Author Topic: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids  (Read 10509 times)

birdman2003

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You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« on: June 29, 2018, 07:49:30 AM »
Me (to intern): I would recommend contributing X% to get full company match and after you pay off student loans and start full time with our company, then raise your % until you max out your 401(k).  That's what I do.
Intern: Sounds good, thanks birdman2003
Coworker (overhearing us): You're able to max out your 401(k) because you don't have kids.  Kids are expensive.
Me: It's true that we don't have kids.  But I can easily max out my 401(k) because we don't have car or truck payments, and we have a modest mortgage.

My coworker has two kids, but he is also making payments on a brand new F150, expensive hobbies like bowhunting, has an expensive house, etc...
He didn't respond to my last statement.

alanB

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #1 on: June 29, 2018, 08:25:05 AM »
I have to max out my 401k because I can't afford the tax ;)


birdman2003

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2018, 09:51:36 AM »
Done

Paul der Krake

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #4 on: June 29, 2018, 10:11:42 AM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

OtherJen

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #5 on: June 29, 2018, 10:19:40 AM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

Bowhunting itself wouldn't be, but I'm guessing this particular version involves the latest and greatest gear every season, pricey weekend rentals with the guys, etc.

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #6 on: June 29, 2018, 03:47:33 PM »
You're able to max out your 401(k) because you don't have kids.  Kids are expensive.

Yet, single people with no kids have to pay far more taxes while married couples with kids get big tax breaks.

In an example I posted in a previous comment, the single woman making $70K/yr paid over 7 times as much tax as a family of four with the same household income.   So kids are expensive to single people who never had them also.

yourusernamehere

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You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #7 on: June 29, 2018, 04:19:46 PM »
These kinds of thoughtless comments really irk me. A coworker said something similar to me late last year and I told her coldly that I would trade all the money in all my accounts to be able to have kids. Because my patience for people's assumptions about having children or not is just completely gone at this point, after 4 years of trying to conceive and an expensive and unsuccessful attempt at IVF.

Normally I would think this kind of reply internally and wish not to make anyone uncomfortable, but it was too near YET ANOTHER negative pregnancy test and I just let it out. For those who have seen my name on other threads, you may also know that I am finally expecting and it was essentially a giant surprise after we had given up. But I am still judgy as fuck at comments like that.

(Edited for rage-typos)
« Last Edit: June 29, 2018, 06:50:37 PM by yourusernamehere »

Duke03

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #8 on: June 29, 2018, 05:36:34 PM »
I have to max out my 401k because I can't afford the tax ;)


x2

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #9 on: June 29, 2018, 06:17:09 PM »
We have three kids (including one that is a teenage driver...OMG the cost of insurance...) and not only do we max out our 401ks, my husband gets catch-up contributions since he turned 50 last year. We also max out the flex spending for child care and our HSA. I can't imagine NOT maximizing our pre-tax deductions...can't afford not to with taxes!

@yourusernamehere Congratulations on finally expecting after so many trials to get to that point! People are so thoughtless sometimes, like that co-worker of yours. We just had the one miscarriage, but my husband's best friend and his wife have been trying for 8+ years, multiple failed IVFs, etc. They are finally expecting (due any day!) via surrogate. It sure isn't an easy road sometimes, as I have seen up close through their experience. Best wishes to you!

yourusernamehere

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #10 on: June 29, 2018, 06:51:17 PM »
We have three kids (including one that is a teenage driver...OMG the cost of insurance...) and not only do we max out our 401ks, my husband gets catch-up contributions since he turned 50 last year. We also max out the flex spending for child care and our HSA. I can't imagine NOT maximizing our pre-tax deductions...can't afford not to with taxes!

@yourusernamehere Congratulations on finally expecting after so many trials to get to that point! People are so thoughtless sometimes, like that co-worker of yours. We just had the one miscarriage, but my husband's best friend and his wife have been trying for 8+ years, multiple failed IVFs, etc. They are finally expecting (due any day!) via surrogate. It sure isn't an easy road sometimes, as I have seen up close through their experience. Best wishes to you!

Thank you!

Michael in ABQ

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #11 on: June 29, 2018, 07:00:00 PM »
While our kids do essentially drop our income taxes to $0, we also require a much larger house, more food, clothes, etc. for those kids. I think it's pretty safe to say that people without kids have more disposable income. I'd love to be able to max out my 401k but with #6 on the way that's not going to be happening anytime soon. That's fine though. Raising a large family on a single income means I'll end up working longer and we'll have a bit lower standard of living but it's worth it.

gpyros85

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #12 on: June 30, 2018, 07:04:47 AM »
3 Kids here , maxed out 401(K), Roth IRA and invest in taxable.

