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Re: IBonds - now or later in the year?

Thanks all, I buy IBonds for my portfolio as part of the fixed portion of the AA and I plan to keep them for at least 5 years. I don't use them for my emergency fund. If I wait till November, I would put the $10K into a savings account at 1% in the meantime. ETA: an alternative to iBonds would be a...
by feh
Mon Mar 30, 2015 11:54 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I Bonds - now or later in the year?
Replies: 39
Views: 3374

Re: Which house would a Boglehead choose?

I'm not gonna make a recommendation, but will make a couple comments:

- don't judge a school on its standardized test scores
- don't buy just because of an elementary school, when both choices will use the same MS/HS
by feh
Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which house would a Boglehead choose?
Replies: 24
Views: 1665

Re: "TIPS. Love them or leave them?"

It is not paltry if you have 20-30 years to build your position. But for those of us closer to retirement, it would be difficult to shift a healthy portion of our "fixed-income" into IBonds. +1 I've been investing for 20+ years, but only learned of I Bonds a couple years ago. I'll be buyi...
by feh
Fri Mar 27, 2015 11:43 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "TIPS. Love them or leave them?"
Replies: 16
Views: 1959

Re: Why 529 plan makes any sense??

KlangFool wrote:A) I am rich and I can early retire. Hence, I can pay the college tuition as it goes. I do not need to save for education separately.


Why wouldn't you want a portion of that cost to come from tax-free earnings?
by feh
Wed Mar 25, 2015 1:53 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When does a 529 plan make sense to me?
Replies: 194
Views: 8535

Re: Why 529 plan makes any sense??

DW and I always maxed out 401K and IRA contributions. Contributed to 529 for college.

The value of that account has appreciated 50%, all tax free. That's a pretty sweet deal, IMO.
by feh
Wed Mar 25, 2015 1:01 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When does a 529 plan make sense to me?
Replies: 194
Views: 8535

Re: master bath remodel: return on investment?

Watty wrote:One thing I have not seen mentioned is the remodeling cost relative to the price of the house. Putting $35K into a million dollar house is a lot different than putting that much into a $350K house.


It would be about 10% of the house value.
by feh
Thu Mar 19, 2015 7:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: master bath remodel: return on investment?
Replies: 42
Views: 2826

Re: master bath remodel: return on investment?

OP here; to answer a couple questions: - no, I don't think the current bathroom would hinder a sale - the room is oddly shaped; if you converted the square footage to a rectangle, it's about 12x15 - we are near a mid-sized city in the midwest; not HCOL, but not LCOL either - the estimate does come f...
by feh
Thu Mar 19, 2015 7:33 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: master bath remodel: return on investment?
Replies: 42
Views: 2826

Re: master bath remodel: return on investment?

For those wondering about the $35K price tag, this would be a major remodel. Some specifics: - it is a large room, and due to unusual choices made during original construction, the proposal is essentially a "gut & replace" - the vanity would need to be relocated - the shower would need...
by feh
Wed Mar 18, 2015 9:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: master bath remodel: return on investment?
Replies: 42
Views: 2826

Re: master bath remodel: return on investment?

We did update the bathroom. Add the utilization of the bathroom, when you own the bathroom. Reduce this amount from your cost of recovery calculation ! Then maybe you get back 50% when you sell, however that is debatable, since the home price is dependent on many factors, also every new owner will ...
by feh
Wed Mar 18, 2015 8:33 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: master bath remodel: return on investment?
Replies: 42
Views: 2826

master bath remodel: return on investment?

Wife and I are considering major remodel of our master bath. Not being familiar w/ the industry, I was shocked by the cost estimate of $35K. Does anybody have any stats or personal experience regarding how much of that cost would be reflected in the increased value of the house? There's a good chanc...
by feh
Wed Mar 18, 2015 8:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: master bath remodel: return on investment?
Replies: 42
Views: 2826

Re: Bond fund or CD Ladder

VG shorter term CDs are not very good. I would buy the 3 and 5 year Cds and put the rest in the short term bond fund. That is true. The highest one-year CD yields 0.6%, whereas Bankrate.com shows 1.2% for the highest nationally available. That's another option to keep some in the bond fund. Thanks....
by feh
Thu Mar 12, 2015 12:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bond fund or CD Ladder
Replies: 16
Views: 1959

Re: Thanks all, another question

Marmot wrote:They are in my wife's maiden name, how do you deal with that? Social Security card?


