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Old 09-18-2013, 01:58 PM   #61
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Yup, been there, done that! I'll have to be near destitute before I'll go back to apartment living.
Sold the house in 07 and wondered if I would miss it. Lived in CA and Mexico and miss a little bit, but gained so much without the hassle. Saved so much more imo and don't have to worry with selling / buying. You also have the option of trying living in different areas of the city without much headache.

Back in Mexico paying $530 for awesome place (4 plex) close to the beach, including utilities...
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:42 AM   #62
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I started a similar thread a couple of months back (link below). I am ten years older than you and for the longest time enjoyed the hi pressure corporate gig and the toys that came with it.

My advice would be to take a harder look at the job and not so much the lifestyle. At least to start, figure out if it is maybe just the job. I have sorted a few things out in my current job that were DRIVING ME FRICKIN CRAZY! Not exaggerating - super hi pay, hi pressure job suddently became miserable, causing me to see a psychiatrict for the first time in my life, etc.

I have learned to manage my crazy boss better and learned to let more stuff roll off my back (politics, all the corporate ass covering activities, etc). Job still isn't easy but life is far, far better. You may consider jut changing companies, get a fresh start and go from there. You can always downsize your whole life later if you can't fix the career.

Balance is a big thing for me. Yesterday was a good day: checked on my retirement account balances and they looked really good. Then went boat shopping with the ladywife (I will pay cash for a very nice used boat as i like my toys but am still a frugal bastard). Big income, saving a lot and still enjoying the ride is fun if you can figure out how to deal with the corporate BS.



Help me get through a couple more years..
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Old 09-22-2013, 06:58 AM   #63
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OK - can't resist commenting on the BMW discussion in the middle of this thread. Nice balanced discussion - usually on this forum I just see everyone bashing people who own luxury cars. ( I have a BMW and a classic 911). Both completely paid for btw.

I live in a modest home for my income which leaves plenty of money for savings and for toys.

This may sound very snobbish, but when people bash BMWs as just being status symbols and/or "not worth it", i am always interested to hear how many BMWs they have owned/driven and how much they know about them. If you can afford these cars and are into quality and performance, it becomes obvious that a BMW is far, far from just being a Honda accord with a different badge and a higher price tag. These cars are engineered fanatically and made to a very high build quality. My 5 series has 100k miles on it now and still looks and drives like it is a new car.

I am completely hooked now. When I travel and get a very nice, brand new domestic rental car, it is almost shocking how low the quality of these cars are by comparison. Not saying everyone should run out and buy one, just saying do some research before just throwing stuff out.

My .02.
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Old 09-22-2013, 07:13 AM   #64
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OK - can't resist commenting on the BMW discussion in the middle of this thread. Nice balanced discussion - usually on this forum I just see everyone bashing people who own luxury cars. ( I have a BMW and a classic 911). Both completely paid for btw.

I live in a modest home for my income which leaves plenty of money for savings and for toys.
Well, you don't get bashed for it because those are your choices and that's what makes you happy. Nothing wrong with that. Who is anyone to tell someone else what their priorities should be?

What people get bashed for is living beyond their means and then whining because they don't have any money and are out of options.
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Old 09-22-2013, 07:37 AM   #65
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You both have a point. People sometimes do bash the owners of luxury homes and cars out of a presumption that they are either grasshoppers, who can't afford the nice things and could be jeopardizing their retirements; or sheep, who buy nice things they can't afford because those around them are doing so.

But somebody who can afford nice things, while still paying their own way? Carry on!

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Well, you don't get bashed for it because those are your choices and that's what makes you happy. Nothing wrong with that. Who is anyone to tell someone else what their priorities should be?

