Search found 168 matches

by chipperd
Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much is your cell phone bill?
Replies: 256
Views: 21370

Re: How much is your cell phone bill?

We are now down to about $200 for a family plan for 5. We've all paid off our phones so this is the rate for data, text, minutes, and taxes/fees. We get about 18 gb per month, shared, plus carryover. We never even come close to going over. Unlimited minutes and text. I'm happy with the overall valu...
by chipperd
Thu Jan 19, 2017 5:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much is your cell phone bill?
Replies: 256
Views: 21370

Re: How much is your cell phone bill?

$100/month including all taxes and fees for 5 lines (smart phones) with 2.5gb data each. This is with Cricket so At and T network with no contract. Same service level for us as Verizon. No sharing which works for my wife and I with three teens :). If you use up your 2.5 gb data allowance, they just ...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 16, 2017 6:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What monetary value has your education provided you?
Replies: 107
Views: 5321

Re: What monetary value has your education provided you?

I agree with those who have stated that while this is an interesting question to ponder, really difficult to objectify an answer as one couldn't simultaneously know their current income and history while also knowing what their current income and history would have been. Anyone see "Back to the...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 16, 2017 5:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How am I doin?
Replies: 31
Views: 2723

Re: How am I doin?

navyitaly wrote:Nice humblebrag....you make mid 6 figures, you know the national average is like $40k or something, why would you need to ask people on this site how you are doing?

+1
by chipperd
Mon Jan 16, 2017 5:12 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 457 contribution influence or treated separate from SEP/ROTH?
Replies: 2
Views: 247

457 contribution influence or treated separate from SEP/ROTH?

Hello all, I am employed, just this past school year, by a local school district as a W-2 employee without a teacher pension (not in the union). I do qualify to participate in this school district's 457 plan and max out my contributions with this employer (age 50 this year; using the catch-up provis...
by chipperd
Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anybody else Age - 10 in bonds, rest in stocks
Replies: 58
Views: 3877

Re: Anybody else Age - 10 in bonds, rest in stocks

Just about:
Age 49
58%stocks
37%bonds
5%cash
by chipperd
Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My niece got accepted to Georgetown and we may have to pay for it.
Replies: 58
Views: 6691

Re: My niece got accepted to Georgetown and we may have to pay for it.

Add me to the list of the need for a tough conversation around affordability of a four-year degree. That said, to answer your question, any funds that are withdrawn from a 529 plan and used for an education, show up on the following year's college financial aid application as student income, which h...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Analyzing schools for an advanced child
Replies: 65
Views: 3958

Re: Analyzing schools for an advanced child

Since schools, like any other bureaucratic institution, are developed by humans, they are fallible. As many have already noted, the quality of any service (education in this case) depends upon the individual (teacher) delivering that service. I have worked in schools for 25 years and have three teen...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Resources for a child gifted in math
Replies: 34
Views: 1770

Re: Resources for a child gifted in math

I am a parent of 3 teens, with 2 being labeled by the school district as "gifted and talented" in the math area (junior in high school and 8th grader). I would encourage you to meet with your school district once he/she is 7years old and have a formal evaluation (I.Q. test) performed. This...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

Thanks again to all for your posts. I really appreciate you all sharing your thoughts and experiences, very enlightening for me to read.
Keep em coming
Thanks again
Chipperd
by chipperd
Fri Dec 30, 2016 4:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

Again, great info all and thanks Mel for the reference and contact idea. Will keep on researching for now.
by chipperd
Thu Dec 29, 2016 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

I didn't get them from any site. Rather, these are my own observations based on actual experience. You may want to try some expat forums for a specific country. For example, here is a good expat forum for Costa Rica http://www.expatexchange.com/ctryguide/4096/33/Costa-Rica/Expat-Costa-Rica-10-Tips-...
by chipperd
Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

I am frankly surprised, given the Boglehead mentality of getting more for your dollar, that more Bogleheads don't live in that part of the world. Well, there are many things to consider and cost of living is only a very small part of it. Those who are successful in retiring overseas tend to have so...
by chipperd
Wed Dec 28, 2016 5:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

