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Re: Moving to Reno: When to look for a rental?"

Check out and also post your question on city data forum. http://www.city-data.com/forum/reno-sparks-area/ You can also post your requirements there and people might suggest appropriate neighborhoods or communities. Separate forums exist for each city and I have found them very helpful. Craigslist i...
by jane1
Tue Apr 15, 2014 4:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Reno: When to look for a rental?"
Replies: 12
Views: 579

Re: California Taxes - Am I Missing Something?

I wouldn't recommend people to move here unless they are getting a huge jump in salary or better career opportunities. Why did you move @jane1 since you said the compensation is only comparable? Were there better opportunities for your career growth here? It doesn't sound like you moved for life st...
by jane1
Tue Apr 08, 2014 6:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: California Taxes - Am I Missing Something?
Replies: 142
Views: 7771

Re: First Trip to India

- ONLY drink bottled (check seal) or boiled/treated water including for rinsing mouth "good" - avoid all uncooked food (salad, cut fruit). peeling you own fruit is ok. Wash fruits with "good" water. - keep OTC medicine (stomach, flu, pain) with you at all times - you can buy most...
by jane1
Tue Apr 08, 2014 4:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First Trip to India
Replies: 45
Views: 3233

Re: California Taxes - Am I Missing Something?

We moved from Chicago to NorCal a couple of years ago. Our experience - Compensation for a individual is comparable. Mean/medians don't tell the whole story. Our expenses here are significantly higher - about $10-15K per year higher for housing (rent) - several 1000s $ higher in state income tax (hi...
by jane1
Tue Apr 08, 2014 2:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: California Taxes - Am I Missing Something?
Replies: 142
Views: 7771

Re: Self-employment and FICA limit?

Thanks DSInvestor and sscritic.
I went through the form and also put it in TaxAct. Looks like Sch C income will be subject to Medicare only. No employee or employer portion since the SS tax limit was already reached. So SE tax rate in this case is 2.9% times 0.9235. And half of that is the deduction.
by jane1
Sat Apr 05, 2014 1:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Self-employment and FICA limit?
Replies: 3
Views: 335

Self-employment and FICA limit?

I have W2 income where I have hit the social security tax upper limit. If I also have a 1099-Misc for some occassional consulting I have done, for which I will have to file Schedule C , what is my Self-Employment tax? I think it is only 2.9% medicare? With .9235 factor. Or is it 2.9% medicare + 6.2%...
by jane1
Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:32 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Self-employment and FICA limit?
Replies: 3
Views: 335

Re: We Don't want to die with Money

My husband and I have been seriously talking about how soon to retire. We are both 59. .... Does anyone have a book/article recommendations on how to go about spending down all your assets in retirement? I understand the "General retirement withdrawal rules: . withdraw from taxable accounts fi...
by jane1
Wed Mar 26, 2014 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: We Don't want to die with Money
Replies: 45
Views: 3747

Re: Upcoming European Vacation - Currency Exchange Questions

We use Credit Cards (with no transaction fees), where accepted, and cash from ATMs. You get the best exchange rates (typically the official rate you see on Yahoo Finance, etc). Never had any problem all these years. We do keep some US $ bills handy in case of emergency. Make sure to check with your ...
by jane1
Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Upcoming European Vacation - Currency Exchange Questions
Replies: 27
Views: 1241

Re: HSA Tax question

I have a HSA acct and my wife and I have family plan insurance policy.It is my understanding that we can contribute the max amount which I believe is 6550 for 2014 and since we are both over 55 an additional 1000 each.What I have been doing is splitting the total and putting half in each account.My...
by jane1
Sat Feb 22, 2014 3:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Tax question
Replies: 5
Views: 523

Re: Non-deductible IRA mess

jane1, if he gets another job with a 401k, couldn't use the "isolate the basis" technique? Basically, he would just roll everything out to an IRA, roll the pre-tax money into the new 401k, the convert the remaining basis to Roth tax-free. Thanks mnvalue. I just read up on the technique, s...
by jane1
Sat Feb 22, 2014 2:28 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-deductible IRA mess
Replies: 40
Views: 2152