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #13 on: June 30, 2018, 08:38:31 AM »
While our kids do essentially drop our income taxes to $0, we also require a much larger house, more food, clothes, etc. for those kids. I think it's pretty safe to say that people without kids have more disposable income.

Since taxes are less for a married couple with kids, they have MORE disable income.  A single person with no kids has less disposable than a married with kids household with the same household income.  You may be misunderstanding what disposable income refers to.  Disposable income is after taxes, not after paying for your house, food, clothes, etc.  I think you are thinking of discretionary income, which could be true, but having kids is a choice, so it shouldn't be a complete free ride on the backs of those who have no kids.

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/the-'i-don't-get-it'-thread-rants-accepted/msg2040846/#msg2040846

Travis

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #14 on: June 30, 2018, 10:50:26 AM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college

Paul der Krake

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #15 on: June 30, 2018, 11:03:22 AM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Travis

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #16 on: June 30, 2018, 11:14:18 AM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Right. One of these days I'll do my taxes by hand and remember that.  It doesn't seem quite a break-even point though.  I could raise a second child within my current household for less than $4000/year, but that tax credit gets eaten up once they're a teenager.  I also suck at math so I'm not seeing where the difference is between paying more taxes upfront is difference from a tax credit and increased cost of living.

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #17 on: June 30, 2018, 03:21:19 PM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Right. One of these days I'll do my taxes by hand and remember that. It doesn't seem quite a break-even point though. I could raise a second child within my current household for less than $4000/year, but that tax credit gets eaten up once they're a teenager.  I also suck at math so I'm not seeing where the difference is between paying more taxes upfront is difference from a tax credit and increased cost of living.

So having your children's expenses "mostly" subsidized by other taxpayers isn't good enough, you think they should be "completely" subsidized???
« Last Edit: June 30, 2018, 03:28:32 PM by DreamFIRE »

Travis

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #18 on: June 30, 2018, 03:24:42 PM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Right. One of these days I'll do my taxes by hand and remember that. It doesn't seem quite a break-even point though. I could raise a second child within my current household for less than $4000/year, but that tax credit gets eaten up once they're a teenager.  I also suck at math so I'm not seeing where the difference is between paying more taxes upfront is difference from a tax credit and increased cost of living.

So having your children's expenses "mostly" subsidized by other taxpayers isn't good enough, you think they should be "completely" subsidized???

I don't have an opinion on this. I was trying to understand the debate you and the others were having up-thread.  You were making mathematical comparisons and I don't have a clear picture of the numbers.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2018, 03:30:09 PM by Travis »

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #19 on: June 30, 2018, 03:31:08 PM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Right. One of these days I'll do my taxes by hand and remember that. It doesn't seem quite a break-even point though. I could raise a second child within my current household for less than $4000/year, but that tax credit gets eaten up once they're a teenager.  I also suck at math so I'm not seeing where the difference is between paying more taxes upfront is difference from a tax credit and increased cost of living.

So having your children's expenses "mostly" subsidized by other taxpayers isn't good enough, you think they should be "completely" subsidized???

I don't have an opinion on this. I was trying to understand the debate you and the others were having up-thread.

Oh ok.   My point earlier is that it does free up some money for married people with kids to invest, particularly compared to a single person, not that it's break-even.  I linked to math tax example a few posts back.
« Last Edit: June 30, 2018, 03:32:47 PM by DreamFIRE »

Michael in ABQ

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #20 on: June 30, 2018, 04:01:48 PM »
While our kids do essentially drop our income taxes to $0, we also require a much larger house, more food, clothes, etc. for those kids. I think it's pretty safe to say that people without kids have more disposable income.

Since taxes are less for a married couple with kids, they have MORE disable income.  A single person with no kids has less disposable than a married with kids household with the same household income.  You may be misunderstanding what disposable income refers to.  Disposable income is after taxes, not after paying for your house, food, clothes, etc.  I think you are thinking of discretionary income, which could be true, but having kids is a choice, so it shouldn't be a complete free ride on the backs of those who have no kids.

https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/the-'i-don't-get-it'-thread-rants-accepted/msg2040846/#msg2040846

Yes, discretionary income is what I meant.

birdman2003

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #21 on: July 02, 2018, 06:58:28 AM »
To me it's all about minimizing your monthly obligations.  If you are making $70,000 a year with a $500/month truck payment, and a $1500/month mortgage, that is almost half of your take home pay.

