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Re: What does "invest in the market mean"

Do you have an extra hour in your life right now? If so, I would strongly recommend watching these videos: http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Video:Bogleheads%C2%AE_investment_philosophy They really got me going with this stuff. The visual explanation for why it's better to "invest in the market&qu...
by TSR
Mon Apr 14, 2014 12:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What does "invest in the market mean"
Replies: 11
Views: 868

Re: Why Americans are Retiring Overseas

Really, you would rather live in Thailand than the Southern US? Absolutely. Someone in an interracial, same-sex marriage just isn't going to feel at home in the Southern US in this lifetime, I am afraid. While the LGBT rights are still not great in Thailand, I would still prefer to live there . Tha...
by TSR
Thu Apr 10, 2014 10:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why Americans are Retiring Overseas
Replies: 109
Views: 8592

Re: 36 year old looking for advice

Oh, Laura, I see you mean that the market won't necessarily return 8%, which I agree with. I think the differences between the VUL returns and an index-approach stays relatively constant, as I played around with the numbers, but I'll make sure I can back that up mathematically. Two comments: 1. On ...
by TSR
Wed Apr 09, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 36 year old looking for advice
Replies: 12
Views: 1491

Re: Brown bagging in a more formal office

Plastic Kroger bag. I work in a law office, but it's pretty loose around here. Even when I worked in a big, formal southern law firm, nobody would have really cared what I brought my lunch to work in. I strongly advise against putting food into anything that cannot be easily cleaned (such as the fan...
by TSR
Wed Apr 09, 2014 12:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brown bagging in a more formal office
Replies: 43
Views: 2933

Re: Why Americans are Retiring Overseas

My aunt and uncle retired to an ex-pat community in Panama. They did not quite do it for financial reasons, as he had decent money. They did it because he had some political views that some folks might consider to be extreme, most of which assumed an imminent colapse of the American financial/politi...
by TSR
Tue Apr 08, 2014 11:09 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why Americans are Retiring Overseas
Replies: 109
Views: 8592

Re: Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction

If you believe there is a benefit to paying interest to someone to get a tax break rather than keeping your money and paying taxes on it, you're over-selling it. :D As mentioned, it is very situational. For high income/high mortgage types paying yearly interest that is twice the standard deduction,...
by TSR
Mon Apr 07, 2014 2:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction
Replies: 11
Views: 679

Re: Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction

In reverse order: 2. Is there a better approximation that we could use on these boards than the "subtract 1%" strategy without getting too deep into each poster's personal situation? Or even some general criteria? (E.g., "people making between $50K and $200K annually typically only d...
by TSR
Mon Apr 07, 2014 2:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction
Replies: 11
Views: 679

Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction

Friends, This post was inspired by numerous recent threads about paying off one's mortgage, as well as my anxiety that we may be collectively over-selling the benefits of the mortgage-interest deduction. It appears that the short-hand on this board for how to view the benefit of the mortgage-interes...
by TSR
Mon Apr 07, 2014 12:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calculate effect of mortgage-interest deduction
Replies: 11
Views: 679

Re: Buying for someone who "has everything"

I am someone who doesn't need a lot of "things" either. That said, there are some luxury items that I enjoy owning but just don't buy for myself -- nice gloves, a cashmere scarf, a quality hat, things like that. These make great gifts in the $100 or below range. For a little bit more money...
by TSR
Fri Apr 04, 2014 3:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying for someone who "has everything"
Replies: 43
Views: 2288

Re: And suddenly, I'm done...

