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Re: Newbie - Need high level assessment and suggestions

You don't say where the $130k savings is; I'm assuming it's in a savings account. If so, and the expenses you are targeting that money for are sufficiently down the road, I'd say that's a bit much to have tied up in cash earning very little return. I personally think your bond concerns may in fact b...
by yosef
Sun Jan 11, 2015 10:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie - Need high level assessment and suggestions
Replies: 14
Views: 858

Re: How to deal with ESPP/RSUs in portfolio, and other quest

Regardless of how it's acquired, the thing to keep in mind about employer stock is that you already have a lot of your livelihood tied up in that company simply due to the fact that you work there. So often, the prudent thing to do is sell the stock as soon as possible and reinvest in something more...
by yosef
Sat Jan 10, 2015 9:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to deal with ESPP/RSUs in portfolio, and other questions
Replies: 2
Views: 294

Re: Almost Clear of Debt, Want to Optimize 401k in Meantime

The Freedom index funds are very good, personally I'd put 100% into the one with the asset allocation that you prefer (ignore the target date). You don't mention your current balances or your income, but IMHO $250 a month in retirement contributions isn't going to get you there. I agree with priorit...
by yosef
Fri Jan 09, 2015 9:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Almost Clear of Debt, Want to Optimize 401k in Meantime
Replies: 10
Views: 1319

Re: 401k Review

There are many here way more knowledgeable than I, but what jumps out at me the most here is that you have way too many funds. Since you're basically just starting out, your savings rate will be by far the biggest influence your portfolio growth. You could do a lot worse than simply sorting your ava...
by yosef
Mon Jan 05, 2015 9:06 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k Review
Replies: 13
Views: 1000

Re: A little portfolio advice for a novice?

If your existing IRA is not your wife's, is it a non-deductible IRA? As I understand it, you are not eligible to deduct Traditional IRA contributions if you are eligible for a 401k plan with your employer. In this case, your IRA should be a Roth. The spousal IRA can be either Roth or Traditional unt...
by yosef
Fri Jan 02, 2015 3:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A little portfolio advice for a novice?
Replies: 16
Views: 1076

Re: Managing Household Records

Such record keeping articles were useful back when records were on paper and the file boxes were always full; with paperless records now they are less so. Consider that 10 years of full household records take less space on my hard drive than last summer's vacation photos. It hardly makes it worth t...
by yosef
Fri Jan 02, 2015 9:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Managing Household Records
Replies: 12
Views: 1384

Re: Why donate to charity?

Can people read the thread? OP has already explained he donates and volunteers.
by yosef
Wed Dec 31, 2014 3:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: 401(k) with minimal match versus Roth IRA

Obviously take the free $1000 first, which it sounds like you are. Beyond that, it's a tough call that will come down in large part to your marginal tax rate now vs what you anticipate it being in retirement. I'd lean whichever way that calculation leads you but also hedge your bet by contributing s...
by yosef
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:54 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401(k) with minimal match versus Roth IRA
Replies: 16
Views: 1178

Re: Boglehead WIP

In general it is preferable to use the asset allocation rather than the date when choosing a target retirement fund. Most firms (including Vanguard) have gotten very aggressive with their glide paths in an effort to avoid looking like they underperform when compared with other firms funds with the s...
by yosef
Wed Dec 31, 2014 11:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Boglehead WIP
Replies: 8
Views: 1198

Re: What are your 2015 Financial Goals?

Continue to max all retirement accounts.

Open a taxable account and deploy some excess cash I've had laying around.

Sell our house and move into a larger home.
by yosef
Mon Dec 15, 2014 9:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your 2015 Financial Goals?
Replies: 102
Views: 8233

Re: Most/Least Boglehead 2014 Activity?

Most: Maxed all tax deferred accounts and saved a lot more from my severance package.

Least: Still have way too much money in cash with no defined purpose.
by yosef
Mon Dec 15, 2014 8:32 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most/Least Boglehead 2014 Activity?
Replies: 93
Views: 9441

Re: Embarrassingly stupid question

I think this particular rule of thumb is intended to be applied to pre-tax income. We can argue about how appropriate or not it is, but I think that's the intent.
by yosef
Mon Dec 15, 2014 8:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Embarrassingly stupid question
Replies: 25
Views: 4545

Re: How should wife counter salary offer within current co.?

