Search found 6278 matches

by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mom wants smart phone, are there classes on how to use?
Replies: 27
Views: 1048

Re: mom wants smart phone, are there classes on how to use?

As a newbie of 2 months of smartphone (a too-small-screen cheapie TracFone), I still made good use of Google Maps on a trip in order to find out exactly where I was and where I wanted to go. I may go on to bigger and better, or leave it at that using mostly other "computers" when WiFi is ...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mom wants smart phone, are there classes on how to use?
Replies: 27
Views: 1048

Re: mom wants smart phone, are there classes on how to use?

As a newbie of 2 months of smartphone (a too-small-screen cheapie TracFone), I still made good use of Google Maps on a trip in order to find out exactly where I was and where I wanted to go. I may go on to bigger and better, or leave it at that using mostly other "computers" when WiFi is a...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please evaluate our situation
Replies: 33
Views: 1708

Re: Please evaluate our situation

If you have no emergency fund, I would put the Roth IRA in a very low risk fund (or bank savings account Roth IRA) such as short term bond, money market, or at the highest risk, Target Retirement Income fund if this is at Vanguard. If a real emergency hits, you could take out your contributions with...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to allocate mother's taxable assets for retirement?
Replies: 4
Views: 413

Re: How to allocate mother's taxable assets for retirement?

If she is in a lower tax bracket she should use taxable bonds (ordinary bonds) in her taxable account. She would only need the tax-exempt bonds if she is in the 28% bracket although sometimes they are OK in the 25% bracket too. If you like target funds there is no reason to use those high cost ones...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 9:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Not sure what direction to go.
Replies: 4
Views: 385

Re: Not sure what direction to go.

Why pay extra on mortgage when you have other loans? What are the monthly payments on the smallest student loan and the car payment? Could you get a better rate on the car loan (credit union, PenFed)? It would be good to wipe out the bigger payment, but your idea sounds good as well. You want them b...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please evaluate our situation
Replies: 33
Views: 1708

Re: Please evaluate our situation

I would look carefully at the numbers for repaying the money back to her pension. It may very well pay off for her to repay it and delay collecting it, I just don't know. (I did repay in a similar plan, and it has paid off very well.) I agree that Life Strategy Growth may be the way to go. Where do ...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 8:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: "Borrow" $5500 from Emergency Fund to Qualify for Vanguard Admiral?
Replies: 18
Views: 2139

Re: "Borrow" $5500 from Emergency Fund to Qualify for Vanguard Admiral?

I also suggest you forget Betterment. Wait until you have 3k, then buy stock fund. Then you can add to it in small amounts if you choose. I would keep the 10k available for emergencies or "opportunities". I think the simplest way to get some bonds is to do it in the TSP. They have the best...
by BL
Sat Feb 25, 2017 8:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Talking with parents' financial advisor
Replies: 46
Views: 3286

Re: Talking with parents' financial advisor

Sheepdog wrote:
TOJ wrote:

Well put! My dad is never going to listen to me.


Indeed! On finances, I wouldn't listen to my children either. They are too young to know anything about that. They are only 53 and 47.

+1 :twisted:
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just beginning: $40k to open taxable and IRA accounts
Replies: 20
Views: 1196

Re: Just beginning: $40k to open taxable and IRA accounts

30% of 40k is 12k for bonds.
So that leaves 28k for stock fund.

You could divide bonds in half and do 6k bonds in each Roth and the rest of the 28k to fill the rest of the space: 5k stock in each Roth, 18k in taxable.
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Low Income 29yr old
Replies: 32
Views: 3582

Re: Low Income 29yr old

You have received some very good suggestions from which to select what will work best for you. Knowing ERs can be very important in decision-making. Using the single index fund in the 403b and perhaps a V. Target fund in Roth would be one good way to start investing. It sounds like you have done ver...
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to allocate tiny Roth balance?
Replies: 4
Views: 290

Re: How to allocate tiny Roth balance?

Perhaps an index ETF?

