Search found 131 matches

by chocolatemuffin
Wed Feb 03, 2016 1:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Form 5305-B
Replies: 1
Views: 173

Form 5305-B

I am establishing a HSA account with HSA Bank. I notice that for Saturna HSA, it asks the applicants to fill out a form 5305-B. However, for HSA Bank, I asked about the form but they said it's not required.

Does anyone know when is form 5305-B needed?

Thanks.
by chocolatemuffin
Mon Feb 01, 2016 12:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: switch to Bank of America HSA
Replies: 23
Views: 2433

Re: switch to Bank of America HSA

Interesting! How long ago did you do this? And did this interchange take place before or after you opened a HSA at BOA. I asked earlier this week before I proceeded with opening an account. Today I opened the account and will be doing a trustee to trustee rollover in. I also have platinum honors at...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jan 07, 2016 2:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Clarification on wash sale
Replies: 1
Views: 102

Clarification on wash sale

I am planning to do some tax loss harvesting, but I'd like to make sure it's not a wash sale. Let's say in the following case: - Bought 100 shares of ABC on Jan 1. - Bought another 100 shares of ABC on July 1. - Sell 150 shares of ABC on July 5. 100 of those shares from the July 1 lot, and the remai...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accumulating air miles for trip to Vancouver
Replies: 2
Views: 320

Accumulating air miles for trip to Vancouver

I am planning a trip to Vancouver (from San Francisco) in the 2nd half of 2016 for a family of 3. I know of quite a few credit card and other offers that award 50k miles. Air tickets have become quite expensive in recent years, so I wonder whether I can accumulate enough miles to get a free trip to ...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Dec 09, 2015 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Confirm how 0% cap gains bracket works
Replies: 20
Views: 1605

Re: Confirm how 0% cap gains bracket works

She may get a step-up in cost basis for the inheritance in stock. It's something you may want to look into.
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Dec 08, 2015 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I get my house reassessed?
Replies: 10
Views: 549

Re: Should I get my house reassessed?

Howdy all, My wife and I have applied for HELOC to consolidate a bunch of debt and shred up the credit cards, we are going more and more cash only thanks to you guys/gals, and a bank that got my wife to realize how bad debt is. So with that in mind, we just had our house assessed for the HELOC and ...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Oct 22, 2015 9:06 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Mobile-friendly version of the bogleheads website
Replies: 6
Views: 1079

Re: Mobile-friendly version of the bogleheads website

I was referring to the bogleheads homepage, since that's where I usually start my browsing. Thanks for the info. It's good to know that it has been at least considered.
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Oct 21, 2015 11:52 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Mobile-friendly version of the bogleheads website
Replies: 6
Views: 1079

Mobile-friendly version of the bogleheads website

Any plan to make the bogleheads website mobile-friendly? I use my cell phone to browse the bogleheads forum sometimes, but it's really hard to read. With the world increasingly mobile, having a mobile friendly website will really help.
by chocolatemuffin
Sat Oct 17, 2015 12:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax efficiency of momentum ETF
Replies: 2
Views: 192

Tax efficiency of momentum ETF

I am considering to put some money into the momentum ETF - MTUM (iShares MSCI USA Momentum Factor). I notice that it only has a dividend rate of 1.25%. Does it make sense to own it in a taxable account? It seems to be more tax efficient than even total stock market ETF like VTI, which has a dividend...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trouble with family thinking we have more money than we do
Replies: 87
Views: 8724

Re: Trouble with family thinking we have more money than we do

Keenobserver, not knowing OP, I give him the benefit of the doubt regarding his parents' situation. I don't see it as "flat out refuse to help them" as I see him not wanting to subsidize unwise choices. Sir the OP admits the parents are actually in need, and has refused due to his own lon...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Oct 07, 2015 11:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help With Job Offer in Bay Area
Replies: 27
Views: 3167

Re: Help With Job Offer in Bay Area

I have been working in the Bay Area as an engineer/manager for 15 years, including two start-ups. I think the offer given to you is very fair. I won't recommend negotiating "too hard" (e.g. give it to me or I'll walk) if you like this job. I think the equity isn't bad as well, given that t...
by chocolatemuffin
Fri Oct 02, 2015 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are luxury watches good investments?
Replies: 45
Views: 3220

Are luxury watches good investments?