Not sure how you're supposed to get a lot of leverage in this situation. Unless she was in the market elsewhere prior to applying for this position internally, she's probably not going to be able to secure another offer before having to give a decision on this one. And I would think that turning dow...
by yosef
Fri Nov 21, 2014 6:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should wife counter salary offer within current co.?
Replies: 60
Views: 5809

Re: What were your biggest financial emergencies?

I think you're going to be hard-pressed to find examples of emergency expenses that require cash in hand on short notice, at least if you operate within the law ;) Given that, keeping most of your emergency funds in a brokerage type account is likely fine, provided that some combination of the accou...
by yosef
Thu Nov 20, 2014 9:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What were your biggest financial emergencies?
Replies: 39
Views: 6051

Re: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offe

I would laugh out loud if someone told me this after we'd written an offer. Once someone is on the shortlist, we expected them to be ready to roll once we made an offer that was acceptable. FWIW, this perfectly logical approach will not sit very well with the hiring manager and may get the offer re...
by yosef
Thu Nov 20, 2014 8:54 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offer?
Replies: 36
Views: 5403

Re: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offe

Company A is interested in me, and I am interested in them. Most likely if an offer comes, it will be by Jan 2015, maybe even earlier. Company B is a bit slow, and they will only start phone screens in Dec/Jan 2015, and offers in Feb 2015 earliest. I do not think I can stall Company A for one month...
by yosef
Wed Nov 19, 2014 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offer?
Replies: 36
Views: 5403

Re: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offe

This is the dance you have to do when interviewing. Just be thankful that your first choice will likely respond first (the other way around is worse). You should keep both companies in the loop with regard to where you are in the search process with other companies. If an offer comes in, you'll need...
by yosef
Wed Nov 19, 2014 7:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trapped deciding between 2 Jobs: Can I renege on my offer?
Replies: 36
Views: 5403

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

I have the old Blue Cash which, based on my back of the envelope calculations, is a better deal for us. The old card pays 1% less on groceries, 2% more on gas, and the same 1% on everything else. But the grocery spending has no limit, as opposed to the $6k limit with the BCP. The cash back rates on ...
by yosef
Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Heads up one of the better reward credit card I've seen.
Replies: 54
Views: 11148

Re: Best way to track / monitor all your accounts

I use Mint and like it for keeping tabs on things like balances, cash flow, and budgeting. As someone else mentioned, the investment portion of Mint is pretty useless. I have my investment accounts added just so I can keep track of my net worth. Mint is not as full featured as most desktop financial...
by yosef
Wed Nov 19, 2014 3:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to track / monitor all your accounts
Replies: 12
Views: 1452

Re: How To Invest Your Emergency Fund?

6 months is not enough to bother with tiering it IMO. I'd just throw it in an online savings account and be done with it. I personally use Ally.
by yosef
Sun Nov 16, 2014 2:47 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How To Invest Your Emergency Fund?
Replies: 97
Views: 14831

Re: Savings rate of -2% for those under 35 - WSJ

I'm on the older edge of the millenials (32) and in a creative field. I don't have access to a 401(k) (to say nothing of a match!) or a pension and most of my peers are in the same boat. Either we are 'self-employed' or working at small companies that don't offer benefits. Even though I am now work...
by yosef
Tue Nov 11, 2014 4:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savings rate of -2% for those under 35 - WSJ
Replies: 69
Views: 4963

Re: Approach to student debt advice

Paying down the student loan debt should be a top priority, that is a very high rate on a large amount of money. Only you and your wife can decide if using "her" money for that is appropriate, but personally I feel that when you are married the distinction of "yours" and "he...
by yosef
Tue Nov 11, 2014 4:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Approach to student debt advice
Replies: 32
Views: 4834

Re: Savings rate of -2% for those under 35 - WSJ

I agree that this seems more attributable to economic factors such as stagnant wages, rising cost of education, etc rather than lack of finance education. I mean, I'm all for schools offering financial education, but in the information age there's no reason people should be less educated about anyth...
by yosef
Tue Nov 11, 2014 11:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savings rate of -2% for those under 35 - WSJ
Replies: 69
Views: 4963

Re: Few questions before investing(that I couldn't find answ

You can invest for any goal, but generally the shorter your time horizon for that goal, the more conservatively you must invest. Most folks here will tell you that no money you are likely to need within the next 5 or perhaps even 10 years should be in stocks. And you'll find that beating that 1% you...
by yosef
Sun Nov 09, 2014 9:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Few questions before investing(that I couldn't find answers)
Replies: 16
Views: 1896

Re: War on Debt

Hard to say anything that hasn't already been said, but this stance of doing what you can without ruffling your wife's feathers (which honestly seems pretty easy to do) is never going to work. You 2 need to get on the same page financially. That absolutely has to be priority 1. Both of you have to c...
by yosef
Sun Nov 09, 2014 8:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 32278

Re: Using prepaid legal plan for first draft will

We had the Hyatt legal plan also and have no complaints at all. Had will done for myself and my wife last year. You still go to "real" attorneys, they just need to participate in the plan. There was no shortage of attorneys that did in my area.
by yosef
Mon Nov 03, 2014 2:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using prepaid legal plan for first draft will
Replies: 4
Views: 768

Re: Tips on winning a small claims court case in California.

