Follow us on...
Follow us on Twitter Follow us on Facebook Watch us on YouTube
Register
Results 1 to 12 of 12
  1. #1
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    03.26.06
    Age
    43
    Location
    Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    34,078
    Favorite VH Album

    like them all, no favourite
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 09:11 PM
    Likes
    1,314
    Liked 6,670 Times in 3,696 Posts

    Default 7 Things The Middle Class Can't Afford Anymore

    very interesting article i saw this morning.

    http://www.businessinsider.com/7-thi...afford-2014-10

    In its discussion of historical middle class societies, The Economist reports, “Their members are neither rich nor poor but somewhere in-between…’Middle-class’ describes an income category but also a set of attitudes…An essential characteristic is the possession of a reasonable amount of discretionary income. Middle-class people do not live from hand to mouth, job to job, season to season, as the poor do.”

    Some argue that the most sensible income amount to attach to the middle class would be the median household income, of around $54,000.

    Perhaps, anyone who earns between the 25th percentile and 75th percentile is a member of the middle class.

    Diana Farrell, once Deputy Director of America’s National Economic Council, told The Economist she thinks a middle class income begins at the point where a person (or family) has one-third of their income left over for discretionary purposes after they’ve provided themselves with food and shelter. In other words, someone who earns $3,000 per month would have $1,000 left after they’ve paid their mortgage or rent, utilities, and grocery bills.

    Though there is some debate over the exact income a middle class household brings in, we do have an idea of who the middle class are — most working class people. Today’s bourgeoisie is composed of laborers and skilled workers, white collar and blue collar workers, many of whom face financial challenges. Bill Maher reminded us a few months back that 50 years ago, the largest employer was General Motors, where workers earned an equivalent of $50 per hour (in today’s money). Today, the largest employer — Walmart — pays around $8 per hour.

    The middle class has certainly changed. We’ve ranked a list of things the middle class can no longer really afford. We’re not talking about lavish luxuries, like private jets and yachts. The items on this list are a bit more basic, and some of them are even necessities. The ranking of this list is based on affordability and necessity. Therefore, items that are necessity ranked higher, as did items that a larger percentage of people have trouble paying for.

    Vacations

    A vacation is an extra expense that many middle-earners cannot afford without sacrificing something else. A Statista survey found that this year 54% of people gave up purchasing big ticket items like TVs or electronics so they can go on a vacation. Others made sacrifices like reducing or eliminating their trips to the movies (47%), reducing or eliminating trips out to restaurants (43%), or avoiding purchasing small ticket items like new clothing (43%).
    New vehicles
    Porsche 911 Carrera
    Porsche

    Very few people who earn the median income can afford to buy a new car or truck. Interest.com recently analyzed the prices of new cars and trucks, as well as the median incomes across more than two dozen major cities, and found that new cars and trucks were simply not affordable to most middle-earners.
    “Median-income families in only one major city [Washington DC] can afford the average price Americans are paying for new cars and trucks nowadays.” As of 2013, new cars are priced at $32,086, according to the study. Mike Sante, Interest.com’s managing editor reminds us, “just because you can manage the monthly payment doesn’t mean you should let a $30,000 or $40,000 ride gobble up all such a huge share of your paycheck.”

    To pay off debt
    These debt statistics come from Debt.org:

    “More than 160 million Americans have credit cards.”
    “The average credit card holder has at least three cards.”
    “On average, each household with a credit card carries more than $15,000 in credit card debt.”
    Not only do we have large amounts of credit card debt, we also have student loans, mortgages, cars, and medical debts. Our debt is growing faster than our income, and many middle class workers have trouble staying afloat. >Money-Zine evaluated debt growth and income growth over the past few decades and found that “back in 1980, the consumer credit per person was $1,540, which was 7.3% of the average household income of $21,100. In 2013, consumer debt was $9,800 per person, which was 13.4% of the average household income of $72,600. This means debt increased 70% faster than income from 1980 through 2013.”

    Emergency savings
    REUTERS/Yuya Shino

    To provide ourselves with a degree of financial security, we are supposed to have emergency savings to protect ourselves in the event of job loss, illness, or some other catastrophe. Most members of the middle class don’t have at least six months of emergency savings, however, and some working people have no such savings.
    A Bankrate survey found that only around one out of four households have six months of emergency money saved, and many of them are in the higher income groups. Another one-fourth have no emergency savings at all, and the remaining household have a small to moderate amount of savings, but not enough to cover six months of expenses.