I recently went on a trip to Europe with a tour group. There are stops at Sweden where they sell luxury watches worth thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars. I didn't buy any, but many other people in the tour did. The tour guide insisted that luxury watches are great investments. Since he g...
by chocolatemuffin
Sun Sep 27, 2015 11:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will this cause Backdoor Pro-Rata rule?
Replies: 19
Views: 815

Re: Will this cause Backdoor Pro-Rata rule?

Ahh I see that I was looking at line 2. I suppose it wouldn't be to messy if I contribute a Non-Deductible Traditional IRA in 2015 and leave it in Fidelity Cash / Money Market so I don't have much earnings. I then contribute another non-deductible $ 5,500 in January 2016. in 2016 I convert all $ 11...
by chocolatemuffin
Sun Sep 27, 2015 11:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will this cause Backdoor Pro-Rata rule?
Replies: 19
Views: 815

Re: Will this cause Backdoor Pro-Rata rule?

Take a look at line 6 of form 8606. It asks for the value of your IRA on December 31st, which is used to calculate the pro-ration.
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Sep 24, 2015 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Re: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

No, you do not need $58.5K. You only need the $53K that ERISA Stone referred to. IRA contributions only require sufficient taxable income for the contributions. So you would only need $5.5K in taxable income. In your case you would have $53K (compensation ) - $13.25K (25% employer pre-tax contribut...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Sep 24, 2015 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Re: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

I'd like to clarify one more thing. Suppose my W2 salary is only $40k. If I contribute $18k to employee deferral 401k, then I am left with $22k. 25% of $40k is $10k in profit sharing, but this $10k does not come out of the $40k since the profit sharing is not part of the W2 salary. Does this mean I...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Sep 24, 2015 1:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Re: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

I'd like to clarify one more thing. Suppose my W2 salary is only $40k. If I contribute $18k to employee deferral 401k, then I am left with $22k. 25% of $40k is $10k in profit sharing, but this $10k does not come out of the $40k since the profit sharing is not part of the W2 salary. Does this mean I ...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Sep 15, 2015 11:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Re: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

No, you do not need $58.5K. You only need the $53K that ERISA Stone referred to. IRA contributions only require sufficient taxable income for the contributions. So you would only need $5.5K in taxable income. In your case you would have $53K (compensation ) - $13.25K (25% employer pre-tax contribut...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Sep 15, 2015 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Re: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

So in order to do all of the above contributions, I would need a minimum of $58.5k in total compensation. Is that right?

I am looking into setting up a "custom" plan (see an article from thefinancebuff - http://thefinancebuff.com/after-tax-con ... -401k.html).

Thanks.
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Sep 15, 2015 1:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit
Replies: 19
Views: 1501

Trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit

I am trying to understand solo 401k contribution limit. Let's assume the followings: - Structured as a S-corp. - W2 salary is $50k. - Plan supports after-tax non-Roth contributions and in-service withdrawal. Can I do the followings: - Contribute $18k in employee salary deferral. - Contribute $12.5k ...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Sep 01, 2015 10:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: About to close on a home we have overbid on - have cold feet
Replies: 74
Views: 10372

Re: About to close on a home we have overbid on - have cold feet

and never ever, ever, make an offer with zero contingencies - EVER!!! That is like handing some stranger the keys to your fortune - for free!!! :shock: :oops: Looking at it from the seller's perspective - we recently received multiple all-cash zero contingency offers for our property in the Bay Are...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Sep 01, 2015 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: About to close on a home we have overbid on - have cold feet
Replies: 74
Views: 10372

