How do u live on $700/month, truly?

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Spaceman Spiff

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.....Anyway, I see hope for the future from young people refusing to work for low wages and organizing for union membership.
The problem is that for the younger generations it is not their grandfather's workplace any more. Unless they have a non-transferrable or difficult to automate skill they are competing against a machine or worker in India or Bangladesh that can live very comfortably on $700/month. COVID driven 'work from home' movement will accelerate this.

Your value to an employer is based on how expensive you are to replace.
 

D'L

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I think everyone would benefit from planning but I believe it's even more so for nomads who are choosing to limit their income so they can be as free as possible now. Because of their low wages, their social security is going to be low and it would be smart for them to think about how they're going to survive. People who aren't nomads working here and there will generally receive more SS income. The average SS benefit for people working full-time is $1,500-$1,600. This actually enough to live off of if you own your home or your in income based or income restricted apartments. $700-$800 is hard to live off of.

While plans can definitely not work out, there's a big difference between doing what I can to set myself up for success and doing nothing, guaranteeing a challenging financial situation in my future.

Everyone can be flexible and adaptable when they're young or in good health. It's a lot more challenging when you're older or have medical issues. Especially since most people don't eat well and don't exercise, their bodies and minds are just not going to work as great in their 50s to 80s as it did in their 20s and 30s. There's a reason society is set up for people to work when they're young and retire when they're older. Doing the opposite is going to be rough.
You are right about all of this.

It is definitely harder for a lot of people to be flexible and adaptable as they get older. I think I managed to forget that, :rolleyes:because I would qualify as "older" and I am very flexible and adaptable, know how to land well on my feet. BUT, I have been that way my whole life. Have always lived that way, although not as an actual nomad. I have not had a home and a steady job in the same place for years and years as many older people have had. It is easier for me.

Ditto for living on very little....having done it all my adult life I am very comfortable with it. Although I do not live on $800 a month, I live on less than anyone else I know does and pretty much always have. I have done that in order to save money for various purposes, medical needs (I have never had insurance), and etc, but mostly to save up and invest so I would have something when I got older and SSI wouldn't pay me enough to live on. Not the easiest strategy but it does work. Barring catastrophic events, of course.
 

D'L

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The problem is that for the younger generations it is not their grandfather's workplace any more. Unless they have a non-transferrable or difficult to automate skill they are competing against a machine or worker in India or Bangladesh that can live very comfortably on $700/month. COVID driven 'work from home' movement will accelerate this.

Your value to an employer is based on how expensive you are to replace.
So true.
My father's idea was you go to school, get the degree(s) and then you get a really good job. That sure worked for him. But even by the time I was college age it was no longer really true, and it has become less true over the years since then. I feel pretty bad for young people today because even a career that looks great when you start out in school can be completely gone -- or completely different --by the time you actually get your degree. That was not true in my father's time.
 

Carla618

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The problem is that for the younger generations it is not their grandfather's workplace...
They know the problems they face and have opted to change the system that created the problems. I wish them well. They only have to look at climate change, our wars/invasions and their inability to live as their grandparents did to know how badly my generation screwed things up for them.

The wage stagnation was allowed to happen by our elected officials from both parties over decades (globalization, austerity, neoliberalism, corporatism and laissez-faire economic policies that led to union busting and the loss of benefits for workers).

It was achieved through the political power of corporations. They legislated to their advantage, knowing it would crush the workers. It can be undone through legislation.

This page at EPI explains it better.
 

towboater

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As a parent we want our kids to do better than we did. So we sometimes imply that if they don’t get a degree they are failures. So they get a degree thinking with their heart and not their head and are upset when they can’t get that dream job in a field that has limited turnover and possibly lower pay. For some it is better to get a trade than a degree. I believe that annual salaries for tradesmen on average will surpass that of those with bachelor degrees. That was not the case in years past. But, when u look at a 65 year old banker and then look at the 65 year old tradesman the banker usually looks younger. Just my observations and what the hell do I know? Best wishes
 

Morgana

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It would be useful to get budget breakdowns from many van dwellers to see how they live on $700/mo.,
IIRC there were a few (not many) of those up-thread.

I think the two most valuable ideas I've gained from people's posts to this thread are the importance of (1) mutual aid and (2) flexibility.
 

