Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Old 09-27-2008, 04:12 PM   #61
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
freebird5825's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: East Nowhere, 43N Latitude, NY
Posts: 9,017
cable + internet + telephone + security & fire alarm system bill -yes
satellite radio - nope
Netflix - yes
cell phone bill -yes
day care - nope
car lease - nope
credit card interest - nope
housecleaner - yes
garbage -yes
car/house/boat insurance - yes

best thing we did was put all bills we could on autodeduct from a shared bank account and tallied it all up in a spreadsheet.
then we trimmed the cell phone minutes and the lowered the frequency of housecleaner ( i have carpal tunnel, so it's a necesity), plus re-evaluated the car insurance.
we saved!
__________________

__________________
"All our dreams can come true, if we have the courage to pursue them." - Walt Disney
freebird5825 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 09-27-2008, 04:12 PM   #62
Administrator
Gumby's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 10,137
Quote:
Originally Posted by youbet View Post
Gee Gumby..... An issue where I seem to be on your left!

I believe in progressive taxes and property taxes are no exception. Make a big footprint with your domicile = pay a big tax bill. Keeping significant assets tied up in real estate, IMO, shouldn't shield you from paying your fair share.

Selling the house isn't an unsatisfactory solution, it's a very viable solution. You're retired, the kids are grown and out of the house, the needs for space and fancy amenities are reduced, so sell and make a little smaller footprint than earlier in life. It makes sense to me.
You would be surprised at how a rather modest "footprint" can generate a very big tax bill in this area of the country. My $8700 annual tax bill is for 2500 square feet with a 1/3 acre property

Actually, I have never regretted paying my property taxes, even though half of the money goes to the schools and I do not have any children. The way I see it, someone paid for me when I was young. But I am cognizant that it will be my largest single expense in retirement, and it would be a great disappointment to have to sell because we couldn't afford the taxes..
__________________

__________________
Living an analog life in the Digital Age.
Gumby is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2008, 04:29 PM   #63
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 33
To Bestwifeever: Great suggestion, but spouse just loves to get those magazines in the mail. Something about when you retire, the mailbox becomes a magic portal you must visit several times a day to see if the postal fairy has left you anything :-) Plus, I read the magazines while riding the elliptical machine or treadmill--so that counts as recycling :-)
As for being thrifty, I know that dial-up Internet resonates with a bunch of people. I don't mention it at work because folks would stare. Yet we resent the "bundling" scams for Internet, phone and TV. We don't need that long-distance phone service that is bundled in, but can't get a decent high-speed internet connection, all by itself, for less than $70 a month including all the taxes and fees. So I'll keep on with the dial-up until nothing will load anymore. So far, it's still a quick, easy way to spend money, pay bills, and send e-mail, and I don't think I'm missing much by not watching You Tube.
__________________
Recycle practically everything.
Own2Feet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2008, 04:53 PM   #64
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
youbet's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2005
Location: Chicago
Posts: 9,965
Quote:
Originally Posted by Own2Feet View Post
I'll keep on with the dial-up until nothing will load anymore..
You might want to check if ATT DSL is available at your house. I discovered the slowest version of ATT DSL at $10/mo was cheaper than the dial-up service I was using. Yet, the slowest ATT DSL screams with speed compared to what the dial-up provided......and I actually save $5/mo!
__________________
"I wasn't born blue blood. I was born blue-collar." John Wort Hannam
youbet is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2008, 06:50 PM   #65
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 309
I suspect many of you here also track your monthly expenses and if not notice when one of your bills goes up. I track mine in Excel and this has been a great tool in helping me slowly cut costs(although I was always very frugal before this). I would suggest that each month you pick a monthly bill and try to get it reduced....for example I just got my land line reduced by about $15 a month by threatening to switch to a competitor. In a year I will call them again and try to get it dropped again. One bill I cringe at is net and cable which is $115 a month. We do have one step above basic cable and high speed net but to me it's still high. We are in Canada though and it seems as though cable, net and phone costs are MUCH lower in the US. Thankfully we have had more options recently so this bill is next on my hit list.

