Author Topic: Relatives who just don't get it  (Read 792537 times)

Playing with Fire UK

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2350 on: January 02, 2017, 03:16:21 AM »
Then I visited the in-laws in one of the hottest summers we had for years; two radiators on and windows open, complaining of the heat, talking about getting an AC unit. Wouldn't let me turn the heating off in case it wouldn't come on again. So that's where that behaviour started.

But ... they ... what???

And MPGH sums up my entire relationship with my in-laws!

Further snappy life-defining insights welcomed!

UnleashHell

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2351 on: January 03, 2017, 04:40:29 AM »
Then I visited the in-laws in one of the hottest summers we had for years; two radiators on and windows open, complaining of the heat, talking about getting an AC unit. Wouldn't let me turn the heating off in case it wouldn't come on again. So that's where that behaviour started.

But ... they ... what???

And MPGH sums up my entire relationship with my in-laws!

Further snappy life-defining insights welcomed!

my inlaws - in Sussex.
she smokes. in the house. opens the window for the fresh air.
gets cold so instead of closing the window tuns the heat up.
heaters on - windows open......

FIL - spends all his time going over the bills and complaining that they don;t have enough money and can't go anywhere.


me  - to mil - stop smoking and opening windows..
me to FIL - sell the 4 bed house that you can't live in, move to a 2 bed flat and you'll have masses of money.


they both look at me like i'm the mad one....
_____________
JTF 96

Linda_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2352 on: January 03, 2017, 05:18:26 AM »
My father in law is now living alone in his big house, full of old hobby stuff from his wife who has now moved to a home. He is cleaning his house out and giving away lots of things. I talked to him about our version of Craig's list and asked if he wanted me to demonstrate how it worked. Then at least he would be able to earn some money from all the stuff. I also gave some examples of what we tend to sell and buy.

He answered that he thought it was too much hassle to sell stuff online. And that he didn't know what price to ask. I answered that for the price, you just look up the item online and take a similar price. After a while he started to realize that maybe he should start selling, but concentrate the selling in a shorter period of time.

I agree with him that it is a bit of hassle, but giving away all that stuff for free is such a waste of money.

FIT_Goat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2353 on: January 05, 2017, 12:34:11 PM »
Quote
Yes! Exactly! To clarify further: hydro Quebec is our power company, and is provincially owned and run with usually cheap electric rates... until you go above a daily threshold and then the rates mpcan more than double. And if you're doing that in winter and some of your heat is electric and you're already raising the heat, any power-using decision pushes your bill that much closer to double-billing territory. Usually 2+ loads of laundry in the dryer in one day will do it. And then ANY extra power used is at higher rates (oven, heating, water heater, etc...) so there's definite incentive to use less overall. Its not a direct cost-per-use calculation

I know some electric companies try to bill based on time of day so as to incentivize not using lots of power when the power grid is already taxed - like, people get home and turn on the heat from 5-8pm, and make dinner and turn on TVs and generally use power, so you may as well incentivize laudpndru after 10pm, when the power grid isn't already taxed. It makes a certain amount of sense.

FPL (in Florida) has tiered pricing based on monthly usage, instead of daily.  Up to 1000kWh is $0.08023 per kWh.  After that it's $0.10148 per kWh.  It's only a 26.5% increase (not a 100% increase), but it is a reason to monitor when things are getting excessive.  I try an keep things well under the cap.  With my new, larger, house it's often right there at the end of the month.  I remember having bills under $30 a month back when I was single and kept the A/C and heat off unless it was absolutely necessary.  Now, with 4 people and a bunch of electronic garbage, I am happy keeping it under $100.

Anyway, that's not why I came to post.

My father dropped by the other night to show me his new truck.  It's MASSIVE.  I didn't catch the make and model, but I'll try and find it.  I almost never see my dad, because he lives his own life.  My sister told me that he traded in his old truck and has a $66,000 loan on this new one (which sounds about right).  He told me his monthly payment was higher than the mortgage on the manufactured home he lives in.  This is even more insane when you know that the Post Office has progressively moved his job farther and farther from where he lives.

