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Old 09-20-2017, 10:39 AM
 
Location: RVA
2,165 posts, read 1,265,978 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TuborgP View Post
Yes and no. I understand what you are saying in principle and would have fully agreed a year or so ago. However at this point spending can vary based on a lot of things. We are the children of having retired into a bear market followed by a raging bull with income streams that have now kicked in. There is a mindset getting there and another one that can develop years into. The Early Retirement forum participants tend to have travelled a common path. Others not as much so. I found myself a tad out of the norm.
Agreed. The mindset there is significantly more common amongst posters than here. There is no self righteousness or socialist over tones. Very few, if any there were born silver spooners. Many were very successful professionals (Drs, attorneys, Wall Street investors, etc) while younger and sacrificed spending now, to maximize investing for long term self income regulation for a 50year retirement! Many are government retirees with healthy pensions that also invested while retired at 50-55. No group resents the others because of how they became FIRE. It is almost embarrassing there to say you worked until 62 and then think you retired early! I will note that a surprising number there are and always have been single. The 3 wealthiest (in financial sense) people I know always were and still are single. An interesting note, only.
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Old 09-20-2017, 10:47 AM
 
10,604 posts, read 14,199,749 times
Reputation: 17203
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flamingo13 View Post
So you plan to live on very little money for a yr. just to game the health insurance system?

Quote:
Originally Posted by CatPeople View Post
No, theory is to declare $100K income in 2017, then in 2018 declare $20K and get $750 month tax subsidy for health care.

Corporations have armies of accountants that do this. Now it is my turn. Still feels creepy.
Is the point that you'd take the 100K from the previous year and live on that when only declaring 20K? Have you done the actual math?

And just hope you don't need to use the insurance since it's Obamacare.

This isn't news. It's been a scandal since day one because politicians are a bunch of corrupt lying bureaucrats and citizen are a bunch of apathetic willfully ignorant takers. The founders predicted it.

They even literally bragged that the voters were "too stupid" to understand that Obamacare was a pathway to single payer [Gruber & Mr. Obama] but it had to be done incrementally.

https://www.google.com/search?q=qual...hrome&ie=UTF-8

Obamacare premium subsidies go to millionaires
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Old 09-20-2017, 10:48 AM
 
29,775 posts, read 34,863,854 times
Reputation: 11705
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryinva View Post
Agreed. The mindset there is significantly more common amongst posters than here. There is no self righteousness or socialist over tones. Very few, if any there were born silver spooners. Many were very successful professionals (Drs, attorneys, Wall Street investors, etc) while younger and sacrificed spending now, to maximize investing for long term self income regulation for a 50year retirement! Many are government retirees with healthy pensions that also invested while retired at 50-55. No group resents the others because of how they became FIRE. It is almost embarrassing there to say you worked until 62 and then think you retired early! I will note that a surprising number there are and always have been single. The 3 wealthiest (in financial sense) people I know always were and still are single. An interesting note, only.
More than just a interesting note. More of a discussed sociological outcome and a emerging trend with the younger generations along with those without a college degree becoming less likely to marry. We could discuss more but this isn't the thread.
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Old 09-20-2017, 11:11 AM
 
1,057 posts, read 515,228 times
Reputation: 1814
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohio_peasant View Post
At the risk of giving this discussion a political bent, it seems to me, that “class envy” in America is (1) almost never against the truly super-rich, and (2) almost never practiced by the truly very-poor. The envy is generally by people earning say $50K/year, against those earning $150K/year. The persons receiving the most vitriol are tenured university professors, senior career-administrators in the public sector, upper (but not executive) managers, lawyers… in other words, the sorts of people who can afford to save maybe $50K/year, hit their first $M by age 40 or 45 or 50, and go on to scrape against the threshold of the 1% just before retiring.

The truly wealthy are extolled as the great captains of industry, the success-stories, the movers and pillars. But the relatively highly-compensated employees, who live modestly, save and invest, and arrive at the low-7-figure range, receive broad opprobrium, as being “the elite”, or otherwise un-American.



The part that continues to confound me, is how can it be possible to simultaneously have a sufficiently large portfolio, as to fully find one's own retirement.... AND to so construct it, as to generate such a low income, that ACA subsidies are still substantial.

Or to rephrase: I don't see how intentionally allocating one's investments to generate minimal income, such as to qualify for the subsidy, is financially wise, relative to forgoing the subsidy but earning a higher investment income.
I agree with the first part of your post....for some reason the truly wealthy, many of whom are merely members of the "lucky sperm" club, seem to get a pass.

