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What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for durable goods and other ideas

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  • Thu, Sep 17, 2009 - 03:44pm

    #1
    Sue Sullivan

    Sue Sullivan

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    What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for durable goods and other ideas

I’m contemplating the decline of the dollar and still on the fence about buying more PMs at the moment (an inaction I may deeply regret, I realize). I’m also on the fence about pulling more cash from our IRAs, but if I did, I’m trying to figure out where I’d put it. From some reading I’ve done thanks to this site (an ITulip piece from last month and the ghost fleet of cargo ships story in the Guardian), it seems we may well be facing retail inventory shortages quite soon.

Arable land would be my first choice, but it’s still pretty expensive in Colorado and water’s an issue here, so I haven’t pursued that option yet. I suppose it’s time to talk to our realtor about it a bit…

We drive clunkers and I’m inclined to continue driving them into the ground and then buy a decent used car, but I’m wondering if those might not be as available or affordable in the next few years, as other folks are driven to buy used instead of new. Perhaps we should replace a clunker now, even though they’re still running well enough.

We’ve picked up a woodstove off of craigslist and are stockpiling wood as it comes up for grabs on CL. My husband is about to begin the task of installing the stove (along with new flooring under it and throughout the house — I know it’s not a necessity, but we bought a fixer and I’m not convinced that bare concrete floors and stained, holey carpets are a necessary aesthetic just yet. I think we can splurge on some hardwood that will last).

Should we be buying a backup clothes washing machine? A backup water heater? Our furnace is far from new, but runs fine and I’m inclined to use it sparingly and rely on wood stove if it should go at some point in the future when we can’t replace it.

We’re well stocked with chicken housing and are set up to co-own two dairy goats housed by a friend on her nearby horse property. I’ll continue to expand the food garden at our place, and may add a bed at the friend’s property as well.

I don’t have a gun yet and haven’t learned how to use one, it just occurs to me. I’m not expecting or willing to spend too much energy preparing for a MadMax scenario, but I think this is still a useful skill for either myself or my husband to have, for hunting purposes alone.

Solar panels are another big ticket item that I keep debating. Arggh, I wish I didn’t feel so paralyzed about so many of these options.

Well, I’d love to read about recent purchases you’ve made that you’re satisfied with, and I’m curious about what others think of the timing on replacing vehicles and with new or used.

Sue

  • Thu, Sep 17, 2009 - 06:22pm

    #2
    Peak Prosperity Admin

    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

I started with items I use every day and don’t want to live without. Food, TP, green coffee beans, a couple years worth of socks/shoes/clothes….

I put new rubber on one vehicle even though the old tires are 40%. I kept the old tires. I bought the lumber for a shed I want to build in the next year. I tuned up all my gas powered equipment and bought an extra plug and filter for each. I bought belts, hoses and filters for both vehicles.

I put together 72 hour survival packs for both vehicles using the book 98.6 Degrees: The Art Of Keeping Your Ass Alive as a guide.

I bought a Honda 2000 watt generator. 15 hours on a gallon of gas…… 

Two 6 volt golf cart batteries and an inverter and a solar charger.

I bought several different styles of very good flashlights and dozens of batteries for them when they went on sale.

I bought a small amount of pre-65 silver coins each month off eBay.

That was my start.

I already had many books on survival and fieldcraft and back to basics left over from Y2KEmbarassed

  • Thu, Sep 17, 2009 - 07:04pm

    #3
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

green coffee beans! I’ll have to google that. I take it they store longer than roasted ones. And replacement tires. Great idea. I’ve been thinking about a little solar array like yours also.

Thanks for the ideas!

  • Thu, Sep 17, 2009 - 10:11pm

    #4
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

Green coffee beans last as long as dried pinto beans – virtually forever in Mylar® bags with O2 absorber.

I got my first beans from http://www.thecaptainscoffee.com Great guy. He was very knowledgeable and informative.

He told me that organic coffee is kind of a misnomer as most coffee farmers are way too poor to afford any herbicides and pesticides are not necessary because humans are the only pests that will touch coffee. No bugs. No rodents. 

