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Re: Who to Use: CPA, Financial Advisor, Someone Else?

Scott, that 1% fee doesn't sound like much until you consider the lost opportunity cost over time. See the true cost of fees here http://www.buyupside.com/calculators/feesdec07.htm Not to mention they will try to steer you to higher cost investments, overly complicate your investment mix, maybe even...
by rickmerrill
Thu Nov 20, 2014 12:22 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Who to Use: CPA, Financial Advisor, Someone Else?
Replies: 57
Views: 2748

Re: Side jobs or hobbies that make you money

In a weird sort of way that ^^^ sort of reminds me of Victoria's comment.

Uh, actually I was referring to the doggie donation post but I'll leave it here because if I was referring to the previous post that would be funny too!
by rickmerrill
Wed Nov 19, 2014 11:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Side jobs or hobbies that make you money
Replies: 112
Views: 15131

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Nightcrawler, a suspense thriller about a sociopath that joins the ranks of those filming emergency situations and selling the footage to TV news broadcasters . We haven't gone out to a movie for years but we did recently and we both thought it was a good movie.
by rickmerrill
Wed Nov 19, 2014 1:22 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 208
Views: 15808

Re: Sell or repair car decision

I grew up with cheap, unreliable cars and always fixed them myself. Later in life I determined that if you have obligations, someone driving that it would be unsafe to have stranded and enough money to reasonably afford a better car, it almost always comes down to the aggravation factor. Once it sta...
by rickmerrill
Sun Nov 16, 2014 12:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell or repair car decision
Replies: 11
Views: 1209

Re: Employer changing commission structure..

I am not in sales but I have known a few that were and something similar has happened to most of them.
by rickmerrill
Fri Nov 14, 2014 12:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer changing commission structure..
Replies: 6
Views: 644

Re: Appliance Protection Plan

I never buy the protection plan either. You know the game is rigged in their favor so over the long run you should expect to win. I only protect against catastrophic losses I cannot self insure. An appliance, I got it covered. Come to think of it I've never been burned in 60 years.
by rickmerrill
Fri Nov 14, 2014 12:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appliance Protection Plan
Replies: 13
Views: 698

Re: I'm Scared! Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 - What to d

Luanne, I whole heartedly agree with everything previously posted and would encourage you to look for ways to postpone SS to get as much of the COLA'd benefit as possible as Laura and others have stated. I don't know your situation and am not asking but my opinion is that you are on the lower end of...
by rickmerrill
Fri Nov 07, 2014 2:18 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I'm Scared! Vanguard Target Retirement 2015 - What to do!
Replies: 39
Views: 7054

Re: Very few kids in our neighborhood-Thoughts?

Tradeoffs abound. So true. I love Halloween and have complained annually about how few "trick-or-treaters" we get each year. This year three, most we ever had was a dozen. I have a friend that revels in having his next door neighbors help him with yard work and constant visits but me, I'm...
by rickmerrill
Mon Nov 03, 2014 1:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Very few kids in our neighborhood-Thoughts?
Replies: 29
Views: 3245

Re: Athens and London, what to do and where to stay?

Greece, my wife is from Athens but she was of little help with hotels (never needed one) or current happenings (she is out of date) so I'll give you the American visitors point of view. See the ancient sites in Athens, Plaka and if interested see Delphi or Olympia or a monestary and then try to get ...
by rickmerrill
Sat Oct 25, 2014 1:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Athens and London, what to do and where to stay?
Replies: 36
Views: 2049

Re: Should I Sue? [couch damaged in garage of rental]

Agree with Texasdiver. If it comes to bargaining appeal to their sense of business ethics, don't threaten, let them know you just want a fair amount to repair your couch. If still no satisfaction I'd file in small claims court and hope they come up with a suitable amount to avoid the hassle. I watch...
by rickmerrill
Fri Oct 24, 2014 11:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I Sue? [couch damaged in garage of rental]
Replies: 39
Views: 3285

Re: Help Change Direction - Invest or Fix Personal Finance

Get out of debt.
Stay out of debt.
Save as much as you possibly can for as long as you can.
Live BELOW your means.
Relish the thought that financial independence will set you free.
Your future is all about the decisions you make now.
Have a good life!
by rickmerrill
Wed Oct 22, 2014 4:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help Change Direction - Invest or Fix Personal Finance
Replies: 16
Views: 1214

Re: Buy a new car, or fix the old one?