Not to rain on your parade, but you might miss it! I tend to want to LOOK at these things, a little like ol' Silas Marner counting his gold every night. I've trained myself not to touch, though -- that's the biggest thing. I hope for you that you can just relax, but even if you're one of the lookers...
by TSR
Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: And suddenly, I'm done...
Replies: 24
Views: 4948

Re: Putting $ away for children

I'm sorry you're getting beaten up here, especially over money that you've worked hard to save for them. These subjects seem to make people suspicious. I agree with some others that the $75K is a good "learning experience" for the later trust money, and I agree with you that a lump-sum tra...
by TSR
Thu Apr 03, 2014 3:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Putting $ away for children
Replies: 103
Views: 5364

Re: best vacuum cleaner

On Amazon, there is a store that only sells refurbished Electrolux vacuums. I own one. It's good and does what it's supposed to do (I think it is an "Oxygen" brand). It has a power head. I think it cost $175-200. This is a lot of vacuum for the money. The equivalent -- though undoubtedly s...
by TSR
Wed Apr 02, 2014 2:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best vacuum cleaner
Replies: 23
Views: 1637

Re: Boxed Wines

I agree with folks above that some of the Bota Box and Big House stuff is decent, but I don't think you'll find any of them particularly "interesting." (I don't personally demand "interesting" in my red wine, but some folks do.) These are available at ALL liquor stores, but there...
by TSR
Tue Apr 01, 2014 3:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boxed Wines
Replies: 29
Views: 1912

Re: Expensive hobbies and possessions? (B/c you can...)

Music related stuff: 1. Concert tickets whenever there are shows I really want to see; and 2. Fancy acoustic guitars. One Martin OM-18V Custom (Adirondack top), which I bought used, and one 1937 Gibson L-OO, which I bought on eBay and has seen better days, but which sounds fantastic. Some people vie...
by TSR
Tue Apr 01, 2014 11:18 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Expensive hobbies and possessions? (B/c you can...)
Replies: 126
Views: 9178

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

I follow him semi-regularly and his blog ultimately lead me to this forum. Frugality is something entirely different when you divorce your personal identity from the quantity and brands you consume. Once you can do this, frugality is no longer a sacrifice the way most view it, and my outlook on thi...
by TSR
Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?
Replies: 225
Views: 23693

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

I may not understand the problem you see occuring when he gets older. While I understand that a 4% withdrawal rate is somewhat questionable at his age, and he makes a few assumptions that are at the very least subject to dramatic change, I still think there's a very high percentage chance of success...
by TSR
Mon Mar 31, 2014 10:24 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?
Replies: 225
Views: 23693

Re: Bad time to open new fund in Roth?

I can't tell exactly how much you intend to invest and when, but this is an absolute GREAT time to contribute $5,500 to your 2013 Roth. In fact, it's now the only time to do it (i.e., over the next 30 days, after which the window closes). Just throw it all in -- no reason to wait. Then you've got th...
by TSR
Sun Mar 16, 2014 4:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bad time to open new fund in Roth?
Replies: 19
Views: 1653

Re: What video games are you currently playing?

Just to follow up on a few comments here, I'm 35, good job, stable relationships etc. (i.e., a relatively competent, normal person), and I really enjoy video games. One rule I've established in order to make all of those things continue is that I will not play games online. Nothing against online ga...
by TSR
Wed Mar 12, 2014 11:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What video games are you currently playing?
Replies: 99
Views: 4203

Re: What video games are you currently playing?

I finished Mass Effect 3 over the summer on my Xbox 360. What a great series. I have Red Dead Redemption sitting on my shelf. I've barely played. I love westerns and it was a gift from a friend. I really need to play through it. But Tiger Woods 2012 and Madden 12 occupy the majority of my video gam...
by TSR
Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What video games are you currently playing?
Replies: 99
Views: 4203

Re: Will this affect your Tipping?

everyone who doesn't tip should be required to work in a tipped position (and subsist on those wages) for 6 months or more. i bet your outlook on tipping would change dramatically, considering these are minimum wage or lower jobs. the pay is inconsistent and varies greatly by season and the weather...
by TSR
Wed Mar 05, 2014 6:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will this affect your Tipping? [Suggested Tip Amounts]
Replies: 123
Views: 7546

Re: Will this affect your Tipping?

