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Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

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Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

https://www.gobankingrates.com/saving-money/budgeting/how-much-average-american-spends-daily/

 

Interesting to me anyway, didn't see how it broke down whether by individual or if this was by household, I was about $3 below daily spending for my age slice, haven't yet dug into the numbers to see where I'm tracking though I know my housing expense is higher than their average for me.

 

Also didn't see a category for auto payment for example in some of their listed data.




        
Message 1 of 19
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Moderator Emeritus

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

Very interesting! Note that my spending is considerably less than what the information shows. Wonder as their spending seems high to me?
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Message 2 of 19
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)


@Dinosaur wrote:
Very interesting! Note that my spending is considerably less than what the information shows. Wonder as their spending seems high to me?

Averages skew badly to be fair.  For example my current expense profile after truing it up comes to 185.1 daily (total monthly expenses / 30) vs 189.13 in the article, at age 43 single / Los Angeles owner.  There are plenty of places to reduce spending too in my life for that matter.

 

That said I'm pretty sure it's household now looking at the numbers though I too am a little skeptical of their total line given it's nearly 2k / month off the list expenses ~3800 vs ~5674; however, a lot of things may not be listed too like I suspect a bunch of Americans have an auto payment, even more have vehicle registration fees, and homeowners have property taxes and insurance too among other non-trivial expenses.  Napkin math calculation vs. my own budget to get a flavor of a more complete calculation than what they show, presumably a state with more extreme weather than SoCal too looking at their utility line.

 

Monthly ExpensesAmountNotesArticle Avg
Mortgage1818Monthly1174.8
HOA482MonthlyInc. Housing
Auto869Monthly0
Cell (Phone&Watch)80Monthly118.2
Internet50MonthlyEntertainment
Electricity100Monthly347.4
Gas (Stove)6MonthlyInc. Utilities
Home Insurance30AmortizedInc. Housing
Auto Insurance90Amortized78.6
Property Tax400AmortizedInc. Housing
Car Registration57Amortized0
Amazon Prime10AmortizedEntertainment
CC Fees40Amortized0
Charity10Amortized129.9
Economist11AmortizedEntertainment
Netflix10Monthly328.8
    
Total Semi-Fixed4063  
    
Food600 770.7
Slush Fund500Other listed846.6
Work Expenses400 0
    
TOTAL5563currently3795



        
Message 3 of 19
New Contributor

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

I find this an interesting comparison. Thanks for sharing!

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Message 4 of 19
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

Revelate ... household would make the numbers more real in my mind. For many years I have spent around $78.93 a day as a single person ($78.93 per day spend x 365 days a year = $28,809.45 per year). Using my budget in a format similar to yours (not leaving anything out - except a slush fund). When you pull up Baby Boomers older for a $135.73 a day (365 days times $135.73 = $49,541.45). I ask how a single widow or widower can average $49,541.45 a year. Do NOT believe it! In my readings over the last many years the number is too high as many people do not have much beyond their Social Security Benefits. The average Social Security monthly payments for 2017 is reported at $1,372 a month which seems high (depending on what the reporting sources are) but, anyways ... then you need to deduct $135.50 for Medicare Part B leaving a net = $1,236.50 monthly Social Security payment.

 

For myself, I usually lived on one pay check a month and the other checks(s) are do whatever I want to money but, certainly not everyone can do that (income with retirement set asides was in the six figures annually). Will add that where a person lives geographically will affect monthly expenses greatly as you have shown living in southern California (sister lives in the New Port Beach area and it ain't cheap).

 

True confession is that I live near the edge of civilization and the cost of living for housing (House Payment $582, Auto $311, Property Taxes $70, Auto Ins $90, Property Ins $65 for a single family residence) and are lower than some areas of the country. However, I still stick to the fact that Baby Boomers do not have the resources to support the $49K reported as an annual expense or $135 a day total. Smiley Surprised This was a good read and I am glad you found it and brough it to us for consideration. Sure have me thinking on the subject!