I would just wait until the other one is set up and transfer to that, or use this one instead.
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 3:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just beginning: $40k to open taxable and IRA accounts
Replies: 20
Views: 1196

Re: Just beginning: $40k to open taxable and IRA accounts

You should both have an IRA, whether that is Roth or traditional + 15% additional invested in taxable (you get a 15% tax break with traditional so the extra should be invested in taxable). There have been some math experts here that prove that traditional + tax savings invested in taxable are equal ...
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing Aid Benefits
Replies: 19
Views: 932

Re: Hearing Aid Benefits

Have you checked Costco for reasonable priced hearing aids?

Sorry, I don't know of any direct help. Government may have assistance with telephone aids.

Here is something that came up with a Google search:
http://www.asha.org/public/coverage/p4AudFundingResources/
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: US Small Value - Did i just luck out big time?!
Replies: 18
Views: 877

Re: US Small Value - Did i just luck out big time?!

ZenInvestor wrote:
BL wrote:What is the other "half" invested in?

Do you wish to invest in individual stocks?


I dont understand the question.

Sorry, I just deleted this. It wasn't a good question.
It looks like a DFA fund.
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Exchanging Target Retirement fund in Taxable Account
Replies: 4
Views: 386

Re: Exchanging Target Retirement fund in Taxable Account

Certainly stop investing and reinvesting in a fund you don't want there. Look at what it is costing you on your income taxes to help you decide what to do. The Target fund will be increasing its bond component until it eventually reaches 70% bonds which makes it less tax-efficient. You could begin s...
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Talking with parents' financial advisor
Replies: 46
Views: 3286

Re: Talking with parents' financial advisor

You might also check into using a Vanguard PAS for management and handholding at 0.3%/year AUM.

The independent advisor who recommends index funds sounds great, but how to find them?
by BL
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio review and a few questions!
Replies: 7
Views: 548

Re: Portfolio review and a few questions!

One quick and easy change might be to switch from Fidelity Freedom to Fidelity Freedom INDEX funds. Much lower ERs, and I believe a simpler allocation. You might want to stick with only index funds instead. This little pdf is full of good advice: https://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio review and a few questions!
Replies: 7
Views: 548

Re: Portfolio review and a few questions!

Not much help here. It would be helpful to write out the names along with the ticker symbols , and also ERs of non-TSP funds so folks here don't have to look up each one. ERs are one of the few things you can control. You won't get much encouragement for holding individual stocks here. Consider addi...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 10:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: In a bit of a pickle as executor with individual stocks
Replies: 14
Views: 900

Re: In a bit of a pickle as executor with individual stocks

My gut reaction would be to sell everything and get it to your mom ASAP, especially since she is not well and shouldn't have to worry about her stocks. Once it is converted to cash, it could be placed in an online savings account at 1% until she decides what she wants to do with it. Give her some ti...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Move $$$ from 2-fund portfolio ---> TR2015?
Replies: 3
Views: 333

Re: Move $$$ from 2-fund portfolio ---> TR2015?

If you allow for a 5-10% band of wandering from your desired AA, how often do you suppose you would need to rebalance? If there is a crash once or twice a decade, that might be once or twice a decade. Is that too much? What if you just pick whatever is over your desired AA when you take your RMDs? G...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stay in cash until rates rise?
Replies: 27
Views: 2389

Re: Stay in cash until rates rise?

This might be a good time to also buy the allowed amounts of inflation adjusted I-bonds, 10k/year/person or trust. It is not such a great amount but it will keep up with inflation and never lose its value.
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak
Replies: 36
Views: 3838

Re: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak

You have the right idea. It should be fine.

Many of us would simplify and use just one bond fund rather than adding international (nothing wrong with it).

When you start your career, try to put most of your bonds in a 401k or IRA for tax-efficiency (or munis).
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax filing for a recent college grad
Replies: 15
Views: 828

Re: Tax filing for a recent college grad

Good advice! I suggest using the 1040 even if she is eligible to use the others. Then she won't have to change in the future. (There are no financial advantages for her to use the others, even though I have run into several people who seem to think there are.) Research: 1. dependency (it is sometime...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are they trying to sell me here?
Replies: 27
Views: 2702

Re: What are they trying to sell me here?