I once hit "no tip" in front of my girlfriend in this exact situation (and then left a dollar in the tip jar because that seemed reasonable as opposed to a percentage). She told me that "in this economy" I was a jerk for not spreading the wealth around. I made the same point abou...
by TSR
Wed Mar 05, 2014 3:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will this affect your Tipping? [Suggested Tip Amounts]
Replies: 123
Views: 7546

Re: Rolling over a 401K to the TSP.

I did this and it worked out just fine. FYI, government bureaucracy being what it is, this will take a little while (maybe a week more than it seems like it should) to be registered to your account. What I discovered is that if you're worried, you can call the TSP folks and they will confirm that th...
by TSR
Wed Feb 26, 2014 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rolling over a 401K to the TSP.
Replies: 9
Views: 511

Re: The Estate lawyer cost us big

Yeah, I just want to chime in here again before this post runs its course. It really does sound -- as some have suggested -- as though your cousin decided that this would be a good case on which to let the meter run. That is both unreasonable and unethical and, unfortunately, sometimes hard to prove...
by TSR
Mon Feb 24, 2014 12:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Estate lawyer cost us big
Replies: 109
Views: 8886

Re: The Estate lawyer cost us big

All attorneys have an ethical duty to charge fees that are "reasonable." If, as you say, this estate was not one where six-figure fees ought to have been reasonable, you have a legitimate ethics complaint that this firm will want to avoid. (At first blush, that amount certainly seems high....
by TSR
Fri Feb 21, 2014 12:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Estate lawyer cost us big
Replies: 109
Views: 8886

Re: Danger of accidental in-app purchase?

I have never played that game, but I have played other "aggressive" games (Candy Crush, anyone?) and have enjoyed them all without ever making any purchases. As a regular gamer, I can tell you that nobody would ever, ever continue to play a game that was ambiguous about when you are spendi...
by TSR
Wed Feb 19, 2014 1:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Danger of accidental in-app purchase?
Replies: 9
Views: 560

Re: Skip IRA for 1 year to buy engagement ring

I agree with everyone that this is a good chance to learn more about your fiance (and that this is an important issue), but I don't agree that you've seen a bunch of red flags just yet. I think that if you love this person, you should give her the benefit of the doubt and actually go ring shopping. ...
by TSR
Tue Feb 18, 2014 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Skip IRA for 1 year to buy engagement ring
Replies: 152
Views: 7206

Re: Buenos Aires and Macchu Picchu?

In Buenos Aires the Recoleta cemetery is kind of neat, but overall the city seems too much like any other older European city for my travel tastes. I'd recommend you take the three hour boat ride to Colonia in Uruguay... I agree with this -- Colonia is lovely. What time of year will you be there? T...
by TSR
Fri Feb 14, 2014 6:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buenos Aires and Macchu Picchu?
Replies: 16
Views: 1289

Re: Ding! Check engine light is now on.

I wouldn't trade solely off of that one indicator though. My personal IPS doesn't even allow me to trade at this level. Exceeding 25 directs me to do research as to why things are getting out of hand and I'm allowed to make small AA changes if historical evidence supports it. The buy and hold restr...
by TSR
Fri Feb 14, 2014 5:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ding! Check engine light is now on. [PE10 exceeds 25]
Replies: 108
Views: 10552

Re: How do you define "emergency fund?"

I'm in my mid-30s and still very much in the "accumulation phase" (provided that phase includes "paying down debts" as "accumulation"). I would like to have your kind of e-fund and one day aspire to it. However, with $30K or so left in student-loan repayment, plenty of ...
by TSR
Fri Feb 07, 2014 6:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you define "emergency fund?"
Replies: 32
Views: 2728

Re: Tell me I did the right thing

My father worked for a prominent technology company for much of his life. When the dot-com bubble was expanding and he was watching a bunch of stock options sitting there, a lot of his friends were waiting to get rich. He got some very good financial advice basically asking him if he was the kind of...
by TSR
Mon Feb 03, 2014 2:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tell me I did the right thing
Replies: 23
Views: 2882

