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Re: Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater

Argh. Why is this so difficult. Haha.

With my handiness, I want the tank that has the highest probability that I don't need to call a plumber for the longest period of time.
by berg
Tue Nov 11, 2014 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater
Replies: 9
Views: 524

Re: Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater

Probably a toss up. I'd probably stick with the plumber/company you use the most frequently. Our first A.O. Smith 50 gal (gas) lasted 17 years. Just replaced it this summer with a new A.O. Smith 50 gal. (also gas). Cost was ~$1,500 installed. Did you let it leak? I have a little bit of rust on mine...
by berg
Tue Nov 11, 2014 2:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater
Replies: 9
Views: 524

Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater

I have two plumbers that are both recommended in my area. One is pricing a Ruud unit @ $1640 for install w/ 10 year warranty. The other is an A.O. Smith w/ a 10 year warranty prices at $1725 (but they have a 10% off coupon on angie's list, so should be $1552). Should I go with the cheaper option in ...
by berg
Tue Nov 11, 2014 1:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ruud vs. A.O. Smith Electric Water Heater
Replies: 9
Views: 524

Do you optimize for consistent cash flow? (max 401k early)

My wife doesn't get a 403b match, so last year we maxed it out early and then had a bigger paycheck in the last 1/3 of the year. For me, I put more in early to my 401k, then reduced after a bonus in Q2 to make even payments throughout the year to ensure I got the max match. While I liked maxing out ...
by berg
Sun Nov 02, 2014 10:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you optimize for consistent cash flow? (max 401k early)
Replies: 7
Views: 868

Group Legal through work - Hyatt Legal

Anybody have any experience with this? Through my employer I have the opportunity to purchase group legal for $201 for the year. I recently had a baby and think it makes sense to create a will, maybe a trust, have papers filed on guardianship, etc. Also, my elderly divorced father could probably use...
by berg
Thu Oct 30, 2014 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Group Legal through work - Hyatt Legal
Replies: 6
Views: 579

Elderly parent on path to run out of money in 6 months

My father has always been terrible with money. Unfortunately, at age 75 he is on a path to run out of savings and will only have some SS and alimony to live off of. He has made many poor decisions and his choices have inspired the opposite behavior in me. For anybody with experience with this with a...
by berg
Tue Oct 28, 2014 7:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Elderly parent on path to run out of money in 6 months
Replies: 13
Views: 3123

Re: How did you buy your forever home (or larger home)?

Our forever home ,the one we are in now cost less and was less square footage than my prior home.We sold the larger home,paid for the smaller forever home,,and had a few dollars left over after all was said and done.Didn't want a mortgage payment :happy Updated title for "largest home." :D
by berg
Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you buy your largest home?
Replies: 25
Views: 2714

How did you buy your largest home?

As I'm looking to upgrade our home, curious how others have done it. Do more people take their profits from a starter home and savings and put down a bigger DP or do you do the minimum 20% down and keep the funds invested otherwise. For example, I might not feel comfortable based on cash flow to aff...
by berg
Wed Oct 22, 2014 5:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you buy your largest home?
Replies: 25
Views: 2714

Laddering Term Life Insurance

I've been approved for life insurance and just trying to finalize the amounts and terms. Due to a health condition it is a bit pricey, but worth it for the piece of mind. Here are my options: 30 years of $1.5 million for $2600 per year 30 years of $1 million and 20 years of $500k for $2267 per year ...
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Laddering Term Life Insurance
Replies: 5
Views: 421

Re: When to think about tax lost harvesting

I did tax loss harvesting in 2008/09 and have more losses than I will ever use up as deductions at ordinary income tax rates- unless I live to be about 140. I was generally able to return to my original fund allocation, except that I presently hold Vanguard's Large cap fund rather than Total Stock ...
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1458

Re: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX

Ok, so I think I understand what I need to do. I currently have a loss just over $3500.

Is there any reason not to do it. My tax bracket is 33%, so seems like it would be prudent to try to get the deduction and save nearly $1000.
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 12:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

Re: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX

Here is simple: Exchange all loser shares of VTIAX to VFWAX now. Do nothing else. Exchange all loser shares of VTSAX to VLCAX now. Do nothing else. Ha. I like simple, thanks! Will this have any other impact on my taxes in the future? Or would it simply be if did this exchange today and sold at any ...
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 10:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

Re: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX

Honestly, I'm just trying to keep it as simple as possible.

