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Re: investing for child (noob)

Option. US savings bonds. I forget which (EE or I), if set up properly are tax free when used for authorized education expenses. Remembering old topic: savings bonds inside 529 plan become acceptable for ALL education expenses. Tax deferred until redeemed. Don't know how this play with high income. ...
by dratkinson
Sun Apr 26, 2015 7:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: investing for child (noob)
Replies: 3
Views: 346

Re: “How Does Aging Affect Financial Decision Making?”

Decline of mental ability. I've a slow system so will sometimes play FreeCell solitaire (every game claimed to be solvable) while I'm waiting for a long graphics page to load. Over the years I've notice my first attempt solution percentage has stayed constant over hundreds of games. Been thinking th...
by dratkinson
Sat Apr 25, 2015 4:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: “How Does Aging Affect Financial Decision Making?”
Replies: 67
Views: 4329

Re: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?

... Is there any other source to check out potential tax due for 2015? ... Recently I've been using excel1040.com to guesstimate after-tax income scenarios, an intermediate step is guesstimating changes to fed tax owed. Entire process required an evening's work. Enter your 2014 tax data into excel1...
by dratkinson
Sat Apr 25, 2015 3:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?
Replies: 28
Views: 1674

Re: Bonds - why invest in them right now? Can use some help.

If you need bonds, then you need bonds. You may be worrying too much about this. Why? We've been hearing about rising rates since 2008. Maybe this time it's true. Maybe it's not. Bond prices vary much less than *stock prices, so even if they do change, up or down, it's not by much. A 1% (absolute) r...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:15 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds - why invest in them right now? Can use some help...
Replies: 10
Views: 1276

Re: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?

In the past I've used TaxACT in quick entry mode to enter all 1099s. Wasn't too bad, and much faster than interview format. This year I tried OLT (OnLine Tax, free file software) for my simple returns , accessed through the IRS.gov free file software portal. Fast and free (fed, state, efile), though...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 24, 2015 2:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?
Replies: 28
Views: 1674

Re: Investing in a fund every month

... I do have one question about if I were to use the Target Retirement Funds at Vanguard. (1) If I put an initial $1000 into the account, can I then put in smaller amounts? (2) Like, will they split up my payments to all of the different funds that make up their fun?... (1) Yes. (2) Yes. Vanguard ...
by dratkinson
Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in a fund every month
Replies: 26
Views: 2569

Re: Transitioning to Low-Fee Holdings

General advice. Might as well make the change now to what you want as the market is ~stable under current political leadership, and shouldn't be less so after next year. Your conversion will result in capital gains (taxes: fed & state). If the market does drop afterwards and you don't know how, ...
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 20, 2015 3:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Transitioning to Low-Fee Holdings
Replies: 4
Views: 476

Re: Buying a Car to commute - SUV or Sedan?

Rough commute.

Any chance of using public transportation and working/reading/napping during your commute? Van pool? Car pool?
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 20, 2015 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a Car to commute - SUV or Sedan?
Replies: 37
Views: 2418

Re: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking

"Sticking, burning." Sounds like the coating is not yet thick enough: more seasoning required. Your temp may be too high, but if it didn't stick, then less chance of burning, so maybe it's just the coating. I also have an electric range. I'm a novice CI user and can barely fry an egg witho...
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 20, 2015 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking
Replies: 127
Views: 17110

Re: [Who is Ameriprise? Got invitation from a financial advi

Good fences make good neighbors. You can give him baked goods as a "Welcome to the neighborhood gift", but not money. Sends the wrong message.
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 20, 2015 2:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Who is Ameriprise? Got invitation from a financial advisor]
Replies: 32
Views: 2836

Re: Investing in a fund every month

Option. Could check internet for "mutual fund minimums", maybe find something lower than Vanguard. Stay away from all low-minimum funds with loads and/or high expense ratios. Going this route would also mean you'd have a capital gain/loss, short-term and long-term to *report, when you late...
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 20, 2015 1:06 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in a fund every month
Replies: 26
Views: 2569

Re: how to deal with it [regret over past investing choices]

Remembered later. Can search forum for "worst investing/financial mistake" to find topics. The wisdom freely given to you was purchased dearly. Live and learn, don't repeat past mistakes; this includes dwelling upon them. By three methods we may learn wisdom: First, by reflection, which is...
by dratkinson
Sun Apr 19, 2015 2:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how to deal with it [regret over past investing choices]
Replies: 74
Views: 5763

Re: how to deal with it [regret over past investing choices]

You are well ahead of me. I didn't find this method until I was 58: retired and no earned income. The only person you are competing against is yourself. Are you better today than you were yesterday? You are, but only if you take what you now know and look forward. You can't keep looking back. You go...
by dratkinson
Sat Apr 18, 2015 3:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how to deal with it [regret over past investing choices]
Replies: 74
Views: 5763

Re: Tips for Post-College Lifestyle

Read The Only Investment Guide You'll Every Need, by Tobias. Covers wide ranging personal finance topics.

