Author Topic: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?  (Read 50563 times)

slappy

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #150 on: December 28, 2018, 10:54:45 AM »
I do not understand how people can blow thru tons of money that is so hard to come by.

With lottery winners and pro athletes part of it is thinking it's so much money it could never all be spent.  'Set for life', not knowing you have to set yourself up for life, because no one told them.

The other piece, and I forget which book I read this in, I think Debt is Slavery, talks about the difference between income-producing assets and income-consuming assets.  Lottery winners tend to buy a lot of income-consuming assets (more fun) and not enough income-producing (boring), until the productive assets can no longer keep up with the assets that are consuming all the income.  Again, because no one told them, or they tried to tell them but, 'so much money I couldn't possibly spend it all, stop worrying'.

The concept of income producing vs consuming assets changed the way I looked at what I do with my money.  I'd never heard it before, at least not laid out so plainly, and I wasn't a newb to personal finance when I came across it.  What hope to people with zero experience and education with money have?

I recall that concept from Rich Dad, Poor Dad. In fact, it was one of the only pieces of info I really retained from the book. He talks about only buying assets that make you money. One of the stories was that his wife wanted a new car. Instead, he bought an asset (probably a mutual fund) and when that asset paid enough dividends to cover the car payment, he bought the car.

slappy

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #151 on: December 28, 2018, 10:58:47 AM »
I do not understand how people can blow thru tons of money that is so hard to come by. My inlaws were stupid with money and had these expensive hobbies but could not pay the electric bill or oil to heat the house. How stupid! When you inherit or win money or get a job in sports that pays mega bucks, what is so hard to figure out that a giant chunk of that money has to be put away in a safe place and not touched. That a portion of the money is set aside to spend on a home, not a mansion and not a zillion expensive cars and jewelry and lions, tigers and bears!
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Could it have to do with one's sense of time?  My father was not good with money and yet he enjoyed life.  I picked up my money values from my mother.  My mother took care of the money and was a worrier.  If my father had money, he had no compunction about spending it.  It was a bit like Yin and Yang.  My mom thought about the future and the past.  My dad would never want to look at family pictures and reminisce.  My dad would say the future would take care of itself.  My dad lived in the present.

People who live in the now do not concern themselves with the future "if."  My dad enjoyed himself better than my worrying mother.  He never had much and it never bothered him.  He just made do with what he had and was satisfied.  He did not regret his mistakes.  He just moved on.  I feel a sense of jealousy for such people.  They are the ones who can take a windfall and buy a nice truck with no worries about fuel mileage, etc.  They just go.  People like these people who are free.

These people are not stupid, but see life in a different way.

I work with some guys who have nice vehicles, homes, etc.  Times are good and they are making good money,......right now.  They are enjoying themselves right now.  They are happy right now.  One told me when he wants something he'll get it.  He doesn't care what it costs.

I have been saving and living somewhat frugally for many years to buy myself a perceived freedom.  However, freedom exists in the mind.  Folks like my dad are already free and I suspect they are happier now than I will be when I reach my goal.

I think I agree with you here. My BIL is like that. Has a $50k truck and a bunch of toys, and is always talking about buying more. But he seems happy enough. I guess now while times are good anyway. Who knows what will happen if he or his wife loses their job.

Cassie

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #152 on: December 28, 2018, 11:28:21 AM »
That very same thing happened in my hometown when the auto plant closed.  People lost everything because they were living beyond their means once the high paying jobs left.

Exflyboy

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #153 on: December 28, 2018, 02:51:05 PM »
Yup life is a balance.. I am a huge worrier. This year our spending jumped (means DW's spending doubled and mine stayed the same).

DW has no clue about where it went but doesn't worry about it either. I have had to insist she does an analysis to figure this out which she has agreed to do in the New Year.

For me this is an unbelievable approach to money.. "Your spending doubles and you're not worried about it?". If that was me I would know with intimate detail where my money was going within hours!

But then.. Which of us has the most appropriate response in our situation?

It turns out that if I take just the dividends from our investments plus rental income it exceeds even this massively spendypants year

I have even ignored future pensions

Yet I am wasting my life being the worrier. DH really does have the most appropriate outlook in our situation.

Roadrunner53

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #154 on: December 28, 2018, 03:21:08 PM »
Yup life is a balance.. I am a huge worrier. This year our spending jumped (means DW's spending doubled and mine stayed the same).

DW has no clue about where it went but doesn't worry about it either. I have had to insist she does an analysis to figure this out which she has agreed to do in the New Year.

For me this is an unbelievable approach to money.. "Your spending doubles and you're not worried about it?". If that was me I would know with intimate detail where my money was going within hours!

But then.. Which of us has the most appropriate response in our situation?

It turns out that if I take just the dividends from our investments plus rental income it exceeds even this massively spendypants year

I have even ignored future pensions

Yet I am wasting my life being the worrier. DH really does have the most appropriate outlook in our situation.

