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Re: What % of your gross income do you spend on mortgage/ren

6% of gross on mortgage.
5.6% of gross on loan principal and 0.4% of gross on interest (at 2.74% interest rate)
by MnD
Sat Feb 21, 2015 10:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What % of your gross income do you spend on mortgage/rent?
Replies: 151
Views: 8116

Re: Worth Upgrading to LED Lighting?

We replaced virtually everything with LED's using the warm white CREE bulbs for the common bulb types and ones from Costco for the less common types like R20 recessed and globe. Electricity use dropped dramatically (~30%). We use a lot of lighting in a 1950's rambling ranch style 2500SF home and we ...
by MnD
Sun Feb 08, 2015 11:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth Upgrading to LED Lighting?
Replies: 45
Views: 3459

Re: The Emergency Fund Revisited

We spent our emergency fund in 1990 on a house down payment and the many things the house needed and never have had one since. We had at the time and still have a taxable investment account that's typically 100% equity and that plus short-term credit has sufficed for the past 25 years. The taxable a...
by MnD
Sat Feb 07, 2015 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Emergency Fund Revisited
Replies: 20
Views: 1869

Re: Dave Ramsey says you shouldn't own bonds?

He also tells kids who aren't getting any parental support to not to _ever_ take out any student loans but rather defer going to college or try to work full-time to support yourself and simultaneously go to community college. I've heard him tell a middle-income individual not to shop for health insu...
by MnD
Sat Feb 07, 2015 2:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dave Ramsey says you shouldn't own bonds?
Replies: 64
Views: 8789

Re: How do you balance frugality and life?

We set a savings amount from each of our paychecks that gets us to where we want to be as far as investment assets required for intermediate term savings goals and an age mid-50's retirement. And spend the rest freely and as foolishly as we please. For our personality types, a life that revolved aro...
by MnD
Tue Feb 03, 2015 10:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you balance frugality and life?
Replies: 50
Views: 5371

Re: 3 must have car safety/'Convenience safety' features

My 2005 Tacoma has none of these and our 2010 Altima has one (multiple side and rear air bags).
So absent a none of the above choice, I selected only the multiple air bag option.
Some of these are on renntal cars now and seem like a nuisance.
by MnD
Tue Feb 03, 2015 8:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 3 must have car safety/'Convenience safety' features
Replies: 36
Views: 2539

Re: How to report interest under $10 in TurboTax?

This would be item 1001 of the top 1000 things I'd expend time on but if reporting $3 or 1 cent of interest income is a priority, I don't want to discourage anyone. :beer
by MnD
Mon Feb 02, 2015 12:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report interest under $10 in TurboTax?
Replies: 12
Views: 1456

Re: Any other investors with 70/30 portfolio?

Roughly 70/30 and plan to hold it for life in a mix of Federal TSP, Vanguard index ETF's and Dodge and Cox Funds. Age 52.5, planned retirement for both of us at age 56. 1 federal pension, one nearly maxed out claim on SS and one above-average claim on SS and will have no debt and no dependents at re...
by MnD
Sat Jan 31, 2015 10:11 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any other investors with 70/30 portfolio?
Replies: 40
Views: 3361

Re: Your Minimum Annual Expenses

Don't know and hope never to find out. 8-)
by MnD
Fri Jan 30, 2015 11:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your Minimum Annual Expenses
Replies: 37
Views: 3677

Re: What mutual fund companies do you use?

Federal TSP, Vanguard, Dodge and Cox, Fidelity, Schwab, Blackrock, iShares and Wisdom Tree in roughly that order of assets.
Weighted ER under 10 basis points so I don't really worry about it.
by MnD
Tue Jan 27, 2015 10:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What mutual fund companies do you use?
Replies: 63
Views: 3138

Re: Salary to Home Value/Mortgage Ratio?

1:1.8 back then
1:1.7 now.
Both our home value and household income have increased about 3.8X in nominal terms over 23 years.

