Search found 2741 matches

by kenyan
Wed Jun 24, 2015 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

If you refinance your mortgage at any time within the first 15+X years (where X is a number than depends upon any prepayments you make, as well as the interest rates 15 years from now), the 15/15 is a better choice than the 30-year fixed. If you pay off your mortgage at any time within 15+X years, i...
by kenyan
Wed Jun 24, 2015 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

Yes, we are planning to go this route, especially since we'd like to pay it off in 15 years. The added flexibility comes at the higher interest rate than the 15 yr FRM, but at least its lower than 30 yr FRM. I ran the numbers on 15 yr FRM at 3% vs 15/15 ARM at 3.375% (today's rates). The difference...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 23, 2015 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?
Replies: 217
Views: 19090

Re: What was the 2008 crash like in real time?

I made no changes in 2008 and didn't find it particularly stressful at all, but maybe that's because my portfolio wasn't all that large back then. Now? I would probably get a little worried - I'm not sure, really. I'm pretty confident I would stay the course, though. This is similar to my experienc...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

Note that if you do go down this route, check the wiki here on PenFed. It will give you suggestions on how to join (basically a $15 donation to charity if you don't have a military connection).
by kenyan
Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Phantom" Tipping
Replies: 68
Views: 10670

Re: "Phantom" Tipping

I have a waitress friend who was justifiably fired for stealing from customers in this manner. Hadn't heard of restaurant managers/owners doing it before. I was considering that I don't verify these transactions...but I actually do these days, since I budget everything in YNAB, and I type in the tra...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 23, 2015 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

One interesting ARM to consider for your case would be the PenFed 15/15 ARM. 15 year fixed rate @3.25% currently (no points), with a rate reset after 15 years. It says it has a 1% origination fee. So, for a $400k home with 20% down, the loan is $320k and the origination fee is $3,200. They have an ...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 22, 2015 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

One interesting ARM to consider for your case would be the PenFed 15/15 ARM. 15 year fixed rate @3.25% currently (no points), with a rate reset after 15 years. Basically, it's a 30-year mortgage that's guaranteed to be much cheaper for the first 15 years. Therefore, you could pay it as if it's a 15 ...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 22, 2015 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down
Replies: 19
Views: 2437

Re: Home purchase: $350k/$70k-down vs $400k/120k-down

My questions: 1. Is $120k a lot to put as a down payment? It will reduce my emergency fund from 10 months to 5 months. 2. Can I afford a 15 year loan? Given we are planning another kid, which will increase our monthly expense to $9,300. That will drop our saving per month to $700, which will likely...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What percent of your spending is "basic" and what percent is "discretionary"?
Replies: 42
Views: 3773

Re: What percent of your spending is "basic" and what percent is "discretionary"?

I started to do this, but eventually decided that my answer would depend more upon what my definitions were than what my spending was.
by kenyan
Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: yobria's easyallocator.org website?
Replies: 9
Views: 1356

Re: yobria's easyallocator.org website?

I believe that yobria left Bogleheads close to 3 years ago. Don't know if the frequent clashes with Swedroe and the small-value crowd got to him (in the months/year preceding it they were arguing all over the site in multiple threads), but it was a fairly abrupt departure, and I never heard any foll...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 22, 2015 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Japan. The rotten apple that spoils the whole index?
Replies: 13
Views: 2569

Re: Japan. The rotten apple that spoils the whole index?

Mountain-Top, you are suffering from the very common investing affliction of verb-tense disease. You meant to say: "Japan. The rotten apple that has been spoiling the whole index." I don't know whether it will keep doing it, or experience mean reversion and come roaring back, but let's ke...
by kenyan
Wed Jun 17, 2015 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-Bogleheads approach to changing cars?
Replies: 44
Views: 4860

Re: Non-Bogleheads approach to changing cars?

