Search found 1426 matches

by Stonebr
Mon Jan 15, 2018 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to pay off mortgage (considering investment returns)
Replies: 9
Views: 1404

Re: Best way to pay off mortgage (considering investment returns)

I paid off my mortgage in 1999, getting lucky with the timing. But paying off in 2000 or 2009 would not have been so lucky. It's probably better to do it when the skies are sunny, the bulls are running on Wall Street, and all your friends tell you you're crazy. Happy days don't last forever, and I f...
by Stonebr
Sat Jan 13, 2018 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: wireless dead again - router suggestions?
Replies: 35
Views: 1632

Re: wireless dead again - router suggestions?

These types of devices are designed to be left running untouched for years at a time. Leaving them turned on is what they are supposed to do. My routers tend to die within five years regardless but I don't spend much on them either. We turn ours off every night and always when we go on vacation. We...
by Stonebr
Fri Jan 12, 2018 5:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How many years of fixed income for Sequence of Return Risk
Replies: 26
Views: 1906

Re: How many years of fixed income for Sequence of Return Risk

I went through calculations and modeling for months trying to answer this question a few years ago. Ended up at age in bonds. :sharebeer
by Stonebr
Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [How much should I give to charity?]
Replies: 17
Views: 1533

Re: Generosity

10+% of gross income to charity and about 6 hours a week volunteering is what I do. Don't know if that's generous or not. If a billionaire did that, I'd think he/she was a cheap SOB, but I'm not a billionaire. I give to charities that address extreme poverty and life-saving health interventions, fol...
by Stonebr
Sat Dec 24, 2016 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bought a house for 560k in 2007
Replies: 73
Views: 10189

Re: Bought a house for 560k in 2007

Sunshine22 wrote:Sometimes I think of selling that house but it's selling for 500k and in that case I will lose my equity.


You don't have any equity. The market price is the market price, and that alone determines whether or not you have equity. I think you should sell.
by Stonebr
Tue Nov 22, 2016 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: for a friend TIRA question
Replies: 8
Views: 731

Re: for a friend TIRA question

Can we assume there are no other invested assets like 401k? Can we assume she's thought about her asset allocation and risk tolerance? If so, these are all excellent choices. An IRA is the best place to own a balanced mutual fund. I don't have a strong preference among them. However... I've found th...
by Stonebr
Wed Nov 16, 2016 9:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)
Replies: 36
Views: 3742

Re: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)

In Dallas you will spend your life in a car, either in traffic or in a hot parking lot.

In Portland, OR you may actually be able to walk around.
by Stonebr
Wed Nov 16, 2016 8:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Comedians' best lines of financial wisdom"
Replies: 20
Views: 4076

Re: "Comedians' best lines of financial wisdom"

A couple more...

Groucho: "Alimony is like buying hay for a dead horse."

Groucho: "While money can't buy happiness, it certainly lets you choose your own form of misery."
by Stonebr
Sun Nov 13, 2016 8:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Age 92 Dad Wants to Boost stocks
Replies: 52
Views: 6191

Re: Age 92 Dad Wants to Boost stocks

My father, 92 years young, told me today that he wants to raise his allocation from 30% stocks to 50%. After talking to him again about the dangers of market timing, he's willing to moderate his stance a bit. For someone his age and with an adequate portfolio to meet his needs, do you think 50-50 i...
by Stonebr
Mon Nov 07, 2016 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Safe Deposit Box Fee (Bank of America)
Replies: 35
Views: 16186

Re: Safe Deposit Box Fee (Bank of America)

TD Bank offers a free small safe deposit box as part of their senior account package.
by Stonebr
Fri Nov 04, 2016 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fish again
Replies: 17
Views: 3785

Re: Fish again

Then I read that because humans are eating lower on the fish food chain, we're depleting stocks of small fish and larger fish are going hungry and dying out. I'm curious where you read this, because to me it does not seem to make much sense from a biological perspective. But then again, it's been a...
by Stonebr
Fri Nov 04, 2016 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fish again
Replies: 17
Views: 3785

Re: Fish again

What to do? find our omega 3s in chia seeds? Fish don't manufacture Omega-3s themselves, the get it from algae they eat in the wild. That's why farmed fish are so much lower in omega-3. You can take a pill and bypass the fish. Health food stores have DHA and EPA pills sourced from algae. Or you can...
by Stonebr
Thu Nov 03, 2016 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Secure alternative to Gmail
Replies: 48
Views: 8401

Re: Secure alternative to Gmail

I wonder if maybe an old typewriter, paper and the US Mail might be more secure than anything online.
by Stonebr
Sun Oct 30, 2016 1:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electronics Recycling
Replies: 14
Views: 1594

Re: Electronics Recycling

You must assume the worst -- that the recycling program is run entirely by evil criminals.

