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Re: Car Accident - Honda Civic for Replacement?

I would suggest test driving both a Civic and a Corolla. Buy the one you like best or can get for the best deal. Either would be a good choice.
by jsl11
Sun Apr 26, 2015 12:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Accident - Honda Civic for Replacement?
Replies: 12
Views: 861

Re: Advise For Buying A House From A Big-Box Builder

Find out the cost of any upgrades you will want to add. Our builder let us add upgrades at his cost. Another builder we considered had big markups on the upgrades. Also, pay attention to what upgrades are available. Our builder let us upgrade anything we wanted in any way we wanted. The other builde...
by jsl11
Fri Apr 24, 2015 12:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice For Buying A House From A Big-Box Builder
Replies: 11
Views: 1723

Re: Refinance: 5/5 ARM or 30-year fixed?

If you are planning to stay in the house more than 5 years, I would choose the 30 year fixed. Rates are very low now, and you have no assurance how long they will stay that way.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 2:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance: 5/5 ARM or 30-year fixed?
Replies: 5
Views: 409

Re: Should I paint the house next door?

Your city building codes may require them to maintain the property properly. Contact your local building department to find out what can be done.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I paint the house next door?
Replies: 17
Views: 2237

Re: Reducing Monthly Costs

Bank fees and credit card fees can often be reduced or even eliminated.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 2:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reducing Monthly Costs
Replies: 29
Views: 2194

Re: 403b Management Fees

Snuffycuts99 wrote:This is on top of the mutual fund company fee, which would be low of course with Fidelity.

Only certain Fidelity funds have low fees. Be sure you check the fees on any fund you are interested in to make sure the fees actually are low.
by jsl11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 6:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 403b Management Fees
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Re: New Water Heater

I am not sure what would be accomplished by draining the entire tank. However, it is important to drain the sediment that accumulates at the bottom. What I have done is to periodically drain some water until it runs clear. It usually is less than one gallon. If you really want to extend the life of ...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Water Heater
Replies: 41
Views: 3007

Re: Semi forced retirement - SPIA ?

You don't give your wife's age. However, at 55, your annuity might run for 30 or even 40 years. Over that many years, inflation could be devastating. Also, with the present low interest rates, an SPIA will be expensive. Accordingly, IMO, it would be better to buy a series of smaller annuities over t...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 9:39 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Semi forced retirement - SPIA ?
Replies: 26
Views: 1339

Re: Potential new home is well-priced, but...

Can you use the pool without heating it? A swimming pool is not really essential.
by jsl11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Potential new home is well-priced, but...
Replies: 31
Views: 2748

Re: Roof shingle selection

My HO insurance company gives a discount if you have hail resistant roof shingles. They have a list of products that qualify.
by jsl11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 12:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof shingle selection
Replies: 16
Views: 1363

Re: Am I saving too much for retirement?

Those numbers will not seem so large if you account for inflation. While inflation has most often been in the 2% - 3% range which may seem small, over long periods of time, the effect can be very large. Think about prices 40 years ago compared with today.
by jsl11
Mon Apr 20, 2015 10:06 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I saving too much for retirement?
Replies: 27
Views: 4669

Re: Squeezing more money into a 401k via a loan?

One risk would be if your employment at this company ended for any reason. The loan would be payable in full within a short time, or it would be considered a distribution subject to taxes and penalties if you are too young.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 18, 2015 3:34 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Squeezing more money into a 401k via a loan?
Replies: 7
Views: 883

Re: Cleaning out large basement - cost to rent a dumpster?

What sort of trash service do you have? If you put out a reasonable amount each week over time, they should take it away at no extra charge.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cleaning out large basement - cost to rent a dumpster?
Replies: 29
Views: 2014

Re: Marginal benefit of spending more on car

Some years ago, Consumer Reports had an article that asked the question "What is the difference between a 30K car and a 40K car". The answer was "not much". IMO, in regards to new cars, is that you can get a good quality car for 20K. If you want that car to be very well equipped ...
by jsl11
Sat Apr 18, 2015 12:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Marginal benefit of spending more on car
Replies: 67
Views: 4750

Re: Squeezing more money into a 401k via a loan?

