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Old 12-06-2008, 07:36 PM   #61
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I'm single with a 30% diminished portfolio and trying to figure out what to do. The next 1-3 years really frighten me. I've decided to downsize by selling my townhome which is really sad because I thought this was where I would live foreever. But through a combination of circumstances, not just the stock market downturn, it looks like the best solution right now.

I worry that I'm making permanent decisions based on a short term problem. I've never experienced an economic catastrophe as a single person, and relying on my own knowledge and instincts feels like flying by the seat of my pants.

If I had a lucrative career, I would feel very differently. Even if I had some regular part time work things would look more promising. But I haven't been able to earn much at all in the past 4 years. The problem with employment, as I see it, is that if I base my lifestyle around the "job" what if it goes away? And how long can I anticipate an employer wanting to keep me at my age?

In one sense, this financial craziness exhilarating. What a ride! But when I seriously look around myself, it's quite sobering. I don't want to wreck my financial situation and be destitute. So for me the remedy is to be ultra conservative. Still, I worry about unintended consequences too. Frankly, I am just plain worried.
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Old 12-06-2008, 09:11 PM   #62
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Quote:
Originally Posted by lazygood4nothinbum View Post

um, that's a little delusional because the guy who took your 10k invested in the very same indexed fund where you just lost 30% so his money is gone too. sure the money went somewhere, back into the smoke and mirrors where it never existed in the first place. this entire system is an agreed upon scam. the only value intrinsic to life is life. everything else is a construct. this economy is nothing more than a social contract drawn with disappearing ink on paper woven from wisps of ether. so do not be surprised as it shreds and vanishes before your eyes.
The money did go somewhere, it didn't disappear into smoke an mirrors The guy who decided to take his money and run made out. Markets don't lose money because the stock prices went down. The lose lose money when people decide not to do anymore trades with them. The only money that disappeared is the assumed money from people thinking debt is as good as gold. All that happened is the banks running 90% deficits saw the results of trying to run that way indefinitely. Not that they learned anything except that if you get a big enough market share you'll get FREE MONEY FROM THE GOVERNMENT TO PAY YOUR BILLS!!!?!

You'll get no argument from me that fiat currency is a fiction and trying to run on a fractional reserve is a Ponzi scheme(by definition). But physical objects do have intrinsic value. The fiction is that a $100 bill is worth more than a $1 bill. They are both just a little bit of linen and have that amount of value. if society collapsed it would still have value as fuel or toilet paper or as insulation. metals have much more intrinsic value as there is a limited supply and makes high technology possible.

Life has no value but the potential that it contains. It's just like counting debt as value. If the debt is repaid then it did have value, if not then it had a negative value. Someone who does not create anything valuable, lives off someone else's money, and spends all their time creating death and mayhem I'd count that life as a liability and not an asset.
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Old 12-07-2008, 04:28 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by Oldbabe View Post
I'm single with a 30% diminished portfolio and trying to figure out what to do. The next 1-3 years really frighten me. I've decided to downsize by selling my townhome which is really sad because I thought this was where I would live foreever. But through a combination of circumstances, not just the stock market downturn, it looks like the best solution right now.

I worry that I'm making permanent decisions based on a short term problem. I've never experienced an economic catastrophe as a single person, and relying on my own knowledge and instincts feels like flying by the seat of my pants.
IMO - Selling property now is probably the worst time to do so. I expect the market and economy will come back.... but some say it will not begin to improve for 12 maybe to 18 months.


Do a fairly careful analysis of the cost of your alternatives (short-term and long-term). Identify your short-fall and the period of time that the short-fall may exist.


If your financial problem is short-term (1 - 3 years)... consider spending less (in areas other than your home) for a while and possibly getting a full or part-time job for a year or two.

If you believe your financial situation to be temporary... Consider the alternatives to moving. Moving has an expense also.
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:16 AM   #64
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Originally Posted by Frugality_of_Apathy View Post
The money did go somewhere, it didn't disappear into smoke an mirrors
well then, perhaps you might be able to locate it because the world could sure use some now.

Quote:
The guy who decided to take his money and run made out.
just what percentage of greedy flippers would you say saw the light and invested conservatively before the crash? perhaps they can fund the recovery with that hidden stash.

Quote:
Markets don't lose money because the stock prices went down. The lose lose money when people decide not to do anymore trades with them.
splitting the imaginary hair you just mime-plucked off a bald head.