I like the D.R. approach of no car payments, and a 15 year fixed mortgage that is no more than 25% of your take home pay.

It leaves a buffer so you can definitely max out a 401(k) and have income to spare.

talltexan

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #22 on: July 02, 2018, 10:01:04 AM »
Conflicted here. Kids are truly an earthquake in your life, and finances are part of this. My BIL/SIL have a grandmother provide a lot of childcare for them, which works out to be about $18,000/year of implied subsidy.

When my wife and I began serious conversations about whether a third child made sense for us, I assured her that I thought we could cover all additional expenses for about $100,000, which would produce a quality of life comparable to our current two. Sounds low compared to the headlines you read, but I think many MMM'ers would see this figure as high.

BTDretire

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #23 on: July 02, 2018, 10:30:42 AM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

Bowhunting itself wouldn't be, but I'm guessing this particular version involves the latest and greatest gear every season, pricey weekend rentals with the guys, etc.

  I have nephew that is a bow hunter, has at least $6,000 worth of stuffed heads on the walls.
Looks stupid!
 He also bought land out of state to hunt on.


fattest_foot

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #24 on: July 02, 2018, 10:56:49 AM »
I've heard similar things to this. The reality is it's just another excuse for why someone is bad at finances.

If we did have kids, it'd likely mean we saved less in our taxable account, but our 401k's and IRA's would still be maxed.

Zamboni

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #25 on: July 02, 2018, 11:09:32 AM »
These kinds of thoughtless comments really irk me. A coworker said something similar to me late last year and I told her coldly that I would trade all the money in all my accounts to be able to have kids.
(Edited for rage-typos)

@yourusernamehere Congratulations! I am right there with you on sniping the thoughtless comments. After all the psychological stress and medical trauma I went through to have my kids (twins), I never assume whether or not people are childless by choice. What you have gone through is much harder than anyone who hasn't been there can imagine.

As for the co-worker in the OP's first post, besides being thoughtless, he is obviously also an idiot. I am a single parent with two kids who maxes both a 403b and a Roth. We manage to live what I think is a luxurious life on what is leftover . . . and we could live on even less if we had to.

And, yes, I can affirm from direct experience that bow hunting is expensive.

v8rx7guy

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #26 on: July 02, 2018, 11:49:22 AM »
I'm kinda torn on this one.  Yes, it obviously is possible to max out pre-tax retirement funds with kids... this thread makes that abundantly clear.  On the other hand, having kids is truly one of those things you cannot fully understand without actually having them.  So from a father of two's perspective, I often feel the same way as the person in the anecdote when I hear about DINKs / SINKs (is that even a thing?) who don't understand how different life, and in particular saving money, can be once kids come into the equation.

Dragonswan

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #27 on: July 02, 2018, 02:13:19 PM »
Coworker is absolutely right... because I don't have kids (or a husband either) I can live where I want, drive what I want, vacation where I want, wear what I want, eat what I want and - drumroll please - retire when I want without worrying about anybody's comfort or opinion but mine.  So you keep using your kids as an excuse and I'll wave from the cruise ship to you while you're staring out the office window wondering when or even if you can retire.  Maybe a few LBYM or soft mustachians with children (who managed to stuff their retirement accounts despite the challenges of mini mes) would care to join me?

hudsoncat

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #28 on: July 02, 2018, 02:14:28 PM »
I'm kinda torn on this one.  Yes, it obviously is possible to max out pre-tax retirement funds with kids... this thread makes that abundantly clear.  On the other hand, having kids is truly one of those things you cannot fully understand without actually having them.  So from a father of two's perspective, I often feel the same way as the person in the anecdote when I hear about DINKs / SINKs (is that even a thing?) who don't understand how different life, and in particular saving money, can be once kids come into the equation.

