March 10, 2007

What do you do?

Informal poll - post under a user name or as anon if you want to for this one

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

2) What do you do for a living

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Be honest.

136 comments:

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

HAPPY RENTER

2) What do you do for a living

SMALL BUSINESS OWNER

3) How much do you make per year

ABOUT $100,000 TAKE HOME (AFTER TAXES)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

25%-30%

Anonymous said...

Guidelines

Just how well do these old guidelines apply to you in today's housing market?

• Housing should take about 25% of your gross pay or 35% of your take-home pay.
• When buying a home, look for something priced at 2.5 times your gross income.


Let's take a look at an average household with an average income. Early in 1988, the average gross income for U.S.. households was about $27,000; the average net income was about $24,580, based on the U.S. Department of Labor's Consumer Expenditure Survey. Using the first rule of thumb, a household should be spending about $562 to $717 per month on shelter, utilities, and other housing-related expenses. If this same average household wanted to buy a house, according to the second rule of thumb, they should be looking in the $67,500 price range.

Anonymous said...

1 owner (11 years with no cashout refis)

2 Attorney with a new and growing chapter 13 bankruptcy practice (it is an ill wind indeed that blows no man good)

3 income changes but around 100 k

4 aound 20-25%

Frank said...

1) HAPPY renter!!!

2) Author/Speaker/Business Owner

3) Around $600k

4) Around 8%, based on my $3,500 rent (on a $1.2M house) plus utilities

Anonymous said...

Renter

Software/systems engineer (sick of working for other people though)

Take home about 47k/year after tax ripoff

Rent and utilities costs me less than 10% of take home pay, although I am getting a deal on rent (could be as high as 20% if not for that)

David in JAX said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

I'm a proud bitter renter and recent former owner.

2) What do you do for a living

Licensed Electrical Engineer by trade, but own/manage a small property management and development business (not houses). Do some engineering work on the side for fun.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

Take home of about $150k.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Total cost of renting including all bills (rent, insurance, electricity, phone, cable, etc.) is $1500 / month or 12%.

If we owned the place we rent it would cost about $3000 / month (including mortgage, insurance, taxes, and the above bills).

We are going to pay cash for our next home when the timing is right.

Anonymous said...

1) Neither, I'm a former Desperate Homedebtor & now a renter

2) Federal Employee/Reservist

3) 135k

4) 10% as a renter; 20% as a Desperate Homedebtor

sixpercenter said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Renter

2) What do you do for a living

Certified Financial Planner

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

$130K

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Rent a $700,000 house for $1600/month. 14% of pay.

Looking to pickup a homedebtors default without the fraudulent workings of a realtwhore.

Anonymous said...

HAPPY RENTER

2) What do you do for a living

TECHNICAL

3) How much do you make per year

ABOUT $53,000 TAKE HOME (AFTER TAXES)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

19 %


Pit

Anonymous said...

1. Owner, paid cash.
2. Work (rather not say, but hey it's legal :-)).
3. Poverty level.
4. Roughly 13-17% on utilities. No taxes or fees. Probably about 5-10% on maintenance/improvements.

Dallas Renter said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Patient renter... anxious to purchase for 20% plus in the next 12 months or later depending on the market.

2) What do you do for a living

IT

3) How much do you make per year
(total and take-home)

gross 130,000
net 80,500
(after taxes, insurance and 401K)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

14%
1100/month for 3/2 apartment and utilities

Bonus:

2150/month to savings account for home purchase (see #1 above)

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Rent

2) What do you do for a living

Computer/Network Security

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

Aprox 95k gross

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

around 35% of net (utilities very greatly in this home), other similar homes in the neighborhood have sold for 750k-800k in the last year.

Flagg707 said...

1. Renter (and not bitter in the least)
2. Engineer
3. Roughly $60k After Taxes
4. We spend maybe 20%-25% on housing-related costs

I've owned two homes previously. I've got to say that in addition to the reduced expenditure, I have a lot more of my time for me and the family - I'm not stressed out over treating the deck or weeding the yard or taking care of the fence or the million other things that go with it. Plus my insurance is way cheaper.

I'll own again some day, but only when the finances are way in my favor. I'm just glad to have a wife who has no problems saving money and living within our means!

Charlie X said...

1) Owner, no mortgage

2) Self employed, work from home

3) $120K-180K

4) 4%-5%, utilities, property taxes, maintenance, insurance

Anonymous said...

Happy renter

Finance

$300k Gross
about $200k net

10%

Anonymous said...

1) Happy Renter, Sold my house at height of bubble in 2005 for $1.2m

2) Management Consultant

3) $385k pre tax income

4) Rent for $3200/mo on a $690k house

Looking for desperate homedebtor to unload the house to me at bargain price.
Life is good.

Anonymous said...

1) Live in rental overseas paid by the government, (sweet digs), sold house in DC April 2006 at about peak prices.

2) Diplomat (wife too)

3) About $175k

4) Now--nothing. Lookng to buy/build in a few years.

Anonymous said...

) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Neither. 25% down, 30 year fixed, ~$60000 in debt, ~$300,000 in cash, silver, gold, and gold stocks.

2) What do you do for a living

IT

3) How much do you make per year

~$65000 take home

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

<20%

mcbee said...

1. Homeowner (not debtor)
2. Financial services (not RE or iinvestment related)
3. 125K before, maybe 70 after 401K, taxes.

4. House is paid off...maybe 5K in taxes ($1,200), utilities, and maintenance (averaged).

Anonymous said...

1. Owner, paid cash. Now looking to sell and rent so the money can be invested elsewhere.

2. Dr's wife, husband is Orthopedic Surgeon.

3. $440,000.

4. Minimal, $700 real estate taxes per year (the City hasn't noticed there is a house on this lot yet). HOA $2400/year, etc...

-- Small Hat

Anonymous said...

What about you Keith?

Small Hat

geeski said...

1. homedebtor with a primary residence plus 3 rentals (all 30yr fixed, 20% down, no HELOC, no consumer debt)
2. IT
3. household income after taxes 142,700
4. 21%

Rochester, NY said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

JUST PUT A OFFER IN 58K (1700SqFt 1.5 Bath 3 bed)

2) What do you do for a living

COMPUTER TECHNICIAN

3) How much do you make per year

40k

4) When buying a home, look for something priced at 2.5 times your gross income.

58K< 100K CHECK

Anonymous said...

1) Happy Renter

2) Attorney

3) $200 - $400K (Gross) ... I have $600K sitting in cash from the sale of my bubble-home/second homes in '05.

4) Less than 25% ...

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

and where's that genius blowflY??

