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(Boing Boing)   A family with a million dollar house earning $200,000 a year but with no savings will get more student aid than someone with a modest house earning $50,000 a year and $200,000 in savings   (boingboing.net) divider line 277
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10597 clicks; posted to Main » on 14 May 2013 at 11:11 AM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-05-14 12:16:32 PM  

abhorrent1: Just be a minority. The government will make rain for you.


Dey terk er jerrrbs!
 
2013-05-14 12:17:05 PM  

Tatsuma: .... a million dollar house is a pretty regular (or even small-ish) house in most of the country, Subby. And a family of four living on a $200,000 is not any means rich.


derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp
 
2013-05-14 12:18:45 PM  

Rapmaster2000: A million dollar house is not a lot of money.  ... I spent a whole summer washing cars at my Dad's dealership to pay for school and I made plenty.


Well sure, $1,000,000 isn't much if you're pulling-down car-washing money!
 
2013-05-14 12:19:06 PM  

Raharu: Thunderpipes: Never understood why people think student aid should only be for the poor. People that make money then have to pay for their kids, as well as poor people's kids. And God forbid you go back to school as an adult when you have a good job.


Because most people are not terrible human beings like you.
If you can afford it without aid, then you clearly don't need the aid.
I see it as being greedy, like going to a food bank, when you have more then enough money for food.


No, not at all. I went back to school in my late 30s. I made too much money for aid. So a combination of out of pocket, and student loans. Crippled my disposable income, now I have loans, and all because I had the audacity to have a job? Can't even deduct the goddamn tuition costs on my tax return.

So I payed for mine, and lazy people's kids. Ya, real "fair" that is.
 
2013-05-14 12:19:44 PM  
Do not start a college fund in little Johnny's name. Any assets in his name directly impact the amount of financial aid he might otherwise qualify for. Keep assets off his balance sheet. Hide all your money in your own IRA/401k and have lots of debt on your house. Drain savings and put it in cash when you fill out those applications. This is how you earn max financial aid. Apart from cake, the lie is saving for college... all you end up doing by saving is paying the highest price for the same education.
 
2013-05-14 12:20:55 PM  

dustygrimp: Tatsuma: .... a million dollar house is a pretty regular (or even small-ish) house in most of the country, Subby. And a family of four living on a $200,000 is not any means rich.

derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp


I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich.  We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and a dog.  We're certainly not starving, but neither are we wealthy.
 
2013-05-14 12:22:23 PM  
This is news?

Seriously, I could've told you this 11 years ago when my older sister went to college.  My parents paid off their house, their cars, and had no credit card debt.  But because of their modest savings and no debt, we did not qualify for any financial aid.  The financial aid adviser actually told my parents to open a 2nd mortgage and leave the cash in the bank because then they would qualify.

Remember people, FAFSA weights DEBTS higher than ASSETS when determining aid.
 
2013-05-14 12:22:35 PM  

jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and a dog. We're certainly not starving, but neither are we wealthy.


change 'most of the country' to 'most big cities in the country' and $1,000,000 to '$500,000 to $1,000,000' and my post is accurate.

This is also pretty much what I meant to begin with, should have been more accurate.


$200,000 a year for a family is barely middle-class unless you live in the middle of nowhere.
 
2013-05-14 12:22:52 PM  

Thunderpipes: Raharu: Thunderpipes: Never understood why people think student aid should only be for the poor. People that make money then have to pay for their kids, as well as poor people's kids. And God forbid you go back to school as an adult when you have a good job.


Because most people are not terrible human beings like you.
If you can afford it without aid, then you clearly don't need the aid.
I see it as being greedy, like going to a food bank, when you have more then enough money for food.

No, not at all. I went back to school in my late 30s. I made too much money for aid. So a combination of out of pocket, and student loans. Crippled my disposable income, now I have loans, and all because I had the audacity to have a job? Can't even deduct the goddamn tuition costs on my tax return.

So I payed for mine, and lazy people's kids. Ya, real "fair" that is.


img822.imageshack.us
 
2013-05-14 12:23:06 PM  

Alphakronik: I wonder what percentage of the populace has over $200k in the bank?


I think it's in the 10% range, if I'm remembering correctly. (Was looking that up, recently.)
 
