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Re: How to respond when someone asks how much money you make

During most of my career my salary was a matter of public record -- for those savvy enough to know where to look, especially after everything went online in the 1990's. How I would answer the question if someone asked me directly would depend on the context. If I'm being asked my current salary by a...
by Garco
Sat Jan 31, 2015 1:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to respond when someone asks how much money you make?
Replies: 78
Views: 6017

Re: RMD withdrawals.

By the way, thanks to the Bogleheads community for significantly helping with my education in investing and RMD's. When my parents died, I was being actively pursued by their ML Adviser. Based on information I gleaned from this website and a book by Rick Ferri I started asking questions about the ~...
by Garco
Thu Jan 29, 2015 1:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD withdrawals.
Replies: 43
Views: 3309

Re: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?

When I think of emergency expenses, I'm thinking of them from the perspective of a recent retiree with a paid-up home and no other loans of any kind, but no income from work. Drawing on Social Security and my RMD's. It's in that context that in my previous post I split my EF into two forms: (a) cash...
by Garco
Sat Jan 24, 2015 6:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?
Replies: 20
Views: 1477

Re: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?

I have about 6 months on hand in cash (MMA), and could get another 6 months quickly by borrowing against a home equity line of credit (HELOC).
by Garco
Sat Jan 24, 2015 8:33 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?
Replies: 20
Views: 1477

Re: How to climb up in a megacorp

My father, who was a senior project engineer in a major aerospace company, had some pretty salty short answers to your question. Some were along the lines of "it's not what you know, it's who you b***" (self-censored). My own advice to younger people is usually pretty plain. Work hard, mak...
by Garco
Fri Jan 23, 2015 11:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to climb up in a megacorp
Replies: 37
Views: 4908

Re: What age did you pay off your "forever" home

We had a 30 year mortgage on our ever-only home, which we still live in. Paid it off at age 62.

We may move post-retirement. There will be no mortgage. It will be a cash deal.
by Garco
Thu Jan 22, 2015 2:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you pay off your "forever" home
Replies: 52
Views: 4062

Re: What age did you hit $100,000?

To piggy back on this a little, do people feel the first $100,000 seemed to take long time to reach and or feel like one of the tougher numbers to reach? I know it was for myself. To be perfectly honest, I scarcely ever noticed what my total accumulation was when it was in that neighborhood (in mid...
by Garco
Wed Jan 21, 2015 5:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you hit $100,000?
Replies: 68
Views: 5835

Re: What age did you hit $100,000?

In agreement with Petrocelli's comment, $100K in 1986, which is also the year that I attained that accumulation in my retirement accounts, would be worth about $220,000 in 2015 dollars. I happen to know my accumulation in 1986 because it's my "grandfathered" amount in my 401k. I have no id...
by Garco
Wed Jan 21, 2015 12:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you hit $100,000?
Replies: 68
Views: 5835

Re: RMD withdrawals.

The RMD in dollars is the same but the RMD as a percentage of the account could have large excursions. Isn't leaving the RMD invested all year at your IRA AA investing short term money inappropriately? You could end up at the end of the year having to withdraw 8% instead of 4% of the account, for e...
by Garco
Tue Jan 20, 2015 11:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD withdrawals.
Replies: 43
Views: 3309

Re: RMD withdrawals.

Christine, that's kind of my thinking. To stock the MM and draw RMD's from there rather than directly from my investments. But I wouldn't put the whole amount into MM at a single point in time -- either end of year or beginning of year. Rather, I would put it there on a quarterly basis, or rather pu...
by Garco
Mon Jan 19, 2015 5:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD withdrawals.
Replies: 43
Views: 3309

Re: RMD withdrawals.

Thanks, Jeff, for the suggestion regarding where to store the cash distribution prior to putting into spending budget. As you note, however, it's still not settled whether end of year or beginning of year is preferred for a single-scoop RMD. I gravitated toward quarterly in part because I think it's...
by Garco
Mon Jan 19, 2015 3:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD withdrawals.
Replies: 43
Views: 3309

Re: RMD withdrawals.