You're wise to hold off on filing suit. You'd be wiser still to heed the advice given here and to realize that pursuing this is simply throwing good money after bad. You purchased a 15 year old car with a poor reliability record sight unseen from halfway across the country and got burned, period. Al...
by yosef
Sat Nov 01, 2014 9:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tips on winning a small claims court case in California...
Replies: 24
Views: 2976

Re: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years

I see you're from NC. Insurance companies have grown increasingly dissatisfied with the rates they are permitted to charge here for homeowners insurance. This has been going on for years. A few years ago, Allstate said they would drop our homeowners policy unless we also gave them our auto. Since th...
by yosef
Fri Oct 31, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years
Replies: 29
Views: 2673

Re: What to ask for when negotiating a severance package?

+1 to what many other posters are saying. There is no negotiation. You will take what is offered, period. Not sure why anyone would think otherwise.
by yosef
Fri Oct 31, 2014 2:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to ask for when negotiating a severance package?
Replies: 26
Views: 2155

Re: Another "Am I ready to buy?" post

I'd say you can definitely afford it; though how long do you anticipate you'd keep a 1BR condo? If kids in 5 years is a real possibility then it seems like such a purchase would be short-lived.
by yosef
Tue Oct 07, 2014 10:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another "Am I ready to buy?" post
Replies: 3
Views: 994

Re: Wife Expecting, Down to One Income Source

My wife hasn't worked in 9 years. She quit to be a SAHM with our son in 2005, and then life happened and it took longer than we wanted to have our second child. She will likely return to work in a couple of years. Without knowing anything about your specific financial situation, I'd say you will be ...
by yosef
Tue Oct 07, 2014 7:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife Expecting, Down to One Income Source
Replies: 116
Views: 9294

Re: Managing Finances - Categorizing on Mint

I try to keep things simple wrt Mint budgeting, which to me means considering these sorts of payments expenses (or outflows). To me, the bottom line is that the money is not available to be spent again. Modeling it as a transfer makes some sense, but why would you only model extra principal payments...
by yosef
Thu Oct 02, 2014 11:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Managing Finances - Categorizing on Mint
Replies: 6
Views: 606

Re: Am I crazy to try to tackle all 4 issues at once?

Maxing out 401k is good. Saving for the emergency fund is good. But you don't state how much you actually have going toward CC debt (or anything about your income). How long will it be until your CC debt is gone at your current pace? What is the interest rate? I'm guessing the answers will result in...
by yosef
Wed Oct 01, 2014 2:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I crazy to try to tackle all 4 issues at once?
Replies: 29
Views: 3491

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

Agree with most of what has been said. This is not about budgeting. This is about living within your means. The thread title is very misleading, OP thinks her husband is a spendthrift since he spends too much on plants. She on the other hand wants to save....for a ski lodge :oops: Do you seriously w...
by yosef
Wed Oct 01, 2014 2:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband a spendthrift? Or I a tightwad?
Replies: 198
Views: 17452

Re: Should I buy this house

- I am looking for some impartial advice on buying a home - I have an income of $450,000 which is stable for at least 3 more years after which may stay the same or could go down to 300,000 per year. My wife makes $220,000 which also is stable for 3 years - I would like to buy a home for $1,480,000....
by yosef
Wed Oct 01, 2014 8:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I buy this house
Replies: 37
Views: 2302

Re: Home affordability

You need to determine whether or not you can swing another $1000/month before you "buy in" to your dream house any more than you already have. Almost doubling your largest single expense also means that your existing emergency fund won't cover the same number of months if you buy this new...
by yosef
Wed Oct 01, 2014 7:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Should I convert my TIRA/401k to Roth?