On the second part....while someone may intentionally drive their income down to qualify, their net worth can be increasing. Simple example....100% in equities, not managed, little dividends. Indexed etf funds following the s and p 500, for example. If you manage these holdings in a way to minimize realized capitals gains, your wealth can increase with little to no income. Obviously, if your holdings are going up across the board continuously, there are no opportunities to harvest losses. But we know all equities do not increase in value all the time. This strategy works well for short term bridging to Medicare, for example.
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Old 09-20-2017, 11:43 AM
 
Location: Haiku
4,062 posts, read 2,572,689 times
Reputation: 5990
Quote:
Originally Posted by parentologist View Post
The problem is that social welfare programs (and the ACA is just that - if you're getting a subsidy) have become income based, not asset based. So someone who earns 120K/year, has no net worth, and lives paycheck to paycheck supporting a family in a city with high cost of living (which is why he's earning that 120K/year), is paying to subsidize someone who has significant assets, but lower income. It's flat out wrong. People should have to liquidate their assets to support themselves before they can benefit from social welfare programs.

But this is how the law is written, so you can legally do it. It's not ethical, but it's legal. Nothing to stop you from doing it.
I disagree about it being wrong. People often have large assets now when they retire only because of the switch from everyone having pensions to having a 401k. It used to be you contributed part of your paycheck to a pension which the company owned but you had a guaranteed income stream from it. Now you contribute your own money to a 401k which you own. The end result is the same - retirement income. So why should I be penalized (under your scheme) because my company switched from a pension to a 401k?
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Old 09-20-2017, 11:52 AM
 
71,537 posts, read 71,712,424 times
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exactly .

like i said a 40k income i have to generate with my own assets which can take a million dollars is on par with a 40k pension and no assets .

why should they be treated differently ? they shouldn't .
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Old 09-20-2017, 11:54 AM
 
2,215 posts, read 743,219 times
Reputation: 1376
Quote:
Originally Posted by Perryinva View Post
Agreed. The mindset there is significantly more common amongst posters than here. There is no self righteousness or socialist over tones. Very few, if any there were born silver spooners. Many were very successful professionals (Drs, attorneys, Wall Street investors, etc) while younger and sacrificed spending now, to maximize investing for long term self income regulation for a 50year retirement! Many are government retirees with healthy pensions that also invested while retired at 50-55. No group resents the others because of how they became FIRE. It is almost embarrassing there to say you worked until 62 and then think you retired early! I will note that a surprising number there are and always have been single. The 3 wealthiest (in financial sense) people I know always were and still are single. An interesting note, only.
This retirement forum is a mix of all income levels and folks with different life experiences on the road to retirement.
That website is much more homogeneous with similar thinking folks all shooting for the same goal.

Suffice it to say I am able to take advantage of ACA subsidies every other year and intend to continue to do that until I reach 65 (medicare) or ACA disappears.

I have no guilt, don't feel like I'm cheating or stealing from the poor.
I'm simply taking advantage of the tax law.
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Old 09-20-2017, 12:04 PM
 
15,202 posts, read 4,018,099 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thrillobyte View Post
Which countries can you go to and get health care immediately?
China - and very good - same day - doctor, MRI, fix, the whole deal.....probably $200 for a broken bone. Top notch experience - beats the heck out of anything but our top 10 or so.

I am speaking about the Big Cities - and these are the reports of MANY Americans and others who have gotten health care there

Heck, there was even a Swedish dude who said the Chinese system was vastly better than his at home!

But the chances of a specialist here seeing you for $20 or getting an MRI for $90 is about zero.
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Old 09-20-2017, 12:17 PM
 
15,202 posts, read 4,018,099 times
Reputation: 10997
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cabound1 View Post
This is one of the reasons I feel no guilt taking advantage of this system....my pre-ACA premiums were about 250/month. Went to about 600/month the year ACA came in. If "the system" has no problem doing this to me, I have no problem jumping through loopholes they left for me....

I'm just doing my part to hasten the demise of a totally screwed up system...:-)
Being as the average cost per person for health care in the USA is 10,600 per year - if you are a married couple ("average") you should be paying about 21K per year.

If you pay less someone else is paying for you.

Your post just shows the problem...you weren't paying the "real" cost in either case, but paying 1/2 the real cost didn't make you happy.

