Search found 449 matches

by tractorguy
Thu Jul 23, 2015 6:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Index Funds May Work a Little Too Well
Replies: 15
Views: 2642

Re: Index Funds May Work a Little Too Well

IMOP, this theory could only be put forward by an academic who hasn't worked in private industry and hasn't had much (if any) interaction with top management in publicly held companies. It's been my experience that the A type personalities who make it to the executive office are hyper competitive, k...
by tractorguy
Tue Jul 21, 2015 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2007 Toyota Camry Issue
Replies: 20
Views: 1565

Re: 2007 Toyota Camry Issue

Go to an independent mechanic you trust and have them verify the problem diagnosis. Strut replacement is one of the favorite ways that less reputable mechanics use to generate business. Symptoms of bad struts are: Uneven tire wear (flat spots) and bad ride. As others have said, try bouncing the corn...
by tractorguy
Tue Jun 30, 2015 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can you simply change the music file structure in iTunes?
Replies: 13
Views: 1600

Re: Can you simply change the music file structure in iTunes?

+1 on letting Itunes manage your music for you. That's primarily what I use it for (and its smart playlists). You said: The problem arises when I try to find the file a tune is in. Or, for instance, if I want to find everything by one group or composer, but their tunes are all over the place in diff...
by tractorguy
Sun Jun 28, 2015 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Smart phone data usage
Replies: 54
Views: 5610

Re: Smart phone data usage

You've got a lot of good advice here. I'm going to chime in to tell you to get one of the many providers that let you change your plan if you find out that you've bought too much or too little. My data usage varies widely. In the winter when I'm at home and mostly within range of my wireless, I use ...
by tractorguy
Fri Jun 12, 2015 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chromebooks- What is the lure?
Replies: 104
Views: 8578

Re: Chromebooks- What is the lure?

Counting my smart phone, we've got 5 computers in the house that are used by 2 people. One of them is a HP 14" chromebook that I bought 3 months ago to take on a 4 week overseas trip. We use them all but for different things. Our "workstation" PCs are a 8 year old Dell desktop and a 4...
by tractorguy
Thu Jun 11, 2015 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help choosing funds
Replies: 36
Views: 3391

Re: Help choosing funds

Just a word on the high percentage in your employer's stock. I'm going to join in to the group suggesting that you try to minimize this. I struggled with how much company stock to have most of my working career because I was given options and later RSU's and the stock was generally going up. I final...
by tractorguy
Thu Jun 11, 2015 10:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken downloads and 2 factor ID in Vanguard
Replies: 14
Views: 1152

Re: Quicken downloads and 2 factor ID in Vanguard

How? I'm not getting the request for the two-factor and quicken simply fails the import. I don't know what I'm doing that you aren't because I just tried it and it worked with no issues. I'm using Quicken Premier 2015 on a Windows 7 machine and Firefox as a web browser. I had Quicken download with ...
by tractorguy
Thu Jun 11, 2015 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: flip phone vs smartphone
Replies: 35
Views: 3587

Re: flip phone vs smartphone

We've got one of each in our family of two. The flip phone has better battery life and is cheaper (both initially and long term). However, we've found that at least one smart phone is very useful in the family when we are traveling. Hotel reservations on hotels.com, fuel prices on gasbuddy, being ab...
by tractorguy
Mon May 04, 2015 3:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do you keep track of your investments?
Replies: 48
Views: 3302

Re: How do you keep track of your investments?

I use Quicken Premier on a Windows computer. Cost at Amazon (don't buy direct from Quicken) is $69.00 for Quicken Premier 2015 (which is the version you would need to buy). This will give you automatic downloads of all transactions from your Vanguard & other accounts for 3 years. It will also gi...
by tractorguy
Mon Apr 27, 2015 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How far away from a freight railroad track should you live?
Replies: 51
Views: 4172

Re: How far away from a freight railroad track should you li

I've been living about a 1/2 block from a 2 track freight line for 6 years and have never been bothered. However, they do not blow the horn at the crossing at night (this is common in residential areas). I very rarely hear a horn at the next crossing west of us. I sometimes am awake at odd hours &am...
by tractorguy
Sun Apr 12, 2015 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me figure out my (FIRE) number?
Replies: 8
Views: 1952

Re: Help me figure out my (FIRE) number?