Thank you all for the insightful responses. I figured something was fishy and the wording does make it sound like some type of whole life policy. No thanks. I'm going to continue to stay the course. Nisiprius's comment is making me feel like I should just avoid the event all together. Glad I can tr...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:13 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak
Replies: 36
Views: 3838

Re: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak

That sounds good. Best of luck to you in your new endeavor.
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 8:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First Time Rebalancing Help Needed
Replies: 6
Views: 521

Re: First Time Rebalancing Help Needed

I agree that you are "close enough". Many here set rebalancing bands of plus or minus 5% or even more, and you are well within that. When you add money, you could just add where it is low and skip the other.
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak
Replies: 36
Views: 3838

Re: Retirement savings: Lots of $, job prospects weak

I suggest you don't invest anything you may need within the next 5 years, so that it is there when you want it. This may include at least a 20% down payment on house, car, college costs, etc. Consider 1% savings account, CD ladder, 10k/yr I-Bonds, etc. You say "weak job prospects". Will yo...
by BL
Thu Feb 23, 2017 12:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need help with decision [leaving Edward Jones]
Replies: 11
Views: 810

Re: Need help with decision [leaving Edward Jones]

The no brainer part is to leave Ed Jones. Schwab, Fidelity and Vanguard all have a variety of inexpensive equity index funds these days. I think Vanguard continues to lead with a variety of low cost bond funds. Vanguard is presently having growing pains due to the huge influx of new money. I am cer...
by BL
Wed Feb 22, 2017 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First Time Rebalancing Help Needed
Replies: 6
Views: 521

Re: First Time Rebalancing Help Needed

First of all, the IRA and taxable are totally separate. However, you can take dividends from taxable and do with them whatever is legal to do. If you are eligible to contribute X $ to an IRA by having earned income, then the "source" of how it came into your checking account doesn't matter...
by BL
Wed Feb 22, 2017 2:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Barney Style Instructions on a Taxable Investment Account
Replies: 6
Views: 547

Re: Barney Style Instructions on a Taxable Investment Account

You might want to have only stock index funds in taxable, if you have room for your bonds in TSP.
Rebalance in tsp mainly by adding new funds.
by BL
Wed Feb 22, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I didn't report 1099-G?
Replies: 15
Views: 951

Re: I didn't report 1099-G?

IRS has the document as well and if you itemized deductions you lied mis-stated how much state tax you paid. They will contact you in a year or so, and you will pay.

An amended 1040X is the nice and simple way of fixing errors. You can't fix it with next year's 1040.
by BL
Wed Feb 22, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are they trying to sell me here?
Replies: 27
Views: 2702

Re: What are they trying to sell me here?

You are right to be suspicious because if you are one of those talked into it, you will be paying the cost and then some. Sounds like one of the new hybrid life insurance/LTC policies. You pay extra for guarantees and lots of fees so it is rarely a good deal. In the medical field you will probably h...
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Windfall, investing, insurance?
Replies: 39
Views: 1725

Re: Windfall, investing, insurance?

Whole live is a terrible deal for but great for the agent selling it. Just say no. Buy a million each in term for you and your wife. Wife should have total say over her inheritance. She should pay off any of her debts but you should handle yours without using her money. She should fund her retireme...
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What is a smart tax strategy?
Replies: 13
Views: 1333

Re: What is a smart tax strategy?

You might want to change the cost basis to Specific Id so you could sell lots which have little or no gains if you choose. I believe you could do this for "covered" funds and use the Vanguard calculated average cost for uncomvered funds (older than 2012?).
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with choosing funds
Replies: 11
Views: 493

Re: Help with choosing funds

What is the ER on the Baird bond fund? If this is less than 0.3%, I think bond is better than TIPS (others may have a different view on this). There is a lot of overlap between PRIMECAP and Institutional Index. Because the ER is lower, I would only use Institutional index. Then I would a portion of...
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 9:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types
Replies: 13
Views: 695

Re: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types

I suggest you get a tax program, a year old cheap one would do, or perhaps even an estimator, and do some "what-if's" as if you were retirement age with SS and withdrawing from various sources. It could be very helpful and informative. SS amounts to be taxed range from 0% to 85% of that SS...
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Windfall, investing, insurance?
Replies: 39
Views: 1725

Re: Windfall, investing, insurance?