It's our system in a nutshell. We focus on the wrong thing - namely "me me me" and how little I can get away with, whilst always shoving the real costs off onto others, the fed debt and our children.

Who profits from this? ALL the Corporations......involved. Big time....

I always like to present a small example of the Average American Family today.

They have two children - for a total of 4 people, so at the average health care is 40+K per year.
The kids are in school - 24K per year.
The Military and Security State are hard at work spending lots of money - 5K per year (more, actually)

That's about 70K in taxes said family should be paying BEFORE their roads are plowed of any other of the MANY services we all consume.

Yet - you will find families like that complaining about their 4K per year property tax and 15K per year health insurance costs.

Try as we may, there is no way to balance the books. As long as we are willing to pray at the dual altars of:

1. Profits - even to the extent of predatory capitalism
and
2. ME - my "job" in life is to take advantage of every system to whatever extent I can.

It can't work and it doesn't work. We have already gone broke - and what is worse is that we are dying earlier than we should and suffering more.

Imagine is a store advertised "Twice the price and guaranteed to cause you harm". You'd LOL. Yet that is the system many support.

I know we are talking philosophy and morals here. But as "elders" that is part of our job. The Founders and others thought deeply about this stuff. Jefferson even suggested we redistribute everything every 50 years (obviously it not the right idea, but they all agreed that accumulated generational wealth was the worst possible thing for the Nation they hoped to create).

If I spend most of the fairly large estate I have built up before we (wifey and I) pass, so be it. We have a disabled adult daughter who we spend large amounts of money on also....and will continue to do so (even tho she is married and has resources).....

I guess my attitude is "that is what money is for". I watch my parents generation and I see these elders acting as if they want to be buried with their millions or whatever. Silly. But I can't convince them otherwise - I have tried. They'd rather play the game until the end instead of having it a little better.
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Old 09-20-2017, 12:38 PM
 
3,088 posts, read 820,707 times
Reputation: 1744
Quote:
Originally Posted by ohio_peasant View Post
...
The part that continues to confound me, is how can it be possible to simultaneously have a sufficiently large portfolio, as to fully find one's own retirement.... AND to so construct it, as to generate such a low income, that ACA subsidies are still substantial.

Or to rephrase: I don't see how intentionally allocating one's investments to generate minimal income, such as to qualify for the subsidy, is financially wise, relative to forgoing the subsidy but earning a higher investment income.
My brother doesn't share the details. From he's said, most of the investments are in taxable accounts or ROTHs. His income is low enough that any capital gains and qualified dividends from the taxable accounts are at the zero percent bracket. In addition, he invests in index funds (Vanguard) that minimize turnover. Focuses on building capital then withdraws the needed amount for living expenses. There's no structuring of the portfolio to forgo high investment income, although he does maintain a certain stock-bond ratio for overall stability.

The key is to reduce fixed expenses so income covers the discretionary. He lives in a gorgeous downtown unit (1 bedroom, 1.5 baths, maybe about 900 sq ft) in a large city with excellent public transportation and all sorts of free entertainment. No auto. Bikes or walks everywhere. No separate gym (from the condo). No cable (who needs it these days). Savvy about items like cell phones (brand new iPhone for $100, minimal monthly bill).Vegan, rarely eats out or wants to. Paid off the mortgage on the condo prior to retiring. The condo fee - which isn't outrageous although to his irritation includes 24-hour front desk staffing - probably is his major expense. Property taxes are well below the national average. Minimal utilities. The condo has a full expanse of southern facing windows that minimizes heat bills in the winter but a nearby tall building shades it in the summer. No desire to travel or buy much clothing.

But he's always lived (and invested) that way. For him it's about not consuming and concern for the environment. It's not to game the system or to obtain the ACA. At one point, he had to generate enough income to avoid Medicaid.

EDITED TO ADD - Looking back, yes, he falls into your no. 4 group. And - per another poster - "The other group is those that have so much a prolonged market slump won't alter their lifestyles, and they are not real concerned about heirs." Not married, no heirs. And while I doubt he cannot fear a market slump, per his above lifestyle he can cut it pretty close to the bone and still live "well" as long as there is a public library, nature, access to the net, and vegetables. Strict ability to control the outflow, helps mitigate market risk - and, for his lifestyle, with minimal "sacrifice."

Last edited by EveryLady; 09-20-2017 at 12:59 PM..
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