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Re: Over-55 communities a ripoff?

My wife and I moved to a small over-55 community a bit less than a year ago. Our complex has 14 units, mostly duplex. Our circumstances were different than the typical downsizing from a house we'd lived in for 30 years, raised kids in, etc., etc. We wanted to relocate from the location in which we h...
by friar1610
Thu Apr 17, 2014 4:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Over-55 communities a ripoff?
Replies: 38
Views: 2711

Re: Did not have fun this year doing my taxes- TT

poundwise wrote:I too had less fun this year due to a mid-year move to a new state. TT was smooth for the Fed component, but was extremely unhelpful for the split state component.



+1
by friar1610
Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:56 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did not have fun this year doing my taxes- TT
Replies: 42
Views: 4051

Re: Just had offer accepted on a house! (Advice pls!)

Assuming your accepted offer is pending inspection - hire a good inspector and have him nitpick the hell out of everything and attach a high dollar amount to every fix. Then use that info to pound the sellers into an even lower price. Once they are informed of defects, make sure you tell them they ...
by friar1610
Thu Apr 17, 2014 11:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just had offer accepted on a house! (Advice pls!)
Replies: 29
Views: 2115

Re: Any Vermont Bogleheads? (Taxes)

I moved 6 months ago from VT to MA after living in VT for 8 years. Taxes were certainly not the primary reason for my move, but they were a contributing factor. You've gotten a lot of detailed info from previous posters already, so I won't repeat any of those details. I should add that my wife and I...
by friar1610
Sun Apr 06, 2014 5:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any Vermont Bogleheads? (Taxes)
Replies: 9
Views: 706

Re: tearing my hair out with multiple state tax return

I had to deal with both MA and VT this year. I have been a Turbo Tax user for years, but I found TT very confusing when dealing with 2 separate state returns. I ended up using TT for the Federal return and doing my two state returns the old fashioned way. My wife and I are retired, so our "sala...
by friar1610
Sun Apr 06, 2014 5:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: tearing my hair out with multiple state tax return
Replies: 11
Views: 732

Re: William Bernstein-When you've won the game, why keep pla

azanon wrote:Been itching to buy that Lexus? Is there a better time than now for liquidating your US stock fund that has been on a tear for 5-6 years? Do it now, not after it crashes later this year. I'm digressing......


Not since Toyota has shown its true colors re: profits vs. customer safety!
by friar1610
Thu Mar 20, 2014 6:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: William Bernstein-When you've won the game, why keep playing
Replies: 241
Views: 25068

Re: Poll: When did you retire? Would you do it all over agai

I retired from the military at age 52. I had planned to take 90 days off before even looking for another job. It turned out to be closer to 120 days before I went to work, but that was fine. I worked for a couple of "Beltway Bandits" (defense contractors) over the next 6 years. They paid w...
by friar1610
Wed Mar 19, 2014 3:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: When did you retire? Would you do it all over again ?
Replies: 103
Views: 10710

Re: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services

I'm perfectly comfortable managing things myself. However, one of my concerns is that if I predecease my wife (which the actuaries say will probably happen), she will not be interested in/capable of keeping up with things. (She's smarter than I am when it comes to things she's interested in; in spit...
by friar1610
Sat Mar 08, 2014 10:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services
Replies: 26
Views: 4117

Re: Don’t Become Shark Bait

I have a friend (now retired) who worked for an agency within DoD and then went on to make lots of money as a contractor. Before he took the government job, he was an insurance salesman and he was apparently very good at what he did but he wasn't loving life so he gave it up. His niche target market...
by friar1610
Thu Feb 20, 2014 6:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Don’t Become Shark Bait
Replies: 29
Views: 4178

Re: "The White Coat Investor" -- A Gem

“The Rule of 72: Divide the interest rate into 72, and the result is the number of years it takes your money to double." Before I retired from the Navy I went to a retirement seminar run by the Navy and intended to help folks transition into retirement. One of the attendees was a Navy guy who ...
by friar1610
Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The White Coat Investor" -- A Gem
Replies: 14
Views: 4341

Re: USAA Auto Insurance?

