Sidebar: Today was the last day of sumer school. I now have two weeks of vacation time. Thank. Goodness.
The expression “living paycheck-to-paycheck” is thrown around a lot, but I’ve started to find that this term means different things to different people. It seems to me that a lot of people think it means that all of the money someone makes is eaten up by expenses, and before the next paycheck comes there’s little or nothing left from the one before. I can basically agree with this definition, but it can get a little fuzzy. I guess I live paycheck-to-paycheck in the sense that a few days before my pay comes in there is little or nothing left from the one before. But to me “expenses” includes savings and extra payments on debts. So am I really living paycheck-to- paycheck? If I didn’t save and make extra payments on debts, I would have a lot more left over when the next paycheck rolled in. But that would be financially irresponsible. I budget my money down to the dollar, and my budget includes savings and extra payments on debts. I think the fact that I don’t have a lot of money left before my next paycheck comes in is a sign that I’m budgeting carefully.
I guess I would define a person who is “living paycheck-to-paycheck” as someone whose fixed expenses eat up almost all of his or her pay and he or she saves very little or nothing at all. This could be because that person’s debts are high, his or her income is low, he or she is overspending, or some combination of those factors.
What do you think “living paycheck-to-paycheck” means?