<< Back to all Blogs
Login or Create your own free blog
Layout:
Home > Archive: October, 2016
 

Archive for October, 2016

feeling anxious

October 27th, 2016 at 03:15 am

I'm found a realtor in one of the areas we liked. She is very good but I find myself again pulling back. I'm feeling pressured. I know I'm grinding my teeth over the anxiety. I can feel myself waking up just thinking and worrying.

Have I mentioned I am using redfin? I really like the touring agents and the method behind touring without pressure. I like how you have to tell the offer agent when you are ready. I didn't like the fact that the offer agent I had didn't respond for 2-3 days when I emailed her. I know it's not full service and I don't need hand-holding I just want a person who responds.

So I switched for one area to a full service agent. And now I'm regretting it. The realtor is very good in the keeping in touch. She's also good about following up with other agents. But I don't think she likes how indecisive I am.

I don't think she likes the fact that I want to see the house more than 1x. That I'm looking at houses with my DH then we want to go back before deciding. Every house we've seen and gone back she's asked and pushed if we want to put in an offer.

The truth is we haven't found the house we want. I was very honest with her today that we are in a lease till July 2017. We decided that we would buy our dream home now if it shows up and if it doesn't we'll wait.

But I don't want to settle now. I'm not ready to compromise and buy a home in the location I am not in love with until March or April. Until then I want to wait and keep watching what comes on. I've yet to walk into anything and been "wow" i want this. Everything has been meh and compromised. I know that I have to compromise, everyone does.

Am I wrong to wait? Do I need to rush? I feel like if I'm going to compromise does it have to be now? Can't it be when we're under the gun and need to move?

Yes I feel my DH breathing down my neck about his commute. Today was another 2 hour commute. But at the same time he's willing to wait because he agrees we haven't found it yet. I don't know what "it" is but all homes have been okay.

What should we do? Since we aren't rushing should I just use redfin and suck it up? I can honestly say we hvaen't seen a house we've kicked ourselves over and said we should have bought. I feel so guilty that this is taking so long and more anxious that I won't find anything.

Suggestions?

My parents retirement plan

October 27th, 2016 at 12:19 am

I want to strangle my mom. I love her and my parents have more than enough to retire on. But my mom doesn't it. She won't spend her money. I want to smack her so hard and tell her you can't die with it and I don't want it.

My mom is in the car with me as I'm prying out about her she feels she can't buy a house she wants. I say just buy the DAMN house. She says "oh we'd have to liquidate" and how will we afford it? I point out to her she gets SS, my dad gets SS, and she gets a pension.

Her monthly take home pay is says is $3k pension, $2k SS, Dad's SS $3k, and $1500 RMD from IRA because he's still working. She's retired and has been for 10 years and still contributing to a ROTH ira. They bring home at least $10k/month and my mom is still trying to save money.

I don't know what for. I wanted to strangle her. I said please buy a new car. Please buy a house you want or renovate it. Her car is a 20 year old Avalon that the A/C is broken in Hawaii but she just constantly refills coolant. She had a leaking roof for years because she couldn't pick a roof.

I wanted to shake her. I begged her to please stop saving. She looked me in the eye and said "oh it'll go to DK1 and DK2. You don't need it, but it's ridiculously frivilous to spend $10k/month".

I give up. I'm not even sure my mom realizes that they make more than the majority of the population. They are still earning income my dad is 86 today (happy birthday dad). They are only drawing on IRA because they have to. OMG. Why aren't they enjoying it?

This same mentality is why she tells me I have to work. The idea of actually spending what you saved for retirement seems crazy.

Do you savers plan on spending your retirement money? Or do you think when you get there you'll be living only off other stuff?

My thoughts has always been we'd draw on our retirement. I always had a plan to be done working by 50 and FI by 45. Looks completely on track, but my DH has mentioned more and more he'd prefer to work a bit longer he's not ready to jump off the hamster wheel. I get it he loves his job. But I like knowing we could.

But can working/saving become addicting? I feel like my parents have worried too much.

Giving early or later?

October 18th, 2016 at 04:22 pm

I'm going to admit to suddenly for once being jealous. In a few different ways. My cousin just bought a house with down payment help from both sets of parents. Neither of them have a good job and yet they can buy $800k home without selling their $350k condo. She's an only and I've heard that he's from a "rich" family. Some envy that they get help.

But I have recently known a lot of people who get down payment help from their families. I know multiple people whose parents gave them the down payment of $50 or $100k or more. Some are even paying/funding college for their kids.

I guess my thought is how are these parents able to give their kids/grandkids money now? I know my parents and in-laws are secure. I don't expect any help nor will we get any. But it's likely they will leave us something eventually.