I've had USAA for more than a decade. I just got a quote from GEICO that is 25/month cheaper. Amica was about the same. Looks like I'll be switching over. I thought I would call USAA and tell them the difference and see if they would drop our rate. Has anyone had success doing this? I did that a fe...
by friar1610
Wed Feb 12, 2014 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: USAA Auto Insurance?
Replies: 53
Views: 3011

Re: The PenFed Craze

People report that on 20 January Navy Federal Credit Union started offering 3% 7-year CDs. Victoria I did "jump on" the PenFed deal but mainly to create a CD ladder which I wanted to add to my portfolio. I checked out the NFCU deal but their 5 year and less CDs are not as good a deal as P...
by friar1610
Tue Jan 21, 2014 9:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The PenFed Craze
Replies: 32
Views: 4731

Re: Investing in Physical as well as Financial Health

I had been a runner (3-5 miles about 4-6 days per week) for 30+ years but gave it up about 2 years ago (at age 66.) I was out for my run and partway through it I just said, "Screw it. I don't like running any more." I was going to a gym anyway (weights, weight machines, etc.) so I switched...
by friar1610
Wed Jan 01, 2014 6:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Investing in Physical as well as Financial Health
Replies: 39
Views: 2581

Re: Fixed Income

I would add that one risk you should consider is the risk of underestimating needs, especially contingencies for bad things happening. Point taken. I've planned for a few contingencies; I'd be interested in your thinking as to whether I've missed any: - Long Term Care Insurance: Not 100% covered he...
by friar1610
Sun Dec 29, 2013 9:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed Income
Replies: 9
Views: 1020

Re: Fixed Income

dbr is pointing you in the right direction. If you don't want to reveal too many personal details, take the total amount in your portfolio and divide it by your estimate of your wife's annual needs after your death. Tell us the resulting ratio, and that will help us respond to your questions. My wi...
by friar1610
Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed Income
Replies: 9
Views: 1020

Re: Fixed Income

One thing that grabbed me was the phrase, "..spread across several accounts." Are these accounts at least held with the same firm? As we get older, it is a good idea to simplify accounts as much as possible. Obviously, all of the rules around various types of accounts (traditional IRA, Ro...
by friar1610
Sun Dec 29, 2013 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed Income
Replies: 9
Views: 1020

Fixed Income

I read all the posts concerning bonds, bond funds, durations, interest rate sensitivities, etc. and it leaves me wondering if I should make any changes. I'd appreciate any comments on the fixed income portion of my portfolio. First, some background on me: - Age 68, spouse 67. - No debt. - Live just ...
by friar1610
Sun Dec 29, 2013 2:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed Income
Replies: 9
Views: 1020

Re: I think low cost of living trumps retiring in a no state

I've lived in both "high" COL/tax states and "low" COL/tax states. Unfortunately I've always felt more at home in the higher cost/tax states for reasons having nothing to do with a desire to pay more. I also agree strongly with an earlier poster that living close to family trumps...
by friar1610
Thu Dec 26, 2013 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I think low cost of living trumps retiring in a no state in
Replies: 80
Views: 5275

[Billionaire Boglehead!!! How to allocate your portfolio?]

[Moved from [Are there any] Billionaire Boglehead!!! --admin LadyGeek] Here's a related question that I've thought about from time-to-time. (I don't mean to hijack this thread, so if it's appropriate to move to another thread, the moderator should do so.) What if you are a Boglehead - three fund po...
by friar1610
Mon Dec 23, 2013 3:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Billionaire Boglehead!!! How to allocate your portfolio?]
Replies: 4
Views: 785

Donor Advised Funds - Boston Globe article

There was an article in today's Globe about donor advised funds. Vanguard is among the many firms that offer them. WHEN AMERICANS think about donating money to charity around the holidays, they tend to think of the organizations whose names have become practically synonymous with philanthropy: the U...
by friar1610
Sun Dec 01, 2013 3:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donor Advised Funds - Boston Globe article
Replies: 18
Views: 1280

Re: My Early Retirement Thoughts and Calculations

One web site you might be interested in is:
http://www.early-retirement.org/

There is a free calculator available there that you might find useful.

