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Some New Possibilities (Employment)

December 14th, 2011 at 08:43 am

So, a lot of you know that I have been having trouble making time for studying to pass the Math COMPASS for college. Doesn't make sense, does it? A personal finance blogger not being great at math... Ha!

We have some recent semi-developments that may help to answer a few of our questions. My wife's uncle lives in Seattle and works as an Apartment Maintenance Supervisor. He makes a little over $20/hr and his rent is free. And he says that all supervisors' rent is free, no matter the company, as far as he has seen. He says to start from the bottom, you make around $12-13/hr, 40+ hrs/wk, and get about a 30% discount on rent. That may work for our situation. We may even be able to get off of food stamps (or may get forced off them). Anyways, he said he should know by as late as January if he has any openings that he could put me in.

It would take a few hundred dollars to move out there, but it would be worth it if it meant getting out of our current situation and still being able to keep up with our bills. As a recap, our expenses (including toiletries and what-not) now are 100% of our income, since taking the huge cut in income.

Also, my wife remembered that one of her father's cousins works in Corporate for Albertson's. That same cousin offered my wife's mother a job just a few months back. If she could get in there, it would be more than she is making now. She did learn, however, that her current employer is keeping her on after the holidays (that was a given) and that her work week would be at least 28 hrs/wk in the same area of the store (those were not a given). So, it would be a hard decision for her to make.

It is nice knowing that we may have some options, though. Working as a "maintenance man" is not exactly what I had in mind for my future, but there comes a point when you have to realize your possibilities vs your dreams. While I am still studying vigorously for the Math COMPASS, I am not ruling out other possibilities. If I were to become a supervisor in three years (like he and someone he'd trained did), we would have free rent and be making $38,000/yr. Factor in the $2,200/mo rent that his apartment goes for, and that's easily $64,000. That's pretty good, if you ask me. It would take a lot of hard work and dedication, however, especially for me. I have only worked three physical labour jobs (drywall taper assistant, plumbing apprentice, carpet cleaner), and only at one of those jobs did I actually learn something... Scratch that. Only at one of those jobs was I actually taught something.

I just want to be able to contribute to retirement, a college fund for the wee one, be able to afford one nice new-used car at a time, and help my wife attain her dream of owning a coffee shop. All doable if I were to stick with the apartment maintenance profession, considering I were to get it in the first place.

So, keep your fingers crossed for us. Prayers. Good vibes. Whatever ya got! Smile

10 Responses to “Some New Possibilities (Employment)”

  1. LuckyRobin Says:

    Just keep in mind that the cost of Seattle is very high and may not be comparable to where you live now. Food prices, partiuclarly, are high. Still, anything has got to better than the situation you are in now. It would be wonderful if this could work out for you and your little family.

  2. creditcardfree Says:

    Could you clarify: You would be living in a $2,200 apartment? At first it is a 30% discount and evenutally free?

    Good luck!

  3. Raleigh Says:

    Glad it sounds like things are looking up!

  4. Amber Says:

    I'm pretty good in math, its one of my favorite subjects. If you like you can shoot me an email with the math problem and I'll see if i can help. Remember with every negative there is a positive, as a maintenance worker you may be able to obtain a few clients on the side and slowly build up a business.
    And I too am happy things are looking up

  5. Frgal Says:

    @LuckyRobin -
    I have taken that into consideration. Most of our expenses do not depend on the geographical location. However, things like gas, food, and toiletries/household items do. But I know Seattle has a Target, so some of the items will be the same. Wink Seattle seems to be - overall, excluding rent/real estate - about 30% more expensive. It is actually par with NYC now! Yikes! I have yet to check out Washington's food stamps web site, but I think we would still qualify if I gross under $2,000/mo. Believe, I want off food stamps!

    @creditcardfree -
    No. He is a supervisor, so his rent is free. His apartment is normally $2,200/mo. We would get whatever is cheapest (though the choice would be ours), and rent would be anywhere from 20-35% discounted. You can also reside in an apartment complex outside of the one you work in if you are not a supervisor, and that may provide lower rent if you work in a higher-end complex. If my calculation are correct, we would probably be able to afford an $850/mo apartment. Depending on location and type of building/complex, that is either a studio or one bedroom. We would be happy with anything!

    @Raleigh -
    Hey, brother! Good to hear from you! (Read you? See you?) Can't wait for bicycling season to come back! Smile
    @Amber -
    That is very kind of you! Thanks so much! Smile However, out Physician Resident friend sent me the book, Practical Algebra: A Self-Teaching Guide. So far, it is going great! I am grasping it well. While I am not quite to where I have trouble with, I have been reminded of some things that I'd forgotten all about, which will most likely help me with the more advanced stuff. Smile
    Thank you all for the support!

  6. patientsaver Says:

    There is no shame in hard work, regardless of the avocation.

    OK, so i have to ask: at which of those physical labor jobs did you learn something, and what did you learn?

  7. Frgal Says:

    @patientsaver -
    I learned a lot about myself throughout all of the jobs I've had. Mostly, that I can learn just about anything so long as I put the effort in to do so. I've cleaned carpets, sold "add-ons," cleaned out septic tanks, delivered car parts, etc. I can do just about anything.

    Working at Stanley Steemer was probably my favourite job to date. Unfortunately, I was neither good at sales at the time, nor was I making enough money to live off of once the dry season hit (winter). That job actually helped me come out of my shell quite a bit.

  8. Frgal Says:

    @Amber -
    Okay, so I don't know your email, and I think it would be rude of me to comment on your blog with an unrelated post. Ha. So, I have a math problem for you... Finally hit my wall of where I have been having trouble before.

    (x^2+xy+y^2)(x+y)

    The answer is x^3+2x^2y+2xy^2+y^3 but I've no idea how to do it. Well... I thought I did. For some reason, it's much hard for me where there are no real numbers used. The problem before this was easy:

    (3m+1)(4-m) = way easy. Answer was -3m^2+11m+4.

  9. Jerry Says:

    My best friend in college was an apartment manager for a company and it leads to a similar deal... it's nice to have some insurance of free rent and a paycheck! I hope something good works out for you on that front.
    Jerry

  10. Frgal Says:

    Thank you, Jerry. Smile
    I got that math problem figured out too.

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