Search found 175 matches

by Nords
Sat Jun 16, 2018 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multi-year Service Agreement - take it now or later?
Replies: 4
Views: 436

Re: Multi-year Service Agreement - take it now or later?

Thanks, Nords! I always appreciate your insight. As a side note, you were one of the people who gave me the best advice - don't buy a home in the military. That put me at peace and gave me a different perspective on my 'numbers' - now we are aggressively building our diversified nest egg instead. T...
by Nords
Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Special Needs Trust
Replies: 20
Views: 1378

Re: Special Needs Trust

I am a 35yo physician just finishing up my last few years of training and trying to figure out finances. I have an 8 yo daughter who was born prematurely and has a lot of medical needs. Luckily, I am in the military and her healthcare is covered 100%. I don't have a lot of assets (~$150,000) but I ...
by Nords
Sat Jun 16, 2018 11:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multi-year Service Agreement - take it now or later?
Replies: 4
Views: 436

Re: Multi-year Service Agreement - take it now or later?

Well, one way would be to opt in to the Blended Retirement System now, so that your DoD matching TSP contributions will compound faster than the portion of the High Three pension you'll give up. If you're already opted in to the BRS then you could serve concurrent obligations by signing up for the C...
by Nords
Tue May 08, 2018 12:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement at 43-45 (Military)
Replies: 17
Views: 2853

Re: Retirement at 43-45 (Military)

Sandi_k wrote:
Tue May 08, 2018 12:14 am
https://the-military-guide.com/3-steps-retire-early-military-salary/

https://the-military-guide.com/
Rich Carey (RichOnMoney) is another servicemember with great advice! Thanks, Sandi.
by Nords
Sat May 05, 2018 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: T-mobile military deal for families
Replies: 3
Views: 651

Re: T-mobile military deal for families

For you military retirees, T-Mobile knocked our monthly one-phone bill down to $55/month (from $57.84). We don't use Netflix so I didn't ask about that. However their lower bill also removed our account's 2GB cap on bandwidth, which could be handy in the future. The verification was simple-- I diale...
by Nords
Sat May 05, 2018 10:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement at 43-45 (Military)
Replies: 17
Views: 2853

Re: Retirement at 43-45 (Military)

Welcome, Mazur, and I recommend starting with these two pieces of advice: 1. Take it one enlistment at a time, and don't plan on going to 20. https://the-military-guide.com/dont-gut-20-leave-active-duty-reserves-national-guard/ This advice also implies that you should opt in to the Blended Retiremen...
by Nords
Sat May 05, 2018 10:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: id.me
Replies: 5
Views: 875

Re: id.me

Do any of you have any experience, good or bad, with this organization. Can they be trusted? They can be trusted at least as much as any other startup in this field. They've been in business for over eight years (including federal govt contracts), and they've survived far longer than most. I met a ...
by Nords
Sun Apr 29, 2018 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?
Replies: 27
Views: 3749

Re: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?

I agree with point 2... My point is that the military transition decision is a lot more complicated (and much more highly individual) than “Just take the money” and “It’s only 10 more years”. I agree that the OP is happy... so far. He asked what we would’ve done differently if we took bonus money, ...
by Nords
Sun Apr 29, 2018 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?
Replies: 27
Views: 3749

Re: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?

Even without a retention bonus, it almost always makes the most financial sense to stay in the full 20 by the time he has 10 years in. Don't underestimate the value of the military pension. Managing two careers can be difficult. A lot of people do it, even if the husband has to be a geo bachelor. T...
by Nords
Fri Apr 27, 2018 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?
Replies: 27
Views: 3749

Re: AF pilots and retention bonus, glad you stayed or happy you went?

If you separated at 10 years, why? Are you happy with your decision? What would you have done differently? If you accepted the pilot bonus, why? Are you happy with your decision? What would you do differently? So, the big question for us: do we take the bonus and get security at the cost of losing ...
by Nords
Sat Apr 21, 2018 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 3 years away from leaving military and buying home
Replies: 5
Views: 636

Re: 3 years away from leaving military and buying home

Purchase a condo/hotel room near the Strip for $150,000-$200,000 (or higher if I can qualify for a loan). Attend graduate school for a masters in education/get certified to teach in Las Vegas with my GI Bill, which pays for tuition and a $1,500/mo housing stipend for 3 years. Possibly work at the n...
by Nords
Sat Apr 14, 2018 6:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 6 yr Progress Update and Checkup
Replies: 8
Views: 1424

Re: 6 yr Progress Update and Checkup

Well done!! Check out 72(t) distributions for your bridge to 59.5 http://www.retireearlyhomepage.com/wdraw59.html Thank you! I appreciate that information. Regarding bridge options, I found this site the other day and it really made me feel better about and also think differently about continuing t...
by Nords
Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Buy? Military Doc. What would you do?
Replies: 46
Views: 3386

Re: Rent or Buy? Military Doc. What would you do?

