Author Topic: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old  (Read 13777 times)

firewalker

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Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« on: September 04, 2014, 01:37:25 PM »
Hello to all. My first post other than my "say hi" post. Thank you all for sharing your valuable time, knowledge, and experience to help the community.

I am in need of a review of my financial world. I lack confidence in this world so I could use some suggestions and direction. Of course, I would love to be financially independent. But I'd be happy with just "secure-ish" before social security time at 62. That ain't far away, so I need to stop firewalking and start firerunning.

Here's my scenario:

54 years of age, single guy with health being fair-to-midling.

Income: $16,000.00 (av $1,300 per month) total, after-tax, take-home pay (breakdown: $13,300.00 from my 4-days a week “day” job and $2,700.00 “side” job self-employed).

Health insurance is pre-tax at $862.80 per year ($71.90 per month).


$16,239.00 : Total Expenses taken from the example past 12 months (breakdown shown below).

($ annual / $ monthly)

$8,400 / $700.00 - apartment rent.

$1,547.00 / $128.00 - electric (apartment is heated with electric).

$456.00 /$38.00 - Verizon cell phone (just a basic phone). I'm told ATT also works around here.

$979.00 / $82.00 - gasoline.

$2,042.00 / $170.00 - groceries.

$400.00 /$34.00 - car maint. / repairs allotment.

$800.00 / $67.00 - insurance for car & apartment.

$500.00 / $42.00 - travel (surviving family lives 2K and 3K miles away).

$600.00 / $50.00 - donations, gifts.

$515.00 / $43.00 - entertainment, hobbies, eating out.

 
No land line, cable, internet.

Zero c.c. debt; paid off every month.

Zero mortgage (but expensive rent due to high property / school taxes here).

Zero loans.
 

Re gasoline, my day job is just under a mile away, but the self-employed job racks up a few miles.
 

The result for this 12 month example? (-)$239.00 savings. I always seem to be just about dead even every year. This 12 month period was a negative.

Current assets and savings (largely funded by an inheritance of 100K a decade ago):

 

$2824.73: Pre-tax HSA (provided in low interest checking account, started 2 yrs ago). My annual contribution is $2,800.00 ($116.66 per month) and the day job kicks in $500.00 per year.

$69,800.00: Fixed annuity (earning 3% with no re-set of rate in the plan).

$64,795.00: 401K (6% company match, currently set at 6% contribution of $105.74 per month).

Current 401K breakdown:

GIC $28,999.71

Vanguard VBTIX $11,336.59

Vanguard VIIIX $7,241.81

Vanguard VEMPX $4,809.35

Lord Abbett LADYX $4,751.95

Dodge & Cox Int. DODFX $3,518.05

Vanguard VTMNX $4,137.11

$48,519.07: Roth IRA (currently in a 1% apy cd).

$13,033.26: After tax emergency fund (currently in a 1% apy cd).

$5,206.53: After tax checking account balance (currently in a .05% checking account).

$2,700.00 : current estimated resale value: 2001 Toyota Camry; nothing owed and 127,238 miles.
 

$206,878.59: current total assets.

So, where does a guy go from here? I'm open to any suggestions and criticism. And thank you for plowing through this mess of mine.

firewalker

 

clarkm04

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #1 on: September 04, 2014, 02:03:38 PM »
Making 16 K/yearly, it's impressive you come out to zero. 

I think one consideration is finding a roommate whether you move someone into your existing home or get an apartment with another bedroom.  Roommates always cut a ton of costs in half.  I'm sure there are others in your position that might be up for that.

Are there opportunities for other higher paying jobs or a side job that didn't require as much driving?

Best of luck.


Petunia 100

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #2 on: September 04, 2014, 02:04:33 PM »
What are your prospects for increasing your income?  Do you wish to increase your income?

rocksinmyhead

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #3 on: September 04, 2014, 02:13:40 PM »
What are your prospects for increasing your income?  Do you wish to increase your income?

I think this is a key question, because your spending looks pretty impressive.

Petunia 100

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #4 on: September 04, 2014, 02:53:17 PM »
Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?

You've got a nest egg of approximately 180k.   What sort of SS benefits do you expect?

Perhaps you plan to continue living on 16k per year into retirement, and your SS benefits will cover most of that?

Chuck

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #5 on: September 04, 2014, 02:54:47 PM »
Bravo on keeping your expenses so low. I wish I was half as badass as you.

