Search found 469 matches

by Big Dog
Sat Jul 22, 2017 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Am I getting good advice - replace the AC, not the 21 year old furnace
Replies: 33
Views: 2503

Re: Am I getting good advice - replace the AC, not the 21 year old furnace

how efficient are the current burners? how much heat do you use? The leak could be in the house lines, btw. (Our AC does have a slow leak, but the furnace is in the garage in the front of the house, so the cooling lines go from outside the back into the walls and snake thru the attic down to the blo...
by Big Dog
Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Debt: pay down student loan or car loan
Replies: 11
Views: 703

Re: Debt: pay down student loan or car loan

student loan interest is tax deductible, so its not 3% after tax.

But since it is the lower balance, I'd tackle that one first. When paid off, you'll have another 'yay' moment. Then pay off the car even faster.l
by Big Dog
Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changing Health Insurance Around Child birth to reduce costs
Replies: 24
Views: 1516

Re: Changing Health Insurance Around Child birth to reduce costs

70k. I assume you mean full fare? If so, you are forgetting about the insurance discount. Even tho you have a high deductible plan, you are still eligible for the contract rates using in-network providers. At discounted, contract, rates, I'd guess the net will would be half of that amount. (assumin...
by Big Dog
Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paid Family Leave - California
Replies: 19
Views: 1132

Re: Paid Family Leave - California

#3 -- its like a deductible in that first 7 days are unpaid. No different than unemployment where first week is unpaid.
by Big Dog
Tue Jul 18, 2017 9:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: COBRA vs. ACA plan - what to consider?
Replies: 48
Views: 2674

Re: COBRA vs. ACA plan - what to consider?

another thing for retirees: if COBRA gets you to Medicare, your dependents can continue on COBRA even tho you drop it, up to 36 months total.
by Big Dog
Sat Jul 15, 2017 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Leaving California, will I be taxed?
Replies: 11
Views: 1286

Re: Leaving California, will I be taxed?

So in order to avoid that, you must sever all ties. Since you don't own property, that includes sending your CA driver's license to the DMV, registering your car in your new state and informing the DMV (I think the CA DMV has a special form for people leaving the state), closing or transferring any...
by Big Dog
Sat Jul 15, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: california homeowners - do you have earthquake insurance?
Replies: 41
Views: 2686

Re: california homeowners - do you have earthquake insurance?

had it but dropped it.

House is wood, on a slab, bolted. Most likely damage will be chimney collapsing, and to repair that is what about the deductible would run. Just didn't think the benefit was worth it.
by Big Dog
Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with transferring IRA to Vanguard
Replies: 13
Views: 561

Re: Help with transferring IRA to Vanguard

How much money is involved? I would do three things: 1) ask EJ want the fees are to transfer/close this account. 2) tell them -- not "ask" -- to STOP making any trades on your behalf, and follow up with an e-mail in writing 3) tell them to make just one more trade: move the funds into some...
by Big Dog
Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Top 5 posts of all times"
Replies: 17
Views: 4206

Re: "Top 5 posts of all times"

extremely tempting, miriam, since I'd love to meet up. OTOH, not sure Mrs. Dog would understand the small decrement to our Retirement funds. Oh wait, let me go check my tome....must be in the Pearls of Wisdom -- add to bucket list: gotta meet Taylor in person. :P P.S. I don't highlight anymore since...
by Big Dog
Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Top 5 posts of all times"
Replies: 17
Views: 4206

Re: "Top 5 posts of all times"

It would be an honor to obtain an autographed copy of whatever you have in store. :sharebeer :sharebeer
by Big Dog
Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Top 5 posts of all times"
Replies: 17
Views: 4206

Re: "Top 5 posts of all times"

Perhaps I'm selfish, but I would much rather read another book by Taylor (the BH Guide to Retirement is already 6 years old, hint-hint), then read the drivel of the vast majority of so-called experts.
by Big Dog
Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Child Roth IRA advice: hiring your kids to model for your website
Replies: 14
Views: 1257

Re: Child Roth IRA advice: hiring your kids to model for your website

it would work a lot better (i.e., pass muster with the Service) if your hired help was working on the website for your C-corp. In other words, why not hire the kids to build your website for your MD practice, and not the "side hustle"?
by Big Dog
Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar panels
Replies: 57
Views: 3890