You see, if the Post Office moves your job more than a certain distance, they have to pay relocation.  So, instead, they have moved his job smaller hops every 6 months or so.  Now, instead of commuting 30 miles each way, it's well over 100 miles each way.  This should be the last hop, but it's still madness.  He's driving well over 200 miles a day to and from work.  Even at 25 mpg (which is really good for a truck even calling it all highway miles), that's 8 gallons of gas a day.  It's 40 gallons of gas and over 1,000 miles a week in wear and tear.  I don't even want to consider the insurance costs and everything else!

A few years ago, he had a small 4 door sedan.  Again, I am not sure of the make or model.  Can you tell that I am not really a car/truck person?  If he had kept that and got rid of his truck (he had both), it would at least reduce the hemorrhage.  Instead, he traded both his old truck and that car for a new truck a few years ago, and then just traded up to this truck.  The deal probably included some negative equity to get the loan up to the $66,000 range.  Honestly, he's probably spending close to $2,000 a month on commuting.  He's not set on moving, although I have told him that it would save him a ton of money to sell the crappy house and lot he has and rent a couple blocks from the new office until he's sure they will keep the job there.  I can't even imagine.  Hell, he could probably afford to rent a place and keep the old place if he didn't have the truck and just kept an old car for getting back to the house on weekends.  It would almost certainly work out cheaper!

Anyway, it's fortunate that I am not planning or relying on anything from my parents.  My dad will be working until he dies.  I don't think he has anything saved up.  He had a retirement fund, but liquidated all of it (or half of it) in one of his divorces and gave half of it to the ex (who is now his current GF again), and I think they blew that cash on luxury spending.

Tasty Pinecones

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2354 on: January 05, 2017, 02:16:46 PM »
A "massive truck" usually only gets in the teens MPG. The trucks people I know drive are only getting 15-16 mpg.

There is a new Dodge 1500 crewcab with a Fiat turbo diesel that gets car like MPG if it isn't carrying cargo or towing I'm told.

FIT_Goat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2355 on: January 05, 2017, 03:22:45 PM »
A "massive truck" usually only gets in the teens MPG. The trucks people I know drive are only getting 15-16 mpg.

There is a new Dodge 1500 crewcab with a Fiat turbo diesel that gets car like MPG if it isn't carrying cargo or towing I'm told.

That's the one I used my optimistic 25 mpg number from.  Everything else was worse, most much worse like your 15-16 mpg.  Those numbers push it to more like 70 gallons a week in gas.  But, even with the best possible number, it's still what I consider ludicrous.

Cassie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2356 on: January 05, 2017, 09:27:18 PM »
If your Dad is a postal worker he will still have his pension. You can only withdraw from another account where you put $ into voluntarily with the feds. I have a friend that is a fed worker and did this so at least he will have his pension.

Kitsune

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2357 on: January 06, 2017, 07:18:49 AM »
Oh, man, my brain breaks.

"Why are you paying for inspections on your car? When something breaks, you'll know it, just fix it then!"

Um... because my garage doesn't suck, and if they catch a corroded piece that costs about 100$ to replace now OR I can let it go for a few months and the entire muffler might fall off... I'm pretty sure that, in the interest of keeping the car in reasonable condition, the sensible thing is to spend the 100$ now and have a car that runs reliably.

Which would be why, despite driving more, I have a 5-year-old car in good driving condition and this relative switches cars every 3 years because 'they keep having problems' and 'cars these days are made so cheap'. *sigh*

shelivesthedream

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2358 on: January 06, 2017, 10:27:37 AM »
'cars consumers these days are made so cheap'. *sigh*

FTFY.

kms

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2359 on: January 06, 2017, 11:18:27 AM »
Yes! Exactly! To clarify further: hydro Quebec is our power company, and is provincially owned and run with usually cheap electric rates... until you go above a daily threshold and then the rates mpcan more than double. And if you're doing that in winter and some of your heat is electric and you're already raising the heat, any power-using decision pushes your bill that much closer to double-billing territory. Usually 2+ loads of laundry in the dryer in one day will do it. And then ANY extra power used is at higher rates (oven, heating, water heater, etc...) so there's definite incentive to use less overall. Its not a direct cost-per-use calculation

I know some electric companies try to bill based on time of day so as to incentivize not using lots of power when the power grid is already taxed - like, people get home and turn on the heat from 5-8pm, and make dinner and turn on TVs and generally use power, so you may as well incentivize laudpndru after 10pm, when the power grid isn't already taxed. It makes a certain amount of sense.
I never knew this existed either. That is until we moved to Austin. Austin Energy does the same thing, the rates more than double after the first 500kWh and even quadruple above 2500kWh. Screenshot below from their website (http://austinenergy.com/wps/portal/ae/rates/residential-rates/residential-electric-rates-and-line-items).