This is one of those cases where more income is the answer. Are there any prospects in that department?

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #6 on: September 04, 2014, 08:17:44 PM »
Quote: " one consideration is finding a roommate whether you move someone into your existing home or get an apartment with another bedroom.  Roommates always cut a ton of costs in half.  I'm sure there are others in your position that might be up for that."

True, sharing rent saves a bunch. Around here $700.00 is unheard of unless, like myself, you have a friend for a landlord.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #7 on: September 04, 2014, 08:30:49 PM »
Quote from Petunia100 "Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?"

I'd feel pretty stupid if I got risky at 54 and ended up with zilch at 62. But again, this is a realm that I know very little about. I picked my 401K stuff like I was at a salad bar. The only thing I knew was keep fees low. Once I heard that the market set a record, I moved a bunch to safety so I wouldn't end up back at square one.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #8 on: September 04, 2014, 08:33:19 PM »
Quote from Petunia100 "What sort of SS benefits do you expect?"

At 62 I'm estimated to get $650.00 per month.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #9 on: September 04, 2014, 08:41:19 PM »
Quote from Chuck "Bravo on keeping your expenses so low. I wish I was half as badass as you."

Thanks. It's all I know. In fact it's all a lot of people know. All those folks you see working at Target, Walmart or Staples? Most of them are also below the median.

Quote from Chuck "This is one of those cases where more income is the answer. Are there any prospects in that department?"

That's a question I don't have an answer to. Any fields come to mind? I'm out of ideas.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #10 on: September 04, 2014, 09:20:50 PM »
What are your prospects for increasing your income?  Do you wish to increase your income?

Chuck asked that as well. Sure, I'd love to increase my income. But at 54 and unskilled, I can't imagine any fields to go into. So much said these days about the difficulties experienced by older ones when job hunting. I see older ones working at fast food places and grocery store checkout lines all the time. If there's something better out there, there's a lot of folks like me who aren't aware of it. Then again maybe there's hope. After all, I just learned the correct way to quote someone!

deborah

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #11 on: September 04, 2014, 09:42:18 PM »
You are a marvel - congratulations on increasing your savings when your jobs pay so low!

Your savings are about $180,000 - giving $7,200 per year if we follow the 4% rule. So, when you are 62 you would have more than $15,000 to live on with SS, and will probably be able to live comfortably assuming SS increases because you work the remaining years until you are 62.

62 is 8 years away. This is both good and bad - good because you haven't got long to go, and bad because it is very difficult to get a job when you are older.

Could you increase the money you get from the side gig? If you concentrate on that, you can see if it has the potential to pay more than your current job combination. Once you had expanded it a reasonable amount, and were reasonably confident that you could expand to cover your current pay, you could quit your current job and concentrate on the side gig. Your savings give you a buffer that would help if things are a bit bumpy (but make sure you set a limit on the amount of your savings that you use this way).

theadvicist

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #12 on: September 05, 2014, 02:51:48 AM »
Sounds like you're doing great on keeping expenses low, well done!

My only addition would be that since you work less than a mile away, and you're health is 'fair to middling' why not start walking to work? (if you're not already). Walking is one the best things you can do for your health, so it kills two birds with one stone: lower mileage on the car (and short journeys are particularly bad for wear and tear), and it will do wonders for your health.

lakemom

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #13 on: September 05, 2014, 05:02:27 AM »
You sir are a rock star at frugal living.  My highest compliments on preserving the inheritance rather than just frittering it away on lifestyle (as so many Americans do these days).  Also compliments to contributing to the 401k when so low income.  So many make the excuse they can't afford to contribute because they make too little and here you are proving them all wrong.  Like all the others I would recommend concentrating on two fronts:  1. studying investing to become comfortable with managing your retirement funds and hopefully growing them at a rate that outpaces inflation.  2.  Trying to increase income, even if only temporarily, by taking on a second job, increasing hours at the primary, growing the side gig.  Finally, what type of job is your primary and your side gig?  These forums are excellent at helping us see outside the box so if we knew what skills you are using now we may be able to help you think of (find) a better paying career using the same of similar skills.  Hang in there!  You are doing better than the majority of your peers.

pom

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #14 on: September 05, 2014, 05:35:38 AM »
Hi Firewalk,

Congrats on saving so much.

Just some questions/comments on these:


$69,800.00: Fixed annuity (earning 3% with no re-set of rate in the plan).

GIC $28,999.71

$48,519.07: Roth IRA (currently in a 1% apy cd).

