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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-01-2005, 09:56 AM   #61
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

$50 USD a day is hardly abject poverty. Anyone want to take a guess what fraction of the world's population lives on less than this? Half? Two-thirds? And many of them live happy and fullfilling lives.

It's all a matter of expectations. Yes, if you want a big house, a nice car, lots of world travel, etc, etc costs rise. But I have friends in their early 20s who make less than that living right here in the first world, and frankly many of them seem to be enjoying their lives more than I do with my higher-stress-but-higher-pay job.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-01-2005, 10:13 AM   #62
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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$50 USD a day is hardly abject poverty.
You are correct that it is not "abject poverty". However, IIRC Dominguez was living on a lot less than that.

Quote:
Anyone want to take a guess what fraction of the world's population lives on less than this? Half? Two-thirds? And many of them live happy and fullfilling lives.
Income alone doesn't tell you what sort of lifestyle you can lead. The other missing part is what is the cost of living where you are. $50 / day in Thailand is lot different from $50 / day in NYC. Anywhere in the US you will likely be forgoing almost all medical care at that level of living particularly if we are talking about a couple.

Quote:
It's all a matter of expectations. Yes, if you want a big house, a nice car, lots of world travel, etc, etc costs rise.
I think that there are very few who make enough income to be able to retire early (and I mean early like 30's or 40's not early as in 60) who will be happy watching TV and drinking Schlub beer as their sole means of entertainment.

Quote:
But I have friends in their early 20s who make less than that living right here in the first world, and frankly many of them seem to be enjoying their lives more than I do with my higher-stress-but-higher-pay job.
Are they getting health care from that job? There's a certain amount of "income" that doesn't show up in their salary. There's also a lifestyle that you are happy to live at while young that most don't want to have to continue as they grow older.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-01-2005, 06:19 PM   #63
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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$50 / day in Thailand is lot different from $50 / day in NYC
So live in Thailand

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I think that there are very few who make enough income to be able to retire early (and I mean early like 30's or 40's not early as in 60) who will be happy watching TV and drinking Schlub beer as their sole means of entertainment.
There's a strawman argument if I ever heard one... beer and TV is a lifestyle choice, and frankly more expensive than some of the alternatives.

Let me explain where I'm coming from on this-- in the town where I grew up, about 60% of the population was italian. All of the retirees where somebody's grandparents. Their kids and their grand kids lived just down the street. They played bocce in the park with their friends on Saturdays, grew grapes on the hillsides, made and bottled their own wine and preserves.

They lived in little houses that (according to MLS) are worth about 50-60K on the open market today, and hardly paid anything in taxes. They were active in the community, involved with their friends and neighbors, and surrounded by family. These people weren't destitute or unhappy, and none of them had anything close to a million dollars in todays terms.

I live in an urban area now, but this is still the lifestyle in my home town. Maybe that's not the lifestyle you want-- fine. But it is do-able, and lots of people are doing it.

The evidence that you can live on $50 a day is that many, many people do live on $50 a day or less. The only realy question is: "Can you live a satisfying lifestyle on $50 a day", and only you can really answer that.

(and before anyone starts in with the "yeah, but what about healthcare", I live in Canada)
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-01-2005, 07:43 PM   #64
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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Let me explain where I'm coming from on this-- in the town where I grew up, about 60% of the population was italian. All of the retirees where somebody's grandparents. Their kids and their grand kids lived just down the street. They played bocce in the park with their friends on Saturdays, grew grapes on the hillsides, made and bottled their own wine and preserves.

They lived in little houses that (according to MLS) are worth about 50-60K on the open market today, and hardly paid anything in taxes. They were active in the community, involved with their friends and neighbors, and surrounded by family. These people weren't destitute or unhappy, and none of them had anything close to a million dollars in todays terms.
I spent some time in Italy too, and when I asked people if they could live on $50 a day, they said $50 a day would be like they hit the lottery.

