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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 11:11 AM   #21
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

These are some great stories!

I don't know if I have ever felt down and out -- I tend to look at it as learning experiences or an adventure.

When I was about 19, I went cross country on a motorcycle with my boyfriend for 4 or 5 months. I had $500, a plastic coat and some ski gloves. Gas was cheap, we camped, and ate simply. We made it! and with memories and stories to share.

When I was 21, I moved to California with $1,000, no job and no plan. I bought 25 lb. bags of onions and carrots for my food and hit the streets looking for employment. I made it! 8)

In 1982 when we owned our restaurant, our town had a 100 year flood, and the city closed our place because the water pipes in the city were broken. It took us 6 months to get out of debt from the short closing. I had to renegotiate loans, and I had 15 employees to pay. But that was the exact time that we decided to begin investing in the stock market so that our income wouldn't be affected like that again... so we learned from the experience.

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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 11:31 AM   #22
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

I've had it easy, compared ... thanx for sharing.

My RE partner and I were 250k - each - upside down on 4 mortgages. Tycoons were declaring bankrupty all around us. It was the early 90's and cash was king.

My partner said "no more" ... I doubled down my bet - buying another dozen properties at auction. Fast forward a decade, I fired at 43; he's still working.

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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 12:05 PM   #23
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Nothing like these stories. But I accepted a promotion from the field to HQ and bought a nice big estate home. Had bridge financing: $150000 mortgage at HQ and total $250000 for old house. House took a year to sell and bridge loan reached 21%.

I knew what poverty was after 15 years married. Road all credit cards to the limit. Paid the minimum each month (hey 18% was a deal). Paid everythng just before service was cut off.

Some would say I experienced living the American Dream! But I resolved to LBYM after that. That set me up for RE 4 years ago.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 12:31 PM   #24
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Lived on the edge of starvation for about 3 years... Then improved to "just being hungry" for another 3. The highlight of the *month* was when we'd get our ration of *half a can* of milk. And no, I wasn't in jail. That was in another lifetime, in another country far, far away.
Now, when my 13-y-o daughter opens up the (well-stocked) fridge and says "Daddy, there is nothing to eat in this house!", I have to bite my tongue, and shake my head at her innocence.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 12:42 PM   #25
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Hmm... which time to tell about... I suppose the very last (EVER!) time. I just turned 40, got divorced, empty bank account, was homeless with two boys, and was undergoing chemo for cancer. NOT FUN!!!!!!

Somehow managed to turn that into living in my dream home, no debt, money in the bank, a career that I love, cancer-free(!), one son in college to be a doctor, and the other in law school. In 6 years. So there is hope!!!
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 01:54 PM   #26
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by SolidA
Hmm... which time to tell about... I suppose the very last (EVER!) time. I just turned 40, got divorced, empty bank account, was homeless with two boys, and was undergoing chemo for cancer. NOT FUN!!!!!!

Somehow managed to turn that into living in my dream home, no debt, money in the bank, a career that I love, cancer-free(!), one son in college to be a doctor, and the other in law school. In 6 years. So there is hope!!!
Congratulations on your life changing for the better............ Lost my sister this year to cancer........at age 46, so I know how scary it is............great to hear you're a survivor................
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 02:15 PM   #27
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

We grew up "poor" so that was my bottom Dont wish to repeat it thanks....seems we always found a way to do more with less though.....a lot of folks these days think essentials = cable tv, a big screen color tv, cell phone, eating out, a big vacation every year, new car, etc.):
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 02:42 PM   #28
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

I don't really have a good story for me, but DW has a good one.

Her and her family were chased at gunpoint our of their home country through the jungles of Cambodia and into Thailand by the genocidal communist Khmer Rouge regime. Then spent the next 5 years floating from one refugee camp to the next in Thailand and the Phillipines waiting for clearance to come to America. Once they got here, they had to learn English and DW was a few years behind in school. No assets. DW, her parents and 4 siblings lived in a 2 BR house for years in the not-so-nice part of town and barely got by. DW eventually did well in school, got her undergrad degree, worked at a big 5 accounting firm, graduated from law school and now works at an I bank.

While living in refugee camps, there was rarely any food to eat, and a treat for them was to catch and fry up termites or grasshoppers and eat them since this was the only thing they had to eat besides the occasional small quantity of rice. In the event they did manage to scrounge up some meat, the oldest brother would chew up a piece of meat to get the flavor, then spit it out and give it to a younger sibling to eat. The stories...

