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Singlespeed & Fixed Gear "I still feel that variable gears are only for people over forty-five. Isn't it better to triumph by the strength of your muscles than by the artifice of a derailer? We are getting soft...As for me, give me a fixed gear!"-- Henri Desgrange (31 January 1865 - 16 August 1940)

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Old 07-29-08, 09:12 PM   #1
onespeed89
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How do you?

I am an 18 soon to be 19 year old heading off to college. I have obviously lived at home for my entire life with no bills saving money working for the last 3 years. So really money for me hasn't been an issue but i am very very conservative/good at managing my money (been saving for a long time). I am going to be in college this fall and am just wondering how all of you budget/handle your bike and the things it needs/you want? The one thing i do love about these bikes, is that they are not very expensive (depending on what you buy), but when you do need/want something, how do you go about doing it? Do you just pay off neccesities first, then use the spare cash to buy your stuff? or do you have a "bike budget" of some sort? I am just trying to prepare myself for my future and life on my own/budgeting money. I really appreciate ALL input and tips.
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Old 07-29-08, 09:29 PM   #2
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uh, have a savings and a checking account, and get a credit card to start building credit. hahaha, i dont know. there are plenty of stupid people out there that get by just fine.
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Old 07-29-08, 09:37 PM   #3
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I'm a grad student in the UK. In my own budget I give myself a monthly bike **** allowance of about cad $120, that's a lot of bike money but I like bikes a lot. More generally, i recommend that you just learn to use excel to work out what you need and want to do with your money, stick to that plan and stay off of the credit cards. It feels really good to know where your $ is going and make guilt free purchases of the stuff you love.
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Old 07-29-08, 09:38 PM   #4
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I am going to be a second-year college student. Last year I spent way way too much on bikes. I receive a considerable sum of government VA money monthly so it is super important I learn to not squander money. My policy is generally two separate bank accounts. One I don't have any debit/credit card for, so I cannot make spur-of-the moment purchases out of. Bills and emergencies (and, eventually, investing) only. That is where most of my money is. Then I have, say, 7 percent to 10 percent of a check in a secondary, debit-card account. This is my play money and I don't expect its normal balance ($100-$200) to last more than the month. Smaller bike purchases (new bars, cleats, etc) will come out of this, along with miscellaneous online purchases, mid-season clothes buying, and so on. My school has amazing food so I never buy any.

Now, for big purchases... like a new bike. Because I can't just walk into a store, test ride a bike, and fork over my debit card, I'd have to at least go to the bank before buying. Generally this forces me to deeply consider if I really really want something or not. Also by looking at "savings money" and "play money" separately I can estimate better how I will be financially after buying something big, and not have my play money bloat my actual financial situation.

It's 10 percent getting trained and organized and 90 percent mental, man!

edit: and about credit cards. STAY THE HELL AWAY FRESHMAN YEAR. No matter how financially responsible you think you have been at home, you _WILL_ be pressured by living away!! I am 27 credit hours into my education and I am NOWHERE near responsible enough to start building credit! I can't imagine being disciplined enough for one until at least next year.
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Old 07-29-08, 09:59 PM   #5
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get a credit card. f what everyone else says. log what you purchase and pay it off the same day. i just graduated from college and managed my credit perfectly all 4 years. because of this i am eligible for loans for important things, like a down payment on a house.

you will also need a credit card in order to rent or lease anything in your name, like an apartment, which you will most likely move into in the next few years. the sooner you start building your credit, the better. only spend money you have, and don't be an R-tard.

the cardinal rule is to leave it at home when you go out drinking
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Old 07-29-08, 10:01 PM   #6
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It's easiest if you don't have to buy gas. Accomplish that, and you'll be able to afford all the bike stuff you need.
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Old 07-29-08, 10:18 PM   #7
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During college im not going to use my car, so gas won't be needed (or very little at that) since i have a job working for the school's IT department, so i'll be able to walk to work/class as well. Thanks for the pointers guys
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Old 07-29-08, 10:34 PM   #8
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Dude, watch Suze Orman. I don't think she talks about bike budgets though.
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Old 07-29-08, 10:49 PM   #9
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get a credit card. f what everyone else says. log what you purchase and pay it off the same day. i just graduated from college and managed my credit perfectly all 4 years. because of this i am eligible for loans for important things, like a down payment on a house.

you will also need a credit card in order to rent or lease anything in your name, like an apartment, which you will most likely move into in the next few years. the sooner you start building your credit, the better. only spend money you have, and don't be an R-tard.

the cardinal rule is to leave it at home when you go out drinking
let's not start the name calling. finance philosophy is personal but supporting first-year students with credit cards is just a little out there, it's bonkers considering the poor kid's going to have a million other pressures to deal with. a credit card is a potentially-hazardous financial tool that, when mixed in with the emotional and psychological changes of a kid living away from home, can turn ugly fast.

you DO know that one can build superb credit in junior-senior years, right? and many students in technical programs will be in school for five+ years -- plenty of time to build credit after you get settled living away from mom and pop. plus most student-aimed housing, at least in my city, is credit-check-less and I wouldn't expect a kid to come fresh out of college looking to buy a house anyway. most people have loans to pay off first. for credit building, the sooner the better is true I suppose, but you need to think back to freshman year in the dorms. a plastic card can wait.

