Search found 3722 matches

by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 6:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking to start investing... How much do I need to start?
Replies: 15
Views: 677

Re: Looking to start investing... How much do I need to start?

Be sure to sign up for e-statements so you don't get charged a low-account value fee of maybe $20 at Vanguard. AFAIK, there are no other fees.

Yes, you need work for pay (e.g., W-2 pay) to open a Roth.
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Risks of RMD Withdrawal From A Single Fund IRA
Replies: 53
Views: 3765

Re: Risks of RMD Withdrawal From A Single Fund IRA

If you give to charity you may want to use a QCD (if congress passes the law again this December) where you have them send you a check(s) addressed to a charity which you then deliver. This satisfied the RMD as well and has zero tax on the withdrawal. This does not affect your AGI like a RMD, but yo...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard
Replies: 24
Views: 1809

Re: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard

The reason for "in kind" in this case is that if you sell and choose to buy again, you may have to pay the load again if indeed you can buy these through Vanguard brokerage which I know little about (I just have the mutual funds, not the brokerage.) So, if you want to keep them, do "i...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 3:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Vanguard Account
Replies: 4
Views: 402

Re: New Vanguard Account

I wouldn't say we are against it, rather against any extra cost when it can be avoided. However, you are selecting someone who will act in your best interests, does not have a conflict of interest, and is so far ahead of A (and most brokers) that there is no comparison. A number of people have sugge...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 1:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard
Replies: 24
Views: 1809

Re: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard

Another alternative is to contact Vanguard, arrange to have a transfer made to a brokerage account you will set up there, and transfer the fund "in kind" (without selling) to your account. Decide how much you want to sell (ask Vanguard what it costs per sale) and sell that much to buy (at...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: seeking advice, in retirement now
Replies: 24
Views: 4231

Re: seeking advice, in retirement now

I do think you are over-thinking, but that is fine. You should be convinced before you start to move things. I hear this expression here often: "There are many roads to Dublin." You have several reasonable paths from which to choose. Also, since there are no tax concerns, you are able to c...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 9:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: E.R. on Vanguard LifeStrategy Funds
Replies: 3
Views: 379

Re: E.R. on Vanguard LifeStrategy Funds

No, it is the complete ER, somewhere under 0.20% IIRC.
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard
Replies: 24
Views: 1809

Re: Should I Avoid My Adviser? - American Funds to Vanguard

Another alternative is to contact Vanguard, arrange to have a transfer made to a brokerage account you will set up there, and transfer the fund "in kind" (without selling) to your account. Decide how much you want to sell (ask Vanguard what it costs per sale) and sell that much to buy (at ...
by BL
Fri Jul 03, 2015 7:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?
Replies: 63
Views: 9650

Re: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?

I see no problem in the "2 pie" solution. It is slightly more complicated (than the lovely, simple solution you may get here), and at some point you may decide to change, but it accomplishes the same thing. As long as it doesn't force you to buy expensive funds to do it, it is fine. Some p...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disability Insurance for non-skilled job
Replies: 3
Views: 284

Re: Disability Insurance for non-skilled job

I also think it would be too expensive for the lower income person. Social Security Disability is also available for some disabled persons.
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning Spanish
Replies: 23
Views: 1262

Re: Learning Spanish

I don't have the answer of which company does the best, but I suggest you spend a lot of time with your friends if they speak the language you want to learn. The Wizard also has good ideas. Someone speaking fluently makes a lot of difference, even though you can learn the vocabulary words and gramma...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: financial adviser told me not to invest too much in 401k
Replies: 81
Views: 5241

Re: financial adviser told me not to invest too much in 401k

I wonder whose crystal ball is accurate?? Anyway, we don't speculate here for long on what future changes may or may not be. Things do change sometimes but not necessarily the way we expect.
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: financial adviser told me not to invest too much in 401k
Replies: 81
Views: 5241

Re: financial adviser told me not to invest too much in 401k

You really lucked out stopping by here, so she did you one favor. She raised a red flag and you were smart enough to come searching for more reasonable answers. The more you read here, in the Wiki (Getting Started), and a recommended book or two, the sharper you will be when it comes to determining ...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 6:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: seeking advice, in retirement now
Replies: 24
Views: 4231

Re: seeking advice, in retirement now

The life strategy fund seems better, no?

