as a rule of thumb, that if you allow £40-50 per week for bills (gas, electricity, phone, etc), plus council tax and rent.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    £40/week rent is about the going rate for places like Washington and Sunderland. I paid £39/week in Durham for my house.

    I'm paying about £55/week for my flat now, and it is a very good flat in a nice part of town.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    But to answer your question:

    utility bills will come to about £30/week, all in.
    You are exempt from council tax if everyone at the property is a student; there are reductions depending on how many people there are who are students compared to thsoe who are not.

    If you shop well you can live on about £15/week on food, providing you know what to shop for and how to cook. 6 chicken thighs from tesco are £2.80, and they will do 6 meals. Add in veg and carbs and you are looking about £1.50 per main meal. Cheap bread and cheap beans, or tuna and mayo, will do for lunch.

    You will just have to get used to eating boring food. But even eating extravagantly I do wonder how anyone can spend more than £20/week on food.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by Kermit
    £40/week rent is about the going rate for places like Washington and Sunderland. I paid £39/week in Durham for my house.

    I'm paying about £55/week for my flat now, and it is a very good flat in a nice part of town.

    I used to pay £90 a week for a bedsit in Southampton in 1989, and that was the going rate then!! Fortunately for me I didn't have to pay gas or electric cause I wouldn't have been able to afford it. Two of us used to eat for £15 a week, bearing in mind there was no smartprice/value stuff then. A loaf of bread used to cost about 60p on AVERAGE and a tin of beans was 29p.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Blimey, I guess it sounds like I live on smoked salmon and such. I cant imagine living on less than £30 of food a week.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Originally posted by bongbudda
    Blimey, I guess it sounds like I live on smoked salmon and such. I cant imagine living on less than £30 of food a week.

    Well no, not really. Who wouldn't eat well if they could afford to? And Waitrose is expensive, even if it IS good. Back in my bedsit days I used to buy one loaf of bread a week, as a treat, lol and we used to eat one meal a day of vegetable stew and spaghetti. :/ I tell you what though, I was disgustingly healthy, even if there wasn't much (any) variety!

    One time I was invited to dinner by someone I knew vaguely who was a lecturer in health and nutrition. Guess what we had....yeah, you guessed it, exactly what I ate every day only with a bit of chicken chucked in too!! I still wonder in idle moments if she thought all bedsit dwellers lived on tinned pies.
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    Former MemberFormer Member Posts: 1,876,323 The Mix Honorary Guru
    Coming from landed gentry as myself one gets used to the finer things.
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