It's frequently difficult to justify a new car's expense compared to the ongoing costs of fixing an old one though many people do. After thinking about it a lot over the years I think an objective person, one who can afford a new one and thinks of a car as transportation (not of their ego), will buy...
by rickmerrill
Wed Oct 15, 2014 12:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy a new car, or fix the old one?
Replies: 55
Views: 3083

Re: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender

Yes, and since everything is so site specific I'd do the same with any wireless hardware purchases. I had not researched interference issues with powerline networks but looking at netgear's troubleshooting guide it looks like most issues stem from either old equipment or other electrical issues with...
by rickmerrill
Tue Oct 14, 2014 12:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender
Replies: 7
Views: 710

Re: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender

In general yes and often better but there are so many variables. This article covers most of the options available and the pros and cons of each http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-wi-fi-extender.
by rickmerrill
Mon Oct 13, 2014 5:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender
Replies: 7
Views: 710

Re: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender

My situation was somewhat different as I had one spot with slow/no connectivity. Using powerline technology was a good fit and it doesn't suffer from the 50% bandwidth hit of wireless repeaters. Basically you get two devices in a kit. One connects to the router with Ethernet. That sends the signal t...
by rickmerrill
Mon Oct 13, 2014 11:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Airport Extreme vs Express as Range Extender
Replies: 7
Views: 710

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

Nice job laying out all of the investments and underlying issues. I know you specifically asked about investment strategy but my thought is that you may be letting a perfect plan get in the way of a good plan? A good plan would be to get their money out of the hands of their high cost "advisors...
by rickmerrill
Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need urgent help for 85 y.o. parents just moved to Vanguard
Replies: 65
Views: 4082

Re: Rebalancing After a Correction

Many good and interesting points. I don't doubt that there is some 'timing' involved - but I consider it like shopping at the 'Day After Christmas Sales.' Currently, I am content to drive in the slow lane and let everyone else zoom past me. It reminds me of the Tortoise and the Hare fable. I've bee...
by rickmerrill
Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing After a Correction
Replies: 13
Views: 1356

Re: Do we plunder our retirement to pay off student debt?

Don't think of it as "plundering". If you could invest in a fund which paid 6.8% risk-free (5.3% after federal and state tax), would you do it? That is effectively what you do by paying down the 6.8% loan; $10,000 paid against the loan will increase your net worth by $10,680 next year. Th...
by rickmerrill
Wed Aug 20, 2014 11:14 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do we plunder our retirement to pay off student debt?
Replies: 30
Views: 2856

Re: Help a late starter (38) newbie

I truly believe one of the best things you can do for your daughter's financial future is to educate yourself about retirement savings and demonstrate by example. You are debt free and saving the max in your employer's plan, that is a very good start. I once asked here how people learned about retir...
by rickmerrill
Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:30 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help a late starter (38) newbie
Replies: 5
Views: 782

Re: Spouse not ready to cut ties with financial advisers

Your DH doesn't think "you both" are capable to manage your own investments - well, I think he is half right. Ever wonder if you did move all your assets to VG if they would still be his poker buddies? These guys are salesmen.
by rickmerrill
Sun Aug 17, 2014 3:07 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Spouse not ready to cut ties with financial advisers
Replies: 112
Views: 9427

Re: Advice for my mother (Widowed @ 62)

I often recommend using this investment fee calculator which gives the person a good long term feel for how much those fees will cost. http://www.buyupside.com/calculators/feesdec07.htm If that doesn't work I don't know what would. Investment wise I don't do what my relatives or most friends are doi...
by rickmerrill
Thu Aug 14, 2014 3:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for my mother (Widowed @ 62)
Replies: 13
Views: 1431

Re: Do I take the separation package offer?

I can answer that one, no unemployment - this is a voluntary offer. I got a better offer, but at a younger age (2 years pay and 25k towards health care). Unlike you I was born to retire. I had 6 months to decide so no rush judgement. If you fell like staying good for you, if not also good for you. I...
by rickmerrill
Tue Apr 08, 2014 3:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I take the separation package offer?
Replies: 52
Views: 5655

Re: HUGE retirement decision.

I had to make a similar decision about a year ago. Circumstances are different as my DW is 10 years younger. Other than do what feels right, as EnglishGirl said, remember that taxes on a single person might be a little higher than for a couple than for a single person. This decision is tuff as you d...
by rickmerrill
Mon Mar 10, 2014 1:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HUGE retirement decision.
Replies: 71
Views: 6787

Re: Any sailboat owners out there?

Grew up sailing, first a 10' sailing dingy then a 17' day sailer. Now we charter most years in places like the British Virgin Islands, San Juan Islands, Antiqua, St. Lucia and Greece. I've had the best memories of my life in boats. Spent last years of working dreaming/researching all things sailing ...
by rickmerrill
Mon Mar 10, 2014 12:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any sailboat owners out there?
Replies: 10
Views: 1069

Re: Tipping for take out

If you tip your bartender for handing you a beer, you should tip the folks at the restaurant for packaging your take-out meal. I may tip my favorite lap dancer $5 at a local gents club, but her job is pretty-much all service. The beer is extra. Thanks for the belly laugh! You deserve a tip for that...
by rickmerrill
Sun Mar 09, 2014 1:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tipping for take out
Replies: 57
Views: 5482

Re: Retirees: About your retirement

Both, a goal and an offer I couldn't refuse came along. You never know...
by rickmerrill
Sat Mar 08, 2014 1:53 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirees: About your retirement
Replies: 55
Views: 6171

Re: Kitchen Renovation: Go big....or not?

