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Old 09-10-2009, 11:13 AM
 
Location: San Diego California
6,797 posts, read 6,638,108 times
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"Living in Beverly Hills" by James Quinn. FSO Editorial 09/09/2009

In this article the author points out how many of us seem to be willing to sacrifice their future prosperity in order to impress friends and neighbors now.
Do you feel this is an accurate depiction of many Americans? Do you feel you fall into this category?
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Old 09-10-2009, 11:31 AM
 
975 posts, read 1,629,442 times
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Yes it's accurate. Everyone's trying to live like me and I'm getting sick of it.
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Old 09-10-2009, 12:30 PM
 
Location: Warwick, RI
3,683 posts, read 4,547,541 times
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It's very accurate, and it's pathetic. People don't seem to be able to grasp the fact that continuing to spend money you don't have to keep up with the Joneses puts you in debt over your head very, very fast, and takes a loooooong time to recover from. Although living within your means and saving money requires discipline and sacrifice up front, it eventually allows you to live the the "keep up with the Joneses" lifestyle, only without the debt. The longer you live within your means, the greater your means become.
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Old 09-10-2009, 01:41 PM
 
Location: DFW - Coppell / Las Colinas
36,731 posts, read 40,860,537 times
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I have not had a car payment in 25 years and have 2 pretty nice vehicles. No credit card debt and only a house payment that I am working on.

I think about all the money in my pocket yearly that could be going to others to finance credit and get a warm & fuzzy feeling.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:19 PM
 
Location: Windsor, Vero Beach, FL
897 posts, read 2,650,669 times
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Not everyone you see that drives a nice car and/or lives in a nice home is in as desperate financial shape as you may think. Before you scorn everyone please realize you have no idea how much they have in their wallet, bank account(s) etc. While there are many people that have lived beyond their means, there are just as many that are just fine.

I was at Meijer a few weeks back, loading groceries in the back of my vehicle and an older gentlemen made a saracastic comment about "where" I was shopping and the "make" of the SUV I own . I made eye contact with him, smiled and politely stated "have a nice day". He grumbled on, saying something else under his breath. I just ignored him at that point.

There are quite a few actual "Joneses" out there. Be nice.
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Old 09-10-2009, 02:57 PM
 
Location: Portland, Oregon
7,090 posts, read 11,181,800 times
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Many do, though usually it is the people who are poor who try to impress people with things. Many strain to say "Look at this stuff, I'm not poor really". You can see it by the number of rent a center trucks go tooling around their house, or the number of newer model leased cars you see, they always seem to be eating out and coming home from shopping trips. Now they are paying for that poor decision in even worse terms.

Those who are the wealthy often dress as they please, not really to impress (unless they need to). Most drive old cars that seem to have been running forever, decent but not flashy houses or what's inside. They don't need to keep up with the Jones on the outside, nor do they really care, they just shovel everything into real wealth instead of depreciating assets.

Heck, I saw this myself going through college and grad school. I always lived simply and saved like mad through school (and still do), furniture from the thrift stores, my car looked like some one already totaled it (kept people from touching it when it looked like that, and no one followed close), home cooked meals, cheap clothes...and friends who were the opposite with new luxury cars, premium furniture, nice apartments in primo locations. It was hilarious going out with them because they would rib me over how cheap I was and in the next breath would complain about how much they were paying in credit card and car debt each month. I lost a few who decided to come with us to test drive when my wife's car finally gave up the ghost, and I handed the full amount to the salesman and we drove off.
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Old 09-10-2009, 03:21 PM
 
Location: Windsor, Vero Beach, FL
897 posts, read 2,650,669 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by subsound View Post
Those who are the wealthy often dress as they please, not really to impress (unless they need to). Most drive old cars that seem to have been running forever, decent but not flashy houses or what's inside. They don't need to keep up with the Jones on the outside, nor do they really care, they just shovel everything into real wealth instead of depreciating assets.
Please, not the "millionaire next door" mantra again. I am not be uber wealthy (not inherited) but DH and I have worked hard to get where we are at. Career wise, DH would not be where he is at today driving in an old beater car and dressing ho-hum. Much of what you see in corporate America is necessary to get ahead.