Call the bank where you would like to cash them.
by feh
Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Old Savings Bonds
Replies: 8
Views: 742

Re: Old Savings Bonds

Marmot wrote:I was cleaning out a file and found some savings bonds from the 80's. How do I cash them in? Thanks all.


Any bank should be able to cash them, assuming you are the owner.
by feh
Tue Mar 10, 2015 12:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Old Savings Bonds
Replies: 8
Views: 742

Re: First Taxable Account

Do a search - topic has been covered many times.

Personally, I don't reinvest in taxable accounts.
by feh
Mon Mar 09, 2015 12:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First Taxable Account
Replies: 26
Views: 2305

Re: What is your fixed income mix?

54% total bond
13% bank loan fund
13% TIPS
09% short term investment grade
05% short term munis
05% CDs
by feh
Mon Mar 09, 2015 12:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What is your fixed income mix?
Replies: 33
Views: 2396

Re: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years

Yah that's a real bummer. I've read his books and I believe him based on the data he presents. I don't know if there's anything to go about it other than be depressed if you're just starting the accumulation phase like some of us. Maybe we'll get lucky it turns out not to be an accurate prediction....
by feh
Mon Mar 09, 2015 11:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years
Replies: 216
Views: 22914

Re: If you have $1 million...

I didn't interpret the poll question literally; I read it more as "do you buy vehicles that cost significantly more than average and/or do you replace vehicles before its necessary". I've never bought a used car in my life (5 new cars), but they've all been reasonably priced and driven 10+...
by feh
Fri Mar 06, 2015 1:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you have $1 million...
Replies: 65
Views: 6252

Re: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?

And retirement contributions are simply prepayments of future spending. I'm shocked how many people consider that "savings". Haha, that deserves a response of "touche" :beer Yup, as long as you consider repayment and prepayment as the same thing. :oops: The mental accounting in ...
by feh
Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?
Replies: 410
Views: 20159

Re: Where's your Will?

Used to keep it in a safe deposit box. Stopped renting the SDB, so now kept at home.
by feh
Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where's your Will?
Replies: 46
Views: 2959

Re: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?

I can't believe this thread is this long...

Mortgage payment is simply repayment of a loan. I'm shocked how many people consider that "savings".
by feh
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?
Replies: 410
Views: 20159

Re: Tax Loss Harvesting Bonds??

nobsinvestor wrote:Does anyone have a TLH strategy for bond funds when rates rise?


All my bonds are in tax-deferred, so this would not be beneficial.
by feh
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Loss Harvesting Bonds??
Replies: 7
Views: 517

Re: Wondering how to convert to Admiral Shares?

Just did this today! I didn't give Vanguard the chance to notify me.

VFSTX -> VFSUX
by feh
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wondering how to convert to Admiral Shares?
Replies: 13
Views: 1550

Re: What's your average ER?

.16% (weighted)
by feh
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What's your average ER? [Expense Ratio]
Replies: 123
Views: 7149

Re: Can I afford my dream house?

I was in a very similar situation when we bought our house. We were lucky that prices had softened when we bought. Rather than buy the most house we could afford, we bought an adequate house in the best school district and had provisioned a 2 year cash emergency fund set aside in case of job loss o...
by feh
Fri Feb 27, 2015 1:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford my dream house?
Replies: 49
Views: 4234

Re: No VWIUX at Fidelity

dratkinson wrote:If you expect to own a 3-fund Vanguard portfolio, double-check the availability of VTSMX/VTSAX (and your international choice) at Fidelity.


For total US, total international and total bond, Fidelity has funds that are equivalent to Vanguard when it comes to ER.
by feh
Thu Feb 26, 2015 11:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: No VWIUX at Fidelity
Replies: 17
Views: 1400

Re: No VWIUX at Fidelity

I just called found out that Fidelity doesn't offer VWIUX (Vanguard Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt Fund - Admiral class). They offer VWITX - the investor class version of the fund (with a $75 transaction fee), but no admiral class. Of course, the rep tried to convince me to use the equivalent Fidelit...
by feh
Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: No VWIUX at Fidelity
Replies: 17
Views: 1400

Re: Learning Taxable Accounts

If you buy a fund in a taxable account for 10k and it pays out a $300 dividend, that dividend is taxable income (although the rate may be zero). You may take that dividend in cash, in which case you still have your original cost basis of 10k. However, if you reinvest the dividend, your cost basis i...
by feh
Thu Feb 26, 2015 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Learning Taxable Accounts
Replies: 5
Views: 671

Re: What age do you guys plan to retire?