1998 - bought first car, 9-yo Infiniti for 7k. 2005 - bought car for wife, 4-yo Nissan for 13k. She had been without a car for a year. 2006 - bought second car, brand new Infiniti coupe for 31k. Sold old car for $500; it was breaking down. 2007 - bought second car for wife, brand new Hyundai for 12k...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 16, 2015 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Men's dress shirts - Charles Tyrwhitt shirts on sale for $29
Replies: 28
Views: 4625

Re: Men's dress shirts - Charles Tyrwhitt shirts on sale for $29

Nice shirts - I'm wearing an altered CT shirt right now. I was originally tempted, but when doing all the math it doesn't make too much sense for me. 2 shirts + shipping + $15 alterations per shirt = $100 = $50 each. Alterations are necessary to look decent; there is no such thing as an off-the-rack...
by kenyan
Fri Jun 12, 2015 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying in Bay Area (redux)
Replies: 57
Views: 6774

Re: Buying in Bay Area (redux)

Not to be anecdotal, but on the peninsula I passed on a townhome in November which sold for 850 all cash. It just went back on the market, no new renovations because it was perfectly remodeled, and sold for 1.02 million. Another townhome complex I was tracking kept having units sell for 30k more th...
by kenyan
Fri Jun 12, 2015 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cable Cord cutting.. alternatives/ideas? Speed Choices?
Replies: 30
Views: 2812

Re: Cable Cord cutting.. alternatives/ideas? Speed Choices?

This is probably a stupid question, but why do you need them saved on a cloud based service? Unless this is for a business where your clients will be accessing it or you continually share with family members, friends, etc., I would suggest going the hardware route and buying an external HDD. 60 gig...
by kenyan
Fri Jun 12, 2015 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cable Cord cutting.. alternatives/ideas? Speed Choices?
Replies: 30
Views: 2812

Re: Cable Cord cutting.. alternatives/ideas? Speed Choices?

I faced this problem a little while ago when I decided to backup all of our precious photos/videos online. Like you, I had a 15/1 plan (though I think I tested it out at 20/1). It was definitely a pain. However, it so happened that my provider upgraded the speed eventually without a plan change. I'm...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 09, 2015 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying in Bay Area (redux)
Replies: 57
Views: 6774

Re: Buying in Bay Area (redux)

Waiting until 30 to buy is not a long time, especially when you're single and probably value a bit of flexibility in your living situation (freedom to move to be closer to a job, to accommodate a future spouse or children). Don't get caught up in hype and/or platitudes such as "if you don't buy...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: REIT Index Fund - Is Now a Good Time?
Replies: 14
Views: 1985

Re: REIT Index Fund - Is Now a Good Time?

I thought I recalled, some time ago, reading a comment here from someone showing data regarding when to best buy a REIT fund. I know, market timing. I believe it was one of the folks that has published financial articles or books but I can never find the post. Several well-researched comments from ...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is my math wrong? When to buy a house
Replies: 11
Views: 1335

Re: Is my math wrong? When to buy a house

OP used a simple inflation-tracking appreciation of the house, which I think is fair to assume. Whether or not that appreciation will actually benefit someone who purchases a house depends upon what one does with the house, but it's needed to calculate a break-even point if one does not intend to li...
by kenyan
Sun Jun 07, 2015 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Frugal Millionaires Article...Sounds Like Bogleheads
Replies: 80
Views: 12067

Re: Frugal Millionaires Article...Sounds Like Bogleheads

- Then there are the $100+ cell phone plans, cable TV packages, and everyone in the family having their own HDTV. Nowadays if you get a raise, a bonus, or even an income tax refund, a lot of people think "What can I buy?" Made me think that I might be a bit abnormal. I received an unexpec...
by kenyan
Wed Jun 03, 2015 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: another 529 question
Replies: 7
Views: 709

Re: another 529 question

Lowest overall cost: NY plan (16 basis points for all options) http://www.nysaves.org Plan with lowest-cost domestic equity index funds: CA plan (Large-Cap Domestic 11 bp; Total Stock Market 12 bp). http://www.scholarshare.com There may be other considerations for your friend - asset class availabil...
by kenyan
Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I'm thinking about becoming a financial adviser...but I need some guidance.
Replies: 37
Views: 4514

Re: I'm thinking about becoming a financial adviser...but I need some guidance.

