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Re: NYT article on sequence of returns risk

I agree the article (and follow up blog post) are interesting, but I also think if they were to look at a 60 year investing life rather than just the 30 year accumulation phases that the numbers would change dramatically. Not sure whether they'd be smoothed out significantly or if the disparities wo...
by Meg77
Fri Jul 25, 2014 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NYT article on sequence of returns risk
Replies: 6
Views: 1004

Re: Rather be Home, Rather be at Work

I go back and forth in a similar way. After a few hours at work I long to be anywhere else and often plan out my retirement. I have never dreaded my job until recently though (due to some big changes at work), but even now I appreciate the quiet organization of my workplace and day, if not the work ...
by Meg77
Fri Jul 25, 2014 4:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rather be Home, Rather be at Work
Replies: 19
Views: 1762

Re: Help on choosing between investing/paying mortgage/colle

I agree with your plan. If you are in the highest tax bracket then the effective rate on your mortgage is more like 2.5% - which is pretty much like free money since that's about the rate of inflation. I'd invest the $100K. If you are sure you are on track for retirement then divvy it up partly in e...
by Meg77
Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:56 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help on choosing between investing/paying mortgage/college
Replies: 12
Views: 874

Re: Advice for Mother in law

Here are the usual steps to financial stability, in varying order depending on particular circumstances: 1. Contribute enough to an employer 401k to get the company match 2. Save $1000 or one month of income in emergency savings 3. Pay off very high interest debt (credit cards, payday loans, etc) 4....
by Meg77
Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for Mother in law
Replies: 9
Views: 785

Re: Comparing home loan offers

I'm a banker and mortgage origination officer so I can help shed some light on this. The answer is actually pretty simple: you should easily be able to compare all quotes by looking at the APR. The Interest Rate will be the flat rate you can lock in (around 4.25% these days for a standard 30 year fi...
by Meg77
Fri Jul 25, 2014 3:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comparing home loan offers
Replies: 9
Views: 801

Re: Can I buy insurance against bank failure?

As a banker, I've never heard of such a product. But I also really don't think you need to obsess so much about the possibility of banks failing. Even when banks fail, in the vast majority of cases ALL depositors are made whole, even those with more than $250K at that institution (this applied even ...
by Meg77
Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I buy insurance against bank failure?
Replies: 12
Views: 961

Re: Cheap auto loan suggestions?

pobrien1902 wrote:Sorry for the confusion! We are still using M in community banking to denote thousands and MM to denote millions.


Ditto, I'm in banking and we use M and MM.
by Meg77
Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheap auto loan suggestions?
Replies: 12
Views: 652

Re: Need Help and totally confused!!

OK obviously there is a lot to digest and figure out here, but I am going to give you three basic first steps that I think most Bogleheads will agree upon so that you feel like you are making some progress! These tips are not right for everyone in every situation, but just some of the reasons I thin...
by Meg77
Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Help and totally confused!!
Replies: 28
Views: 1775

Re: Starting off and Maxing Out

Congrats on a great start! You sound a lot like me; I had 7 rental properties at 28 (a mere few years ago) and now manage 10 units in my area. Well, I wizened up and hired a property management company finally, but I own them anyway. :beer I agree with a lot of what Duckie is saying, but I just want...
by Meg77
Tue Jul 22, 2014 4:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting off and Maxing Out
Replies: 9
Views: 1618

Re: Thoughts on [not] rebalancing

If you were in 100% stocks, then what was there to rebalance? I agree that in the middle of a stock market crash would be a bad time to change your target AA from 100 stocks to 80% stocks/20% bonds. However if you had been 80/20 from the beginning then a) you wouldn't have lost as much in stocks whe...
by Meg77
Tue Jul 22, 2014 2:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thoughts on [not] rebalancing
Replies: 12
Views: 665

Re: Former Employer Over Payment

I would have done exactly what you did (for better or worse). At this point you made your bed either way and now you just have to lie in it. GE obviously sold this "debt" for pennies on the dollar to a collection agency. I doubt this can or will show up on your credit report (since I assum...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 21, 2014 5:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Former Employer Over Payment
Replies: 37
Views: 2258

Re: New car - put extra $ towards current loan or save?

