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Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

Maybe I missed it, but what is he planning on studying at U-M? The Michigan name will open a lot more doors than a degree from Florida or Alabama, especially if he is planning on going into finance, management consulting, etc. It will also help him if/when he applies to graduate school. Another unh...
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 15, 2014 3:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

If you get a free ride to a name U. take it. Why pay full shot somewhere else? :oops: Junior might be sad? Awww! He's lucky he gets to go period. It always seems to come to this. For some of us, it is the happiest check we write. For others, it is out of the question. If junior (MY precious snowfla...
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

By my meager calculation, that is a $140k + $160k = $300k decision. Quite the "swing" in costs for a pastor making well under $100k/year. Wait. I know my coffee has worn off, but isn't it a swing between paying $0 in tuition and paying $40x4 in tuition, or a $160k swing? Edited to correct...
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 15, 2014 12:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

Btw, $140k might not cover the full cost of attending for undergraduate. :annoyed . At U of Michigan, the current in-state cost is $25k (room, board, tuition). For out of state students it is double that. For a newborn, a $140k gift is way overkill, in my opinion. L. I don't know if college costs w...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

That's a good point Ybsybs. I'm not sure how a 529 that has the student as beneficiary but is not owned by either the student or parent is treated. There is no obligation to actually use the money for the student, as the beneficiary can be changed at any time, so I wonder how FAFSA treats it. Do you...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: Best Outlook app for iPhone

killjoy2012 wrote:Nut sure why you just wouldn't use the default Mail app on the iPhone. :idea:


Uh, because it's junk maybe? It's fine for personal use, and I use it to see that I've received mail (I.e., as notification), but it's not fit for business purposes.
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Outlook app for iPhone
Replies: 10
Views: 435

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

2. Advice to others, that if you are posting on Bogleheads you should probably not be trying to fine-tune your kids' eligibility for need-based aid. I imagine that there are things one can do, but I think most often it becomes the aid tail wagging the portfolio dog. Retirement assets are treated di...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

Ps. I personally would skip the honors societies.
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all tha

Our aid situation was not affected by 529s or UTMAs. My wife's income is too high -- even at generous highly selective need based schools, you are unlikely to get anything if annual income exceeds $200k or so. Most highly selective schools give no merit-based aid, on the theory that all of their stu...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 9:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings vs Aid: 529s, UTMAs, FAFSA, and all that
Replies: 33
Views: 1255

Re: Am I in over my head?

Welcome to the forum, Forward. I agree with your thoughts about getting an FA; you can good advice here for less than $2,500 per year. Eta: as in free. And with no conflicts of interest. I'm usually one to encourage more bonds rather than fewer, but if that asset allocation makes you comfortable, go...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:22 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I in over my head?
Replies: 50
Views: 3819

Re: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investmen

An owner occupied home is obviously an investment. I didn't say it wasn't. What I wrote holds whether one considers it an investment or not. You didn't, but a number of others did, in so many words. And it's a investment whether one 'considers' it so or not. I'm not an economist and also not one wh...
by TomatoTomahto
Sat Sep 13, 2014 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investment?
Replies: 100
Views: 4792

Re: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investmen

My home isn't an investment, so it can't be a foolproof one. The way it seems, I will get back what I've put into the house (ex. property taxes). I consider that fine, considering I got to live there for 20 years. A fair bit of what we put into the house was done for our pleasure and not to increase...
by TomatoTomahto
Sat Sep 13, 2014 1:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do so many think their home is a foolproof investment?
Replies: 100
Views: 4792

Re: Angry when stock market is down

I am always looking for a little humor in the strangest places and with all due respect to InvestorNewb and his almost daily investor angst cannot help chuckling each time I see the title of his post. One would think he would reallocate more to fixed income but nothing wrong with angst if willing t...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Angry when stock market is down
Replies: 79
Views: 3731

Re: Can college force low-deductible health insurance plan?

