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Re: Tell me about Paris

A few tips. 1) Don't bother with Versailles as it will take too long if you're only there for a few days 2) If it's your first trip - try to do the following . Eiffel Tower, Champes Elysee & Arc de Triomphe , Notre Dame & Left Bank 3) Use the Metro or Batteaux Mouche to get around and get t...
by jebmke
Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tell me about Paris
Replies: 24
Views: 903

Re: Lakefront property with small children?

Our local paper reported today that a 2 year old drowned in a swimming pool. They didn't say if the pool had a fence but I know for sure that many people do not fence their pools.

The suggestions above are good ones.
by jebmke
Tue Sep 30, 2014 11:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lakefront property with small children?
Replies: 44
Views: 1883

Re: favorite brand name products

I want to try these, but my wife will kill me if I spent this much on shoes. The TCO for Allen Edmunds is competitive. I wore the Park Avenues for years. They are extremely durable and A-E has an excellent re-crafting program that extends their life. The key is to take care of them. Use shoe trees,...
by jebmke
Mon Sep 29, 2014 11:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2686

Re: Ready to retire next month

FWIW, I don't include real estate (personal or investment) in my allocation. Can't easily mark it to market, it isn't liquid and therefore, can't re-balance in or out.
by jebmke
Sun Sep 28, 2014 2:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ready to retire next month
Replies: 5
Views: 910

Re: Tax Season Reference???

I once saw an old tax guide in the book store. When I looked at it, I saw that it had simply copied most of Pub 17 and put a price tag on the outside. I think someone (maybe the IRS itself?) analyzed the IRS publications and found them to be about on the 6th to 8th grade reading level. That is, the...
by jebmke
Sun Sep 28, 2014 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Season Reference???
Replies: 13
Views: 597

Re: Tax Season Reference???

livesoft wrote:The IRS has all the publications one needs. What's that first one? Publication 17?

This is my go to reference along with Publication 4012 (VITA/TCE Volunteer Resource Guide). The 1040 Instructions are also very good.
by jebmke
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Season Reference???
Replies: 13
Views: 597

Re: favorite brand name products

notmyhand wrote:Advil Ibuprofen - can't stand the generic non-coated tablets, taste like chalk

You are supposed to swallow them, not chew.
by jebmke
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2686

Re: favorite brand name products

Ecco

Years ago someone gave me the following advice which seems to cover about 50% of most situations in life: "wear comfortable shoes." Eccos work well for me.
by jebmke
Sun Sep 28, 2014 12:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: favorite brand name products
Replies: 58
Views: 2686

Re: Help me divorce my Stocks

Here is what I did. Sold off a few during the 2001-2002 bear market (so the gain was lower than it had been) Donated some to our DAF in 2007 when my tax rate was at its peak and the valuations were high. Sold off a few during the 2009 downturn; I had been harvesting significant losses on other asset...
by jebmke
Sat Sep 27, 2014 12:18 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help me divorce my Stocks
Replies: 16
Views: 1521

Re: Supporting the Operating Costs of the Forum

jriding wrote:Donation sent. Best investment I'll make all year!

Same here.
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:25 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Supporting the Operating Costs of the Forum
Replies: 9
Views: 980

Re: operating cost of this forum

Houston101 wrote:I think it will be a good idea if we have a 'donate' button somewhere on the main webpage. This forum sometimes gives the impression that it either probably very little operating costs or it is sponsored by vanguard.


There is a link on the main page that says "Donate".
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:51 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: operating cost of this forum
Replies: 42
Views: 5240

Re: Why do people buy annuities?

John3754 wrote:Guaranteed return vs expected return. That's why.

Actually, the only thing that is guaranteed is the nominal cash flow while you are still living, right?
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do people buy annuities?
Replies: 50
Views: 3831

Re: Paycheck Taxes

Just a random question. Wanted to see if I am missing something. My annual salary is $135,000. I get paid twice a month. So each pay check is $5,625. Total tax is $2,118. That leaves me with net pay of $3,507. Net pay / Gross Pay = 62.35% I just stated this job and cannot contribute to a 401(k). Al...
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paycheck Taxes
Replies: 5
Views: 425

Re: Paycheck Taxes

Just a random question. Wanted to see if I am missing something. My annual salary is $135,000. I get paid twice a month. So each pay check is $5,625. Total tax is $2,118. That leaves me with net pay of $3,507. Net pay / Gross Pay = 62.35% I just stated this job and cannot contribute to a 401(k). Al...
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 5:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paycheck Taxes
Replies: 5
Views: 425

Re: headphones for running

Marquintosh wrote:
jb1934 wrote:Not a good idea wearing headphones when walking or running.