Next year, at 50.
by feh
Mon Feb 23, 2015 1:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age do you guys plan to retire?
Replies: 143
Views: 8875

Re: Keep Holding Series EE US Savings Bonds?

Keep the bonds. For 1992-2007 the rates should be very good compared to current fixed income alternatives. This is a blanket statement, and not accurate (to the best of my knowledge). OP - you really need to check on each bond. Some of them may be earning relatively nice interest. Others could be a...
by feh
Sat Feb 21, 2015 8:02 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Keep Holding Series EE US Savings Bonds?
Replies: 9
Views: 846

Re: Keep Holding Series EE US Savings Bonds?

We can't answer this question without knowing when each bond was purchased.

Go over to treasurydirect.gov and do some reading on EE bonds. They also have some tools that will tell you when the bonds will reach face value (for those that haven't), what interest rate they're earning, etc.
by feh
Fri Feb 20, 2015 1:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Keep Holding Series EE US Savings Bonds?
Replies: 9
Views: 846

Re: should son cash EE savings bonds?

happen to see your thread - I've been wondering the same thing - and our son is 24 - BTW - wonder how you are keeping track of the bonds ? Did you turn them in, and keep track online ? or - I'm using the Savings Bond Wizard - very primitive software program. http://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/tool...
by feh
Mon Feb 16, 2015 4:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should son cash EE savings bonds?
Replies: 5
Views: 580

should son cash EE savings bonds?

Hi folks. My son is 15, and I recently remembered that he received several EE bonds when he was an infant. They were all issued in the 99-01 time frame. I'm wondering if they should be cashed and the proceeds placed in his 529 account. Questions/thoughts: they are currently earning about 1.5% I'm fa...
by feh
Mon Feb 16, 2015 3:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should son cash EE savings bonds?
Replies: 5
Views: 580

Re: Pfau: Four Risks of Retirement Income

My take on this is that the 4% fails when returns are low or negative early in retirement. The answer then should be to save for a 4% comfortable early retirement. If right after you retire there is a down market, go back to work part time if possible to avoid drawing down the portfolio for a year ...
by feh
Mon Feb 16, 2015 1:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Pfau: Four Risks of Retirement Income
Replies: 31
Views: 4450

Re: National muni tax-exempt funds

OP - if you decide to go short term, look at VMLTX/VMLUX.

I opened a Vanguard account to avoid the $75 charge I would've had to pay through Fidelity.
by feh
Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: National muni tax-exempt funds
Replies: 10
Views: 1008

Re: My early 30's Ameriprise portfolio - UPDATE

Another vote for bonds in the portfolio. I suggest 20%.
by feh
Fri Feb 13, 2015 12:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My early 30's Ameriprise portfolio - UPDATE
Replies: 45
Views: 5231

Re: College savings costs / number

The rising costs for attending college are unsustainable. Something has got to give. +1 Over the next 20 years I see major changes occurring, most likely in the form of online/distance learning. The traditional experience of a dorm room/apartment near campus and attending classes in vine covered bu...
by feh
Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College savings costs / number
Replies: 120
Views: 6733

Re: College savings costs / number

The rising costs for attending college are unsustainable. Something has got to give. +1 Over the next 20 years I see major changes occurring, most likely in the form of online/distance learning. The traditional experience of a dorm room/apartment near campus and attending classes in vine covered bu...
by feh
Thu Feb 12, 2015 12:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College savings costs / number
Replies: 120
Views: 6733

Re: The Best 60/40 Portfolio?

