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12 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

Random question.

If you do your taxes somewhere like H&R Block, is it possible to meet with them and file your taxes jointly without your spouse present?  

I've done this, it's pretty straight forward.  Just slip the guy a c note

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Well, today we paid off the last 22 years of our mortgage.  We sold/closed our investment property last week that we bought in 2013.  We did well on it and rolled that money up with some savings and p

Can't really talk about it with RL friends and most of it is pre-tax, but sat down with the wife and figured out that the household is officially in the two comma club. Ten years ago I was unemployed

My big win was in getting educated on personal finance, getting organized, and making a plan. Details: 1. Learned the value of an HSA and contributed for 2019 and 2020. 2. Got my wife’s

On 8/9/2020 at 3:19 PM, ConstruxBoy said:

Agree that most in this thread go it alone. I'm actually trying to break into the CFP business as a mid-life career change. I really enjoy the subject and think it would be a fun career.

 

Let us know how this goes. I've been contemplating the same, along with estate planning (I'm a member of the bar in this state). But it's been mentally challenging to contemplate leaving the comfort of federal employment to go private.

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13 hours ago, OrganizedChaos said:

You can meet with without spouse but they will need to sign tax return (which you can take home) before they file it

Just do it on line :shrug:

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1 hour ago, -OZ- said:

Just do it on line :shrug:

Or download TurboTax. I’ve got pretty easy taxes, but I buy it at Costco when it’s $10 off, download it and it takes me an hour at most. Most transfers from the year before and some W-2s and investment transactions just download automatically that it’s really easy. I do my oldest son’s as well as his is cake. 

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Just wondering what type of coverage levels and deductible you guys have for home owner's insurance? 

For my auto insurance I'm a high deductible guy. What's the highest level of deductible for home owner's insurance you guys are comfortable with? First time homeowner so not aware of the costs of repairs, etc.

Edited by Charlie Harper
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10 hours ago, Charlie Harper said:

Just wondering what type of coverage levels and deductible you guys have for home owner's insurance? 

For my auto insurance I'm a high deductible guy. What's the highest level of deductible for home owner's insurance you guys are comfortable with? First time homeowner so not aware of the costs of repairs, etc.

This answer to this will vary a lot based on location.  For example, here in FL, our insurance is pretty high and we are technically in a flood zone.  We have to buy a separate flood insurance policy.

I'm not sure what our deductible is off the top of my even though we had to use a couple years ago for Irma (insurance bought us a new roof and a new fence!  Yay!).

Definitely look into bundling auto and homeowners insurance if you can.  It could save you a ton of dough.

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11 hours ago, Charlie Harper said:

Just wondering what type of coverage levels and deductible you guys have for home owner's insurance? 

For my auto insurance I'm a high deductible guy. What's the highest level of deductible for home owner's insurance you guys are comfortable with? First time homeowner so not aware of the costs of repairs, etc.

I’d say whatever you’re comfortable paying out of pocket. Lower deductibles well jack up your premium because the insurance company then expects you to file a claim for every small thing. Seems like the sweet spot is usually around 1% of the coverage amount but I have a high insurance score (can’t remember the technical term for it) so my premium is still reasonable with a $1,000 deductible. I would just get a few quotes from your agent and go with the monthly payment and deductible combination you’re most comfortable with. 

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12 hours ago, Charlie Harper said:

Just wondering what type of coverage levels and deductible you guys have for home owner's insurance? 

For my auto insurance I'm a high deductible guy. What's the highest level of deductible for home owner's insurance you guys are comfortable with? First time homeowner so not aware of the costs of repairs, etc.

I'm at $1,000 deductible and made our first claim this month. Leak under the bathtub, cost over $10,000 in damage. Everything was covered except we decided to redo the floor while we got new paint, new vanity, everything is new. Along with the $1,000 deductible, the floor cost $650 and the fixtures (faucets, shower head, new light) cost another $250.  We just took the money out of our EF. I guess the amount over $1,000 wasn't really emergency but target of opportunity.

