So, about a year ago my husband quit his 9-5 office job to become a paramedic. Knowingly, we cut our income in half but it would be ok. So my hub works 2 jobs, I work a bit as well...we should be ok...if the economy had stayed stable.
I took a look at things. In the past few years....our power/gas, water, garbage, property taxes, dr visit and prescription co-pays, and, of course, gas have gone up significantly. Most of them by at least 25% if not 50%. Food prices have gone up as well...but oddly we haven't seen a huge change in our grocery bills (I think the diaper money just got reabsorbed).
I've said it before, even if my hub would have stayed full-time at the university, his salary would not have gone up 25% to make up for the inflation. How are people paying the bills? I am extremely good with money and budgeting plus I keep money for emergencies, etc. I would rather be able to pay for our expenses directly from our income but that isn't possible. But so many people live paycheck to paycheck...and on credit cards. People will paying off the past few years for the next 20.
And now you hear that major corporations are suffering too...the car industry is in trouble, the airlines are making travel ridiculous, the housing/building market....and the cost of last months weather has been devastating not only individuals and families but towns' economies.
The current economy is frightening. I've written my governmental representatives but what can they do? (Not to mention my senator has been pretty busy the past year...remember us in Illinois?? the ones you are supposed to be representing?)