Since you know you want to buy new and you know you want out of your current car, I vote that you just go ahead and get the new truck sooner than later. The longer you wait the further your Honda will depreciate and the less your trade in will be worth (whereas new truck prices probably won't change...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 21, 2014 5:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New car - put extra $ towards current loan or save?
Replies: 9
Views: 600

Re: Lifecycle Financial Planning Spreadsheet

The lifecycle planning model is actually not that different from the traditional model. The primary difference, which is significant, comes when you are a few years away from retirement, at which point it's usually recommended that you purchase an annuity or some combination of annuities to ensure a...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 21, 2014 4:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lifecycle Financial Planning Spreadsheet
Replies: 3
Views: 840

Re: Intimidated by Investment Advisor

If the trust has closed and the funds have all been distributed to regular accounts with this investment advisor, then I don't think you need a lawyer - you just need a new financial advisor. If I'm understanding you correctly and the first trust has been dissolved, then you can move your money anyw...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 21, 2014 12:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Intimidated by Trustee and Investment Advisor
Replies: 32
Views: 3804

Re: Poll - Do you use Quicken?

I use Mint for spending, SigFig for investment monitoring, and Excel for net worth tracking over time. I tried Quicken years ago on my Mac, but it seemed overly burdensome since every single thing had to be categorized manually. I'm sure I'd love it, but I've been using my system for so long that I ...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 21, 2014 12:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll - Do you use Quicken?
Replies: 66
Views: 3276

Re: how often do you look at your account

Daily or a few times a week. I use Mint so it all shows up whenever I check my checking account balances or anything else. I update our net worth statement every month so I make sure to check at least that often. I don't really look at performance data that often though - just balances.
by Meg77
Sun Jul 20, 2014 9:20 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: how often do you look at your account
Replies: 70
Views: 3572

Re: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move

In light of the most recent expense ratio info, I would not leave your 401k where it is: rolling to your new 401k will get you better expense ratios than you have now and will simplify rebalancing by minimizing the number of accounts you have. Rolling to a Vanguard IRA will do the same thing, but th...
by Meg77
Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move
Replies: 29
Views: 2346

Re: Investment Advisor usage? (vs. 3-fund)

I'll respond to the first question. The folks who would benefit from hiring an investment manager who truly only manages a portfolio include those who are suffering from cognitive decline or who worry they might; those who are young and not yet of legal decision making age; those who have no inclina...
by Meg77
Sun Jul 20, 2014 3:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investment Advisor usage? (vs. 3-fund)
Replies: 9
Views: 1186

Re: Likely about to lose job, planning for transition

I would not touch the Roth IRAs at all since you have a largish taxable account. Several folks have responded with this. I guess I'm thinking about it this way: if things get bad enough that I need cash for longer than expected, the order in which I'd have access to cash for generic expenses is as ...
by Meg77
Thu Jul 17, 2014 12:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Likely about to lose job, planning for transition
Replies: 21
Views: 2631

Re: Wife has no retirement options- is breadwinner

1 - Max your 401k 2 - Max both Roth IRAs 3 - Max any HSA you might have access to 4 - Start piling up funds in tax efficient taxable Vanguard mutual funds (such as the Total Stock Market Index, the Total International Index, and/or the S&P 500 Index). Keep bonds and any REITs in the retirement a...
by Meg77
Thu Jul 17, 2014 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife has no retirement options- is breadwinner
Replies: 36
Views: 3212

Re: Is this realtor lying to me?

