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Re: Double Cash Credit Card from CITI

If you charge a lot on the card, then the Fidelity Visa is effectively equivalent at 2.00% on all purchases, but with the first $15,000 of annual purchases receiving only 1.50% back. This is equivalent to a $75 annual fee. For that $75 annual fee, you get your monthly rebate auto-deposited into your...
by lhl12
Tue Dec 16, 2014 9:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Double Cash Credit Card from CITI
Replies: 19
Views: 2526

Re: switching main credit card

A few comments on this issue. First, I make more than $75/hr - lucky me. But, that's only when I work, and I'm not working now. Second, don't you have to log into the Citi website every month anyhow, to pay your bill ? That's one of the things I'll miss if Penfed ceases to be my main card, the auto...
by lhl12
Sun Dec 14, 2014 6:18 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: switching main credit card
Replies: 58
Views: 4198

Re: switching main credit card

My time is worth more than $75/hr to myself Well aren't you lucky. Not all of us are paid $75/hour. I didn't say that I'm paid more than $75/hr. I said that I value my own time - when I'm not working - at more than $75/hr. Life is very short and when I have free time, I'd like to take maximum advan...
by lhl12
Sun Dec 14, 2014 6:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: switching main credit card
Replies: 58
Views: 4198

Re: switching main credit card

If you spend a lot on your credit card each year and you'd rather have a Visa or MasterCard than Amex, you might consider the Fidelity Visa, which also give unlimited 2% cash back on all purchases with the exception of the first $15,000 of annual spending (which only earns 1.50% cash back). This di...
by lhl12
Wed Dec 10, 2014 6:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: switching main credit card
Replies: 58
Views: 4198

Re: switching main credit card

If you spend a lot on your credit card each year and you'd rather have a Visa or MasterCard than Amex, you might consider the Fidelity Visa, which also give unlimited 2% cash back on all purchases with the exception of the first $15,000 of annual spending (which only earns 1.50% cash back). This di...
by lhl12
Tue Dec 09, 2014 8:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: switching main credit card
Replies: 58
Views: 4198

Re: switching main credit card

If you spend a lot on your credit card each year and you'd rather have a Visa or MasterCard than Amex, you might consider the Fidelity Visa, which also give unlimited 2% cash back on all purchases with the exception of the first $15,000 of annual spending (which only earns 1.50% cash back). This dif...
by lhl12
Tue Dec 09, 2014 7:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: switching main credit card
Replies: 58
Views: 4198

Re: HELOC as emergency fund

Because it may not be there when you need it. It's not permanent. It's not guaranteed. The bank can withdraw the line of credit, and this happened frequently in 2008-2009. Same thing for credit cards. Not coincidentally, this was exactly the same time that people were encountering financial emergen...
by lhl12
Thu Dec 04, 2014 7:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC as emergency fund
Replies: 19
Views: 1646

Re: HELOC as emergency fund

By definition, a HELOC is not a "fund", it's a contingent liability. A HELOC is not a contingent liability. A better example of a contingent liability is a lawsuit against you that you might win, (with no impact at all on your assets) or that you might lose (obliging you to pay someone a ...
by lhl12
Thu Dec 04, 2014 7:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC as emergency fund
Replies: 19
Views: 1646

Re: HELOC as emergency fund

I use a HELOC as my emergency fund as well. I think it's a very efficient mechanism for that purpose. I expect it will be available even in periods of great market distress, and on the off chance that it fails to fund, I have the ability to liquidate mutual fund assets if absolutely necessary.
by lhl12
Thu Dec 04, 2014 2:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC as emergency fund
Replies: 19
Views: 1646

Re: Why does Buffett like S&P not Total US Market?

A more interesting question to me is why he doesn't favor a Total Global index (as opposed to either an S&P 500 Index or a Total US Index)?
by lhl12
Wed Dec 03, 2014 3:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why does Buffett like S&P not Total US Market?
Replies: 29
Views: 2704

Re: Favorite nonfiction books

+1 for "Guns, Germs and Steel", by Jared Diamond. "Collapse" by Diamond is also quite good. Another +1 for anything by Robert Caro. Both "The Power Broker" and the LBJ biography are outstanding. Another +1 for "The Fatal Shore". Also "The Shock of the New...
by lhl12
Fri Nov 28, 2014 11:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite nonfiction books
Replies: 117
Views: 9638