2013-05-14 12:24:15 PM  

itsaidwhat: I paid for a public college education by working - it took six years - I graduated with no debt. All these cry babies complaining about student loans can suck it. I'm not alone. I know a lot of people that ate beans and lived one grade above homeless to achieve the same. The govt is just perpetuating poverty in the poor by indebting them thru college.


what year was that?  I did that too, in the 90s.   Then I watched tuition go up by 50% over the course of the 4 years it took for my wife to get through a program during the..err...00s.
 
2013-05-14 12:25:04 PM  

Alphakronik: I wonder what percentage of the populace has over $200k in the bank?


While I'm pulling out Census data, there's this (Excel... multiple charts in the spreadsheet). Best general numbers I've found. They make the breakdown at $250k household wealth, not $200k.   Around 26% of US households have net wealth over $250k, but that's including home equity.  "In the bank" (meaning investable, including retirement accounts, but not primary home) over $200k, you can roughly infer from the numbers given that it's 12-15% of the nation's households.  More than half of those households will be headed by people 60-and-over.
 
2013-05-14 12:25:51 PM  

Bumblefark: Well, the most obscene thing is that that we as a society has decided that it isn't in our best interest to ensure post-secondary education to the nation's best and brightest. We decided that we should make higher education a consumer item.


The best and brightest are pretty much guaranteed school.
Now they may have to choose between paying various amounts for a top tier school (If the school thinks they can get money out of them) or going to a state school on a full ride. But IMHO if you get offered a full ride to the best public schools in your state, you don't have much room to biatch about the costs if you choose to go to school in some other place.

It's the rest of us that have to make the choice.

That said: A  $600 scholarship? Really? Fark you USC...
 
2013-05-14 12:26:22 PM  

Ivo Shandor: Goodluckfox: Define "most"??? I think you meant "in certain markets, a "normal" house runs about a million dollars."

For example in Vancouver, BC a million dollars gets you this. A half million might get you something about the same size, between two auto body shops and across the train tracks from a rendering plant.


what's that, like $35 K  American?
 
2013-05-14 12:27:57 PM  

Gabrielmot: Tatsuma: Lawnchair: In the world of facts, a million dollar house is in the top 2.3% of home values in the nation. The median owner-occupied home value is $186,200.

No, those are houses that are worth more than a million dollar. If you take houses between 500,000 and 999,999, then that's 10% of the country, or the vast majority of people who have houses in decent neighborhoods in New York, Chicago, LA, or any other major city out there.

Do a search of www.har.com for Houston (just for giggles).

Because the tax structure is so different here (no state taxes, just property and sales taxes), prices are no where near what they are in New York, Chicago, or LA. Same goes for any city in Texas including Dallas and Austin.

In the grocery a few days back, I just met a new retired couple who moved here from New York. They kept going on about how nice people were here, and how cheap housing, food, etc. was. You'll have to remember, that even though Texas votes Republican, most of the large cities are primarily Democrat, so they fit in nicely.

I'm originally from Louisiana, and I think people in Houston are jerks, and the cost of living and housing is expensive, even though I live in the "best" part of Houston (so YMMV).

A million dollar home in Houston and a moderate income gets you a lot more than you'd get in New York, Chicago, or LA (don't get me wrong, as a consultant, I loved Chicago when I was there for a year). But comparing on house value alone isn't a fair comparison.


Out of curiosity, what part are you calling the "best" part of Houston?
 
2013-05-14 12:28:53 PM  
4 years of SUCK as 11B in the 82nd Airborne = $50,000.

5 years and a masters degree later...debt free.

FARK YEAH! 'MERICA!
 
2013-05-14 12:29:39 PM  

Sticky Hands: Bumblefark: Well, the most obscene thing is that that we as a society has decided that it isn't in our best interest to ensure post-secondary education to the nation's best and brightest. We decided that we should make higher education a consumer item.

The best and brightest are pretty much guaranteed school.
Now they may have to choose between paying various amounts for a top tier school (If the school thinks they can get money out of them) or going to a state school on a full ride. But IMHO if you get offered a full ride to the best public schools in your state, you don't have much room to biatch about the costs if you choose to go to school in some other place.

It's the rest of us that have to make the choice.

That said: A  $600 scholarship? Really? Fark you USC...



I forget my numerical SAT scores, but the sum put me in the 99th percentile -- #2 of 416 in my graduating class -- and was offered exactly $0 in aide by my state school (Univ. of Minnesota).  I didn't end up going there for undergrad, but still...
 