    Retirement savings

    If you reach the retirement age with little or no money saved, Social Security is probably not going to be enough to cover your basic needs. Even if you want to work for your entire life, you have no way of knowing whether or not you will be physically capable of doing so.
    Although having a lack of a retirement savings is a risky move, so many people bet on double zero, just hoping that things will work out in their favor. While some members of the middle class neglect this aspect of financial planning because they are procrastinating, there are also some workers who cannot afford to set this money aside. Nearly half of those who don’t save for retirement say it’s because they simply don’t have the money.

    As of late, around 20% of people near 65 have not saved anything for retirement at all, and the majority of people — 59% — worry that they don’t have enough money saved for retirement, according to a Gallup Poll.

    Medical care

    Medical care is a basic necessity and something we’d think would be affordable for someone earning a middle income. A Forbes article published data indicating that workers in large companies — many of whom are members of the middle class — “face nearly $5,000 in premiums, co-payments, deductibles and other forms of co-insurance.”
    During the past few years, these costs have had a large impact on working Americans. A report by Feeding America found that a shocking 66% of households say they’ve had to choose between paying for food and paying for medical care — 31% say they have to make that choice each and every month.

    Dental work

    According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, “the U.S. spends about $64 billion each year on oral health care — just 4 percent is paid by Government programs.” About 108 million people in the U.S. have no dental coverage and even those who are covered may have trouble getting the care they need, the department reports.
    Oftentimes, people will purchase medical coverage and forgo dental because it’s so expensive. Plus, dental insurance may cover only 50% of the more expensive procedures, like crowns and bridges. This leaves those who have insurance with large co-payments.

    In many cases, middle-earners will delay or even forego some of these procedures in efforts to save on costs. According to the CDC, nearly one in four adults between the ages of 20 and 64 have untreated dental caries (like cavities or infections).

  2. #2
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
    Join Date
    02.18.03
    Age
    34
    Location
    St. Louis, MO
    Posts
    8,622
    Favorite VH Album

    Van Halen/ADKOT
    Favorite VH Song

    Hot For Teacher
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 01:56 PM
    Likes
    565
    Liked 2,210 Times in 1,114 Posts


    Premium Member

    Default

    How many middle class families in 1980 were paying for cable, an iphone, a wireless plan for each family member, a laptop or tablet, or an internet bill? Pretty much everyone in the middle class pays for all of that now, and you can probably find some people in the lower income brackets that have most of those expenses as well.

    I think people would find themselves doing a lot better financially if they lived like it was still 1980 but with 2014 incomes. Just those expenses listed above are worth a few hundred dollars a month.

    Those debt numbers are staggering though.
    CNN may think my opinion matters, but you shouldn't.

  3. The Following 3 Members Like This Post:


  4. #3
    Atomic Punk
    Join Date
    01.29.02
    Age
    49
    Location
    somewhere over the rainbow
    Posts
    22,946
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
    Likes
    842
    Liked 1,229 Times in 448 Posts

    Default

    ""Some argue that the most sensible income amount to attach to the middle class would be the median household income, of around $54,000.""

    Seems low for Middle Class...
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  5. #4
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    03.26.06
    Age
    43
    Location
    Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    34,078
    Favorite VH Album

    like them all, no favourite
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 09:11 PM
    Likes
    1,314
    Liked 6,670 Times in 3,696 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by bsbll4 View Post
    How many middle class families in 1980 were paying for cable, an iphone, a wireless plan for each family member, a laptop or tablet, or an internet bill? Pretty much everyone in the middle class pays for all of that now, and you can probably find some people in the lower income brackets that have most of those expenses as well.

    I think people would find themselves doing a lot better financially if they lived like it was still 1980 but with 2014 incomes. Just those expenses listed above are worth a few hundred dollars a month.

    Those debt numbers are staggering though.
    i think you're completely right about this. We consume far more in 2014 than we did in 1980. Granted things, in real dollars, are also much cheaper than they were back then as well. I bought my first computer in 1993 and for that same amount of money i could pay for my computer, my phone, my wife's phone and our ipad.

    But we do have a huge spending problem and if we ever address this i fear we'll cripple the economy. We spend a couple thousand dollars a year in Christmas gifts, my parents didn't spend 200. I think the biggest issue isn't what people spend but rather what we spend relative to what we make. When we bought our van i had to explain to people at work how we didn't borrow to buy it. The concept of saving is a lost art.