Re: Ever wake up one day, and your whole life has changed? (

My immediate reaction is that you have WAY too much of your net worth tied up in a single asset. In this case it's your gun collection, but it could just as easily be a single mutual fund. One of the most important principles of investing is diversification, and you are far too concentrated in a sin...
by lhl12
Fri Nov 28, 2014 10:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [woke up] and whole life has changed. [disabled vet]
Replies: 26
Views: 6781

Re: Received an inheritance, clueless as to what to do with

You should definitely not worry about feeling like an idiot for calling Vanguard Concierge Services (VCS). There is a big difference between being an idiot (which everyone on this forum can already tell you are not) and being uneducated about something. VCS exists to help folks like yourself. They g...
by lhl12
Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Received an inheritance, clueless as to what to do with it.
Replies: 29
Views: 4615

Re: Heads up one of the better reward credit card I've seen.

Increasingly, I see gas stations quoting two prices per gallon: one for cash and a higher one for credit. The differential usually more than offsets the benefits of a card like this one.
by lhl12
Wed Nov 19, 2014 11:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Heads up one of the better reward credit card I've seen.
Replies: 54
Views: 8261

Re: Mpowered's conversion into a Boglehead

Welcome to the Forum Private Equity: $450,000 invested with a private equity fund, approx 50% held in cash, but subject to future calls. Please clarify: 1) What was the original commitment amount to the private equity fund? 2) Of that original commitment amount, how much has been called and how much...
by lhl12
Tue Nov 18, 2014 9:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mpowered's conversion into a Boglehead
Replies: 4
Views: 712

Re: War on Debt

I have not lived extravagantly, so that is assumption on your part or a matter of perspective. Here is the definition of extravagant: adjective 1. spending much more than is necessary or wise; wasteful: an extravagant shopper. 2. excessively high: extravagant expenses; extravagant prices. 3. exceed...
by lhl12
Mon Nov 10, 2014 5:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 31509

Re: War on Debt

I am taking responsibility. I pointed out how ignorance can lead to bad choices, especially when you don't have any guidance. That is not taking responsibility. Taking responsibility would sound something like this: - I have screwed up - badly. - I am in a lot of debt because I have not managed my ...
by lhl12
Mon Nov 10, 2014 2:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 31509

Re: War on Debt

There are very few things in life that, once done, cannot be undone. Marriages can be undone. Bad job decisions can be undone. Moves to a different city can be undone. Unmanageable amounts of debt can be undone. Having a child cannot be undone. Once you have this child, it is your responsibility and...
by lhl12
Sun Nov 09, 2014 8:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 31509

Re: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards

Can someone very intelligent please inbrief me on how/where Bank of America/Merrill Edge/Lynch is making money on the Preferred Rewards - Platinum Honors status when you take the following actions (I do this literally). I have over $100,000 with Merrill Edge. https://www.bankofamerica.com/preferred...
by lhl12
Sun Nov 02, 2014 4:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank of America/Merrill Edge - Preferred Rewards
Replies: 33
Views: 2152

Re: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net W

And if he doesn't spend it all on hookers, blow and Italian sports cars. I am reminded of the quote from George Best, a British soccer star of the 60's, when it came out that he had burned through the huge amount of money he had made during his career: "I spent a lot of money on booze, birds, ...
by lhl12
Sat Nov 01, 2014 8:06 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Prudent Investment Portfolio for 58-year Old w/20M Net Worth
Replies: 39
Views: 4835

Re: Strategy of 6M trusts meeting tonight. Few Q's

You are much too nice. I don't want to spend time figuring out taxes, so I have an accountant. We have a lawyer do wills, and a lawyer will set up trusts when the time comes. My portfolio is roughly the size of the trusts you have, and it would NEVER dawn on me to put any of it into funds with thos...
by lhl12
Fri Oct 31, 2014 12:55 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Strategy of 6M trusts meeting tonight. Few Q's
Replies: 64
Views: 6062

Re: Strategy of 6M trusts meeting tonight. Few Q's

You need to get rid of that financial advisor. Anyone who would suggest those John Hancock funds to you is a disaster waiting to happen.
by lhl12
Fri Oct 31, 2014 9:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Strategy of 6M trusts meeting tonight. Few Q's
Replies: 64
Views: 6062

Re: Gifting from g-parents to minors

I should have clarified while five years worth of $14,000 contributions can be accelerated into the current year solely through the use of one's annual gift exclusion (and, as runner9 rightly points out, without any further contributions made in the subsequent five years), it is possible to contribu...
by lhl12
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting from g-parents to minors
Replies: 6
Views: 930

Re: Gifting from g-parents to minors

She could also start another 529 for each child and contribute to it, with herself being the owner/controller of the account. This is the way to go. As I understand it, if it is in the grandparent's name, it will not adversely affect applications for aid, that is, until the money is withdrawn and u...
by lhl12
Sun Oct 19, 2014 8:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting from g-parents to minors
Replies: 6
Views: 930

Re: inherited 500k, still a college student, how to invest??

