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Old 07-28-2021, 08:33 AM   #261
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OP- I gave some additional thought to our Year One FIRE budget, and during our look back at the beginning of Year Two, we realized we needed to increase our Travel budget based on our Year One behavior. So we did.

I donít remember which accounts we identified as being available for trimming in order to locate the extra Travel funds, so they must have been overfunded to begin with. (Iím weight gain adverse, so if I had to hazard a quess, Iíd say Groceries and Restaurant funding were among them)

All to say that I think what you are discovering to be your actual vs predicted spend in a couple of categories is pretty normal.

We have an interesting upcoming dilemma you may be able to appreciate, which is what to do with the additional money flow that will occur once SS and Medicare kick in for both of us. Iím loathe to kick up our fixed run rate, (nerves that something beyond our control might go haywire) so that leaves it all going to some type of Blow That Dough account. Yes, a terrible, rotten problem to have for sure.
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:13 AM   #262
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Originally Posted by teejayevans View Post
If you have to do this, then you shouldnít have retired.
I have a large miscellaneous budget line item, I didnít want to sweat the small stuff.
You can always find a way to spend more money.
Retirement is about living your life on your terms, not surviving on a minimum budget.
^^^^ This!
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:45 AM   #263
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No related to the overspending on clothes of the orig. post.
But things have changed since I retired at 51 in 2013.
Things that have gone way up in price. Doubled in price,
or more than doubled in price. In my neck of the woods anyway.
SoCal coast.

Calif. DMV tags. For an old motorcycle was $60.00 per yr. Now the min is $132.00 (It's a hobby, have (11) 5 registered a yr. for street)
Same with cheap cars, min 1 yr tags is $132.00

Elect. was $60-70, now $120-150 per month.

Gas. up about $1.00 a gallon. Cheapest place in town for prem. is now $4.50

A lot of food is up an easy 50% at the store. "Good" Carne Asada burritos' are right at $9.00-$10.00 rather than $5.00

Nat. gas, about doubled. Was ave/mo around $30.00 now $60.

Water/ sewage / curb & gutter, Clean ocean fee's $60-$70 now $115-$150 mo. (Have rocks, stepping stones and a bit of fake grass)

Cable & internet was $90.00 now $182.00

But, luckily we have had 2% inflation over the years. And interest rates are still at all time low's.

Am doing fine. No real worries. But if you are not aware what's been happening. You have not been paying attention.
Here I've been whining about inflation in Hawaii for several years now. Suddenly, I get to "share the pain" with the rest of the country (and probably the world.) I have especially noticed things like canned goods. 8 cans of Dinty Moore Beef Stew went from about $8 for 8-16 oz cans to $11 for 6-15 oz cans over the past 8 years or so (at OUR Sams.) Didn't do the math, but I think that's more than the 2% we've been told. Lots of other stuff I haven't tracked, but clearly, stealth inflation is the phrase of the day. NOW, it's not so stealthy. But, the FED hasn't seemed to get the news, but we'll let that go. Returning you now to our discussion of spending on clothes, er, budgeting or whatever. YMMV
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Old 07-28-2021, 09:46 AM   #264
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OMG! That actually happened last month in our closet. The top rack pulled out of the wall and all the boot boxes came crashing down in the middle of the night. She's going through her closet and thinning the herd.

For those that are married or have an SO, would you make a big deal out of this with your spouse? All she has to say "You spent $2,500 on a telescope, and I like nice/new clothes." Just doesn't seem like a battle that needs to be fought if we can afford it. If either of us has a serious issue with spending, we can and do talk about it and make adjustments.
You say the amount spent is not an issue, and while I wonder why you brought it up if it really isn't, I think damage to the house from excessive volume is a problem.

My husband is a golf fanatic. I had a discussion with him about the volume of his golf gear because it was getting to be too much, and he took it to heart. He has become awesome about selling his older clubs when he buys new ones, or dumping his old golf shoes when he buys new ones. He has learned that the sooner he turns around and sells his old clubs, the more money he gets. They do not increase in value with age. I suspect it's the same with your wife's clothes.
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Old 07-28-2021, 10:00 AM   #265
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We haven't spent any money on clothes so far this month, but we do have 4 days left to go.

