Join Early Retirement Today
Closed Thread
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Changing "Classes"
Old 01-20-2017, 06:24 PM   #1
Recycles dryer sheets
Join Date: Feb 2012
Posts: 80
Changing "Classes"

I have always viewed myself as being part of the "working-class". It is probably because of my upbringing. Maybe that is why I have been able to save a relatively high percentage of my income over the last 30 years. I have been very fortunate and blessed.

I just looked at a Quicken report and realized that the return from my investments (including appreciation) was twice the amount I earned during the last 12 months working full-time. Does this automatically make me part of the "investor-class"? I hope not. In my warped mind I am still more comfortable with being self-identified as being part of the "working-class".

Have any of you had a moment when you suddenly realized that you may have changed "classes"? Are you comfortable with this change? Did it impact your motivation to work?

KMyer 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 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 01-20-2017, 06:49 PM   #2
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Just_Steve's Avatar
Join Date: Apr 2016
Location: Dutchess County
Posts: 1,601
Never thought about it, sounds a little pretentious.

Just_Steve is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 06:51 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Amethyst's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 8,608
I think of myself as high class. Always did, even when I was poor as heck, and didn't have a dime to invest or even know what investing was.
If you understood everything I say, you'd be me ~ Miles Davis
'There is only one success to be able to spend your life in your own way. Christopher Morley.
It involved a mannequin hand, and an electric shaver taped to a golf club! - "The Other Guys"
Amethyst is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 07:27 PM   #4
Moderator Emeritus
Ronstar's Avatar
Join Date: Aug 2007
Location: A little ways southwest of Chicago
Posts: 12,104
I always thought I was middle class, but I never considered class as an important measurement.
The wilderness is calling and I must go.
Ronstar is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 07:37 PM   #5
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
travelover's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2007
Posts: 12,378
I've always been no class, so no need to change with different assets.
travelover is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 07:51 PM   #6
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Join Date: Nov 2005
Posts: 1,246
The area where I live is pretty funny: developers must have decided that happiness is maximized when people associate only with members of their own 'class', because it's pretty easy to label each subdivision as low, middle, upper middle, or upper class based on the quality of the housing. As long as all of my external signaling screams 'middle class' (quality of my house & car, for example), it's hard to think of myself as anything but middle class. That's fine - I'm comfortable where I am.

P.S. I occasionally drive through a lower class subdivision and glimpse a very expensive car in the garage of a very modest house. What's up with that? Big hat / no cattle? Or, someone as cheap as I am who likes fancy cars?
socca is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:04 PM   #7
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
brewer12345's Avatar
Join Date: Mar 2003
Posts: 17,910
I always felt kind of uncomfortable in my career rubbing elbows with the sons of privilege and the power elite professionally when here I was the first of my family to graduate college and Dad was a blue collar guy with a GED who got ahead by being an entrepreneur. Now that I no longer do that stuff, I have dropped back to my Appalachian-American roots (pickup truck, hound dogs, etc.) and feel much more comfortable, like I no longer have to keep up appearances. When I bump into my peers at the local fishing hole or public hunting land it is very obvious that I have a lot more education and money than the average dude there, but it really does not matter when you are trading fishing tips or admiring someone's goose. Now that some of the shine is off the pickup and it has a few dents, I fit in a little better.
"See their morals, their code, it's a bad joke. Dropped at the first sign of trouble. They're only as good as the world allows them to be. I'll show you. When the chips are down, these civilized people, they'll eat each other.
See, I'm not a monster... I'm just ahead of the curve."

- The Joker
brewer12345 is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:06 PM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Join Date: Jun 2016
Posts: 3,871
Originally Posted by Just_Steve View Post
Never thought about it, sounds a little pretentious.
I thought about it as my income rose. I came from a very working class, at best, family. As my assets and income got bigger, I appreciated it more and counted my blessings. Nothing pretentious, more about realization and appreciation.
COcheesehead is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:25 PM   #9
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Nemo2's Avatar
Join Date: May 2011
Location: Belleville, ONT
Posts: 7,418
I once thought one of my bosses had submitted a report about me having class, but when I deciphered the handwriting I realized he'd actually written crass.
"Exit, pursued by a bear."

The Winter's Tale, William Shakespeare
Nemo2 is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:31 PM   #10
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
euro's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2015
Posts: 1,367
Originally Posted by Ronstar View Post
I always thought I was middle class, but I never considered class as an important measurement.
That. Never paid much attention to social status
euro is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:48 PM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Katsmeow's Avatar
Join Date: Jul 2009
Location: NE Tarrant County
Posts: 4,377
I think this is an interesting question. In the US, famously, most people no matter their income think they are middle class. FWIW, I don't think it is just income that defines these things but it is a factor.

I grew up in a working class family. No one had gone to college. My parents expected me, though, to go to college. When I decided to go on to law school I think my mother was a little doubtful. I think she honestly thought I was trying for "too much."

When I went to law school, there were other people like me and then there were students from a very different background that seemed very foreign to me. And, over time, as I associated more and more with other lawyers and my income rose I became more like them in many ways than I was like my parents and other family.

I thought of myself as living an upper middle class life. And, yet, there were ways I was still from a not so upper middle class background. For example, there were restaurants I liked going to that some people I knew wouldn't be caught dead at. But, I liked them.

Anyway - two points.

It is interesting now. I don't make that big salary any more. DH and I are now definitely in the middle class territory in terms of income. And, I mostly wear T shirts and jeans and such. But, in a lot of ways I still feel like I felt when I was making the money I made working full time.