Be that as it may, as a DINK when my BiL tells me I can't understand how expensive kids are and how impossible it is to save, I'm still going to side eye that comment. Because his household income is north of $275,000, more than double mine. DH and I are maxing out a 401K, 403b, two IRAs, and two HSAs while paying for a 3 bedroom/2 bathroom house. I don't think his one kid is costing him $150,000 additional per year over our household expenses. Pretty sure its the house that has twice the square footage of mine and is 3 times as expensive. And the brand new cars every two years. And the lake house and the boat at the lake house. And all of additional frivolous spending.

elysianfields

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #29 on: July 03, 2018, 06:58:28 AM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.

Not under the new tax law, as the child tax credit was increased to $2000 / child, of which $1400 is refundable.  Also, the per-person exemption was eliminated in favor of a larger standard deduction ($12,000 for singles, $24,000 for MFJ in 2018).

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #30 on: July 03, 2018, 07:07:39 AM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

Hahaha. I'm assuming you don't know many bowhunters, or if you do, they're not the kind I know. Most spend thousands per year on local hunting leases to chase whitetail deer, or take excursions out West for $5,000 or more to hunt elk or mule deer. They spend ungodly sums of money on licenses, camo, trail cams, scent eliminators, calls, binoculars, etc., not to mention the taxidermy charges when they actually kill something that they want to put on the wall. I don't know a single serious hunter who doesn't spend thousands of dollars per year on their hobby. I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #31 on: July 03, 2018, 09:08:37 AM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

Hahaha. I'm assuming you don't know many bowhunters, or if you do, they're not the kind I know. Most spend thousands per year on local hunting leases to chase whitetail deer, or take excursions out West for $5,000 or more to hunt elk or mule deer. They spend ungodly sums of money on licenses, camo, trail cams, scent eliminators, calls, binoculars, etc., not to mention the taxidermy charges when they actually kill something that they want to put on the wall. I don't know a single serious hunter who doesn't spend thousands of dollars per year on their hobby. I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

Agreed, among urban and suburban dwellers. But frugality is more of a norm among rural hunters who tend to stock their freezer with game.

cats

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #32 on: July 03, 2018, 09:14:45 AM »
I'm kinda torn on this one.  Yes, it obviously is possible to max out pre-tax retirement funds with kids... this thread makes that abundantly clear.  On the other hand, having kids is truly one of those things you cannot fully understand without actually having them.  So from a father of two's perspective, I often feel the same way as the person in the anecdote when I hear about DINKs / SINKs (is that even a thing?) who don't understand how different life, and in particular saving money, can be once kids come into the equation.

Be that as it may, as a DINK when my BiL tells me I can't understand how expensive kids are and how impossible it is to save, I'm still going to side eye that comment. Because his household income is north of $275,000, more than double mine. DH and I are maxing out a 401K, 403b, two IRAs, and two HSAs while paying for a 3 bedroom/2 bathroom house. I don't think his one kid is costing him $150,000 additional per year over our household expenses. Pretty sure its the house that has twice the square footage of mine and is 3 times as expensive. And the brand new cars every two years. And the lake house and the boat at the lake house. And all of additional frivolous spending.

I agree, many people who complain that they can't save because they have kids are usually spending a ton of $$ on things that have nothing to do with the kids. Certainly if they have access to a 401(k) they are likely making enough money to max it out while still covering basic expenses for themselves and their kids.  I say this as someone with a kid.


Maenad

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #33 on: July 03, 2018, 11:11:08 AM »
I don't know a single serious hunter who doesn't spend thousands of dollars per year on their hobby.

[Raises hand] DH has been hunting since he was a teenager, and it's only been in the last decade that he's bought a new rifle and some new blaze (his old stuff from his teen years was wearing out). The only things we reliably buy every year are new handwarmers. :-D

Granted, we hunt on land owned by a friend, which takes considerable upkeep, so he's spending (likely) thousands a year and we're mooching.

Quote
I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

That I'll grant you. :-)

Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #34 on: July 03, 2018, 02:05:49 PM »
...I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

Agreed, among urban and suburban dwellers. But frugality is more of a norm among rural hunters who tend to stock their freezer with game.


I'm actually speaking from the perspective of someone who has lived the the rural South my whole life. I know lots of people who own a lot of land. Most of them are farmers who are too busy to hunt with any frequency. I also know a lot of people who spend a lot of time hunting. Most of them are too broke to own land. (These are generalizations based on the pool of people that I know personally; I'm aware that there are many exceptions)

I am one of those "frugal freezer-stockers" to whom you refer. I spend a couple of evenings a year in a deer stand until I shoot a good-sized deer. I get it processed and then I'm done. I wear hand-me-down camo and a deer rifle that I was gifted at 16. I have been using the same carton of ammo for more than a decade, because it only takes one bullet to take a deer. But I don't call myself a "hunter", because hunting is a hobby and it's not a hobby for me.


