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Old 12-20-2012, 02:02 PM   #81
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Quicken tells me that I spend $27K less than last year, when I still had college tuition for my son and also made a gift to my daughter for her to buy her home. And that's despite traveling a bit more this year than last!

When the kids were at home, my annual expenses were in the low 6-figure, but as I was making decent money, did not even notice.

Yep, when one no longer has earned income, that 3.5%WR limit really strikes home. Instead of LBYM, one suddenly finds himself trying to live right at his means, which has shrunk!
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Old 12-20-2012, 02:10 PM   #82
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I spend about $3600/yr and live very satisfactorily. My budget is $300/month "walking around money" for important things like stopping by the pub, Sunday afternoon at the sports bar with the buddies to watch Da Bears get their butts kicked (again) and perhaps a rare trip to Wrigley Field to remind myself what the "Friendly Confines" look like in person.

All the boring crap like food, clothing, shelter, HI, cars, taxes, travel, hobbies, etc., etc., DW takes care of.
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Old 12-20-2012, 02:27 PM   #83
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I spend about $3600/yr and live very satisfactorily.
All the boring crap like food, clothing, shelter, HI, cars, taxes, travel, hobbies, etc., etc., DW takes care of.

You sound like my DH, to a tee!
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Old 12-20-2012, 02:41 PM   #84
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You sound like my DH, to a tee!
We're lucky guys!
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Old 12-20-2012, 03:27 PM   #85
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I spend about $3600/yr and live very satisfactorily. My budget is $300/month "walking around money" for important things like stopping by the pub, Sunday afternoon at the sports bar with the buddies to watch Da Bears get their butts kicked (again) and perhaps a rare trip to Wrigley Field to remind myself what the "Friendly Confines" look like in person.

All the boring crap like food, clothing, shelter, HI, cars, taxes, travel, hobbies, etc., etc., DW takes care of.
So you are a Kept Man......
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Old 12-20-2012, 04:07 PM   #86
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My budget runs a lot higher than some of the members but it is still way below 3.5% . Time to celebrate bring out the ski shot board loaded with tequila !
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Old 12-20-2012, 05:08 PM   #87
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I don't track my expenditure to the dollar. Give or take a couple of hundred dollars, as of today, my total expenditure for the year so far is about $16,200 which means I'll come in at under $17,000 for the year.

These expenses are for a family of 3 - me and 2 kitties who I adopted this year I spent about an extra $500-600 on initial vet fees/equipment costs, which is included in the total.

I paid myself $15,600 from savings and investments and the rest came from a very minor cash-in-hand job and selling a few things here and there.
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Old 12-20-2012, 07:17 PM   #88
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Some of you are really amazing. There is no way we can live on what you guys are living on.

It's really inspiring to hear your stories.
+2

I was always amazed at how little some people manage to live on. Not retired yet but our annual YTD spending was 80K excluding taxes with no mortgage and no other debt. Living in a high cost of living area is a factor but I'm not sure we could live on less than 70K anywhere else in the country without major reduction on recreational activities, sporting events, dining out etc.
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Old 12-20-2012, 07:44 PM   #89
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Some of you are really amazing. There is no way we can live on what you guys are living on ....

It's really inspiring to hear your stories.
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+2

I was always amazed at how little some people manage to live on....
I don't know that I find it 'inspiring'. It's a choice, or maybe a necessity. I'd prefer to not need to cut back to those levels, and will avoid it if I can.

I'm not saying I couldn't find a way to be happy at those levels, but it would involve giving up a lot of things I would prefer to have. Heck, HI alone is costing me over $10K. Even discounting that, I would need to move to reduce property taxes, and I like it here. We like having two cars for the independence, and I'm not going to send my wife out in a 20 YO car, if I can avoid it.

Different strokes for different folks? Sure. Inspiring? Not to me.

-ERD50
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:05 PM   #90
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This was my first full year in ER. I am about the same age as the OP and single as well. I'll spend about $3,000 per month not including income related taxes. My SWR model will allow me to spend more in 2013 without too much worry.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:54 PM   #91
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+2

I was always amazed at how little some people manage to live on. Not retired yet but our annual YTD spending was 80K excluding taxes with no mortgage and no other debt. Living in a high cost of living area is a factor but I'm not sure we could live on less than 70K anywhere else in the country without major reduction on recreational activities, sporting events, dining out etc.
I'm sure that most, if not all, of the homeless people I see here in the Bay Area live on much less than the 17K/year I spend but I don't think I'd want their lifestyle. Equally, many of the folk living on 100K/year would look at my lifestyle and say to themselves "Not for me".

The trick is finding a standard of living that is compatible with your income and keeps you happy as well, and for that you just need to know yourself.
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Old 12-20-2012, 08:58 PM   #92
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We spent close to $120k this year. DW, a college going DS, a Terrier and myself living in SE part of the country. The bigger expenses from MINT are

- Travel $17k,
- Paid up house at $14k
- Kid $13k
- Taxes $12k
- Food & Dining $10k
- 3 paid off Cars $10k

Some are wants and some are needs,

Regards
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:16 PM   #93
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Originally Posted by Major Tom

I'm sure that most, if not all, of the homeless people I see here in the Bay Area live on much less than the 17K/year I spend but I don't think I'd want their lifestyle. Equally, many of the folk living on 100K/year would look at my lifestyle and say to themselves "Not for me".

