Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

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kfitz1313
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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by kfitz1313 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:49 am

3-20Characters wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:43 am
FBN2014 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:22 am
I'm just curious. Why do couples even marry if they have made a conscious decision not to have children? Alternatively, do most DINKs end up childless due to a health issue where they married with the intention to have children but was not able to? I wonder if there is any research on this.
Being wed in the eyes of the law is the surest and simplest way to assure yourselves the same rights and protections as every other married couple. Any number of scenarios can arise where an unmarried partner may not have status (or have their status challenged)—situations that a married partner takes for granted. Medical POA, inheritance, and SS and pension survivor benefits are a few I can think of.

Edit: got curious and searched.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/kateashfor ... t-married/
Exactly - those rights can really matter when they matter. No one wants to deal with something wrong in their life that is compounded by laws not giving you certain legal rights with your partner. :sharebeer

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by kfitz1313 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:52 am

Nissanzx1 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:40 am
As far as housing, if you are going to constantly be relocating (ugh sorry hate moving) to follow/chase the next best thing, you probably should be renting.
You write this as though the next best thing is a bad thing... If you don't like to move then there's no problem with staying where one is but moving for opportunity is probably the surest way to improve your financial situation for almost anyone on the planet. Geographical location accounts for up to 60% of a person's income globally. Simply moving to where the money is makes it easy to get the money.

P.S. Moving to a country with good health insurance also largely fixes the concern over health insurance. I absolutely do not plan to retire in the US unless major changes happen to the healthcare system. Just go where they've already got it figured out.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by 22twain » Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:12 am

FBN2014 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:22 am
Why do couples even marry if they have made a conscious decision not to have children?
My wife and I were professors at a small church-related college in a small town in the South. (Not fundamentalist by any means, but associated with a mainline denomination.) When we got together in the late 1980s, it would have been unthinkable for us (in our jobs) to "live in sin." One trigger for our setting a date was that rumors were spreading among students that we were living together. Although we weren't, some students had seen us shopping for groceries together.

Things are easier here in that respect nowadays. And we're still together after more than thirty years.

Note also that in those days there were no official "civil partnerships" or suchlike, which give unmarried couples some of the legal advantages of being married, in medical emergencies, etc. At least not in our state.
My investing princiPLEs do not include absolutely preserving princiPAL.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by LadyGeek » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:12 am

I removed an off-topic post. As a reminder, see: General Etiquette
We expect this forum to be a place where people can feel comfortable asking questions and where debates and discussions are conducted in civil tones.

...At all times we must conduct ourselves in a respectful manner to other posters. Attacks on individuals, insults, name calling, trolling, baiting or other attempts to sow dissension are not acceptable.
Please stay focused on the financial aspects. Rationale for marriage or not having kids is a relationship question (off-topic).
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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by hdas » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:18 am

Lynx310650 wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:43 pm
Married, approaching 40, will not have children. Was wondering if there were other BHs in the same situation and what (if anything) you may be doing that might be slightly (or very) different to general financial advice? A couple of things off the top of my head:

Emergency fund: With each person making enough income to support the other if need be, and no other mouths to feed, we deliberately keep a small e-fund, just 1-2 months of expenses.

Buy vs rent: This is definitely subjective as I know plenty of singles and DINKs who own, but we've always been renters and considering renting until retirement. This has given us the flexibility to always move and rent close to work to cut down on commute times, and also keeps overall housing costs down (we've always lived in 1 bedrooms). We also like the flexibility of moving at the drop of a hat if need be to follow career opportunities.

Life insurance: Decided no need, the other half can support themselves!
If you are of the adventurous/continuous learning type, consider expanding the use of 529 accounts. :greedy
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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by aristotelian » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:27 am

If I was DINK, my biggest concern would be identifying charitable causes to support with my estate.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by kfitz1313 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:34 am

aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:27 am
If I was DINK, my biggest concern would be identifying charitable causes to support with my estate.
Is that a genuine concern or just being tongue-in-cheek? It's hard to tell on the forum sometimes.