The other thing is my kids. I've never thought of myself as pretentious and I didn't really make a big deal about class. But, we lived in a nice neighborhood, went on nice vacations, ate out frequently, etc. My son made the comment once that, even so, we didn't spend as much money as some of his friend's families spent even though we made more money.

Anyway, once when we sold a house a few years ago we rented for awhile in a true middle class neighborhood. We did this while we were looking for a new house to buy. My kids complained that it wasn't a nice neighborhood and they thought it was basically a poor neighborhood. It wasn't. It was just a standard middle class neighborhood. I thought it was fine and felt it was fine to live in (houses weren't big enough for us at the time but they were fine). It was eye opening to me. I see myself as middle class and I can fit comfortably into that world. Even though I never talked to my kids about class they were nonetheless raised in an upper middle class environment and see that as the norm.
Katsmeow is online now  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:55 PM   #12
Recycles dryer sheets
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 109
Very timely post. My SO and I were just discussing how "much" we have. How our families were of lesser means and both built significant family businesses. I thought of myself as middle class growing up. I now consider myself wealthy. We have so much more than so many.

We also discussed the fact that our happiness was never dependent on our wealth or our class designation. There were good times and bad at every stage.

We both agree we should be more thankful.
prose3589 is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 08:56 PM   #13
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Marita40's Avatar
Join Date: May 2011
Location: St. Paul
Posts: 1,403
I've always thought the phrase "working class" was funny. Does it imply that all others don't have to work? Guess I'm solidly in the working class then. Next stop: retired from working class.
Marita40 is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 09:26 PM   #14
Full time employment: Posting here.
cooch96's Avatar
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Lakewood
Posts: 844
This topic fascinates me more than I can openly discuss elsewhere.

My grandparents were professionals but my parents never had steady employment. my mother raised a family of four on about $10k a year in the 80's. That may qualify as poverty, but it didn't feel that way.

I was raised to respect and aspire to be part of the bildungburgeratum, middle class folk who value education, hard work, service and society more than wealth.

But I have discriminating taste and am lazy. So I'm trying to get my assets up to a certain level so I can retire early and enjoy my leisure. I see this goal as getting to the landed gentry class. I will be thrilled when I attain it. I've been working at it for three decades, just one more to go.
Why be normal when you can be yourself?
cooch96 is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 09:42 PM   #15
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Mdlerth's Avatar
Join Date: Oct 2016
Location: The Shire
Posts: 1,504
Originally Posted by Katsmeow View Post
In the US, famously, most people no matter their income think they are middle class.
I think those people are right. We don't have titled aristocracy or constrained serfs. And ever since the arrival of the Industrial Revolution, hereditary fortunes have been wildly outstripped by entrepreneurial ones.

Not that money is an indicator of class anyway. Pick a music/film/sports celebrity at random and you're likely to find a wealthy person you would not trust to borrow your lawnmower.
Paying it forward is the best investment.
Mdlerth is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 10:05 PM   #16
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Souschef's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2015
Location: Santa Paula
Posts: 2,846
Originally Posted by COcheesehead View Post
I thought about it as my income rose. I came from a very working class, at best, family. As my assets and income got bigger, I appreciated it more and counted my blessings. Nothing pretentious, more about realization and appreciation.
Amen! We live in an over 55 mobile home park, and nobody has a clue about what we have. We are down to earth people, and do not even think about class.
Retired Jan 2009 Have not looked back.
AA 50/45/5 considering SS and pensions a SP annuity
WR 2% with 2SS & 2 Pensions
Souschef is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 10:34 PM   #17
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Join Date: May 2005
Posts: 15,434
Maybe this should go to another thread if it is talked about.....

But, I got an email talking about Donald Trump.... he is going down in class!!!

According to the email, he is going from 30,000 sf penthouse apt that has very high amenities to a 20,000 sf house...

Talk about slumming it...
Texas Proud is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 10:44 PM   #18
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
calmloki's Avatar
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: Independence
Posts: 6,328
President Obama was to land here in Palm springs with his family this afternoon (didn't happen - bad weather). All kinds of rumors that he was shopping for or had bought a place in Rancho Mirage. It was noted that his net worth and annual income might have made it a stretch for him to buy in that area.. When I think class he and his family are pretty close to as high as it gets. Don't think his net worth has all that much to do with it.
calmloki is offline  
Old 01-20-2017, 10:57 PM   #19
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 10,432
I've always thought of class as how someone acts and not a certain status of wealth or accomplishment attached to a person. Take pro athletes for example. Some make tons of money and are accomplished but not every athlete has class.
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 01-20-2017, 11:12 PM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Join Date: Nov 2007
Posts: 7,746
I'm pretty sure I'm one of the richest, most educated members of the lower middle class out there.

Retired in 2013 at age 33. Keeping busy reading, blogging, relaxing, gaming, and enjoying the outdoors with my wife and 3 kids (8, 13, and 15).
FUEGO 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

Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Allow changing the 4% parameter in "Work Less, Live More" option? wasdana FIRECalc support 0 08-12-2006 08:41 AM
add other asset classes? just_hatched FIRE and Money 17 10-08-2005 10:24 PM
Total market index vs asset classes Roger_R FIRE and Money 5 06-12-2004 05:27 PM
Categorizing Asset Classes DFW_M5 FIRE and Money 12 02-23-2004 04:23 PM
Balancing when Asset Classes are across tax bounds Telly FIRE and Money 9 09-14-2003 06:55 PM

» Quick Links

All times are GMT -6. The time now is 02:14 AM.
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.