  6. The Following Member Likes This Post:


  7. #5
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
    Join Date
    03.26.06
    Age
    43
    Location
    Vaughan, Ontario, Canada
    Posts
    34,078
    Favorite VH Album

    like them all, no favourite
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 09:11 PM
    Likes
    1,314
    Liked 6,670 Times in 3,696 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by voivod View Post
    ""Some argue that the most sensible income amount to attach to the middle class would be the median household income, of around $54,000.""

    Seems low for Middle Class...
    it seems low for the median. In Canada the median household income if 76,000 and I can't imagine we're that much different. Unless there's a huge difference in single parent homes in Canada that can't force the number down pretty dramatically.

  8. #6
    Atomic Punk
    Join Date
    01.29.02
    Age
    49
    Location
    somewhere over the rainbow
    Posts
    22,946
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
    Likes
    842
    Liked 1,229 Times in 448 Posts

    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  9. #7
    Atomic Punk
    Join Date
    01.29.02
    Age
    49
    Location
    somewhere over the rainbow
    Posts
    22,946
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 04:37 PM
    Likes
    842
    Liked 1,229 Times in 448 Posts

    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    it seems low for the median. In Canada the median household income if 76,000 and I can't imagine we're that much different. Unless there's a huge difference in single parent homes in Canada that can't force the number down pretty dramatically.
    yikes

    http://www.census.gov/newsroom/press.../cb14-169.html
    "Watch what people are cynical about, and one can often discover what they lack.” -- Gen. George S. Patton

  10. #8
    Atomic Punk ZeoBandit's Avatar
    Join Date
    01.29.02
    Age
    41
    Location
    Chicago
    Posts
    17,830
    Favorite VH Album

    F.U.C.K.
    Favorite VH Song

    Humans Being
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 06:24 AM
    Likes
    54
    Liked 40 Times in 29 Posts


    Donor

    Default

    Credit Card debt is something I just do not understand how it can be so rampant. It is a simple choice to live within your means and pay off your card every month. How so many people can not grasp that concept is beyond me.
    "What we are dealing with here, is a complete lack of respect for the law" - Jackie Gleason, Smokey and the Bandit

    www.geocaching.com - The site where you are the search engine.

  11. #9
    Atomic Punk Dave's Dreidel's Avatar
    Join Date
    01.10.05
    Age
    47
    Location
    Kate Upton's Closet
    Posts
    37,839
    Favorite VH Album

    Alex, Dave, Ed and Mike
    Favorite VH Song

    The songs with Ed on them
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 05:21 PM
    Likes
    3,496
    Liked 18,089 Times in 8,937 Posts

    Default

    I see lots of different finances, and sometimes it can just be something very simple that happens. Job loss, medical bills, disability, business failure, etc. That doesn't explain everybody of course, but I always try to be careful in lumping people with financial difficulties into a big basket. Some of it is obviously just due to plain old miss management, but there are sometimes things that happen totally out of a person's control that cause them to get in financial difficulty.
    Taylor Swift is nice to look at. Adele can sing.

    Emperor Brett - "I can't believe you guys are analyzing song-by-song Van Halen III? What next, analyzing the script of Stroker Ace looking for some shred of Citizen Kane?"

    David Lee Roth did the impossible. He made Van Halen better. Deal with it!

    Preferred pronouns: he/him/his

    Hurricane Halen - Let's all gingery touch our sword tips!!!

    DONATE TO THE LINKS YA CHEAP BASTARDS!!!!

  12. #10
    Gird your loins Daisy Hill's Avatar
    Join Date
    04.17.08
    Age
    57
    Location
    Goose Poop, Ohio
    Posts
    13,016
    Favorite VH Album

    Fair Warning
    Favorite VH Song

    Panama
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 07:55 PM
    Likes
    1,791
    Liked 2,230 Times in 1,348 Posts

    Default

    so much has changed. People today starting out in life want to buy the same kind of homes their parents have without thinking that their parents saved and worked for perhaps decades to get where they are. Big debt there

    the "starter" house is very different from what it used to be

    wardrobes. In school my brothers and I were considered well dressed, yet when I look at what constitutes a young persons wardrobe today I shudder. my closet was full, but now would only take up a corner of a typical teens walk in closet today. Shoes alone....I had dressy shoes in a couple of colors, a couple of pairs of casual day shoes and a pair of gym shoes or keds. The average woman today probably owns 20-30 pairs of shoes and the average teenage girl probably 18 or so.

