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How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm
by diydocwifejd
All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle, I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:02 pm
by 7eight9
I think there is some saying about don't judge if you don't want to be judged. Seems like pretty good advice.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:06 pm
by JDCarpenter
I generally just smiled and nodded. Occasionally, if I thought it might lead to something substantive, I might say "not my cup of tea, but good luck." IF they followed up with "why not your cup of tea," we might then have a discussion.

FWIW, we never did 529s; figured we'd cashflow college and put the savings elsewhere for retirement. And we never did Ramsey and Cash Only.

More than one route to Rome and to F.I.R.E. Two of our friends are extremely well set in life and both of them use financial advisors. They know I would never--but the spouses aren't interested, the orthopod doesn't feel like he wants to get into it, and the multinational exec travels the vast majority of the time (well, until this year). They do it differently than me, but I can hardly say they are wrong.

(Interestingly, my username could well be diydochusbandjd :D )

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:08 pm
by Flashes1
It's their money, they earned it, and they can spend it as they please. But it's hard not to scoff when you what you consider to be reckless spending, but I don't know if the purchase of rental property is what I would consider reckless spending.

Everyone has an area or two that they like to indulge that many might find off-putting. I try to keep that in mind when I look at other's spending. They might/could be saying the same thing about me!

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:09 pm
by GoldenGoose
Whenever someone tells me what they do with their money, I'm not going to say "wow, that's bad" because I don't know their financial situation. I would just assume the best of people. For example, if you tell me you just bought a brand new Merc/BMW/Lambo/Ferrari whatever, I would marvel at your new purchase and say "wow, that's awesome!". Or if you tell me that you invest in bitcoins or you daytrade, I would assume you know what you're doing. If it is something that I have an aversion to, then following the initial compliment I would just say "I'm too chicken for that" or "I don't think I would be able to do that." I don't criticize people. I rather find out more about the details of what they did than why did they do that. If it works for them, I would like to learn it to see if I can use it. My goal is to learn from other people how to make more money.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:10 pm
by jebmke
This is a variation on a similar thread that comes up often. These topics almost never come up among my family and friends.

I did have one colleague when I was working who always liked to note his latest expensive car purchase. My usual response was to ask him where he parked it so I could park next to his in the lot. I always figured if someone stole or broke into a car, they would choose his over mine.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:12 pm
by 123
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm ...I'm not sure how to respond...
You have to consider that the other people know more about their situation and priorities than you do. There may be assets, liabilities, values, and considerations that they haven't or don't want to disclose to you. Everyone acts in what they believe to be in their own best interests. All you can do is let them live their own lives and wish them well.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:13 pm
by Golf maniac
Throughout my adult life since marriage we were always pretty frugal. Smaller homes, kept cars forever, no CC debt, maximizing retirement funding, etc. I watched many friends and family spend on big homes, new cars, vacations, etc. I would only provide advice if asked and allow them to make a choice. My reward is an early retirement at 56 and financial security for the rest of my life. Everyone has choices about financial security, but it is up to us as individuals to make the choices. There is plenty of information out now on how to budget and get financial security for yourself. As the old saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:13 pm
by GoldenGoose
jebmke wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:10 pm This is a variation on a similar thread that comes up often. These topics almost never come up among my family and friends.

I did have one colleague when I was working who always liked to note his latest expensive car purchase. My usual response was to ask him where he parked it so I could park next to his in the lot. I always figured if someone stole or broke into a car, they would choose his over mine.
True, until they use your car as a platform to break into your colleague's car. It happened at my workplace where the thief(thieves) used the car parking next to a nice car as a platform to spring themselves into the window of the victim's car to break the window. So the non-targeted car had a nice big dent/scratch in the door.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:15 pm
by Normchad
It’s very hard to do. We all think in some certain way, and becoming less judge mental really requires a change in how you think. It’s taken me decades of introspection to understand why I think like I do, and to change how I view the world and others behaviors. I’m not sure I could have done it any faster. So, it’s just flat out hard not to do it.

Understanding reality is a big help though. Realize that everybody is living a different life. They have different situations, different values, different goals, and different outlooks on the future. You think you’re doing the right thing, but it might not be the right thing for them. And there is a real chance, that you are actually wrong.