Fingers crossed for you!
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Old 07-28-2021, 10:12 AM   #266
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It is always enlightening to me to see the impact that $100 / mo for 40 years has vs. a one time purchase of $10,000. While the latter seems much more impactful, the former is actually has way more impact.

I agree. I have tried to train myself to really focus on the recurring costs. Those are the high payback areas for us. When I talked to some lenders about refinancing again, at least a couple said it is hardly worth it for $50 a month savings. But with a zero cost loan to us, $50 a month on a 30 year loan is $18K, plus interest if the money gets reinvested. So for maybe 10 hours of work on my part, that is a pretty good hourly rate on my time.
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Old 07-28-2021, 10:17 AM   #267
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<SNIP>

And no, I am not going to have a talk with my wife about clothes spending. She is heading to her mom's to help her because she is having surgery on Friday. She's not doing well and my wife doesn't need me pinging her on something that really doesn't matter that much in the grand scheme of things. I can tell that she is worried about her mom and I'm trying really hard to be kind and understanding. Now, the poor guys building our patio are getting an earful everyday as she finds little things wrong that really bother her (which normally wouldn't).
You are a wise and caring man. As long as you can afford it and the "irritation" factor doesn't affect your relationship, DW's clothing budget should be one of those things you occasionally "whine" about to your buddies (you know, like here ) Good on you!
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Old 07-28-2021, 10:26 AM   #268
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I do appreciate all the replies! We haven't spent any money on clothes so far this month, but we do have 4 days left to go.

As a small update, I did update my model to reflect actuals. And added some buffer for future unknown unknowns. After making those adjustments, we have $20k of extra / year beyond our $25k BTD budget.

It is always enlightening to me to see the impact that $100 / mo for 40 years has vs. a one time purchase of $10,000. While the latter seems much more impactful, the former is actually has way more impact.

And no, I am not going to have a talk with my wife about clothes spending. She is heading to her mom's to help her because she is having surgery on Friday. She's not doing well and my wife doesn't need me pinging her on something that really doesn't matter that much in the grand scheme of things. I can tell that she is worried about her mom and I'm trying really hard to be kind and understanding. Now, the poor guys building our patio are getting an earful everyday as she finds little things wrong that really bother her (which normally wouldn't).
FWIW I am glad you started this thread.
Some folks confuse having a yearly budget as being rigid or perhaps frugal.
This can be true, but in general it is not.
There are just some folks including me that like to play with numbers/have a budget so we can see where the monies go/have a guideline if cuts might be made in the future, etc etc etc.
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Old 07-28-2021, 12:15 PM   #269
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There are just some folks including me that like to play with numbers/have a budget so we can see where the monies go/have a guideline if cuts might be made in the future, etc etc etc.
I never have a budget, but I still like to know where my money goes.

There are many posters like myself with a very low WR.

I don't know if it's frugality or luck with the market, but most likely both.
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Old 07-28-2021, 01:12 PM   #270
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This is one of the things that always irritates me about ER discussions. For some reason, you aren't doing it right if you spend more than what others consider reasonable. Whatever.
Yes several of my friends have quit ER because of an perceived intolerance with those who make above average earnings. They cannot fathom above middle class lifestyle.

The fact is that my friends deal with the same issues.
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Old 07-28-2021, 01:28 PM   #271
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...I had a friend who started hoarding clothes after a divorce. Her second bathroom was unusable because she used the shower rod as a clothes rack and the whole tub area was filled to the brim with clothes, which was an overflow from her bedroom closet.
We did a home swap with a couple in San Diego. They had a tract home except that it was 4 BR plus a library and a 4-car garage on half acre. Their two daughters has left the nest and they took over the closets. We had to lay our clothes on the beds of those bedrooms.

The 4-car garage had Ikea wardrobes around the whole garage. Plus one of the stalls was all storage right to the roof.

So affordability is a double-edged sword!
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Old 07-28-2021, 02:27 PM   #272
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So affordability is a double-edged sword!
These are fun to watch videos on just that subject -

A Cluttered Life: Middle-Class Abundance: Americans sure do like their stuff. The problem is, it piles up, leaving families surrounded by overstuffed cabinets and plenty of clutter.

