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  • Writer's pictureHeather Buckner

Meet this nonprofit development manager from Reynoldstown

This 29-year-old pays $1,300 in rent and owes $65,000 in student loans

Art clippings of a one hundred dollar bill, a map of Atlanta, the Georgia capitol, and a peach
Illustration by Khoa Tran

This 29-year-old nonprofit development manager supports himself (and his cat) on $49,000 a year in Reynoldstown, where he pays $1,300 in rent. He owes around $65,000 in student loans and tries to save at least $200 a month for savings and retirement—for which he currently has about $4,000 total set aside. He occasionally treats himself to vinyl records, but his main splurge is dining out (around $300 a month). What does he want for the city? Denser neighborhoods and more transit-oriented development. For himself? An e-bike and some international travel.

Job title

Nonprofit development manager





Lives with

A cat

Annual gross income




Debt (all student loans)


Health insurance and prescriptions

Paid for by his employer

Phone plan and monthly subscriptions (Netflix, Spotify, food delivery services, apps, etc.)




Transportation (car payment, car insurance, and gas + public transportation or Uber)




Restaurants, fast food, drinks at bars, coffees


How much do you save each month, and how much do you have in savings/401(k)?

Try to save between $200 and $400 a month. Savings and 401(k) is around $4,000.


Between $500 and $1,000 a year

Fun (concerts, books, movies, recreational drugs, etc.)


Clothes/beauty (new shoes, laundromat services, makeup)


What he’d like to have but lives without

E-bike and international travel

His take on what can be done to improve the cost of living in Atlanta

Lower housing costs through creating denser neighborhoods and focusing on equitable transit-oriented development (TOD). Properly assess property value for businesses in order to get the most money through property taxes and invest that money in making the city more affordable.

Most challenging thing about living in Atlanta

Housing costs

What he loves most about Atlanta

The potential to be great!


It's one thing to talk about the cost of living—it's another to see how it plays out in real life. In this series, we'll explore how everyday Atlantans are saving and spending their money—on coffee, health insurance, shoes, and rent. Tell us how you make ends meet and we may feature your entry on the website. (We ask for your name and contact info so we can follow up with you if needed, but your name will never be published.) Still on the fence? Everyone who fills out a form will be entered to win a $50 gift card. We'll draw a winner on the first day of every month.


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