Law School Discussion

Poll

Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???

I'm male and want kids
51 (24.8%)
I'm female and want kids
45 (21.8%)
I'm male and DONTwant kids
35 (17%)
I'm female and DONT want kids
50 (24.3%)
unsure
25 (12.1%)

Total Members Voted: 193

Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???

Steve.jd

  • ****
  • 4967
  • I'm edumacated now, still not photogenic though
    • View Profile
Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #60 on: April 23, 2006, 06:07:53 PM »
Kids are expensive.  If I can afford them, I'll consider it.  I'd have to have an insanely high income before it could even come under consideration though, something around $400k gross, minimum, at today's prices (unless the real estate market crashes or public schools in my city stop being off limits).

If that's how much you need to make to have a kid, you should keep all the cash. You'd save a lot of money if you let the nanny from South America raise her own children instead of yours.

actually, that's without any thought of a nanny.  that's not in the necessary expense calculation...

Modest house (and I'm really saying modest, not too small, but nothing spectacular): $1.5m, @ 6%: $9000/mo
Taxes: $16000 yr
Insurance: $2000 yr
Maintenance + Utilities: $10000
Other than kid expenses: $20k/yr (I can live off that, includes food, a run-of-the-mill Honda, etc)
Savings: $10k/yr
-----------------------------------------
total: $166k

AMT kicks in, assume 35% overall federal + state tax rate.

income necessary before even CONSIDERING a kid: $255k

-------------------------------------------------------------

Kid expenses: $6k/yr (summer camps, food, etc, etc)
Kid education: $25k/yr (K-12, $50k/yr college)

Not tax deductible, so, another $31/.65 = ~ $47k -- even more at college, but less early on, so evens out

--------------------------------------------------------------

Total MINIMUM necessary income: ~$300k.

--------------------------------------------------------------

And that's without a Brazillian nanny, or a BMW.

I was $100k off.  Fine.  Same idea, $300k, 400k might as well be a mil to me today.

Anything wrong with the calculations?  That's really just to afford to raise a child, nothing much, nothing pretentious.  Want to be able to send them to summer camp, pay for piano lessons, sports teams, etc.  And live in relatively nice, unpretentious home, in a decent neighborhood, attending a decent school.

Sure, it's a lot less if the house doesn't cost a fortune, and public schools are decent, but I mentioned that at the beginning.  I like it here, regardless the costs.

While I'm not going to tell anyone to have or not to have kids, because its none of my business your calculations are not correct.

For starters a house worth 1.5million is not "modest" by any means even in large cities, especially if its (at least initially) only needed for two people - couple without kids.  From your posts it seems that you live in San Francisco, so I'm gonna assume thats where you do live.  According to Forbes, S.F. is the fourth most expensive place to live in the U.S.; the fifth is Northern N.J.

http://www.forbes.com/2005/09/15/cx_sc_0916homeslide_5.html?thisSpeed=90000

I happen to be from that area and from arguably the most expensive region in Northern NJ.  The house my parents bought there is a 1600-700 sq ft two story, pretty new, with full basement in addition, garage, and a large lot.  Price: 1.1-1.2 million.  This is fairly overpriced too, we live less than 10 minutes from NYC, if we lived 20 minutes away the price would fall to about 700-800k.

Here is my other qualm with your numbers, why is a house necessary?  Why can't you have a large apartment which will be half the price? 

Obviously, once the house price comes down so do the taxes, and maintenance costs.

Other thing I take issue with is the private education stuff.  I think you have a rather warped negative view of public education and a very forgiving view of private education.  I'm a little biased here, because I am a product of the NYC public school system (called by many one of the worst in the country), but let me assure that I got a world class education and ran circles around my prep-school peers in UG.  I think your assesment of public schools is a case of statistical discrimination - meaning you are comparing the average student in a public school and in a private school, rather than using individual characteristics to judge results.  Sure private schools are much more likely to pump out good successful students, but you assume this is due to the better education at these schools.  Mostly it is because children in public schools are predominantly from poor backgrounds with parents who have no interest in them attending college or finding "professional" jobs.  Education like most other things in life is what you make of it.

And, jsyk, my parents combined incomes barely cracks 250k, and when I was starting UG it was just scraping at the edges of 200k, and yet on this they managed to raise two children who never wanted for everything and pay for my uber expensive private UG in full.

Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #61 on: April 23, 2006, 10:08:52 PM »
hmmm...interesting thread. I have nothing to add other than I have no desire and will never have the desire to have any children. Parenting does not appeal to me in the least bit. Perhaps that makes me odd but I'm fairly certain I would be bad at it.