Anonymous said...

either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey. If everyone made incomes like this then everyone could afford a house but the truth of the matter is people don't. I wouldn't put my income on this because I am a single mother living in this house (my own) for 14 years, I did refi to get money to do some much needed repairs, I am now back to where I started at with my house but the payments remained the same, I live in Cali and if I sale I will still make money. I spend at least 1/2 of my monthly income to maintain my house but I still have enough left over to eat and buy stuff. I make less than 50,000 but I do get child support and I have been on my job 28 years. So what is the point of this? Are you admitting that even though there is nothing at stake people will still fudge the #'s a bit to look better to everyone else.

Garth said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Undesperate Homedebtor (I could pay off my modest, low i-rate mortgage anytime I want but like the deduction)

2) What do you do for a living

Entrepreneur

3) How much do you make per year

350,000 before taxes

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

10%

Anonymous said...

1) I'm a bitter renter

2) I'm a lawyer who owns his own practice

3) just over 120k

4) I rent for half what it costs to own here in seattle and the house i rent was fully remodeled 9 months ago.

Anonymous said...

re:I forgot

Anonymous said...
HAPPY RENTER

2) What do you do for a living

TECHNICAL

3) How much do you make per year

ABOUT $53,000 TAKE HOME (AFTER TAXES)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

19 %


Pit

Saving 700 $ per month on 401 K,last year return 8 % ( tax free of course and no 6% to the realtors)

oneclickplus said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor?

Neither - 100% equity and don't care if housing crashes. My non-existent mortgage will not be affected.

2) What do you do for a living?

Small business owner - computer / network service and support (directly compete with "Geeks on call")

3) How much do you make per year

$175,000 (after income taxes)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

ANNUAL figures: electric (which includes heat/hot water) $4000, Water $600, Property taxes $3600 ... I'll even throw in Comcast / phone / TV / cell $2500, insurance $1100.

That's it. Total is $11800. Percentage of income is LESS than 7%

But I want to add this. There are those who will read this and make me out as some wealthy, greedy individual. However, I have not always been this well off. I worked for everything I have and I learn FAST. For instance, I have purchased exactly ONE car off of a dealer and felt the pain of monthly payments. Never did that a 2nd time. I have 4 cars - all very used (7-12 years old) and all paid off. I spent the first 20 years of my career hardly ever eating out and throwing EVERY spare dollar at my mortgage. I got mortgage free with a lot of sacrifice - not by eating out 3x per week and driving a BMW. Most teenagers where I live drive nicer cars than me. I'm nearly 50 years old.

Other things I invite my fellow baby boomers to consider. I have NO official retirement accounts by choice. Whenever I was offered to join one at previous employers, I always denied and put the money into regular savings myself. I fully recognized that I might miss the employer contribution. However, I fully acknowledge and expected NOT to have the tax deferral. WHY? Because the assumption that the government wanted us to make (way back when we were young and it was at the time true) was that we would be taxed at lower rates in the future. Well, I've already been taxed on all my savings and I don't have the government forcing me to withdraw from my 401k when I turn 70 (just so they can collect the taxes they never got). Besides, with all the entitlement mentality and the prospect of universal healthcare on the horizon, taxes are going to go through the roof. I've got a paid up house and 1.5 mil in the bank (actually in 22 different banks and 100% insured). All of it has been taxed. All of it is mine and my kids.

All of this was done with 30 years of frugal living, fixing my own cars, cooking my own meals, doing my own house work, cutting my own lawn, taking care of my own pool, buying good/used cars, etc.

Next year on my 50th birthday, I will "retire". But, to me, that will mean that I stop the aggressive earning / saving posture and start to relax. I will still run my business but I will do less of the actual work myself and just continue to manage the people working for me. I'll still have a 6-digit income (for life) and work only as much as I like. In May of 2008, we are celebrating the start of our retirement by taking a 4.5 month "world cruise" at a cost of $36,000. And you know who's paying for it? Not me. It's all those debtors whose interest payments filter through the system into my CD deposits accounts.

So, if you're 20 and reading this, think long and hard about that new car, fancy restaurant and morning latte. My kids have been taught well. Have yours??

ShadowCat said...

1. Happy Owner. Will be morgage free in 4 years.
2. IT
3. 70K
4. 15% - including maintenance.

Guy Daley said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

I'm a homeowner, paid $119K cash for a triplex. You couldn't buy a fire hydrant for that much in CA but I think that will change in due course.

2) What do you do for a living

Nothing right now, Just screwing off, getting ready to check out Mendoza, Argentina for a month, then I'll look for a job when I get back.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

Nothing right now, just getting $1000 a month from 2 tenants in the triplex.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Shit, now I have to do some math. Oh, 33% of my rental income for utilities, property tax, insurance.

Mark in San Diego said...

1. Happy Renter

2. Retired Univeristy of California Business Librarian

3. Income - Pension/Investments from previous rental property (now sold)- Household income 170K

4. 18% of income (170K x 18% = $30,600 Rent)

Anonymous said...

1/ neither rent nor own, just sold house at peak, banked proceeds (200k), now live in a rent-free one room trailer on a friend's farm in Colorado (very primitive)

2/ as little as possible (ex-high tech, now hike and sleep-in and read books)

3/ $750/month from CDs

4/ zero - life's good! no debts. have finally achieved my definition of success, which is to wake up each day and do whatever the heck I want

Anonymous said...

bought a fixer-upper 8yrs ago for 50K, spent next 6yrs remodeling head to toe (another 30k, all work done by us). House worth 165k. Same house in any other city, 250k-400k. Historic district 1920's vintage

happy near-paid off home owner.
I'm a residential remodeling consultant
wife works for state
combined income $100k

month housing cost, including taxes, ins, P/I and all utilities:
$850

feel sorry for the suckers

Anonymous said...

1) Bitter Renter
2) Software
3) Earn $155k, take home ~ $100k
4) Rent + utils = $1200, so
$1200*12/100,000 = 14.4%

Not bad. Oh ya, and I have over $550,000 in gold and silver equities.

bozonian said...

I'm a frustrated homeowner who bought at the last bottom. I'm not desperate to sell as I have tripled my equity, however, I want to move up to a larger home and refuse to buy an asset that is certain to lose massive value in the coming months, so I'm stuck.

Calm down about me being a house owner. It's a mountain home which doesn't even have a garage but was REAL cheap so I'm not going to lose much in the coming crash. The lack of a garage is getting expensive because we have to rent an external storage facility to keep things. The lot is small and sloped at a 45 degree angle so I can't even build and external storage structure.

I'm rather ticked off at the morons who paid completely stupid prices for houses, and who are about to find out what their houses are REALLY worth. They cranked up the prices for all of us by being unable to contain their consuming urges. When one doesn't discipline ones self, the world will do so.

stuck in So Pa said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Pre bubble owner. Own outright, no mortgage.

2) What do you do for a living

Semi retired.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

$60000/50000

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

10%

Anonymous said...

Oh, I make 80k as a computer programmer. My wife is a nurse and makes as much as I do but I'm not including her income in these calculations. My mortgage is only a standard 30 year and costs me $900/mo. At one point my car payment (I got a 2 year, NO interest car loan) was bigger then my mortgage payment.