They even have summer and winter rates, with winter being significantly cheaper than summer.
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cheapass

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2360 on: January 06, 2017, 11:21:32 AM »
I never knew this existed either. That is until we moved to Austin. Austin Energy does the same thing, the rates more than double after the first 500kWh and even quadruple above 2500kWh. Screenshot below from their website (http://austinenergy.com/wps/portal/ae/rates/residential-rates/residential-electric-rates-and-line-items).

They even have summer and winter rates, with winter being significantly cheaper than summer.

You can switch providers, no? www.powertochoose.org
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Kitsune

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2361 on: January 06, 2017, 11:26:54 AM »
I never knew this existed either. That is until we moved to Austin. Austin Energy does the same thing, the rates more than double after the first 500kWh and even quadruple above 2500kWh. Screenshot below from their website (http://austinenergy.com/wps/portal/ae/rates/residential-rates/residential-electric-rates-and-line-items).

They even have summer and winter rates, with winter being significantly cheaper than summer.

You can switch providers, no? www.powertochoose.org

In Austin, maybe.

In Quebec... nope. There is basically one power company (govt-owned, and honestly given their rates I'm not complaining, they're half of what kms listed in that screencap, even before the exchange rate) and that's basically your option.

You can chose to heat with wood, or to go off-grid, but unless you're in one of the smaller cities that have their own hydro power (I believe Sherbrooke is one of them, but don't really know of any others), it's HydroQuebec or nothing.

kms

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2362 on: January 06, 2017, 11:39:18 AM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2017, 11:44:49 AM by kms »
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cheapass

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2363 on: January 06, 2017, 01:26:14 PM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.

That's crazy. Here in DFW we've got a totally open market and it actually offers a mind-boggling array of options. Some offer price breaks below 1000 kWh, some offer price breaks over 2000 kWh, some offer a flat rate across the board, etc. I had to download the last 2 years of monthly usage and build a spreadsheet with various scenarios to see what would get me the lowest annual energy cost.

I signed up for a 3 month "gimmicky" plan in the summer that if I used below 1,000 kWh or over 2,000 kWh the rate was like $0.13/kWh but if you were in between the two it was $0.015/kWh (yes, 1.5  cents). My first month was a partial billing period so I had to use some extra energy to get over the threshold.

I'm sure my neighbors thought the space heater on my porch, running 24/7 in June was strange!!
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FIT_Goat

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2364 on: January 06, 2017, 01:29:17 PM »
If your Dad is a postal worker he will still have his pension. You can only withdraw from another account where you put $ into voluntarily with the feds. I have a friend that is a fed worker and did this so at least he will have his pension.

That's true.  Although, my [limited] conversations with him have led me to believe it isn't much.  He's told me that he can't retire even when he reaches the normal age.  I don't know if it is because the amount of his pension is tiny, or if his spending is just far in excess of what he could get.

My current job offers a pension, although it isn't going to be much.  The job I am considering moving to also offers a pension, which is significantly better.  I'm still trying to set myself up so that I don't "need" either of them and they are just bonus money when I reach the age to start getting them.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2017, 01:31:41 PM by FIT_Goat »

cakie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2365 on: January 06, 2017, 03:32:14 PM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.
I never understood why people complained about electricity bills here - it always seemed reasonable to me to pay (AUD) $100/mth to power our whole place. But looking at your rates, they are crazy!! Like unbelievably low! We pay 28c /kwh... That's after shopping around and only applies to the first 200kwh(?) for the quarterly period. After that it goes a fair bit higher. Even we dip into the 1st higher power bracket, despite not using much.

Actually, I never thought about the impact of the tiers before, but someone using double our electricity would be paying a lot more than $200/month...

cakie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2366 on: January 06, 2017, 03:38:29 PM »
Just did the calcs based on Austin rates and my monthly bill would be at most $18 that's amazing! Have i really calculated that correctly?? We use about 9kwh/day average, 10kwh in summer to run the aircon.

nnls

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2367 on: January 06, 2017, 03:43:42 PM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.
I never understood why people complained about electricity bills here - it always seemed reasonable to me to pay (AUD) $100/mth to power our whole place. But looking at your rates, they are crazy!! Like unbelievably low! We pay 28c /kwh... That's after shopping around and only applies to the first 200kwh(?) for the quarterly period. After that it goes a fair bit higher. Even we dip into the 1st higher power bracket, despite not using much.