2013-05-14 12:31:13 PM  

IamAwake: ThatGuyGreg: A family with a million dollar house earning $200,000 a year is most likely horrifically in debt, or if not, a layoff or health problem not covered by insurance away.

/just saying

Then they should stop living beyond their means, by selling the house and getting one they can afford.  Then, they can use the excess proceeds to send their kids to college.


I remember in the late 90's my guidance counselor being super surprised when I told him my family wasn't planning on applying for financial aid in sending me to college. Practically everyone was applying - and my parents certainly weren't in the "upper tiers" of wealth in comparison to others in my HS. But looking back, I believe a lot of people had "fake" wealth.

My parents always dreamed of sending me and my brother to wherever we wanted to go (a chance they themselves didn't have), and started saving when we was in the womb. Yes, they were solidly upper middle class but really at the end of the day we lived well within our means - I wore Kmart and my parents drove 15 year old cars. This is why my Dad was able to retire the day I graduated HS and still pay for my college. I'm incredibly thankful.

Most of the "wealthy" parents I knew back then are still not retired and deeply in debt and many of my classmates had to take out hundreds of thousands in loans for college. But they had brand new BMW's and huge houses and their kids all wore designer brands - so I just assumed they were far wealthier than me. They may have in fact been wealthier than my parents, but they spent it as quickly as it came.

I try to think about this fact every time I spend money on something frivolous.
 
2013-05-14 12:33:23 PM  

Tatsuma: $200,000 a year for a family is barely middle-class unless you live in the middle of nowhere.


What I'm getting from you in this thread is that you consider anywhere further afield than Park Slope to be the middle of nowhere.
 
2013-05-14 12:33:32 PM  

itsaidwhat: I paid for a public college education by working - it took six years - I graduated with no debt. All these cry babies complaining about student loans can suck it. I'm not alone. I know a lot of people that ate beans and lived one grade above homeless to achieve the same. The govt is just perpetuating poverty in the poor by indebting them thru college.


And when did you do this?
 
2013-05-14 12:35:03 PM  

Tatsuma: jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and a dog. We're certainly not starving, but neither are we wealthy.

change 'most of the country' to 'most big cities in the country' and $1,000,000 to '$500,000 to $1,000,000' and my post is accurate.

This is also pretty much what I meant to begin with, should have been more accurate.


$200,000 a year for a family is barely middle-class unless you live in the middle of nowhere.


Um, no. I live in NYC and went to HS in one of America's wealthiest suburbs.. $200k is absolutely upper middle class. Hubby and I make a bit over $160k together and I certainly consider myself upper middle class - I can purchase a home while still saving money for my kid's college and my retirement. Now, can I afford a 3bd/2 ba in the Upper East Side? No. But I live very well in "normal" middle class Queens.
 
2013-05-14 12:36:03 PM  

jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and


You're in the 95% percentile, dude.
 
2013-05-14 12:36:27 PM  
Are you telling me that aid is means-tested and thus anybody with even modest means is ineligible but if you are loaded down with debt you technically qualify because your assets are less than zero?

Sorry, I was just chatting with Charles Dickens, the famous comic author, and not paying attention.

In order to qualify for welfare you have to liquidate all your financial assets (savings, notably) before they pay a penny. But many welfare recipients have nice suburban houses, given to them by the state.

Welfare for a single person does not pay the rent on the grungiest batchelor (bedsitter if you're in the UK) but I see welfare moms on TV living in apartments that are clean, neat, well-furnished, equipped with all the latest conveniences, and about ten times better than my own squalid dump.

To claim unemployment insurance you must first liquidate any cash, bank account savings, or pay you have due to you, such as vacation pay, severance pay, etc. But somehow this does not prevent the rural poor from having snow mobiles, ATVs, giant plasma TVs, etc., luxuries that the working poor (often the same as the honest welfare poor, mind you) daren't dream of.

It has been like this for centuries. The Elizabethan Poor Laws were as draconian and callous as the Victorian Work House. Modern welfarism is not a jot better, but vastly more complex and expensive.

I suspect that even charitable conservatives wouldn't hate the welfare state if they weren't constantly riled up by the inequities and absurdities of the thing.

My father's income was too high for me to be eligible for student loans, but a guy I knew didn't let that stop him. He boasted that he was setting aside all this unneeded money and I wouldn't be surprised if he is now a millionaire Tory dumping on the welfare classes despite having his university education paid out of their hefty (proportionally) taxes.