I drive a 22,000 Subaru Baja. It was the cheapest high quality 4 wheel drive which is truly needed when you live in snow. A jeep is cheaper but I want reliability and jeeps are not known for that. In fact, I snapped my wife's drive shaft (on her jeep you dirty minded idiots) last year trying to maneuver in our driveway on ice and snow.

The total house costs comes to 18% of my gross income but that doesn't take into account the mortgage deduction savings which would lower that percentage of course.

Anonymous said...

1) Bitter Renter
2) Software Engineer
3) 92,000
4) 18%

michael said...

1. happy owner and happy leesor.

2. tax director of two billion dollar company.

3. me + wife + rental property = 250k.

4. just utilities, taxes and the condo fee.

Anonymous said...

1. Bitter Renter of course
2. Executive Director for a non-profit and own a small medical office with my wife.
3. Should Clear $250k this year, max out retirement and bring home $180k.
4. LESS THAN 10% baby.

Anonymous said...

Actually, in an inflationary environment, it's better to be a debtor (with a fixed rate of interest). As long as income keeps up with inflation, the dollars you owe don't increase so they become a smaller proportion of your income.

I could pay off my house right now but I anticipate massive inflation starting in 6 months after the Fed lowers interest rates to bail out struggling home debtors.

Cheaper money is cheaper money. It means it requires more money to equal the same value of hard asset, ergo, prices will go up.

I think the Wall Street geniuses have no idea of the true value of money. All day long they are moving around milions of dollars and their statistics are measured in billions. Someone like that is unable to understand why housing and mortgage lending is in trouble.

"What, you need a million? Go take it out of the petty cash drawer. Make sure you leave 100k or so for the departmental lunch today."

The Fed will never permit a deflationary environment, where prices are going down generally. In that environment, being a debtor would truly suck.

Anonymous said...

Hey Comrade Mark from San Diego!

I am a computer programmer who works for the Science Library at the University of California, Riverside.

I can't wait for my retirement benefits to kick in where I can sit back and let the California laborers pay my way.

You know California where everyone wants to live. It should be no problem attracting suckers here to work their fingers to the bone paying for the retired public service population.

Now that's what I'm talking about.

Niiiice.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Neither. I sold my house in March 2006, and have been renting a ghetto apartment for cheaper than my mortgage for the past year. I'm building a new home (have already signed contract) which will close in October 2007.

2) What do you do for a living

Me: Accounting/Auditing
Husband: Computer programming

3) How much do you make per year

Between my husband and me, about $130,000 before taxes

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Currently as a renter: 14%
Come October as a homedebtor: about 33% if interest are the same in October, but I expect them to go lower before then. We are not doing an ARM or anything weird. Just a straight 80/20, 30/15 year fixed.

Anonymous said...

Someone on this board is concerned about "looking better" than other people.

I don't give a rats ass how I'm doing compared to other people. I only care about my own comfort level and ability to indulge my urges. Whatever income level supports that, and investing for the future when I can no longer work is all I care about.

Because people have these "keep up with" urges they get manipulated into spending money on status like bigger houses, bigger cars, clothes with a specific label on them that are the exact same clothes sold on the bargain heap at COSTCO.

It's pathetic but I think it's fine with me for them to be taken advantage of. Consider it a stupidity tax and I am all for the exploitation of the stupid.

And the CEO pay issue. This one is really telling. No one except the customers and shareholders of the company are affected by this, and they each have the freedom to register their opinion with dollars. Don't buy the stock. Don't buy the company's product. The fact that congress wants to actually put limits on CEO pay just means there are a lot of envious people in this country who can't stand when someone else makes a big bunch of money. Hey stupid. Stop buying stuff from Home Debot or Walmart if you don't approve. I'll never buy Exxon stock for the above reason.

Anonymous said...

I don't believe in being too frugal. Just within whatever is necssary to be able to retire in comfort.

So you held off enjoyment when you were younger.

Now when you're older, all wrinkled and can't keep your pecker hard, you have all the money you want. Only problem is, you can't enjoy it with the same fervor.

Then you die and your kids get all your money and spend it on hookers and crack or Scientology.

Nice.

Anonymous said...

just want to say, great site, and you're spot on what's happening. anyway:

1. i'm a renter, not so bitter though (was an owner from 2001-2003, now moved into NYC so am renting til I can save up enough to buy. yes, i do believe in paying money down)

2. i trade subprime mortgage ABS for a wall street investment bank

3. 300k (100k base + 200k bonus) last year, expecting double this year (we've been short ABS for a long time and now it's paying off, big time. when you look at these abs bonds, you really see how much total cr@p mortgages are out there... and how some end investors are going to get burned badly)

4. i pay about 12% of total yearly compensation for rent/utilities. excluding bonus, pay 40% (ie of base salary). that's investment banking for you.

you're completely on the right track about how zero HPA + massive credit standard tightening will lead to foreclosures, big time. perhaps the deeper and more interesting story out there, not yet completely told (although the Brookings institute has a good paper on it) is who ultimately owns that risk--a large majority are the cdo holders, often in Europe, Asia, Australia.

i predict there will be more than a few small to medium banks in Thailand, Austria, Germany, etc., who bought "investment grade" A-rated CDO debt who are going to find out that it's worth $0.

keep up the great work!

Anonymous said...

1) Ecstatic Homeowner
2) Electrical Engineer
3) $85,000
4) ~30%

I sold my 1200 sq. ft. home in Phoenix at the height of the bubble in 2005 for $250,000, turned around used profits to buy a 3000 sq. ft. home for $322,000 that was scaring away the greedy investors because the house needed some minor cosmetic upgrades. Same size house brand new was selling for $450,000 to $600,000 at the time. Have spent ~$20,000 in quality high end upgrades and improvements and saved money by doing labor myself.

area 51 said...

1. Bitter (not) Renter.(rent space)

2. Engineer for S&P 500 Semiconductor Equipment Co.

3. Self Gross=$76,800. Wife Gross=$23,000. Total gross=$99,800.
Take-home combined=$45500.
(We both max 401k's)

4. % annual housing/takehome = 8%

Anonymous said...

1: renter
2: IT
3: no comment
4: 10.69% (not including interest and dividend income)

ABQ_Infidel said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Happy homeowner. Sold in DC area 2 years ago, took my profit and ran. Bought a condo for cash in a much cheaper city, where I am taking time off working to be a full time student.

2) What do you do for a living

Student

3) How much do you make per year

About $8000 a year in interest off of my profits from selling.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

$500/yr taxes
$1950/yr condo fees
$180/year electric
Total $2630= 32%

Now that my boyfriend (who was renting before) has moved in and is taking care of the condo fees for us, that's down to about 8% for me and 6% for him.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor - Renting for now. Spent my house downpayment money and paid cash for a boat last weekend from a desperate Florida Realtor(tm) / Asshat flipper.