Good luck!
by friar1610
Wed Nov 27, 2013 3:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Early Retirement Thoughts and Calculations
Replies: 43
Views: 7857

Re: Bogle-approved spend on a car?

I remember reading quite a few years ago that Warren Buffet drove a used Mercedes. He thought Mercedes cars were excellent but that the new ones were just way too expensive.
by friar1610
Tue Nov 19, 2013 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogle-approved spend on a car?
Replies: 68
Views: 4048

Schiller vs. Fama: Who's Right?

Interesting NYT article opinion piece coming down on Schiller's side (that markets are inefficient and can be exploited for profit.)
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/15/opini ... inion&_r=0
by friar1610
Fri Nov 15, 2013 1:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Schiller vs. Fama: Who's Right?
Replies: 17
Views: 1381

Re: Dropping Verizon for Triple Play?

I just chased away a Comcast salesperson from my front door earlier today. I moved to MA from VT about 5 months ago. During 8 years in VT I had only dial-up internet + DirecTV for most of the time. Then I figured out I could use Verizon 3G for internet and that made my life a lot better for a while....
by friar1610
Wed Nov 13, 2013 5:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dropping Verizon for [Optimum's] Triple Play?
Replies: 6
Views: 542

Re: Need help with variable annuity decision

I bought a Fidelity VA quite a few years ago and have since transferred it to Vanguard. Although it has turned out OK and I have made a good return on my investment, if I had to do it over again I wouldn't. I'm not trying to talk you out of one, but just offer a few thoughts for your consideration: ...
by friar1610
Sun Nov 10, 2013 7:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need help with variable annuity decision
Replies: 17
Views: 1207

Re: It's not different for me. Is it for you?

One of my Navy buddies with whom I used to discuss investing always quoted his father: "Bears can make money; bulls can make money but pigs never make money."
by friar1610
Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:10 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It's not different for me. Is it for you?
Replies: 54
Views: 5311

Re: Why/How is the Vanguard REIT VA an insurance offering?

Thanks everyone. Let me be a bit more clear. Assuming I don't "annuitize "ever -- I just want to get distributions from the money I invested at retirement age -- what role did the insurance company play? ie, why are they involved at this point in the creation of the VA? Why can't Vanguard...
by friar1610
Wed Oct 02, 2013 11:02 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why/How is the Vanguard REIT VA an insurance offering?
Replies: 11
Views: 897

Re: Why/How is the Vanguard REIT VA an insurance offering?

With some variable annuities there is a guarantee (insurance) that the value of your contract will never be less than the principal you put into it. In other words, you are insured against losing any of your initial/periodic investments. But if gains you made through the investment are later lost, t...
by friar1610
Tue Oct 01, 2013 7:33 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why/How is the Vanguard REIT VA an insurance offering?
Replies: 11
Views: 897

Re: Does active investing work for college endowments?

In regard to endowments, just saw this article in this morning's Boston Globe about Harvard's endowment being up 11.3% for the year. (Not sure if you can get to this without a subscription.) http://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2013/09/24/harvard-endowment-gains-percent-beating-internal-target-but-un...
by friar1610
Wed Sep 25, 2013 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does active investing work for college endowments?
Replies: 26
Views: 2018

Re: Is there a low cost 50/50 fund?

I have no specific input for the OP. Just wanted to say that in the far reaches of my mind is a recollection of an interview I read many years ago with a noted economist (whose name, of course, I've forgotten.) This was on the TIAA-CREF web site if I recall correctly and I think the economist was at...
by friar1610
Wed Sep 25, 2013 2:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is there a low cost 50/50 fund?
Replies: 38
Views: 2659

Does active investing work for college endowments?