Re: Best use of $40K

This wasn't an option, but I would put it all toward the $50K student loan and, pay off the remaining $10k as soon as possible, then roll the monthly savings into building a car fund for when you next need one (while using other income to chip away at the other debt). It may not make the absolute mo...
by TSR
Fri Jan 31, 2014 3:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best use of $40K
Replies: 11
Views: 915

Re: Met with Financial agent from Northwestern Mutual yester

I've been through this same sales pitch from NWM. Let me guess, you're a lawyer? Doctor? Consultant? They tend to target young professionals with free financial advice, then transition straight into the sales pitch. Do not buy this product. Search on this wiki or elsewhere -- it's not what you need....
by TSR
Fri Jan 31, 2014 3:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Met with Financial agent from Northwestern Mutual yesterday.
Replies: 22
Views: 2006

Re: Succession Planning Under Reduced Life Expectancy

My sympathies as well, though it sounds like you're handling this with impressive clarity of mind and spirit. The only thing I might add is to identify whether there are any personal valuables you own that your family would not have reason to know the value of. Unlike in the case of the more common ...
by TSR
Tue Jan 28, 2014 12:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Succession Planning Under Reduced Life Expectancy
Replies: 13
Views: 1019

Re: Making $175k/year. What do I do with it all?

I can't answer your tax/incorporation questions, but here are a few comments: 1. Agree that you probably can't contribute directly to the Roth in light of your high income. You may have already screwed this up this year, but take a look and see if you need to fix it. 2. Read up on the Backdoor Roth ...
by TSR
Fri Jan 17, 2014 1:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Making $175k/year. What do I do with it all?
Replies: 39
Views: 6246

Re: Employer 401k no longer matching. What to do?

The more I read here, the more I think that you of all people should be contributing to your 401k. What you've described above is a perfectly fine plan -- we could use more people who want to give to others -- but it suggests that you have trouble compartmentalizing your savings. You appear to be vi...
by TSR
Wed Jan 15, 2014 6:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employer 401k no longer matching. What to do?
Replies: 36
Views: 1378

Re: Employer 401k no longer matching. What to do?

Looks like you've got good choices and you picked a good fund. I'm in the camp that says that the 401k benefit is good even without the match -- i.e., you don't pay tax on that money until retirement, which saves you money NOW. Some would say you should contribute to a Roth IRA instead, but this is ...
by TSR
Wed Jan 15, 2014 2:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employer 401k no longer matching. What to do?
Replies: 36
Views: 1378

Re: percolator vs drip

Chemex. I am not a coffee snob, but the Chemex can make even second-rate coffee taste ok and it is relatively easy to use/clean. I also like that you're not pouring hot water through plastic, which may or may not be an actual problem. I use an electric (stainless) kettle to heat the water. Again -- ...
by TSR
Wed Jan 15, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: percolator vs drip
Replies: 109
Views: 4790

Re: Best Movies of 2013

traveler90 wrote:Before Midnight

My other top ones have already been mentioned.


This was amazing. I might also add Computer Chess, which was truly bizarre and wonderful.
by TSR
Tue Jan 14, 2014 7:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Movies of 2013
Replies: 83
Views: 5479

Re: Doom and Gloom

It helps me to remember the conception of economics as "the study of choice in a world of scarcity." A few years ago people always talked about "peak oil" and how oil was DEFINITELY just going to run out entirely. These days we talk about health care and entitlement crises. These...
by TSR
Tue Jan 14, 2014 5:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Doom and Gloom
Replies: 41
Views: 2575

Re: Dating, Gender, & Wealth Differences...

I've done a lot of dating in my life and while I have mostly learned how much I DON'T know, I think the closest thing to a universal rule I have learned is this: Women are attracted to people who are confident about themselves. This is true whether you are short, tall, muscular, skinny, rich, poor, ...
by TSR
Mon Jan 06, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dating, Gender, & Wealth Differences...
Replies: 102
Views: 5848

Re: Benefits of Living Will / Healthcare PoA

Folks in this thread are mixing the traditional POA with the health-care POA, which is understandable given that these things can be different from state to state. To answer your question, there are a few important reasons to have a HCPOA, although they can be state-specific. As others have pointed ...
by TSR
Mon Dec 30, 2013 6:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Benefits of Living Will / Healthcare PoA
Replies: 8
Views: 639

Re: Robbing the emergency fund to start a Roth...?