2stepsbehind wrote:solid advice from blueleaf. I'd take his/her comments to heart.

+1. Especially #1 and #6.
by lhl12
Sun Oct 12, 2014 9:01 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: inherited 500k, still a college student, how to invest???
Replies: 55
Views: 6044

Re: old universal life insurance policy as fixed income

I help my mother and my father-in-law with their portfolios, following BH principles. They both have whole life policies which have been in force for many years and which, like yours, make sense to keep rather than eliminate. In each case, we treat the whole life policy as part of their fixed income...
by lhl12
Sat Oct 11, 2014 1:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: old universal life insurance policy as fixed income
Replies: 24
Views: 1899

Re: Cash-Back Credit Cards

Does the Citi card automatically deposit the 2% to your account each month, or does it require manual monthly intervention to get the rebate? The Fidelity Visa and Amex both credit my account automatically, which in the case of the Visa is easily worth $75/year to me. If the Citi card requires no ma...
by lhl12
Wed Oct 08, 2014 2:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash-Back Credit Cards
Replies: 20
Views: 1826

Re: Cash-Back Credit Cards

Fidelity has a 2% cash back Visa as well, if you would rather have a Visa than an Amex. The only difference is that Fidelity only gives 1.5% back on the first $15,000 of purchases on the Visa (vs. 2.0% back on the first $15,000 of purchases on the Amex). Both cards give 2.0% cash back on amounts abo...
by lhl12
Wed Oct 08, 2014 1:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash-Back Credit Cards
Replies: 20
Views: 1826

Re: 2% Cash back credit card with QuickBooks download?

I believe the fix you mentioned works only with Quicken, not with QuickBooks. Do you (or does someone else) know of a fix for QuickBooks?
by lhl12
Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2% Cash back credit card with QuickBooks download?
Replies: 2
Views: 321

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

I guess it depends on what you mean by "dire". Are you at risk of ending up homeless and getting your meals from a Food Bank? No, probably not. Are you at risk of reaching a point 20 years down the road when you do not have enough to maintain your current lifestyle and need to make major a...
by lhl12
Fri Oct 03, 2014 6:24 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

2% Cash back credit card with QuickBooks download?

I love my Fidelity Visa, which gives 2% cash back on all purchases (with only 1.5% cash back on the first $15,000 of spending). However I do not like the fact that this card's website (FIA Services) for some reason does not allow automatic transaction level downloading to QuickBooks. Does anyone kno...
by lhl12
Fri Oct 03, 2014 5:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2% Cash back credit card with QuickBooks download?
Replies: 2
Views: 321

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

BTW, I'm very conscious of sounding like a spoiled brat, I don't want to do this, I can't compromise on that. It's because I am not convinced that our situation is that dire. You don't sound like a spoiled brat. You do sound uninformed and naive. Your situation is dire. It is very, very bad. You ar...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

This is very concerning. $700k to most people would be a LOT. To some it would be enough to retire for the rest of their lives. To people with spending habits like yours, it's a drop in the bucket. It's less than 3 years of your income, and you already spend like you have twice the income that you ...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 4:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

On "our own plans for retirement" front: I am thinking we stay at our current contributions for now, but in 2 years when we will have cashed out equity in the house, done away with the mortgage payment, and have very reduced childcare expenses (if any at all, depends on whether I work mor...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 3:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

Are you an only child?
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 3:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

It's not making sense to me why we have "too much house". I understand from a net worth perspective that our entire net worth is tied up in an illiquid asset. But setting that aside and looking at ONLY the budget situation - are you guys saying $2k towards housing (whether in the form of ...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

We should have a general rule of thumb that would get everyone on the same page when it comes to real estate. Just take the value of the house(s) you own and multiply by some percentage, call it 6%. This is how much you are consuming. It doesn't matter the size of the mortgage payment or whatever. ...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 9:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

Alex's suggestion is a good one too - a different way of coming at the same problem. The main point is that you are "house poor". You may have a lot of net worth but you also have a large mortgage (that is too big for your income since you are stretched so thin budget-wise.) If you can eli...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 5:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

If college and retirement are both covered by family money or expected inheritance, then the problem is simpler. In that case you are just living in far too expensive a house for your income. Sell the house and use the $1.2 million of equity to buy a $800,000 house, paying cash. Buy the ski condo fo...
by lhl12
Thu Oct 02, 2014 4:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?