I don't know a single serious hunter who doesn't spend thousands of dollars per year on their hobby.

[Raises hand] DH has been hunting since he was a teenager, and it's only been in the last decade that he's bought a new rifle and some new blaze (his old stuff from his teen years was wearing out). The only things we reliably buy every year are new handwarmers. :-D

Granted, we hunt on land owned by a friend, which takes considerable upkeep, so he's spending (likely) thousands a year and we're mooching.

Quote
I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

That I'll grant you. :-)

Your husband does it the right way. Hunters tend to love company, so mooching off of somebody who owns and maintains the land is the way to do it. Same mindset is required for boats and pools :)

TheGrimSqueaker

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #35 on: July 03, 2018, 02:38:51 PM »
...I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

Agreed, among urban and suburban dwellers. But frugality is more of a norm among rural hunters who tend to stock their freezer with game.


I'm actually speaking from the perspective of someone who has lived the the rural South my whole life. I know lots of people who own a lot of land. Most of them are farmers who are too busy to hunt with any frequency. I also know a lot of people who spend a lot of time hunting. Most of them are too broke to own land. (These are generalizations based on the pool of people that I know personally; I'm aware that there are many exceptions)

I am one of those "frugal freezer-stockers" to whom you refer. I spend a couple of evenings a year in a deer stand until I shoot a good-sized deer. I get it processed and then I'm done. I wear hand-me-down camo and a deer rifle that I was gifted at 16. I have been using the same carton of ammo for more than a decade, because it only takes one bullet to take a deer. But I don't call myself a "hunter", because hunting is a hobby and it's not a hobby for me.


I don't know a single serious hunter who doesn't spend thousands of dollars per year on their hobby.

[Raises hand] DH has been hunting since he was a teenager, and it's only been in the last decade that he's bought a new rifle and some new blaze (his old stuff from his teen years was wearing out). The only things we reliably buy every year are new handwarmers. :-D

Granted, we hunt on land owned by a friend, which takes considerable upkeep, so he's spending (likely) thousands a year and we're mooching.

Quote
I know frugal hunters exist, but it is not the norm by any stretch of the imagination.

That I'll grant you. :-)

Your husband does it the right way. Hunters tend to love company, so mooching off of somebody who owns and maintains the land is the way to do it. Same mindset is required for boats and pools :)

Hmm, you may not identify as a hunter, you just occasionally do hunter things. Like hunting. You hang out in deer stands from time to time (not a normal activity for non-hunters), and you have a freezer full of game you shot yourself. You may not march in hunter pride parades, and it's OK that you don't. We'll label you as "hunter-curious".

Jrr85

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #36 on: July 03, 2018, 02:53:29 PM »
You're able to max out your 401(k) because you don't have kids.  Kids are expensive.

Yet, single people with no kids have to pay far more taxes while married couples with kids get big tax breaks.

In an example I posted in a previous comment, the single woman making $70K/yr paid over 7 times as much tax as a family of four with the same household income.   So kids are expensive to single people who never had them also.

You are really letting your bitterness regarding taxes get to you, and posting this in just about every thread.  Wouldn't you feel better if you stopped ignoring the fact that you are comparing the income for one person to the income for four people, and ignoring that the parent(s) in the family of four are bearing wayyyyyyy more costs than you to ensure there is funding for social security for the next 50-70 years?

 

fredbear

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #37 on: July 03, 2018, 09:06:54 PM »
Hmm, you may not identify as a hunter, you just occasionally do hunter things. Like hunting. You hang out in deer stands from time to time (not a normal activity for non-hunters), and you have a freezer full of game you shot yourself. You may not march in hunter pride parades, and it's OK that you don't. We'll label you as "hunter-curious".

Are you thinking he'll come out of the blind one of these days?

When I outed myself as a hunter, I did it at the yoga school. Than which there is no whicher.  It went like this:

I killed a moose last weekend and ...

OH.  I suppose you're one of those people who just takes the horns and leaves the rest to rot.

Antlers.  They don't have horns.  And no.  I carried the moose out on my back.  It took 6 loads.  Then I went back to bring out the hide, because a woman like you wants to tan it and have it to sleep under.  Then I went back for the head, because a woman like you wants to clean it up with dermestid beetles and make the skull a mosaic.  Then I went back to bring out the femurs for a woman like you who wants to make native American flutes out of them.