I spend half of most years in Panama, on the Pacific side. I love it there. Strong economy, modern amenities, rule of law, welcoming to foreigners, diverse, beautiful You can have a comfortable middle-class lifestyle for substantially less than in the US (30-40% less) Medical care is excellent and ...
by chipperd
Tue Dec 27, 2016 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

Re: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

Thanks to all for the interesting and informative responses. Wife and I were thinking of renting a couple months here or there in various places around the world, and central America kept popping up, so thought I would ask. The boat idea is one we have also considered instead of or in addition to th...
by chipperd
Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car
Replies: 311
Views: 29578

Re: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car

2005 Toyota Sienna CE
230,000 miles
Kid schlepper bought used in 2008 with 45k on it
We keep it up, but only what our trusted mechanic says it needs.
Highly recommend that Toyota V6 and accompanying transmission
Chipperd
by chipperd
Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)
Replies: 30
Views: 4382

anyone living in central america?(Nicaragua, Costa Rica, Panama, Belize...)

Hello,
Looking at retirement ideas that are cost effective with sun and ocean. Central America seems to get a lot of good press. Wondering if any Bogleheads are currently living either part or full time in that area of the world and their experiences, pros and cons?
Thanks!
by chipperd
Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?
Replies: 5
Views: 1106

Re: Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?

Thanks for the thoughts. In Ct if you work for the school, you are a board of ed employee, whereas my wife works for a town and is a part-time town employee. I just figured there must be some way to look up the Mid-America annuity to find out costs and return rates. Thoughts along those lines?
by chipperd
Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?
Replies: 5
Views: 1106

Re: Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?

mouses wrote:The town HR department, assuming there is one, should have information about this. If not, I would try contacting the town finance person. Your wife should have been given an HR packet when she was hired.

Yup.
by chipperd
Sun Dec 25, 2016 6:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?
Replies: 5
Views: 1106

Wife's new 3121 plan. What the?

Hello all, My wife started a new part time job with a town as an employee. I noticed in on her paystub that she is getting a small amount taken out of her pay, seems like pre-tax, that goes into a 3121 plan. Doing a little research it seems these funds are deposited into a 3121 account with Mid-Amer...
by chipperd
Sun Dec 25, 2016 6:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: adding Real Estate Index Fund to lazy three portfolio?
Replies: 5
Views: 647

Re: adding Real Estate Index Fund to lazy three portfolio?

I agree that expense ratio is high. Maybe hold in your Roth the VGSIX with expense ratio of 26 basis points until you reach Admiral level (10k) and then can lower your expense to 12 basis points.
by chipperd
Sun Dec 18, 2016 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flying with Norwegian
Replies: 24
Views: 2266

Re: Flying with Norwegian

Myself, wife and three teens flew from JFK to Oslo stayed a couple days and then Oslo to Vienna to start our month long European tour this past summer. No complaints at all. Loved the new, clean Dreamliner and had great entertainment. Like a Cadillac in the sky. Food was pedestrian.
by chipperd
Sun Dec 18, 2016 6:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: anyone else moving into bond funds
Replies: 30
Views: 3401

Re: anyone else moving into bond funds

Thanks again to all for the input. Seeing as I'm turning 50 in a few months and was at 54% equities, 31% bonds, 13% REIT and 4% fixed, I have been making small changes until the last couple weeks when I stepped it up to move equity funds to bonds so that now I am at 45% equities/38% bonds, 13% REIT ...
by chipperd
Sat Dec 17, 2016 7:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: anyone else moving into bond funds
Replies: 30
Views: 3401

Re: anyone else moving into bond funds

Thanks for all the input. Can someone explain the phrase "Age in bonds?". Does that mean if I am 50 years old (I am) that if I "Age in bonds" my overall portfolio consists of 50% bonds?
Thanks again,
chipperd
by chipperd
Thu Dec 15, 2016 6:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: anyone else moving into bond funds
Replies: 30
Views: 3401

anyone else moving into bond funds

Hello all, Over the past couple weeks I have been taking some off the table from stock funds and moving that into total bond fund. All told about 7-10% shift. Anyone else doing this or have thoughts on this. Doing a bit more than "rebalancing". BTW, where is the line between timing and reb...
by chipperd
Tue Nov 22, 2016 5:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

