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the part about "im sure there will be super clear answers ..."


I can't speak for poster, but looks to me like self deprecating humor about the job market 🙂


@todo The cost of living in the Bay Area eats $200k pretty quickly 🙂


@seancorfield What if I live alone and like a pig?


Just like, really lower whatever standards are left


looking for a minimum bound here


I've no idea what rental is for single rooms -- which is about as low as you can go I guess?


I don't know what it is today, but you can probably rent a single room in a 5-bedroom house for about $700 / month in San Jose. Don't know about San Francisco. I have met people with houses in other states who fly to Silicon Valley to work from office Mon-Thurs, sleeping in a camper parked in the company parking lot (after getting chummy with the company's security folks so that they don't get their vehicle towed away).


Even at $1500/month rent, $500/month food, $500/month insurance, it's still only 30k/year, and 200k, even after taxes, contains many 30k's.


If you have a family, though, $30k/year is not going to cut it in the Bay area.


@todo that assumes you can get somewhere that cheap, close enough to work that you can walk 🙂 and that you really can live on $500/month for food in the area where you work...


@seancorfield Grad students survive on less than $30k/year in the bay area.


I can't begin to imagine how... my commute to San Francisco (from where I live, which is one of the cheaper parts of the Bay Area) would be $200/month on BART if my math is correct.


$1500/month will rent you 2 bedrooms in a 5-bedroom house, but I don't think you can rent a 1-bedroom apartment for that low anywhere within 20 miles of the area.


If you can survive without a car, that definitely helps. But a lot of people have to have a car and gas is $3.40 at the cheapest places around here.


I think the main factor is children vs no-children. If you have children, things get very expensive. If you don't have children, you can go without alot of things (including car).


When you said "$500/month insurance", were you referring to renters' insurance? Health insurance?


I was referring to health insurance (the scenario was trying to survive after a tech layoff.)


or working in the area and living as cheaply as possible, saving up money 🙂


If you can get CalCOBRA to continue your employer health insurance, that's certainly cheaper than trying to get insurance separately, but certainly still not cheap. I went through that about ten years ago when the startup I worked for imploded.


Prior to ACA, my wife and I were quoted $1,800 a month and told we'd probably be denied coverage.


I was thinking just "catastrophic care insurance", not anything ACA compliant. [since the context is being unemployed]


I think im safe on family issues for... quite awhile




Maybe I should angle for work in Boston


at least I kinda have that figured out




Anyone feel that there are less opportunities in Tech? 2000s, we had the internet boom; 2010s, we have the mobile/social boom; as for 2020s? VR/crypto looks like they're fizzling out, while AI requires massive compute+knowledge


In 2000, the dot-com boom was about to implode -- I think the level between the "booms" is the norm and the various hot periods are unusual (and downright dangerous and should not be relied on).


(I'm also really skeptical of Silicon Valley in general and the ridiculous startup culture -- and don't get me started on how abusive the whole VC culture is for software startups!)


@seancorfield: To the best of my knowledge, VCs are not kidnapping programmers and forcing them to program. Programmers are joining early stage software startups with the hope of joining the next FB/Google and retiring after 4-5 years.


@todo why not buy a lottery ticket than?


it is much higher chance that you win the lottery than your startup will succeed


@istvan: Are you implying that all the employees of startups can't calculate expected values ?


@todo more like taking into account the chance a company succeeds and even when a company succeeds what is the chance that a tech guy who is really far from the business gets anything


i used to work in SF and I had to explain to my co-workers how this works several times because their knowledge about corporate finance was non-existent and many of them literally though that they get a check


preferred stock, rsu vs options, there are many things involved here


i think you are better off playing the lottery 🙂


Maybe a raffle at a local show, but no, startups have a way higher expected value than a lottery ticket.


Of course they also demand a lot of your time and effort over an extended period of time, so cost much more than a single lottery ticket.


Having moved to the UAE from Sweden, I cannot begin to explain how disappointing I find private health insurance. It’s a service with masses of people employed to fight your usage of the service. It’s ridiculous. The amount of time spent on filling out forms and arguing with them via email alone is infuriating.

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Both have drawbacks


And somehow, even though I’ve got a very good health insurance, allegedly, I’ve spent more on health related stuff than ever before.