If genuine - how would you go about solving the concern? Would charities be the only option or could you just identify an acquaintance and pass off a huge lottery to them? I haven't quite figured out what I would do but I lean towards finding some individual I deem as financially responsible and simply passing it all on to them. I haven't really been convinced by any charities I've come across as of yet. I don't mean that the individual is more worthy. I just mean I don't see breaking wealth up into small pieces for charity as necessarily beneficial and so might as well make one person extra well off. I don't think it really matters once I'm dead.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by lostdog » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:46 am

DINKS here. We tried to have kids early on based on a bad decision to conform. We both decided we truly did not want to have children. To this day we never regret it. We like kids but up to a point.

In life and financial, we have more freedom compared to our friends. We love how we can just get up and go wherever and whenever we want. Our networth is high enough where we don't need life insurance. At some point in the future we'll have to figure out long term care.

We're having fun now while we're still young and healthy and in our early 40's. We don't care what other people think and we don't worry about how other will take care of us in the future. We'll take care of that when needed.

One of my friends that decided to have two kids with a SAHM and big mortgage figures he'll drop dead at his desk.
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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by aristotelian » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:52 am

kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:34 am
aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:27 am
If I was DINK, my biggest concern would be identifying charitable causes to support with my estate.
Is that a genuine concern or just being tongue-in-cheek? It's hard to tell on the forum sometimes.

If genuine - how would you go about solving the concern? Would charities be the only option or could you just identify an acquaintance and pass off a huge lottery to them? I haven't quite figured out what I would do but I lean towards finding some individual I deem as financially responsible and simply passing it all on to them. I haven't really been convinced by any charities I've come across as of yet. I don't mean that the individual is more worthy. I just mean I don't see breaking wealth up into small pieces for charity as necessarily beneficial and so might as well make one person extra well off. I don't think it really matters once I'm dead.
Genuine. I would want to do something good with the money rather than simply spend it. If it's a significant amount of money, I would want to put some effort into thinking about where it will go. My focus would be on finding a cause that I am passionate about, and an organization that is doing effective work to address it. Since I have kids, I can leave it to them and trust that they can decide where the money will go.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by kfitz1313 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am

aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:52 am
kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:34 am
aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:27 am
If I was DINK, my biggest concern would be identifying charitable causes to support with my estate.
Is that a genuine concern or just being tongue-in-cheek? It's hard to tell on the forum sometimes.

If genuine - how would you go about solving the concern? Would charities be the only option or could you just identify an acquaintance and pass off a huge lottery to them? I haven't quite figured out what I would do but I lean towards finding some individual I deem as financially responsible and simply passing it all on to them. I haven't really been convinced by any charities I've come across as of yet. I don't mean that the individual is more worthy. I just mean I don't see breaking wealth up into small pieces for charity as necessarily beneficial and so might as well make one person extra well off. I don't think it really matters once I'm dead.
Genuine. I would want to do something good with the money rather than simply spend it. If it's a significant amount of money, I would want to put some effort into thinking about where it will go. Since I have kids, I can leave it to them and trust that they can decide where the money will go.
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by aristotelian » Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 am

kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.
Actually this happened to me. I had an uncle married to my mom's sister (no kids). They divorced, he never remarried, and was estranged from his family. We kept in touch with him and were the only "family" he had. I had no idea, but he left his accounts with my kids as beneficiaries (no will, however, which was a huge PITA). I am now court appointed guardian of the funds, and my kids are each millionaires at ages 9 and 12.

That is definitely one way to go, although personally I don't like the idea of inherited wealth, and my kids already enjoy a tremendous level of privilege. I do hope they will do some good with their wealth, but that will legally have to be their decision, not mine.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by ohai » Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:55 am

I have some relatives like that. They have siblings, but in general, they are going to die alone.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by kfitz1313 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:09 am

ohai wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:55 am
I have some relatives like that. They have siblings, but in general, they are going to die alone.
Pretty easy to choose when you go now. As soon as my wife or I are incapable of independence it's time to pop over to Europe and get help with assisted suicide. Until then we have each other and the option to remarry when whoever dies first.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:27 am

ohai wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:55 am
I have some relatives like that. They have siblings, but in general, they are going to die alone.
The problem is not really so much dying alone, but what happens when living with failed cognitive, mental, and/or physical health. Having no kids in most likelihood makes that stage of life extremely problematic. Zero family help makes things intractable. Money can help, but only to a limited degree.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by ohai » Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:45 am

visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:27 am
ohai wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:55 am
I have some relatives like that. They have siblings, but in general, they are going to die alone.
The problem is not really so much dying alone, but what happens when living with failed cognitive, mental, and/or physical health. Having no kids in most likelihood makes that stage of life extremely problematic. Zero family help makes things intractable. Money can help, but only to a limited degree.
That is very sad, but I agree. For instance, I have a 90 something+ year old grandma in an assisted living. She is reasonably wealthy but has declining cognitive function to the point that she cannot handle her day to day affairs and is completely dependent on her children (i.e. my mother's generation). She has outlived almost all her friends, siblings, and other same aged family. Fortunately, there are a lot of people who visit her almost every day, but these are all her own children or grandchildren. If not for these descendents, she would be alone and perhaps taken advantage of every day for the last 20 years of her life.