Yes, again, there are those that live hand-to-mouthto "look" wealthy. DH & I, like many others, used many "millionaire" ideas to get where we are at. But, you cannot continue to lump everyone you see into this nice neat little package of want-to-be's.

You have no idea what is in some one's wallet. Be nice.
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:08 PM
 
Location: Milwaukee
933 posts, read 1,756,412 times
Reputation: 1605
Quote:
Originally Posted by GeminiGal View Post
Not everyone you see that drives a nice car and/or lives in a nice home is in as desperate financial shape as you may think. Before you scorn everyone please realize you have no idea how much they have in their wallet, bank account(s) etc. While there are many people that have lived beyond their means, there are just as many that are just fine.
.

I really have no problem with a little scorn here. Look at some of the facts the author lays out. The average value of loan on new car purchase - 101%. Total debt mortgage in U.S. 10.5 trillion vs. Equity 8.5 trillion. We all know the credit card debt problem so no bother posting that. To many people have been irresponsible with their money and they should be called out. The responsible have to pay for this mess, so we should have a say.

Now comes the hard part. Cleaning up the mess these clowns have created.
Good luck to us on getting out of this. We may never be the same.
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:45 PM
 
Location: Windsor, Vero Beach, FL
897 posts, read 2,650,669 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Allan Trafton View Post
The average value of loan on new car purchase - 101%. Total debt mortgage in U.S. 10.5 trillion vs. Equity 8.5 trillion. We all know the credit card debt problem so no bother posting that.
Car purchases are at historic lows. People that need or those that can afford to are the only ones buying cars.

Um, the majority of folks in the US own homes and yes they have loans on those homes - where are you going w/ your numbers?

Consumers are paying off cc debt - yes it is still a problem - but from what is being reported they are doing quite well paying that debt off.

"Driving to the poor house" is overkill. It plays on emotions. It makes those that are climbing out of debt feel better and those that have little to no debt and continue to struggle envious of anyone that drives a luxury car or lives in a $500K plus home.
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Old 09-10-2009, 04:51 PM
 
1,369 posts, read 2,092,593 times
Reputation: 1100
Quote:
Originally Posted by subsound View Post
Many do, though usually it is the people who are poor who try to impress people with things. Many strain to say "Look at this stuff, I'm not poor really". You can see it by the number of rent a center trucks go tooling around their house, or the number of newer model leased cars you see, they always seem to be eating out and coming home from shopping trips. Now they are paying for that poor decision in even worse terms.

Those who are the wealthy often dress as they please, not really to impress (unless they need to). Most drive old cars that seem to have been running forever, decent but not flashy houses or what's inside. They don't need to keep up with the Jones on the outside, nor do they really care, they just shovel everything into real wealth instead of depreciating assets.

Heck, I saw this myself going through college and grad school. I always lived simply and saved like mad through school (and still do), furniture from the thrift stores, my car looked like some one already totaled it (kept people from touching it when it looked like that, and no one followed close), home cooked meals, cheap clothes...and friends who were the opposite with new luxury cars, premium furniture, nice apartments in primo locations. It was hilarious going out with them because they would rib me over how cheap I was and in the next breath would complain about how much they were paying in credit card and car debt each month. I lost a few who decided to come with us to test drive when my wife's car finally gave up the ghost, and I handed the full amount to the salesman and we drove off.
So true.

Some of the wealthiest people I've ever known have been the most unassuming. Compared to some of my work colleagues who were desperate to "have" the trappings of a millionaire lifestyle on salaries that fell well short. Lost track of the number of people who "refinanced" on their properties and are now turning pale as the value of their home has fallen.

A true millionaire - in my opinion - is someone who could casually stroll to the bank and withdraw a million in cash - not someone whose "net worth" is tied up in their home and vehicles.

And you're right about not throwing money into a depreciating asset - one of my friend's fathers is driven around by a chauffeur in a top of the line Mercedes whilst working - and earns 7 figures - at home he drives an old sedan - because he thinks buying a new car is a total waste of money and equally, has nothing to prove to his neighbors or anyone else for that matter. He would be happier driving himself whilst working but his high business profile requires that he has a chauffeur (also so that he can work in transit) and an upscale vehicle - for business he flies First, for family trips they fly coach. If you met him, you would have no idea how wealthy he is.

Last edited by London Girl; 09-10-2009 at 05:02 PM..
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