Two thoughts:
1. Is the "payback rate" the interest rate paid, or the size of the payment?
2. There may be fees associated with the 401k loan. These fees may wipe out any advantage.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 18, 2015 9:47 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Squeezing more money into a 401k via a loan?
Replies: 7
Views: 883

Re: Would you buy 1.5 M house without AC?

I don't like the idea of leaving windows open at night because we turn the alarm system on before going to sleep. Any thoughts? You should be aware that it is possible to have an alarm system that allows windows to be opened a few inches (but not more than that) while the alarm is armed. This allow...
by jsl11
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you buy a house without AC?
Replies: 60
Views: 4626

Re: What to do...

Like many things, risk is good in moderation. Neither too much nor too little is a good idea.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 15, 2015 12:29 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do...
Replies: 15
Views: 1554

Re: Required minimum distribution and year end fund distribu

Since it seem more favorable to do the RMD beginning of the year, will VG still withhold the taxes for the IRS? I will turn 70 in April 2018. So it would be ok to have the RMD done in January 2019 and then the next one January 2020 etc.? Also if the funds are transferred to i.e. Total Stock VTSAX, ...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 14, 2015 6:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Required minimum distribution and year end fund distribution
Replies: 29
Views: 2017

Re: Vehicle for tall people/Spouse wants 50k car help!

If you (she) like a Lexus SUV, you might want to consider the various Toyota SUVs. Toyotas can be similar to the Lexus's at a significantly lower cost. Toyota makes 6 different SUVs: RAV4, Venza, Highlander, 4Runner, Sequoia, and Land Cruiser. You have lots to choose from. They vary substantially in...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 14, 2015 10:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle for tall people/Spouse wants 50k car help!
Replies: 77
Views: 5545

Re: Did I overpay Uncle Sam this year?

In a taxable account, your capital gains are taxable. The gains may be short term, long term, or some of each. The rules are different for short term and long term. However, without going into too much detail, if you paid 20K for those holdings and sold them for 30K, you have 10K in capital gains. T...
by jsl11
Mon Apr 13, 2015 9:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did I overpay Uncle Sam this year?
Replies: 6
Views: 660

Re: Car Insurance

If you have your auto policy and your homeowners/renters policy with the same company, you may be eligible for discounts on both policies.
by jsl11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Insurance
Replies: 12
Views: 1522

Re: 5yr cd ladder

That is interesting. However, I do not see any mention of rates and/or fees.
by jsl11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 5yr cd ladder
Replies: 4
Views: 845

Re: Barrons Article on LTC Insurance

It's also not just a matter of net worth. The amount of guaranteed income is also a factor. If your income is high enough, you do not need as much in assets to self insure LTC. Consider someone with a 100K pension. That would go a long way towards LTC.
by jsl11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Barrons Article on LTC Insurance
Replies: 12
Views: 1074

Re: Unsolicited offers to buy your house

I once worked for a company that was moving to another city hundreds of miles away. Some employees were offered jobs at the new location. For those that were offered jobs, the employer arranged for a real estate company to buy their houses. The employees that were moving did not have to sell to that...
by jsl11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 2:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unsolicited offers to buy your house
Replies: 14
Views: 2025

Re: Asset class for cash/cd

I would call MM funds or accounts as cash. I would call CDs cash if they are short term, such as 12 months or less. I consider longer term CDs to be bonds. Everyone has their own opinion on this.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 11, 2015 1:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asset class for cash/cd
Replies: 5
Views: 391

Re: Price for new furnance & AC unit

killjoy2012 wrote: Lennox is good quality, but the black sheep of the hvac world.