No real experience to offer you on this, but from what I've read, getting a foothold in the field is almost entirely about being a salesman - cold calls, door-to-door, dinner seminars, etc. If you don't think you can be a salesman full-time (at least until you've got an established client base and/o...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Global Market is the optimal portfolio. Do you follow that rule?
Replies: 43
Views: 3223

Re: Global Market is the optimal portfolio. Do you follow that rule?

Note that the author of the linked piece, Dr. Burton Malkiel, has a financial interest in pushing emerging markets, and has for some time. He is Chief Investment Officer of AlphaShares, which exclusively offers China-focused products. "AlphaShares, LLC is an investment management firm dedicated...
by kenyan
Tue Jun 02, 2015 1:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why so little International SV?
Replies: 8
Views: 995

Re: Why so little International SV?

This question was one of the drivers for a backtesting analysis that resulted in one of this forum's longest threads: TrevH's Ultimate Buy and Hold thread: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=38374 Since most people cannot access some of asset classes, the question was posed for whether...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 01, 2015 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: good vacuum cleaner for up to $200?
Replies: 26
Views: 2174

Re: good vacuum cleaner for up to $200?

Another vote for Shark. We have the Navigator Lift-Away Pro, and it is powerful and easy to use. We had one issue with the main rotating brush head swivel joint, but Shark replaced the large head under (5-year) warranty for just the shipping cost. I use it weekly on both our rugs and hardwood floors.
by kenyan
Mon Jun 01, 2015 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?
Replies: 144
Views: 11726

Re: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?

800k Mortgage: 3700/ month = 44k year Property tx: 40k/yr (again you need to put in your numbers. You will see a huge variance in this number) 16k for insurance, maintence, and utilities seems really high but lets go with it. Maybe lawn & Maid service is expensive in Mi. How is our family doing...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 01, 2015 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?
Replies: 144
Views: 11726

Re: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?

15k property tax: ~ 1250 Property tax rates are much higher in Michigan, especially in nicer neighborhoods. This house will likely carry $40-50k/year property taxes. Property taxes are really variable. I paid 2400/yr on a 500k house and 24k/yr on a 1.2 million dollar house. As I said put your own n...
by kenyan
Mon Jun 01, 2015 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?
Replies: 144
Views: 11726

Re: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?

randomguy wrote:15k property tax: ~ 1250


Property tax rates are much higher in Michigan, especially in nicer neighborhoods. This house will likely carry $40-50k/year property taxes.
by kenyan
Mon Jun 01, 2015 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?
Replies: 144
Views: 11726

Re: Your opinion on realistic income to live in a $1 million home?

what is a person to do in a High Cost of Living area? It seems the OP is from Michigan and I am not sure how the real estate is there but in North New Jersey its painful to find anything below $1M for good schools and a reasonable commute to mid town. :annoyed That depends on what one's definition ...
by kenyan
Thu May 28, 2015 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing Market in SoCal
Replies: 55
Views: 5704

Re: Housing Market in SoCal

LA-area Boglehead, long-time renter, but recent (~2 years ago) first-time purchaser. Curious to know Bogleheads opinions about the housing market in Southern California / San Diego. I'm currently renting a 2bd 1 bath house, all utilities included @ $2200. It's about 42% of net income after taxes, 40...
by kenyan
Thu May 28, 2015 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 6686

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

The opportunity cost was significant, but there's no sense crying about it now; I'm doing fine. If I were to try to do it again now, with a wife, children, and mortgage to support, things would be quite different. The "opportunity costs" for a PhD have been mentioned a few times, but it's...
by kenyan
Thu May 28, 2015 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?
Replies: 91
Views: 6686

Re: Cost of a "free" PhD program is around half a million? How does anyone afford this?

