We're just barely starting the process of extricating our selves from an underwater house. Haven't even missed a payment yet. Anyway, that's a topic for another thread. However, I'm already looking ahead to the future when we're in the new place. I expect my future rent to be the same or perhaps up to $300 cheaper than my current mortgage. (You know, depending on size, quality of apartment, quality of neighborhood, etc.) The main reason we're moving is to cut commuting costs. Right now we buy slightly less than 100 gallons of gas a month for hubby to commute to work. So, gas is $4.25, we're paying over $400 in gas costs. Not to mention we get an oil change nearly once a month and the major 30,000 mile service every 15 months or so. The plan is to move someplace where he could get to work on his feet or the bus, so a car dying won't kill us. (I already use the bus or my feet to get where I'm going most days.)
Ultimately I'm hoping to get our "fixed costs"--the things we have to pay no matter what, down to half his income or less. We have no credit card debt, but we do have $25,000ish left on his student loans, super-uck!! We also insist on taking a vacation every year, that is non-negotiable. (Though we do attempt to do it on the cheap!)
As you've had this chance to re-evaluate your finances in the transition stage, what are you doing differently? Any tips or tricks, anything you wish you'd done differently?