How long can you last on your own?

Discuss those "what if" or "what would you do" scenarios you've been wondering about.

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Ellywick
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Ellywick » Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:38 am

Luckily, I am self-employed as a counselor and would be able to drop my work expenses significantly if I chose to stop having a physical location and just do in-homes. Really, the only thing I worry about for me is if I would have a major health issue that would keep me from working or if I would have to change the city in which I work and take a pay cut as I rebuild my practice. However, we are a dual-income family who needs both incomes to make the bills, so if anything happened to either one of our incomes, we would be in trouble at the moment.

Due to some major medical expenses incurred a while back, 3 children, and various other life crap, we don't have much in savings. Could probably last a month without having to liquidate anything or ask for family assistance. Maybe two if I did some unique accounting. Seems like every time I start to build it up, something happens. Last issue was a reindeer (as I am calling him forever since it happened in November) deciding to jump on the hood of my car. While I was driving. I am not exaggerating. Was able to get a decent down payment on a vehicle from the corpse of my old one, but had to spend a large chunk of savings on taxes and licensing. I travel so much to and from work I really couldn't get a clunker.

Things we could cut down easily would be eating out (which we do too much of anyway) and fun money for us and kiddos. We don't spend an extravagant amount normally, but every little bit helps. We don't have cable, but need the interwebs.

Could last a lot longer if we liquidated either IRA or sold the house, took the equity, and got a rental.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by grumpyviking » Thu Nov 29, 2018 9:08 am

being out of work is not SHTF, its a minor inconvenience.
some people that prefer to be alone are not anti social they just have no time for Drama, Stupidity and false people.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by FrankyDub23 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:38 pm

w3rdtoyamama wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:16 am
I have planned for that.

1. Get a full sized van and live in it.
2. Divorce wife and find a sugar momma.
LOL'd at this so much. :clap:

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by FrankyDub23 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 9:54 pm

I've actually been in Asia last year with a couple of friends. I lived like how Filipinos, Vietnamese and Japanese people live in their country. I stayed at remote locations like Ogasawara island, villages beside the Mekong River and the mountains of Rizal Province. I lived there just like the villagers and helped them how to sustain themselves. I learned from them and I hope they learned from us too. So I guess I can last on my own based on all the things I learned.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Evan the Diplomat » Thu Aug 08, 2019 11:48 pm

I was "between assignments" for 17 months. Wife never skipped a beat. I put her in charge of paying the bills, but she juggled them expertly. I had my monthly VA check and an annuity of 3,200 a month after taxes and health insurance for my wife and four kids. We maxxed out four credit cards, I liquidated a huge chunk of my stock portfolio and didn't plan for the massive capital gains tax. Who knew that buying Apple at $2.69 would come back to bite me in the ass.

We also made the strategic decision to file but not paid the federal income tax owed since we didn't have the money. Their debt has the lowest vig.

So as a result I'm in debt about 170K.

Luckily, things turned around for me in January of this year landing a six figure job with a TS/SCI/CI POLY clearance position. You'd think I'd be wiping my debts out, but after the withholdings, it is surprising how much less it is.

So now I'm trying to set up a cash out refi on the house I bought in San Diego after Desert Storm to pay my taxes, payback the money we took out of the kids account and wipe out the credit cards and right this ship.

I'm going to start getting my kids to invest now. Drips are what kept me from going under.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by MPMalloy » Sat Aug 10, 2019 1:29 pm

w3rdtoyamama wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 7:16 am
I have planned for that.

1. Get a full sized van and live in it.
2. Divorce wife and find a sugar momma.
I might have a lead on a van. :mrgreen:

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by olateone » Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:33 pm

Probably start a “Go Fund Me.”

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Stercutus » Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:27 pm

olateone wrote:
Mon Aug 12, 2019 8:33 pm
Probably start a “Go Fund Me.”
Ah, the modern day electronic pan-handling and grift. Whoever thought of that was pure genius.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by grumpyviking » Wed Mar 24, 2021 10:36 am

how long have you got? probably a damn sight more than most.
some people that prefer to be alone are not anti social they just have no time for Drama, Stupidity and false people.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Blast » Wed Mar 24, 2021 12:16 pm

Been there twice. The first time we had six months of living expenses saved up but we still went directly into survival mode, slashing expenses even more.
The second time we were down to three months of living expenses saved and ended up needing all of it. Now we're frantically trying to rebuild back to the six month level but being self employed isn't the best for that. :/
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by sheddi » Sat Mar 27, 2021 7:43 am

I haven't been unemployed since 1992 (and then I was in my 20s and single, not in my 50s married with two kids) so I'm a bit out of practice at this. I'm taking that the framing for this thread is that you can't get another job, for some reason.

