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Social Security, are you making ends meet living off of it

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posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 07:47 AM
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For those of us without a union pension and no savings ( yes I mean no savings, no home equity, no nothing but a 15 year old car), how are you faring?

What is the main thing that you have to deal with on an everyday basis. Here us old folks have turned to shop lifting to make ends meet. It's called Nenkin in Japanese.




posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:21 AM
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originally posted by: musicismagic
For those of us without a union pension and no savings ( yes I mean no savings, no home equity, no nothing but a 15 year old car), how are you faring?

What is the main thing that you have to deal with on an everyday basis. Here us old folks have turned to shop lifting to make ends meet. It's called Nenkin in Japanese.
If we had to live off of our SS exclusively, we couldn't do it. We could cover our bills, but it would be very tough to live for sure.

Some of my older relatives, who are long since gone, had to make it on their SS and it was pretty grim for them.

If we could get our Medicare paid for by the government, the portion they take from our SS checks, it would be a big help for people.

A lot of people don't realize that $104 comes right out of your SS payment. $104 dollars could go a long ways to help people out.

Anyway don't know about Japan, but here we do have Seniors Centers where you can get a decent cheap lunch and also free or very minimal charge for days trip. A lot of businesses offer Senior Discounts, they don't really amount to a hill of beans, but every little bit helps. We can also get reduced property taxes. Even a reduction on your utilities.

It's very sad to know so many older folks are struggling, not only putting up with aches and pains and failing health, but then have to add the huge problem of not being able to make it financially. Or as my 87 years old mom says..."Golden years hell, I'd like to know where that is"

I tell you one thing folks, if you don't know what a budget is and how to stick to it, have fun in retirement!!!!!

All my best to you



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:36 AM
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a reply to: musicismagic

Whats really amazing is the tenure people have put in all their lives working for some company or companies and have nothing to show for it. Lots of people are in that boat,

They got up every day, worked all day for decades even and the company let them go at some point with little to fall back on.

In Greece right now they are forming 'plans' to levy even more austerity on the people. One of the 'deals' is a choice between a higher age for retirement (67 instead of 65) or a 15 percent decrease in their pension at 65. The devil or the deep blue sea for the people.

Folks are well advised to make some other plans for themselves, this kind of government plan to strip you of your hard earned benefits is going to be wider spread as time goes on.

The banks aren't going to relent on endless debt and the government isn't going to pay for it without your 'help'.

So take your pick, a little of this or that austerity, more blood from your turnip.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:43 AM
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Social Security is the government's way of determining when you eat, what you eat, what you drink, how you live, where you live, what you buy, where you buy.

Trusting government to take care of you when you retire is risky, to put it mildly.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 08:53 AM
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I couldn't make it on SSDI alone that's for sure.
After doctor bills and medications I'd be trying to live on $700/month.
You can't live anywhere but a cardboard box for that amount.
Now, If they would just take off all the people who don't actually need it they could probably give us enough to live on.
SSDI is the unemployment program for many people in the US, especially in coal country where there are no jobs.

Eta: I live in coal country but actually am disabled. I never wanted to be on SS but life sometimes doesn't leave us choices.

edit on 12-7-2015 by Asktheanimals because: (no reason given)



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:06 AM
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My last job, 24 years at the same place, then I retired, but the last few years I was there they "restructured" the retirement program and if your age and years of service didn't add up to a certain age, then you could no longer be in the plan and were moved to the new plan, which was crappola in comparison. Then pretty soon some of us older folks were let go, Hmmmm..after 30 years all of a sudden the company didn't need them ?!? I heard a couple of people sued them and won too.

Anyway, I already had one foot out the door, my choice, I wanted out bad, before they decided to revamp the retirement plan again!!!

There is no way in hell a person can actually live on their SS, take heed younger folks, if you don't have some sort of retirement plan going for yourselves, you need to get with it.

I can really foresee a time when they will do away with SS, they won't just cut us all off, we can only hope they will leave the people on it at the time on it, but there will be a stop date as far as ever getting any. And they will keep increasing the age when you can receive your full benefits, before it is completely gone.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 09:08 AM
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I began paying into social security in 1968. I understood it was for a minimal way of life, it covers our meds. I did not have a plan for a backup to that. But in the 70's pensions became part of hiring packages, except for the most lowest job types. So, my husband joined the Laborers union, mucked concrete for over 40 years, paid into pension every paycheck. But that option is waning with the busting of unions. I just had a high school education but could get jobs. Companies at that time got good tax breaks for "on the job training", one of the reasons jobs were plentiful. But that option is gone, and now we have EIC.

We could never actually live on just social security. Options for the common worker is limited or gone. Sorry millenials, old age is gonna be rough for your generation.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 10:45 AM
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a reply to: musicismagic

We, of the "land of plenty" have been lured and lulled into thinking that retirement amounts to golden years of finally relaxing and enjoying the sweetness of our labors. --It ain't that way.