> It’s a service with masses of people employed to fight your usage of the service …exactly at the moment when you’re the most vulnerable and at the greatest disadvantage to fight them. (I agree re disappointment.)

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(swedish resident here, used to live in switzerland where it's private)


I’m sure private health insurance looks different from country to country as well. But so far I’m not sure I enjoy the privatized version.


You have more choice with the private insurances, but yeah that costs more. On the other hand you get direct acces to care-takers without having to deal with never ending queues and whatnot


as you say for sure it varies from country to country


on the other hand, everybody I know in sweden pay premiums for improved acces


so there's that


Well, kind of, there’s no public health care in the UAE (for expats, which makes up ~90% of the population), so there’s really no alternative whose queues you’re circumventing.


that sucks


I am frustated with the lack of access here, even with premiums sometimes it gets quite difficult to get for instance an appointement with a pediatrician without a dozen phone calls, months of wait and so on.


Right, maybe it’s just private health insurance here that’s awful. I read some guy on Twitter (in the US) who was millions in debt, even though covered by private insurance. If you have 20% copay, and a complicated health issue, you can end up personally bankrupt even when covered, as it turns out.


as a result most people just go to the ER for minor stuff


which is idiotic


That’s nuts.


I miss the swiss system for sure


the system in Switzerland works pretty well - max deductible is 2500CHF/year (I think you pay 10% of the bill after that up to some limit)


but that's prolly not your average private insurance system


yeah but the franchise is capped even after the 10% limit


You moved to UAE for work?


Yes, about a year and a half ago.


Biggest surprise is the locals. Every single one I’ve met has been a delight.


Same when I visited Oman. They’re universally kind and welcoming.


Re: Sweden, they could make it easier for companies to offer private health insurance. If there’s pressure on the public institutions, redirecting some people to private ones would ease that.


☝️ That’s what’s going on in Finland atm.. Or not exactly like an insurance, but some people are being redirected to private health sector.

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Historically, there’s not been much interest in policies that might widen the gap between groups in society.


They might need to rethink that. I never had problems with the Swedish health care system, but I haven’t lived in the country for a few years either.


There is some of it already, you can get payed access to private clinics for instance, but usually the problem availability in my experience. Private practicians are quite difficult to find too


It’s a fledgling market in Sweden, I think.


but I shouldn't complain too much, it's not so bad, it's just not as good as in Switzerland for my case let's say


some things are incredible here too: when you become a parent life is way easier than over there


guaranteed daycare access, tons of choice for it, super high quality in most cases etc


I think they’re working on the principle that health care access should be equal for everyone. But the fact is that the public health care needs to expand, or pressure needs to be taken off it. The pragmatic solution would be to follow Finland, I think, if that makes it better for everyone.


Oh yeah, I’ve friends who’ve moved from places like the UK to Sweden simply because it was financially impossible for them to have kids in London.

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Guaranteed childcare is an equality thing. Without it, women stay home rather than work, which increases division between men and women.


yeah… daycare in Switzerland is a tad on the expensive side 🙂


@dm3 sure is, and that's when you can find a spot not on the other side of the canton where you live


That was the option my friends had in London. She could stay home, and it would work out. But she didn’t want to. With childcare costing more than her entire salary per child, they had to move.


Usually in switzerland people can manage, the average salary is quite high, but it's a pain to deal with I guess


that wouldn’t happen in Switzerland - the problem would be finding work


Is it hard to find work in Switzerland?


depends on what you do 🙂 software-related is probably easiest


Otherwise have to know German, which takes time


and be Swiss-certified for many types of work


(that’s for the german part, obviously)


there are 3 languages (well 4'ish) and in the big hubs it's not so difficult to find work if you speak english


but yeah it depends on what you do


Biggest thing in Sweden right now is the real estate market. It’s probably the biggest reason why I wouldn’t consider moving back right now.


It's ok in Skane


actually prolly a good time to invest too


They’ve made themselves a spectacular bubble, and I’m not sure what it’s going to look like when it explodes.


try buying a house in Geneva 😛


or a parking spot


lol, there’s no hope in Switzerland


Well, Sweden is now one of the top countries in terms of morgage/GNP


With low tolerance for any increase in interest.


very few people rent, it's a bit nuts compared to what I was used to


and given the space, houses everywhere, they build "horizontally"


then I know that near Stockholm it's another story


Sure, the big cities are going to be the worst. They’re currently slashing prices 10-15% in Stockholm, but I would wait a bit if we’re talking investments. I think bigger cuts are coming. Prices need to go down about 50% to normalize to historical inflation rates.


