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Old 05-13-2016, 09:13 AM   #101
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I continue to be a bit horrified at the dollar amount of our expenses (withdrawal rate is under 4% so we're not going broke, and I'm not collecting SS yet). For this reason, I do track our expenses to see if it makes sense.
I think it's time to start clipping coupons and start shopping yard sales and flea markets.
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Old 05-13-2016, 09:14 AM   #102
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...and flee markets.
Is that one of those markets everyone runs away from?
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Old 05-13-2016, 09:17 AM   #103
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Is that a market everyone runs away from?
Good one. I guess I need my second cup of coffee....
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Old 05-13-2016, 09:45 AM   #104
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Is that one of those markets everyone runs away from?
Yeah, because of all the flees.

Or maybe it's because they try to fleace you.

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Old 05-13-2016, 09:48 AM   #105
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"I can't figure out how I'll spend $40,000/year in retirement..."

Get a boat
May I also suggest horses? I thought I was spending a lot on my hobby (stereo stuff and LP's) that's $18,680 according to Quicken since I started using the program in 1992 but then we got mini horses - that's $30,987 in 3 years. But they are cute...
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Old 05-13-2016, 10:05 AM   #106
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As someone who spends less than $40,000 per year, that simply comes from habits formed over a long career of earning a modest income. I chose to own a smaller house, do most of my own DIY, drive less expensive vehicles, and prefer to cook at home rather than drop $100 at a restaurant. Of course, I can't say that the same choices would have been made had I earned a substantial income, but I also don't feel that I have missed out very much.

There is a difference between a $90,000 car and a $30,000 car, but the $90k car isn't 3 times better, or even 2 times better. I don't see much of a difference between 8 people spending $500 at a restaurant compared to the same 8 people enjoying a good home cooked meal and drinks on a deck that can be done for less than $100.
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Old 05-13-2016, 12:55 PM   #107
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Thanks again everyone.

In summary, I did find a couple of things to add to my "40,000" expected expenditures, so my new expected level is closer to 43,000. Again, this doesn't bear any relationship to our expected income, as this was merely an exercise to see if I was forgetting any larger-ticket items (the bigger one was dental, which is only partially covered in retirement, and whose costs I expect to rise).
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Old 05-13-2016, 03:30 PM   #108
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Dental works will make a big dent (pun intended) in your expenses. Teeth are expensive.
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Old 05-13-2016, 03:44 PM   #109
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Dental works will make a big dent (pun intended) in your expenses. Teeth are expensive.
+1. We paid 16K for dental work last year. Need them to enjoy the nice juicy steaks at the Capital Grille or Flemings.
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Old 05-13-2016, 06:33 PM   #110
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Dental works will make a big dent (pun intended) in your expenses. Teeth are expensive.
Here's an idea. Maybe us FIs should get together and invest in some dental practices. Pay ourselves .

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Old 05-13-2016, 06:56 PM   #111
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Dental works will make a big dent (pun intended) in your expenses. Teeth are expensive.
I'm just getting started in this dental work game. Within the last two months 2 crowns and a root canal and ~$4k. Maybe I need a vacation in Mexico. I half remember reading somewhere that there is a town in Mexico near the border that specializes in good quality dental work at reasonable rates?
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Old 05-13-2016, 07:04 PM   #112
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I half remember reading somewhere that there is a town in Mexico near the border that specializes in good quality dental work at reasonable rates?
International Dental Services – We help you find a highly qualified dentist in Mexico

Close to 20 years back, a friend living in Olympia, Washington, said he could take a vacation down to Algodones, have work done, and it'd still be cheaper than having it done locally.

A few years later another friend, also from WA, had root canals done in Puerto Penasco very cheaply...he was extremely happy with the professionalism and the price.

But Algodones has the biggest selection of dentists.
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Old 05-13-2016, 07:07 PM   #113
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I'm just getting started in this dental work game. Within the last two months 2 crowns and a root canal and ~$4k. Maybe I need a vacation in Mexico. I half remember reading somewhere that there is a town in Mexico near the border that specializes in good quality dental work at reasonable rates?
Do you have to go back to Mexico every time you have a problem with the dental work performed there?