Yes, I think so. It is simpler, rebalances itself, and I believe it works better than ETFs because it deals with dollar amounts rather than whole shares, and perhaps a simpler way to deal with distribution money.
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 3:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Social Security Strategy
Replies: 2
Views: 493

Re: Social Security Strategy

If she takes SS before FRA, she basically takes what she gets and has no choices except whether to delay if she is able to do that (it doesn't sound like she can). Every month she delays means slightly more SS. No changing anything at FRA if she started earlier. When her husband (or ex if she was ma...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k plan for Spouse
Replies: 9
Views: 386

Re: 401k plan for Spouse

You didn't say if she gets a 1099 or is a W-2 recipient. I believe those who get 1099 pay can set up small-business retirement accounts.
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Girlfriend's Money Manager--Should She Switch to Vanguard?
Replies: 23
Views: 1940

Re: Girlfriend's Money Manager--Should She Switch to Vanguard?

I am surprised that the A share has that high ER. Most of the American funds I see are around .80 while the C classes are maybe double that. Anyway, what exact fund does she have, so we can look up the fee on Morningstar? I suggest you both do that as well. If they really are A shares, there is no n...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take SS at 62 or 70?
Replies: 12
Views: 1598

Re: Should I take SS at 62 or 70?

Since you are the higher income person, I think it is almost a no-brainer to do as you plan to do. This covers COLA'd longevity for you or your spouse if he outlives you.
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Surrendering a Variable Appreciable Life Policy with a small gain
Replies: 5
Views: 166

Re: Surrendering a Variable Appreciable Life Policy with a small gain

Good point. The demutualalization (2001? I think) occurred when I was still a minor so I will have to ask the 'rents about those shares. They probably received the shares and may have sold them off. We have a few and haven't sold them off yet, but they would be considered all CG, AFAIK. So we eithe...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 8:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for first time Investor.
Replies: 11
Views: 917

Re: Advice for first time Investor.

You are off to a great start! Here is another little booklet by a Boglehead, William Bernstein, that you might like for its general advice: http://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf Agree on the 2 Roth IRAs, even if you keep one in money market for back-up emergency medical until that is covered. You hav...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 7:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Calculator for late starters
Replies: 19
Views: 1691

Re: Social Security Calculator for late starters

You will want to search for: Windfall Elimination Provision (WEP) and Foreign Pensions

Here is one of the SS sites:
http://www.ssa.gov/international/wep_disclaimer.html

and/or:
http://www.ssa.gov/international/wep_intro.html
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Young poster- new job/loans/general advice and ideas
Replies: 3
Views: 440

Re: Young poster- new job/loans/general advice and ideas

Don't buy a house just to save on taxes. There are lots of expenses with houses and costs going in and out of owning a home so you don't want to consider it unless you will be living there a long time. It sounds like you have an ideal situation right now. Being able to walk to work is terrific! Also...
by BL
Thu Jul 02, 2015 12:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on Whole Life Insurance as part of retirement portfolio
Replies: 11
Views: 779

Re: Advice on Whole Life Insurance as part of retirement portfolio

PS--I already max out my 401(k) and can no longer contribute to a Roth due to income limits Did you read about the backdoor Roth in the Wiki here? I don't have the arguments but they are definitely out there: http://whitecoatinvestor.com/8-reasons-to-avoid-whole-life-insurance-and-4-reasons-to-cons...
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where to Save Excess Budget Each Month?
Replies: 18
Views: 2167

Re: Where to Save Excess Budget Each Month?

Is there an S&P 500 index in there somewhere, hopefully with somewhat lower ERs? That is often the best of the bad choices.

Better yet, list them all here with name, ticker symbol, and ER. You would be surprised how often a good fund is missed.
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 11:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with investment for my Mother
Replies: 5
Views: 432

Re: Help with investment for my Mother

I also think the Life Strategy Conservative (40% stocks/60% bonds) is worth considering also as a less radical change from all FDIC guaranteed funds. Maybe some there and some in above-mentioned CD would be fine and get her used to the idea and see how she reacts when it crashes. You could always ad...
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 9:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are we structuring our long term savings properly?
Replies: 4
Views: 468

Re: Are we structuring our long term savings properly?