Having gone back and forth in my thinking about the best timing for RMD's from a strictly financial point of view, I was persuaded by a different voice -- my wife -- who said she really wants to get a "monthly paycheck" to regulate our household spending during the year. Having gone back a...
by Garco
Mon Jan 19, 2015 3:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD withdrawals.
Replies: 43
Views: 3309

Re: How long did it take your net worth to go from $1.5M to

In my case, that first $100K was accumulated by the end of 1986, after 15 years working in the economy. It took that long in part because I lost 4 years of 8% 401k matching from my first employer when I changed jobs and hadn't reached the 5-years needed to be vested in the plan. By 2015 this lost mo...
by Garco
Mon Jan 19, 2015 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did it take your net worth to go from $1.5M to $3M?
Replies: 22
Views: 4567

Re: How long did it take your net worth to go from $1.5M to

2007--->2014. But in between it went down to ~1M in early 2009. Also this increase wasn't simply organic. In 2013-2014 I also inherited some money.
by Garco
Sun Jan 18, 2015 11:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did it take your net worth to go from $1.5M to $3M?
Replies: 22
Views: 4567

Re: Malkiel's recommendations, 1990 to 2015

Gosh, I'm 60+ and my portfolio is remarkably similar (and coincidentally so) to Malkiel's 2015 portfolio. It may be iffy but it's what I am comfortable with in 2015. I wasn't 60+ in 1990....
by Garco
Sun Jan 18, 2015 6:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Malkiel's recommendations, 1990 to 2015
Replies: 40
Views: 3835

Re: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?

Work hours per week just isn't something that people in my profession compute. If you want to get ahead as a researcher in academia you are likely to be putting in 60-70 hour weeks routinely, and more than that when deadlines are coming up. A lot of research isn't "creative" work but "...
by Garco
Sun Jan 18, 2015 2:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?
Replies: 301
Views: 46334

Re: What is a good rule of thumb on savings vs salary?

I described my simple approach in the "How Did You get to $3MM" thread. I did not have that total or any other total in mind when I started my career. For one thing I had no idea how my salary would progress from my first year of full-time employment at age 27 (after earning my PhD). That ...
by Garco
Sat Jan 17, 2015 4:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What is a good rule of thumb on savings vs salary?
Replies: 19
Views: 2815

Re: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?

At my mother's funeral, I gave a little talk in which I explained how it was that my parents remained married for 73 years. The formula was simple: 1) marry young, 2) live to an old age, and 3) stay married. Accumulating money is sort of like that: 1) get a good foundation (education), 2) stay emplo...
by Garco
Wed Jan 14, 2015 10:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?
Replies: 301
Views: 46334

Re: Should I apply for another credit card?

You currently have $38K of credit available on your cards. Why do you need any more? That said, I do like having my main Visa card with my Credit Union because of ease of transfers from my salary (which is automatically paid to my CU) to credit card and other accounts, including savings and money ma...
by Garco
Wed Jan 14, 2015 9:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I apply for another credit card?
Replies: 5
Views: 504

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

Cool charts. Thank you.
by Garco
Tue Jan 13, 2015 10:09 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

That's a bit easier to see. OK, one more opinion. Your linear trend line is forcing one to look on this as "higher net worth with age" - we don't know that's the case. My first impression is that net-worth peaks around 55-60. Try using a higher order curve-fit. +1 Yes, this curve wants to...
by Garco
Mon Jan 12, 2015 11:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: 401K contributions

I couldn't to that with my base RA, but I maxed out two supplemental accounts for two "years" (at $23K each year) between October of the first year and May of the second year. (I retired in June.) So I jammed about $90K into those accounts over a period of about 8 months.
by Garco
Sun Jan 04, 2015 10:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401K contributions
Replies: 9
Views: 745

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

It seems clear to me that some of the poll answers are incorrect. Perhaps some people used yearly instead of monthly for assured income (although nobody seems to have done that for SS), or perhaps some included employment income. Some appear to have used yearly salary in answering assured monthly i...
by Garco
Sat Jan 03, 2015 2:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

Thanks, Bobblehead, for fixing my double-entry.
by Garco
Fri Jan 02, 2015 11:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

I'll try later. It was a PITA finding my previous listings, so I'm not going to try that part again. Just the current.
by Garco
Thu Jan 01, 2015 12:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition

I posted my data last night but it doesn't show up in the spreadsheet. Do you review these before incorporating?
by Garco
Thu Jan 01, 2015 12:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2015 Edition
Replies: 134
Views: 22270

Re: POLL: How do you make important investment decisions?

For me, simple rules and conventions are a good starting point -- 15% savings rate, age in bonds, 4% SWR. They aren't grounded in superstition but in collective experience. But individual needs and situations vary a lot, depending on age, marital status, family finances (income, wealth, liabilities)...
by Garco
Tue Dec 30, 2014 2:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: POLL: How do you make important investment decisions?
Replies: 27
Views: 2806

Re: What are you up YTD?