There are things you see that can add value and there are things that just cost money to make it right. If you go with #2 expect a lot of the latter in a house that old. In fact, expect the unexpected! Electrical - will you need a service upgrade? Remember, every circuit they change will need to be ...
by rickmerrill
Sat Mar 08, 2014 1:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen Renovation: Go big....or not?
Replies: 25
Views: 2004

Re: Signing up for SS before 70

As someone said above it probably isn't going to make a big difference either way but, I am going to use the worst case I can come up with as an example of why you might want to continue to delay. Say you pass sooner rather than later after you file for SS, the market enters a poor sequence of retur...
by rickmerrill
Tue Jan 21, 2014 2:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Signing up for SS before 70
Replies: 60
Views: 3621

Re: Pension---lump sum or annuity?

Some comments... SS - realize that your surviving spouse will get the greater of her SS or yours. As yours is larger it would seem that delaying your benefit would be a wise move. Also remember that she will be filing single so there will be a higher tax burden. I don't think in terms of getting the...
by rickmerrill
Fri Jan 03, 2014 3:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension---lump sum or annuity?
Replies: 46
Views: 3460

Re: A monkey could have made money in 2013

Take a look at asking portfolio questions - we need the expense ratios of each investment. In loose order I'd take the following steps: First, come up with a plan - lookup IPS (investment policy statement) and start thinking about an asset allocation that you can be comfortable with. Second, simplif...
by rickmerrill
Mon Dec 30, 2013 1:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A monkey could have made money in 2013
Replies: 14
Views: 2651

Re: How many folks have a dog?

We rescued two small mixed breeds from a vet (same litter). I think we got all vaccinations and neutering for free (Boglhead style). I support the local animal rescue group but their requirements can be tough; vets and humane society are glad you want to adopt. I prefer mutts due to overbreeding iss...
by rickmerrill
Thu Dec 26, 2013 1:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many folks have a dog?
Replies: 112
Views: 7959

Re: Roth 5 Year Clarification

Below is a "table approach" for understanding Roth IRA withdrawal rules which can be found in the Fairmark forum. The discussion that went on while it was being created is also helpful [url]fairmark.com/forum/read.php?2,54159[/url] Roth IRA Table UNDER AGE 59.5 FIVE YEAR CONVERSION HOLDING...
by rickmerrill
Mon Dec 23, 2013 1:05 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Roth 5 Year Clarification
Replies: 13
Views: 1229

Re: Help how to invest 200k?

Welcome to the Bogleheads. I'm not clear what time frame you have in mind for spending this money. If you are going to use it to buy a house in the next 5 years you should be conservative I f it is for retirement in 30 years that would probably be a mistake. That is why you will get much better feed...
by rickmerrill
Fri Dec 20, 2013 3:13 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help how to invest 200k?
Replies: 13
Views: 2954

Re: automobile extended warranty pricing

I don't know all of the details on how dealership warranties are priced and haven't found the article that gives the entire story but in general my readings say they are a bad deal. First I have to figure they won't offer something that works in your favor. Then the quick retreat to a lower price pl...
by rickmerrill
Sat Dec 14, 2013 2:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: automobile extended warranty pricing
Replies: 7
Views: 997

Re: How to respond to request for current salary in an inter

From some book on how to interview, I just stated that I was more interested in the opportunity and would not want salary to stand in the way, which was true. I don't think I was ever asked what I made but I haven't interviewed for over 25 years. I'm sorry - rant follows: Some of you must have had t...
by rickmerrill
Fri Dec 13, 2013 4:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to respond to request for current salary in an interview
Replies: 113
Views: 8057

Re: Tips on staying the course...

Do you guys generally avoid financial channels and financial news? Yes. Nothing actionable there. Do you avoid logging into your account? Do you even look at what the markets did on any given day? I look just for fun, not going to change my plan. As a new retiree and newly minted member of the two ...
by rickmerrill
Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:17 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tips on staying the course...
Replies: 19
Views: 1486

Re: I have no idea what I am doing. Evidence below.

