What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
yeahman
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by yeahman » Tue Jun 11, 2019 1:39 pm

If you paid extra for it, you did so because you presumably derive some value from it. The better question would be: What lifestyle creep DIDN'T make you happier?

The only thing I can come up with is the king bed. A queen would've been plenty.

H-Town
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by H-Town » Tue Jun 11, 2019 1:43 pm

1) $25/month gym membership through my insurance provider. It let me go to any LA Fitness, Planet fitness club in the country. It's very handy since I travel very frequently. Workout is my best stress relieving method.

2) Food: I got to enjoy steak, salmon, cod, vegetables, etc. rather than just chicken. I had chicken for all of my college years....

3) Travel: my wife and I travel at least 5 trips a year. We still travel economically (using points for flights/hotel, fly coach, stay in 2-star hotels or under). But we travel longer and gotta do many things and make memories.

4) Camaro: the engine noise, the handling, and imposing ride that I get to drive every single day.

5) My dog: my second best friend. He's still expensive for his boarding while we're out of town.

HawkeyePierce
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Location: Colorado

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Wed Jun 12, 2019 12:35 am

Therapeutic massage. A place near my office sells punchcards for quick 30 minute clothed table massages. If my hip injury flares up or I have some neck tension from a full day at the computer I can pop by after work. I end up going about five times a month and it runs about $220 a month. Nicely compliments my physical therapy and stretching routines.

I'm considering hiring a maid to come in once a month. That will probably be my next splurge.

crossbow
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by crossbow » Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:08 am

Silk McCue wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:21 pm
Being able to give generously without having to think about it. That gave me joy rather than happiness I would say.

Cheers
I can't participate in this thread because I'm still waiting for someone like you to walk into my life. :D

crossbow
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by crossbow » Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:16 am

Halicar wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:43 pm
It's been years since this has been an issue, but I remember when filling my gas tank all the way up was a rare and wonderful occasion. I'm grateful that it's now the norm.
I can somewhat relate. I used to put in as little gas as possible to lighten the weight of the vehicle, to increase fuel efficiency. This sometimes resulted in a trip to the Costco gas station twice a day. I can now afford to treasure my time more and fill up once a week. Still go to Costco though.

Vanguard Fan 1367
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Vanguard Fan 1367 » Wed Jun 12, 2019 8:51 am

ThankYouJack wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:43 pm
I'm curious for those who were able to make increase in their lifestyle, what things actually made you happier?
The wife and I had a 90 year old house that had issues that most 90 year old houses have. To make the wife happy there would have taken a pile of money. But the wife was pretty picky about what she wanted if we moved so we finally found a house that would "do" for her. It was more than twice what we got when we sold the old house but the wife is definitely happier in the newer nice house and I am experiencing the "happy wife, happy life" phenomena. And in typical Boglehead fashion I feel like I got a bargain compared to what I would have spent to fix up the old house and what the old house would be worth after spending the money to remodel the old one.

Broken Man 1999
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Broken Man 1999 » Wed Jun 12, 2019 8:59 am

Ceasing to work on our cars made me the happiest.

Although I didn't mind working on our cars, lacking a garage in our early marriage meant I was crawling under cars in dirt/grass, or on my back on driveway heated by Florida's sun.

If I had been fortunate enough to have the proper facilities to do automotive care, I would have kept at it much longer. I have all the tools even now.

Broken Man 1999
“If I cannot drink Bourbon and smoke cigars in Heaven than I shall not go. " -Mark Twain

an_asker
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by an_asker » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:08 am

ThankYouJack wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:43 pm
I'm curious for those who were able to make increase in their lifestyle, what things actually made you happier?
Shutting up when rest of family's lifestyle crept ;-) :oops:

[Edited to add an example]: I purchased a DIY bike from Wal*Mart a few years ago for IIRC $50-70. Right now, DW and DS are on their way to retrieve it from the local bike shop where they've spent $150 to get it overhauled. And we will drive it to his undergrad school. I can think of many arguments against it... but MUM's word ;-)

lazydavid
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by lazydavid » Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:50 am

crossbow wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:16 am
I can somewhat relate. I used to put in as little gas as possible to lighten the weight of the vehicle, to increase fuel efficiency. This sometimes resulted in a trip to the Costco gas station twice a day. I can now afford to treasure my time more and fill up once a week. Still go to Costco though.
I hope you're not serious. You unquestionably wasted more gas filling so frequently than you saved by having a 2% lighter car.

crossbow
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by crossbow » Wed Jun 12, 2019 3:36 pm

lazydavid wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 9:50 am
crossbow wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 1:16 am
I can somewhat relate. I used to put in as little gas as possible to lighten the weight of the vehicle, to increase fuel efficiency. This sometimes resulted in a trip to the Costco gas station twice a day. I can now afford to treasure my time more and fill up once a week. Still go to Costco though.
I hope you're not serious. You unquestionably wasted more gas filling so frequently than you saved by having a 2% lighter car.
I am serious. I was younger and dumber.

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Rotwang
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Rotwang » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:28 pm

Hiring a crew for lawn care.
Now the grass gets cut whenever my wife wants it to be.
Happy wife, happy life :happy

onmyway33
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Joined: Sat Nov 15, 2014 7:40 am

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by onmyway33 » Wed Jun 12, 2019 4:49 pm

These come to mind:

1. Buying high quality (sometimes professional grade) tools for home related projects. In many instances, such as a power washer I just purchased, they really do perform much better and have a longer service life than home-owner grade.
2. Paying off bills (utilities, property taxes, medical co-pays, etc.) as soon as I receive them. In the past I would wait until closer to the due date of the respective bill so that I could have available funds to handle an emergency. It is a good feeling (and nearly eliminates late payments) to receive a bill electronically or in the mail, pull out of my phone and log into my bank's app, and immediately pay off that bill.
3. Buying the most expensive premium toilet paper and paper towels at Aldi. They really do perform much better. :shock:

Ependytis
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Ependytis » Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:20 pm

I am surprised no one mentioned a HCOL area with nice weather. I am so thankful that I do not need to bundle up, preheat the car, scrape ice off the windows, clear the driveway, worry about the driving conditions or if my car breaks down and I freeze to death. I am so grateful I don’t live in winters with freezer like temperatures. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to visit the mountains and see the snow every couple years but I can’t imagine living in that weather day to day.

LeftCoastIV
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by LeftCoastIV » Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:59 pm

1. Uber Eats / Grubhub

2. Ski vacations

3. Tennis club

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StormShadow
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by StormShadow » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:29 pm

Under Armour golf shoes.
iPad.
Netflix.
UHD tv.
Nicer clothes (Vinyard Vines, Brooks Brothers).
Traveling.
Internet (pretty much a necessity these days).

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3wood
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by 3wood » Wed Jun 12, 2019 7:50 pm

Private golf club. No more 5+ hour rounds on beat up courses. I don't think I could ever go back to that.

Colorado13
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Location: Colorado

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Colorado13 » Thu Jun 13, 2019 8:59 am

Parking at the airport during short trips rather than taking the shuttle, bus or train.

Sandi_k
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Sandi_k » Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:01 pm

Ependytis wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:20 pm
I am surprised no one mentioned a HCOL area with nice weather. I am so thankful that I do not need to bundle up, preheat the car, scrape ice off the windows, clear the driveway, worry about the driving conditions or if my car breaks down and I freeze to death. I am so grateful I don’t live in winters with freezer like temperatures. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to visit the mountains and see the snow every couple years but I can’t imagine living in that weather day to day.
I did - our house on the water in California. ;)

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Sandtrap
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Location: Hawaii😀 Northern AZ.😳 Retired.

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Sandtrap » Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:16 pm

1. Business class / First class (lay flat seats). Great for my spine.
Now able to visit family and friends in Hawaii more often :D :D

1b. . . . 4-5 star hotels and resorts when I travel. Or at least the top floor suite of Holiday Inn Express.