Re: About to close on a home we have overbid on - have cold feet

A large, brand new house in a great school district, built on a quarter acre lot, and only goes for $2.3m? That's actually a bargain in the Bay Area. I think the price has already factored in the power line issue. Even older houses in a reasonable school district with 5,000 sq ft lot can go for over...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Aug 20, 2015 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long term disability insurance
Replies: 8
Views: 921

Re: Long term disability insurance

Have you looked at MetLife? My husband is a year younger and our policy is only $4300 but we pay $900 annually for his. Same elimination period and also to age 65. I got quotes from MetLife, Guardian, and Principal. MetLife costs over $150 per month with all the riders I mentioned before, but only ...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Aug 18, 2015 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long term disability insurance
Replies: 8
Views: 921

Re: Long term disability insurance

That sounds like a decent policy. Does the price go up each year with your age? (For some occupations it does.) Perhaps in your case, the price should go down in later years because you would not have as long to collect if you became disabled. Ralph No, the price stays the same. However, the monthl...
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Aug 18, 2015 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long term disability insurance
Replies: 8
Views: 921

Long term disability insurance

I am trying to purchase long-term disability insurance for myself. The quotes I found cost around $130 to $150 [Updated from previously stated $100 to $120] per month for $5,000 in monthly benefit. Here's some info: - 36-year-old male - Good health, no particular health issues - Software engineer - ...
by chocolatemuffin
Fri Aug 14, 2015 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Purchasing insurance
Replies: 3
Views: 445

Purchasing insurance

I'll be quitting my job and starting my own business soon, so I am shopping for insurance now. For health insurance, I'll just get it from the ACA exchange. I also already have life insurance. I am still shopping around for the other types of insurance, and would like to solicit some feedback. A lit...
by chocolatemuffin
Mon Aug 10, 2015 1:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I crazy? Quitting my job.
Replies: 107
Views: 18027

Re: Am I crazy? Quitting my job.

Since you are three years away from full retirement, I think you should tough it out. I was in a similar situation around three years ago too. One thing I did that helped me got through these three years was to space out my vacation time. I got four weeks of vacation an year, and I also accumulated ...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Jul 29, 2015 1:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keep paying the mortgage??
Replies: 67
Views: 6939

Re: Keep paying the mortgage??

My situation a few years ago was similar to yours now. In my case, it was because of an un-permitted addition. During the inspection process, my agent brought in a contractor to see how much work it is to fix up the addition and obtain a permit for it. The contractor told me that the addition was mo...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Jul 22, 2015 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

Re: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues

Thanks for the response, Jared. Just want to add that I discussed this topic with my CPA, and our conclusion matches what you said as well (i.e. can claim tax deduction and get premium tax credits on the ACA exchange at the same time).
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jul 16, 2015 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

Re: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues

If the salaries are so low that you will be eligible for subsidies on exchange, are you taking more of the s-corp income as K1 profit or is the revenue itself so low? I think for subsidies calculation purpose, both salaries and K1 profit are treated the same, so that shouldn't make a difference. In...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jul 16, 2015 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

Re: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues

Thanks for the response, Spirit Rider. 2) Both 1 and 2 tax treatments are intended to treat S-Corp owners and Sole Proprietors the same. In neither case can you escape FICA/SE Tax on Health insurance premiums/HSA contributions.. According to this document http://www.irs.gov/irb/2005-04_IRB/ar13.html...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Jul 15, 2015 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

ACA subsidy and S-corp tax issues

My wife and I own a S-corp where we are the only employees. We are planning to purchase health insurance via the ACA exchange. Our income should be low enough to get subsidy. My understanding is that a S-corp can normally handle health insurance in the following ways: 1) The insurance premium can be...
by chocolatemuffin
Thu May 28, 2015 3:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond portfolio YTM> 3%
Replies: 24
Views: 1660

Re: Bond portfolio YTM> 3%

There are 10-year brokered CD yielding 3%. You can check them out at Fidelity. If you don't mind holding the CD for 10 years, then it's completely safe (FDIC-insured) assuming you stay below the $250k limit per issuer.
by chocolatemuffin
Tue May 26, 2015 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Once in a life time trip.
Replies: 121
Views: 7895

Re: Once in a life time trip.

