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charley last won the day on February 12 2007

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About charley

  • Birthday 08/01/1968

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  1. Money cannot make anyone happy, but lack of money can make almost anyone unhappy, or at least make life more difficult.
  2. I am a real estate expert, but I'm not familiar with your local market. thereforeeee, I cannot give any advice on that. I will say this however: An investment councelor sells stocks, bonds, CDs, mutual funds, and many various types of non-real estate investments. Naturally an investment councelor will tell you that real estate is NOT a good investment because they can't sell that and can't make a commission on that. They want you to buy something they can make a commission on. So their advice is always biased against real estate. That even happens in my local area where real estate is an excellent investment. On the other hand, a real estate agent, including a commercial real estate agent, is the exact opposite problem. They sell real estate, NOT stocks, bonds, mutual funds, etc. thereforeeee, they will always tell you that real estate is the best investment, whether it is in your area or not. I was a commercial real estate agent for years and now write investment analysis software used by commercial agents and investors. Since I was a commercial real estate agent, and am still in that industry, but now from the software end of it, I know commercial real estate agents very well - as well as I know real estate. I also know their competitors very well too (the investment councelors). Both the investment councelor and the real estate agent want to make a commission because they need to make a living. So they will always tell you that something in their inventory is the best investment for you, whether it is or not. They might even believe it, but that doesn't make it so. The fact is that they don't even know what else is available to you, if it's not in their inventory. The only unbiased, quality advice you can buy is from a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). That said, if you were to buy real estate, I'd recommend a duplex, and you live in one side. Then the rent from the other side can pay part of loan payment and insurance, or in my local area the rent from one side would pay all of the loan payment and insurance every month so you can live rent and payment free in the other side. So in my local area you could then live free and your investment goes up in value due to property appreciation, and there are MANY tax benefits. In my local area, and in many parts of the USA, this is the best type of first time investment. In fact, in the USA, you can do this 7 times and still get low interest, owner occupied loans and in many parts of the country end up being wealthy in about 8 to 10 years. However, I don't know your local market, nor do I know Canadian tax laws. So I don't know if this idea is practical for your local area. Also, keep in mind that real estate requires maintenance, which means that you either must have the time and ability to do it, or to do much of it (mow yard, occasional plumbing or electrical problems, needs a roof every 20 to 30 years, etc). So you have to either be able to do all or part of maintenance yourself, or be able to pay to have it done. Non real estate investments do not require as much time or effort or management. So consider your abilities, available time, and if you can pay to have someone else do those things. You'd have to make a budget that includes all your income and expenses, including the income and expenses from the duplex (or other property). Don't forget to figure in the tax benefits because that's money off your taxes. Actually, this is exactly what my software does. It makes a monthly and annual budget and also shows the investment benefits (and dangers). Personally, I'm handicapped now due to having my neck broken in a car accident. I'm not parlyzed, but I'm no longer able to do the maintenance things I used to be able to do. That is why my money is currently invested in a high 10% annual interest compounding monthly private CD aka private contract note that in 6 months will increase to 15% annual interest compounding monthly. It requires no physical maintenance. If I was as physically fit as I used to be, I'd be invested in real estate income property. Since I'm not as physically fit, I'm invested in a private CD aka private contract note, though still related to real estate since it's with a local real estate developer who's using my money (and many others') to build luxury condominiums. Point is, since I'm handicapped, I got out of the real estate market. i.e. - I no longer own the income property real estate directly myself because I can't deal with the maintenance. Instead, I'm now invested as explained above, which is not really a real estate investment at all, it's similar to the sort of thing an investment councelor would sell, except this one is private (not a publicly offered or advertised security). It's nice because it requires no physical maintenance (or any of my time to manage it). Everyone must live somewhere. So owning a duplex and living in one side might be a good first investment. Of course that depends on your local real estate market, and I know nothing about your local market. Once you have your living situation handled; then, is additional income property real estate a good investment for additional investments? That party depends on the individual. Do they have the time, health, and ability to do the maintenance themself? If not, do they have the management skills and resources to hire it done, time to