Thank you, Nords. I appreciate you chiming in! I’ve enjoyed your posts and anticipated your conclusion based on the posts you linked. They make sense. Let me ask you this - given my higher likelihood of staying at a location longer than the average service member, would there ever be a theoretical ...
by Nords
Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Buy? Military Doc. What would you do?
Replies: 46
Views: 3386

Re: Rent or Buy? Military Doc. What would you do?

Thank you, everyone. Very helpful. Hey, RamblinDoc, let me pile on to White Coat Investor's advice with two more posts: Don't buy a home while you're on active duty: https://the-military-guide.com/dont-buy-home-active-duty/ And don't even buy a home when you leave active duty: https://the-military-...
by Nords
Sun Feb 25, 2018 2:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Military FIRE; 7 years to go & losing motivation--HELP!
Replies: 36
Views: 3621

Re: Military FIRE; 7 years to go & losing motivation--HELP!

The problem is that I've recently been struggling with the lifestyle that being in the military entails. We are about to PCS to my sixth duty station with a 15 month old and will likely have to uproot our lives at least twice more before my retirement. Does anyone else on the path, or who has alrea...
by Nords
Sun Feb 18, 2018 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

I opted into BRS the second week in January and didn't get matched contributions on my January LES. I split 50:50 with Roth and Traditional. I was wondering how this was even going to work for January since matching starts "the first pay period after (you) opt into BRS." Since earliest opt-in date ...
by Nords
Sat Feb 17, 2018 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USAA 41% More For Car Insurance
Replies: 43
Views: 2927

Re: USAA 41% More For Car Insurance

I've had car insurance with Auto Owners for many years. Last year their rates went up 26% and this year they're up 21%. I decided to get a quote from USAA and was shocked to see that their quote was 41% more than Auto Owners was quoting. I didn't seek any other quotes after that. Is there much of a...
by Nords
Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

Maverick3320 wrote:
Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:36 pm
You almost need a spreadsheet with all the different scenarios on it to truly make a comparison.
... and this Google Sheet might help get people started:
https://the-military-guide.com/military ... readsheet/
by Nords
Sun Jan 28, 2018 12:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

Sorry, let me get to the point. Are you saying if someone has a chance of not staying in for 20 they should do BRS, and if somehow they know they will be in for 20 or more they should stay with high three? Yes. If you know you are staying in, the traditional pension will almost always come out on t...
by Nords
Sun Jan 28, 2018 1:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

Do you think someone starting at say age 18, putting 20 years in for Guard/Reserve, then retiring so to speak at 38, would be affected differently by collecting at 60 as opposed to active duty collecting at 38? I would like to see some calculations bases on real scenarios to compare the monetary ou...
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 9:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

raisinsaregrapes wrote:
Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:35 pm
Active Duty AF here. I opt'd in at 6am on 1 Jan. A friend I am currently deployed with opt'd in on 2 Jan and he did not have a matching contribution. He is AD Army.

Image
Thanks, Raisins, that's the first LES I've seen with a matching contribution on it.
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Military TSP Question
Replies: 9
Views: 1052

Re: Military TSP Question

RamblinDoc, all of the advice you've received in this post is correct, of course, and I've also confirmed the TSP contribution-limit experience with over a dozen readers. Keep in mind that if you deploy to a combat zone then your TSP contribution limit rises to the annual addition limit ($55K in 201...
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

I am Guard and very skeptical of BRS. I think if you are going to be in less than 20, you should do BRS, if 20 or greater you should do legacy high three. Guard, and possibly Reserve, don't receive retirement until around 57 to 62 I believe, so that is another factor. Active duty gets retirement da...
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

Doctors like you (with active-duty obligations like that) are about the only servicemembers who could stick with High Three . Would you please clarify this, especially from a Guard/Reserve standpoint? My general impression has been that those expecting to do 20 or more should stay legacy, and those...
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Military Retirement BRS vs. Legacy
Replies: 7
Views: 750

Re: Military Retirement BRS vs. Legacy

There's no guarantee that I can stay in the military for 20 years, and in that case, I would have received nothing under Legacy. The continuation pay, as mentioned, may be more than $20,000, and if invested, would add a large cushion to my own retirement savings. These are the top two reasons to se...
by Nords
Sat Jan 27, 2018 2:40 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: this is why I value this Forum
Replies: 3
Views: 1486

