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Old 10-26-2008, 03:51 PM   #15
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Originally Posted by AZ-JH View Post
Don't want to and don't need to. BUT, I can see why people would. Even with a paid-off mortgage, there's still those nagging property taxes and insurance that keep increasing. Plus, the more one needs to earn for their chosen lifestyle, the more they're taxed out the wazoo. Less is more.
Got into a discussion with a good friend yesterday. A couple of things really bother this guy about the tax system. One thing he wants to know is "One guy works hard for eight hours a day and makes a nice living and is taxed at a certain percentage. His neighbor works hard for sixteen hours a day, and makes twice the money, but does not keep twice as much for himself because he is taxed at a higher percentage for his hard work."

Less is more? Perhaps more is less.
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Old 10-26-2008, 09:06 PM   #16
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This week's (dated Nov 3, 2008) MacLean's Magazine has the banner headline of:

THE JOY OF FRUGALITY
Want to flourish in tough times?
The case for the simple life. P42

MacLean's for those of you who don't know, is Canada's version of Time, or Newsweek.

Gotta admit, today I eyed a bicycle that's been hanging in the garage for years, left there by one of the kids when they moved out. I'm thinking I could probably make it to the local milk store and back, in nice weather. The only problem is that here, nice weather runs one or two weekends in July.
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Old 10-26-2008, 09:25 PM   #17
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Well, wish i could chime in along the same lines but we live in California, both my wife and i have to work to keep the household going.. we are a blended family with four kids and i will tell you its a struggle. Im not one of those that would let anything go to the creditors looking for an easy way out.. i will just work harder for less money till things get paid off. I hasnt been easy and i dont think there is a rainbow on the horizon.. but i love my family and i live right and i do love my airstream. Give me 10 more years and Im hoping we will be debt free and relocated but until then I will continue to pay alot of taxes!

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Old 10-26-2008, 10:12 PM   #18
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Downsize?

I'm not sure we have ever looked at what we have done as "downsizing". We retired in April, 2000.

In 2000 we completed the contract that we had taken that had us living and working in Ireland for two years. We knew we wanted to travel around the world on our motorcycles. We spent the last 7 weeks of that time in Europe traveling about on our two moto's to determine if we could in fact spend 7 days a week, 24 hours a day together.

As luck would have have we found that we could.

We learned that we did not like being absentee landlords while in Ireland. When we returned to the states in May of 2000 the first thing we did was sell our house. This was somewhat easier for us because we had cleared out two years previously. Gave away our furniture to family, gave, quite literally, tons of stuff to every agency that would come to the house to collect it. We moved the "good stuff" we had put in storage when heading for Ireland to Verna's mom's place, put it on a shelf in the RV barn and it has sat there ever since.

After traveling outside the USA for 7 years, last year we came back to the USA because the US dollar had gotten so worthless that we could not afford to stay out of the country.

We spent six months with Verna's parents as we worked out what we were going to do for the next phase of our journey. The end result was the purchase of our Ford truck and our 30' Classic. We spent last winter traveling the southern states. We learned that we did not like being without a motorcyle so we spent a good part of the past summer back at Verna's mom's fitting an aluminum flatbed to the truck, a winch, a generator and compressor and some ramps. We now have one of our sidecars on the back of the truck along with Verna's bicycle and the aformentioned "stuff".

We have been debt free for as long as I can remember. I like to purchase vehicles on New Years eve, about 30 minutes before they close; cash.

So, we have been homeless for 7 years while traveling about on our moto's and now live in what we consider a place after 7 years with 2 shirts, one pair of pants and three changes of underwear plus moto riding gear. It sure is nice not washing underwear in hotel or campground sinks every other night.

Why am I posting this? Well, I often think that people don't "think outside the box". There sure are a lot of ways to "live". While we were on the bikes we definately learned to appreciate the, "Less is More" philosophy. I suspect that this is a very difficult concept for many people to understand, to say nothing of adopt. I do not think that what we are doing is for everyone but we like the nomadic lifestyle and meeting people. We also like being able to stay wherever we want for however long we want.

We have met so many people in our travels and we continue to stay in touch by email and Skype. Modern technology makes this type of lifestyle so easy. At the minute we are one of four RV's in a campground with 100+ spaces near Mammoth Cave National Park in Kentucky. Traveling at this time of year is so nice. Lots of people were here for the weekend but they were all pulling out when we pulled in at noon today. Oh, did I mention that we put on a whopping 70 miles today? No need to rush; there is always tomorrow.

Jim
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Old 10-26-2008, 10:24 PM   #19
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Quote:
Originally Posted by vlamica View Post
Well, wish i could chime in along the same lines but we live in California, both my wife and i have to work to keep the household going.. we are a blended family with four kids and i will tell you its a struggle. Im not one of those that would let anything go to the creditors looking for an easy way out.. i will just work harder for less money till things get paid off. I hasnt been easy and i dont think there is a rainbow on the horizon.. but i love my family and i live right and i do love my airstream. Give me 10 more years and Im hoping we will be debt free and relocated but until then I will continue to pay alot of taxes!

Vinnie
We to are a blended family, also four kids. They were all in grade school when we got together. We worked hard, the kids got summer jobs at the pear packing shed, cleaning houseboats at the rental company, paper route, etc.

There will be light at the end of the tunnel. Trust me.

