9 ways to know if you're middle class
There's no hard-and-fast definition, but surveys show what kind of income and lifestyle you're likely to have if you -- and others -- think you're middle class.
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Does it really matter what 'class' you consider yourself? Does that actually affect your decisions - what demographic some survey considers you to be? It's like asking "what's your sign". (Yeah, because I'm going to change my decision to purchase a car or go back to school if I'm considered middle-class.) Pathetic that the label defines the individual anymore.
The one thing I've noticed is how few of you meet all of the "basics". Apparently the middle class is disappearing.
Shall we take an informal poll? How many of us meet say, 6 of the 9 basics, without qualification? (For example, we shop at Target, but because my wife works there, & we take vacations, but have to save up for 3 years to do so, etc.)
the key is planning and trade offs. an rv home costs about $5,000 used, Parking-utilities-upkeep,
for about $4,000yr. This makes living near childrens colleges, (or vacations) greatly reduced. By
using this as a basic model, tweeked
I personally think middle class is about 45k per adult and 15k per child in a house, at least if I compare it to my "middle-class" upbringing.
One is "You Shop at Target." Most of the best low-priced places like Aldi, Ollie's, The Dollar Store, etc. were pointed out to me by people making well into six figures. When my wealthy, Mercedes-driving cousin comes from out of state to visit, we can't drive past Dollar Tree, etc. without her ordering me to pull over so she can check it out. I know people who say they're embarrassed to be seen at such places, but NONE of them are wealthy. I'm still Middle Class, but comfortably retired with a greater income than most working people make. So if someone sees me coming out of of such stores I figure they'll say, "See: that's why he's got more than a couple pennies to rub together." If not, what do I care? I love my $14.77 Walmart athletic shoes and they're as good, come in widths, have pronation control, etc, as the $179 Nikes and New Balance's I used to buy when I was a high school track and cross country coach.
The Second is, under vacations, the remark that "the South of France is for the 1%." You can spend 4-days at Cannes, France in late Spring or Summer for just a few hundred more than spending the same time at some Atlantic beach resorts - and that includes round-trip airfare from the East Coast. I did. There is a big free public beach, and you can also sneak onto some of the private ones late in the day - that's how we got to experience the most exclusive, Carlton Hotel's beach. Air France runs some cheap air-hotel deals (sometimes less than $1000 and you can find them and similar ones in Budget Travel magazine or online) to various French cities and it's easy to find cheap one-day tours in English either through the hotel or by exploring the town a little. For example, if you're in Paris, there are little shops offering cheap, one day tours one the right bank along the Seine near the Louvre. We spent 5 days in Paris and took a one-day bus (a couple hours of driving each way) tour for less than $50 each to the Loire Valley to see a few Grand Chateaus of the old French Kings. We also considered similar tours to places like Normandy.
A year's smoking at a pack a day costs as much as a trip for two in the Spring for 4 days in Rome including the hotel & meals, round trip airfare, and 3 long tours.
Many of my fellow Middle Class relatives have taken several big tours as I have. My travels have included two weeks touring China (Great Wall, Terra Cotta Warriors, 5-day Yangtze Cruise), a week in Egypt (including a 4-day Nile Cruise), a week in Israel, 9 days in France, two weeks in the Aegean (3 days in Athens, 7-day Aegean Cruise, 3 days in Istanbul), and an Alaska Cruise. I never spent more than $2350/person for any one including meals and all the side-tours. In the next decade I expect to do several $2K to $4K per person vacations, including climbing Mt. Kilimanjaro, hiking the Inca Trail from Cuzco to Machu Picchu, visiting Mexico City and the Yucatan, touring the Galapagos Islands, and do a cruise of Australia, New Zealand, and Antarctica. I retired early because of leg problems which are mostly healed now at 62, so I may not make the two climbs, but if not there are plenty of other things I want to see!
MiddleClass is a mindset also, as was mentioned..
But it is a GOOD MINDSET...That can help you get there IF YOU ARE NOT.
Don't always trying staying with Joneses, but shadow them when you can.
Attribute ideas from the Rich or Wealthy, at one time they may have been poor, or in the Middle.
Work hard and prepare your life, but have some fun along the way; Makes life easier.
My guess is half or less than half of those who took vacations in the past few decades.
Not many middle class people own a home, they own a huge f****g mortgage which they nurtured and grew by irresponsibly ATMing an equity they might have had in the house.
A hall mark of being middle class that was not listed: zero (0) net worth.
I am middle class for sure...my take on secure job is the best are the hardest...you can't just add jobs to the job market...how secure is that? I make about $65,000/yr delivering product in a stinky old truck that looks like a junkyard on wheels for a 70 year old company...I am a Teamster and haven't missed a scheduled workday for my almost 6 years with the company. You can't just add those kinds of opportunities...but it seems they are becoming more rare...I Love My Job!
If you have to worry about being laid off because you don't have company stock options or a golden parachute, you're Middle Class.
If you've never received a company bonus, you're Middle Class.(A little flash - Hostess wants 19 people who were part of the brilliant management team that lead the company into 2 bankruptcies to be paid a total of $1.75M in bonuses while handling the company liquidation. That's in addition to their salary)
If your raises haven't kept up with inflation for the last 10 years, you're Middle Class.
If you have a job where people who don't work 8 hours per day make sure you do, you're Middle Class.
If your parents had better benefits at their job than you do now, you're Middle Class.
If your vacation home and regular home are the same place, you're Middle Class.
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