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Update on the guy from Northwestern Mutual who wants to be my financial advisor.  Yes, he is acting as a fiduciary in this situation.  He gets paid by the commission on the life insurance and he wants 1% of the account value every year to manage the combined life insurance, brokerage, and retirement accounts. 

He worked up a pretty comprehensive assessment of where I am now and a plan to improve income available in retirement. 

I'll post more details later. 

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18 hours ago, The Z Machine said:

Update on the guy from Northwestern Mutual who wants to be my financial advisor.  Yes, he is acting as a fiduciary in this situation.  He gets paid by the commission on the life insurance and he wants 1% of the account value every year to manage the combined life insurance, brokerage, and retirement accounts. 

He worked up a pretty comprehensive assessment of where I am now and a plan to improve income available in retirement. 

I'll post more details later. 

1% is a ####load of money.  He's just going to recommend whatever NM tells him to.  You don't need anyone to manage life insurance stuff.  I would make sure you ask any questions in here before pulling the trigger.

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19 hours ago, The Z Machine said:

Update on the guy from Northwestern Mutual who wants to be my financial advisor.  Yes, he is acting as a fiduciary in this situation.  He gets paid by the commission on the life insurance and he wants 1% of the account value every year to manage the combined life insurance, brokerage, and retirement accounts. 

He worked up a pretty comprehensive assessment of where I am now and a plan to improve income available in retirement. 

I'll post more details later. 

You didn't ask, but I agree with this:

13 minutes ago, Tiger Fan said:

1% is a ####load of money.  He's just going to recommend whatever NM tells him to.  You don't need anyone to manage life insurance stuff.  I would make sure you ask any questions in here before pulling the trigger.

If you find the FA to be worth while, shop around. 

But unless you have some really complicated taxes and/or are managing 8 figures (and if that's the case, 1% is really expensive) you probably don't need one. 

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7 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

You didn't ask, but I agree with this:

If you find the FA to be worth while, shop around. 

But unless you have some really complicated taxes and/or are managing 8 figures (and if that's the case, 1% is really expensive) you probably don't need one. 

Yeah, at this point, no chance I’d pay 1% to someone who wasn’t actively getting me better than S&P returns (by more than 1%).

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12 minutes ago, stbugs said:

Yeah, at this point, no chance I’d pay 1% to someone who wasn’t actively getting me better than S&P returns (by more than 1%).

At this point, I'm not paying someone to manage my investments unless they teach me more than I already understand.  (Emphasis on the teaching)

But, if I wanted to own real estate and/or had complicated taxes, that could be worth paying for someone to manage. 

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54 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

You didn't ask, but I agree with this:

If you find the FA to be worth while, shop around. 

But unless you have some really complicated taxes and/or are managing 8 figures (and if that's the case, 1% is really expensive) you probably don't need one. 

Agree completely on both of these. FAs are good for complicated situations for well off people. That's likely worth 1%. Just setting up investments is likely not worth it and although you said he would be a Fiduciary, I'm not liking that he gets commission on life insurance. Need to be careful there. It's easy to be talked into more insurance than you really need. 

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48 minutes ago, stbugs said:

Yeah, at this point, no chance I’d pay 1% to someone who wasn’t actively getting me better than S&P returns (by more than 1%).

I've said this before, but if you think a FA is just a stock picker, you're missing the point. There's way more to it than that. 

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3 minutes ago, ConstruxBoy said:

I've said this before, but if you think a FA is just a stock picker, you're missing the point. There's way more to it than that. 

I understand just saying that if I am paying 1%, I’m expecting solid gains. Underperforming the market makes 1% even more expensive. Also, my father is still an insurance agent so I’m aware of a lot of other sides of finance. I’m definitely a lot more informed so to me the 1% would be a lot more about the investment return than anything else.

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Question.  My dad called my brother yesterday and says he wants to give us (his 3 kids) each 15 grand.  No real reason.  He isnt sick or dying or trying to hide money or anything.

He calls today and says nah, something about taxes blah blab blah.

So my question is, if my dad decides to write each of us a check for 15 grand, is there any sort of tax ramifications?

In Ohio

TIA

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36 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

Question.  My dad called my brother yesterday and says he wants to give us (his 3 kids) each 15 grand.  No real reason.  He isnt sick or dying or trying to hide money or anything.