What people get bashed for is living beyond their means and then whining because they don't have any money and are out of options.
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Old 09-22-2013, 09:57 AM   #66
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This may sound very snobbish, but when people bash BMWs as just being status symbols and/or "not worth it", i am always interested to hear how many BMWs they have owned/driven and how much they know about them. If you can afford these cars and are into quality and performance, it becomes obvious that a BMW is far, far from just being a Honda accord with a different badge and a higher price tag. These cars are engineered fanatically and made to a very high build quality. My 5 series has 100k miles on it now and still looks and drives like it is a new car.
There's no doubt that the BMWs are very well engineered and of high quality. But, I don't think from a strict utility standpoint (the ability of the car to move me and my cargo safely and efficiently from place to place at the lowest price) that the BMW can be justified. It's over-engineered (and overpriced) from this perspective. And, regarding performance, I think it's reasonable to argue that if driven on public roads within the confines of speed laws and at the speed of prevailing other traffic, there's little difference between a BMW and an Accord (with good tires). That still leaves plenty of reasons to buy the BMW--for the owner that likes "nice things" for their own sake (a well built grandfather clock or sewing machine, or old SLR camera is a wonder to behold, and I appreciate them), or for the status it conveys (which can be practical--to a real estate agent, lawyer, or "corporate climber").
Regardless, if a person has the money and wants to buy the car, they'll get no argument from me--I hope they enjoy it. There are lots more frivolous ways to spend money.
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Old 09-22-2013, 10:11 AM   #67
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There's no doubt that the BMWs are very well engineered and of high quality. But, I don't think from a strict utility standpoint (the ability of the car to move me and my cargo safely and efficiently from place to place at the lowest price) that the BMW can be justified. It's over-engineered (and overpriced) from this perspective. And, regarding performance, I think it's reasonable to argue that if driven on public roads within the confines of speed laws and at the speed of prevailing other traffic, there's little difference between a BMW and an Accord (with good tires). That still leaves plenty of reasons to buy the BMW--for the owner that likes "nice things" for their own sake (a well built grandfather clock or sewing machine, or old SLR camera is a wonder to behold, and I appreciate them), or for the status it conveys (which can be practical--to a real estate agent, lawyer, or "corporate climber").
Regardless, if a person has the money and wants to buy the car, they'll get no argument from me--I hope they enjoy it. There are lots more frivolous ways to spend money.

Of course it can't. Your point is, in a sense, perfectly logical but how many choices do you make in your life based on pure utility?

Do you eat nothing but beans and rice every day?
Do you buy all of your clotches at a thrift store?
Do you and your family of four live in a 600 sq ft studio apartment?
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:01 AM   #68
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Of course it can't. Your point is, in a sense, perfectly logical but how many choices do you make in your life based on pure utility?
Your point is valid. But even in "non-utilitatrian" matters (e.g. happiness), utility theory still prevails. Most of us will use our available dollars to buy the things which give us the highest happiness per dollar spent (rank ordered by marginal utility/happiness). For most folks, spending on upgraded food and clothes ranks a bit higher than cars in this regard, but I'm very glad we can all make our own decisions in these things.
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Old 09-22-2013, 11:37 AM   #69
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I think people should drive what they can afford and makes them happy. But what seems a bit sad to me are the former co-workers we see now and then who hate their jobs, are worried about getting laid off, are totally stressed out and then they'll drive off in their $80K cars.

That $80K car alone could be funding a year of living expenses, either towards retirement or not having to worry about paying the bills while they look for a new job / update their skills. I think for them the savings would bring them more happiness than the car, but they aren't getting the link between the expensive car, the expensive house, the vacations and their hamster wheel existence.
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Old 09-22-2013, 07:18 PM   #70
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I think people should drive what they can afford and makes them happy. But what seems a bit sad to me are the former co-workers we see now and then who hate their jobs, are worried about getting laid off, are totally stressed out and then they'll drive off in their $80K cars.

That $80K car alone could be funding a year of living expenses, either towards retirement or not having to worry about paying the bills while they look for a new job / update their skills. I think for them the savings would bring them more happiness than the car, but they aren't getting the link between the expensive car, the expensive house, the vacations and their hamster wheel existence.

Fair point. You certainly do build stress into your life the more you extend yourself financially.

I just find a lot of the bashing of luxury goods to be more jealousy than anything. I have family members who I know have made comments about my toys. To them my stuff seems over the top but they probably have no idea that I make 5-10 times what they do. The bank would loan me enough to buy a million dollar home and I could, by bank math, afford a new 7 series BMW. Instead, I live in a $250k house and bought a two year old 5 series BMW. To me that is being quite frugal. Seen from the outside, I may appear to be one of those "living way above their means" people. Not so much. It is all relative.
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:21 PM   #71
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OK - can't resist commenting on the BMW discussion in the middle of this thread. Nice balanced discussion - usually on this forum I just see everyone bashing people who own luxury cars. ( I have a BMW and a classic 911). Both completely paid for btw.

I live in a modest home for my income which leaves plenty of money for savings and for toys.

This may sound very snobbish, but when people bash BMWs as just being status symbols and/or "not worth it", i am always interested to hear how many BMWs they have owned/driven and how much they know about them. If you can afford these cars and are into quality and performance, it becomes obvious that a BMW is far, far from just being a Honda accord with a different badge and a higher price tag. These cars are engineered fanatically and made to a very high build quality. My 5 series has 100k miles on it now and still looks and drives like it is a new car.

I am completely hooked now. When I travel and get a very nice, brand new domestic rental car, it is almost shocking how low the quality of these cars are by comparison. Not saying everyone should run out and buy one, just saying do some research before just throwing stuff out.

