Search found 442 matches

by Nearly A Moose
Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: DC 529 Plan vs other states'
Replies: 17
Views: 1010

Re: DC 529 Plan vs other states'

DC resident here. The plan to find the DC 529 and then roll out of it once you pass the recapture period is probably your best play. DC income taxes are high. But be aware the tax break is capped, I beloved to a $4,000 deduction per person (I know it's capped at $8,000 for a couple, each with a sepa...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Use Guest wifi for thermostat, Roku, etc.
Replies: 28
Views: 2792

Re: Use Guest wifi for thermostat, Roku, etc.

Subscribed.

What if someone were running something like an Amazon Echo to control the thermostat? Put them all on the guest network?
by Nearly A Moose
Sat Jul 08, 2017 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Transamerica Life Insurance
Replies: 8
Views: 520

Re: Transamerica Life Insurance

I have them for a term life plan. Haven't had to use it yet ( ), so no real interaction with them. Online premium payments are annoying because they make you use Western Union, which costs a few extra dollars. Considering switching to a different term insurer on premiums, but that's more because I'm...
by Nearly A Moose
Thu Jul 06, 2017 8:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1831

Re: To shred or not to shred, that is the question

Stick the bag into the garage until your town sponsors a shredding event. My town has one twice a year where they bring in a huge industrial shredder and it literally can shred an entire car load of documents in seconds. I've done that before also. In fact, last time it was mainly my mom's document...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"
Replies: 54
Views: 5610

Re: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"

Like many of you we have tons of accounts. And for the many of you who also participate in new account bonus chasing, you know what I mean by "tons" of accounts. My wife and I go over monthly all of our money and everything is tied into mint.com so we have up to the second views of our ac...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Educate Myself on Home Addition Costs - Preliminary Stages
Replies: 4
Views: 476

Re: How to Educate Myself on Home Addition Costs - Preliminary Stages

In fact, I bet OP is going to find that it's cheaper to tear down the existing house and rebuild from scratch than to make the additions he/she is contemplating. Ha, don't tempt me... this is a classic example of loving the area (with the only unknown being schools) but being constrained by housing...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"
Replies: 54
Views: 5610

Re: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"

Like many of you we have tons of accounts. And for the many of you who also participate in new account bonus chasing, you know what I mean by "tons" of accounts. My wife and I go over monthly all of our money and everything is tied into mint.com so we have up to the second views of our ac...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: High Income, High Debt, Low Life Expectancy
Replies: 21
Views: 4616

Re: High Income, High Debt, Low Life Expectancy

I'm terribly sorry to hear about your situation and wish you the very best. You didn't ask this question, but I'm pretty sure I know what type of work you're in and roughly the market. In reference to your comment that you could be let go "if you even look sick," do you have realistic opti...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Educate Myself on Home Addition Costs - Preliminary Stages
Replies: 4
Views: 476

How to Educate Myself on Home Addition Costs - Preliminary Stages

I've seen a bunch of interesting and informative posts on different folks' proposed expansions and renovations to their homes, but I'm looking for even more fundamental guidance: When you're in the very preliminary phases of trying to get very high-level information about cost, time, logistics, and ...
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with cashflow
Replies: 24
Views: 2879

Re: Help with cashflow

Another vote riding this one out. You're doing great with your retirement savings. Keep that on track. If you get strapped for cash, defer that month's Roth contribution, but don't raid the principle unless you have to. This is more behavioral, but you don't want to get comfortable doing that. Obvio...
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Grandson's request for advice
Replies: 37
Views: 3566

Re: Grandson's request for advice

Schools are teaching kids about penny stocks? Paul Likely found that on his own. I understand the impulse - he wants to own a lot of different stocks to follow them and cheap stocks gets him that. OP should find a way to let him own a few different names that he's enthused in - pay for the transact...
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jul 02, 2017 10:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Already feel like I'm making this more complicated than it needs to be.
Replies: 10
Views: 1186

Re: Already feel like I'm making this more complicated than it needs to be.