What are you going to do with your time when you FIRE? Is it going to cost more money than you are spending on this activity now? I don't see that in your budget. I've found that I can use all of the time I used to spend at work in ways I hadn't dreamed of when I was working. Some of them are free o...
by tractorguy
Sat Apr 11, 2015 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account
Replies: 74
Views: 8403

Re: Hypothetical End Game Scenario w/ 5M retirement account

IMOP, your expectations are being warped by the people you are working and socializing with. 50K/yr for a 2nd home? 100K/year for a primary home? 20-30K for a vacation? Most of the people I know are happy to spend 1/10 to 1/5 of that. And I do mean happy. They are having memorable vacations and livi...
by tractorguy
Wed Apr 08, 2015 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: More Lump Sum vs Annuity
Replies: 5
Views: 597

Re: More Lump Sum vs Annuity

I personally preferred to take the annuity because it provided a guaranteed minimum income level that will meet 70% of my needs. It sounds like you probably have a good one. However, before accepting it, I'd look at the underlying health of the company that is paying the annuity. Worst case scenario...
by tractorguy
Fri Apr 03, 2015 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I shou
Replies: 49
Views: 5586

Re: Considering Doing My Own Investing...but I'm not sure I

IMOP, with a little bit of reading you can acquire the knowledge about what works and doesn't that will exceed that of most of the financial planners you might try to interview. I don't think you need to be a CFP. You do need to read the books and articles that others in this thread have already sug...
by tractorguy
Wed Apr 01, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comparing tax software vs. my accountant?
Replies: 15
Views: 1520

Re: Comparing tax software vs. my accountant?

I stopped using an accountant 3 years ago and have used the Home & Business version of turbotax (because I'm doing a little consulting and have some 1099-MISC to put in). With Vanguards discount, it cost me $59.00 or so to e-file a federal and one state return. I think it took me an afternoon to...
by tractorguy
Tue Mar 31, 2015 6:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How long do sofas really last
Replies: 46
Views: 5147

Re: How long do sofas really last

Its going to vary a lot. Unfortunately, the quality associated with historically middle of the road brand names doesn't seem to be a guarantee of long life any more. I bought a La-Z-Boy middle of the road cloth covered recliner in about 1980 that lasted until 1993. It was still comfortable but we el...
by tractorguy
Tue Mar 31, 2015 5:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's trust fund for retirement: Crazy allocation, etc.
Replies: 10
Views: 1328

Re: Mother has residual trust with questionable aspects

In your shoes, I would try to find the documents that establish the trust and find out what the terms are. Of particular interest are the named trustee. The trustee has control of the money until the conditions of the trust are met. Also of interest are the terms under which money can be removed fro...
by tractorguy
Sun Mar 22, 2015 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Urgent Care Centers - When should they be used?
Replies: 45
Views: 4622

Re: Urgent Care Centers - When should they be used?

I've used urgent care 2-3 times/year for the 5 years. I wouldn't consider an emergency room unless its possibly life threatening. The one I go to in my area is part of the same conglomerate as my primary care physician and shares all records. I get seen by a doctor who is generally younger and a new...
by tractorguy
Thu Mar 19, 2015 11:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help needed with Edward Jones and 401/403 accounts
Replies: 20
Views: 1725

Re: Help needed with Edward Jones and 401/403 accounts

You said: My EJ advisor and office manager is very friendly and personable. That being said my husband likes EJ and believe he is making us money. It's hard to tell when we occasionally add money or change Funds. I don't feel he is as bad as some I have seen on this forum. Our last change in our acc...
by tractorguy
Wed Mar 18, 2015 6:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help needed with Edward Jones and 401/403 accounts
Replies: 20
Views: 1725

Re: Help needed with Edward Jones and 401/403 accounts

You've got a lot of accounts and a lot of funds in each account. It's going to take some effort on your part to first figure out what you actually are invested in, then figure out what you WANT to be invested in, and finally figure out how to move from where you are to where you will be in a way tha...
by tractorguy
Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I put some money into a IRA while semi-retired?
Replies: 5
Views: 469

Re: Should I put some money into a IRA while semi-retired?

