Author Topic: MMM 2015 Spending  (Read 9939 times)

marcus0aurelius

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MMM 2015 Spending
« on: March 19, 2016, 04:36:02 PM »
Has MMM posted his 2015 spending anywhere? I was looking on the site and didn't see it, couldn't find it on the forums either. I was hoping he would do it again this year as it's my first full year of mint data to compare but it looks like he has other articles he wants to write instead of putting all of his mint data in internet form? Basically if someone has seen it and I've just missed it it'd be neat if you could link me to it.

PhysicianOnFIRE

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #1 on: March 19, 2016, 05:37:59 PM »
I noticed that it hasn't been posted.  It's not terribly relevant to me.  We know that in the past, he was able to spend about $25,000 (not including blog-related spending, travel, etc...) 

If the Adeneys choose to spend more or stop telling us, it doesn't change what they've done in the past.  I suppose I am curious, though.  Why hasn't he posted?  Spend too much?  Prefer some privacy now that the relative anonymity is gone?

tyort1

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #2 on: March 20, 2016, 12:12:18 PM »
I'm not surprised.  I suspect he's spent more than $25k, and probably a lot of the excess is blog related.  Here's what happens whenever this comes up.  Depending on how Pete categorizes this extra spending, the IRP show up and say this:

If it's characterized as plain old expenses, then HE'S GOT LIFESTYLE CREEP AND IS A HYPOCRITE.

If it's characterized as a business expense, then HE'S NOT REALLY RETIRED AND IS A HYPOCRITE.

Seriously.  And every time this comes up I'm sort of shocked at the level of vitriol around this topic for these people.  Just wait, you'll see....
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NESailor

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #3 on: March 21, 2016, 07:49:20 AM »
I've been curious as well.  I figured it's probably a mix of more spend and the wish for some privacy since his entire life is out there for everyone to see anyway. 

I wouldn't fault them for a little bit of lifestyle creep in the least either.   His relative wealth and large income is a direct result of everything he's preached on here.  He could be a cubicle (or office) dwelling coder and be just as wealthy but he chose to take a different path, affect a huge number of people for the better...and still ended up wealthy.  Good for them I say!

FiveSigmas

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #4 on: April 01, 2016, 11:26:15 AM »
Okay, well played, Pete. Well played.

undercover

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #5 on: April 01, 2016, 11:50:09 AM »
Gotta say though...how many here would ever come back to the site if his actual expenses had went up significantly? I know it's the message that counts - but it would be really awkward.

I know some here don't see it this way...but I still think his blog expenses are relevant. The blog is completely based on him and his ideas. I wonder how much his "blog" spent this year on travel and purchases. I would imagine not over $10k, but you never know.
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Cassie

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2016, 11:52:03 AM »
It was a good read and he honestly mentions the things that he has been criticized for before and states what it would cost if they were all included in his budget, etc.  I am glad that he addressed some of the issues.  He has such a low spend on things like eating out.

Gin1984

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #7 on: April 01, 2016, 11:54:16 AM »
The lack of home insurance would make me seriously nervous.

Paul | pdgessler

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #8 on: April 01, 2016, 11:56:45 AM »
The lack of home insurance would make me seriously nervous.

This. I was really shocked when I read that. But, I suppose with all the cash the blog is pulling in, they could just pull funds from that stream to repair/replace. It'd just be a temporary diversion of an income stream that ideally goes to charity/MMM doing awesome stuff for the world.

Cassie

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #9 on: April 01, 2016, 12:08:48 PM »
I think it is foolish to go without the home insurance. Penny wise but pound foolish.

Mr. Green

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #10 on: April 01, 2016, 12:34:23 PM »
I think it is foolish to go without the home insurance. Penny wise but pound foolish.
If you have the money would would you bother? There's certainly the liability aspect, but for fire, etc? I'm not quite sure what the point of the insurance would be if you had more money than you knew what to do with.

Cassie

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #11 on: April 01, 2016, 12:36:10 PM »
He has earmarked the blog $ for charity but if he has a big home disaster-etc then he would have to waste all that $ paying for it. What if he got a million dollar judgement by someone getting hurt on his property?

forummm

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #12 on: April 01, 2016, 01:24:20 PM »
Or got sued for libel. There's already been legal threats made against him because of the blog. I think it's foolish not to have liability coverage. You can get several million in coverage for a few hundred bucks per year.

neo von retorch

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #13 on: April 01, 2016, 02:32:39 PM »
In the comments, he mentions an umbrella policy.