2) What do you do for a living - Analytical Chemist / Mass Spectroscopist.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home) - $ 52,000 Total, ~$ 38,000 Take Home.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc) - ~ 20% :)

Anonymous said...

1) Happy renter, former owner
waiting for REOs starting in
late 2008
2) Software IT
3) 135K + 40K other income
4) housing about 15%
5) 1.3 Million liquid, about
500K gold and silver stocks.
120K puts and shorts housing
related

Survivor said...

1. HomeOWNER (80K house paid off)
2. Web Programmer
3. 40K/year
4. About 13%
Elec and water about $60/mo. each and taxes/insurance on the house = $190/mo. House is all-electric (no nat. gas)

We have plenty of money left over every month to buy "preps" hahaha

Joey said...

1) Owner - bought condo in Santa Monica in 1999 for 350K and now on zillow it's "worth" 856K

2) Owner of technology startup

3) Right now, nothing other than what my investments make

4) Currently have no pay, living on savings while building business

bobbyj0708 said...

- Smug renter after selling my Reno home in August of '05.

- Homebuilding specialist for a GC in OC (we'll see how long that lasts).

- Just over 6 figures, not counting my stock market gains on puts on the lenders.

- Less than $1000 per month living in Irvine (single, no kids) so a little under 10%.

Anonymous said...

1. Owner. Mortgage payment $1200 for home on 1/2 acre, in a guard gated golf course community.

2. VP-Marketing for well known hospitality company.

3. Combined with my wife, gross $240K, net $180K.

4.12% of net income.

That being said,

I agree completely with anon 3:52. If you all really made as much as you claim, you not be renting. One of the complaints I read over and over here is that you are pissed homes are not affordable. I don't care where you live, if your take home is $150K you can afford a decent home.

You also all wouldn't be so gung ho to support Democrats who would steal another $10K minimum from you, nor would you be so concerned about $10 manfjobs going to India. People making $600K don't go on blogs and rant about issues typically concerning UAW members.

Anonymous said...

1) "Bitter" renter, biding my time.
2) Office stiff.
3) Six figures after taxes is impressive. My salary is just north of $90k, but it doesn't feel very different from earning arbitrarily less, as someone who lives in a major metro area. About 15 years ago, $100k was the target for lavish living. NY Times claims that's now at least doubled. Inflation taking a bite even for the upper-middle class. Not to take away from you 6-fig. earners - congrats!
4) A couple %. Rent's a rock-bottom $1,000/mo. Large 2BR apt. with nice pool & tennis ct., short commute. Was paying $1700 plus parking for a more distant, smaller "luxury" place I got tired of. This apt. actually nicer!

Jack Russell, Snr. said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter...

YES, RENT SHARED HOUSE

2) What do you do for a living

ELECTRONICS TECHNICIAN

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

GROSS = $60k
NETT = $45k

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

20%

Jack Russell, Snr.

Anonymous said...

Bitter renters are just jealous because they can't take out a HELOC to buy the H2 they always dreamed of owning

jrinlv said...

1) Sold our home and 5 acre property just over a year ago for a very good price and we now rent in Las Vegas

2) Retired after 40 years in IT

3) $57,000 gross (SS and Pension) with no bills

4) Spend about 30% on rent. I know this is too high so I have to reduce this number. The wife wants to buy in an area that has experienced very little appreciation in recent years, but I am dubious. She hates renting - especially at our age.

Anonymous said...

1) Happy Renter

2) Engineer

3) 120K

4) 25% (live in a home I could NEVER afford!!)

Anonymous said...

How about a category for the almost extinct species: SENSIBLE HAPPY HOMEOWNER.

1)I own a home in SoCal I bought at the peak which I consider pre-bubble for 227k. 30 year fixed @ 5.365. Never cash refied or took the HELOC. House next door just sold for 430k.

2)I am an IT manager for a mid size corporation. Promotion on the horizon.

3)About 100k pretax. Looking at possible 150k soon.

4) Monthly mortgage is less than rent, it's 1400 plus about 200 in property tax/insurance. Still less than rent. With utilities about 25%

Nice 2 story house in SoCal with huge yard? Check. Wife happy? Check. Non toxic mortgage? check. Mortgage less than local rent?check. Decent cushy salary? check. HAPPY? Double check!

borkafatty said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

( Happy homeowner $1200 a month PI-TI)5 years left on a 15 year fixed 4.75

2) What do you do for a living

Town Engineer 20 + years (Hack)
Small Thriving Office cleaning business PT.

3) How much do you make per year

$80,000- $90,000

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

25%-30% about right...never thought about it..but lets put it this way...my shit is paid and my pocket is fat...but who is bragging...& Debt free!!!!

Anonymous said...

1) Happy Renter, Sold in 02 : )
2) $115,00 gross
3) Banker

Anonymous said...

I am very happy renter (I bought in 1996 and sold in 2006 after divorce).

I am semi-retired CPA.

I make approximately $100,000 per year to taxes.

I spend 20% of annual take-home pay on housing.

Anonymous said...

renter (I travel all the time)

computer consultant

$170-200k (it varies -- last year $226, but that was high)

4% (I live cheap, and turn off the AC when I am on the road). Funny thing is, I live just outside of Houston and if I were to buy a condo, I would be spending 6% on a small place. Texas is pretty cheap.

Housing should take 15% of your gross, and people shouldn't go over 2x salary if they can help it.

Of course I wind up saving about 40% of my gross, so I am atypical.

Anonymous said...

1- happy renter
2- small business owner
3- 125,000 after taxes
4- 3-4%

Anonymous said...

1. Owner

2. Physicist. (max ever $63k). :(

3. $0 from salary. Living on investments.

4. PITI is $1500, reasonable if I had a job. Bought in 2000.

How do all these other people make so much money? I've never seen software jobs that pay $150k, thought $60k was more normal.

Batman said...

1)owner
2)professor
3)120 (canadian, so 100 US)
4)8% (after split with wife with same profession and pay; 98k mortgage at 5%, payments 1200/mo, tax 2500/year, 8 years left to pay)

Have to renew mortgage in 2 years - if interest rates are 22% then, will payoff with stocks.

dalmos said...

1) Fairly happy renter

2) University Professor

3) 55K gross pay

4) 17%

If I were to have purchased the 2BR, 1 bath condo I'm living in now, I would be paying about 2X as much monthly, with absolutely no prospects of long-term appreciation for about a decade. Given the recent run-up in prices here and the average wage, (75% of DC), real estate prices here (in real terms) will not reach last year's level for a long time to come, indeed.

Anonymous said...

1. Own, no mortgage

Anonymous said...

bitter renter

heavy equipment operator

48k after supporting the war on terror, Cheney's stints, etc.

33%

Anonymous said...