Quote:
physical objects do have intrinsic value. The fiction is that a $100 bill is worth more than a $1 bill. They are both just a little bit of linen and have that amount of value. if society collapsed it would still have value as fuel or toilet paper or as insulation. metals have much more intrinsic value as there is a limited supply and makes high technology possible.
it is easy to get caught up in the mythology of the day. physical objects only have value as we assign value. it is not intrinsic. your gold watch has no value to me as i do not care for jewelry. to me it is no different than crap. a diamond to me is just shiny crap. that you might say, oh, but you could sell the watch for some food is also not indicative of intrinsic value because that is also simply the value that the person with food has assigned to the watch. if i have food, you can not buy it with a gold watch.

a watch has intrinsic value only for telling time, not for buying food. just like a house only has intrinsic value as shelter. that is not to say that in a constructed economy, you can not buy and sell houses for watches and watches for houses. but buying and selling does not by itself affix intrinsic value. it is a construct.

Quote:
Life has no value but the potential that it contains. It's just like counting debt as value. If the debt is repaid then it did have value, if not then it had a negative value. Someone who does not create anything valuable, lives off someone else's money, and spends all their time creating death and mayhem I'd count that life as a liability and not an asset.
if you think that life is a debt, then i suppose saying life has no intrinsic value is not completely pathetic or at least it is consistant with your apathy. but if you ever have the inkling that perhaps life is a gift, then perhaps you will find intrinsic value in living, in sharing freely, in love and yes, even in "creating death and mayhem" for where else will you find better opportunity to practice your compassion.

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Originally Posted by chinaco View Post
IMO - Selling property now is probably the worst time to do so. I expect the market and economy will come back.... but some say it will not begin to improve for 12 maybe to 18 months.
didn't they say 12 months 12 months ago? my hope is that by selling a house low now i can buy low into the stock market which i then hope might go up faster than housing. (or at least if the market goes down some more, at least i missed the portion that it went down already.)
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:29 AM   #65
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Originally Posted by chinaco View Post
IMO - Selling property now is probably the worst time to do so. I expect the market and economy will come back.... but some say it will not begin to improve for 12 maybe to 18 months.


Do a fairly careful analysis of the cost of your alternatives (short-term and long-term). Identify your short-fall and the period of time that the short-fall may exist.


If your financial problem is short-term (1 - 3 years)... consider spending less (in areas other than your home) for a while and possibly getting a full or part-time job for a year or two.

If you believe your financial situation to be temporary... Consider the alternatives to moving. Moving has an expense also.
Thanks for the input. I've done all that. My condo complex is looking at a construction defect suit in one year (which I really doubt will be successful). If that doesn't work out then big assessments and/or fees are in order. I don't want to be around for that eventuality.
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Old 12-07-2008, 11:58 AM   #66
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Lzg4nb, it seems to me that even if the market did not crash, you would still be despondent. With what you've been through, going back to work may work out for you. I do not see that your disappointment with ER could be avoided with more money. Cheer up.
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:51 PM   #67
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oldbabe. a very dear friend of mine lives in a condo undergoing major renovations, new water pipes, air conditioning, hurricane-resistant windows and more, multi-million dollar project which started in the heyday.

obviously it is an older building as are many of its residents who have been there for many years, living well, on the beach, but on fixed incomes which are now dwindling.

so the condo assessment has become a two edged sword. on one side they need to maintain the condo so as to keep value in their property. but on the other edge sits residents who might be forced to sell right when the market is in the toilet, driving down prices further. the board is currently discussing if they can offer some relief to anyone who might otherwise be forced to sell but that issue has yet to resolve so they still have quite a few scared residents.

nw-bound, i didn't think of myself as despondent, in fact, i am very much engaged on thinking how i will successfully survive this downturn. though i might come across as a bit more melancholy than how i prefer to go through life, it is only because there is not a whole lot to be enthusiastic about when our economy has become so sobering. besides, it would be a little like singing and dancing on graves. perhaps it is not even appropriate now to be too happy, or at least not to flaunt it out of respect for the suffering of others.

also i don't think of myself as being greatly disappointed with e.r. as i really had no great expectations for it. er isn't anything i worked my entire life for. it just happens that i always saved for a rainy day, never lived in debt and then, besides that, came into some money. i hadn't spent my working life thinking about retirement. i retired out of depression and tears due to circumstances which developed, not out of anticipation and baited breath of having reached some long-sought goal.

if anything, i am appreciative to have woken up to some realizations i hadn't had before. for instance, even though i originally thought i'd have my buddy to sail the world with, i figured i'd find someone new when he died. now i realize there's not a whole bunch to chose from who are both compatible and capable. and given the downturn of the economy, what available pool there was would be even less now and likely into the future.

would more money make things better? maybe it wouldn't hurt. but you are right that money is not the ultimate determining factor of my happiness as it only helps to hide the pain with the distractions it buys. but it is not the things that money buys, rather only people are the balm. and the good ones can't be bought.