I wouldn't trust anyone other than my own dentist with my teeth.
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Old 05-13-2016, 07:57 PM   #114
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I pay a grand for a crown and I think the root canals were about 1250.

Yup, sounds about right. And no, I'm not going to Mexico to have a problem fixed.
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Old 05-13-2016, 08:02 PM   #115
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Have you looked into dental HMOs? Metal crowns 100% covered, porcelain crowns $350, gold $350, root canals free
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Old 05-13-2016, 08:06 PM   #116
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I'm self insured, but the doc give me a 15% senior discount and I pay the bill with HSA dough.
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Old 05-13-2016, 11:28 PM   #117
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Yes, Algodones near Yuma, AZ is the place many people go to get dental work done. In reading RV blogs, I learned that many RV'ers walk across the border, with their RV parked on the US side.

The quality of work depends on the dentist, same as in the US. I have read about some RV'ers not being happy with the work, while some were just raving about the fancy machines that I have not seen in any US dental office I have visited. For example, one office has a CAD-Scan machine to take 3D images of patient's jaws as part of the implant procedure. It has a milling machine to make crowns the same day you walk in. The same office will do everything from implant surgery to teeth cleaning.

A worker at the megacorp where I worked took a vacation and went down to Algodones for several crowns, despite having dental insurance from work. He explained that paying 100% of the cost there was still much less than the out-of-pocket he had to pay in the US.

For more info, search the Web for "Algodones RV blog". To read about a particular dentist that one RV'er raved about, search the Web for "mobilecodgers Algodones dentist".

I do not want to provide the links directly because it would look like I am pushing something. If you are really serious about this, you have to do a bit of work and read some info to decide for yourself.

I myself have not gone down to Algodones although it's only 200 miles from my home, because we have not needed extensive work, and just a crown here and there. But for more major works, I would seriously look into it.
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Old 05-14-2016, 07:41 AM   #118
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Kids long gone, house gone (downsized, renting), one vehicle gone. No need to budget for medical. No budget for car replacement...expect the current one to last for another 10-15 years (like the one we recently gave away). Lots of overseas travel-twice a year 6 weeks in the fall, 9-12 weeks in the winter.

After tax budget and actuals have held steady for 4 years at $70K Canadian, currently 55K USD. Looked like we might have to increase it by 8 percent but this proved to be a blip. Might change if we buy either a house or a vacation condo but this is looking less likely as time passes.

We are spending more money on experiences and charitable donations, less money on things/housing.


One thing was did after retiring was to spend some time re-aligning our charitable donations based on our preference and the efficiency of the organizations. It changed our giving pattern considerably and opened our eyes to how little some of our prior giving actually went to activity and how much went to admin and fund raising. We reviewed it in the same way I would a P&L or an investment.
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Old 05-14-2016, 08:13 AM   #119
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We are spending more money on experiences and charitable donations, less money on things/housing.
Same here; downsizing is an interesting exercise because you realize how much you have that you don't need/enjoy. In the new place, there's less stuff on the shelves, less in the basement storage area, less in the garage. We want to keep it that way. Clothing spending is way down although I seem to keep accumulating freebie T-shorts from athletic events.

I'm glad to see someone else spending a lot on charitable donations; we kept our donations pretty steady after I retired so we're actually giving a bigger %. Our charity budget is roughly equal to our travel budget, and that feels like a good balance to me.
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Old 05-14-2016, 11:24 AM   #120
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I'm just getting started in this dental work game. Within the last two months 2 crowns and a root canal and ~$4k. Maybe I need a vacation in Mexico. I half remember reading somewhere that there is a town in Mexico near the border that specializes in good quality dental work at reasonable rates?
Speaking of dental work...just had braces slapped on our 12 year old. First time I ever actually watched it done. Barely took an hour, so not much to it I guess. I don't know why, but I was expecting to see the process be a bit more involved.

$5,000/hr isn't bad coin
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