Search found 966 matches

by Leemiller
Tue Apr 24, 2018 7:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with extra 50k? Still struggling.
Replies: 26
Views: 2125

Re: What to do with extra 50k? Still struggling.

I might pay down the mortgage enough so that you have 5-7 years of payments left. Then I’d probably leave the rest in taxable depending on how much state schools cost, you may be a little light even for that. And, there is also graduate school or letting some money ride for future grandkids.
by Leemiller
Tue Apr 24, 2018 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Salary Negotiation gone sour
Replies: 98
Views: 9588

Re: Salary Negotiation gone sour

Sometimes there is no room on base pay, just total comp. I took a job change where I ended up barely higher in my base pay but much higher based on overall comp (I got a first year bonus guarantee). Frankly, I would have been put off as someone who just hired an applicant by the back and forth and t...
by Leemiller
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Age 30 how are we doing
Replies: 5
Views: 1330

Re: Age 30 how are we doing

I would probably fund the TSP to the match, then two Roths to the max, then cash savings in taxable. You can use a Roth as a back up emergency fund. It would be better if you didn’t tap it for the downpayment (really there may barely even be a benefit to doing this given the timeframe we are talking...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?
Replies: 134
Views: 7926

Re: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?

I’m also appalled by some of the responses on this thread. There is also an underlying insensitively to many of them. Op is in great shape because she has a career but there is a reason that the majority of households living at the poverty level are headed by women. There are many threads giving wor...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 15, 2018 9:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Car Loan vs Home Mortgage
Replies: 28
Views: 2141

Re: Car Loan vs Home Mortgage

Are you dual or single income? I’d put more into post-tax savings to have more of a 12 month+ fund that could pay living expenses if needed. For single income I might even bump that, but I know too many people who were financial destroyed in the financial crisis. I’d rather have a portfolio drop 50%...
by Leemiller
Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young
Replies: 111
Views: 9828

Re: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young

I interviewed a bunch of people lately and what I wanted from older candidates was a clear demonstration of sigficant substantive experience. In your field, keeping up to date on the latest thing also sounds key. When I interview, I can talk through time periods of change that together means I have ...
by Leemiller
Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Crazy to start 529 without kids??
Replies: 49
Views: 3496

Re: Crazy to start 529 without kids??

No way I’d do this. Plus, it will put pressure on your future plans re kids.
by Leemiller
Thu Apr 12, 2018 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help with shared child being spoiled
Replies: 46
Views: 3911

Re: Help with shared child being spoiled

My grandmother spoiled me with gifts of cash and it didn’t ruin me for life. I certainly didn’t ask - more than once - for something when we were out. Some of the above responses just feel extreme. I don’t take my kid to stores very much, but when we do I’ve explained to her that she won’t always ge...
by Leemiller
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me choose a top law school!
Replies: 65
Views: 5704

Re: Help me choose a top law school!

With the area you are aiming for without Harvard/Yale that will be very challenging. For your current options, I’d say Georgetown has the best location for what you want and location is very important. Also, are you thinking of a LLM or doctorate? What is it you find attractive about that area of la...
by Leemiller
Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?
Replies: 134
Views: 7926

Re: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?

Op, I’m sorry you’re in this position. What your ex is paying is pathetic. I would consult with a few more attorneys immediately, and sue him for a fair amount. Women really suffer in a divorce. You may have to give up the funding of the 529s to survive now. Try NASA federal credit union for a HELOC...
by Leemiller
Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What would an extra $2000 in cash flow mean for a large family?
Replies: 58
Views: 4037

Re: What would an extra $2000 in cash flow mean for a large family?

What jumps out is that you’re significantly undersaving for college, for two, let alone five. That would eat up 2k a month easily.
by Leemiller
Mon Apr 09, 2018 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you pay off the student loan or keep the $$$
Replies: 48
Views: 2162

Re: Would you pay off the student loan or keep the $$$

Did you get 28k for the sale of the car or are you saying this has freed up a couple of hundred in your budget? I’m sort of confused by how much cash the sale left you with. You also have the option of focusing on paying off the student loan, while setting aside a couple of thousand in cash to buy a...
by Leemiller
Sat Apr 07, 2018 5:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Evaluate financial situation - goal is to save
Replies: 17
Views: 844

Re: Evaluate financial situation - goal is to save

What is your personal debt level besides your home? Looks like student loans and auto payments? Auto Note - 22k @ 0% Student loan - 16k @ 3% Mortgage 4% Heloc - 5k @ 3.25% Credit card BT - 10k @ 0% I think you need to drop your 401k contributions to the match level for awhile and clean some of thes...
by Leemiller
Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford new house(360-400k)?
Replies: 13
Views: 1675

Re: Can we afford new house(360-400k)?