It does seem to be a conflict of interest to have the insurance salesman (the school) determine whether your existing insurance is acceptable. After the ACA, it seems that every health insurance must meet minimum standards of acceptability, and any insurance should be acceptable. Fwiw, my son's scho...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 10:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can college force low-deductible health insurance plan?
Replies: 12
Views: 533

Re: Does it work for me-- HSA as a retirement savings vehicl

I don't do math on Fridays, but I think I can answer one of your questions and answer one you didn't ask. You can keep your childcare FSA. To my understanding, if your HDHP does not cover dental and vision, you can have a medical FSA but only for expenses related to vision and dental. Double check w...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 4:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does it work for me-- HSA as a retirement savings vehicle
Replies: 3
Views: 477

Re: Angry when stock market is down

Since I'm still accumulating, it makes me happy.

It's not fun to see that there's now a sale on the shirts you just bought, unless you need another shirt.
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 1:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Angry when stock market is down
Replies: 79
Views: 3731

Re: FIOS

We also kept service during Sandy. But the FIOS TV isn't that good. There are video artifacts, loss of sound/video synch (fixed by Pause, then Play), and frozen frames during real-time video watching. Perhaps it's the obsolete DVR you get for the "free" deal. That doesn't sound right. It ...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 12:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FIOS [versus cable]
Replies: 27
Views: 1748

Re: FIOS

So do you just have internet? what speed? No phone in package? how much? :) Yes, I just have internet. It costs about $75/month. I don't know the speed, but it's fast enough for my purposes. I watch Netflix, Amazon Prime Videos and YouTube on my TV without issues. I think my wife streams music. The...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 11:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FIOS [versus cable]
Replies: 27
Views: 1748

Re: Neighborhood kid around 13 throwing rocks at my house

nyknicks4412 wrote:You guys are way too nice...

Well, there are worse things to be than way too nice. I don't know the kid, and he might be Satan's spawn for all I know, but more than likely he's a spectrum kid. Walk a mile in his parents' shoes.
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 8:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Neighborhood kid around 13 throwing rocks at my house
Replies: 55
Views: 2938

Re: FIOS

FIOS has been very reliable for me, and I've had it for years. Because of silly blackout rules that existed until a couple of years ago, I had concurrent Comcast and FIOS service during hockey season, and could directly compare HD pictures. Comcast looked okay until you compared it to FIOS on the sa...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 12, 2014 8:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FIOS [versus cable]
Replies: 27
Views: 1748

Re: Vanguard Recommending Quicken Changes

However: Quicken doubled the value of my 401k, which I hold at Vanguard, because it tried to allocate contributions. Although that number looked good, I felt the need to delete all the doubled entries and now I am back to being moderately well-set. I KNEW there was a reason beyond sheer laziness th...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 11, 2014 4:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard Recommending Quicken Changes
Replies: 44
Views: 3799

Re: Quit/retire - should I do this?

I agree with not getting unemployment insurance under false pretenses. However, some employers will, for long term employees, agree to provide a severance package that they are not legally obligated to provide. If you're ready to pull the retirement trigger, it can't hurt to discuss it with a manage...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 11, 2014 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quit/retire - should I do this?
Replies: 41
Views: 3676

Re: Vanguard Recommending Quicken Changes

Grrr... :annoyed I followed the instructions per Vanguard's website, and now my share balances are all doubled. I can't find the "placeholder entries" to delete them. Very frustrating... Well, restore (you say you followed the instructions so you should have a backup) and try again. Don't...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard Recommending Quicken Changes
Replies: 44
Views: 3799

Re: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy

jcman01 wrote:The Fountainhead. One of the characters reminded me of a coworker at the time. Very depressing.


That book almost ruined a few months of HS for me. I became more insufferable than the average teen for a while.
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 11, 2014 11:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy
Replies: 193
Views: 8677

Re: College-bound teens and finances

Most colleges have some sort of a deal with a bank that offers free student checking and has a no-fee ATM on campus. Most students will have an account at that bank. My parents never made me an authorized user on any of their cards. I still got one at about 18 after being rejected for a couple. I t...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 11, 2014 8:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College-bound teens and finances
Replies: 35
Views: 2287

Re: Which generator do you have?