Yes I meant 70. However I don't have to take RMD's until 75 so I still defer the taxes on last years income for 13 years.
by tractorguy
Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I put some money into a IRA while semi-retired?
Replies: 5
Views: 469

Should I put some money into a IRA while semi-retired?

I'm retired with income from investments and a fixed pension. These put me at the lower range of the 28% federal tax bracket. In addition, last year, I exercised some restricted stock grants and had some consulting income. These two additional income sources bumped me up to the top of the 28% federa...
by tractorguy
Sat Mar 07, 2015 9:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Acct maintenance - Statements - Confirmation emails???
Replies: 15
Views: 2596

Re: Acct maintenance - Statements - Confirmation emails???

I've converted as much as possible to a paperless system. I download the yearly statements the same time as I download the yearly 1099's and store them on my computer. My computer is backed up two ways (local NAS drive and in the cloud with Crashplan) so I don't worry about ever losing any of these....
by tractorguy
Sat Mar 07, 2015 9:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Acct maintenance - Statements - Confirmation emails???
Replies: 15
Views: 2596

Re: Acct maintenance - Statements - Confirmation emails???

I've converted as much as possible to a paperless system. I download the yearly statements the same time as I download the yearly 1099's and store them on my computer. My computer is backed up two ways (local NAS drive and in the cloud with Crashplan) so I don't worry about ever losing any of these....
by tractorguy
Fri Mar 06, 2015 2:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: not sure about my adviser
Replies: 68
Views: 6613

Re: not sure about my adviser

I will post all the holdings but where is the best place to find the expense ratio for a fund? Or is it a calculation? When I transitioned an inheritance from Edward Jones to Vanguard, I looked up all the funds they had me in on Morningstar. http://www.morningstar.com/ For example, if I look up PCL...
by tractorguy
Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Higher Downpayment a Good Idea?
Replies: 33
Views: 3553

Re: Higher Downpayment a Good Idea?

IMOP you should buy the house you're going to be happiest with for the longest time. Saving money on a house to put more in the stock market is a bad decision if you end up moving again in 3 years because you've outgrown it or the neighborhood is worse than you thought it was. The transaction cost o...
by tractorguy
Thu Mar 05, 2015 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: switching from Edward Jones
Replies: 56
Views: 5862

Re: switching from Edward Jones

Thanks so much for the info on the 401k funds. I'm kind of nervous that I'm in some front load funds and didn't realize it... a big contribution is being processed now. Not sure if a change I make today will be in effect for that bonus. Guess it won't hurt to try if I know what to change it to. Any...
by tractorguy
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Work wants me to train for promotion before giving it to me?
Replies: 18
Views: 1568

Re: Work wants me to train for promotion before giving it to

I was a mega Corp engineering manager with 150 people in my division for 8 years. Any staff member who refused any training for any reason was taken off my list of people who were to be considered for a promotion. If you were working for me and you tried to refuse to cover for an employee who was le...
by tractorguy
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Consumer Cellular increases Minutes, Texts, & Data
Replies: 14
Views: 1131

Re: Consumer Cellular increases Minutes, Texts, & Data

Thank for the notice. I would have struggled to understand my next bill without this clarification. This is good news for me as I am usually right at the limit for data use. It will save me a bit.
by tractorguy
Sun Feb 15, 2015 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken downloads and 2 factor ID in Vanguard
Replies: 14
Views: 1152

Re: Quicken downloads and 2 factor ID in Vanguard

I'm using two step verification and Quicken 2015 with no problem with transaction downloads.
by tractorguy
Mon Feb 09, 2015 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google two step verification & overseas travel
Replies: 10
Views: 727

Google two step verification & overseas travel

I've been using Google two step verification with my cell phone & so far its worked just as advertised and has increased my comfort level. However, I'm planning to take an overseas vacation in April and the phone I've got set up to receive the authorization codes won't be able to receive calls w...
by tractorguy
Sun Feb 08, 2015 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you like a job but the company has financial issues....
Replies: 18
Views: 2149

Re: If you like a job but the company has financial issues..