2. $26 / mo. copay at the hospital rehab center 2x/week, includes all services and evals.

3. *** Special shipped in fresh "Kona Coffee Beans" from the slopes of Mauna Kea (plantation).
One cup every morning from my fresh press. Awesome!!

4. New Kindle reader : Oasis . . . . incredible!!!!

5. Expensive underwear that fits!!!!! :shock: :shock:

*Otherwise, DW and I are comfortably frugal. Familiar old ways of things. :D

j :happy
Last edited by Sandtrap on Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:45 pm, edited 2 times in total.

Patzer
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Patzer » Sat Jun 15, 2019 2:22 pm

New Kitchen Cabinets and Countertops. Even got the fancier more expensive stone.
Was really reluctant to do it, but my significant other wanted it.
Turns out I love it, and even a year later, I still smile every time I walk into the kitchen.

Laptop with a Solid State Drive.
The old one used to frustrate me so much with load times. New one was about $400 more, but I am so much happier using it.

Going to the nice movie theater with recliners and craft beer.
Will never go to a regular movie theater again, like being at home, but with a huge screen.

ssquared87
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by ssquared87 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 4:28 pm

Ependytis wrote:
Wed Jun 12, 2019 6:20 pm
I am surprised no one mentioned a HCOL area with nice weather. I am so thankful that I do not need to bundle up, preheat the car, scrape ice off the windows, clear the driveway, worry about the driving conditions or if my car breaks down and I freeze to death. I am so grateful I don’t live in winters with freezer like temperatures. Don’t get me wrong, it’s nice to visit the mountains and see the snow every couple years but I can’t imagine living in that weather day to day.
I live in a HCOL area in SoCal and it’s not even close to being worth living here. In fact I’d pay more to live somewhere cold with snow if I could get away from the traffic, terrible infrastructure, passive aggressive low IQ people, air pollution etc. I’m originally from the North East and will gladly wear a cashmere sweater and a jacket instead of dealing with all the nightmares here. Getting away from the cold is vastly overrated. The only reason i stay is because of my career.

Some aspects of lifestyle creep that have been worth it for me
1. Buying decent quality furniture from places like room & board instead of IKEA
2. Used or new BMWs instead of bland Japanese cars
3. Eating whatever I feel like whenever I want without even considering cost. I used to force myself to eat whatever was in the house even if I had a craving for something. Now if I really want good sushi or a steak or something I’ll just go to a nice restaurant.
4. Never flying basic economy - I always get main cabin extra at the least and on flights over 5 hours I try to go for lie flat seats.
5. Housekeeper
Last edited by ssquared87 on Sat Jun 15, 2019 5:01 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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TheAccountant
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by TheAccountant » Sat Jun 15, 2019 4:38 pm

Buying a boat.

I went used and do all of the maintenance myself, which helps keep costs down. I also trailer it, so I can buy gas on land instead of at the marina where it's usually $ 1.50 per gallon more expensive.
Making cents out of every dollar.

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Peter Foley
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Peter Foley » Sat Jun 15, 2019 7:07 pm

This goes back a long time, but I can remember when we got an automatic garage door opener. In Minnesota that was a big deal!

Colorado13
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Location: Colorado

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Colorado13 » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:09 pm

Peter Foley wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 7:07 pm
This goes back a long time, but I can remember when we got an automatic garage door opener. In Minnesota that was a big deal!
Also in MN years ago, remote auto start so I could warm up the car before leaving work at the end of the day. This was also a big deal; literally some of the best money I have ever spent.

Current equivalent = heated car seats.

Old Guy
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Old Guy » Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:55 pm

Buying the largest house we’ve ever owned in a resort community in the southeast, on a beach path, a five minute walk to the ocean, and with mild winters. No more -14 degrees for us.

Gifting money to our son.

Buying crafts, mostly glass, including a Chihuly piece, a Marigold Persian (https://www.chihuly.com/shop/marigold-persian.)
(We didn’t pay that price.)