Remove the hard drives and beat them to smithereens with a hammer.
by Stonebr
Sat Oct 29, 2016 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warren Buffett(himself) has never invested in an Index fund, WHY?
Replies: 32
Views: 4884

Re: Warren Buffett(himself) has never invested in an Index fund, WHY?

..only return 'INTO my bank account' is dividends payout which is paltry 2-3% compared to 10-20% cash Berkshire subsidiaries send to Warren.. - The 10-20% that BRK earns (I don't know where you got that figure, maybe based on book value rather than market?) from its wholly owned subsidiaries includ...
by Stonebr
Fri Oct 28, 2016 2:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you make your Martini?
Replies: 63
Views: 5782

Re: How do you make your Martini?

5:1 gin to vermouth

Local ingredients: Cold River Gin (Freeport, ME) and Sweetgrass Vermouth (Union, ME).
by Stonebr
Wed Oct 26, 2016 7:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Investor Pulse Check
Replies: 8
Views: 808

Re: New Investor Pulse Check

1. Fund allocation doesn't matter much at this stage in your life. Just get exposure to equities, build an emergency fund and keep saving. The amount you save has far more impact on your results than the return in the early years. For that reason a Total Stock Index fund is the place to be. The 100/...
by Stonebr
Wed Oct 26, 2016 3:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: stable value funds
Replies: 7
Views: 1293

Re: stable value funds

Isn't that highly risky? what If one of the insurance companies fails like lehmann? i was reading that insurance companies with GICs have failed back in the 90s As a result of the failure of Mutual Benefit in the early 90s, much of the GIC market converted to a form called synthetic GICs or separat...
by Stonebr
Sun Oct 23, 2016 12:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: anyone using solar as an alternative investment
Replies: 9
Views: 969

Re: anyone using solar as an alternative investment

You would probably get more bang for your buck by reducing consumption than from increasing production. We have put about $15,000 into weatherization and LED lighting in the past several years. I consider this an alternative to a fixed income investment. The returns on this investment are the saving...
by Stonebr
Sun Oct 16, 2016 5:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safety in gold ?
Replies: 37
Views: 3349

Re: Safety in gold ?

I bought gold for safety in 1981-1983 and watched it go down in value for a couple of decades. It was safe, though. I kept it in a shoe box.
by Stonebr
Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: eBay?
Replies: 32
Views: 2990

Re: eBay?

I'd argue that if you've done your research, the "efficient" way to use Ebay is to just bid the max price your research says the item is worth and walk away, regardless of how much time is left in the auction. If someone else bids a dollar more than you did, that means he or she paid too ...
by Stonebr
Mon Oct 03, 2016 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: eBay?
Replies: 32
Views: 2990

Re: eBay?

I really don't mess around with bidding. I bid and if that's not enough, that's it. +1 That's been my strategy for the past 16 years. I pick my high bid amount, place it early in the auction, and let the chips fall where they may. If I lose out, a few days later another identical item will show up ...
by Stonebr
Thu Sep 29, 2016 4:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is Deutche Bank a buy?
Replies: 54
Views: 4975

Re: Is Deutche Bank a buy?

Reminds me of Bear Stearns. It seemed like a one-off at the time...

Buy Wells Fargo too for a little diversification.
by Stonebr
Thu Sep 29, 2016 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Expensive dry cleaning in Boston area
Replies: 5
Views: 807

Re: Expensive dry cleaning in Boston area

I lived in Boston for many years. I did my own shirts. I figured that after adjusting for taxes paid and unpaid, I was making more by ironing my own shirts than I was at my job. Like Andrew Tobias once said, "A penny saved is two pennies earned." Later I bought the all cotton no-iron shirt...
by Stonebr
Thu Sep 29, 2016 3:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: reit allocation
Replies: 30
Views: 4273

Re: reit allocation

Equity. There's nothing fixed about the income from REITs. I used to hold REITs and slice and dice. But then I found myself losing sleep over these picky little holdings in REITs, resources, whatever -- all the little 5% asset classes that were supposed to reduce risk and pump performance. After a f...
by Stonebr
Thu Sep 29, 2016 10:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable SPIA: Why Not?
Replies: 18
Views: 1667

Re: Variable SPIA: Why Not?

