Detroit woman hopes to break cycle of living paycheck to paycheck, looks toward next chapter

53-year-old woman hopes to line things up for family, retirement

With more than 60% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, it’s likely that someone you know -- if not yourself -- is living this way; trapped in a stressful cycle of trying to make ends meet.

DETROIT – With more than 60% of Americans living paycheck to paycheck, it’s likely that someone you know -- if not yourself -- is living this way; trapped in a stressful cycle of trying to make ends meet.

In an effort to help our viewers break the cycle of paycheck to paycheck living, we reached out to WDIV Insiders to learn more about your individual situations and challenges.

Related: Metro Detroit family shares their struggle with living paycheck to paycheck

Local 4′s money expert Rod Meloni sat down with LaTonya Edwards, a 53-year-old single working mother of three young men hear more about her financial situation, and to see if any improvements could be made.

Edwards said she struggles to stretch the dollars from one month to the next and she’s looking toward her next chapter. SHe wants to do what her grandmother did for her. Her grandmother left her a fully paid-for Detroit condo.

She purchased the one next door and rents it to one of her sons and has a mortgage on it. Edwards is an autoworker, has a steady, well-paying job, but doesn’t budget. Instead, she times her payments for when her weekly paychecks arrive.

SHe’s making her utilities, insurance, and condo association payments on time. She also has a small amount of credit card debt she’s paying down. Her biggest problem is her Ford F-150 XLT 4x4 pickup truck. She’s paying $750 a month for a vehicle that Blue Books out for roughly $22,000.

If she pays the note she has in full with a local Ford dealer, she’s on the hook for around $40,000. She needs the truck to haul around her side hustle, a children’s bounce house she used to rent on weekends.

It was a profitable business before COVID. As for the truck, she couldn’t tell Rod Meloni the interest rate she is paying. If she got rid of the truck, she would like to put more money away for retirement.

Watch the family’s story in the video report above, and see what changes they’re making to their budget.


Are you living paycheck to paycheck? We’re breaking down steps you can take to break that cycle and get off the hamster wheel. Read more here.


Here are some links that can help you learn how to save money:


About the Authors:

Rod Meloni is an Emmy Award-winning Business Editor on Local 4 News and a Certified Financial Planner™ Professional.

Kayla is a Web Producer for ClickOnDetroit. Before she joined the team in 2018 she worked at WILX in Lansing as a digital producer.