Gd, I have neighbors with Generac and Kohler. When it came time for me to buy, I picked Kohler because of my electrician's recommendation and the difference in how they sounded when running.
by TomatoTomahto
Wed Sep 10, 2014 8:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which generator do you have?
Replies: 127
Views: 6951

Re: Would you quit over the pretend boss

If you are a manager, then why don't you manage the COO and the CIO to get 1. A huge raise 2. Incredible bonuses 3. More staff to complete the work they want done 4. More vacation days 5. A better work environment 6. Etc. I don't see how this comment helps the OP. Good managers can manage. You can ...
by TomatoTomahto
Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you quit over the pretend boss
Replies: 33
Views: 2937

Re: Hiring your kids

I personally don't believe in 12-year olds working enough to earn $6k per year, but I guess you're never too young to find out what a no-show job is [/sarcasm]
by TomatoTomahto
Wed Sep 10, 2014 4:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Hiring your kids
Replies: 34
Views: 2064

Re: New Big iPhones

I have a 4s that is starting to wear down a bit (power switch failing, battery life declining, etc.). I would love a larger screen, but I can't help but wonder how that works in a pants pocket. I often wear cargo pants and shorts (I'm 63 years old and happily married; fashion concerns are the least ...
by TomatoTomahto
Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Big iPhones - How to Upgrade Early?
Replies: 4
Views: 535

Re: College-bound teens and finances

My 18-year old is a bit of a tightwad, so I've been comfortable giving him a credit card to use for quite a while. When he turned 18, he opened a checking account with a bank that has ATMs on his campus, although there isn't much need for cash at college. He has a credit card in his name that we hav...
by TomatoTomahto
Wed Sep 10, 2014 9:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College-bound teens and finances
Replies: 35
Views: 2287

Re: Poll: Which iPhone 6?

I like a lot of what's available in IOS 8, but surely given the recent hacking of iCloud that made private celebrity photos available to the public, maybe this wasn't a wise thing to tout: "Be the master of your photo collection."
by TomatoTomahto
Tue Sep 09, 2014 4:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poll: Which iPhone 6?
Replies: 41
Views: 2924

Re: Poll: Which iPhone 6?

I'm going to have to handle one of each to see if they'll fit comfortably in my pocket. I think I will probably go for the smaller one.

Eta: and since the power button on my iPhone 4s miraculously started working again, I might not buy either one.
by TomatoTomahto
Tue Sep 09, 2014 2:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poll: Which iPhone 6?
Replies: 41
Views: 2924

Re: UTMA to 529 conversion

I'll chime in but expect that those with more knowledge will address taxation issues. Be aware that the money in the UTMA belongs to the child when they reach a certain age (18 or 21 depending on state). In order to not be a (well-meaning and loving) thief, the 529 must also belong to the child, oth...
by TomatoTomahto
Tue Sep 09, 2014 2:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: UTMA to 529 conversion
Replies: 2
Views: 158

Re: Life insurance with a smoking spouse

theduke wrote:A spouse can't make the other spouse quit smoking, so please give the op a break on that subject.


I think we have.
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance with a smoking spouse
Replies: 38
Views: 1275

Re: Life insurance with a smoking spouse

How much income are you hoping to replace with the proceeds from life insurance?

I think perhaps you should use the portfolio help format to ask your question.
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance with a smoking spouse
Replies: 38
Views: 1275

Re: Life insurance with a smoking spouse

I see that while I was typing this, you said that you didn't want lectures about smoking. I am going to submit this anyway, in the hope that perhaps HE will read it. You should let him see this thread. When my then-wife was pregnant 33 years ago, I started the process of quitting by not smoking at h...
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 08, 2014 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance with a smoking spouse
Replies: 38
Views: 1275

Re: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?

I do wonder what one of our executives thought when the guy he moved ahead of everyone else into a nice promotion and leadership position retired a year later at age 50 with $3 mil in the bank, leaving the department in the lurch. With all due respect the guy that retired was as surprised as anyone...
by TomatoTomahto
Mon Sep 08, 2014 10:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?
Replies: 62
Views: 6065

Re: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?

Maybe I'm naive, but I like to think my employer looks at me in terms of what value I bring to the operation and makes decisions that essentially affect retention based on those, and that my bank account balance has relatively little to do with it. In other words, that my employer is motivated by s...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 07, 2014 5:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?
Replies: 62
Views: 6065

Re: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?