Actually, I never thought about the impact of the tiers before, but someone using double our electricity would be paying a lot more than $200/month...

I think electricity is pretty affordable in Australia, I pay about $60 every two months, though I have friends who pay upward of $500 for the same period, I cant even imagine using that much power even if I tried

kms

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2368 on: January 06, 2017, 04:24:09 PM »
Just did the calcs based on Austin rates and my monthly bill would be at most $18 that's amazing! Have i really calculated that correctly?? We use about 9kwh/day average, 10kwh in summer to run the aircon.
Not quite. You'd have another $10 (Customer Charge) plus 1% city sales tax on top of all that but other than that it sounds about right. At 9 kWh you'd end up at around $30 in winter and around $35 in summer. Although there is no way you'd survive a summer in southern Texas on a 10kWh average. It'd be like living in a slow cooker. For nine months.

FYI, our December bill was $66 (731 kWh, 20kWh average) but that was before we swapped the lightbulbs in this apartment for CFLs/LEDs and had the lights on pretty much all the time because we had just moved in. I expect an average of 10-15 kWh per day in winter (depending on whether we have the heater running or not, winter temperatures here vary between 40F and 80F) and somewhere around 20-25 kWh in summer, which includes hot water and HVAC.

Like I said, I'm not complaining. The same amount of Energy in Germany would've cost us roughly $250 instead of $66.

cakie: is that Australian Dollars/Cents? If so remember that 1 AUD = 0.7 USD, which means 28ct (AUD)/kWh = 20 ct (USD)/kWh. Which is still more than twice of what we're paying here though. And since the US Dollar and the Euro are pretty much en par now it's the same in Eurocents. Long story short: in the US I'm paying 50% less than you are, in Europe I was paying 50% more :-)
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Pooperman

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2369 on: January 06, 2017, 04:32:32 PM »
I just checked how much we use for our house. About 275 kwh/month in the not summer. Out bill is about $35-$40. Not too shabbby!

mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2370 on: January 06, 2017, 05:00:37 PM »
I think electricity is pretty affordable in Australia, I pay about $60 every two months, though I have friends who pay upward of $500 for the same period, I cant even imagine using that much power even if I tried

My boss pays $1500/quarter.

I pay $200/quarter.

cakie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2371 on: January 06, 2017, 05:17:14 PM »
Just did the calcs based on Austin rates and my monthly bill would be at most $18 that's amazing! Have i really calculated that correctly?? We use about 9kwh/day average, 10kwh in summer to run the aircon.
Not quite. You'd have another $10 (Customer Charge) plus 1% city sales tax on top of all that but other than that it sounds about right. At 9 kWh you'd end up at around $30 in winter and around $35 in summer. Although there is no way you'd survive a summer in southern Texas on a 10kWh average. It'd be like living in a slow cooker. For nine months.

FYI, our December bill was $66 (731 kWh, 20kWh average) but that was before we swapped the lightbulbs in this apartment for CFLs/LEDs and had the lights on pretty much all the time because we had just moved in. I expect an average of 10-15 kWh per day in winter (depending on whether we have the heater running or not, winter temperatures here vary between 40F and 80F) and somewhere around 20-25 kWh in summer, which includes hot water and HVAC.

Like I said, I'm not complaining. The same amount of Energy in Germany would've cost us roughly $250 instead of $66.

cakie: is that Australian Dollars/Cents? If so remember that 1 AUD = 0.7 USD, which means 28ct (AUD)/kWh = 20 ct (USD)/kWh. Which is still more than twice of what we're paying here though. And since the US Dollar and the Euro are pretty much en par now it's the same in Eurocents. Long story short: in the US I'm paying 50% less than you are, in Europe I was paying 50% more :-)
Sorry everyone for the thread hijack, but this is really interesting :)

Sounds like you are going about it right kms! We are in a semi arid area, but it's a dry heat so we only put the aircon on when it's >30C inside our 1bdrm flat. Which is pretty much every day in summer, but only for a few hours since we are usually out working :) it helps that I work outside a lot, my SO struggles because he spends his days in a cold office!

nnls

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2372 on: January 06, 2017, 05:34:08 PM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.
I never understood why people complained about electricity bills here - it always seemed reasonable to me to pay (AUD) $100/mth to power our whole place. But looking at your rates, they are crazy!! Like unbelievably low! We pay 28c /kwh... That's after shopping around and only applies to the first 200kwh(?) for the quarterly period. After that it goes a fair bit higher. Even we dip into the 1st higher power bracket, despite not using much.

