Search found 725 matches

by Iorek
Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Caribbean vacation recommendations
Replies: 32
Views: 2660

Re: Caribbean vacation recommendations

Broadly speaking, Caribbean islands tend to be either mountainous, with beautiful scenery (like St. Lucia, Dominica) or flatter with nicer beaches (like Aruba, Anguilla). Of course there will be beaches and scenery on both types islands (and some places don't fit, esp. if they are large like Puerto ...
by Iorek
Fri Jun 26, 2015 6:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FatWin and Dealer "Challenge"
Replies: 6
Views: 649

Re: FatWin and Dealer "Challenge"

I once got a call at work telling me I had won a contest and I tried to get off the phone as quickly as possible but stopped just short of hanging up on the person and it turned out I really had entered some online contest to win a trip and while I hadn't won the grand prize I had won a pretty decen...
by Iorek
Wed Jun 24, 2015 8:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?
Replies: 218
Views: 20115

Re: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?

There seems to be a paucity of people who rebalanced into equities to get back to their stated asset allocation during this time. Recalling the chart I posted earlier in this thread, equities were down 20% in 2008 before the drop in October and they were down more than that in October and again fro...
by Iorek
Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?
Replies: 218
Views: 20115

Re: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?

355 is chilling. The first few minutes talking about the money pool and chasing returns because of the "low 1%". If 1% was bad for a few years, whats 0-0.25% for 7 years do? Makes you wonder. I'm listening to it right now...chilling is a good word. I think it was in the second episode whe...
by Iorek
Sun Jun 21, 2015 11:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing 11 Million Dollar Gift
Replies: 80
Views: 11981

Re: Investing 11 Million Dollar Gift

Maybe I missed something, but if OP wants to spend $250k a year after tax, and lives in NY, then he could easily be in a 40% tax bracket, and would be at/over a 4% withdrawal rate to get $250k after taxes. Now maybe that's fine, but it doesn't seem helpful to describe it as an easy 2.5% withdrawal r...
by Iorek
Mon Jun 15, 2015 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice on Disability Insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 760

Re: Need advice on Disability Insurance

You might want to look at what emergdoc a/k/a the white coat investor has to say on the topic-- I haven't read these particular posts but IME/O he is very much worth reading-- http://whitecoatinvestor.com/tag/disability-insurance/page/2/ I think there are DI agents on Bogleheads who may be able to w...
by Iorek
Mon Jun 15, 2015 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 66
Views: 7805

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

Some things to note. 1) This is a 39 month lease for which you will be responsible for paying the 4th year's registration cost even though you will only drive it for 3 months. 2) Do not underestimate the increase in your electricity bill. Their savvy marketers use general nationwide avg. to calcula...
by Iorek
Sun Jun 14, 2015 7:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 66
Views: 7805

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

We ended up leasing one of these, and I have to say it's a small car, and the interior certainly says "economy" but it's a blast to drive. Really happy with it, and with essentially no fuel or maintenance costs the cost is almost negligible. We are usually a one car family but we didn't t...
by Iorek
Sat Jun 13, 2015 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 66
Views: 7805

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

We ended up leasing one of these, and I have to say it's a small car, and the interior certainly says "economy" but it's a blast to drive. Really happy with it, and with essentially no fuel or maintenance costs the cost is almost negligible. We are usually a one car family but we didn't tr...
by Iorek
Wed Jun 10, 2015 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Banff & Jasper with 1.5-yr old daughter.
Replies: 23
Views: 3263

Re: Banff & Jasper with 1.5-yr old daughter.

There is a nice book called "walks and easy hikes in the Canadian Rockies" you might want to check out. We did this with a smaller child and elected to skip going all the way to Jasper because it was too much driving with an infant, but we still had a great trip. ISTR we stayed in/near Ban...
by Iorek
Thu May 28, 2015 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do in Raleigh
Replies: 18
Views: 1603

Re: What to do in Raleigh

I like Durham a lot. One thing I didn't see mention is the Durham Athletic Park-- home of the Durham Bulls (of Bull Durham fame, although this park is not the one used in the movie-- that's the "historic DAP" which they only use occasionally now).
by Iorek
Sat May 16, 2015 7:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?
Replies: 56
Views: 4603

Re: Emerging Markets: Yes or No?