Remember, "don't live in fear" - insurance makes money for the company. Odds are very low of fire, and relatively low of injury on your property. When the odds are low, but the consequences would be life-changing, you pay to insure. When you can afford the consequences in the unlikely event they occur, you self-insure... and the odds are good you're better off that way!

fattest_foot

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #14 on: April 01, 2016, 02:34:10 PM »
Okay, well played, Pete. Well played.

He had me going with everything up until the house. Then I was like, "Okay, he's trying to prove a point."

And yeah, the home insurance thing for liability purposes definitely seems worthwhile. House burns down? No big deal, he can pay in cash for a new one. Someone gets hurt on his property and sues him? Uh, good luck...

Yankuba

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #15 on: April 01, 2016, 03:03:01 PM »
I'm amused by the fact that people accept what he writes as gospel. Just because he says he spends XYZ doesn't mean it's true. He is a guy who got rich by selling blue sky to people like us. I doubt he is only spending $25k a year w/ $500k in income but it doesn't matter to me. I do what I do and he does what he does. To each their own.

tyort1

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #16 on: April 01, 2016, 03:10:08 PM »
Wondering when tooqk4u22, Ricky, EnjoyIt and Metric Mouse will show up and admit they were wrong in the MMM Scold thread....
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Cassie

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #17 on: April 01, 2016, 03:12:57 PM »
He did note how much he spends on travel, what his mortgage would be if he had one, etc ( things that are not in his budget)  so I think he is being upfront about everything.  If he was spending a ton of $ someone would surely expose it with how popular he has become.

tyort1

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #18 on: April 01, 2016, 03:15:00 PM »
I'm amused by the fact that people accept what he writes as gospel. Just because he says he spends XYZ doesn't mean it's true. He is a guy who got rich by selling blue sky to people like us. I doubt he is only spending $25k a year w/ $500k in income but it doesn't matter to me. I do what I do and he does what he does. To each their own.

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SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2016, 03:21:31 PM »
Maybe it's part of the the $2700 in travel expenses, but he mentions gas for driving to his Safety Pirates snowboarding trip, but doesn't seem to have anything else for that trip, i.e. a week's worth of lift tickets + lodging.  Resorts are $50-150/day for lift tickets. Maybe they camped and boarded in the back country for free.  Or maybe it's an oversight.  I don't like to nitpick on his spending, but when I read $24k for a family of 3 and think NFW, I want to be proven wrong.  But when there is stuff that I spot that is missing, it makes me wonder what else is missing.  I assume his Uber to the airport got rolled into travel as well.  He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

Heh.  One other note, my internet bill (Qwest 14 MB) is slightly less than his.  That's got to be the only thing in my life that is cheaper than what MMM spends on the same thing.

Also not sure it's fair to not include the remodeling supplies.  Claiming it doesn't count because he made a profit on the other house doesn't seem right.  That's like saying I won $10k in a poker tournament so the car I bought with the money doesn't count.  I do think it's sort of fair to not count it and say it was an investment, assuming his home equity in the current house went up by at least as much as he spent, which it probably did.

As someone mentioned in the blog comments, I'm amazed and impressed that the family got dental care for the year for $256.  Would love to know where you can get 3x cleaning, exam, and x-rays for that.  Maybe they only do the x-rays every couple of years.  Over the years I've found that dentist visits are definitely a "you can pay me now, or you can pay me later" situation.

I'll stop being a complainy pants and say well done, it's impressive that they live on essentially $25k a year and that he's willing to share his spending in such detail.

Yankuba

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2016, 03:57:35 PM »
Maybe it's part of the the $2700 in travel expenses, but he mentions gas for driving to his Safety Pirates snowboarding trip, but doesn't seem to have anything else for that trip, i.e. a week's worth of lift tickets + lodging.  Resorts are $50-150/day for lift tickets. Maybe they camped and boarded in the back country for free.  Or maybe it's an oversight.  I don't like to nitpick on his spending, but when I read $24k for a family of 3 and think NFW, I want to be proven wrong.  But when there is stuff that I spot that is missing, it makes me wonder what else is missing.  I assume his Uber to the airport got rolled into travel as well.  He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

Heh.  One other note, my internet bill (Qwest 14 MB) is slightly less than his.  That's got to be the only thing in my life that is cheaper than what MMM spends on the same thing.

