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Old 04-17-2014, 08:46 AM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,124 posts, read 23,000,049 times
Reputation: 35318

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Quote:
Originally Posted by lenora View Post
SSI is Supplemental Security Income, NOT Social Security benefits. The poster, Nomoresnowforme, is receiving SSI, a cash benefit for the disabled/elderly poor. There is no special "paying in" and it is commonly referred to as welfare or "being on the dole". I prefer the term "being on the dole".
Right. When I applied for SSDI, I didn't have enough "recent" work credits to get SSDI, which would have been a higher monthly benefit amount. Weird, because my disability began with a workers comp claim from a job I was working at lol! But, it was a part time job while going to college, and I had quit work completely prior to that to go back to school, and I have not worked full-time all of my life, though I did work most of my life, with time off to be a mom and other reasons.

I DID pay into the SSA system enough over my lifetime, that I DO qualify for SSA retirement, though. So, it's confusing. When I hit SSA retirement age, I'm not entirely sure what will happen. I read one SSA document that says that SSI disability does not convert to old-age benefits. But, I have received notices from SSA that says it will convert when I hit full retirement age. So, getting conflicting info.

My benefits estimate online in my account says at full retirement age I would receive $826/month old age benefits (estimated amount), which is less than the $877 I receive now on SSI.

So, I'm really not sure what will happen when I hit age 64. I may get a cut in pay lol!

I think that you can get SSI, though, even if you did not work at all. So, yes, I'm on the dole (I like this term better, too ) - even though I qualify for retirement benefits, based on my work history. Confusing and weird system. But there you have it.
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Old 04-17-2014, 12:33 PM
 
38,241 posts, read 14,949,076 times
Reputation: 24654
Quote:
Originally Posted by brightdoglover View Post
Regarding ALFs and Medicaid- I thought ALFs were all out of pocket, and that Medicaid only kicks in for skilled nursing homes.
A lot of old/older people don't need to be "cared for," they need more money than they have for the normal bills of daily living.
In many states, maybe most, if your income is under $1400 or so a month, Medicaid applies your income to your monthly ALF bill and makes up the difference up to around $2000/month or so. Varies by state.

Many ALF's will accept a person who is self-pay, with the idea that when their funds run out, they will accept Medicaid funding.

The problem comes when people's income is too high to qualify for Medicaid funding by too low to pay the bill. Some states have other funds that kick in to keep people in a place.

People with dementia or other conditions that require supervision and care are in a real bind. The $2000/month places often don't take them because they often require locked doors and more staff. That's $4000/month and up in our area.

Skilled nursing facilities requirements are that a person need nursing care, such as wound care and I.V.s etc.. Many elderly who used to go to nursing homes, no longer qualify.

So if you are low-income and need a lot of supervision and care but not nursing care, you are in a bind.
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Old 04-17-2014, 03:37 PM
 
38,241 posts, read 14,949,076 times
Reputation: 24654
Quote:
Originally Posted by NoMoreSnowForMe View Post
Right. When I applied for SSDI, I didn't have enough "recent" work credits to get SSDI, which would have been a higher monthly benefit amount. Weird, because my disability began with a workers comp claim from a job I was working at lol! But, it was a part time job while going to college, and I had quit work completely prior to that to go back to school, and I have not worked full-time all of my life, though I did work most of my life, with time off to be a mom and other reasons.

I DID pay into the SSA system enough over my lifetime, that I DO qualify for SSA retirement, though. So, it's confusing. When I hit SSA retirement age, I'm not entirely sure what will happen. I read one SSA document that says that SSI disability does not convert to old-age benefits. But, I have received notices from SSA that says it will convert when I hit full retirement age. So, getting conflicting info.

My benefits estimate online in my account says at full retirement age I would receive $826/month old age benefits (estimated amount), which is less than the $877 I receive now on SSI.

So, I'm really not sure what will happen when I hit age 64. I may get a cut in pay lol!

I think that you can get SSI, though, even if you did not work at all. So, yes, I'm on the dole (I like this term better, too ) - even though I qualify for retirement benefits, based on my work history. Confusing and weird system. But there you have it.
You can get SSI even if you never worked enough to qualify for SSDI or SS.

Once you retire, if your SS benefits are below a certain amount, you will be eligible to receive SSI to supplement that up to a maximum amount. It changes every year.
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Old 04-17-2014, 11:19 PM
 
Location: Silicon Valley
18,124 posts, read 23,000,049 times
Reputation: 35318
Quote:
Originally Posted by GotHereQuickAsICould View Post
You can get SSI even if you never worked enough to qualify for SSDI or SS.

Once you retire, if your SS benefits are below a certain amount, you will be eligible to receive SSI to supplement that up to a maximum amount. It changes every year.
Ah, good to know. Thank you!
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Old 04-18-2014, 07:07 AM
 
38,241 posts, read 14,949,076 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by NoMoreSnowForMe View Post
Ah, good to know. Thank you!
It's not a huge amount, but many get by on it.
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Old 04-18-2014, 07:20 AM
 
Location: University City, Philadelphia
22,592 posts, read 12,346,799 times
Reputation: 15498
Quote:
Originally Posted by tijlover View Post
I agree! I'm guessing the majority of those with a middle class income haven't ridden a public bus ever, and missing out on how enjoyable it can be, to ride the public bus, or riding their bikes to a grocery store!

As cars become more high-tech, increasingly expensive to repair (even changing light bulbs can blow a hold in your budget, or losing your Fob, not including expected traffic fines!) this is one expense that won't figure into my $1200 a month budget, except an occasional bike repair expense! And my house will be paid for!

