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Re: American Automobile Assn (AAA)

A international driver permit is required for car rental


A normal US state's driver's license has always worked for me.
by expat
Fri Jun 20, 2014 7:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: American Automobile Assn (AAA)
Replies: 51
Views: 3396

Re: How much $$ to change jobs?

currently have a great working environment in the federal govt. I have a great work-life balance, very decent pay for the amount and type of work I do, relatively stress-free, a lot of flexibility in managing my workload and being able to take vacations pretty easily. If it were me, I would stick w...
by expat
Thu Jun 19, 2014 4:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much $$ to change jobs?
Replies: 52
Views: 4134

Re: Selling Apt. Buildings. Best Option for Reinvestment? 1

Yesterday, a friend who is involved in the wealth management business, suggested that there are other alternatives for us to consider that could take advantage of the 1031 exchange rules and help us avoid cap gains taxes. (He is not interested in selling anything, but was just giving me ideas). He ...
by expat
Tue Jun 17, 2014 10:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selling Apt. Buildings. Best Option for Reinvestment? 1031?
Replies: 11
Views: 740

Re: Pin and Chip Cards coming to the US

In France, BofA chip and signature do not work at the toll booths. There is no place to enter a pin which is why I thought a chip and signature card might work. I did not see any people working at these, only machines. I have a chip and pin as well but if you drove up to one of these by accident wit...
by expat
Fri Jun 06, 2014 3:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pin and Chip Cards coming to the US
Replies: 71
Views: 4953

Re: Living trust vs will

>> Trusts also have provisions such as a Health Care Power of Attorney. For example, you and your spouse get into an accident and you cannot communicate your wishes. Who speaks for you? In California, at least, that is a separate document. You don't need a trust to have an advanced healthcare direct...
by expat
Tue Jun 03, 2014 2:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living trust vs will
Replies: 26
Views: 2493

Re: Living trust vs will

>> One of our friends suggezted that the will is not sufficient and we need to setup a living trust and not rely on creating a trust after the fact. They said that it helps avoid probate and it also has tax benefits. I agree with your friend. >> Is there a downside to setting up a living trust? It s...
by expat
Tue Jun 03, 2014 2:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living trust vs will
Replies: 26
Views: 2493

Re: My dad is asking me for advice

I would encourage him to enjoy the money by spending it however he wants. No more saving or investing.
by expat
Mon Apr 28, 2014 6:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My dad is asking me for advice
Replies: 11
Views: 2852

Re: Net Worth Survey, 2014 Edition

Lock this thread. There is nothing actionable about it.
by expat
Fri Apr 18, 2014 12:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Net Worth Survey, 2014 Edition
Replies: 149
Views: 21654

Re: Bogleheads Stance on Home Buying

And it always bugged me the fact that we use a special word for our home debt...mortgage. I think a mortage is a special debt and appropriately named. The word means a pledge until death. mortgage late Middle English: from Old French, literally ‘dead pledge,’ from mort (from Latin mortuus ‘dead’) +...
by expat
Tue Mar 18, 2014 1:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogleheads Stance on Home Buying
Replies: 61
Views: 5202

Re: Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) - Contracts and Deposits

>> The more TIME you spend communicating with the owner/manager, the less likely it is to be a scammer who has hijacked some email account. Those scammers aren't going to waste the time having discussions about the property or area, etc. In my experience, this is not an accurate statement. I have se...
by expat
Wed Feb 19, 2014 6:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation Rental By Owner (VRBO) - Contracts and Deposits
Replies: 7
Views: 727

Re: Pitfalls of ceding an inheritance

Teachable Moment: Again, the family could have avoided probate by seeing an estate lawyer before the fact, creating a simple trust, and passing the property to the sisters, all at far less cost than the stated/fees. Not necessarily. The trust document could allow the trustee to take a fee. The trus...
by expat
Wed Jan 01, 2014 4:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pitfalls of ceding an inheritance
Replies: 29
Views: 2225

Re: Please Help a 36 Yr Old With $7m+ Portfolio

You have way too much house, IMO.
by expat
Sat Dec 28, 2013 5:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please Help a 36 Yr Old With $7m+ Portfolio
Replies: 66
Views: 10924

Re: 28 y/o Investor With 1M Portfolio Needs Advice

I think a 50/50 portfolio is fine if you are comfortable with it.

Most young people don't have a lot to lose which is why an aggressive portfolio makes sense.

You, on the other hand, have a lot to lose and I don't think the typical advice for young people applies.
by expat
Sun Dec 22, 2013 7:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 28 y/o Investor With 1M Portfolio Needs Advice
Replies: 31
Views: 4685

Re: Kids in 5 years. Preparation with finances.

If you decide you like having kids, you won't have much time to have them if you wait until 35.
by expat
Sat Dec 21, 2013 1:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Kids in 5 years. Preparation with finances.
Replies: 40
Views: 1898

Re: Should I move to California from Midwest?