I agree with everyone that this year's plan (which you have until April to implement) should definitely include maxing out the Roth space to use as a sort of quasi emergency fund. I want to press you a bit on whether you should necessarily have that as your "long-term" plan as well though....
by TSR
Sun Dec 29, 2013 11:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Robbing the emergency fund to start a Roth...?
Replies: 23
Views: 2282

Re: What you wish you had known entering your late 20's

Do not succumb to the idea that you "ought to" own a home because you are now an adult and "adults own homes." This is one of the most important purchases you will ever make. Make it based on your need and ability to own a home. Do you NEED or even WANT to be locked into living s...
by TSR
Fri Dec 27, 2013 12:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What you wish you had known entering your late 20's
Replies: 100
Views: 9254

Re: Student loans now refinanced - pay down or invest?

I am not a lawyer, but I am about your age and have many friends who are biglaw lawyers who are about your age in in approximately your financial position. One important question--what do you intend to do after you leave your law firm? Law jobs are notoriously unstable, and I absolutely would not a...
by TSR
Mon Dec 23, 2013 12:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student loans now refinanced - pay down or invest?
Replies: 15
Views: 1508

Re: My experience with "Big Death"

TSR: It's hard for a retired attorney and professional cynic, as I am, to believe the best in people. However, I must say the Funeral Home now attending to my Mom has been utterly caring. They never once tried to dissuade me from the arrangement my Mom requested (cremation, and to have her ashes sc...
by TSR
Tue Dec 10, 2013 6:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My experience with "Big Death"
Replies: 32
Views: 3610

Re: My experience with "Big Death"

This is a very interesting issue. Although it is a little heavy on hearsay, the following reddit thread is fascinating: http://www.reddit.com/r/AskReddit/comments/1kfoy5/what_is_a_dirty_little_or_big_secret_about_an/ A funeral director chimes in at approximately the third post, and what he or she ha...
by TSR
Tue Dec 10, 2013 4:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My experience with "Big Death"
Replies: 32
Views: 3610

Re: Wine for daily consumption?

My favorite boxed wine that is not one of the "expensive boxed wines" (yes, this is a real thing), is called Alandra -- it's Portugese. So many of the boxed reds are extremely fruit-forward -- a word I hate -- and sweet. This is a little more interesting. It runs for about $22/box, which e...
by TSR
Wed Dec 04, 2013 3:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wine for daily consumption?
Replies: 105
Views: 5160

Re: Thoughts on having kids?

As a mid-20's male, I have not yet decided if I want to have kids in the future (or marriage for that sake). I am interested in hearing from those who chose not to have kids and whether or not you regret it. Also I doubt anyone would admit it but those who have kids and perhaps wonder what life wou...
by TSR
Wed Dec 04, 2013 2:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on having kids?
Replies: 101
Views: 3007

Re: Advice for studying abroad in Spain?

If one of her goals is to improve her Spanish while in Spain, my only suggestion if I may, is for her to try to make friends with local students and not mingle too much with US students. Also to travel around Spain as much as her studies allow; it is a beautiful country and a lot to see. She will d...
by TSR
Tue Dec 03, 2013 1:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for studying abroad in Spain?
Replies: 25
Views: 1108

Re: Advice for studying abroad in Spain?

I've spent some time in Spain in study abroad situations. A few thoughts: 1. It's a lovely place. She will learn a lot. Don't worry too much. 2. The most important factor in an experience like that is the host family. There are good ones and bad ones. If she gets a feeling that the family is ONLY in...
by TSR
Tue Dec 03, 2013 11:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for studying abroad in Spain?
Replies: 25
Views: 1108
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