1) Homedebtor (not too bitter)

2) Civil Engineer

3) About $95,000

4) 30%

I have a 30 year traditional mortgage at 5.25% and did not overextend on how much house I can afford. Plan to stay here for a long time, so am not in too bad a shape.

foxwoodlief said...

Proves the numbers used by many are wrong. most posters here earn more than the median household income posted by many to show how unaffordable homes are. Take out the working poor and most Americans earn $80-100,000 on average and most fall within $70-130,000, not the $40,000 often quoted. At $100,000 a year that $300,000 mortgage doesn't sound out of line.

Anonymous said...

1. Bitter renter. Sold in 04 thinking the so cal bubble would pop within a year. Yes, we got 300k tax free, but the condo we rent is small
2. subprime lending-I will be out of a job soon so you can only hate me until our company formally files bk
3. soon unemployed but subprime has been lucrative
4. we rent and pay about 11% in housing costs.

Anonymous said...

Damn, I make good money considering my area and the company I work for, but I feel like I'm at the poverty level after seeing so many six figure incomes here. And so many in the multiple hundreds of thousands. I guess inflation only exists in certain areas. Too bad the housing is way out of whack here while wages have leveled off. I make over twice the average income and can't afford/justify a piece of shit in the ghetto here.

Frank said...

"either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey. If everyone made incomes like this then everyone could afford a house but the truth of the matter is people don't."

You forgot option #3: People who can afford to buy a home but are smart enough not to buy while things are still overpriced.

Example: The house I'm renting in Newport Coast was worth $1.2 Million just over a year ago and today is worth $700k. Should a person have bought it at $1.2M just because they could afford it? Hell no!!! That person who bought it lost a half-million dollars!!!

Would you buy a new car for $50,000 knowing the dealer will offer it for $30,000 next month? NO! You wait for the better deal!

Your logic makes as much sense as saying that because a person has a thousand dollars in their wallet, they should run out and spend it immediately, and if they don't then they're lying about having a thousand dollars.

In other words, your logic is the logic of Scottsdale AZ that I'm moving out of in 34 hours, where people assume that if you don't have a Rolex and a BMW then you must be dirt-poor and flip burgers at McDonald's.

Egyptian Real estate Agent said...

We have to ask ourselves this question and ask others!!!

Ahmed Anies
Egyptian Real estate Agent

Egyptian Real Estate BLOGGER
Phone: (002)+ 016 1334420
Email: info@egypt-realestate-agent.com
site: www.egypt-realestate-agent.com

Anonymous said...

i think the peeps who make less then 30k/year are more likely on myspace right now and not reading housing bubble blogs (or anything investment related)

GT said...

renter, not too happy, not too sad
patent examiner
65k net
30% of my income

Anonymous said...

maybe the salaries here arent out of whack like everyone thinks and maybe people really do make more than they thought a lot of people do. most people come to answer this post thinking, wow i'm surely at the head of the class here and come to find out, nope, manye others make in line to what you do. so maybe housing isnt so out of line with real median incomes. although most people who have the luxury to read blogs on weekends probably are not median income households.
i wish people would be more specific with their job, instead of software robot, maybe say oracle server software programmer level 3

Anonymous said...

1) Homeowner w/cash on hand to pay debt off anytime.

2) Software

3) $100K after taxes

4) 14%

GowdTeef$ said...

Proves the numbers used by many are wrong. most posters here earn more than the median household income posted by many to show how unaffordable homes are. Take out the working poor and most Americans earn $80-100,000 on average and most fall within $70-130,000, not the $40,000 often quoted. At $100,000 a year that $300,000 mortgage doesn't sound out of line.

Yea, I'm sure the ones making 25k a year are reading this blog. They are too busy trying to scrape together their mortgage payment and watching American Idol.

Anonymous said...

Sold in 12/05 Did not like the run up. Moving out of State.

Still here and renting and very happy. Move soon.

6 Fig. Income but will not pay insane prices for anything.

Keep happy.

Anonymous said...

1) own free and clear 1600 sq/ft 3/2 with large back yard and oversized garage/work shop. Bought for $145K 12 years back for cash I had saved and equity from another house that I sold. I used the callsifieds and bought from an old coubple that were scaling down. No real estate agent, no credit score, no hassels. Used a lawyer to draw up the papers and check title for $500 and he handled the closing chaeper that a title company, since they want to sell you Title insurance" which is totally useless and a waste of money. The bankers need it so they can sell your mortgage note, but cash cuts through the BS and needless expenses. Pay cash and buy from the owners directly if you want the better deal. Use a lawyer and you only pay for the services you actually use. You can find me most days in my garage workshop working on my jeep, and fixing stuff that breaks.

2) retired at 50 years old

3) live on 45K year

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Agent #777 said...

Physicist - I hear ya. I am feeling kinda sheepish too, as the most I have ever made at my IT job is about 62k, but hey, I get to work from home - that is worth about 15k to me. My drive to the office would be 75 mins each way, about 30 miles. I know a guy who has a strong resume as a consultant that has made anywhere from 80-120 per HOUR on a contract basis for the last 9 years. All he is doing is helping large companies format their business data for use in a financial application. I wish I would have started 2 years earlier, I could have done the same. Now I am married with child, and the home life means too much. I could probably get a 30-50% raise if I wanted to do it, but then I would be away from home 4 or 5 nights a week. I will be riding the current gig as long as it lasts, even though I am "underpaid".
My uncle was a highly specialized Civil engineer who retired in 1985 or so. Boy, were we both surprised to find out what the other made. He was "up to" 34k when he retired, even though he was constantly recruited after that to come back, even if part time.
I would not doubt that there are garbageman in NYC that make more than me in IT. That is why I still do RE on the side.

Agent #777 said...

foxwoodlief, have you noticed the types of people posting here? I am seeing almost all IT and business owners. Freinds of my wife bought a small house recently, even though they both have nice car payments, and as a fireman and a teacher, together their salaries barely beat mine. Let me know if the working poor includes the police officers, teachers, fast food and motel managers, firemen, taxi drivers, sanitation workers, call center managers, electricians, pest control technicians, pastors, architects, general office workers and whatever else so I will know if they should be included in those figures.
Down here in FL, any of those making over 50k a year is considered to be doing very well.

Baja Fresh said...

Wow every other post is from a SOFTWARE/IT guy. I suppose this group is very 'blog savy' so it would make sense.

I'm one also!! And yes we DO make a lot of money, I doubt anyone here is lying. If you make 50k a year just know that in CA thats a 'secretary' salary, no offense.

I'm renting -paying 1100 mo.

IT guy.

Gross 150k/110 take home

Sold home(s) at peak and going to ezily pay cash for McMansion after crash.

Anonymous said...

1. I'm a homeowner, but far from desperate.

2. I'm a self-employed executive recruiter.

3. After business expenses and taxes, my net has ranged between $150,000 - $290,000 per year (been in business six years). Average take-home over the past six years is roughly $220,000.