I recently read a comment by the head financial guy at Middlebury College in Vermont. He was responding to an article written by a person who was making an argument on a totally different topic. In that article, the author used the S&P 500 as the benchmark to judge the wisdom of Middlebury makin...
by friar1610
Fri Sep 20, 2013 4:51 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does active investing work for college endowments?
Replies: 26
Views: 2018

Re: Retirement: How do you gauge whether you are on track?

I set goals based on age and financial situation. My goals are: Age 40 - out of debt Age 45 - $X invested Age 50 - 2* $X invested Age 55 - 3* $X invested (able to retire) Age 57-58 retire (increase margin of error) I am working toward the age 50 goal. I am saving aggressively, but it will be tough ...
by friar1610
Mon Sep 02, 2013 6:00 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement: How do you gauge whether you are on track?
Replies: 27
Views: 2820

Re: "Why You Are Probably Not Saving Enough In Your 401k"

I just dont get why people are so focused on their kids education while disregarding their needs for retirement Hey, some of us focused on both. Paying attention to one doesn't mean disregarding the other. I will never regret giving my kids a great education! Probably one of the greatest things I c...
by friar1610
Wed Aug 28, 2013 8:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Why You Are Probably Not Saving Enough In Your 401k"
Replies: 42
Views: 6380

USAA advice regarding bonds

I'm not sure if this link will work for everyone or not. I'm a USAA member and it may be that they recognize my computer when I click and that may not happen for non-members. https://www.usaa.com/inet/ent_blogs/Blogs?action=blogpost&blogkey=marketcommentary&postkey=high_yield_stocks&EID=...
by friar1610
Tue Aug 13, 2013 5:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: USAA advice regarding bonds
Replies: 10
Views: 716

Lower cable rates but in new neighbohood

Hi, I just read the thread about negotiating lower cable/internet/phone rates at renewal time. I'll be moving into a new house/new location where my choices are Comcast and Verizon FiOS. Are the strategies any different in this scenario? How about getting a "new resident" commitment for th...
by friar1610
Sun Jun 16, 2013 5:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lower cable rates but in new neighbohood
Replies: 3
Views: 528

Valuable personal property insurance

I have a scheduled valuable personal property policy with USAA. (This is for stuff like jewelry, art, etc. that you want to insure, by the specific item, for amounts over and above what standard homeowner's insurance will give you in the event of a loss.) I'm going through the update drill since I h...
by friar1610
Tue Jun 04, 2013 3:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Valuable personal property insurance
Replies: 2
Views: 213

Re: Long Distance Walking

I'm way late to this thread but just wanted to point out that there was a good article in last Sunday's New York Times Travel section by a woman who, along with a friend, did one of these walks in Wales. Sounded like the weather wasn't great for them but the scenery was beautiful. And to all those w...
by friar1610
Sat Jun 01, 2013 3:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long Distance Walking
Replies: 133
Views: 13148

Re: Military SBP--Gotta make the decision soon

FWIW,I took a partial SBP - about halfway between the min. and the max. If I could walk that dog back, I would opt for the full amount. Although my wife and I are in fine financial shape, if I knew she would have more SBP income if I predecease her, we would be able to spend more of our nest egg on ...
by friar1610
Sun May 05, 2013 12:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Military SBP--Gotta make the decision soon
Replies: 8
Views: 775

Re: what is an ibonds duration?

I'm no expert on this and I'll leave it to someone else to give a technical answer. But just thinking it through, I'm not sure that a savings bond has a duration. I understand the definition of duration as a measure of the sensitivity of a bond's underlying value to changes in interest rates. (With ...
by friar1610
Fri Mar 22, 2013 10:19 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: what is an ibonds duration?
Replies: 85
Views: 4605

Re: Market Timing of RMDs, Conversions

Although I'm not doing RMDs, I have a similar situation in that I have been liquidating a portion of my taxable equity mutual funds in anticipation of a new home purchase. I thought about all the same things that you've mentioned. In the end, I decided to dollar-cost-average out of the fund, just as...
by friar1610
Tue Mar 19, 2013 10:50 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market Timing of RMDs, Conversions
Replies: 9
Views: 736