Sometimes life throws you lemons. This year was a rotten lemon year for us. We have two dogs and no children. Our younger dog developed a lump  and it turned out to be an anal tumor. Yep, he had surgery to remove it and it was cancerous. It is an aggressive cancer. We took him to an animal hospital that specializes in cancer and they did a bunch of tests and determined it had moved to his lymph glands. They recommended surgery BEFORE chemo. So they removed his lymph glands which was major surgery. He pulled thru both surgeries very well. They had him heal for about a month before chemo started. He had six rounds of chemo 3 weeks apart. Now is in remission and is being cared for by our local vet. The other place was over an hour away. All of this was sudden, unexpected and extremely costly. Some people might say "it is just a dog, let it die and get a new one". Nope, he is a good little boy and yes we spent a fortune but if we had a kid, we'd do the same. So this year we spent a lot of money that we did not budget for. No one plans for this stuff. Good news is that we took him to the vet today for an exam and he is doing great! The vet was in total shock that his health is doing so well! I hope it continues for a long, long time!
« Last Edit: December 28, 2018, 04:26:58 PM by Roadrunner53 »

Cassie

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #155 on: December 28, 2018, 04:05:33 PM »
RR, my kids are grown and my dogs are my babies. We have spent a lot of money on them also.

BTDretire

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Re: What's the sorriest situation you've known of someone who couldn't retire?
« Reply #156 on: December 28, 2018, 07:12:27 PM »
Did you hear they invented a translator for dogs?
 But, they had to destroy it, all the dogs did was argue
about who was such a good boy.

Step37

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I have a friend who will never retire unless he does a ďMiraculous Mustachian 180.Ē Definitely the sorriest situation I am personally aware of. 47 years old . . . Two adult kids with ex-wife 1, a teenager with ex-wife 2, (thankfully) no kids with estranged wife. Debt of 85k, no assets aside from truck (which is upside down), claimed bankruptcy after ex-wife 2 (and clearly learned nothing), expenses exceed income every.single.month, even though he lives for free (not even a utility bill) in an old house on his familyís rural property. Clown truck 50km (one way!) commute to a low-paying job, plus constant driving of teenager (who lives in yet another town 35 km from his work and 30 from his home) to various hockey practices and games (elite level, so in itself very expensive). A trifecta of Income Problem, Debt Problem and Spending Problem coupled with the most unoptimized life Iíve seen. Absolutely nothing he does makes any sense to me; my mind is boggled and Iím sad that a life that once held so much potential has been reduced to this.

Iím trying to help with advice and positive encouragement. Iíve sent a few key MMM articles to hopefully trigger a change in mindset. Iíve looked up credit counselling services and offered to go with to support. I feel like his situation could be turned around IF he really decided to do it. But, my god. There are SO MANY things that need to change: the job, the vehicle (I donít think relocating is feasible yet given ďfreeĒ accommodation, but fuel costs could be cut in half if the truck could be unloaded and an older, reliable fuel-efficient car purchased), the unnecessary driving, the MINDSET. I know he just wants to die or run away rather than face this.

Roadrunner53

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My deceased inlaws were the worst ever savers. My FIL had a union truck driving job and made good money. Mostly he worked 40 hours a week. My MIL had 4 kids and worked a little but not even enough to collect her own Social Security. She also had health problems. I find it a miracle they ever bought and didn't have their house in foreclosure. They would run out of oil to heat the house. The electric would get turned off. But as soon as my FIL got paid they'd run to the stores and blow the money. My FIL had too many expensive hobbies that he thought nothing of spending money on. My MIL would then revenge spend and order collectible things. They both smoked like chimneys so I can imagine the collectibles were ruined with nicotine. This went on for years and years and they never had two cent days after payday. My MIL would cash those checks that come with an introductory rate and they could never pay off that debt when the bills came in. Their only salvation was the fact that FIL had Social Security and a union pension. My MIL didn't qualify for SS on her work record but eventually, she got some from FIL's work record.  My SIL helped them out by arranging a home equity loan to consolidate their debt. Not sure if they ever turned the corner on debt. My MIL died and a year or two later the FIL moved in with one of his daughters. They sold the house and probably paid off the debt at that point. FIL didn't live that long after moving into his daughters house. They lived a whole lifetime of buying stupid things and juggling the bills. If it wasn't for the forced savings for SS and the pension money, I cannot imagine what would have happened to them. One thing they did not do was buy expensive vehicles. They had cars a long time when they bought them. If they had bought expensive vehicles, I am sure they would have been repoed!

jojoguy

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I`ve known multitudes of people who make a high income but were always in debt. In fact, most of the people I know are like that. A buddy of mine got promoted recently. He took a big pay increase(salary) and high stress job and instantly went out and bought a brand new car. I tried warning him, but he is still young.

Roadrunner53

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I`ve known multitudes of people who make a high income but were always in debt. In fact, most of the people I know are like that. A buddy of mine got promoted recently. He took a big pay increase(salary) and high stress job and instantly went out and bought a brand new car. I tried warning him, but he is still young.

I really wish they would have a course in high school (mandatory) that would teach kids real life situations on paying bills, being able to afford housing that might not be a mansion but affordable, learning that buying new cars might not be the right thing to do. I guess you would call the course Life Management. Even as far as deciding to have children now or waiting. Kids have been taken care of by the parents for their whole lifetime and have no experience in making the right decisions once they have to do it all. Unfortunately, we all seem to go to the school of hard knocks and it sure would be nice if we learned Life Management skills earlier in life to guide us better. I think this course could really teach kids how to shop for food bargains, learning to budget for 'fun' things like vacations. Learning to stretch a buck.

Prairie Stash

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I`ve known multitudes of people who make a high income but were always in debt. In fact, most of the people I know are like that. A buddy of mine got promoted recently. He took a big pay increase(salary) and high stress job and instantly went out and bought a brand new car. I tried warning him, but he is still young.