He calls today and says nah, something about taxes blah blab blah.

So my question is, if my dad decides to write each of us a check for 15 grand, is there any sort of tax ramifications?

In Ohio

TIA

No, but it may be where the money is coming from, such as he could give you money out of an ira and not pay taxes.

i had to explain to my mom why she couldn’t just move an ira and a 403b into a living trust a couple weeks ago.

 

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36 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

Question.  My dad called my brother yesterday and says he wants to give us (his 3 kids) each 15 grand.  No real reason.  He isnt sick or dying or trying to hide money or anything.

He calls today and says nah, something about taxes blah blab blah.

So my question is, if my dad decides to write each of us a check for 15 grand, is there any sort of tax ramifications?

In Ohio

TIA

I can’t speak to Ohio rules, but there would be no federal gift tax on a gift of $15k to each of you. If he had to sell an investment to raise cash there could be capital gains tax but he could also just gift the appreciated stock instead. 

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11 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

Its cash.  No IRA.  Not from any investment.

No federal tax then on $15k a year to each of you if he wanted. Maybe he just changed his mind, or maybe OH has taxes for that?

 

Good write up here. Don't see anything about state taxes: Link

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3 minutes ago, ghostguy123 said:

So now my dad says he is going to deposit 30k into my brothers bank account, then my brother will write each of us a check for 10k.

Is the initial deposit of 30k any sort of issue if my brother turns around and gives 20k of that to his two siblings?

Technically I suppose your dad should file a gift tax return because he is giving your brother over 15k (unless your brother is married and the gift is deemed to be for both of them).  Why wouldn't he just write 3 checks?

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2 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

So now my dad says he is going to deposit 30k into my brothers bank account, then my brother will write each of us a check for 10k.

Is the initial deposit of 30k any sort of issue if my brother turns around and gives 20k of that to his two siblings?

Why make it more complicated than it needs to be?

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3 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

So now my dad says he is going to deposit 30k into my brothers bank account, then my brother will write each of us a check for 10k.

Is the initial deposit of 30k any sort of issue if my brother turns around and gives 20k of that to his two siblings?

Outside of possible tax implications, You may love your brother and trust him completely, but money has a way of making people do crazy things. I’ve seen families falling out over smaller sums than 20k.

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7 minutes ago, Buckna said:

Outside of possible tax implications, You may love your brother and trust him completely, but money has a way of making people do crazy things. I’ve seen families falling out over smaller sums than 20k.

Unless that brother is scamming Dad, I don’t know why he’d agree to that. Potential tax issues and having to explain large deposits/checks (not nefarious maybe just refinance) would make me tell Dad to write three checks.

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7 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

So now my dad says he is going to deposit 30k into my brothers bank account, then my brother will write each of us a check for 10k.

Is the initial deposit of 30k any sort of issue if my brother turns around and gives 20k of that to his two siblings?

NOPE!  Don't do that unless he makes out the check to both your brother and his wife.  Your father (or anyone) can give gifts up to $15k per person without incurring the need to file a gift tax return.  If he writes the $30k check to only your brother, then he will need to file a gift tax return.  Most likely a gift tax return won't increase his taxes, but the expense of the return is there (assuming he uses an accountant).  I am not an accountant, but have dealt with this issue in Ohio.

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4 hours ago, Buckna said:

Outside of possible tax implications, You may love your brother and trust him completely, but money has a way of making people do crazy things. I’ve seen families falling out over smaller sums than 20k.

Zero chance of anything shady.  My brother knows I would cause way more than 10 grand worth of damage to his house and his personal well being if he tried to steal it.  I live a tenth of a mile down the road from him, and he knows I like to play with fire.🤬

Anyway, come to find out my dad and brother still have a joint savings account from many years ago.  They say they didn't close it because they both have to be there in person to do it, and my dad lives in Arizona.  Seems stupid they couldn't close it during one of their visits.  Whatever, so I guess my dad is going to transfer 30k into that savings account, then my brother is going to transfer that to his other account and write each of us a check for 10 grand.

Legit with no issues right?