I guess I'm jealous because how do people know they have enough to give to their children before death? How do they know when they are only in the 60s and 70s and in "early" retirement to know they have enough? I ponder this because I'd like to think that maybe we'll save enough to help our kids.

It's a stretch goal that we are able to pay 100% for 4 years of college, some money for a wedding/house down payment, and a car out of college. In that order I'd like to gift our kids with a leg up. I've really thought about it but we'll be in our early 50s and potentially retiring when they go off and finish college. But how will I know that I have enough? How will I be able to part with so much cash so early in our "retirement" position? Of course if DH chooses to work past 50 then I'm assuming we have a large cash flow.

But how secure do I have to be? Do I think maybe whatever our parents leave behind will be used to be passed on? I think maybe we'll get something but I could be entirely wrong. Our parents have paid for homes and pensions. But I'm not sure much cash on hand, which is understandable why gifting us with anything is pretty much nil.

But how do we get there? How do you know? Have you been gifted a substantial amount of cash from your parents or grandparents? Was it before death? If so why before? How did they know they had enough? If you got it upon death did you expect it? Was it more or less than you expected?

power and prestige?

October 16th, 2016 at 05:35 pm

I don't like Donald Trump. I still haven't reconciled voting for Hillary either. I don't want to write in Gary Johnson, but I would write in Bernie Sanders.

Anyway this past week after watching the Donald Trump video and his words. It came up in a group of moms. I am disgusted and his words on the video definitely helps perpetuate rape culture.

More than one mom talked about rape on their college campus and having a friend go through it. I am unsure if it really was "friend or themselves" and they were hiding behind the words. Truth is that many guys talk like that especially guys with money and privilege. I mean look at the Stanford swimmer. The more expensive universities tend to have more kids born like Donald Trump to privilege.

I think that Donald did many actions that definitely were suspect in proper behavior. Because he thought he had the money, right, and power. And women don't talk about it because they are embarrassed and many times feel like they were to blame. I had a college roommate who was "date" rape but she never reported because she was drunk. She couldn't give consent but felt shame because she "brought it on herself". I wasn't there it was a sorority/fraternity party. Yet how much has it changed?

Now do we believe women? Do we say that being drunk is not consent? Or do we still bring up the victims past? My favorite line is Michelle Obama's a strong mand doesn't have to put down women.

I'm disgusted by Donald Trump. It just shows his total disdain for people in general. Actually both candidates do. I don't think either people have any sort of moral fiber. Arrrgh.

Do you think he did sexual assault all those women? Or is it the media? I wonder if more come out if it's really all made up. It's falling into the same line of more women stepping forward like Bill Cosby.

i hate house hunting

October 11th, 2016 at 09:36 pm

I am already tired of looking for a home and I've only just started. It's been exhausting and I think the real problem is that my DH and I agreed I would give homes the first run and then only show him the homes that past the muster. I have found a lot of homes with a some sort of problem. I will admit that I've managed to narrow down what I want in the house.

Location is key. We want a 30-45 minute commute for DH in a good school district. He had 2x last week of 2 hour commutes. There were accidents and the bus just got stuck and he was in at work around 10 am after leaving at 8 am. He also had a couple of 95-100 minute return commutes home when it should be between 75-90 minutes typically. This has made him exhausted. He can't work on the shuttle because he is easily motion sick so he only sleeps or listens to podcasts/audio books. But the truth is it's tiring even just adding those extra hours to his day. He's ready to buy the first house we can because of it.

We also have made a list and managed to define needs versus wants. We need 3 bedrooms but want 4 for guests. We need 2 car attached garage but want 3. We need a yard but want at least 1/4 acre but will likely compromise. We need a den, but want a den and bonus/playroom. We need the bedrooms together. We'd settle for a 4 bedroom and bonus if we could use the guest bedroom for a den/4th bedroom. Of course everything is negotiable based on price and location.

One of the problems? Is I feel like realtors are just trying to sell us any house and don't really care. I've gone out a couple of weekends and two different brokers on two different days in two different areas basically said "hey put in an offer." Nevermind neither house was exactly right, they both felt we should jump on it and just go in with an offer. I feel like both realtors feel like "hey let's get rid of these people with homes."

These were the full service brokers. I've found I prefer using redfin to tour homes not full commission based realtors because the full service realtors give me their opinion as to why a house is great. They don't point out the negatives. Instead they are basically just trying to sell me on every home. I wish they would shut up. Hence touring with the redfin is a lot more relaxing and calm. They are based on tours and I can see what I want and make my own notes and take in the house.