I don't understand the details, but I think having rolled over an old 401k to a TIRA complicates or prohibits doing backdoor Roths. Regardless, if you're still working then yes doing a conversion would likely result in a substantial tax bill. You'd likely be better off waiting until retirement (when...
by yosef
Tue Sep 30, 2014 1:28 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I convert my TIRA/401k to Roth?
Replies: 11
Views: 639

Re: Help for New Investor

You could direct your current DRIP and Roth contributions to the 401k to capture some additional tax benefits. Also your mortgage rate seems high; have you considered refinancing?
by yosef
Tue Sep 30, 2014 12:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help for New Investor
Replies: 5
Views: 539

Re: My paycheck.

Once you hit the contribution limits for your tax deferred accounts, you'll start having federal tax withheld though, right? If I follow you correctly, you're essentially contributing 100% of your salary to retirement accounts and living off savings instead. I don't think you have anything to worry ...
by yosef
Tue Sep 30, 2014 9:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My paycheck [all to Roth 457, living off savings]
Replies: 12
Views: 2338

Re: Home affordability

It doesn't seem that financial advice is what the OP is looking for here. Because I can't pay cash? That was more or less your suggestion right? I would look into the immediate area then! Home prices double outside of those two neighborhoods? Not quite double but get significantly more expensive ye...
by yosef
Tue Sep 30, 2014 7:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Home affordability

We could likely sell our existing home for ~$230k. Ideally, I'd like to purchase a new place for around $350k. But there isn't much available around that price. http://www.badgerflats.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/07/Scratch-head2.jpg Perhaps you missed this sentence, cleverly hidden before that...
by yosef
Mon Sep 29, 2014 8:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Home affordability

To provide an update, I have a realtor coming by this week to discuss what I could sell my existing place for, and to get info on commissions, etc. Also got some detailed pricing info on the new community. No idea what we'll wind up doing, but we at least got up the nerve to get the ball rolling so ...
by yosef
Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Home affordability

Are you saying that in order to have a paid-off house in 2 decades or so, you need to hurry up and buy a more expensive house now? It doesn't quite work that way. As I admitted to another poster via PM, this was not a well thought out point and I readily admit that. I'm with your wife on that one, ...
by yosef
Mon Sep 29, 2014 7:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Home affordability

Part of this has to do with how stable your job is, and how tied to it you want to be. Part of our home affordability analysis was whether either of us could take a pay cut if a good opportunity came up. As for the burbs are the schools as good? If they are, the plus of having a cheaper house is yo...
by yosef
Mon Sep 29, 2014 12:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Home affordability

You mention your salary/income & that you have enough to cover a 20% downpayment. But what about your retirement savings? If buying this new house and taking on higher mortgage payments means you won't be able to continue your contributions to retirement plans at the max, I would say stay where...
by yosef
Fri Sep 26, 2014 7:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Home affordability

Some background: We purchased our current home in late 2004. Almost 10 years later, we have 2 kids (3 and 9) and all the "stuff" that goes along with them. We love the area we live in. Unfortunately, outside of our neighborhood and one other near us, housing in our immediate area is genera...
by yosef
Fri Sep 26, 2014 3:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home affordability
Replies: 25
Views: 2894

Re: Gas Water Heater Upgrade worth the $$$

I don't understand why a builder would use electric if the home already has gas available. Costs aside, gas heaters are MUCH nicer. Electric heaters take much longer to heat up in my experience. I can tell you that our gas heater costs my family of 4 about $23-$25 a month to run. I know this because...
by yosef
Fri Sep 26, 2014 2:57 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gas Water Heater Upgrade worth the $$$
Replies: 31
Views: 2149

Re: Investments for beginners.

With boglehead style investing, there's almost no real difference between "beginner investments" and those that the most knowledgeable people here use. The philosophy is simple: 1) You don't have to beat the market, you only have to match it. 2) Matching it is trivial due to index funds th...
by yosef
Sun Sep 21, 2014 7:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investments for beginners.
Replies: 6
Views: 606

Re: Roth IRA v. 401(k)

Sounds about right. It's mostly about your tax rate now vs retirement. Max the 401k first, but don't overlook a Roth if you are eligible since as you said it gives you some more flexibility to control your taxes in retirement.
by yosef
Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:17 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA v. 401(k)
Replies: 7
Views: 746

Re: how to use I-Bonds as an Emergency Fund?

The early withdrawl penalty is 3 months interest. But perhaps more importantly for EF purposes is that they cannot be redeemed at all for the first year. So make sure you keep enough in cash or equivalent in case you need it during that time. Not sure how long it would actually take to put hands on ...
by yosef
Mon Sep 15, 2014 7:46 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: how to use I-Bonds as an Emergency Fund?
Replies: 9
Views: 1289
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