Lots of my coworkers don’t participate in the 401k plan. I was on the committee, so I was interested to find out why. To figure out how we could improve the plan to get a higher participation rate. I learned that a bunch of people don’t do it, because they are focusing on paying off student debt. A bunch of others don’t do it, because they are retired service members, and have a pension coming. And others don’t do it because a big inheritance is in their future. We can quibble here, but none of those reasons is objectively wrong. They just have a different circumstance than I do.

Some people love to work, and have no desire to ever stop. So for them working hard, and spending big is a perfectly fine balance to strike.

And also remember, other people are free to do whatever they want with their money. No matter how dumb we think it is. And truthfully, it doesn’t affect us. It just doesn’t matter *to me* what other buy or save. If my friend buys a new Lexus, I’m excited. I’m excited because it’s a cool car, and I like cool cars. And I’m excited because my friend is happy. And I want my friends to be happy, I want to celebrate their successes with them.

Maybe the key is to want to be not judgemental, even if you can’t help it sometimes.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:21 pm
by mptfan
I have struggled with this in the past as well, I had a hard time stopping myself from judging others who were making what I considered to be poor financial decisions. At some point I came to the realization that everyone has the right to spend or manage their money as they see fit as much as I do, and I no longer judge in the negative sense. I agree with the comments that it is a hard thing to do and sometimes I can't help but think about other people's decisions and how it will affect them in the long run, but I find myself judging less and less and I have tried hard to adopt a more zen view now.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:21 pm
by Sandtrap
Is it human nature, societal, or cultural, to be judgemental, contentious, argumentative, comparative, or prideful?

Regardless.
Actionably: focusing on one's own investment portfolio progress can be helpful. Posting a request for a "Portfolio Review" can provide food for thought that lasts a long time.

j :D

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:25 pm
by wander
Never have a problem.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:30 pm
by bogledogle
You can judge all you want. Problems arise when you tell them about it :D

The world runs just fine without everyone being a Boglehead. The fact is that you could be wrong, and your friends could be right by overextending and leveraging in rental properties than investing in a 529 or paying off their mortgage. Your approach toward spending/investing is something that you think is right and many people on this forum tend to agree, but that does not mean there are other ways to approach life.

If you feel strongly about your family or friend making mistakes, rather than tell them they are wrong just ask them questions about their decision and how they are able to take on such a huge risk. Maybe you will learn something from them or make them realize the risk they are taking.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:31 pm
by retiredjg
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
Frankly, it is not up to you to respond. If they are interested in your opinion, they will ask.

You sound a little like a new enthusiastic convert just busting at the seams to spread the news. Imagine how interested you would be if your friends tried to explain to you why their new religion is so much better than yours.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:36 pm
by Impatience
Sure your approach will probably net you a higher net worth in the end, but will you be happier than those people? Who’s to say. Or who’s to say your approach IS right? You make some statements about avoiding debt and using 529 plans that are a little too certain. Those aren’t necessarily the right approaches - there’s room for argument there.

So in short, you may not be as right as you think you are, and even if you are, it probably matters less than you think. Unless they’re blowing half their income on lottery tickets let them be.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:36 pm
by JD2775
This goes hand in hand with your other thread about your friend who works for Northwestern Mutual...

Gotta learn to mind your own business

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm
by bogledogle
retiredjg wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:31 pm Imagine how interested you would be if your friends tried to explain to you why their new religion is so much better than yours.
:D :D :D :D :D :D

Ha ha ..:sharebeer

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm
by livesoft
I don't know the OP's age, but maybe the OP is not old enough to see that the world is composed of all kinds of people and they are not like me nor you. Sorry, I just judged you. :twisted:

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:43 pm
by stoptothink
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pmHas anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
Yes, but I just learned to accept that it is none of my business unless they make it my business (ask me for help or ask me for money).

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:50 pm
by 000
I don't understand the issue.

Why do you want to stop?

Is it because of the judgments of judgmental people who say that being judgmental is bad?

If your question really is "what should I say when....", then I suggest some simple phrases to deal with awkward conversations. How about:
  • I don't know a lot about [houses, cars, etc.]. Can you tell me more?
  • How did you pick the property?
  • How many bedrooms does it have?
  • Which realtor did you use?
  • Where did you buy it?
  • Does it have a V8?
  • Is it a 4x4?
  • I like the color.
  • Can I go for a ride?
  • Did you get a good deal?
  • What does [the wife/husband/family] think?

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:52 pm
by vitaflo
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pmI know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond.
I would not assume you know anyone's actual financial situation, even if they tell you. Nobody knows mine, because I don't tell them, or just pretend it's "normal" (debt, mortgage, etc) because I don't need people to know my actual situation. For all you know the grandparents are going to finance the kids education so they don't need to worry about it. And maybe they don't want you to know that.