You can earn another 20k and still be at the top of the 15% tax bracket with 5 kids. I think it is the credits that you want to watch to see what is best to do. The best way to do that is to use a recent tax program or possibly Taxcaster to estimate and find out how the credits are affected, such as...
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 5:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are we structuring our long term savings properly?
Replies: 4
Views: 468

Re: Are we structuring our long term savings properly?

I haven't read much about it but this government plan might be worth at least a quick look:
https://myra.gov/

(My IRA)

Otherwise, taxable is fine.
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 3:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help! Elderly father got snookered.
Replies: 35
Views: 4665

Re: Help! Elderly father got snookered.

Watch what you call elderly to a bunch of folks here, many of whom have surpassed that age and are heavily into stocks (or not) if they have enough income sources elsewhere! You might want to check out the funds on Morningstar.com with your father, also check on the various fees. Some may be sunk co...
by BL
Wed Jul 01, 2015 6:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?
Replies: 63
Views: 9650

Re: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?

He has 3 great funds that I highlighted: OP here, I think I found the fact sheets. I noticed the expense ratio are a little different from paper but these are from my 401k site. Her 401K Dreyfus Stock Index Svc.(0.52) His 401K Spartan 500 Index Inst (FXSIX)(0.05) For international International Stoc...
by BL
Tue Jun 30, 2015 11:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying Additional Admiral Shares After Initial Purchase
Replies: 11
Views: 1208

Re: Buying Additional Admiral Shares After Initial Purchase

This sounds like a very expensive proposal if it is even possible to buy Admiral shares at Schwab. I would either buy ETF version or move to Vanguard.
by BL
Tue Jun 30, 2015 6:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Am I in a Bad Position?
Replies: 26
Views: 3091

Re: Am I in a Bad Position?

You picked two excellent funds, good for you! Very smart! I also agree that you need some fixed income, whether that be bonds (Total bond market or an intermediate length bond), cash, CDs or other fixed income. You definitely don't want to sell out when the market crashes, but rather hang in there e...
by BL
Mon Jun 29, 2015 1:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tell Me I'm Stupid To Consider Quitting My Job and Moving
Replies: 157
Views: 34310

Re: Tell Me I'm Stupid To Consider Quitting My Job and Moving

I have met people who are happy no matter where they live, and others who are unhappy no matter where they live. One of the differences I seem to notice is that the happiest are those who are able to serve others in some capacity, giving without compensation: this might be volunteering at a charitab...
by BL
Sun Jun 28, 2015 10:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?
Replies: 52
Views: 3021

Re: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?

You need to find an independent insurance person so they can shop several companies for the best term price. That is why term4sale was mentioned: to get an estimate and to help find an independent agent. It is important to shop around.
by BL
Sun Jun 28, 2015 6:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing Lump Sum for Little Sister
Replies: 6
Views: 791

Re: Investing Lump Sum for Little Sister

Target Retirement 2015 starts at about 50/50 and ends us as Target Retirement Income at about 30/70. She probably won't need to worry about taxes once she retires. What bracket is she in now?
by BL
Sun Jun 28, 2015 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?
Replies: 63
Views: 9650

Re: As a couple in late 30s, how bad are we doing?

Don't forget that the taxes you don't pay contribute to that much more you can put into the 401k! If you put in 18k each to your 401Ks, the 28% fed you don't pay, plus the ??% CA state tax you don't pay, means it is not really costing you that much, maybe around 2/3 of it is your out of pocket and t...
by BL
Sun Jun 28, 2015 9:13 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Risks of RMD Withdrawal From A Single Fund IRA
Replies: 53
Views: 3765

Re: Risks of RMD Withdrawal From A Single Fund IRA

I think you are trying to combine 2 (or 3 including how to fund the tax) unrelated steps into one giant single move. First, decide if the fund in your IRA is what you want it to be? If so, leave the fund alone and just plan to sell off the RMD at whatever time you choose. Next, decide either to with...
by BL
Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TFFR/Whole Life Question/Advise
Replies: 13
Views: 834

Re: TFFR/Whole Life Question/Advise

It sounds to me like you need to study the options and Expense Ratios of the other providers in your 403b! This person does not have your best interests in mind, only what gives him the most for his retirement. Think of all the suckers clients that were not as clever as you that he has made money fr...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?
Replies: 52
Views: 3021

Re: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?