$13,033.26: After tax emergency fund (currently in a 1% apy cd).

$5,206.53: After tax checking account balance (currently in a .05% checking account).


Annuities tend to be full of hidden fees, has your cash value really been increasing at 3%? I suggest that you look at the last 2/3 years of financial statements to check.

You have almost 100k invested at a 1% per annum that does not even cover inflation. This money needs to be put to work in one way or another. There has to be investments that earn more than 1% that you can get comfortable with. How about some lending club (for the 18k that is not the ROTH/401k)? How about REITs?

I don't see why you would need 13k in emergency fund and 5k in savings. In total that is more than one year expense in emergency funds. Usually 3 months is plenty or 6 months if that makes you comfortable.

If you can grow your stash 4% per year above inflation, you will have around 300k once you reach 62. That should then generate 12k in income on top of your 8k of social security. You are definitely not in a bad situation but you need to make some adjustments.

rocksinmyhead

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #15 on: September 05, 2014, 07:10:45 AM »
What are your prospects for increasing your income?  Do you wish to increase your income?

Chuck asked that as well. Sure, I'd love to increase my income. But at 54 and unskilled, I can't imagine any fields to go into. So much said these days about the difficulties experienced by older ones when job hunting. I see older ones working at fast food places and grocery store checkout lines all the time. If there's something better out there, there's a lot of folks like me who aren't aware of it. Then again maybe there's hope. After all, I just learned the correct way to quote someone!

Are there any skills you're interested in learning, that you could teach yourself or learn for cheap? What's your side gig? Could you somehow expand that or make it more profitable?

aj_yooper

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #16 on: September 05, 2014, 07:58:07 AM »
Firewalker, I am very impressed by your budget!  And, you are able to save and keep your assets over time. 

Jack

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #17 on: September 05, 2014, 08:49:43 AM »
At your income level, you might qualify for a bunch of subsidized stuff. Look into "lifeline" cellphone and/or Internet service (I think it's something like $10/month for each), section-8 housing, etc.

Quote from Petunia100 "Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?"

I'd feel pretty stupid if I got risky at 54 and ended up with zilch at 62. But again, this is a realm that I know very little about. I picked my 401K stuff like I was at a salad bar. The only thing I knew was keep fees low. Once I heard that the market set a record, I moved a bunch to safety so I wouldn't end up back at square one.

Your time horizon is not 8 years unless you plan to die at 62. If instead you want your money to last until you're 84 (for example), then your time horizon is 30 years and you should be more aggressive.

Exhale

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #18 on: September 05, 2014, 09:11:36 AM »
Great job so far. As a formerly low-income person myself, I sympathize!

Some ideas:
- Look into co-housing - can be a great source of savings, friendship and community
- Consider moving somewhere for more job options (doesn't have to be permanent)
- Like Jack said, check out any supports you can access (emergency cell phone, etc.)
- Check the Republic phone co. Can be $5/mo (after buying the phone which will pay itself off in a few months)

Work ideas:
- The field of youth services is desperate for men to work with youth. I'll bet you could pick up a job (might need to volunteer first to prove yourself). Boys and young men desperately need healthy men in their lives who care
- When you retire join the Peace Corps or some other service group that will pay your living expenses and insurance. Also, a great way to pick up more skills, improve your resume, network and have amazing experiences.
- Live free in exchange for house cleaning/light maintenance (I did this for seven years and it was a huge help)

Good luck!

amha

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #19 on: September 05, 2014, 09:16:28 AM »
Can you tell us more about what you do? What kinds of jobs have you had in the past?

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #20 on: September 05, 2014, 10:15:40 AM »
Can you tell us more about what you do? What kinds of jobs have you had in the past?

First, I must say that I'm overwhelmed by the response to my post! So many helpful people on this forum!

In the past I've done data entry, address list clean-up for large mailings, and research / reply correspondence for inquiries regarding missed deliveries. My current "day" job is bank teller.  I've been strapped to that corporate whipping post for about 10 years (yes I could use a change).

Petunia 100

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #21 on: September 05, 2014, 02:00:42 PM »
Can you tell us more about what you do? What kinds of jobs have you had in the past?

First, I must say that I'm overwhelmed by the response to my post! So many helpful people on this forum!

In the past I've done data entry, address list clean-up for large mailings, and research / reply correspondence for inquiries regarding missed deliveries. My current "day" job is bank teller.  I've been strapped to that corporate whipping post for about 10 years (yes I could use a change).

