Scraping by on $150,000 a year....

Discussion in 'Countryside Families' started by NCGirl, Jan 13, 2007.

  1. NCGirl

    NCGirl Well-Known Member

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    Poor souls :rolleyes:


    http://articles.moneycentral.msn.com/SavingandDebt/LearnToBudget/ScrapingByOn150000AYear.aspx


    If she thought it would really fix her family's finances, Amy Schuett would make it her New Year's resolution to squeeze every bit of extra spending from the family budget.

    But she's already slashed so many little luxuries -- the gourmet coffee, the restaurant lunches, the weekly dates with husband Brian -- that she's fresh out of ideas.

    Cable TV? Unplugged. Pool membership? Down the drain.

    They've even considered giving up their unlisted phone number. At a cost of $3 a month, this move wouldn't save much -- even over, say, 150 years -- but it shows how desperate the couple feel about easing their financial strain. "We're struggling week to week to get by," says Brian, 42. "Any money that comes in gets chewed up right away."

    Digesting that fact becomes harder when you consider that the Schuetts earn a comfortable living, with Amy, 39, pulling in $150,000 a year as a hospital psychiatrist. True, their income did take a big hit last summer when Brian got laid off from his job as a sales rep for a pharmaceutical firm (he'd been making a base salary of $82,000 a year, plus commissions as high as $24,000).

    And they do have four daughters to raise, ages 4 to 9. But still.

    The Schuetts don't have any child-care bills (Brian is now a stay-at-home dad). They don't have credit card debt. They don't splurge on fancy vacations. And they live in a nice but definitely not luxurious home on a three-acre plot in Elkhorn, Neb., just west of Omaha, where the cost of living is, well, livable.

    Yet, says Amy, "We live from one paycheck to the next, we're struggling to save, and we never seem to have enough money to do anything fun."

    It's a statement that an awful lot of Americans can make these days. About two-thirds of families need their next paycheck to meet their living expenses, according to a recent survey by the American Payroll Association.

    While many claim to be clueless about where all their money is going, it's often easy enough for an objective observer to figure out. After all, easy credit makes blowing bucks at the mall (or anywhere else) painless -- at least until you find yourself mired in high-interest debt.

    And once your lifestyle has been lifted, it becomes utterly unthinkable to live without satellite radio, TiVo, iTunes and Netflix. And is any suburban clan complete without a monstrous SUV in the driveway? (It can't fit in the garage.)

    If, like the Schuetts, you're determined to stop living for every payday and start saving, these strategies should help



    THERE IS MORE ARTICLE ON THE LINK IF YOU CARE TO READ IT.

    Perhaps someone from the board could help these poor souls get a grip on their finances?????
     
  2. seedspreader

    seedspreader AFKA ZealYouthGuy

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    Without credit card debt, living in Nebraska making 150K a year???


    BWAHAHAHAHA.

    I can live like a king on a third of that.
     

  3. happycat

    happycat Well-Known Member

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    "A closer look at the Schuetts' finances reveals, for example, that a big chunk of their income is eaten up by two rental properties. Brian purchased them thinking they'd generate extra income, but he has yet to find tenants. Even when the properties are finally occupied, the area's softening rental market probably won't allow them to make enough to cover carrying costs."

    They needed a financial expert to see this? They may be beyond hope.
     
  4. Meg Z

    Meg Z winding down

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    I had to hunt down on the second page to find what they're doing with all that money! They need to sell those unrented and unrentable rentals! If they can. If not, sell 'em for salvage rights, and plant a garden on the lots! Good grief, what I could do with $150K a year.

    Amazing.
     
  5. largentdepoche

    largentdepoche Well-Known Member

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    We live on 80 bucks a month, this month we came into alittle money and it's like the heavens are raining down!

    We got an extra 60 bucks this month LOL! :)

    Kat
     
  6. Beaners

    Beaners Incubator Addict

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    I swear I thought the article was supposed to be a joke. And their poor kids have a horse but not a dime set aside for college too? They don't need tips for saving money, they need to be slapped upside the head. Tips for saving money are things like buying extra sale items that you can store, not "get rid of your two rental properties."

