Author Topic: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!  (Read 1626 times)

rb

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #10 on: January 13, 2018, 04:06:30 PM »
I seem to recall reading/hearing somewhere that the average American family has LESS than $500 in liquid assets.  Thus, for an "average" family, a $3k monthly water bill would be a financial catastrophe.
If you have a less than $500 in liquid assets then basically anything is a potential financial catastrophe.


John Hjorth

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2018, 04:30:15 PM »
I seem to recall reading/hearing somewhere that the average American family has LESS than $500 in liquid assets.  Thus, for an "average" family, a $3k monthly water bill would be a financial catastrophe.
If you have a less than $500 in liquid assets then basically anything is a potential financial catastrophe.

lol. I simply love reading posts like this one from rb!

It's all about getting out of the financial swamp / quicksand, and to stay there [stay out], by not swimming naked. Some prefer more frothy waters than others, though.
[ : - ) ]
« Last Edit: January 13, 2018, 04:36:40 PM by John Hjorth »
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Uccmal

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2018, 04:54:50 PM »
DTejd,

I always love your posts.  There so filled with local colour.

Just for me to get this straight:  Detroit is located on not one, not two, but three bodies of water, at least.... okay two, if we dont count the St. Clair river cesspool.  We have the quite large Lake St. Clair, and the gigantic and quite clean (mostly) Lake Erie.  And Detroit has high water prices.  Boggles the mind.   

GARP tending toward value

Uccmal

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #13 on: January 13, 2018, 05:05:55 PM »
I seem to recall reading/hearing somewhere that the average American family has LESS than $500 in liquid assets.  Thus, for an "average" family, a $3k monthly water bill would be a financial catastrophe.
If you have a less than $500 in liquid assets then basically anything is a potential financial catastrophe.

lol. I simply love reading posts like this one from rb!

It's all about getting out of the financial swamp / quicksand, and to stay there [stay out], by not swimming naked. Some prefer more frothy waters than others, though.
[ : - ) ]

Being a good saver and better than average investor has its benefits.  The ability to just pay for things you need or want is priceless.  Car breaks down... spend the 1400 to repair it.  Kids need something... just buy it.  Need a new (gently used) car... pay cash.  Need a 30,000 line of credit... just ask.  One doesn't want to go overboard but then frugality is a hard habit to break so thats generally not an issue. 

Now, I could do without a sudden bill for 96,000 but it wouldn't break us. 

I dont know how people live paycheck to paycheck, barely making their credit card interest payments.  The stress must be brutal. 
GARP tending toward value

DTEJD1997

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #14 on: January 13, 2018, 11:28:21 PM »
DTEJD1997 maybe I don't get it.

As far as I can tell from your post, your associate did use the water he was that led to the bill. So he wasn't charged in error. He was actually liable for the whole amount.

In the case of automated payments if you have a large amount come through the payment will bounce and you get an NSF charge from the bank. Not ideal but not the end of the world. Automated payments are great for someone like me. I'm horrible with remembering all the bills I have and paying them on time. The cost for me in late payments, penalties, lower credit score, etc would be much greater than the odd NSF charge. A good idea in life is to not keep a lot of money in your chequing account. This helps avoid being debited for excessively large bills, also it's good security overall preventing a lot of types of thefts.

My associate is an elderly man.  I don't think he has EVER used the toilet in the basement in 15+ years...he had no knowledge it was running.

Here in Detroit, the water is most certainly expensive...but so is the sewer charge.

My associate maintains that he should be given a "pass" on the sewer charge as 99.9% of the water going into the sewer was "clean" water.  He did not use the toilet 45,000 times in one month.

It also boggles the mind how much water could POSSIBLY have gone through a running toilet?

It further boggles the mind that the Detroit/Michigan area is sitting on something like 1/3 of the world's fresh water supply.  YET, we have MORE expensive water than Texas and Las Vegas.

As time passes our local politicians & civil servants get more & more stupider....more & more corrupt!

globalfinancepartners

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #15 on: January 14, 2018, 06:54:08 AM »
Of course it's not the water you are paying for - it is the maintenance of the aging infrastructure coupled with a smaller population.  Just like in New Orleans, where our water comes from the Mississippi river (near the end!  YUCK!) - we aren't paying for the water - we are paying for decades of deferred maintenance, subsidence, mismanagement, etc...  Rumor is that there are still hollow wood water pipes active in the New Orleans Sewerage and Water Board system.  Water leaks, which cause sinkholes, are everywhere and remain unaddressed for months.  All the resources are spent putting out fires so there never seems to be a plan for comprehensive updating of the infrastructure.  We have boil water alerts regularly because water main breaks cause pressure to drop to some level that requires boil water advisories.

New Orleans' population is growing now, but shrunk for decades previously - and, of course, halved overnight in 2005.

Cigarbutt

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #16 on: January 14, 2018, 07:07:44 AM »
Just to expand on maintenance (and need to re-invest).
In their last 13-F, it shows that Fairfax has a position in Northwest Pipe Company.
From the company website and other sources, it appears that there is now a massive need for catch-up investments in water infrastructure.

Here's a nice article wrapping up the topic and touching on the plastic/metal controversy:
https://www.nytimes.com/2017/11/10/climate/water-pipes-plastic-lead.html

Pelagic

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Re: How a running toilet can lead to financial RUIN!
« Reply #17 on: January 14, 2018, 09:23:37 AM »
I had a similar situation occur recently in an unoccupied apartment with a plumbing leak in the shower and the water company was happy to give me a major discount on the bill. Clearly the water was used but they still offered to refund about 80% of the bill when I asked if there was anything they could do, and did it quite promptly. I know we have large volume pricing here where if you want to fill a swimming pool or something they'll cut you a break as well. Sorry to hear about your friend's case, might be worth calling to see if they'll give him a break. If the first person says no call back and hope you get someone else, the utility probably has a provision for plumbing issues.

Out of curiosity what did your friend's bill say the total amount used was? A constantly running toilet might do about 2 gallons per minute so 86,000 gallons a month.