Re: What to do with small prepaid credit cards

Certainly if you go to Home Depot with a Home Depot gift card, they can figure it out but the clerks at Lowes told me there is no way to determine how much is on a prepaid VISA card (or maybe they're just lazy). Or my Lowe's is more upscale than yours. :) I really don't know, but then I don't get t...
by jane1
Sat Feb 22, 2014 2:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to do with small prepaid credit cards
Replies: 47
Views: 1820

Re: Non-deductible IRA mess

DH may be getting into one of these situations and will need to figure some way to avoid the future 8606 tracking. Former employer 401k rolled over into IRA 2 years ago. Current employer 401k - We ended up with some after-tax contributions in addition to pre-tax contributions to get maximum company ...
by jane1
Fri Feb 21, 2014 2:45 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-deductible IRA mess
Replies: 40
Views: 2152

Re: Cost Analysis: Living in CA vs the South

We moved from the Midwest to Bay Area, CA a couple of years ago. After visiting CA over the years, we have always wanted to live here. Our estimates showed it would cost about 50% more. It appears almost double, if you account for taxes (in our case); but with older housing, smaller spaces. NorCal c...
by jane1
Tue Feb 04, 2014 6:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost Analysis: Living in CA vs the South
Replies: 79
Views: 5499

Re: Any other travel freaks?

We traveled abroad extensively for pleasure for 10+ years while working. Then quit our jobs, put stuff in storage, so we can travel more. Lived in short-term furnished apartments and long-term stay hotels for several years in several cities. Exhausted. Now back to a more settled life in a different ...
by jane1
Tue Feb 04, 2014 3:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any other travel freaks?
Replies: 92
Views: 5630

Re: New car or used car

Ten years ago it was a much better deal to buy a used car 2-3 years old than a new car. Used car prices have gone up a lot in the last few years though. A frugal friend told me he recently bought the first new car of his life, because the economics had changed. What do you think? We had also always...
by jane1
Thu Jan 30, 2014 11:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New car or used car
Replies: 9
Views: 1059

Re: Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefit

Yes. And, if I recall correctly, it is all or nothing for ALL the I-bonds you own. You can't do it with a subset of the I-bonds you own. Thanks for your responses. Looks like it would be limiting unless you can keep changing between Methods 1 & 2 endlessly. Has anyone tried that? SS benefits ta...
by jane1
Wed Jan 29, 2014 2:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefits?
Replies: 5
Views: 450

Re: Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefit

It is a valid consideration especially if your purchases are concentrated into a smaller number of years. You could consider this like Roth conversions. Suppose you intend to claim SS benefits at 70 and stop working several years before. You can switch the tax status to yearly reporting which will ...
by jane1
Tue Jan 28, 2014 11:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefits?
Replies: 5
Views: 450

Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefits?

For those who max out on I-bonds every year and choose to defer Federal taxes until I-bond maturity, have you done analysis to see whether paying as you go might be more beneficial? I am thinking from the taxation of SS benefits perspective. If you expect to have income that makes 85% of your SS ben...
by jane1
Tue Jan 28, 2014 9:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defer I-bonds taxes and impact on taxation of SS benefits?
Replies: 5
Views: 450

Re: Marriage and Money

As others have said, financial compatibility - how each of you views spending, saving for bigger home/kids/retirement, supporting parents if needed, etc., is the most important. I am sure there are quizzes out there that you can take to understand your priorities when it comes to finances. If you ar...
by jane1
Thu Jan 09, 2014 8:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Marriage and Money
Replies: 32
Views: 3194

Re: HSA Questions

If you are contributing through your paycheck, you will be saving SS+medicare taxes also (employer also would be saving the same amount). That equates to 7.65% for you and 7.65% for your employer. The federal and state tax (some states dont provide the tax benefit) savings can be had even with afte...
by jane1
Thu Jan 09, 2014 7:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: HSA Questions
Replies: 13
Views: 1100

Re: If Not TurboTax, What?

