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Old 01-12-2016, 06:48 AM
 
14,082 posts, read 7,515,196 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Larry Siegel View Post
How nice for them. My dad never made over $12 an hour. He did get a pension, which I won't get, but I went to college and graduate school and make a very nice, top 3%, living.

I think my story is more typical than yours. The national income data certainly support that; while median incomes have stagnated, average incomes have risen because of the emergence of a mass upper middle class that barely existed in 1960. Drive around and look at all the expensive new houses and cars. Somebody has money and is buying them.
That is because socioeconomically successful people self-segregate. They cluster together in the high cost of living economically vibrant parts of the country and then build those elaborate homes in elite towns with top school systems. If you live in one of those places, you get the false impression that everyone is like you. That isn't the case. Only 6% of tax filers max out their Social Security ($118.5k). If you're not making that kind of money and you don't have a defined benefit pension, you have no shot at creating the wealth to retire comfortably. The median household income in this country is about $50k. You're not maxing out your 401(k) for 30 years on that income. You are living paycheck to paycheck. And half of the country makes less than that.
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Old 01-12-2016, 06:58 AM
 
29,910 posts, read 34,970,994 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
That is because socioeconomically successful people self-segregate. They cluster together in the high cost of living economically vibrant parts of the country and then build those elaborate homes in elite towns with top school systems. If you live in one of those places, you get the false impression that everyone is like you. That isn't the case. Only 6% of tax filers max out their Social Security ($118.5k). If you're not making that kind of money and you don't have a defined benefit pension, you have no shot at creating the wealth to retire comfortably. The median household income in this country is about $50k. You're not maxing out your 401(k) for 30 years on that income. You are living paycheck to paycheck. And half of the country makes less than that.
Yes they do congregate together and their public service employees are compensated with salary and benefits at a higher level and they are willing to pay to recruit and retain the best for their public sector.
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Old 01-12-2016, 07:47 AM
 
14,082 posts, read 7,515,196 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Yes they do congregate together and their public service employees are compensated with salary and benefits at a higher level and they are willing to pay to recruit and retain the best for their public sector.
Yep. Around me, there are 1000 job applications for every public school teaching job. The police department is mostly a patronage job since suburban cops in affluent towns typically aren't dodging bullets and arresting gang bangers.

My post was a rebuttal to the classic libertarian "I'm economically successful, it's your fault that you're not economically successful" statement. I'm a 5%er. I work with 5%ers. I live around 5%ers. All my leisure activities are those done by 5%ers. Just about everybody is quite bright, educated, and motivated. 20 years ago, I was a card-carrying libertarian with exactly that point of view. As I broadened my horizons, I realized that 80% of the country doesn't live like that.

The point of this "retirement crisis" is that if you're not in the top-20% and you don't have a defined benefit pension (from a public sector job, usually), you're facing a fairly grim life when you can no longer work. The article referenced in the initial post of this thread is looking backwards. Greatest generation, silent generation, and the earliest of the boomers didn't have a retirement problem and that is who is retired now. They had defined benefit pensions and usually a perpetually growing economy where they could accumulate some wealth. The article looked at today's retirees and concluded we don't have a problem. What it didn't do is look at the typical 45-year-old and project what their retirement might look like. Without a dramatic bump in the national savings rate, that typical 45-year-old is going to have a huge problem at age 65 when they're nudged out of the labor force.
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Old 01-12-2016, 08:01 AM
 
29,910 posts, read 34,970,994 times
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The sad reality is that affluent economically and financially savvy folks tend to live and work together. They are also more prone to talking finances and giving thoughts and most importantly listening to the thoughts of others. They feed on each other growing stronger and wiser from each other. Much of what I learned was from others and much I have shared has helped others in real life. Those least financially wise tend to not want to talk and that's ok but they fail to grow and learn and tend to stay behind the eight ball and boom retirement or the want to retire. While the other group is buying a second home and enjoying and loving life. We visited a large planned community over the weekend near the beach and considered consolidating both current houses and moving there. For good reasons, cost not being one we probably won't. Lots of older folks there in expensive homes loving the recreational and fun opportunities. As we were told and expected many from the Mid-Atlantic North.
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Old 01-12-2016, 08:45 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,692,057 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
The sad reality is that affluent economically and financially savvy folks tend to live and work together. They are also more prone to talking finances and giving thoughts and most importantly listening to the thoughts of others. They feed on each other growing stronger and wiser from each other. Much of what I learned was from others and much I have shared has helped others in real life. Those least financially wise tend to not want to talk and that's ok but they fail to grow and learn and tend to stay behind the eight ball and boom retirement or the want to retire. While the other group is buying a second home and enjoying and loving life. We visited a large planned community over the weekend near the beach and considered consolidating both current houses and moving there. For good reasons, cost not being one we probably won't. Lots of older folks there in expensive homes loving the recreational and fun opportunities. As we were told and expected many from the Mid-Atlantic North.
Totally agree TuborgP. Plenty of tidbits learned here that I have incorporated into my planning.
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Old 01-12-2016, 08:54 AM
 