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2 hours ago, ghostguy123 said:

Zero chance of anything shady.  My brother knows I would cause way more than 10 grand worth of damage to his house and his personal well being if he tried to steal it.  I live a tenth of a mile down the road from him, and he knows I like to play with fire.🤬

Anyway, come to find out my dad and brother still have a joint savings account from many years ago.  They say they didn't close it because they both have to be there in person to do it, and my dad lives in Arizona.  Seems stupid they couldn't close it during one of their visits.  Whatever, so I guess my dad is going to transfer 30k into that savings account, then my brother is going to transfer that to his other account and write each of us a check for 10 grand.

Legit with no issues right?

Accounts typically only need one signer present to close the account. 

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So this is the reason that you save a bit for a rainy day and have an emergency fund.  Ostensibly a story about how slow the unemployment system is, but that isn't what I got from it.

52 year old architect at a Manhattan firm.  So making bank, or at least some healthy portion of that.  Pandemic hits.  After losing the job is immediately broke. Gives up his car lease (ugh).  Drains 401k to cover expenses (which means he essentially had nothing tucked away there, either).

Article I linked a bit back notes that about 1/3 of people making 200+k spend it all.  I suspect this is one of them.  Don't be this guy.  

Edited by Sand
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16 minutes ago, Sand said:

So this is the reason that you save a bit for a rainy day and have an emergency fund.  Ostensibly a story about how slow the unemployment system is, but that isn't what I got from it.

52 year old architect at a Manhattan firm.  So making bank, or at least some healthy portion of that.  Pandemic hits.  After losing the job is immediately broke. Gives up his car lease (ugh).  Drains 401k to cover expenses (which means he essentially had nothing tucked away there, either).

Article I linked a bit back notes that about 1/3 of people making 200+k spend it all.  I suspect this is one of them.  Don't be this guy.  

Yeah, amazed by some friends and neighbors that have pretty extravagant lifestyles that seem unsupported by their job income. Maybe some trust funds or something but I think a lot of them are in way more debt than they should be.  

ETA: And really the super low interest rates will just make it worse because people will use it to justify more debt. 

Edited by ConstruxBoy
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17 minutes ago, Sand said:

So this is the reason that you save a bit for a rainy day and have an emergency fund.  Ostensibly a story about how slow the unemployment system is, but that isn't what I got from it.

52 year old architect at a Manhattan firm.  So making bank, or at least some healthy portion of that.  Pandemic hits.  After losing the job is immediately broke. Gives up his car lease (ugh).  Drains 401k to cover expenses (which means he essentially had nothing tucked away there, either).

Article I linked a bit back notes that about 1/3 of people making 200+k spend it all.  I suspect this is one of them.  Don't be this guy.  

What an odd situation. Like you said 52 year old architect who has credit card debt and no emergency fund. He does however have a leased car while working in Manhattan so probably lying through the nose for parking and I’m sure leasing a 7 series or the like. Then we find out he only has an $8k 401k? Then we find out he has a 2.5 year old son? How was this guy going to ever stop working and retire?

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3 minutes ago, ConstruxBoy said:

Yeah, amazed by some friends and neighbors that have pretty extravagant lifestyles that seem unsupported by their job income. Maybe some trust funds or something but I think a lot of them are in way more debt than they should be.  

ETA: And really the super low interest rates will just make it worse because people will use it to justify more debt. 

There are definitely some people whose families have way more money than you’d think, but there are way more living above their means. I get it, however, it wasn’t easy having a single income for over a decade with three kids and a wife who enjoyed life, not a coupon cutting big time saver (she’s made up for it). That said, I’ve never owned a boat or vacation rental or leased a car or bought a luxury car.

This guy was meant to be an example of unemployment checks not getting paid quickly but the more you read the more you realize this guy was having issues with money while he was employed.

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33 minutes ago, Sand said:

So this is the reason that you save a bit for a rainy day and have an emergency fund.  Ostensibly a story about how slow the unemployment system is, but that isn't what I got from it.

52 year old architect at a Manhattan firm.  So making bank, or at least some healthy portion of that.  Pandemic hits.  After losing the job is immediately broke. Gives up his car lease (ugh).  Drains 401k to cover expenses (which means he essentially had nothing tucked away there, either).