Read Date... Or Soul Mate?, by Warren. Cheaper than a divorce.

Compare words and actions. When they disagree, believe the actions.
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 3:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Financial] Tips for Post-College Lifestyle
Replies: 53
Views: 2781

Re: Don't have a plan, what to do with my money?

achen9291 wrote:...
Is there a pdf of the book online? I"ve tried looking for it but with no luck. I might just have to buy it and give it a read.


Get it from your local public library, or through inter-library loan.
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 3:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Don't have a plan, what to do with my money?
Replies: 12
Views: 1582

Re: Turning 21, help organizing

Suggest reading The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need , by Andrew Tobias. Covers a wide range of personal finance topics. Can keep your fun-money stocks. Selling stocks. Pick one each year until done. (Assumes you stay in the <=15% fed tax bracket.) --Can sell losing stocks to offset ordinary i...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 2:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Turning 21, help organizing
Replies: 3
Views: 478

Re: Taxes on a Muni Bond Fund

Two tax gotchas come to mind. 1. Any capital gain/loss on the sale is reported on Sch D. 2. Any TE dividends received, on shares (original or reinvested) owned less than six months, lose their tax-preferred treatment. Believe that means they are reported as ordinary interest on Sch B, but I could be...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxes on a Muni Bond Fund
Replies: 7
Views: 1218

Re: Don't have a plan, what to do with my money?

If you have not already done so, suggest you read The Only Investment Guide You'll Every Need , by Andrew Tobias. Covers more personal finance issues than just investing. Had to look up Mango account: http://www.dailyfinance.com/2012/02/02/when-6-percent-interest-is-too-good-to-be-true/ Six percent ...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Don't have a plan, what to do with my money?
Replies: 12
Views: 1582

Re: Safety Deposit Box is Necessary (+1 plug:)

Recall Taylor telling us that his local Chase bank provides a free (unadvertised benefit) safety deposit box for veterans.
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 10:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safety Deposit Box is Necessary (+1 plug:)
Replies: 33
Views: 4455

Re: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside

@ogd, Thanks. Your speed|acceleration analogy was helpful. Working my through the Investopedia link supplied in the BH Wiki. I can't do anything with the math, but the graphs are helpful. Is the short-answer action-step to venture no further than IT with all callable bonds? Should that be my takeawa...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 17, 2015 10:26 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside
Replies: 19
Views: 1959

Re: How do you quickly cool food?

For quick cooling, how about a shot from a CO2 fire extinguisher?

Believe I've seen something similar (compressed CO2) used to chill glasses enough that some of the later added contents would form an icy layer on the inside. A frosty mug of root beer comes to mind.
by dratkinson
Thu Apr 16, 2015 7:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you quickly cool food?
Replies: 34
Views: 2432

Favorable review: OLT.com (IRS freefile online tax s/w)

Favorable review: OLT.com (IRS freefile online tax software) Apologize for tardiness. I don’t file early and I didn't know I'd find this solution. Long story short. This year I used OLT. Worked well with my simple returns and old/slow PC/connection. Easy to learn/navigate. Simple fed/state returns i...
by dratkinson
Thu Apr 16, 2015 6:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Favorable review: OLT.com (IRS freefile online tax s/w)
Replies: 0
Views: 160

Re: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside

@ogd, I do appreciate your effort, and the efforts of other senior investors who have tried to shed light on the finer points of muni investing, but so far it doesn't seem to be sinking in. The above logic is the only things that have stuck. I read your link and the described LT muni call risk sound...
by dratkinson
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside
Replies: 19
Views: 1959

Re: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside

I'm a novice investor, you are forewarned. I went through this exercise in ~2007 when I was in the top of the 15% fed tax bracket, and trying to stay there to protect QDI/LTCG taxed at 0%. I decided to go with 50/50 VWITX/VWLTX because both won on the TEY (taxable-equivalent yield) calculation and k...
by dratkinson
Wed Apr 15, 2015 5:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DQOTD: Municipal Bond Fund Downside
Replies: 19
Views: 1959

Re: Vehicle for tall people/Spouse wants 50k car help!