4. My mortgage payment, including taxes and insurance is $992 per month. Total utilities are probably another $400 or so per month.

That being said, I must say that this is absolutely the most absurd blog I've ever seen. I read Keith's rambling from time-to-time for amusement purposes only...is this guy for real? Yes, real estate values are right-sizing, but crashing? I don't think so.

Keep up the freak show, Keith. We're all watching, and laughing. I just pray that you don't take yourself too seriously...surely you can't be that delusional.

Anonymous said...

>1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Renter, sold home in 2003

>2) What do you do for a living

Recruiting / Buy Puts on REIC Industry

>3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

$592,000 (with wife's pay)

>4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

We're saving $25,000 a month.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

HAPPY RENTER

2) What do you do for a living

SOFTWARE ENGINEER

3) How much do you make per year

around 6 figures

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

5%-10%

Amber said...

Fox,
Do you really think the readers/posters to HP reflect the "average american"??
I think we're, for the most part, more educated and financially savvy than the average american, and our salaries are a reflection of that.

Nobody's even posted yet that works for America's largest employer: Wal*Mart.

Anonymous said...

Happy Renter

Computer Mapping (GIS)

82K

About 10%

Anonymous said...

"either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey."

um, maybe it's because "financial conservatives" are reading the blog-- ones who save money and think twice before being sucked into a scam.

There is evidence that "people are getting richer!" You may have seen that 100+ people became "dollar billionaires" last year.

Of course, that doesn't mean that a dollar buys what it did last year either!

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor - Bitter renter - Missed the housing bubble, waiting to buy in 2 years after the crash is in full swing.

2) What do you do for a living - Programmer

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home) - $ 200,000 pre-tax (2 jobs)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc) - $700/month rental w/3 roommates includes utilities (~6%)

TM said...

1. Bitter renter.

2. IT/Insurance

3. $55k take-home

4. 20% spent on housing.

Please note that $55k net is absolute poverty wages in Orange County, CA. God I need to get out of here.

Anonymous said...

"most Americans earn $80-100,000 on average"

I would say most houshold income (dual) is 80-100k. I have very little friends that pull in over 80k by themselves. If it is, its because they factor in the wife's income.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor?

both - old house still owned and rented out (positive cashflow), moved to new work, happily renting there (prices much higher here)

2) What do you do for a living?

engineer

3) How much do you make per year?

about 45k after tax and 401k

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

25%

Anonymous said...

1. I am an owner but paid 100% cash last year.

2. Run a production factory of about 600 people

3. About $300K / yr before taxes, 190K after taxes (how you all pay less taxes really surprises me)

4. My yearly fees are $1200, no taxes till I sell, another $2000 a year for electricity, water & cable. So this is about 2%.

I am tighter than a Scot / Jewish / Indian all rolled into one!

Anonymous said...

1) Happy renter

2) Physicist-turned-engineer

3) $100k + wife's $60k (both after tax)

4) 12%

My wife and I purposely live in a smaller place than we could afford so we are able to save >50% of our after tax income.

Note to the physicist who never made more than $63k--you could probably double your salary if you go work as an engineer in Silicon Valley, where I am. That's not to say your quality of life would improve though! Once I have enough $ saved I will shift to a job that is lower stress and fewer hours.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Bitter -- ahem, HAPPY -- renter.

2) What do you do for a living

Attorney

3) How much do you make per year

$125,000 (pre-tax).

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

approx. 23%

graphrix said...

1. Homedebtor and I don't blame anyone for renting right now.

2. Financial services my own business - I actually want people to have money and retire in style and not think that their house is a retirement plan.

3. $100k plus or minus but more plus than minus.

4. 20% on the low income side.

People are crazy to think this is normal. I like the idea of an investment property is great but with a cap rate of 1.3% it doesn't make sense. Let's compare apples to apples a house in my neighborhood is for sale for $1.1mil and no one shows up but the realtwhore has a flyer for 20% down and a payment of $3325 a month. Yes a pay option arm! Now we have a rental for $3k a month and it has modest traffic and will be rented soon. Do the math and you will see buying right now is stupid and renting is smart.

graphrix said...

Oh and I forgot to mention I have made more money buying puts on the defunct lenders and homebuilders than I have ever made in real estate.

cabbiesouth said...

Paid off Trailer on a lake in Texas. 1 acre.

You guessed it. I own a Cab.

I'm not telling.

Last year it was about 2500.00 I think?

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor?

Renter

2) What do you do for a living

Computer Systems Engineer

3) How much do you make per year

Gross: $102,000
After Taxes and 401k: $58,000

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

$675 per month or 14% of take home pay.

Frank said...

"1. I am an owner but paid 100% cash last year."

Congratulations! That makes you a real OWNER. I'm sick of people bragging about their "ownership" only to learn they're 100% financed with a 2nd loan for the down payment. That's not an OWNER, that is a SLAVE TO DEBT.

Like I've always said, if the phonies were as rich as they all claim to be, they'd pay cash.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

unHAPPY RENTER but refuse to pay the ridiculous prices and will not sign up for monthly slavery to do it.

2) What do you do for a living

SMALL BUSINESS OWNER

3) How much do you make per year

ABOUT $85,000 TAKE HOME (AFTER TAXES)

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

20%

Dave Barnes said...

1) Happy Homeowner (share ownership with bank)

2) What do you do for a living:
Live in my basement and help companies with their marketing.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home):
$100+K and not sure. With your own business it is easy to get confused about take home pay.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc): $1750/mo or $21K/yr. Is equal to 31% of AGI on 1040. I am very comfortable with that number.

foxwoodlief said...

Agent 777 and all, I agree that there are probably fewer lower income people reading this blog than upper income since most poor people don't think much past today.

As far as incomes? We are talking median household incomes, the ones most people quote when saying homes are too expensive, and household income usually involves more than one income unless single.

Most American families are two wage earners. Firemen do make a lot of money once they have a few years on the job and don't say they don't. Same with teachers and considering most teachers work for nine months their income based on their actual hours worked is quite good. Age comes to play as well. I'm sorry that so many 20 year olds think they deserve to earn $25 an hour with no skills, education just because they want to live well. Living well takes hard work, discipline, education, skill, talent, not waiting for someone to give you a check for being alive.

I know lots of middle Americans who earn $100,000 a year and what amazes me is that there are so many bigger dogs out there. Now that I'm back to work after taking a year off, traveling to Europe and around the USA and our household income is over $150,000 again I consistently wonder where all the big money comes from! Then I look around at the professional working class, doctors, investment bankers, CEOs, etc and $250,000 and up is the norm for their household incomes.