I know your drinking comment was in jest but please, this kid is likely 18. you do realize that is well under the legal drinking limit and getting caught with a fake ID or any involvement with alcohol in that age can result in between a light slap in the wrist from a school to expulsion and legal matters. It was a joke, I know, but underage drinking is not a light-hearted manner.

no harsh on your mellow but that's just my two.
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Old 07-29-08, 10:57 PM   #10
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k. the 'leave your card at home' was in jest, glad you picked that up. take it easy, or maybe hold OP's hand? i dunno
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Old 07-29-08, 11:20 PM   #11
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it's fine guys, thanks again for the tips, i think they'll all help, i just need to see what works for me
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Old 07-29-08, 11:25 PM   #12
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don't spend unnecessary money and keep a steady income.

i spent unnecessary money and now i'm broke. there you have it.
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Old 07-29-08, 11:45 PM   #13
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Pay off all your bills first.
Learn how to cook
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Old 07-30-08, 12:29 AM   #14
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like the others have said, just don't spend money that you don't have. you say you're working while at school, so spend enough for necessary maintenance, and if there is something that you want to upgrade, stash little by little away and eventually you'll get it. just because you have other financial responsibilities, it doesn't mean you can't go after the "want" parts, it just may take a bit longer to get them.
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Old 07-30-08, 12:32 AM   #15
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Pay off all your bills first.
Learn how to cook
+ 1,000,000

The money you save cooking for yourself will buy many bikes.
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Old 07-30-08, 12:42 AM   #16
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roll coins. its get me an extra $20 a month usually
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Old 07-30-08, 01:57 AM   #17
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Dude, watch Suze Orman. I don't think she talks about bike budgets though.
While biking around, I found a Suze Orman DVD boxset on the road including the DVD: The Courage to be Rich.
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Old 07-30-08, 02:01 AM   #18
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let's not start the name calling. finance philosophy is personal but supporting first-year students with credit cards is just a little out there, it's bonkers considering the poor kid's going to have a million other pressures to deal with. a credit card is a potentially-hazardous financial tool that, when mixed in with the emotional and psychological changes of a kid living away from home, can turn ugly fast.

you DO know that one can build superb credit in junior-senior years, right? and many students in technical programs will be in school for five+ years -- plenty of time to build credit after you get settled living away from mom and pop. plus most student-aimed housing, at least in my city, is credit-check-less and I wouldn't expect a kid to come fresh out of college looking to buy a house anyway. most people have loans to pay off first. for credit building, the sooner the better is true I suppose, but you need to think back to freshman year in the dorms. a plastic card can wait.

I know your drinking comment was in jest but please, this kid is likely 18. you do realize that is well under the legal drinking limit and getting caught with a fake ID or any involvement with alcohol in that age can result in between a light slap in the wrist from a school to expulsion and legal matters. It was a joke, I know, but underage drinking is not a light-hearted manner.

no harsh on your mellow but that's just my two.


jesus christ! pull the stick out of your ass
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Old 07-30-08, 09:38 AM   #19
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I'd stick with a check card your first year of college. It gets you used to using plastic but doesn't have the temptation of a credit card. Always remember that getting a credit card is not in any way getting money. Try to think of it as another way to spend the money you already have. With a credit card you are only postponing the inevitable. (And sometimes making it a lot worse!)

As for bike purchases, I stick to only buying stuff if I need it to ride because something broke, wore out, or is causing me extreme discomfort. Don't bother with trying to sort out if something is a need or luxury. If you are currently riding without it then it must be a luxury huh? Once you acknowledge that 99% of bike stuff is a luxury then your natural thrifty nature will take over and let you weigh the cost/benefits of every purchase.

You mention paying off necessities and then using the "spare cash" for bike purchases. "Spare cash" is a silly idea that's only good for easing your conscience. All the money you have is the same; every dollar can be either saved or spent and it's up to you to make that choice. Everyone has a level of luxury that they feel comfortable sustaining. Once you decide on where to draw the line (which'll probably change based on your circumstances) don't feel guilty about your spending, but never think that you "need" or deserve all that "spare cash".

This might seem to be a hard-line but I've found it really helps me to keep my mind off my money and my butt on the bike.
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Old 07-30-08, 09:58 AM   #20
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Build a decent bike, then maintain it. Doesn't cost much. Spend your time riding/studying, not dreaming about parts and upgrades.
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Old 07-30-08, 10:12 AM   #21
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Pssst...your going to college...The secret is to buy an ACS freewheel tool. Slap freewheels on perfectly good road bikes/add a chain and sell the single speeds for 200$.

You'll do pretty good.
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Old 07-30-08, 10:19 AM   #22
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jesus christ! pull the stick out of your ass
+1
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Old 07-30-08, 10:52 AM   #23
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+1
jesus christ! finances are not a stress-free topic!
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Old 07-30-08, 10:53 AM   #24
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get a credit card. f what everyone else says. log what you purchase and pay it off the same day. i just graduated from college and managed my credit perfectly all 4 years. because of this i am eligible for loans for important things, like a down payment on a house.

you will also need a credit card in order to rent or lease anything in your name, like an apartment, which you will most likely move into in the next few years. the sooner you start building your credit, the better. only spend money you have, and don't be an R-tard.

the cardinal rule is to leave it at home when you go out drinking
You have good financial instincts, but borrowing for a downpayment is not advisable for anyone. Asking for a world of trouble there.
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Old 07-30-08, 12:06 PM   #25
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i didn't get a credit card until my 3rd year of college and i use it mainly for larger purchases, but my limit is only 500 dollars. i dont have a savings account so i mainly make a largish purchase, ie wheelset, crankset, tattoo, ipod, etc. then pay off 50 or 100 dollars every paycheck. when im back to 0, or under 100 anyway i will make another largish purchase, if theres something i need/ want. i try to stay away from using it for things like food, or small purchases because thats harder to keep track of, and definately not for drinking. i always keep enough money around to buy extra things like tubes/ tires as needed. i do tend to find that i'm happier spending a large amount of money towards the beginning of my pay cycle and figuring out how to budget my life with less, than wasting a bunch of money on a few highish bar tabs and not being able to afford things i would rather have than a hangover.
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