My advice is to sell your current home and put that money into the new home. This would reduce your payments, maybe you could even go to a 15-20 year. Also, I wouldn’t add the stress of landlording and a bigger mortgage on top of job instability. Besides, why would you ever buy a single family house...
by Leemiller
Wed Apr 04, 2018 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grass is always greener, federal edition
Replies: 59
Views: 6460

Re: Grass is always greener, federal edition

Personally, I think you should make peace with your choice instead of creating so much drama in your mind about the private sector or wealth. People in the private sector aren’t missing every meal or suffering by going to businesses and telling them how they can help. I was good at business developm...
by Leemiller
Tue Apr 03, 2018 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford a house of 600-700k?
Replies: 56
Views: 4061

Re: Can we afford a house of 600-700k?

You can afford it, just depends on if you are willing to pay a mortgage longer. And wow, that is some gift from your in-laws.
by Leemiller
Mon Apr 02, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grass is always greener, federal edition
Replies: 59
Views: 6460

Re: Grass is always greener, federal edition

I retired from a senior federal position five years ago after 40 years of service. During the latter half of my career I did a lot of hiring. One of the things that intrigued me is that we always had applications from former federal employees who wanted to get back into government . They had left b...
by Leemiller
Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford this house?
Replies: 44
Views: 3020

Re: Can we afford this house?

I would drop your 401k to the match and stop HSA contributions and pile as much cash as possible. Then maybe I’d buy. But I think you need to pick one. After you have a good emergency fund, baby is home and healthy, and you know if your house was a lemon move the 401k back up, but you may not be abl...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Warning: Max out 401k early - lose some of the match
Replies: 46
Views: 5183

Re: Warning: Max out 401k early - lose some of the match

In my case, MegaCorp switches contributions to after-tax when the 18k limit is reached, and they will match those. So I'm able to just set it to the max contribution rate (30%) and let it ride. I get full match and can roll the after-tax out for a Mega Backdoor move. I need to figure this out for m...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Yearly Checkup
Replies: 11
Views: 1596

Re: Yearly Checkup

That mortgage is way too high for your income. I’d sell both rental properties, put the equity in your home and do a recast or refinance. I don’t see how you’ll make it otherwise. Especially once you have kids. Daycare here costs 2k a month for infants, nevermind what a nanny costs.
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do I need to save?
Replies: 16
Views: 2764

Re: How much do I need to save?

Single income or duel? I’d want a year or more of expenses saved, which could be invested in the market at that point. We have enough in the market now that even with a 50% drop, it would cover a long time period of dual unemployment. This could also be a new car or other big expense slush fund. I’d...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?
Replies: 192
Views: 10701

Re: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?

The longer it's in trust the more risk there is of theft by trustee. I've seen it happen. Or more likely mismanagement by the trustee. Lots of banks mismanage trust funds, during the financial crisis some of them had funds invested in instruments that became illiquid. It was a mess for those benefi...
by Leemiller
Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:13 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Reached 4M target. Taking money off table. Advice?
Replies: 120
Views: 20617

Re: Reached 4M target. Taking money off table. Advice?

A couple of thoughts... Divorce is expensive and happens to empty nesters, buy your wife a new or CPO car that is nice - I have the feeling she’d really enjoy a Mercedes, BMW, etc. We got one to celebrate my new job and I feel much safer in it than our very old Honda. I’m a nervous drivers and it ha...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 31, 2018 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?
Replies: 192
Views: 10701

Re: What age is the best to give a child control of an inheritance?

I grew up without much money, and I’m so happy that won’t be my kids. Honestly, it’s give me anxiety that I hope to spare my kids from. I would add a consideration that others haven’t, if I didn’t have the debt I did, or my general money anxiety, I would have had more kids sooner. I’m damn lucky to ...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 31, 2018 10:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Determine Actual Muni Bond Return?
Replies: 71
Views: 4727

Re: How to Determine Actual Muni Bond Return?