Also not sure it's fair to not include the remodeling supplies.  Claiming it doesn't count because he made a profit on the other house doesn't seem right.  That's like saying I won $10k in a poker tournament so the car I bought with the money doesn't count.  I do think it's sort of fair to not count it and say it was an investment, assuming his home equity in the current house went up by at least as much as he spent, which it probably did.

As someone mentioned in the blog comments, I'm amazed and impressed that the family got dental care for the year for $256.  Would love to know where you can get 3x cleaning, exam, and x-rays for that.  Maybe they only do the x-rays every couple of years.  Over the years I've found that dentist visits are definitely a "you can pay me now, or you can pay me later" situation.

I'll stop being a complainy pants and say well done, it's impressive that they live on essentially $25k a year and that he's willing to share his spending in such detail.

On my old insurance we paid nothing for dental cleanings and Xrays.

Eric

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #21 on: April 01, 2016, 04:29:43 PM »
He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

That has to be its own separate category?  Does it have to be broken out by strain as well?  If he both smokes and vapes, can they be combined or is that too different?  Can edibles go with food?  Or do they need their own category as well?  I just want to make sure I know how to classify my own spending correctly for my future blog as well.  TIA
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tobitonic

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #22 on: April 01, 2016, 04:46:37 PM »
Maybe it's part of the the $2700 in travel expenses, but he mentions gas for driving to his Safety Pirates snowboarding trip, but doesn't seem to have anything else for that trip, i.e. a week's worth of lift tickets + lodging.  Resorts are $50-150/day for lift tickets. Maybe they camped and boarded in the back country for free.  Or maybe it's an oversight.  I don't like to nitpick on his spending, but when I read $24k for a family of 3 and think NFW, I want to be proven wrong.  But when there is stuff that I spot that is missing, it makes me wonder what else is missing.  I assume his Uber to the airport got rolled into travel as well.  He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

Heh.  One other note, my internet bill (Qwest 14 MB) is slightly less than his.  That's got to be the only thing in my life that is cheaper than what MMM spends on the same thing.

Also not sure it's fair to not include the remodeling supplies.  Claiming it doesn't count because he made a profit on the other house doesn't seem right.  That's like saying I won $10k in a poker tournament so the car I bought with the money doesn't count.  I do think it's sort of fair to not count it and say it was an investment, assuming his home equity in the current house went up by at least as much as he spent, which it probably did.

As someone mentioned in the blog comments, I'm amazed and impressed that the family got dental care for the year for $256.  Would love to know where you can get 3x cleaning, exam, and x-rays for that.  Maybe they only do the x-rays every couple of years.  Over the years I've found that dentist visits are definitely a "you can pay me now, or you can pay me later" situation.

I'll stop being a complainy pants and say well done, it's impressive that they live on essentially $25k a year and that he's willing to share his spending in such detail.

There have been lots of discussions about the many, many purchases and experiences MMM writes off as "business expenses." Yes, it's obvious that his actual spending rate is significantly above the number he provides, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.

SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #23 on: April 01, 2016, 04:58:55 PM »
He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

That has to be its own separate category?  Does it have to be broken out by strain as well?  If he both smokes and vapes, can they be combined or is that too different?  Can edibles go with food?  Or do they need their own category as well?  I just want to make sure I know how to classify my own spending correctly for my future blog as well.  TIA

Heh.  Maybe it's under his $42 "Pharmacy" spending.  Per the New Yorker article, "He said that thirty dollars of sativa oil lasts him half a year. It was time for a reload."  So, ~$60 a year. 

I've been reading MMM's blog since '12 and love much of it and find some of it amazing.  However, I've always been a little skeptical of the numbers in his annual spending report.  It's extremely detailed, but seems to be missing things.  (And looking back at his 2012 expenditures, he *did* count $2k in home renovations then, so not sure why his $10k in home renovations wouldn't count this time, except that he seems to want to keep the number around $25k.)

As for your blog, as long as it's as interesting as MMM's, I'm sure readers won't care whether you split out your weed expenses by strain, form, or color.  Or maybe you'll just grow your own.

SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2016, 05:01:33 PM »

On my old insurance we paid nothing for dental cleanings and Xrays.

I doubt he has dental insurance.  For one, he didn't list it, and for another it's generally not a very good deal.  It's really just pre-paying in some sense.  Much of the cost of your dental insurance was really just paying for those cleanings and Xrays.

2527

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #25 on: April 01, 2016, 05:21:35 PM »
I don't fault him for whatever his spending is.  But I think it is indicative of the point that maybe life on a very low amount of money might be a little boring.  After a year of watching Netflix, it is fun to go to the movies, etc.

robartsd

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #26 on: April 01, 2016, 05:42:13 PM »
He has earmarked the blog $ for charity but if he has a big home disaster-etc then he would have to waste all that $ paying for it. What if he got a million dollar judgement by someone getting hurt on his property?
I think his personal stash could withstand the total lost of his house and still support their lifestyle (though without the income stream insuring against a second disaster would be prudent). The liability side does have a little more to be concerned about, but as MMM frequently points out, its a very unlikely outcome. Most likely outcome - someone gets hurt and he settles with a reasonable amount or fights tooth and nail (and wins) against an unreasonable claim. He might be out tens of thousands (or even a few hundred thousand) if they're really dumb and drive up legal costs; but he's not going to do something that a reasonable judge would award a million dollar judgement for.

Yankuba

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #27 on: April 01, 2016, 05:48:26 PM »

On my old insurance we paid nothing for dental cleanings and Xrays.

I doubt he has dental insurance.  For one, he didn't list it, and for another it's generally not a very good deal.  It's really just pre-paying in some sense.  Much of the cost of your dental insurance was really just paying for those cleanings and Xrays.

My dental insurance is free - or at least my employer pays for it.

CopperTex

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #28 on: April 01, 2016, 05:54:47 PM »
He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I think MMM's 25k/yr spending comes to down "creative accounting".

forummm

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #29 on: April 01, 2016, 06:35:06 PM »
In the comments, he mentions an umbrella policy.

...and that he doesn't have one of those either.


He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I did something similar, and I regret it daily.

tyort1

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #30 on: April 01, 2016, 07:03:48 PM »
In the comments, he mentions an umbrella policy.

...and that he doesn't have one of those either.


He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I did something similar, and I regret it daily.

Gotta agree here - I went without dental checkups for more than a year due to unemployment and I'm still paying for it.  Do not screw around with your dental health....
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undercover

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #31 on: April 01, 2016, 08:03:32 PM »
I think MMM's 25k/yr spending comes to down "creative accounting".

I'm a bit skeptic on the whole $25k/yr thing. I don't want to be, but it's hard not to be? For the amount his categories fluctuate, how is it humanly possible to hit that nearly that exactly number every year since he started the blog? He also states that he doesn't really track spending or budget but only spends what he feels is necessary - yet it somehow always comes right out at $25k/yr?

$25k for a family of 3 is cheap to some and very expensive to others, just depends who you ask, but I don't think he's being as transparent as he lets on. Leaving out the travel expenses of the business is another way in which he's clearly not as transparent as he could be. It's not like he doesn't benefit from the "expenses" of the blog. Beyond hosting fees and yearly domain renewals, the expenses are purely discretionary since the blog is simply an extension of him. He wants to try out a new "frugal" product like an electric bike? No problem, just spend the money and write it off. Wants to meet an interesting person for an interview in person and decides to fly out to them? No problem, just spend the money and write it off. And so on and so on. Yet, all these expenses directly benefit him nearly as much as they do the blog itself.

Clearly if an authoritative figure, or "guru", who claims to live well below their means suddenly reveals that they're spending even $10k more ($35k) per year then their credibility would pretty much be shot, no? Sure the exact spending increase amount is arbitrary, but you get the idea. It's not that the posts or message of the blog would be any less meaningful, it would just mean that people would take the blog as a whole less seriously. So in some ways the life of this blog does depend on the author keeping true to his word, no? And we already know that in some ways (his "business" expenses) that he's not exactly true to his word, so...I suppose it's up to the individual to be the judge.
« Last Edit: April 01, 2016, 08:14:46 PM by undercover »
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randymarsh

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #32 on: April 01, 2016, 09:16:28 PM »
Yeah MMM sure is a hypocrite improving his life with tax deductible self-employment expenses. It's not like he's ever recommended doing that or anything.