Re: Solar panels

Yeah, I agree that's a good investment with 35 years of good production and your bill is $100 per month now. It's a long-term investment. And don't forget, the Edison bill does not go to zero, unless you go completely off grid. They will still charge you a monthly hook-up fee ($10-$15?), so the tru...
by Big Dog
Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Bogleheads' Guide to Retirement Planning
Replies: 2
Views: 658

Re: The Bogleheads' Guide to Retirement Planning

Thanks, Camper.

also, Bogle's new book, The Little Book of Common Sense Investing, due to be released in October, is available for $5.00 off today, with the Prime code.
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 09, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?
Replies: 61
Views: 4141

Re: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?

RMD is not income at all but just a relocation of assets from tax preferred accounts to taxable accounts with a tax cost along the way. One could argue that the Annuity is the exact same thing: 1) you have cash in a taxable account, 2) you reallocate those cash assets into tax preferred account (an...
by Big Dog
Sat Jul 08, 2017 11:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: PHD student (bro) needs help with financial planning
Replies: 8
Views: 1356

Re: PHD student (bro) needs help with financial planning

Does Waddell and Reed have an account closure fee? If so, who cares? Dump them anyway.


Second this recommendation. And get out of gold and tech funds. Instead, look to Total Stock and Total Bond.
by Big Dog
Fri Jul 07, 2017 12:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help choosing type of taxable account
Replies: 4
Views: 427

Re: Help choosing type of taxable account

couple of tax considerations: Community property account at Vanguard means when one of the couple dies, the other automatically gets full ownership AND stepped-up basis. (assuming that you bought the stock when you were married and it was not inherited.) JT Tenancy only steps-up the basis for the ha...
by Big Dog
Thu Jul 06, 2017 9:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you keep a balance in your settlement fund?
Replies: 30
Views: 2894

Re: Do you keep a balance in your settlement fund?

I keep my cash in Vanguard's CA tax-exempt fund.
by Big Dog
Wed Jul 05, 2017 7:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ca. Muni bond funds
Replies: 12
Views: 1659

Re: Ca. Muni bond funds

So bottom line these funds are all losing value -


VCAIX is up 3.4% since Jan 1....
by Big Dog
Tue Jul 04, 2017 3:32 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: A Fourth of July Message [Independence Day]
Replies: 13
Views: 1337

Re: A Fourth of July Message [Independence Day]

Taylor never disappoints. A true gem on BH.

Thank you to all for participating. A relative newbie, I've learned so much from just hanging around. Happy 4th to all.
by Big Dog
Mon Jul 03, 2017 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars
Replies: 173
Views: 12860

Re: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars

All beat out buying a new car and keeping it 20 years, which has been my preferred strategy. What are the economics for buying one-year old new, i.e., new off the lot but in the fall after they come out, so the dealer is also selling new-new models, and keeping 30 years? Drove my '89 Volvo to work ...
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Picking College and College Scholarships
Replies: 365
Views: 29670

Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

He may add in GT, CMU and John Hopkins.


It's Johns (with an "s"). They are kinda sensitive about that extra letter. :wink:
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When, if ever, does it make sense to cease contributing the 401K max?
Replies: 40
Views: 5250

Re: When, if ever, does it make sense to cease contributing the 401K max?

If you are for example in the 15% bracket now but expect to be in the 33% bracket (or higher, who knows) in retirement, it might make sense to pay the taxes now and be done with it. Our 401k has a Roth option, so we encourage the 15 per centers to go that way, since it is still eligible for the com...
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: People who receive employer 401k contributions, how is it accounted on paystubs?
Replies: 28
Views: 2128

Re: People who receive employer 401k contributions, how is it accounted on paystubs?

