Search found 2029 matches

by MathWizard
Thu May 05, 2016 9:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safe withdrawal rates
Replies: 17
Views: 1560

Re: Safe withdrawal rates

I'm planning using the 4% rule, but will establish a floor with SS and an inflation adjusted SPIA that will handle base expenses (food , housing, medical, taxes ...). Discretionary spending can then be extremely variable. I do plan to delay SS, which is like buying an inflation adjusted SPIAs with s...
by MathWizard
Thu May 05, 2016 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not at fault Car accident, should I file for Arbitration?
Replies: 23
Views: 1494

Re: Not at fault Car accident, should I file for Arbitration?

I've never had a problem like this. When in an accident, either I was at fault or the other party was. I reported the accident to my insurance agency, and gave them the info of the other agency, and everything was taken care of. I would ask your Geico Insurance agent to handle this. If they will not...
by MathWizard
Tue May 03, 2016 4:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Numeracy and Wealth
Replies: 32
Views: 4094

Re: Numeracy and Wealth

Part of the problem is the shift in math education in elementary school to math appreciation. Its what you'd get if you tried to teach someone how to throw and catch by explaining it to them and having them explain it back, rather than just throwing and catching repetitively. The dismissiveness tow...
by MathWizard
Tue May 03, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??
Replies: 89
Views: 2979

Re: Sci-Fi ... your favorite movies and episodes??

Big Star Trek fan (watched the original as a child when we were still reaching for the moon.) Favorites of Original Series: Guardian of Forever ; Doomsday Machine; Assignment Earth Non-trek Movies: Forbidden Planet; Stargate; The Day the Earth Stood Still; Authors: Clarke, Asimov; Heinlein ; Bradbur...
by MathWizard
Mon May 02, 2016 8:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much House
Replies: 59
Views: 4713

Re: How Much House

For all of the BH homeowners... What was the purchase price of your house in comparison to annual income, NW, etc? Did you pay cash or finance? How close are you to work? Do you feel like you are living comfortably or is too much/too little house? Thanks. Mortgage was 1.85x higher earner's income a...
by MathWizard
Mon May 02, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to double check CPA work?
Replies: 24
Views: 1750

Re: How to double check CPA work?

If you are really worried, think significant money is at stake, and do not want to do it yourself, use two CPAs from competing firms next year, providing them with the same info. You are just getting a second opinion then. If you don't see much difference, pick the one you feel the most comfortable ...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 29, 2016 12:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please Help: Have Advisor, Would Rather Have Gains
Replies: 16
Views: 1649

Re: Please Help: Have Advisor, Would Rather Have Gains

OP, Welcome to the forum. I don't think you are going to get tough words. You've come seeking help, and you'll get it. I would just suggest setting up some form of Solo 401K. As a freelancer, it would seem that you are a contractor (correct?). If so, you have your own business. Doe that sound right?...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 28, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Young Male Living with Parents
Replies: 83
Views: 4142

Re: Young Male Living with Parents

Clearly financially the situation you have is better.

There is a lot of recency bias on the part of your friends.

In the US, it has not been that long since living with your parents until marriage, and maybe a while after
that was the norm. This was true both for my parents and my wife's.
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 27, 2016 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are females just not interested in investing in general or is it just the women that I date?
Replies: 89
Views: 8775

Re: Are females just not interested in investing in general or is it just the women that I date?

Financially, I've always been more interested in the long term and my wife in the short term. I also grew up poorer than she did, so that may play into that dynamic as well. We respect each other's opinions, even when we disagree. This actually gives us a good balance, as otherwise I might end up on...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 27, 2016 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy used or new? Which of these small SUVs are best for families?
Replies: 36
Views: 2030

Re: Buy used or new? Which of these small SUVs are best for families?

With three kids, you probably want a minivan. I've had good luck going to a state auction and buying one that was in the motor pool of one of the state Universities. These are well maintained vehicles. The one I bought it in 2006 was 5 years old, with 55K miles it has served us well. We still use it...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 26, 2016 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I Hate My Job: Politics at Work (Advice Needed)
Replies: 105
Views: 10863

Re: I Hate My Job: Politics at Work (Advice Needed)

I think that your assessment of the likelihood of you being continued is probably accurate. I would continue to work there as amiably as possible, and look for a better position elsewhere. It is possible that you are in too high a level R&D organization to be able to be the main PI at this stage...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 26, 2016 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to tell your child about Bill for tax preparation
Replies: 53
Views: 4876

Re: What to tell your child about Bill for tax preparation

I think that it is great that your son will come to you for advice in money matters. I hope that my sons continue to do so as well. (My oldest is 26, so not much different form your situation.) Next year, I suggest you purchase turbotax and do your taxes yourself as well as have the CPA firm do them...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stanley Kubrick's 2001 a space odyssey
Replies: 154
Views: 14633

Re: Stanley Kubrick's 2001 a space odyssey

I saw it the first weekend it came out. I *loved* it, my girlfriend hated it. I've probably seen it 15 times since then, and it made me a lifelong Kubrick fan. Still married to her, and she still hates it. :happy Saw it with my wife (girlfriend at the time) and sister. They both walked out during t...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Economics Math and Differences (from another thread)
Replies: 4
Views: 614

Re: Economics Math and Differences (from another thread)

I believe you are correct.