It isn't hard for two middle-professionals to earn $65-100,000 each or upper professionals to earn $100,000 each an up! Lots of government workers make over $100,000, school superintendents, fire chiefs, police chiefs. When I was in Austin they were starting Domino's managers at $38,000 and most of those were in their 20s. Here in Phoenix they had an ad on TV for corrections officers with starting salaries of $38,000, again blue collar work. You can name lots of jobs where if the husband makes $40,000 and the wife makes even $25,000 they earn a lot more than those median incomes quoted at $45,000 for a household.

They say the median wage is like $16 an hour and will rise with the minimum wage rising. Then there is a lot of inherited wealth...a lot from inflated real estate, but there are lots of lower middle class workers who get mom's house and suddenly are flush with cash, move to say Phoenix, pay cash for their house and can live well earning $40,000 a year.

There are too many variables to lump everyone into one camp. Age, skill, profession, if a person works more than one job, works a lot of overtime, inherits wealth from family, starts up a successful business. I'm sorry but it is obvious that there is way more money out there than I can account for even looking at just salaries.

YoungExec2B said...

1) I'm a homedebtor. Not really desperate. Hoping to be mortgage free in 6 years or so. I bought a house in December 2005 because of a transfer, and because my wife was expecting, and we didn't like the idea of renting with a baby.

2) My wife and I are both civil servants. I'm in middle management, she's an EA: Yearly income is about $132K CAD. Take home of about $7K a month.

3) Mortgage: $1300. Taxes: $300. Utilities: $300. So, about 27% of take home, or 17% of gross. I also pay down an additional $2,000 a month in extra mortgage payments.

Anonymous said...

1) Only a part time renter. Living with my parents on a small farm. They save me from a mortgage and wage slavery. I save them from the horrors of the nursing home.

2) Mix of tutoring/personal assistant part time and gardening.

3) About 20K a year after taxes but I only "work" 3 days a week. I save more than half of what I earn.

4) Less than 10%, and all of that is to secure a room in the city for my PA job. Next year I will look for part time work closer to the farm, so it will fall to less than 1%.

Anonymous said...

What about Keifer? Don't lie!

Anonymous said...

""either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey."

um, maybe it's because "financial conservatives" are reading the blog--"'

No..people like to boast and stretch the truth. Especially men. Who makes up most of the posters here i would say.
Come on..some guy said hes a programmer making 200k! I have been in the IT industry for 10 years and have not heard of a 'programmer' that makes 200k. Unless hes a principal developer or team lead and that's for a big corporation. Even those are very few! Give me a an f-ing break and keep it real folks.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Neither, employer based housing in various locales across the globe.

2) What do you do for a living

Assassin - I also have a part time, business for self gig as a Ninja.

3) How much do you make per year

No salary, sponsors make arrangements for my expenses with no questions asked and contribute $250,000 per year in my assassin pension fund - for retirement purposes, you know. I know it sounds like a lot but you know, we assassins don't have a long time in our careers.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing? 0%, no salary and no housing expense in the traditional sense of the phrases.
25%-30%

Agent #777 said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

1. Bitter Renter in OC.
2. Lawyer married to a lawyer.
3. About $300,000 gross.
4. Less than 20%.

Bitter because we make more than almost anyone we know but would never even consider an exotic loan. Thus, using a conventional 20% down, 30 yr. fixed, we could only afford a POS house (i.e. in OC, $900,000 in a good neighborhood buys an attached home with tiny yard). We are, therefore renting a $2+ million home for less than 1/3 what it would cost to own. In 2004, when our income was about the same, our banker said we would qualify for $2.2 million house. How crazy is that? We will wait, and wait, and wait in our Newport Beach rental, until the market is sane again.

mythium said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Somewhat bitter renter. I'm still relatively young and never had the chance to buy at a reasonable price due to the housing bubble.

2) What do you do for a living

Work on CG Animated Features.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

Take home of about $100k.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

Rent is about $1000/month. So, including utilities, I'm paying about 15% of take home pay for housing.
My wife and I are planning to put about 50% down on a house in Southern California in a few years, maybe 2010.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Bitter Renter (Would be happy owner if moved to SoCal in '92)

2) What do you do for a living

Me: Director of IT
Wife: DBA (for a sub-prime lender!)

3) How much do you make per year

Combined:
$220k/yr Gross,
$94K/yr Net,
That's fed tax, 9+% CA tax, FICA (of which I'll never see a dime), etc. and 2 maxed 401(k)s. How do you people pay so little taxes without the home-interest deduction?

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

$3,800 /mo rent
$1,000 /mo utilities ($600/mo electic+gas! - have a home server farm)

So that's 60% of take-home on housing! Which is about 15% less than where buying would have put us!

We (myself and 3 other partners) sold our company in '06. My portion of the proceeds combined with our savings gives us over $600K in cash - still not enough to buy a house in San Diego! We have no debt. Instead, I invested in selected equities and my children's future education. Bitter? Yeah, a little. My neighbors bought their ocean-view home for $70K in '74, on two teacher's salaries. Such opportunity doesn't exist for my or later generations. Both of us work 60hr+ work weeks, and can't afford to save much of anything; We drive a '01 VW Jetta and a '5 Mazda 6 wagon; and can't afford to replace our 8 year old couch - at least on cash flow - which is the only way we buy anything - no using debt - no using savings. If we can't afford it on cash flow - we can't afford it. The bitterness comes from knowing that our vindication of our fiscal discipline will come when we are too old to enjoy it. ... and will probably be evicerated by a bleeding heart government that will "bail-out" a generation of over-spenders at the expense of our children.

CRT said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Bitter Renter - cashed out at the peak in early 2006

2) What do you do for a living

Bank officer

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

$85,000/50000

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

50% - Oh California!

YoungExec2B said...

""either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey."

Probably true.

Then again, people who are slugging it out in multiple low-income jobs, trying to raise their kids and stay out of trouble probably 1) don't have a PC and 2) wouldn't waste their time reading HousingPanic. I don't mean that to be mean, it's just true.

Anonymous said...

Renter

Lobbyist/Business Owner

$160,000+/year

15%

Agent #777 said...

"We (myself and 3 other partners) sold our company in '06. My portion of the proceeds combined with our savings gives us over $600K in cash - still not enough to buy a house in San Diego! We have no debt. Instead, I invested in selected equities and my children's future education. Bitter? Yeah, a little. My neighbors bought their ocean-view home for $70K in '74, on two teacher's salaries. Such opportunity doesn't exist for my or later generations. Both of us work 60hr+ work weeks, and can't afford to save much of anything; We drive a '01 VW Jetta and a '5 Mazda 6 wagon; and can't afford to replace our 8 year old couch - at least on cash flow - which is the only way we buy anything - no using debt - no using savings. If we can't afford it on cash flow - we can't afford it. The bitterness comes from knowing that our vindication of our fiscal discipline will come when we are too old to enjoy it. ... and will probably be evicerated by a bleeding heart government that will "bail-out" a generation of over-spenders at the expense of our children."

I don't know if these people are brilliant or foolish. How can you have 600k in cash, and not afford a new car or couch?

