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PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 3:47 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
Posts: 284

About half way through my 2nd read.


It might be a glaring case of the obvious, but the book really drives home that my 1600 sq. ft. town house is the biggest hurdle to my financial independence. Not just the interest, taxes, and association fees, but the required maintenance and accessories. I failed to properly account for that when evaluating if it made financial sense to move out.


When the microwave broke, I could not just slap a new one on the counter. I had to replace the over-stove one at twice the cost, plus installation. My wife wanted to use the fire place (my idea if hiding it behind a bookshelf was vetoed), there goes another $1000 for doors, gas logs and installation. I put that one off over 4 years, but eventually compromises are made.


The 2nd bedroom has 3 heating vents, all we use it for is the spare shower. We'd like to paint, but the great room has 25 foot ceilings, so we're probably not doing that ourselves. If we want to, we'll need to get a really big ladder and risk falling off. I am pretty sure all my heat is up there too. On and on.


I need to go through my junk again. Even though our peers say we have nothing (it does not seem like much in all this space), we have hundreds of things that have not been used in the last 6 months. A lot of it has not been touched in years.


It was interesting to me how much I missed on the first read through last year. And I still want that damn pressure cooker. I can't bring myself to buy until amazon has a 20% off sale on kitchenware though.




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PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 4:00 pm 
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Joined: Sat Mar 05, 2011 12:43 pm
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Any chance your housing situation can change? Sometimes you don't want to change the situation because you think you will spend more in the process, but when you do the math you find out that the difference in savings is so big that you will in fact be saving more by changing.




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PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 10:07 pm 

Joined: Mon Aug 02, 2010 4:45 am
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I would just buy the pressure cooker. I find that, when I procrastinate about implementing a project that's important to me, I regret it a lot more than the times that I've invested in a project that didn't work out.




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PostPosted: Sat Mar 10, 2012 11:04 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
Posts: 284

The housing will change eventually, it's more a question of when. I'd previously calculated 10 years in our current place was about $30k more expensive than downsizing. Between my wife and I, the extra $1500 a year was deemed worth it for now. We are on track to be FI in 10 years, even with the house.


A recovery of the real estate market could certainly hasten that transition. I'd ultimately like to be in a single story brick house, maybe 1000-1200 square feet. Basement would be nice, but not a deal breaker either way. That's the other downside of the town house long term - it is not built with maintenance in mind.


Amazon will put on a kitchenware sale sooner or later, and I'll get that pressure cooker then. Plenty of other ways for me to work on saving.




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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 1:14 am 
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Joined: Thu Feb 17, 2011 4:30 am
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Location: STL

Yeah, this is a book I'll probably re-read once every year or two until I read it, I don't know 3-4 times.




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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 3:20 am 

Joined: Thu Mar 31, 2011 12:55 am
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I have read it once through to the end, and read portions again here and there.




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PostPosted: Sun Mar 11, 2012 11:35 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
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You guys get anything new from the book on the additional reads. I was kinda thinking people would say "yeah, I am re-reading it now, with the time I've spent pursuing financial indepedence, this jumped out at me that I missed before..."


Jacob's argument against outsourcing menial skills like cooking or doing the taxes jumped out at me today. I went back through it this morning, while having my pre-Aldi tea and bagel.


Sunday mornings I hit the grocery store, then on Sunday evening I cook food for the week. I have been wondering if it would be better to hire someone for 10-15 bucks an hour to do that stuff for me, then use the time to invest in building my salary or some consulting work.


The point that I'd miss out cross-training my brain is pretty solid. I have found the analysis I used to drive down grocery costs useful in other scenarios, and the ability to make some basic food has definitely let me relate to others better.


It's not all about maximizing the difference between salary and expenses. I lose track of that at times, the book was a nice reminder.




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PostPosted: Mon Mar 12, 2012 10:05 pm 

Joined: Tue Feb 14, 2012 7:38 pm
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I'd like to re-read it again...


But this time, it would be out-loud, my DW would be sitting next to me.. :)


**she's generally on-board, but she's also in school right now and doesn't have time to read it herself or to really focus in on the fundamentals..which is cool..for now..but we're not going to be able to go full-bore until we're both on the same page. There's still a disconnect between "we can afford that" vs. "we should afford that" ... the trade-off between wants/needs, etc.. I'm saving bars of soap from business travel; she's buying Aveda products at the mall..lols. On the whole, I still have things really great though..just a couple areas to tighten-up.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 13, 2012 2:24 am 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
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Heh, I know the feeling. At this point I have my wife on a first name basis with Jacob, Amy, Kristen and Joe/Vicki.




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 4:17 pm 

Joined: Fri Feb 03, 2012 12:47 am
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I know who the others are, but who is Kristen?




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PostPosted: Wed Mar 14, 2012 11:42 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
Posts: 284

http://www.thefrugalgirl.com


Stay at home mom with a fantastic attitude.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 2:35 am 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
Posts: 284

Love the section about ensuring your goals are aligned with one another. I skimmed over it last time, but the wisdom really struck home with me this time.


I think the difference is, I have managed to slow my life down enough that work no longer totally dominates. My first instinct was to start pursuing half a dozen goals, all heading in different directions.


Over the past half a year, I found my self skipping from goal to goal, eventually giving up some, consolidating others.


Now, I discover my goal setting has trended towards the approach Jacob suggests. When building up A enables greater performance at B, life really is much easier.


The concept is simple. Acting on it consistently is hard.




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 3:49 am 
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Location: Chicago, IL

I gets pretty easy though :)




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PostPosted: Tue Mar 20, 2012 7:53 pm 

Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 10:34 pm
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I think the real difficulty is in accepting loss of part of my self-image, which previously included the behaviors and anticipated rewards of the misaligned goal.


For instance, despite owning a pool table, my life does not support what is needed to become an exceptional pool player. When I actually started to invest the effort required, and exposed myself to be people who are good, the limitations were obvious. Banging a few racks around at home made me think I was awesome. I am not.


The funny part is, that part of my self-image was delusional. Until I introduced a mechanism that provided objective assessment (playing in tournaments), I was blind to it. There is no real loss, just a forced acknowledgement of reality.


Designing goal alignment, instead of letting it emerge, is a habit I still need to develop. I anticipate that as I prune the misaligned (delusional) goals, staying consistent will become easier.




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