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Re: Taxes are killing me

We even claim 0 deductions and we still owe in Federal taxes. This suggests you might want to adjust your cash flow to make it less stressful. When your circumstances make W2 withholding inadequate, you are required to make estimated payments up to what you think your tax liability will be. That al...
by gd
Sat Apr 25, 2015 6:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes are killing me
Replies: 21
Views: 2604

Re: Approach to Second Act Career Switch

Burning out on my second, have retired for a while, considering my options for a possible third. We'd need more information about your occupational options and interests. If you have interests and skills leading to an obvious alternative that's one thing, no applicable outside interests is another m...
by gd
Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Approach to Second Act Career Switch
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: Living in New Hampshire?

Haven't read the thread carefully, but after the last OP post, glance at Peterborough. Last time I was there an old friend took us to watch Tibetian monks do a sand mandala. Her neighbor used to take his goat for a walk on a leash. Don't commute to Boston unless you like spending time in your car. R...
by gd
Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Living in New Hampshire?
Replies: 35
Views: 2427

Re: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?

The product everyone loves to hate. I find TurboTax has improved in the last few years for unusual foreign income situations, particularly after I found the obscure undocumented checkbox that forces F1116. Also, their slightly superior interview saved me a *lot* of money on a really dumb mistake I w...
by gd
Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:00 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?
Replies: 28
Views: 1621

Re: How much do you pay in Property Taxes?

they have socialized garbage collection :D :D :D :D :D That's a new one on me. Trying to figure this out. Is my town water socialized? What about the fire department? :D :D :D :D :D Don't know what R. means, but one of my favorite local tax stories. Water, no, you pay per use. Fire department? youb...
by gd
Wed Apr 22, 2015 6:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you pay in Property Taxes?
Replies: 175
Views: 8078

Re: Roof shingle selection

Thanks for the replies, for several reasons we're doing a side extension first, and most likely the main roof in a year or two when we catch our breath. They don't match now in exact shade and condition, so not too worried about a year or two mismatch. No unusual wind/hail conditions. We're having a...
by gd
Tue Apr 21, 2015 6:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof shingle selection
Replies: 16
Views: 1358

Roof shingle selection

Curious if anyone can offer opinions-- I'm having some house renovation done, and am having the builder completely reroof the section they'll be working on a piece of. He proposes a roof shingle brand (IKO) with a class action lawsuit about a specific product we are NOT using (organic felt base). Br...
by gd
Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof shingle selection
Replies: 16
Views: 1358

Re: Still having a hard time on retiring

Jobs can provide structure and sense of worth or community, as well as money. That matters to some and not to others, depending on your personality and life outside the job. Hobbies might be solitary refuges not sufficient by themselves, or the sense of being needed or an expert at your job might be...
by gd
Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Still having a hard time on retiring
Replies: 43
Views: 6060

Re: Temporal autocorrelation of stock/fund prices and moveme

If it worked, whoever was using it would essentially be re-randomizing the market by using it, extracting out the signal by their market transactions until it was back to random noise-- the statistical version of "already priced in". There's a few billion PCs in the world easily capable of...
by gd
Sun Apr 19, 2015 3:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Temporal autocorrelation of stock/fund prices and movement
Replies: 30
Views: 1377

Re: How to invest with Euros?

1) I'd start with what *can* he invest in, based on his residency and citizenship circumstances. 2) I suspect you'll find that in the end, the currency rates make all other factors secondary. I have trouble worrying about 1% when month-to-month random variation is 10%, YMMV. http://www.xe.com/curren...
by gd
Fri Apr 17, 2015 6:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to invest with Euros?
Replies: 5
Views: 412

Re: Neighbor hired a surveyor. Should I be nervous?

Having just paid thousands of dollars in surveyor and lawyer fees to have a mis-surveyed property line amicably resolved with a neighbor whose family screwed up both properties 80 years ago, I don't think you have anything to worry about. The fence was properly positioned slightly on your neighbor's...
by gd
Tue Apr 14, 2015 7:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Neighbor hired a surveyor. Should I be nervous?
Replies: 49
Views: 6210

Re: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account

To the OP-- If I was you I'd be feeling somewhat bruised at this point, possibly including from my response. I believe you do have a real problem; I have it myself an order of magnitude less. It's just a first-world, .1%er problem, so you'll get some flak. You've got to work to reprogram your emotio...
by gd
Sat Apr 11, 2015 6:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account
Replies: 74
Views: 7328

Re: Can anyone recommend a good low cost generator?