We have been using Taxact (online version) for several years. $13.95 for fed, state and efiling is a great price. And data gets carried over from previous years (personal info, all bank, brokerage details, carryover loss, etc). Handles Roth conversions, HSAs, Sch A/B/C/D, everything. Even imports tr...
by jane1
Thu Jan 09, 2014 3:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If Not TurboTax, What?
Replies: 143
Views: 11776

Re: Fitness DVDs

Try Leslie Sansone videos specifically for workout at home with no equipment. Walking at home, low impact for older adults with some light strength training, coordination, etc. Once your parents are familiar with the steps, they can do it while watching other TV programs too. There are 100s of Sanso...
by jane1
Thu Jan 09, 2014 2:10 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fitness DVDs
Replies: 11
Views: 888

Re: Laptop suggestions (for my mom)

I would strongly suggest a laptop that is still loaded with Windows 7. Windows 8 really requires that you function like a 'swipe' device like iPod/iPad. I have iPod and iPad and still struggle with Win8 on the newer laptop I bought. I had to put a Classic Shell program on it to function reasonably ...
by jane1
Sun Jan 05, 2014 3:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptop suggestions (for my mom)
Replies: 10
Views: 449

Re: 401k Match and Changing Jobs

Things to keep in mind as you try to maximize the match. Each employer can have different rules for Contributions and Match. One employer might allow 100% of paycheck to be withheld for 401(k) whereas another might only allow upto 25% 401k withheld per paycheck (limiting your flexibility in how quic...
by jane1
Tue Nov 12, 2013 7:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k Match and Changing Jobs
Replies: 4
Views: 358

Re: Get an MBA or Invest?

Job mobility and flexibility is the major advantage with an MBA. Even if right now you like your company and industry, things change with time. And you will find you are a lot more marketable and have transferable skills after you get an MBA. If you do it part-time, the whole process from prep to ap...
by jane1
Mon Sep 02, 2013 10:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Get an MBA or Invest?
Replies: 50
Views: 3291

Re: How do you "rent" movies?

Public library. Great collection. They get new DVD/BD soon after release. And we can put hold/freeze. We are typically able to see within a few weeks of a DVD release.
by jane1
Wed Aug 28, 2013 1:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you "rent" movies?
Replies: 87
Views: 5555

Re: Should I file a claim or not? [auto damage]

I was on the receiving end of something similar. At a stop light, a lady (driving a Merck) rear-ended me. My bumper was damaged and so was her front-bumper. She offered to settle. I got 3 quotes and she paid by check the max quote. In her case, her daughter was on their policy with an accident and t...
by jane1
Fri Aug 23, 2013 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I file a claim or not? [auto damage]
Replies: 15
Views: 1073

Re: Best online values for new laptops?

Slickdeals.net Fatwallet.com typically have the best deals listed. But you will find the best deals once listed on deal sites, get sold out quickly. If you don't mind a manufacturer refurbished, the best deals are often at 'Dell Outlet' site or 'Lenovo Outlet' site. As good as new but significantly ...
by jane1
Sat Aug 17, 2013 3:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best online values for new laptops?
Replies: 18
Views: 1690

Re: Is there a catch to car dealer financing, if price is lo

One potential issue to be aware of is insurance. A finance deal may require levels/types of insurance that you wouldn't otherwise use. Probably not a huge stumbling block, but something to keep an eye out for... Good point, I didn't think of that. After reading your post, I researched it. In additi...
by jane1
Fri Aug 16, 2013 12:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there a catch to car dealer financing, if price is lower?
Replies: 10
Views: 1101

Is there a catch to car dealer financing, if price is lower?