Oh.  Well, I....

As a matter of fact, my -06 is providing the meat for two college houses of young men as well as for me.

Well, I suppose....

You supppose.  You are so far off base I'm not even going to be offended.  Leave the meat to rot!  Leaving the meat is a felony in this state.  If you actually know someone who did that, let's step over to the phone.  I'll call the Division of Wildlife.  The poaching hotline.  Right now.  You give the name and the circumstances.  We'll send them up.  They'll lose the right to hunt forever.  Because by God, they deserve it.

Well, I don't exactly....

No.  Let's go.  There's the phone, right in there.  Shakti will let us use it.  (Shakti, our God-Empress Instructor, who is amused, suppresses her smile and indicates the phone is available.)  Let's get those game-wasting assholes in the slammer.  I'm dead serious.  Let's make the call.  Right now.

Well, I don't exactly know of anybody.  I've sort of heard that....

I see.  Sort of heard that....  How about you find the person you sort of heard that from and set them straight?  Those people that leave the meat are felons and we hunters want them upstate, maybe even more than you do.

Shakti intervenes: We'll do Pincha Mayurasana now.  If you need to space your elbows, grab a block.  Find a place along the wall....

Laura33

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #38 on: July 04, 2018, 09:40:11 AM »
What the coworker misses is the power of inertia and habit.  When I started my first “real” job, the advice we were given was to start saving as much as we can now, because even with loans and such, we were never going to have as much discretionary income again once the kids came and we started buying houses and such.  But the nice thing is that by the time I did get married and have kids, I had already built my lifestyle around net-income-minus-savings - and with inertia being such a powerful force, my natural inclination was to figure out how to fit my expenses within the money that I saw in the account every month (i.e., post-savings), rather that decreasing my savings to pay for more stuff.

markbike528CBX

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #39 on: July 04, 2018, 12:14:48 PM »
@fredbear if I could have a snappy answer like that, I'd start hunting again and do yoga just so I could could out myself. I've never liked big game hunting ( too cold, too much waiting, walking and work), so the impact just isn't the same when you substitute squirrel, pheasant, rabbit for elk.

I'm with Laura33 on the inertia/habits part.  I intentionally saved a lot when I was single, as I knew a wife would drive up yearly costs ( it has).  The habits were so strong, I paid off the wife's student loan, and the house almost automatically, and without reducing 401(k) savings.


edit to undo whaling vs waiting, as I'm not Captain Ahab
« Last Edit: July 04, 2018, 05:27:06 PM by markbike528CBX »

Gin1984

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #40 on: July 04, 2018, 01:50:01 PM »
OP got it right the first time. No outrageous debts to drag you down regardless of your disposable income.  Having a high enough income to max it without thinking too much about it doesn't hurt either.

Getting into the child/no child debate: besides the $1000/year child tax credit, is there another tax savings I'm missing?

The cost per year for my son appears to be about $10,000 which includes:
-difference between 3 bedroom rental house or 2 bedroom apartment
-utilities of house vs apartment
-food
-entertainment
-saving for college
Well there's that small $4,050 exemption per child.
That no longer exists....

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #41 on: July 04, 2018, 09:59:02 PM »
You're able to max out your 401(k) because you don't have kids.  Kids are expensive.

Yet, single people with no kids have to pay far more taxes while married couples with kids get big tax breaks.

In an example I posted in a previous comment, the single woman making $70K/yr paid over 7 times as much tax as a family of four with the same household income.   So kids are expensive to single people who never had them also.

You are really letting your bitterness regarding taxes get to you, and posting this in just about every thread. 

I call double BS.    I've never said once that I was "bitter" about it, and I'm simply pointing out the facts.   In fact, I specifically stated that I wasn't bitter in this thread days ago, prior to your post here, and you had posted to that thread afterwards before you post here, so you clearly aren't understanding, which is why I have to repeat myself:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/social-security-will-not-be-bankrupt/msg2056201/#msg2056201

And to help drive this home for you, I'll point you again to where I stated that I didn't have a problem with the current tax situation of families with kids getting a tax break:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/i-wonder-why-healthcare-is-so-expensive-in-the-us/msg2055618/#msg2055618

Hmmm.... that sure doesn't sound like something a bitter person would say.