+1

And even more dangerous for biking...

runner w/headphones + biker w/headphones = kaput

Always astonished at how many cyclists I see with headphones on and no helmet.
by jebmke
Fri Sep 26, 2014 4:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: headphones for running
Replies: 40
Views: 1549

Re: Trying to understand Uber and similar "ride sharing" ser

I have read mixed reviews on insurance coverage. Unclear whether drivers insurance will cover you. Don't know how that has shaken out, if it has.
by jebmke
Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trying to understand Uber and similar "ride sharing" service
Replies: 51
Views: 3137

Re: Do you include 1040-ES in your emergency funds?

My entire portfolio is my emergency funds, so yes.
by jebmke
Thu Sep 25, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you include 1040-ES in your emergency funds?
Replies: 9
Views: 723

Re: Binoculars appropriate for a 6-year-old?

...We tried various brands and some just didn't work (mainly due to blacking)... By "blacking," do you mean that the exit pupils are floating in space at some funny location, and you can't find a comfortable way to hold the binoculars at the right distance and alignment to see the whole f...
by jebmke
Wed Sep 24, 2014 11:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Binoculars appropriate for a 6-year-old?
Replies: 11
Views: 908

Re: VG Removes Percentage IRR from Personal Performance

I may be in the minority but I have no use for historical performance information. I can't go back and change anything - I can only attempt to affect the future.

I'd rather have them invest the resources in enhancing security.
by jebmke
Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:43 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: VG Removes Percentage IRR from Personal Performance
Replies: 7
Views: 981

Re: Quicken to track investments - how are you using it?

I only use it to track cost basis for taxable accounts now. I may even port that to a spreadsheet after a couple more simplifications.
by jebmke
Wed Sep 24, 2014 10:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quicken to track investments - how are you using it?
Replies: 9
Views: 569

Re: Binoculars appropriate for a 6-year-old?

Leopold Yosemite 6x30 Nice glass for about $70. Fit small hands and faces. Only downside is the focusing has an o-ring type seal for "waterproofing" and it can be a little sticky until you get things moving. More so in cold weather. I bought the Yosemites for my granddaughter and my son-i...
by jebmke
Tue Sep 23, 2014 5:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Binoculars appropriate for a 6-year-old?
Replies: 11
Views: 908

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Field of Prey by John Sandford. Typical Lucas Davenport tale.
by jebmke
Tue Sep 23, 2014 4:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 47
Views: 2365

Re: Consulting fees: non working travel time

When I was consulting in early-re I typically billed daily rates for short assignments and weekly rates for longer ones -- all-in (except out of pocket expenses). The only time I billed hourly was when I worked from home and took calls or responded to emails.
by jebmke
Mon Sep 22, 2014 11:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Consulting fees: non working travel time
Replies: 30
Views: 1623

Re: Vanguard monthly statement availability(Website)

I get statements every month, regardless of activity.
by jebmke
Sun Sep 21, 2014 5:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard monthly statement availability(Website)
Replies: 9
Views: 919

Re: Critique my thoughts on Real Estate Investing

And try to be honest with yourself about the amount of time involved. A lot of real estate guys will brag about having a passive rental yield of 20%, but won't mention they spent 6 months of full-time work rehabbing the property. In order to calculate the true return on investment you need to imput...
by jebmke
Sun Sep 21, 2014 5:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Critique my thoughts on Real Estate Investing
Replies: 17
Views: 1126

Re: About to Retire, Need Help!

With 5 real estate properties, my concern would be having to cover the big expenses that may come up over the next 20 years for repairs as well as maintenance. With rental property you have to reserve for this and keep assets aside otherwise you are kidding yourself counting the rental income as pu...
by jebmke
Sun Sep 21, 2014 4:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About to Retire, Need Help!
Replies: 25
Views: 2955

Re: About to Retire, Need Help!