I wonder if it would make more sense to just move to money market for 31 days and then move back to the same funds. I might miss out on some gains, but this is for long term growth.
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 9:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

Re: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX

I don't understand most of these gyrations as there don't seem to be any substantially identical funds except in the Roth not to mention that the IRS publications don't mention anything about 401k and 403b even being potential for wash sale. So ignoring my 401k and 403b, does the plan make sense ot...
by berg
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:10 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX

So I think I have a grasp on tax lost harvesting, but this is my first time, so hoping for some help to confirm my plan. In a taxable account I hold VTSAX and VTIAX. I also hold these funds in our Roth IRAs. In my wife's 403b she holds FSIVX (Spartan Int'l Index) and FSTVX (Spartan Total Market Inde...
by berg
Sun Oct 19, 2014 9:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Plan of attack for Tax Lost Harvesting VTIAX and VTSAX
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

When to think about tax lost harvesting

This might be the first year I try to tax loss harvest. Should I wait until December or for those who have done it, when do you start to plan and act?
by berg
Sun Oct 19, 2014 6:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to think about tax lost harvesting
Replies: 19
Views: 1458

Re: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?

You know, I am in the same boat. I have two kids, one is an infant, the other is 3. I purchased 3 policies. One for my wife for 30 years wasn't all that expensive (she's younger). One for myself for 20 years that was way more expensive. There's a 30 years policy on the way for 500K, but the premium...
by berg
Fri Oct 17, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?
Replies: 16
Views: 922

Re: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?

technovelist wrote:I'd just buy the whole thing as one policy if it isn't a burden for you financially. It gives you more flexibility at a relatively low extra cost.


It would be about 1.8% of our gross annual salaries (not including bonuses or stock). I don't think it would be a burden, but is still a lot of money.
by berg
Fri Oct 17, 2014 12:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?
Replies: 16
Views: 922

Re: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?

Take into consideration how old your kids are right now, and how much your are saving into their 529 plans, etc. Additional insurance after the 20 year mark is probably not necessary. I like your approach and strategy, makes sense to me. We have one child who is two months old and then would like t...
by berg
Fri Oct 17, 2014 12:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?
Replies: 16
Views: 922

Re: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?

I did a 20yr-30yr ladder. What is the difference in price for you of doing the ladder or just doing 30 years? Having only $1 million dollars of life insurance 20 years from now doesn't sound terrible. My broker is pulling the numbers now to confirm. But he believes it will reduce my annual cost by ...
by berg
Fri Oct 17, 2014 10:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?
Replies: 16
Views: 922

Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?

I'm in final stages of purchasing life insurance and I am debating a full 30 year of $1.5 million or doing a ladder and doing 20 year of $500k and 30 year of $1 million (so for the first 20 years I'd have $1.5 million in total coverage). Due a to a health condition $1.5 million is going to cost me $...
by berg
Fri Oct 17, 2014 10:22 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody ever reduce term coverage amount?
Replies: 16
Views: 922

Re: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance

bluemarlin08 wrote:Do each of you have personal disability insurance?


Yes. We both have 60% through our employers in addition to what SS or her pension plan will pay out for a disability.
by berg
Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 298

Re: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance

Will your SS survivor benefits be 49K if your wife continues to work? I'm not sure of this. I just read on the site when I logged in, if you died today you would get X. It said $2037 for my child and $2037 per month for my spouse. Is there more I need to know? Does her work affect the spousal benef...
by berg
Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 298

Re: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance

How much are your current expenses and how much would it cost to pay off the house? Do you get any insurance from your place of employment? Mortgage is payment is $2400 per month (including tax and insurance). On average we spend about $10k per month. But this includes our vacations, dining out, et...
by berg
Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 298

Re: How much of your Emergency Fund would you lock up in CDs

I guess I'm the outlier here. I think it is okay to lock up some of your EF if it is fully funded in CD's. If you have 6 to 9 months of expenses in your EF, it is probably safe to have 1 to 2 months immediately available and the rest locked up in CDs with someone like Ally that you can break fairly ...
by berg
Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much of your Emergency Fund would you lock up in CDs?
Replies: 37
Views: 2954

Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance

I recently started a thread on term life insurance, so thanks to those who shared their thoughts. The quick recap is that my wife and I have been approved for 30 year terms. $1 million for her and $1.5 million for me. Due to a health condition mine is $2600 per year, hers is $980. Our broker advised...
by berg
Sat Oct 11, 2014 9:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Survivor Benefits When Buying Life Insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 298