Re: this is why I value this Forum

https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=238161&p=3729290#p3729290 See the post by Nords re military on disability retiring to Hawaii. It's just full of direct and seemingly sensible advice, pointed right at the OP's concerns, and anchored in personal experience. Thanks. After 15+ years...
by Nords
Fri Jan 26, 2018 1:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

January LES is out and mine doesn't show any matching funds, does anyone else have an indication that their opt in worked? Typically, a change in January to TSP contributions would only be effective in February, so was I overly hopeful that the DOD wouldn't let system limitations deprive us of the ...
by Nords
Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

I have just less than 10 years in with an ADSO that puts me at 18. Doctors like you (with active-duty obligations like that) are about the only servicemembers who could stick with High Three. You'd probably make more money from the BRS, but we all know that doctors have no reason to ever stop worki...
by Nords
Fri Jan 19, 2018 12:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique
Replies: 146
Views: 14887

Re: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique

Good grief, folks, after reading the first dozen responses to this thread I wondered whether this is the Bogleheads forum or Mr. Money Mustache? Why so much negativity? Where’s the support on figuring out how to make it work? With a poster name like SurferLife, the question is not “if” or “when” the...
by Nords
Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

Thanks Nords for the wealth of information! To sum this all up- I plan on contributing a percentage of my base pay to my Roth TSP that will be equal to or slightly greater than 1542 per month (=18,500/12). My monthly percentage will be above the 5% threshold to receive max DoD BRS contributions. Si...
by Nords
Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS
Replies: 57
Views: 5023

Re: Opted into the new military retirement system/BRS

I am under the impression that Roth TSP contributions are limited at 18.5k per year regardless of the 55k annual additional limit. If this is true, what will happen with my personal and DoD contributions? Will they stop prematurely summer or fall 2018 due to reaching the 18.5k Roth limit precluding...
by Nords
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Military Deployment Help—TSP Optimization
Replies: 17
Views: 1772

Re: Military Deployment Help—TSP Optimization

I’m an O-5 (Lt Col) in the military, and I’ll be deploying next year for 6 months from April to October to a tax exempt location. I’m trying to figure out the best way for me to maximize my TSP contribution (up to $55k) while minimizing taxes. I know the ROTH TSP is optimal while deployed because i...
by Nords
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disability Insurance Conundrum
Replies: 2
Views: 347

Re: Disability Insurance Conundrum

9Liner, do you still need the policy? For example if it's for medical care then the AGR has you covered with Tricare and you wouldn't need the disability insurance. You could choose your option 1 now. What's the policy's fine print about "serving on active duty"? If you bought the policy to cover ot...
by Nords
Sat Dec 23, 2017 2:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Naval Officer looking ahead to retirement
Replies: 10
Views: 1245

Re: Naval Officer looking ahead to retirement

Welcome, FSW! My questions: - My Roth is actively managed and I think I am getting killed on fees (Over $1100 last year). Does it make sense to rollover to a self-directed Roth with Scottrade and just invest in a simplified Vanguard style account to save on fees (Some kind of target date ETF)? Any s...
by Nords
Sun Dec 17, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maxing out my TSP while deployed
Replies: 7
Views: 1140

Re: Maxing out my TSP while deployed

Nords has numerous posts helping service members maximize saving in the combat zone. As I remember, maximize Roth prior to deployment careful not to contribute the last dollar of $18K because the DFAS computer may not allow further tax exempt contributions in the combat zone if annual contribution ...
by Nords
Thu Dec 14, 2017 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Military Blended Retirement System starting in 2018
Replies: 40
Views: 7659

Re: New Military Blended Retirement System starting in 2018

sergeant wrote:
Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:50 am
Nords, thanks for the information. My son is an Army officer deployed to South Korea. He has used your site to help his platoon members make the right decision on this topic.
You're welcome-- glad to help!
by Nords
Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Military Blended Retirement System starting in 2018
Replies: 40
Views: 7659

Re: New Military Blended Retirement System starting in 2018

As the final hour approaches I wanted to open this thread back up to updates from anyone. I too have realized that even though I plan to stay for 20 years, the right decision is to switch to the BRS. Thank you to everyone on here for the input. Nords, your most recent post on "Tricky Details" is a ...
by Nords
Tue Nov 28, 2017 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card
Replies: 278
Views: 51762

Re: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card

USAA does not subsidize its products, and even card rewards programs have to be at least revenue-neutral. It looks like this card costs more than it earns, but we already suspected that. If USAA can't figure out a way to make it stand on its own then they'll shut it down. So then the jury is still ...
by Nords
Tue Nov 28, 2017 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card
Replies: 278
Views: 51762

Re: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card

I've attended USAA's blogger conferences for several years, and I asked them for an update on the pilot. Their Communications team forwarded the response to me: "The USAA Limitless Credit Card was rolled out throughout the year as a pilot in a number of states. As a part of our test and learn approa...
by Nords
Wed Nov 01, 2017 12:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New to the world of investing.
Replies: 7
Views: 885

Re: New to the world of investing.