Its rare these days for a company to avoid rough patches. From management's perspective, how good an employee are you and how good have your ratings been? The megacorp I worked for had roughly 4 groups of workers. They were: * Contract employees. They were always the first to be let go when times go...
by tractorguy
Wed Jan 21, 2015 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selling duds. Righting the ship after firing FA.
Replies: 4
Views: 830

Re: Selling duds. Righting the ship after firing FA.

You are going to find very few on this site who will invest in individual stocks and they will be shouted down by the rest of us. (in a nice way hopefully). Because there is no tax penalty, almost all of us will tell you to sell all of the individual stocks in your 401k immediately and buy a low cos...
by tractorguy
Mon Jan 19, 2015 6:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the international portion of your portfolio and why?
Replies: 140
Views: 13750

Re: What is the international portion of your portfolio and

I find these kinds of statements so fascinating coming from Bogleheads ... on the one hand, a belief that you can't outsmart the market and that the market is relatively efficient, but, at the exact same time, a conflicting belief that somehow the markets can't gauge geographical, political or econ...
by tractorguy
Fri Jan 16, 2015 6:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the international portion of your portfolio and why?
Replies: 140
Views: 13750

Re: What is the international portion of your portfolio and

My stock international exposure is 20% and all of my bonds are in my home country (U.S.). I am aware that this is lower than market weight would indicate but it is intentionally so. If I was planning to retire in a country that didn't have its currency as the world's defacto trading currency and tha...
by tractorguy
Tue Jan 13, 2015 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Getting out of Edward Jones ...
Replies: 25
Views: 2876

Re: Getting out of Edward Jones ...

I'm going to add another vote to transferring in kind ASAP. When I did this with an inherited estate, I did it as a 4 step process. 1) Talk to Vanguard and have them initiate the paperwork to transfer everything in kind. You don't need to give your EJ broker an opportunity to beg you to stay by talk...
by tractorguy
Tue Jan 13, 2015 12:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Edward Jones Fees
Replies: 24
Views: 2591

Re: Edward Jones Fees

You said: Fund is composed of municipal funds and stocks This could mean that you own one or more mutual funds that specialize in municipal bonds and stocks or it could mean that Edward Jones has acted as your broker and you own individual bonds and stocks. Which one is it? If you own mutual funds, ...
by tractorguy
Sun Jan 11, 2015 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken Premier 2015 available from Amazon for $49.99
Replies: 2
Views: 544

Quicken Premier 2015 available from Amazon for $49.99

I realize that many here don't use it, but for those who do, Amazon is showing Quicken Premier 2015 (the version you need to track investments) available for 49.99. This is about 1/2 the price it was listed at when it came out. Prices apparently dropped about $20.00 around New Years. My 2012 version...
by tractorguy
Fri Jan 09, 2015 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just left meeting with my advisor....
Replies: 57
Views: 8292

Re: Just left meeting with my advisor....

I'm going to add to the chorus that's telling you to run away from your adviser. I'm self directing a portfolio that's larger than yours with most of my assets in Vanguard index funds. If it wasn't for capital gains tax, they'd all be in index funds. I've got a 64% equity, 36% bond investments and h...
by tractorguy
Tue Dec 30, 2014 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Feeling a bit lost...should we buy a house?
Replies: 17
Views: 3060

Re: Feeling a bit lost...should we buy a house?