I have never financed a car before. Honda currently offers $500 rebate if you use Honda financing and apparently no prepayment penalty if you pay in full after 91 days (per the salesman). If I qualify for their 0.9% 24 month financing and pay off a $10K loan in 3 months, will I actually be ahead alm...
by jane1
Thu Aug 15, 2013 5:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there a catch to car dealer financing, if price is lower?
Replies: 10
Views: 1101

Re: What do I owe my children?

Why not postpone the loan repayment for say 5 years, or whatever time is needed for the MBA child to settle down? Communication with both children is key. The actual solution may not matter as much.
by jane1
Thu Aug 08, 2013 2:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What do I owe my children?
Replies: 119
Views: 9327

Re: Expectations for permanence of ROTH rules?

The question is....I've heard grumblings about the possibility that rules may be changed to force beneficiaries to take withdrawals more rapidly than currently required...or that rules may change such that some appreciation may no longer be tax free for beneficiaries. Do you have any insights into ...
by jane1
Tue Jul 30, 2013 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expectations for permanence of ROTH rules?
Replies: 9
Views: 1112

Re: Renting indefinitely vs buying a condo?

We are lifelong renters but no kids, now in the Bay Area. Between HOA, Prop Taxes, Maintenance and Opportunity Cost, i doubt if 1BR would be better than renting, at least for the next few years. I love the flexibility to move closer to jobs, desirable areas, just locking up and traveling. What I wan...
by jane1
Tue Jul 30, 2013 1:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Renting indefinitely vs buying a condo?
Replies: 28
Views: 3032

Re: lost job - can I retire now

Sorry about your job loss. I think you should be okay to retire now as long as you have the mentaility to adjust your spending in the lean years. MA should be easier for health insurance. You might be eligible for healthcare subsidy next year onwards, which would reduce your spending. Based on how y...
by jane1
Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: lost job - can I retire now
Replies: 39
Views: 5792

Re: Family vacation - need some bogle wisdom

I am guessing you have already bought your flight tickets. If not, skip/shorten Niagara Falls (1 full day is plenty) and spend more time in DC or NYC.
by jane1
Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Family vacation - need some bogle wisdom
Replies: 18
Views: 1840

Re: Road trip: Chicago to Yellowstone

We did a Chicago-Yellowstone in early September 2 years ago. You have the enroute highlights well covered in your itinerary. Just in case you get tempted to take different routes in each direction, I would suggest avoid ND. Because of some oil rush, accomodations, etc were very hard to come by. Keep...
by jane1
Sun Jul 21, 2013 1:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road trip: Chicago to Yellowstone
Replies: 27
Views: 2179

Re: NYC, Philly, Boston, or Chicago?

It depends on where you live within any of these cities. Once you narrow down to 2 cities, you can use that as an important factor. A central part of NYC beats all, in my opinion. Although heart of Chicago would be better than a suburb of NYC... Even a few blocks makes a big difference in quality of...
by jane1
Wed Jul 17, 2013 10:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NYC, Philly, Boston, or Chicago?
Replies: 102
Views: 6277

Re: Buying ETF's from TD Ameritrade

Note that funds in the TD list can change with time. I used to have some no commission funds (not Vanguard) from years ago, which at some point dropped off the list. Now to sell them I have to pay commission.
by jane1
Fri Jul 12, 2013 5:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying ETF's from TD Ameritrade
Replies: 12
Views: 1082

Re: Are you expected to subsidize friends and family?

Happens to us all the time. Cousins expect us to pay majority share for any outings, bring them and their kids gifts, etc. Since we live in high cost of living area with higher incomes and travel, they assume we have money to blow. They might actually be "better off' given the low cost of livin...
by jane1
Tue Jun 25, 2013 5:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are you expected to subsidize friends and family?
Replies: 52
Views: 5563

Re: Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?

