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Re: Girls gymnastics: what to expect

Think critically about the level of rigor that is required of even beginning competitive gymnasts. I did gymnastics for nine years when I was a kid (3-12) and even though I escaped without any serious injuries, I think I still experience the psychological impact of pushing myself so hard at such an ...
by strbrd
Sun Aug 17, 2014 4:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Girls gymnastics: what to expect
Replies: 28
Views: 2588

Re: Seattle and Portland, OR restaurant recommendations

For top notch food in a casual environment in Seattle: Kedai Makan--Malaysian street food on Capitol Hill (eat outside or in the grungy Montana bar next door); Cafe Presse (quite casual French on Capitol Hill) or Le Pichet (slightly less casual French on the edge of Belltown); second the Sitka and S...
by strbrd
Thu May 01, 2014 1:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seattle and Portland, OR restaurant recommendations
Replies: 31
Views: 1407

Re: Planning first trip to Oregon and Seattle - advice sough

I would prefer to stay downtown over Capital Hill. Interesting neighborhood, but can get pretty rough at night (ditto, Portland). So much action in downtown and lots of fun. I'll advise the opposite. If you're under 40, Capitol Hill over downtown any day. If you must stay downtown, stay in Belltown...
by strbrd
Wed Mar 05, 2014 2:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning first trip to Oregon and Seattle - advice sought!
Replies: 43
Views: 2679

Re: Seattle as a place to live?

If the marijuana argument is meant to demonstrate that one city is more liberal than the other, surely the more relevant data point is that Seattle recently elected a member of the Socialist Alternative party to city council.
by strbrd
Mon Feb 10, 2014 3:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seattle as a place to live?
Replies: 74
Views: 8396

Re: Bed sheets like they used to be?

Garnet Hill (garnethill.com). Excellent quality, and you can usually find something on sale if you'll put up with odd colors. I like the percales and the flannels. I was thinking they were expensive, but I don't think I've ever paid more than around $150 for fitted+flat, so compared to some other su...
by strbrd
Tue Dec 31, 2013 4:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bed sheets like they used to be?
Replies: 41
Views: 5011

Re: 250k Student Loan Payment Schedule

Was in your shoes two years ago--but in slightly lower COL city, not NYC. The generic advice you're getting here does not take into account the pyramid structure of biglaw firms. But you're on the right track--stick with it and do not be intimidated into thinking you need to spend money just because...
by strbrd
Tue Nov 05, 2013 6:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 250k Student Loan Payment Schedule
Replies: 47
Views: 5129

Re: Student Loan Transfers

Today I noticed another surprise on my Sallie Mae account - $1,495 in fees added to my loan principle a few days after the transfer due to "Rebate Reversal." Does anyone know what this is about? According to direct.ed.gov: An up-front interest rebate is offered to Direct Subsidized Loan, ...
by strbrd
Fri Aug 16, 2013 9:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Transfers
Replies: 14
Views: 2185

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Yep, can't see how this is a topic of prolonged discussion. Now, my daughter's financial picture, as a newbie lawyer with $178K in debt at 7.9%, in a BigLaw Firm starting in October would warrant greater discussion. Not to hi-jack this thread, but I'm trying to figure out the most financially advan...
by strbrd
Wed Aug 14, 2013 4:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Are you sure you can contribute to a deductible TIRA? Or do you mean you are contributing to a nondeductible TIRA in order to do a backdoor Roth? The no-match deal seems common among law firms, sadly. I honestly haven't thought about it yet and still need to read up on it--my prior tax-advantaged r...
by strbrd
Wed Aug 14, 2013 12:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Are you sure you can contribute to a deductible TIRA? Or do you mean you are contributing to a nondeductible TIRA in order to do a backdoor Roth?

