Join Early Retirement Today
Closed Thread
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Are You Better Off Now Than You Were Four Years Ago?
Old 09-08-2012, 01:12 PM   #1
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jul 2007
Posts: 60
Are You Better Off Now Than You Were Four Years Ago?

This question has been bouncing around the media lately and I was wondering if the members of the ER forum have similar financial experiences over the past four years.

Are You Better Off Now Than You Were Four Years Ago? - US News and World Report

My investments are up about 34% since September of 2008 and as the closer we get to November that number will probably continue to go up because my investments were taking the nose dive towards the end of 2008. This also includes consuming over $100K of our investments because my contracting wife was unable to find a position for over 12 months during the past four years.

I quit working back in the spring of 2008 while my wife has continued to work. We are now within about two years of meeting the 100% success rate noted by Firecalc. I keep informing my wife that not working anymore could probably happen at anytime but she chooses to continue working. Extroverts are so strange.
__________________

__________________
Stupid is as stupid does. - Forrest Gump
tapper is offline  
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 09-08-2012, 01:32 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 3,870
I am much better off today than I was 4 years ago.

My story is similar to yours, Tapper. I ERed in late 2008 when the markets were falling a lot and that was a great aid to my finances. I am up about 20% from where I was at this time 4 years ago, and like you that figure would rise if the comparison is done using a lower starting point when I actually ERed at the start of November. This is despite not working any more and spending a lot of my investment income instead of reinvesting it.
__________________

__________________
Retired in late 2008 at age 45. Cashed in company stock, bought a lot of shares in a big bond fund and am living nicely off its dividends. IRA, SS, and a pension await me at age 60 and later. No kids, no debts.

"I want my money working for me instead of me working for my money!"
scrabbler1 is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:35 PM   #3
Moderator
MichaelB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Rocky Inlets
Posts: 24,467
Let's see. DW and I are still alive and in good health. Two grandchildren. Kids are employed and living their lives. Brothers and sisters on both sides also all in good health. Mom is hanging in and we see each other often. Still ER'd. Life is good and we are fortunate.
__________________
MichaelB is online now  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:40 PM   #4
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,019
On paper I am about $700K better off than 4 years ago (based on my NW spreadsheets) but I have less human capital left. A quick calculation (assuming a retirement age of 60) on the QWEMA calculator suggests that I've lost about $700K in human capital during the last 4 years. So the answer is neutral. Of course, if I were already retired, there would be no need to discount the human capital.
__________________
Meadbh is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:40 PM   #5
gone traveling
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Placerville
Posts: 161
I think the question should be;
Are you better off now than you were 4 years ago in spite of, or, because of the current administration?

Considering all of my assets, and only on a financial level, no. My home's value has depreciated by $500,000 putting my total worth below what it was 4 years ago.

And perhaps another better question is;
Is your quality of life better now than it was 4 years ago?
In my personal situation, yes. I will retire this year and have enough income to do what I want and since I'm not planning to move anyways or tap the equity in my home, the home's value isn't really meaningful to me right now.
But I don't think the quality of life for younger Americans is better today than it was in the past. I meet too many young people who are so much further behind the curve than I was at their age; no home, no career job, no savings, etc.
__________________
skipro3 is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:45 PM   #6
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,019
Quote:
Originally Posted by skipro3 View Post
I think the question should be;
Are you better off now than you were 4 years ago in spite of, or, because of the current administration?
That would change the question from an economic to a political one. If it was meant to be political in the first place, I completely missed the point. But then I am not a USian.
__________________
Meadbh is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:47 PM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
steelyman's Avatar
 
Join Date: Feb 2011
Location: Triangle
Posts: 3,218
I think this thread has a high probability of seeing Goodbye Porkpie Hat, but my answer is a two-thumbs Yes.
__________________

steelyman is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:48 PM   #8
Moderator Emeritus
 
Join Date: May 2007
Posts: 11,044
Two-thumbs yes for me too.
__________________
FIREd is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 01:52 PM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
frayne's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2002
Location: 19th Hole
Posts: 2,534
Net worth is essentially the same as what it was four years ago, so I would have to answer yes. Could I be better off, yes, could I have been a lot worse, you bet, in light of the financial crisis of 08. There is much to be said for investing in index funds and staying the course.

As MichaelB so succinctly stated, family is all doing good, no major health or job issues, plus two wonderful grandkids both healthy and doing good in school. That is the true measure as if you are better off or not.
__________________
A totally unblemished life is only for saints.
frayne is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 02:13 PM   #10
gone traveling
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Placerville
Posts: 161
Quote:
Originally Posted by Meadbh View Post
That would change the question from an economic to a political one. If it was meant to be political in the first place, I completely missed the point. But then I am not a USian.
The link in the OP's post was political so I took it as a political question.

The first sentence under the link's title article was;
"The Romney-Ryan campaign says the economy has gotten worse than it was four years ago when President Barack Obama took office"
__________________
skipro3 is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 02:15 PM   #11
Moderator
Alan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Eee Bah Gum
Posts: 21,113
I am much better off than 4 years ago. September, '08, 2/3rds of the site had been shut down, 200 or so contractors laid off, salary freeze, no bonus paid in 08 or 09.

Today I am ER'ed, investments doing great, my old site is now back at full capacity, with a big expansion in the works, lots of "welcome new employees" in the last 2 quarterly magazines I've received.
__________________
Retired in Jan, 2010 at 55, moved to England in May 2016
Now it's adventure before dementia
Alan is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 02:16 PM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso) Give me a forum ...
REWahoo's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Texas Hill Country
Posts: 42,119
Quote:
Originally Posted by skipro3 View Post
The link in the OP's post was political so I took it as a political question.

The first sentence under the link's title article was;
"The Romney-Ryan campaign says the economy has gotten worse than it was four years ago when President Barack Obama took office"
From bad to waaay bad.

The mods will be along shortly to mop up...
__________________
Numbers is hard

When I hit 70, it hit back

Retired in 2005 at age 58, no pension
REWahoo is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 02:25 PM   #13
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 7,891
I think the answer depends on the interpretation of "better off."

Financially?

Health?

As a family?

etc. etc.

As a country? (oops, do I smell bacon?)
__________________
Have you ever seen a headstone with these words
"If only I had spent more time at work" ... from "Busy Man" sung by Billy Ray Cyrus
easysurfer is offline  
Old 09-08-2012, 02:44 PM   #14
Moderator
MichaelB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Rocky Inlets
Posts: 24,467
Quote:
Originally Posted by easysurfer View Post
I think the answer depends on the interpretation of "better off."

Financially?

Health?

As a family?
All of the above

Quote:
Originally Posted by easysurfer View Post
As a country? (oops, do I smell bacon?)
as Yoda would say: Strong the smell of bacon is ..
__________________
MichaelB is online now  
Old 09-08-2012, 03:14 PM   #15
Moderator
Alan's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2005
Location: Eee Bah Gum
Posts: 21,113
and other election politics thread is closed....

__________________

__________________
Retired in Jan, 2010 at 55, moved to England in May 2016
Now it's adventure before dementia
Alan is offline  
Closed Thread


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


 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 07:36 AM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.