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Old 12-14-2018, 10:41 AM
 
Location: SoCal
13,200 posts, read 6,308,074 times
Reputation: 9815

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Quote:
Originally Posted by mathjak107 View Post
one of the reasons all these "how bad people are doing " articles are a waste of time reading , is they tend to not include all the details just so they can skew things in the direction they want or they cherry pick examples who are the outliers or worst of the lot . .

i won't even bother to read these rags that are posted daily . if i am going to take the time to read something it needs to teach me something i don't know that helps me do better ..
I like it that these stereotypes are propagating out there. Heck, that’s how I’m able to ask for and get seniors discount for my husband.

Last edited by NewbieHere; 12-14-2018 at 10:49 AM..
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Old 12-14-2018, 10:45 AM
 
6,306 posts, read 5,046,206 times
Reputation: 12810
Quote:
Originally Posted by Blue Wave View Post
I can't imagine many things more depressing than having to work until you drop dead.

You can retire in your early 60s on a measly $1k monthly SS check though. There are low-income senior housing complexes (many of which are quite nice), food stamps, heavily discounted senior public transportation, and Medicare/Medicaid. Alternatively, you could expatriate to some third world country and live comfortably for next to nothing. If my finances were horrible, I'd do that before having to find a job in old age.
My oldest sister still works. She is 71. But she loves it.

And she does have a pension from her primary employer that also still pays her medical insurance, medicare supplement etc. She could stay home and goof off all day, but she likes getting out of the house. And not one to do volunteer type things. Shes also not a house person either. Has lived in an apartment her entire adult life. She loves the freedom of renting. She doesn't care about decorating and gardening, so this works for her.

I am becoming more like that.
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:18 AM
 
Location: NYC
2,901 posts, read 1,582,286 times
Reputation: 7918
Quote:
Originally Posted by Electrician4you View Post
Bs on the lost pension. No company can just take away a pension. Now there may be underfunded pensions or the guy may not of been vested which means he will lose a portion, he may of gotten or been offered a buyout but they can’t “take away his pension” . It doesn’t work that way.

Most people have a hard time in later years due to either a tragedy/huge emergency in life or being wasteful and do8ng no planning for the future. . A person who works saves and is careful with their finances most obviously likely have no financial issues in their late years.
From a Washington Post story from 2017 about the McDonnell Douglas plant (that I erroneously said was Lockheed Martin on my original post):

"....but in 1994, with an eye toward cutting retirement costs, the company closed the plant. Now, The Washington Post found in a review of those 998 workers that even though most of them found new jobs, they could never replace their lost pension benefits, and many are facing financial struggle in their old age: One in seven has in their retirement years filed for bankruptcy, faced liens for delinquent bills, or both, according to public records.

Those affected are buried by debts incurred for credit cards, used cars, health care and sometimes, the college educations of their children. Some have lost their homes.
And for many of them, even as they reach beyond 70, real retirement is elusive. Although they worked for decades at McDonnell Douglas, many of the septuagenarians are still working, some full time."
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:24 AM
 
Location: NYC
2,901 posts, read 1,582,286 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I'm still trying to grapple with "The average American over 65 lives on about $4,125/month". ...
I questioned that also when I first saw the story, I suspect the copy meant to say: "The average American couple over 65...
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Old 12-14-2018, 11:30 AM
 
1,898 posts, read 843,980 times
Reputation: 723
Add a take to this. When I worked in the trades most people with kids did not make enough to really put away enough for retirement. Being 50 years old with less then 5k in your 401K was pretty common. No pensions etc. Say you worked in a body shop for 3 decades the chances your medical bills will eat you alive near retirement are pretty high. In the past the older generations I knew who did this were often saved by real estate values, I'm not so sure they can rely on that in the future in many parts of the country. When I lived in a rural area most people had zero retirement savings. They basically worked their whole life to live off social security. Many worked a life time never making more then 150% of minimum wage.

I think they often pick poorly for these stories. There are plenty of people with much harsher stories. Luckily Social Security and other programs help people enough to survive most of the time.
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Old 12-14-2018, 12:15 PM
 
77 posts, read 33,177 times
Reputation: 497
The gentleman portrayed in the story is over 80 years old. When I was a teenager, over 50 years ago, I knew a lot of working class individuals just like this. Most never graduated from high school, and if they did, it was considered a big deal. Quite a few of my friends parents never graduated from high school, and if they did it, was considered a big deal. The father of my boyfriend when I was 16 years old worked in a sheet metal factory in Baltimore and had only in eighth grade education, like many of his coworkers. He was able to support a stay at home wife and 4 children, not lavishly, but adequately. They owned their own home and had one car. Vacations were visiting family a few hours away. Back in those days, not a lot of people had a college education and it was not expected that you needed one in order to get a job that could support a family. Now days you need a minimum of a college degree just to work at McDonald’s

Last edited by mercedesmarcelina158; 12-14-2018 at 12:24 PM..
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Old 12-14-2018, 01:07 PM
 
71,490 posts, read 71,652,652 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I'm still trying to grapple with "The average American over 65 lives on about $4,125/month". That doesn't in any way align with the Social Security check and accumulated wealth of the average retired pension-free 65-year-old. Median household net worth including home equity for a 65 to 69-year-old is $210K. Maybe 20% of 65-year-olds have pensions. You pretty much have to be public sector or one of the few remaining union people to get one. I don't see where $50K yearly income could be even remotely possible. I guess married and dual income, two Social Security checks might get you there retiring at 66-ish.


I'd figure $50K retiring at 65 is more like a 70th percentile retirement.
i never bother to pay any attention to who has what supposedly . it does not help me in any way and odds are it is wrong anyway
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Old 12-14-2018, 01:43 PM
 
Location: Denver CO
21,159 posts, read 11,761,610 times
Reputation: 32142
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeoffD View Post
I'm still trying to grapple with "The average American over 65 lives on about $4,125/month". That doesn't in any way align with the Social Security check and accumulated wealth of the average retired pension-free 65-year-old. Median household net worth including home equity for a 65 to 69-year-old is $210K. Maybe 20% of 65-year-olds have pensions. You pretty much have to be public sector or one of the few remaining union people to get one. I don't see where $50K yearly income could be even remotely possible. I guess married and dual income, two Social Security checks might get you there retiring at 66-ish.


I'd figure $50K retiring at 65 is more like a 70th percentile retirement.
Even $3100 per month doesn't sound like it's too out of step with averages.

And I'd still like to know what his monthly pension was at 29 years vs. what it would be been "fully vested" at 30 years. I know it certainly isn't 0 at 29 years, but just how significant of a difference was it?

I'm not saying I don't have sympathy for someone losing their job unexpectedly, esp. someone who was in his mid or late 50s, but only had an 8th grade education. Even in the 1990s, that wasn't common and yes, he was going to have very limited job opportunities.

And there is also no explanation about why he would still be paying a mortgage now, 24 years after losing his job, after having a good job for 29 years.

It's kind of a perfect storm of bad luck, but at least he does recognize that he isn't completely blameless here.
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Old 12-14-2018, 01:49 PM
 
9,353 posts, read 6,249,009 times
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I worked to 70, not because I had to but wanted to.

Been retired for 3 years and love every minute of it.
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Old 12-14-2018, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Dallas TX
15,024 posts, read 21,723,664 times
Reputation: 22191
I don’t think hubby and I will ever be able to retire. I am terrified, we have hardly anything saved, and have gotten deep in debt. My husband lost his job two years ago and we have had a hard time getting back in our feet. To top it off he refuses to put anything into a 401k.

He has 9 years until he is 65. I am absolutely terrified.
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