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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 03:53 PM   #29
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by brewer12345
we were not making it in OH, so we decided to mave to NYC when one of us got the first job offer (turned out to be me, and a truly sh!tty job it was).
brewer12345, Dw and I not making it too at OH. What's wrong? People are so nice there.
We moved east too, first stop was phily, there NYC.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 03:57 PM   #30
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by semtex
brewer12345, Dw and I not making it too at OH. What's wrong? People are so nice there.
We moved east too, first stop was phily, there NYC.
The economy has sucked there since the 1970s, unfortunately. My Mom grew up in Canton, and her roots are SE Ohio along the WV border (yes, they play the banjo, mandolin and fiddle at family reunions). That area has been in recession for decades, sadly. We were around Cleveland, but there just wasn't enough of a service economy for us to find decent jobs. I understand that Cleveland has gotten a good deal poorer since we left in 1997. Sad.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 04:26 PM   #31
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

I grew up in OH, too. I left in 1978, and it seems the economy has never really been good since then.

When I was growing up around the Akron area Goodyear, Firestone, and Goodrich were all going strong, and more than half the kids in my school had fathers employed in auto or rubber related industries. That's all gone, and nothing has replaced it.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 07:42 PM   #32
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

I had $10K credit card debt when I got married in '93. We paid that off with a loan - then, one day, we went to go out to lunch, checked the ATM for cash and had $111 in the checking account. That's it, no savings, no IRA, no 401(k)... no house, nothing.

Shortly thereafter, I read "Your Money or Your Life" - totally changed my life.

Today, we are FIRED for three years. We had pretty good jobs - nothing stupendous. Just saved like crazy (about 50% of our income for 10 years) and determined not to be in that circumstance ever again.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:03 PM   #33
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sparky
I had $10K credit card debt when I got married in '93. We paid that off with a loan - then, one day, we went to go out to lunch, checked the ATM for cash and had $111 in the checking account. That's it, no savings, no IRA, no 401(k)... no house, nothing.

Shortly thereafter, I read "Your Money or Your Life" - totally changed my life.

Today, we are FIRED for three years. We had pretty good jobs - nothing stupendous. Just saved like crazy (about 50% of our income for 10 years) and determined not to be in that circumstance ever again.
"As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again!"
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:10 PM   #34
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

The closest I came to the bottom was not so many years ago. I was engaged, living paycheck to paycheck credit card to credit card. Made some INCREDIBLY awful choices and financial decisions. Ended up with no cash, no savings, and about $60k+ in CC debt. (gross income at that time was about$30k/year)

Finally got jolted into reality, and started to fight my way out. I looked at bankruptcy as a cop-out, and refused to go that route. Figured I buried my self this bad, I can dig myself out.

First I got rid of the fiancee who though $$$ grew on trees, and thought living way beyond one's means was normal. She gave back the ring, which I promptly sold to pay it off! Sold off some other crap also! Started doing without a lot of things that I thought I really needed. Took every thin dime I could muster, and started paying down the CC debt. Sometimes I thought I'd never see light of day again.

Long story short....paid off CC debt in about 2 years. Started living well BELOW my means...still do to this day....with no thought of changing!!! Will be able to FIRE in 3 months 2 weeks and 4 days!!! At that time I won't "have" to live below my means....but I probably still will....BY CHOICE! 8)

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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:12 PM   #35
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khan
"As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again!"
-Scarlett
"I saw it in a window and I just couldn't resist it!"
- Carol Burnett as Scarlett

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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:17 PM   #36
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by REWahoo!
"I saw it in a window and I just couldn't resist it!"
- Carol Burnett as Scarlett

Hey!
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:20 PM   #37
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?



I am a single working mother of a handicapped son.

I was blessed to find a special needs daycare who
would care for my son during working hours... even
now when he is 32 going on 3.

I have lived frugally and simply and saved as much as
I was able thanks to God's blessings... I hope to retire
next year at age 55... if I can make it, anyone can



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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-20-2006, 08:27 PM   #38
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Have to say I've had pretty much a middle of the road existence, never really been destitute or homeless. I have been down to my last dollar a couple of times in my early-mid twenties but could always go out, get work and make a few bucks.

This my not count in the regard the original question was posed, but at 21 years of age I went from being a strong healthy 185# lean mean fighting machine down to a scrawny 114# malaria ridden soul whose own mother couldn't even recognize. A rather sobering life experience.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-21-2006, 05:23 AM   #39
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

grew up in a two bedroom house and we had four kids. Did not dawn on us that we were poor because we always had food and shoes and grew up in an area where really big Catholic families were the norm and we only had four of us. Eloped with someone poorer than me who had nothing but school loans, no cars and what did we do? Moved to California (hitched a ride with a friend) and found jobs and started the way up. Shared an apartment with a group of people, slept on a mattress on the floor, walked to work until we could afford a used car.

I feel fortunate I was born in this country, as we have two friends, one who escaped Yugoslavia and one who left Cambodia via a refugee camp and not only had nothing but also had family members killed.
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?
Old 12-21-2006, 08:25 AM   #40
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Re: OT: Have you guys even hit/seen/been near the bottom?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Khan
"As God is my witness, I'll never be hungry again!"
-Scarlett
"Frankly my Dear, I don't give a damn."
Rhett
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