The realtor may not be lying to you, but he or she also may not know much about financing options for the client. The clients themselves may not even know much about what they can borrow. The bottom line is that you are right. If the client has 50% to put down, then a low appraisal is not going to c...
by Meg77
Thu Jul 17, 2014 11:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this realtor lying to me?
Replies: 27
Views: 3336

Re: Likely about to lose job, planning for transition

I agree with all of the above. 1 - First and foremost, start job hunting now. It is easier to get a job while you have one, and it can take awhile for the interview process and orientation, especially if you are relocating. Also, cut back on expenses where you can and pad your accounts now. I wouldn...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 16, 2014 4:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Likely about to lose job, planning for transition
Replies: 21
Views: 2631

Re: Refinance ?

You should refinance. Even if you were paying closing costs, your monthly savings would outweigh them before you move out of the house. However I agree that if you are planning to move in 5-10 years then an ARM might be a better option. PenFed's 5/5 ARM is perfect for you. Another option would be ge...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 16, 2014 3:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance ?
Replies: 14
Views: 870

Re: REITs vs Rental Properties?

I have rental properties, and although they are certainly a lot more work than passively funnelling money into a REIT, there are distinct advantages to owning the actual property - namely leverage and tax breaks. Say you have $10,000 and you can either put it into a REIT or use it to buy a rental pr...
by Meg77
Tue Jul 15, 2014 5:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs vs Rental Properties?
Replies: 7
Views: 1270

Re: Thoughts on 100% stock allocation for 33 year old

I'm 30 and my husband is 36 and we have 95% in stocks. We have both invested nearly 100% in equities since we started investing (separately) about 12 years ago. We both bought more - as much as we could - during the crash in 08-09. I've never even considered adding bonds until recently, with the ma...
by Meg77
Tue Jul 15, 2014 12:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on 100% stock allocation for 33 year old
Replies: 85
Views: 6171

Re: Knowledge gaps + anxiety = shame; gender and investing

This is a very interesting topic from both sides. As a female and a financial advisor (and, until recently, an active dater) I have read and thought much about gender differences in work and life. I think we can all agree that there are some differences between the sexes, particularly when it comes ...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 14, 2014 4:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Knowledge gaps + anxiety = shame; gender and investing
Replies: 77
Views: 5452

Re: Should I try to re-fi my mortgage?

How did that compare to Zillow? I've been curious as to how well that tracks actual appraisals. This depends a lot on your area. In Texas where I live sales aren't public record so Zillow is notoriously off-base. But I've heard in some metros with lots of comps and mandatory sales price reporting t...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 14, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I try to re-fi my mortgage?
Replies: 26
Views: 3277

Re: Sell taxable account to pay down student loans?

No, you should not pay off that student loan early. You are barely paying the rate of inflation on that debt currently, and that's even if you are in the lowest tax bracket. In other words, you can make more by investing that money (even in some rewards checking accounts that are 100% FDIC insured) ...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 14, 2014 2:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell taxable account to pay down student loans?
Replies: 15
Views: 949

Re: Thoughts on 100% stock allocation for 33 year old

I'm 30 and my husband is 36 and we have 95% in stocks. We have both invested nearly 100% in equities since we started investing (separately) about 12 years ago. We both bought more - as much as we could - during the crash in 08-09. I've never even considered adding bonds until recently, with the mar...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 14, 2014 1:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on 100% stock allocation for 33 year old
Replies: 85
Views: 6171

Re: [Poll] How often do you re-balance?

I don't rebalance at all. So far I have just directed new investments (annual IRA contributions primarily) into one asset class or another and maintained my target AA of 90-95% stocks. However now my portfolio is big enough that new contributions aren't sufficient to move the needle much, so I need ...
by Meg77
Mon Jul 14, 2014 12:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Poll] How often do you re-balance?
Replies: 25
Views: 2209

Re: Marriage - Asset Allocation Question

I am a woman who recently married who also has a trust and some inherited assets (not as much as your wife, but fairly substantial). So you may appreciate my perspective. Or not. :D 1. You didn't tell us anything about what you have or how old you two are, or how stable your jobs/careers are. It's h...
by Meg77
Fri Jul 11, 2014 5:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Marriage - Asset Allocation Question
Replies: 11
Views: 1243

Re: Munchies ?

