Search found 1211 matches

by Stonebr
Wed Jul 01, 2015 8:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Closing a bank account
Replies: 8
Views: 1097

Re: Closing a bank account

I had to close an account at Sovereign/Santander a few years ago because of a move. I called them up and asked how to close the account. They said just zero it out (the account had no monthly fees) and within a year of zero balances it would close automatically. They sent the 1099 to the new address...
by Stonebr
Wed Jul 01, 2015 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quebec City Suggestions
Replies: 12
Views: 676

Re: Quebec City Suggestions

How walkable is the city? I'll be driving so what are good options to park? The city is not drivable is the point. Just park for the whole weekend and walk everywhere. On street parking is certainly possible, but I don't know why you'd want a car except maybe to get out of town. The hotel should ha...
by Stonebr
Wed Jul 01, 2015 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Dealerships - is this bad service?
Replies: 21
Views: 1891

Re: Car Dealerships - is this bad service?

My recent experience with dealers is the exact opposite of what you describe. Appointment often means that you drop the car off at that time and pick up after work. If you are waiting, they do it right away, if possible. For 11 years with a Volvo I had to leave the car overnight only once. With Toyo...
by Stonebr
Wed Jul 01, 2015 3:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is a large emergency fund needed after 59 1/2
Replies: 24
Views: 2378

Re: Is a large emergency fund needed after 59 1/2

Retired and drawing down taxable, we are deferring SS to 70. In the meantime, the drawdown means holding substantial cash -- online savings and a CD. Note that this cash/CD is counted as part of the fixed income allocation. I'm just not taking risk with it, and the taxable return of about 1% is dism...
by Stonebr
Wed Jul 01, 2015 8:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Active Funds Win Battles But Lose Wars
Replies: 15
Views: 1653

Re: Active Funds Win Battles But Lose Wars

Maynard F. Speer wrote:I'll shut up, but although I understand indexing, and use indexing myself as much as I can ... as an American, why wouldn't you just invest in Berkshire Hathaway?


Buffett is 84 and his partner Charlie Munger is 91. How many more years can one expect from this duo?
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 30, 2015 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real Estate Inspection Question
Replies: 13
Views: 1072

Re: Real Estate Inspection Question

We had a similar experience with the roof, which was truly on its last legs. The house was priced aggressively for a quick sale, and the offer was low. Then the inspection "revealed" that the roof was old -- duh. We stuck to our guns and responded that the house was priced to reflect age a...
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 23, 2015 8:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSAX)
Replies: 16
Views: 4328

Re: Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund (VTSAX)

I first read about the "superiority" of small cap in 1982. It was a long wait -- about 20 years -- for the payoff. By then I had gray hair.
by Stonebr
Mon Jun 22, 2015 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life Expectancy Divisor for RMDs
Replies: 4
Views: 547

Re: Life Expectancy Divisor for RMDs

Follow the steps in this worksheet:

http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-tege/uniform_rmd_wksht.pdf

The factor to use is the one for your age on your birthday this year. Since you turned 70.5 already, you will be 71 on your 2015 birthday.
by Stonebr
Sun Jun 14, 2015 7:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bear Market strategies, if any
Replies: 61
Views: 6700

Re: Bear Market strategies, if any

Best thing is get out of debt and stay out of debt. Without debt you can survive unemployment, stock market downturns, and liquidity crises a lot longer.
by Stonebr
Fri Jun 12, 2015 8:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Aren't bogleheads predicting the long term?
Replies: 84
Views: 8387

Re: Aren't bogleheads predicting the long term?

Long term global growth is by no means guaranteed. Resource depletion, nuclear war, pandemics, an asteroid splashing down in the Pacific -- you name it -- could throw a monkey wrench. :( Aside from stocks, you keep your debt to a minimum or zero, learn how to live frugally, have a trade, and treasur...
by Stonebr
Fri Jun 12, 2015 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Just patch roof or replace it?
Replies: 12
Views: 929

Re: Just patch roof or replace it?