Norcaldude: woah...your numbers are crazy but I respect that you have the guts to admit that you want a certain level of living for your children. there isn't anything wrong with it. however, my mom raised me by herself on 35k/year and I went to thirteen years of private school followed by four more at an insanely expensive private college of which we are still paying for. i think that, in turn, makes me her own living breathing annuity  :D :D

norcaldude

Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #62 on: April 23, 2006, 11:38:44 PM »


While I'm not going to tell anyone to have or not to have kids, because its none of my business your calculations are not correct.

For starters a house worth 1.5million is not "modest" by any means even in large cities, especially if its (at least initially) only needed for two people - couple without kids.  From your posts it seems that you live in San Francisco, so I'm gonna assume thats where you do live.  According to Forbes, S.F. is the fourth most expensive place to live in the U.S.; the fifth is Northern N.J.

http://www.forbes.com/2005/09/15/cx_sc_0916homeslide_5.html?thisSpeed=90000

I happen to be from that area and from arguably the most expensive region in Northern NJ.  The house my parents bought there is a 1600-700 sq ft two story, pretty new, with full basement in addition, garage, and a large lot.  Price: 1.1-1.2 million.  This is fairly overpriced too, we live less than 10 minutes from NYC, if we lived 20 minutes away the price would fall to about 700-800k.

There is nothing like that in a decent area within 20min of SF for $800k.  Maybe $1.2m within 20min of the city.

Here is my other qualm with your numbers, why is a house necessary?  Why can't you have a large apartment which will be half the price? 

Obviously, once the house price comes down so do the taxes, and maintenance costs.

Just is.  Can't raise kids without a house.  We're people, not vagabonds.

Other thing I take issue with is the private education stuff.  I think you have a rather warped negative view of public education and a very forgiving view of private education.  I'm a little biased here, because I am a product of the NYC public school system (called by many one of the worst in the country), but let me assure that I got a world class education and ran circles around my prep-school peers in UG.

And I'd assume you went to Brooklyn Tech, Bronx Science, or Stuyvesant (if I got the names right).  Assuming the kids didn't make the cutoff, they should be doomed for life?  I was talking to a girl who just missed them recently, sophomore in a neighborhood school in NYC.  Miserable isn't the right word to describe her, poor kid is thinking about getting a GED even though she has a 90, hopefully she doesn't after listening to my spiel.

I went to the one decent high school in SF (unlike NYC, there's only one here), and it's been getting progressively worse as the school board has become more and more progressive  ::).  I wouldn't count on it being decent in a decade at the rate things are going.

The middle and elementary schools in NYC are probably same as here, all sh!t with a few exceptions which you can't always be guaranteed to get your kid into other than by luck.  Again, if you don't get the kid in, should you doom said kid to a crappy school with aimless students?


And, jsyk, my parents combined incomes barely cracks 250k, and when I was starting UG it was just scraping at the edges of 200k, and yet on this they managed to raise two children who never wanted for everything and pay for my uber expensive private UG in full.

My parents income is a lot less, then again they wouldn't be able to pay for a private UG if they wanted to.  And they moved to the suburbs rather than paying said private school tuition for middle schools for siblings (all publics currently suck in SF).  They barely make the mortgage as it is, no way they could afford the house today, but better than throwing money into the air for private schools I guess.  From my calculations, I think you saw that extra expenses of $6k/yr for a kid are a tiny part of where most of the spending goes.

The absolute minimum in the suburbs would be the above calculations with a $1m house and no tuition payments.  But then again, I want to stay in the city, that was my initial point.  It's expensive, but I know what I'm shooting for.


greengrl -- Better make the coupon payments whenever you mature  ;)

Steve.jd

  • ****
  • 4967
  • I'm edumacated now, still not photogenic though
    • View Profile
Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #63 on: April 23, 2006, 11:48:43 PM »


While I'm not going to tell anyone to have or not to have kids, because its none of my business your calculations are not correct.

For starters a house worth 1.5million is not "modest" by any means even in large cities, especially if its (at least initially) only needed for two people - couple without kids.  From your posts it seems that you live in San Francisco, so I'm gonna assume thats where you do live.  According to Forbes, S.F. is the fourth most expensive place to live in the U.S.; the fifth is Northern N.J.

http://www.forbes.com/2005/09/15/cx_sc_0916homeslide_5.html?thisSpeed=90000

I happen to be from that area and from arguably the most expensive region in Northern NJ.  The house my parents bought there is a 1600-700 sq ft two story, pretty new, with full basement in addition, garage, and a large lot.  Price: 1.1-1.2 million.  This is fairly overpriced too, we live less than 10 minutes from NYC, if we lived 20 minutes away the price would fall to about 700-800k.

There is nothing like that in a decent area within 20min of SF for $800k.  Maybe $1.2m within 20min of the city.



