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Re: Nice Round Number reached tonight

This week we hit and went over $1.6M net worth, $1.2M financial net worth and $750k in my 401-K.
I was rather excited about this trifecta of intermediate milestones but wife's reaction was "so when do we get to redo the office and laundry room"? :mrgreen:
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 4:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nice Round Number reached tonight
Replies: 23
Views: 3050

Re: What I learned at my mandatory employee 403(b) info meet

Two career federal employees in our work group of around 10, both with graduate degrees in hard sciences did not know we had a defined benefit pension coverage.
One is in her 40's and the other is close to her earliest retirement age, although she plans to work about 10 more years.
:shock:
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 1:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What I learned at my mandatory employee 403(b) info meeting
Replies: 31
Views: 2547

Re: Tough to get a mortgage while retired?

i know a banker who just had to deny a $40K loan to a early-retired couple worth 2M+.
They withdrew funds irregularly as needed so the bank concluded they didn't have demonstrated "regular" income.
If they had regular cash deposits from those assets it would have been no problem.
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 10:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tough to get a mortgage while retired?
Replies: 21
Views: 1756

Re: Help with letter from IRS about 2013 529 distribution

We never got an IRS letter on this during the 5 years we have been making 529 plan withdrawals. Maybe we will get lucky in the future? I never got the letter for 2010-12 but did get it just recently for 2013. They were asking about another matter mainly (incorrect 1099-misc sent by past employer) s...
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 10:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with letter from IRS about 2013 529 distribution
Replies: 29
Views: 2319

Re: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerin

About what I expected except the 5% I fund especially compared to 38% in total US. We actually had some "free" brown-bag training from a private financial advisor on the TSP and she described the I fund as the high risk fund where you find stocks from Egypt and whatnot. So both incorrect a...
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 10:05 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerings
Replies: 20
Views: 1133

Re: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerin

The I Fund would be improved by a broader index though. Due to this omission my taxable is 90% emerging markets and small cap international and her 401-K is 65% in that. I doubt I'm the only one in this situation. By avoiding "risk" and/or a couple basis point expense in the I fund, they ...
by MnD
Sat Apr 25, 2015 9:10 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerings
Replies: 20
Views: 1133

Re: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerin

What about broadening the I Fund more generally (which is not the same thing as adding Emerging Markets)? I've read that the I Fund doesn't even include Canada, and that the dollar/Euro exchange rate is pretty much the most significant driver of the I Fund's returns. The biggest complaints I've see...
by MnD
Fri Apr 24, 2015 5:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerings
Replies: 20
Views: 1133

Re: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerin

What about broadening the I Fund more generally (which is not the same thing as adding Emerging Markets)? I've read that the I Fund doesn't even include Canada, and that the dollar/Euro exchange rate is pretty much the most significant driver of the I Fund's returns. The biggest complaints I've see...
by MnD
Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:13 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Study Recommends Keeping Status Quo for TSP Fund Offerings
Replies: 20
Views: 1133

Re: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns

So it sounds like the argument is that American accounting standards have changed for the worse, earnings are no longer reported as accurately as they used to be, therefore we should be less worried by an earnings yield of 1/29 (=3.4%) than we would have been before standards slipped. We don't need...
by MnD
Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns [1.4% for 60/40]
Replies: 232
Views: 23384

Re: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns

Fairly close to actual results??????? They were overwhelmingly biased low, often by hundreds of basis points _annually_ and in one case by well over 1000 basis points. For a board that stresses over differences of a few basis points in annual ER's between funds, I don't see how anyone could conclude...
by MnD
Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: A Decade of Super-Low Returns [1.4% for 60/40]
Replies: 232
Views: 23384

Re: International Stock Poll: Emerging vs Developed Ratio

27% emerging 73% other international.
10% emerging as % of investment portfolio so I don't get too excited about it.
by MnD
Fri Apr 24, 2015 12:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: International Stock Poll: Emerging vs Developed Ratio
Replies: 48
Views: 1819

Re: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."

