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Old 12-25-2018, 11:23 PM
 
83 posts, read 17,766 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teakboat View Post
The US is actually so much wealthier now than in our parents or grandparents time, there is really no comparison. To say otherwise is just nostalgic thinking, or a lack of real awareness.

And the US is generally much wealthier than the rest of the world.
Surprisingly, the US is not as wealthy as you might think. The latest OECD figures ( probably most easily accessed here https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List...alth_per_adult ) show that the US is 5th in terms of average wealth per adult (about $403k) but only 21st in terms of median wealth (about $63k) You can think of median as being the wealth of the typical person you meet on the street. The US has relatively large numbers of extremely wealthy people who boost the average wealth compared to most other countries. On the other hand there are absolutely huge numbers of relatively poor people.
The US clearly has a society which enables some to be very well rewarded indeed but this data also clearly shows that the US society fails the majority in that the path to that level of success is too difficult for them to emulate.
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Old 12-26-2018, 08:21 PM
 
Location: Thailand
5,269 posts, read 2,512,220 times
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That's a great point Formerly-Kansas, but remember that in relation to the topic "struggling to get by" it's more than accumulated wealth but also sustained income and how that enables a standard of living. USA doesn't have as much of a savings culture than many other countries.
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Old 12-26-2018, 09:49 PM
 
25,138 posts, read 27,408,009 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
And we have a thread in these forums with people arguing that it's perfectly ok to feed fat laden, sugary refined foods to school kids. Making School Lunch Great Again: Mooch Devastated

I most certainly would NOT be one of them!


But, as with anything, the video I posted out shows what's possible.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
So if that's the opinion that most people have, we won't ever be able to reduce healthcare costs by a better diet and exercise, and even if they 'saw the light' and agreed that kids should eat nutritious foods it would be 40 or 50 years before we saw the results in the general population. So, what happens to people in the meantime, do people who aren't rich just curl up in a ball and die, because if we are stuck with a 100% free market approach that is what will happen to anyone who can't write 500k checks to hospitals.

IMO, that's an argument for a 100% free market approach. People need an immediate, direct, in-your-face connection between their diet and lifestyle and the cost of health care. Insurance, especially when it pays for most of the up front costs of many things, whether government sponsored or private, removes that direct incentive.

Unfortunately, I think it's just a question of time before large numbers of people end up curling up and dying anyway with all the debt we're accruing paying for health care (among other things). Of course, nobody thinks that can happen until it does. People just won't look for alternatives until there's a crisis and at the rate we're going there will be one--many, I think. I wish human nature was different, but we're a crisis oriented species.
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Old 12-27-2018, 02:37 PM
 
7,523 posts, read 8,404,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Not in Kansas any more View Post
Surprisingly, the US is not as wealthy as you might think. The latest OECD figures ( probably most easily accessed here https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List...alth_per_adult ) show that the US is 5th in terms of average wealth per adult (about $403k) but only 21st in terms of median wealth (about $63k) You can think of median as being the wealth of the typical person you meet on the street. The US has relatively large numbers of extremely wealthy people who boost the average wealth compared to most other countries. On the other hand there are absolutely huge numbers of relatively poor people.
The US clearly has a society which enables some to be very well rewarded indeed but this data also clearly shows that the US society fails the majority in that the path to that level of success is too difficult for them to emulate.
I'm betting those numbers are not corrected in buying power terms. I'll check later.
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Old 12-27-2018, 03:23 PM
 
Location: Grosse Ile Michigan
25,346 posts, read 60,744,820 times
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The unfounded judgmentalism in this thread is amazing. Seems that many people feel they have listened to Dave Ramsey and therefore become God.

Things happen. Even people who make reasonable financial decisions can be devastated by surprises, especially if they come in groups. Apparently many believe only idiots live on more than $10,00 a year even if they are making $350,000. They should be saving the rest just in case.

Of course other people might think it unlikely for that persons income to dry up completely forever at the same time major medical expenses and an environmental crises hit them and maybe the person should live a little while they have the opportunity. These people would find the Godlike frugal super savers somewhat less Godlike, possibly even foolish.

I am probably in the middle, but tend more towards the latter. I think anyone who dies with $1 million in assets or in the bank is foolish.
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Old 12-27-2018, 07:25 PM
 
473 posts, read 218,126 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Coldjensens View Post

I am probably in the middle, but tend more towards the latter. I think anyone who dies with $1 million in assets or in the bank is foolish.
Most people will retire without a pension and will need to rely on savings to fund a good portion of their expected retirement expenses. If you use a 4% withdrawal rate, a $1 million nest egg would provide $40,000 a year in retirement income. That is a modest amount of money, so many people have targets of $1 million and more just to cover normal living expenses. In addition, long term care expenses must also be considered. What we cannot factor is how long we will live. Some people will live well after their average life expectancy, while others will live much shorter lives due to illness, accidents, etc. when looking at all these variables, how is it foolish for someone to die with assets of $1 million or more?
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Old 12-28-2018, 01:15 AM
 