Without her own children, maybe she would be closer to nephews/nieces or some other people like that, but it's not the same and those further relatives rarely really care about aunt and uncles like their own parents.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by CoastalWinds » Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:49 am

HobbesMB wrote:
Fri Apr 06, 2018 12:56 pm
Being DINKs but living a modest lifestyle has allowed us to save a lot of money even without particularly high incomes, and we'll be retiring in 3 years (age 53). Then we'll spend the next 40 or so years doing whatever we want. The list of things we want to do in retirement is huge.

We didn't have kids because we didn't want them. While we considered the fact that we won't have kids to assist us as we age, that's a poor reason to have children. Plus, it's no guarantee that kids would be willing to do so anyway. Quite a few old folks are sitting around their house or assisted-living facility hoping for a rare visit from one of their children. We'll pay for good care when the time comes.

There is a niece and nephew who will benefit from any estate we leave behind, but we get to approach retirement with the intent of spending every last dime before we croak.
+1

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by Godot » Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:51 am

kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:44 am
warner25 wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 7:31 am
This was discussed extensively in another thread earlier this week, and I still don't get it. Even as someone with kids, I don't understand the assumption that anyone (short of having kids with disabilities who need ongoing support, of course) should leave a big pile of money to their adult children when they die. The best explanation I've received is that people will "feel like a jerk" if they don't. But I wouldn't mind seeing my own parents buy a SPIA or leave everything to charity (presumably benefiting people who could use it more than me at that point). It's their money.
I can give you my reasons for why I believe one should leave a big pile of money to their adult children even if you choose to dismiss it. Children do not make a choice to enter life. If they never have the option to opt out or veto being born then by default I would put 100% responsibility onto the parents. Therefore any suffering the child experiences is completely on the parents. Money can (although may not) ease some or even the majority of a child's particular forms of suffering. Choosing to abnegate responsibility for that is morally wrong and therefore leaving all money to said children is the "right" thing to do. BTW I would say this is true even before parent death in that they should always put their child's suffering above their own.

If the children choose to turn around and donate it all to charity then fine. We don't allow pet owners to decide after two or three years that they've done the job of raising their pets and wonder why they still expect food shelter and healthcare but for some reason children at age 18 are on their own. This makes no sense. The children admittedly have more ability than a pet (obviously) to provide for themselves but they equally never had the change to decide whether they wanted to. Forcing something onto someone (life) and then expecting them to be grateful for it is a pretty strange move and yet that is the default in society.
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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by changingtimes » Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:03 am

aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 am
kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.
Actually this happened to me. I had an uncle married to my mom's sister (no kids). They divorced, he never remarried, and was estranged from his family. We kept in touch with him and were the only "family" he had. I had no idea, but he left his accounts with my kids as beneficiaries (no will, however, which was a huge PITA). I am now court appointed guardian of the funds, and my kids are each millionaires at ages 9 and 12.
I was one-half of a deliriously happy DINK couple, until DH died. If I die soon (hope not--only 52!) there are a number of nieces and nephews who could make out like bandits. But I've also set things up to leave money to my closest friends, who could certainly use it (and who, as it happens, are also all without kids).

But I also hope to spend it myself. And hopefully have plenty left if I end up old and crazy so that at least my sibling as executor of my trust can spend a pile to have me taken care of instead of doing it himself.

So, to the OP, I would also say that a big part of DINK planning is the reality that you two probably won't die at age 90 on the porch of your house within minutes of each other. A lot of estate planning needs to be done with an eye toward what if it's only one of you for a long period of time.