There is no such thing as a pay stub anymore. Instead, there is a full page document that one can view online, download, and print. Well yes, and no. While a "wage statement" is required in California, a pay stub (aka "voucher") can fulfill the state regs; some employers still u...
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: People who receive employer 401k contributions, how is it accounted on paystubs?
Replies: 28
Views: 2128

Re: People who receive employer 401k contributions, how is it accounted on paystubs?

your 401k deferrals are subject to FICA but not income tax. The employer match is not subject to FICA nor income tax. These are federal rules for all employers and all matching, depending on the time of the match. Reporting requirements can be found on the link below. https://www.irs.gov/retirement-...
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 11:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Total Bond Fund in a rising rate environment
Replies: 59
Views: 4366

Re: Total Bond Fund in a rising rate environment

Historically, equities have had close to a near-zero correlation with equities.


Typo?
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Picking College and College Scholarships
Replies: 365
Views: 29670

Re: Picking College and College Scholarships

Princeton is also a lottery. :D btw: Notre Dame tends to take a certain type of applicant: ~half are former varsity players, so it may be a reach even with excellent numbers. Plus financial aid tends to be on the less generous side. What about other excellent schools, like Georgia Tech? VaTech? Mich...
by Big Dog
Sun Jul 02, 2017 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Childless couple - want siblings to inherit after we both go
Replies: 36
Views: 3435

Re: Childless couple - want siblings to inherit after we both go

annielouise wrote:
and 50% to my surviving siblings. (Although we are about to change that.)

I REALLY misinterpreted the parenthetical the first time I read it.


My laugh for the day. Thanks.
by Big Dog
Sat Jul 01, 2017 11:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: converting term life insurance to permanent insurance
Replies: 8
Views: 668

Re: converting term life insurance to permanent insurance

My insurance agent said that people sometimes choose to convert term insurance to a permanent policy with a lower coverage amount, as it makes it more affordable. It is a much, much lower coverage amount. My wife's term insurance expires in Sept. (20-year fixed). For the same cash outlay on a month...
by Big Dog
Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Single mom seeking investing advice
Replies: 22
Views: 2044

Re: Single mom seeking investing advice

welcome mom. Sorry to hear about your family situation, but you have chosen to join one of the most useful forums on the 'net. There are a LOT of brilliant folks on here which willingly share their time and expertise. My first reaction was too many accounts in Taxable. At a 30% combined tax rate, I'...
by Big Dog
Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BRKB Stock [Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Class B]
Replies: 26
Views: 2598

Re: BRKB Stock [Berkshire Hathaway Inc. Class B]

been an owner since Day 1, so I'm in the hold category to avoid cap gains.
by Big Dog
Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Index fund fallacy - what we lost sight of!!
Replies: 55
Views: 6615

Re: The Index fund fallacy - what we lost sight of!!

What say you?, I say it a rambling piece just to get to the punchline (~9th par.) that you lean/tilt with International Growth bcos International indexes are conflated with currency fluctuations. A more enlightening discussion would be a comparison of I-Growth vs. I-index funds over the last xx tim...
by Big Dog
Wed Jun 28, 2017 11:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry [Brokerage Services]
Replies: 146
Views: 14761

Re: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry

^^hmm, strange. I have an inherited IRA and it transferred over rather easily a few months ago.
by Big Dog
Tue Jun 27, 2017 11:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard 401k admin fees
Replies: 13
Views: 606

Re: Vanguard 401k admin fees

The fee is not for your benefit. It is for your employer's benefit. A more sensible complaint would be with your employer requesting that they subsidize the fee for you as an employee benefit. Correct. We moved our 401k to Vanguard/Ascensus, and our employer pays the administrative fees separately ...
by Big Dog
Mon Jun 26, 2017 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank Account - Payable on Death or Account Co-Owner
Replies: 14
Views: 1105

Re: Bank Account - Payable on Death or Account Co-Owner

My in-laws wish to make my wife a co-owner on a bank checking account so she would be able to take care of expenses if there was an accident where they (her parents) both pass or are incapacitated unexpectedly.


Why not just add her as a signer on their bank account?
by Big Dog
Mon Jun 26, 2017 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Won an ATV in a raffle...now what?
Replies: 39
Views: 3310

Re: Won an ATV in a raffle...now what?

Not sure if they'll send me a 1099 but my understanding is the FMV is reported as ordinary income come tax time...not sure how much that differs from the MSRP? Yes, ordinary income. You can look in local papers/internet to see what the exact ATV model is selling for, net and use that for FMV. Just ...
by Big Dog
Sun Jun 25, 2017 10:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy condo at Trump Tower Chicago a good deal?
Replies: 24
Views: 3437

Re: Buy condo at Trump Tower Chicago a good deal?