manage it, and can the investment still work out for them (if hiring maintenance help)? For some people in some locales, real estate is the best investment, but that depends on the individual, their local real estate market, and which property they invest in. I'd be very wary of a private CD aka a private contract note (in effect making a private loan and owning the contract note to receive payment(s) (principal and interest) on the numeric schedule agreed to in writing as part of contract). You'd only want to do that if you knew the borrower very well, trusted them, knew they had excellent credit, and you had a signed contact specifying terms. I felt comfortable doing that because I know the real estate developer I loaned my money to has excellent credit and has been a successful developer since 1965 (47 years), though 20+ years experience would have been enough for me to feel comfortable. There are ways to increase your security with private notes like the one I have since it's related to real estate, like having the property mentioned as security in our contract for repayment, having it notarized at time of signing, and then attaching the contract and amortization schedule to the real estate by recording it at the local assessor's office. That means the property can never be sold to anyone without the lender - i.e. - lien holder (that's me, or you if you did this) getting paid first. However, if I did that, the borrower (real estate developer in this case) would have that show on property title reports, which would reduce his ability to borrow money from commercial bank(s) on that property, which would make it more difficult or impossible for him to complete the project. i.e. - I'd be more secure on my note, but in return I'd get a much lower interest rate, at which point I may as well have bought a publicly offered government CD since it's most secure (though low interest). I suggest you consult an accountant, ideally a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) so you can get some quality, unbiased advice from someone who is NOT trying to make a commission off you. Financial advisors and real estate agents are paid on commission and thereforeeee they cannot afford to be unbiased. Once your CPA helps you form the best plan for your situation, then you can use an investment councelor or commercial real estate agent to help you carry out the plan, if you need their help and expertise. Once you learn enough, you can then buy (and sell) online (for publicly offered securities) or direct (for real estate - direct with the seller). Naturally I'd personally deal direct (represent myself) in real estate. For securities, I would consider hiring some professional help since that's not my strongest area of knowledge, though I did deal direct when I invested in the private CD (contract note) and that is working out very well and I paid no commission. However, my background as a commercial real estate agent, real estate software expert, expert related to real estate and business contracts, and loan related math made me more than qualified to represent myself. The average person should have used a lawyer or CPA for this. Many did. There are many local people who invested in the same private CD arrangement with the same R.E. developer. Some investors had their lawyer or CPA represent them. The more experienced investors represented themselves. Personally, I would not hesitate to hire an expert in any area where I was not an expert. However, I always examine their monetary motives. An expert paid on commission only gets paid if you invest in their inventory of investments (biased advice). An expert NOT paid on commission gives impartial, unbiased advice (CPA or lawyer). CPAs know more about money, but lawyers know more about contracts. If you can't afford both (most of us can't or don't want to pay for both) then I'd choose the CPA with 15+ years experience on the job since they know a lot about money and probably enough about contracts. A CPA would refer you to a lawyer if needed (for contract advice or to make a contract). Perhaps the CPA can make the contract for you (not sure). As a commercial R.E. agent I was legally allowed to write contracts related to real estate and related money. So possibly a CPA can do the same. CPAs certainly know money well and give unbiased advice. P.S. - I intended to NOT post anymore at E. I guess I might make an occasional exception in the financial area.
  3. This thread on credit is full of good financial advice, if I say so myself. Yes, it's my thread. Might be useful for you. Have a look please.
  4. I like both of my jobs aside from some occasional unpleasantness at one of them. I love my job duties, and for the most part I really like my coworkers. I'd want to go to work even if they didn't pay me, but don't tell my employers that.
  5. Hi RedQueen. So you have observed that men and women are different? Wow. You're smart. Ha ha. I'm just teasing. You can punish me later. Charley
  6. Is it possible to be cool with everyone? No. I don't think so. I've tried many times and it was always a wasted effort. You can can't please everyone and be true to yourself. i.e. - you also have to please yourself and you're the most important person when it comes right down to it. Just concentrate on those who make some reciprocal effort to be nice to you, and continue being nice to them. As for others who make no reciprocal effort to be nice to you, then stop wasting time on them, and ignore them. I try to be nice to everyone initially, but if I'm attacked or ignored in return, I might try being nice to that person again later, but after 3 or more rejections, I'm finished with them for good. I operate on a 3 strikes you're out policy.