I wish the TSP included EM at market weight, but I have decided I don't really have the stomach to try and "fill in" that part of the index. So I would say, in theory yes, but for me, not really.
by Iorek
Sun May 10, 2015 9:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Financial Plan Under the New [ 0.3% ] Fee
Replies: 33
Views: 5443

Re: Vanguard Financial Plan Under the New [ 0.3% ] Fee

What does the Vanguard Personal Advisor service do or suggest if someone has non-Vanguard accounts? I haven't used this exact version of the service, but I did use the CFP consultation in its prior incarnation and I can say that they collected information on all of your accounts and offered advice ...
by Iorek
Fri May 08, 2015 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: dishwasher service plan
Replies: 18
Views: 1031

Re: dishwasher service plan

I will say that while I am sure that overall extended warranties are not a good deal for the consumer, and I don't usually get them, I did get one for our KA dishwasher because I had heard from too many people that their KA dishwasher had issues in the 2-5 year range, and where I am one service call...
by Iorek
Fri May 01, 2015 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2 Days in Bangkok
Replies: 17
Views: 1362

Re: 2 Days in Bangkok

The temples and the palace are worth a visit (and provide a good reason to ride up/down the river), but what I most remember is the food. We really enjoyed a food tour of Yaowarat (Chinatown), but you could look to see if one of these other tours is more to your liking (http://bangkokfoodtours.com/)...
by Iorek
Fri May 01, 2015 9:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Financial Plan Under the New [ 0.3% ] Fee
Replies: 33
Views: 5443

Re: Vanguard Financial Plan Under the New .03% Fee

When I talked to one of their CFPs under the old program they also told me they preferred equities as an inflation hedge (vs. inflation-adjusted bonds), but I thought that was perhaps because I am about 15 years from retirement. I think the target retirement funds for at/close to retirement have TIP...
by Iorek
Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 66
Views: 7805

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

driven this car I thought that if any car hit me at any reasonable speed, that i would not survive if an SUV hit me, then definitely wouldn't make it No point in being a boglehead if you don't live to enjoy the benefits of the money one saves however, if that doesn't concern you, then its a decent ...
by Iorek
Fri Apr 24, 2015 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 66
Views: 7805

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

I am usually the one tut tutting about leasing cars vs buying, but now I am the one considering a lease.
by Iorek
Mon Apr 20, 2015 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff Mortgage or Fund Taxable Account
Replies: 16
Views: 2214

Re: Payoff Mortgage or Fund Taxable Account

Look at what the rate on a no cost refi would be (where you take a slightly higher rate in exchange for a "negative point" or credit against closing costs). Amerisave usually offers a range of rates depending whether you pay to pay a point or receive a credit.
by Iorek
Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff Mortgage or Fund Taxable Account
Replies: 16
Views: 2214

Re: Payoff Mortgage or Fund Taxable Account

If it was me, I would probably refinance to a fixed rate mortgage, and if there was $ left over, I would put it in a 529.
by Iorek
Wed Apr 08, 2015 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of College & Weighing the Merits of Top Schools
Replies: 304
Views: 19017

Re: Cost of College & Weighing the Merits of Top Schools

Frank Bruni has written about this recently, a book called "Where You Go Is Not Who You'll Be", which has been excerpted in the NYT and reviewed a few places (like here, http://www.nytimes.com/2015/03/15/opinion/sunday/frank-bruni-how-to-survive-the-college-admissions-madness.html?_r=0). I...
by Iorek
Tue Apr 07, 2015 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting continental Europe (first time) with kids
Replies: 20
Views: 2090

Re: Visiting continental Europe (first time) with kids

t-mobile phones work in most of europe without any extra fees, fwiw
by Iorek
Mon Apr 06, 2015 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting continental Europe (first time) with kids
Replies: 20
Views: 2090

Re: Visiting continental Europe (first time) with kids

I would bring ample supplies of whatever medicine you use to treat cold/fevers etc. In Europe you may find limited availability (both in terms of hours of operation and in terms of what is OTC). Renting an apt is great for the ability to eat in, as well as having more room. Might seem obvious, but y...
by Iorek
Fri Mar 27, 2015 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Benefits of setting up a Trust Account
Replies: 16
Views: 2360

Re: Benefits of setting up a Trust Account

I believe banks still accept what is known as a Totten Trust account. This is simply "Mary Jones in trust for Susan Jones". Possibly these accounts are largely being replaced by POD accounts or UGMA accounts. Any of these would suit your needs. Gill There's a big difference between a POD ...
by Iorek
Wed Mar 25, 2015 8:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Travel Insurance
Replies: 20
Views: 1439