Please explain this comment. Thanks.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 11, 2015 10:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price for new furnance & AC unit
Replies: 21
Views: 1400

Re: Price for new furnance & AC unit

I would get three additional quotes. Before you ask a company to quote, check them out with the Better Business Bureau. When you compare quotes, try to compare at the same quality level. I believe that Lennox is one of the better brands. In any case, I would expect the Costco offer to be very compet...
by jsl11
Sat Apr 11, 2015 1:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price for new furnance & AC unit
Replies: 21
Views: 1400

Re: Need Help Picking A Broker

2. He also suggested that if I didn't like SIP, I can get a portfolio similar to the VPA with him and it will cost only .22 as opposed to VPA's (.3 + .14). This seems like a good solution for you. Tell him that you value simplicity in your portfolio and you have your eye on the costs and tax effici...
by jsl11
Thu Apr 09, 2015 10:03 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Help Picking A Broker
Replies: 57
Views: 3555

Re: Accrued dividends: What happens when you sell?

At Vanguard, they will pay the accrued dividends to you. They are not lost. This is true for a fund that pays dividends monthly. If it pays semiannually, or quarterly, the dividends are included in the price.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 08, 2015 10:45 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Accrued dividends: What happens when you sell?
Replies: 8
Views: 1025

Re: explanation of interest rates and bonds

Let's say you have a $1000 bond that pays 2%. You get $20 interest each year. Now if interest rates rise to 3%, no one will pay you $1000 for your 2% bond because they can get a 3% bond for that money. So, your bond will be worth less. The amount of the decrease in value depends on how close the bon...
by jsl11
Wed Apr 08, 2015 10:24 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: explanation of interest rates and bonds
Replies: 6
Views: 740

Re: Tree roots growing into sewer lines

I would have the roots removed from the existing line, followed by a dose of copper sulfate. Copper sulfate for tree roots should be available at any hardware store, Home Depot, Lowes, etc. It may have a brand name such as RootX or RootBGone. It is can of small blue crystals. IIRC, it comes in a 4 l...
by jsl11
Wed Apr 08, 2015 4:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tree roots growing into sewer lines
Replies: 41
Views: 1835

Re: Minimizing gains in taxable account

What tax bracket are you in? Long term CG income is taxes at 0% in the lower tax brackets.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 08, 2015 3:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Minimizing gains in taxable account
Replies: 6
Views: 535

Re: More Social Security Bum Steers

We had an equally bad experience with our local office. We were given wrong information and the local office information was different from the 800# live person. When we realized we had a problem, we tried to call the local office on the phone. Most of the time, they did not answer the phone, no mat...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 07, 2015 10:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: More Social Security Bum Steers
Replies: 6
Views: 1846

Re: Need Help Picking A Broker

I understand that I will get a dedicated adviser with Vanguard Personal Advisor. How do I know that the decisions he makes are in my interest? Is anybody at Vanguard doing any crosschecks? My understanding that Vanguard advisors work for a salary. There are no commissions. Accordingly, the only int...
by jsl11
Tue Apr 07, 2015 9:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need Help Picking A Broker
Replies: 57
Views: 3555

Re: Admiral Shares Versus ETFs

I've used funds for many years. ETFs do not interest me at all. With funds, I can exchange as desired. I can also buy or sell exact dollar amounts in fractional shares as needed. I do not need to be concerned about the intricacies of market purchases, such as spreads, limit orders, etc. For my needs...
by jsl11
Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Admiral Shares Versus ETFs
Replies: 16
Views: 1866

Re: HR error- Highly compensated employee status

Gardener wrote:I am going to write a polite letter to HR explaining the problem and asking for a specific resolution, like Prudent suggested.

I would suggest that the letter come from your wife.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 04, 2015 5:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HR error- Highly compensated employee status
Replies: 11
Views: 1282

Re: High income help - must I resort to marriage?

There is one other way to possibly save on taxes. If you can bunch your deductible expenses into alternate years, you may have enough to itemize those years while taking the standard deduction in the "off" years. Often this can be done with real estate taxes.
by jsl11
Sat Apr 04, 2015 12:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income help - [Will marriage help reduce taxes?]
Replies: 29
Views: 2708

Re: Does Vanguard send out a QCD statement?