The no-match deal seems common among law firms, sadly.
by strbrd
Wed Aug 14, 2013 12:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Student Loan Transfers

My Direct Loans were also transferred to Sallie Mae and the rates also differ from what they were originated at. I did not do any consolidation activity, as well. I had a very small amount of subsidized loans (at 6%) that were transferred at 5.75%. The rest were unsubsidized (at 6.8%) that were tra...
by strbrd
Wed Aug 14, 2013 9:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Transfers
Replies: 14
Views: 2185

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Thank you so much for your help. I'm not sure what stub year means other than drawing an inference from your post, but I assume it has to do with being a recent graduate. We graduated in 2010 so that might not apply. But thank you for making me feel better about the amount. We're definitely on the ...
by strbrd
Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Pay it off now. Otherwise, you're inviting disaster. I could elaborate, but just take it from someone who is many miles down the same track you're on. I would almost agree, if we were talking to Subject B. But we are not. There is no need to be alarmist when Subject A is already freaked out about t...
by strbrd
Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

EDIT: I realize I was assuming you were still in your stub year. Maybe not? Prior: Well, you are very lucky to have graduated with no debt and $50K is not very much at all for a 2013 law school grad. Subject B could easily pay that amount in the first year, even in a high COL area. (You won't have m...
by strbrd
Tue Aug 13, 2013 4:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Pay off student loans in our situation?

Is Subject B perhaps a first-year associate at a law firm? Other posters can tell you what to do mathematically speaking (probably pay off the high ones and possibly keep the 2%-ers), but future career plans might come into play as well.
by strbrd
Tue Aug 13, 2013 3:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans in our situation?
Replies: 26
Views: 1424

Re: Want to cut the cable cord

I only had cable for one year of my life, and it wasn't worth it. In my opinion, there's better news programming on digital broadcast TV than cable. A combination of PBS Newshour and the weekend talk shows (plus Politico, NPR, and--OK you have to pay for this--a subscription to the New York Times on...
by strbrd
Thu Aug 08, 2013 5:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to cut the cable cord
Replies: 67
Views: 6597

Re: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)

Can you explain more about the redemption fee? How long have you held that mutual fund and how long do you have to keep it to avoid the fee? If you'd had to liquidate that one in order to do a conversion wouldn't you also have to liquidate the "closed to new investors" fund in that IRA? I...
by strbrd
Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)
Replies: 13
Views: 972

Re: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)

In addition, my projected income over the next ten years or so generally puts me above the cutoffs for Roth IRA contributions. My only real option for accessing Roth space, assuming I want to save above any regular retirement vehicles, is a backdoor Roth. But I can't do that right now because of th...
by strbrd
Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)
Replies: 13
Views: 972

Re: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)

Yes, I'll probably wait till I move to do this in any case. Will the state I'm leaving want a chunk of the conversion income even if I do it after I leave (but still within the year I lived in that tax jurisdiction)?
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 3:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)
Replies: 13
Views: 972

Re: Student Loans and the Correct Course of Action

GoDeacs wrote:All these are estimates because I am on my phone. Loan 1: $56,000 @ 6% -$400 Loan 2: $35,000 @ 2.75% -$175 Loan 3: $23,000 @ 6% -$200 Loan 4(car): $9,400 @ 2.5% -$290 I could use some input from the gallery on this. Isn't the objective to minimize the amount of interest being paid? To...
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loans and the Correct Course of Action
Replies: 44
Views: 2819

Re: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)

Thanks! To be clear, I realize that trying to figure out whether having a Roth or a trad IRA is objectively better would require more information--more information than I or anyone else has, because I really have no idea what my income/tax bracket will be in retirement. (For instance, I have no idea...
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 1:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)
Replies: 13
Views: 972

Re: What to do with old 401K?

SIMPLE/SEP IRAs are aggregated just like regular T-IRAs; you have to shield them if you want to take full benefit of the backdoor Roth.
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with old 401K?
Replies: 13
Views: 718

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

Oh, thanks for clarifying. I never thought of "transferring" a balance from a 0-balance debit card. Has anyone tried this technique recently?
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 12:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)

Hi all. I am considering converting my traditional IRA (~$17k) to a Roth IRA for future backdoor Roth purposes and would appreciate any guidance about the tax impact and other considerations. Backstory: I have a 401k that I will max out with no match for 2013 (and possibly invest in an I-bond, but m...
by strbrd
Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To convert or not to convert (Trad to Roth IRA)
Replies: 13
Views: 972

Re: What to do with old 401K?