Increased charitable contributions.

chenzi
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by chenzi » Sat Jun 15, 2019 9:55 pm

Our in-laws and parents visit us from Asia every year. We book their tickets every year in coach but upgraded them to business class this year, their first one in their lives! We still travel coach with two kids.
Some of the lifestyle creep - cleaner every week, helper to do dishes and laundry every day, doordash premium membership to save food delivery fee for food orders few times a week,Peloton, 3 reasonably luxury vacations every year for last couple of years - one week in Hawaii island every year , one theme park (Disney/Legoland etc) every year, one more week somewhere in USA/Canada - we take our parents / in-laws too.

samstar
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by samstar » Sat Jun 15, 2019 10:02 pm

Nice neighborhood
Gardener
Nicer furniture
Occasional fast casual takeout
More spacious rooms during vacation travel so we can stay up after the kids sleep
Nicer car

If it didn’t fit comfortably within our budget and savings goals, it wouldn’t make us happier. Being able to do it with very minimal guilt helps.

Herekittykitty
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Location: Flyover Country

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Herekittykitty » Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:14 pm

Fly first or business class when available.

It reminds me of how flying was decades ago for everyone.
I don't know anything.

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WWJBDo
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Location: San Diego

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by WWJBDo » Sat Jun 15, 2019 11:15 pm

TuneIn Radio Pro. Pro has no ads and I prefer it to Sirius.
Whole Foods fresh-squeezed OJ. Add a splash of unsweetened Cranberry = bliss.
Business class for international travel.
"It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." Upton Sinclair

Bobby206
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Bobby206 » Sun Jun 16, 2019 12:14 am

Not flying standard coach very often would be #1.

Paying extra to guarantee ocean front at hotels when staying at the beach since my wife loves it so much would be #2.

HawkeyePierce
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Location: Colorado

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Sun Jun 16, 2019 1:50 am

I have a mail-order subscription to one of the best coffee roasters in the country (IMO). $400 a year and they ship a freshly-roasted bag of beans to me twice a month. Well worth the splurge.

CAP_theorem
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by CAP_theorem » Sun Jun 16, 2019 9:15 am

Manual transmission sports cars. Commuting is fun so I stopped working remote. I go more places and get more sun.

Sandi_k
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Sandi_k » Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:16 am

HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 1:50 am
I have a mail-order subscription to one of the best coffee roasters in the country (IMO). $400 a year and they ship a freshly-roasted bag of beans to me twice a month. Well worth the splurge.
What's their name?!

Drengr
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Drengr » Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:26 am

Household & gardening help, larger home, overseas vacations, higher quality furniture rather than Ikea

hightower
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by hightower » Tue Jun 18, 2019 7:46 am

ThankYouJack wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 8:43 pm
I'm curious for those who were able to make increase in their lifestyle, what things actually made you happier?
Travelling. I have no regrets for spending money on travel over the last 9-10 years since finishing residency. So many memories from those trips that I will forever cherish.

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Just sayin...
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Just sayin... » Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:26 am

Top-notch personal trainer 3X/wk. Between these workouts, my Peloton bike, and completely changing my diet and activity level, I’m in the best shape of my life. Now, I’m able to soundly sleep all night (quite an accomplishment for me), feel comfortable at a beach or poolside resort in just a pair of trunks, and my BP/cholesterol numbers are great (normal). Retirement has been great thus far...

MarkerFM
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by MarkerFM » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:22 am

More of a leap than a creep, but about 10 years after retiring we shuffled our homes from two totaling 6,600 sq ft worth $3.25 million (selling prices) to two totaling 8,350 sq ft worth $5.75 million (current values). One was in the same general location, the other was a trade from a high tax cold northern state to Florida. We are very happy with the change.

rbaldini
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by rbaldini » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:50 am

Generally speaking, not sweating the small stuff. It started with not worrying about the price of rice I was buying. More recently, it's not changing my own oil (most of the time) because I value my time more than the rate they charge. Get the big things right, meet your savings and investment goals, and don't worry about the trivialities.