See the SSA website, and use the calculator
https://www.ssa.gov/OACT/quickcalc/early_late.html

to see this. I am assuming that the SSA calculator is correct.
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost to refinish hardwood floors and to install new floors
Replies: 16
Views: 1077

Re: Cost to refinish hardwood floors and to install new floors

This does not seem out of line to me. 11 years ago I had 800 sq ft sanded/refinished plus 200 of new red oak installed and that ran about $5K. You are adding much more to the install and have demolition of the tile, and it is 11 yrs later. You could try a calculator like: http://www.homewyse.com/cos...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Least bad Tiaa-Cref option
Replies: 10
Views: 801

Re: Least bad Tiaa-Cref option

I chose the Equity Index for stocks. It is supposed to track the Russell 3000, which is the closest I could
come to the vanguard VTSAX.

It's also the lowest ER in your list.
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 25, 2016 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice for post retirement career
Replies: 53
Views: 2723

Re: Advice for post retirement career

I'm assuming that the pension tops out after 30 years, or increases very slowly after that. However, that only applies for teaching in your state. If the only reason to switch careers is the pension issue, and you aren't burned out from teaching, you might want to consider teaching in another state....
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 22, 2016 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why am I still scared ? Is it actually normal ?
Replies: 59
Views: 6573

Re: Why am I still scared ? Is it actually normal ?

You are not alone. With a son still in college, and a mortgage, and a new position at work, I often worry, especially in the middle of the night . I expect to become FI in about 3-4 years, and probably work a few years after that for a cushion. I think those extra years will be much less stressful, ...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 21, 2016 1:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If past performance doesn't indicate future performance, why buy stocks?
Replies: 43
Views: 4044

Re: If past performance doesn't indicate future performance, why buy stocks?

I'm fairly confident that the market will go up.

For individual stocks, I don't know enough to beat the professionals.
That is why I invest in an index and can feel comfortable about it.
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reflections on the Current State of Personal Finance
Replies: 9
Views: 1279

Re: Reflections on the Current State of Personal Finance

I just concentrate on my wife and I and our kids. Most everyone else resents advice on personal finance. I've even talked about the benefits of delaying SS for managing longevity risks, and the replies are something like "I'm getting it while it is still around" or some such variant. Most ...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 21, 2016 11:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What do you wish you had known in your early 20's?
Replies: 46
Views: 4225

Re: What do you wish you had known in your early 20's?

I didn't really have the dollar inputs necessary for investing – both my wife and I were in graduate school with a young child to raise soon to follow. At the same time, we didn't make a lot of huge mistakes by getting into debt or living beyond our means. That would be my advice, get into the habi...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 19, 2016 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: mortgage pre payment, why?
Replies: 101
Views: 10455

Re: mortgage pre payment, why?

For me, once I can maintain a decent first tier EF and pay off the entire mortgage balance, I will. Before I can pay off the entire balance, I could prepay part to save interest, but then my cashflow would stay the same until the loan is paid off. This means more short-term risk for a long term gain...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 15, 2016 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Whats with the hedge fund hating?
Replies: 60
Views: 4368

Re: Whats with the hedge fund hating?

... I want to know how to print money because I can never cross the 20% mark. FWIW, a simple S&P500 index fund would have had eleven 20%+ years in the past thirty years. 1985 +32.2% 1989 +31.5% 1991 +30.5% 1995 +37.6% 1996 +23.0% 1997 +33.4% 1998 +28.6% 1999 +21.0% 2003 +28.7% 2009 +26.5% 2013 ...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 15, 2016 7:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did the brokers just get lucky?
Replies: 16
Views: 2467

Re: Did the brokers just get lucky?

You don't want to depend on hot tips from others. That would leave you vulnerable to pump and dump schemes. Only buy an individual stock if you think it is a great deal. In fact, the best deals would be on stocks that are out of favor, but still solid companies, so that they would be under-valued. T...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 15, 2016 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Tax filing mistakes made by your CPA (or yourself)]
Replies: 69
Views: 4164

Re: How often does your CPA screw up your taxes?