If it doesn't affect you, I don't know why you'd care. It seems like a silly thing to worry or even think about.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:57 pm
by mptfan
Impatience wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:36 pmUnless they’re blowing half their income on lottery tickets let them be.
Even then let them be.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:02 pm
by sd323232
2 years ago my friend went 70% his networth into tesla stock, I did tell him he making big mistake, but he didnt listen to me. He is a multi millionaire now. Well, how do u know other people are making mistakes, who are we to judge anyone?

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:02 pm
by yangtui
Smile and nod then change the subject.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:06 pm
by diydocwifejd
Golf maniac wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:13 pm Throughout my adult life since marriage we were always pretty frugal. Smaller homes, kept cars forever, no CC debt, maximizing retirement funding, etc. I watched many friends and family spend on big homes, new cars, vacations, etc. I would only provide advice if asked and allow them to make a choice. My reward is an early retirement at 56 and financial security for the rest of my life. Everyone has choices about financial security, but it is up to us as individuals to make the choices. There is plenty of information out now on how to budget and get financial security for yourself. As the old saying goes, you can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make them drink.
here here! :sharebeer

Congrats. I agree. Not my duty to educate the masses. It's exhausting anyway.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:09 pm
by diydocwifejd
livesoft wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm I don't know the OP's age, but maybe the OP is not old enough to see that the world is composed of all kinds of people and they are not like me nor you. Sorry, I just judged you. :twisted:
Ha I'm 33 :D

But I'm starting to realize I have this nasty habit of imposing my world view on others. Just trying to get a sense of how to handle it, as I suspect it's common among BHs. Once you see the light, it's hard to unsee it.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:10 pm
by montanagirl
I recall feeling a little surprised and yeah judgmental when a musician colleague & friend kept taking time off for vacations with his GF, including Hawaii every year. Came back glowing. Me, I had my nose to the grindstone at a day job and music and rarely took time off.

But then he developed cancer, fought it for 7 arduous years, then passed. The GF went downhill and passed four years later.

Had to admit, the vacations were exactly the right thing to do for them. What do I know.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:10 pm
by johnny
A friend of mine is a personal financial advisor and one of the most frugal people I know. I was talking with him about his business and he told me about one client that shared their annual budget for wine was about $5k. I asked how could anybody spend that much on wine and he just shrugged it off. "I don't tell people what to do with their money, I just make sure they have the information they need to make decisions."

I think the main value that Bogleheads has been to me is that I now have a resource to make sure that more of my money is not lost to taxes, that I'm properly and safely invested, and that I have a plan for the future. Whether people have cheap cars or expensive, rent or have a primary residence that holds 80% of their net worth, homeschools or sends their kids off to the priciest summer camps -- regardless it's about LBYM and making your own choices with the right information.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:11 pm
by sailaway
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:09 pm
livesoft wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm I don't know the OP's age, but maybe the OP is not old enough to see that the world is composed of all kinds of people and they are not like me nor you. Sorry, I just judged you. :twisted:
Ha I'm 33 :D

But I'm starting to realize I have this nasty habit of imposing my world view on others. Just trying to get a sense of how to handle it, as I suspect it's common among BHs. Once you see the light, it's hard to unsee it.
It is unfortunately common among humans. Some mature and realize that there are many ways to skin a cat, others evangelicize about their diet or their money habits or...

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:12 pm
by diydocwifejd
mptfan wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:21 pm I have struggled with this in the past as well, I had a hard time stopping myself from judging others who were making what I considered to be poor financial decisions. At some point I came to the realization that everyone has the right to spend or manage their money as they see fit as much as I do, and I no longer judge in the negative sense. I agree with the comments that it is a hard thing to do and sometimes I can't help but think about other people's decisions and how it will affect them in the long run, but I find myself judging less and less and I have tried hard to adopt a more zen view now.
Thank you! This is exactly the perspective I was looking for. It's not that I think I am right (although admittedly my post made it seem that way). I'm just trying to turn my knowledge inward instead of outward. I struggle with it.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:15 pm
by mbasherp
Always remember that the wise man knows that he knows nothing.

As for examples you gave, it’s not hard at all to picture a scenario where buying a rental property while still having home loan/car loans and no 529s would have easily been the better choice. In my locale, anyone who did that in the past decade would be far wealthier as a result.