Re: % of income spent on life insurance

Just to make sure have you factored in to your calculations the Social Security Payments that would come if one of you were to die with children not yet 18? For earners like yourselves they are significant. I haven't is there a place I can check that easily? My wife actually doesn't pay into SS, as...
by berg
Thu Oct 09, 2014 10:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: % of income spent on life insurance
Replies: 19
Views: 1521

Re: % of income spent on life insurance

Thanks everyone for your thoughts. I love the boglehead mentality and everyone trying to make sure I'm being smart with my money. Indeed I did shop around with an independent agent and talked to several independent websites too (AccuQuote, etc.). Here is the thing though. I was born with a condition...
by berg
Thu Oct 09, 2014 6:56 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: % of income spent on life insurance
Replies: 19
Views: 1521

% of income spent on life insurance

My wife and I were just approved for two policies. I'm 31 and she is 29. We are looking at 30 year term, $1.5 million for me and $1 million for her, which I believe is reasonable. We have one child who was just born. Right now our combined salaries, excluding bonuses and stock, is $204k per year (13...
by berg
Wed Oct 08, 2014 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: % of income spent on life insurance
Replies: 19
Views: 1521

Real life windfall experiences?

I've read a lot about windfalls. Curious if some of the Bogleheads have stories to share about how they treated their own and what they did well or what maybe they wouldn't do again. Ideally thinking a windfall that could have a big impact on your life, but not necessarily mean instant retirement (s...
by berg
Mon Oct 06, 2014 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real life windfall experiences?
Replies: 23
Views: 4506

Re: Experience with big spike in earnings (stock options)

Thanks for the advice all.

I'm curious though how others hand handled the big differences in their annual income or an early spike that they never saw again later vs. specifics of stock options. Any additional thoughts would be appreciated!
by berg
Mon Sep 29, 2014 6:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experience with big spike in earnings (stock options)
Replies: 8
Views: 1020

Experience with big spike in earnings (stock options)

I would love to hear from some bogleheads more experienced than I with how they dealt with large spikes in earnings. Things they did well, things they regret. My wife and I make an income about $225k and I expect that to be fairly steady and hopefully continue to raise (though I'm not in the type of...
by berg
Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experience with big spike in earnings (stock options)
Replies: 8
Views: 1020

Re: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?

Thanks all, great advice. I have shopped around through AccuQuote and SelectQuote and now with the Northwestern Mutual agent as well. They are all coming back the same basically. The NW agent is local, from my hometown (went to school with my sister), and hasn't tried to push anything except the ter...
by berg
Wed Sep 03, 2014 7:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?
Replies: 16
Views: 1197

Re: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?

dhodson wrote:I hate it when I have to agree with the agents but I'm going with BS as well. :greedy



BS on what?
by berg
Tue Sep 02, 2014 2:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?
Replies: 16
Views: 1197

Re: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?

I personally know this broker and he knows I don't want whole. He even said that.

He just said he had gotten policies for people with my exact condition before and had gotten better ratings than the other companies were giving me.
by berg
Tue Sep 02, 2014 2:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?
Replies: 16
Views: 1197

Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?

I'm talking to a broker at Northwestern Mutual about term life insurance for myself and my wife. I'm 31 and she is 29. Based on research, I'm looking at $1.5MM for myself and $1MM for my wife. I'm looking at 30 year term policies. Northwestern Mutual only offers 20 year policies. He said when he was...
by berg
Tue Sep 02, 2014 9:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy a 30 and 20 term policy at the same time?
Replies: 16
Views: 1197

Pay more for term you can convert? Prudential vs. Banner

Was just speaking to a rep about 30 year term policies. He said Prudential might be $50 more per year vs. Banner Life, but was recommending them because they at least have the option to convert to whole at the end of the policy and Banner doesn't. I know the general consensus is term only around her...
by berg
Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay more for term you can convert? Prudential vs. Banner
Replies: 4
Views: 535

Re: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?

I just talked to my agent. It's $200 cheaper to go with a $2500 deductible vs. a $1000 deductible. Sound like it's worth it? Those are the types of quotes that caused me to take the 2500 deductible vs the 5000 or 10,000 deductible. I never thought I was getting a decent discount for the higher dedu...
by berg
Wed Aug 27, 2014 4:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?
Replies: 8
Views: 479

Re: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?