Carla618

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It would be useful to get budget breakdowns from many van dwellers to see how they live on $700/mo., rather than people just saying I can or can't survive on $700 fro these reasons:___________.
There are a bunch on youtube. Play with keywords when you search there, so more pop up. You could start with "vanlife + budget"
 

SLB_SA

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The article People Who Work After Retiring Enjoy Better Health, According to National Study by the American Psychological Association suggests that there may be benefits to working after retirement.
There's a reason society is set up for people to work when they're young and retire when they're older. Doing the opposite is going to be rough.
Does "doing the opposite" mean retiring when you are young and working when you are older? If I could "retire" starting at 26 and start working at 90, that would sound great to me; how could I have pulled this off? :LOL: Instead I am draining my retirement account in order to help support two of my (adult) kids and to delay taking social security benefits until age 70 (& I'm older than Bob). My account is draining fast but my SS should cover all of my needs for the rest of my life. ;) :LOL:
 

SLB_SA

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"For 2022, the primary insurance amount for people receiving the Social Security special minimum benefit ranges $45.50 for someone with 11 years of coverage to $950.80 for workers with 30 years of coverage. The maximum corresponding family benefit ranges from $69.40 to $1,427.90." Here 2022 Minimum Social Security Benefit is the link. If a person with 30 years of work history and a FRA of 66 waited until age 70 to collect her/his benefit, this would yield 1.32 x $950.80 = $ 1225.05. If a person with 30 years of work history and a FRA of 67 waited until age 70 to collect her/his benefit, this would yield 1.24 x $950.80 = $1179.00. If a person worked at a (very) low paying job from age 18 to age 48, "retired" at 48, bummed around Europe or South America or Asia until age 70 and showed up in the US in 2022, s/he would get about $1225/month in SS, far more than $700/month proposed in the title here.
 

SLB_SA

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If you were born in 1952, "retired" at age 18 (or age 0), survived until age 40 (odd jobs in Malaysia?), started working in the US at 40 and quit working at 70, and started taking SS in 2022 at age 70, you would be receiving at least $1225/month in SS benefits. I have friends who as undergraduates took a "sabbatical" year bumming around Europe, Asia or South America but none who did this for 22 years (from 18 to 40). If only I could go back and relive my life. :LOL:
 

RoamerRV428

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no one really wants older workers. They want them gonzo mostly. a few rare industries need the major experienced and braniacs etc. but mostly, regular ol' corp business, they f up the ins. cost group for companies and medical leaves and all that stuff that screw companies out of their profits. Youngers are the best profit by far to take on. more agism is gonna hit also in how ins. and other issues are slamming the economy and changing policies now and demands on workers. Unless one is super kinda more special in a way can an older person kinda get 'a good payin' job' to make up for all those years not contributing to SS I would think. I don't think yrs at a fast food burger place is gonna wham up anyone's SS high in a shorter amt of time.

Plus omg if I did nothing for 20 plus years but have fun, how in the hell could I go to work around age 40-45? I know I couldn't do it HAHA
 

bullfrog

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Many people in this country work for years doing jobs like teaching, nursing, military service, government social services, law enforcement that make them feel good because they are trying to improve people’s lives for very little financial reward and very little support in the last few decades. That has caused the best ones to find other careers or to retire/drop out of the job market as quickly as possible causing the critics claims to become true in many cases. That needs to change or we will continue to see more and more harder to solve problems as this country sinks back into a third world country and many end up nomads on the road.
 

bullfrog

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I did military service for 7 years, got out and went to college and taught school 12 years the worked in school transportation for 10 years. By doing many other jobs at the same time I managed to raise a family and build equity to a point that when my youngest child went to college, I was bankrupt and inflation had overtaken my ability to pay my mortgage payments almost. I was able to sell the house and use the equity to buy my retirement at age 53 which I did. I bought an old motorhome and my wife and I started our life on the road. Health insurance has been the biggest problem, finding a job has been no problem even at 70 years old. The last 15 years have been the best of our lives.
 

Morgana

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Yes it's easy to live on $700 a month

Forage wild edibles& road kill..cook with solar..& get a 100 watt solar panel for power..

So what was the last road kill you ate? How did you cook it? What wild edibles did you forage? Where did you find them? How did you learn what's edible and what's poisonous? How did you handle your other daily needs? How many months did you live at $700 a month? What did a typical one of these easy days look like?
 

hollingsworthmark08

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So what was the last road kill you ate? How did you cook it? What wild edibles did you forage? Where did you find them? How did you learn what's edible and what's poisonous? How did you handle your other daily needs? How many months did you live at $700 a month? What did a typical one of these easy days look like?

So what was the last road kill you ate? How did you cook it? What wild edibles did you forage? Where did you find them? How did you learn what's edible and what's poisonous? How did you handle your other daily needs? How many months did you live at $700 a month? What did a typical one of these easy days look like?
Go to groups on facebook & that forage for them& join& learn..& survival groups as well..just keep the rest of your life minimal & stay away from very cold areas if possible..
 
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