I have two different "variable SPIAs" with TIAA. One is based on Commercial Real Estate (TREA) and one is based on the broad stock market (CREF Stock). I've been pleased with their contribution to my monthly income since 2013... +1 No additional costs, but I do not know of anybody else th...
by Stonebr
Mon Sep 26, 2016 5:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I might have made a mistake on ebay?
Replies: 26
Views: 4122

Re: I might have made a mistake on ebay?

Sorry about your experience. I hope it wasn't a high value item. You can't leave negative feedback for a buyer... But you can do what I've seen others do: Post positive feedback with a message like "POISON, AVOID, Non-Payer XXXXX!!!!" One clown won an auction of mine and had a couple of me...
by Stonebr
Mon Sep 19, 2016 7:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: MetShield Annuity
Replies: 6
Views: 971

Re: MetShield Annuity

Run. These are expensive, gimmicky products that are sold on commission basis, not bought by rational investors. Here's a Boglehead wiki page on products like this... m The very fact that your eyes glaze over on reading the prospectus for this product is a warning flag. This is part of the product d...
by Stonebr
Mon Sep 19, 2016 7:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Last minute Portland trip, need help
Replies: 23
Views: 2265

Re: Last minute Portland trip, need help

I just want to see some beauty and stay somewhere nice. Not more than $300 a night. SO sick of the heat here in Texas. It's 96 degrees right now. Bend is dry ranch country. Great area, but if you want something different from Texas, go to the coast. I'd second the Astoria suggestion and add nearby ...
by Stonebr
Mon Sep 19, 2016 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone accidentally tell a friend about your inheritance?
Replies: 83
Views: 11383

Re: Anyone accidentally tell a friend about your inheritance?

You can assume he'll tell at least someone, and word will spread and get exaggerated. You could soon be a millionaire in the eyes of your friends. But really, you will continue to be who you are, and after a flurry of talk, your friends (at least the ones worth keeping) will accept you for the fruga...
by Stonebr
Fri Sep 16, 2016 3:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Good read on mutual fund investing needed.
Replies: 10
Views: 1049

Re: Good read on mutual fund investing needed.

Here's a link to the wiki reading list: m Of course, a good Boglehead will go to the public library first. Most of these books will be there. After browsing and reading library copies, you can make an informed decision on which, if any, to buy and use as a long term reference. My own favorite invest...
by Stonebr
Wed Sep 14, 2016 8:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Monsanto
Replies: 14
Views: 2318

Re: Monsanto

More sellers than bayers :wink: :wink:
by Stonebr
Tue Sep 13, 2016 6:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Index Funds a Lousy Bet Right Now?
Replies: 28
Views: 4683

Re: Are Index Funds a Lousy Bet Right Now?

El Greco wrote:This Kiplinger writer seems to think so. What say you?

http://www.kiplinger.com/article/invest ... geid=15477


I keep a bucket next to the couch when I read this kind of ****.
by Stonebr
Mon Sep 12, 2016 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are separately managed 401(k) accounts?
Replies: 3
Views: 536

Re: What are separately managed 401(k) accounts?

One reason is dividends and distributions. With a typical mutual fund account you have a choice of either taking the dividend in cash or reinvesting. Same with capital gains distributions. The share price takes a hit and then you buy more shares at the lower price or get a check in the mail. In a 40...
by Stonebr
Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: retiring with a mortgage
Replies: 35
Views: 3754

Re: retiring with a mortgage

I'm like your mom, I just don't like debt. My wife is the same. We retired a few years ago without debt. On the other hand, if your parents have plenty of assets (and I mean PLENTY) and could pay off the mortgage with a snap of the fingers even in a bear market like 2008, then there's a case to be m...
by Stonebr
Fri Sep 09, 2016 6:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone follow Tom McClellan?
Replies: 5
Views: 951

Re: Anyone follow Tom McClellan?

Sorry, never heard of him.

