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Re: Life in the Bay Area and housing costs

I grew up in South Bay. The weather is lovely, but there's really no reason to stay there unless you're a high tech employee with lots of unvested, valuable stock options or if you have a strong connection to the area. I moved to Reno about 10 years ago and haven't regretted. The cost of everything...
by RenoJay
Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Life in the Bay Area and housing costs
Replies: 51
Views: 3121

Re: Life in the Bay Area and housing costs

I grew up in South Bay. The weather is lovely, but there's really no reason to stay there unless you're a high tech employee with lots of unvested, valuable stock options or if you have a strong connection to the area. I moved to Reno about 10 years ago and haven't regretted. The cost of everything ...
by RenoJay
Thu Apr 10, 2014 8:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Life in the Bay Area and housing costs
Replies: 51
Views: 3121

Re: Buffett hasn't beaten the market regularly since '07

Packer, thanks for the response. I'd be lying if I claimed I understood all of it, but I still have the question that if Buffett has control of book value of BRK, wouldn't CEOs of other S&P 500 firms have control of the book value of their stocks? Aren't they subject to the same wisdom of the cr...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 06, 2014 9:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett hasn't beaten the market regularly since '07
Replies: 20
Views: 2390

Re: Buffett hasn't beaten the market regularly since '07

I hope this isn't too off-topic, but Buffett compares Berkshire's "book value" against the actual return of the S&P 500 including dividends. This always struck me as an apples to oranges comparison since, if shareholders are forced to liquidate their BRK holdings, they don't get the ch...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 06, 2014 1:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett hasn't beaten the market regularly since '07
Replies: 20
Views: 2390

Re: Going from S-Corp to Sole Proprietor

Thank you all for the excellent feedback and advice!
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 06, 2014 11:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Going from S-Corp to Sole Proprietor
Replies: 7
Views: 654

Going from S-Corp to Sole Proprietor

I will follow up with my CPA on these questions, but first I was hoping to tap some Boglehead wisdom. For ten years I’ve owned an S-Corp. In the old days, I had lots of revenue from websites running through it, but lately it’s mostly a vehicle for commission income I earn from doing sales. I learned...
by RenoJay
Fri Apr 04, 2014 11:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Going from S-Corp to Sole Proprietor
Replies: 7
Views: 654

Re: What was your dumbest financial decision?

I bought a house in Nevada in late 2006. I knew there was a housing bubble and had been a renter from 2002-2006. Then, after I saw the local market fall 20%, I figured it was a safe time to get in. Then I watched prices continue to plummet for years. Now we're on the upswing, but the value is still ...
by RenoJay
Sun Mar 02, 2014 10:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was your dumbest financial decision?
Replies: 106
Views: 8359

Re: Should I let a credit card expire?

I recently canceled a Chase card I've had since 2003 with a 25k credit limit and within a few weeks received an alert from Equifax informing me that my FICO score had dropped 12 points. Still have about $150k in unsecured credit and never carry a balance so I wouldn't think closing the account woul...
by RenoJay
Thu Feb 27, 2014 7:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I let a credit card expire?
Replies: 8
Views: 1004

Should I let a credit card expire?

I received notice that a credit card which is buried deep in my drawer somewhere is going to be cancelled due to non-use unless I renew it soon. The card has a limit which is only about 6% of our total, available revolving credit, and we only utilize about 6-8% of our available revolving credit (and...
by RenoJay
Wed Feb 26, 2014 7:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I let a credit card expire?
Replies: 8
Views: 1004

Re: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

Instead, I'd rather loan $250k against a property worth $450k, get a fixed rate of 9% - 10% and be done with it. (Which is pretty much what the collateral-backed lending I've done looks like.) I'm still amazed you can find people that are smart enough to have saved a $200k down-payment, yet dumb en...
by RenoJay
Fri Feb 21, 2014 8:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Re: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

For those who have done consistently well with P2P (i.e. 8%+ returns for more than three years), I would be very interested to learn what you did/do differently from me. If you're willing to share, these details would be valuable: 1. When did you start? 2. How big are your loans? 3. How many loans ...
by RenoJay
Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Re: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

For those who have done consistently well with P2P (i.e. 8%+ returns for more than three years), I would be very interested to learn what you did/do differently from me. If you're willing to share, these details would be valuable: 1. When did you start? 2. How big are your loans? 3. How many loans d...
by RenoJay
Fri Feb 21, 2014 11:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Re: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