It's a Catch 22 situation. If the Government was lax with the monies it dribbles into the pockets of the poor, the vast amount it pours into the pockets of the upper middle classes (tax credits, tax shelters, various subsidies to investment, etc.) would not save it from the wrath of the middle classes and the 1%.

Many benefits such as unemployment insurance are means-tested but nonetheless the biggest payouts go to those with the greatest means.

For example, you get a percentage of the wage that you paid unemployment insurance dues on, so the better you are paid, the longer you work, the more money you get when unemployed, even though you may need it less than everybody else receiving payments.

A lot of these "welfare" benefits are skewed to the top of the range of income. Which coincidentally is where the voters and political donors are.

Teenagers, wives and other dependents can live in the lap of luxury but claim pogey (welfare, unemployment insurance) for half the year. Meanwhile, many of the people on welfare more or less permanently (say, half the year) have to work at three jobs to be able to afford to live without work.

When Bush the Dumber congratulated that poor American at having three jobs, that is the point when a Samurai should have leaped out of the crowd and neatly snicker-snacked his head off without him knowing it until he bent over to pick up a dime.

And that is why I hate all of the classes and prefer to think of myself as Paul Fussell's Brand X.

Not only is Saint Paul right in saying that all have sinned, but Paul Fussell is right in pointing out that the class system is a giant pyramid scheme and that intelligent, creative and sensitive people should have no part of it, if such were possible.

Personally I prefer a steady, adequate pay-cheque so I work as a drudge in Sector 7-G of the Government.

It used to be a safe and pleasant job away from the hubbub, not unlike being a monk. But all the good jobs disappear when I look at them. I am currently considering a career as a blood-thirsty dictator in hopes that it is me and not the Way of the World or le Monde come il va.
 
2013-05-14 12:36:46 PM  

ThatGuyGreg: A family with a million dollar house earning $200,000 a year is most likely horrifically in debt, or if not, a layoff or health problem not covered by insurance away.

/just saying


A family with a household income of $200k can easily afford a $1M house.  If they have no other debts they could comfortably push that to 1.3-1.4 million as long as they have a reasonable down payment.
 
2013-05-14 12:37:26 PM  

DubyaHater: Earn $50K a year and have $200K in savings?  No one in this planet is that good with money.


You and I clearly have different friends.

Sock $10k a year into a mutual fund (not pleasant, but not impossible if you're single, no kids, etc.) and it'll take you 13 years or so.
 
2013-05-14 12:37:31 PM  

Lollipop165: Tatsuma: jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and a dog. We're certainly not starving, but neither are we wealthy.

change 'most of the country' to 'most big cities in the country' and $1,000,000 to '$500,000 to $1,000,000' and my post is accurate.

This is also pretty much what I meant to begin with, should have been more accurate.


$200,000 a year for a family is barely middle-class unless you live in the middle of nowhere.

Um, no. I live in NYC and went to HS in one of America's wealthiest suburbs.. $200k is absolutely upper middle class. Hubby and I make a bit over $160k together and I certainly consider myself upper middle class - I can purchase a home while still saving money for my kid's college and my retirement. Now, can I afford a 3bd/2 ba in the Upper East Side? No. But I live very well in "normal" middle class Queens.


This ... $200k a year means that your HOUSEHOLD is in the top 2% of ALL HOUSEHOLDS (two incomes) in the entire country ...

Seriously, if you don't think $200k/year is upper-middle class, you are seriously farked in the head.
 
2013-05-14 12:39:08 PM  

thurstonxhowell: What I'm getting from you in this thread is that you consider anywhere further afield than Park Slope to be the middle of nowhere.


Pretty much
 
2013-05-14 12:40:33 PM  

dustygrimp: Tatsuma: .... a million dollar house is a pretty regular (or even small-ish) house in most of the country, Subby. And a family of four living on a $200,000 is not any means rich.

derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp


Not derpp.   In my area, if you are a single dude making 100k, you are just getting by.  If you have a family and all the extra expenses invilved, which probably means the wife works and you have to pay someone to watch your kids,..  200 is ok.  Certainly not rich and swimming in a bathtub of coins like Uncle Scrooge.

If you live in Houston, you are doing well.  But then, you have to live in Houston.
 
2013-05-14 12:41:56 PM  
Yeah, Vancouver is farking nuts. I'm eagerly awaiting a massive correction.
 
2013-05-14 12:42:54 PM  

Detinwolf: jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and

You're in the 95% percentile, dude.



