Safiyyah lives in a two-bedroom townhouse with her sister in North Philadelphia. They each pay $220 a month, with the government covering the remaining $125 through the Philadelphia Housing Authority and HUD’s Section 8 housing assistance program.
“My number one always is to make sure that my rent is paid so I make sure we have somewhere to live,” she said.
She also covers her gas and electricity bill, which is roughly $40 a month. She keeps that low by keeping lights off and constantly unplugging everything.
To make that money last, she buys in bulk and sticks to frozen foods.
“I don’t buy fresh fruits and stuff like that because it’s not guaranteed that it will be eaten all in the couple of days that it will stay fresh,” she said.
Safiyyah also often skips lunch to save money, but she says she always makes sure her son doesn’t go hungry.