My usual contribution to generator threads: My neighbor put in a standard Home Depot-issue Generac, natural gas. It is astonishingly loud, like a commercial lawn mower or large snow thrower. I hear it immediately anywhere in my house when it comes on automatically once a week. I doubt I have ever NO...
by gd
Fri Apr 10, 2015 6:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can anyone recommend a good low cost generator?
Replies: 35
Views: 2071

Re: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account

If you can find some psychiatric help that will help you dealing with your money without solving the problem by simply taking it all, that would be one approach. Another would be to ease into the concept of loosening up the purse strings and lifestyle gradually and on your own. Perhaps come up with ...
by gd
Fri Apr 10, 2015 1:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account
Replies: 74
Views: 7328

Re: Buy riding mower or hire service to cut grass?

Walk-behind lawnmower, maybe self propelled, for you and your kids. You save on the lawn service, you save on the exercise equipment/gym membership, you save on the eventual medical bills resulting from inactivity, you save on whatever occurs in your later years from your kids being more capable bec...
by gd
Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy riding mower or hire service to cut grass?
Replies: 56
Views: 3950

Re: Gearing up for big replacement windows project

Can any construction members here comment on this: We have 40 yr old original windows. True divided light 9 over 9 we've done all the weatherstripping we could but bc of all the individual panes, there is still air leakage, frost on the inside of the storm windows, ect. I've also heard installing h...
by gd
Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gearing up for big replacement windows project
Replies: 35
Views: 2590

Re: Letter from Lawyer to enter my property to construct roa

My state (MA), at least my county, has all deeds searchable on line. As far as I know, I can pull up all the legally-filed deeds and associated paperwork for my and my neighbor's properties back about 50 years in a few minutes. That said, I just had a deed issue resolved and the lawyer charged a tho...
by gd
Thu Apr 02, 2015 7:05 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Letter from Lawyer to enter my property to construct road
Replies: 39
Views: 6309

Re: Did you learn anything from 2008?

I learned to trust my common sense and pay attention to specific financial/economist public figures who most accurately analyzed circumstances before, during, and since.
by gd
Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did you learn anything from 2008?
Replies: 105
Views: 8509

Quicken 2015 fails to update euro rate

I have Quicken 2015 accounts in dollars and euros. When I first started using it, I believe Quicken 2015 was updating the euro-dollar exchange rate, but it does not now. Other currencies are updated. So for example I can manually edit both euro:dollar and any other currency:dollar to 1:1, update, an...
by gd
Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken 2015 fails to update euro rate
Replies: 0
Views: 120

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

E.O. Wilson's Life On Earth intro biology textbook done as an iPad app, thanks to whoever mentioned it on the "reading textbooks" thread. It's a masterpiece, and the first textbook I've seen in decades that didn't infuriate me with overproduced bloviating. And free. Anyone who considers th...
by gd
Fri Mar 27, 2015 8:09 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 648
Views: 91610

Re: Vanguard HealthCare Fund

What's not to like? LTCG. Bought it taxable decades ago before I cared much, and it blows out my low-cash-flow-low-tax-bracket planning every year. It's a good problem to have, but a problem. To me, "sector" means mostly an investment area that ebbs and flows with economic conditions. The...
by gd
Wed Mar 25, 2015 7:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard HealthCare Fund
Replies: 68
Views: 6224

Re: Buying a house that had a Dog

I've lived in >20 places in my life, mostly rentals, and I will say flatly I have *never* lived somewhere there was not visible damage from pets, other than newish rentals that banned pets since new. Scratched and chewed doors and windowsills, floors, stained floors, rugs, smells, whatever. This is ...
by gd
Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house that had a Dog
Replies: 18
Views: 2622

Re: Tax Software

Some states have very well-done online filing once you've finished the Federal return, MA for one. These are complex products and cannot meet everyone's needs. Pick the product, including none or paying someone, that fits your needs. To answer your question, TurboTax's tedious but more exhaustive qu...
by gd
Mon Mar 23, 2015 6:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Software
Replies: 23
Views: 1194

Re: New washing machine won't fit down basement steps.