    Kayleigh
     
  7. Terri

    Terri Singletree & Weight Loss & Permaculture Moderator Staff Member Supporter

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    If they rented or sold those properties at a loss, they would still be ahead from having them unoccupied.
     
  8. ladycat

    ladycat Chicken Mafioso Staff Member

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    They need to SELL them! Sheesh!!
     
  9. lvshrs

    lvshrs Well-Known Member

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    This is insane! We would be high on the hog if we made that kind of money...pay off the credit cards,have a very healthy savings account and a afford a decent amount of land to start our homestead....People like this need to pull their head out of their padded posterior and try living on 20,000 a year.
     
  10. FiddleKat

    FiddleKat Mother,Artist, Author Supporter

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    They have no reason to cry poor mouth.
     
  11. unregistered6474

    unregistered6474 Guest

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    This family actually lives in my parent's neighborhood! My parents sent me the article. I grew up in Elkhorn NE so I know the area well.

    My parents said that they drove by the house and that there were two luxury cars (a Lexus and something else) sitting in the driveway.

    Hmmm ... perhaps that is part of the problem?
     
  12. jen74145

    jen74145 Well-Known Member Supporter

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    YIKES.
    150,000 a year?! It boggles me to think what we could do with that. sigh...
     
  13. mama2littleman

    mama2littleman El Paso

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    I can see how it happens. Your standard of living rises to meet your income. It's a phenomenom that DH and I have taken to calling "Lifestyle Creep". You start thinking "Oh, I work so many hours I deserve to treat myself to lunch" or "I work hard enough to afford TIVO" or I have earned the right to go on an expensive vacation, we work so hard we deserve it" and before you know it ... Boom! You're living pay check to paycheck on a six figure income.

    I'm not saying it's right, I'm just saying I can see how it happens. We have to be very careful not to fall into that trap.

    Nikki
     
  14. Lizza

    Lizza Well-Known Member Supporter

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  15. Yeti

    Yeti Well-Known Member

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    I can under stand where it can get out of control. I have seen people leak money like the Titanic. I was looking at houses last year and this one kept coming up about 2 miles north of me. the wife drug me to look at it. it was 3200 sq.ft. and brand new ,but had been forclosed on before it could be sold by the builder. it was listed for $790,000 and the base taxes were $14,600. I can only imagin what the heat & light bills were. it had a 4 car attached Garage and 2 acres of land. I couldn't beleive the bank was only asking $550,000 for it...what a deal!

    I must say I could live pretty well on $150,000 a year.
     
  16. HeavenHelpMe

    HeavenHelpMe Well-Known Member

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    I can only imagine how much money we'd have in savings for a nest egg for us and a starter savings for our son! Wow!

    Live ultra-high-on-the-hog on $50,000 and bank the $100,000 each year. Oh, if only! :Bawling:
     
  17. seedspreader

    seedspreader AFKA ZealYouthGuy

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    To be fair they are in the 28% tax bracket (just for fica), but still you're looking at 100K take home probably. And honestly, with the loss on rental units, they should have a heck of a tax right off.
     
  18. moopups

    moopups In Remembrance

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    Maybe they should try life at $9,120.00 anually for two. That is the situtation here.
     
  19. chicamarun

    chicamarun Well-Known Member

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    We're in that tax bracket. However - we still think of ways to cut back (we do have a lot of bills from getting this farm up and running but at least the kids colleges are paid for and they aren't even out of elementary school yet).... I make the bread for the house.... I can stuff.... we grow a lot of stuff... it all adds up. My splurge? I have my milk delivered and I belong to the wine club...oh and now we have netflix because I haven't really watched movies in over 3 years so I thought we might want to get caught up with some of the new "sayings" out there. Plus on top of that - my kids are both doing 4-H to earn money.

    I wonder what these people are teaching their kids?
     
  20. ladycat

    ladycat Chicken Mafioso Staff Member

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    I know how that goes!!