I am in the military and I have been told this a fantastic forum to get advice from. I am reading and learning as much as I can before investing my money but i could use some more help. Thank you. While you're reading and learning, take the first step of investing now. If you're not already doing s...
by Nords
Wed Nov 01, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card
Replies: 278
Views: 51762

Re: USAA 2.5% Cash Back Credit Card

Crap. This card has been on my radar for over a year. Thanks for the update. It recently rolled out in Hawaii (although it seems to have rolled back in), but we weren't ready to apply. We've spent most of this year messing around with our credit. We've just finished refinancing mortgages (a six-mont...
by Nords
Sat Oct 21, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2692
Views: 520210

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

New policy from Chase, active duty military can be exempted from annual fees for cards opened after September 20, 2017 due to Chase's interpretation/implementation of the Military Lending Act (MLA). https://www.doctorofcredit.com/military-lending-act-everything-need-know-annual-fee-waivers-capped-i...
by Nords
Tue Oct 10, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP
Replies: 25
Views: 2650

Re: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP

Would you roll the small traditional IRA I have (~$6K) into the TSP? I cannot make deductible traditional IRA contributions, and cannot contribute to a Roth IRA after this year. Sure. You're unlikely to need to withdraw the assets while you're in uniform, and moving them into the TSP will almost ce...
by Nords
Tue Oct 10, 2017 1:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP
Replies: 25
Views: 2650

Re: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP

That is quite a prolific military family! :) I swear it wasn't my idea! My spouse and I met in college, and our daughter grew up with the Navy. She's the one who insisted on dating a sailor. It was very romantic-- they met during a cryptographic materials training class. 18 months later they decide...
by Nords
Sat Oct 07, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Bogleheads you would most like to meet and why?
Replies: 134
Views: 11833

Re: Bogleheads you would most like to meet and why?

military vets & especially retirees not for me, but for my kids (one in undergrad , another a similar path) so I'd like to pick their brains to help my kids with how to maximize their financial lives while in the military If your kids don't want to post here then they (and you) are also welcome to ...
by Nords
Sat Oct 07, 2017 11:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TSP and Income Limitations for Tax-Advantaged Accounts
Replies: 3
Views: 599

Re: TSP and Income Limitations for Tax-Advantaged Accounts

Just looking for advice for the military portfolio that exceeds Roth eligibility as well as deductions from traditional investments. I get those questions a lot from servicemembers, and you've answered all of them correctly. I could make a snarky comment about minimizing your military tax burden by...
by Nords
Sun Oct 01, 2017 12:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP
Replies: 25
Views: 2650

Re: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP

You were active duty military? Medical? I have never heard of a Personnel Support Detachment. I wonder if I can find out if one exists where I am stationed. The local DFAS office states that they have nothing to do with physician/bonus pay. The fellow who handles our physician pay says he cannot do...
by Nords
Sat Sep 30, 2017 10:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP
Replies: 25
Views: 2650

Re: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP

Thanks much for your feedback! I do plan on "opting in" for the BRS, I believe the earliest we can is 1/1/2018. As of 7/1/2017, the lump sum bonus pays for physicians (sans board certification pay), have been converted to combined monthly taxable income going into each paycheck. As of now, many phy...
by Nords
Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Federal Employee with Blank Financial Slate
Replies: 7
Views: 965

Re: New Federal Employee with Blank Financial Slate

ST346, here's some more info & links: Here's a summary of how to apply for your military service credit deposit: http://gubmints.com/2013/03/26/gubmints-comprehensive-military-service-credit-deposit-guide/ It's written by a submarine vet who worked in a federal civil service job for a number of year...
by Nords
Sat Sep 30, 2017 12:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP
Replies: 25
Views: 2650

Re: 3 months left to contribute and max TSP

A few more comments, WanderingDoc. You may have already noticed this, but your myPay account will let you set your traditional TSP contribution to 92% (the other 7.45% is reserved for FICA) while you can only set your Roth TSP contribution to 60%-65% (varies by service). DFAS has the lower limit on ...