7,523 posts, read 8,404,202 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1921 View Post
Most people will retire without a pension and will need to rely on savings to fund a good portion of their expected retirement expenses. If you use a 4% withdrawal rate, a $1 million nest egg would provide $40,000 a year in retirement income. That is a modest amount of money, so many people have targets of $1 million and more just to cover normal living expenses. In addition, long term care expenses must also be considered. What we cannot factor is how long we will live. Some people will live well after their average life expectancy, while others will live much shorter lives due to illness, accidents, etc. when looking at all these variables, how is it foolish for someone to die with assets of $1 million or more?
Not to toot my own horn but my wife and I are successful people who have accumulated well and we have plans for a fun and active retirement.

We made one blunder. We waited too long to buy long term care insurance. I'm 55 she's 50........talk about expensive.

For goodness sakes people buy LTC policies in your 30s or 40s.
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Old 12-28-2018, 03:58 AM
 
67,246 posts, read 68,177,812 times
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i agree . we waited until our 60's and then i had some blood tests come back in the diabetic range . even though diet and exercise brought me back down again i got surcharged an extra 900 bucks a year forever now .

they are so strict as to who they take that the broker we bought our ny state partnership plans from was over weight by quite a bit and they won't take him .

the premiums are pretty much based on paying in about 1 years stay in a snf when you are in that sweet spot for care . so starting younger or later usually is pretty close in what you pay . the difference is you can be covered earlier and not risk surcharges or being declined by taking it earlier .
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Old 12-28-2018, 04:50 AM
 
473 posts, read 218,126 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by EDS_ View Post
Not to toot my own horn but my wife and I are successful people who have accumulated well and we have plans for a fun and active retirement.

We made one blunder. We waited too long to buy long term care insurance. I'm 55 she's 50........talk about expensive.

For goodness sakes people buy LTC policies in your 30s or 40s.
For those at are very successful, you can also self insure. Further, getting your LTC in your 30’s and 40’s may not help much in your over all costs. Rate increases in LTC policies could still put you at a high level even if you had initiated a policy at a much younger age.

https://www.investmentnews.com/artic...-an-average-58

You then have to factor all those payments you made in your 30’s and 40’s.

On a related note, take a look at what these insurance companies require before they will pay for your care as well as the limits in the policy. In many cases, you will still face the risk of significant out of pocket costs.
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Old 12-28-2018, 05:05 AM
 
67,246 posts, read 68,177,812 times
Reputation: 45111
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim1921 View Post
For those at are very successful, you can also self insure. Further, getting your LTC in your 30’s and 40’s may not help much in your over all costs. Rate increases in LTC policies could still put you at a high level even if you had initiated a policy at a much younger age.

https://www.investmentnews.com/artic...-an-average-58

You then have to factor all those payments you made in your 30’s and 40’s.

On a related note, take a look at what these insurance companies require before they will pay for your care as well as the limits in the policy. In many cases, you will still face the risk of significant out of pocket costs.
we were going to self insure . but when money magazine did a story on us years ago , where they wanted their team of pro's to go head to head against my own planning , they were against self insuring .

they were right ! you need to have many many millions to be unaffected self insuring .

we can never be the same as an insurer . ltc insurance is partially funded by those who die or drop out or don't need it . we lose that aspect of funding . trying to self insure becomes the most costliest way .

to self insure you really would need to take a few hundred thousand dollars and separate it from the money you typically invest for income in retirement , because you cannot count that money in your portfolio for income creation .

you can't count it because a safe withdrawal rate assumes you could spend that money down to 1 dollar and still be 100% successful .

you need to protect that insurance money and that means very low safe return . you may need that money early on . when my co-worker had a stroke and was paralyzed at age 55 , it really opened my eyes to how devastating these bills can be and it can happen at any point ..

the pro's at money magazine showed us how just keeping that money invested normally like we always do , could pay the premium on a real policy and have much more left over .

they were right .

in fact my estate / elder law attorney says the bulk of his clients are the so called self insurers .

they basically dd nothing special other than call it self insuring . now that they got punched in the face , the stay at home spouse realizes that they can be easily impoverished .

so now they are scrambling for help .

also our partnership LTC policy has a special version of medicaid pick up the tab after the 3 years insurance runs out for a snf or 6 years in home care and all our assets are protected 100% . no look back , no spend down , nothing . plus the stay at home spouse has no limits on income if medicaid picks up the bills .

you can never have that self insuring .

next to trying to self insure , the 2nd most costliest way is these hybrid life insurance policies that try to fill both rolls . they sucker people in because they promise to pay out a death benefit .

but that benefit comes with a heavy price . they keep all the interest you earn over decades and every time rates rise you just got a premium increase . the interest over time can be way more than you paid in . they can be very very costly to try to insure with plus they usually lack things like inflation adjusting and low pay out rates .

Last edited by mathjak107; 12-28-2018 at 05:23 AM..
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