Re: Asset allocation for retirees

Thanks to those who responded. In the final analysis, I think I will probably end up fairly close to the 40% I currently have in equities - about 30% in Total Stock Market Index and about 10% in one of the total international indexes.
by friar1610
Thu Feb 14, 2013 12:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset allocation for retirees
Replies: 7
Views: 1313

Asset allocation for retirees

This is an asset allocation question. I'll give details below. I'm just interested in what other Bogleheads think is a reasonable asset allocation for a couple in our situation. Because I am dipping into our portfolio to buy a new primary house for cash in the near future, the current asset allocati...
by friar1610
Mon Feb 11, 2013 3:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset allocation for retirees
Replies: 7
Views: 1313

Re: Corporate bond ladders using defined target dates ETFs

I would certainly consider it, but the ER is currently in the 0.24% range. I think I'd still be more likely to build a CD ladder with rates what they currently are and with those expenses, though. That said, awesome product if the cost comes down significantly (say, below 0.10%?) I understand that ...
by friar1610
Thu Jan 31, 2013 1:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Corporate bond ladders using defined target dates ETFs
Replies: 4
Views: 428

Re: The worst advice

A "Financial Adviser" at my credit union reviewed my investments and recommended an assortment of mutual funds. All with an 8% front load. I did not bite. I got similar advice from (then) USPA-IRA (now First Command), an "investment advisor" company that targets military people....
by friar1610
Tue Jan 22, 2013 1:12 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The worst [investing] advice [you have received]
Replies: 64
Views: 5240

Re: HELOC woes

Somewhat disappointed USAA* (of all banks, mind you) would not consider the amount requested.... I would suggest OP explore local banks or CUs. *We've been with USAA since I was commissioned, in 1970. Both kids are legacies. I'm happy to report, as Paul Harvey would have said, "the rest of the...
by friar1610
Fri Jan 18, 2013 5:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC woes
Replies: 14
Views: 1370

Re: HELOC woes

I am not familiar with loan-to-debt ratios. Do you mean loan to income? That's what I meant - typing faster than the brain was thinking. Do you belong to a Credit Union? I have found them to be more understanding than banks. Yes, and my first instinct was to use Navy Federal (my primary "bank&...
by friar1610
Fri Jan 18, 2013 9:15 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC woes
Replies: 14
Views: 1370

HELOC woes

I just ran into a "gotcha" in the course of applying for a home equity line of credit. My wife and I are retired and have contracted to buy an "over 55" condo in another state. We will be putting our current house, which we own free and clear, on the market next week. The new hou...
by friar1610
Thu Jan 17, 2013 6:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC woes
Replies: 14
Views: 1370

AARP Magazine article (not an AARP bash)

The Dec/Jan issue of AARP Magazine has an article called "The Influentials - 50 over 50." It says. "We looked beyond the politicians and power brokers to find the people affecting your life - and your future." There is one category called "Watching Our Wallets." It list...
by friar1610
Fri Dec 21, 2012 10:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AARP Magazine article (not an AARP bash)
Replies: 1
Views: 453

Credit Scores

I'm in the process of applying for a HELOC. In connection with the application, the bank obviously ran my credit score which is a very good one. But the report includes "Key factors adversely affecting your credit score in the model" which are keyed to codes described on the back of the re...
by friar1610
Sat Dec 15, 2012 5:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Credit Scores
Replies: 7
Views: 736

Re: Losing Attractiveness Over Time

Sure they do, only now they call me "Sir" and offer to help me get my walker into/out of the car. I was career military and was addressed as "sir" and addressed a lot of others as "sir." One day shortly after I retired, a young person held a door open for me; I said th...
by friar1610
Mon Dec 10, 2012 5:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Losing Attractiveness Over Time
Replies: 105
Views: 7988
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