With some belt-tightening, but nothing too poverty-line, we could live on 2/3rds of what I'm bringing home now. After paying our final mortgage payment (due in august this year) that becomes 1/2 of current (you can tell I'm Gen X, my mortgage is only 1/6th of my take-home).

We have cash savings that will cover 4-5 months at the 2/3 rate (which would just about see us to the end of the mortgage, at time of writing) and longer-term investments we could liquidate to cover another 20-24 months (at the 1/2 rate).

After that we're stony broke until I can make an early claim on my retirement savings at age 55. But by then my kids are both old enough to send out working and earn their own keep :D
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by grumpyviking » Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:04 am

I think most people over here wouldnt last long without an income, if the reports about food banks are anything to go by.
literally a few weeks not much more.
I'm a little bit confused, I thought this thread was about survival not how long can you pay the bills.
some people that prefer to be alone are not anti social they just have no time for Drama, Stupidity and false people.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by NT2C » Sat Mar 27, 2021 9:26 am

May 21, 1999 to April 7, 2001 I was homeless and living on the streets (with occasional nights on the floor or couch of a friend or family member) and could have lasted longer if I needed to. Fortunately, I got full-time employment then and was able to afford to rent a room then.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by sheddi » Sat Mar 27, 2021 12:04 pm

grumpyviking wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:04 am
I think most people over here wouldnt last long without an income, if the reports about food banks are anything to go by.
literally a few weeks not much more.
I'm a little bit confused, I thought this thread was about survival not how long can you pay the bills.
This thread is quite literally about how long you can pay the bills.

The original question from the OP was:
Close_enough wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:20 am
Another SHTF scenario, but one that most people will face at least once in their lives.
You're out of work
You didn't qualify for any government assistance
What do you do and how long do you think you'll last before you start selling off retirement account, house, hobbies, etc. to make ends meet.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by grumpyviking » Sun Mar 28, 2021 3:28 am

sheddi wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 12:04 pm
grumpyviking wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:04 am
I think most people over here wouldnt last long without an income, if the reports about food banks are anything to go by.
literally a few weeks not much more.
I'm a little bit confused, I thought this thread was about survival not how long can you pay the bills.
This thread is quite literally about how long you can pay the bills.

The original question from the OP was:
Close_enough wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:20 am
Another SHTF scenario, but one that most people will face at least once in their lives.
You're out of work
You didn't qualify for any government assistance
What do you do and how long do you think you'll last before you start selling off retirement account, house, hobbies, etc. to make ends meet.
I may be the only one but I dont consider being out of work as SHTF, SHTF would to me be something that affects at least the whole country if not the entire planet, being out of work is a personal problem not SHTF.
I have neighbours here who because of covid cannot do their normal jobs but to give them credit they didnt sit on their backsides and moan they went out and found other work instead.
some people that prefer to be alone are not anti social they just have no time for Drama, Stupidity and false people.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by tony d tiger » Sun Mar 28, 2021 4:08 pm

grumpyviking wrote:
Sun Mar 28, 2021 3:28 am
sheddi wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 12:04 pm
grumpyviking wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:04 am
I think most people over here wouldnt last long without an income, if the reports about food banks are anything to go by.
literally a few weeks not much more.
I'm a little bit confused, I thought this thread was about survival not how long can you pay the bills.
This thread is quite literally about how long you can pay the bills.

The original question from the OP was:
Close_enough wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:20 am
Another SHTF scenario, but one that most people will face at least once in their lives.
You're out of work
You didn't qualify for any government assistance
What do you do and how long do you think you'll last before you start selling off retirement account, house, hobbies, etc. to make ends meet.
I may be the only one but I dont consider being out of work as SHTF, SHTF would to me be something that affects at least the whole country if not the entire planet, being out of work is a personal problem not SHTF.
I have neighbours here who because of covid cannot do their normal jobs but to give them credit they didnt sit on their backsides and moan they went out and found other work instead.
It's all about perspective. Everybody is gonna have a different take on it - and no one opinion outweighs the others. :mrgreen:
Some people may put their whole self-worth on their work.
Others may be behind in arrears and have dependents relying on them for food, shelter, clothes...
Then there's those who are independently wealthy but still working because of the relationships they've built. And so on... :words:

The OP (several years back) didn't get into all that, just a basic scenario. What it means is up to you. :awesome:
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by grumpyviking » Mon Mar 29, 2021 2:53 am

tony d tiger wrote:
Sun Mar 28, 2021 4:08 pm
grumpyviking wrote:
Sun Mar 28, 2021 3:28 am
sheddi wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 12:04 pm
grumpyviking wrote:
Sat Mar 27, 2021 8:04 am
I think most people over here wouldnt last long without an income, if the reports about food banks are anything to go by.
literally a few weeks not much more.
I'm a little bit confused, I thought this thread was about survival not how long can you pay the bills.
This thread is quite literally about how long you can pay the bills.