Actually, I never thought about the impact of the tiers before, but someone using double our electricity would be paying a lot more than $200/month...

I think electricity is pretty affordable in Australia, I pay about $60 every two months, though I have friends who pay upward of $500 for the same period, I cant even imagine using that much power even if I tried

So I just checked my plan, supply charge is 48.5989 cents per day, and electricity charge is 26.4740 cents per day.

My last bill I used 129 units, which would mean in Austin my bill would be $19.35! Now I am feeling kinda ripped off for $60

How hot does it get in Southern Texas in summer, I am in Perth (Australia) and I very rarely use the aircon

kms

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2373 on: January 06, 2017, 07:17:29 PM »
Oh it gets hot. Really hot. May through September 100s (around 40C) are quite common. March/April and October/November it's usually high 80s to mid 90s (30-35C). In Winter it varies widely between 0C and 25C.
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ShoulderThingThatGoesUp

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2374 on: January 06, 2017, 07:40:06 PM »
Stifling is really the word for what outside feels like in central/north Texas in the summer. You go outside and catch your breath.

But by July you're used to it and it's fine.

(I grew up in Dallas.)

nnls

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2375 on: January 06, 2017, 08:03:10 PM »
Oh it gets hot. Really hot. May through September 100s (around 40C) are quite common. March/April and October/November it's usually high 80s to mid 90s (30-35C). In Winter it varies widely between 0C and 25C.

ok so similar to where I work then. Its been 42C  the last few days, though getting down to about 30C at night, and its humid up here And home is more of a dry heat about 37C during the day and 23C at night

Dave1442397

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2376 on: January 07, 2017, 08:05:44 AM »
Oh it gets hot. Really hot. May through September 100s (around 40C) are quite common. March/April and October/November it's usually high 80s to mid 90s (30-35C). In Winter it varies widely between 0C and 25C.

ok so similar to where I work then. Its been 42C  the last few days, though getting down to about 30C at night, and its humid up here And home is more of a dry heat about 37C during the day and 23C at night

I find that the humidity is what gets to me more than the actual temperature. If I lived somewhere with low humidity, I could deal with higher temps. When it hits 76F in the house and the humidity is >85%, that's about all I can handle.

I remember visiting my sister in Houston, TX in July, and we basically ran from one air-conditioned building to the next. The worst part of it was that, for some reason, the hotter it got outside the colder they kept it inside. We went out to eat one night and we were absolutely freezing in the restaurant. I can't stand that...why does it need to be 60F inside?

zolotiyeruki

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2377 on: January 07, 2017, 11:11:04 AM »
I remember visiting my sister in Houston, TX in July, and we basically ran from one air-conditioned building to the next. The worst part of it was that, for some reason, the hotter it got outside the colder they kept it inside. We went out to eat one night and we were absolutely freezing in the restaurant. I can't stand that...why does it need to be 60F inside?
I never understood it when I lived there, either.  In our office building, the "standard" temperature was 60-62.  I took an informal survey of my coworkers, and about 50% found it too cold, 25% about right, and 25% too warm!

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2378 on: January 07, 2017, 12:34:20 PM »
Nope, can't change. My area is "not open to competition". I think the City of Austin is the only provider for energy, water, gas, etc. in Austin.

I'm not complaining though. Even the most expensive tier is still only about half as expensive as energy was back in Germany. There's a few additional fees on top of that so it ends up somewhere between 8-15 ct/kWh, depending on the tier. In Germany, 30ct/kWh was quite normal despite massive competition.
I am outside the city limits, and my PEC rate is almost as high as your top tier!
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TomTX

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2379 on: January 07, 2017, 12:38:12 PM »
Oh it gets hot. Really hot. May through September 100s (around 40C) are quite common. March/April and October/November it's usually high 80s to mid 90s (30-35C). In Winter it varies widely between 0C and 25C.
Except last night was -9C at my house....
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mustachepungoeshere

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2380 on: January 08, 2017, 03:04:51 AM »
Struggling with my in-laws at the moment.