  7. Well, tradtionally men paid for everything on dates, but that was before women's lib, before most women had an income, and before women had any control. Like before the 60s and 70s, I think. I remember things changing in the 70s, though I was only in grade school at the time. My father is very socially astute. He taught me that for business appointment lunches/dinners, and also for friends going out, the person who asks or invites is supposed to pay. That was always tradtional for non dates. Now since women's lib, women's rights, women having paying jobs and rights, they now have equality, or something close. As a result, they now have the same responsibilities. thereforeeee, women should pay their share. However, what is their share? I fall back onto the traditional rules for business and friend appointments as a guide. Those rules were based on equality. So they should apply to any equal relationship. thereforeeee, the asker/invitor should pay for the invitee. However, that also means the people should take turns inviting each other. I think "hang" is a casual way of him asking you for a casual date, though it can also mean a friend activity. It's irrelevant what he means because no matter what he means, the money issues are the same, IMO. Now when both people are not equal in money, then the equality based rules don't work, and maybe they shouldn't be applied then anyway. I guess that is up to the people involved. I haven't dated in a long while, but I do go out with women friends a lot. If we are approximately equal in income, then the invitor usually pays for both people, or we go dutch, either of which is acceptable by traditional friends rules, and should also be acceptable for dating today. That's how it usually goes for me with women in their 30s and 40s because many of them are familiar with tradtional friends and business appointment manners, as they use those for friends or dates. However, younger women in their 20s operate on their own personal rules that they each make up according to what she thinks is fair, and they typically don't even know the traditional friends and business appointment rules. So then I go along with whatever she wants, as long as it seem fair. Generally they just like to either go Dutch or take turns paying (regardless of who invited who). OK, that's fair, if she can afford it. However, what's fair when both people are not equal in income? I think "fair" has to be adjusted to circumstances. For example, when I was 23 and dating a 36 year old woman, she did pay for most things. I felt really guilty, embarrassed, and immasculated about it too. However, I was from a different generation than young guys today. I don't think most young guys today would think twice about a woman paying for them. In my case, I was working, but a starving college student. In hindsight, I shouldn't have felt so guilty about. Sometimes I wouldn't even go out with her because I didn't have the money to even pay my half, let alone take my turn to pay for both of us. I don't think I ever once paid for both of us. However, I did pay my half when I could. She always tried to make me feel better about it. She was happy to be with me and she could easily afford to pay for both of us. In hindsight, since I'm in my 30s now, I realize that if you are dating a younger person, there is likely to be a disparity of income, especially a disparity of disposable income. So the normal rules and ideas of what's fair with regard to money just don't apply. What is fair is that the person with less money do what they can, pay their half when they can. That's all they can do. I can remember my older GF wanting to go out, me not wanting to because I didn't have the money, being to proud to say so, but she knew. She'd talk me into going out anyway and letting her pay for both of us. Now that I'm in my 30s, I'm in her shoes. I have dated one woman younger than me, and I'm friends with many women from 18 to 90. Really. Most of my women friends are in their 20s, 30s, and 40s. When I go out with the one's in their 30s and 40s it's a very equal relationship since they have their own money, and sometimes have more of it than I do. When I go out with women in their 20s, especially early 20s, they typically don't have much money. So I expect to pay all or more than half because they often can't afford to pay half. They certainly can't afford to pay for both of us. The thing that impresses me so much about young women today, is that often they won't let me pay for them, even if they don't have much money. Wow. Such impressively good character they have. I'm very impressed with them. However, that means we then can't go out very often. So I find myself trying to convince them to please let me pay for them so we can go out. i.e. - I find myself in exactly the same shoes my older GF was in with me when I was younger. If you are in your 30s+ and date, or are friends, with a younger person in their 20s, and especially early 20s, then you should expect to pay more than half, even though they might object. Personally, I'm totally fine with paying for them. I love it when they object because it's a sign of good character in them. However, I also hope they'll let me pay after some convincing because then we can actually go out, instead of canceling due to lack of money. ========== If the income of both people is similar, or at least both are adequate to afford to pay, then I go with the "invitor pays for both people" theory, or the "taking turns" theory, or Dutch if that's what they prefer. If there is an extreme disparity of income, then I go with my IRS view based on ability to pay. Hey, sometimes I eat with very, very wealthy people, in which case, I offer to go Dutch, but if they offer to pay (man or woman), I'm OK with that. ========== If you aren't comfortable paying more than half, or all, for this younger guy, then date a guy your age or older. Otherwise, learn to accept the fact that an age-gap relationship is probably not going to be economically equal. That doesn't bother me at all, as long as the younger person pays what they can, and/or does what they can. That way I feel it's fair. Fair doesn't have to mean equal dollars spent, fair means equal effort spent, IMO. i.e. - paying according to ability to pay is fair, IMO.. ========== So the real issue to me, if I was in your shoes, wouldn't be if he pays half. The real issue would be, does he pay what he can? Does he make that effort? If so, I think it's fair. If not, then it's not fair. However, that's just my opinion as someone who accepts the likely financial realities of an age-gap relationship. Others might demand equality of money spent, which requires equality of income, which means date a guy your age or older.