You may be able to roll it into your current 401k as well, but from previous posts it looks like you might not have great options there. Have you checked to see whether you can hook up your old 401k account to an aggregator like Mint so you can keep track of it without having to log in proactively? ...
by strbrd
Sat Jul 27, 2013 8:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with old 401K?
Replies: 13
Views: 718

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

OK, so just to consolidate everything I've learned for people considering this course of action: ⋅  the easiest way to do this is to passively receive a "balance transfer check " offer from an existing credit card; these are quasi-mythical beasts and may not be offered by every c...
by strbrd
Sat Jul 27, 2013 8:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: Q about IRA to 401K rollover for Back Door Roth

The rollover of his pre tax IRA balance this year will allow him to make his 2013 non deductible TIRA conversion and convert it right away tax free. The key is that Form 8606 is used to report both the non deductible TIRA contribution and the conversion and pro rating is based on the total IRA year...
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 6:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Q about IRA to 401K rollover for Back Door Roth
Replies: 4
Views: 331

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

Yes, all my loans are calculated (and one is held) separately, so if I pay any down (or shift the balance to another account, as I am attempting to do for these two), my minimum payment for the remaining balance decreases. I have already lowered my minimum payment from over $2K per month to about $7...
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 5:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

OK, thanks. I am shopping around but can't seem to get much info on convenience checks as opposed to balance transfer checks. (The woman I spoke to at Chase had no idea what I was talking about, e.g.)
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 3:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

Awesome, thanks for the link. Do you think I should just sign up for a Barclay card and wait? Which one do you have? I definitely have never received anything better than a 2.9% offer from my current CC (USAA).
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 1:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

OK, so the only card I can find with a 0% transaction fee and 0% balance transfer for a period of a year or more is the Chase Slate Visa, and when I called they told me that they can't give me a balance transfer check, just a cash advance check with the normal astronomical APR. (Maybe I shouldn't ha...
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 12:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

OK, thanks! So all "balance transfer" offers work the same as a convenience check from your existing credit card? For some reason I was assuming you had to be transferring a credit card balance rather than another kind of debt. But I see some 0% fee, 0% for 15 months on balance transfer of...
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 7:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

Re: IRA-to-401k rollover fees

I'm asking about outgoing fees from IRA to the 401k. It doesn't look like there are incoming fees (it's a Fidelity 401k), and the Fidelity documents seem comprehensive enough that I'm not as worried about hidden fees. Columbia Management, on the other hand, is a mess.
by strbrd
Fri Jul 26, 2013 7:24 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA-to-401k rollover fees
Replies: 4
Views: 351

Using convenience checks to pay down student loan

I have two student loans totaling approximately $15K that I'm considering paying down with a convenience check from my credit card company using a 1-year promotional APR. (I also have about $25K at slightly lower interest rates, and one ~$5K loan at the same rate that I intend to pay off in the next...
by strbrd
Thu Jul 25, 2013 9:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using convenience checks to pay down student loan
Replies: 16
Views: 1844

IRA-to-401k rollover fees

Are there any rules about what fees an institution may charge (and/or what disclosures they must make) for rolling over an IRA to a 401k? I'd like to do this for future Roth backdoor purposes. The custodian for my SIMPLE IRA (Columbia Management) hasn't disclosed any fees on the form they told me to...
by strbrd
Thu Jul 25, 2013 5:49 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA-to-401k rollover fees
Replies: 4
Views: 351

Re: Conflicted About Expected Lifestyle Creep

One thing that I wish I'd done in the "stub year" in which I worked only a few months at a highly paid job is take advantage of the lower tax bracket I was in, however fleetingly. So, for example, you may be able to deduct student loan interest this year only (though it sounds like you pre...
by strbrd
Fri Jul 19, 2013 8:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Conflicted About Expected Lifestyle Creep
Replies: 47
Views: 5974

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