So go 30 mins outside of the city, the price goes down exponentially.  Also why does it have to be SF, there are other "world class" cities - many of which have much lower price tags.

Quote

Here is my other qualm with your numbers, why is a house necessary?  Why can't you have a large apartment which will be half the price? 

Obviously, once the house price comes down so do the taxes, and maintenance costs.

Just is.  Can't raise kids without a house.  We're people, not vagabonds.


You can get a fantastic 3 bedroom 11-1200 sq ft apartment which is just as nice as a house minus the yard - this isn't exactly bad living.

Quote

Other thing I take issue with is the private education stuff.  I think you have a rather warped negative view of public education and a very forgiving view of private education.  I'm a little biased here, because I am a product of the NYC public school system (called by many one of the worst in the country), but let me assure that I got a world class education and ran circles around my prep-school peers in UG.

And I'd assume you went to Brooklyn Tech, Bronx Science, or Stuyvesant (if I got the names right).  Assuming the kids didn't make the cutoff, they should be doomed for life?  I was talking to a girl who just missed them recently, sophomore in a neighborhood school in NYC.  Miserable isn't the right word to describe her, poor kid is thinking about getting a GED even though she has a 90, hopefully she doesn't after listening to my spiel.


Yes I got into Bronx Science and Brooklyn Tech, and went to Tech.  Good guess ;)  To be fair however, there are something like 9 of these magnet schools now, they have been adding more although the originally three are still the only general ones, the other magnets have specialities like business education, etc.

Also, although there are plenty of horrid zone schools in NYC like Lincoln or Xavier there are plenty of fantastic zone schools like Midwood or Murrow, and in NYC you can apply for any school you like, you don't have to go to your neighborhood school.

Quote

I went to the one decent high school in SF (unlike NYC, there's only one here), and it's been getting progressively worse as the school board has become more and more progressive  ::).  I wouldn't count on it being decent in a decade at the rate things are going.

The middle and elementary schools in NYC are probably same as here, all sh!t with a few exceptions which you can't always be guaranteed to get your kid into other than by luck.  Again, if you don't get the kid in, should you doom said kid to a crappy school with aimless students?


Again, there are undoubtedly crappy middle schools in NY but there are plenty of good ones.  FWIW I loved my middle school - teachers would take us to broadway, we had tons of high school level classes, one on one counseling, etc

Quote

And, jsyk, my parents combined incomes barely cracks 250k, and when I was starting UG it was just scraping at the edges of 200k, and yet on this they managed to raise two children who never wanted for everything and pay for my uber expensive private UG in full.

My parents income is a lot less, then again they wouldn't be able to pay for a private UG if they wanted to.  And they moved to the suburbs rather than paying said private school tuition for middle schools for siblings (all publics currently suck in SF).  They barely make the mortgage as it is, no way they could afford the house today, but better than throwing money into the air for private schools I guess.  From my calculations, I think you saw that extra expenses of $6k/yr for a kid are a tiny part of where most of the spending goes.


The absolute minimum would be the above calculations with a $1m house and no tuition payments.  But then again, I want to stay in the city.  It's expensive, but I know what I'm shooting for.



Out of curiousity how do you plan on paying for a 1m house?  Even with biglaw, at 145k + bonus, and that rate is not in every firm, lets say 180k, its insane to try to pay for a 1m house with this salary - in fact you couldn't get such a mortgage even if you wanted to.  I suppose you could save up but it would take a lifetime.

norcaldude

Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #64 on: April 24, 2006, 12:00:33 AM »
So go 30 mins outside of the city, the price goes down exponentially.  Also why does it have to be SF, there are other "world class" cities - many of which have much lower price tags.

Eh.  Calculations made for fun.  I like it here.  Would be nice if it weren't so damn expensive.

Again, there are undoubtedly crappy middle schools in NY but there are plenty of good ones.  FWIW I loved my middle school - teachers would take us to broadway, we had tons of high school level classes, one on one counseling, etc

Yeah, there are no good ones in SF anymore :(

Out of curiousity how do you plan on paying for a 1m house?  Even with biglaw, at 145k + bonus, and that rate is not in every firm, lets say 180k, its insane to try to pay for a 1m house with this salary - in fact you couldn't get such a mortgage even if you wanted to.  I suppose you could save up but it would take a lifetime.

This is a good question.  First off, nobody is expecting to remain mediocre for a lifetime, and I'd assume three years into biglaw to pulling in at least $200k, which  should be enough to start saving.  Thereafter, you try to start your own firm get there, or try to start a company, or join a smaller company and hope for it to go public -- that's why I said it's highly unlikely I'll ever get to the point I need to get to, but that's what I'm shooting for.