Never. Had a CPA firm do the taxes twice, once for each business my wife started. My wife was a bookkeeper, and had all the numbers ready an an office assistant plugged the numbers in. A CPA may have reviewed the form, but I'm sure did not fill it out. My wife and I did just as well filling out pape...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reading Devices
Replies: 43
Views: 2365

Re: Reading Devices

It sounds like I'm about the same age as the OP. I purchased a kindle paperwhite not long ago, and it just sits on my desk. I like the e-ink and the fact that I can store lots of "books" in a small volume, but it's just too small a screen to be useful. At the font that I am comfortable wit...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 13, 2016 11:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Too late to open and fund a roth for 2015?
Replies: 21
Views: 1302

Re: Too late to open and fund a roth for 2015?

Many banks have Roth CDs or Roth Money markets. I assume that this is for this kind of situation, or
perhaps for people who are using that part of the ROTH as part or all of their Emergency Fund.
You can always move the money later.
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 13, 2016 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: One finance/investing book you heard great things but wasn't your cup of tea.
Replies: 29
Views: 2360

Re: One finance/investing book you heard great things but wasn't your cup of tea.

Another vote for Rich Dad/Poor Dad In particular the way the "Poor Dad" was trashed. The "Poor Dad" was not some bum, but a highly educated person (college professor if I recall correctly) who worked hard. My take was that the book was a get rich quick book which usually had the ...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 13, 2016 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell phone bills and annual expednitures
Replies: 29
Views: 2830

Re: Cell phone bills and annual expednitures

This depends on how much other communication is costing you. I have a landline that is costing me $45/month, internet only cable that is costing $55/mo (capped at 250GB which I sometimes exceed) plus $16.67/month for two low end androids with 0.1GB/month each which we mainly use with wifi which is e...
by MathWizard
Sat Apr 09, 2016 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How often does your credit card # get stolen?
Replies: 73
Views: 3578

Re: How often does your credit card # get stolen?

Never a fraudulent charge. Only twice had a number potentially exposed (an website employee had CC numbers on a laptop that was stolen) and once a after a move my CC company updated my billing address incorrectly, sending my bill to an incorrect address. Both times, I just asked for a replacement CC...
by MathWizard
Sat Apr 09, 2016 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help needed: switch from 30 year fixed mortgage to 7 year arm?
Replies: 23
Views: 1519

Re: Help needed: switch from 30 year fixed mortgage to 7 year arm?

No. The downsides are obvious, and nothing in your post presents an upside. I assume you want to switch due to a lower interest rate, but you already have a 3.625% fixed rate 30 year mortgage. What rate can you get on an ARM, and what are refinancing costs? How much can the ARM adjust, both per year...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how to pay for degree(s)
Replies: 10
Views: 703

Re: how to pay for degree(s)

schoolboyguy, https://clep.collegeboard.org/ How about using CLEP to earn some credits on math and science if you have the knowledge? KlangFool If only I had the knowledge.... I would not feel comfortable skipping even the prerequisites. But thank you for the link. I think that you are smart not to...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: what are the implications of claiming my significant other as a dependent?
Replies: 34
Views: 2317

Re: what are the implications of claiming my significant other as a dependent?

Financial aid doesn't count. Only out-of-pocket education expenses would be factored into "total support." I'm assuming the refund is coming from a tax credit of some sort, since she didn't have any income to report. Correct. I believe the refund is coming from an education credit. Are yo...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are you planning to leave an "estate"?
Replies: 74
Views: 6851

Re: Are you planning to leave an "estate"?

No, but using a 4% wr all but guarantees
growth in the portfolio value.
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 05, 2016 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: starter home vs. final home
Replies: 37
Views: 3712

Re: starter home vs. final home

What you want in a home can change over the years

With small kids, being close to a school was important.

We've had several older friend have problems with our stairs, even though we don't give
them any thought. As we get older, we'll likely
want a home with minimal steps, and minimal
maintenance.
by MathWizard
Sun Apr 03, 2016 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Easy way to estimate grade (steepness) of a drive?
Replies: 16
Views: 1208

Re: Easy way to estimate grade (steepness) of a drive?

A protractor and a plumb-bob, or a nut on a string if you don't have a a plumb-bob.

The tangent of the angle will give you the steepness as a ratio.
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which account should be more aggressive, Roth or traditional IRA
Replies: 21
Views: 2499

Re: Which account should be more aggressive, Roth or traditional IRA

I am more aggressive in ROTH. 100% equity versus 80/20 equity/fixed income in tax deferred. That may or not be better, but I am believe that equity mutual funds are better over the long term. RMDs play a part in this, since if tax deferred has the high gains, that will push me into higher tax bracke...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: do you do airbnb ??
Replies: 64
Views: 4220

Re: do you do airbnb ??