Now if I didn't have a house that was paid for, I'd be looking at uncomfortable poverty!
Many people do not realize how expensive it is to buy, maintain, insure, and operate a car.

I am driving less and less. I made an important decision two months ago to invest $1,000 in my 10 year old Hyundai Sonata with 120,000 miles ... have the engine taken apart, new timing belt, new water pump etc. ... rather than buying a new car and having to make monthly car payments and pay a higher rate for insurance.

I take the trolley when going to Center City ... parking is too d--n expensive; I walk the 4/5 of a mile to work (I know that's a luxury very few have). When I traveled to NYC two days ago I took a bus ($18 round-trip) - last time I drove the 90 miles to NYC the gas, tolls alone were over $20 and the parking was about $25 for the day!

About my house ... unfortunately I was in my mid-40's when I bought it, so the mortgage will not be paid off untill my mid 70's, long after I retire. However I am in the unusual situation where I have housemates (sorta like the male version of "The Golden Girls") and their rent pays my mortgage, so for all intents and purposes I am living rent-free.

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Old 04-18-2014, 08:16 AM
 
Location: Los Angeles area
14,018 posts, read 17,751,136 times
Reputation: 32309
Quote:
Originally Posted by Clark Park View Post
Many people do not realize how expensive it is to buy, maintain, insure, and operate a car.

I am driving less and less. I made an important decision two months ago to invest $1,000 in my 10 year old Hyundai Sonata with 120,000 miles ... have the engine taken apart, new timing belt, new water pump etc. ... rather than buying a new car and having to make monthly car payments and pay a higher rate for insurance.

I take the trolley when going to Center City ... parking is too d--n expensive; I walk the 4/5 of a mile to work (I know that's a luxury very few have). When I traveled to NYC two days ago I took a bus ($18 round-trip) - last time I drove the 90 miles to NYC the gas, tolls alone were over $20 and the parking was about $25 for the day!

About my house ... unfortunately I was in my mid-40's when I bought it, so the mortgage will not be paid off untill my mid 70's, long after I retire. However I am in the unusual situation where I have housemates (sorta like the male version of "The Golden Girls") and their rent pays my mortgage, so for all intents and purposes I am living rent-free.

First, about the house. If you wish to accelerate the date at which you will be mortgage-free, you can pay some extra every month. Any extra you pay above the scheduled amount goes entirely to reduction of principal and results in a reduction in the total amount of interest paid over the life of the loan.

As for as your opening statement (the one I bolded), so much depends on variables such as what kind of car one has and what age it is that the statement itself doesn't really mean anything. It's sort of like saying, "It is so expensive to buy dinner wine". I buy Charles Shaw wine at Trader Joe's for $2.49 a bottle, but one can buy wine for $20, or even $50 a bottle - so where is the validity of the statement?

Ironically, your own example with your 10-year-old Hyundai Sonata contradicts the claim about car ownership being expensive. With a 10-year-old car, the annual depreciation is quite negligible, very close to zero. So you wisely decided to make a $1000 repair in order to keep it running reliably. With a car that old, one can often decide to just drop the collision and comprehensive insurance and just retain the liability insurance, thus saving money. You are getting by very nicely, and very cheaply, on car ownership.

There are brand-new, very reliable cars, which can be purchased for around $14,000 to $15,000, such as the Honda Fit or the Nissan Versa. There is a little Chevrolet too, but I don't remember the model name. These cars come with a standard warranty and are also miserly on gasoline. Or alternatively, one can buy a used car which is one smallish step up from the above, say a Ford Focus or a Toyota Corolla. Buying a one or two-year-old car represents a tremendous saving on depreciation while still providing lots of long life and use.

Where car ownership gets really expensive is when people see their car as a status symbol and so they want a BMW or Mercedes or similar. By the way, I am not criticizing anyone who has a BMW or Mercedes and can afford it. More power to those people. I am just trying to place the question of car ownership in a financial context.

Let's take gas. Let's assume an economical car which gets 30 miles per gallon. Let's assume one drives 600 miles per month. 600 divided by 30 equals 20 gallons of gas per month. Let's assume $4 per gallon, and voila, one spends only $80 per month on gas! It's really quite cheap!
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Old 04-18-2014, 09:09 AM
 
8,204 posts, read 11,923,585 times
Reputation: 18020
Quote:
Originally Posted by Escort Rider View Post
Where car ownership gets really expensive is when people see their car as a status symbol and so they want a BMW or Mercedes or similar. By the way, I am not criticizing anyone who has a BMW or Mercedes and can afford it. More power to those people. I am just trying to place the question of car ownership in a financial context.
Of course you're criticizing them. You look down your nose at anyone who drives a car that is more expensive than one you in your infinite wisdom deem sensible, and seem to believe that they do so only because they are trying to impress you. This isn't the first time you've made this insulting statement. In effect, it's a form of reverse snobbery.

Not that I mean to criticize you.
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Old 04-18-2014, 03:54 PM
 
1,380 posts, read 1,888,761 times
Reputation: 2384
True low wage workers (not talking about the $20/hour folks) don't usually live as long as everybody else. An enormous number drop in their 50s and 60s, still in debt and working paycheck to paycheck.
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Old 04-18-2014, 04:07 PM
mlb
 
Location: North Monterey County
3,190 posts, read 2,860,347 times
Reputation: 4887
It truly is HOW you spend your money - NOT how much you make.

I make 50K - but live on 30K. With an unemployed spouse.

We will do better in retirement - with our savings, a pension and a 401K and SS.
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