I feel also the full commission realtors don't want to bring me back. With redfin I feel as though I can go back more than once to see a house. I learned from a friend you should go see a house more than once because this is a big purchase. Don't rush and make a snap decision. I need to see a home at least 3x I feel. 1 by myself, 1 with DH, then again with DH at a different time of day.

This is the biggest purchase we'll make and I feel as though they want us to see it for 20 minutes and bam put down money. At least with redfin I don't feel that sort of touring pressure.

I will say that I think the full service realtors are better at figuring out negotiations and pricing. The ones on redfin are honestly BAD. They have no idea how to do comps and really price out an offer.

But right now I've told DH if a house falls in our lap we'll buy it. I've gotten a feel for what he likes. I think that we are going to wait and if we can't find a house we really like then we will settle in March/April. But until then I think we should keep looking until we find a home that hits all the boxes and works out for us.

owning a pet is expensive

October 10th, 2016 at 11:39 pm

So this past year we've spent $7938 on our dog. He's still alive amazingly. He was diagnosed with cancer left september and he torn his ACL and was 14 years old or so. He's a rescue so we're not really sure how old he is but we've had him for 10 years and they thought he might be around 3-4 years old in 2006 when we got him. The acl healed, we did chemo, and he's in pretty good spirits still.

When our other dog died 2010 I would guess I spent even more in his last year of life. I wasn't ready having been pregnant and just had a baby. I wasn't ready to let him go. When he did go I was ready and we'd had a good year with him.

But now I see lots of families who go to school with my kiddos getting a new puppy. For the "kids" to grow up with. I hope they understand what they are getting into. A huge commitment both of time and money. It's expensive to travel and when they get older you don't travel unless they are with you. Hence for now we're stuck driving because he can't handle plane rides anymore and we're too nervous he'd die if we left him at a kennel for more than an overnight. And a dog walker wouldn't work since he'd get upset being left alone so long.

Truth is I get that pets aren't family. He's not my kid. But he is I will admit probably my best friend. I am the one who walks him 2-3x/day. I'm the one who cares for him by brushing and bathing him. He sat next to me on the couch when I cried with post-partum depression. I was medicating halfway through my second pregnancy it was so bad. He walked with me when I pushed the stroller 365 days a year and when I felt lonely. I admit that he's not a person and he's not "family". But he is my friend and I've never admitted what we spend on him or our previous buddy.

I don't think that we'll get another dog anytime soon. Certainly not while he's alive. But seeing the numbers in black and white now before he passes is easier. It's not a pretty number, but it's real. I guess we know where a good chunk of our money last year went. LOL.

If anyone ever gives you a "puppy present" give it back. It's probably one of the most expensive gifts you'll ever get.

Do you know what you spend on your pets? I feel a little sticker shock since I've never added it up.

a year in financial review

October 8th, 2016 at 02:56 pm

It's been a great year. I'm doing it now a little late because as of September 1st we spent a whole year in our new life. It's been amazing for all of us. We got to get closer as a family with DH not working for 11 months. He pretty much did not get a paycheck for 12 months. But he was unemployed from August 15 2015 to July 25 2016.

We burned through $91.5k. Yes you read that right in 11 months. Granted $17k was tuition but still that $74.5k. We spent around $6700/month including our fees for renting our place which was $8k up front costs. So we spent around our normal $5500/month rate we had budgeted. Lucky for us a signing bonus helped bump our spending for the year up to $71.5k including the $17k tuition.

Was it worth it? Yes. We had a great time. I think perhaps our spending will force us to delay "retirement" by 1 year.

I forgot that from our $91.5k we direct $4k to college for kids, $11k to Roth IRA so I guess we "saved" $15k out of the $91.5k. Also we're maxing out Roth IRA and 401k this year on a compressed 5 month paychecks. So we're still on track to save for retirement even if we aren't saving our normal cash cushion.

But the real goals were met. Move and be able to be closer to family. Get job that DH loves. Buy a house. Check on first two and working on the third.

Sometimes in life as I'm reflecting on the past year you have to spend money to make money. You have to invest in yourself, maybe start a business, buy a rental property, go back to school and retrain to get to where you want to be. It's a HUGE risk and it can cost you a lot of money. But the rewards can be significant, not just financial but pay dividends in other ways.

I suspect our net worth might be able net zero with gains in our retirement accounts. But back to regular programming of saving now. I have to admit it was REALLY daunting spending all this cash without any income. To go from being a saver to a spender. This could be why my DH and I are not meant to be true early retirees, we are too nervous nellies and risk averse to pull the trigger. We're actually very close to being able to do it but would rather pad our accounts.