Search found 751 matches

by MoonOrb
Mon May 29, 2017 10:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Credit unions are non-profit, how come they do not dominate over banks???
Replies: 62
Views: 2867

Re: Credit unions are non-profit, how come they do not dominate over banks???

To understand this better, it would be interesting to know what the most profitable aspects of banking are: is it the spread between what you make when you lend and what you pay out in interest on CDs, etc.? Or is it on the fees you charge banking customers, the other investment products you get int...
by MoonOrb
Sun May 28, 2017 11:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retiring in southern college town
Replies: 78
Views: 4888

Re: Retiring in southern college town

RoadHouseFan wrote:Alabama is as good as it gets. Wonderful state! Wonderful people with American values! The BBQ is unbeatable! The tea is unmatched!


Except for the last two, this has been true in every part of America that I've lived or visited.
by MoonOrb
Wed May 24, 2017 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to calculate tax benefit of owning a home
Replies: 28
Views: 1467

Re: How to calculate tax benefit of owning a home

Shouldn't the tax benefits also include the exemption from capital gains taxes on sale of a home in which you've been living?

FWIW I think some people overstate the significance of the mortgage interest deduction, though.
by MoonOrb
Mon May 22, 2017 9:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are your priorities for retirement?
Replies: 56
Views: 4998

Re: What are your priorities for retirement?

It would be fascinating if everyone posting here could check back in 5 years after retirement.
by MoonOrb
Sun May 21, 2017 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 2695
Views: 738845

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

I just watched "Alien: Covenant" today, and, wow. A lot of WTF type moments in it. I didn't have an awful time at the theatre, but I would recommend it only for people whose sci-fi fandom means they have a wide tolerance for mediocre movies. It will make no one forget the original (or its ...
by MoonOrb
Sun May 21, 2017 9:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What % of your income have you converted to wealth?
Replies: 133
Views: 16090

Re: How many Bogleheads have investment assets that exceed their cumulative lifetime earned income?

Many older Bogleheads. Few younger Bogleheads. More likely to be Bogleheads who retired early than those who continued to work; more likely to be Bogleheads who lived in LCOL areas but had jobs paying relatively highly for those areas, than to be those who spent their working years in HCOL areas. Mo...
by MoonOrb
Sun May 21, 2017 9:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV show recommendations?
Replies: 489
Views: 195629

Re: TV show recommendations?

Just finished American Crime Story: The People vs. OJ Simpson. It was excellent! Other shows since I've posted in this thread before: The Expanse, Westworld, Game of Thrones (I can't explain why I like it but I do), Fargo, Bosch,The Night Manager, Stranger Things. We really liked Person of Interest,...
by MoonOrb
Sat May 20, 2017 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are your priorities for retirement?
Replies: 56
Views: 4998

Re: What are your priorities for retirement?

Mine are:

Maintain health.
Live in a place where I can walk to things that I enjoy.
Travel extensively.
Learn something new, like a language or how to play an instrument.
Find a way to contribute to the betterment of my community.
by MoonOrb
Sat May 20, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What goes in your smoothie?
Replies: 45
Views: 2478

Re: What goes in your smoothie?

For anyone who hasn't gotten a Vitamix: get a Vitamix! Easily one of the best consumer purchases I have ever made. Go-to smoothie is: Frozen banana, almond milk, peanut butter, and vegan chocolate protein powder Alternate smoothie is: Frozen pineapple, coconut water, ginger, carrots, turmeric. Anoth...
by MoonOrb
Fri May 19, 2017 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks in freefall
Replies: 3511
Views: 907220

Re: U.S. stocks in freefall

I get a kick out of the realization that if it weren't for the existence of this thread, I'd likely have no idea that the markets had a pretty big down day. Over the last four months I've cut down my news media consumption by about 95% or more. I'm more likely to check financial news than anything e...
by MoonOrb
Wed May 17, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 100% VTSAX need advice [Vanguard Total Stock Market]
Replies: 65
Views: 6797

Re: 100% VTSAX need advice

I've made a similar comment a few times before here, but I can't help but think that there's a strong correlation between thinking 100% equities is a solid idea and recent history of strong equity performance. I feel as if you would peruse the forum between late 2008 and, say, 2010, you wouldn't see...
by MoonOrb
Sun May 14, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is there any reason I should invest any additional money into bonds?
Replies: 29
Views: 2496

Re: Is there any reason I should invest any additional money into bonds?

Given that you have no concern about leaving anything behind and your living expenses are currently covered, what is the downside in having a fixed income-heavy portfolio? You have no need to take risk and have no idea what to do with extra money and no desire to leave anything behind. More fixed in...
by MoonOrb
Sun May 07, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?
Replies: 213
Views: 17962

Re: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?