When we sold our house a couple of years ago, it needed a new roof. We definitely got low-balled on the price by about the cost of a new roof, the buyer and their inspector made a big issue of it. We drove by a few months later and the new owners had replaced the roof.
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Elderly in-laws portfolio advice with low funds
Replies: 3
Views: 383

Re: Elderly in-laws portfolio advice with low funds

My mother's solution was to hold the Vanguard Life Strategy Income Fund. She had dividends paid to her quarterly. I think the dividend yield is currently about 2%, so you would be looking at withdrawing (selling shares) another 3% or so of principal in the first year. More as years go by.
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension from old out-of-business employer
Replies: 4
Views: 579

Re: Pension from old out-of-business employer

Another thing. Whoever ended up with this pension plan liability will eventually want to contact her. As an unclaimed benefit gets closer to retirement age and beyond, it becomes a larger and larger liability for the plan, which must hold a reserve to fund it. It's in their financial interest to con...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension from old out-of-business employer
Replies: 4
Views: 579

Re: Pension from old out-of-business employer

If she knows any other employees of the company, she could ask them if they know anything. Particularly helpful would be someone that worked there for a very long time and is close to or in retirement. They would surely know. Otherwise, use the internet. You can discover many revealing things about ...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 10, 2015 12:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stable Value Funds
Replies: 6
Views: 772

Re: Stable Value Funds

"Stable value funds did not exist in the 1979-1981 era..." OK, I never have completely understood what my TIAA Traditional account was. I thought it was a stable value fund (with restrictions on withdrawal to protect against "runs" on the fund). Whatever it was, I think it's exi...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 10, 2015 6:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we trade in the old truck or sell it privately?
Replies: 46
Views: 3407

Re: Should we trade in the old truck or sell it privately?

Selling privately via Craigslist will yield more money, but will come with hassles - fielding calls, weeding out the fake offers and trade offers, meeting people so they can test drive, some uncertainty about how to receive payment safely. I found the hassles to be minimal. Posted the ad on CL on a...
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 09, 2015 7:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A/C efficiency question
Replies: 31
Views: 3182

Re: A/C efficiency question

TxAg wrote:Is it more efficient to leave the unit set at 75 all day and night or 80 during the day and 74 at night?


You could get a "Kill-A-Watt" meter and measure for yourself. They are not expensive, and some public libraries can loan them just like a book.
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 09, 2015 3:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Discussion of Economics on Bogleheads
Replies: 3
Views: 568

Re: Discussion of Economics on Bogleheads

Generally not allowed under forum policies: " Non-actionable (Trolling) Topics If readers can't do anything with the content of a topic other than argue about it, it does not belong here. Examples include: US or world economic, political, tax, health care and climate policies " Space on th...
by Stonebr
Fri Jun 05, 2015 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does too high initial house asking price kill chance at selling house?
Replies: 50
Views: 4722

Re: Does too high initial house asking price kill chance at selling house?

IMO doesn't matter at all - if you want to sell it, you need to keep lowering the price until it sells , it's as simple as that , no high level financial or economic analysis needed . In an efficient market, I'd agree. But residential real estate is far from efficient, at least for the individual b...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gardening 2015 pt 2
Replies: 21
Views: 2820

Re: Gardening 2015 pt 2

From Maine: Kale and Shallots wintered over -- the 5 or so feet of snow seems to have acted as insulating blanket. Have been eating them since April. For the past 2 weeks we've been eating Mesclun, Spinach, Kale, Arugula, and a few Beet Greens. Peas are about 18 inches tall, pole beans, zucchini, an...
by Stonebr
Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on restructuring elderly parent's portfolio
Replies: 12
Views: 1168

Re: Advice on restructuring elderly parent's portfolio

Advice was mixed on the previous thread. Some, including Taylor, advised to hold onto the securities with a profit because capital gains taxes are eliminated at the owner’s death. Others suggested it still might be better to get on track now with a diversified three fund portfolio and improve asset...
by Stonebr
Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bread Machines?
Replies: 41
Views: 2804

Re: Bread Machines?

I use mine about once a month. Had it for 8 years. Breadman.

Get one at Goodwill. They have a better selection than any big box store. :wink:

If you get a used thrift shop bread maker, you won't feel stuck with it if you find you don't use it much. You can just donate it again.
by Stonebr
Mon Jun 01, 2015 8:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension or Unfair Lump Sum
Replies: 39
Views: 5096

Re: Pension or Unfair Lump Sum

Another issue I see is that with a spouse who is 10 years younger, with a lump sum you have to be very careful with the SWR (sustainable withdrawal rate). My own choice, with a spouse 11 years younger, was 100% joint annuity. As others have noted, a steady income that covers the basic expenses of li...
by Stonebr
Sun May 31, 2015 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Canadian money
Replies: 34
Views: 2718

Re: Canadian money

Similar to HIinvestor, we just use ATM cards in Canada, as well as our credit cards. Our Ally Bank ATM card has no fees. As for the exchange rate, it's not like it's worth shopping around when you're only going to save 70 cents.
by Stonebr
Fri May 29, 2015 8:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This time is different
Replies: 44
Views: 4747

Re: This time is different

What would a repricing of bonds look like if yields went from 2.1% to 5%? For a 10yr bond it would equate to a drop of 23%; a similar move in 20yr bonds would be -35%, and -43% for 30yr These are not 'small deltas' How do you think house prices and stocks (which yield <2%) hold up if overnight rate...
by Stonebr
Fri May 29, 2015 7:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This time is different
Replies: 44
Views: 4747

Re: This time is different

Go with the flow. If a strong wind comes up, open the barn door.
by Stonebr
Thu May 28, 2015 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Things Change(? - Getting Married)
Replies: 8
Views: 916

Re: Things Change(? - Getting Married)

It took us about 4 years to consolidate banking into one joint checking account. After a while, it seemed like separate checking accounts were just "clutter" so I nixed mine and we opened a joint account at her bank.