How involved is your husband in all of this and what was the purpose of the gift? Was it meant to be for something or just a safety net? It sounds like you’re doing a lot of the work here, and personally I’d be worried about your husband not being involved. You will have some big swings in a stock h...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $20,000 book - what to do with it
Replies: 34
Views: 5519

Re: $20,000 book - what to do with it

Well, it seems the value is more about the book being a first edition than the content. I would sell the book at auction, but then that is because I read a quote by Thoreau to the effect of why do people pay so much money for a scrap of paper with Shakespeare’s signature on it, when a copy of his co...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 31, 2018 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grass is always greener, federal edition
Replies: 59
Views: 6460

Re: Grass is always greener, federal edition

I made the jump from a high paying (non-GS) job to the private sector for about a 40-60% pay increase, depending on how you look at vesting stock. I have zero regrets. At my agency, I had prestigious assignments but was not management. I’m also in my early 40s. You’re right, staying in the govt too ...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: KF Annual Expense Based Personal Finance Strategy
Replies: 149
Views: 6297

Re: KF Annual Expense Based Personal Finance Strategy

Folks, There is a point where your portfolio is big enough that you can choose to save nothing. Let's assume that the annual expense = 60K and the FI number = 25X (1.5 million). The current portfolio size is 20X. Starting Net Worth $1,200,000 Annual Savings $0 Years Annual Return Rate 1 2 3 4 5.00%...
by Leemiller
Thu Mar 29, 2018 7:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: KF Annual Expense Based Personal Finance Strategy
Replies: 149
Views: 6297

Re: KF Annual Expense Based Personal Finance Strategy

I like this method, but think healthcare costs make it trickier as a guideline. If you’re assuming Medicare eligible, that works great. Also, we’d be pulling out lots of kid related expenses. I’ve also seen one where you break down your expenses into buckets. First would be how much it would cost to...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 24, 2018 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Light Switch Style and Why?
Replies: 12
Views: 1345

Re: Light Switch Style and Why?

We went with this brand and style, but ours was a lot more expensive. I would check the different models, and consider upgrading. We thought the rocker was a more modern look. I especially like having a dimmer option for our overhead lights. We also went with tamper resistant outlets, which is now c...
by Leemiller
Wed Mar 21, 2018 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: We made the right decision to not purchase a home now, right?
Replies: 47
Views: 3993

Re: We made the right decision to not purchase a home now, right?

I would drop the retirement savings down for one year or a little longer and save as much cash as possible, maybe contribute only to get your employer’s match. And then, but only after you are married, I’d get a house in the range you’re looking at. At that point, you’d have a much better down payme...
by Leemiller
Wed Mar 21, 2018 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Repayment
Replies: 30
Views: 2322

Re: Student Loan Repayment

What is your wife doing? That HHI is low for an attorney in NYC. She should be doing what she can to get into biglaw, work that a few years and pay off the loans. Plus, it is a good thing to have on your resume. I’m a NY barred attorney and I waived into DC. Lots of people take multiple bars. Either...
by Leemiller
Sun Mar 18, 2018 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bought house six months ago - now feeling like we're treading water and can't save money
Replies: 189
Views: 16483

Re: Bought house six months ago - now feeling like we're treading water and can't save money

I lost a friend to cancer in his early 40s last year, please get insurance for both you and your wife immediately. My husband and I both got an extra policy last year to have extra insurance outside of work in case we switched jobs. It was easy. Someone came to our house to weigh us and take our blo...
by Leemiller
Sun Mar 18, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bought house six months ago - now feeling like we're treading water and can't save money
Replies: 189
Views: 16483

Re: Bought house six months ago - now feeling like we're treading water and can't save money

I would lower retirement savings and drop the pre-pay on the mortgage. I think you have an unrealistic view of savings given your income and lifestyle expectations. Focus on increasing your income and consider as your child gets older if your wife can go back to work at least part-time. Also, is you...
by Leemiller
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paging BH Gearheads: Reasonable Net Worth for Exotic
Replies: 104
Views: 6451

Re: Paging BH Gearheads: Reasonable Net Worth for Exotic

Maybe 7.5m with kids, 5m married without kids, and 2.5m single.
by Leemiller
Thu Mar 15, 2018 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice re: Liberal Arts Colleges...
Replies: 235
Views: 12442

Re: Need advice re: Liberal Arts Colleges...

I went to a liberal arts college and majored in philosophy. My current career as a tax attorney is highly compensated with a good work-life balance to boot. Is your high compensation and good work-life balance a result of your philosophy degree? Or the subsequent law degree? Your data point doesn't...
by Leemiller
Thu Mar 15, 2018 6:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice re: Liberal Arts Colleges...
Replies: 235
Views: 12442

Re: Need advice re: Liberal Arts Colleges...

I started at a community college for financial reasons, it was a great experience. I then transferred to a state college and from there got a full tuition grant to go to law school. My undergrad degree was in the humanities. I’m now an executive in an in-house position. I probably would be doing eve...
by Leemiller
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Balsamic vinegar?
Replies: 31
Views: 3665

Re: Balsamic vinegar?