Switzerland is on there for sure.


The worrisome thing about the housing market is that prices are now falling, despite interest rates being negative, and that household debt has ballooned so much in the past few years

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A whooping 121% debt/GDP


I'm very much in favour of bankruptcy law from mortgages changing a bit. That is, if you're unable to repay your mortgage, you should be able to walk away from the asset (the house) debt free at any point. Trade your house for the loan


Same here. The loan should be on the house, not on you.


If that was allowed, banks would no longer be willing to lend to 95% of the house value but mortgages would stabilise around ~60%


I believe this is what happened in CA(?) after TARP.


the way it is now all the poor people who need some place to live are assuming all the systemic risk from the lenders.


Well, I guess there’s a reason why mortgage literally means “death pledge”


> Etymology From Anglo-Norman morgage, Middle French mortgage, from Old French mort gage (“death pledge”), TIL


I read a short history about mortgages a few years back, that’s where I learned it. I wish I could remember what it was called. It claimed that mortgages are not that old of an institution, and that they used to be considered an immorally abusive way to loan money.


Lending money was just generally considered bad in ye olden dayes, as I understand it


Yeah, true.


Ah, here we go: […] in which the fruits of the property were taken by the creditor without reduction in the debt, was known by the term mort gage, which in Old French means “dead pledge.” Because of Christian prohibitions on profiting from money lending, however, the mortgage was considered a species of usury. The preferred type of pledge, in which the property’s profits went to paying off the debt and thus continued to benefit the borrower, was known in Old French by the term vif gage, “living pledge.”


modern mortgage would be a blend of the two. although i've heard of modern mort gage where a person takes over a mortgage payment while someone still lives there and will take ownership after the death of the resident


They did literal mortgages in Sweden up until recently (i.e., no amortization), until a law ended that. Even so, most mortgages are set up to be paid over 40-50-60 years, so the “death pledge” part kind of holds true.


that's an "usufruit" I think


@dpsutton at least what we call like this in Switzerland, but I am not an expert


the most important part of that seemed to be that the money did not reduce the debt


it was all interest


it's not what I mentioned then.


Yeah, indeed. And it wasn’t that people were not allowed to pay off their loans in Sweden until recently—they were, but they didn’t. A recent law made it mandatory to pay off the mortgage, at least to some extent.


you mentioned what i was talking about. i was just pointing out that the ancient term mort gage differs from our modern term mortgage in a substantial way


@dpsutton sure, I was just correcting myself


I was a bit shocked when I learned that it was even possible a few years back here.


If we look at the spirit of mortgage vs lifgage though, we could use them more loosely to mean whether the loan is set up in good conscience, to be sustainably payable within a reasonable time frame.


i suppose it is just rent otherwise?


rent + all the ownership burden like having to take care of the place


replace a boiler, fix a roof etc


all the fun stuff


30 years is a reasonable time frame. it would be quite brutal if you were expected to pay off a house in 5 years


yes, i suppose it would only be beneficial to secure housing for a long term. ie, don't have to renegotiate lease, terms, be pushed out, etc


I dont really agree with that. Your typical smallish house probably has a value of around ~USD30-60k. Why should it cost 600k to purchase it? You're just competing against other people to purchase this house, and they all have only 60k in deposit anyways. The demand of the house is inflated because it's the norm to lend at 90% of the value of the house. That's not how it used to be. And if you did borrow money you borrowed it to pay for the contruction of a house. We'd just have a much much healthier economy as a society if people were able to purchase their houses in 5 years instead 50 and we'd get rid of this bubble prone system we have today leaving people destitute and homeless every 60 years or so.


typical smallish house 30-60k sounds way off to me. I'm not in a major metropolitan area but i would expect 80-150 for a "typical smallish house"


80 being on the very low end


that's lovely and way more than 30-60k i would imagine


cost of construction probably varies depending on where you are but, yeah i concede that my estimate was on the low side


even so your 150 house probably goes for 600 on the market, if not more


yeah a new bathroom (renovation) is like 10-15k alone 🙂


(still talking about sweden)


labor is quite high quality, very controlled/codified and not cheap


i was talking market rates here. you can get houses for 150-250 and be quite comfortable. 600k here would be a stunningly nice house


Swedish property market is being flooded with “luxury” apartments at the moment. Everyone’s aware that the bubble has burst, but the market has roughly 2 year wind up/wind down latency due to the length of your average building project.