Edamame (in the pods) and pistachios (in the shell) are both lower in carbs, have interesting texture, and require just enough work to eat so that it's hard to go through way too much. Although honestly there isn't really much of anything you can eat consistently for any length of time (even the dur...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 09, 2014 5:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Munchies ?
Replies: 22
Views: 2074

Re: How I look at $ in the real world vs my retirement accou

That is very interesting. I think you just become accustomed to looking at investment accounts differently as you get into the habit of investing. It's true it's almost like it isn't "real" money. You kind of have to compartmentalize it. But the beauty of it is when the account balance goe...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 09, 2014 4:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How I look at $ in the real world vs my retirement accounts
Replies: 45
Views: 5786

Re: When do you "limit" saving and start to spend more?

I'm kind of at the point of enjoying spending now. I'm not near financial independence yet, but I'm ahead of the game enough to feel comfortable loosening the reigns on the budget a bit. To me the major factor is that we have emergency savings and are on track to be able to retire in our early 50s -...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 09, 2014 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When do you "limit" saving and start to spend more?
Replies: 39
Views: 3875

Re: How does a commercial banker define liquidity?

I'm a banker, and whether you are talking about consumer or business loans, it's true that we do not consider retirement accounts as "liquidity." Some banks will count retirement assets as liquid if you are over 59.5 and can access them, or they will give you credit for a portion of them, ...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 09, 2014 3:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does a commercial banker define liquidity?
Replies: 8
Views: 779

Re: What finance experts do you follow on Twitter?

It's ironic to post in an internet forum challenging the "large quantities of short, imprecise statements" on Twitter. Haha so true! I just joined twitter earlier this year and have been really surprised by how much I use and enjoy it. I mainly follow news outlets (not friends or celebrit...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 09, 2014 3:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What finance experts do you follow on Twitter?
Replies: 35
Views: 4581

Re: Do you set financial goals annually?

Yes - see net worth increase. This is pretty much my only goal as well. In January I started a new spreadsheet (!) and began tracking the global net worth statement for myself and my new husband. The net worth figure has gone up every month so far this year due to a combination of new investments, ...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 02, 2014 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you set financial goals annually?
Replies: 44
Views: 2388

Re: opinions on mortgage recast (specific numbers included)

I'm a banker, and I just want to clarify what you mean by "recast." Some banks offer the ability for borrowers to do a one time lump sum principal reduction and then re-amortize the remaining balance over the remaining life of the loan, at the same interest rate. I assume this is what you ...
by Meg77
Wed Jul 02, 2014 4:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: opinions on mortgage recast (specific numbers included)
Replies: 9
Views: 1088

Re: Is it really necessary to have a bank account?

Given the broad range of services provided by companies like Fidelity and Vanguard, why would one have a separate bank account? Would it be more efficient to consolidate all under one roof? Depending on the services you use, you may not need a checking account from a brick-and-mortar bank. A simple...
by Meg77
Thu Jun 26, 2014 4:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it really necessary to have a bank account?
Replies: 36
Views: 3599

Re: Retiring at 25? Help with allocation

Keep in mind that most of the studies citing safe withdrawal rates and other rules of thumb are based up on periods of only 30 years - a typical "retirement." They are also based usually on the performance of US stock market returns, which you'd largely be avoiding. And for the record, ass...
by Meg77
Thu Jun 26, 2014 3:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring at 25? Help with allocation
Replies: 9
Views: 2846

Re: Am I Nuts?

I don't think you're nuts, especially if you have the money set aside for the project and can continue maxing out retirement accounts as well.
by Meg77
Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I Nuts? [Purchased "forever house," planning addition]
Replies: 34
Views: 2732

Re: School me on my rental property understanding..