My head touches the roof of everything (all Subaru's, Toyota Land Cruiser/4Runner, Honda CRV, Nissan Pathfinder, KIA Santa Fe, ...) I've recently sat in except: MB G500, Mini-Cooper, and Ford Transit Connect van. $50K gets a 10-yo G500. Big enough for 5 but I'd hate to feed/maintain it. Mini-Cooper ...
by dratkinson
Tue Apr 14, 2015 9:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle for tall people/Spouse wants 50k car help!
Replies: 77
Views: 5543

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

(Edit) 1% management fee. It is an error to believe that a 1% fee costs you only one part out of one hundred. Accumulation phase. Assume 1% management fee, 25% tax bracket, 3% inflation, and the market struggles to earn 7% 7%, nominal market return -3% , inflation 4%, real market return -1% , 25% ta...
by dratkinson
Wed Apr 08, 2015 9:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 4997

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

Free money incentive. If you follow the money, but pay resulting higher fees, you will eventually lose it back, plus more. Bwaa-ha-ha-ha.... Vanguard pay you money to move your account there? Do some research into the structure of Vanguard Investment Group. Vanguard doesn't own the funds, we own th...
by dratkinson
Wed Apr 08, 2015 5:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 4997

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

Your portfolio asset allocation (AA: stock/bond ratio) determination will be one of your most important decisions. Why? Because it controls your exposure to market risks. The short answer. There are simple rules of thumb for selecting an AA: (1) Age in bonds (conservative), or (2) age-10 in bonds (a...
by dratkinson
Mon Apr 06, 2015 3:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 4997

Re: Investing in Hong Kong ETFS

Over the years, there have been several folks on from HK. Recall some interest in forming a HK BH chapter. Could search forum for those HK residents and send them private messages (should generate corresponding emails to there on-file addresses) requesting a meet & greet to exchange ideas. I rec...
by dratkinson
Sun Apr 05, 2015 11:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in Hong Kong ETFS
Replies: 1
Views: 223

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

... Dive in head first with educating yourself, you will know when you have absorbed enough information as alot of it will be repetitive once you have a good grasp on how to move forward. ... Ditto. "Successful investing requires doing a few things correctly, and avoiding serious mistakes.&quo...
by dratkinson
Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 4997

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

The short answer. It's not that hard. You can do it. Use a low-cost, tweaked 3-fund portfolio. The long answer. 1. Read The Arithmetic of Active Management : http://web.stanford.edu/~wfsharpe/art/active/active.htm Conclusion. It's a loser's game to try to beat the market. Instead, winner's match the...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 03, 2015 8:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 4997

Re: Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond Index Fund vs Savings Account

If I understand you correctly... you want to use a muni fund as a business checking account? ... I had a question. I have a business checking bank account that is usually around 100k and I've always wondered if a municipal bond investment would be a better use of those checking account funds... Grea...
by dratkinson
Fri Apr 03, 2015 7:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Tax-Exempt Bond Index Fund vs Savings Account
Replies: 7
Views: 1786

Re: Muni fund dividends considered income

If you need bonds, then you need bonds. Muni bond dividends, like all bond dividends, are considered income... they just receive favorable tax treatment. However, muni bonds (because of their favorable tax treatment) are typically of lower yield so will affect MAGI calculations less than taxable bon...
by dratkinson
Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Muni fund dividends considered income
Replies: 9
Views: 1067

Re: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking

Was browsing a thrift store a few days ago and found a Griswold 10" skillet. Had to buy it. Oven self-cleaning cycle cleaned it up nicely, but seems to have affected oven temp sensor as its now ~50 degrees lower than set-point when compared to aux. oven temp gauge. Griswold is noticeable thinne...
by dratkinson
Wed Apr 01, 2015 5:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking
Replies: 127
Views: 17110

Re: 26 year old beginner, What should I do?

...However, you could open and fund a Roth IRA for 2014 up to the limit, currently $5500 per year for someone your age. ... Now, if you were to fund a Traditional IRA for 2014, which is also possible , ... Clarification. One or the other, not both. Your 2014 traditional IRA tax savings (additional ...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 31, 2015 4:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 26 year old beginner, What should I do?
Replies: 21
Views: 2415

Re: 26 year old beginner, What should I do?

Read The Only Investment Guide You'll Ever Need , by Andrew Tobias. I covers a wide range of personal finance topics. Avoid the mistakes it identifies: not paying yourself first, CC debt, whole life insurance,.... Pay yourself first. Fully fund your 2014 Employer's retirement plan; at least ensure y...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 30, 2015 5:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 26 year old beginner, What should I do?
Replies: 21
Views: 2415

Re: Building a new house. Any recommendations?

I really like the idea of controlling water flow from blown washing machine hoses. Big pans under the washer with drainage. If similar things could be done for the dishwasher and icemaker that'd be even better. These hoses blow out all the time and cause big damage. Automatic, whole-house, water sh...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 30, 2015 4:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Building a new house. Any recommendations?
Replies: 53
Views: 5247

Re: Building a new house. Any recommendations?