Article I linked a bit back notes that about 1/3 of people making 200+k spend it all.  I suspect this is one of them.  Don't be this guy.  

That's pretty amazing.  I'm so thankful that my wife and I have always been more or less on the same page when it comes to household finances and investing.  

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49 minutes ago, Sand said:

So this is the reason that you save a bit for a rainy day and have an emergency fund.  Ostensibly a story about how slow the unemployment system is, but that isn't what I got from it.

52 year old architect at a Manhattan firm.  So making bank, or at least some healthy portion of that.  Pandemic hits.  After losing the job is immediately broke. Gives up his car lease (ugh).  Drains 401k to cover expenses (which means he essentially had nothing tucked away there, either).

Article I linked a bit back notes that about 1/3 of people making 200+k spend it all.  I suspect this is one of them.  Don't be this guy.  

So many people feel compelled to keep up appearances. And assume their job will always be there.

25 minutes ago, stbugs said:

There are definitely some people whose families have way more money than you’d think, but there are way more living above their means. I get it, however, it wasn’t easy having a single income for over a decade with three kids and a wife who enjoyed life, not a coupon cutting big time saver (she’s made up for it). That said, I’ve never owned a boat or vacation rental or leased a car or bought a luxury car.

This guy was meant to be an example of unemployment checks not getting paid quickly but the more you read the more you realize this guy was having issues with money while he was employed.

:yes: to the bolded. My wife hasn't been A HUGE spender but still. In a way having multiple kids and a SAHM has allowed us to not worry about keeping up. I assume people just assume we're not wealthy, and I'm quite good with that assumption.

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2 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

So many people feel compelled to keep up appearances. And assume their job will always be there.

:yes: to the bolded. My wife hasn't been A HUGE spender but still. In a way having multiple kids and a SAHM has allowed us to not worry about keeping up. I assume people just assume we're not wealthy, and I'm quite good with that assumption.

Lol. My wife has had her moments. It’s amazing the difference between her working and not working though. She’s made up for every penny and then some. Still, I can emphasize a bit with keeping up with the Joneses especially with 3 kids. It ain’t cheap, but unlike most neighbors I see in their $50-70k SUVs and kids with Jeeps, my last 4 cars are 2 used, 1 gift from my dad and 1 new Highlander that my friend got a sweet deal using a large local company’s discount with Toyota. I didn’t have to pay freight, even got big discount on every option, came out to $8k better than dealer including selling my car instead of trading it in. I’ve also now had that car for 8 years, 3 with no payments and it’s going to my middle son next year when he gets his full license and can drive to school. The gift from my dad had 90k miles and he refused to trade it in based on the low ball over. I drove it another 4 years and buried it as the tranny was on it’s last leg and the engine died. I’ve got a nice car (RX 350 F Sport) that I love but I paid a #### to less than the person who paid for the first two years. They paid 1/3 drove it for 19k miles and I’ll pay 2/3 and drive it for 120k or more. I appreciate their down payment. 

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1 hour ago, ConstruxBoy said:

Yeah, amazed by some friends and neighbors that have pretty extravagant lifestyles that seem unsupported by their job income. Maybe some trust funds or something but I think a lot of them are in way more debt than they should be.  

ETA: And really the super low interest rates will just make it worse because people will use it to justify more debt. 

I see this all the time (I'm a loan officer) with clients. People that make $100k plus (our median income is $50k, starter home is about $280k) and don't have any savings, don't contribute to retirement accounts and are just loaded with debt. 

I try to help them budget and put them on a 3-6 month plan but very few actually listen to me. 

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34 minutes ago, stbugs said:

. I’ve also now had that car for 8 years, 3 with no payments and it’s going to my middle son next year when he gets his full license and can drive to school. The gift from my dad had 90k miles and he refused to trade it in based on the low ball over. I drove it another 4 years and buried it as the tranny was on it’s last leg and the engine died. I’ve got a nice car (RX 350 F Sport) that I love but I paid a #### to less than the person who paid for the first two years. They paid 1/3 drove it for 19k miles and I’ll pay 2/3 and drive it for 120k or more. I appreciate their down payment. 