Bought 2500SF and 3/4 acre lot in out late 20's. Now in our early 50's it is, in the words of Jack Bogle - "Enough".
by MnD
Mon Jan 26, 2015 9:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Salary to Home Value/Mortgage Ratio?
Replies: 50
Views: 5487

Re: Half off TurboTax thru Monday

So it seems that the $25 refund offer for Premier will "appear" after filing 2014 if you filed using Deluxe in 2013. I paid $55 at Costco so after the $25 refund that brings Premier cost down to $30 for 2014 ($32.60 when including sales tax and 2% Costco exec member cash back and 1% Costco...
by MnD
Sat Jan 24, 2015 2:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Half off TurboTax thru Monday
Replies: 37
Views: 4392

Re: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?

100% equity emergency fund in taxable that would cover 3-4 years of bare-bones expenses. Another 3-4 years bare-bones expenses in credit card lines and unsecured bank credit lines. Virtually no cash, I remember a few weeks last year where we had maybe $15 in the bank. 7-figure investment net worth h...
by MnD
Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:41 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you have an EF & Taxable Account?
Replies: 20
Views: 1534

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

Did you pay for 1st class tickets or were these seat upgrades due to status? I think your course of action makes a difference depending upon how you were given these seats. Neither. We "purchased" two confirmed one-way first class seats on US Airways (Denver to Maui) using 80,000 United m...
by MnD
Mon Jan 19, 2015 11:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

United customer care just added another 10,000 miles and an apology on behalf of their partner airline US Airways at the time. The 80,000 I got earlier this week came from the mileage plus refund department. So I guess categorically at least I got what I asked for. Entire flight for both us us made ...
by MnD
Mon Jan 19, 2015 7:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Dave Ramsey's bad advice at an all time high!

I can't listen to 30 minutes of the show without hearing at least one instance of terrible advice. He recently advised someone needing individual health insurance to go directly to insurance companies and go not go through the ACA exchange because that route was "too much government". I've...
by MnD
Sun Jan 18, 2015 10:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Dave Ramsey's bad advice at an all time high!
Replies: 40
Views: 6437

Re: US/foreign allocation under massive relative US drop

I just look at VT annually and adjust new money to what percentages US, ex-US the portion of that in emerging markets. The old money which is in separate funds for US, ex-US and EM pretty much adjusts all by itself to VT due to differential performance. US/ex-US has recently moved from 45%/55% to 50...
by MnD
Sun Jan 18, 2015 9:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: US/foreign allocation under massive relative US drop
Replies: 21
Views: 1442

Re: Why invest in International funds? It's a mystery

Beware of confirmation bias, seeking information the supports your opinion after it has already been established. There are several posts supporting not investing in international equities because of what the market has recently done (in as little as six months) and hoping the US can't behave like ...
by MnD
Sun Jan 18, 2015 8:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why invest in International funds? It's a mystery
Replies: 121
Views: 10708

Re: A refinance example that doesn't work?

Zero closing cost first lien fixed rate home equity loan.
My bank has 3.62% for a 10 year and 3.87% for a 15 year.
I'm sure the bank would do a zero cost 8.75 year loan at 3.62%

That beats the heck out of 5.25% with no costs to do so.
by MnD
Sat Jan 17, 2015 11:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A refinance example that doesn't work?
Replies: 10
Views: 1105

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

I think it would be reasonable for them to refund your miles, essentially making your flight free. They did still get you there after all, and one of your segments was still first class. Nonetheless, flying first class is exciting, and when you have a confirmed ticket like that, being bumped is a v...
by MnD
Sat Jan 17, 2015 7:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Survey - Men Who Exercise At a Gym

Work out everyday and throw the dirty cloths in the laundry hamper daily.
Often I'll wear a clean set of gym clothes for lounging around after work evenings and then work out in that set in the morning.
by MnD
Sat Jan 17, 2015 7:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Survey - Men Who Exercise At a Gym
Replies: 23
Views: 2671