I'm thinking 1 yr off, 3 yrs law school, 3yrs in biglaw, 2-3 yrs doing my own thing, and then either back to biglaw or hopefully keep doing my own thing if that works out.

Biglaw is not gonna get me there on it's own, I agree.

And finally, even if all else fails, you immediately seem to consider a single income household.  Throw in two $150-200k incomes and you got the necessary income to get by.

If I throw in the towel and take the $1m house, that can easily be achieved on a biglaw salary though: you're making around $200k as a fourth year associate, and three years of savings should yield the necessary $200k downpayment to get a decent 4x income loan, and that's in a single-income household, so it's not THAT bad if you're willing to move...

upNdown

  • ****
  • 615
  • My favorite bike - cheap, ugly, heavy, and fun.
    • View Profile
Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #65 on: April 24, 2006, 10:06:56 AM »
Norcal, I try not to make judgements on people (usually unsuccessfuuly) and I try not to verbalize judgements (I'm usually successful with this one) but you've spent so much time stating and defending your position that I think you're fair game.  And this has nothing to do with kids. 

Your narrow view of what is an acceptable life is sad.  I hope and expect you'll outgrow this. 

Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #66 on: April 24, 2006, 10:12:58 AM »
Norcal, I try not to make judgements on people (usually unsuccessfuuly) and I try not to verbalize judgements (I'm usually successful with this one) but you've spent so much time stating and defending your position that I think you're fair game.  And this has nothing to do with kids. 

Your narrow view of what is an acceptable life is sad.  I hope and expect you'll outgrow this. 

 ;D

likewise

  • ****
  • 1051
    • View Profile
Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #67 on: April 24, 2006, 10:19:24 AM »
Norcal, I try not to make judgements on people (usually unsuccessfuuly) and I try not to verbalize judgements (I'm usually successful with this one) but you've spent so much time stating and defending your position that I think you're fair game.  And this has nothing to do with kids. 

Your narrow view of what is an acceptable life is sad.  I hope and expect you'll outgrow this. 

 ;D  Agreed.  I can't even seem to get the fellow to read my posts, even if I limit them to to three lines.  He just blindly plows ahead with his schtick.

norcaldude

Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #68 on: April 24, 2006, 02:32:45 PM »
Norcal, I try not to make judgements on people (usually unsuccessfuuly) and I try not to verbalize judgements (I'm usually successful with this one) but you've spent so much time stating and defending your position that I think you're fair game.  And this has nothing to do with kids. 

Your narrow view of what is an acceptable life is sad.  I hope and expect you'll outgrow this. 

 ;D  Agreed.  I can't even seem to get the fellow to read my posts, even if I limit them to to three lines.  He just blindly plows ahead with his schtick.

I responded to your post, you didn't care for my reply.  You're going to be a lawyer, you aren't always going to get a yes/no answer...

If I "grow out" of it, it simply means I'll have failed to achieve my goals, otherwise I won't need to "grow out" of it.  Whether or not it's sad is a judgement call.

likewise

  • ****
  • 1051
    • View Profile
Re: Anyone planning on NEVER having kids???
« Reply #69 on: April 24, 2006, 02:42:18 PM »
Norcal, I try not to make judgements on people (usually unsuccessfuuly) and I try not to verbalize judgements (I'm usually successful with this one) but you've spent so much time stating and defending your position that I think you're fair game.  And this has nothing to do with kids. 

Your narrow view of what is an acceptable life is sad.  I hope and expect you'll outgrow this. 

 ;D  Agreed.  I can't even seem to get the fellow to read my posts, even if I limit them to to three lines.  He just blindly plows ahead with his schtick.

I responded to your post, you didn't care for my reply.  You're going to be a lawyer, you aren't always going to get a yes/no answer...

If I "grow out" of it, it simply means I'll have failed to achieve my goals, otherwise I won't need to "grow out" of it.  Whether or not it's sad is a judgement call.

Well, they weren't close-ended questions and no, they weren't answered at all.  Here they are again, if you want to give it a try:

1)  Your happiness would not be based on the child's?
2)  What if that's [a better lifestyle than you] not importnt to him / her?

I'll clarify (might help).

On the first, I'm asking whether or not you will happy (yourself) or happy that the child is happy--if the child is happy.  In addition, if the child is UNHAPPY because of the choices you make for him or her, can you BE happy?  So, if the kid wants to play baseball and take piano lessons rather than taking AP Calc and studying with a tutor for his boards...

On the second,  if your child wanted to become an academic, a schoolteacher, a policeman, a janitor, a nanny, a social worker, etc., could you be happy with that.  If the child weren't happy with your choice of study for him or her, how can YOU be happy?

In either case, neither question is about living in the suburbs or not, OK?