It's not that they are persisting in their old ways.

They have downsized from a house into an apartment, reduced their possessions by about a third, have sold half their vehicles, and are being very enthusiastic on Facebook about simplifying their life.

This is great.

I'm just not as happy for them as I should be because I've years of:

- comments about how apartments aren't real homes
- jokes about being scared to buy me gifts because I hate clutter
- predictions that my minimalist ways were merely circumstantial and that I would immediately acquire a fuck-tonne (my word) of stuff once I lived in a bigger place
- comments on my wardrobe because MiL decided I didn't own enough clothes

They're not going Mustachian. The almost-million-dollar apartment they bought cost near double what they got for their house, and the reduction in power and pool maintenance costs will be offset by strata fees and renovations. And their eating out budget has increased dramatically.

But they are moving in the right direction.

It's just frustrating because they are extolling the virtues of a simplified life like that hasn't been how I've lived for the better part of a decade!

It's the zeal of the convert, and I'm bored by it.

It would be different if we were bonding over a newly-shared interest, but it's this didactic spiel about how good it is living the simple life. I know!

The upside is that I'm hoping this will open up lines of communication about more mindful spending.

Stachey

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2381 on: January 08, 2017, 01:05:48 PM »
Struggling with my in-laws at the moment.

It's not that they are persisting in their old ways.

They have downsized from a house into an apartment, reduced their possessions by about a third, have sold half their vehicles, and are being very enthusiastic on Facebook about simplifying their life.

This is great.

I'm just not as happy for them as I should be because I've years of:

- comments about how apartments aren't real homes
- jokes about being scared to buy me gifts because I hate clutter
- predictions that my minimalist ways were merely circumstantial and that I would immediately acquire a fuck-tonne (my word) of stuff once I lived in a bigger place
- comments on my wardrobe because MiL decided I didn't own enough clothes

They're not going Mustachian. The almost-million-dollar apartment they bought cost near double what they got for their house, and the reduction in power and pool maintenance costs will be offset by strata fees and renovations. And their eating out budget has increased dramatically.

But they are moving in the right direction.

It's just frustrating because they are extolling the virtues of a simplified life like that hasn't been how I've lived for the better part of a decade!

It's the zeal of the convert, and I'm bored by it.

It would be different if we were bonding over a newly-shared interest, but it's this didactic spiel about how good it is living the simple life. I know!

The upside is that I'm hoping this will open up lines of communication about more mindful spending.

Oh I totally get where you are coming from MPGH! 
My relatives have mocked me for years about my frugal ways. 
For example I would spend hours on homemade presents for these people while they do shitty things like regifting something they hate or handing over a bag full of crap that they got at the dollar store.
And if they do any tiny little thing to save money in their daily lives (which does not happen very often) then they are shouting it from every rooftop and wanting everyone to congratulate them for it. 
Hypocrites!
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LeRainDrop

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2382 on: January 08, 2017, 05:19:17 PM »
Struggling with my in-laws at the moment. . . . It's just frustrating because they are extolling the virtues of a simplified life like that hasn't been how I've lived for the better part of a decade! . . .

Just tell them you're glad to see that some of your and your spouse's wisdom is finally rubbing off on them ;-)

Cassie

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2383 on: January 08, 2017, 08:34:19 PM »
How are they simplifying if the apartment cost 2x's the cost of their home? 

Linda_Norway

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2384 on: January 09, 2017, 01:24:32 AM »
How are they simplifying if the apartment cost 2x's the cost of their home?

Apartments are simplifying because you don't own a house with all the maintenance stuff that comes with it. In an owned apartment you need to do maintenance on the whole building and share it with your neighbours. It will probably save cost, but be more hassle as you need to agree on everything.
Maybe for this couple it is indeed simpler. But with their lifestyle and going out for dinner it might indeed be more expensive to live there than it was in their house.