I really wish they would have a course in high school (mandatory) that would teach kids real life situations on paying bills, being able to afford housing that might not be a mansion but affordable, learning that buying new cars might not be the right thing to do. I guess you would call the course Life Management. Even as far as deciding to have children now or waiting. Kids have been taken care of by the parents for their whole lifetime and have no experience in making the right decisions once they have to do it all. Unfortunately, we all seem to go to the school of hard knocks and it sure would be nice if we learned Life Management skills earlier in life to guide us better. I think this course could really teach kids how to shop for food bargains, learning to budget for 'fun' things like vacations. Learning to stretch a buck.
Home Economics already exists. You're describing the economics portion of the class.

Cassie

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When I was young home economics consists of cooking and sewing. No budgeting, etc.

wenchsenior

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I`ve known multitudes of people who make a high income but were always in debt. In fact, most of the people I know are like that. A buddy of mine got promoted recently. He took a big pay increase(salary) and high stress job and instantly went out and bought a brand new car. I tried warning him, but he is still young.

I really wish they would have a course in high school (mandatory) that would teach kids real life situations on paying bills, being able to afford housing that might not be a mansion but affordable, learning that buying new cars might not be the right thing to do. I guess you would call the course Life Management. Even as far as deciding to have children now or waiting. Kids have been taken care of by the parents for their whole lifetime and have no experience in making the right decisions once they have to do it all. Unfortunately, we all seem to go to the school of hard knocks and it sure would be nice if we learned Life Management skills earlier in life to guide us better. I think this course could really teach kids how to shop for food bargains, learning to budget for 'fun' things like vacations. Learning to stretch a buck.
Home Economics already exists. You're describing the economics portion of the class.

This must be a new thing.  I was in high school in a very well regarded school during the late 80s, and the ONLY personal finance -related thing we learned (in economics class, not home ec) was how to write a check and balance a checkbook (and calculate interest, though that wasn't particularly tied into personal finance).

Cassie

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How about sympathy and help for all the abused, poor, hungry kids that already exist?

ematicic

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How about sympathy and help for all the abused, poor, hungry kids that already exist?

Not too many of us could reach FIRE if we had to pay everyone else's way. I grew up hungry and I learned to be frugal and hunt. I even tried to help my Mom leave my abusive Dad, she kept running back. Look at LA, people defecating and sleeping in the streets. The world problems are too big for me. I have a 5 and 6 year old. Once a month we go around the neighborhood and pick up litter. On a global scale, no difference but it teaches good manners. I do what I can, I sleep well at the end of the day. There are enough threads here for worldly problems but staying on topic, my only sympathy if for those that never stood a chance.

AlotToLearn

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This thread is too depressing to add.

marion10

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I've mentioned my sister and BIL who have filed bankruptcy but finally seem to be learning. His parents had no money management skills- they kept taking out home equity loans so they were underwater on their house. My sister got them into subsidized housing but her MIL would not go because there was not a window over the sink. FIL dies and MIL keeps falling but refuses to move. Finally my sister gets her in a very good nursing home on Medicaid- house had to be listed for sale because she had to spend down her assets- MIL dies while in the nursing home house is still on the market.

Here's where it (to me ) gets crazy. Her children just let the house sit there and go into foreclosure.Totally unable to cope with settling the estate.  Electricity gets cut off, pipes burst, no one retrieves any thing from the house- maybe a year and a half later my sister goes into to a least try and get some family photos and everything is covered with mold.

One of the adult children has no savings - lost his house to foreclosure and could have used a little money- he is 70 and on Social security only renting an apartment and trying to make ends meet by doing Grub Hub. He is having seizures but still driving because he needs to keep doing deliveries.


Cassie

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Maybe there was no equity left in the house.

RFAAOATB

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My deceased inlaws were the worst ever savers. My FIL had a union truck driving job and made good money. Mostly he worked 40 hours a week. My MIL had 4 kids and worked a little but not even enough to collect her own Social Security. She also had health problems. I find it a miracle they ever bought and didn't have their house in foreclosure. They would run out of oil to heat the house. The electric would get turned off. But as soon as my FIL got paid they'd run to the stores and blow the money. My FIL had too many expensive hobbies that he thought nothing of spending money on. My MIL would then revenge spend and order collectible things. They both smoked like chimneys so I can imagine the collectibles were ruined with nicotine. This went on for years and years and they never had two cent days after payday. My MIL would cash those checks that come with an introductory rate and they could never pay off that debt when the bills came in. Their only salvation was the fact that FIL had Social Security and a union pension. My MIL didn't qualify for SS on her work record but eventually, she got some from FIL's work record.  My SIL helped them out by arranging a home equity loan to consolidate their debt. Not sure if they ever turned the corner on debt. My MIL died and a year or two later the FIL moved in with one of his daughters. They sold the house and probably paid off the debt at that point. FIL didn't live that long after moving into his daughters house. They lived a whole lifetime of buying stupid things and juggling the bills. If it wasn't for the forced savings for SS and the pension money, I cannot imagine what would have happened to them. One thing they did not do was buy expensive vehicles. They had cars a long time when they bought them. If they had bought expensive vehicles, I am sure they would have been repoed!

It sounds like these people won the game.  Instant gratification and deferring consequences until the very end of life.  Not the plan I would take, but unless youíre leaving out deathbed regrets that more saving would have solved then itís hard to say they did the wrong thing.

Roadrunner53

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"It sounds like these people won the game.  Instant gratification and deferring consequences until the very end of life.  Not the plan I would take, but unless youíre leaving out deathbed regrets that more saving would have solved then itís hard to say they did the wrong thing."

