I’m not going to kid you. Living 30 miles from everything has its share of challenges: Crazy long bus rides to school for the kids, involvement in extracurricular activities, hanging out with friends.
And I won’t even get started on what it can be like out in the woods during the winter when the roads are bad. (Have you seen The Shining?)
But I will say this: Living rural has some definite financial perks. I was reminded of this when I read Quick Tip: Save Money by Staying Home over at Finances Your Way.
“For us, not being able to run to the store for every little thing — or just because we’re bored and looking for something to do — is a quick and easy way to save money. And there are plenty of times that we talk ourselves out of making a trip “to town” because we know that just being out and about will mean spending money on gas and food plus the temptation to spend on a hundred other little things.”
Staying home is such a simple strategy for saving money. And for those of us who are rural dwellers, we can tell you it works!
We estimate that every trip to town costs us $5-$6. And if you don’t time it right, it could mean there is pressure to buy a snack or a meal out – another $10 to $40 for a family of 5. UGH. Not to mention the risk of impulse buys and if you accidently forget your coupons at home (gasp!)
When you live in the country, you’re forced to really think about what it is you really need. There is no such thing as a quick trip to the store.
You learn to make do with what you have and to make friends with your neighbors. You learn to carpool and to combine trips to save on gas. You get good at finding deals online so that you don’t even have to leave the house to get what you need.
We pay far less in property taxes than those who live in metro areas. We enjoy clean air and less crime. And who needs a gym membership when you have the whole great outdoors?
Sometimes living in the country is inconvenient. But most of the time, I wouldn’t trade it for the world.