Your post really caught my attention.  I am 47 and constantly fretting if I am doing all I can do, or not.  You are doing a much, much better job with spending than I am.

Also, I was surprised that your income is so low.  You write well and seem to be a person of above-average intelligence.  I had no idea that bank tellers were paid so little.  Entry level accounting type jobs (accounting clerk, accounts receivable, accounts payable) would pay quite a bit more than 16k per year.   Does that line of work interest you?

Petunia 100

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #22 on: September 05, 2014, 02:11:11 PM »
Quote from Petunia100 "Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?"

I'd feel pretty stupid if I got risky at 54 and ended up with zilch at 62. But again, this is a realm that I know very little about. I picked my 401K stuff like I was at a salad bar. The only thing I knew was keep fees low. Once I heard that the market set a record, I moved a bunch to safety so I wouldn't end up back at square one.

I understand wanting to hang on to what you have.  But, you have a substantial chunk of your capital tied up in cash.  This is long-term money, it should not be guaranteed to lose pace to inflation.  I'd re-think this.  :)

Also, while it is true that the US stock market is currently at an all-time high, we don't know whether it will go higher still or come crashing down.  Well, I guess we do know, it will do both.  What we don't know is when.  Trying to guess what will happen next and then invest accordingly is a losing game.

A better approach is to make a reasonable asset allocation plan and stick with it.

MoneyCat

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #23 on: September 05, 2014, 02:49:04 PM »
It's nice to read a reader case study from a low income person for a change.  Sometimes it feels like everyone on this forum has a six figure income (my family included), which actually makes it really simple and easy to achieve FIRE.  It's nowhere near as easy for someone making a lot less money.  Honestly, I think you are doing a great job so far.

It's hard to find decent side income at your age, so you may feel stuck with all the travel for your side hustle.  Maybe you could try to switch to something you can do from home.  I have a friend who is a substitute teacher and she supplements her income by making homemade soaps and selling them on Etsy.  You mention that you are unskilled.  Do you think you could learn some useful DIY skills that you could monetize?

Sdsailing

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #24 on: September 05, 2014, 03:05:31 PM »

Investments:

I think you should dump the lord abett and the dodge and cox and put them into low cost index funds.

Also in the IRA, i would at least move some of the CDs at 1% to bond funds, for example vanguard total bond fund.

You may want to consider a higher stock asset allocation, although that is a personal decision.

Also, you could add a fund such as vanguard wellington, if you dont want to get into rebalancing stocks and bonds.

When the time comes, you may be a good candidate for s SPIA.

Peony

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #25 on: September 05, 2014, 03:29:51 PM »
I just saw something on a similar thread (can't remember if it was here at MMM or somewhere else) in which a low earner mentioned selling plasma for $200 a month -- a bigger number than I would've expected. Read the side-hustle threads on this forum for other creative ways to boost income.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #26 on: September 05, 2014, 04:21:54 PM »
It's nice to read a reader case study from a low income person for a change.  Sometimes it feels like everyone on this forum has a six figure income (my family included), which actually makes it really simple and easy to achieve FIRE. 

I guess I am sort of an odd duck here. I've often thought to myself, "his take home pay is 80,000.00 a year!?! And he's worried?!? If I were just starting from scratch, I'd be putting away 60K a year while living easy and still be FI in only 10 years!"

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #27 on: September 05, 2014, 04:40:47 PM »

  You write well and seem to be a person of above-average intelligence. I had no idea that bank tellers were paid so little.

It's a surprise to many. Google "bank teller low pay" and you'll spot stuff like this from The Washington Post:

"Researchers say taxpayers are doling out nearly $900 million a year to supplement the wages of bank tellers, which amounts to a public subsidy for multibillion-dollar banks."

I've been a teller for over ten years. That makes me question my "above-average intelligence." :-)

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #28 on: September 05, 2014, 04:49:15 PM »

Your time horizon is not 8 years unless you plan to die at 62. If instead you want your money to last until you're 84 (for example), then your time horizon is 30 years and you should be more aggressive.

A solid point I hadn't thought of. My father, uncle and grandparents all lived to 80+.

GGNoob

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #29 on: September 05, 2014, 05:10:46 PM »
My current "day" job is bank teller.  I've been strapped to that corporate whipping post for about 10 years (yes I could use a change).

