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Old 01-02-2011, 07:18 AM   #421
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No, this one:

Amazon.com: Nikon D300 SLR Digital Camera [Body Only] + Nikon 18-200mm AF-S DX VR II Lens + Nikon Multi-Grip Power Battery Pack + Two (2) 4GB CF + Extra Nikon Battery + DSLR Camera Bag + 3-Year Warranty + Willoughbys Bonus Pack: Camera & Photo

But I ask myself, would my photographs be $3k better with it? Nope, I'm not at that level. Yet.
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Old 01-02-2011, 10:16 AM   #422
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Wait until you can get it with super-saver shipping.
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Old 01-02-2011, 10:23 AM   #423
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There is a $3,000 camera on my Amazon "wish list" that I seriously doubt I'll ever actually buy. But it's nice to dream.
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Originally Posted by freebird5825 View Post
I put needed or wanted items on my Wish List at Amazon until I hit the magic $25 level for Free Shipping. More often than not, some of the items are lowered in price by the time I actually go to Checkout.
We bought our HDTV through Amazon. I put it in our cart at $2800.00 and kept coming back to visit the cart. Over the course of a year, the TV's price dropped to $2K [much lower than if purchased locally] and the suppliers competed on shipping. We finally hit the "buy" button at $1900.00 and free shipping. Worth trying, Walt, if you need that $3K camera's features to bring out your inner Ansel Adams.

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The "deal killer" for me is always the Shipping Cost. There are many (the majority of the) times the shipping is the same or more than the product(s) -- effectively doubling the cost of the item. This rarely happens at Amazon .
I wanted a "Zippi" desk fan, a specialty item that doesn't (yet) have any generic knock-offs. I could pay $25.80 with "free shipping" at Amazon, or $18.00 plus $7.80 shipping from another supplier - what a coincidence

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Old 01-02-2011, 10:53 AM   #424
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Get an energy audit and do pay for your air ducts to be sealed and mastic to be put around them if they aren't. Then have any needed insulation blown in if needed.

I just did this and it's been down to 32 degrees here at night, and I haven't really HAD to turn on my heat at all. Granted, it has gotten down to 66 degrees in the house, but with a sweater over my jeans and cotton shirt I'm fine (and you know we women freeze alot).

Cannot tell you how happy I had this done recently. What a great moneysaving tip this will be over the next 10-15 years....wow!

And--because I had sun screens/solar screens (different regions call it different things I found) in Houston--I am having sun screens made. I know from past experience that this really cools a house down in the heat of summer and saves alot of money and adds gobs of comfort.

Yeah, yeah...I know the upfront cost is alot, but in 2010 you get tax rebates and some tax credits, too, if you go thru your local electric company list of approved vendors. Worth it totally if you are staying where you are for awhile. It's still worth it tax benefits or not to you.
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Old 01-02-2011, 11:29 AM   #425
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I wanted a "Zippi" desk fan, a specialty item that doesn't (yet) have any generic knock-offs. I could pay $25.80 with "free shipping" at Amazon, or $18.00 plus $7.80 shipping from another supplier - what a coincidence
Yeah, that too. It's all part of the game, I guess. Its still easier to comparison shop without leaving the house, though.
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Old 01-03-2011, 12:11 PM   #426
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Here is what I did in 2010 to save.

> Converted a Mountain bike to an e-bike(20 miles @ 20mph) and ride to work w/o oil or repairs! Saves me 1 gallon per day and extends the time between maintanence.
> EAT LESS sugar and meat - eating further down the food chain and non processed foods is good for you, I lost 35lbs since June, and the cost/calorie is less overall. Since the food is better and has a lower calorie density profile you get satisfied quickly and feel great. I dropped my cholesteral med's + all my health problems went away. Saving me $
> I use a pellet stove to heat most of my house. Compares to $2/gal heating oil. In my area it is over $3 now. I save 3 tank fulls per year, 750*1 = $750 savings.
> Grow as much of the expensive food as you can, I grow much of my plant based food from June thru October
I purchased a used, small camper -Aliner, and replaced the expensive resort vacations. I purchase a used camper for $750, fixed it up(added enclosed toilet) and now have a portable hotel room. Most parks cost $12/night w/o power/water or $35 with. My $5k yearly vacation budget just went to $2k
> I got rid of all my gas powered lawn power equiptment, snow thrower, lawn tractor. They constantly needed gas and fixing and cost $. I now have a self sharping 20" bladed push mower and electric snow thrower. I sold my old stuff for ~$1000 and spent less than $200 for the replacements. I get a low impact work out, recovered some of my $ and am saving $.
> I purchase a NuWave oven and save 85% on my cooking cost. No more preheating an oven and heating an area to big for my needs.

Take care and stay in-control!
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Old 01-03-2011, 12:13 PM   #427
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I said goodbye to my cable tv bill when I built a good indoor over-the-air digital tv antenna from wood, coat hangers, and pipe. I'm quite happy with the reception (works better than store-bought indoor antennas). Here's a picture of it:
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Here's the link to the build plans I used, if you are ever wanted to give it a try or just want to check it out:

Make: Online : Maker Workshop - DTV Antenna & Steadycam on MAKE: television

It's pretty cool.
Easy surfer, thank you SO much for posting this link! We have decided to try and go without cable t.v. We made up this antenna the other night, put it in our attic an dropped a cable line down to the living room. Wa-la! Perfect reception of all the local channels...FREE!!!!! We are now going to put a splitter off the antenna and figure out how to get the cable to all of the other rooms.