No, these people did not win the game. Bill collectors were calling constantly. The children had no decent clothes to go to school in. FIL hobbies were more important. The children learned no values in life from these losers. Very sick if you ask me. There is much more but when kids are in constant fear of bill collector calling, no electricity, no heat, raggedy clothes, no real direction it is amazing that they didn't turn out to be criminals.

marion10

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Maybe there was no equity left in the house.

Possibly- but family photos, Christmas ornaments? It was just odd to me.

merula

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I've mentioned my sister and BIL who have filed bankruptcy but finally seem to be learning. His parents had no money management skills- they kept taking out home equity loans so they were underwater on their house. My sister got them into subsidized housing but her MIL would not go because there was not a window over the sink. FIL dies and MIL keeps falling but refuses to move. Finally my sister gets her in a very good nursing home on Medicaid- house had to be listed for sale because she had to spend down her assets- MIL dies while in the nursing home house is still on the market.

Here's where it (to me ) gets crazy. Her children just let the house sit there and go into foreclosure.Totally unable to cope with settling the estate.  Electricity gets cut off, pipes burst, no one retrieves any thing from the house- maybe a year and a half later my sister goes into to a least try and get some family photos and everything is covered with mold.

One of the adult children has no savings - lost his house to foreclosure and could have used a little money- he is 70 and on Social security only renting an apartment and trying to make ends meet by doing Grub Hub. He is having seizures but still driving because he needs to keep doing deliveries.

This happened to my husband's family. Grandma had three sons, S1 and S2 with her first husband and S3 with her second (hereafter Grandpa). Grandma passes unexpectedly. It becomes clear very quickly that Grandpa was not able to take care of himself, and he eventually gets diagnosed with paranoia and dementia and moved to a home. (County social services had to step in as he was deemed a danger to himself.) S1 and S2 had checked out; they bore the brunt of the work around Grandma's short illness and death, and Grandpa blamed them for her death (due to the dementia and paranoia). They also figured that since Grandpa is S3's dad, he should take more responsibility.

Well, S3 didn't, so the adult grandchildren got together to get valuables and mementos out of the house. (S1 and S2's kids; S3's kid is 9.) S3 shows up to berate us for trespassing. I handed him a box of information I found on his parents' financial accounts (which he had insisted didn't exist) without so much as a thank you.

And now a lot of the boxes are taking up space in my basement because the brothers won't do anything about it until after Grandpa dies, and he's physically pretty healthy.

No good deed goes unpunished.

Spud

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When I was young home economics consists of cooking and sewing. No budgeting, etc.

Same here. I'm 36 now and it was nothing more than cooking and sewing for me as recently as 1994-1999. I have no idea what it would be these days. People don't seem to cook because you can order lots of terrible food using a variety of popular apps and have it delivered to your front door.

There was never any thought of finances in home economics when I was at school. That was dealt with by the math teachers. They made us add, subtract, multiple and divide monetary amounts because sticking a £ sign or $ sign in front of numbers apparently changes everything.

Seriously though, think about the reality of teaching children about finances in school. The likelihood is, given the way the world is, that the person teaching the class would be up to their eyeballs in debt, living paycheck to paycheck, spending everything they earn and more, and the majority of the children listening to them would have parents who were in exactly the same boat. It simply wouldn't work. Children get taught one thing at through classes, but then at home they are completely immersed in an environment where although there is no formal, structured teaching, everything is screaming at them "SPEND! SPEND! SPEND!" They will learn far more from the actions of their parents than they ever will from a teacher in a boring class about to be boring and save money like a boring person.

You'd need a genuinely Mustachian teacher giving the lessons, but that's never going to get approval from a school principal who is probably buried by debt. You also move into the same realm as you would do if you tried to push a certain religion HARD on every kid, or tried to change the sexuality of every kid, or the political persuasion of every kid.

It's a nice idea but I think the responsibility will always fall to the parents, which if you're Mustachian, is no problem at all. If you're not, then you're screwed.

marion10

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Back when I was in 8th grade our social studies teacher did a lesson on budgeting and real life. He ďgaveĒ us a high school diploma and we would find a job in the want ads and he would decide if we got it or not. Then we had to account for lodging, food, transportation. Health care wasnít a concern in the Ď70s. Very enlightening for most of us.

Roadrunner53

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Back when I was in 8th grade our social studies teacher did a lesson on budgeting and real life. He ďgaveĒ us a high school diploma and we would find a job in the want ads and he would decide if we got it or not. Then we had to account for lodging, food, transportation. Health care wasnít a concern in the Ď70s. Very enlightening for most of us.

Exactly what I am talking about. This class would be very involved just like life. From getting a job, finding a place to live that costs money, using the paycheck to pay bills. Temptations of credit cards, buying new or used furniture, buying a used or new car. Shopping for food bargains by using weekly grocery store sales flyers. Temptations of being invited out for drinks after work and spending money, eating out or making food at home. Buying second hand things or new. Budgeting for vacations, car repairs, gifts, eating out, movies. I could see this course being one full school year or even two. Should be taught at the sophomore and junior years at school when money starts to be an interest to kids. Every week the class would include a new assignment the student would have to decide what they would do and how they would handle being responsible.