With two more trading days, my total return is 7.07% in 2014 in my main retirement account (this compares to 13.9% TR in 2013). A couple of dvd's yet to be accounted for. A bad (negative return) year in my non-US holdings (which comprise 23% of my equities). My basic AA is not out of line (~48% equi...
by Garco
Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are you up YTD?
Replies: 271
Views: 30091

Re: POLL: How do you make important investment decisions?

I like the 4% SWR rule. It's probably too conservative for my taste but following it gives me confidence b/c on top of following this formula I have a very sizable reserve that I totally leave out of the equation. Sort of like Maverick always having a $1,000 bill pinned inside of his lapel.
by Garco
Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: POLL: How do you make important investment decisions?
Replies: 27
Views: 2806

Re: Stop contributing to 401k to pay off CC

I'm concerned that if you were to stop contributing to the 401k's you'd find too much cash in your pocket, increase your spending, and take longer to restart those contributions than you think. I'm strongly with those who show why it makes sense to keep your contributions going to receive the match,...
by Garco
Sun Dec 21, 2014 11:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stop contributing to 401k to pay off CC
Replies: 21
Views: 1255

Re: Newbie and how to manage a large inheritance

There's a lot going on in your post. I think you should take a systematic look at how this "found money" fits into your lifetime investment plan. If this were invested properly, there's a reasonable chance it would amount to $3-4 million+ by the time you reach retirement age. Of course tha...
by Garco
Wed Dec 17, 2014 8:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie and how to manage a large inheritance
Replies: 15
Views: 1742

Re: What do you splurge on?

Two things I splurge on: 1. RESTAURANTS. When I travel, I often look for the very best restaurant, or among the best or most interesting. One of the true pleasures of my life. Have dined at some of the best in the world over the years. 2. KIDS. Though the kids are grown up, we are always gifting the...
by Garco
Tue Dec 09, 2014 11:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you splurge on?
Replies: 237
Views: 24415

Re: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mini

To those advising the OP to stick with the plan, or stay the course, you're missing the point.

He didn't have a plan. He had a wish. He wanted to play roulette. He lost.

There's no reason to double up on a bad bet. No reason to throw good money after bad.
by Garco
Mon Dec 08, 2014 5:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with VGPMX (Vanguard Precious Metals and Mining)?
Replies: 40
Views: 3938

Re: Someone tried to login to my vanguard account yesterday

My name isn't uncommon. Fortunately, with my two financial services/brokerages, I do not need to use my name in my log-in. Instead, both my "userid" and my "pw" are a series of numerals and letters and/or symbols.
by Garco
Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Someone tried to login to my vanguard account yesterday
Replies: 38
Views: 5068

Re: Dividing assets between taxable and tax-deferred accts

Scott: A few preliminary questions: 1) When you say you are in the 28% bracket, is that while you were employed or now that you're retired? If the latter, where is your taxable income coming from? 2) Are you receiving pensions? 3) When do you plan to start receiving Social Security? What percentage ...
by Garco
Thu Dec 04, 2014 12:56 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Dividing assets between taxable and tax-deferred accts
Replies: 6
Views: 1055

Re: How did you handle the 2008 bear market ?

My reference point is mid-October 2007, which was when my portfolio reached a peak as we were about to head into the recession (country was officially in recession in December 2007). I regained that level in my portfolio by the end of 2010. So it was a 3-year decline and rise. With the exception of ...
by Garco
Fri Nov 28, 2014 12:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How did you handle the 2008 bear market ?
Replies: 79
Views: 7409

Re: How to Plan for an Unknown Future

Hello Scott. I'm from a family of engineers but am not one myself. We do plan for the things that can be planned. We sometimes plan against unknowns using a WAG as a plug. But generally we assume "no change" in the absence of information about the future, except when it comes to dollar pri...
by Garco
Mon Nov 24, 2014 9:23 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to Plan for an Unknown Future
Replies: 23
Views: 2021

Re: What percent "Boglehead" are you?

