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Old 03-15-2016, 11:02 AM
 
3,341 posts, read 3,045,294 times
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Quote:
my income was marginal for a middle class living standard but a bit over the amount needed for any financial aid. My daughter worked hard and in 6 years completed a double degree and a masters from Johns Hopkins. You can only imagine what that cost me and how it reduced my retirement funds.

Excuse me if I don't cry crocodile tears for you. My mailman father and Avon lady mother made just over the low water mark for me to get financial aid but also couldn't afford to pay for my (state university) college. I paid my own undergrad and grad school and paid off the student loans.
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Old 03-15-2016, 11:14 AM
 
6,239 posts, read 4,721,373 times
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Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
The problem is that they keep lowering the bar for who they classify as "wealthy".

It's not millions anymore..it's a mere $250K a year if you are working.

I can't tell you how many times I got hit with the AMT at tax time.
That AMT was for the wealthy, the truly rich to get extra money out of them.
$52K triggers the AMT.

That AMT magically worked its way down to middle class folks.
And the bulk of the AMT tax is collected from the middle class, not the wealthy.
So it doesn't serve the government to really and truly fix it.

I wish I was at $250k or even half of that a year. Even at a much lower income, the taxes are painful. Property taxes for example hit everyone regardless of income. Last year we paid $14k in property taxes for a 3 BR house we share with my daughter and her family. Well I guess we are lucky and could save that if we rented, right? Actually no. The real estate taxes on rental properties are even higher and those costs get passed on to the renters. So even if you can only afford a small studio or 1Br apartment, you are still effectively paying high property taxes.
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Old 03-15-2016, 11:19 AM
 
6,239 posts, read 4,721,373 times
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Originally Posted by N.Cal View Post
Excuse me if I don't cry crocodile tears for you. My mailman father and Avon lady mother made just over the low water mark for me to get financial aid but also couldn't afford to pay for my (state university) college. I paid my own undergrad and grad school and paid off the student loans.

Actually I think you are in the same situation. In many parts of the country a mailman's job is a good income and sought after. If you live in a high cost area that same income does not go very far and you get no break on tuition costs and taxes.


At least you got by with loans you could pay off. I shorted my retirement due to tuition costs and my daughter is paying loans 5 years later and still owes a lot.
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Old 03-15-2016, 11:42 AM
 
Location: Albuquerque NM
1,656 posts, read 1,522,222 times
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Originally Posted by N.Cal View Post
Excuse me if I don't cry crocodile tears for you. My mailman father and Avon lady mother made just over the low water mark for me to get financial aid but also couldn't afford to pay for my (state university) college. I paid my own undergrad and grad school and paid off the student loans.
Yes, but my $400 a semester National Defense Student Loan covered my state university tuition and books in the 1970's. And the interest rate was about 3% which was an incredible deal in the 1980's when I was paying the loan off.
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Old 03-15-2016, 11:48 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,479,637 times
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Originally Posted by jrkliny View Post
I wish I was at $250k or even half of that a year. Even at a much lower income, the taxes are painful. Property taxes for example hit everyone regardless of income. Last year we paid $14k in property taxes for a 3 BR house we share with my daughter and her family. Well I guess we are lucky and could save that if we rented, right? Actually no. The real estate taxes on rental properties are even higher and those costs get passed on to the renters. So even if you can only afford a small studio or 1Br apartment, you are still effectively paying high property taxes.
I was referring to the Federal level and income taxes. That's the cut off for "wealthy".

I lived in the Austin area. When I got my house in 1999 taxes were $2K.
In 2010 taxes were $7K.
I was out in the county though and got nothing for the tripling of property taxes.

I sold and left.
My property taxes are back to $2K.
My old home is up to $12K in property taxes.

And that was a custom home I had built. Only 2000 sq ft and it was $140,000 to build in 1999.

What happened there is Austin took off as a "hot city" and people from all over flocked there.
I took advantage of the RE bubble and cashed out.
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Old 03-15-2016, 12:00 PM
 
9,893 posts, read 3,272,428 times
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Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post
Many of my Engineering friends who are still working are now choking on college costs. Their kids tend to be very smart and get into good schools but because their family incomes are above average, they get very little financial aid. The scholarships help but not enough.

They are having a hard time saving for retirement.

This gets overlooked a lot.

If you work hard. Save your money, prepare for the future.... You get damn all help paying for your kids school...


But if you waste your money, don't save and do nothing about the future , the state and fed are happy to give you a dig out for kids college monies.....


When you think about it, it should be the other way around. Those who build the nation should be rewarded and should get help preparing their offspring to continue the task.


The little bit of the middle class that has survived gets no help at all. We get phased out on every benefit but still have to pay every tax and fee.
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Old 03-15-2016, 12:57 PM
46H
 
965 posts, read 584,909 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Vision67 View Post
Many of my Engineering friends who are still working are now choking on college costs. Their kids tend to be very smart and get into good schools but because their family incomes are above average, they get very little financial aid. The scholarships help but not enough.

They are having a hard time saving for retirement.

People just need to be realistic. My siblings and most of the cousins in my generation went to private colleges and universities. The next generation of cousins is going to public universities. So far there are 2 CPAs and a Chem E, all working for big firms. We paid for 2/3 of my son's education and he paid for 1/3. We would not saddle him (or us) with the private school prices. We live in the NYC metro and with 2 working parents we did not qualify for financial aid. My son received a number of scholarship offers from decent private schools, but the numbers were still as much as 100% higher (or more) than what we paid for his public school.

The public universities are more competitive now as people cannot afford to drop $50k+ of after tax dollars when you can pay $18k to $28K for a great education.
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Old 03-15-2016, 01:45 PM
 
29 posts, read 22,127 times
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Originally Posted by HappyTexan View Post
What happened there is Austin took off as a "hot city" and people from all over flocked there.
And it's happening again now. Also D-FW, Houston, and San Antonio.

US Migration 2004-2010

Austin is particularly attractive to retirees.


https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sVH4_w5DLZo
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Old 03-15-2016, 02:04 PM
 
3,341 posts, read 3,045,294 times
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Originally Posted by jrkliny View Post
Actually I think you are in the same situation. In many parts of the country a mailman's job is a good income and sought after. If you live in a high cost area that same income does not go very far and you get no break on tuition costs and taxes.


At least you got by with loans you could pay off. I shorted my retirement due to tuition costs and my daughter is paying loans 5 years later and still owes a lot.
Small town Kansas. Mailmen didn't make much back then.
I paid my student loans for more than 10 years. My first real job out of grad school was making $18,000 in SF Bay Area. Thankfully I make much more than that now.
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Old 03-15-2016, 03:09 PM
 
1,429 posts, read 1,794,414 times
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Originally Posted by jim9251 View Post
Luckily I have a good retirement, but enjoy the benefits of the Social Security system I PAID IN TO for the past 50 years or so. People forget, that isn't a gift, it's our money. I know a few people who live on SS payments alone, and because of media hype are terrified their payments will be stopped.
The endgame for social security privatizers is not termination of the program. It's investment, via politically connected Wall Street operators, of the SS payroll tax cash cow in the stock market. Since this gambling stake represents America's retirement savings, the bets would be implicitly backstopped by the Federal Government. Wall Street players know that the chances that the Feds will allow the SS money to go up in smoke are nil. It's the "Greenspan Put", x1000. It's a future bailout on steroids, on stilts, on a level that would make 2008 seem like pinochle.
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