You (plural) are living beyond your means - not by a little - by a lot. You need to plan on your retirement first and your kids college second. Only after those expenses are fully funded can you think about any major discretionary purchases (like a ski condo). Minor discretionary purchases (like gar...
by lhl12
Wed Oct 01, 2014 5:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 16896

Re: Should I pay off my sisters student loans?

It's funny to read people lecturing the OP about the horrors of giving away money to the sister when he's a recipient of a massive windfall that from all appearances has fallen into his lap with no effort on his part. There are likely life lessons that should be learned by the sister about managing...
by lhl12
Tue Sep 30, 2014 7:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I pay off my sisters student loans?
Replies: 49
Views: 3674

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

Your municipality may be an exception, but in most big cities the taxicab experience is a nightmare. The cars are terribly run down, with bad shocks, seats that have no support, non-working air conditioning, and often a fetid odor. The drivers usually drive like madmen because they are trying to min...
by lhl12
Thu Sep 25, 2014 8:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trying to understand Uber and similar "ride sharing" service
Replies: 54
Views: 3942

Re: inherited 500k, still a college student, how to invest??

The money I inherited is in my name and it's basically both my brother's and mine, but by law it's mine. He trusts me with the money and trusts me to do the right thing with it (my brother and I are very close). This quote causes me a great deal of concern. What does "basically" mean in t...
by lhl12
Thu Sep 25, 2014 7:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: inherited 500k, still a college student, how to invest???
Replies: 55
Views: 6044

Re: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?

Zecht wrote:
dolphinsaremammals wrote:I buy bags of wild bird seed and other food for wild animals each week. Probably $30 to $50 a week. I'd probably give up buying books before I'd give that up, though.

I buy bags of wild birds and feed them to wild animals. It's far more entertaining.


ROFL
by lhl12
Mon Sep 22, 2014 6:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest discretionary expense in retirement?
Replies: 29
Views: 3117

Re: Need urgent help for 85 y.o. parents just moved to Vangu

One point of clarification that may help ease a bit of the confusion. I understand that your parents had paid off their home mortgage debt in full and owned their house free and clear. They then took out a mortgage to help your brother. You refer to this as a "second" mortgage, but if I am...
by lhl12
Sun Sep 21, 2014 8:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need urgent help for 85 y.o. parents just moved to Vanguard
Replies: 65
Views: 4124

Re: Help with a large business decision

Based on what you've laid out, it seems like a good decision to purchase the equipment. Yes, it's one year of profits and it's possible the economy could tank the day after you spend the money, but it seems like the payback on the purchase is so significant and so quick that within a year or two you...
by lhl12
Tue Sep 16, 2014 5:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with a large business decision [capital expenditure]
Replies: 36
Views: 1436

Re: Rather macabre but necessary question

I don't know if your Will and estate plan are done, but if not they need to be. With luck you will bounce the check to the undertaker many years later than you might now think, but you should get all your affairs in order as quickly and efficiently as possible, so you don't need to think about that ...
by lhl12
Tue Sep 09, 2014 12:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rather macabre but necessary question
Replies: 74
Views: 6620

Re: Injury on MBTA: Financially worth it to hire an attorney

In my opinion, our society is filled with countless frivolous lawsuits that burden taxpayers with expense that is unnecessary and not rightly theirs. There is a big difference between a boiler explosion on a ship (ripping people limb from limb and presumably killing everyone aboard due to the ship s...
by lhl12
Sun Sep 07, 2014 8:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Injury on MBTA: Financially worth it to hire an attorney?
Replies: 27
Views: 2114

Re: Texas - Recommendation Where To Live

livesoft wrote:I would not consider Austin and San Antonio to have major airports as many of their flights simply go through DFW and IAH.

Agreed - I think only DFW and Houston pass the airport test.
by lhl12
Sun Sep 07, 2014 4:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Texas - Recommendation Where To Live
Replies: 56
Views: 3206

Re: Injury on MBTA: Financially worth it to hire an attorney

As a periodic MBTA rider (and financial supporter through my taxes) I find it despicable that someone would even consider something like this. This was just bad luck, may not be anything but fleeting, was not negligence, and certainly doesn't merit a lawsuit which, if successful, would just increase...
by lhl12
Sun Sep 07, 2014 10:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Injury on MBTA: Financially worth it to hire an attorney?
Replies: 27
Views: 2114
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