4 holdings across all accounts doesn't seem too bad. I guess if you really value having a smaller number of ticker symbols you could do that, but you are missing the small and mid cap exposure if you do it. I'll confess I don't really see the need to do this. It's not like you have overlapping holdi...
by Nearly A Moose
Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice on real estate options (pied a terre + rental)
Replies: 4
Views: 480

Re: Advice on real estate options (pied a terre + rental)

Wondering pretty far outside whatever financial expertise I might have, but emotionally and behaviorally, I would go with the downtown condo. It seems sized right for your needs, being in a condo helps with upkeep, and it sounds like the option that most easily lets you show up and get right to work...
by Nearly A Moose
Thu Jun 29, 2017 8:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with Choosing Funds for Utah/NY 529 Plans
Replies: 12
Views: 741

Re: Help with Choosing Funds for Utah/NY 529 Plans

I'm not in either of those state funds (using DC for tax benefits), but I'm 100% in the S&P fund for my daughter (~3 yrs) (the closest to a total market fund I can access). I plan to stay there at least 5-10 years, and then might or might not glide. Since I don't pay any tax on the gains, my cur...
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we/should we afford a $2M house?
Replies: 93
Views: 12526

Re: Can we/should we afford a $2M house?

Also, yes, you can afford this. OP has "low" savings because he must have just started his real doctor job and paid down loans (I assume). FWIW, we make half of what you do and will probably be buying a house for this much in a couple years (it's in the plan at least)....
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we/should we afford a $2M house?
Replies: 93
Views: 12526

Re: Can we/should we afford a $2M house?

To OP's question about building sites: in the second location, you say land as far as the eye can see. What does that mean? Who owns it, and what's going to happen with it? Unless there's an easement or restrictive covenant, I have to assume its going to become another neighborhood in the soonish fu...
by Nearly A Moose
Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good camera - new baby coming
Replies: 64
Views: 4154

Re: Good camera - new baby coming

We bought a Nikon D3300 and a 35mm prime lens with the idea of "saving money" on professional pictures. It works for the bokeh effect your wife wants. The entire package around Black Friday was $299 for the camera + kit lens and then around $130 for the 35mm fixed lens. This was a refurbi...
by Nearly A Moose
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do You Take Your Credit Card Receipts?
Replies: 85
Views: 6316

Re: Do You Take Your Credit Card Receipts?

I usually take them if I'm walking out the door with something, but that's mostly so I can prove I'm not shoplifting. I don't take restaurant receipts, etc.
by Nearly A Moose
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Practices for Managing Paper Receipts
Replies: 28
Views: 2281

Re: Best Practices for Managing Paper Receipts

The presumption in my household is that any piece of paper that enters the home goes straight into the trash can (sometimes with a pass through the shredder) unless there is a very compelling reason to keep it, in which case it gets scanned and then immediately shredded. So far, usual suspects for s...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 21, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP
Replies: 111
Views: 14607

Re: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP

Vanguard's Limited Term Tax Exempt Bond fund (VMLTX) has a current SEC yield of 1.47%. For those of us in high federal tax brackets (33% for me), I think this may make more sense than even the Ally 11-month CD. It's average duration is about 2.5 years and it's risk is rated level 1 on Vanguard's si...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 21, 2017 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP
Replies: 111
Views: 14607

Re: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP

Vanguard's Limited Term Tax Exempt Bond fund (VMLTX) has a current SEC yield of 1.47%. For those of us in high federal tax brackets (33% for me), I think this may make more sense than even the Ally 11-month CD. It's average duration is about 2.5 years and it's risk is rated level 1 on Vanguard's si...
by Nearly A Moose
Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Siblings in disagreement over mom's house.
Replies: 241
Views: 18066

Re: Siblings in disagreement over mom's house.

Sorry for the bad situation. I think the threshold questions are: 1) how important to you is your share of the value? As some have alluded, $50k may or may not be a lot of money to you. Don't think I saw this answered in the chain. 2) how much to you and the other sellers value family haromony? If (...
by Nearly A Moose
Fri Jun 16, 2017 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Parent's Portfolio
Replies: 12
Views: 1309

Re: Parent's Portfolio

Pardon my addressing a question you didn't ask, but the whole time reading your post I had thought this was where you were going: it sounds like want things simple, they insist on relying on you for financial guidance, and you're trying to distance yourself a bit. Why aren't they all-in on a target ...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Moving to] Washington, DC Navy Yard Area
Replies: 12
Views: 1233

Re: [Moving to] Washington, DC Navy Yard Area

Hello, friends. I'll be moving to DC in a month and was wondering if any DC locals had any insight into the rental market near the Navy Yard/Nationals Park. I'll be working at the Navy Yard, which makes my commute walkable. My main questions are: (1) Is traffic oppressive during Nationals home game...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Moving to] Washington, DC Navy Yard Area
Replies: 12
Views: 1233

Re: [Moving to] Washington, DC Navy Yard Area

Welcome! Depending on your budget and desires lifestyle, might I suggest you look into Capitol Hill as well, especially the Southern section, as that would be very close to your job, is residential (100 yr old row homes), quite beautiful, full of young families, dogs and babies but also some older f...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 13, 2017 9:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Joint bank account w/parent or not?
Replies: 28
Views: 2268

Re: Joint bank account w/parent or not?