Re: Help me to understand time shares

Owning a time share = financial herpes.
Does that sound like something you want to aquire?
by MnD
Sat Jan 10, 2015 1:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me to understand time shares
Replies: 58
Views: 5415

Re: “Safe” investment choices for Fidelity Roth IRA

I looked at Money Market funds, but they have a very poor yield (~.01%) and the expense ratio is on the order of 0.40% per year, so they would effectively be losing money each year, albeit a small amount. The money market returns are stated after expenses. It sounds like you think the return would ...
by MnD
Sat Jan 10, 2015 10:11 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: “Safe” investment choices for Fidelity Roth IRA
Replies: 4
Views: 658

Re: What do you drive, and why?

2005 Tacoma 4X4 Doublecab long bed PU. It's my third vehicle in life following up a 1977 Datsun kingcab PU and a 1989 Mazda extended cab PU. It suits my needs, ultra-reliable, tops both the lake kayaks, good for camping, comfortable, holds the whole family and I haul stuff. It's a comfortable commut...
by MnD
Wed Jan 07, 2015 8:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you drive, and why?
Replies: 205
Views: 17730

Re: Let's Celebtate! Which funds are you buying in 2015?

I rebalance only when rebalancing bands are exceeded. I do not attempt to rebalance constantly with new money. New money is always buying shares in propertion to my stated AA. Bands were exceeded recently for small cap international (VSS) and emerging markets (VWO) so I made purchases of those funds...
by MnD
Tue Jan 06, 2015 9:27 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Let's Celebrate! Which funds are you buying in 2015?
Replies: 48
Views: 3631

Re: Relative tax inefficiency of active funds?

Several years back people on this board were warning about possible cap gains from the then brand new schwab small-cap international ETF and yet that year Vanguard small cap international ETF VSS was the one with the capital gains distribution if I recall correctly. I doubt GWX has turned into a cap...
by MnD
Sun Jan 04, 2015 1:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Relative tax inefficiency of active funds?
Replies: 38
Views: 3058

Re: International - good for diversification, bad for return

The worst thing an investor could do is bail on international during a period of under-performance. The two funds highlighted were about dead even over the period of comparison until as recently as end of 2012. I can guarantee an investor personality that would bail or cut back on international now ...
by MnD
Sun Jan 04, 2015 12:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International - good for diversification, bad for returns?
Replies: 43
Views: 4903

Re: Relative tax inefficiency of active funds?

I think the correct way to describe this event is: OUCH! My words were a little more forceful than OUCH! My faith in the tax efficiency of ETF's and index funds in general has been diminished. What I think happened with GWX was a large outflow of funds maybe triggered by poor performance in Japan w...
by MnD
Sun Jan 04, 2015 12:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Relative tax inefficiency of active funds?
Replies: 38
Views: 3058

Re: Car shuts off while driving - death, dealers, & liabilit

Why don't you just go fix the problem for now and seek reimbursement later? Just put the key in. Then play around with it. Is the ignition key friction device (to prevent shut-off) so worn or broken that the key easily slides to ACC or off? If so, replace the ignition key assembly part. I've had thi...
by MnD
Sat Jan 03, 2015 12:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car shuts off while driving - death, dealers, & liability
Replies: 44
Views: 4335

Re: [Annual POLL] What was your 2014 return?

2014 XIRR = 1.1% Benchmark return=3.6%, so I lagged my benchmark by 2.5 percentage points 2014 asset allocation = 35% US stock, 40% International stock, 25% bonds and cash. Benchmark was 35% Total US stock market (VTI), 40% total international stock (VXUS), 20% Total Bond Market (BND) and 5% Money M...
by MnD
Fri Jan 02, 2015 1:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Annual POLL] What was your 2014 return?
Replies: 144
Views: 14381

Re: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?