Sure but wouldn't you be steadily reducing risk as you edged ever closer to your number? Nope. I'm also getting closer to tapping secure sources of income which have increasingly firm numbers attached to them. So risk on our investment side stays significant and constant. I also disagree with the p...
by MnD
Wed Apr 22, 2015 9:52 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."
Replies: 146
Views: 14739

Re: Car insurance status changes for college kids

I just dropped my son off our policy altogether and he has no car at college. He does not love to drive, so no biggie. Waiting to see if I can get away with that again with my 2nd kid, and when 1st one is an upperclassman at his new (and rural) college. Saved $2k for freshman year by dropping him. ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance status changes for college kids
Replies: 5
Views: 412

Car insurance status changes for college kids

How tightly do you manage this? Do you call twice a year and make policy changes when your kids are off to and back from college - such as changing from car away at college to car at home parked on street? Or when they get a summer job - do you change it from home pleasure use to commuting XX miles ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 21, 2015 4:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance status changes for college kids
Replies: 5
Views: 412

Re: engineers - please help with engineering school selectio

I went to CSU and i think Mines (where my daughter went) is IMO vastly superior to either CU or CSU in terms of internships, academic rigor and post-graduation opportunities for employment and grad schools. Thanks, MnD, I have similar thoughts as you do. He did receive outstanding merit scholarship...
by MnD
Tue Apr 21, 2015 3:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: engineers - please help with engineering school selection
Replies: 172
Views: 10027

Re: How much do you pay in Property Taxes?

Denver suburbs 0.65% of what I think the house would easily sell for. Income tax is 4.63% flat tax on federal taxable income with a few adjustments including being able to subtract 100% of gross 529 contributions. I'm not sure what extra goodies people are getting in cities/states with 2%+ property ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 21, 2015 3:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you pay in Property Taxes?
Replies: 175
Views: 8047

Re: engineers - please help with engineering school selectio

I'm not crazy about CU. Very few people I know that attended are working as professionals and/or in their field of study. Lots of partying, drop-outs, alcohol, drugs, turn into ski bums....... I went to CSU and i think Mines (where my daughter went) is IMO vastly superior to either CU or CSU in term...
by MnD
Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: engineers - please help with engineering school selection
Replies: 172
Views: 10027

Re: Do you get non-zero peak values on your CO detector?

1) They are relatively new (1 and 3 years) and both have the 10-year end-of-life shutoff feature. 2) Have a garage and have always had one. No change in garage or vehicles recently, and both vehicles pass emissions tests. Never had non-zero peaks until this March. 3) With one exception they both had...
by MnD
Mon Apr 20, 2015 4:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you get non-zero peak values on your CO detector?
Replies: 3
Views: 267

Re: Can SiriusXM Radio damage my credit rating?

SiriusXM is one of the sleaziest consumer companies out there. I had refunds owed for reducing my service plan and was told it was "in process" for months until I filed a BBB complaint - then it arrived immediately. I cancelled all service with email confirmation of cancellation, only to f...
by MnD
Mon Apr 20, 2015 4:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can SiriusXM Radio damage my credit rating?
Replies: 15
Views: 1014

Do you get non-zero peak values on your CO detector?

If you have a CO detector with a digital readout and that stores peak values - do you get peak values stored other than 0? In 15 years or so with 4 readout type detectors (2 locations with each detector replaced once) I've never seen a stored peak value other than zero. But for the past couple month...
by MnD
Mon Apr 20, 2015 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you get non-zero peak values on your CO detector?
Replies: 3
Views: 267

Re: Car for teenager

The kids at age 16 got exactly matching 2002 Subaru Outback Limited 4-cylinder wagons with the exception of the color and transmission so we could tell them apart and they could start on the automatic but also learn to drive a manual. Slow, AWD, fabulous visibility, tons of airbags and leather for s...
by MnD
Sun Apr 19, 2015 11:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car for teenager
Replies: 52
Views: 2566

Re: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."

The worst case real annualized returns for bonds or bills for 10, 20 and 30 year holding periods 1802-2012 were worse than for stocks. The Bernstein scenario is that retirees are wedding to inflexible withdrawal strategies, and overweighted with equities because the retiree "needs" higher ...
by MnD
Sun Apr 19, 2015 2:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."
Replies: 146
Views: 14739

Re: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."

William Bernstein advises retirees and near-retirees to avoid investing in risky assets such as stocks, at least with money needed to provide an adequate income stream. Is anybody acting on this advice and what is your strategy? I am not acting on his advice. I view bonds as just as risky to my ret...
by MnD
Sun Apr 19, 2015 9:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."
Replies: 146
Views: 14739

Re: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."

40 months from mid-50's retirement and we're 75/25 where we will remain for life. If anything, Bernsteins writings have confirmed our relatively high equity allocation approach. The only sibling of my father that didn't smoke just hit 92 in excellent mental and physical health. My wife's mother pass...
by MnD
Sun Apr 19, 2015 8:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: "If you've won the game, stop playing."
Replies: 146
Views: 14739

Re: SC international: Swap GWX for VSS?