You might reconsider the concrete removal. A rentable electric jackhammer or demolition hammer will trim back a small volume. Otherwise, there are companies that install bulkhead doors who have saws that can easily cut through a foundation. If it's just a non-structural wing of concrete that "e...
by gd
Sat Mar 21, 2015 6:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New washing machine won't fit down basement steps.
Replies: 32
Views: 3012

Re: Tankless Hot Water Heaters

I've also been considering them to relocate the hot water source closer to the use points, for reasons other than economics. Can anyone state how long it takes for fully heated water to start flowing out of one of these, measured at the outlet?
by gd
Fri Mar 20, 2015 1:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tankless Hot Water Heaters
Replies: 33
Views: 3243

Re: Gaming amazon product reviews

Modified the OP to make clear this is an inquiry. Thanks, this is actually getting even more interesting. I went back and reread the email I got from the seller that I believe I responded to, and it clearly states it is a product review request (with link supplied). Perhaps they're even more devious...
by gd
Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gaming amazon product reviews
Replies: 16
Views: 2249

Gaming amazon product reviews

I need a low-flow showerhead. After finding nothing locally, I went to amazon.com and found two candidates advertised as low-flow-- one with a handful of reasonable-sounding complaints about quality, the other goofy-looking but with almost no negative reviews. After purchasing and receiving the bett...
by gd
Sat Mar 14, 2015 7:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gaming amazon product reviews
Replies: 16
Views: 2249

TurboTax- forcing Form 1116

Somewhere in the bowels of TurboTax I believe I once found a checkbox, probably in a worksheet, that will force a Form 1116 to be produced when TurboTax would otherwise not do so. I cannot find it again. Can anyone tell me where it is? Not a question about IRS rules, just TurboTax behavior.
by gd
Mon Mar 09, 2015 7:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax- forcing Form 1116
Replies: 1
Views: 291

Re: Should I use both Turbotax and TaxACT?

5 years ago I found TurboTax was better at drawing my attention to and handling not-quite-typical tax issues I had been neglecting than TaxACT. If you fully understand your tax situation, and the tax preparer has done well and their work can be followed, I'd guess TaxACT can be used. If you're enter...
by gd
Mon Mar 09, 2015 6:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I use both Turbotax and TaxACT?
Replies: 8
Views: 1044

Re: What if you already have a couple million?

You do what you want, whatever will leave you with no regrets at the end of the game. It's pretty much all arbitrary anyway, following intricate calculations and precise numbers based on... vague historical trends and an unknowable future. Example, I am baffled why someone who has barely enough reti...
by gd
Wed Mar 04, 2015 8:01 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What if you already have a couple million?
Replies: 42
Views: 6709

Re: Can I e-file? Form 8938 and 3 foreign accounts?

I use TurboTax Premier this year, Deluxe last year, and have more foreign accounts than you (my spouse and the banks conspire to aggravate me, never closing unneeded savings accounts). I dimly recall it is sometimes slightly confusing exactly how they prompt you; this year I was able to just import ...
by gd
Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I e-file? Form 8938 and 3 foreign accounts?
Replies: 5
Views: 517

Foreign Tax Credit and foreign estimated tax payments

A question for people who claim Foreign Tax Credit, and make estimated tax payments to the foreign government during the tax year: I make quarterly estimated payments in foreign currency for passive income. After the tax year ends, the foreign tax is reckoned, and I pay additional or receive a refun...
by gd
Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Foreign Tax Credit and foreign estimated tax payments
Replies: 0
Views: 144

Re: Is Vanguard understaffed?

scifilover wrote:Never an issue with EFT's. It is just another trade when you buy or sell.

Then the 1099 comes a month later than the equivalent MF. That's an issue for me.
by gd
Sat Feb 28, 2015 5:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Vanguard understaffed?
Replies: 37
Views: 3662

Re: Is Vanguard understaffed?

Maybe this is what they mean by "Vanguarding". Marketing first, then clean up the mess.
by gd
Sat Feb 28, 2015 5:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Vanguard understaffed?
Replies: 37
Views: 3662

Re: Is a generator worth it?

Rule of Thumb: If something expensive is positioned at the entrance of Home Depot, it's probably a fad.
by gd
Sat Feb 28, 2015 8:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is a generator worth it?
Replies: 105
Views: 6119

Re: Safe Withdrawal Rate as it relates to Size of Portfolio

$1M: work Firecalc nervously for SWR. $10M: don't worry about it. $100M: lounge on the yacht trying to decide which house to use next week.
by gd
Sat Feb 28, 2015 7:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Safe Withdrawal Rate as it relates to Size of Portfolio
Replies: 25
Views: 2943

Re: Air Quality Testing for home inspection?