In short, there's no rush.
by Stonebr
Thu May 28, 2015 7:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Are You Devoting Too Much Time (and Money) to Niche Asset Classes?"
Replies: 61
Views: 5596

Re: "Are You Devoting Too Much Time (and Money) to Niche Asset Classes?"

Who's to say that some other Nobel Prize winner won't come along with "proof" that another tilt is even better? What will you do then, change your allocation? Sounds like a loser's game to me.
by Stonebr
Sat May 23, 2015 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good 3-way LED Bulb?
Replies: 10
Views: 1207

Re: Good 3-way LED Bulb?

Like the Coyote says above, earthed.com has FEIT 30/70/100 in a soft white. We use them in a couple of lamps. No problems. A lot of our lamps come with shades that actually clamp onto the bulbs, so we've had to experiment a bit. The FEITs work fine with our lampshades. This was a bigger problem with...
by Stonebr
Wed May 20, 2015 6:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How should drivers react to bicycle riders on one lane roads?
Replies: 68
Views: 3118

Re: How should drivers react to bicycle riders on one lane roads?

The only way to do it would be to pull way over to the left crossing the road's double yellow lines, which I think would be a violation. So it is a two lane road. One can cross the center line to go around an object or every parked/stalled car would close the road. Correct. The double yellow lines ...
by Stonebr
Sun May 17, 2015 8:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My experience with stock options - selling vertical spreads
Replies: 9
Views: 725

Re: My experience with stock options - selling vertical spreads

Feel free to share any other words of wisdom on the topic. I feel like I like the subject of stock options but if I continue failing I think I will just put my additional money into regular stocks and forget about this whole stock option thing. Welcome to the forum. You may have answered your own q...
by Stonebr
Sun May 03, 2015 7:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Wellseley VWINX - for a conservative investor mid 30s.
Replies: 16
Views: 2034

Re: Wellseley VWINX - for a conservative investor mid 30s.

Wellesley has never lost more than 10% in a single year, not even 2008. That is hopefully tolerable for even risk averse people. http://finance.yahoo.com/q/pm?s=VWINX+Performance Not so comforting when you adjust for inflation. 1974, for example the inflation rate was 11% and you got -6.43% in tota...
by Stonebr
Sun May 03, 2015 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will you buy self-driving car?
Replies: 235
Views: 10567

Re: Will you buy self-driving car?

Biggest flop in history.

Who would want one?
by Stonebr
Sat May 02, 2015 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Power of attorney
Replies: 59
Views: 5028

Re: Power of attorney

Where POA is needed most is when one or the other of you is incapacitated and the other is force to sell real estate or a car to raise money. State rules would apply, and your attorney can help you. The POA document will be golden. For a married couple with joint accounts I don't see why you would ...
by Stonebr
Sat May 02, 2015 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Power of attorney
Replies: 59
Views: 5028

Re: Power of attorney

Where POA is needed most is when one or the other of you is incapacitated and the other is force to sell real estate or a car to raise money. State rules would apply, and your attorney can help you. The POA document will be golden. For a married couple with joint accounts I don't see why you would n...
by Stonebr
Fri May 01, 2015 7:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: US stocks returned "just 0.6%" 1915-1982
Replies: 56
Views: 5916

Re: US stocks returned "just 0.6%" 1915-1984

dumbmoney wrote: Is Warren Buffet's company a Ponzi scheme because it doesn't pay dividends?


Note that Warren Buffett's (Buffett has two tees, by the way) company is a holding company that owns other companies, all of which pay huge dividends. He just doesn't share those dividends with his passive partners.
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My new dishwasher doesn't clean
Replies: 64
Views: 8104

Re: My new dishwasher doesn't clean

You people obviously don't understand the purpose of these modern appliances. The dishwasher is not designed to wash dishes, it's designed to save energy, save water, and improve the balance sheet of the manufacturer. The only way to actually clean dishes here in the iworld is by hand. You bought t...
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Approach to Second Act Career Switch
Replies: 22
Views: 2427

Re: Approach to Second Act Career Switch

Try retirement. Learn to live on less and practice a healthy lifestyle. Failing that, become a bike mechanic, bike messenger, truck driver, market gardener, be one of those farmers at the local farmers market, try painting (art), try house painting, teach math in a charter school, write for a travel...
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 8:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the best roofing material?
Replies: 17
Views: 1927

Re: What is the best roofing material?