When SCHC came out we had threads here warning of cap gains distributions on "new" small cap international funds and advising to use VSS instead. Then VSS had two years in a row of cap gains. I don't think you predict future cap gains based on past history for an index fund. Were it not fo...
by MnD
Sun Apr 12, 2015 10:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SC international: Swap GWX for VSS?
Replies: 5
Views: 755

Re: WSJ: You may need less than 80% in retirement

We'll be retiring on 63% of current income and have 36% more to spend.
by MnD
Sat Apr 11, 2015 7:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ: You may need less than 80% in retirement
Replies: 98
Views: 9041

Re: Would you use your neighbor's son for yard service?

I had 5 neighborhood lawns age 12-15, did a very good job and made great money. I hated doing "stoop" work - one dentist neighbor wanted me to take out all the wood chips in his beds, sieve and shop-vac them to get rid of leaves, twigs and dirt and put them back every year. I think I laste...
by MnD
Sat Apr 11, 2015 6:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you use your neighbor's son for yard service?
Replies: 33
Views: 2166

Re: Vanguard: One Third of 401k Participants Not Maxing Mat

I'm OK with this. If everybody built wealth the way Bogleheads did, I imagine the costs for the sorts of things we enjoy would skyrocket. I'm kind of amazed how relatively inexpensive some really great things and experiences are, and how people of similar income but without wealth just aren't in the...
by MnD
Fri Apr 10, 2015 10:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard: One Third of 401k Participants Not Maxing Match
Replies: 13
Views: 1577

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

There is a strong confirmation bias about the value of selective school education. Those who or whose children have succeeded in general university environment believe that Harvard/Princeton/Yale/Stanford are overpriced. Those who or whose children flourished after receiving HYPS education would no...
by MnD
Wed Apr 08, 2015 2:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of College & Weighing the Merits of Top Schools
Replies: 304
Views: 16723

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

Top public high school in district, 3.95 unweighted GPA, perfect ACT, near perfect SAT, 31 IB/AP credits, strong extracurriculars. My cost - $1.5K maybe for for IB/AP classes/exams??? Best in-state engineering school, 3.97GPA, honors degree physics, two minors, 2316 hours of paid internships, $33K e...
by MnD
Wed Apr 08, 2015 12:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of College & Weighing the Merits of Top Schools
Replies: 304
Views: 16723

Re: Paying for childrens' college

2) My niece is a National Merit Semi-finalist. She was top 16,000 out of 1.5 millions. She accepted a full-ride scholarship to study International Business at Arizona State. For her second year, she was an exchange student study at Spain. Third year, France. Forth year, Beijing, China. Fifth year, ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 4:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying for childrens' college
Replies: 121
Views: 7906

Re: Nailed it! $223,199/yr: magic# for making it in SF Bay A

$44K cost of living for everything excluding only direct housing, education and taxes on $223K gross?
My wife would not be happy with that number! :mrgreen:
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 4:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nailed it! $223,199/yr: magic# for making it in SF Bay Area
Replies: 117
Views: 11033

Re: Paying for childrens' college

I still don't get why so many against taking out loans for the kids. We know we still have time to save. However, if they want to study out of state or private school, we will need to borrow money. We believe we must give our children a leg up. We want them to focus on learning without worry about ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying for childrens' college
Replies: 121
Views: 7906

Re: Paying for childrens' college

For our oldest (a top student) we recently finished paying paid $72K for her four years undergrad at the most selective State U which reflected 4 years of "away at school" experience (tuition, fees, room and board).This $72K reflected a $24K discount for a merit scholarship. Summer and par...
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying for childrens' college
Replies: 121
Views: 7906

Re: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)

Reporting it correctly means you will not have to worry about the corrected 1099R arriving in the mail some time in the next several months. You will already have dealt with it. That would be nice but I disagree 100% that doing so now will put this issue to bed. Even if the recipient believes they ...
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 1:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)`
Replies: 37
Views: 4577

Re: Advantages? - Child's own Form 1040 v. filing Form 8615

A should be getting at least summer jobs which, along with unearned income will have them filing 1040's for a number of years prior to true financial emancipation.
by MnD
Tue Apr 07, 2015 1:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advantages? - Child's own Form 1040 v. filing Form 8814
Replies: 3
Views: 248

Re: Did your early investments shape you?

Started investing in mid-1986 with two monthly checks mailed in 25% to a Vanguard MM fund, 75% Strong Total Return Fund, both directly to the two different fund companies. October 1987 crash hit and it was difficult to move funds between families back then, but I sent in 100% of my checks to the Tot...
by MnD
Mon Apr 06, 2015 9:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did your early investments shape you?
Replies: 7
Views: 1163

Re: How do you invest your taxable account?