Oliviers & co. makes one that I like. It is syrupy and has a sweetness to it, unlike the many bitter ones I’ve tried. Beats staring at a shelf of options in Whole Foods.
by Leemiller
Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opening Up Kitchen to Dining Room
Replies: 17
Views: 1662

Re: Opening Up Kitchen to Dining Room

I would budget 50-75k given the DC area. Renovations are shockingly expensive here. We did a kitchen in the area which included removing a load bearing wall and opening it up. I believe our cabinets were around 25k, the wall wasn’t that big a deal cost wise but you want a good contractor. As someone...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 1:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable account
Replies: 7
Views: 1121

Re: Taxable account

We have tax advantages accounts with low bond allocations, maybe 10-15%. No sure on retirement date, estimate FI at sometime in the next 10 years, but we may continue to work. I’m mainly curious as to what others do and what their reasoning is. In some sense these funds are a replacement for the fed...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable account
Replies: 7
Views: 1121

Taxable account

I have some additional funds for our taxable account. Right now we are about 50% split between VTSAX and VFIAX. Emergency funds, yes and could pay expenses on one income if needed. MJF with federal at 35%, Md state 5.75% and county at 3.20%. Should I consider a state muni fund? We are somewhat heavi...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another shower question: ShowerGuard and Ultra Clear glass?
Replies: 3
Views: 455

Re: Another shower question: ShowerGuard and Ultra Clear glass?

I think we paid for both and saw samples in our home. So far I’m happy with our choice. Also, our bathroom is small so the premium to have glass that wasn’t tinted so much was worth it to us.
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is this too much for a kitchen?
Replies: 69
Views: 6583

Re: Is this too much for a kitchen?

I think you need a cost breakdown, at least so that you can understand how much you’re paying in cabinets and for things like the window change. I don’t know that I’d change a window out like that, but we did brick over a door and took down a wall - both of those were huge improvements. Plus you nee...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 8:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?
Replies: 80
Views: 9101

Re: Can I take an 85+% pay cut for fun?

I would explore taking an unpaid leave of absence for a couple of months. I would also talk to your wife about getting a job to help allow you make this jump. If she brings in some money, that makes the numbers work. Personally, I think you’re viewing this 35k job through rose colored glasses. It is...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 09, 2018 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To Move or Not To Move - Couldn't be more of a Coinflip! (Help Please)
Replies: 82
Views: 6970

Re: To Move or Not To Move - Couldn't be more of a Coinflip! (Help Please)

In my experience the rosiest period for a new job is around when you get the offer. Doesn’t sound like you’re excited about this one, maybe wait for the next offer from a school with more pay and a stronger department. Help can be hired, and who knows how helpful the grandparents will really be if y...
by Leemiller
Thu Mar 08, 2018 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford a 760K home
Replies: 32
Views: 2909

Re: Can we afford a 760K home

I don’t think you can afford it unless you put a lot more than 20% down. I’d aim for a mortgage of 2-3x your income.
by Leemiller
Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401K contributions (percentage sounds high)
Replies: 24
Views: 2564

Re: 401K contributions (percentage sounds high)

How do you want to live your life? What do you both enjoy and what are your goals? Personally, I would focus on 401k contributions up to a match, then Roth, but not much more than 15-20% of income because I’d want to spend some money now and save some money for longer term goals like home ownership ...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford to stay in HCOL area?
Replies: 72
Views: 5664

Re: Can we afford to stay in HCOL area?

It sounds like you need to go look at some properties for sale and figure out what you can afford, which may not be a SFH in your desired neighborhood. Lots of kids in my daughters class live in condos and townhomes in our HCOL.
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford to stay in HCOL area?
Replies: 72
Views: 5664

Re: Can we afford to stay in HCOL area?

$80k in expenses for one child, for one year? We have two young children, both in daycare, and our total household expenses (including mortgage, daycare, wife's college tuition, daughter's gymnastics and jiu jitsu classes...everything) were ~$45k for '17. If you are spending nearly twice that on ta...
by Leemiller
Fri Mar 02, 2018 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen features
Replies: 108
Views: 7298

Re: Kitchen features

I’m happy with our white quartz counters, they clean up with some Bon Ami. Sealed marble back splash. We have a sub zero fridge, Miele dishwasher and Wolf gas range. I wish we had purchased two dishwashers to keep our counters neater. We went with matching fronts on the dishwasher and fridge, nice l...