Backup capability ideas, if you don't have a whole-house NG/propane backup generator. Backup sump pump. If you need a sump pump, can install a basepump.com as a backup sump pump. It runs off municipal water pressure so should work during a power outage. Backup heat. If you installed direct vent, NG-...
by dratkinson
Sat Mar 28, 2015 9:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Building a new house. Any recommendations?
Replies: 53
Views: 5247

Re: Re:

I've found from long sad experience that the chance of screwing something up when trying to print double-sided is greater than 50%. Me too. I rarely have to print anything and when I do I have to figure out how to setup the printer again. The forms never fit the page the first try. It is worth the ...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 27, 2015 5:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If You Print and Mail, Do You Double-Side?
Replies: 44
Views: 15123

Re: Building a new house. Any recommendations?

Build an extra bay in your garage to use as a shop. Wire it with 240v (air compressor, welder, EV charging,...) Build a horizontal drain line inside your garage doors to carry away water, from hosing out garage and snow melt. Slope garage floors toward drain line. Build in a large pantry/laundry roo...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Building a new house. Any recommendations?
Replies: 53
Views: 5247

Re: If You Print and Mail, Do You Double-Side?

... On two-sided forms (such as 1040) there is no place to put name or SS number on the back side. If I print single-sided, should I put name or SS number on the 2nd page of the form? Will it confuse their scanners if I do so? ... On automated two sided forms (1040), your identifying information is...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 27, 2015 7:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If You Print and Mail, Do You Double-Side?
Replies: 44
Views: 15123

Re: repair or replace old car?

Thanks, everyone. Upon reflecting on your posts, I plan to repair the car and continue adding to a sinking fund for a newer car in the next 12 months. I considered going to Camry/Accord route but I'm a big guy, hence my username, and the LS 400/430 is one of the only cars I've found where I'm truly...
by dratkinson
Thu Mar 26, 2015 6:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: repair or replace old car?
Replies: 26
Views: 2598

Re: Converted to Roth TSP and my taxes doubled!!

Looking at my federal withholding on my payroll website, it only gives me the option to increase my dependents and add a specific dollar amount for extra withholding. I have 0 dependents and I'm not married. How would I adjust it to get less money taken out? Can I just up the number of exemptions e...
by dratkinson
Thu Mar 26, 2015 5:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Converted to Roth TSP and my taxes doubled!!
Replies: 17
Views: 1725

Re: If You Print and Mail, Do You Double-Side?

... On two-sided forms (such as 1040) there is no place to put name or SS number on the back side. If I print single-sided, should I put name or SS number on the 2nd page of the form? Will it confuse their scanners if I do so? ... On automated two sided forms (1040), your identifying information is...
by dratkinson
Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If You Print and Mail, Do You Double-Side?
Replies: 44
Views: 15123

Re: Whole Life Insurance 'Gift' from Parents

Short story. I kept the policy my parents bought for me. Believe I've probably broken even and beneficiary will gain. Long story. My parent did the same thing when I was in my mid-20s. Not knowing any better I kept the MetLife policy and reimbursed them for it. Assumed I was getting a good deal... b...
by dratkinson
Wed Mar 25, 2015 7:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whole Life Insurance 'Gift' from Parents
Replies: 57
Views: 4231

Re: why they requires my username and pass word

Automatic login doesn't work if the cookie is gone.

Your PC's BH cookie is probably being deleted. Check all settings to ensure your cookie is being saved.

Believe browsers can save/delete cookies when they close.

Some 3rd party utilities (CCleaner,...) can save/delete cookies at PC startup.
by dratkinson
Wed Mar 25, 2015 5:58 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: why they requires my username and pass word
Replies: 7
Views: 960

Re: Teaching a responsible teen about money

The Only Investment Guide You'll Every Need, by Andrew Tobias, covers a wide range of financial topics every young adult should know.
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Teaching a responsible teen about money
Replies: 12
Views: 1039

Re: Convince a Newly Converted Boglehead to sell AAPL shares

You don't need to sell just because you are a new BH. Sell only for other (good) reasons. BHs are allowed a 5% fun-money account to scratch the speculative itch. As your BH investments grow, your AAPL position% will drop naturally. To reinvest dividends or not is also your decision. If for fun: then...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Convince a Newly Converted Boglehead to sell AAPL shares
Replies: 20
Views: 2007

Re: Best Bank for Checking Account

Could use bankrate.com to identify free checking accounts. Could call your local credit unions as CUs seem to have more free accounts than banks. Wherever you go, double check the fee structure as some things you may want to do (link to external accounts with ACH push/pull) may entail a fee. Ensure ...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 23, 2015 5:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Bank for Checking Account
Replies: 29
Views: 2715
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