{signed, little Mary Sunshine :) }

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by stan1 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:10 am

FBN2014 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 6:22 am
I'm just curious. Why do couples even marry if they have made a conscious decision not to have children? Alternatively, do most DINKs end up childless due to a health issue where they married with the intention to have children but was not able to? I wonder if there is any research on this.
Well, there are extensive legal benefits to being married for government benefits, taxation, inheritance, property ownership, health care and maybe even a gym membership (although most business go by household now). Some DINKs are same sex couples. Some might not be able to have children. Some might choose not to.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:17 am

kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 10:09 am
ohai wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:55 am
I have some relatives like that. They have siblings, but in general, they are going to die alone.
Pretty easy to choose when you go now. As soon as my wife or I are incapable of independence it's time to pop over to Europe and get help with assisted suicide. Until then we have each other and the option to remarry when whoever dies first.
All much easier said than done when you reach that stage, unfortunately.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by prudent » Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:36 am

I removed more off-topic posts. Posts about reasons for lifestyle choices are off-topic. Please keep replies focused on issues relevant to DINK couples finances.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by LFKB » Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm

Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:57 pm

aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 am
kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.
Actually this happened to me. I had an uncle married to my mom's sister (no kids). They divorced, he never remarried, and was estranged from his family. We kept in touch with him and were the only "family" he had. I had no idea, but he left his accounts with my kids as beneficiaries (no will, however, which was a huge PITA). I am now court appointed guardian of the funds, and my kids are each millionaires at ages 9 and 12.

That is definitely one way to go, although personally I don't like the idea of inherited wealth, and my kids already enjoy a tremendous level of privilege. I do hope they will do some good with their wealth, but that will legally have to be their decision, not mine.
That kind of money at a young age can destroy the life of a child if they never learn how to handle it.
There is a reasonable chance my child will get a life changing amount of cash in his early 20s and I will be working damn hard to teach him the value of work and money way before that happens. Right now, I will be happy if he can sleep the whole night without waking us up.

Honestly though, I kind of like the idea of passing the money on to someone I know as opposed to a charity.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm

LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:09 pm

LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I'm pretty sure the choice of having or not having children is very rarely purely financial. Medical and lifestyle choice is far more powerful of a deciding factor for most. We had a difficult time deciding if were to have children and eventually chose to have kids. Finances clinched our decision. For us, we really enjoyed our dink lifestyle and were hesitant to let go of that freedom while a the same time wanting kids. It took a few years, and after strong evaluation of our finances we concluded that between family and hired help, we can afford to still enjoy many of the fun things the world has to offer so we went for it. Our lifestyle has obviously changed, but as predicted we are still traveling, going out and enjoying life outside of the home, just not as often as before. Plus there is additional joy in our house now as well. If we did not have the resources we have available to us, we would still be DINKs today.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:13 pm

visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm
LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.
I'm not sure exactly what you are referring to, but you don't help your kids launch by throwing money at them. That direction will likely have the opposite effect as described by Thomas Stanley in his research.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:21 pm

EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:13 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm
LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.
I'm not sure exactly what you are referring to, but you don't help your kids launch by throwing money at them. That direction will likely have the opposite effect as described by Thomas Stanley in his research.
Paying for education as well as helping with housing. This makes a huge difference for the better in their lives.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:43 pm

visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:21 pm
EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:13 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm
LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.
I'm not sure exactly what you are referring to, but you don't help your kids launch by throwing money at them. That direction will likely have the opposite effect as described by Thomas Stanley in his research.
Paying for education as well as helping with housing. This makes a huge difference for the better in their lives.
My opinion: Paying for education yes, paying for housing while getting said education, yes. Purchasing housing thereafter in an area they can't afford is high risk. Again described by Stanley's research. This is basically inflating a child's lifestyle outside of their own income range. Sure buying them a home gets them out of your house, but they didn't really launch if you are paying for their home. Your family can be different. I am just sharing statistical research.

Who knows what I will do when I get to that point in life.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by jbranx » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:44 pm

{I deleted more off-topic comments. If the post is not about personal finance, it does not belong here}

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by DG99999 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:47 pm

Excellent thread, being financially illiterate with no kids, I have found the discussion useful.
I am not a financial professional. My posts are only my opinion on the topic. You need to do your own due diligence and consult with a professional when addressing your financial questions.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by aristotelian » Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:11 pm

EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:57 pm
aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 am
kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.
Actually this happened to me. I had an uncle married to my mom's sister (no kids). They divorced, he never remarried, and was estranged from his family. We kept in touch with him and were the only "family" he had. I had no idea, but he left his accounts with my kids as beneficiaries (no will, however, which was a huge PITA). I am now court appointed guardian of the funds, and my kids are each millionaires at ages 9 and 12.