And what is with the maxed-out 401K? As a previous poster mentioned, tax rates are bound to be much more onerous in the future - why do you think that not paying them now is so great, when you could pay out just as much or more in the future? I put in the 6% to get the 50% match, and that is it. The rest of my money comes to me where I can invest in anything I want, not the limited choices in my 401K.

Anonymous said...

The Salaris posted here are not the real salaries--they are are salaries people would use on a no-doc loan! The data are completely inflated!!!! I love it. HP'ers are generally a likeable bunch but geez it appears that people in the 99th percentile of income are all responding to the survey. Keith, you should up your advertising rates for the folks here that slice of demographic at 99.8 percentile......

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
AndyS said...

Proves the numbers used by many are wrong. most posters here earn more than the median household income posted by many to show how unaffordable homes are. Take out the working poor and most Americans earn $80-100,000 on average and most fall within $70-130,000, not the $40,000 often quoted. At $100,000 a year that $300,000 mortgage doesn't sound out of line.

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This has to be the stupidest comment I've heard on here in a long time. The average American isn't loggin on to Housing Panic or any other housing bust website. They're busy checking out the latest American Idol stats. And if you take out the working poor that balance the median and average houshold income, you've just eliminated about 90% of the population. The comments you're seeing on this site are coming generally from the top 10% of the gene pool, except yourself of course.

Me:

Software Engineer - $106k including the benefits.

I'm not a bitter renter or a desperate home owner. Live in my house 11 years, bought at the bottom in '96 not knowing it, paid $93k for a Cape Cod, currently have a 15 year mortgage with 10 left, owe $67k. Mortgage is $1,176/month. Utilities, about $400. so that's 32% of my take home, but I'm extremely comfortable with that and always have plenty of cash. Could pay it off if I want to, but why, I'd have to sell my gold and silver investments. That would be dumb.
Wife makes about $35k. With her income added were around 20% of take home for housing. Not complaining. Wouldn't mind having one of those $150k+ jobs being tossed around here though. At least I see I'm hanging with the right crowd here instead of a bunch of morons.

AndyS said...

""either people are lying about income or this is a flawed survey."

um, maybe it's because "financial conservatives" are reading the blog--"'

No..people like to boast and stretch the truth. Especially men. Who makes up most of the posters here i would say.
Come on..some guy said hes a programmer making 200k! I have been in the IT industry for 10 years and have not heard of a 'programmer' that makes 200k. Unless hes a principal developer or team lead and that's for a big corporation. Even those are very few! Give me a an f-ing break and keep it real folks.

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Actually, now that you mention it, I'd like to see the tax returns. I can't believe that just the 99.98765894% of the population reads Housing Panic.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor?

Homeowner. I paid cash for my $1.5 million home.

2) What do you do for a living?

Owner and CEO of an Engineering Consulting firm in the Midwest.

3) How much do you make per year?

In 2006 my gross was $2.4 million, not including stock options.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)?

5% or so.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

I bought 2 investment homes in 1984. I sold both properties without listing or buyer’s agents FSBO directly to home buyers. I paid off my primary home with proceeds from the rental properties sold in 2006/2007 in Phoenix. I put enough away to pay my capitol gains taxes next year and am now completely debt free excluding obvious monthly expenses.

2) What do you do for a living

Western Regional Director for an International Corporation which supports Energy Production, Industrial markets and Nuclear industries.

3) How much do you make per year (total and take-home)

At the risk of being takes as delusional by Nay–Sayers, I will not divulge. I will say, I am comfortable with my earnings. Wife believes her job is to shop, host parties and volunteer.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)


Well….. the wife has to live in a big house so here it goes…HOA..4800 yearly, Property Taxes on Primary Home… 4950.00 Utilities including phone, electricity, water/sewer cable TV etc. yearly….7800. The illegal border crossers I use for Home cleaning, yard work tennis court and pool maintenance..8400.00 yearly. Home maintenance and upgrades last year exceeded 14000.00. We are installing solar cell panels this year which will exceed 25000.00 but will pay for itself in approx 10 years. What percentage of annual take home pay is that? I don’t care; it is still a chunk of change how ever you look at it.

I travel over 80% of the time, so I do not get to enjoy the property much, but my wife is having a big party next week if you want to come. I will be in Chile on a mountain top sleeping in a bunk bed investigating a contract for a large mining concern.

Anonymous said...

1) Are you a Bitter Renter or are you a Desperate Homedebtor

Rentet

2) What do you do for a living

Sales

3) How much do you make per year

$120,000 last year. Around $84,000 after tax.

4) What % of your annual take-home pay do you spend on housing (include everything - fees, utilities, payments, taxes, etc)

12%

Anonymous said...

1) Renter (ready to buy and settle down, bitter about house price inflation although we are not priced out)

2) Software (me) and pharmaceuticals (spouse)

3) Total pre-tax comp is about 400K. Take-home is about 240K after federal and state taxes, SS, medicare and 401K.

4) Rent (including utilities) is about 30K per year so 7.5% of pre-tax, and 12.5% of post-tax.

Homes we would like to purchase are priced around $1m which would have payments of around 60K per year (6% 30 year mortgage of 800K, property taxes, insurance, maintenance etc.) adjusted for tax deduction and accounting for AMT. So owning would be 15% of pre-tax and 25% of post-tax, which is still within the traditional guidelines.

Anonymous said...

"Come on..some guy said hes a programmer making 200k! I have been in the IT industry for 10 years and have not heard of a 'programmer' that makes 200k. Unless hes a principal developer or team lead and that's for a big corporation. Even those are very few! Give me a an f-ing break and keep it real folks."

It all depends on location and what they are programming. An experienced programmer working in computational finance for a Wall St. investment bank in NYC area should be making 200-300K per year, including 100-150K of cash bonus and stock options / restricted stock.

I suspect that the sample of bloggers are skewed towards those living in areas of hyperinflated housing like NYC and Bay Area where salaries are also elevated, though not enough to compensate for housing inflation.

Programmers living in areas with affordable housing like MidWest and South are much less likely to spend time worrying about the housing bubble generally and will be making much closer to the published medians of 75-90K.

Anonymous said...

ABOUT $100,000 TAKE HOME
Income changes but around 100 k
Around $600k
Take home of about $150k
135k
$130K
gross 130,000
$120K-180K
$300k Gross
$385k pre tax income
About $175k
$440,000

Ha-ha-ha. Why do you people waist your time and read this blog at all? Time is money. You got tons of money so I assume you have no time, right?

BTW, I'm getting $15000000 gross. Man, houses are so expensive!!!!!!!! I wanted to by one for $385000 but it's freaking expensive, I'll wait until the prices goes down and I can buy the same house for $380000. Man, I cannot afford pay extra $5000. :)

I thought this blog attracts "regular" people with $50k-60k/year per family. Sorry, I'm not in your club.