...some have been on the market over a year.


forget recent protests; what concerns me is the above.
by Big Dog
Thu Jun 22, 2017 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?
Replies: 64
Views: 4670

Re: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?

Never understood the need to give an 'explanation' to a call center clerk. One of the primary reasons they ask is to see if there is something that they can do to sweeten the pot, such as waving xx fee for a month or two. Getting into a discussion with the phone answerer is just a waste of both of y...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 17, 2017 10:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So sick of it! [Paying off student loans]
Replies: 42
Views: 6406

Re: So sick of it!

This is what I am a sick of paying!!!! It drives me nuts every time is see it going out of my account!!! More than my mortgage! Shoulda thought about that before incurring those loans! But to answer your question, I would keep paying them down. Perhaps add a thousand extra every so often, but I'd k...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 17, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Turbochargers
Replies: 60
Views: 3971

Re: Turbochargers

For me this is a simple equation. How much gas will I save in 100,000 miles and what will the be the cost to replace the T Charger in 100,000 miles. Yah, I know some of you will say they last over 100,000 miles but I am not going to be bet on it unless it is a Honda or Toyota T Charger. I wonder wh...
by Big Dog
Mon Jun 12, 2017 10:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TreasuryDirect - death of account holder
Replies: 20
Views: 2206

Re: TreasuryDirect - death of account holder

fortunately, the US Treasury knows that more and more banks are not performing a medallion (signature) guarantee anymore. When I pressed them last year when my step mom passed away, Treasury Direct said that they would accept a notarized signature on a letter that said something to the effect: 'my b...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it safe to prepay a Navient loan payment?
Replies: 10
Views: 1180

Re: Is it safe to prepay a Navient loan payment?

does Navient have an online account access? If so, when you send in say, $1,000 for principal, you will see the loan balance decline by that amount once they receive the cash. Kid's law school loan is on Nelnet and I'm surprised that they do a pretty good job, at least based on what I've heard about...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Babson College
Replies: 30
Views: 2390

Re: Babson College

It is clearly a regional school, but almost all are. And that was exactly my point. ...what you learned at the school is ultimately more important than name recognition. Do you really believe what they teach is that much different than the other excellent business program in the NE, say, UMass, Bos...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suits: best bang for your buck?
Replies: 64
Views: 7735

Re: Suits: best bang for your buck?

I'm a fan of Brooks Brothers's sales. (Father's Day sales have already started.)

And, if you open a credit card at the store, you receive another 10-15% off your purchase. Don't forget to pay the card in full so you have no interest charges.
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Babson College
Replies: 30
Views: 2390

Re: Babson College

That just demonstrates how elitist southern California has become. Perhaps, but the reality is that there are maybe ~ten national undergrad business schools; the rest are ALL local, with great connections on the local/regional community. Babson is less known on the west than the University of Phoen...
by Big Dog
Sat Jun 10, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College admissions question - she got a "C"
Replies: 100
Views: 8289

Re: College admissions question - she got a "C"

So, there you have it. Has that C dropped her out of the "top 10-15% of her graduating class?" If not, it hasn't closed any doors. Any ? Just not true. Unless the OP has a hook, Harvard's door is closed. But it probably was already with the B's. But as the others noted unthread, actual im...
by Big Dog
Fri Jun 09, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAA Cost
Replies: 85
Views: 6616

Re: AAA Cost

about $120 in SoCal for basic plan for wife and me.

Never had them change a tire, but have older cars ('89, '01, '03), and things break, so have used towing and battery charge. Service truck usually arrives within 30 minutes.
by Big Dog
Fri Jun 09, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Babson College
Replies: 30
Views: 2390

Re: Babson College

I would base a decision on whether the curriculum and "theme" of Babson is a fit for your son, and not what some potential employer With that, I disagree. Business is one area where pedigree can help, at least early on in careers. And since business is becoming more global every day, IMO ...
by Big Dog
Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Babson College
Replies: 30
Views: 2390

Re: Babson College

Much past NY the name recognition drops off, so really depends on your son's plan for after school.


Exactly.

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