Thanks for all your responses so far. Keep them coming. I will try to summarize your recommendations Inflation risk protection I-Bonds, TIPs, REITs (increase %) Gold, could be in the form of jewellery/coins 1-3% of portfolio Precious metals mining Vanguard fund 4-6% of portfolio Ladder of CDs Stock ...
by jane1
Wed Jun 05, 2013 7:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?
Replies: 33
Views: 2339

Re: Capital One Card - No Foreign Transaction Fees

I have been using Capital One for years for purchases abroad. Get the same inter-bank rate that I get with my ATM card or other CCs but without transaction fees. In fact I pretty much get the rate you see when you google, for instance, USD to EUR (or another currency).
by jane1
Wed Jun 05, 2013 6:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Capital One Card - No Foreign Transaction Fees
Replies: 13
Views: 1500

Re: Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?

What can we do to protect against major currency devaluation risk? I think we have no assets that would help with that. Physical assets (like real estate) might have shielded some, I believe. Does a total intl stock index fund reduce currency risk? Is there a currency index fund types where I can ge...
by jane1
Tue Jun 04, 2013 11:48 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?
Replies: 33
Views: 2339

Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?

We have 100% of assets in stocks, bonds, cash. I.e. no physical real estate, no gold and also no debt. Also it is all in US $. We are semi-retired in our 40s. For years we have liked the freedom of not owning real estate and moving around. We still dont know where we will live in 2-3 years from now....
by jane1
Mon Jun 03, 2013 10:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inflation, currency protection in case of crisis?
Replies: 33
Views: 2339

Re: Costco holdout considering membership

We resisted membership for years, but finally became members. And just renewed membership! No kids. You can probably get similar prices if you chase sales, but what we found the most valuable was the time savings. We can get 'quality' items at a reasonable price. I also realized that I actually enjo...
by jane1
Mon Jun 03, 2013 9:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco holdout considering membership
Replies: 117
Views: 7266

Re: buying a new laptop

My work laptop is a Lenovo Thinkpad and it's a very, very solid machine. 6 months ago when they replaced my four-year old laptop with this one, I had a Thinkpad and insisted on getting a new one. All the way to the point of telling the tech to not even bother showing up with a Dell or HP as I would...
by jane1
Wed May 29, 2013 2:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: buying a new laptop
Replies: 53
Views: 4716

Re: Nearing retirement assistance

It appears Yr 1,2,3 of retirement, your income is from SS only, but future years you would have SS income as well as 401k withdrawal income putting you in a higher tax bracket that Yr 1-2-3. If that is the case, you should evaluate whether to start converting some 401k/IRA to Roth and pay taxes in l...
by jane1
Wed May 22, 2013 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Nearing retirement assistance
Replies: 2
Views: 534

Re: What were the little things that led you to index invest

Trial and error. Tried individual stock picking. Lost a lot of money. Tried market timing, didn't work. Selected MFs based on past returns, sector funds based on "hot" sectors, "tips" from experts. Tried my hand at Options. Read several good investments books. Everything turned o...
by jane1
Fri May 17, 2013 10:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What were the little things that led you to index investing?
Replies: 60
Views: 3621

Re: Data Packages

Check out any prepaid phone plans (numerous small carriers out there) but you will need your own phone.
T-mobile has no-contract plans.

For about $30-50 per month per line there are good options for decent talk, text and data.
by jane1
Tue May 14, 2013 2:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Cellphone] Data Packages
Replies: 7
Views: 690

Re: Do I really need a Smartphone?

I too resisted Smartphone for a while thinking it will not be very useful. Once you have it, you start finding more & more uses of it. And ultimately you wonder how you managed without it. Even for a leisure user Maps & Navigation Ease of texting / typing Decent camera & Video recorder a...
by jane1
Tue Apr 02, 2013 3:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I really need a Smartphone?
Replies: 433
Views: 25660

Re: Vacation ideas in California - on the beach !

As others have pointed out, and I want to reiterate, CA coast does not have warm waters even in the summer. http://www.beachcalifornia.com/beach/california-ocean-temperature.html shows average water temperatures for different CA locations. You can get natural beauty, aquariums/zoo, etc but not anyth...
by jane1
Sun Mar 24, 2013 4:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation ideas in California - on the beach !
Replies: 12
Views: 856
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