You have a record showing the withdrawal from your account. You should also have received a letter of acknowledgement from the charity. Those two items together should be proof of your QCD. I also keep a photocopy of the Vanguard check I receive (made payable to the charity) before I forward it to t...
by jsl11
Thu Apr 02, 2015 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Vanguard send out a QCD statement?
Replies: 2
Views: 321

Re: hate Hate HATE shopping for home services

We want to have a contractor or electrician install a GFCI outlet in our kitchen. There is another outlet right nearby. It seems like this is easy but wife does not want me doing this without a professional. How much will this be? $100? $500? Do you want to install a GFI outlet in place of the exis...
by jsl11
Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: hate Hate HATE shopping for home services
Replies: 10
Views: 891

Re: Tax question

I can explain the Ohio question: Ohio takes your taxable income directly from your federal tax form. The federal tax form does not include income from municipal bonds issued by any of the states. However, Ohio does tax municipal bond interest from any state other than Ohio, so that has to be added i...
by jsl11
Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax question
Replies: 6
Views: 527

Re: VWENX or VBIAX for long term

You will get better responses if you include the names of the funds. Many Bogleheads do not know all the ticker symbols.
by jsl11
Wed Apr 01, 2015 11:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VWENX or VBIAX for long term
Replies: 7
Views: 903

Re: My car is (supposedly) totaled. What to do?

LadyGeek,
Thank you for the explanation. I need to look up the rules for my state.
by jsl11
Tue Mar 31, 2015 10:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My car is (supposedly) totaled. What to do?
Replies: 26
Views: 2285

Re: My car is (supposedly) totaled. What to do?

I don't understand why you would have to get a salvage title. The car is considered "totaled" by the insurance company only because it would cost them more to fix it than it is worth. This would seem to be between you and the insurance company. If you decide to fix it anyway, it is still y...
by jsl11
Tue Mar 31, 2015 9:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My car is (supposedly) totaled. What to do?
Replies: 26
Views: 2285

Re: Weird situation with active vs. index

If the expense ratios are close, as you show, the index fund may be better even with a higher ER. The reason for this is that the index fund will do little trading and therefore will have low transaction costs. Depending on the turnover rate for the active funds, the transaction costs may exceed the...
by jsl11
Sun Mar 29, 2015 11:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Weird situation with active vs. index
Replies: 12
Views: 1234

Re: RMDs for 25-year-old - take out enough to fund annual Ro

Does "M" have earned income? IRA contributions cannot exceed earned income for the year. Withdrawals from the inherited IRA are taxable income, but not earned income.
by jsl11
Sun Mar 29, 2015 10:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMDs for 25-year-old - take out enough to fund annual Roth?
Replies: 38
Views: 2054

Re: MRD and charitable contributions

There is another detail to pay attention to: You must take the RMD starting in the year that you reach 70.5. However, if your birthday is early in the year, you will not be 70.5 until the second half of the year. Withdrawals taken any time during that year count towards the RMD. However, for the QCD...
by jsl11
Sun Mar 29, 2015 10:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: MRD and charitable contributions
Replies: 10
Views: 687

Re: MRD and charitable contributions

A QCD can reduce your state income taxes where itemized deductions do not. However, as stated above, the law is not (yet?) in effect for 2015.
by jsl11
Sun Mar 29, 2015 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: MRD and charitable contributions
Replies: 10
Views: 687

Re: Turbo Tax keeps prompting me to pay estimated quarterlie

You will get better responses if you change the title of your post to show that it relates only to Virginia income taxes.
by jsl11
Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimated Quarterly Tax FOR VA STATE
Replies: 5
Views: 894

Re: Buying a house to save on taxes?

Is it possible to pay tuition and send your school age child (children) to the school district of choice, even if you don't live there? This might be less expensive than owning for only a few years and then moving again.
by jsl11
Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house to save on taxes?
Replies: 18
Views: 1865

Re: Charitable Contribution from IRA

Just found this discussion when searching for "IRA Charitable Rollover" for which I did not find anything in the Wiki. A relative received a postcard from a charity urging the relative to be prepared for the "pending 2015 IRA Charitable Rollover opportunity." The relative asked ...
by jsl11
Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Charitable Contribution from IRA
Replies: 44
Views: 2277
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