This UCTV Prime series follows a team of UCLA anthropologists as they venture into the stuffed-to-capacity homes of dual income, middle class American families in order to truly understand the food, toys, and clutter that fill them. - https://www.uctv.tv/clutter/
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Old 07-28-2021, 03:32 PM   #273
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Isn't it funny? Some people spend themselves into the poorhouse, trying to keep up with some perceived notion of "where we should be at this age."

Meanwhile, others look down their noses at anyone who spends money on anything that can't be justified as essential to life!

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Yes several of my friends have quit ER because of an perceived intolerance with those who make above average earnings. They cannot fathom above middle class lifestyle.

The fact is that my friends deal with the same issues.
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Old 07-28-2021, 03:39 PM   #274
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Your spending is not the issue since you can afford it. Your budget is the issue because you don't need it. You can track your spending without the budget.
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Old 07-28-2021, 04:13 PM   #275
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Isn't it funny? Some people spend themselves into the poorhouse, trying to keep up with some perceived notion of "where we should be at this age."

Meanwhile, others look down their noses at anyone who spends money on anything that can't be justified as essential to life!
Yes, indeed!

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Old 07-28-2021, 05:15 PM   #276
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Rework the budget and feel better about the actuals. Considering how much I spend and how I shouldn't be spending now, feel good you have everything under control.

I also don't like how so many people on FIRE talk about living a very "modest" lifestyle so much so that they chase away those who don't live a lifestyle or are embarrassed about sharing it. It's next to impossible to be honest on a board if you are tied to well i really spend $60k a year on groceries/eating out...traveling...etc. That you FIRE or are at FIRE but are supporting your family of 4 and traveling costs $40k.

I say that because there have been years recently where I am blushing at our spending. But do I really need to? Should I have to? I guess that's an important question to consider.

How to make everyone in FIRE feel welcome.
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Old 07-28-2021, 05:30 PM   #277
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Rework the budget and feel better about the actuals. Considering how much I spend and how I shouldn't be spending now, feel good you have everything under control.

I also don't like how so many people on FIRE talk about living a very "modest" lifestyle so much so that they chase away those who don't live a lifestyle or are embarrassed about sharing it. It's next to impossible to be honest on a board if you are tied to well i really spend $60k a year on groceries/eating out...traveling...etc. That you FIRE or are at FIRE but are supporting your family of 4 and traveling costs $40k.

I say that because there have been years recently where I am blushing at our spending. But do I really need to? Should I have to? I guess that's an important question to consider.

How to make everyone in FIRE feel welcome.
My observation is that if you are FAT FIRE, the crowd here really don't want you to post because they don't believe that you are spending so much, or that they cannot understand how you can be so wasteful by their standards.
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Old 07-28-2021, 05:51 PM   #278
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I think we are just seeing what happens to a long-time chat group when external trends change.

When I joined in 2009, the focus was on "I'll do whatever it takes to break the shackles and live my own life without working for somebody else." We had grand discussions of uber-frugality, since for many, that was the only way they'd ever see FIRE. Still is.

In the intervening years, the economy has dealt different hands; some people have so much, they wonder how they'll ever get rid of it all before they die. In addition, many in the "boom" generation have received their inheritances.

So, it's just a phase. Soon we'll be welcoming the toothpaste-tube-squeezers, the teabag-reusers, and those of us (you know who we are) who tear the half-paper-towel sheet into 2 pieces.
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Old 07-28-2021, 05:53 PM   #279
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Corn, why fiddle with all those categories? Life is much simpler when you just focus on "money in vs money out". If things get out of hand with money out, just look into where it went and fix it if necessary.

That's all we focus on after decades of looking at every penny (which now is meaningless to us since our life is less complicated). I have a small spread sheet with just a few entries by month.

Income in (SS, pull from savings)
Income out (Bank pulls - cash, CC spent, automatic payments).

At the end of the year, I have a picture of whether or not we are spending according to plan. And the plan is to not end up broke someday!
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Old 07-28-2021, 05:56 PM   #280
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So, it's just a phase. Soon we'll be welcoming the toothpaste-tube-squeezers, the teabag-reusers, and those of us (you know who we are) who tear the half-paper-towel sheet into 2 pieces.
Guilty as charged.
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