When I asked them what they would spend it on, they spoke mostly of spending it on their kids or grandkids, not on themselves. One lady told me, "When you have your health and you can put a plate of pasta and meatballs on the table with some wine, what else do you need?"

I love living in the USA, but man do the Italians know how to live.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-01-2005, 09:48 PM   #65
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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There's a strawman argument if I ever heard one... beer and TV is a lifestyle choice, and frankly more expensive than some of the alternatives.
It's not a strawman argument. It's blindingly obvious to most that whether you can retire on $50 / day or 50 cents / day is a lifestyle choice. All of us can retire right now with whatever amount of money we have and it's all just a lifestyle choice. Even if you have nothing you can retire, live under a bridge, eat out of dumpsters and sit on street corners begging for spare change. Most of us don't want that lifestyle. How little do you need? It depends on what lifestyle you want now and how much do you need to cover the unexpected.


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(and before anyone starts in with the "yeah, but what about healthcare", I live in Canada)
Yeah, but I'm a Canuck too. *However, most of the folks here are Yanks and for many of them retiring early means 20-30 years until Medicare. *If you want health insurance at today's rates (depending on your current health and state of residence) that could easily eat up 1/3 to 1/2 of that $50 / day. *Then you have to factor in the continued growth of those costs at multiples of the inflation rate. *It's not pretty.

A lot of older retirees also don't have to factor in as much for replacement costs as they'll just let it all run down. *In fact a lot of people talking about $50 / day aren't factoring in the costs to replace the car when it goes or the appliances or any number of things.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 04:30 AM   #66
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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I think that there are very few who make enough income to be able to retire early (and I mean early like 30's or 40's not early as in 60) who will be happy watching TV and drinking Schlub beer as their sole means of entertainment.
Yeah for me its going to be a balance. My current plans are 58 (which is my 30 yr point in federal service) , which i do consider ER simply because i'm a health nut and i optimistically anticipate i'll still feel young and strong at that age, and "could" work much longer if i wanted to.

I dont ever want to have to ask myself post-retirement, Do I really have enough? I want it to be overkilled enough that there's no doubt at all.

Re: lifestyles, yes you have to be careful with assumptions on that. One of my favorite hobbies is playing MMORPGs (massively-multiplayed role playing games) on the PC, which admitting doesnt help the community, isolates me from others, and is not that expensive. And this is despite the fact that I have a graduate degree and a "relatively" well-playing/important job.

But i'm an INTJ, i just dont require or even desire a lot of social interation. I'm quite comfortable by myself. I laugh at those statistics that say you live longer the more friends you have. LOL, other people stress me out, and i like to be alone mostly.

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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 04:45 AM   #67
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

Yeah, I'm with azanon, i.e. strong INTJ. I don't need a
lot of social stimulation. In fact, I frequently avoid it.
"Self entertaining" is what I tell my wife. Anyway, on a nice day, I am happy as a clam just sitting in the boat whether I catch anything or not, or maybe just taking the dog out in the woods and roaming around, or stopping at Barnes and Noble or the library to kill some time reading. Sometimes, I just sit on the deck and watch "Ol' Man River" flow by our door. This stuff costs
practically nothing and I find it very rewarding.

JG
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 07:03 AM   #68
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Re: $50 per day revisited

I'd say, $50/day can be done easily.

So let's add it up:

rent 350
food 400
car 250
health ins 100
internet 50
electricity 50
water 10
entertainment 300

That's $1510/mo. Cut your water and you're living on $50/day. Make the entertainment category whatever you want: clothes, travel (might have to save), cable tv, movies, shopping... whatever.

If you own your home and car and do repairs yourself, which should not be a problem with all the spare time you'll have in retirement (personally, I prefer to not have a car at all, but that's not something a lot of people would consider doable.) that would save you $600/month bringing the daily expenses to around $30/day.

Of course i'm including taxes in those numbers and car insurance in that number, but with a cheap car and liability, you're doing well on $250/mo.