Location: Living rent free in your head
31,246 posts, read 13,730,916 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Those least financially wise tend to not want to talk and that's ok but they fail to grow and learn and tend to stay behind the eight ball and boom retirement or the want to retire.
Or they create an account on an internet forum and role-play rich and successful...that's why I never take advice from an anonymous poster on a forum, my guess is that only about 10% are as perfect as they would like us to believe.
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Old 01-12-2016, 08:59 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,692,057 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
Or they create an account on an internet forum and role-play rich and successful...that's why I never take advice from an anonymous poster on a forum, my guess is that only about 10% are as perfect as they would like us to believe.
You don't have to act on it. But it may give you incentive to go off and research it more.
It could be something you never thought of.
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Old 01-12-2016, 09:03 AM
 
29,910 posts, read 34,970,994 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
Or they create an account on an internet forum and role-play rich and successful...that's why I never take advice from an anonymous poster on a forum, my guess is that only about 10% are as perfect as they would like us to believe.
My reality suggest otherwise and I have been here for about a decade and have followed a number of people and what they say makes total sense based on my experiences. I also have two sons with families and know their stories and the stories of their friends and families etc. As with most things they tend to socialize and live with folks similar to them and that becomes their realities. It is especially interesting to listen to the friends of my youngest in Northern Virginia. Well educated, well off and very tuned in to their finances now and down the road. They studied hard, made good career decisions and many transplanted to the DC area to grow their wealth now and down the line by working in a well paying job market with in demand skills. We each have to live our own realities and I have seen many successful and unsuccessful folks across the age and income spectrum. Generational wealth and wisdom is a live and well for many. Not all but many. My oldest is doing well his friends as are many of the folks he has known. My hunch is that the folks in this forum attempt to put what they read into the context of the world they know and for some certain things are more believable than others. Consider if a person has a combined pension and SS of XXXX the odds are the people they worked with have similar pensions and SS especially if they have the same job description and worked the same number of years and salary is determined on a schedule/scale. Not to hard to figure out if you know the area and relative income levels. I don't know anyone on here who claims to be perfect and most of us admit and have learned from our mistakes. Am I well off? Yes! Could I be even better off yes! My doing? Yes! However I have learned that I am far better off than most and feel blessed for that could care less about folks having more. Bless them for their success! One of the lessons is that two retirement packages create a world of difference and many younger folks have learned and are applying that as they weigh marriage, life and career.

Last edited by TuborgP; 01-12-2016 at 09:15 AM..
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Old 01-12-2016, 09:21 AM
 
29,910 posts, read 34,970,994 times
Reputation: 11812
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
Or they create an account on an internet forum and role-play rich and successful...that's why I never take advice from an anonymous poster on a forum, my guess is that only about 10% are as perfect as they would like us to believe.
Again it is your choice and we all make and live with our choices for better or worse. I was not talking as much about forums as I was workplace and neighborhood and broader community friends etc etc. I mean take a look at average family income in various areas. If you live in a community with a six figure average family income it isn't unreasonable that a number of the folks there will live with six figure retirement incomes. Especially with two professional spouses doing their own retirement thing. Same with home equity. Probably more of it with older folks in a neighborhood of 500K homes that have done well with appreciation over the years vs a neighborhood of 50K homes. Take what ever average appreciation percentage you want and apply it two the two price points and see who on average will have the most home equity if they decide to sell. Now depending on which neighborhood you live in your world perspective and reality could be very different.
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Old 01-12-2016, 09:41 AM
 
Location: SoCal
13,463 posts, read 6,441,185 times
Reputation: 10034
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2sleepy View Post
Or they create an account on an internet forum and role-play rich and successful...that's why I never take advice from an anonymous poster on a forum, my guess is that only about 10% are as perfect as they would like us to believe.
I too don't take complaint online seriously, they live out little facts on purpose. And you can decide who is BSing or not just like in real life.

Last edited by NewbieHere; 01-12-2016 at 09:49 AM..
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