It sure can be helpful for narrowing down a list that is unmanageable into something that can then be focused on and more practically explored, though.
by MoonOrb
Thu May 04, 2017 10:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?
Replies: 213
Views: 17962

Re: Where to Live on $60K or Less a Year?

My immediate thoughts were things that came up a number of times already: Albuquerque and Reno. I'm with the majority here, I think, in that I don't think you can get every single thing you want on that list but you can sure get a lot of them in some places. I also thought of Bellingham, WA, but it'...
by MoonOrb
Thu May 04, 2017 9:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Paris for 8 days - what to do?
Replies: 47
Views: 2962

Re: Visiting Paris for 8 days - what to do?

Oh, I'd totally skip Versailles by the way. When we went in the off-season it was plenty crowded as things were, and having triple the crowds or more would have made it unbearable. I don't exactly regret going, but it's kind of a long day hanging out with mobs of people and there are just so many am...
by MoonOrb
Thu May 04, 2017 11:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Too much Money?
Replies: 40
Views: 7150

Re: Too much Money?

Keep in mind that your social security payment, when you get it, will likely be reduced by some amount if you spend a lot of years not working. So when you're considering early retirement, you need to think not only about bridging the gap between when you retire and when social security kicks in, bu...
by MoonOrb
Thu May 04, 2017 12:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Advice After Year 1
Replies: 9
Views: 1343

Re: Portfolio Advice After Year 1

I'm assuming based on your income level that you're doing backdoor Roths. Are mega-backdoors an option?
by MoonOrb
Wed May 03, 2017 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Paris for 8 days - what to do?
Replies: 47
Views: 2962

Re: Visiting Paris for 8 days - what to do?

We got a VRBO in Montmartre that was great and convenient. About 2 mins walk from Sacre Coeur and within a few minutes walk of different Metro stops. Really convenient. Vibrant part of the city. Out of town trips we did that were: 1. Normandy D-Day beaches (this was a lot to do in one day but I'm so...
by MoonOrb
Tue May 02, 2017 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are we (nearly) ready to retire?
Replies: 32
Views: 3189

Re: Are we (nearly) ready to retire?

Yes, you can do this. You can make the call on delaying SS when you each approach 62, but for now it looks as if you'll have your yearly expenses just about covered by pension/SS even if you both take SS at 62. Her immediate pension eligibility means you only need to come up with about $30k/year unt...
by MoonOrb
Sun Apr 30, 2017 1:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard adviser - advice when not carrying a mortgage into retirement
Replies: 57
Views: 4465

Re: Vanguard adviser - advice when not carrying a mortgage into retirement

Fifteen years out is far enough away that using some rule of thumb is reasonable, although I would never use 80% of current income as this rule of thumb. I use something like "current expenditures plus 25%" as our rule of thumb. This is also conservative IMO and I'd be surprised if it turn...
by MoonOrb
Sat Apr 29, 2017 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I in Trouble [Assets in cash, help requested]
Replies: 17
Views: 2528

Re: Am I in Trouble

You have a lot of assets for someone who needs to come up with about $25k/year to fund your expenses (after SS and rental income are factored in). Even if you lose half of what you have, you should easily have enough. If you're anxious about getting into the market right now you could (a) set aside ...
by MoonOrb
Fri Apr 28, 2017 9:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does Portfolio Size Influence Stock/Bond Allocation?
Replies: 43
Views: 4261

Re: Does Portfolio Size Influence Stock/Bond Allocation?

If you're going to have enough to live the lifestyle you want to live and accomplish what you want to accomplish even if the market goes through a tremendous downturn, then you might as well be in 100% equities, I guess. I can't imagine why I'd personally bother with this. I'm 70/30 gradually moving...
by MoonOrb
Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:24 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking advice: Pay off student loan or ???
Replies: 15
Views: 1125

Re: Seeking advice: Pay off student loan or ???

The better financial decision is to invest the money. If the emotional weight of owing a small amount of money in student loans is so great that you'd feel better eliminating them than having a greater net worth in the future, then you should pay them off now. Whatever you do, you won't be making a ...
by MoonOrb
Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Capitalize Your Pension and SSA for AA Purposes?
Replies: 8
Views: 832

Re: How to Capitalize Your Pension and SSA for AA Purposes?