I'll venture to say that nobody but a big CEO of some humongous outfit retires to such a life. Getting old for most of us means downsizing, doing without, and blaming the government in addition to the indignity of aging.

Who's at fault? Regardless, of the actual reasons that can be numerated as seemingly relevant, is the fault due to the simple failure of individuals to plan ahead? Or can we blame government for seeming to abandon us with insufficient programs?

In my view, the American way of life in the last couple of generations has spoiled itself with massive debt allowed by credit cards and insanely low buy-ins for home purchases. Most people live beyond their means by way of debt but they are happy to do it. Never will they rationally understand that those monthly interest payments should be going toward some manner of savings for the future. When you "buy" debt simply because your credit card says you have XXXXX dollars to "spend," then you need your head examined. But unfortunately, that awareness comes too late.

Still, even the most careful and frugal of us suffer at the hands of a system geared to those have are actively working. Insurance costs bug me. House, automobile, and health insurance costs are of invisible benefit to me on a daily basis, but stacked one upon the other, they make a huge impact on how I divide up that check every month. Automobile insurance is a scam for older folks, the rate goes up as we age, drive less, and even as--in my case--the vehicle decreases in value every year!

A couple of my kids have absolutely no idea of how little money I have to work with every month. I think that is probably true all across America. We are ashamed at being reduced to a "paycheck-to-paycheck life style. True, I recently dropped $4k for a rebuilt transmission for my nine-year-old vehicle, but that money came directly our of savings as would money for a newer vehicle if such was required. I've always seen my savings as money to pass on to my family, not as a cushion on which I would need to draw upon. the growing numbers of poor retires is creating another underclass of US citizens and the growing numbers and kinds of programs that reward able-bodied people does is of no comfort.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 10:59 AM
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a reply to: Aliensun

Retirement was not a problem until industrials and corporations took the place of family farms. Something else we lost through change. We just keep going back and back or in circles instead of finding solutions.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 11:15 AM
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a reply to: Aliensun

What you said, especially about people living outside their means and the huge debt people go into to have more, newer, bigger and better.

We are doing fairly well because we have done without things for decades. Never buy something new just because, not if whatever old item is still working well. Never bought anything on time, if we couldn't afford it we waited. Everything but our house, which we have been in for almost 40 years. We had it paid off in the mid 1980s and stayed put.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 12:57 PM
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Have been on SSI Disability for a number of years, and had been doing OK until rent began to increase exponentially over the past 3 years. Landlord decided he wanted to sell the building, and I later learned that the sudden rent increases were done to artificially increase the "income value" of the property in order to gain a higher sales price and attract buyers. Now I am stuck here, because I can no longer afford to set anything aside for moving expenses without some sort of miracle happening. I have resorted to selling my belongings on ebay, craigslist, pawn shops, etc. just to have enough cash to survive until the next benefits arrive. I try to appreciate what I have- I've been homeless and that is certainly no fun, so I am thankful that I have a place, but it is frustrating to be trapped by rising prices of EVERYTHING when your income does not increase at the same rate.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 01:34 PM
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Most people I know that retired well, meaning nice roth ira married both drawing social security have completely gone broke in the first 3 to 5 years because of medical costs. Seems the system is rigged to get your money, retire well off and in no time all your money is sucked away. If you haven't wittiness the banks or corporation steal your pension you will end up giving what ever wealth you saved to the medical industry, if you wish to live that is.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 01:38 PM
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a reply to: seattlerat

I'm sorry that you are truly cornered.

I'll offer a hint that may work for you. My GF and I love going to estate sales and yard/garage sales. Especially, estate sales where you can find about any item that you may need to replace in your own place at a fraction of the cost of a new item. Estate sale/moving sale items are almost always in working order or can be tested on site.

Plus, if you have a knowledge about cameras, jewelry, pocket knives, anything mailable, you may find items that you can turn around and sell for a profit.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 01:48 PM
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originally posted by: beezzer
Social Security is the government's way of determining when you eat, what you eat, what you drink, how you live, where you live, what you buy, where you buy.

Trusting government to take care of you when you retire is risky, to put it mildly.


SS is a good example of how poorly the Government does things when they get control. All the money a person puts into SS over a 40 plus year period would have triple+ the amount per month if it went into a 401k instead.

For those who worked with some company for 25 years you never started a IRA or had a 401k too?



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 01:51 PM
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originally posted by: seattlerat
Have been on SSI Disability for a number of years, and had been doing OK until rent began to increase exponentially over the past 3 years. Landlord decided he wanted to sell the building, and I later learned that the sudden rent increases were done to artificially increase the "income value" of the property in order to gain a higher sales price and attract buyers. Now I am stuck here, because I can no longer afford to set anything aside for moving expenses without some sort of miracle happening. I have resorted to selling my belongings on ebay, craigslist, pawn shops, etc. just to have enough cash to survive until the next benefits arrive. I try to appreciate what I have- I've been homeless and that is certainly no fun, so I am thankful that I have a place, but it is frustrating to be trapped by rising prices of EVERYTHING when your income does not increase at the same rate.


