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Re: Don't come to Europe with a new chip and sign credit car

Smart cards were introduced in France in 1992, chip & PIN. Took more than 20 years for the US to catch up... with chip & signature? So how long exactly will it take to go to chip & PIN? :shock: :shock: :shock: Come on, people, everybody knows how to type a PIN in an ATM machine. How har...
by Epsilon Delta
Sat Apr 18, 2015 9:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Don't come to Europe with a new chip and sign credit card
Replies: 50
Views: 5660

Re: New HVAC

The big issue for me would be the reliability of the existing air conditioning unit. If you need to replace an air conditioning unit in the middle of a southern summer, you'll probably have to stay in a motel for a couple of weeks, while you're getting quotes, and you'll have to wait for them to pu...
by Epsilon Delta
Sat Apr 18, 2015 8:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New HVAC
Replies: 18
Views: 1039

Re: long term capital gain tax vs. roth conversions

Do you make charitable donations? If yes, do you include make those donations with cash after selling shares and realizing capital gains? A more tax efficient way to donate may be to donate the appreciated shares instead. You'd get the benefit of the donation without realizing capital gains. I alre...
by Epsilon Delta
Sat Apr 18, 2015 8:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: long term capital gain tax vs. roth conversions
Replies: 39
Views: 1959

Re: long term capital gain tax vs. roth conversions

Roth conversion is taxed as ordinary income by fed and state. Not always. For example, NY allows $20k of tax free pension income if you're over 59.5. A Roth conversion counts as pension income. If bobk were in NY state tax would suggest converting at least 20k per year (40k per year if part of the ...
by Epsilon Delta
Sat Apr 18, 2015 8:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: long term capital gain tax vs. roth conversions
Replies: 39
Views: 1959

Re: My job says I can't work for anyone else...

"Physician shall engage in the practice of medicine or in the medically related activities only as an employee of XXX unless otherwise authorized in writing by XXX. Physician shall devote full time and attention to XXX's medical practice and affairs. Physician shall not, without the written co...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 3:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My job says I can't work for anyone else...
Replies: 53
Views: 4710

Re: Federal Tax Bracket Question

Using tax software is the best way to find out what your marginal bracket(s) are. You can download TaxAct for free or for very little. Punch in all your current numbers as a baseline. Increase/decrease your W-2 income by $100 and see how much your tax changes. Increase/decrease your qualified stock...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 2:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Tax Bracket Question
Replies: 27
Views: 2169

Re: Tips for Post-College Lifestyle

Otherwise, you're just reverting to the same life you had while you were in HS, IMHO. If you're an adult, than start acting as such. - Ron Acting like an adult means making your own decisions for your own reasons. Giving in to pressure to do what everybody else does so they won't feel bad about the...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tips for Post-College Lifestyle
Replies: 53
Views: 2623

Re: Ornamental Grasses for Midwest

You probably want to consult a professional, perhaps a local land grant university with a cooperative extension. Some grasses are invasive species. In some areas planting grasses such as Phragmite or some varieties of bamboo could result in legal actions against you. You could be responsible for era...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 12:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ornamental Grasses for Midwest
Replies: 5
Views: 380

Re: Becoming Trustee. Do they need my income and net worth?

Until the OP is a trustee, I don't think he is really entitled to any financial info. Anybody being asked to accept a position of responsibility has a right, and IMO a duty, to determine if they are willing and able to fulfill the responsibilities are before accepting the position. This requires kn...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 11:54 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Becoming Trustee. Do they need my income and net worth?
Replies: 21
Views: 1792

Re: Would you buy 1.5 M house without AC?

celia wrote:Those who don't live in California have a different perspective on what's important in housing and their comments should be considered with a grain of salt.

Quite so. Even California is overly broad. Indian Wells and Eureka are both in CA.
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 17, 2015 11:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you buy a house without AC?
Replies: 58
Views: 4231

Re: Becoming Trustee. Do they need my income and net worth?

I will get my hands on the trust document. About a month ago wanted to find out where the division of responsibilities lay between the investor and the lawyer, so I called the lawyer. She told me that she couldn't send me the trust document, but I could be made a trustee. I know that my aunt is the...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Becoming Trustee. Do they need my income and net worth?
Replies: 21
Views: 1792

Re: Can existing employer require new credit report every ye

Tycoon wrote:
There are industries where a 0.01% risk is unacceptable. Think CIA or NSA.


Neither of those is an industry. Private employers are not governments.
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 6:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can existing employer require new credit report every year?
Replies: 36
Views: 2940

Re: Should I consider Bicycle Insurance?

