ANOTHER YEAR ON A FIXED INCOME- Marilyn Armstrong

We got our taxes done.

This used to be a big deal because we got so much money back at the end of the year. Then Reagan changed everything and we got back less than half we’d gotten in the past. Now, on a fixed income, we get pretty much the same thing every year.

This year we got a little more Federal, a little less State, but the result was essentially the same as last year.

Not a big deal, but it beats out nothing. It’s the only “lump” of money we get all year and I’m hoping it’ll be enough to get the chimney fixed.

I’m still a little punchy with the upcoming fix up to the bathroom and trying to snip whatever payments I can downward so that maybe we can get through this alive. Getting out of AT&T and into US Mobile brought $40/month back into our account. I’ve got a few almost finished accounts and when they are done, we’ll have another $100 maybe?

It’s the fixed income thing.

Prices go up, but income never goes up. We haven’t had crazy inflation, yet the price of food has been slowly rising. Heating oil has risen. Trash went down a little, but taxes went up too. And somehow, our “low-end” cable package keep crawling upward. A dollar here, two dollars there, another five in that corner.

We dumped cable and got “YouTubeTV” and haven’t looked back. Of course, we still have to keep paying Charter for Wi-Fi and somehow, the price of Wi-Fi is now more than our original cable bill was. Funny how that works.

We don’t get “big hits” of income change, either positive or negative — but over time, since we’ve been on a fixed income, it has eroded by 15%, give or take maybe another 5%. That’s with low inflation, mind you. If inflation rises faster, we will be in trouble.

There is nothing to be done about it … other than winning Mega Millions of course. I suppose we should buy a ticket. Just in case.



Categories: Economics, humor, Money, Retirement, Social Security

Tags: , , , , ,

18 replies

  1. Ugh. I started my taxes in February and it’s already April 3rd. I guess I’d better get it done.

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  2. We’ve been steadily whittling our monthly expenses in view of the fact that at some point soon, we will both be on Social Security. Just when I think I’ve figured a budget we’ll be able to live on, one of the monthly bills increases or some household or automotive disaster arises that necessitates a credit card or bank financing. I keep warning my kids that we may wind up living with one of them – but, of course, they’re not doing all that great in this economy, either. Maybe it’s time to buy a plot of land, a tent, and a portapotty.

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  3. I hear you. I’m in the same leaky boat. We just keep praying to God and rowing towards shore.

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    • I get very depressed about the whole thing. Aren’t we supposed to be taking it easy????? What happened to “easy”?

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      • Easy lasted a short time starting after WWII and lasted a few decades. It started slipping away in the eighties. In the US and for people who were working in the factories mostly in the Midwest. Never got to the south or Appalachia at all.

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        • Well, it certainly never made it here. We are doing “better” than a lot of seniors, but we have a house and a mortgage and owning a house at our age is not such a joy. Especially since not only are WE getting older, so it is the house. I suppose we’ll survive, one way or the other. I worry that it will be “the other.”

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          • I know what you mean about the house. But the thought of moving into small apartment or assisted living is a worse choice. We may have to at some point but I would miss the room and the yard. It is three quarters of an acre but is big enough to enjoy flowers and plants.

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  4. They have been lying about inflation. It is going up and we just got a new “Carbon Tax” that goes on our gas for the car plus our heating oil. Then the food is going up because the food stores has to pay the carbon tax to transport the food and heat their humugus stores. It’s a never ending battle.
    Leslie

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    • Yes, it IS going up. Slowly but surely. What was enough to live on, money-wise, now is BARELY enough to live on — and then they wonder why we use credit cards. It’s because when something big comes up — like needing new tires for the car or repairing the chimney or buy two storm doors and a back door … there’s no money. You don’t get extra “Home repairs” income as part of your retirement pensions. Oil costs at least 50 cents a gallon more and since a big piece of Massachusetts blew up from bad gas lines a few months ago, I’m not hoping they bring in gas lines. No, thanks. Lawrence is STILL mass of rubble from the explosions that left the entire area without heat or cooking gas for more than six months and not all the houses have been repaired yet.

      Gasoline has gone up too, but that has always gyrated up and down. I think with all the flooding, we’re going to see a BIG jump in food prices. California is a mess and the wheat fields in the upper west of this country have been burning down or flooding for months and no one has done anything about it. This will not only affect Americans because those harvests go everywhere on earth.

      I’m really NOT looking forward to our future here on earth.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Yes, I mentioned to our new friend in Venice, Italy – that we’d have to win the lottery in order to accept his gracious invitation.

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