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Old 03-16-2016, 07:32 PM
 
25,986 posts, read 33,003,034 times
Reputation: 32213

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Quote:
Originally Posted by dbsteel View Post
You are probably right, but I'd like to think there could be a correction where people get it together, understand they aren't getting pensions, move to downsizing their homes, and do a better job at saving, etc. Gotta weed our way through this generation of excess and living on the edge with the big houses and too many cars.
I'm not planning on downsizing, or moving at all. My plan is to retire at 66.5, and with my pension, SS, and 403B and IRAs, I will have an income that very nearly matches what I make today. I started later than I should, but saved hard, and will continue to do so to make my goal.
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Old 03-16-2016, 07:48 PM
 
Location: Central IL
15,244 posts, read 8,532,850 times
Reputation: 35673
Maybe I don't understand, but the program was originally set up in such a way so that you COULD count on it. Now, I'm not RELYING on it totally...no one should if they have the means to do otherwise and put some other money aside. But in my early retirement planning I got the "three-legged-stool" analogy...SS, 401(k), and in my case, a pension.

I know SS isn't rock steady but I did kinda do my planning around it. I can only save so much on my own so maybe I just used it set my expectation a bit higher by including SS rather than by ignoring it. So I'll definitely be disappointed as I was planning on having that to use for stuff - hopefully fun stuff. I won't starve without SS, but I'll have to reset my expectations and that will not be fun at all.
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Old 03-16-2016, 08:40 PM
 
Location: Forests of Maine
30,682 posts, read 49,455,573 times
Reputation: 19134
Quote:
Originally Posted by reneeh63 View Post
Maybe I don't understand, but the program was originally set up in such a way so that you COULD count on it. Now, I'm not RELYING on it totally...no one should if they have the means to do otherwise and put some other money aside. But in my early retirement planning I got the "three-legged-stool" analogy...SS, 401(k), and in my case, a pension.

I know SS isn't rock steady but I did kinda do my planning around it. I can only save so much on my own so maybe I just used it set my expectation a bit higher by including SS rather than by ignoring it. So I'll definitely be disappointed as I was planning on having that to use for stuff - hopefully fun stuff. I won't starve without SS, but I'll have to reset my expectations and that will not be fun at all.
I live in a relatively small town with a fairly low Cost-Of-Living. Off the top of my head I know four people who became disabled during their careers, they each spent time on SSDI, before they reached retirement age and transitioned to SS. They own their homes and vehicles.

In the process after being disabled and the years it took to get onto SSDI, they each consumed what savings they had, before SSDI was approved.

I believe these people each went onto SS with no other sources of cash flow. But thankfully no debt.

My wife and I host a potluck every month attended by these friends [among others]. I assure you. If bad events happen and you do end up going onto SS with no other cash flows, you will be okay. So long as you have no debt, you will be just fine.

Once a week I have coffee with a group that my wife calls 'Floyds barbershop' [but really it is a gunsmith's shop]. One of the regulars [Mike] just went from SSDI to SS two months ago. Mike has had a string of open heart surgeries while on SSDI, he seems to be doing really well now. His SS payment is right around $650/month. Mike owns his house and 20 acres of land. He is very active with the rifle club, where he takes lots of ribbons.

Mike is a good representative model for these folks. A home owner, active, living by himself, independent, and pretty active, while on SS income.
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Old 03-17-2016, 05:22 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
my son is in scarsdale in westchester . they have a commuter station and top school district and the highest taxes in the country . the houses are all in the million plus range unless they are in bad shape . then they get bought and knocked down .

everything in westchester is priced good-better-best in relation to the school district .
There are 2 ways to look at property taxes. One is highest in dollars. The other is highest in terms of % of home value. Westchester County seems to be the highest by the first measure - but is far from the highest in terms of the second:

Property taxes: How does your county compare? - CNNMoney.com

So one could actually move from place X to place Y - buy a home that is worth less - and wind up paying more in property taxes!

There are also various distortions when it comes to property taxes as a result of various factors. Ranging from assessments at less than fair market value to measures like Prop 13 in California and the SOH Amendment in Florida. Which limit property tax increases. In Florida - part of your SOH property tax savings is portable if you move within the state. It starts to look like plane fares. Where everyone on the plane is paying a different fare.

Do counties in New York like Westchester have multiple school districts? Here in Florida - each county has its own (single) school district (except for the least populous counties - which can have consolidated school districts). Robyn
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Old 03-17-2016, 05:34 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChessieMom View Post
That's ridiculous. They should not be going into debt for that much. There are much less expensive schools available.
You'd be surprised how education costs add up. One of my nieces went through medical school. At state schools. And still wound up with $100k or so in debt. A lot of students in a lot of state schools are paying much higher tuition/fees than they used to:

The most expensive state university systems - CBS News

OTOH - some state schools are still excellent values:

Kiplinger's Best College Values-Kiplinger

Robyn
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Old 03-17-2016, 05:48 AM
 
Location: Ponte Vedra Beach FL
14,628 posts, read 17,932,507 times
Reputation: 6716
Quote:
Originally Posted by reneeh63 View Post
Maybe I don't understand, but the program was originally set up in such a way so that you COULD count on it. Now, I'm not RELYING on it totally...no one should if they have the means to do otherwise and put some other money aside. But in my early retirement planning I got the "three-legged-stool" analogy...SS, 401(k), and in my case, a pension.