That is definitely one way to go, although personally I don't like the idea of inherited wealth, and my kids already enjoy a tremendous level of privilege. I do hope they will do some good with their wealth, but that will legally have to be their decision, not mine.
That kind of money at a young age can destroy the life of a child if they never learn how to handle it.
There is a reasonable chance my child will get a life changing amount of cash in his early 20s and I will be working damn hard to teach him the value of work and money way before that happens. Right now, I will be happy if he can sleep the whole night without waking us up.

Honestly though, I kind of like the idea of passing the money on to someone I know as opposed to a charity.
Yeah, it's a great problem to have all things considered (no worries about saving for college!) but the thought of them coming into the money with no strings attached at age 18 keeps us up at night. If my uncle had talked to us about it, I would have asked for some kind of trust restricting the funds to education before age 30 or so. Something to think about if you decide to go that route.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:14 pm

aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:11 pm
EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:57 pm
aristotelian wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:04 am
kfitz1313 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 8:56 am
Thanks for the reply. I just find the charity route difficult the more I look at it. I think it'll most likely be a friend's children or maybe just a younger person I interact with regularly once the time gets closer. Sort of a proxy kid if you will. It'd be very satisfying to leave our best friends' kids a big inheritance they had no idea was coming if we thought they were reasonably responsible with money.

If they turn out not to be then we won't be around anyway. That isn't much different than one's own kids at that point.
Actually this happened to me. I had an uncle married to my mom's sister (no kids). They divorced, he never remarried, and was estranged from his family. We kept in touch with him and were the only "family" he had. I had no idea, but he left his accounts with my kids as beneficiaries (no will, however, which was a huge PITA). I am now court appointed guardian of the funds, and my kids are each millionaires at ages 9 and 12.

That is definitely one way to go, although personally I don't like the idea of inherited wealth, and my kids already enjoy a tremendous level of privilege. I do hope they will do some good with their wealth, but that will legally have to be their decision, not mine.
That kind of money at a young age can destroy the life of a child if they never learn how to handle it.
There is a reasonable chance my child will get a life changing amount of cash in his early 20s and I will be working damn hard to teach him the value of work and money way before that happens. Right now, I will be happy if he can sleep the whole night without waking us up.

Honestly though, I kind of like the idea of passing the money on to someone I know as opposed to a charity.
Yeah, it's a great problem to have all things considered (no worries about saving for college!) but the thought of them coming into the money with no strings attached at age 18 keeps us up at night. If my uncle had talked to us about it, I would have asked for some kind of trust restricting the funds to education before age 30 or so. Something to think about if you decide to go that route.
May I ask, do they know about it? How are they reacting? What are you doing to head off some of the risk?

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:19 pm

EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:43 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:21 pm
EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:13 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm
LFKB wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 12:52 pm
Not assuming anything, but don't not have kids for financial reasons. If you want kids, you will be much happier having kids and less money than you will not having kids and having more money. I assume you're not having them for another reason (and no need to disclose the reason), but just wanted to pass along my two cents.
I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.
I'm not sure exactly what you are referring to, but you don't help your kids launch by throwing money at them. That direction will likely have the opposite effect as described by Thomas Stanley in his research.
Paying for education as well as helping with housing. This makes a huge difference for the better in their lives.
My opinion: Paying for education yes, paying for housing while getting said education, yes. Purchasing housing thereafter in an area they can't afford is high risk. Again described by Stanley's research. This is basically inflating a child's lifestyle outside of their own income range. Sure buying them a home gets them out of your house, but they didn't really launch if you are paying for their home. Your family can be different. I am just sharing statistical research.