I think this is junk insurance, like "dread disease" insurance. If you need insurance to cover medical expenses you need insurance no matter what the cause of the medical expenses. I'd also say that the main thing bicycle insurance should cover is something like the CTC offers in the UK. Y...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 5:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I consider Bicycle Insurance?
Replies: 10
Views: 1146

Re: How do you sign a document when you are POA for someone?

I am starting to wonder if maybe this is not necessary in all cases. My dad's signature is no longer consistent - I don't think you can authenticate it by comparing with previous versions. But, if I can just get him to write anything on the line - an 'X' or just some squiggly line, would that be go...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Father can no longer sign his name. Looking for solutions.
Replies: 23
Views: 2185

Re: Friend not filed taxes for years but owes no money

That article seems to say if a person owes nothing, there is no penalty for not filing. It is a bit unclear. But I think that the penalty is based on the tax due for the year. Not any tax that is due over and above what's been withheld from income or paid quarterly. The article may be unclear, but ...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Friend not filed taxes for years but owes no money
Replies: 15
Views: 1621

Re: What makes a signature valid?

There are legal and practical considerations. Legally I believe that what makes a signature valid is the intent to sign and enter into the contract. If your father has the mental capacity an x or squiggle should be fine. Consistency is not needed. Practically for many purposes (particularly for smal...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 1:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Father can no longer sign his name. Looking for solutions.
Replies: 23
Views: 2185

Re: Non-Deductible Traditional IRA advantageous than Taxable

A taxable account ends up with a small annual tax drag. This comes from taxes on dividends and capital gains distributions as well as from any activity such as rebalancing or sales forced by things beyond your control. The annual drag depends on dividend yield and the tax rate on dividends, among ot...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 16, 2015 12:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-Deductible Traditional IRA advantageous than Taxable Inv
Replies: 11
Views: 529

Re: Backdoor Roth IRA

Hi, My wife and I opened rIRA accounts with Vanguard in March 2015 ($11k each for 2014 and 2015). We re-characterized the accounts to tIRA yesterday when we found out our MAGI was too high to qualify for rIRA. The gains over the past month were minimal, around $200. Today, we converted from tIRA ba...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 15, 2015 3:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backdoor Roth IRA
Replies: 6
Views: 669

Re: Need help understanding market cap in total market

The morningstar style box for VTI looks like this: https://www.dropbox.com/s/u5m820r8gsrbpdt/morningstar%20vti.jpg?raw=1 You can easily construct portfolios of only 9 stocks would match this style box exactly. These portfolio would not be expected to closely follow VTI or any other proxy for the ma...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:32 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Need help understanding market cap in total market
Replies: 11
Views: 802

Re: Required minimum distribution and year end fund distribu

Is the RMD in the same index fund within the IRA as you plan to use in the taxable account? Assuming we're referring to a stock index fund and stocks usually increase in value more than they lose value it might be beneficial to take the RMD early. Waiting until year end means any gains will be taxe...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:15 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Required minimum distribution and year end fund distribution
Replies: 29
Views: 1967

Re: Amending tax return

This is something I don't understand. If you're spending time and energy checking the work of your tax preparer (and even finding mistakes) aren't you essentially doing your own return and paying someone for that privilege? What value does the tax preparer bring to this equation? If you did it your...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 15, 2015 8:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amending tax return
Replies: 17
Views: 1210

Re: Amending tax return

I am actually surprised that more people do not submit extensions or that their accountants do not do it for them. It would relieve a lot of the crunch at tax time and spread the tax return work out over the year. That was the motivation for moving the deadline from March 1 to March 15 and then Apr...
by Epsilon Delta
Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amending tax return
Replies: 17
Views: 1210

Re: Which 3 year old hybrid: Camry or Prius

but driving to the grocery store which is less than 1.5 mi with two stoplights and two stop signs I can't win any kudos on the screen...sometimes it doesn't even register anything...will short driving times charge the battery sure A hybrid gets it's worse mileage in when it's warming up. But so doe...
by Epsilon Delta
Tue Apr 14, 2015 9:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which 3 year old hybrid: Camry or Prius
Replies: 36
Views: 2689

Re: How smart are thermostats?

I work in this very industry - I hope you all learn to enjoy being able to control every light bulb and appliance from your phone! :D For myself, this is a solution looking for a problem, or a "First world problem." There's data showing that a smart thermostat can save 10% of energy bills...
by Epsilon Delta
Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:33 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How smart are thermostats?
Replies: 43
Views: 2975

Re: Declining to continue Interview Process

Apparently a lot of people think employers are very thin skinned. When I've been on the hiring side the only thing that would burn bridges* was not telling me when he was no longer interested. Stringing things along after that point would waste my time and could have a knock on effect on other candi...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 10, 2015 9:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Declining to continue Interview Process
Replies: 26
Views: 3125

Re: How smart are thermostats?

