I'm officially bound for new employment in Ann Arbor. I've been busy crunching numbers in regards to car insurance (for the new to us Saturn Vue we purchased last week), gas, car maintenance and employment benefits (life insurance/long term disability insurance). The major factor is a significant decrease in my salary. Starting in November my contribution to the household will be $36,000 per year. I'm planning to sign up for term life insurance that is 6 times my salary for $4.95/month plus they chip in for an additional $30,000. I'm also going to buy into a long term disability insurance policy for the first time. I'll be covered for 65% of my salary for 2 years for approximately $18/month. I feel pretty good about these additions to our insurance. I have some life insurance through GJS's employer but not enough to feel comfortable going forward without my own policy.
The more difficult to predict part of the new commute to Ann Arbor is how our automotive expenses will change. For now I'm planning on driving 30 miles to a park and ride lot and take a free commuter bus to central campus. I predict I'll need about $200/month for this arrangement in gas. Our car insurance will go up about $60/month, I think. I need to see if my understanding of our new policy meshes with the reality of dollars taken out of our account next month. Plus my great plan may be a flop. I may not be able to get to work on time due to traffic or no room in the lot or slow running buses. If that happens, I'm back to the drawing board with what makes the most sense to get to my desk by 7:45 a.m., five days a week.
The biggest plus to the new job is the blank slate feeling. I've been in the same position for over 11 years. I worry about the same people and the same situations that I faced when I was 22. I'm happy to be moving forward and facing new challenges. I'm hoping the new environment is as positive in reality as it seemed the two times I interviewed at the office. Good vibes and low stress (comparatively) were two reasons I took this job so I'll be bummed if that doesn't pan out.
And finally, I'm stoked to not have to pay Detroit city taxes anymore. It took me several years to stop feeling affronted in having to pay taxes to a government that afforded me with zero representation in governing decisions. But that's a rant for another time...