Our society does promote spend, spend, spend and everyone thinks they deserve anything they want. The reality is that we can't unless we have an endless source of income. That is how so many people get into credit card debt. A kid out of high school maybe making $12 an hour $480 before taxes is not going to be able to buy a $35,000 car and afford car payments on top of rent, food, utilities.

mm1970

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Back when I was in 8th grade our social studies teacher did a lesson on budgeting and real life. He ďgaveĒ us a high school diploma and we would find a job in the want ads and he would decide if we got it or not. Then we had to account for lodging, food, transportation. Health care wasnít a concern in the Ď70s. Very enlightening for most of us.
I think they did something like this recently in my 7th grader's class.  Or, they had a career day and incorporated some of that.

auntie_betty

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In the UK Money Saving Expert Martin Lewis has funded a financial textbook for English 15-16 year olds. Good stuff in it and it's downloadable if anyone wants a look:
https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/news/2018/11/financial-education-textbooks-funded-by-martin-land-in-english-s/

talltexan

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I work for a large public utility.

three years ago, the utility made buy-out offers to a number of longer-serving employees. Many colleagues of mine in their 50's took the offer and "retired". One of them just sent an e-mail to the rest of us in our group letting us know that he was now doing a new job search, and asking for letters of recommendation. He's already applied within the company, but the available jobs are poor matches for his skills. Which are three years out of date.

pecunia

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I've worked for utilities.  I think they like to hire out of school.  They set students up as interns and develop their own people.  I doubt whether your friend has an icecube's chance in hell of getting back in.  He could, however, possibly work for one of the utilitie's contractors.  It may even pay better.

Adam Zapple

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Back when I was in 8th grade our social studies teacher did a lesson on budgeting and real life. He ďgaveĒ us a high school diploma and we would find a job in the want ads and he would decide if we got it or not. Then we had to account for lodging, food, transportation. Health care wasnít a concern in the Ď70s. Very enlightening for most of us.

What a great teacher!

crispy

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Last year when my daughter was in 4th grade, they learned economics and budgeting in a fun way. At the beginning of the year, they had to create a resume and apply for a job in the classroom that earned them a salary (They even printed money with the one of the teacher's face on it).  They had to budget their earnings and pay for things throughout the year. For example, if they lost a pencil, they had to buy another one with their salary. They also had business days four times a year where they created, marketed, and sold a product. My daughter's first items didn't sell well so she tried a different product the next business day.

The whole 4th grade participated, and it was fantastic way to learn. She became a little cheapskate!

Fishindude

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I have a friend that has been retired from a good union job with pension for 10+ years, he's about 63 so is getting social security too, and the pension included health insurance coverage for him up till medicare age.   All sounds pretty good with pension and SS coming in, but his wife still has to work full time for insurance and additional income and he works some cash jobs as well.   They've lived in same home for 35+ years and still owe a big chunk on it due to several silly refinancing deals and trade vehicles every couple years and always have them on 4-5 year loans.   Doesn't sound like they have much savings at all, don't think they ever thought about it or tried to save much. 

While certainly not as bad as some of the scenarios above, I can't fathom still making house ad car payments in my 70's and being totally reliant on SS and a pension for everything.

soccerluvof4

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Unfortunately i just know so many people that don't even think about retirement because its all about fun now till there in there late forties, early fifties and there just never going to have shit for retirement. Just way to many people that literally live as the saying goes as if its your last and have no worry of debt or tomorrow. Then something major happens and reality hits.

Roadrunner53

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Last year when my daughter was in 4th grade, they learned economics and budgeting in a fun way. At the beginning of the year, they had to create a resume and apply for a job in the classroom that earned them a salary (They even printed money with the one of the teacher's face on it).  They had to budget their earnings and pay for things throughout the year. For example, if they lost a pencil, they had to buy another one with their salary. They also had business days four times a year where they created, marketed, and sold a product. My daughter's first items didn't sell well so she tried a different product the next business day.

The whole 4th grade participated, and it was fantastic way to learn. She became a little cheapskate!

That was a great learning opportunity and this is what kids need through out their school years. When the kid loses a pencil and mommy buys a new one there is no education there. When the kid loses the pencil and has to pay for a new one out of his/her pocket, that hits home. Especially when the kid might have been saving for a 'fun' thing and this dumb pencil took money from that purchase. Might be two learning scenario's. 1. keep a better eye on your pencil and don't lose it (responsibility) and 2. learning that things cost money and not all purchases bring joy but nevertheless are necessary.

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When I was young home economics consists of cooking and sewing. No budgeting, etc.

Same here. I'm 36 now and it was nothing more than cooking and sewing for me as recently as 1994-1999. I have no idea what it would be these days. People don't seem to cook because you can order lots of terrible food using a variety of popular apps and have it delivered to your front door.

There was never any thought of finances in home economics when I was at school.
The grasshopper says to the master ďI didnít learn anything.Ē

Cooking and sewing are two of the simplest ways to be frugal and save money. Home economics isnít just balancing a budget, itís practical skills to keep your money. Thereís no point to budgeting if you spend all your money on take away. A good home ec class also teaches grocery shopping for the food you cook; itís the concept of getting value for your grocery money. In the modern world, youíre right that itís easy to order food in; arenít cooking skills even more valuable if you want to save money?

Home economics is the economics of running a household, which includes cooking meals, groceries, laundry and laundry repairs. If you donít know the basics, thereís no point in learning the rest.

How many things from school do you use weekly? I do far more cooking than biology or calculus (I used calculus up to the end of university, while eating lots of pasta...). Try to see home ec for what it is, a class for basic frugal living.