  8. I don't see why you can't be friends with a woman regardless of if either of you is seeing someone else. I can and do. I don't find it a problem to be friends regardless of if either of us is seeing someone else or not. That assumes we actually want to be friends. Sometimes when someone of opposite sex says they want to be friends, they mean it. Other times, they really mean, "Please go away." If the desire to be friends is real, then why not be friends? That's how I run my life and I have plenty of good women friends. Some are longterm friends of many years, even more than a decade in a few cases.
  9. Sometimes I feel loney too. Mostly it doesn't bother me. I think I must have a very high tolerance for solitude. I do however have friends, and that helps a lot. Lack of romantic relationship is easier when you have friends. I think it's important to learn to be alone and stand on your own two feet emotionally without relying on a romantic relationship. I'm all for romance, but I wouldn't want to rely on it for companionship or self worth. If you are alone long enough, you will learn to be more emotionally self sufficient. If you meet someone, then you won't be alone. So either way it will get better in time. If you can spend some more time with friends, that will help. Make some new friends if necessary. ========== Regarding your standards, I share those same standards. However, I'm willing to compromise. My friend I recently asked out is a smoker, but at least she's considerate about it, and somehow she doesn't stink like most smokers. How's she do that? I told her she'd be a perfect 10, if she quit smoking. She was very flattered, but she ain't given up the cigs for anything. So I accept her as is. My other friend I'd like to ask out next, is also a smoker. She also is considerate about it and does not smell like a smoker. How's she do that? What's with beautiful and otherwise smart babes smoking? It's like an epidemic of cigarettes, especially among women in their early and mid 20s, but also their 30s too. One of my other faves also smokes. I hate cigarettes. So how come I keep getting attracted to smokers? Because so many women smoke, that's why. Only reason I can figure. I've got asthma. I can't be around smoke. Yet none of these women stink like a smoker. How do they manage to still smell good? Why do they smoke? I don't get it.
  10. However, it sounds, based on your last post, that maybe your parents are starting to accept him, or willing to consider it. You mentioned all of you having dinner. That has the potential to make excellent progress towards their accepting him. If that works out, then great. If not, wait until you are 18.
  11. They can legally physically stop her because the legal age of consent here is 18. If she drives to his house against parents will, they can report her as a runaway and him for contributing to delinquency of a minor, and both of them could be locked up in jail, and he'd have a criminal record. If they really wanted to be nasty, they could accuse him of having sex with her and get him arrested for being a child molestor. This his life would be ruined. If he survived prison, which is doubtful, he'd have a criminal record as a child molestor and never be able to get a decent job. Back when I was 17, my 19 year old male neighbor had sex with his 17 year old GF. This was back in the day before the age of consent laws took age difference into account. Her parents called the police. He was arrested and convicted of statuatory rape - i.e. - of being a child molestor. He spent 2 years in state prison and now has mental problems for life and a criminal record as a child molestor. Her parents decided to teach him a lesson. They destroyed him for life. So don't think for one minute that her parents can't go really hard on her and him. They can and the law is on their side. And their age diff is enough for him to get into serious legal trouble. So once again, I advise she mellow out and stop fighting her parents and just play it cool and stop seeing him until AFTER she is 18, at which time she will then have the law on her side backing up her right of choice. However, at any age, don't take your parents car without their permission because that could get you into serious legal problems at any age, especially AFTER you are 18. If the car is yours, then it's yours, but if it's theirs, then it's theirs. I think much of this hostility and conflict will subside after you turn 18 because then what choice do your parents have but to accept your BF, or at least your right to make your own decisions. Until then, calm down, be smart, and don't fight them or disobey them. After you turn 18, then be an adult.
