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“It would be nice to be able to afford a house, but who knows”: A couple makes over $100,000 a year and lives in a basement apartment

By Toronto Life| Photography by Erin Leydon
“It would be nice to be able to afford a house, but who knows”: A couple makes over $100,000 a year and lives in a basement apartment
(Image: Erin Leydon)

Who: Gerard Reynolds, 31 and Lana Khan, 32

What they do: Gerard is a corporate recruitment specialist. Lana is a waiter and food blogger.

What they make: Gerard makes $85,000 a year. Lana makes $40,000 a year.

Where they live: A one-bedroom basement apartment in Little Italy.

What they spend in a month: Rent $1,400. (They hope to move into a house this year and eventually start a family. “It would be nice to be able to afford to buy,” Gerard says.) Contacts for Lana: $250. (“I have an eye disorder called keratoconus. I recently started wearing specialty contact lenses that aren’t covered by insurance.”) Credit card payments $450. (They have $5,000 in debt, partly from travel. “We go to Ireland once or twice a year to visit Gerard’s family.”) Student loan payments $95. (Lana is paying off $10,000 in debt.) Car insurance $170. Gerard’s annual Gaelic football registration fee and tournaments: $200. Lunch and coffee: $300. Dinners: $600. (“We dine out a lot. Lana’s blog is about trying new restaurants.”) The annual domain fee for Lana’s blog: $150. Dog food for their cockapoo, Crawford, from Pet Valu: $100.

What they bought in one week: Dim sum from Rol San: $83. Knee-high suede boots for Lana, from Aldo: $150. Tickets to Cuisine and Confessions at the Princess of Wales Theatre: $180. A mop and bucket from a warehouse sale in Markham: $20. Box spring and bed frame from Wayfair.ca: $1,000. An LED system for an indoor herb garden: $100. (“We live in a basement, so we don’t get natural light.”)

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