Roadrunner53

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I had Home Economics in high school and had it for at least two years if not more. There was never a class on budgeting, shopping, saving money. We sewed mostly and  I don't even remember cooking anything. I graduated HS in 1971 (I know 100 years ago) and I do remember this person came and demo'd a microwave oven. Nobody had them in those days! LOL! The thing was as big as a tv and it was thousands of dollars. The demo person said everyone would have a microwave in the future. Of course, it seemed like science fiction and eventually that did happen. Everyone has a microwave! We got our first one in maybe 1978-80 and it was a Amana Radar Range! It cost $525 and we got a $50 rebate. Funny how I can remember that! So, home economics back in the day was a joke! I think sewing isn't a bad thing to know and today they could teach sewing but maybe sewing that could be to make crafts to make money! Like stuff you might find on etsy.

If people had skills to create things and be able to sell them, that would be another way to make money to retire.

Cassie

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RR, I am your age and had it in junior high. We did stupid things like draw the inside of cupboards and draw where the dishes go. We cooked one or 2 things all year.

OtherJen

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Home economics wasn't offered at all in my Catholic K-8 school, and only as a 1-semester elective at my high school (mid-1990s). One friend took it and learned how to bake. I had been baking with my mom since I was a toddler and on my own since late elementary school, so I figured I'd use my elective hours on vocal ensemble, pre-calc, Spanish, physics, and AP Chemistry. Twenty-odd years later, I have two STEM degrees and work in a related field, still sing in audition-only choirs, and can speak/understand basic conversational Spanish. I think I chose the right electives.

Rosy

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When I was young home economics consists of cooking and sewing. No budgeting, etc.

Same here. I'm 36 now and it was nothing more than cooking and sewing for me as recently as 1994-1999. I have no idea what it would be these days. People don't seem to cook because you can order lots of terrible food using a variety of popular apps and have it delivered to your front door.

There was never any thought of finances in home economics when I was at school.
The grasshopper says to the master ďI didnít learn anything.Ē

Cooking and sewing are two of the simplest ways to be frugal and save money. Home economics isnít just balancing a budget, itís practical skills to keep your money. Thereís no point to budgeting if you spend all your money on take away. A good home ec class also teaches grocery shopping for the food you cook; itís the concept of getting value for your grocery money. In the modern world, youíre right that itís easy to order food in; arenít cooking skills even more valuable if you want to save money?

Home economics is the economics of running a household, which includes cooking meals, groceries, laundry and laundry repairs. If you donít know the basics, thereís no point in learning the rest.

How many things from school do you use weekly? I do far more cooking than biology or calculus (I used calculus up to the end of university, while eating lots of pasta...). Try to see home ec for what it is, a class for basic frugal living.

Cooking and sewing are valuable skills - that will serve you well for the rest of your life and continue to save you money your entire life.
Of course, it all depends on what you actually took away from class and how good and helpful the class really was for future life skills.

I got lucky - the sewing class was good enough so that I could actually sew a new upholstery cover for our first sofa, make curtains and sew a couple of simple outfits for myself.

The cooking class required us to purchase the ingredients each week and we were graded on how our purchases compared - who got the best deal? We also had to stay within the given budget for the week.
We learned to make our own baby food, cook for the elderly and the convalescent and even a special diet for people with heart problems. The dinners we prepared each week were mostly basic everyday dishes for a family of four and included salad, a three-part main dish, and dessert.

We had other classes like knitting and crocheting which I hated because of the teacher, I barely passed them. My mother refused to let me cook anything at home, but she took advantage of my newly acquired food budget shopping skills.

Prairie Stash

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Cooking and sewing are valuable skills - that will serve you well for the rest of your life and continue to save you money your entire life.
Of course, it all depends on what you actually took away from class and how good and helpful the class really was for future life skills.

I got lucky - the sewing class was good enough so that I could actually sew a new upholstery cover for our first sofa, make curtains and sew a couple of simple outfits for myself.

The cooking class required us to purchase the ingredients each week and we were graded on how our purchases compared - who got the best deal? We also had to stay within the given budget for the week.
We learned to make our own baby food, cook for the elderly and the convalescent and even a special diet for people with heart problems. The dinners we prepared each week were mostly basic everyday dishes for a family of four and included salad, a three-part main dish, and dessert.

We had other classes like knitting and crocheting which I hated because of the teacher, I barely passed them. My mother refused to let me cook anything at home, but she took advantage of my newly acquired food budget shopping skills.
You sound like someone who got the most out of Home Ec.! You far exceed myself.

I liken this debate about home economics to the debate about the utility of Art, Music or Phys Ed. in the school system. You get a bunch of people thinking its useless and slashing the budgets in lieu of more Math or English but there are students who can use those skills to make the world a better place. In Home economics the results are generally limited to the personal level; except for the people who go on to further the research.

In other words, I encourage people to learn what real Home Economics classes can be; not just what they are at your personal level. People with excellent home skills for the last 100 years generally have more disposable income; its still true today. The old axiom of "teach a man to fish" still applies; until you learn the basics of frugality the vast majority of the population will have less disposable income.

SunnyDays

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Someone I used to work with (female), with a bachelor's degree and in management did not know how to sew on a button.  That made my jaw drop.

My Home Ec in the 70's consisted of both sewing and cooking, but nothing else.  I now own a sewing machine and do hemming, patching and have made curtains.  I mostly cook at home, but frankly, credit my mother and not classes for this skill.  I currently have a roommate whose definition of cooking is throwing frozen packaged food into a pan and heating it up.  For every meal, except for breakfast, which is eggs and toast. 

