30 years ago, 1988, we paid a lot less for some things

Grocery Shopping

Die Hard was a box office hit. People were whistling Bobby McFerrin’s Don’t Worry Be Happy and George Bush was elected president of the U.S. over Michael Dukakis.

The median household income in America was $25,872, which in today's dollars would be about $55,000.

Financial analysts claim the U.S. economy is facing one of the worst periods of inflation since the recession.

“Level of revolving debt, 30 years ago is was at $172 billion and it’s now over a trillion,” said Sugar Land-based Money Management International's Thomas Nitzche.

He said there's a five to sixfold increase in the level of unsecured debt.

And, we have expenses and services we didn't have back then.

“With movies, most people will have Hulu and Netflix and they have other sort of entertainment expenses. Cable is a big expense,” said Nitzche.

He said more households have higher levels of credit card debt, medical debt, multiple student loans, car payments and housing--rent or mortgage.

Nitzsche said most of their clients have never done a household budget before, knowing exactly what's coming in and going out. They know an hourly wage or yearly income, but not each month. And, raises haven't kept up with the inflation and rising costs.

People now have side jobs that they didn't 30 years ago, or have family or a friend living with them to split the costs.

From apples to stock in Apple, there’s many everyday items that cost much more than they did back in the day. Here's 25 everyday items cost 30 years ago

1. A college education

1988— tuition at private four-year colleges was $15,160 and $3,190 at public four-year institutions.

Currently— $34,740 for private colleges and $9,970 for state residents at public colleges.

2. A wedding

1988— $10,000

Currently— Average $30,000

3. Bacon

1988— $1.90 per pound

Currently — $5.25 per pound

4. Movie tickets

1988— $4.11

Currently — $9.27

5. Gas

1988— $0.96/gallon

Currently — $2.87 per gallon

6. Milk

1988— a gallon of milk was about $2.19

Currently —$2.89.

7. Houses

1988— At the end of the first quarter of 1988, the median sale price of homes in the U.S. was $110,000.

Currently — At the end of 2017, the median home sale price was $323,100.

8. Apples

1988— $0.80 per dozen

Currently — A pound of Red Delicious apples cost an average of $1.32 in late 2017

9. Apple stock

1988—shares were trading for around $0.10 apiece

Currently —Apple became the first American company to have its market capitalization cross the $1 trillion mark, with its shares closing at $207 apiece that day.

10. A first-class stamp

1988—$0.22 to $0.25.

Currently —$0.50

11. A personal computer

1988— $1,400

Currently — $400

12. Eggs

1988— $0.71 per dozen

Currently —$1.63

13. Magazines

1988— $2

Currently — $6.

14. Cell phones

1988— $2,500

Currently —A new Apple iPhone X, starts around $1,000.

15. Bread

1988— $0.60

Currently — A one-pound loaf of white bread recently cost an average of $1.28

16. Big-screen TVs

1988— $3,000

Currently — $700 or less.

17. Ice cream

1988— A half-gallon of ice cream cost an average of $2.44

Currently — $4.66, in mid-2018.

18. Rent

1988— $550

Currently —$950.

19. Internet access

1988— $6 to $47.50 per hour -- which would be about $13 to $101 in today's dollars.

Currently — $50 to $60 per month.

20. Sirloin steak

1988— the average cost of a pound of USDA Choice sirloin steak was about $3.85

Currently — $8.51 per pound

21. Coffee

1988— A pound of ground roast coffee cost an average of $2.74

Currently —averaged $4.29

22. Hard drive memory

1988— cost per MB at about $10.

Currently — 1TB capacity for $50 or less, putting the price per MB at $0.00005 or less.

23. Camera

1988— Canon EOS 650, which sold for around $600.

Currently —Canon DSLR (digital single-lens reflex) between around $400 and $800.

24. Electricity

1988— A kilowatt hour of electricity cost an average of $0.084

Currently —averaged $0.139

25. Color printer

1988— a fancy one cost around $995

Currently —a Brother color laser printer can be found for less than $175.

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