I have two main (somewhat contradictory) thoughts about this. First, generally this doesn't affect my asset allocation decision at all. My asset allocation is 70/30 right now and I don't know that it would be very different no matter how much or how little I had invested. The second thought is that ...
by MoonOrb
Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thinking in real vs. nominal
Replies: 46
Views: 3178

Re: Thinking in real vs. nominal

Thanks for all of the replies. For what it's worth, I do projections with both real and nominal, so exploring this curiosity for me doesn't have much impact on my overall approach to planning. But it was something I've wondered about, because it seems to me that there might be some advantage in an i...
by MoonOrb
Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Mortgage, need help with financial considerations (15 vs. 30 year)
Replies: 24
Views: 2059

Re: First Mortgage, need help with financial considerations (15 vs. 30 year)

30 year is a good plan. You can prioritize maximizing your tax-advantaged space. I don't agree that you can just up and refinance into a 30 year if something happens where one of you loses a job. Maybe you can, maybe you can't. The bank will care about your ability to repay...if one of you is jobles...
by MoonOrb
Mon Apr 24, 2017 9:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Thinking in real vs. nominal
Replies: 46
Views: 3178

Thinking in real vs. nominal

For those of you who do your planning strictly in terms of real growth, is the motivation simply that it makes projection easier because it eliminates the variable of inflation? I've been wondering about this because I've been thinking that inflation, if it increases investment growth at the same ra...
by MoonOrb
Mon Apr 24, 2017 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Comcast negotiations
Replies: 58
Views: 6262

Re: Comcast negotiations

Last year when I called Comcast to tell them my internet service was slow they offered me free HBO for a year. I told them I didn't have cable or a cable box so they said they would give me the most basic cable and a cable box for free. I said okay. Because it was a year ago and I'd have to pay for ...
by MoonOrb
Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should some professions tell people how much they make?
Replies: 39
Views: 4969

Re: Should some professions tell people how much they make?

If you haven't read it already, pick up a copy of "How to Win Friends and Influence People" by Dale Carnegie. It's one of a few books that has had a profound impact on my life and I imagine it can hold great insight for someone who is talented and hardworking and has a lot to offer prospec...
by MoonOrb
Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: National Parks in Northern CA
Replies: 34
Views: 2281

Re: National Parks in Northern CA

Stuff to do on the eastern side of Yosemite National Park: Bodie State Park (ghost town, mentioned above, cool). Mono Lake (it's a salt lake with pretty cool formations, just outside of Lee Vining, CA) Devils Postpile National Monument in Mammoth Lakes If you drive down even further south: Manzanar ...
by MoonOrb
Thu Apr 20, 2017 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When does it make sense to start paying down (or off) a low rate mortgage?
Replies: 53
Views: 5371

Re: When does it make sense to start paying down (or off) a low rate mortgage?

It makes a lot more sense to me as retirement age approaches and some of these things happen: 1. You're maxing out all tax advantaged accounts, including making catch up contributions 2. You have no other debt to pay off instead 3. You may no longer be in a position to itemize tax deductions 4. You ...
by MoonOrb
Sun Apr 16, 2017 7:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New contributions after making number, aggressive or conservative?
Replies: 30
Views: 2173

Re: New contributions after making number, aggressive or conservative?

If you're not happy with your current allocation, then you have a decision to make: If you value growth more, allocate it more towards stocks. If you value the security more, allocate it more towards fixed income. You seem not to care about leaving anything to heirs or charity so there's little reas...
by MoonOrb
Sun Apr 16, 2017 1:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New contributions after making number, aggressive or conservative?
Replies: 30
Views: 2173

Re: New contributions after making number, aggressive or conservative?

Invest it at your current asset allocation. It's gotten you this far.
by MoonOrb
Thu Apr 13, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What rate of return do you use when planning for retirement?
Replies: 178
Views: 22950

Re: What rate of return do you use when planning for retirement?

4% real. I also consider a range from 2% real to about 6% real. I can retire securely with a 2% real return but retirement will be closer to age 66 than 58. But for projection purposes I'm using 4%. I don't plan to adjust much unless unforeseen circumstances cause it. I'm comfortable with the amount...
by MoonOrb
Tue Apr 11, 2017 11:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Put $6,500 bonus check to pay off car or max out Roth for the year?
Replies: 29
Views: 1815

Re: Put $6,500 bonus check to pay off car or max out Roth for the year?

I'd put every single dollar of this into your tax advantaged accounts. Your 401k up to the match, your Roth, then fully fund your 401k. Then a spousal IRA after that, if that's something you can do. If you have enough left over after that and are choosing between taxable investing and paying off you...
by MoonOrb
Sat Apr 08, 2017 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help on how to spend more on myself (First World Whine)
Replies: 93
Views: 5654

Re: Help on how to spend more on myself (First World Whine)

Here is a random list of things that I feel like I've received a substantial amount of satisfaction/pleasure from having spent the money on them: Vitamix blender Bose noise canceling earbuds Kindle paperwhite Tempur-pedic mattress A home in a location we really love, within walking distance of thing...
by MoonOrb
Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "the Truth About Your Future" - Ric Edelman's new book
Replies: 27
Views: 5517

Re: "the Truth About Your Future" - Ric Edelman's new book

I found his books to be really helpful to me 15-20 years ago because they were highly readable, entertaining introductions to investing and personal finance that got many of the fundamental ideas right. I'm way less enamored of him now that I have learned so much more nuance. But I'll always be grat...
by MoonOrb
Mon Apr 03, 2017 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Switching Jobs for less...Has anyone done this....
Replies: 46
Views: 3761

Re: Switching Jobs for less...Has anyone done this....