Kitsune

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2385 on: January 09, 2017, 10:20:04 AM »
*snip*
Like, good lord, basic solution, how hard is it to do laundry on different days? (Actual difference: 20-30$/month) I'm not even hassling him to hang it up, just don't run the dryer 3 times in the same day!! (Hydro more than doubles the cost of power after you reach a certain amount per day... works out to the first load of laundry costing less than 1$ but further loads being $$$) and also if you don't let the laundry pile up we all have clean clothes... how wonderful, to not run out of underwear... *ahem*

*frustration*

Yes, for all who asked, Kitsune is saying that higher usage of electricity ("hydro") increases the cost per unit.  I haven't run into this in the US, though I know some electric companies in the US have electric prices that vary based on the time of day, another interesting system.

Yes! Exactly! To clarify further: hydro Quebec is our power company, and is provincially owned and run with usually cheap electric rates... until you go above a daily threshold and then the rates mpcan more than double. And if you're doing that in winter and some of your heat is electric and you're already raising the heat, any power-using decision pushes your bill that much closer to double-billing territory. Usually 2+ loads of laundry in the dryer in one day will do it. And then ANY extra power used is at higher rates (oven, heating, water heater, etc...) so there's definite incentive to use less overall. Its not a direct cost-per-use calculation

Aaaaand this came up again yesterday. With friends. Sigh. WHY can adults not understand cause/effect??!

Friend: "I don't understand why our power bill is so high! We turn off the lights in rooms we're not in, we're frugal, we plastic the windows, we live in a small apartment... "

Meanwhile: its -25C outside. The outside walls are badly insulated and Ice cold to touch (so heat out, cold air in...). The kitchen is so much colder, and there's an actual breeze coming in a crack from the back door.

The apartment is heated to 22-23C. I mention that their power bill is the same as ours (and we heat a HOUSE that's at least 6-8x the square footage, gets north wind off a lake hitting the front door, and is about 500m higher in altitude with the associated colder temperatures), and mention that we lower the heat to 16-17C at night and wear flannel PJs, have flannel sheets, and sleep under thick duvets.

Response: "*gasp* oh, no, we couldn't lower our heat! We're not hardcore, we LIKE being warm!"

... well then there's your answer as to why your power bill is so high. It's fine to make that decision, but don't tell me you "don't understand".

Also, its winter, and a COLD day. WHY are you heating your drafty apartment to 23C and then wearing long-sleeved thin cotton shirts with no sweaters?? I like being warm too - that's why Sweaters and wool socks exist!

At least Husband has mended the issues that were increasing the power bill, and we've all made more of an effort to heat with the wood stove, which should mean that our next power bill won't spike upwards despite the freezing temps outside. Small blessings.


MrMoogle

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2386 on: January 09, 2017, 12:04:15 PM »
Based on electricity comments above, I had to check my details.  I've been averaging ~$35/month since June.  $9 is availability.  $1.50 is tax.  The other $23.50 is from ~250 kWh @ 9.1c/kWh.  I can't imagine 2c/kWh, I thought what I was getting was crazy cheap.

kayvent

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2387 on: January 09, 2017, 01:58:52 PM »
I feel kinda jealous with against y'all. My thermostat only has an on/off button.

mtn

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2388 on: January 09, 2017, 02:17:37 PM »
I feel kinda jealous with against y'all. My thermostat only has an on/off button.

We had that in college. Pain the ass--it was either at 90*, or off. My roommate and I had a decent system figured out--turn it on when we left for class, turn it off when we got back. On when we went for dinner, off when we got back. On between 7-9PM, then it went off until morning when it was usually between 50 and 62 in the room in the winter--then we turned it on again at about 6 AM until we left for class.

I hated it.

Dollar Slice

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2389 on: January 09, 2017, 02:25:06 PM »
I feel kinda jealous with against y'all. My thermostat only has an on/off button.

My heat is either on or off, also. And I don't have access to the on/off button. And the heating is insufficient for the space on very cold days. In the last six weeks my interior temps have ranged from 59F - 75F.

On the plus side, I don't pay for heat. On the minus side, I'm sure the cost is just folded into my rent anyway...
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Tasty Pinecones

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2390 on: January 09, 2017, 03:43:47 PM »
Couldn't you just hack that on/off switch? Arduino, little stepper motor to actuate the switch, a little programming, and boom - you have a programmable thermostat with no internal changes... ;)


JoJo

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2391 on: January 09, 2017, 03:46:37 PM »
Brother, Wife and 5 kids that from time to time have needed to take money from our parents for larger expenses (new roof, new car) have bought a $600 dog.

gimp

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2392 on: January 09, 2017, 04:34:28 PM »
Couldn't you just hack that on/off switch? Arduino, little stepper motor to actuate the switch, a little programming, and boom - you have a programmable thermostat with no internal changes... ;)

Just make sure your program has hysteresis - otherwise you'll go on-off-on-off-on-off and burn out some expensive equipment.