Excluding my rail pass and ticket to get there, I lived on < $49.30/day in Europe for 114 days and that included the UK, France, Switzerland, Scandanavia (all very expensive) and Eastern Europe which is much cheaper. You could live there on $10-20/day easily.

Asia is about the same as Eastern Europe or even cheaper, as is Mexico and south of there. I've heard you can live like a king in Africa on that.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 08:19 AM   #69
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Re: $50 per day revisited

To expand on what JG said, it reminded me of one of the dreaded times at work for me; when my boss comes around on Monday to ask if we had a great weekend and indirectly inquire what we did with our time.

I feel like i have to make up a story every Monday because in most people's eyes, i didnt do a da*m thing, yet that's exactly what i wanted to do.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 09:31 AM   #70
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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The book isn't helping him now. He's dead.

JG
Well I guess that shows you what happens when you attempt a barebones retirement. You end up dead! Sure as heck makes you want to avoid that pitfall.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 09:43 AM   #71
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

Hello azanon! There were many years when if anyone asked
what I did over the weekend, I could truly have said "The
same thing I do every day" (work). That would have been true for a lot of my nights also. I bought a small
manufacturing company in 1990. A CPA friend of mine
bought a small company nearby at about the same time.
I ran into him one day and we compared notes on how much time we spent in the office. I recall he was under 40 hours
a week. I was shocked as I was spending every spare
minute working. Why, the first year I was on the road
exactly 6 months out of 12, and back in the office as soon
as I returned. Yep, it was rampant workaholism all right.
Just like an alcoholic, I can't just have a taste. Pretty soon
I would be right back into it.

JG
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 10:43 AM   #72
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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Well I guess that shows you what happens when you attempt a barebones retirement. *You end up dead! *Sure as heck makes you want to avoid that pitfall.
We 're all gonna wind up dead.
Most of you that post here are in a class way over my head. I am never going to attain the level of wealth many of you have. I'm not complaining - I made choices and I work with the hand I was dealt.

Many of you seem to enjoy taking shots at Dominguez and YMOYL. Yes, that lifestyle may not be something you want, but it was something that Dominguez wanted. The point of the book is to think outside the box and to figure out what "you" want. This was the first book I read that got me thinking about what I could do differently in order to get what I want. I don't agree with everything in the book, but you're not supposed to - you're supposed to figure it out for yourself.

My retirement (which will be early but not sure exactly when) will probably be closer to John Galt's than anybody else's and that's just fine with me. $50 a day is do-able for me. Retiring early is important enough to me that I know have to and am prepared to move overseas in order to do it. Doesn't work for everyone, but works for me.

Remember - you escaped from the "box" called work. There is no one, perfect early retirement "box" that everyone should fit into.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 11:25 AM   #73
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

Excellent post Cal,
Your correct in that it can and is being done, yes, even in the USA.

Do not let others stop you from following your dreams.

Good Luck,
Billy
Website www.geocities.com/ba264
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 03:03 PM   #74
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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Remember - you escaped from the "box" called work. There is no one, perfect early retirement "box" that everyone should fit into.
Ahhhh, the voice of reason calling in the wilderness. Thanks, Cal, from all of us who have to look outside the box.

Judy
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-02-2005, 03:13 PM   #75
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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We 're all gonna wind up dead. *
Most of you that post here are in a class way over my head. I am never going to attain the level of wealth many of you have. I'm not complaining - I made choices and I work with the hand I was dealt.

Many of you seem to enjoy taking shots at Dominguez and YMOYL. Yes, that lifestyle may not be something you want, but it was something that Dominguez wanted. The point of the book is to think outside the box and to figure out what "you" want. This was the first book I read that got me thinking about what I could do differently in order to get what I want. I don't agree with everything in the book, but you're not supposed to - you're supposed to figure it out for yourself.

My retirement (which will be early but not sure exactly when) will probably be closer to John Galt's than anybody else's and that's just fine with me. $50 a day is do-able for me. Retiring early is important enough to me that I know have to and am prepared to move overseas in order to do it. Doesn't work for everyone, but works for me.