Moving forward, who knows! Not me. I make choices I can live with, for myself.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:17 pm
by JDCarpenter
johnny wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:10 pm A friend of mine is a personal financial advisor and one of the most frugal people I know. I was talking with him about his business and he told me about one client that shared their annual budget for wine was about $5k. I asked how could anybody spend that much [little] on wine and he just shrugged it off. "I don't tell people what to do with their money, I just make sure they have the information they need to make decisions."
...
FTFY! :sharebeer (Granted, once we retired, our spending dropped by 50%, since we aren't home as much and are basically drawing the cellar down; but ...)

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:20 pm
by seppatown
Another user mentioned being able to celebrate successes with your friends. I feel like this is a fundamental part of being a good friend and colleague.

Judging the cost of such things often comes from a position of envy - which I actively do my best to avoid.

That said, as a frugal person, I WILL judge when some friends are overly frugal. For example, I have to set my standards aside when gift-giving and contributing to group events. I rarely eat exotic seafood or drink wine, but when friends come over, I'll put on the works. I used to penny-pinch with others and am ashamed about it. I figure if it feels bad and looks bad - it probably is bad.

What else is money useful for (after kids, living expenses) if not put towards memorable experiences with people close to you? I've found myself to be the happiest when I'm frugal with myself (since I know exactly how much I need) and more generous with others.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:47 pm
by Broken Man 1999
I always think those who are so interested in other people's business must have too little of their own business.

There are certainly some newbies who want to save the world from high ERs and active funds, but their ardor hopefully will cool before they become too much of a pest.

As I age, I find myself caring less and less about more and more.

I definitely don't care to waste my time on activities like convincing others of the error of their ways. In fact, the whole idea of such activities seems a bit arrogant to me.

Broken Man 1999

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:54 pm
by Olemiss540
I keep my nose out of other's business. If I am asked directly for advise, I stick to describing how I do things and why I do them, I never focus on how THEY do things or comment on THEIR methods.

This keeps me from making assumptions on other's situations, while also keeping others from being defensive which makes it most likely they will digest the communication versus rejecting it immediately.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:07 pm
by vitaflo
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:09 pm But I'm starting to realize I have this nasty habit of imposing my world view on others. Just trying to get a sense of how to handle it, as I suspect it's common among BHs. Once you see the light, it's hard to unsee it.
My experience is you will eventually stop imposing your world view on others, either by you stopping it, or them stopping talking to you.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:10 pm
by MathIsMyWayr
Too many people have too much time, wasting time on silly stuffs.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:50 pm
by Exodus
I'm definitely still guilty of doing this. Financial advice is similar to religion. Everyone has their own beliefs and trying to convert them to believe your side is dam near impossible. The best way to stop judging would be to stop comparing their view/opinion of PF to yours, but instead just be willing to listen to their side and smile. If they ask what you think then maybe you can ease in your knowledge, but trying to convince someone is likely a fruitless endeavor.

Exodus

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 5:58 pm
by whodidntante
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle, I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
The specific situation you mentioned is not even slightly concerning, depending on the particulars. You're just debt-averse. Not everyone is. Rational use of credit can significantly increase your wealth over a lifetime. You won't hear Dave Ramsey talking about that, though. It's difficult to yell a statement like that.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:06 pm
by diydocwifejd
Olemiss540 wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:54 pm I keep my nose out of other's business. If I am asked directly for advise, I stick to describing how I do things and why I do them, I never focus on how THEY do things or comment on THEIR methods.

This keeps me from making assumptions on other's situations, while also keeping others from being defensive which makes it most likely they will digest the communication versus rejecting it immediately.
I like that approach. It's easier to explain why we do the things we do. And naturally personal finance really is personally so a lot of it may or may not apply to another person anyway

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:52 pm
by Dandy
In most cases you aren't going to change other adult's spending/investing/borrowing methods. So, just wish them good luck.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:52 pm
by Fallible
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:06 pm
Olemiss540 wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:54 pm I keep my nose out of other's business. If I am asked directly for advise, I stick to describing how I do things and why I do them, I never focus on how THEY do things or comment on THEIR methods.