I don't know about Europe. Studies I've seen for the U.S. show that average home prices basically follow inflation but with huge standard deviation based on which local city you look at and when you look at it. So, buying a house now, you would be making an investment that had an expected value of b...
by tractorguy
Mon Dec 29, 2014 11:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Facebook is Outrageous
Replies: 78
Views: 10439

Re: Facebook is Outrageous

This interesting discussion on the value of Facebook just reinforces my view that indexing is the only way to have high assurance that I'll get to participate in the next great spurt of technology driven wealth generation. Every generation seems to have one and they all seem to be in a brand new fie...
by tractorguy
Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: butterflies investing $500K
Replies: 28
Views: 3897

Re: butterflies investing $500K

I've learned in the last 30 years that the really bad investment decisions are made in panic. So, IMOP, you should put together an ISP when you are calm and then implement the plan. If you are nervous about investing a 500K lump sum, then by all means dollar cost in over a year or so. In theory, you...
by tractorguy
Mon Dec 22, 2014 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: new computer for wireless network
Replies: 22
Views: 1852

Re: new computer for wireless network

To expand on what others have said, once its set up you don't need to physically connect anything to the router. A wired connection is still faster than wireless but this doesn't mean much unless you're into streaming movies and playing on line games simultaneously. A wired connection is also theore...
by tractorguy
Sun Dec 21, 2014 2:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Withdrawing from Mom's Investments
Replies: 9
Views: 1239

Re: Withdrawing from Mom's Investments

IMOP, the schedule for withdrawals probably isn't as important as deciding on a plan, writing it down and sticking to it. Its much better to put together the plan now when stress is low than to be in a down year and agonizing over the decision. Do a mind experiment on the plan to see if you and your...
by tractorguy
Fri Dec 19, 2014 6:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking to move inheritance from high-fee advisor
Replies: 30
Views: 3215

Re: Looking to move inheritance from high-fee advisor

When I had a similar size inheritance from my mother, I did this in 4 steps. 1) Turn off auto re-investment immediately at the current broker. There is no point in putting more money in to funds you're going to sell (and possibly incuring loads) so that you can pay capital gains taxes on them when y...
by tractorguy
Thu Dec 18, 2014 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Quick ?? RE 100k investment
Replies: 5
Views: 590

Re: Quick ?? RE 100k investment

Why don't you just apply it to your downpayment? I doubt a 5-7 year CD would offer a higher rate than your mortgage. It's also unlikely you'll find any other risk-free investments that have a higher rate. SAM My apologies for the ambiguity. I already bought the second house before I sold the first ...
by tractorguy
Thu Dec 18, 2014 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why a Boglehead doesn't invest in individual companies?
Replies: 142
Views: 17091

Re: Why a Boglehead doesn't invest in individual companies?

Continuing my journey to becoming a Boglehead, I want to know why you don't invest in individual companies? High risk the only reason? The problem is that most stocks are losers . A chart from this Chase whitepaper: http://i57.tinypic.com/osz5hi.png This is the performance of individual stocks in t...
by tractorguy
Tue Dec 16, 2014 12:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Managing a windfall & fixing my high-fee portfolio
Replies: 21
Views: 3723

Re: Managing a windfall & fixing my high-fee portfolio

You should be able to improve your portfolio in a 4 step process. Step 0: If you have not done so, call your adviser today and tell them to suspend reinvestment of any dividends in all of your funds. There is no point in putting more money in to them so that you can then turn around and pay short te...
by tractorguy
Tue Dec 16, 2014 12:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying Estimated Taxes, Due Date, Paying Monthly/Online?
Replies: 17
Views: 1867

Re: Paying Estimated Taxes, Due Date, Paying Monthly/Online?

I've got online accounts set up at both the federal and state IRS. When I do my yearly taxes, I go ahead and figure out what my minimum withholding will be to avoid a penalty for the next year, log on to the IRS online accounts, and set up 4 quarterly withdrawals from my bank checking account to the...
by tractorguy
Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is a move-up car after mid-size sedan?
Replies: 63
Views: 4601

Re: What is a move-up car after mid-size sedan?

If you haven't been lusting after a particular car all the time you've been building up your nest egg then you probably won't get much joy out of getting an "upscale" model for the sake of having a luxury brand. My spouse is like that. To her, a car is an appliance that gets her to the thi...

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