Surviving on Poverty Level Income

Surviving on a poverty level income isn’t easy but it is possible. The worries associated with it can be overcome and you can get more confident in your abilities to take care of yourself. When you live at the poverty level your not poor you’re below poor which means that you have to get more creative with your finances than if you want to make it through this rough time.


You have to have a budget for your expenses, needs and wants. Savings should be included in the budget as well. When you live on a poverty level income you won’t be able to save a lot but even throwing your loose change into a jar can help. When you live off of a income that’s this low you have to decide what things are absolutely needed and what are luxuries that you just think you need.

Ask for Help

There is nothing wrong with asking for help when you need it. You should examine programs such as food stamps, WIC (women, infants and children), utility and housing assistance. Some communities have free clinics for people that don’t qualify for medical programs or can’t afford insurance. These and other programs are designed to assist people until they can get back on their feet.

Avoid Luxury Spending

When you have a poverty level income you have more important things to worry about then having the latest in designer fashion. Shopping thrift stores for slightly used clothing will help to reduce this expense a great deal. Things like going out to eat are luxuries and when you earn so little you have to stretch the amount of money for food as far as it’ll go. Remember just because you may qualify for food stamps does not mean that they’re going to be enough to purchase all the food that you need.

Additional Income Opportunities

You will want to to search for additional income opportunities to help out while you’re trying to get on your feet. Something as simple as picking up aluminum cans from the side of the road can give you enough money to buy something to eat. If you’re living on a poverty level income chances are you’re pride won’t be that hurt by taking a walk. Search for additional employment, it might not be the highest paying job in the world but a little bit of income is better than none.

Education Opportunities

Finding educational opportunities will help you to get past the poverty level. You can research grants that will help you go back to school. You can also check with your employer for training programs and opportunities that lead to promotions so that you can increase your income to above the poverty level and stand on your own.