I think 3, 4 or 5X income is crazy. Our home price to income was 1.45 in 1991 (lucky timing I know) and the house was somewhat more than the median home price at the time. The bank of course said we afford much much more. We wanted a place we could get paid off by the time we retired and one we coul...
by MnD
Thu Jan 01, 2015 11:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?
Replies: 46
Views: 4873

Re: Backyard Spa

220V, slab is good, buy from a small dedicated pool/spa store that has in-house service and expertise, buy supplies on-line to save. It's going to consume a fair amount of electricity especially in cold climates in the winter. Ours boosts our electric by ~$50 relative to our neighbors in the winter ...
by MnD
Sun Dec 28, 2014 10:31 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard Spa
Replies: 19
Views: 2206

Re: Don't be tempted to buy your teen a cheap (old) car, par

The kids (since age 16) drive identical 2002 Subaru Outback limited wagons except for the color and transmission. One is manual so both have learned to drive a stick very well but got to start out driving with an automatic. And each kid has full vehicle familiarity with the other (except for shiftin...
by MnD
Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Don't be tempted to buy your teen a cheap (old) car, parents
Replies: 139
Views: 11725

Re: Retiree Poll:What is your current AA?

64% of respondents so far fall within 50:50 to 100% equity.
Either we have some _very_ young retirees here or age in bonds is kind of out the window.
by MnD
Sat Dec 27, 2014 10:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retiree Poll:What is your current AA?
Replies: 85
Views: 7046

Re: "When Funds Insult Their Investors"

Active funds had huge distributions in 2000-2001 at the same time share prices were plummeting.
One fund had a 55% of assets capital gains distribution (an active Japan fund).
Several formerly high-flying Janus, Scudder and 20th Century funds were real tax-gain disasters.
by MnD
Sat Dec 27, 2014 10:37 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "When Funds Insult Their Investors"
Replies: 15
Views: 2711

Re: Leaf blower (& Gutter cleaner) recommendations

Stihl gas.
12 years old and still runs like new.
Use it all the time including walking the roof on a 2500SF ranch (with tons of large trees) to clean hundreds of feet of gutters in less than 20 minutes.
by MnD
Fri Dec 26, 2014 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Leaf blower (& Gutter cleaner) recommendations
Replies: 18
Views: 1894

Re: Lost $'000s for failing to do a HSA !

I'm not considering it. The premium savings we would get are no-where near as good as in your example, we're in our 50's, our traditional PPO is pretty good as far as cost and reimbursement, young adult kids are on the plan and it's hard enough getting them trained to do the right stuff as far as in...
by MnD
Wed Dec 24, 2014 9:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lost $'000s for failing to do a HSA !
Replies: 23
Views: 3185

Re: What "actively" managed funds do you own?

Dodge and Cox Stock DODGX (~25 year holding) Dodge and Cox International Stock DODFX (~13+ year holding since fund inception) Dodge and Cox Global Bond DODLX (<1 year holding since fund inception and still adding) Fidelity Growth Co. Stock FGCKX (~8 year holding due to wife's limited 401K options at...
by MnD
Mon Dec 22, 2014 7:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What "actively" managed funds do you own?
Replies: 82
Views: 4917

Indexing international with 3 funds - proper percentage?

If you wanted to market cap index your international holdings with the minimum amount of tilting or omissions and had to use these three funds, what would be the proper percentage in each? Is the omission of large cap Canadian stocks the only significant "defect" with using these three fun...
by MnD
Sat Dec 20, 2014 4:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Indexing international with 3 funds - proper percentage?
Replies: 1
Views: 315

Re: Bogle on CNBC 12-16-2014: 100% USA squity

I prefer holding the current floating market cap between US and international. If you choose a fixed percentage, and say the US market cap grows for decades versus rest of world or rest of world grows for decades versus US, you will be always re-balancing away from what is the current US/internation...
by MnD
Wed Dec 17, 2014 9:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogle on CNBC 12-16-2014: 100% USA squity
Replies: 35
Views: 3757