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/06/08/the-joy-of-self-employment/

Quote
Meanwhile, almost everything in life has become tax-deductible. The main things I spend money on besides groceries are: tools, a good computer or camera occasionally, and cell phone and internet service. All of these are required by the business, so the business pays for them. With this newfound additional blog writing hat in the closet, I might even be able to write off some travel expenses in the future.



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SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #33 on: April 01, 2016, 09:19:53 PM »
In the comments, he mentions an umbrella policy.

...and that he doesn't have one of those either.


He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I did something similar, and I regret it daily.

Gotta agree here - I went without dental checkups for more than a year due to unemployment and I'm still paying for it.  Do not screw around with your dental health....

Exactly.  Like I said, dental care is one of those "you can pay me now or you can pay me later things."  And when you pay later it's a lot more.

SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #34 on: April 01, 2016, 09:22:49 PM »
He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I think MMM's 25k/yr spending comes to down "creative accounting".

Yup.  Some years he counts more home renovation, some years he counts less.  Some years he counts more travel, some years he counts less.  And it always is +/- $1k for the year.

I respect what he's done and think it's kind of amazing.  But like I said above I've always been a little skeptical of his annual spending reports.  This year's more than most. 

undercover

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #35 on: April 01, 2016, 09:36:15 PM »
Yeah MMM sure is a hypocrite improving his life with tax deductible self-employment expenses. It's not like he's ever recommended doing that or anything.

http://www.mrmoneymustache.com/2011/06/08/the-joy-of-self-employment/

Quote
Meanwhile, almost everything in life has become tax-deductible. The main things I spend money on besides groceries are: tools, a good computer or camera occasionally, and cell phone and internet service. All of these are required by the business, so the business pays for them. With this newfound additional blog writing hat in the closet, I might even be able to write off some travel expenses in the future.

I'm still not sure how referencing that post aids your argument that he's being completely transparent. Just because he's justifying these new expenses by way of making more money doesn't make his lifestyle any less grandiose than he leads on.
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randymarsh

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #36 on: April 01, 2016, 09:46:43 PM »
Have you read the blog? His entire point is that the life he and his family leads is grandiose!
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undercover

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #37 on: April 01, 2016, 10:05:08 PM »
It is...but my point is that he leverages that $25k figure (which most people see as very cheap) as a means to advocate his legitimacy.

What he's leaving out is his stance that if you make more money you can justify spending more money. For some reason he doesn't deem it necessary to disclose that extra spending even though most if it directly affects his lifestyle. I guess some would see this as a bit inconsistent. If you don't, then whatever.
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obstinate

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #38 on: April 01, 2016, 11:42:45 PM »
There have been lots of discussions about the many, many purchases and experiences MMM writes off as "business expenses." Yes, it's obvious that his actual spending rate is significantly above the number he provides, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
He addressed this in the comments. Either he's a liar, or his business expenses are not that high.

neo von retorch

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #39 on: April 02, 2016, 05:23:27 AM »
MMM also advocates your money working harder than you and using your muscles and skills.

His budget is not-at-all subtle about pointing out what people need to live and be happy vs. things that are spendypants. None of his readers need to renovate their homes to be happy (well maybe they do, but that's not a typical budget item everyone needs.) Plus... of course MMM is not-at-all in accumulation. He retired ten years ago, and now he's making more money than ever. Anything in his budget now that is cushy is pretty irrelevant to the budget goals his readers should be setting for themselves before retirement or financial independence.

To say a 25k annual budget with a paid off home isn't a reasonable target "because he spent some money doing some home upgrades which he did all himself and using a trivially small portion of his wealth" is disingenuous, in my opinion.

tobitonic

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #40 on: April 02, 2016, 06:57:52 AM »
There have been lots of discussions about the many, many purchases and experiences MMM writes off as "business expenses." Yes, it's obvious that his actual spending rate is significantly above the number he provides, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
He addressed this in the comments. Either he's a liar, or his business expenses are not that high.

He doesn't address his penchant for flying to Ecuador in the comments; that alone is a significant business expense that never appears when he's magically hitting the 25k mark year after year.