Who knows what I will do when I get to that point in life.
In the past, housing wasn't such a big hurdle in the US. These days, it's very expensive where most of the good opportunities are located. It makes it very hard for young people to start a family without help even in the cases where they are able to launch promising careers. By the time they get their education and make enough money, the biological clock has advanced a lot. The US is becoming more like many other countries in terms of the need for family help with this situation.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by aristotelian » Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:30 pm

EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:14 pm

May I ask, do they know about it? How are they reacting? What are you doing to head off some of the risk?
They know about it but they don't know the details. They ask how much is there and we tell them it's enough to pay for college. They think it is about $10K, which is wrong on several levels, lol.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by jbranx » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:22 pm

{I deleted another off-topic comment. If it's not about personal finance, it does not belong in this topic.}

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:27 pm

HobbesMB wrote:We didn't have kids because we didn't want them. While we considered the fact that we won't have kids to assist us as we age, that's a poor reason to have children. Plus, it's no guarantee that kids would be willing to do so anyway. Quite a few old folks are sitting around their house or assisted-living facility hoping for a rare visit from one of their children. We'll pay for good care when the time comes.
We have kids, but don’t expect them to take care of us. We are doing a renovation on our house, and while we fully expect to be able to navigate the stairs for many years, and do our own cooking, shopping, etc., a thought in the renovation was to make the house easy to serve as an “aging in place” home. Our kids are launched, or in college, and why would I want to burden them?

OP doesn’t have to worry about this for some time, but it might be a reason to have some term life insurance.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by Meg77 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:35 pm

DINK here. This is a really interesting and - to me - important topic. It's true that most aspects of traditional financial planning assume a traditional life path - college, marriage, decades of building a career/business and a family, retirement, leaving a "legacy" to kids upon death. Many people are upending this standard narrative with or without kids. People are delaying or avoiding marriage, retiring very early, and starting businesses or encore careers after retiring at traditional retirement age. It does change the financial equation and the way we think about long term planning.

DH and I assumed we'd have kids, and all my financial and career projections counted on it. I planned to have a 10-15 year career and then retire from the corporate world. I assumed parenting would be my primary occupation, though I might do some part time work or run my rental property business to continue to financially contribute. We've been married for 5 years though and still haven't felt the urge to start a family. We might still, but I'm not sure if we will.

The main challenge this has presented for me is psychological. I'm a planner and very goal oriented. But without having kids, I have run out of financial goals. No 529 to fund, wedding to save for, legacy to plan. We own a town home near our jobs in a cute urban neighborhood that we never *need* to upgrade unless we have 2+ kids. We max out our retirement accounts and save half our gross income. We cancelled life insurance a few years ago; we are already just 5 years from being able to retire in our 40s even at our current non-frugal spending level. We have cash piling up that I'm stressed about optimizing, even though it doesn't really matter if it's optimized. We both like our jobs and don't plan or strive to retire early, though we want the option of course.

Another thing I think about is what will keep our marriage strong and us attached without a family. We love each other, but when we married we agreed the point of legal marriage is twofold: to build wealth and build a family (we aren't specifically religious). We're well on our way to the former, but it's hard to imagine 5-6 more decades together if we don't have shared goals or endeavors besides maximizing net worth (which itself is vague and not very compelling the more you accumulate). So one new goal is to be financially independent in the true sense - in case of divorce. We may well choose not to stay together forever. It's a concept I wouldn't have acknowledged even a year or so ago, but it would be naïve of me to pretend it's not a possibility, even if I hope it's a remote one.
"An investment in knowledge pays the best interest." - Benjamin Franklin

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by willthrill81 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:37 pm

max12377 wrote:
Sat Apr 07, 2018 6:05 am
Hmm, so if you are a DINK, that makes me a SINK (Single Income no kids). Not sure I like the sound of that .. :shock:
We were a SINK family until four years ago. Now we're a SI1K (pronounced 'see-wunk'). :D

One big financial advantage that SINK couples transitioning to having children have that DINK couples don't is a spouse who is probably already staying at home, hence, no need to pay obscene amounts of money for childcare. Other expenses can be lower as well, such as food expenses since the spouse at home can cook, that spouse can potentially shop for better prices, reduced transportation expenses, etc. We actually transitioned from two vehicles to one a year ago, and it's worked out perfectly, especially now that we have family a half mile away if a sudden real need for a second vehicle comes up.

Our daughter is now four, and I doubt that we've spent more than $10k on her in total so far. And that's taking into account that we've on a high-deductible health plan the entire time.
“It's a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don't keep your feet, there's no knowing where you might be swept off to.” J.R.R. Tolkien,The Lord of the Rings

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by TomatoTomahto » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:42 pm

Our daughter is now four, and I doubt that we've spent more than $10k on her in total so far.
Just wait. Tip: don’t let her grow up to be a hockey goalie.
Okay, I get it; I won't be political or controversial. The Earth is flat.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:45 pm

TomatoTomahto wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:27 pm
We have kids, but don’t expect them to take care of us. We are doing a renovation on our house, and while we fully expect to be able to navigate the stairs for many years, and do our own cooking, shopping, etc., a thought in the renovation was to make the house easy to serve as an “aging in place” home. Our kids are launched, or in college, and why would I want to burden them?