50% emerging markets (VWO), 35% small cap international (VSS) and 15% individual stocks.
I don't have any emerging markets or small cap international options in my 401-K.
by MnD
Sun Mar 22, 2015 9:04 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you invest your taxable account?
Replies: 69
Views: 7626

Re: The one area I disagree with Jack

My spouse and I will each have a defined benefit, indexed pension, along with Social Security. Together, those streams of income plus a paid-off house will take care of our needs and most of our wants. That leaves me willing to shoulder more risk with equities; we are at roughly 80:20 allocation de...
by MnD
Sun Mar 22, 2015 8:36 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The one area I disagree with Jack
Replies: 93
Views: 7481

Re: What are some common misconceptions found in this forum?

Saving more and working longer to accommodate ultra-low SWR's for bearish scenarios worse than ever observed in the past is a prudent move.
by MnD
Sat Mar 14, 2015 1:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are some common misconceptions found in this forum?
Replies: 209
Views: 18116

Re: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years

If I believed in these 2% numbers, I'd take all my funds out of the market and invest in something else - probably an express-type car wash that our neighborhood needs desperately. Likewise with believing in the doom and gloom predictive capabilities of CAPE. There are always unexpected positives to...
by MnD
Sat Mar 14, 2015 1:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years
Replies: 216
Views: 23576

Re: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years

Great news for the richest person in the graveyard crowd.
Maybe cut that back to 1% - to be safe......
by MnD
Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years
Replies: 216
Views: 23576

Re: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)

A whopping $700 distribution from 35 years ago and you have no recollection of the specifics and it's a favorable situation given what the employer reported. Gee - that's a tough one. Many of the responses in this thread are just bizarre. Do people have nothing better to do than spend hours trying t...
by MnD
Fri Mar 13, 2015 9:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)`
Replies: 37
Views: 4577

Re: When you put some credit cards in a drawer and not use t

I close cards I don't want/use anymore. The long-term cards do not disappear from your credit report, they just stop accruing more years. I've never seen any meaningful impact on our credit score from closing unused/unwanted cards. Our one "drawer card" gives us free checked bags, priority...
by MnD
Sun Mar 08, 2015 10:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When you put some credit cards in a drawer and not use them
Replies: 17
Views: 1974

Re: interest rate increase looming. what you gonna do ?

TSP G fund paired with Dodge and Cox bond funds ride pretty smooth in rising rate environments...... 8-)
by MnD
Sat Mar 07, 2015 3:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: interest rate increase looming. what you gonna do ?
Replies: 65
Views: 6452

Re: Poll: Increasing international equities

Market cap weighting since 2000 at least and no change planned. Glad to see the herd finally coming my way. :beer
by MnD
Wed Mar 04, 2015 8:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: Increasing international equities
Replies: 58
Views: 4031

Re: Taxation of NSF REU undergraduate research stipend

Just following the Turbotax path for any 1099-MISC box 3 income reports ends up at Schedule C income. Much more favorable for her overall (some taxed at 0%, some at 10%) versus my marginal rate. She pays SE tax, but does gain social security credits and gets the SE tax deduction. A student with a 10...
by MnD
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:33 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxation of NSF REU undergraduate research stipend
Replies: 12
Views: 1311

Re: new car battery

Costco now sells Interstate batteries for $77. Many are cold cranking 850 amps which is a $125 battery anywhere else. The warranty through Costco is 42 months full replacement with no pro-rating after that. I have only one experience with Interstate, a used car I bought for the kids had an interstat...
by MnD
Tue Mar 03, 2015 12:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: new car battery
Replies: 45
Views: 2993

Re: Taxation of NSF REU undergraduate research stipend

itstoomuch wrote:If I remember, no 1099, W2, or other wage income statement will be issued for a stipend. Treat the stipend as such.
[no one wants to count a stipend as income]


They issued her a 1099-MISC with $5525 in Box 3 (other income).
by MnD
Mon Mar 02, 2015 9:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxation of NSF REU undergraduate research stipend
Replies: 12
Views: 1311

Re: Costco/AmEx relationship ending. New Costco MasterCard?

Costco is known for going the extra mile on the value proposition so I suspect their branded Citi-Visa will have something that goes a bit beyond the usual Visa rewards cards. For me the no-fee Costco Amex that provided 4% back on gasoline, including Costco gas (which was usually the lowest price ga...
by MnD
Mon Mar 02, 2015 3:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Costco/AmEx relationship ending. New Costco MasterCard?
Replies: 85
Views: 135750
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