The original question from the OP was:
Close_enough wrote:
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:20 am
Another SHTF scenario, but one that most people will face at least once in their lives.
You're out of work
You didn't qualify for any government assistance
What do you do and how long do you think you'll last before you start selling off retirement account, house, hobbies, etc. to make ends meet.
I may be the only one but I dont consider being out of work as SHTF, SHTF would to me be something that affects at least the whole country if not the entire planet, being out of work is a personal problem not SHTF.
I have neighbours here who because of covid cannot do their normal jobs but to give them credit they didnt sit on their backsides and moan they went out and found other work instead.
It's all about perspective. Everybody is gonna have a different take on it - and no one opinion outweighs the others. :mrgreen:
Some people may put their whole self-worth on their work.
Others may be behind in arrears and have dependents relying on them for food, shelter, clothes...
Then there's those who are independently wealthy but still working because of the relationships they've built. And so on... :words:

The OP (several years back) didn't get into all that, just a basic scenario. What it means is up to you. :awesome:
SHTF probably means different things to different people, to some its unemployment or something equally personal, to me it means something that affects everybody.
thats why a lot of the time I use the term TEOTWAWKI to signify a national or international event.
I lived alone off grid-no power of any kind-no main services- on a small plot of land for 12 years growing my own food and shooting small game for meat.
I can survive a lot better on my own than with other people.
some people that prefer to be alone are not anti social they just have no time for Drama, Stupidity and false people.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Lettuce Pray » Sun Apr 25, 2021 6:31 pm

My wife and I both work. If only one of us lost a job, we could probably last 3-4 years after a little bit of belt tightening. If we both lost jobs, we would be good for about 1 year. One of my medium term goals is to get our expenses down to where we can again hey by one one income if needed. Buying our (we think) forever home in the country last year upped our mortgage payment a good bit but it was worth it.

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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Halfapint » Mon Apr 26, 2021 12:57 pm

2020 was a good test and luckily our situation had changed for the better. The wife and I both work for an airline, I was secure in my job, even if they downsized my department. I could always go to a station of my choice or somewhere my seniority would allow me to go.

Wife on the other hand only had 3 years in her new roll and was about to face furlough. After all was said and done, she didn’t get furloughed, but it was close, less than 30 people more and she would have been out.

Even with her out of work, we would have no problems. Our “mortgage” is $400 a month. Total monthly expenses are under 1000$. That’s about 1/4 of my full pay. I take home a lot less because right off the bat 30% comes out (20% into 401k and 10% into stock buying plan) then taxes, medical, union dues etc.

If both of us lost jobs with the cash readily available (not retirement investments just money here and there) we could have survived 3-4 years roughly. I also took 2020 to learn new trades and look into other revenue streams. I started climbing trees, starting my up small engine repair, and doing tractor work.

All in all I think we would have been fine if we both lost our jobs.
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Re: How long can you last on your own?

Post by Close_enough » Sat May 15, 2021 2:43 am

I'm back, and since I can't leave well enough alone...

We lasted 18 months. Including one failed attempt at forming a LLC, driving for a rideshare, and two slightly above minimum wage jobs. I won't say how close we came to financially auguring in, but I think we lost some paint off the undercarriage!

There were problems getting re-employed. I had quit. I knew I was probably going to be fired for falling asleep (undiagnosed diabetes), and I was burned out to boot. So, I decided to save everybody the hassle and left on my own terms.

I got picked up to do contract work a couple of counties over. It meant moving out to work while my family stayed home, but we survived. I ended up working from home anyway because of COVID-19.

Now I'm back on the job market. This time I was let go because of after 2 1/2 years for lack of future work. So, no stigma and I qualify for for unemployment.

Lesson's learned:
1) Take care of yourself. You're no damned good to anybody else if you're too screwed up to function.
2) Fuck the paycheck. Look for new work if you're burned out. If you hate your job, it'll show.
3) Never quit unless you already have another job lined up.

EDIT: Fasting blood sugar tends to have a lot of false negatives for diabetes, and certain ethnicities won't display elevated readings until the disease has already significantly progresses. Glucometers are fairly cheap ($20 for a full kit). If you feel like shit for no apparent reason, take forever and a day to heal, or are losing weight without trying, buy one and check your blood sugar 2 hours after breakfast. Normal is under 145 mg/dL, Over 180, and you've got problems. The first reading I ever took was 443 mg/dL.

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