I'd also second (third? Fourth?) the points about using TOD or POA instead of actually being a joint account holder. How awful would it be if you faced some liability issue and all of a sudden your mother's entire savings account got drawn into it? Since banks are finnicky, have a conversation with ...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 13, 2017 9:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to calculate Annual Expenses with spending volatility?
Replies: 15
Views: 645

Re: How to calculate Annual Expenses with spending volatility?

jebmke wrote:I just use a rolling average -- I think mine is 5 years -- that sort of smooths out the lumpiness. I also carve out capital items and look at the trend on everything else.


Wow, this is so blindingly obvious I'm shocked I haven't tried it yet. Thanks for sharing.
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have you canceled cable?
Replies: 90
Views: 6037

Re: Have you canceled cable?

Yes!!! We use Amazon and Netflix to watch what we want, coupled with MLB TV and a special Tour de France package to stream le Tour. We save $100 p/mo and watch a ton less TV, which is a real win-win.
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 12, 2017 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need Advice Urgently - Are we in over our heads?
Replies: 45
Views: 6253

Re: Need Advice Urgently - Are we in over our heads?

Don't forget that the mortgage payment is fixed (it's fixed right? Or did I miss something?). Give yourself a coupke years of cost of living raises, real raises, or bonuses (if you're lucky enough to get those three), and it will become much more affordable as a percentage of your budget over time. ...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Re: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

Consider taking out a $2M 20 year policy, so the coverage ends about the time your kids are finishing college. You don't need much insurance after that, and may consider cancelling your 30 year policy then, or not. ... -want to put both kids through college (assuming $100k (future dollars), for 4 y...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Re: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

Most of this is above my pay / income grade. But I can speak to FEGLI. You're not missing something. It is expensive (even with 30% subsidy) if you're healthy. I dropped it in favor of something I found through Term4Sale, after shopping around there and elsewhere as you are considering. (If, of cou...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nanny or Afterschool Helper finding advice
Replies: 9
Views: 818

Re: Nanny or Afterschool Helper finding advice

Neighborhood list serve and word of mouth. The good nannies get passed back and forth in the neighborhood.
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Budgeting
Replies: 47
Views: 3463

Re: Budgeting

I used mint.com. Still sort of do but lately have felt it's been a bit buggy. Issue is my wife and I just don't want to write down every single transaction. I think in a perfect world I'd use Excel, but I haven't found an easy way to get transactions and categories into it. You can download your Mi...
by Nearly A Moose
Wed Jun 07, 2017 1:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Re: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

Full disclosure since you're new to the forum - I'm an insurance agent. Edit - had you confused with another poster, but still leaving the disclosure since you're asking for insurance advice. Not sure I knew that anyway, so thanks. I think a disinterested insurance agent is what I need! My advice w...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Re: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

Insurance is a personal decision. My preference is to invest in 529's to take care of kids education and if I were to die, my spouse would most likely want to downsize the house regardless if it is paid for or not. As for future income, I would prefer to self-insure and invest that money (in your c...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Re: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

Why did you choose the Whole Life Policy? With the Term and other insurance, just wondering if it was needed or sold to you. You have large incomes to protect. The real danger is being a "Under accumulator" of wealth based on The Millionaire Next Door calculations. Very high income, very ...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts
Replies: 13
Views: 1416

Insurance Strategy Review - Soup to Nuts

I hope you’ll pardon the long post, I wanted to put everything together at once. This took a long time to assemble, and I'm really hoping to get some good input. I would like some feedback on our insurance setup. I've laid out some very basic financial info below, followed by a summary of our curren...
by Nearly A Moose
Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?
Replies: 67
Views: 6567

Re: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?