One thing you're missing is the opportunity cost of the equity you have in the house (or the down payment and closing costs you use to purchase the rental). Just because you can make $100 a month or $500 a month on an investment doesn't make it a great investment. There may be higher yielding, more ...
by Meg77
Thu Jun 26, 2014 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: School me on my rental property understanding..
Replies: 16
Views: 988

Re: Can I afford a house in this price range? ($500k)

I think you can afford it, assuming you can swing the monthly payments and still save 10-15% toward retirement each year (I'm assuming wife will have a pension). It may be a stretch depending on your monthly budget, but you have 20% to put down, no other debt, and you're looking in homes just barely...
by Meg77
Wed Jun 25, 2014 4:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford a house in this price range? ($500k)
Replies: 31
Views: 4402

Re: Maxed out contributions help!!

Investing in a taxable fund can look just like investing in your IRA - it might even be with the same funds. Many investors say an S&P 500 index or total US stock market index is all you need, but many Bogleheads champion the "three fund portfolio" for maximum diversity for the lowest ...
by Meg77
Mon Jun 23, 2014 3:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maxed out contributions help!!
Replies: 14
Views: 1300

Re: Pay Down Principle or Save for Down Payment?

Could you rent out your current home by any chance? That could be a way to get out whether you stay underwater or not. In any event I agree that you should save the money rather than pay down your loan more aggressively. Paying the loan down now isn't going to speed up your amortizatio enough to mak...
by Meg77
Mon Jun 23, 2014 3:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay Down Principle or Save for Down Payment?
Replies: 11
Views: 1006

Re: [Poll] How many brokerage firms do you use for investing

We have two. My brokerage account is with Scottrade, my IRA is with Vanguard, and husband's brokerage and IRAs are with Vanguard. No plans to consolidate, because I've had the Scottrade for 15+ years and don't need the capital gains hassles. Although if I ever liquidate it I might re-open taxable ac...
by Meg77
Mon Jun 23, 2014 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Poll] How many brokerage firms do you use for investing?
Replies: 43
Views: 2030

Re: Stop-n-Go on the freeway? Or Nice and easy (and long)?

I used to rotate around for my job at various locations for a month at a time and experienced all types of commutes within a 15 months period. Stop and go is the WORST for stress level, even if overall time/distance is shorter. My commute from Dallas to Fort Worth was one of the easiest because, whi...
by Meg77
Fri Jun 20, 2014 5:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stop-n-Go on the freeway? Or Nice and easy (and long)?
Replies: 7
Views: 1074

Re: How much $$ to change jobs?

Pros of current job: - high pay, low stress, flexibility and freedom, ability to take vacation, low accountability, Cons of current job: - could possibly be promoted once in 4-5 years time but thereafter do not see myself going further due to politics/ no interest in managing people - low engagemen...
by Meg77
Fri Jun 20, 2014 4:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much $$ to change jobs?
Replies: 52
Views: 4141

Re: Renting my condo - need tax advice (esp depreciation)

I have a few rental properties, and you can pretty much deduct everything related to them starting when you moved out or made it available for lease. Just keep good receipts. 1 - You don't have to have it re-appraised I don't think, but there is some mechanism for determining the value...you'll have...
by Meg77
Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting my condo - need tax advice (esp depreciation)
Replies: 4
Views: 533

Re: Should one ever do a cash-out refi to invest?

I have a rental house and I am pondering a cash-out refi. I have a 15 (3.5%) and may go to a 30 (5%). The rate would be higher but the payment would stay about the same. I could take the 30k out of the house and put it in a 529. The new rate would be about 5% and I am in the 25% bracket. So let's s...
by Meg77
Fri Jun 20, 2014 3:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should one ever do a cash-out refi to invest?
Replies: 38
Views: 4133
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