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Old 07-24-2013, 06:04 PM
 
Location: SE Michigan
6,191 posts, read 14,728,660 times
Reputation: 10227

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Apart from addictions (cigarettes, alcohol) I can think of two "poor" people I know who spend an utterly insane percentage of their meager monthly income on Rent-To-Own crap: laptops, appliances, TVs, furniture.

Truly insane, when a laptop worth $400 new costs $1700 rent-to-own, and $150-200 to buy used. Yes, I've done the math.

One such person is the mother of someone who works for me - she has a meager disability income and is always short of funds for some bill or other (her son who works for me often bails her out) and from my understanding almost half her disability check goes to rental payments for appliances, TV and laptop.

The other person is a neighbor of mine who similarly lives on a fixed income yet has, you guessed it: larger TV and new furniture. She starts running out of money by the middle of the month because she "has to pay" for her stuff.

I have no sympathy at all!
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Old 07-24-2013, 06:10 PM
 
Location: Lakeland, Florida
6,682 posts, read 11,902,937 times
Reputation: 7899
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kembek View Post
I have a friend of 37 years who is always crying poor. She's 76, works full-time and part-time, draws Social Security and was getting alimony until her ex died last yr. Her house is paid for as is her 13 yr old car. She has literally travelled the world over the years, but she can't afford decent shoes or clothes. Whenever she tells me she "can't afford" something I just say, "Sure you can!!" Even her financial advisor has told her she's nuts. I think she likes the attention.
I'm curious what kind of a full time job she has at 76, and then a part-time one also. Maybe she has worked these jobs for many years.
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Old 07-25-2013, 03:04 AM
 
Location: California
8 posts, read 9,396 times
Reputation: 27
I work with some people who constantly stand on their soapbox and proclaim how much they sacrifice by working the odd shift and overtime for the sake of their family because life is so hard. At the end of the shift they jump in their lifted trucks or sports cars, all less than 2 years old, then go out to eat and drink.
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Old 07-25-2013, 11:15 AM
 
Location: Ayrsley
4,714 posts, read 8,238,587 times
Reputation: 3809
Quote:
Originally Posted by malamute View Post
That's why it's probably good to at least at some point to have been really broke so you know what it means.
While I agree that having been in such a position deos lend perspective, I would never say it is a "good" thing to be "really broke" at any time in one's life. Being broke sucks, no matter what life lessons may be learned from the experience.
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Old 07-25-2013, 12:15 PM
 
16,724 posts, read 13,681,589 times
Reputation: 40996
Talking Top this

My brother-in-law and sister-in-law are like this. They are always broke, but they live in my husband's paid-for house, rent-free, they go on week-long vacations (at least two or three a year), with their expensively-dressed kids.

A couple years ago they wanted to move out of their house because it was only two bedrooms and their kids were getting older, and move into our former house, three-bedroom, which we were renting out. The deal was that they would rent out their house, and give us the money in lieu of their paying rent to us for the "new" house, and in the meantime they would be saving money for a down payment to buy the house from us, and they would be responsible for upkeep on the house and making all repairs out of their own pocket.

Five years later, and they finally agreed to sell their former home to our daughter. That would give them money to put towards the purchase of our house. Everybody goes to the bank and gets numbers, paperwork, what's required, etc. Then two weeks ago we find out they'd just run out and gotten a second mortgage on their house.
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Old 07-26-2013, 07:07 AM
 
Location: NNJ
8,476 posts, read 4,663,797 times
Reputation: 9110
Some in my circle probably think the same about me...

I am fairly thrifty and avoid debt as much as possible. Some of our conversations do touch on how I don't want to spend on this or that... sometimes I admit I don't have enough money to do so.

Yet.

I walk around with a camera that is worth more than my car.


What they don't see is that photography is part of who I am.... my camera is an important extension of my eye. Its also an expense that I've spread across 10 years (twice the typical car loan). As much as I would like a lot of nice things, car, electronics etc.. none of them are as fulfilling to me personally. So while I forego a lot of luxuries, I pick and choose one or two things that are important to me (modest family road trips is another). Sometimes, people on the outside fixate on those few things... but don't really see the whole picture.

Buy many cheap things or buy a few expensive things... never buy a lot of expensive things.
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Old 07-26-2013, 12:15 PM
 
465 posts, read 410,895 times
Reputation: 169
Quote:
Originally Posted by Kembek View Post
I have a friend of 37 years who is always crying poor. She's 76, works full-time and part-time, draws Social Security and was getting alimony until her ex died last yr. Her house is paid for as is her 13 yr old car. She has literally travelled the world over the years, but she can't afford decent shoes or clothes. Whenever she tells me she "can't afford" something I just say, "Sure you can!!" Even her financial advisor has told her she's nuts. I think she likes the attention.
Maybe she grew up poor and finds it hard to get used to. I had a family friend that grew up during the depression and he was rich but he was so frugal and taught his kids to be that way too. I mean he was frugal to the nth degree.
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Old 07-29-2013, 05:19 PM
 
4,668 posts, read 5,909,915 times
Reputation: 9460
I don't know how many times I have had parents say "I can't afford to buy more pencils and paper. You teachers just ask for too much." When we contact them because their child does not have supplies. Yet, when they pull up in the car line to pick up their child, they are driving a Mercedes, Lexus, or BMW.

What bugs me even more is when I see them in Wal-Mart or Target they have a buggy overflowing with groceries, name brand labels and expensive products. Then they pull out the food stamp card to pay for it. This just infuriates me!
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Old 07-30-2013, 06:29 AM
 
16,724 posts, read 13,681,589 times
Reputation: 40996
Talking Preach!

Quote:
Originally Posted by hey teach View Post
What bugs me even more is when I see them in Wal-Mart or Target they have a buggy overflowing with groceries, name brand labels and expensive products. Then they pull out the food stamp card to pay for it. This just infuriates me!
There was a woman in front of me at the grocery store checkout several years back that had a buggy full of steaks, raw shrimp, chips & dip, party trays, expensive deli meat & cheeses, soft drinks, and beer. She paid with her food stamps and then pulled a wad of cash out of her purse to pay for her beer.

I couldn't stop myself from saying, "Hey can I come over and eat too? Because my taxes paid for most of that."

She got in a huff and left the store. The cashier said she'd been doing that for years, once a week.
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Old 07-30-2013, 08:32 AM
 
13,710 posts, read 22,838,286 times
Reputation: 18526
I use the "I cannot afford that" quite often. I figure that it is a lot more polite to say something like that as opposed to saying "I am not going to waste my money on something THAT STUPID."
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