40% Vanguard Total U.S. Stock Market Index (VTSMX) 20% Vanguard Total International Stock Index (VGTSX) 32% Vanguard Total Bond Market Index (VBFMX) 8% Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities (VIPSX) This AA is exactly what I plan on holding at the start of my retirement next year, except 1/3 of th...
by feh
Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:30 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The Best 60/40 Portfolio?
Replies: 20
Views: 2223

Re: Cheap web hosting

I'm currently using siteground.com. Been happy with them.
by feh
Tue Feb 10, 2015 4:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap web hosting
Replies: 15
Views: 1026

Re: Need advice: 401k and Annual Bonus

It drives me nuts that 401K plans force people to use percentages like this...

The plan administrator before my current one allowed you to specify a dollar amount to be taken from each paycheck, and you could exclude bonuses. That made things very easy.
by feh
Tue Feb 10, 2015 1:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice: 401k and Annual Bonus
Replies: 8
Views: 1046

Re: Best Small Cap Value Funds

SCZ is EAFE, not domestic.

For US, I only use VBR. For ex-US I use VSS and SCZ.
by feh
Fri Feb 06, 2015 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Best Small Cap Value Funds
Replies: 43
Views: 4379

Re: Seeking advice on learning computer science

I haven't read the entire thread, but I suggest you first determine what aspect of computer technology you are interested in. Here's a rough outline, each one building on the previous: hardware (internal guts of the machine: storage (hard drives, solid state storage), CPUs, display devices, peripher...
by feh
Thu Feb 05, 2015 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seeking advice on learning computer science
Replies: 40
Views: 1943

Re: Fidelity or Vanguard

I think Vanguard has better products, and Fidelity has better service. Holding Vanguard ETFs in a Fidelity account you get the best of both. bingo. i swapped all my vanguard accounts to fidelity and couldn't be happier. fido has the better website, apps, tools, etc it's not even in the same ballpar...
by feh
Thu Feb 05, 2015 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity or Vanguard
Replies: 31
Views: 3019

Re: Approaching Roth IRA income limits

Here's what I've done the past couple of years. It might not be the most efficient, but it is possibly the easiest. I wait until mid-March of the following year to make the previous year's Roth contribution. That way, you know exactly what your tax situation is. You lose a relatively small amount o...
by feh
Thu Feb 05, 2015 12:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Approaching Roth IRA income limits
Replies: 15
Views: 1297

money needed in 3 years

Looking to invest in something short term (assume 3 year horizon, although probably won't need the money at that time)...what would you choose?

3 year CDs seem to be around 1.3-1.4%.

Short term corporate (VFSTX) 30 day yield is 1.54%

Something else?
by feh
Wed Feb 04, 2015 2:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: money needed in 3 years
Replies: 8
Views: 831

Re: How much can I afford to spend on a car?

seeshells wrote:Secondarily speaking, Is FI your goal? If so, invest every penny you can, till you are!!


+1

Whenever I see a question about "how much can I afford" something, I always feel the wrong question is being asked,
by feh
Mon Feb 02, 2015 5:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much can I afford to spend on a car?
Replies: 32
Views: 2400

Re: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with

Planning on 60/40 at retirement; no plans to get more conservative than that.
by feh
Fri Jan 30, 2015 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The lowest stock allocation you plan to stay with
Replies: 79
Views: 4487

Re: Are any US-only investors having 2nd thoughts?

Newb, Newb, Newb... Newb... some of the threads you start (bored when market is closed).... and, now this... :oops: I'm starting to think he's trolling; way too many threads started like this that are obviously anti-Boglehead. Care to explain how the thread is anti-Boglehead? One of the Bogle corne...
by feh
Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are any US-only investors having 2nd thoughts?
Replies: 44
Views: 4608

Re: Payoff Mortgage with investments in taxable accounts

sgl wrote:We have a 529 for the kid with about a 40k balance. Other than that we would pay as we go with the freed up cash from not having a mortgage.


You could also pay as you go w/ the money you're thinking about using to pay off the mortgage.

At 3% I wouldn't pay it off early.
by feh
Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff Mortgage with investments in taxable accounts
Replies: 22
Views: 1739

Re: Are any US-only investors having 2nd thoughts?

Twins Fan wrote:Newb, Newb, Newb... Newb... some of the threads you start (bored when market is closed).... and, now this... :oops:


I'm starting to think he's trolling; way too many threads started like this that are obviously anti-Boglehead.
by feh
Wed Jan 28, 2015 12:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are any US-only investors having 2nd thoughts?
Replies: 44
Views: 4608
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