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by Sidney
Fri May 22, 2015 2:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: please confirm: early retirement
Replies: 50
Views: 2901

Re: please confirm: early retirement

Those numbers look feasible. Are there any items you're missing (increased funds for travel, etc)? Two things people often forget on the expense line. Income taxes (which may not be an issue here) and capital replacement (roof, cars, furnace ...). I'm also interested in the answer on health care. W...
by Sidney
Thu May 21, 2015 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Being an Uber driver
Replies: 14
Views: 2059

Re: Being an Uber driver

Jack FFR1846 wrote:My auto renewal included a page explaining that if the vehicle is found to be used in a service like Uber, coverage resorts to state minimums. So my $500k liability would go to $10k.

That isn't a surprise. If I were the underwriters I would do something like this or exclude coverage altogether.
by Sidney
Tue May 19, 2015 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Converting garage into office space
Replies: 6
Views: 555

Re: Converting garage into office space

Does your lot have space adjacent to the remaining one-car space that a future buyer (or you if you change your mind) could use to expand the actual garage?
by Sidney
Tue May 19, 2015 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living on last months income.
Replies: 33
Views: 3251

Re: Living on last months income.

Do unrealized capital gains count as income?
by Sidney
Tue May 19, 2015 8:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Estimating Portfolio Return
Replies: 13
Views: 1069

Re: Estimating Portfolio Return

Then how are people estimating their retirement if thats not a valid method? To be noted, I would be doing these for a VG Fund. Pick a number for equity and pick a number for fixed income. Weight them per your portfolio and round to the nearest whole percent. IMO nobody can accurately forecast retu...
by Sidney
Mon May 18, 2015 8:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Apple and Google Cars
Replies: 3
Views: 409

Re: Apple and Google Cars

long thread here. now locked

viewtopic.php?t=165063
by Sidney
Mon May 18, 2015 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Maryland Taxpayers: Comptroller vs. Wynne ruling is out
Replies: 4
Views: 399

Re: Maryland Taxpayers: Comptroller vs. Wynne ruling is out

I am wondering if the ability to go back prior to open return years (normally three) will depend on whether you filed a challenge. This case has been in the news in recent months. In April, another year closed for most taxpayers (2011).
by Sidney
Sat May 16, 2015 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much does social security factor into your retirement income?
Replies: 161
Views: 9648

Re: How much does social security factor into your retirement income?

I include it in my projections assuming wife takes spousal benefit at FRA and then we both take full benefit at 70. For simplicity I assume it is all taxable -- I suppose I could do it at .85 but my planning isn't that precise. However, in stress testing our plan, it is very survivable if SS is zero.
by Sidney
Thu May 14, 2015 4:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Safety Net
Replies: 31
Views: 3600

Re: Keep Investing Simple

I see no need to complicate my portfolio with a low-performing "cash cushion." If I need money, I simply take it from my portfolio. What can be simpler than money in the bank? Cash is the best performer during the worst of times, it is also the easiest asset to liquidated. Of course asset...
by Sidney
Thu May 14, 2015 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is the Post Office slowing down First Class Parcel delivery?
Replies: 25
Views: 2352

Re: Is the Post Office slowing down first class parcel delivery?

Hard to know without data. It could be that their express business has grown so much it is consuming most of the logistical resources that can get stuff from A to B in 2 days.
by Sidney
Thu May 14, 2015 8:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Networth question
Replies: 54
Views: 4258

Re: Networth question

Net worth includes everything. It might even include life insurance proceeds, if you have that in force. Now what is the UTILITY of figuring your Net Worth? Not much, really... Once a year is probably often enough. I send a statement to my attorney once a year in case it has some bearing on our wil...
by Sidney
Thu May 14, 2015 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Networth question
Replies: 54
Views: 4258

Re: Networth question

The problem with real estate is liquidity. In terms of retirement portfolio I don't include anything I can't convert to food in a reasonable time (one business week?).
by Sidney
Thu May 14, 2015 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Networth question
Replies: 54
Views: 4258

Re: Networth question

It really depends on what you are using your "net worth" number for. I only use it for estate planning purposes in which case I include the net asset value of real estate.
by Sidney
Wed May 13, 2015 1:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I need umbrella coverage?
Replies: 15
Views: 1905

Re: Do I need umbrella coverage?

Keep in mind that future income could be at risk. When I was starting out my assets were fairly low but my future income was high so I carried an umbrella policy then mainly to protect against claims on the future income.

Umbrella insurance is insurance for liabilities, not assets.
by Sidney
Tue May 12, 2015 11:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Doom and Gloom from Marketwatch
Replies: 12
Views: 2324

Re: Doom and Gloom from Marketwatch

Have you thought about shifting to non-fiction?
by Sidney
Mon May 11, 2015 7:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement in 2 years?
Replies: 16
Views: 2274

Re: Retirement in 2 years?

I haven't looked in detail at your numbers but it seems to me that there is a good chance your tax rate is lower after you quit working and the CG hit on selling equity then could potentially be zero. How does your plan work if the market tanks in 2 years and your equity is worth 30-40% less than it...
by Sidney
Sat May 09, 2015 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Math for Retirees and the 4% Withdrawal Rule
Replies: 89
Views: 9751

Re: New Math for Retirees and the 4% Withdrawal Rule

Rick Ferri says that he advises his clients to "spend the income"...dividends and interest from, I assume, balanced portfolios. That's my plan. And if things are going well and I want to splurge beyond that once in a while, then fine. This means you need to have discipline to maintain an ...
by Sidney
Fri May 08, 2015 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedge Fund ETF
Replies: 18
Views: 1120

Re: Hedge Fund ETF

There is always uncertainty about the S&P. That's why we get non-zero expected returns.
by Sidney
Wed May 06, 2015 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Aging parent not interested in setting up POA etc
Replies: 26
Views: 2820

Re: Aging parent not interested in setting up POA etc

Fallible wrote:If she no longer remembers talking with you about it and can't understand even the purpose of it, it could signal a cognitive problem.

I'd be hard pressed to remember a single conversation I had 20 years ago.
by Sidney
Mon May 04, 2015 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA contribution Strategies for early/semi-retired person
Replies: 5
Views: 508

Re: HSA contribution Strategies for early/semi-retired person

If you read through publication 969 you will find that there is not an "earned income" requirement for HSA contributions. There may be other limitation that affect you.
by Sidney
Mon May 04, 2015 7:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Monthly Income Funds
Replies: 12
Views: 1238

Re: Monthly Income Funds

You should be able to get a reasonable TE fund for less than 25bp.
by Sidney
Wed Apr 29, 2015 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Charitable Contribution Strategy
Replies: 9
Views: 438

Re: Charitable Contribution Strategy

One advantage of a DAF is the ability to give anonymously. Good way to keep your name off lists that get passed around.
by Sidney
Tue Apr 28, 2015 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why Does My Muni Bond Fund Frequently Not Change Price?
Replies: 5
Views: 810

Re: Why Does My Muni Bond Fund Frequently Not Change Price?

You will get better answers if you state which fund you own.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 27, 2015 12:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA contribution limits for 2015
Replies: 3
Views: 346

Re: IRA contribution limits for 2015

or even through April 15 of 2016.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 27, 2015 12:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Traveling light up to 2 weeks - ditch the laptop, use phone?
Replies: 54
Views: 3550

Re: Traveling light up to 2 weeks - ditch the laptop, use ph

I haven't traveled with my laptop in years. Phone gets it done for me. When I go someplace, I try to research where the local library is located. They usually have full size PCs if I ever need to use one to look at something larger scale. I don't do financial transactions on the road -- on the phone...
by Sidney
Mon Apr 27, 2015 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quietest garage door and opener
Replies: 19
Views: 1649

Re: Quietest garage door and opener

user5027 wrote:
It is like the hunt for the quietest bathroom fan. In some situations you want the loudest. :wink:

Solid core doors. If you have hollow core doors you have practically no door at all.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 27, 2015 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How far away from a freight railroad track should you live?
Replies: 51
Views: 3333

Re: How far away from a freight railroad track should you li

I'd also consider the blast zone and/or toxic cloud zone in case of a derailment.
by Sidney
Sun Apr 26, 2015 8:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - How do I know if I qualify
Replies: 4
Views: 435

Re: HSA - How do I know if I qualify

It should be explained in the plan document. If you don't have a copy, your HR/benefits department should be able to provide one (or a link to it online).

IRS publication 969 defines some of the attributes of a qualifying HDHP. That is worth reading as well.
by Sidney
Wed Apr 22, 2015 3:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirees: What is your SWR in retirement?
Replies: 45
Views: 4084

Re: Retirees: What is your SWR in retirement?

texasdiver wrote:Do you guys distinguish between withdrawal and spending?

I don't. But I also don't withdraw using any methodology. I withdraw only enough to pay the bills. I use the Taylor Larimore method.
by Sidney
Sat Apr 18, 2015 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can't Just Do Nothing
Replies: 45
Views: 6276

Re: Can't Just Do Nothing

Drew777 wrote:1 night at the Atlanta airport Sheraton

Second prize is two nights.
by Sidney
Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Marginal benefit of spending more on car
Replies: 83
Views: 6735

Re: Marginal benefit of spending more on car

Once you go beyond safe, affordable transportation you are basically talking about jewelry on wheels. Nothing wrong with that, as long as you know that is what you are paying for.
by Sidney
Sat Apr 18, 2015 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there a good IPOD alternative?
Replies: 27
Views: 1824

Re: Is there a good IPOD alternative?

MP3 players are a commodity. When I was working we used to give them away at employee meetings. I think paid $.50 a piece for them in bulk -- and that was 2006. They are probably cheaper now.
by Sidney
Thu Apr 16, 2015 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Friend not filed taxes for years but owes no money
Replies: 15
Views: 1689

Re: Friend not filed taxes for years but owes no money

Filing makes it difficult for someone else to file with your SSN. I am coming around to the conclusion that people should file whether or not they are required to file.
by Sidney
Wed Apr 15, 2015 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Many Credit Cards Do You Have Open?
Replies: 25
Views: 1609

Re: How Many Credit Cards Do You Have Open?

We have three. Each of us carries one that is not carried by the other in case a wallet is stolen, we would have one good card.
by Sidney
Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:28 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: How does this site make money?
Replies: 39
Views: 5661

Re: How does this site make money?

The real story behind all this is the selflessness of the owners of this site. This is a million dollar a year site they have simply decided not to monetize. The beauty of capitalism is that you can make money and at the same time serve your purpose better. If the site chooses to monetize, it can h...
by Sidney
Tue Apr 14, 2015 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience with Apple Pay?
Replies: 32
Views: 2495

Re: Experience with Apple Pay?

I'd much rather see more rapid intro of Chip and PIN and elimination/vast reduction in check transactions.
by Sidney
Tue Apr 14, 2015 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does your family know about your net worth (ball park)?
Replies: 98
Views: 11537

Re: Does your family know about your net worth (ball park)?

From looking at the recent annual income poll result, I think most BHs are already millionaires or will become one. Q1. Does your family (parents, siblings) know about your net worth (ball park figure)? I have never asked them, so I really don't know. Q2. Do you know their net worth? No Q3. How doe...
by Sidney
Tue Apr 14, 2015 7:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ: You may need less than 80% in retirement
Replies: 98
Views: 9263

Re: Finally some good news on retirement

TwoByFour wrote:This is silly. Nobody should plan a retirement budget on income, past, present, or future.

That is why I stopped reading the article after the first sentence.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating old books and getting tax writeoff?
Replies: 17
Views: 2190

Re: Donating old books and getting tax writeoff?

My library sells used books (which have been donated to them) for $.25 for paperbacks and $.50 for most hardbacks. Some go for a $1. So I don't bother with keeping track for taxes since the market value in our area is so low.
by Sidney
Wed Apr 08, 2015 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your homeowner and auto insurance annual rate increases?
Replies: 30
Views: 3356

Re: Your homeowner and auto insurance annual rate increases?

My homeowners bill just came. It went down $6 this year. Umbrella is flat.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 06, 2015 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: FSA contributions incorrectly coded as HSA on W2
Replies: 8
Views: 564

Re: FSA contributions incorrectly coded as HSA on W2

If you are using software, isn't there a place where you can enter the 1099 as you believe it should be? Seems like I saw that a few times over the years. I've never had to use it though. It is a W2; you normally match the inputs on your software to the paper form. If the paper form is incorrect, i...
by Sidney
Mon Apr 06, 2015 4:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: FSA contributions incorrectly coded as HSA on W2
Replies: 8
Views: 564

Re: FSA contributions incorrectly coded as HSA on W2

File when you want to. The matching process takes place later in the year. On the other hand, you could file for an extension and enjoy your summer and file in September like I do.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 06, 2015 4:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Capital gain on primary residence
Replies: 20
Views: 1724

Re: Capital gain on primary residence

trueblueky wrote:You can always get married and double your exclusion :D


Right, Kite is looking for someone to marry to fix his tax issues. Sounds like a perfect match.
by Sidney
Mon Apr 06, 2015 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Capital gain on primary residence
Replies: 20
Views: 1724

Re: Capital gain on primary residence

Keep in mind that the capital gain tax only applies to the excess of the gain over the $250,000 exclusion. When you go to sell, you will pay real estate commission on the entire selling price.
by Sidney
Thu Apr 02, 2015 4:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If long-term, why not just go really high risk?
Replies: 49
Views: 5114

Re: If long-term, why not just go really high risk?

One of the big risks is when 50 years becomes 20 years, in year 19.
by Sidney
Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: My Strategy For A Market Crash
Replies: 54
Views: 9572

Re: My Strategy For A Market Crash

I'm curious why dividends are relevant to your strategy at all. The distinction between dividends and capital gains has always seemed arbitrary to me. I think all that matters is total return. The OP frames the strategy in terms of dividends, but it is really a variant of Taylor's belt-tightening s...
by Sidney
Tue Mar 31, 2015 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement AA
Replies: 5
Views: 484

Re: Retirement AA

I'd probably just go with a Target Retirement Fund. Pick an allocation you are comfortable with 40/60 ... 50/50 ish.

When you say "gross" you are saying that the $60K will cover income taxes.

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