Quote
Wouldn't you feel better if you stopped ignoring the fact that you are comparing the income for one person to the income for four people

I'm comparing household income.  It's couples filing jointly with kids as a household using current tax law that gives them the big tax breaks.  But, if you think it would make me feel better if I break down the tax paid "per person" in the comparison, the difference is even more stark.  As I've posted before:

Quote
Exactly.  I was surprised to see some of the other responses that missed the point that it wasn't about paying taxes in general, but unfair share of the tax burden for those that use the most resources compared to those who use less.

I posted this in a previous thread as an example, and it applies here and should clarify what my original comment was referring to when I stated I was subsidizing families with kids.

Here are some figures I calculated with the Dinkytown 2018 tax calculator using a simple comparison:

Household income of single woman with no kids $70,000
Total federal income tax $8700
Total federal income tax per person $8700

Household income of married couple with 2 kids $70,000
Total federal income tax $1139
Federal income tax per person $284.75

The single woman household pays over 7 1/2 times as much tax in this example.  She is subsidizing the family with kids by paying many more times in federal income taxes despite the family utilizing far more $ in public resources.  If you divide the tax by each person in the household, the difference in tax burden per household member is even more stark at over 30X!

And the part about posting that in almost every thread.  I've posted it in maybe 3 or 4 threads out of the dozens I've posted to and the thousands of threads.  How about sticking to the facts?
 

DreamFIRE

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #42 on: July 04, 2018, 10:33:20 PM »
Jrr85, regarding your SS comment above, you sound very bitter about having to pay payroll taxes.  The rest of us pay them throughout our careers.  In fact, I wouldn't mind paying much higher payroll taxes to help shore up SS and Medicare for deserving seniors who paid into those programs all of their careers as well.

elysianfields

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #43 on: July 05, 2018, 05:37:42 AM »
What the coworker misses is the power of inertia and habit.  When I started my first “real” job, the advice we were given was to start saving as much as we can now, because even with loans and such, we were never going to have as much discretionary income again once the kids came and we started buying houses and such.  But the nice thing is that by the time I did get married and have kids, I had already built my lifestyle around net-income-minus-savings - and with inertia being such a powerful force, my natural inclination was to figure out how to fit my expenses within the money that I saw in the account every month (i.e., post-savings), rather that decreasing my savings to pay for more stuff.

Indeed, if you don't see it in your account, you're less likely to spend it.

I have two kids, one in college and another headed there next fall.  I still max my TSP, his & hers Roth IRAs, 529s (his, hers, kid #1, & kid #2 - this is all about avoiding state income tax), and HSA.  Going on the car-free diet for four years (we just bought a used car, but that's another story) and maximizing bicycling & public transit have been key to our savings.

Jrr85

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #44 on: July 05, 2018, 07:16:51 AM »
You're able to max out your 401(k) because you don't have kids.  Kids are expensive.

Yet, single people with no kids have to pay far more taxes while married couples with kids get big tax breaks.

In an example I posted in a previous comment, the single woman making $70K/yr paid over 7 times as much tax as a family of four with the same household income.   So kids are expensive to single people who never had them also.

You are really letting your bitterness regarding taxes get to you, and posting this in just about every thread. 

I call double BS.    I've never said once that I was "bitter" about it, and I'm simply pointing out the facts.   In fact, I specifically stated that I wasn't bitter in this thread days ago, prior to your post here, and you had posted to that thread afterwards before you post here, so you clearly aren't understanding, which is why I have to repeat myself:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/welcome-to-the-forum/social-security-will-not-be-bankrupt/msg2056201/#msg2056201

And to help drive this home for you, I'll point you again to where I stated that I didn't have a problem with the current tax situation of families with kids getting a tax break:
https://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/off-topic/i-wonder-why-healthcare-is-so-expensive-in-the-us/msg2055618/#msg2055618

Hmmm.... that sure doesn't sound like something a bitter person would say.

Quote
Wouldn't you feel better if you stopped ignoring the fact that you are comparing the income for one person to the income for four people

I'm comparing household income.  It's couples filing jointly with kids as a household using current tax law that gives them the big tax breaks.  But, if you think it would make me feel better if I break down the tax paid "per person" in the comparison, the difference is even more stark.  As I've posted before:

Quote
Exactly.  I was surprised to see some of the other responses that missed the point that it wasn't about paying taxes in general, but unfair share of the tax burden for those that use the most resources compared to those who use less.