This keeps me from making assumptions on other's situations, while also keeping others from being defensive which makes it most likely they will digest the communication versus rejecting it immediately.
I like that approach. It's easier to explain why we do the things we do. And naturally personal finance really is personally so a lot of it may or may not apply to another person anyway
OP, there may be nothing more personal than personal finance because it's all about that volatile mixture of humans and money. Here's WSJ columnist Jason Zweig from his book, "Your Money & Your Brain":
The 100 billion neurons that are packed into that three-pound clump of tissue between your ears can generate an emotional tornado when you think about money. Your investing brain does not just add and multiply and estimate and evaluate. When you win, lose, or risk money, you stir up some of the most profound emotions a human being can ever feel.
It's something to think about in the struggle not to be judgmental about others' finances, or at least not to express that judgement and stir up a "tornado."

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 6:56 pm
by JBTX
The same characteristics that make their investment choices seemingly risky may also lead to eventual success in other aspects of life. By and large those who really succeed take on significant risk.

In most cases we have no clue what friends and relatives make or how much they save.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:04 pm
by Wricha
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:09 pm
livesoft wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm I don't know the OP's age, but maybe the OP is not old enough to see that the world is composed of all kinds of people and they are not like me nor you. Sorry, I just judged you. :twisted:
Ha I'm 33 :D

But I'm starting to realize I have this nasty habit of imposing my world view on others. Just trying to get a sense of how to handle it, as I suspect it's common among BHs. Once you see the light, it's hard to unsee it.
I suspect your world view will change a time or two before you call it quits.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:12 pm
by Starfish
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle,
I am sorry for that. It sounds terrible.

I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
Your friend sounds very rational (or at least he could be), but you do not.
Leveraging with low interest for high return investments is a great approach to increase wealth. Using credit cards is the wise financial decision. Financing cars is a good thing. I personally don't like 529 and don't use it.

I have a friend with similar mindset (pay off the house, no debt etc). Every time I told them how we apply for new credit cards for the bonuses, refinance the house extending again to 30 years, buy cars only on credit because the interest rates are so low, take a new loan for a rental property etc they looked at me like I am crazy. At this point he managed to almost pay off his house and his cars but his NW is pretty modest because most of his money went in that direction and he did not take advantage of stock market returns or any card bonuses.

So financially this approach is definitely not a good idea. It's safe but it does not get you anywhere fast.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:16 pm
by Starfish
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 4:09 pm
livesoft wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 3:40 pm I don't know the OP's age, but maybe the OP is not old enough to see that the world is composed of all kinds of people and they are not like me nor you. Sorry, I just judged you. :twisted:
Ha I'm 33 :D

But I'm starting to realize I have this nasty habit of imposing my world view on others. Just trying to get a sense of how to handle it, as I suspect it's common among BHs. Once you see the light, it's hard to unsee it.
I suggest you read "Leveraging while young" thread. You are doing things very suboptimally. You do not have the adhere to the leveraging philosophy if it's too much for you, but at least you could recognize that is mathematically a superior approach.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:25 pm
by TN_Boy
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle, I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
I might have struggled a tiny bit when I was younger and dumber, but now I wouldn't struggle at all, unless their financial decisions were going to impact ME. If somebody I cared about was doing something that was clearly a trainwreck (e.g. running up so much debt they are about to declare bankruptcy, etc) I'd feel bad, but well, people make choices.

There are all kinds of things people do that I think maybe they shouldn't.

Perhaps I find their choice of significant other puzzling.

Maybe I can't believe their exercise routine consists of walking to the fridge to grab a beer. And they weigh 40 lbs too much.

Or they watch TV shows/read books I find .... kinda dumb.

And yes, occasionally friends or family will make financial choices that baffle me.

But I've gotten pretty good at not worrying about it. I might be mentally shaking my head, but that's about it.

And you know, it's possible my friends think I do things that are kinda dumb sometimes. .......

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 7:32 pm
by kelway
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle, I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
I don't stop. It's fun to judge and look down on people.

Re: How to stop judging how other people spend/invest

Posted: Thu Sep 10, 2020 8:49 pm
by reln
diydocwifejd wrote: Thu Sep 10, 2020 2:56 pm All,

Now that I've been implementing a Dave Ramsey/BogleHead/Index Only/Cash Only/No Debt lifestyle, I have a hard time with judging how others (family, friends, etc.) spend their money. I know it's not my money/doesn't affect me rationally, but when a friend casually mentions how they are going to invest in a rental property (their house isn't paid off, their cars are financed, they don't even invest in 529s for their kids yet, etc.), I'm not sure how to respond. Has anyone else struggled with how to just smile and nod and reserve judgement? I struggle with it a lot lately.
I got off my high horse.