Funny how we forgot you can get t.v. FREE. We had become so conditioned to paying high prices for cable. This is going to save us around $100/mo!
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Old 01-03-2011, 12:25 PM   #428
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Three simple rules:

1)Don't get married
2)Don't have kids
3)Don't borrow money

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Old 01-03-2011, 12:27 PM   #429
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Three Four simple rules:

1)Don't get married
2)Don't have kids
3)Don't borrow money
4)Learn to manage your own investments
Fixed it for ya'
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:30 AM   #430
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Three simple rules:

1)Don't get married
2)Don't have kids
3)Don't borrow money

I definitely agree with points 2 and 3, but in my experience, getting married has actually dramatically increased my net worth.

By getting married to someone earning the same as you, you're basically doubling your income and halving your housing cost. 2 people can live in a dwelling just as easily as 1, with only minutely affecting the utility costs. Your food cost doubles, but in my experience, everything else stays virtually the same.

Also, by marrying and combining retirement accounts, you increase your balances to levels where you get discounts, faster. For example, households with $50,000 in assets get $9.99 trades (instead of $200) with TDW. By marrying and pooling our money, we've hit that threshold faster, thus decreasing our costs.

You can split the chores, giving you more free time (it takes the same amount of time to cook a meal for 1 person as it does for 2), and you get two heads working on money-saving ideas rather than just one.

And that's not even counting the *ahem* "free entertainment" benefits of being married.

Just don't get divorced.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:34 AM   #431
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I definitely agree with points 2 and 3, but in my experience, getting married has actually dramatically increased my net worth.

By getting married to someone earning the same as you, you're basically doubling your income and halving your housing cost. 2 people can live in a dwelling just as easily as 1, with only minutely affecting the utility costs. Your food cost doubles, but in my experience, everything else stays virtually the same.

Also, by marrying and combining retirement accounts, you increase your balances to levels where you get discounts, faster. For example, households with $50,000 in assets get $9.99 trades (instead of $200) with TDW. By marrying and pooling our money, we've hit that threshold faster, thus decreasing our costs.

You can split the chores, giving you more free time (it takes the same amount of time to cook a meal for 1 person as it does for 2), and you get two heads working on money-saving ideas rather than just one.

And that's not even counting the *ahem* "free entertainment" benefits of being married. You know what's cheaper than a ticket to a hockey game, and just as fun?
So, your marriage was a business proposal, got it!
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:43 AM   #432
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I think having kids and responsibility is what gives many of us drive to succeed. Often I've seen childless/unmarried folks with no responsibility except to themselves become less driven and just more frugal to bank money.
For me that just wouldn't have worked. Just IMHO.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:51 AM   #433
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I think having kids and responsibility is what gives many of us drive to succeed. Often I've seen childless/unmarried folks with no responsibility except to themselves become less driven and just more frugal to bank money.
For me that just wouldn't have worked. Just IMHO.
I think without kids, I would be the exact opposite of what you observe. If I didn't have kids, I could spend a lot more time and energy on my profession and probably move up and advance quicker (and ER a little sooner!). With 2 (young) kids, they take a lot of time and energy away from professional pursuits. Picking up and dropping off at school, preschool, daycare, etc. Running them to/from dentist and doc appointments. Coordinating school stuff, helping with homework, enrichment activities, etc.

Makes me wonder what I did with all that free time pre-kids?!?!

And then there is a significant proportion of families where one income earner drops out of the full time work force to take on child raising responsibility. Not the case in my family, but it is the case for many of my peers. They are less career focused post-kids.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:56 AM   #434
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I think having kids and responsibility is what gives many of us drive to succeed. Often I've seen childless/unmarried folks with no responsibility except to themselves become less driven and just more frugal to bank money.
For me that just wouldn't have worked. Just IMHO.
Agreed, I think there definitely is an inner drive for some (when in a meaningful relationship with another) to get up off couch, go out, and kill something and drag it back to the cave. Where-as the ambition is far less when only providing for oneself in many folks.

Personally I also believe that having a family makes me think and work much harder at providing for all of our financial security and ABUNDANCE than I would if I was single.
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Old 01-05-2011, 09:58 AM   #435
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I definitely agree with points 2 and 3, but in my experience, getting married has actually dramatically increased my net worth.

By getting married to someone earning the same as you, you're basically doubling your income and halving your housing cost. 2 people can live in a dwelling just as easily as 1, with only minutely affecting the utility costs. Your food cost doubles, but in my experience, everything else stays virtually the same.

Also, by marrying and combining retirement accounts, you increase your balances to levels where you get discounts, faster. For example, households with $50,000 in assets get $9.99 trades (instead of $200) with TDW. By marrying and pooling our money, we've hit that threshold faster, thus decreasing our costs.