"if suffering can be corrected, then there's no need to be despondent. and if it cannot be remedied, there is no benefit even if one becomes unhappy."~~shantideva
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Old 12-08-2008, 01:57 PM   #68
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(snip)

"if suffering can be corrected, then there's no need to be despondent. and if it cannot be remedied, there is no benefit even if one becomes unhappy."~~shantideva
I once read something like that philosopy expressed in a little poem:

For every problem under the sun,
there's either a remedy or there is none.
If there's a remedy, try to find it.
If there is none, then never mind it.

It's easier said than done.
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How will it effect you?
Old 12-08-2008, 05:36 PM   #69
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How will it effect you?

& Less Importanly Me? LOL

Well IAD.. On what your Financial Situation is? Do you have twice as much or more than you need per FireCalc? and won't run out til your 90?
Than Your doing fine..

Hyperinflation? I sure Hope so... Bring the Carter Yrs back!
Loved to see those 15% -30 yr LT treasuries...
I'll sell just about everything and buy them with Baby's Shoes..!

My Dad and His CPA Brother did back then and even 2nd Mortgaged their Homes to buy more.. I think they even had some 16-17% one's...

Am I worried the next Generations of Kids will have to foot the Bill for what's going on? Not really.. They have Jobs/Businesses that are making them 3-5x as much as I ever did, they can well afford it.. So they Lease or buy cars EOY instead of Every yr and Go to Disneyworld on 1 x yr vs 3..

They, like me have 50/50 Portfolio's, SuperPension Plans and their $1 Million+ Homes on 15 yr Mortgages about half paid for by now..

Even Divorce won't jeopordize either one..

I'm more concerned about What to do with The EXTRA $ I expect to make in this Recovery yrs comming up.. I made over +50% in 03' and +35% in 04' on my Portfolio and if do this again or better? I guess more goes into my Chartible Trust and to Charities..

That's one of the Benefits of being Able to retire early and take some extra risks and get More Rewards from the fruits of your Labor and Good Fortune.. and Karma Plays a Big role too.. Give back to the society that helped you succeed is the name of the game..

Just don't Give to a Beggar to help them Remain a Beggar..

The next few Months thru the next Yr or so, is going to be quite exciting.. as far as the Market and for us Upper Income Class goes... For the rank and File? Maybe Not so much.. Been there, done that..No thanks..
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Old 12-08-2008, 05:52 PM   #70
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oldbabe. a very dear friend of mine lives in a condo undergoing major renovations, new water pipes, air conditioning, hurricane-resistant windows and more, multi-million dollar project which started in the heyday.

obviously it is an older building as are many of its residents who have been there for many years, living well, on the beach, but on fixed incomes which are now dwindling.

so the condo assessment has become a two edged sword. on one side they need to maintain the condo so as to keep value in their property. but on the other edge sits residents who might be forced to sell right when the market is in the toilet, driving down prices further. the board is currently discussing if they can offer some relief to anyone who might otherwise be forced to sell but that issue has yet to resolve so they still have quite a few scared residents.


"if suffering can be corrected, then there's no need to be despondent. and if it cannot be remedied, there is no benefit even if one becomes unhappy."~~shantideva
Lazy, that story is really really sad. And I am more than annoyed for those resident owners. I get the message. And I'm going with my gut instinct to sell now while I still can.

I appreciate the quote too. I'm reading a lot of Buddhist philosophy these days.
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Old 12-08-2008, 07:10 PM   #71
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Lazy, that story is really really sad. And I am more than annoyed for those resident owners. I get the message. And I'm going with my gut instinct to sell now while I still can.

I appreciate the quote too. I'm reading a lot of Buddhist philosophy these days.
One of my more major life regrets was that I was not taught Zen Buddhism as a child.
Second best would have been no religion at all,( not that I consider Zen to be religion), but alas, I was not even that lucky.
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