AdrianC

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #41 on: April 02, 2016, 07:13:29 AM »
My dental insurance is free - or at least my employer pays for it.

It's part of your compensation package. You are paying for it.

We had some basic dental coverage through our private health plan up till this year. Now (thanks to the ACA) we don't get dental coverage. We went with a Cignaplus reduced fee dental "plan". For about $100 membership we get the same discounted dental costs that the insurance company pays, rather than the full price. It helps a lot.

I see MMM has a note that their health insurance will double in 2016 due to the ACA. A family only making $25k would currently qualify for subsidies, probably through 2017. What will happen for 2018 is anyone's guess.

The $25k spending is instructive, I think. I applaud MMM for posting it and being such an inspiration. The spending shows what is possible during an optimal year. A minor illness, some dental work and some auto repairs and the spending could easily be $10k higher. We seem to have these "one time" events about every couple of months...

ender

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #42 on: April 02, 2016, 07:26:08 AM »
It's hard for me to take that too seriously. Fortunately, I don't really read the blog much at all unless directly linked (like I was to this story). For example:

Quote
Started taking Uber to the airport instead of driving

Ok, so you just reduced your personal expenses by increasing business expenses (I don't see Uber on there anyways). I get this is probably an accounting thing, moving personal expenses into business ones, but it's intellectually dishonest when the business expenses are not reported. Or:

Quote
Curtains and some paint. Does not include $10k of materials used in actually finishing the build-out of this house, since we're still running a profit due to the 2014 downsizing.

You can magically wish away $10k materials/expenses because of "we're still running a profit" - how does this make any sense?


I don't disagree you can live a rich life on a relatively small amount of spending. My wife and I are about on pace for $20k in non-rent spending this year and that includes $4500 in tuition, so more like $16k non-rent spending. If we had a paid for home we would be under his figures ourselves. But I just wish the way he reported this was less... misleading.

forummm

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #43 on: April 02, 2016, 08:39:41 AM »
I assume his Uber to the airport got rolled into travel as well.  He's also missing his weed expenditures as described in the New Yorker article. 

MMM gets free Uber rides because he did a post about them and got people to sign up using his promo code so he gets a free $30 each time someone signs up. He reported that he hasn't paid for one since, hence the $0.

No idea where his weed expense is accounted for.

In the comments, he mentions an umbrella policy.

...and that he doesn't have one of those either.


He answered someone in the comments that he hasn't been to the dentist since 2005. That's one way to save on dental expenses I suppose.

I did something similar, and I regret it daily.

Gotta agree here - I went without dental checkups for more than a year due to unemployment and I'm still paying for it.  Do not screw around with your dental health....

Exactly.  Like I said, dental care is one of those "you can pay me now or you can pay me later things."  And when you pay later it's a lot more.

And sometimes the payment is not just in dollars but in discomfort and hassle for the rest of your life.

There have been lots of discussions about the many, many purchases and experiences MMM writes off as "business expenses." Yes, it's obvious that his actual spending rate is significantly above the number he provides, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
He addressed this in the comments. Either he's a liar, or his business expenses are not that high.

He doesn't address his penchant for flying to Ecuador in the comments; that alone is a significant business expense that never appears when he's magically hitting the 25k mark year after year.

MMM has said that he doesn't count work-related travel as a personal expense. He's been traveling around the country and to at least one other continent for business purposes so that doesn't get counted. Yes those trips are some of his favorite things to do but he doesn't count them as a personal expense.

For his overall $25k, if we had no mortgage, that's about what we've been spending the past few years. And we have a pretty nice life. I have detailed the expenses in my journal a number of months. I think I'll do a 2015 summary for comparison.

forummm

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #44 on: April 02, 2016, 09:31:33 AM »
For his overall $25k, if we had no mortgage, that's about what we've been spending the past few years. And we have a pretty nice life. I have detailed the expenses in my journal a number of months. I think I'll do a 2015 summary for comparison.

I finally got a chance to put the baby down and do this summary:

2015 annual summary:

$2,373.79 Utilities (water, power, gas, cable, internet, phones)
$2,732.58 Groceries
$1,356.94 Dining Out
$13,007.48 Misc
$4,370 Insurance and property tax
$3,783 Interest (mortgage)
$27,623.79 Total Expenses

Includes (in misc) an international trip, replacing one of the A/C's, copays for maternity/prenatal care, dental care (we don't have dental insurance), and everything else we paid for.