Re: Hawaii inter island flights and condos

95%+ of decent VRBO properties for christmas break were booked many months ago. Tourism is way up in Hawaii due to the strong economic recovery for higher income households. Maybe look for a cancellation. Any week of the year it's tough to find good homes or condos fairly priced unless you book mont...
by MnD
Tue Dec 16, 2014 8:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hawaii inter island flights and condos
Replies: 7
Views: 1169

Re: Help planning a Hawaii trip

I would go to Kauai and given that it's March and the kids are fairly young, stay on the southside. It could easily rain every day on the north shore. The kiahuna-plantation is excellent for kids if you are looking for a condo. That assumes they like the beach/ocean - the pool is across the road and...
by MnD
Mon Dec 15, 2014 9:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help planning a Hawaii trip
Replies: 18
Views: 2203

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

I found some exact matches doing flyertalk searches including tables of compensation provided for people bumped from first class on miles for a couple of major airlines. I tailored my compensation request based on those tables, to all miles refunded and a $1000 certificate per passenger for a 3000+ ...
by MnD
Sat Dec 13, 2014 3:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Very strange burglary

They usually just want the cash. A card or use of a card number is a trail from you to them. I had my wallet stolen at a gym and wallet dumped and recovered with just cash gone. Cops said do what you want, but chances are cards are OK - which was the case. Also criminals are often really dumb. My br...
by MnD
Sat Dec 13, 2014 12:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Very strange burglary
Replies: 41
Views: 4743

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

It's a real mess with USAir merging with AA, especially because of the alliance issue. I'll echo what the others have said and pen a letter to US Airways customer service. Typically if they still get you there, they're not required to give you a voucher for another flight. They won't be able to giv...
by MnD
Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

About what I expected despite US Airways checkin, boarding passes, equipment and flight ticket receipt. Now i expect United will claim US Airways was the one providing the flight and hence the lapse in customer service. I figure six months till resolution on this project....... Dear Mr. ---------- T...
by MnD
Fri Dec 12, 2014 9:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8823

Re: Bogle Advises Investing No More Than 20% Outside U.S.

I've opted to mirror the allocation in VG Total world and let it drift as opposed to a fixed percentage. Whatever your allocation to international, one might consider a relative allocation like that versus a fixed one. With a fixed percentage you are always going to be doing a lot of trading to hold...
by MnD
Mon Dec 08, 2014 8:20 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bogle Advises Investing No More Than 20% Outside U.S.
Replies: 106
Views: 13226

Re: Long-Lasting Incandescents + LED Question

The Crees are looking good. FYI, Cree just came out with their next generation of LED bulbs, the 4Flow. http://www.extremetech.com/extreme/193023-cree-launches-new-cheaper-plastic-4flow-60w-and-40w-equivalent-led-bulbs It appears that this convection design relies on airflow inside the bulb cover. ...
by MnD
Wed Dec 03, 2014 8:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long-Lasting Incandescents + LED Question
Replies: 64
Views: 5110

Re: What % of your fixed-income is TIPs?

Ijim wrote:
MnD wrote:0%.
Not interested in "risk-proofing" everything in life as that tends to get expensive.
I find that things over the years sort of balance out. You get dinged on some things worse than you thought and other things pan out better than expected.


are you 100% equities?


No
by MnD
Tue Dec 02, 2014 11:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What % of your fixed-income is TIPs?
Replies: 71
Views: 3657

Re: Why is Dave Ramsey wrong?

Obvious wrong answers I've heard recently are..... Never ever borrow money for education Primary breadwinner should also do moonlighting work like delivering pizzas in evening to boost income Don't look into affordable care act insurance subsidies - contact insurance companies directly to get a &quo...
by MnD
Tue Dec 02, 2014 11:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why is Dave Ramsey wrong?
Replies: 73
Views: 10174
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