Unfortunately, it probably depends on whether you are a man or a woman. Many employers know that a spouse is somewhat "captive". My wife once had a conversation with her (new) boss who she thinks was affected when he realized that I was the stay-at-home-spouse and that it was a single-inc...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?
Replies: 62
Views: 6065

Re: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?

I have also heard that prospective employers for many kinds of positions may not want to hire someone who is so financially well off that the person does not care about doing a good job and can just walk away whenever they please. The contra to that is that if they don't need the money, perhaps the...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?
Replies: 62
Views: 6065

Re: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?

There was only one time that it affected me as an employer. I had one employee who I figured, if I give him a big bonus, he's such a dingbat that he'll quit, spend it, and come back begging for a job. I decided to give him a larger salary increase but smaller bonus. Subsequent bosses didn't use my r...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer finding out you have a financial cushion?
Replies: 62
Views: 6065

Re: Portfolio Advice Needed $1M age 40

Consider funding a UTMA account for each child starting with $2k per year of age now, then $2k per year going forward. That's also where their cash gifts from Nana and Uncle Bob go. +1 with a caveat For one of my 4 children, a highly funded UTMA account might possibly have ended poorly when they tu...
by TomatoTomahto
Sun Sep 07, 2014 2:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Advice Needed $1M age 40
Replies: 18
Views: 2025

Re: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?

On the other hand, you'd be surprised at how many classes at the ivys are taught by grad students/professional students who have limited to no training and little direction on the material to be covered. I'd imagine that rankles more when you are shelling out 60k verses being on scholarship. I admi...
by TomatoTomahto
Sat Sep 06, 2014 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?
Replies: 92
Views: 4794

Re: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy

And now a terrible confession to make. I requested a hold on Capital in the 21st Century by Thomas Piketty, and waited about six weeks for this much-in-demand book to come in. When it came in, I looked at the other books, both stack on my night table and queued in my Kindle, and said to myself &quo...
by TomatoTomahto
Sat Sep 06, 2014 12:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A 'really good book' you did NOT enjoy
Replies: 193
Views: 8677

Re: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?

If your kid has survived the application ordeal and has been offered a place at an elite university, don’t punish her for the irrationalities of a system she did nothing to create; by all means send her there! The economist Caroline Hoxby has shown that selective universities spend twenty times mor...
by TomatoTomahto
Sat Sep 06, 2014 10:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?
Replies: 92
Views: 4794

Re: College Counselors

Ktemene, I didn't mention the age of the book to discount it; I've read it and it was interesting. I don't have as cynical an attitude about Wesleyan (and schools of that sort: middle to elite LACs). Having had one relative head a department there, and another relative (with no blood or timing assoc...
by TomatoTomahto
Fri Sep 05, 2014 7:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College Counselors
Replies: 44
Views: 2541

Re: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?

Bill Gates dropped out of Harvard. Because of that single data point, I suspect that a statistical average would probably show that, once admitted to Harvard, it is a better investment not to get a degree than to get one! Bill Gates left Harvard after successfully completing Math 55, so perhaps it ...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 04, 2014 11:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?
Replies: 92
Views: 4794

Re: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?

Therefore save enough for the state school and if your kids turn out brilliant, chances are they'll get scholarships for the elite school. Whichever side of this divide you find yourself on, it is useful to know that the elite schools do not generally provide merit-based scholarships (on the theory...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 04, 2014 11:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?
Replies: 92
Views: 4794

Re: College Counselors

Fwiw, The Gatekeeper was about the application process 15 years ago. Some things might have changed.
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 04, 2014 4:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College Counselors
Replies: 44
Views: 2541

Re: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?

This is always an interesting topic. My wife and I are definitely outliers (at least on this board), in that setting aside resources for the college education of our child (soon to be children) is way down the list of financial priorities. I think you have lots of company on this issue here, stopto...
by TomatoTomahto
Thu Sep 04, 2014 1:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Graduating Debt-Free, or with Elite College Degree?
Replies: 92
Views: 4794
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