I think the mistake people make is treating this in accordance with the Bogle-ish principle of broad diversification (and relative agnosticism to the individual borrower). There are too few borrowers using these platforms for investors to really benefit from diversification. You either have to trea...
by RenoJay
Wed Feb 19, 2014 7:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Re: Attic Insulation Retrofit: Spray Foam Insulation

All I know is that I got quotes a few years, and the spray foam insulation was easily 5x more expensive.
by RenoJay
Wed Feb 19, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attic Retrofit: Spray Foam Insulation [Updated w Images]
Replies: 40
Views: 2978

Re: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

RenoJay, thanks for sharing your experience. I would be interested in hearing more information like the number of notes you had, loan grades, weighted average interest rate etc. There are a lot of factors that play a role in p2p lending and those who are getting 8-10% returns once notes are seasone...
by RenoJay
Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:02 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]

Hi All, About two years ago I was one of the big proponents on this board for P2P lending through LendingClub and Prosper. I just want to post a caution that I've changed my tune 180 degrees. Starting about eight or nine months ago, I noticed the monthly interest collected was rapidly dwindling to t...
by RenoJay
Tue Feb 18, 2014 10:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warning about P2P Lending [Peer-to-Peer]
Replies: 42
Views: 4791

Re: High Umbrella Limits - A waste

We are very glad that one particular person DID purchase umbrella coverage. WE would have been destitute at that point in our lives, and/or our child would not have had the care that was, in fact, provided. (And there might NOT have been as good a recovery.) What bills did you have that wouldn't ha...
by RenoJay
Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Umbrella Limits - A waste
Replies: 71
Views: 5926

Re: High Umbrella Limits - A waste

Just out of curiosity, after reading this thread last night I decided to see what it would cost to double my umbrella from $5 MM to $10 MM. My premium for $5 MM is around $1,100/year. I only found one carrier who would do $10 MM (GEICO) and their quote was around $3,400/year. I was dumbfounded and t...
by RenoJay
Mon Jan 27, 2014 11:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Umbrella Limits - A waste
Replies: 71
Views: 5926

Re: unanticipated savings (or costs) of stay at home parent?

My unexpected cost of my wife staying home is that when the kids are at school she seems to always discover some product on the Internet that we just need to have. :oops:
by RenoJay
Sun Jan 26, 2014 10:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: unanticipated savings (or costs) of stay at home parent?
Replies: 18
Views: 1295

Re: Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution

Just use specific ID and sell the shares that were automatically reinvested. If they have a loss, that's tax-loss harvesting :) If they have a gain, that's better than they would've done in your checking or mm account. Livesoft: This is an interesting tip, although if I've previously chosen a diffe...
by RenoJay
Mon Dec 23, 2013 9:32 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution
Replies: 18
Views: 2259

Re: Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution

Putting them into an MM fund doesn't change the tax due (except for the a small amt of CG distributions on those CG distributions next year. Yes, I'm aware of that but the goal is to lessen my equity exposure so I hate the fact that this was automatically reinvested into a fund in which I'd rather ...
by RenoJay
Mon Dec 23, 2013 4:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution
Replies: 18
Views: 2259

Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution

Early this year I decided I no longer wanted any automatic reinvestment of capital gains or dividends in my taxable accounts. I went through the Vanguard screens and thought I had checked all the correct boxes to have these pay outs put into a money market fund. Lo and behold...I just discovered an ...
by RenoJay
Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Grrr...unexpected capital gain distribution
Replies: 18
Views: 2259

Re: Retiring at 50

When I left work at the end of 2003 I never imagined that I would have a higher value portfolio and net worth ten years on...especially after some of the market's antics over that period. You just never know how the chips will fall. Enjoy it while you can. That's remarkable given the timing. Any ch...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 21, 2013 10:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring at 50
Replies: 67
Views: 8185

Re: Retiring at 50

I'm thinking of retiring sometime between 45 - 50. A few sites I've enjoyed that are dedicated to this topic are:

http://www.early-retirement.org/

http://www.caniretireyet.com/
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 21, 2013 9:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring at 50
Replies: 67
Views: 8185

Re: How to deal with the temptation to pullback on stocks

For me, I was 85% in equities when the market tanked in 2008/2009. I stayed the course, but it ate me up inside. I had a ton of anxiety. So I realized that was way too high an allocation to equities. Eventually I figured out that 50/50 is right for me, and I waited until the market had made a nice r...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 21, 2013 7:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to deal with the temptation to pullback on stocks
Replies: 35
Views: 2188

Re: Stay put as mortgage slave or relocate?

Is it possible to sell the underwater home and simply eat the loss yourself so it's out of your hair? I've had situations where I needed to make a tough choice of either sticking with something I hated or taking a big loss and moving on with my life. I chose the latter, and within a month or two I r...
by RenoJay
Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stay put as mortgage slave or relocate?
Replies: 23
Views: 3279

Re: how much more expensive is a bigger home?

Don't do it. I upgraded to a 4,000+ sq foot home and I regret it. In addition to buying at the wrong time and watching the value plummet, the utility bills are very high, it takes forever to walk from A to B in the house, and the yard maintenance gives me palpitations since something is always going...
by RenoJay
Tue Nov 19, 2013 11:15 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how much more expensive is a bigger home?
Replies: 68
Views: 4633

Re: windfall in high tax california, what to do

For a large, one-time event like yours it's worth paying a good California-based accountant for an hour of advice. Congrats on the windfall, by the way!
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 18, 2013 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: windfall in high tax california, what to do
Replies: 20
Views: 1929

Re: Have I put too much into the 529 plan?

I put in about $60k each into my kids' 529s, and the rest into UTMA accounts with the intent of that money being used for college. At this point in their young lives, I feel it's way too early to know if they'll go Ivy League, state school, community college or into the trades and also whether they'...
by RenoJay
Sun Nov 17, 2013 8:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Have I put too much into the 529 plan?
Replies: 33
Views: 5695

Re: Financial failures

Buying a big house. It's a money pit.
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 11, 2013 8:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financial failures
Replies: 55
Views: 3179

Re: Large Inheritance -- moving toward income

What form was the inheritance? If you inherited IRAs, there are some strict rules about how those need to be titled to avoid big tax penalties. While I think paying an "advisor" .6% - 1.2% is totally unnecessary, I would pay a good CPA $200/hour to advise you on titling all these assets so...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 11, 2013 2:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Large Inheritance -- moving toward income
Replies: 15
Views: 2352

Re: Important Change to Ally CDs

What is this like the fifth time this "news" has been posted over the past few weeks? I'm kind of offended that there seems to be an expectation that no one can open their mouths unless they've thoroughly searched every thread ever posted. I visit this site daily. I had not seen any repor...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:44 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Important Change to Ally CDs [turned into search tips]
Replies: 23
Views: 2046

Re: Feeling less than Successful lately

I have started four businesses and I now sell businesses for others. I can't tell you the number of corporate people I've seen who have lost a big chunk of their lifesavings either buying or starting a business. I went this route because I simply could not work for others. Fortunately I was successf...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 11, 2013 1:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Feeling less than Successful lately
Replies: 58
Views: 6029

Re: Private Money Lending

This morning I found this article about private money lending on marketwatch.com: http://www.marketwatch.com/story/bank-wont-give-you-a-home-loan-ask-hank-2013-11-11 By the time an article like this comes out, I figure the asset class has maybe two more good years before it totally devolves into the...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 11, 2013 11:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Private Money Lending
Replies: 102
Views: 7632

Re: Acura RDX or BMW X3?‏

I've never owned a BMW, but have owned numerous Acuras. Overall Acura is nice, but my most recent model (a 2012 MDX) feels "cheap" in some ways, although the handling, turning, and cool electronic features are pretty nice.
by RenoJay
Sat Nov 09, 2013 7:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Acura RDX or BMW X3?‏
Replies: 34
Views: 3296

Important Change to Ally CDs [turned into search tips]

Many of us own Ally CD's in large part because of the 60 day interest penalty for early withdrawals, which is a relatively mild penalty. For CD's opened on 12/7/13 or later, the new penalties will be: 90 days' interest on 3 year CD 120 days' interest on 4 year CD 150 days interest on 5 year CD It's ...
by RenoJay
Sat Nov 09, 2013 12:01 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Important Change to Ally CDs [turned into search tips]
Replies: 23
Views: 2046

Re: Private Money Lending

Why would someone want to undertake this level of complexity for what is essentially I geographically undiversified portfolio of loans. And, provide a cut to a middle man at the same time. What is the anticipate rate of return that one is looking at with this investment and is it high enough to com...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 07, 2013 7:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Private Money Lending
Replies: 102
Views: 7632

Re: Private Money Lending

Ok...understand on the pool manager risk. So, if I was to do on my own, and being I don't live in a very large area (thus not many opportunities), would you recommend a service like the below to find potential loans? http://www.loanmls.com Or just stay away from this if you can't actually visit the...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 07, 2013 5:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Private Money Lending
Replies: 102
Views: 7632

Re: Private Money Lending

Appreciate the input from both of you. As I said earlier, I would not recommend the pool route. I'm wondering if you would give some detailed reasoning why you wouldn't recommend the pool route. I did just look thru the thread and didn't see any mention of pools. My reasoning on going the pool rout...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 07, 2013 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Private Money Lending
Replies: 102
Views: 7632

Re: Private Money Lending

Appreciate the input from both of you. As I said earlier, I would not recommend the pool route. I'm wondering if you would give some detailed reasoning why you wouldn't recommend the pool route. I did just look thru the thread and didn't see any mention of pools. My reasoning on going the pool rout...
by RenoJay
Thu Nov 07, 2013 11:37 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Private Money Lending
Replies: 102
Views: 7632

Alternatives to Mint.com?

I was a big fan of Mint.com until last week. After two years of meticulously tracking my spending in Mint, somehow their system duplicated one of my credit card accounts and started double-counting those charges. I deleted just the duplicate account, and when I logged in a few days later my entire b...
by RenoJay
Tue Nov 05, 2013 2:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alternatives to Mint.com?
Replies: 8
Views: 3183

Re: Vanguard REIT Questions

Hi: Check out Vanguard REIT Index tax distributions - Bogleheads for historical data. regards, Thanks, Barry. So if I'm reading the chart correctly, it appears the current dividend is quite low compared with history, and that the "return of capital" has to do with depreciating the real es...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 04, 2013 11:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard REIT Questions
Replies: 4
Views: 652

Vanguard REIT Questions

Can anyone show me to find the historical yield by year for the Vanguard REIT fund? Also, I was reading the Vanguard site and it appears the yield includes a "return of capital"? What's that about? Finally, are there any metrics to determine if this fund is relatively cheap or relatively e...
by RenoJay
Mon Nov 04, 2013 10:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard REIT Questions
Replies: 4
Views: 652

Re: Rebalancing Taxable - psychology of paying taxes?

Make sure they're not automatically reinvesting dividends. If they are, ending that practice will help rebalance things over time a little bit. I'm in a similar position where most of what I own is in taxable and there are some big gains. Fortunately I tax loss harvested at the very bottom, so I sti...
by RenoJay
Wed Oct 30, 2013 10:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing Taxable - psychology of paying taxes?
Replies: 19
Views: 1417

Re: Net Worth Survey 2014

How will the survey account for investments that are not equities or REITs, but also not the traditional fixed income? (Such as P2P lending, rental properties, and other non traditional investments?)
by RenoJay
Sun Oct 27, 2013 12:32 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Net Worth Survey 2014
Replies: 58
Views: 8326

Re: SWR and home equity

One more thought: You say that in Sam A's world, $600k of his investable portfolio is tied up to cover "housing costs", but it's the same for Sam B. He's also spending $1,500/month on housing for insurance, fees, etc. which in no way makes him richer. So he has just as much of the investab...
by RenoJay
Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SWR and home equity
Replies: 11
Views: 618

Re: SWR and home equity

It's an interesting hypothetical. In my world, non income-producing, illiquid assets don't count in the "portfolio" category and therefore are not counted in the calculation of SWR. Overall, I'd suggest that Sam A. (the renter) is in better condition because his $2 million portfolio is lik...
by RenoJay
Sat Oct 26, 2013 2:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SWR and home equity
Replies: 11
Views: 618

Re: Relatives Who Really Need Money Advice But Don't Get It.

I think it's a question of which family members you're talking about. If it's your own generation or older, it's kind of preachy, but with your children (or the children of your siblings if they're not getting good advice) I see it as an obligation to teach them financial literacy.
by RenoJay
Sat Oct 26, 2013 11:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relatives Who Really Need Money Advice But Don't Get It.
Replies: 56
Views: 6617

Re: Bogleheads' "Rags to Riches" Stories

Grew up middle class. Graduated college at 22 and bounced around something like four commission sales job. I don't recall what I was earning, but I think it was maybe $18k/year or so on average. (I do recall that I qualified for the "universal lifeline" subsidy so I could have a home phone...
by RenoJay
Fri Oct 25, 2013 12:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads' "Rags to Riches" Stories
Replies: 107
Views: 14124

Re: A Message from Jack

Jack, just wanted to say what an honor it is to hear your voice this forum.
by RenoJay
Tue Oct 22, 2013 11:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A Message from Jack
Replies: 22
Views: 3825
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