Yes. I took about a 35% pay cut for a job that suited my skills, abilities, and temperament better. It also involved working fewer hours and for an organization that I'm excited about. I have more autonomy and I cut my commute down by 2/3, too.
by MoonOrb
Mon Apr 03, 2017 10:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security for Millennials
Replies: 144
Views: 13980

Re: Social Security for Millennials

If I must, I'll do some combination of working a few more years and spending less in retirement, but this isn't a decision I expect to need to make until I get within 5 years or so of impending retirement and can see for myself whether there's actually a shortfall. Current projections would put reti...
by MoonOrb
Sat Apr 01, 2017 11:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio review and advice
Replies: 6
Views: 648

Re: Portfolio review and advice

Before you roll your old 401k into a traditional IRA consider whether you are someone who is likely to approach the income limits for contributing to Roth IRAs. If you can foresee running into the Roth contribution income limits, if you roll your 401k into an IRA then you'll limit or practically eli...
by MoonOrb
Sat Mar 25, 2017 11:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 100% stocks w/pension?
Replies: 40
Views: 4471

Re: 100% stocks w/pension?

The line of reasoning in which a pension is "treated like a bond" doesn't make tons of sense to me although maybe I reach the same answer in the end. It seems to me that what we're trying to figure out is the amount of money that we need in retirement, and this amount is driven by the diff...
by MoonOrb
Wed Mar 22, 2017 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vehicles as a percentage of net worth
Replies: 102
Views: 5714

Re: Vehicles as a percentage of net worth

I can't understand how a rule concerning net worth would be really helpful here. The guiding principle is: live beneath your means.
by MoonOrb
Wed Mar 15, 2017 4:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: "Don't time the market" vs. "Buy low, sell high"
Replies: 69
Views: 5496

Re: "Don't time the market" vs. "Buy low, sell high"

I think of this as reflecting--very generally--two things. First, that over time, the market is expected to rise. Thus, if you buy and hold you will tend to, as a general statement, buy low and sell high. Second, that when you sell as part of rebalancing to stick to your desired asset allocation, yo...
by MoonOrb
Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: gratuitous homeownership items
Replies: 218
Views: 18930

Re: gratuitous homeownership items

Our house was already 90 years old at the time we bought it--partly as a consequence it is small and has no real "extras." The previous owners remodeled the bathroom in perhaps a way that we would not have, but they didn't add anything gratuitous. We were lucky that what we bought suited u...
by MoonOrb
Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need guidance on my path to FI
Replies: 6
Views: 907

Re: Need guidance on my path to FI

Agree what Duckie said about the funds. There's no reason at this point to be in any funds other than those with the very low expense ratios. Among your 2 available 401k plans you should be able to have a very reasonable asset allocation just by choosing among: Vanguard S&P 500 Index Vanguard To...
by MoonOrb
Thu Mar 09, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Clawback of sales commissions earned
Replies: 42
Views: 2850

Re: Clawback of sales commissions earned

The reason to consult an employment lawyer is because states often have specific laws that affect an employer's ability to withhold wages. I have no idea what the laws might be in Texas, but I know they exist in other jurisdictions and employers are not always aware of them or especially diligent in...
by MoonOrb
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cashing out 401k at age 54 then getting re-hired?
Replies: 40
Views: 2645

Re: Cashing out 401k at age 54 then getting re-hired?

You should consider writing a book, this is amazing--it sounds like the town you live in could be the backdrop for a Jack Reacher novel. On a more serious note the community of folks here generally have very different ideas about finances than you do. You're asking a legal question about tax laws--I...
by MoonOrb
Tue Mar 07, 2017 8:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Oh no! The Ohama Titanic Syndrome signal.
Replies: 24
Views: 4615

Re: Oh no! The Ohama Titanic Syndrome signal.

Folks, the Ohana Titanic Syndrome is no laughing matter. When I had it in '06, I lost 45 pounds, was laid up in bed for weeks, and had fevers as high as 108.

Be careful out there.
by MoonOrb
Tue Mar 07, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on relocation or staying put
Replies: 83
Views: 5820

Re: Advice on relocation or staying put

KlangFool, It appears like OP is indeed considering--or had already considered--other choices beyond just Seattle and Boston though? I'm picking up a sense in this thread that feels a little more to me like OP is being interrogated rather than he is being helped. Suggesting other areas looks like ac...

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