Yep. Cars can crush you if you let them but you can be smart about it.

Our last few vehicle purchases:

2019 paid cash for a 2018 used RAV4 - "my" vehicle but the wife has been driving it more than me lately. bought with 30k miles, now has slightly over 40k

2011 paid cash for a 2011 Honda Odyssey - wife's / family use. Bought new, now has 135k miles

2009 paid cash for a used 2007 Highlander. Bought with 30k miles, now has 166k. Oldest son uses it, we'll keep passing it on to the next driver. Hopefully it makes it to our 6yo.

Last vehicle we financed was a 05 Dodge Grand caravan, which was the worst vehicle we ever bought.

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2 hours ago, stbugs said:

I get it, however, it wasn’t easy having a single income for over a decade with three kids and a wife who enjoyed life, not a coupon cutting big time saver (she’s made up for it). That said, I’ve never owned a boat or vacation rental or leased a car or bought a luxury car.

I was in no way denigrating those who have to live a bit closer to the line.  Just noting that this guy very likely had every opportunity to build a cushion and hasn't.

An 8k 401k means that he has effectively saved a buck a day during a 20 year work career.  

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2 hours ago, -OZ- said:

Yep. Cars can crush you if you let them but you can be smart about it.

Not hard to do.  Over the 30 years I've had a car I've paid a total of 30k for my rides.  And the last one was new.

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2 hours ago, CR69 said:

I see this all the time (I'm a loan officer) with clients. People that make $100k plus (our median income is $50k, starter home is about $280k) and don't have any savings, don't contribute to retirement accounts and are just loaded with debt. 

Compound interest is the 8th wonder of the world, but it works just as effectively in destructo mode. 

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7 minutes ago, Sand said:

I was in no way denigrating those who have to live a bit closer to the line.  Just noting that this guy very likely had every opportunity to build a cushion and hasn't.

An 8k 401k means that he has effectively saved a buck a day during a 20 year work career.  

Oh, I agree with you. This guy was awful at prepping for the future. You could see it in the little tidbits of info. I just was empathizing knowing how expensive it can be. That said we never truly struggled but it was easy to not save as much as I should have.

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5 minutes ago, Sand said:

Not hard to do.  Over the 30 years I've had a car I've paid a total of 30k for my rides.  And the last one was new.

That's impressive. We're significantly higher especially when you include maintenance (not to mention insurance and gas). Our current vehicles cost us $60k in purchase price.

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2 hours ago, -OZ- said:

Yep. Cars can crush you if you let them but you can be smart about it.

Our last few vehicle purchases:

2019 paid cash for a 2018 used RAV4 - "my" vehicle but the wife has been driving it more than me lately. bought with 30k miles, now has slightly over 40k

2011 paid cash for a 2011 Honda Odyssey - wife's / family use. Bought new, now has 135k miles

2009 paid cash for a used 2007 Highlander. Bought with 30k miles, now has 166k. Oldest son uses it, we'll keep passing it on to the next driver. Hopefully it makes it to our 6yo.

Last vehicle we financed was a 05 Dodge Grand caravan, which was the worst vehicle we ever bought.

I haven’t paid cash for a car yet and not sure I ever will unless rates jump up. I did get one car for free and my oldest inherited his papa’s car, so that’s the closest. Timing should work well for my last two kids to get our high mileage cars that hopefully last them through college and first few years of working. That would be nice. No desire to buy my kids a new car but I see that all the time.

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11 minutes ago, Sand said:

Not hard to do.  Over the 30 years I've had a car I've paid a total of 30k for my rides.  And the last one was new.

I don’t think I could do that unless you kept your cars for 10+ years.

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5 minutes ago, -OZ- said:

That's impressive. We're significantly higher especially when you include maintenance (not to mention insurance and gas). Our current vehicles cost us $60k in purchase price.

About the same for me but I’ve already had one for 8 years and it will be with us for 6 more years at a minimum. Other only 3 years but probably 9 more based on handing it down. With that length of time you are talking about a nice car being less than $200 a month. That’s not bad.

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