  12. When you are 17, you have to ask your parents permission and they have the legal right to say no. That's reality. When you are 18, you can just tell your parents he's your BF. Then it's your choice and the law is on your side then and your parents will know that, or should know that. I think it's really counter productive asking them permission, arguing with them, or trying to go behind their back when you are 17. Just be smart, act like an adult about this and chill out until you are 18. That way you can skip a lot of conflict that is bad for you, your parents, and your BF. After you are 18, you will be legally the master of your own destiny. At that time, you parents are more likley to accept him because they no longer have any legal say in it. However, the more conflicts that occur when you are 17, the more problems you'll have later in trying to get them to accept him after you are 18. It would be nice if they'd accept him after you are 18 so you could be a happy family. So cool it while you are still 17. Also, your BF should have some respect for your parents are back off until after you are 18. That would be the respectful and the wise things to do. So just don't see him for now. It's only a few weeks. After you are 18, then you'll have a much better chance of getting them to accept him, if you don't rock the boat to much now and create grudges.
  13. I don't smoke and never have. However I did once have to quit prescription meds that I was addicted to. I tapered off gradually over several months. It was easy that way. It worked like this. I made a goal to use lightly less per day for a week. Then, the following week. slightly less yet. So each each I'd do the same every day that week, but the following week, I'd be reduced a bit more. Over a period of several months, I was off it completely and have been for about 4 or 5 years now. It requires some self discipline at the first two or three days of each week as your body is complaining of not getting it's full dose of drug. However, by 4th or 5th day that week, you're used to the lower dose. Then, the next week it all starts over again with the next reduction. It's relatively easy to do, if you can just stick to the plan and get through the first 2 or 3 days of each week. I'd call this 2 parts planning, and 1 part character. It's a lot easier than cold turkey and a lot safer too. Stopping any drug cold turkey can be dangerous, as well as miserable. That should work for cigs to.
  14. Compare the pain of NC with the pain of ongoing contact. Then you'll know what to do.
  15. I can only say that's what I'd do. My former best friend deserted me when I had pneumonia recently. I was very sick for 9 weeks and at times I wasn't even sure I was going to survive. Three people I know died while I was sick. They died from same thing. My doctor was going to check me into hospital if I didn't start improving by New Years. Well, I started improving just prior to New Years. So no hospital. For 9 weeks, I couldn't go out to shop for groceries, or go to pharmacy, etc. At least I wasn't supposed to go out, but I had to sometimes. Two of my friends offered to help me, also my dad offered. My mom and sister couldn't offer to help because they were sick with same thing. My dad was taking care of my mom, and my brother in law taking care of my sister. I declined help from my dad because he had his hands full at work with several managers home sick, he had to work more, and he was taking care of my mom at home before and after work. He was also doing all shopping for both of them. He's got money. He should have hired a shopper, or had a healthy employee do it (on the clock), but he did it all himself. One of my friends who offered to help is 65 years old and I was afraid she'd get it and maybe die. So I declined her help. I accepted help with shopping for groceries and pharmacy from on of my younger friends who'd offered to help. Why not? She's young and healthy. So she's not likely to get sick. Also, I've helped her countless times in the past. I even drove at warp speed to a local bar just a few weeks before I got sick. I saved her from an aggressive drunk who had her cornered in the women's restroom - where she'd called me from. So I accepted help from her and it seemed fine since I'd helped her many times. However, she completely blew me off, never helped me once, and didn't answer my calls, nor return my messages. She just left me for dead, and I really could havd died too because I had to go out and do my own grocery and pharmacy trips in freezing weather because I had no one else to help me since I'd turned down help from others earlier. So I got more sick being out in freezing winter weather with pnemonia. I had to go to store myself in freezing weather and to pharmacy too. That at least once or twice a week. I couldn't get better. So my dad started doing my shopping. Later, when my mom recovered (weeks before I did) she started doing my shopping. Over a month later while I was still sick, my former friend called me to see if I wanted to go out on a Friday night. She assumed I wasn't sick anymore, but I was. I didn't return her call. She's called several times since then, but I screen her calls and don't answer, and I won't return her calls. She can go to hell. If a friend or best friend substantially screws you over, not just a minor dispute, but something major, like a betrayal, or deserting you in your time of need, then NC is appropriate and I never want to see or hear from her again. Period. It still hurts. She was my friend of 5 years. I'd always been there for her on probably a 100 occasions. When I needed her, she couldn't be bothered. NC now. It was a lopsided relationship anyway. Now I don't get anymore sobbing calls wanting to cry on my shoulder about guys, nor calls for financial and credit advice, nor calls to go rescue her from a guy in a bar. I like helping people, but it has to be a two way street. This was mostly one way. So good bye.
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