If both companies are rated highly, consider the lowest cost. A simple term should be comparable. Some look at pricing health differently. Once you start adding on riders and benefits, the company benefits the most. In 20 or 30 years, you should have retirement savings in place, children out of the ...
by BL
Tue Feb 21, 2017 12:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Windfall, investing, insurance?
Replies: 39
Views: 1725

Re: Windfall, investing, insurance?

Yes, it is getting sold hard because it is a good profit to them. For a term estimate check https://www.term4sale.com/ for a rough estimate. My check showed about $745-$1000 per year for $2 mil 20 yr. level term. Invest the difference in a Total Stock Market index fund. Check with an independent ins...
by BL
Mon Feb 20, 2017 8:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types
Replies: 13
Views: 695

Re: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types

Only the Capital gains from taxable are added to AGI. Roth is not added at all. All of tIRA is added. Deductions and exemptions are subtracted to get taxable income (line 43 of 1040). Capital gains taxes are pulled out and calculated separately. Since you are in 15% tax bracket, the rate is 0% for ...
by BL
Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do Taxes work with Mutual funds.
Replies: 21
Views: 1389

Re: How do Taxes work with Mutual funds.

Income from mutual funds comes either from dividends or from capital gains (or both). The rate at which they are taxed depends on your marginal tax rate and on whether they are "short term" or "long term" gains. Side note: since index funds do less trading of holdings through th...
by BL
Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types
Replies: 13
Views: 695

Re: Tax Implications of Drawdown from Different Account Types

Only the Capital gains from taxable are added to AGI. Roth is not added at all. All of tIRA is added. Deductions and exemptions are subtracted to get taxable income (line 43 of 1040). Capital gains taxes are pulled out and calculated separately. Since you are in 15% tax bracket, the rate is 0% for C...
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 11:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Older parents advice.
Replies: 29
Views: 2606

Re: Older parents advice.

FCISxC
has 1.1% ER including 0.65% 12b-1 kickback along with 1% deferred load.

SGENX
has 1.1% ER including 0.25% 12b-1 kickback along with 5% front load.

MEHQX
has 0.6% ER including 0.1% 12b-1 kickback.
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 6:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on current situation?
Replies: 4
Views: 354

Re: Advice on current situation?

Realistically, I think you should do some reading in the Wiki and threads here.

Here is a great little pdf to get you started reading:
https://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf

Agree that investing in yourself may be the best investment.
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 10:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Allocations after Inherited IRA
Replies: 7
Views: 451

Re: New Allocations after Inherited IRA

Do you have 401Ks? That might be a good place to rebalance, depending on cost of funds.

IRAs and 401ks are good places for bonds.
Total US stock and international are good anywhere.
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 9:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Older parents advice.
Replies: 29
Views: 2606

Re: Older parents advice.

What does his full-service broker charge in fees, AUM, loads, etc.? It seems like it would eat up most gains from any fixed income.

Maybe better to do something simple with Vanguard or pay Vanguard PAS 0.3% AUM and get very low-ER funds.
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 2:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash out 457(b)?
Replies: 4
Views: 464

Re: Cash out 457(b)?

If you are changing companies, can you roll it over to an IRA and convert to Roth IRA?
If it is a governmental 457, that should be possible.
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 1:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do you invest the proceeds [from your RMD?]
Replies: 22
Views: 1776

Re: How do you invest the proceeds [from your RMD?]

We previously used it to buy total stock market in taxable. With QCD, it goes first to charities, that way the RMD is not taxed (we don't itemize).
by BL
Sun Feb 19, 2017 1:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth vs Traditional
Replies: 4
Views: 329

Re: Roth vs Traditional

I contribute the max $18000 to a Roth 401k and $5500 to a traditional IRA. My employer contributes a flat $5000, which is tax-deferred. My husband is self employed and contributes $5500 to Traditional IRA. Consider setting up his own 401k such as at Fidelity. IRA could probably be rolled into it, f...

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