This does not include health insurance which is covered through work.

If we had paid off the mortgage it would have been $23,840.79, or about what MMM spends for the 3 of them in his official tally (although he excludes a ton of expenses as business expenses).

Travis

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #45 on: April 02, 2016, 10:37:34 AM »
For his overall $25k, if we had no mortgage, that's about what we've been spending the past few years. And we have a pretty nice life. I have detailed the expenses in my journal a number of months. I think I'll do a 2015 summary for comparison.

I finally got a chance to put the baby down and do this summary:

2015 annual summary:

$2,373.79 Utilities (water, power, gas, cable, internet, phones)
$2,732.58 Groceries
$1,356.94 Dining Out
$13,007.48 Misc
$4,370 Insurance and property tax
$3,783 Interest (mortgage)
$27,623.79 Total Expenses

Includes (in misc) an international trip, replacing one of the A/C's, copays for maternity/prenatal care, dental care (we don't have dental insurance), and everything else we paid for.

This does not include health insurance which is covered through work.

If we had paid off the mortgage it would have been $23,840.79, or about what MMM spends for the 3 of them in his official tally (although he excludes a ton of expenses as business expenses).

How are you only spending $250/month on groceries?

SugarMountain

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #46 on: April 02, 2016, 10:40:20 AM »
There have been lots of discussions about the many, many purchases and experiences MMM writes off as "business expenses." Yes, it's obvious that his actual spending rate is significantly above the number he provides, but that's the way the cookie crumbles.
He addressed this in the comments. Either he's a liar, or his business expenses are not that high.

He doesn't address his penchant for flying to Ecuador in the comments; that alone is a significant business expense that never appears when he's magically hitting the 25k mark year after year.

Exactly.  He blogs about the fancy house he lives in but doesn't count the $10k in renovation expenses.  He blogs about fancy trips to Ecuador and Hawaii, but doesn't count the travel expenses.  He can count them as home equity investments and work expenses (cough), but I think it dilutes his message.  He talks about the great life they live on $25k, but they're not living on $25k.  Not that he gives a crap what I think, but it seems to me that saying he spent $37k and lives this great life is more forthright than $25k with a bunch of hand waving.

APowers

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #47 on: April 02, 2016, 11:22:44 AM »
For his overall $25k, if we had no mortgage, that's about what we've been spending the past few years. And we have a pretty nice life. I have detailed the expenses in my journal a number of months. I think I'll do a 2015 summary for comparison.

I finally got a chance to put the baby down and do this summary:

2015 annual summary:

$2,373.79 Utilities (water, power, gas, cable, internet, phones)
$2,732.58 Groceries
$1,356.94 Dining Out
$13,007.48 Misc
$4,370 Insurance and property tax
$3,783 Interest (mortgage)
$27,623.79 Total Expenses

Includes (in misc) an international trip, replacing one of the A/C's, copays for maternity/prenatal care, dental care (we don't have dental insurance), and everything else we paid for.

This does not include health insurance which is covered through work.

If we had paid off the mortgage it would have been $23,840.79, or about what MMM spends for the 3 of them in his official tally (although he excludes a ton of expenses as business expenses).

How are you only spending $250/month on groceries?

By buying food when it's on sale? We (me, wife, 4y/o, 3y/o) spend under $200 a month. It's not really that hard-- it's almost harder for me to imagine spending more than $250. Link.

randymarsh

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #48 on: April 02, 2016, 01:13:17 PM »
He never went to Ecuador or did those other things until the blog took off and those opportunities presented themselves.

If I work for Fancy Corp and they fly me first class to Manhattan once a month, do I have to include the expense in my personal spending? That ticket is probably $1000+. Now my "spending" is $12,000 more???
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tobitonic

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Re: MMM 2015 Spending
« Reply #49 on: April 02, 2016, 01:25:13 PM »
^ If you're writing a blog about how you get to travel everywhere while on a budget of X dollars due to your financial acumen, yes, I'd see it as only honest to include that 12k in your expenses. Similarly, if I had a blog about sustainability and financial sensibility and also happened to get a free Model S or 3 from my best bro Elon, it would be intellectually dishonest for me to brag about how little I spent on transportation.