I know SS isn't rock steady but I did kinda do my planning around it. I can only save so much on my own so maybe I just used it set my expectation a bit higher by including SS rather than by ignoring it. So I'll definitely be disappointed as I was planning on having that to use for stuff - hopefully fun stuff. I won't starve without SS, but I'll have to reset my expectations and that will not be fun at all.
Count on it to do what? Barely keep you living at about the poverty level? This is certainly an area where individual mileage varies. Especially if you're comparing areas with a very low COL to other parts of the country with average or above average COLs. But I've never seen any family member who could live 100% on SS.

FWIW - the traditional 3 legged stool was SS - a pension and *savings*. IRAs/401ks have largely replaced pensions. And they're not as good in terms of guaranteeing retirement income as traditional defined benefit pension plans used to be. Also - a lot of people with those old defined pension plans had various employer health care retirement benefits. And those are disappearing too.

Finally - one part of the retirement equation was the notion that one would have a paid off house in retirement. Which would lead to lower expenses. But - increasingly - people are reaching retirement with all kinds of debt - including mortgage debt:

The silent struggle of seniors with debt | Reuters

Robyn
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:12 AM
 
71,593 posts, read 71,751,865 times
Reputation: 49204
all spot on . we have to include the fact that in some aras even having a paid off home may add little to the affordibility of it .

take long island where when my friends and i entered the home buying era of our lives back in the 1970's a home was 30-40k in suffolk county .

so after 30 years you paid off a mortgage that represents 1/2 a utility bill today and taxes are 12 to 15k.

you still may not be able to afford to live there even with that paid off mortgage. folks forget as time goes on that mortgage can represent less and less of your monthly nut .
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:38 AM
 
Location: Baltimore, MD
3,745 posts, read 4,218,356 times
Reputation: 6866
Quote:
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.<snip>
Households bringing in $250,000 have more income than 97% of the households in the United States. These are households, mind you, not individual wage earners. Admittedly, it's not in the top 1%, but still...

How close are you to the top 1%? - CNNMoney
(2012 numbers)

Income required to be the top 1% in US cities - Business Insider
(fun comparison of top cities)
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:40 AM
 
Location: Great State of Texas
86,093 posts, read 72,515,954 times
Reputation: 27565
Quote:
Originally Posted by lenora View Post
Households bringing in $250,000 have more income than 97% of the households in the United States. These are households, mind you, not individual wage earners. Admittedly, it's not in the top 1%, but still...

How close are you to the top 1%? - CNNMoney
(2012 numbers)

Income required to be the top 1% in US cities - Business Insider
(fun comparison of top cities)

But that's upper middle class, not wealthy.

The likes of Warren Buffet, Michael Dell, and all those other millionaires and billionaires are wealthy.
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Old 03-17-2016, 07:46 AM
 
33,046 posts, read 22,062,610 times
Reputation: 8970
Quote:
Originally Posted by Submariner View Post
I live in a relatively small town with a fairly low Cost-Of-Living. Off the top of my head I know four people who became disabled during their careers, they each spent time on SSDI, before they reached retirement age and transitioned to SS. They own their homes and vehicles.

In the process after being disabled and the years it took to get onto SSDI, they each consumed what savings they had, before SSDI was approved.

I believe these people each went onto SS with no other sources of cash flow. But thankfully no debt.

My wife and I host a potluck every month attended by these friends [among others]. I assure you. If bad events happen and you do end up going onto SS with no other cash flows, you will be okay. So long as you have no debt, you will be just fine.

Once a week I have coffee with a group that my wife calls 'Floyds barbershop' [but really it is a gunsmith's shop]. One of the regulars [Mike] just went from SSDI to SS two months ago. Mike has had a string of open heart surgeries while on SSDI, he seems to be doing really well now. His SS payment is right around $650/month. Mike owns his house and 20 acres of land. He is very active with the rifle club, where he takes lots of ribbons.

Mike is a good representative model for these folks. A home owner, active, living by himself, independent, and pretty active, while on SS income.

I see a vast lifestyle difference between SSDI (oe retirement SS) homeowners and renters. As a poor person limited to renting cheap rooms on Craigslist, I've known a number of SSDI recipients limping from month to month with no money and no life, which is no way to live. So I figure every homeowner on SSDI should be grateful they own their home, because it can be worse to always worry where you're going to be sleeping in two months.
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