And speaking of roommate, back to the "can never retire" topic.  Mid 50's female who has worked hard all her life in various jobs and a side-business that was heavily dependent on physical health and fitness.  Twice divorced and raised 2 kids partly on her own.  Reports that she made no less than $100,000 a year for the last 15 years.  Owned a cheapie house for a few years, but had to sell when she got very ill and had to move in with a relative.  That wasn't working out, so she moved to another town to be nearer other family and is renting a room from me.  So now she is recovered enough to work part time, but has NO savings and her only assets are a 12 years old car and some furniture in storage.  Struggling to live on about $1600.00 a month before taxes.  I've never asked about pensions, but I doubt she has much or any as she did lots of different jobs over the years, so will probably have to rely on CPP (maximum of $900.00 a month at 65, but most people never reach that amount, so $500 -700 is more likely) and OAS (about $600.00 a month with possible bump up to $1200.00 if that's all you have).  Not likely to get any significant inheritance either.  So she will likely have to work until she can't and will have little even at that point, because of her wastefulness.  It's no wonder she has next to nothing now, because it all goes out as fast as it comes in.  She has to pay her rent in 2 installments when she gets paid, receives packages from Amazon about once a week, buys her dog pricey treats and expensive kibble, eats all organic, drives to a town 20 minutes away for meat, eats fast food at least twice a week at $12.00 each time, has 2 baths a day with a tub full of water, uses at least half a sink's worth of running water to wash one plate, leaves her lights on all the time, and MUST have the temperature at 22 degrees all year round or can't possibly survive (I live in Canada, where it's - 30 C in winter and + 30 C in summer).  I have to pay all utilities now, but if that's how she's lived all her life, she's lost a lot of money and will continue to do so in future.  She doesn't seem to make any connections between her habits and her lack of assets, either, because she will fret about her lack of money but then leave kibble in the dog food bag she throws out, not eat the crusts on the $8.00 (!) a loaf bread she buys, throw out the toothpaste with a few more days worth left in it, etc, etc.  It amazes me how she can be so oblivious.  But her dream is to have a large country property and lots of dogs.  Yeah, that'll never happen.  We're talking about a woman who had to get an advance on her first paycheck because she didn't have any suitable work clothes.  Yikes.  Sad, frustrating for me to watch, and downright unnecessary.  So glad that's not my life!

Roadrunner53

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Someone I used to work with (female), with a bachelor's degree and in management did not know how to sew on a button.  That made my jaw drop.

My Home Ec in the 70's consisted of both sewing and cooking, but nothing else.  I now own a sewing machine and do hemming, patching and have made curtains.  I mostly cook at home, but frankly, credit my mother and not classes for this skill.  I currently have a roommate whose definition of cooking is throwing frozen packaged food into a pan and heating it up.  For every meal, except for breakfast, which is eggs and toast. 

And speaking of roommate, back to the "can never retire" topic.  Mid 50's female who has worked hard all her life in various jobs and a side-business that was heavily dependent on physical health and fitness.  Twice divorced and raised 2 kids partly on her own.  Reports that she made no less than $100,000 a year for the last 15 years.  Owned a cheapie house for a few years, but had to sell when she got very ill and had to move in with a relative.  That wasn't working out, so she moved to another town to be nearer other family and is renting a room from me.  So now she is recovered enough to work part time, but has NO savings and her only assets are a 12 years old car and some furniture in storage.  Struggling to live on about $1600.00 a month before taxes.  I've never asked about pensions, but I doubt she has much or any as she did lots of different jobs over the years, so will probably have to rely on CPP (maximum of $900.00 a month at 65, but most people never reach that amount, so $500 -700 is more likely) and OAS (about $600.00 a month with possible bump up to $1200.00 if that's all you have).  Not likely to get any significant inheritance either.  So she will likely have to work until she can't and will have little even at that point, because of her wastefulness.  It's no wonder she has next to nothing now, because it all goes out as fast as it comes in.  She has to pay her rent in 2 installments when she gets paid, receives packages from Amazon about once a week, buys her dog pricey treats and expensive kibble, eats all organic, drives to a town 20 minutes away for meat, eats fast food at least twice a week at $12.00 each time, has 2 baths a day with a tub full of water, uses at least half a sink's worth of running water to wash one plate, leaves her lights on all the time, and MUST have the temperature at 22 degrees all year round or can't possibly survive (I live in Canada, where it's - 30 C in winter and + 30 C in summer).  I have to pay all utilities now, but if that's how she's lived all her life, she's lost a lot of money and will continue to do so in future.  She doesn't seem to make any connections between her habits and her lack of assets, either, because she will fret about her lack of money but then leave kibble in the dog food bag she throws out, not eat the crusts on the $8.00 (!) a loaf bread she buys, throw out the toothpaste with a few more days worth left in it, etc, etc.  It amazes me how she can be so oblivious.  But her dream is to have a large country property and lots of dogs.  Yeah, that'll never happen.  We're talking about a woman who had to get an advance on her first paycheck because she didn't have any suitable work clothes.  Yikes.  Sad, frustrating for me to watch, and downright unnecessary.  So glad that's not my life!


How does someone who made $100,000 for 15 years blow thru it all? Yes, I know it is easy to blow money but what on earth did she spend it all on? If she is that dumb, she deserves to live like a hobo. Why do you have her as a roommate and have to pay all utilities?

fuzzy math

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Someone I used to work with (female), with a bachelor's degree and in management did not know how to sew on a button.  That made my jaw drop.