Are there any banks around you that would pay more? Or can you get more hours? I think banks around here pay at least twice what you are making. There's gotta be a job that will pay more than what you are currently making.

I don't know what your options are with that annuity, but it may be nice if you could get rid of it and invest that money yourself. Even a conservative 40% stocks and 60% bonds would average much better than 3%.

For the 401k, I'd try to consolidate that into fewer funds or at least into funds that match your asset allocation goal. Aim for the 3-fund portfolio of Total US Stock, Total International Stock, and Total US Bonds.

Your Roth IRA is losing value. Get that invested ASAP. Pick a stock/bond allocation you want for all of your investments and get them invested.

Check out this for invested advice: http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Three-fund_portfolio

Overall it seems like you are doing very good considering your income. Work on increasing your income and put more of your money to work in investments. Like others have said, unless you plan on dying at age 62, you need your money to last a lot longer than 8 years. You can't be too conservative yet.

G-dog

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #30 on: September 05, 2014, 05:52:53 PM »
Are you sure you are "unskilled"?
Start thinking about your skills in general:
- computer skills
   More specific details here (excel, PowerPoint, website, sharepoint)
- accounting skills ?
- communication skills
     Do you have to prepare any reports or summaries?
     Do you give presentations to your team?
- analysis skills?
     Do you analyze any data or information, identify key points, draw conclusions, digest the information, outline implications/associations, etc?
- any mechanical or trade skills?
- problem solving skills, creative skills?
      Any issue at work where you came up with a solution
Think about what makes you good at the jobs you have had - and then distill that into a list of skills and experience.
Will your job pay for any further training or education?
Is there a community college with low tuition where you could take a few classes?

Re: $$$
You are doing a great job of saving, I would be more aggressive with the investment class as others have noted.  Read the jlcollins stock series - there are great examples (in the long haul, the stock market always go up - of course a downturn at the wrong time SUCKS!), right now you are losing vs. inflation (your cash and CDs).  Get a little stock in there (vanguard whole stock market or S&P 500).
Do you plan to continue with your side gig at 62?
Anything you are not using that you can sell?

FYI - at your income level you can get free tax prep through the United Way/IRS VITA program - they will prepare and e-file your Fed and State income taxes for you, and may find some deductions, etc. you have not discovered yet.

Do not despair, you are doing really well and this community will give you some ideas to help.

unpolloloco

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #31 on: September 05, 2014, 06:16:31 PM »
You might qualify for food stamps and/or subsidized housing FYI.  No reason not to take these if you qualify for them (you've paid into these programs with your tax dollars over the years!).  Also, you might be able to save a few bucks on the cell phone if you went to a prepaid option. Quite impressive budget overall!

Sounds like you're set so long as you keep working until you take SS! Or increase your income and quit working earlier!

Roots&Wings

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #32 on: September 06, 2014, 07:51:40 AM »
I just saw something on a similar thread (can't remember if it was here at MMM or somewhere else) in which a low earner mentioned selling plasma for $200 a month -- a bigger number than I would've expected. Read the side-hustle threads on this forum for other creative ways to boost income.

Yes, there are a ton of side $ job ideas for extra income here: http://forum.mrmoneymustache.com/ask-a-mustachian/who-has-a-side-gigjob-that-brings-in-extra-cash-share-with-us!/

Leapforce seemed to be a popular online (from home) one.

rosarugosa

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #33 on: September 07, 2014, 08:15:07 AM »
Hi Firewalker:  I don't know where you live, but is there a hospital nearby?  My DH is working very happily as a hospital transporter on a part-time schedule earning just about what you're earning at your day job.  This was a total job change for him with no experience required, and he was close to you in age when he made the change.  If regularly scheduled hours are over 20 hours per week, then employees at his hospital are benefits-eligible, and the benefits package isn't bad.  It seems there are always positions available.  Best of all, he really enjoys the work.  My eventual exit strategy is to retire from my corporate job and get a comparable job at the hospital.  DH works 10 AM - 3 PM, and the two of us working that schedule at pleasant, low-stress jobs would be my idea of bliss.

Ambergris

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #34 on: September 07, 2014, 09:26:31 PM »
I'm going to chime in with the chorus remarking that you are doing amazingly well both on being frugal and investing given your income. I come from a poor blue collar family myself, so I'm not actually surprised (they all do really well given what they have to work with. There's nothing like actual poverty to make you learn to be resourceful). Nevertheless, lots of people in your position don't do as well.