AS others have said I have zero interest costs on my CC....except for last month when I forgot to pay it on time which I've never done before. Interest was around 20 bucks on about a $800 balance...ouch
__________________
accountingsucks is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-27-2008, 07:03 PM   #66
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Posts: 3,815
I'll be (mildly) contrarian and point out that the "regular monthly expenses" has a mirror image for some people. Many of those who save do it by having automatic payroll deduction for 401K plans. I've heard that employers are promoting 401k more strongly by automatically enrolling people - you need to actively reject the deduction in order to opt out.

And, since interest rates are set by supply/demand, if lots of people borrow and spend and only a few save, the savers (that's us) get better rates.


(Yes, I know about the negatives. 401k's replace pensions which were 100% automatic, the balance in the 401k makes people feel rich so they spend even more, all the borrowers drive the dollar down when they vote the same way they live. But I'm trying to find a silver lining here.)
__________________
Independent is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 11:19 AM   #67
Full time employment: Posting here.
old woman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2005
Posts: 551
Down grading your housing isn't always wise even if you save on property taxes. My brother is retired and 59 YO now and buying a 5 bedroom house with a 5 car garage and 3 bathrooms. Mom is 82 and moving in with him and his wife and he has business that will be in the garage. He is spending 200K more to get a bigger house and not charging mom rent. She is selling her house to his son and he is selling his house. The housing market seems good in our family. My brother is buying from his daughter and a friend of a neighbor is buying his old house for cash.
__________________
old woman is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 03:27 PM   #68
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 404
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy29 View Post
I'd eat dog food before going back to dial-up Internet.
I'd choose broadband over indoor plumbing.
__________________
BLS53 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 04:38 PM   #69
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,846
Quote:
Originally Posted by BLS53 View Post
I'd choose broadband over indoor plumbing.
After Katrina, I didn't have either in my home in New Orleans. After finding that out I went to Alabama and did not return until the indoor plumbing/sewer was working again in my neighborhood. Cable TV/internet was not working but I was still glad to be back.

However, getting my cable internet back was WONDERFUL!! Then I truly felt that I was back home.

So, from that experience I can conclude that in my case, I would choose indoor plumbing over broadband.
__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 04:52 PM   #70
Moderator Emeritus
Khan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Pine Island, Florida
Posts: 6,868
Send a message via AIM to Khan
Quote:
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziggy29
I'd eat dog food before going back to dial-up Internet.

I'd choose broadband over indoor plumbing.
I'm somewhere between these two.
__________________
"Knowin' no one nowhere's gonna miss us when we're gone..."
Khan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 04:55 PM   #71
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
HFWR's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2005
Location: Lawn chair in Texas
Posts: 12,964
If your "pipe" was big enough, you could always email some "packets" to some deserving person, say your Congress critter...
__________________
Have Funds, Will Retire

...not doing anything of true substance...
HFWR is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 07:34 PM   #72
Dryer sheet aficionado
 
Join Date: Sep 2008
Posts: 31
I don't know if the monthly payments will kill us, but I think the steady dumbing down will.

When I was a kid in the 80's (this is when houses in Southern California were $200 k, no Suze Orman, no psycho babble on tv, you weren't hearing about your credit score every 5 minutes), people were on top of things. You add distraction and this steady erosion, dumbing down. And aggressive credit card companies....

It was only 15 years ago, but people weren't idiots back then like they are now. I don't know what's changed...you've still got tv, cable, a phone (now more than one phone). Instead of a video rental store, you've got netflix. A car. Video games. What's changed in peoples lifestyles?

I think a lot of stuff in the last 10-15 years, its been way too confusing, too much to keep with for the average person. Points, erewards, surveys, ...points, erewards, surveys. Miles. A lot of fees and charges have been chopped up into 10 or 15 pieces. Perhaps making it harder to keep track of things. I would simplify things massively....you dont have control over your life if you don't.
__________________
John23 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 08:14 PM   #73
Moderator Emeritus
Khan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: Pine Island, Florida
Posts: 6,868
Send a message via AIM to Khan
Quote:
Originally Posted by John23 View Post
I don't know if the monthly payments will kill us, but I think the steady dumbing down will.