Remember - you escaped from the "box" called work. There is no one, perfect early retirement "box" that everyone should fit into.
I did read his book and gleaned some good information from it.

While I never wanted to lead his life, if push came to shove leading his life would be much preferred and less scary than going back to work at this point.

This Amy Dyzysacin (never could spell it), I'd get a job, before I'd go her route though! She is a Wacko!

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Dominguez & Dacyczyn
Old 02-03-2005, 12:31 PM   #76
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Dominguez & Dacyczyn

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Many of you seem to enjoy taking shots at Dominguez and YMOYL. Yes, that lifestyle may not be something you want, but it was something that Dominguez wanted.
Before we turn him into a martyr, for the safety of the Young Dreamers let's remember that the man retired with absolutely zero inflation protection and "stayed the course" despite the erosive effects of inflation's ravages. Instead of moving more of his portfolio to equities (like the Terhorsts or Greaney) he elected to cut back on his lifestyle & expenses to the point where I wonder if his cancer was caused by his genetics-- or by his environment. I don't know.

Avoiding all volatility risk strikes me as especially odd for a man who retired from a Wall Street career. And I'm curious how much help his medical insurance was-- I don't even know if he had any.

Dominguez was the trailblazer with some good lifestyle habits-- living a frugal life (maybe not with all the tricks of the Frugal Zealot), spending less than he earned, tracking expenses, commuting by bicycle, and teaching others his skills.

But after his book received so much attention, I think he boxed himself into a corner on inflation protection and obstinately elected to try to live through it. I doubt he would have made it, although it would be interesting to hear his thoughts on I bonds & TIPS.

Quote:
This Amy Dyzysacin (never could spell it), I'd get a job, before I'd go her route though! She is a Wacko!
She may have a lot of wacko ideas, but I bet she felt a lot of pressure to come up with more content for her newsletters & book tours. I'd love to see how much of that she still practices.

I don't use every word in the dictionary but I appreciate having the reference available when I need it, and I see Dacyczyn as just another reference. She acknowledges that she doesn't expect her kids to adopt her practices, but she feels better knowing that she's taught them how to do it if they NEED to.

But I do consider myself a dumpster diver par excellence.
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-06-2005, 06:16 PM   #77
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Re: $50 per day revisited

Believe Joe D. made an update to YMOYL investment advise on their homepage somewhere admitting that times had changed. Do not remember the details.

$50/day gives a great life in Thailand! Cheers, Ben
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-07-2005, 03:24 AM   #78
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

For Nords...................I challenge you to a dumpster diving contest. From where I sit right now, I can see
an aluminum extension ladder, a deluxe dog house,
an antique (circa 1920s) oak desk, a set of rustic wood
furniture (mostly tables), entertainment center, telephone answering machine,
VCR, various tools, clothing and kitchen stuff, all free.
This does not include the stuff we sold off which included
a lawnmower, washer, dryer, refrigerator, rototiller,
etc, also all free. We also buy a lot of things for practically nothing to mostly resell.

For Cut_Throat..............based on what I know about Joe Domequez' lifestyle, if I was reduced to that I think
I would go back to work (real estate investing).
I can cut back a lot but that would be below even my
low tide of ER living. It's mostly my sense of style, but also a certain level of comfort that I require.

JG
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-07-2005, 03:50 AM   #79
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Re: $50 per day revisited

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For Nords...................I challenge you to a dumpster diving contest.
John, I guess we'd have to figure out how to compare apples to apples.

In our case: landfill, new front doors, kitchen sink, doorway "baby gates", a DVD player, and melamine storage closets. As far as the "reselling" part goes, we have a closet full of stuff but I just haven't bothered to start an eBay account yet.

The guy across the street is about to give away an old British MG sports car. Does that count?
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Re: $50 per day revisited
Old 02-07-2005, 04:02 AM   #80
 
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Re: $50 per day revisited

Hi Nords. Re. "MG sports car", I'd take it as long as there were at least some salvageable parts.

JG
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