Should we keep his TSP in the TSP, or rollover to a IRA after retirement? What are the pros and cons here? Maryland has a limited exemption from income taxes for retirement income, including withdrawals from qualified retirement accounts once you turn 65. 403 accounts are considered retirement acco...
by jebmke
Sun Sep 21, 2014 2:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About to Retire, Need Help!
Replies: 25
Views: 2955

Re: AliBaba

Business reporter on NPR yesterday called the AliBaba deal the biggest IPO "in human history". Not sure what that implies.
by jebmke
Sat Sep 20, 2014 1:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AliBaba
Replies: 128
Views: 8172

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

I just finished The Heist by Daniel Silva. It was a good read but he's really recycling themes perhaps because he's got a backlist of characters. Many past characters do walk on's with little to do with the story. I could carp more, but still a good read. I finished this a few weeks ago. Silva is g...
by jebmke
Sat Sep 20, 2014 12:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1170136

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

Dave55 wrote:"Personal" by Lee Child...New Jack Reacher just out. Excellent read.
Dave

Ever since they cast Tom Cruise as Reacher I can't read these.
by jebmke
Mon Sep 08, 2014 12:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1170136

Re: Travel to the Netherlands?

We used to enjoy taking our bikes up to Zeeland (we drove up from Brussels). Middelburg and Vlissingen are pretty close together. Both are easy to navigate. Vlissingen is right on the water and if I recall correctly, the beaches were pretty nice.
by jebmke
Sat Sep 06, 2014 4:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel to the Netherlands?
Replies: 6
Views: 584

Re: [Symantec anti-virus] Norton Auto Renewal

In my opinion, Norton IS a virus :twisted: It has a been a couple years since I worked on a computer with Norton. A few years ago I banned Norton and MacAfee from my TaxAide sites. We had a lot of problems with slowness and the default settings seemed to cause problems with our networking. Maybe th...
by jebmke
Wed Sep 03, 2014 12:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Symantec anti-virus] Norton Auto Renewal
Replies: 21
Views: 1123

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V

I am about halfway through The Gods of Guilt by Michael Connelly, the best crime novelist out there. This is from the Lincoln Lawyer series of Connelly. Somehow after having seen the movie made from the initial book in this series several years ago, I can only see Matthew McConaughey as Mickey Hall...
by jebmke
Tue Sep 02, 2014 5:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part V
Replies: 3372
Views: 1170136

Re: Filing a prior tax year that was not required to be file

Glad to hear that worked out for her. For anyone doing this in the future, you're not required to provide any explanation of why you are filing. If the IRS has questions, they'll let you know. I always include a letter of explanation if I think anything will look odd. Much simpler than shuffling ba...
by jebmke
Tue Sep 02, 2014 11:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filing a prior tax year that was not required to be filed
Replies: 9
Views: 558

Re: Filing a prior tax year that was not required to be file

Glad to hear that worked out for her. For anyone doing this in the future, you're not required to provide any explanation of why you are filing. If the IRS has questions, they'll let you know. That is true and especially relevant for late returns that trigger a refund. If you are filing a late retu...
by jebmke
Tue Sep 02, 2014 11:12 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filing a prior tax year that was not required to be filed
Replies: 9
Views: 558

Re: Determining who makes it past age 90?

Bustoff wrote:* It's not good to be skinny when you're old.


Break out the M&Ms!

I
by jebmke
Tue Sep 02, 2014 11:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Determining who makes it past age 90?
Replies: 32
Views: 1915

Re: Zwilling Cookware (non-stick)?

barnaclebob wrote:Get ready to have people lose all respect for you and question your life choices due to your selection of cookware.

I used to work for a sociopath. I have a thick skin. :P
by jebmke
Tue Sep 02, 2014 10:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Zwilling Cookware (non-stick)?
Replies: 10
Views: 812

Re: Online Security: Are there any sites you do not trust?

I also make it a little harder for them by using one browser strictly for the things that require a google log in (mostly gmail and voice) and another browser for my actual browsing. On the latter I do not sign in to google and I've blocked their tracking bugs. This is what I do as well. I use Goog...
by jebmke
Mon Sep 01, 2014 2:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Online Security: Are there any sites you do not trust?
Replies: 14
Views: 1513

Re: Why invest in bonds?