When I was a kid in the 80's (this is when houses in Southern California were $200 k, no Suze Orman, no psycho babble on tv, you weren't hearing about your credit score every 5 minutes), people were on top of things. You add distraction and this steady erosion, dumbing down. And aggressive credit card companies....

It was only 15 years ago, but people weren't idiots back then like they are now. I don't know what's changed...you've still got tv, cable, a phone (now more than one phone). Instead of a video rental store, you've got netflix. A car. Video games. What's changed in peoples lifestyles?

I think a lot of stuff in the last 10-15 years, its been way too confusing, too much to keep with for the average person. Points, erewards, surveys, ...points, erewards, surveys. Miles. A lot of fees and charges have been chopped up into 10 or 15 pieces. Perhaps making it harder to keep track of things. I would simplify things massively....you dont have control over your life if you don't.
Not 'monthly payments', but one thing that I think has changed vastly in the last 30 or so years is the frequency of dining out, whether fast food or sit down.
__________________
"Knowin' no one nowhere's gonna miss us when we're gone..."
Khan is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-28-2008, 09:03 PM   #74
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 404
Quote:
Originally Posted by John23 View Post
I don't know if the monthly payments will kill us, but I think the steady dumbing down will.

When I was a kid in the 80's (this is when houses in Southern California were $200 k, no Suze Orman, no psycho babble on tv, you weren't hearing about your credit score every 5 minutes), people were on top of things. You add distraction and this steady erosion, dumbing down. And aggressive credit card companies....

It was only 15 years ago, but people weren't idiots back then like they are now. I don't know what's changed...you've still got tv, cable, a phone (now more than one phone). Instead of a video rental store, you've got netflix. A car. Video games. What's changed in peoples lifestyles?

I think a lot of stuff in the last 10-15 years, its been way too confusing, too much to keep with for the average person. Points, erewards, surveys, ...points, erewards, surveys. Miles. A lot of fees and charges have been chopped up into 10 or 15 pieces. Perhaps making it harder to keep track of things. I would simplify things massively....you dont have control over your life if you don't.
Go back to the 60's and you'll see an even bigger difference in how personal finances were handled. The remarkable thing is, that other than cable TV, internet, and cell phones, there's really few technological break thrus in consumer goods. Products are more reliable yes, but nothing in the scope of "aircars" or other costly futuristic devices have come to pass.

Most "new stuff" is simply repackaged products, that are aggressively marketed as a "must have".

The emergence of consumer credit is another issue. We've replaced the local banker, with huge information networks, where the number of consumers is so great, no lender really knows who they're lending to. Hence we have credit scoring, which in itself is often inaccurate and subject to consumer manipulation.
__________________
BLS53 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 01:58 AM   #75
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Posts: 77
Quote:
Originally Posted by Art G View Post
Well you've hit on another problem. People don't buy things based on need, they buy on wants. Our parents may have had one TV and one car. Perhaps a stereo and that was about it. They didn't go out and buy a 60" big screen because the 48 inch just wasn't big enough, or because you needed one in each room. They didn't upgrade their kitchens just because they were tired of the old cabinets.
Interestingly, this isn't by any means limited to Americans. I know a woman who went to live in Singapore. She said when they needed new computer equipment or cell phones, they went to the dump. She said they are crazy over there about keeping up with new technology. In fact, things like blu-ray are much bigger over there than in the US.
Wish the wife was up so I could show her the kitchen cabinet story and maybe she'd understand why I don't see the need to replace 5 year old cabinets and appliances.It's like talking to the wall. I could understand if they were destroyed.
__________________
CRABBY JERRY is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 08:47 AM   #76
Recycles dryer sheets
Canadian Grunt's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2007
Location: Edmonton
Posts: 197
Quote:
Originally Posted by Art G View Post
From my perspective, the "monthly payment" will bring down the economy. Think about it....