Move the money in your other funds into the recommended portfolio.
by rickmerrill
Wed Dec 11, 2013 12:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I have no idea what I am doing. Evidence below.
Replies: 20
Views: 1955

Re: Computer Hardware Experts: Is my hardrive on its last l

I hope bnttwnbnt comes back with the results of his drive tests! I'll go on record with the "sounds like the hard drive is starting to fail" bunch - just so I can be a part of the celebration, if that's it. I see a 320gb (5400 rpm) laptop drive on amazon for $50. But with support going awa...
by rickmerrill
Tue Dec 10, 2013 8:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer Hardware Experts: Is my hardrive on its last leg?
Replies: 45
Views: 2844

Re: London and Paris Trip Advice

I also recommend seeing Agatha Christie's Mousetrap play at St. Martin's Theatre. It has run continuously for over 60 years. Funny, I was planning to see at least one play in London after my father had mentioned that London is a bargain but equal to Broadway and with smaller, more intimate theaters...
by rickmerrill
Sat Dec 07, 2013 2:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: London and Paris Trip Advice
Replies: 34
Views: 2514

Re: Favorite Podcasts?

The Skeptics Guide To The Universe - science and skepticism
Car Talk
Planet Money
by rickmerrill
Wed Dec 04, 2013 12:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Podcasts?
Replies: 22
Views: 1858

Re: Retiring at 50

1) It is a situation highly dependent on your specific circumstances and personality. Consider advice from others, but be prepared for things to be different. 2) You remain the same person. I found that completely new activities (such as the standard volunteer work) were interesting for a while, bu...
by rickmerrill
Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring at 50
Replies: 67
Views: 8815

Re: Thank you moderators, site administrators

Once you've experienced the "free for all" boards you come to appreciate the difficult job the moderators have and how well they do it. When I read an article and then the comments that follow I am reminded how strong peoples opinions on "issues" can be and of how little informat...
by rickmerrill
Mon Dec 02, 2013 1:09 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Thank you moderators, site administrators
Replies: 32
Views: 1951

Re: The JFK Assassination

I must have been in 2nd or 3rd grade. We had moved to a room with a screen and a projector to watch some sort of an educational film. Our principal came in and asked our teacher to stop the projector, she had an announcement to make. I remember thinking that she didn't look normal. I think we immedi...
by rickmerrill
Sat Nov 23, 2013 3:21 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: The JFK Assassination
Replies: 42
Views: 2690

Re: A "Newbie" Asks For Help For Retirement

Sir, you have won the game! Yes, move the tax advantaged assets to VG in the funds you suggested - this can be accomplished by a call to VG. You don't appear to have a need to take a lot of risk but you do have the ability. Personal opinion, I'd lower my allocation to stocks. You will need to balanc...
by rickmerrill
Wed Nov 20, 2013 3:04 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A "Newbie" Asks For Help For Retirement
Replies: 12
Views: 1569

Re: clueless about wireless

To simplify, I'll assume your basic goal is to get that Nook hooked up on your own wireless network. If you want to change providers first we might have to back up a bit (for example, u-verse has a box that already comes with wireless built in), otherwise all you are going to need to begin is an unu...
by rickmerrill
Sat Nov 16, 2013 2:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: clueless about wireless
Replies: 62
Views: 3116

Re: Investing Priority - Should 401k be 1st in this case.

Your eligibility to deduct contributions to your Traditional IRA depends on your Modified Adjusted Gross Income (MAGI) and whether you have a retirement plan at work. If you are covered by a retirement plan at work During the 2013 tax year: Fully deductible if MAGI is less than $59,000 (single) or $...
by rickmerrill
Wed Nov 13, 2013 12:18 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investing Priority - Should 401k be 1st in this case.
Replies: 15
Views: 1305

Re: Looking for fee-only decumulation advisor

Duvius, welcome to the forum! Sorry, I don't have anyone I can recommend that could help with your inquiry but if you do find someone please let us know. I just retired in June and I found saving and investing for retirement to be much simpler, especially since I discovered the Bogleheads, than plan...
by rickmerrill
Thu Nov 07, 2013 2:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for fee-only decumulation advisor
Replies: 18
Views: 1564

Re: Aheville NC as a final destination

Parents transfered to Asheville just before retirement and stayed. I have visited once or twice a year for over 20 years now. I'll just say that it has the most unusual mix of hippie/artsey and mountain/red-neck people I've every come across. My opinions on Asheville as a final destination: Two good...
by rickmerrill
Wed Nov 06, 2013 8:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Asheville NC as a final destination
Replies: 65
Views: 4968

Re: FA or just index funds?

Welcome to the forum! This investment fee calculator http://www.buyupside.com/calculators/feesdec07.htm shows it would cost you almost 6M in 30 years. A little less than half for the advisor and a little over half in opportunity cost. A little investment in your time will pay off big. Besides, you h...
by rickmerrill
Fri Nov 01, 2013 2:05 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: FA or just index funds?
Replies: 35
Views: 2659
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