OP doesn’t have to worry about this for some time, but it might be a reason to have some term life insurance.
We don't plan for our kids to take care of us either in the sense of living with us or anything like that. If you have no kids, you are in a much more extreme situation than kids not taking care of you. You have no one to help with many critical things and arrangements that often come up in the late stages of life, and no one to monitor and make sure things are ok. Many things can become huge problems. Having surgery, for example...

Anyway, I don't really like to dwell on all that depressing stuff. People without kids need to figure out how to handle the late stages of life, and how much money would be needed for that. Maybe it's a CCRC, maybe it's building a relationship and helping out financially some younger more distant family with the hope that they'll help you when you're old, etc.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by shell921 » Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:54 pm

Lynx310650 wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:43 pm
Married, approaching 40, will not have children. Was wondering if there were other BHs in the same situation and what (if anything) you may be doing that might be slightly (or very) different to general financial advice? A couple of things off the top of my head:

Emergency fund: With each person making enough income to support the other if need be, and no other mouths to feed, we deliberately keep a small e-fund, just 1-2 months of expenses.

Buy vs rent: This is definitely subjective as I know plenty of singles and DINKs who own, but we've always been renters and considering renting until retirement. This has given us the flexibility to always move and rent close to work to cut down on commute times, and also keeps overall housing costs down (we've always lived in 1 bedrooms). We also like the flexibility of moving at the drop of a hat if need be to follow career opportunities.

Life insurance: Decided no need, the other half can support themselves!
My husband and I married when he was 36 and I was 27. I love kids and was an elementary school teacher for 30 years. We discussed
having children before marriage and my position was if he wanted them, I would try but that I was fine not having them.
I had seen too many female teachers talk their husbands into having kids - it never seemed to work out. I was not opposed, and if he had had a
burning desire to be a father I would have tried to conceive. But he was not gung-ho and so we didn't. It's a decision I have not regretted. We have had a lot less stress and a lot more freedom ! We were a great auntie and uncle and I got a lot of my nurturing needs met by being a great auntie and by teaching.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by visualguy » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:01 pm

shell921 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:54 pm
My husband and I married when he was 36 and I was 27. I love kids and was an elementary school teacher for 30 years. We discussed
having children before marriage and my position was if he wanted them, I would try but that I was fine not having them.
I had seen too many female teachers talk their husbands into having kids - it never seemed to work out. I was not opposed, and if he had had a
burning desire to be a father I would have tried to conceive. But he was not gung-ho and so we didn't. It's a decision I have not regretted. We have had a lot less stress and a lot more freedom ! We were a great auntie and uncle and I got a lot of my nurturing needs met by being a great auntie and by teaching.
The issue is what happens in old age. If you maintain a strong relationship with nieces/nephews, that can help a lot, of course.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by Gill » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:09 pm

ralph124cf wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:48 pm
If there is no competent relative around whom you trust, you may be left with a high cost bank trust department...
You could do much worse. :happy
Gill
Cost basis is redundant. One has a basis in an investment | One advises and gives advice | One should follow the principle of investing one's principal

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by lostdog » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:12 pm

visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:45 pm
TomatoTomahto wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:27 pm
We have kids, but don’t expect them to take care of us. We are doing a renovation on our house, and while we fully expect to be able to navigate the stairs for many years, and do our own cooking, shopping, etc., a thought in the renovation was to make the house easy to serve as an “aging in place” home. Our kids are launched, or in college, and why would I want to burden them?

OP doesn’t have to worry about this for some time, but it might be a reason to have some term life insurance.
We don't plan for our kids to take care of us either in the sense of living with us or anything like that. If you have no kids, you are in a much more extreme situation than kids not taking care of you. You have no one to help with many critical things and arrangements that often come up in the late stages of life, and no one to monitor and make sure things are ok. Many things can become huge problems. Having surgery, for example...