If I was selling my 75 yr. old house and a prospective buyer demanded a discount because they found mold spores, I'd politely suggest perhaps they aren't cut out for an older house and go across town to the McMansion development. And don't forget to test for various air-tight-new-house carcinogens w...
by gd
Tue Feb 24, 2015 8:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Air Quality Testing for home inspection?
Replies: 21
Views: 1109

Re: Suggest an infrared temperture gun

Like lots of low-end Amazon products, that product seems to be marketed under at least 3 names-- Nubee, Sain Sonic and Etekcity.
by gd
Tue Feb 24, 2015 7:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suggest an infrared temperture gun
Replies: 21
Views: 1763

Re: Does it really make sense to use historic data before PC

Perhaps what you're looking for is the tolerance and capacity for economic and societal deviation before something dramatic happens to fix it. That capacity is both psychological and physical in terms of markets and trade means and financial tools. Whether it's due to revolutions, electrification, w...
by gd
Mon Feb 23, 2015 7:41 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does it really make sense to use historic data before PCs?
Replies: 13
Views: 1233

Re: Does it really make sense to use historic data before PC

Business news channels blaring gossip, trivia and random events all day long. 70%+ of all trades being algorithmic HFT. What makes you think markets are more efficient now? Perhaps they just flail around more efficiently.
by gd
Sun Feb 22, 2015 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does it really make sense to use historic data before PCs?
Replies: 13
Views: 1233

Re: Turbotax MA State

You know MA has free online tax filing, right? I've got some odd tax situations, yet have still been able to use if for years-- even when TaxAct and TurboTax wouldn't allow e-filing of federal.
by gd
Sun Feb 22, 2015 8:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbotax MA State
Replies: 3
Views: 325

Re: Has anyone restored windows?

I am a little puzzled as to why there are still drafts with the new storms. I spent a bundle on high grade storms for my old house, and the drafts went to zero. As others have said, trace down the source of the drafts. I believe a lot of what might seem to be window drafts with old windows are simp...
by gd
Sat Feb 21, 2015 8:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has anyone restored windows?
Replies: 25
Views: 2012

Re: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. questi

What's the difference between what's reported on a brokerage 1099 and what you can get by logging into vanguard.com and clicking: Balances and Holding -> Brokerage Account -> Cost Basis -> Realized Gains and Losses -> 2014 Total The dividends shown in your online account does not break out qualifie...
by gd
Fri Feb 20, 2015 4:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard brokerage tax forms changed to late Feb. question
Replies: 95
Views: 8126

Re: Why do companies match 401K contributions?

Allow me to summarize the possibilities so far: 1) HCEs make the self-interested decision to match non-HCE contributions so as to boost contributions by non-HCEs, with the ultimate goal of boosting HCE rewards. 2) As a recruitment and retention benefit. 3) Because it's a decent thing to do. I sugges...
by gd
Fri Feb 20, 2015 11:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why do companies match 401K contributions?
Replies: 50
Views: 4608

Re: What was your dumbest financial decision?

I responded to the "worst" financial decision, not the "dumbest". There is a difference, at least for me, and it is an important one. Something can be a bad/worst financial decision, but still a reasonable decision for non-financial reasons. That's not dumb. These were two differ...
by gd
Fri Feb 20, 2015 7:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was your dumbest financial decision?
Replies: 172
Views: 15677

Re: Has anyone restored windows?

Just curious-- does anyone in a seriously cold climate with single-pane sashes (working, not painted shut) and external storm windows NOT get frosted over storms in the upstairs moisture-filled bedrooms of their house?
by gd
Wed Feb 18, 2015 9:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has anyone restored windows?
Replies: 25
Views: 2012

Re: What is the worst financial decision that you've made?

No hesitation on this one-- bought a house instead of renting. Not a bad decision, just the worst decision financially.
by gd
Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was your dumbest financial decision?
Replies: 172
Views: 15677

Re: Has anyone restored windows?

I have restored my original 75-year-old windows myself. My neighbor also. It's time consuming but not all that hard, and makes an entertaining, long-lasting hobby doing a few sashes a year. The restored windows are aesthetically very pleasing. Several random comments: Modern windows, particularly pl...
by gd
Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has anyone restored windows?
Replies: 25
Views: 2012

Re: Should I raise my tenants rent?

We haven't raised the rent in 11 years. I was considering it a few years back then realized that if they move out I'll probably push to sell the property rather than risk getting a bad tenant like their predecessor.
by gd
Mon Feb 16, 2015 5:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I raise my tenants rent?
Replies: 35
Views: 1939
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