I still try to follow the Elves on WSW. :wink: Classic Taylor posting from 15 years ago...

http://socialize.morningstar.com/newsoc ... 45750.aspx
by Stonebr
Thu Sep 08, 2016 7:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 60 Year SWR Model
Replies: 15
Views: 2444

Re: 60 Year SWR Model

When I did my projections 5 years ago, I was able to trick Otar RC into projecting out 40 years by pretending to be 55 at retirement and asking for a projection to age 95. Maybe you could get even more extreme. We've found that our real life spending needs have been far less than Otar (or Firecalc) ...
by Stonebr
Tue Aug 23, 2016 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity for 28 Year Old Hippie
Replies: 41
Views: 5748

Re: Annuity for 28 Year Old Hippie

What's wrong with blowing through the money in a year or two? Maybe he'll have fun. Did your friend, the hippie's brother, also receive a similar inheritance? How does he plan to invest it? Maybe he could suggest a similar plan for his brother. I hear suggestions for a trust, but don't see a good p...
by Stonebr
Mon Aug 22, 2016 3:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This is why a 100% stock allocation is a bad idea
Replies: 68
Views: 10739

Re: This is why a 100% stock allocation is a bad idea

"Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth." -- Mike Tyson
by Stonebr
Sat Aug 20, 2016 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tips for a 1000 miles car trip with toddler and baby
Replies: 100
Views: 6356

Re: Tips for a 1000 miles car trip with toddler and baby

In the pre-cheap-airfare days everybody did this. I got hauled across the country many times as a toddler. It was probably torture for my parents, but they survived.
by Stonebr
Tue Aug 09, 2016 3:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Small & Mid Cap Funds
Replies: 6
Views: 1004

Re: Small & Mid Cap Funds

As has been said many times, there are things you can control in investing (manager risk, cost, taxes, turnover) and things you can't (everything else). These funds accomplish what you need. S&P has been doing indexes for longer than anybody except maybe Dow Jones. When you start worrying about ...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SWR and Current/Future Cash Flows
Replies: 23
Views: 1992

Re: SWR and Current/Future Cash Flows

I have run Firecalc. And Fidelity's retirement planner, Personal Capital's retirement planner, as well as the Otar Retirement Calculator. But I can't be the only person that's trying to get a handle on how SWR is impacted by staggered cash flows that are a significant percentage of their later-life...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: new potential tenants negotiating on rent
Replies: 72
Views: 8374

Re: new potential tenants negotiating on rent

They are playing games and will continue to play games. Do you have time for this kind of crap?

I would stick with $1600 and that a standard deposit should be a full month's rent.
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I sell taxable account?
Replies: 6
Views: 896

Re: Should I sell taxable account?

Cap gains rate may not always be zero for 15% income tax bracket. Sell FT while you can do it tax-free and put the proceeds into Roths, also tax-free. Your grandfather would want you to do this. +1 Zero tax is a gift. Assuming you see the light and want to Bogle-ize your future, ditching the Frankl...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Zero ER ?
Replies: 25
Views: 2904

Re: Zero ER ?

Apparently the funds make some money from lending securities. I don't really understand how it works, but it appears that ERs of 0 are quite possible and potentially profitable. Caveat emptor: In 2008 some institutional index funds had loaned securities to Lehman Brothers. When Lehman went down the...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Heart rate monitors
Replies: 22
Views: 1726

Re: Heart rate monitors

Are you a professional athlete? Have a heart problem?

I've gone my whole life without a HRM. Ran marathons, cycled century rides, climbed mountains. Keep it simple.
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help for 60 year old
Replies: 11
Views: 1797

Re: Help for 60 year old

I'm mid sixties and retired for about 5 years, so I've been asking myself the same questions for a while. Similar assets to yours, but less in pension income. I'm at 50/50 but with a pension like yours I might be at 60/40. My wife and I are both living healthy lifestyles with respect to diet, exerci...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To pay or not to pay off mortgage?
Replies: 16
Views: 2786

Re: To pay or not to pay off mortgage?

What you call "empowering" about not having debt is a very real feeling for me too. I've been debt-free for about 17 years. I sold stock in 1999, paid off the mortgage and never looked back. I feel so sorry for young people nowadays, locked into a lifetime of debt-slavery. It's a national ...
by Stonebr
Fri Aug 05, 2016 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on buying a used Prius
Replies: 58
Views: 19377

Re: Advice on buying a used Prius

Here is a helpful article on Prius battery replacement. Note that Toyota offers a $1,350 refund for recycling your old battery pack. m Consumer Reports has commented in the past that the failure rate of the Prius battery at 10 years is about the same as the failure rate of a conventional IC engine i...
by Stonebr
Tue Jul 26, 2016 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fav books about crashes
Replies: 10
Views: 948

Re: Fav books about crashes

The 1929 Crash is a particularly rich source of classic economic literature:

The Great Crash by John K. Galbraith
Only Yesterday by Frederick Lewis Allen -- chapters 11 through 14 on the Florida Land Boom and the 1929 Crash.
Once in Golconda by John Brooks