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Message 5 of 19
Community Leader
Valued Contributor

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

Hmm that’s really interesting. I’m a Gen Z-er (I know—ick lol)and my spending isn’t quite that high even when you average everything out. Although I do spend a lot on my dog because he’s the love of my life.  Lol 

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Message 6 of 19
Senior Contributor

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)


@Revelate wrote:

@Dinosaur wrote:
Very interesting! Note that my spending is considerably less than what the information shows. Wonder as their spending seems high to me?

Averages skew badly to be fair.  For example my current expense profile after truing it up comes to 185.1 daily (total monthly expenses / 30) vs 189.13 in the article, at age 43 single / Los Angeles owner.  There are plenty of places to reduce spending too in my life for that matter.

 

That said I'm pretty sure it's household now looking at the numbers though I too am a little skeptical of their total line given it's nearly 2k / month off the list expenses ~3800 vs ~5674; however, a lot of things may not be listed too like I suspect a bunch of Americans have an auto payment, even more have vehicle registration fees, and homeowners have property taxes and insurance too among other non-trivial expenses.  Napkin math calculation vs. my own budget to get a flavor of a more complete calculation than what they show, presumably a state with more extreme weather than SoCal too looking at their utility line.

 


It's not clear from the article whether daily spend is individual or household. As "young" baby boomers with a sizeable monthly mortgage payment (15 year loan), DW and I are spending around $6500/month - about $1000 over average. The published spend levels appear overstated for an individual but, seem reasonable for a household. [$178/day = $5414/month = $64970/year]

 

Looking forward to mortgage payoff 10/2020 and being debt free.

 

Daily spend.jpg

The above graph taken from article : https://www.gobankingrates.com/saving-money/budgeting/how-much-average-american-spends-daily/

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Message 7 of 19
Moderator Emeritus

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

Yeah TT, true enough about dramatically reducing expenses by just not having an auto or home payment.

 

There's an outside chance I pick up yet another gig (I don't even know what to call it anymore, two full time gigs and a side hustle?) for a month or two at a place nobody wants to work for so they're throwing money for talent and willing to deal with the awkward schedule too for modernizing a small piece of their network.

 

I can do that... and at the rates that are being floated around even a month after taxes would take a serious dent out of my auto loan.

 

The problem I have with it financially is the auto loan is at 3.85% and the mortgage is at 3.25%, and I'm not sure we're ever going to get similar again in our lifetimes though I don't expect we're going to see 20% APR's ever again either.  Also the market, I know we've talked about timing but I didn't sell prior to the December collapse but I'm up more than 35% since then... the graph is just at a an absurd angle over the last 90 days.  

 

As a result there just seems to be better things I can do with the money, and while the debt is annoying and spending 5.5k a month just seems expensive to my admittedly middle class sensibilities, I'm having a hard time wrapping my head around trying to materially reduce the biggest portion of my expenses which is my debt payments.

 

Maybe that'll come if I just up and move out of Cali: more and more places seem to not care where you live as long as you come when they call (in just the past few days I've received two emails for 50% onsite 50% remote in massive metropolitan areas like Atlanta and Boston) and I never ever saw that previously so it's clear things are shifting at least in my industry and if I'm working 2-3 gigs it's not like I have time for a social life anyway and I can deal with worse weather... so Cali why?




        
Message 8 of 19
Senior Contributor

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

Just think if you had sold and bought back in after the drop.

 

I think the market is softening and another pull back is likely. Supposedly the Fed won't be raising rates any further. I would not expect loan rates to increase much, if any, near/mid term. I might sell some funds and put them in ladder CDs or municipal bonds in preparation for retirement late this year. Our medical & car insurance costs will drop some after DD finishes grad school in May and starts her career as a PA.

 

BTW: I lived in Atlanta from 1986 to 1997. Nice city back then but, it is too congested and has too much smog these days for my taste. 

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Message 9 of 19
Community Leader
Super Contributor

Re: Average Spending by Americans (data based on age and expense category)

mmmm, thats an interesting article! I may spend $10 one day, and $400 the next (that day was an exception as a Target run, and needed everything, lol).

My average "daily" spend is much less than my group, probably because I don't have that kind of extra money just lying around.

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Message 10 of 19
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