I posted this in a previous thread as an example, and it applies here and should clarify what my original comment was referring to when I stated I was subsidizing families with kids.

Here are some figures I calculated with the Dinkytown 2018 tax calculator using a simple comparison:

Household income of single woman with no kids $70,000
Total federal income tax $8700
Total federal income tax per person $8700

Household income of married couple with 2 kids $70,000
Total federal income tax $1139
Federal income tax per person $284.75

The single woman household pays over 7 1/2 times as much tax in this example.  She is subsidizing the family with kids by paying many more times in federal income taxes despite the family utilizing far more $ in public resources.  If you divide the tax by each person in the household, the difference in tax burden per household member is even more stark at over 30X!

And the part about posting that in almost every thread.  I've posted it in maybe 3 or 4 threads out of the dozens I've posted to and the thousands of threads.  How about sticking to the facts?

Or you could look at it as a person with $70k pays an effective tax rate of 12.42% on their income (or really, I'm guessing more like 25.76% since it looks like your example is ignores the ~14.2% FICA taxes).  While the person with $17,500 pays an effective tax rate of 1.62% on income (or really, 15.7%).  I'm all for making the tax code flatter, but I'm not sure politically how you are going to get much more than that out of a household with about $18,838.75 of income per person.   




Jrr85

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #45 on: July 05, 2018, 07:24:26 AM »
Jrr85, regarding your SS comment above, you sound very bitter about having to pay payroll taxes.  The rest of us pay them throughout our careers.  In fact, I wouldn't mind paying much higher payroll taxes to help shore up SS and Medicare for deserving seniors who paid into those programs all of their careers as well.

I'm not bitter about having to pay payroll taxes.  I am somewhat disheartened that so many people openly advocate redistribution from poorer workers to richer retirees.  Realistically, I am going to have the screws put to me to pay money to boomers.  Whether they raise payroll taxes, increase the cap on SS, or just raise non-fica taxes, I don't think my tax burden will be materially different. 

I am a little bitter that the only group of people who could have realistically prevented the problem are likely going to be the ones that are most shielded from the pain.  Not a real problem for me and I think I'll be able to basically make my kids whole so that I can shield them from the ill effects, but it really sucks for those people who are less fortunate.   


Mississippi Mudstache

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #46 on: July 06, 2018, 11:29:47 AM »
Hmm, you may not identify as a hunter, you just occasionally do hunter things. Like hunting. You hang out in deer stands from time to time (not a normal activity for non-hunters), and you have a freezer full of game you shot yourself. You may not march in hunter pride parades, and it's OK that you don't. We'll label you as "hunter-curious".

Hehe. I can go with that :)

Seriously, though, I just really don't find hunting to be interesting. I avoid tagging myself as a "hunter" so people won't assume that I'm interested in their annoying stories about killing four subspecies of North American turkey or shooting doves by the thousands at some ranch in South America. Don't care, never will. Killing a deer is as interesting, difficult, and enjoyable as killing a cow from my neighbor's pasture.

talltexan

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #47 on: July 09, 2018, 07:12:13 AM »
When I read this, I imagined some kind of boss scenario where--once the cow is dead--the neighbor shows up and you have to fight him. Hope you saved some ammo!

swampwiz

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #48 on: July 09, 2018, 09:18:14 PM »
How on earth is bowhunting expensive?

Bowhunting itself wouldn't be, but I'm guessing this particular version involves the latest and greatest gear every season, pricey weekend rentals with the guys, etc.

I probably know more about the design of a bow than just about any bow hunters.  My team for the senior project in mechanical engineering had the task of designing a computer-aided system to design the compound bow cam (i.e., the pulley for the cord) to match a desired input of points of pulling force vs. pulled distance.  I ended up personally designing an optimal cam design just by carefully tweaking a current design by hand, keeping in mind all the parameters that go into it that blew away what the computer program generated.

Bayou Dweller

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Re: You only max your 401(k) because you don't have kids
« Reply #49 on: July 10, 2018, 06:19:55 AM »
Classic, really.

I've got a kid, but I'm a single father-ish. I pay child support and I don't get the child tax credit or exemption on my return (thanks, State of Texas!).

Through witchcraft and sorcery I've managed to max out my 401k, Family HSA, and Roth IRA.

Funny enough, as you all know, I've managed to save thousands on my tax bill. I can't afford NOT to max out the pre-tax ones.