My .02.


I don't bash them because it is a BMW.... but the thinking that a BMW is the only car that can deliver on these things.... I bought a nice car... an Acura TL... my car is quicker than most of the BMWs that are in my class... my car can handle probably at the 98% level of one... (and with the ones I have been next to, better... but that is probably the driver).... and my car cost at least $10K less....

Most of the people that I have met or known that have owned a BMW did it for a status symbol..... not for the driving ability of the car...


Edit to add... I also have a Hyundai Elantra that works just fine taking our family places... I am perfectly happy with that car also.... not as 'fun' as the TL, but it does the job it was intended well...
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Old 09-22-2013, 08:47 PM   #72
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I don't bash them because it is a BMW.... but the thinking that a BMW is the only car that can deliver on these things.... I bought a nice car... an Acura TL... my car is quicker than most of the BMWs that are in my class... my car can handle probably at the 98% level of one... (and with the ones I have been next to, better... but that is probably the driver).... and my car cost at least $10K less....

Most of the people that I have met or known that have owned a BMW did it for a status symbol..... not for the driving ability of the car...


Edit to add... I also have a Hyundai Elantra that works just fine taking our family places... I am perfectly happy with that car also.... not as 'fun' as the TL, but it does the job it was intended well...

Acura drivers are all snobs living beyond their means.
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Old 09-23-2013, 06:44 AM   #73
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Acura drivers are all snobs living beyond their means.
Pure luxury!
Drivers are all snobs living beyond their means!

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Old 09-23-2013, 09:27 AM   #74
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Edit to add... I also have a Hyundai Elantra that works just fine taking our family places... I am perfectly happy with that car also.... not as 'fun' as the TL, but it does the job it was intended well...
To me it is very much about matching the car to the job. For somethings you need practical and efficient, other jobs need heavy duty hauling, and sometimes for fun you want quick and agile, etc. I hope everyone has what they need, and can also afford what they want.

Everyone has different priorities and wants. Instead of an upscale example let me go a different way. Most people I work with either drive average normal cars/suvs or various upscale cars/suvs. However, one guy has a Smart car. For the same price you can buy a bigger compact car that gets the same mileage, can haul more stuff and is more stable at highway speeds. The only thing I would say the Smart car does better than others is parking in tiny places. But he likes it. He dressed it up as a football helmet one year. He had one of those slowly spinning wind up things attached to the back at one point to make it look like a large toy car. I got a chuckle out of that. This is his "fun" car. Instead of deriving fun from driving on a winding road at speed, he get's fun a little more directly.
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Old 10-01-2013, 11:35 AM   #75
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One of the things I do not get is that there are many cars that are 'equal' (or close enough) to the handling of a BMW that are cheaper...


You are probably not even coming close to the limits of that BMW... so say you are in the 80% range... another car might be in the 85% range for the same turn.... both will do it at the same speed...
You are correct that there are many less expensive cars which have similar performance numbers to any given BMW. Part of the appeal of most of the European cars I've driven is the heavy, solid, buttoned-down feeling they tend to have, as well as the amount of road feel the driver receives. Part of this is due to their alignment settings and tire choices (which can be adjusted on any car to improve the handling), but part of it is due to the geometry of the suspension and its physical components. (Unfortunately, some of those physical components on a BMW are more fragile than competing models, e.g., fluid filled suspension bushings which eventually spill out their fluid.)
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Old 10-01-2013, 12:00 PM   #76
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I've had a boss and two BILs that have owned BMWs. I've ridden in all of them multiple times and drove one BILs BMW once. I'll agree that they were nice but I was not impressed enough to want one.

I once had a Volvo with which I was not overly impressed with as time went on. I fell for the "safety" aspect early in my child rearing days. The place I took it to for oil changes/routine maintenace also serviced BMWs. You could always tell which car someone had based on their service fee. Volvos were $79 and BMWs were $139. I got my Chevy done at another place for $39.
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:12 PM   #77
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Just joined this forum, but I hope I don't feel this way after reading in here for a few months!

The whole idea of FIRE is pretty eye-opening.
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:53 PM   #78
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Just joined this forum, but I hope I don't feel this way after reading in here for a few months!

The whole idea of FIRE is pretty eye-opening.
What way do you feel? The ruined life part?
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Old 10-01-2013, 01:56 PM   #79
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What way do you feel? The ruined life part?
Based on his "gone traveling" status, I'd say your assumption was correct.
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Old 10-01-2013, 02:34 PM   #80
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Based on his "gone traveling" status, I'd say your assumption was correct.
We had drifted so far from the original thread, I wasn't sure anymore. Let's talk about classic horror films next. Halloween is coming.
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