I'm not willing to assume that there will be no crash in the next 5 years or that stocks will return 15% going forward. I don't forecast if I had to assume something my "assumption" for equity would be in the range of 3-4% real return going forward. But it could be a lot less or a lot more.
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 3:39 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why invest in bonds?
Replies: 103
Views: 6321

Re: Excess RMD

By the time we start our RMDs we will obviously be farther down the actuarial slope. My pension will have started 5 years earlier and SS will start @ 70 so we will likely start ramping up our charitable giving when RMDs start.
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Excess RMD
Replies: 19
Views: 974

Zwilling Cookware (non-stick)?

Time to replace our non-stick frying pans. I'd be interested in any feedback folks have on Zwilling.

There seems to be different brands sold

Zwilling Spirit
Zwilling Sol

not sure what the difference is, if any.

Would appreciate any thoughts you might have on these.
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Zwilling Cookware (non-stick)?
Replies: 10
Views: 812

Re: bonds in taxable. which fund?

Dandy wrote:I have some in intermediate muni and some in LTD term Tax exempt. Both are good funds. I would hesitate to go for much longer duration.

These are what we use as well. Ltd Term is pretty stable.
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: bonds in taxable. which fund?
Replies: 6
Views: 577

Re: Vanguard is finally getting Two Factor Auth (2FA)

Does the use of SMS as the second factor mean that you really don't have 2-factor when using a Vanguard app on your phone? I don't use the VG app - I am not comfortable with the overall security of phone apps for financial transactions but just wondering what this means. For me personally, this won'...
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard is finally getting Two Factor Auth (2FA)
Replies: 23
Views: 3785

Re: Policy on changing Passwords

having his Fire fox profiles stored in a a Truecrypt file with a very strong password. One note of caution on this. When you move the profiles out of the normal location, programs like SuperAntiSpyware malware scanner may not know where to scan for browser-based malware. You may have to tweak the s...
by jebmke
Sun Aug 31, 2014 12:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Policy on changing Passwords
Replies: 15
Views: 1200

Re: Cellphone for trip to Ireland

This site might have some info. I haven't been into the site in a couple of years so I can't say how current they are

http://www.prepaidgsm.net/en/ireland.html
by jebmke
Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cellphone for trip to Ireland
Replies: 11
Views: 875

Re: Gas station etiquette

I routinely make the same maneuver. If someone were waiting I'd probably roll my window down and ask them if they were going to use that space or just point and shrug. If someone had been in front of him and taking longer he would have had to pull into the center anyway. I doubt he had any real conc...
by jebmke
Thu Aug 28, 2014 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gas station etiquette
Replies: 46
Views: 2963

Re: Help wanted: After 20+ years finally looking at expenses

portfolio with the overall expense ratio of about 0.15%. Ours is probably pretty close to that. No reason why OP can't get down to 20bp or lower without much effort. Agree with other comments, holdings are much to complicated. Without knowing what the unrealized gains are, it is hard to map out a s...
by jebmke
Thu Aug 28, 2014 1:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help wanted: After 20+ years finally looking at expenses
Replies: 13
Views: 1835

Re: Policy on changing Passwords

It is safest not to allow computer programs to remember your passwords. I don't for any "risk" accounts. Only for low risk accounts like NYT, Washington Post .... Not a lot at stake if a hacker gets into my online subscription to the NYT. Now you know that I am at risk, you have no idea w...
by jebmke
Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Policy on changing Passwords
Replies: 15
Views: 1200

Re: Tax loss harvesting

I always use Spec ID (except for some short term muni funds which aren't volatile).

One of the side-effects of the great TLH of '09 was that we were able to consolidate almost all our equity slices into one lot. Not that it matters.
by jebmke
Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:53 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax loss harvesting
Replies: 32
Views: 1544

Re: Policy on changing Passwords

I'm confused. Your browsers have passwords on them? I don't know about other browsers but Firefox does. I allow FF to store passwords for low risk sites (like this one). However, when I open the browser it prompts me for a master password, which is long, complex but easy for me to remember. Without...
by jebmke
Thu Aug 28, 2014 11:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Policy on changing Passwords
Replies: 15
Views: 1200
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