Including the entire US, possibly.  In the San Francisco Bay Area, certainly not.  A 2br. townhouse in the complex I live in sells for around $600-700k.  They're not super-luxurious either -- mine was built in the early 50s IIRC (but remodeled just before I moved in).

I'm not claiming poverty or anything, but $200k just does not go very far around here, and I don't have the option of moving to a rural area and maintaining my salary (there are not a lot of jobs for PhD engineers in the middle of a corn field).
 
2013-05-14 12:42:56 PM  

seadoo2006: Seriously, if you don't think $200k/year is upper-middle class, you are seriously farked in the head.


Trust me, it's not.  Just a different set of problems, especially when April rolls around.
 
2013-05-14 12:43:34 PM  

Sticky Hands: Bumblefark: Well, the most obscene thing is that that we as a society has decided that it isn't in our best interest to ensure post-secondary education to the nation's best and brightest. We decided that we should make higher education a consumer item.

The best and brightest are pretty much guaranteed school.
Now they may have to choose between paying various amounts for a top tier school (If the school thinks they can get money out of them) or going to a state school on a full ride. But IMHO if you get offered a full ride to the best public schools in your state, you don't have much room to biatch about the costs if you choose to go to school in some other place.

It's the rest of us that have to make the choice.

That said: A  $600 scholarship? Really? Fark you USC...


Over a decade in the higher education biz. I assure you: the myth that our farked up system nevertheless somehow manages to provide for those who ought to receive a higher education, regardless of their financial situation, is...well, a myth.
 
2013-05-14 12:43:51 PM  

Detinwolf: jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and

You're in the 95% percentile, dude.


Guess what, they are in the 95th percentile of expenses too.  Do you have to pay $13.95 for a sub where you live?
 
2013-05-14 12:44:37 PM  

jshine: dustygrimp: Tatsuma: .... a million dollar house is a pretty regular (or even small-ish) house in most of the country, Subby. And a family of four living on a $200,000 is not any means rich.

derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp

I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich.  We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and a dog.  We're certainly not starving, but neither are we wealthy.


That's a very different viewpoint. The wife and I are at $145k/yr in Atlanta (Decatur) and we're pretty well-off by my standards.  $70k in home equity, $300k in savings, we have two cars, and we pretty much buy and eat-out whatever and whenever we want.   I paid for grad school with cash.  I'm only 37.

I grew up in a family that made ~$45k a year and my wife was a refugee.  I think it's all about your perspective of what rich is.

While it's very easy to upgrade your lifestyle so that what was once a luxury becomes standard, you need to remember that the overwhelming majority of your fellow Americans are living on far less income than you.
 
2013-05-14 12:45:12 PM  

jshine: Sticky Hands: Bumblefark: Well, the most obscene thing is that that we as a society has decided that it isn't in our best interest to ensure post-secondary education to the nation's best and brightest. We decided that we should make higher education a consumer item.

The best and brightest are pretty much guaranteed school.
Now they may have to choose between paying various amounts for a top tier school (If the school thinks they can get money out of them) or going to a state school on a full ride. But IMHO if you get offered a full ride to the best public schools in your state, you don't have much room to biatch about the costs if you choose to go to school in some other place.

It's the rest of us that have to make the choice.

That said: A  $600 scholarship? Really? Fark you USC...


I forget my numerical SAT scores, but the sum put me in the 99th percentile -- #2 of 416 in my graduating class -- and was offered exactly $0 in aide by my state school (Univ. of Minnesota).  I didn't end up going there for undergrad, but still...


What were your grades? What about your extracurricular?
I managed a very high ACT as well, but I finished HS with a 2.7 GPA
Obviously while I may have been bright I was not the best.

My step daughter OTOH finished with a GPA in the top 10 of her class  AND had good test scores.
Full rides at Utah and BYU  (thank God she skipped that second one) .

Her peers had similar offers (though most of them got into places like Cal Tech, MIT  and Stanford)
 
2013-05-14 12:47:36 PM  

Rapmaster2000: A million dollar house is not a lot of money.  Most of the guys in my fraternity have a house at least that much in value.  Look, if these people don't want to have debt then they just need to get a job.

I spent a whole summer washing cars at my Dad's dealership to pay for school and I made plenty.  When I graduate next year, I'll have the sales manager job at the dealership waiting for me.  I've earned it.