Re: Travel Insurance

I generally don't but I have once in a while-- for example sometimes we like to rent a beach house during hurricane season. While I could self-insure, I'm happier to take a bit of the savings from renting that time of year and put it towards trip insurance.
by Iorek
Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Schwab Intelligent Portfolios [now live]
Replies: 390
Views: 45984

Re: Schwab Intelligent Portfolios [now live]

I wonder about the auto-TLH. In a world where Roth conversions already give taxpayers significant control over when to time their income I expect this is small potatoes, but I wonder how the auto-TLH works, and whether having auto-TLH as a feature offered on investment accounts will prompt the IRS t...
by Iorek
Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset allocation when using target retirement funds
Replies: 8
Views: 908

Re: Asset allocation when using target retirement funds

Some people argue for bonds in tax-preferred to avoid paying tax on ordinary income gains, others argue for stocks in Roth to shelter the asset with greater growth potential. I tend to split the difference by putting my Roth into an aggressive lifecycle fund, so I certainly think that's a viable opt...
by Iorek
Sun Mar 08, 2015 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Choosing between learning a language/learning martial art
Replies: 20
Views: 1186

Re: Choosing between learning a language/learning martial ar

Opening your thread I was going to recommend a martial art because of the health benefits of being in shape (I think Taekwondo is a pretty good all-around exercise, with some aerobic activity, and also some emphasis on core strength and flexibility). However, when I read that you were looking at it ...
by Iorek
Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard PAS vs. Portfolio Solutions?
Replies: 11
Views: 1297

Re: Vanguard PAS vs. Portfolio Solutions?

If you have $5m I think the relevant comparison is to VG Flagship services, which are mostly free, isn't it?
by Iorek
Sat Mar 07, 2015 8:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disability insurance + life coverage
Replies: 2
Views: 336

Re: Disability insurance + life coverage

The long answer is of course that you should sit down and figure out how much you need to meet your family's needs in the event of those contingencies. It's hard to provide much advice without more info about ages of the family, other wage earners, etc. That said, I think the short answer is that fo...
by Iorek
Wed Mar 04, 2015 11:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ulysses Contract
Replies: 12
Views: 1426

Re: Ulysses Contract

I invest in target date funds partly because for this reason-- both for the automatic rebalancing and for the gradual shift away from a mostly equity portfolio.
by Iorek
Wed Mar 04, 2015 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard becominng more assertive with boards WSJ
Replies: 9
Views: 2000

Re: Vanguard becominng more assertive with boards WSJ

Vanguard does not have a good record on shareholder activism-- I think it is the biggest problem with the index fund model. Here is a recent example-- http://www.nytimes.com/2015/02/22/busin ... opics&_r=0
by Iorek
Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Costs of loyalty to employer
Replies: 14
Views: 1845

Re: Costs of loyalty to employer

If you like your job, your coworkers and your commute then I would suggest you not underestimate the value of that. Another way to think about it is, what would you do with the extra money? For what it's worth, in my career I once took a 25% pay cut to a job that required about 25% fewer hours becau...
by Iorek
Sun Mar 01, 2015 4:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does a Roth IRA make sense if you live in a high COL place?
Replies: 85
Views: 4225

Re: Does a Roth IRA make sense if you live in a high COL pla

I think the poster was using HCOL as a shorthand for "likely to be in a higher combined state/fed tax bracket". Technically of course that is not always the case, but I think it's often true that HCOL areas have higher salaries and higher state taxes.
by Iorek
Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does a Roth IRA make sense if you live in a high COL place?
Replies: 85
Views: 4225

Re: Does a Roth IRA make sense if you live in a high COL pla

NeutrinoPerson wrote:I am in the 25% tax bracket (I make $70k/year).


are you maxing out your 401(k)? In other words, if you don't contribute to a Roth, what will you do with the money?
by Iorek
Thu Feb 26, 2015 12:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct (no TIPS or Series I) and taxes
Replies: 9
Views: 1237

Re: Treasury Direct (no TIPS or Series I) and taxes

I personally have chosen not to operate with the addition of TD as another agent holding assets just to be able to carry individual treasury bonds. I didn't like their approach to account management and customer interaction. Maybe they are different now but when they mailed out that plastic card gi...
by Iorek
Tue Feb 24, 2015 12:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 Breakeven math; quick question
Replies: 4
Views: 777

Re: 529 Breakeven math; quick question

Some recent posts and a revisit of the Wiki have me thinking... Let's assume a high ER state plan that has a nice state tax deduction. When deciding whether to invest in this plan or the cheaper no state tax benefit alternative, shouldn't breakeven calculations grow the annual state tax savings? So...
by Iorek
Mon Feb 16, 2015 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Preparing for 2 months incommunicado
Replies: 144
Views: 8315

Re: Preparing for 2 months incommunicado

Victoria, FYI, if you have (or setup) a gmail account, and if you turn on 2 factor authentication, then you need to print out a series of one-time passwords from gmail's site to let you log in at internet cafes abroad (but if you do that, you should not have problems). Sounds like a great adventure-...
by Iorek
Sun Feb 15, 2015 3:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Have 20k to invest.. trying to time it.
Replies: 7
Views: 1131

Re: Have 20k to invest.. trying to time it.