Using Nisiprius' scoring system I'm 71% Boglehead (he is 81%). Kind of surprised myself, since I usually regard the use of broad-based index funds as the defining characteristic of a Boglehead, along with staying the course. I do have several index funds, but I have more managed funds. This is partl...
by Garco
Mon Nov 24, 2014 12:59 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What percent "Boglehead" are you?
Replies: 125
Views: 10251

Re: Emergency fund question. please help

Although this may not be conventional, I look at emergency funds not strictly as separate funds allocated to CD's or some bank-type account, but also as funds that I could get access to in an emergency. So when I figure "what money can I get in an emergency" -- I include my home equity lin...
by Garco
Sat Nov 15, 2014 2:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency fund question. please help
Replies: 14
Views: 1995

Re: Joint accounts or separate accounts for married couples?

Perhaps because we have been a one income family, at the very beginning of our marriage we consolidated our debts (which amounted to all of $700), and we have had joint accounts and joint ownership of everything. Although we each have Social Security income, the monthly payments go into an account h...
by Garco
Sun Nov 02, 2014 7:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Joint accounts or separate accounts for married couples?
Replies: 59
Views: 4962

Re: 401k millionaire

I reached $1.0M for the first time in 1999, the second time in 2003, the third time in 2009. Major crashes took me down. The first $1M came after 24 years of investing in 401k plans. (Not counting real property value.) But let's put this in another context. $1.0M in 1975 when I first started to inve...
by Garco
Sat Nov 01, 2014 1:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k millionaire
Replies: 27
Views: 5172

Re: What are you up YTD?

+5.95% ytd with 48% equities.
by Garco
Fri Oct 31, 2014 10:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are you up YTD?
Replies: 271
Views: 30091

Re: Checking monthly - may not even notice the October "cras

If you had to withdraw money near the bottom of the recent little trough, it could cost some money. I had to: RMD, which had been prescheduled. But I invest for longer term always. If you had to withdraw money at the bottom of this little trough, the money should not have been in equities anyway. D...
by Garco
Wed Oct 29, 2014 9:43 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Checking monthly - may not even notice the October "crash"
Replies: 51
Views: 4546

Re: Checking monthly - may not even notice the October "cras

If you had to withdraw money near the bottom of the recent little trough, it could cost some money. I had to: RMD, which had been prescheduled. But I invest for longer term always.
by Garco
Wed Oct 29, 2014 9:19 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Checking monthly - may not even notice the October "crash"
Replies: 51
Views: 4546

Re: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal R

I think the concern for a "bad sequence of returns" is reasonable, and reason to be flexible and conservative. But I also think about the possibility of a bad sequence of events : Ill-health, disability, divorce, children/grandchildren in sudden need, etc. Any one of those can really eat i...
by Garco
Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal Rate)
Replies: 77
Views: 4169

Re: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal R

I expect to follow a "4% rule" starting next year. Of course no such fixed numeric rule is 100% guaranteed to work out. But given the size of my accumulation, if I build my budget based on starting with 4% w/d in 2015 (and using the standard idea of a COL increment each year thereafter), ...
by Garco
Sat Sep 27, 2014 3:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal Rate)
Replies: 77
Views: 4169

Re: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal R

I expect to follow a "4% rule" starting next year. Of course no such fixed numeric rule is 100% guaranteed to work out. But given the size of my accumulation, if I build my budget based on starting with 4% w/d in 2015 (and using the standard idea of a COL increment each year thereafter), I...
by Garco
Fri Sep 26, 2014 10:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your best estimate of the SWR (Safe Withdrawal Rate)
Replies: 77
Views: 4169

Re: Mechanics of paying a financial advisor?

I don't mind writing a check to my investment manager each quarter. I think it is money well spent and I sleep better at night knowing that when I am not be here any longer my spouse will not have to take on a task for which she has no interest or skill. Furthermore, having a trusted investment man...
by Garco
Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mechanics of paying a financial advisor?
Replies: 23
Views: 1403

Re: Barron's article: Don't Panic! (retirement news & theory

This article does an excellent job of calling out "retirement panic porn," which is often based on quick-and-dirty analyses of an available data set.
by Garco
Sun Sep 21, 2014 12:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Barron's article: Don't Panic! (retirement news & theory)
Replies: 28
Views: 3899

Re: Mechanics of paying a financial advisor?

If you have "cash," the adviser will take the fee from there, at the start of each year of your agreement. They prefer not to sell things for this purpose. Most accounts generate cash. If you use an adviser/manager you should clarify in fact whether he's charging you for the money you keep...
by Garco
Sat Sep 20, 2014 10:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mechanics of paying a financial advisor?
Replies: 23
Views: 1403
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