Another STEM PhD here - no, it wasn't worth it for the money. I believe that M.S. is the sweet spot in from a monetary standpoint - but as others have noted, the key reasons to pursue the PhD is for the different careers/lifestyles that can open up as a result, as well as the satisfaction of intelle...
by kenyan
Thu May 28, 2015 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)
Replies: 46
Views: 3688

Re: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)

There are various devices like this one that I have (don't buy this one anymore since it's discontinued and the price is exorbitant as a result). http://www.amazon.com/NETGEAR-Universal-Ethernet-Adapter-WNCE4004/dp/B008LTPFG6/ref=sr_1_3?ie=UTF8&qid=1432830013&sr=8-3&keywords=netgear+gami...
by kenyan
Thu May 28, 2015 9:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Another look at why it's important to globally diversify
Replies: 14
Views: 2422

Re: Another look at why it's important to globally diversify

Japan is a pretty unique place imo. Small island nation with declining birth rate, extremely low immigration, homogenous society, limited acceptance of outside cultures/people, deep seated and ancient cultural norms and systems which can suffocate innovation and outside the box type thinking. I don...
by kenyan
Wed May 27, 2015 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)
Replies: 46
Views: 3688

Re: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)

A couple of other notes about the Channel Master DVR+: It was on sale last year on both Black Friday and Cyber Monday for $175 direct from CM. Don't believe it has gone back down to that price since then, but is something to keep an eye on. For hard drives, supposedly not every drive is a plug-and-p...
by kenyan
Wed May 27, 2015 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)
Replies: 46
Views: 3688

Re: Looking for a DVR device for antenna TV (Simple.TV?)

I first tried Tablo TV. I was pretty excited about the possibilities, but in practice it was unusable in our place. Buffering times were awful (over Wi-Fi that is fast enough for other devices to stream HD simultaneously without hiccups), especially when trying to fast forward/rewind/skip around. Lo...
by kenyan
Fri May 22, 2015 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Post tax investing or Pay off 2.95% Mortgage?
Replies: 39
Views: 3932

Re: Post tax investing or Pay off 2.95% Mortgage?

I notice that you are in California, where earthquake insurance is expensive and not very comprehensive. Some friends observed that a big mortgage can be an excellent alternative.... A big mortgage as an excellent alternative to earthquake insurance? I don't think I understand... California purchas...
by kenyan
Thu May 21, 2015 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pay cash or finance a brand new car? And why?
Replies: 13
Views: 1268

Re: Pay cash or finance a brand new car? And why?

33k is OTD for the dealer, but doesn't include the OP's sales taxes per the other thread. PenFed has 0.99% financing on new car purchases for 48 month loans right now. Also, doing a hypothetical comparison of what you could earn in the stock market versus financing is not the proper comparison. You ...
by kenyan
Thu May 21, 2015 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much should I pay for a brand new car?
Replies: 14
Views: 1831

Re: How much should I pay for a brand new car?

investingnoob2015 wrote:
also if the values I see on KBB, Edmunds are before taxes.. my guess is they are since it varies by state...


Yes, any general price quotes you see on those or similar sites will be before tax, title, and license.
by kenyan
Mon May 18, 2015 5:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Best 401K option in terrible plan
Replies: 8
Views: 678

Re: Best 401K option in terrible plan

Certainly, I would prioritize your (Backdoor Roth) IRA above this 401k, as well as any spousal contributions, if applicable. Now, there are worse plans out there - my wife's plan charges a minimum of 2% on the cheapest options (though I can withdraw the funds as it is a SIMPLE IRA) - but yours certa...
by kenyan
Mon May 18, 2015 5:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 30 years old, baby on the way, just starting out advice...
Replies: 16
Views: 1830

Re: 30 years old, baby on the way, just starting out advice...