Nothing personal but I will burst if I don't post this:

My Dad owns a dealership.
Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Youtube

His Dad, owns, a dealership, bro'.
 
2013-05-14 12:48:06 PM  

Nutsac_Jim: Detinwolf: jshine: I have to second Tatsuma's post though -- Mrs. jshine & I are over $200k/yr and we're not rich. We've got one car (a Mazda 3), an apartment, and

You're in the 95% percentile, dude.

Guess what, they are in the 95th percentile of expenses too.  Do you have to pay $13.95 for a sub where you live?


I could probably wind up spending that much on a sub, but I'm not an idiot.
 
2013-05-14 12:48:16 PM  

Lollipop165: $200k is absolutely upper middle class


Uhhhm.... no

On an unrelated note,  life is not fair.     The world needs ditch diggers too....
 
2013-05-14 12:48:21 PM  
When I was applying for student aid I got a bunch. I had money from a lawsuit over my dad's death and my mom had a nice house but wasn't employed. The total income was my near minimum wage pay at the supermarket.

The fact that parents/family factor in at all is stupid though. Just because a family member could potentially pay shouldn't mean they have to. My mom paid for high school, I was on my own financially at 18.
 
2013-05-14 12:48:33 PM  

Nutsac_Jim: dustygrimp: Tatsuma: .... a million dollar house is a pretty regular (or even small-ish) house in most of the country, Subby. And a family of four living on a $200,000 is not any means rich.

derrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrp

Not derpp.   In my area, if you are a single dude making 100k, you are just getting by.  If you have a family and all the extra expenses invilved, which probably means the wife works and you have to pay someone to watch your kids,..  200 is ok.  Certainly not rich and swimming in a bathtub of coins like Uncle Scrooge.

If you live in Houston, you are doing well.  But then, you have to live in Houston.


You live in a very, very small enclave of the country.  I gross right around $80k/year ($60k salary + ~$20k end of year bonus).  I live in a one-bedroom apartment that costs me roughly $1000/month all-in after utilities (cable, heat, electric).  I own two cars ... one is a paid off 1997 Civic, the other is a 2004 Audi S4 that I pay ~$350/month for.  Add in insurance for the two cars at another $130ish/month.

I paid off my student loan, I have no credit card debt, and I max out my HSA contribution ($270/month) and put away $800/month into my 401k.

Food for my SO and I roughly runs $300/month, put away a few hundred in the liquid savings account and that basically sums up my monthly liabilities.

$3150 is what I've calculated my monthly liabilities at for the two of us.  I bring home ~$3800 a month after taxes (excluding the end of year bonus which goes right to savings/investments), which gives me $800/month to do whatever I want ... Every month.
 
2013-05-14 12:50:30 PM  

brantgoose: Rapmaster2000: A million dollar house is not a lot of money.  Most of the guys in my fraternity have a house at least that much in value.  Look, if these people don't want to have debt then they just need to get a job.

I spent a whole summer washing cars at my Dad's dealership to pay for school and I made plenty.  When I graduate next year, I'll have the sales manager job at the dealership waiting for me.  I've earned it.

Nothing personal but I will burst if I don't post this:

My Dad owns a dealership.
Aqua Teen Hunger Force, Youtube

His Dad, owns, a dealership, bro'.


That was the inspiration.  I knew a guy in my frat in college who's Dad owned a dealership and people would speak about it with reverence.  "Jimmy's Dad owns a dealership."  So that was even funnier for me.  I think they sold Chevy's .  Not sure what's so awesome about that.
 
2013-05-14 12:50:37 PM  

kab: And the best interest rates are reserved for the folks who need them the least.

Capitalism, working as intended.


That's the way it should be.  Interest is based on risk.
 
2013-05-14 12:52:02 PM  

seadoo2006: This ... $200k a year means that your HOUSEHOLD is in the top 2% of ALL HOUSEHOLDS (two incomes) in the entire country ...

Seriously, if you don't think $200k/year is upper-middle class, you are seriously farked in the head.


Lots of people manage their money badly, and therefore like the idea that $200k isn't a high income (thus providing an excuse for their bad budgeting).
 
2013-05-14 12:53:34 PM  

Sticky Hands: jshine: Sticky Hands: Bumblefark: Well, the most obscene thing is that that we as a society has decided that it isn't in our best interest to ensure post-secondary education to the nation's best and brightest. We decided that we should make higher education a consumer item.