I would look for the surrender value. Since most of the first year premiums probably goes to the salesman, I doubt it would be very much, but hope I am wrong.
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?
Replies: 52
Views: 3021

Re: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?

I always listen to what dhodson has to say.
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: fund placement
Replies: 28
Views: 1811

Re: fund placement

I don't know what age you are, but perhaps you can pick and choose topics from this excellent short and free booklet for beginners, especially the Nuts and Bolts at the end: http://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf Anyway, whatever cash you have on hand was earned and taxed at whatever rate you are at. ...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?
Replies: 52
Views: 3021

Re: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?

I doubt it, but maybe you can get some useful information anyway. Remember, they are experts at making it unintelligible on purpose. I believe the company is required to furnish the Illustration when asked. Here is a quote from the article I cited above: Universal life policies allow companies to ra...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 4:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: unsure if I should open up a 457B
Replies: 23
Views: 1732

Re: unsure if I should open up a 457B

I am confused. Did you mean something else for one of the mentioned 457Bs? I wouldn't pay an extra 2% when I already had funded one tax-advantaged account. Maybe one of the other providers is better. As you have found out, Vanguard has low-ER and total Stock or Tot. International is quite tax-effici...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 3:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?
Replies: 52
Views: 3021

Re: Drop a 3 year old Indexed Universal Life Insurance policy?

I went looking for an article that shows some of the worries about Universal life and here is one I found: http://www.forbes.com/sites/investor/2012/09/13/retirement-disaster-looms-for-universal-life-policyholders/ If I understand correctly, it contains something like a term insurance which gets ver...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safety of non-profit 457b
Replies: 5
Views: 434

Re: Safety of non-profit 457b

My thought is that if you are able to spread it out over 2 years and remain under 15%, that would be a suitable solution. Have you studied the options carefully? I think you will be paying the 15% eventually, so it doesn't seem so bad. You could put it into taxable where gains would be CG, (and also...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New investor and boglehead!
Replies: 2
Views: 262

Re: New investor and boglehead!

Congratulations! It sounds like you learned quickly and well. As for the spouse's account, it is not too bad as is. You could save some by using the total stock and/or the bond funds. No need to search for international if they are considerably higher (although they are perhaps not terribly high, ju...
by BL
Fri Jun 26, 2015 8:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Strategy for age 62 - 70?
Replies: 33
Views: 3228

Re: Strategy for age 62 - 70?

The 15% tax bracket in 2015 runs up to $74,900 for married couples. . Don't forget you also get the standard deduction 12,600 and two exemptions 8,000 so you stay in the 15% up to 95,900. OK, just to be even more specific, for those over age 65, add $1250/person SD if MFJ, making it $98,400 (or add...
by BL
Thu Jun 25, 2015 4:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Strategy for age 62 - 70?
Replies: 33
Views: 3228

Re: Strategy for age 62 - 70?

We don't know enough about your circumstances to give a good answer. I believe you could file and suspend either at FRA or anytime before age 70 so your spouse would be eligible to get spousal benefits and you could delay until age 70 if you choose in order to get maximum payments with COLA for the ...
by BL
Thu Jun 25, 2015 11:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help on my AA plan ?
Replies: 7
Views: 829

Re: Help on my AA plan ?

Also, I thought about paying the parental loan back early since we treat their loan(s) like a free "line of credit" but it's at 0% so I am torn. My wife work's the summer so we plan on paying down most, if not all of the student loans with that. At age 40 and 28% tax bracket it is beyond ...
by BL
Thu Jun 25, 2015 10:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with extra money
Replies: 2
Views: 378

Re: Help with extra money

Once I hit my contribution limit for my roth account in 2015, am I allowed to start contributing in Jan 2016 or do I have to wait until April 2016? Yes, lots of BHs put in the full year's amount on the first business day of the year. Those extra months are just for your convenience, such as if you ...

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