RJC
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by RJC » Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:55 am

Any type of cleaning (home, car, etc.) and more trips with the family is money well spent IMO.

ctuser1
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by ctuser1 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:00 am

Moving from an apartment to SFH.
Apt (750Sqft) -> $1250/month
Raised Ranch SFH (1200sqft upper floor + 600 sqft finished above-ground basement) -> $3200/month carrying cost according to my spreadsheet.

DW and the kids seem to enjoy the house more and are much happier for it. That + the marginally improved school quality makes the $2k/month extra worth it.

Frugalbear
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Frugalbear » Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:03 am

Sandi_k wrote:
Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:16 am
HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 1:50 am
I have a mail-order subscription to one of the best coffee roasters in the country (IMO). $400 a year and they ship a freshly-roasted bag of beans to me twice a month. Well worth the splurge.
What's their name?!
Yes, please share!

Cooper62
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Cooper62 » Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:56 am

Monthly spa membership and audiobook subscription.
A couple coffees from Starbucks or Dunkin Donuts each week.
Additional travel - when we were younger our vacation was an annual trip within driving distance.
Now we take a few trips a year and some include flying and have added a few cruises.

quantAndHold
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by quantAndHold » Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:57 am

Thinking back to when I was first out of college, and how I lived then...

Business class on flights that are long enough that lie flat seats will matter.

A yard guy.

A house with a yard large enough to need a yard guy.

A house.

The good seats at concerts.

Paying for tickets to concerts instead of getting in for free by ushering.

Eating what I want without worrying how much it costs. Both in restaurants and better quality food at home.

Multiple fitness memberships, even though we also have equipment at home. We use all of it.

Regularly scheduled massages.

When we both worked, we had a house cleaner. Now that we don’t work, we do it ourselves. Still not sure if doing it ourselves was the right decision or not.

Osprey
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Osprey » Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:13 am

I bought an electric bicycle which rides great without using the motor and the pedal assist lets me have the confidence to go further and help with hills when I need it. This has enabled my husband and I to enjoy biking together as a fun retirement activity.

desiderium
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by desiderium » Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:22 am

Not following a budget

We do a budget exercise every year and review the previous year's spending. We check spending periodically and use it occasionally to correct excesses and maintain a comfortable degree of restraint. Despite not following or caring if certain things go over or under, our overall spending has not changed for the last 6 years. We are fortunate that this comfort level sits well below our means and we save and give generously.

HawkeyePierce
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Location: Colorado

Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by HawkeyePierce » Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:02 pm

Sandi_k wrote:
Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:16 am
HawkeyePierce wrote:
Sun Jun 16, 2019 1:50 am
I have a mail-order subscription to one of the best coffee roasters in the country (IMO). $400 a year and they ship a freshly-roasted bag of beans to me twice a month. Well worth the splurge.
What's their name?!
Brown Coffee Co in San Antonio. Comes out to $16/bag which is a pretty good price for freshly roasted coffee of this quality.

https://browncoffeeco.com/shop/3yxinzs3 ... cllhhbr614

Aaron Blanco, the owner, also produced a documentary on how he sources coffee called "Coffee Hunting: Kenya" available for streaming on Amazon: https://browncoffeeco.com/coffee-movie

KenBen40
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by KenBen40 » Tue Jun 25, 2019 7:51 am

Home upgrades always make me feel happier.

CoAndy
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by CoAndy » Tue Jun 25, 2019 9:52 am

CrossFit membership.

investingdad
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by investingdad » Tue Jun 25, 2019 11:55 am

Paying to upgrade work travel from coach to first on my own dime for domestic flights.

Two nice family vacations per year while the kids are still young.

Music lessons for me.

Afty
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Re: What lifestyle creep made you happier?

Post by Afty » Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:18 pm

I've stopped agonizing over every purchase and am much quicker to just buy the thing I want. 10 years ago I would buy the second-rate version of the thing I really wanted, and then be dissatisfied when it wasn't as good as the thing I really wanted.

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