My Home Ec in the 70's consisted of both sewing and cooking, but nothing else.  I now own a sewing machine and do hemming, patching and have made curtains.  I mostly cook at home, but frankly, credit my mother and not classes for this skill.  I currently have a roommate whose definition of cooking is throwing frozen packaged food into a pan and heating it up.  For every meal, except for breakfast, which is eggs and toast. 

And speaking of roommate, back to the "can never retire" topic.  Mid 50's female who has worked hard all her life in various jobs and a side-business that was heavily dependent on physical health and fitness.  Twice divorced and raised 2 kids partly on her own.  Reports that she made no less than $100,000 a year for the last 15 years.  Owned a cheapie house for a few years, but had to sell when she got very ill and had to move in with a relative.  That wasn't working out, so she moved to another town to be nearer other family and is renting a room from me.  So now she is recovered enough to work part time, but has NO savings and her only assets are a 12 years old car and some furniture in storage.  Struggling to live on about $1600.00 a month before taxes.  I've never asked about pensions, but I doubt she has much or any as she did lots of different jobs over the years, so will probably have to rely on CPP (maximum of $900.00 a month at 65, but most people never reach that amount, so $500 -700 is more likely) and OAS (about $600.00 a month with possible bump up to $1200.00 if that's all you have).  Not likely to get any significant inheritance either.  So she will likely have to work until she can't and will have little even at that point, because of her wastefulness.  It's no wonder she has next to nothing now, because it all goes out as fast as it comes in.  She has to pay her rent in 2 installments when she gets paid, receives packages from Amazon about once a week, buys her dog pricey treats and expensive kibble, eats all organic, drives to a town 20 minutes away for meat, eats fast food at least twice a week at $12.00 each time, has 2 baths a day with a tub full of water, uses at least half a sink's worth of running water to wash one plate, leaves her lights on all the time, and MUST have the temperature at 22 degrees all year round or can't possibly survive (I live in Canada, where it's - 30 C in winter and + 30 C in summer).  I have to pay all utilities now, but if that's how she's lived all her life, she's lost a lot of money and will continue to do so in future.  She doesn't seem to make any connections between her habits and her lack of assets, either, because she will fret about her lack of money but then leave kibble in the dog food bag she throws out, not eat the crusts on the $8.00 (!) a loaf bread she buys, throw out the toothpaste with a few more days worth left in it, etc, etc.  It amazes me how she can be so oblivious.  But her dream is to have a large country property and lots of dogs.  Yeah, that'll never happen.  We're talking about a woman who had to get an advance on her first paycheck because she didn't have any suitable work clothes.  Yikes.  Sad, frustrating for me to watch, and downright unnecessary.  So glad that's not my life!

Oh gosh, those personal habits are a sick morph of my mother and sister. Mother is dirt poor, sister is working but unable to save.

I hope your room rent is enough that you don't come out behind after paying her utility cost.

SunnyDays

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RoadRunner15 and Fuzzy math - I have no idea how she blew through it all, but I guess if she can waste money when she has next to none, then she could have wasted a lot more when she was rolling in it.  I'm curious too, but don't want to ask, because I don't know if my heart could take it!

I'm paying utilities because that is generally the standard procedure where I live, but if I'd known how wasteful she is, I would have made different arrangements.  I won't lose money on her, but certainly won't make a lot either.  Thankfully, she's leaving in September, so this winter, there will be no heat in the house to make up for it, haha.  Needless to say, she will be my last roommate.  Just not worth it.

(I privately refer to her as "dimbulb" too, but she's actually NOT dumb, just apparently has no common sense at all.)

Exflyboy

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@SunnyDays Just watching her drain a sink full of MY expensive hot water would give me the hebe geebies!


Roadrunner53

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RoadRunner15 and Fuzzy math - I have no idea how she blew through it all, but I guess if she can waste money when she has next to none, then she could have wasted a lot more when she was rolling in it.  I'm curious too, but don't want to ask, because I don't know if my heart could take it!

I'm paying utilities because that is generally the standard procedure where I live, but if I'd known how wasteful she is, I would have made different arrangements.  I won't lose money on her, but certainly won't make a lot either.  Thankfully, she's leaving in September, so this winter, there will be no heat in the house to make up for it, haha.  Needless to say, she will be my last roommate.  Just not worth it.

(I privately refer to her as "dimbulb" too, but she's actually NOT dumb, just apparently has no common sense at all.)

I hope nothing changes and she leaves in September or SOONER! OMG! I have never had a desire to have a roommate and hearing your story I never will! I will live in a tiny place to be by myself if need be some day but no roommate!

cloudsail

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I feel like these habits are very important to establish as a child. Then they become ingrained and pretty difficult to change.

John Galt incarnate!

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When you inherit or win money or get a job in sports that pays mega bucks, what is so hard to figure out that a giant chunk of that money has to be put away in a safe place and not touched.


Some individuals differentiate the value of money based upon its source, a behavior known as mental accounting. Influenced by mental accounting, they don't treat   money as fungible. Their tendency  is to value earned money more than  windfalls  such as an inheritance or lottery winnings. I suppose they regard windfalls as "easy come, easy go."
« Last Edit: May 10, 2019, 04:10:17 PM by John Galt incarnate! »

Hula Hoop

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Now I feel a bit better about yelling at my kids for leaving lights on or having really long showers.

I can't imagine leaving toothpaste in the tube, running the hot water and air conditioning could account for all of her lack of savings though.  She must have wasted money in larger ways to blow through that much.