No one has any idea where the market is going and in the long-term (which is hopefully the time frame you are looking at) it seems unlikely that anything that happens in the next couple weeks is going to matter. If you will feel regret if the market moves down after you buy, then you could consider ...
by Iorek
Sun Feb 01, 2015 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Understanding Cost Basis and Form 8606.
Replies: 20
Views: 1177

Re: Understanding Cost Basis and Form 8606.

One way that might help to think about it is basis represents the amount you have already been taxed on, and which will be subtracted from proceeds in calculating taxes. For a simple stock transaction, basis is the amount you paid out of previously taxed income to purchase the stock (including trans...
by Iorek
Fri Jan 30, 2015 1:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?
Replies: 22
Views: 2202

Re: what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?

3feetpete wrote:
I think if she marries someone with outstanding college debt she could even pay it off with the 529 money. That's a question I have. Someone check me on that.


I don't think student loan debt counts as a qualified tuition expense. No one gets a 1098-T for their student loan payments.
by Iorek
Fri Jan 30, 2015 12:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?
Replies: 22
Views: 2202

Re: what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?

529 Withdrawals to cover qualified expenses that are covered by scholarships are penalty free, but they are not tax-free. Withdrawals in those circumstances are taxed as ordinary income. Good point, although I guess if we changed it from a scholarship to an inheritance/gift earmarked for education ...
by Iorek
Thu Jan 29, 2015 9:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?
Replies: 22
Views: 2202

what to do with 529 if you earn a scholarship?

So this is somewhat hypothetical for me at the moment, but I was wondering what you would do if you found that your only child had been awarded a $20,000 scholarship for her last year of college and therefore did not need the $20k you had set aside in a 529. Assume you don't need the $20k and want t...
by Iorek
Sat Jan 24, 2015 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prepaid Tuition Vs 529 plan
Replies: 12
Views: 1025

Re: Prepaid Tuition Vs 529 plan

We have a similar program in our state and we bought in. I think your basic analysis is right. One thing to keep in mind is that there are a number of influences on tuitions at state schools (particularly state govt). In our state we went through a period of rapid tuition growth, and then a period w...
by Iorek
Fri Jan 23, 2015 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying life insurance online
Replies: 21
Views: 807

Re: Buying life insurance online

Good topic and we are getting closer to buying life insurance as well. Don't mean to change the topic, but does anyone know the difference when it comes to alcohol use etc. We don't smoke, but like to have the occasional glass of wine. Will we not be considered preferred plus? Or does having a glas...
by Iorek
Fri Jan 23, 2015 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Intuit Turbo Tax Refund
Replies: 23
Views: 2303

Re: Intuit Turbo Tax Refund

Intuit forced people that need Schedule D to upgrade to the Premier version and that was not well received. Now they are offering a rebate to those customers but you really have to question if they thought very much about this announcement. If you look into this a little further it turns out you mu...
by Iorek
Fri Jan 23, 2015 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Intuit Turbo Tax Refund
Replies: 23
Views: 2303

Re: Intuit Turbo Tax Refund

Note they just acknowledge they messed up the communications, not the fundamental strategy...
by Iorek
Sun Jan 18, 2015 11:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: EE bonds vs iBonds
Replies: 29
Views: 2799

Re: EE bonds vs iBonds

I have both EE and I bonds for my emergency savings fund. Before 2011 EE bonds sold for 1/2 face value and were guaranteed to reach face value in about 20 years. Now the EE bonds sell for full face value. I can't find anything at treasurydirect dot com describing the guarantee of doubling your mone...
by Iorek
Sat Jan 17, 2015 9:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: EE bonds vs iBonds
Replies: 29
Views: 2799

Re: EE bonds vs iBonds

My wife and I are looking to purchase some EE bonds next week. The reason I like these bonds is the guaranteed double on your initial investment, and the exemption from state taxes. We are investing the full 20k, so our return after our 28% federal taxes should be 34,400 after the full 20 years. I ...

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