Maybe we should take a lesson from that…….Ummm….maybe not.

Nancy and I had a favorite FairTrade coffee we loved called Mind Body Soul. I looked the blend up on the ‘net and asked the guy at The Captain’s Coffee to help me choose two of his beans that came close to MBS. I got five different coffees and played with them until I found a blend we like even better than MBS.

I did not order my bulk order from him as he does not offer any bulk discount. I ordered the same beans from Sweet Maria’s

Here’s how I cook them:

http://www.homeroaster.com/heatgun.html

And I bought a $30 wall mount hand grinder made in the early 1900s to grind it. Best coffee I’ve ever had!

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 12:01am

    #5
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

I have the same concerns and the same paralyzed feeling. I did can some flour, sugar, oats, rice, etc in gallon cans that are supposed to last for 20 years. I pick up extra socks, clothing items etc whenever I hit a sale. But this is small potatoes! I know I’m going to look back on this time of relative prosperity and kick myself for not getting a ton more everyday stuff.

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 01:19am

    #6
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

[quote=plg]

I have the same concerns and the same paralyzed feeling. I did can some flour, sugar, oats, rice, etc in gallon cans that are supposed to last for 20 years. I pick up extra socks, clothing items etc whenever I hit a sale. But this is small potatoes! I know I’m going to look back on this time of relative prosperity and kick myself for not getting a ton more everyday stuff.

[/quote]

You gotta start somewhere. At least you’ve started rather than just sitting there paralyzed with fear.

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 02:22am

    #7
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

Hello SueSullivan:

Sounds all good to me. I’d highly recommend when you guys research a metalbestos flu. They are pricey, but can withstand massive temperatures and can be cheaper than a chimney fire. I’d also get your own fiberglass poles and cleaning brush. I do my flu 1 – 2 x a year. I put my stove in and put the flu in, the metalbestos is easy to install and is like Lego. I’m sure you guys read about clearances and what surfaces meet code.

You know me, I have NO faith in 401k’s or the “market” or the dollar. 4 Gs. G?d, Gold, Government will make a mess of it and Guns.

My only regret is moving to the mountains and not leaving the country. Everyone of my grandparents emigrated here, one from Russia, one from England, one from Germany and one from Switzerland. I’d go to any country but England, they all could have saved me a trip.

Seems to me countries institute rules instead of positive guiding principles and everything comes unglued every so many years.

Good luck!

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 03:23am

    #8
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

I have been agonizing over this question for the last few weeks myself. I know there is a list on the internet somewhere based on someone’s experience in Argentina I believe. I have begun to write things down on a list whenever they cross my mind and carry this list with me always. Just this week I added nails of all sorts(repairs/new projects), various work gloves, especially leather(most of which are inexpensive and made in China), extra garden tools of all types, vitamins, bandaids/bandages, common medications like aspirin, soaps, and so on. I am more worried about missing one of these little things than the big stuff like energy, water, and food. I even have several can openers. How frustrating would that be to have a lot of food you couldn’t access for lack of a $3 opener. Let me tell you it can be done but it is messy, dangerous, and wasteful. c

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 03:53am

    #9
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

[quote=PraySam]

II know there is a list on the internet somewhere based on someone’s experience in Argentina I believe. 

[/quote]

Google: FERFAL

  • Fri, Sep 18, 2009 - 04:27am

    #10
    Peak Prosperity Admin

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    Re: What are you divesting your dollars for? Looking for …

I know I’m in the minority here but, does anyone think it might be a good idea to save those dollars instead of spend them out of fear? Every time I have ever purchased (or invested in) something out of fear its always been a mistake. The time to divest into assets was in March, when the dollar was much stronger. In my opinion, with the dollar much weaker now, its time to invest in the dollar, not divest from the dollar. Most certainly there will come a day when dollars are the most desired asset, and many will be eager to trade 10x the stuff for the one thing that they lack, liquidity.

Just a thought…

Jeff

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