The best and brightest are pretty much guaranteed school.
Now they may have to choose between paying various amounts for a top tier school (If the school thinks they can get money out of them) or going to a state school on a full ride. But IMHO if you get offered a full ride to the best public schools in your state, you don't have much room to biatch about the costs if you choose to go to school in some other place.

It's the rest of us that have to make the choice.

That said: A  $600 scholarship? Really? Fark you USC...


I forget my numerical SAT scores, but the sum put me in the 99th percentile -- #2 of 416 in my graduating class -- and was offered exactly $0 in aide by my state school (Univ. of Minnesota).  I didn't end up going there for undergrad, but still...

What were your grades? What about your extracurricular?
I managed a very high ACT as well, but I finished HS with a 2.7 GPA
Obviously while I may have been bright I was not the best.

My step daughter OTOH finished with a GPA in the top 10 of her class  AND had good test scores.
Full rides at Utah and BYU  (thank God she skipped that second one) .

Her peers had similar offers (though most of them got into places like Cal Tech, MIT  and Stanford)



My grades?  Its complicated because my HS didn't use a 4.0 scale, but basically I got "A"s in everything (except one gym class) up to junior year.  At that point it gets more complicated because I started taking classes from the Univ. of Minnesota and the local community college on the high school's dime (Minnesota was generous with tuition as long as you were still a high school student), so my high school GPA has to be averaged across 2 colleges + my high school itself, all using different metrics.  By senior year I was actually living on campus at the Univ. of Minnesota in Minneapolis in a dorm, but the credits transferred back to high school.  ...so academia was pretty much my only extra-curricular, but I was deeply engulfed in it.

However the GPA math worked out, I ended up very high (over 4.0 on our high school's scale) and -- like I said -- #2 of 416 graduating seniors.  Still no free ride at the UofMinn after I graduated from high school.

I ended up going to the Univ. of Wisconsin in Madison for my BS and getting my PhD in chemical engineering from the Univ. of Minnesota (the PhD was free, actually -- plus a $26k/year stipend).
 
2013-05-14 12:53:57 PM  
Get the loan, get the Sociology degree, get a job waiting tables and never pay back the loan.
 
2013-05-14 12:55:46 PM  

Tatsuma: In Israel it's pretty much the case anywhere in Tel Aviv, Jerusalem or the surrounding areas. Like, you will hardly find something decent in Jeru or TA if you put down less than $500,000.

How that can be the upper 10% in America, that just confuses me.


https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_U.S._states_and_territories_by _a rea  suggests that Israel has the land size of Massachusetts.
 
2013-05-14 12:56:07 PM  

seadoo2006: This is news?

Seriously, I could've told you this 11 years ago when my older sister went to college.  My parents paid off their house, their cars, and had no credit card debt.  But because of their modest savings and no debt, we did not qualify for any financial aid.  The financial aid adviser actually told my parents to open a 2nd mortgage and leave the cash in the bank because then they would qualify.

Remember people, FAFSA weights DEBTS higher than ASSETS when determining aid.


This.

And this was true 22 years ago when I went off to a private college. My parents had paid off their house in my junior year of high school, assuming that it was the smart thing to do in the long run for themselves financially (they were right). When it came time to apply for financial aid, we thought I might qualify based on the fact that my Dad was a community college professor and my mom was an administrative assistant in a public elementary school. The financial aid rejection letter listed helpful suggestions for us, including selling or re-mortgaging the home my parents owned.
 
2013-05-14 12:56:40 PM  
While you're all arguing about whether or not $200K is middle class, a reminder that:

Half of all jobs in America pay less than $34,000 a year. Link
 
2013-05-14 12:59:16 PM  

jshine: Rapmaster2000: A million dollar house is not a lot of money.  ... I spent a whole summer washing cars at my Dad's dealership to pay for school and I made plenty.

Well sure, $1,000,000 isn't much if you're pulling-down car-washing money!


proscontras.files.wordpress.com
agrees
 
2013-05-14 01:00:07 PM  

Slaves2Darkness: brap: I like Senator Warren's plan of allowing students to borrow at the same rate as banks.

Stupid idea is stupid. The problem with the system as it currently stands is too much free money and too little competition. You want to fix the college tuition problem then go on a Federal University spending spree, Federally mandate that tuition start at 5,000 dollars a year and only rise at the rate of inflation.


Please cite the line in the Constitution that states they can set prices for goods and services.
 
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