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Thread: I make $6.50 an hour. Am I poor?

  1. #46
    Elite Member bella's Avatar
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    Christmas Day 2003 I brought home a homeless man into my parents' home (I was 18) and we gave him Christmas dinner, washed his clothes, let him use our bathroom to have a long bath and gave him 500. He then stayed in our garage (converted room) for the evening and left us on Boxing Day. We'd recently come into a small amount of money and it seemed the best way to use a bit of it.

    He now lives around 200 miles away from us in a small flat and sends us a xmas card every year to thank my family.

    I wouldn't recommend bringing homeless people that you don't know into your home, but I like to think we changed his life a little bit, for very little risk.

  2. #47
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lobelia View Post
    My mother's on disability & is always short on money, but I don't think she'd want to live if she didn't have animals to care for.
    Same for my mother. She has been on s.s. disability since my dad passed away. She has just now been able to start working a part time job on the weekends but has to be extremely careful. For starters, it is wearing on her in a bad way but to make matters worse for her, she was told that once you go over earning a certain, very low amount in one paycheck your disability amount goes down by that amount and you are entered into a trial period. That trial period is 6 months over 5 years. Not consecutive but cumulative. So if she makes a penny over their set amount at any time she is put into the trial period and it happens 6 times during 5 years, that's it, she's off the s.s. disability. Their idea of a reasonable income is less than $800. My mother's mortgage is more than that. She had a life before this happened. Her husband became sick and passed away, she had two other kids still in school and living at home and she was fired from her job while on disability. They had the normal bills and expenses, a car, pets and so on. If you were to take any of that from them back then or now, she'd be in an even worse state.
    ----------------------
    As far as income, I worked a job in a daycare for $5 something an hour back in 99. I was more than full-time, had no benefits and raises were dimes and nickles an hour. My hubby just quit a second job at the bowling alley, he was getting $7 an hour, no benefits and in his first week worked 50 some hours. This was in addition to his 40 hour job that he drives an hour each way for each week. I finally convinced him that we are not THAT bad off. We can pay our bills, we can eat and we can make it. We don't get to do much else but we pick and choose.

    I would love to know how to get a $300 mortgage, mine is about $1020 and that's considered low around here! My power bill is sitting at $900 plus (that increase did catch up to us, damn!) and my $2k in property taxes are going to be a little bit later than I planned. That's what we get for staying in our nice little rural town that's about an hour from 6 major cities and work areas.
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  3. #48
    Elite Member KrisNine's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bella View Post
    Christmas Day 2003 I brought home a homeless man into my parents' home (I was 18) and we gave him Christmas dinner, washed his clothes, let him use our bathroom to have a long bath and gave him 500. He then stayed in our garage (converted room) for the evening and left us on Boxing Day. We'd recently come into a small amount of money and it seemed the best way to use a bit of it.

    He now lives around 200 miles away from us in a small flat and sends us a xmas card every year to thank my family.

    I wouldn't recommend bringing homeless people that you don't know into your home, but I like to think we changed his life a little bit, for very little risk.
    I think you did change his life, especially if he sends your family a card every year.

    Wow, that's a great story.

  4. #49
    Elite Member JamieElizabeth's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mklady View Post
    ----------------------
    As far as income, I worked a job in a daycare for $5 something an hour back in 99. I was more than full-time, had no benefits and raises were dimes and nickles an hour. My hubby just quit a second job at the bowling alley, he was getting $7 an hour, no benefits and in his first week worked 50 some hours. This was in addition to his 40 hour job that he drives an hour each way for each week. I finally convinced him that we are not THAT bad off. We can pay our bills, we can eat and we can make it. We don't get to do much else but we pick and choose.
    I have been thinking about this "health" benefits issues a lot lately. I think what happens is that when we are younger(say 23 or less), it just isn't brought up a lot because we're considered young and not going to need such a "benefit" then. Now, as we mature, it becomes an issue b/c we realize our rights.

  5. #50
    Gold Member Merlot-N-Bali's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by KrisNine View Post
    Before my boyfriend and I started to consider our move to the east coast, we started looked for houses here in Southern California. I would seriously like to know how someone has a mortgage paymnet of $310. Our electric bill alone is about $150 in the winter. A single family home here, on average, is over $650,000. Your mortgage is going to be around $4000 per month, including taxes.
    She probably purchased her home 20 years ago (in the article, she did mention she moved back to her home state because she still owned a house there). And she is in Montana, where perhaps homes are more affordable, or at least were whenever she happened to purchase her home.

    We purchased our home 10 years ago brand spankin' new, built from the ground up, before the huge housing boom hit our area. Our mortgage is $428 a month, while our newer neighbors are paying upwards of $1500 - $2000 for modest homes. I am glad we built our house when we did. If we had waited, or if we were younger and just starting out, there is no way we would be able to afford to live here.
    Last edited by Merlot-N-Bali; March 3rd, 2007 at 09:53 AM.
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  6. #51
    Elite Member Sojiita's Avatar
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    The really awful truth is that unless you literally have millions tucked away, you are always just one catastrophic illness away from destitution. Even owning a home and having several hundred thousand dollars saved is not enough if you(or a spouse/child) gets a catastrophic illnes or has an accident or something with huge medical bills that are not entirely covered by insurance(not uncommon in the US). With drugs that are still 'experimental' and not covered by insurance(but desperately needed) costing up to thousands of dollars weekly it can not take very long at all to be wiped out and in the hole. Same thing with a disabling injury, or a chronic illness that limits or makes impossible work(sometimes MS, Lupus, etc can do this).

    The sad truth is that in the US a catasrophic illnes or chronic illness/disability is often a ticket to poverty.

    The number 1 cause of bankruptcies in the US is a catastrophic illness(followed by loss of job at number 2).
    Don't slap me, cause I'm not in the mood!

  7. #52
    Elite Member Sojiita's Avatar
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    ^^ Well that is not quite the same thing as what I was saying, but it is a good article nonetheless and illustrates the issue of homelessness. That is certainly a possibility if someone is financially wiped out as I was suggesting might happen. That would be the most extreme cases where people would not only be wiped out, but would lose their homes and not have friends or relatives to move in with. I am sure that in some of the extreme cases that actually does happen(homelessness). Really sad.
    Don't slap me, cause I'm not in the mood!

  8. #53
    Elite Member JamieElizabeth's Avatar
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    Yeah, it is off-topic a bit. I'll go ahead and create it's own tread now.

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