Vinnie, don't ever give up the ship. (The aluminum one that is.)
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Old 10-26-2008, 10:30 PM   #20
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Thanks Jim,

sounds like we have a similar story. I agree with all the posts here, and we look forward to the day when we are financially independent (God willing) but with all the negative news these days it can be a bit overwhelming. We too have considered the downsizing but once you leave the bay area its tough to come back. So until then we do what we can and selling the airstream is not an option for either of us.

Thanks Vin
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Old 10-26-2008, 10:34 PM   #21
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Gotta admit, today I eyed a bicycle that's been hanging in the garage for years, left there by one of the kids when they moved out. I'm thinking I could probably make it to the local milk store and back, in nice weather. The only problem is that here, nice weather runs one or two weekends in July.[/QUOTE]

There is A guy in are town that will put a really small gas motor on your bike or about $350.. IT has a .5 gallon tank and gets about 100 miles out of that tank... A guy up the road from us has one... He drives to town and back about 4 miles. and 600 ft difference... the thing will to about 28 mph on the flats and he only pedals once in a while to help it up the really steep stuff... He says from town he pedals only one place...

This would be a great commuter, or fun to have at a camp ground... It was a little loud but a better muffler might help...


On topic.... Downsize..NOPE.. I want to do a couple of additions on my house.... but we are buying a commercial building for my wife's office and will have to wait to see what kind of Down Payment they want.. at least 20% Man we picked the wrong time to do it. But you gotta do what you gotta do...
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:22 AM   #22
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Previous post by SilverThreads: "The plan is to put a building close to the Airstream for storage and also a shop where she can still sew curtains. We will run electric and water out there, but still not sure what to do about the sewer."

Sounds like your plan is doable, and might lighten the load in these times.

2 recommendations:
Add a couple extra feet in length and width to your proposed shop building -- space to relax, or to accomodate expansion. It's much easier and less expensive than adding space later.
Also think you need a 'sewer solution' for fulltime living. What options are available in your area? Can grey water be handled by digging a dry well? Could you put a composting toilet in the shop? Do you have a reliable water source? Can you hand dig a well in your area?

Good luck, and keep us posted on your plans.
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Old 10-27-2008, 09:43 AM   #23
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That article is very reminiscent of the Small House Society.

Anything I can't see, I am not using - wasted space! I've always been this way, but the economy is a good incentive for me to stay this way efficient, debt free, pay cash, or like Jim Foster use the credit card float & take advantage of the rewards. Vehicles, all Airstream renovations are paid out of pocket. Someday soon, the Airstream will be this Gen Y-er's only home.

Bicycle motors are a great idea, but there are a lot of laws you have to be aware of, because they are not treated like normal bicycles anymore. I have and love my moped - pedals, scrappy 50cc engine, great mileage & not too hard to get replacement parts. For me in PA, I have to have it titled, registered & insured to be legal.

- laws for motorized bicycles
- laws for mopeds
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Old 10-27-2008, 01:07 PM   #24
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Downsize, No way. The house is paid for, the truck is paid for and the Airstream is paid, credit cards get used but paid in full every month. We spend about 5 months a year in the 34' Airstream, wish they made a bigger one, I'd buy it if they did.

We did nothing to contribute to this economic mess, as usual we get to help pay for it though..
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Old 10-27-2008, 01:13 PM   #25
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For a little different slant on things, did you know that it was during the depression of the 30s that the RV lifestyle first took off? Literally exploded in popularity, trailer makers could not keep up with the demand.

"The trailerite is the only one who pays no rent or taxes" O if that were still true! LOL

Noted financial analyst Roger Babson predicted in 1937 "in 10 years half the people in America will live in trailers". Based on the trend of the previous 5 years.

Maybe we are in on the ground floor of the big change to smaller quarters and RV's as the economy collapses.
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Old 10-27-2008, 03:52 PM   #26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jim Foster View Post
Got into a discussion with a good friend yesterday. A couple of things really bother this guy about the tax system. One thing he wants to know is "One guy works hard for eight hours a day and makes a nice living and is taxed at a certain percentage. His neighbor works hard for sixteen hours a day, and makes twice the money, but does not keep twice as much for himself because he is taxed at a higher percentage for his hard work."

Less is more? Perhaps more is less.
At least I have never found a case where the higher paid person actually takes home less money... yes the higher paid person pays more taxes, and pays a higher rate. However, to take home less the higher paid person would actually need to pay over 100% on a last dollar in basis, which is not the case.

Yet... long ago, for 1 year, I went from 5 day work week to 3 day work week, dropping my income by 40%. Yet the drop in take-home pay was much less. Made me realize that the chase for ever higher income, at the expense of less free time, was questionable.

Similarly, for a professional to take on a part-time job for extra spending money can make no sense... as the $8/hour may reduce to less than half after tax.
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Old 10-27-2008, 04:12 PM   #27
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Downsizing anyone?

If anyone would like to Downsize out of a CCD 27 FB - perhaps I can help (she said with a fiendish grin).

Paula
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Old 10-27-2008, 08:22 PM   #28
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Downsizing!

We are glad we entered the Airstream community some three years ago. We enjoy it more than we ever imagined. We started with an 87 34' which we refurbished, but sold traded it this year for a 98 wide body queen bed 34'. We love it! We currently have a home in the city where I work, but we have often said how much we look forward to spending much of our year in the AS. Time will tell, but we are enjoying the AS as a second home, but we would not mind it being our primary home at some point.




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