The trick is finding a standard of living that is compatible with your income and keeps you happy as well, and for that you just need to know yourself.
For me, I think it is just plan habit. I have spent around 3k a month not counting taxes, for years and less before that. Having a pension, I could spend closer to 5k a month but I won't. I was relatively "poor" most of my life with my salary ramping up significantly only in the last few years before I retired, so I guess my habits are ingrained. I have spent almost a year talking about getting a new couch, but I can't make myself spend "all that money" even though I could pay cash for it out of my monthly check. My GF is getting sick of listening to me talking about getting one "soon".
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:21 PM   #94
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If I were not married, nor had the "stuff" that I had, I would take off in my little 25' motorhome and wander around the country. I'll bet I can live on a lot less than I spend now, and not unhappy about it at all. That is as long as I get Internet access every few days to see that my stash is still there. Heh heh heh...

For me, having money can be just as good as spending it. Some scroogy types here know what I am talking about. Heh heh heh... Wife will not understand it though.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:21 PM   #95
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All the posts are amazing to me because they remind me of days gone by when we had to budget every dollar in order to get through the year. I am so glad not to have to worry about that any more. On the other hand, I am ashamed to even think what we spend every year on junk. A while back my wife wanted to know what our income was per year and I didn't even know without sitting down with pen and paper. It came out to about $70K and we spend every bit of it. No mortgage. We are through saving money and just want to make sure our savings doesn't evaporate and that we have enough to get us to about 90 years of age. We have to get through the next 15 years without running out. By that time we probably won't even know what is going on so it won't make any difference.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:22 PM   #96
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+2

I was always amazed at how little some people manage to live on. Not retired yet but our annual YTD spending was 80K excluding taxes with no mortgage and no other debt. Living in a high cost of living area is a factor but I'm not sure we could live on less than 70K anywhere else in the country without major reduction on recreational activities, sporting events, dining out etc.
I think much of the difference is you're talking about expenses for a family whereas the the low expenses are a for a single, no dependents type. From the other side, I am amazed at how much some can spend. I can't imagine spending the amounts some mention, I don't even know what I would spend it on. I buy whatever I want, I guess my wants are not great.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:33 PM   #97
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If I were not married, nor had the "stuff" that I had, I would take off in my little 25' motorhome and wander around the country.
Really? I've never heard you say that before NW-Bound
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:36 PM   #98
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How often have I talked about spending a summer in Alaska? My wife has family obligation, but a summer might be too long for her anyway. I might just have to go on a solo trip.
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Old 12-20-2012, 09:36 PM   #99
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+2

I was always amazed at how little some people manage to live on. Not retired yet but our annual YTD spending was 80K excluding taxes with no mortgage and no other debt. Living in a high cost of living area is a factor but I'm not sure we could live on less than 70K anywhere else in the country without major reduction on recreational activities, sporting events, dining out etc.
It seems that most people spend around $35k/person/year. Some can half that, but a single person on $35k with no mortgage to pay can live very comfortably. My plan is to spend the same in ER as I do now allowing for the increased cost of health premiums and setting aside enough for taxes, so that would be $36k for me.

I suppose I'm frugal, but i don't think of myself like that, I just don't like to waste money I go out and drink, go to the theatre and movies, take regular vacations and eat well. But you can do all that for very little money. This year my vacation was a 2 week bike trip, inexpensive, exciting and good for the legs. You can see plays for free by volunteering as an usher or behind the scenes and if you can bake and have some other basic cooking skills you can save lots of money on food and probably eat better than store bought. I'm working on the cheap beer, but haven't done "home brew" yet, all I do to limit the beer budget now is buy PBR, ok on a warm day, but it's not really even beer.
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Old 12-20-2012, 10:13 PM   #100
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I think much of the difference is you're talking about expenses for a family whereas the the low expenses are a for a single, no dependents type. From the other side, I am amazed at how much some can spend. I can't imagine spending the amounts some mention, I don't even know what I would spend it on. I buy whatever I want, I guess my wants are not great.
You beat me to it by about 30 minutes! I am single with no kids and no debts so my annual expenses are quite low, around $20k. Two requirements for me to ER were: (1) live off monthly dividends and don't touch principal, at least for several years until I get close to my "reinforcements" arrive as I near 60 years old (I ERed at 45 and am 49 now), and (2) No changes to my everyday lifestyle. I still go out to eat when I want to (with my ladyfriend) and maintain my hobbies and volunteer work, never using the excuse, "I can't afford to do that because I am not working." I don't have expensive hobbies. Being an atheist is helpful, too, because my holiday spendng this time of year is zero.
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