Unless you really want to get away from family and/or bad weather, I wouldn't do it. It's not that great.
by expat
Fri Dec 20, 2013 4:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I move to California from Midwest?
Replies: 153
Views: 7932

Re: I just inherited $1 million

Your wife inherited the money, not you.
by expat
Sat Dec 07, 2013 9:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I just inherited $1 million
Replies: 65
Views: 10585

Re: Family member renting 2nd house. Ok to ignore on tax ret

Check with your CPA. In the case of below market rent, I believe your deductions (depreciation, maintenance, fees, taxes) cannot exceed your income. Or perhaps you could construct another story. A family member is staying as a guest in your second home and the $7,800 is a gift to you. It's under the...
by expat
Wed Dec 04, 2013 2:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Family member renting 2nd house. Ok to ignore on tax return?
Replies: 197
Views: 11938

Re: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level"

I suggest your daughter drop out of the "race to nowhere." :)

http://www.racetonowhere.com/
by expat
Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level".
Replies: 50
Views: 3119

Re: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level"

TomatoTomahto wrote:
expat wrote:Why does she have to exceed her grade level?

I am not OP, but considering how low the "grade level" bar is set, I can't disagree with a parent's wish to have their child exceed it.


I must have missed that. I read that the OP's school was :

high rated and very competitive.
by expat
Tue Nov 19, 2013 6:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level".
Replies: 50
Views: 3119

Re: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level"

Why does she have to exceed her grade level?
by expat
Tue Nov 19, 2013 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grade 4. Writing Reading. Goal. "Exceed the Grade Level".
Replies: 50
Views: 3119

Re: junk mail auto-readdressed during change of address

dmachoice.org can reduce some junk mail.
by expat
Sun Nov 10, 2013 1:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: junk mail auto-readdressed during change of address
Replies: 35
Views: 1889

Re: How did you start up your small business?

Regarding franchises, Gerber suggests using them as a model for creating your small business. From the same review ... For turning businesses around, or getting them off the right foot, Gerber suggests looking at franchises as a model. In comparison to the dismal rate of ordinary small-business star...
by expat
Wed Oct 23, 2013 6:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you start up your small business?
Replies: 18
Views: 2069

Re: How did you start up your small business?

I would recommend this book. http://www.amazon.com/The-E-Myth-Revisited-Small-Businesses/dp/0887307280 From one of the Amazon reviews .... One of Gerber's most striking observations is that most small businesses are started by "technicians", that is people who are skilled at something and ...
by expat
Wed Oct 23, 2013 6:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you start up your small business?
Replies: 18
Views: 2069

Re: Home Affordability

Is that 3% a year? I was using 1% of the home price and divided that into 12 to get the monthly expense of $625. Yes per year. The IRS rate of depreciation for residential real estate is roughly 3% per year of the actual structure but not the land itself. Your home price is made up of the cost of t...
by expat
Thu Oct 17, 2013 1:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Affordability [check my calculations]
Replies: 77
Views: 4507

Re: Home Affordability

How much should we have saved in cash for furniture, minor repairs, etc.? What about major repairs? For some reason, homeowners do not acknowledge the cost of maintaining their property. Your house, and every system and component in it, will, of course, deteriorate and become obsolete overtime. 3 p...
by expat
Thu Oct 17, 2013 12:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Affordability [check my calculations]
Replies: 77
Views: 4507

Re: Shiller Thinks Owning a Home is a Terrible Investment

A home is an unpaid job as a property manager, an opportunity to run an unprofitable business with no tax breaks for maintenance or depreciation, and opens the possibility of spending an excessive amount of money on unnecessary improvements.
by expat
Wed Oct 16, 2013 8:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller Thinks Owning a Home is a Terrible Investment
Replies: 255
Views: 21309

Re: Shiller Thinks Owning a Home is a Terrible Investment

It's speculation not investment.
by expat
Wed Oct 16, 2013 4:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller Thinks Owning a Home is a Terrible Investment
Replies: 255
Views: 21309

Re: Do we still need to own a home?

When you own a place even mortgage free you still have insurance,prop taxes and possibly HOA fees.You could be paying 1000 a month easy even without a mortgage. And that same place would cost $2000 to rent, because the landlord is going to be passing those costs onto you. You can't escape the expen...
by expat
Thu Oct 03, 2013 6:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do we still need to own a home?
Replies: 34
Views: 4221

Re: Moving to Japan Self Employed.

Does Japan even need to know about your income? I don't think I would declare it unless I had a good reason to do so.
by expat
Sun Sep 08, 2013 2:56 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving to Japan Self Employed.
Replies: 20
Views: 2015

Re: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?

Me three. Aging solo: no spouse, no kids, no siblings. I'm glad someone brought this up. I moved a long distance when I retired, and now live in an isolated semi-rural area. There are all sorts of problems when one is really solo. Just recently I had trouble finding a ride for a medical test where ...
by expat
Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?
Replies: 27
Views: 3390

Re: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?