Despite what's been said above, I actually think you're a good candidate for a conservative investment approach. As the Bogleheads say, one's risk taking should depend on ones capacity to recover from bad market downturns. Since it probably would take you a long time to recover (you don't have much to invest) and you don't have a long time to recover (you are close to retirement) being cautious is the right approach.

That said, you can do a lot better than a 1% CD: your IRA should probably be invested in a mix of stocks, bonds and cash, but heavy on the bonds and cash (I guess no more than 50% stocks). You might try a transfer to Vanguard. Currently you are facing just as much risk of not being able to keep up with inflation as you are of losing money to risky investments.


theonethatgotaway

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #35 on: September 08, 2014, 09:31:56 AM »
I've recommended this to another poster:

Since you already use a vehicle for a side job ( looking at the income from the side job what's the hourly breakdown minus costs for car usage? Are you breaking even?)

Anyway, why not sign up and be a driver for uber? I've read the average after car usage income is about 11 an hour and you dictate when you drive.

I say this as I recently met a driver that was making 25k per year doing taxi work and is now making 50k driving 12 hours a day for uber.


Captain and Mrs Slow

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #36 on: September 08, 2014, 09:45:46 AM »
Quote from Petunia100 "Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?"

I'd feel pretty stupid if I got risky at 54 and ended up with zilch at 62. But again, this is a realm that I know very little about. I picked my 401K stuff like I was at a salad bar. The only thing I knew was keep fees low. Once I heard that the market set a record, I moved a bunch to safety so I wouldn't end up back at square one.

to that end I'd suggust reading the book Millioniare Teacher, fun easy to read book and it'll tuen you into a world class investor

oldtoyota

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #37 on: September 08, 2014, 09:49:25 AM »
If you are willing to change mobile phone companies, you could switch over to AirVoice Wireless. It's $10/month and uses AT&T lines, which you say works in your area.

Nice work with the frugal living!

2ndTimer

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #38 on: September 08, 2014, 10:07:28 AM »
Congratulations on doing as well as you are.  When we had electric heat (it is a killer) we bought an electric blanket and turned the heat off completely a couple of hours before bed.  If you feel like trying the experiment, you can find one at a thrift store.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #39 on: September 09, 2014, 10:20:00 AM »
I've recommended this to another poster:

Since you already use a vehicle for a side job ( looking at the income from the side job what's the hourly breakdown minus costs for car usage? Are you breaking even?)

Anyway, why not sign up and be a driver for uber? I've read the average after car usage income is about 11 an hour and you dictate when you drive.

I say this as I recently met a driver that was making 25k per year doing taxi work and is now making 50k driving 12 hours a day for uber.

"Are you breaking even?" Very good question!  I have to crunch some numbers on this one.  I may be doing the side job to pay for a car so that I can do the side job so that I can pay for a car so that ...

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #40 on: September 09, 2014, 10:22:20 AM »
If you are willing to change mobile phone companies, you could switch over to AirVoice Wireless. It's $10/month and uses AT&T lines, which you say works in your area.

Nice work with the frugal living!

Thanks!  I knew that Republic Wireless wouldn't work in my area. I will definetly check out AirVoice Wireless.

firewalker

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #41 on: September 09, 2014, 10:25:53 AM »
Quote from Petunia100 "Also, I notice that your asset allocation plan is very conservative.   Why is that?  Are you unwilling to take much risk?  Are you in preservation mode?"

I'd feel pretty stupid if I got risky at 54 and ended up with zilch at 62. But again, this is a realm that I know very little about. I picked my 401K stuff like I was at a salad bar. The only thing I knew was keep fees low. Once I heard that the market set a record, I moved a bunch to safety so I wouldn't end up back at square one.

to that end I'd suggust reading the book Millioniare Teacher, fun easy to read book and it'll tuen you into a world class investor

Thank you Petunia100 and oldtoyota!  I will check out Millionaire Teacher (by Andrew Hallam - found on Amazon).

angelagrace

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Re: Reader Case Study, Low income, 54 yrs old
« Reply #42 on: September 09, 2014, 10:50:21 AM »
I know you said you don't have internet, but I have read about a side gig you can do online called Leapforce and it's basically searching on search engines. You might be able to do it from the library or get a cheap internet connection. You can make your own hours so it might help bring in a little extra. Here's more info: http://frugalparagon.com/2014/02/05/why-the-frugal-paragon-loves-leapforce-at-home/