A good starting point for retirement savings is 15%, assuming you don't have early retirement plans. You earn ~$200k and are saving $11k/year plus whatever your wife is putting in her 401k. You seem to be hoping that's enough without doing the math, so here I am to tell you: it's not enough. You're ...
by kenyan
Mon May 18, 2015 10:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Performance of VGTSX
Replies: 7
Views: 729

Re: Performance of VGTSX

Why would the performance over the last 19 years matter? You're not investing 19 years ago. Nor are you investing 10 years ago, 5 years ago, or at the beginning of this year. You're investing now. Those past performance numbers indicate almost nothing about how your investment will perform starting ...
by kenyan
Sun May 17, 2015 12:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's email "The case for a global portfolio"
Replies: 46
Views: 4421

Re: Vanguard's email "The case for a global portfolio"

The one hesitation I have in jumping on this now seemingly popular bandwagon is the fact international is outperforming this year. I ALWAYS advice not changing one's asset allocation when one wants to put more money into the currently well performing asset class. This often smells to me of market t...
by kenyan
Fri May 15, 2015 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Installing Solar Panels
Replies: 11
Views: 1258

Re: Installing Solar Panels

50 years is way too optimistic. Also, utility rates may go up, they may go down. The safe thing to do is to just assume they will rise with inflation, so this doesn't factor into the return (since you're using 2015 dollars to pay for it, and their value will rise with inflation). 20 years is probabl...
by kenyan
Fri May 15, 2015 7:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details
Replies: 33
Views: 3296

Re: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Moving Forward to next steps

Thank you again. {Our Larson adviser did help us get set up with disability insurance and home/auto insurance. It has been an expensive lesson, but it has at least forced me and my spouse to get smart about finances.} I will post my questions regarding the next steps in this post as our background ...
by kenyan
Fri May 08, 2015 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: buying a new subaru outback
Replies: 25
Views: 2419

Re: buying a new subaru outback

1.94% is probably a bit higher than I'd want to pay, given the choice. Ours is at 0.9%, which is well shy of our current cash-equivalent return (5-year CDs at 2.4%, newly invested might be 2% or just above). 1.94% is a higher rate than an after-tax return on those CDs (for us, 25% fed + 5% Child tax...
by kenyan
Thu May 07, 2015 9:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Monetize Simple IRA or Taxable account
Replies: 12
Views: 565

Re: Monetize Simple IRA or Taxable account

One benefit to a Traditional IRA over a SIMPLE IRA at Vanguard is that you can actually purchase Admiral Shares in a Traditional. Last time I looked into it, you could not in the SIMPLE that they offer - Investor Shares only. Nevertheless, let us know how it goes.
by kenyan
Thu May 07, 2015 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Monetize Simple IRA or Taxable account
Replies: 12
Views: 565

Re: Monetize Simple IRA or Taxable account

As the above post notes, you do not need to keep your SIMPLE IRA assets in your employer's plan. You can transfer the money out (to your Traditional IRA, for instance) as often as you like, once you've passed the 2-year limit (for the account being open). There is even a way to to transfer money out...
by kenyan
Thu May 07, 2015 1:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details
Replies: 33
Views: 3296

Re: Budget allocation between LARGE student loan burden and Retirement_Updated details

My final question is re mortgage refinancing: Has anyone used PenFed? I take online reviews w a grain of salt but theirs are quite poor that it makes me nervous about losing money going through the appraisal process then failing to get approved. Best, RKO We refinanced with PenFed about 18 months a...
by kenyan
Thu May 07, 2015 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long term Capital Gains vs Tax loss harvesting
Replies: 13
Views: 947

Re: Long term Capital Gains vs Tax loss harvesting

Aside from the 0% bracket issues people have discussed, another way to think of the benefit is: Deferred taxation = greater compounding. Thought experiment: In Scenario A, you sell off your LTCG each year. In Scenario B, you defer the taxation, and pay it all at the end. 10% annual return, 15% LTCG ...

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