I just talked to my agent. It's $200 cheaper to go with a $2500 deductible vs. a $1000 deductible. Sound like it's worth it?
by berg
Wed Aug 27, 2014 12:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?
Replies: 8
Views: 479

Re: Term Life Insurance Help

I think what is driving me nuts about deciding on insurance is it seems there is no general consensus. I often find by doing research I can land in a pretty good spot, but I'm really having trouble deciding on the amount and I guess as some have suggested the term (20 vs. 30), though given my health...
by berg
Wed Aug 27, 2014 10:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term Life Insurance Help
Replies: 16
Views: 766

Re: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?

I'm in home insurance mode right now so I will give you my humble opinion. An insurance company will drop you for too many claims. I am not sure how they figure a claim on the house prior to your policy other than pricing that in. I treat my home insurance like insurance, not a bank. Meaning that I...
by berg
Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?
Replies: 8
Views: 479

Raise deductible after an insurance claim?

I'm renewing my insurance after we had a claim this year and I'm wondering fi I want to raise the deductible. My home had one claim in February 2011 before I moved in and now we had an unrelated claim in in December 2013. This makes two claims in the last four years on this property. My current dedu...
by berg
Wed Aug 27, 2014 8:05 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Raise deductible after an insurance claim?
Replies: 8
Views: 479

Re: Term Life Insurance Help

Have you and your wife asked about buying life insurance through your companies? I have the impression that would be the lowest cost. Be sure that you can continue the insurance at the same price if/when you leave that employer. As far as the amount of insurance, I would think you don't have to wor...
by berg
Tue Aug 26, 2014 12:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term Life Insurance Help
Replies: 16
Views: 766

Re: Term Life Insurance Help

Preventing catastrophe would be putting three kids through college and paying for house. You might need more than 1MM.... Have you read this: http://www.slate.com/blogs/moneybox/2014/08/18/the_cost_of_raising_a_child_245_000_according_to_the_government.html I guess I wasn't considering not being ab...
by berg
Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term Life Insurance Help
Replies: 16
Views: 766

Term Life Insurance Help

Just became a father and I am shopping term life insurance for my wife and I. Trying to figure out how much insurance to buy. I am 31 and my wife is 29. For reference, with salary and bonus only, I make around $150k per year. My wife makes around $68k per year (and is a teacher with summers off and ...
by berg
Tue Aug 26, 2014 11:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term Life Insurance Help
Replies: 16
Views: 766

Re: 3.85% medicare tax?

kaneohe wrote:no interest?


Ah, great point. I will have some interest from savings accounts, but maybe $1000. I guess I was just surprised I could be taxes on a few thousand of $150k, so wanted to make sure I understood correctly. Seems like if someone had no interest or dividends, they could get screwed.
by berg
Fri Aug 22, 2014 3:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3.85% medicare tax?
Replies: 6
Views: 756

3.85% medicare tax?

I'm trying to understand how this tax works as I'm exercising some stock options. From what I can tell, as a married filer, I will owe an additional 3.8% on the lesser of my investment income or the amount my MAGI is over $250k. In my example, I estimate our MAGI to be around $400k, but I only have ...
by berg
Fri Aug 22, 2014 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3.85% medicare tax?
Replies: 6
Views: 756

Riders for home insurance?

Considering adding a rider to my policy for $65 for sump pump/sewer back up.

The rep also told me common riders are Fraud Expense Coverage and Special Computer Coverage.

Any of these or others I should be considering?

Thanks!
by berg
Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Riders for home insurance?
Replies: 3
Views: 296

Thoughts on USAA?

Liberty Mutual hiked my insurance 54% this year and I'm looking into alternative options. My father served in the army, but has never used USAA, so in order for me to even get a quote he would need to start a policy. He would just need a renters insurance policy for his studio apartment. So likely l...
by berg
Mon Aug 18, 2014 10:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on USAA?
Replies: 24
Views: 2093

Re: Asset Allocation Check-in for Early 30's

Not much to add, it appears you are well on your way. As you mentioned the stock options seem a little high but as you increase your other investments that percentage should go down so I wouldn't do anything too drastic. Only other thing you might have a little too much tied up in CDs especially if...
by berg
Mon Aug 11, 2014 10:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation Check-in for Early 30's
Replies: 2
Views: 733
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