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2393 on: January 09, 2017, 11:17:04 PM »
I feel kinda jealous with against y'all. My thermostat only has an on/off button.

My heat is either on or off, also. And I don't have access to the on/off button. And the heating is insufficient for the space on very cold days. In the last six weeks my interior temps have ranged from 59F - 75F.

On the plus side, I don't pay for heat. On the minus side, I'm sure the cost is just folded into my rent anyway...

I had an apartment in grad school with exactly these conditions. Plus, the heat I had no control over was an ancient radiator, meaning I was awakened by ear-splitting banging at 5am every winter morning. I do not miss those years.

cheapass

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2394 on: January 10, 2017, 07:28:39 AM »
Brother, Wife and 5 kids that from time to time have needed to take money from our parents for larger expenses (new roof, new car) have bought a $600 dog.

I'll never understand why in the world a family that can barely make ends meet with 2 or 3 kids will think it's a good idea to go ahead and shit out a couple more.
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Dollar Slice

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2395 on: January 10, 2017, 08:02:37 AM »
I feel kinda jealous with against y'all. My thermostat only has an on/off button.

My heat is either on or off, also. And I don't have access to the on/off button. And the heating is insufficient for the space on very cold days. In the last six weeks my interior temps have ranged from 59F - 75F.

On the plus side, I don't pay for heat. On the minus side, I'm sure the cost is just folded into my rent anyway...

I had an apartment in grad school with exactly these conditions. Plus, the heat I had no control over was an ancient radiator, meaning I was awakened by ear-splitting banging at 5am every winter morning. I do not miss those years.

I have that at my office (not at 5AM, but while I'm trying to work). It's fun. :-/  I'm grateful that my home is heated by peacefully noise-free hot water baseboard heaters. Even if it is currently 61F, it's still better than steam radiators.
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RetiredAt63

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2396 on: January 10, 2017, 08:26:41 AM »
Based on electricity comments above, I had to check my details.  I've been averaging ~$35/month since June.  $9 is availability.  $1.50 is tax.  The other $23.50 is from ~250 kWh @ 9.1c/kWh.  I can't imagine 2c/kWh, I thought what I was getting was crazy cheap.
It is crazy cheap, and in US dollars too.  I pay 8.7, 13.2 and 18.0c/kWh for Off-, mid- and on-peak, and then delivery and taxes and stuff on top of that.  My total last month was $59.67 of actual electricity (560 kwh), total bill $163.64CAN.
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JoJo

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2397 on: January 10, 2017, 01:46:29 PM »
Brother, Wife and 5 kids that from time to time have needed to take money from our parents for larger expenses (new roof, new car) have bought a $600 dog.

I'll never understand why in the world a family that can barely make ends meet with 2 or 3 kids will think it's a good idea to go ahead and shit out a couple more.

It's a blended family - they started with 3 combined from prior marriages and wanted one together.  Then there was an accident 5 years later POST vasectomy.  They're doing OK - brother makes decent money and has a good pension but they've had alot of bad luck too (they hit their max out of pocket on health insurance almost every year, had a tornado damage a roof, etc).  Still, a $600 dog!

kms

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2398 on: January 10, 2017, 01:53:16 PM »
So, does that dog do any tricks? Does it come with a massive inheritance down the road? Does it clean up after itself? Is it a special breed that can feed, walk, and bathe itself? Can it bark in three different languages? Does its poop smell like flowery perfume?

If not how is it any better than a free dog from the shelter?
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Dave1442397

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Re: Relatives who just don't get it
« Reply #2399 on: January 10, 2017, 02:46:19 PM »
So, does that dog do any tricks? Does it come with a massive inheritance down the road? Does it clean up after itself? Is it a special breed that can feed, walk, and bathe itself? Can it bark in three different languages? Does its poop smell like flowery perfume?

If not how is it any better than a free dog from the shelter?

We have a shelter dog, and when he came home with us in 2010 the bill was close to $550. No such thing as a free shelter dog around here. You pay for neutering/spaying, shots and microchip.