You can afford it. If you go 20% down for 30 yrs (many here like a 15 yr note, I'm just picking something) at 4%, that's about $3k/month P+I. Without knowing property taxes, maybe another $1k/mo for insurance and taxes, so ~$4k per month, or $48k per year. Throw in $10k/yr for random expenses. If y...
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please comment on employer's long term disability insurance policy
Replies: 6
Views: 521

Re: Please comment on employer's long term disability insurance policy

If your employer is paying for it then you probably can't opt out so the coverage doesn't really matter. When the employer is paying the premium with no opt-out, the amount of coverage you can purchase on an individual policy will be more limited. That said, it's a decent definition for a group pol...
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?
Replies: 67
Views: 6567

Re: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?

finite_difference wrote:Go for it. Put down 20%. Get a good interest rate. Make sure you and your spouse like the house and location though :) Short commutes are good.


+1 on short commutes.
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 05, 2017 11:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?
Replies: 67
Views: 6567

Re: I'm considering buying a house in the $800k range.. can I?

You can afford it. If you go 20% down for 30 yrs (many here like a 15 yr note, I'm just picking something) at 4%, that's about $3k/month P+I. Without knowing property taxes, maybe another $1k/mo for insurance and taxes, so ~$4k per month, or $48k per year. Throw in $10k/yr for random expenses. If yo...
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 05, 2017 8:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please comment on employer's long term disability insurance policy
Replies: 6
Views: 521

Please comment on employer's long term disability insurance policy

It occurred to me that I probably should have some long term disability insurance (i.e. I need to get some; one of the many things I'm learning from this group). I'm covered under my employer's group policy, and while I know I will need to buy some more on my own, I'd like some feedback on how “good...
by Nearly A Moose
Mon Jun 05, 2017 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spouse returning to work. How to keep low stress lifestyle?
Replies: 47
Views: 4997

Re: Spouse returning to work. How to keep low stress lifestyle?

Your spouse does stuff with computers, but what exactly? Is it something he can do free-lance as his own business? Custom web design, app development, etc? Being your own boss is the ultimate in flexibility, and if you don't depend on his income, perhaps a lot of the stress associated with being you...
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jun 04, 2017 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with Life Insurance Decision
Replies: 5
Views: 621

Re: Help with Life Insurance Decision

Just speaking to the emotional side, no reason to stick with the son in law just because you have a family connection. The older agent dumped you off when you didn't want to buy an overpriced WL policy for goodness sakes.
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jun 04, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inheriting Quandary
Replies: 46
Views: 6901

Re: Inheritance Quandary

As has been said, if you want a SIngle family home (and sized for 1), $2M cash will get that, even in the Bay Area. So buy for the cash and just buy something you like. Buy for $1M and put the rest into a massive "house expense" fund or something if prop taxes are that bad. Or just rent a ...
by Nearly A Moose
Sun Jun 04, 2017 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Budgeting
Replies: 47
Views: 3463

Re: Budgeting

I used mint.com. Still sort of do but lately have felt it's been a bit buggy. Issue is my wife and I just don't want to write down every single transaction. I think in a perfect world I'd use Excel, but I haven't found an easy way to get transactions and categories into it.
by Nearly A Moose
Sat Jun 03, 2017 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Down Payment:
Replies: 12
Views: 1209

Re: Home Down Payment:

How much higher are the jumbo rates? Mine is 3.5%, 30 yr fixed. I keep getting letters in the mail advertising 3.75 or 3.875. That's far from awful. Perhaps you sell primary home, buy new house with 20% down or whatever but don't withdraw from retirement funds, and whenever the vacation homes sells ...
by Nearly A Moose
Fri Jun 02, 2017 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Biographies and Memoirs
Replies: 33
Views: 2016

Re: Favorite Biographies and Memoirs

FDR. Have it on audiobook and listen to it each night while doing dishes. Americans in Paris isn't a biography per se, but it's interesting and seems aligned with what you've listed. I saw someone mentioned Endurance. A great read. At the end, pay attention to the hardship they faced and the percent...
by Nearly A Moose
Fri Jun 02, 2017 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help: Need advise on my situation with Student Loan
Replies: 8
Views: 930

Re: Help: Need advise on my situation with Student Loan

You need to check out WCI (whitecoat investor). He has some vetted loan consolidation companies on his site and several posts regarding refi. I'm fairly certain you can get a better rate than 7+% Live like a resident for a few more years, and you'll knock it out of the park! One other piece of advi...