You can split the chores, giving you more free time (it takes the same amount of time to cook a meal for 1 person as it does for 2), and you get two heads working on money-saving ideas rather than just one.

And that's not even counting the *ahem* "free entertainment" benefits of being married.

Just don't get divorced.
I strongly agree with this. As long as you pick a mate that shares similar ideas about money management, it is definitely cheaper (per person) for 2 than for 1.

Take DW and my "movie night" last night for example. Kids were in bed, and we sit down for an hour and a half of quality movie time. Corn dogs, $0.50 beers (from trader joes), some wine and champagne ($2-4 bottle stuff). Had I been single and date-seeking this experience would have cost maybe $100+ (admittedly in nicer environs than our living room and eating better food than corn dogs).
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:02 AM   #436
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I think without kids, I would be the exact opposite of what you observe. If I didn't have kids, I could spend a lot more time and energy on my profession and probably move up and advance quicker (and ER a little sooner!). With 2 (young) kids, they take a lot of time and energy away from professional pursuits. Picking up and dropping off at school, preschool, daycare, etc. Running them to/from dentist and doc appointments. Coordinating school stuff, helping with homework, enrichment activities, etc.

Makes me wonder what I did with all that free time pre-kids?!?!
I agree to this "logic" in this first paragraph above (you'd think there should be soooo much more time etc to "climb the ladder") but I think the reality is in the sentence that follows for many.

Given the abscence of the "motivating factors" (family dependence) many will not know what happened with the time because it was "frittered" away doing things that lacked direction and purpose.
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Old 01-05-2011, 10:29 AM   #437
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To each his own I guess. I would never remember to turn it down before retiring for the evening and it is nice that it starts to heat up before I get up. Just to let you know, even if you have one to override it is just like the old dumb ones except you push a button rather than twist a dial.
Speaking of undirected DRINKER (Dual Retirement Income No Kids Early Retired) energy [well, almost there...DW announced her retirement at her office an hour ago]

If someone has not invented this already, the optimum would be a thermostat that responds to behavior, like shutting off the heat when you set the alarm on the way out of the house or shut off the TV going to sleep.

You could also build in an algorithm that constantly and gradually seeks to lower the heat or raise the AC until you notice

even better, go with personal heating or cooling (and lighting) ; - )

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Old 01-05-2011, 10:47 AM   #438
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I agree to this "logic" in this first paragraph above (you'd think there should be soooo much more time etc to "climb the ladder") but I think the reality is in the sentence that follows for many.

Given the abscence of the "motivating factors" (family dependence) many will not know what happened with the time because it was "frittered" away doing things that lacked direction and purpose.
Isn't the average single man pretty well motivated by his knowledge of the favorable effect that money and signs of accomplishment have on women, whether he intends to eventually marry one or just date? And if he is not securely linked, he had better keep his skills up because he can't really coast.

Now if an American man could be like an Iranian and add a permanent or temporary wife every time he got a promotion, just watch that mother work!

Ha
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:09 AM   #439
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I agree to this "logic" in this first paragraph above (you'd think there should be soooo much more time etc to "climb the ladder") but I think the reality is in the sentence that follows for many.

Given the abscence of the "motivating factors" (family dependence) many will not know what happened with the time because it was "frittered" away doing things that lacked direction and purpose.
Not having kids requires a certain amount of philosophical robustness - not recommended for the faint of heart. My advice to any young man is not to attempt this unless it is the wife's idea. (my situation)

and conversely, don't pressure a woman into having kids if she is not 100% into it. You also have to consider the risk of a disabled child and if you jointly have the emotional stamina for this and the usual challenges.

And don't have kids if you are just bored or your mother in law is nagging you or your brother has kids and you need to catch up or you think it will fix a teetering marriage.

We are conspicuously close to the nephew and neices of one branch of our family who reside in our City and who are moderately engaged with our lives, vacationed with them when they were younger, there is an understanding that they are our heirs etc. That colors my attitude to this a bit.

This only works if the parents are into it or see a benefit to the relationships. Many a aunt has been cut off from her substitute children neices because of a spat with the parents...so...mouth shut and wallet open.

It will be interesting to see how this plays out as we drift into our 60s, 70s and hopefully beyond. For many of the old, the only people in the world that will give them the time of day or spend a few minutes on the phone are their children, but having children is no guarantee that even this will happen.

I think childlessness combined with social awkwardness could be a bad combination. The childless need to persistently engage in activities that get them out into the world, retaining old friends, and constantly adding new ones. (as many will die off, become disabled, move)

Research apparently indicates that childless couples tend to have better marriages and are not less happy in old age. Poverty in old age is though correlated to unhappiness, as is marriage negatively correlated to unhappiness.
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Old 01-05-2011, 11:14 AM   #440
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Isn't the average single man pretty well motivated by his knowledge of the favorable effect that money and signs of accomplishment have on women, whether he intends to eventually marry one or just date? And if he is not securely linked, he had better keep his skills up because he can't really coast.

Now if an American man could be like an Iranian and add a permanent or temporary wife every time he got a promotion, just watch that mother work!

Ha
is it hard to emigrate to Iran? ; - )
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