No. I can't ever imagine myself doing it. I don't use Uber either. I'll stick with hotels and shuttles or cabs. My wife and I just got back from a trip and of 4 hotels over 7 nights, we only had one stay over $100/night and we got breakfast at all of them. 4 of the nights were in suites, none of whi...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Name one good, Name one bad thing YOU experienced [that saved money]
Replies: 37
Views: 3030

Re: Name one good, Name one bad thing YOU experienced [that saved money]

My parents would not allow me to take Industrial Arts aka "shop" with my friends in jr high school and high school. I missed out on learning how to do a lot of "handy" stuff around the house. However, they did allow me to work at a motorcycle shop (and spend additional hours jus...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financially, how have you done/doing vs. your parents?
Replies: 134
Views: 10488

Re: Financially, how have you done/doing vs. your parents?

We are doing better than either set of parents, especially so on my side, where there is basically no comparison. My wife and I moved from poor and lower middle class resp. to upper middle class in both income and wealth. Our kids may do better than us. I hope so, but the bar is higher for them.
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for visit to Austin, TX
Replies: 14
Views: 802

Re: Recommendations for visit to Austin, TX

The Russian House has tango night on Tuesdays. Great instructor.

Food is good too.
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Name one good, Name one bad thing YOU experienced [that saved money]
Replies: 37
Views: 3030

Re: Name one good, Name one bad thing YOU experienced

Bad: Bought a (used) car with a loan in 1980 when I got an engineering BS because I thought I needed a reliable car to drive to interviews. Who knew they flew you in? 2 year loan, 18% interest, youch!! Good: Decided to go grad school and got married instead of getting a job. Hurt in the short term (...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 31, 2016 8:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your current Cash to Investment ratio?
Replies: 112
Views: 5763

Re: What is your current Cash to Investment ratio?

6%. counts checking and savings


The majority is my first tier EF

Lowest at beginning of year right after I contribute to IRAs and/or college costs hit
or after right after I have to replace a car.
by MathWizard
Wed Mar 30, 2016 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Updates on the status of Linux
Replies: 70
Views: 4393

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Ubuntu on Windows — The Ubuntu Userspace for Windows Developers Here’s let’s break it down slowly… 1. Windows 10 users 2. Can open the Windows Start menu 3. And type “ bash ” [enter] 4. Which opens a cmd.exe console 5. Running Ubuntu’s /bin/bash 6. With full access to all of Ubuntu user space 7. Ye...
by MathWizard
Wed Mar 30, 2016 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Updates on the status of Linux
Replies: 70
Views: 4393

Re: Updates on the status of Linux

Rather than anecdotes: A quick search reveals that other than the desktop/laptop, UNIX variants Linux, Android ... are well ahead of all other OS's. In the tablet market that Apple defined with the Ipad, IoS and Android are close to each other at least in Non-US markets. Linux is the OS on 494 of th...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 24, 2016 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $184,000? How do you like your cell phone now?
Replies: 59
Views: 6070

Re: $184,000? How do you like your cell phone now?

I recently did the same math and figured that, compared to our friends with matching iphones and money problems, at the current rate my wife and I are going to have about $600,000 more at retirement based on cell phone expenditures alone (we have basic smartphones and unlimited talk and text for $1...
by MathWizard
Thu Mar 24, 2016 8:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Financial Morality
Replies: 23
Views: 1771

Re: Financial Morality

I have doubts about my ability to accurately monitor the financial aspects of companies much less their other behaviors. If a company would be especially objectionable, I would not be a customer. A problem with an approach such as this is that those companies would have less freedom of action, putti...
by MathWizard
Sun Mar 20, 2016 10:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Importance of parental involvement in education.
Replies: 31
Views: 2426

Re: Importance of parental involvement in education.

Some states/districts have open enrollment options, where you can enroll your child in another district. You'll have to provide transportation, but you'd have to in a private school anyway. You can augment in a poor school district if you need to. Read to them nightly until they can read for themsel...
by MathWizard
Sun Mar 20, 2016 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $1 Million+ Nest Egg From Less Than $100k Yearly Income
Replies: 45
Views: 8295

Re: $1 Million+ Nest Egg From Less Than $100k Yearly Income

How long did it take you to reach $1,000,000? What are your best practices and lessons learned? Household income exceeded $100K for the first time in 2015. We would have made it to $1 Million invested assets by 2020 on our old salary. My strategy was: As soon I could, I paid interest only on educat...
by MathWizard
Mon Feb 29, 2016 10:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to convince a young person that she is right?
Replies: 24
Views: 3322

Re: How to convince a young person that she is right?

Perhaps you/she would find the frontline video
The Retirement Gamble
helpful.

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