snowman and dbr, those are helpful clarifications. I understand, dbr, that your point was about the very limited effect of a 10% bond allocation and not about advocating for 100% stocks. And thank you for the reading ideas, snowman.
snowman wrote:As far as buying VT only and be done with it, it certainly is an option, and not a bad one. I don't do it myself mostly for the reason you outlined - ER. My spreadsheet keeps track of current AA very accurately, so new funds get invested to restore balance, it's super easy. For me personally, VT would have to be cheaper than VTI/VXUS combo to even consider investing in it.
I see the point about expense ratios. I guess I would prefer to be less involved as an investor, which VT allows for, and to not create tax bills from rebalancing. When computing the likely difference in expense ratios for my portfolio in $ terms each year, it would certainly amount to a considerable amount of money. But, for me, the expense might be worth avoiding distraction from work and being tempted to not stick to allocations. Hopefully VT's expense ratio will continue to get lowered by Vanguard, too.
snowman wrote:Since everyone's situation and risk tolerance is different, it's impossible for me (or anyone else) to recommend the right course of action. You may want to give yourself a deadline of say 2-3 years from now to come up with glide path for adding bonds to your portfolio. There are different ways to approach it, so it may not make sense to just come up with some numbers now without further education. There is no rush - in investing, the slower you go, the better.
I'll certainly try to educate myself and take it slowly. Working towards dbr's 25% bond allocation via new, tax-advantaged contributions, so that I have a less volatile portfolio eventually, might be one strategy for me to think about.