    In my neighborhood the one family car was the norm, but many families had 2 cars In our family every kid got a car at 16 but I think that was more a function of my Dad liking cars. Now you go to the high school and look at the cars in the parking lots and it's a different thing than in my day when kids had handme down station wagons and clunkers...seldom a clunker seen

    when we were in school kids with braces on their teeth were rare enough to be an object of ridicule...now it seems like families don't have the capacity to birth a kid with any hope of growing their own set of straight teeth and instead need the intervention of the orthodontist by the time they are 12...usually taking advantage of a payment plan

    we just buy more stuff and rent storage units to store all the stuff until we can sell our stuff on ebay or donate it..or garage sale it.

  13. The Following 4 Members Like This Post:


  14. #11
    Atomic Punk edwardv's Avatar
    Join Date
    12.13.01
    Age
    59
    Location
    hanover pennsylvania
    Posts
    10,029
    Favorite VH Album

    diver down
    Favorite VH Song

    drop dead legs
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 05:27 PM
    Likes
    4,474
    Liked 2,383 Times in 1,487 Posts


    Premium Member

    Default

    I remember going to a wedding in 1979. I sat at a table with mostly 50-60 year olds who I did not know because my gf was in the wedding at the head table.All they talked to me about was how tough I was going to have it with home prices around 40- 50 k and new cars being 6k. Not to mention gas going from 60 cents to near a dollar. We had no cell phones, internet, computers,and TV was free. The Kraft Mac and Cheese was 25 cents. Bread 40 cents. VH concert 7-10 bucks. Albums 4.75 at record store in the mall. Two litre Coke 49 cents on sale 39 cents. Oh yeah wages sucked back then too unless you had a union job or you were a MD or Lawyer. So now its worse and most of those union jobs are gone. Pensions are gone now with 401ks replacing them unless your still in a union that offers them mostly government jobs. GE , Phizer, or Microsoft I don't think they even offer pensions. Maybe for the executives? Lets not even talk about medical insurance. I would say things are devolving and people business and government less responsible.Good article Mike.
    Last edited by edwardv; 11.19.14 at 04:20 PM.
    EVH 1979: Well, actually it's not much of a vacation, because we run everything ourselves. We design our own album cover, we have to be in the office every day to sign checks - the whole corporation revolves around us. Nothing can be done without our approval. We even have photo approval.

  15. #12
    Atomic Punk ziggysmalls's Avatar
    Join Date
    11.24.03
    Location
    Cleveland, Oh
    Posts
    12,962
    Favorite VH Album

    Fair Warning
    Favorite VH Song

    Dance the Night Away
    Last Online

    12.11.17 @ 04:50 PM
    Likes
    2,594
    Liked 4,792 Times in 2,444 Posts


    Premium Member

    Default

    Grew up a child of the 70's and 80's with two other siblings. We had one color TV. Maybe in 85 we got a black and white you could watch outside but that was it. I have three TV's with just me and my wife. Had one game system when the Atari came out. Now I still have one but also have three computers/laptops and a tablet. One landline for all has turned into two Androids for me and my wife. Back then you had gas, electric and water as utilities. Now you have to throw in cellular and high speed internet on there. Its essential in todays age.

    Clothes? I don't have kids but I didn't get my first pair of NIKE's until I was like 13 or so. Maybe got Levi's at about the same age. God knows what parents spend on kids for clothes in this fashion conscious world.

    Heck take a look at drinking. I am a beer snob however that wasn't even an option back in the day. The advent of Craft beers probably has cost me thousands of extra dollars over the years. Yeah I guess I should cut down but why?

 

 

Similar Threads

  1. How Black Middle Class Kids Become Poor Adults
    By Hot Sauce in forum VH Fans Meeting Place (Non-Music)
    Replies: 77
    Last Post: 01.24.15, 02:07 PM
  2. Replies: 123
    Last Post: 01.22.15, 12:22 PM
  3. SURPRISE! TAX HIKE FOR MIDDLE CLASS...
    By ScottyBHarris in forum VH Fans Meeting Place (Non-Music)
    Replies: 22
    Last Post: 08.03.09, 08:52 AM
  4. Even if Dave came back, I don't think I could afford tickets
    By Halen88 in forum Main VH Discussion
    Replies: 55
    Last Post: 06.20.06, 09:58 PM
  5. Wolfie's middle name ?
    By diggyd in forum Main VH Discussion
    Replies: 4
    Last Post: 11.25.00, 09:34 AM

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •