Search found 2326 matches

by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 31, 2015 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k loan
Replies: 12
Views: 702

Re: 401k loan

You will be restricting your Solo 401k options by requiring access to a 401k loan. Vanguard and Fidelity Solo 401k plans do not allow loans. I believe TD Ameritrade allows loans and you can buy Vanguard ETFs.
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 31, 2015 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Audit - and efficient heat
Replies: 2
Views: 228

Re: HVAC Audit - and efficient heat

The setback differential may impact the efficiency, but how the restore happens is critical. If you have a programmable thermostat that simply acts as a timer that changes the desired temperature by several degrees, it can call for resistance heating to restore the temperature. In this case it will ...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 29, 2015 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare and HSA question
Replies: 3
Views: 339

Re: Medicare and HSA question

There is one relatively obscure factor to be aware concerning Medicare and HSAs. When you apply for Medicare Part A after turning 65, Medicare is automatically retroactive by up to six months, but not earlier than 65. For example, if you delay enrolling in Part A until age 66, it will be automatical...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 29, 2015 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: HSA dilemma
Replies: 10
Views: 1060

Re: HSA dilemma

Always safer to actually see that the name of your plan has HSA in it. That may be true with individual ACA exchange plans or commercially available plans outside of the exchanges, but many HSA qualifying HDHP employer plans do not indicate this in the name of the plan. Mine clearly does not. It is...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 28, 2015 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Solo 401K Questions
Replies: 13
Views: 1925

Re: Solo 401K Questions

In case you were not aware of it. Your employee salary deferral can be up to 100% of compensation. However, for W-2 employees, it must all come from a deduction to your salary. So as a practical manner it is more like 90% of your salary to allow for FICA and the small amount (if any) tax withholding...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 28, 2015 9:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Solo 401(k) question
Replies: 31
Views: 2140

Re: Solo 401(k) question

While ERISSA Stone certainly has the cites to back up his position, and I always defer to his knowledge and experience (the professional in the room, by fact and history of posts). I'm going to have a contrarian take on the application of "recurring and substantial" to a Solo 401k. Yes, a ...
by Spirit Rider
Wed Aug 26, 2015 10:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has anyone actually used gold or silver coins for a purchase?
Replies: 57
Views: 4401

Re: Has anyone actually used gold or silver coins for a purchase?

I would question the practical aspects of trying to use gold or silver coins to make purchases in such severe circumstances. Only an infinitesimal percentage of the average population would have the ability to make purchases in such a manner. It could be very likely that information could leak out t...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 25, 2015 6:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Solo 401(k) question
Replies: 31
Views: 2140

Re: Solo 401(k) question

This is an entirely different fact pattern, than you were leading us to believe. There is a big difference between just not contributing every year year and selling the business. A Solo 401k IS an employer retirement plan. The plan is in the name of a business and associated by its EIN. How was the ...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 25, 2015 1:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Solo 401(k) question
Replies: 31
Views: 2140

Re: Solo 401(k) question

I agree with livesoft and lawman3966, there is no IRS requirement that you must contribute to a Solo 401k every year. A 401k is intended to be a plan with some degree of permanence. I have had two 4-5 year periods not making contributions to a Fidelity Solo 401k with no problem. Don't believe us, As...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 24, 2015 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What happened with ishares HDV this morning?
Replies: 8
Views: 808

Re: What happened with ishares HDV this morning?

Remember an ETF is NOT a mutual fund. A mutual fund's value is directly related to its holdings. An ETF is a marketable security based on the ETF's holdings. Not exactly the same. The financial press is speculating that this was a liquidity problem aggravated by the massive sell volume. The speculat...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 24, 2015 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: All I can afford is to max my roth: an investment plan
Replies: 25
Views: 1868

Re: All I can afford is to max my roth: an investment plan

I would consider setting up an online bill pay of $500/month to your friend for 10 months. This would be automatic, you could just factor this into your budget. This would allow you to both partially fund your Roth account and pay your friend back in reasonable committed manner. I think it would imp...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 24, 2015 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oversized HVAC?
Replies: 39
Views: 3946

Re: Oversized HVAC?

I agree with jebmke, that this sounds more like a configuration or control problem than an oversizing problem. A two stage system is designed to be able to compensate for an oversized second stage. The first stage handles the efficiency and humidity control issues and the second stage can provide ad...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 24, 2015 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mysterious AC noise
Replies: 5
Views: 313

Re: Mysterious AC noise

Noises in A/C ductwork can be a real challenge to determine the cause. It can be anything from metal expansion/contraction, vibration, air flow noises, bees/wasps, you name it. It is really going to be hard for someone remote to diagnose it. tomd37's suggestions are on the more probable side.
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 22, 2015 9:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Substantially Identical?
Replies: 15
Views: 1335

Re: Substantially Identical?

I would bet that selling VG's S&P500 Index fund only to buy another company's S&P500 Index fund inside of 31 days would be considered "substantially identical" if the IRS wanted to pursue it. The S&P index is a one of the arguable cases. However, all S&P 500 index funds ha...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 22, 2015 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 5-Year BS/MS programs computer science
Replies: 15
Views: 1217

Re: 5-Year BS/MS programs computer science

If you have a certain level of maturity and potential management aspirations, I would follow stevep's advice. Get your BSCS, after you are hired and settle in for a year, start a master's program paid for by the company (make that benefit a requirement in your job search). You will get income quicke...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 22, 2015 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)
Replies: 15
Views: 1486

Re: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)

1. The employee salary deferral limit (2015 =$18K) is across all Simple IRA, 401k, and 403b plans. The annual addition limit (2015 = $53K) is separate for each employer plan. A 403b is considered owned by the participant so its annual addition limit must be combined with all self-employed plans. In...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 21, 2015 10:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA losing value....should I exchange?
Replies: 36
Views: 3243

Re: Roth IRA losing value....should I exchange?

The Wizard wrote:OP can't put anymore in a Roth right now, so best to just sit tight...

It is not entirely clear that is true. It was contributed in April. It is entirely possible or maybe even likely it was a 2014 contribution.
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 21, 2015 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: question about starting 401k at small scorp
Replies: 4
Views: 230

Re: question about starting 401k at small scorp

A four (4) employee 401k will not be cost effective at Vanguard. Even Vanguard's small business 401k plan (which is administered by Ascensus). Yes, you must cover all eligible employees. You can restrict the plan to those >= 21 and those working >= 1000 hours. If you added a one year service require...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 21, 2015 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Individual 401K
Replies: 85
Views: 4346

Re: Individual 401K

First, your spouse does not have to be an owner to be eligible for Individual 401k contributions. She could be a W-2 employee of a disregarded single member LLC/sole proprietorship, with her salary deferrals deducted from her paychecks and both of your equal percentage employer contributions coming ...
by Spirit Rider
Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Independent Contractor Tax Rate
Replies: 5
Views: 649

Re: Independent Contractor Tax Rate

As nolesrule said; You first need to indicate if you are a W-2 through an agency, a W-2 through your own S-Corp, or a sole proprietor. If you are the latter, use this procedure. Fill out a Schedule C with your estimated revenue/expenses/deductions/credits to get your estimated net business profit. F...
by Spirit Rider
Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why keep non-Roth 401ks post retirement?
Replies: 10
Views: 881

Re: Why keep non-Roth 401ks post retirement?

The last thing you want to do is convert so much of your pre-tax accounts that you don't even have enough taxable income to use up your deductions/credits and at least get to the top of the 10% bracket. It would really be a waste if you converted at 25%+ and that happened.
by Spirit Rider
Thu Aug 20, 2015 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Individual 401K
Replies: 85
Views: 4346

Re: Individual 401K

It is hard to tell if people are talking about being allowed to withdraw money or being allowed to withdraw it without penalty. I'm under the impression that you can always take money out of a 401k if you are willing to pay the tax and the penalty. And if one of the exceptions apply, there is no pe...
by Spirit Rider
Wed Aug 19, 2015 10:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)
Replies: 15
Views: 1486

Re: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)

I believe the expansion of tax advantaged space , refers to the fact that post-tax advantaged space is worth more than pre-tax advantaged space. Assuming a 25% tax rate at withdrawal; $100K post-tax will net $100K, but $100K pre-tax will only net $75K. This is usually only a factor when making the p...
by Spirit Rider
Wed Aug 19, 2015 6:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer Fund Selection for 401k Plan
Replies: 9
Views: 477

Re: Employer Fund Selection for 401k Plan

I don't understand why you want to eliminate one of the bond funds. You have six equity funds, yet you don't want to allow the participants a choice of at lest two bond funds??? Personally, I would keep them both and add Vanguard Intermediate-Term Treasury Fund Admiral Shares VFIUX
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Solo 401k for wife
Replies: 8
Views: 536

Re: Solo 401k for wife

Yes, but then you have added the complication that your wife's company does work for your company. This is all very complicated. That is why I suggested professional advice.
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Solo 401k for wife
Replies: 8
Views: 536

Re: Solo 401k for wife

I know there are retirement plan rules about companies that are closely related, but I don't know how they apply. You know the saying about if it sounds too good to be true... Good luck. Yes, I agree :( Just looking for some link (tax code, etc) that says you can't do this. If the only ownership of...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 7:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: RMD Beneficiary payout question
Replies: 20
Views: 1339

Re: RMD Beneficiary payout question

RSP usually stands for Retirement Savings Plan, a fancy way of saying these were from non-elective contributions instead of matching contributions. Following Alan's suggestion you would end up with one Inherited IRA and one Inherited Roth IRA from the three plans. As for how you take the RMD distrib...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Aftertax 401k Contributions
Replies: 13
Views: 1424

Re: Aftertax 401k Contributions

After looking into this further, this has a major downside related to 401k compliance testing. Even if your company has a safe harbor plan, the ADP test is still required for after tax contributions. Given that, (and the fact that I'm an HCE) this may not work out as good as I had planned. Technica...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's a Bug Out Bag and who uses them?
Replies: 67
Views: 7765

Re: What's a Bug Out Bag and who uses them?

The folks here who pin a negative connotation to people who prepare in such a way, or even just use the term "bug out bag", should seriously reconsider their thoughts on this subject. It's really no different than a form of cheap insurance. It takes a little time and effort to pull one to...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: RMD Beneficiary payout question
Replies: 20
Views: 1339

Re: RMD Beneficiary payout question

The RMD for a particular yr is based on the value of the IRA(s) as of yr end the previous yr so it is defined precisely. If you are crystal-balling what will happen in the future then some guess as to the return will be needed but it is only for guess-timating purposes. Yes, and the custodian is ob...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: RMD Beneficiary payout question
Replies: 20
Views: 1339

Re: RMD Beneficiary payout question

I don't know what the calculators you are referring to, unless they are just projecting the growth of an Inherited account taking into account the RMDs. The IRS rules in this situation are very precise. If your father passed away in 2015, you have until 12/31/2016 to rollover to an Inherited IRA and...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Part B Supplement - Down to Few Options
Replies: 30
Views: 2045

Re: Medicare Part B Supplement - Down to Few Options

I am also in OP's position as I turn 65 in October. Although I am in NJ I have found that Plan G provides everything Plan F provides EXCEPT the annual $147 Part B deductible. If the plan F quoted to you is MORE THAN $12/month then plan G is less expensive and provides same coverage as Plan F. I'm g...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 1:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taking an RMD
Replies: 2
Views: 479

Re: Taking an RMD

I believe you are technically correct on all your points. The only time you effectively tell the custodian that it is an RMD is when you are asking them to automatically calculate and distribute the withdrawal based on RMD tables. Just remember that RMD withdrawals are not eligible for rollover. So ...
by Spirit Rider
Tue Aug 18, 2015 12:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)
Replies: 15
Views: 1486

Re: Need a gut check or someone to clear up my confusion about Backdoor Roth (mega and simple)

The reason people rollover a non-deductible IRA contribution to a Roth IRA (backdoor Roth) and rollover an after-tax 401k contribution to a Roth IRA (mega backdoor Roth), is to make additional tax-free retirement plan contributions instead of taxable investments. A SEP IRA -> Roth IRA conversion is ...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 17, 2015 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in after tax 401k
Replies: 14
Views: 1051

Re: Investing in post tax 401k

I called Fidelity to see if I can do this and I can with after tax contributions. So instead of dumping $12k / year into my taxable brokerage account for retirement, I might be better off maxing out my after tax contribution to my 401k and then doing the Roth conversion. I turn 50 next year so I co...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 17, 2015 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Savings rate better calculated via Gross or Net?
Replies: 23
Views: 1737

tax adjusted deferred gross + taxable gross

Being an engineer and a contrarian I have always used a strategy for lack of a better name we will call this "tax adjusted deferred gross + taxable gross". An example best illustrates this. Say there is a desired "savings rate" of 25% and a marginal tax rate of 33%. A 15% gross t...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Verizon Plans
Replies: 5
Views: 980

Re: New Verizon Plans

Yes, the More Choice monthly plan prices out of contract are $25/$15 for <6GB/>=6GB data. You must ask for these discounts, they are not automatic. The new plans ($20/month) are $5 less expensive for data <6G and $5 more expensive for data >=6GB. Then there are differences in data plans pricing old ...
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Employer doesn't offer 401k: Alternatives?
Replies: 3
Views: 466

Re: New Employer doesn't offer 401k: Alternatives?

Your only other real option is an HDHP health plan with HSA (if offered by new employer) and pay all qualified medical expenses out of pocket (saving all receipts). Only do this if the HDHP/HSA makes financial sense for your particular circumstances.
by Spirit Rider
Mon Aug 17, 2015 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Contributions to MyRA with existing Roth IRA]
Replies: 5
Views: 722

Re: [Contributions to MyRA with existing Roth IRA]

What happens when you contribute >$15k into MyRA over time? Does it get liquidated or can you keep the G fund? When the balance (including earnings) reaches $15,000 or 30 years since first deposit, the MyRA balance must be withdrawn or rolled over to another Roth IRA account. One way to avoid the $...
by Spirit Rider
Sun Aug 16, 2015 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Contributions to MyRA with existing Roth IRA]
Replies: 5
Views: 722

Re: Obama's MyRA [Contributions to MyRA with existing Roth IRA]

No, if she has already made the maximum Roth IRA contribution. No further contributions can be made to a MyRA account. If you followed LadyGeek's MyRA resources link you will see that a MyRA accont is Roth IRA account. The IRA contribution limit applies to all Traditional IRA, Roth IRA, and MyRA con...
by Spirit Rider
Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Self 529 questions
Replies: 1
Views: 123

Re: Self 529 questions

There is no 529 double dipping with deductions, credits, and reimbursements. Any expenses are offset by these and only net expenses are qualified educational expenses for 529 purposes.
by Spirit Rider
Sun Aug 16, 2015 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Phone Reception
Replies: 34
Views: 2384

Re: Cell Phone Reception

There are really several issues with regards to cell phone reception Don't assume that all carriers are on all towers. Yes, very often they share the same towers, but not always. So there can be significant coverage differences between carriers in any given area. There is no one best company, it is ...
by Spirit Rider
Sun Aug 16, 2015 12:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS regulation on 401K plan (company mistake)
Replies: 34
Views: 1807

Re: IRS regulation on 401K plan (company mistake)

This violation was for 2013 and 2014 I just found out. So will someone get fined from the IRS? And if so who would you feel should pay for this fine? The plan sponsor is responsible for making corrective distributions within 2 1/2 months of the end of the plan year. For calendar year plans (almost ...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 15, 2015 6:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Animal cruelty free mutual Funds
Replies: 37
Views: 2386

Re: Animal cruelty free mutual Funds

Nope, no moral constraints on investing whatsoever. I invest in broad market index funds. I let the market sort it out. Are there hypothetical situations in which you would have moral constraints? I have better uses for my time, like volunteering. I believe in placing my money and my body where it ...
by Spirit Rider
Sat Aug 15, 2015 6:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Animal cruelty free mutual Funds
Replies: 37
Views: 2386

Re: Animal cruelty free mutual Funds

Nope, no moral constraints on investing whatsoever. I invest in broad market index funds. I let the market sort it out.

Then I contribute a percentage of my income and a smaller percentage of my liquid net worth to causes I support.

Anything else is just tilting at windmills.
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should car be repaired (airbag issue)?
Replies: 13
Views: 927

Re: Should car be repaired (airbag issue)?

Not that I don't trust your mechanic, but the age of 14 years sets off my potential BS meter. In the beginning it was not known how long airbags were good for. They were made with plastic seals and there was concern of moisture infiltration. So they originally came with expiration dates and the SRS ...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 14, 2015 8:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA catch up contributions taxable?
Replies: 3
Views: 274

Re: HSA catch up contributions taxable?

Your father either misunderstood, or the rep doesn't know what they are talking about. The catchup contribution is just like the base contributions. It is not subject to income taxes. Now, some companies do not allow you to make catchup contributions by payroll deduction. In that case your wages are...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non Deductable IRA
Replies: 24
Views: 1269

Re: Non Deductable IRA

"Another point is that IRAs that are funded completely with a rollover from a 401k enjoy the same protection from lawsuits as a 401k. 401k accounts generally have slightly better protection from liability than IRAs." All, Can anyone provide reference to a law that specifically states the ...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verizon new plan issue
Replies: 8
Views: 1439

Re: Verizon new plan issue

On vacation earlier this month, my wife dropped her phone and we used an upgrade to replace it. I had the original phone repaired by Apple. Since it is only the 14th, you should be able to return the phone under the worry free guarantee and on pay a $35 restocking fee and rescind the contract. Also...
by Spirit Rider
Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS regulation on 401K plan (company mistake)
Replies: 34
Views: 1807

Re: IRS regulation on 401K plan (company mistake)

2. How much do they match in 401k?>>3% even if you don't participate Wow, a 3% company non-elective contribution, meets the contribution requirement for a safe harbor plan. The most likely reason they don't offer a safe harbor plan is so they can have a restrictive vesting schedule. Safe harbor pla...

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