I would use living revocable trust with a professional fiduciary as trustee with alternates. Please clarify and define: what does this mean? In California, at least, professional fiduciaries are licensed by the State. http://www.dca.ca.gov/publications/fiduciary_need.shtml Someone I know is going t...
by expat
Tue Aug 27, 2013 2:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?
Replies: 27
Views: 3390

Re: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?

I would use living revocable trust with a professional fiduciary as trustee with alternates.
by expat
Tue Aug 27, 2013 1:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Preparing one's finances for senility - can we discuss?
Replies: 27
Views: 3390

Re: Moving brother out of Mom's house

Is your brother taking care of your mother? If that it is the case, I would hope, in her estate plan, that she would leave a disproportionately larger share of the estate to him as compensation.
by expat
Fri Aug 23, 2013 1:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving brother out of Mom's house
Replies: 26
Views: 4440

Re: Kindergarten Struggles

Talk to your grandson.
by expat
Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kindergarten Struggles
Replies: 39
Views: 4501

Re: solo 401(K) questions

I contribute the employee portion first for two reasons. - The employee contribution must be done by the end of the calendar year whereas the employer contribution does not have to be done until the tax-time up until October. - The employer contribution is dependent on overall net income which is no...
by expat
Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: solo 401(K) questions
Replies: 20
Views: 1303

Re: RBD (Really Bad Day) today ?

Wait for a really bad year.
by expat
Fri Aug 16, 2013 5:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: RBD (Really Bad Day) today ?
Replies: 69
Views: 7074

Re: Can I afford a house payments in Bay Area?

Why do you want to buy a house? You lose your mobility and flexibility and have to take on the time and expense of maintaining a property.
by expat
Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford a house payments in Bay Area?
Replies: 33
Views: 3193

Re: Estate planning, second marriage, kids and steps

Who do you want to ultimately receive your assets?

If it is your daughters, I would look into a QTIP trust and use a bank to act as a trustee to avoid a conflict. You will a need a bank that is willing and able to take on your investment properties.
by expat
Sat Aug 10, 2013 3:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate planning, second marriage, kids and steps
Replies: 45
Views: 3467

Re: college savings for kids - how much?

I limit college savings to 10 percent of my investment portfolio to ensure I don't save too much for college at the expense of retirement.
by expat
Wed Aug 07, 2013 4:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: college savings for kids - how much?
Replies: 20
Views: 2040

Re: Your Home is Not a Good Investment

When you buy a home, you are taking on an unpaid part-time job, imo.
by expat
Sun Aug 04, 2013 5:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your Home is Not a Good Investment
Replies: 145
Views: 11924

Re: International Driving Permit

We are going to Ireland in September for two weeks with a likely side trip to England and Scotland. Its been suggested we get an International Driving Permit. I checked with Irish Car Rental and they said my license is fine as long as its in Roman Script. I have not yet checked the other rental age...
by expat
Sat Aug 03, 2013 4:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: International Driving Permit
Replies: 30
Views: 1580

Re: SEP-IRAs and Solo 401ks for side income

Does this mean I should open both a Solo 401k and a SEP-IRA so I can get 20% from both?


The 20% of net self-employment contribution is shared between all retirement accounts so there is no need to open up both.
by expat
Fri Jul 26, 2013 5:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: SEP-IRAs and Solo 401ks for side income
Replies: 5
Views: 327

Re: SEP-IRAs and Solo 401ks for side income

From the wiki : http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Solo_401k_plan http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/SEP In your situation, I would use a SEP IRA for the side income and continue to contribute the maximum to my employer's 401K assuming it had low fees and good investment options. If my self-employment incom...
by expat
Fri Jul 26, 2013 5:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: SEP-IRAs and Solo 401ks for side income
Replies: 5
Views: 327

Re: Small Business Banking Recommendations (California)

Chase Bank is working well for me. No fee for accounts with average daily balances over 10K.
by expat
Thu Jul 25, 2013 12:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Small Business Banking Recommendations (California)
Replies: 4
Views: 212

Re: Community college a better option to start college?

Having been through it, I question the wisdom and necessity of sending an 18 year old off to live in a college dormitory. Community college could be a better option.
by expat
Sat Jul 20, 2013 6:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Community college a better option to start college?
Replies: 122
Views: 6551

Re: How Can I Avoid the $95 Edward Jones Account Closing Fee

WEL wrote:P.S. I would call Edward Jones directly for suggestions but I'm guessing they would not be too helpful. :happy


I think you're wrong there. Call them and politely ask them to waive the fee as a courtesy. It works for me.
by expat
Tue Jul 02, 2013 11:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How Can I Avoid the $95 Edward Jones Account Closing Fee?
Replies: 34
Views: 4090

Re: Please give me some tax advice, newly self-employed.

In the first year, I used tax software, and plugged in estimates for income, deductions, business expenses, retirement contributions etc and paid quarterly taxes based on what the software proposed. It is possible to underestimate and there could be penalties but they are not very significant. Also,...
by expat
Tue Jun 11, 2013 6:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please give me some tax advice, newly self-employed.
Replies: 18
Views: 968
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