Be careful with regards to the answers, from what I remember, different material may make sense depending on the weather, i.e. areas that are snowy or rainy. Here in Maine, there are 250-year-old houses with cedar shake roofs. Of course, the cedar gets replaced every 20 years, and so does everythin...
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Primerica [as a job]
Replies: 12
Views: 1186

Re: Primerica

wikipedia has an article on the convoluted history of this outfit. They are a sort of Amway for financial services. Or maybe Amsoil. They started with a great idea -- buy term insurance, invest the rest. Then they evolved or devolved, depending on your point of view. You're right, there's a lot of m...
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 7:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My new dishwasher doesn't clean
Replies: 64
Views: 8104

Re: My new dishwasher doesn't clean

You people obviously don't understand the purpose of these modern appliances. The dishwasher is not designed to wash dishes, it's designed to save energy, save water, and improve the balance sheet of the manufacturer.

The only way to actually clean dishes here in the iworld is by hand.
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 28, 2015 4:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to liquidate a bad REIT investment?
Replies: 22
Views: 1964

Re: How to liquidate a bad REIT investment?

It's not just what I think -- they told me so over the phone, and I found this recent article: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2995430/CNL-Lifestyle-Properties-sell-16-ski-resorts-Maine-California-worth-hundreds-millions-dollars.html "The REIT is nearing the end of its projected lifesp...
by Stonebr
Mon Apr 27, 2015 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help Choosing Survivor Pension Option (50% vs 100%)
Replies: 25
Views: 1988

Re: Help Choosing Survivor Pension Option (50% vs 100%)

Depends on what else they have. Does she have her own pension? Do they have $2 million stashed away somewhere? Will they both get a nice Social Security benefit? These two amounts are financially equivalent. That is, they take into account all of the life expectancy and interest earnings based on cu...
by Stonebr
Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why the big difference in my intl managed vs index funds
Replies: 8
Views: 766

Re: Why the big difference in my intl managed vs index funds

With thousands of active mutual funds investing internationally, a few were bound to have good luck. I don't own either of these funds, but I would note that both have had a lot of very consistent "luck" for a lot of years and rolling time periods. Dodge & Cox have also had a lot of &...
by Stonebr
Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling on eBay with local pickup using PayPal - Dangerous?
Replies: 22
Views: 1929

Re: Selling on eBay with local pickup using PayPal - Dangero

An old fashioned paper bill of sale with signatures from both you and the buyer would be a sufficient deterrent, I would think.
by Stonebr
Sat Apr 18, 2015 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Is The Worst Car You Have Ever Owned?
Replies: 39
Views: 2151

Re: What Is The Worst Car You Have Ever Owned?

It depends on how you define "worst." The most unreliable car was a 1971 Saab 99. I bought it used with 95k miles, and it was nothing but trouble at a time when I had no money. However, it was fun to drive, and the body was solid. The car that was the least fun to drive was its successor, ...
by Stonebr
Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to sell actively managed funds in taxable acct
Replies: 21
Views: 1883

Re: When to sell actively managed funds in taxable acct

Do a step at a time. Two funds have gains of only $2k and $3k. Start there. You've alluded to capital gains distributions on one or more of your funds, and this is the kicker. Distributions are out of your control and can happen at the worst time. My brother in law found this out last year when one ...
by Stonebr
Tue Apr 14, 2015 3:25 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: How does this site make money?
Replies: 39
Views: 6338

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 Stonebr
Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question abt Stable Value fund
Replies: 7
Views: 660

Re: Question abt Stable Value fund

Thank you for the response.. Does the 5 yr stated Std. Dev. (fund .34) look like a reasonable number? Is this fund apt to be effected by interest rate changes? Yes. Note that Std Dev is lower (as a stable value fund should be) than the market valued benchmark ML 1-3 index. (Merrill Lynch 1-3 year b...
by Stonebr
Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question abt Stable Value fund
Replies: 7
Views: 660

Re: Question abt Stable Value fund

Stable Value asset class is fixed income (aka bonds). Vanguard's GNMA is also fixed income. Many Boglehead forum members use Stable Value (SV) accounts in their 401k plans. I do. But it all depends on the interest rate and the credit quality. The SV account described in your post is diversified acro...

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