There are really cheap areas in the country to live and really expensive areas too. I would think if you could down size to a small Uhaul of stuff you can live anywhere in the country since your not glued to one location due to a job.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 03:19 PM
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originally posted by: LDragonFire
Most people I know that retired well, meaning nice roth ira married both drawing social security have completely gone broke in the first 3 to 5 years because of medical costs. Seems the system is rigged to get your money, retire well off and in no time all your money is sucked away. If you haven't wittiness the banks or corporation steal your pension you will end up giving what ever wealth you saved to the medical industry, if you wish to live that is.


I totally agree with this. My father who worked and toiled endlessly for decades finally retired with decent savings. Never during his working years had to have surgery or go to the doctor. Right after retiring, he started getting ailments then surgeries. Although Medicare paid a lot of it, he still needed to pay for some of the cost. After multiple surgeries, doctors visits, medications...his savings dwindled to nothing. In the end he passed away at home, refusing to go to the hospital because he did not want to pay for anymore medical costs. He barely had enough to cover his funeral costs.
As for me, I'm seeing a decrease in work benefits. The company I work for froze and ended the pension plan. Those of us who have some years with the company will get our pension at the rate it was frozen. But this is not guaranteed to be there. I still have many years before I retire, so inflation will eat up that pension. They also started cutting back on the 401K matching. Management has gone on the attack against its employees trying to write you up for any mistakes to avoid having to award you the yearly merit pay increase.
My advice is try to stay as healthy as you can.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 04:10 PM
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Believe it or not, my parents are doing it. They have retirement savings, but they only use it when they make a large purchase like a car. My mom was forced early in her life to live on a tight budget, and she is VERY good at it. They sure don't seem to be suffering, although they definitely don't live extravagantly at all. Their mortgage is paid off, and they are both in good health (currently no meds of any kind).



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 04:20 PM
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My husband and I are both relying on SSDI for our respective mental sensitivities. After our rent and bills are paid, we have roughly $250 a month left over for food and incidentals between the both of us.

Even though we are sub-poverty in our yearly income, we are only eligible for less than $20 a month in Supplemental Food Stamps, which basically covers a gallon of milk per week. It's not a lavish lifestyle, but he grew up in a poor home and I spent the majority my 20's homeless, so we're used to making a dollar stretch as far as we can take it.

What bakes my noodle is meeting disabled kids barely in their 20's who make over double my monthly earnings...they've held one of two jobs, whereas I've held over 30 jobs when I was able to work. I have no idea how that algorithm is constructed.

The beast of the situation is that while I have been working in close proximity with my therapist and psychiatrist for twenty years now trying to get back into the work force after being "off the record" for ten years or more. Without a recent job, even finding low end employment in the retail sector is damned near impossible. We'd like to be able to get off the meager food stamps, but it seems no one is willing to hire someone with a history of mental disability.

We're kind of stuck unless we can get a self-employment gig going, and that takes initial start up costs. It's slow moving with a lot of mental hoop jumping and personal sacrifice, but there are more options available these days with the boon of the internet than there were in years previous, so we're remaining optimistic while we get our proverbial ducks in a row.

edit on 7/12/15 by GENERAL EYES because: grammar, clarity



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 04:58 PM
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Social Security is a joke.

The average monthly stipend is around $1200 month.

That is below the national poverty line.

If people think once they get to 'retire' think again.

Your still going to have to work.



posted on Jul, 12 2015 @ 07:03 PM
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In about a year our house will be paid off and we will not need to use much of our savings. I won't take any meds for longer than two weeks or maybe a little more if it is a stubborn infection. I have had so many negative reactions to pills over the years that I don't want to take them. I can't even take a multivitamin on a regular basis, not one that I have tried anyway and that is about ten different brands.

I have done a lot of research and am confident I can fix most things with dietary changes. A few herbs and spices can help a lot too. I am sure I will need a doctor to set bones or sew me up if I get hurt, and you never know, I may need surgery someday. But no matter what, I won't go on long term meds again. I know how many of them work and how to get the chemistry from nature. The ones I could use there is no medicine, just dietary recommendations.

My wife still gets suckered into going to the doctor and the doctor does little to help her. Now when she went back after pulling her back out, the doctor did give some short term meds that helped. She has a new doctor now and I actually have to go to get a visit in the same office to a different doctor. I hope he is good, I wouldn't go to my old doctor anymore because she kept shoving pills at me and the other doctor said to stop taking them so she could find if I was allergic to the meds she gave me. I was, and could finally know for sure that I am intolerant of the whole class of epileptic drugs. But I also found I felt better not taking the meds the regular doctor gave me so I filtered off of them and never went back to her.

So Social Security will take care of us except for major home expenses like a roof or new well pump and stuff like that. We part D insurance when the wife retired. I will keep studying so the medical field will not gobble up everything we own.
edit on 12-7-2015 by rickymouse because: (no reason given)



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