I think my top requirements would be: ... Able to disable aux power at certain temperatures ... That's something a smart thermostat shouldn't need. Not running the aux power when it's not needed should be a consequence of energy efficient operation, not an explicit parameter. The temperature above ...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 10, 2015 12:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How smart are thermostats?
Replies: 43
Views: 2975

Re: Mailing tax returns

Although the first class mail paper receipt seems like perfectly reasonable evidence of timely filing to me, I agree with spectec that a literal-minded IRS employee might not see it that way. I don't know of any official guidance stating that the paper first class receipts issued by the PO are acce...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 3:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mailing tax returns
Replies: 56
Views: 3572

Re: Form 8606 Tax question re: Backdoor Roth

I am not a tax expert. I can't be certain that my guess above is correct. But it looks to me to be consistent with the instructions in Pub. 590-B for Worksheet 1-1. 4. If line 5 of Form 8606 is less than line 8 of Worksheet 1-1, complete lines 6 through 15 of Form 8606 and stop here. Ron Aha. Looks...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Form 8606 Tax question re: Backdoor Roth
Replies: 8
Views: 697

Re: Year round storage container for CDs in car

If temps outside are in the 90's, temps in a sealed car can reach over 120. Even a cooler will eventually reach those temps given enough time. The best solution would be to transfer them to an mp3 player and keep the hard copies at home. I'm sure you could find used ipods for pretty cheap on ebay. ...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 2:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Year round storage container for CDs in car
Replies: 14
Views: 711

Re: Norwesco water tanks

Bottom line: no worries about water delivery (I will get it myself, about 9 miles away) and I got a really great deal on the F-150. The F-150 can handle the 210 or 300 gallon tank with ease. I get the 300 gallons for free (per trip) from the local sanitary district, my cost is transport to and from...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Norwesco water tanks
Replies: 16
Views: 1555

Re: Form 8606 Tax question re: Backdoor Roth

Here is my guess. line 1 5500 the April, 2015, non-deductable contribution for 2014 line 2 0 no basis carried forward from 2013 line 3 5500 line 4 5500 because the contribution for 2014 was made in 2015 line 5 0 line 6 0 rollover IRA was empty at the end of 2014 line 7 0 line 8 11914 distribution f...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 1:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Form 8606 Tax question re: Backdoor Roth
Replies: 8
Views: 697

Re: Accrued dividends: What happens when you sell?

Note that when Vanguard pays you the accrued dividend they may resort to sending a paper check, particularly if dividends were being reinvested. Keep the smelling salts handy if this is likely to give you the vapors.
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 09, 2015 12:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Accrued dividends: What happens when you sell?
Replies: 8
Views: 1017

Re: Is it okay to use backdoor Roth if it's unnecessary?

retiredjg wrote:If you take money out before age 50.5, those records will be needed.

That should be 59.5. After age 59.5 (and your first Roth being over 5 years old) Roth IRA withdrawals are qualified, so tax and penalty free without jumping through further hoops.
by Epsilon Delta
Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it okay to use backdoor Roth if it's unnecessary?
Replies: 7
Views: 1271

Re: Difficult to answer tax and residency question

If it is on me to prove my residency, I would contend that my intentions were to lay down roots in each of the states I moved to (ND, OH and MI) and thus was never a resident of KS during 2014 and don't owe them taxes. I then fill out a part-year residency for each of the three states that I worked...
by Epsilon Delta
Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Difficult to answer tax and residency question
Replies: 19
Views: 1211

Re: Difficult to answer tax and residency question

You might think you are in fact a "resident" of another state, but Hawaii could care less; all they care about is how many days you spent here. Hawaii certainly cares how many days you spend there, but it's not all they care about. You can be domiciled in Hawaii and they will tax you as a...
by Epsilon Delta
Mon Apr 06, 2015 10:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Difficult to answer tax and residency question
Replies: 19
Views: 1211

Re: Mystery of increasing wages, but decreasing federal with

Pub 15 and pub 15-A tell the employer how to calculate withholding. You can use them to check your employers calculations. You will probably want to ask payroll which method they use, although you could also try reverse engineering. Prior years instructions are available using urls similar to the f...
by Epsilon Delta
Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mystery of increasing wages, but decreasing federal withhold
Replies: 12
Views: 1342

Re: Obtaining Swiss visa in the US

adamthesmythe wrote:
NOW there are no checks at borders between European countries- with the possible exception of Switzerland.


There are still some customs checks. Not all European countries are in the EU. Not all EU countries are in the Schengen area.
by Epsilon Delta
Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Obtaining Swiss visa in the US
Replies: 16
Views: 1311

Re: life expectancy and taxable versus tax deferred account

The friend is not an advisor. It is simply his guess, assuming assets in taxable acconuts are easier to access, either for consumpsion in his life time, or for passing to heir at death. Both of us are not sure. I will definite look into the 55 years old rule on Roth. Let me clarify - there is no 55...
by Epsilon Delta
Mon Apr 06, 2015 11:11 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: life expectancy and taxable versus tax deferred accounts
Replies: 17
Views: 1376

Re: Best way to lower tax refund?

