Lifestyle

Inflation Makes Me Want to ……!

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Come on everyone, be honest and complete this sentence with me.

Inflation makes me want to

Oh man, inflation is crazy. I know it’s been high since 2021, but the numbers have been off the charts lately. In case you’ve been stuck in a Shanghai-style lockdown, check it out.   

Recently, inflation has been over 8%.

Everything is more expensive these days. Gasoline, groceries, eating out, and travel are just a few things that I’ve been loathing to spend money on. It was a big shock when I came back from spending 3 months in Thailand. This is the highest inflation I’ve experienced in my adult life. It sucks!

Inflation makes me want to …

Okay, here is my answer.

Inflation makes me want to turtle up at home and not spend any money.

Not that we spent a lot of money previously, but high inflation is turning me into a recluse.

Normally, Mrs. RB40 and I enjoy going out to eat at the neighborhood restaurants. There are so many eateries in our area that we haven’t tried them all yet. But eating out seems so much more expensive lately. Inflation is really bringing out my cheapskate instinct.

Eating out

No wow.

We went out to dinner last week and it was $74 including drinks and tips. The food was …good. But at this price, the experience has better WOW me. Regrettably, it didn’t. The food was nice, but I could have made 2 servings of this penne dish at home for about $8. If I can look it up on YouTube and cook it, why should I bother changing out of sweat pants?

The wine was nice, but $10 for a little taste made me wince. I got a huge bottle of Chianti from Trader Joe’s for $11. And my wine glass at home is nicer to boot. This is why I’m turning into a recluse. Eating in is more comfortable, cheaper, and way more pleasant. I don’t even want to go out to dinner anymore unless the food is amazing.

Anyway, the price really affected my experience. I think $50 would have been a fair price for this dinner. Oh, the drinks didn’t cost that much more than last year. I think the margin was high enough on drinks already so they didn’t raise the price much. Just my theory. I never liked paying 10-15 bucks for a drink.

Yes, I’m cheap

Ok, I admit it. I am cheap. Just as I was getting more comfortable with spending money, inflation hit. It is turning me back into a cheapskate. My instinct is to stop spending when things are uncertain. This might be due to growing up poor. My parents only ate out once or twice per year. They were even cheaper than I am. It’s natural for me to revert and turtle up.

These days, the only thing I want to spend money on is growth stocks. They’ve been beaten down so much. If we invest now, we’d be wealthier in the long run.

The stock market looks bad, but this is the best time to buy if you’re young. That’s why you need to keep investing when the stock market is down. Don’t make the same mistake I did during the Dot Com crash. I stopped investing in my 401k for a while and regretted it ever since. Just keep investing and you’ll be way ahead of all your friends in 5 years or so.

Alternatives

As for eating out, I’ve been thinking about what we can do instead. Here is my plan to keep Mrs. RB40 happy.

  • Go out for lunch instead. Lunch is cheaper and we rarely drink when we go to lunch.
  • Ply her with alcohol at dinner. I got that big bottle of Chianti and I’ll pick up some happy sparkly wine for her. That should help her relax.
  • Cook new dishes at home. I’ll look up the menus of local restaurants and try to make some at home. When we go out, I want to try dishes I can’t make.

Alright, cheapo husbands and wives of the world. Do you have any tips for keeping your spouse happy in this high inflationary environment?

Oh, what was your answer? Inflation makes me want to ……! Add your answer to the comment section below.

Real estate investment should do well over the next few years. We still have a housing shortage in the US and people need to live somewhere. Check out CrowdStreet if you want to generate passive income from commercial real estate. It’s way easier than being a landlord.

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Joe started Retire by 40 in 2010 to figure out how to retire early. After 16 years of investing and saving, he achieved financial independence and retired at 38.

Passive income is the key to early retirement. This year, Joe is investing in commercial real estate with CrowdStreet. They have many projects across the USA so check them out!

Joe also highly recommends Personal Capital for DIY investors. They have many useful tools that will help you reach financial independence.

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