Anyway, I don't really like to dwell on all that depressing stuff. People without kids need to figure out how to handle the late stages of life, and how much money would be needed for that. Maybe it's a CCRC, maybe it's building a relationship and helping out financially some younger more distant family with the hope that they'll help you when you're old, etc.
You're fear mongering DINKs on this board. How do you know your kids are going to support you for sure? Plenty of examples of kids not showing up to help out parents. It goes both ways. To keep this relevant, financially, most DINKs are living for the NOW. Things work out most of the time.
Total World Stock and Total World Bond. The simple two fund diversified portfolio. "Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by lostdog » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:14 pm

shell921 wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 3:54 pm
Lynx310650 wrote:
Thu Apr 05, 2018 5:43 pm
Married, approaching 40, will not have children. Was wondering if there were other BHs in the same situation and what (if anything) you may be doing that might be slightly (or very) different to general financial advice? A couple of things off the top of my head:

Emergency fund: With each person making enough income to support the other if need be, and no other mouths to feed, we deliberately keep a small e-fund, just 1-2 months of expenses.

Buy vs rent: This is definitely subjective as I know plenty of singles and DINKs who own, but we've always been renters and considering renting until retirement. This has given us the flexibility to always move and rent close to work to cut down on commute times, and also keeps overall housing costs down (we've always lived in 1 bedrooms). We also like the flexibility of moving at the drop of a hat if need be to follow career opportunities.

Life insurance: Decided no need, the other half can support themselves!
My husband and I married when he was 36 and I was 27. I love kids and was an elementary school teacher for 30 years. We discussed
having children before marriage and my position was if he wanted them, I would try but that I was fine not having them.
I had seen too many female teachers talk their husbands into having kids - it never seemed to work out. I was not opposed, and if he had had a
burning desire to be a father I would have tried to conceive. But he was not gung-ho and so we didn't. It's a decision I have not regretted. We have had a lot less stress and a lot more freedom ! We were a great auntie and uncle and I got a lot of my nurturing needs met by being a great auntie and by teaching.
+1.
Total World Stock and Total World Bond. The simple two fund diversified portfolio. "Simplicity is the master key to financial success."

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by nick evets » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:19 pm

Hmm....I'm still not sure I see the financial question here.

Wife and I married somewhat late in life (mid/late 30's) and didn't have a desire to have children and 20 years later...no regrets. Financially a significant obligation is avoided, but yes, at the end of our lives, perhaps there may be other considerations. That said, I know families that treat parents horribly, so I'm not sure children necessarily guarantee going peacefully into the night.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

Post by EnjoyIt » Fri Jun 21, 2019 4:30 pm

visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 2:19 pm
EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:43 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:21 pm
EnjoyIt wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:13 pm
visualguy wrote:
Fri Jun 21, 2019 1:00 pm


I think a common scenario is that people delay having kids (rather than deciding not to have them) for financial/career reasons, and then can't have them. This is the main reason it's so important to help your kids launch, so that they don't end up in this situation.
I'm not sure exactly what you are referring to, but you don't help your kids launch by throwing money at them. That direction will likely have the opposite effect as described by Thomas Stanley in his research.
Paying for education as well as helping with housing. This makes a huge difference for the better in their lives.
My opinion: Paying for education yes, paying for housing while getting said education, yes. Purchasing housing thereafter in an area they can't afford is high risk. Again described by Stanley's research. This is basically inflating a child's lifestyle outside of their own income range. Sure buying them a home gets them out of your house, but they didn't really launch if you are paying for their home. Your family can be different. I am just sharing statistical research.

Who knows what I will do when I get to that point in life.
In the past, housing wasn't such a big hurdle in the US. These days, it's very expensive where most of the good opportunities are located. It makes it very hard for young people to start a family without help even in the cases where they are able to launch promising careers. By the time they get their education and make enough money, the biological clock has advanced a lot. The US is becoming more like many other countries in terms of the need for family help with this situation.
I get where you are coming from. I grew up in the Northeast and many of my classmates lived with their parents deep into their 20s because housing is so expensive. One of the problems with these HCOL areas is that average normal wages do not allow for much. For me, the answer was easy, why live with my parents, why ask them for money, why live paycheck to paycheck and struggle. I moved and have had a very successful life since. I have colleagues still living in the same area living practically paycheck to paycheck despite very good incomes. Even with family support, life is just harder there.

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Re: Permanent DINK couples - Considerations, thoughts, etc?

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