You can alter your withholding by filing a W-4 with your employer(s). Claiming more allowances will reduce the withholding. If you're income varies during the year it can be tricky to work out how many allowances you need to claim to get it exactly right. The first thing to look at is how many allow...
by Epsilon Delta
Sun Apr 05, 2015 10:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to lower tax refund?
Replies: 7
Views: 1283

Re: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns

Instructions for Form 8606: What Records Must I Keep? To verify the nontaxable part of distributions from your IRAs, including Roth IRAs, keep a copy of the following forms and records until all distributions are made. Page 1 of Forms 1040 (or Forms 1040A, 1040NR, or 1040-T) filed for each year you...
by Epsilon Delta
Sun Apr 05, 2015 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns
Replies: 39
Views: 3117

Re: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns

Scan and keep forever. Unless you move a lot what's the point? Letting a cubic foot or so of records just sit there is a lot less work than handling every sheet. I suppose everyone needs a hobby, but that's not my idea of fun. If you do your own taxes, pretty much every software nowadays will gener...
by Epsilon Delta
Sun Apr 05, 2015 12:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns
Replies: 39
Views: 3117

Re: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns

gwe67 wrote:Scan and keep forever.


Unless you move a lot what's the point? Letting a cubic foot or so of records just sit there is a lot less work than handling every sheet. I suppose everyone needs a hobby, but that's not my idea of fun.
by Epsilon Delta
Sat Apr 04, 2015 10:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LOL how long do you keep old tax returns
Replies: 39
Views: 3117

Re: Bogle says: "Active mutual funds could disappear:

I am starting to wonder if I completely understand the difference between a passive fund and an active fund. IMHO the difference between active and passive is turnover. Low turnover should lead to lower costs, both in the funds expenses and in taxes. Lots of people want to make it more complicated....
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 03, 2015 8:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogle says: "Active mutual funds could disappear:
Replies: 28
Views: 3404

Re: IRS Identity Theft Tax Fraud

Question for those who know the correct answer; Does the IRS even have W-2, 1099-R, etc., information by the April 15th filing deadline to make computer checks against when a return in processed in the normal filing period? I have heard unofficially that information is not even available to them an...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 03, 2015 10:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IRS Identity Theft Tax Fraud
Replies: 47
Views: 4074

Re: How does one invest without rebalancing?

Some people seem to be missing the somewhat perverse point of this thread. Longinvest had it right. To avoid inadvertent rebalancing, one needs to track their AA dynamically. Sure, if you define rebalancing as taking some action that changes the balance. But that's not a very useful definition. Und...
by Epsilon Delta
Fri Apr 03, 2015 10:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one invest without rebalancing?
Replies: 17
Views: 1653

Re: ACA MAGI and Capital Gains

So my question is this. Even though capital gains on the sale of ones home are exempt from taxation, does that mean they are excluded from MAGI, or would those gains be included in MAGI for ACA purposes? You can find the actual code section here: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/36B#d Par...
by Epsilon Delta
Thu Apr 02, 2015 12:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has health coverage under ACA affected investment decisions?
Replies: 21
Views: 1991

Re: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar

One issue I think the industry needs to work on for whole house solar / off grid is to move products from AC to DC. How many of your electronic products today simply convert AC back to DC with a transformer, I'd say more and more. Now with LED lighting one could go DC for lights. AC motors are prob...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar
Replies: 61
Views: 4211

Re: Car Engine Immobilizer Issue

Start the car once every 2 weeks and stop worrying about it. Drive the car every two weeks for 10-20 miles, enough to fully warm it up and fully charge the battery. Just starting it is counter productive. If your mother doesn't drive that frequently a battery maintainer is usually cheaper than the ...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:47 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Engine Immobilizer Issue
Replies: 11
Views: 942

Re: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar

This is a good point, but IMO the push back on net-metering is as much about politics and regulatory capture as it is about economics. My guess is that if utilities could eliminate net metering rules today, most would in a heartbeat. Why wouldn't they, since each kWh they're forced to accept reduce...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar
Replies: 61
Views: 4211

Re: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar

Distributing the batteries throughout the grid, close to where power will be used, helps with efficiency because in many areas, transmission lines to move electricity from power plants to users is as much of a capacity bottleneck as the powerplants themselves. It's a good analysis. Remains to be se...
by Epsilon Delta
Wed Apr 01, 2015 9:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla to start making Batteries for Home Solar
Replies: 61
Views: 4211
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