Re: which engineering major for renewables

Another update. Thought WPI, with it's one project per year and 4 seven week terms with three classes per term was a fantastic approach and a good fit for my kid. Pricey and tough to get in (3.86 avg admission GPA), but hope he agrees with this one.
Thanks again all
Chipperd
by chipperd
Sat Nov 12, 2016 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

Re: which engineering major for renewables

I really appreciate all who take the time to give such thoughtful responses and I enjoy reading the back and forth. I find that very educational.
Thanks again. Going to tour WPI next weekend.
Chipperd
by chipperd
Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

Re: which engineering major for renewables

I knew I could count on the Bogleheads and you all gave me great input and information to consider and share with my son. Thanks so much for taking the time to share your thoughts and experiences!
Chipperd
by chipperd
Tue Nov 01, 2016 4:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

Re: which engineering major for renewables

As an engineer, I'd recommend a few bits of legwork before deciding. There are a few majors to consider, which I'll list by discipline: 1. Ceramic, Materials Ceramic and Material engineers are experts at material science and thermodynamics as most ceramics are chosen for their heat transfer propert...
by chipperd
Sun Oct 30, 2016 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

Re: which engineering major for renewables

Wow. Thanks all for your input. Marjimmy, very generous offer and may take you up on that at some point. He does have an interest in chemical, but was turned off by RPI prof answer over the weekend that most chem engineers focus on petroleum (that may be the profs experience at that school). Still e...
by chipperd
Sun Oct 30, 2016 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: which engineering major for renewables
Replies: 62
Views: 3930

which engineering major for renewables

Hello all, My son is currently a junior in h.s. and we have checked out a couple colleges in our area. He is high functioning (3.98 gpa, AP/honors and one college class) and is looking to engineering as a major. Specifically, he would like to study(to quote him) " The harvesting, storage, deliv...
by chipperd
Sat Aug 06, 2016 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Data heavy sim card for Europe trip
Replies: 18
Views: 1161

Re: Data heavy sim card for Europe trip

Just came back from Europe. There for a month and in 6 countries, Austria/Germany being two of them. Be sure to get the details on "international". The sim card we bought stateside could call from a European country to U.S. but not European country to European Country. We survived pretty w...
by chipperd
Sun Apr 03, 2016 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experience with CapitalOne?
Replies: 28
Views: 2989

Re: Experience with CapitalOne?

I use the 1.5% back on everything MasterCard... works just fine. I've used it all over North America without issue. Every time my cash back hits $100, they credit my account. They poke me via email now and then when I tip too much for a few drinks at the local pub, but other than that leave me alon...
by chipperd
Fri Mar 25, 2016 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

Re: pension choices for spouse and self

Option 2 is clearly the best situation for you and spouse. The deduction for 100% contingent is only 6%. The same deduction for NC pension is about 18%. My big question is the pension COLA based? If not, the value of the pension will erode substantially over time. At age 46, your wife's life expect...
by chipperd
Sun Mar 20, 2016 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

Re: pension choices for spouse and self

Thanks to all for their responses. Pretty much backs up my thoughts on Option #2 as the preferred choice for us.
Thanks again
by chipperd
Sat Mar 19, 2016 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No idea how much to save in a 529
Replies: 37
Views: 3786

Re: No idea how much to save in a 529

For us, (we have three teens), we stopped saving into our 529's when we found out that would be included in the private school calc and once funds are used for any college, would also be used in the next year's FAFSA as well. So, didn't seem to make sense for us. Instead, we have been paying down ou...
by chipperd
Sat Mar 19, 2016 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

Re: pension choices for spouse and self

Since you will not be pressed for current income in the near future, it seems to me that Option #2 is better at controlling risk down the road. Thanks for the feedback . Much appreciated One way to look at this choice is from the point of view of the survivor rather than the primary recipient. In o...
by chipperd
Sat Mar 19, 2016 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

Re: pension choices for spouse and self

dm200 wrote:Since you will not be pressed for current income in the near future, it seems to me that Option #2 is better at controlling risk down the road.