cable bill
internet bill
satellite radio
cell phone bill
day care
car lease
credit card interest

I'm sure I've forgotten quite a few, but consider it. All these things are small monthly expenses that add up to things we'll never own. We talk about the savings of our parents or grandparents and wonder why they were able to do it on such small incomes? They bought things, paid them off, then needed much less income to survive in retirement. What is going to have to happen to save the economy from a surefire broke economy in our senior years? You may think it won't affect you because you've saved, but we can already see the government's involvement with bailing out people. Is Rome about to burn? Even though you've saved, will you be paying for your neighbors retirement?
Where I live up in Edmonton Alberta, Canada the companies have managed to harness our reserves of cash by applying monthly standing charges for piping gas, and infrastructure costs whether you use it or not.

So up here you can add.

Water, Sewage, and Garbage pick up
Natural Gas
Municipal Taxes
Electicity
__________________
it's the journey that matters
Canadian Grunt is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 10:10 AM   #77
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Milton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,068
All of the monthly expenses listed by Art G are purely optional.
  • cable bill - I don't have cable
  • internet bill - I use a dial-up service, which costs less than $10 a month. And if necessary, I could easily do without
  • satellite radio - I don't even know what that is (why would anyone pay for radio?)
  • cell phone bill - I don't have a cell phone
  • day care - I don't have children
  • car lease - I paid cash for my Corrolla
  • credit card interest - I do use a no-fee credit card, but of course I pay the balance in full every month, so there is no interest.
People are free to spend their money, or save it, as they see fit. Personally, I have no sympathy for the spenders.
__________________
"To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive". Robert Louis Stevenson, An Inland Voyage (1878)
Milton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 10:18 AM   #78
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 1,052
Quote:
Originally Posted by CRABBY JERRY View Post
Wish the wife was up so I could show her the kitchen cabinet story and maybe she'd understand why I don't see the need to replace 5 year old cabinets and appliances.It's like talking to the wall. I could understand if they were destroyed.
Going through stores like Home Depot or Lowe's can be deadly now. Everytime I walk through the store I see things I'd love to have in my home. The new toilets and sinks are beautiful! I replaced all the faucets in my house and spent about $1300, JUST FOR FAUCETS! Of course I could have gone the cheap route for around a hundred, or not replaced them at all. Lately, every weekend my wife finds something else to work on.

BTW, to add to my original thoughts, how many of you out there are on a long term contract with your phone company, or didn't take the free phone, but instead paid for the upgrade? How many of you have kids with texting?....or games?
__________________
Art G is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 10:50 AM   #79
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Milton's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Posts: 2,068
Quote:
Originally Posted by Art G View Post
Going through stores like Home Depot or Lowe's can be deadly now. Everytime I walk through the store I see things I'd love to have in my home. The new toilets and sinks are beautiful!
Please tell me you're kidding.
__________________
"To know what you prefer, instead of humbly saying Amen to what the world tells you you ought to prefer, is to have kept your soul alive". Robert Louis Stevenson, An Inland Voyage (1878)
Milton is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 09-29-2008, 10:55 AM   #80
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
FinanceDude's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Posts: 12,484
Quote:
Originally Posted by Milton View Post
Please tell me you're kidding.
He's not. Home Depot and Lowes are to men like J Jill and Kohls are for women. Places to spend money.
__________________

__________________
Consult with your own advisor or representative. My thoughts should not be construed as investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results (love that one).......:)


This Thread is USELESS without pics.........:)
FinanceDude is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
ba-bye house payment bow-tie Young Dreamers 65 08-17-2007 09:00 AM
lump sum or monthly payment valve monkey FIRE and Money 20 03-26-2007 09:18 PM
Pension: Lump Sum or Monthly Payment ? Helena FIRE and Money 12 09-07-2006 10:00 AM
Your Monthly Social Security Payment TromboneAl FIRE and Money 22 05-07-2006 04:12 PM
Never Have Another Car Payment! scoopsteve FIRE and Money 72 03-03-2006 11:08 AM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 05:14 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.