I thnk @cfeckardt is right - the price of houses has a lot to do with the supply of money / debt


You cannot decide to forego food, drink, breathing, healthcare and housing (also social relationships, but I have no idea how to quantify that.)


Healthcare and housing are however easy to put a bottleneck onto… so that’s what private industry is doing.


@lady3janepl You can decide to forgo social relationships. If you need tips just lmk.

picard-facepalm 8

I.. hope that was an ironic comment


nothing against people willingly foregoing social relationships, but suggesting doing so as a means of surviving is depressingly bleak


I think it was ironic given the dog in avatar 🙂 but to clarify I meant social relationships not as in family, friends, but minimum level of human contact like saying hello to the shopping assistant or whatever.


Facebook makes me think about it often: the degree to which Twitter, Facebook groups, and Meetup have taken over society’s social life and clubs.


It’s as if we voluntarily and en-masse moved to a private network of roads, because their surface quality is better.

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I think we could take more lessons from Diogenes @emccue


Those are two dogs their names are Jenny and Rhodie


And the society changed immensely, as you would imagine if that happened irl. 1) since we all meet in company-owned squares, the company can now kick out the groups it doesn’t like 2) …and the people it doesn’t like 3) …and it can monitor who associates with whom by associating the spaces 4) …and the shops and restaurants built along public motorways lose customers, while new franchises pop up along the private roads; the company controls which franchise gets a permit 5) …and the company can now restrict which brands of cars can drive on the private roads 6) …and sells the data to car insurers and drivers insurance 7) …and us-the-users petition the company to create an equivalent of roads policing. Which means the company now starts to issue its own parking tickets, kick out drivers 8) …and the company can block communication between this user and that.

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☝️ 4

Is capitalism...bad!?


While we still have public roads (meeting people face to face), those who struggle to do so (the elderly, the disabled) can be easily cut off from all human contact by having their internet connection cut, or chat account force-closed.


So social contact is under some pressure, but it’s not such a bottleneck as housing / healthcare.


@emccue now you only need 99 more 😄


Yeah dalmations are absolute insanity. Most people didn't get that from watching that movie so a bunch of people adopted them and realized later that there is no way in hell that dog can live in an appartment.


We give those two acres to run around and they never tire. The one with less spots can go from at my feet to on my shoulders nipping my nose in half a second with no running start


They really never tire. I eventually gave up and started walking mine on a bicycle, since even jogging wouldn't do. Not to mention the 3am sprints chasing her after the explosive escapes through the first inch of the door-opening progress. Guaranteed way to sober up.


- Some doggie fun facts


Were dalmatians herding dogs originally? Or hunting dogs?


Dogs of war. Strong guarding instinct.

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They've been used a lot with horse drawn carriages though, to guard them. They get on well with horses.


Ah! That explains why they’re so energetic


(First read “they’ve been used a lot with horse drawn carriages” and imagined a Dalmatian-drawn carriage, lol )


(“And now, news from the City. Another pileup on the Tower bridge as the driver decided to encourage his team to speed up by shouting “good boy!” and the dogs all jumped to lick him. Also, the queen was late to the speech today as her carriage sped off after a squirrel.”)

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Richard Smedley11:12:16

In the Dodie Smith book ("101 Dalmations", upon which the Disney films are based), istr they're referred to as "carriage dogs." They'd have been trained to attack the horses of highway robbers. This suggests that they'd walk/run around 60 miles per day!


every time i google stuff like that i end up on some eugenics-but-for-pets blog or whatever


They really never tire. I eventually gave up and started walking mine on a bicycle, since even jogging wouldn't do. Not to mention the 3am sprints chasing her after the explosive escapes through the first inch of the door-opening progress. Guaranteed way to sober up.


Dogs of war. Strong guarding instinct.

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