Thanks for the feedback . Much appreciated
by chipperd
Sat Mar 19, 2016 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

Re: pension choices for spouse and self

Hello forum, This site has been instrumental in helping me with retirement and investment choices and I have another I would like to pose. My wife works in what is considered a hazardous duty state job. She will be" retiring" from state service 6/1/16 and has the following options we are ...
by chipperd
Sat Mar 19, 2016 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pension choices for spouse and self
Replies: 17
Views: 1872

pension choices for spouse and self

Hello forum, This site has been instrumental in helping me with retirement and investment choices and I have another I would like to pose. My wife works in what is considered a hazardous duty state job. She will be" retiring" from state service 6/1/16 and has the following options we are c...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 18, 2016 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Saving Plan = paying off mortgage early
Replies: 41
Views: 4631

Re: College Saving Plan = paying off mortgage early

Quick heads up from a dad staring down the barrel of at least 12 years of college for my three teens: FAFSA will count grandparents contributions at the student income/asset rate rather than the favored parent rate towards determining need based aid. Not sure if that's your situation, but worth cons...
by chipperd
Mon Jan 18, 2016 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling house, disappointed in realtors. Am I expecting too much?
Replies: 23
Views: 3703

Re: Selling house, disappointed in realtors. Am I expecting too much?

Let me preface that I've never been through a corporate move but... We purchased a short sale over the course of 6 months (late 2008-early 2009) through a friend who happened to be a real estate agent who said the home was a steal. We did our homework and hired a professional appraiser as we also th...
by chipperd
Fri Dec 25, 2015 5:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal umbrella insurance policies
Replies: 34
Views: 3478

Re: Personal umbrella insurance policies

Not sure where you live but that sounds a bit high so you may want to quote that out. I live in a high cost of living area in the northeast and our 1mil umbrella is $205. That said, seems like a small price to pay for more financial security
by chipperd
Sun Dec 20, 2015 7:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Inexpensive Smartphone for Cricket Wireless
Replies: 20
Views: 2792

Re: Inexpensive Smartphone for Cricket Wireless

We switched 3 of our accounts to cricket in the last few months. Myself and daughter opted for the samsung s4. At $199 it was a bit pricey but seems to be working well
by chipperd
Sat Dec 19, 2015 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: aggregate two vanguard accounts under new system
Replies: 1
Views: 271

aggregate two vanguard accounts under new system

Hello all, I would like to aggregate my wife's Vanguard retirement account with mine and not clear how to do this under the new Yod... system (terrible name btw). When I type in Vangaurd under the add accounts drop down, the closest I can come up with is "Vanguard Ascensus" choice. Given t...
by chipperd
Sat Nov 21, 2015 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way t o purchase euros
Replies: 16
Views: 1481

best way t o purchase euros

Traveling with the family throughout western europe this coming summer and looking to purchase euros. Our bank will charge us a flat fee of $7.00 to exchange at the current rate. Is there a better or more cost effective way?
Thanks
Chipperd
by chipperd
Sat Nov 21, 2015 6:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: whole life pitched as way to pay for kids college
Replies: 67
Views: 8528

Re: whole life pitched as way to pay for kids college

Can actually afford the sailboat and the amount we would pay for all three to be in state school college if we take out equity loan. The plan is to then sell the house when we retire, pay off the equity loan at that point then downsize and purchase the sailboat, both with cash. Not sure where the de...
by chipperd
Tue Nov 17, 2015 4:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: whole life pitched as way to pay for kids college
Replies: 67
Views: 8528

Re: whole life pitched as way to pay for kids college

Chipperd- I think a HELOC is a terrible idea. If anyone is going into debt for an education, it should be the student, even if you can get a better rate. Think about what happens if heaven forbid your kid dies without paying off the debt. If you have a HELOC, you still owe the money whereas with a ...

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