Those kind of questions about specific examples are always there but never have an objective answer. Not even a partly objective answer unless you more tightly define 'lifestyle creep' as 'creeping toward a level that's not sustainable'. But as a lot of posts suggest, in many cases it's people's lifestyle 'creeping' to a level they could have afforded before, but they'd gotten carried away a bit (or a lot in some cases) with excessive saving and frugality. Does that apply to the average American (or perhaps other rich country avg person)? No. But it probably does apply to a significant % of people here. And to me, I believe.EnjoyIt wrote: ↑Tue Jan 29, 2019 11:37 amJackoC wrote: ↑Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:19 amAnd as a lot of those examples show, 'family' isn't all about emotions. It's also somewhat about material things, including money to buy 'experiences' (like nice family vacations, and even expensive cars are an 'experience', including to drive somewhere with your family). In real life, family isn't 100% about just being with and sharing love with loved ones, though that's a key ingredient obviously. So I agree, evaluating how you loved and were loved and how you earned and spent money are potentially related issues but not the same thing. And it's definitely not that spending more money makes you less loving or loved.
Also one could take a step back and ask why it's so disproportionately important what you think of your life in your final days compared to what you think about it the whole rest of the time. If you believe your life in this world is just a small part of something bigger/longer, that's one thing (not to sidetrack on such an risky topic). If you believe this is all there is, why does it matter so much more how you evaluate your life in your final 2 months in the hospice v. any other 2 months during your life?
You are right in a sense. Yes, spending money on a vacation to help create new experiences for a family is an excellent example. But, how is the experience any better if the family stays on the top floor of the hotel for an extra $300/night? That is lifestyle creep with no real benefit. Since you say a car is an experience, and I am a car guy who loves to drive. How is the experience of driving a 3 year old Porsche cayman any different than driving a brand new Porsche cayman? Can you quantify the improvement in experience or, after driving the new porsche for a few weeks you completely lose any site of the difference. Is driving a Honda CRV that much worse than driving an Acura RDX or are the differences negligible after a few months of ownership.
We as mere mortals should enjoy our life as best we could and not just save so that we die the richest scoundrel in the retirement community. But at the same time we should really evaluate our expenses to make the most of them. Lifestyle creep has no limit. One can always find an excuse and way to spend more.
I bought a new M2 last year. I also considered a new Cayman S or 911 4S but those were around 50% and 100% more respectively, optioned as I'd like. OTOH I just don't like my fun cars to be somebody else's hand me down, unless a classic. But while many say the M2 is reminiscent of classic M cars of the past, it's also modern and perhaps a future classic itself. But mainly I didn't want a much more expensive car because I'm not comfortable spending a lot of money, cars overcome that for me a bit but it's still true even so (also the M2 has a real if cozy back seat, though so do other sporty cars I didn't mention). For people who couldn't afford one or more of them or for whom there would be hard trade off with something else they wanted, OK. But the idea 'you don't get anything more' as if some general appeal to logic, no. It's means and propensity to spend. And some people need to reconsider if they are spending enough, even if they are fewer in number than people the other way around. A lot of people have to be careful to avoid constantly gaining weight. It's no surprise that mass market advice assumes that. But some, even healthy, people have to be conscious of avoiding losing weight.
Is the M2, after awhile, the same as any other car? No. If it's not your cup of tea it might be stiffer and louder than you'd like for one thing. The next 'experience' planned is to have it trucked to the west coast in enclosed comfort, fly to meet it and drive it back to the east coast on two lane roads. We drove our tuned-up 328i 3/4's of the way west and back last year. That was fun, but I thought to myself at the time, a little more pull to pass more quickly on two lane roads, a little more tire area and grip on windy mountain roads, perhaps RWD and an electronic limited slip differential... Based on shorter range excursions I believe the M2 will be 'quantifiably' more fun.