I grew up in HK. When I was around 8, my mom took me back to rural China to visit my grandfather. I remember looking up at the sky one night, and shocked by how beautiful the night sky was. It's one of the happy memories that stuck with me until this day more than 20 years later. If the kids have ha...
by chocolatemuffin
Fri May 22, 2015 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Career Advice: Follow "Passion" or Follow the Money?
Replies: 74
Views: 5500

Re: Career Advice: Follow "Passion" or Follow the Money?

Some of my friends who also has PhDs in Physics ended up working as quants. Have you thought about that route? You mentioned that you are not a people-person and also have no experience in management consulting, I think quants may be a better fit since it can make good use of your mathematical skills.
by chocolatemuffin
Tue Apr 07, 2015 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nailed it! $223,199/yr: magic# for making it in SF Bay Area
Replies: 117
Views: 13933

Re: Nailed it! $223,199/yr: magic# for making it in SF Bay A

A few suggestions: 1) Live in San Jose, it's quite a lot cheaper (although a SFH will still likely cost your over $1m). If you make $100k or so, it's probably better to buy a townhouse rather than a SFH. 2) There's no need to go to private school. There are quite a lot of decent school districts in ...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Mar 25, 2015 1:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When does a 529 plan make sense to me?
Replies: 194
Views: 11475

Re: Why 529 plan makes any sense??

You are right, for most people 529 plans don't make any sense. But Bogleheads are not most people, they tend to be high income earners and prodigious savers who max out their tax-advantaged space. For them, 529 are an excellent option to increase tax advantaged space and save for their children's e...
by chocolatemuffin
Sat Mar 07, 2015 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is this ethical? [Selling company equipment to be disposed]
Replies: 41
Views: 2564

Re: Is this ethical?

This is how I look at it: - Your friend's company wants to dispose of some old phones. - They tried selling it to a recycling company, but the result does not justify the efforts required. - Your friend's boss instructed him to simply throw away the phones. - Your friend then found a better buyer (i...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Jan 07, 2015 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: should I stop 401K contributions as I ready to retire?
Replies: 24
Views: 2637

Re: should I stop 401K contributions as I ready to retire?

There's value in contributing to 401K even if your tax rate stays the same. For simplicity, let's assume the tax rate is always 20%, the rate of return is 5% per year, and the investment horizon is 10 years. Case 1: 401k - Each dollar compounds at 5% per year, then 20% tax is paid for the entire amo...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CollegeInvest Stable Value Plus for non-education purpose
Replies: 2
Views: 335

Re: CollegeInvest Stable Value Plus for non-education purpos

Buffetologist wrote:See the following link.

http://www.justanswer.com/law/8azaf-sho ... ments.html


Thanks, Buffetologist. It sounds like opening a 529 account for non-educational purpose is considered fraud. I guess my plan wouldn't work after all.
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Dec 10, 2014 3:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CollegeInvest Stable Value Plus for non-education purpose
Replies: 2
Views: 335

CollegeInvest Stable Value Plus for non-education purpose

The CollegeInvest Stable Value Plus 529 plan offers a 3.09% rate of return of 2015 net of all fees. I have some money that I would like to put into safe investment that's relatively liquid. A regular savings account will give less than 1% in interest now, so the 3.09% offered by CollegeInvest seems ...
by chocolatemuffin
Mon Nov 24, 2014 1:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating for a specific family
Replies: 43
Views: 3856

Re: Donating for a specific family

It sounds like (at least to me) that the OP just wants to help someone. What I am saying is that instead of designating the money to that particular family, the OP should just designate the money to a love fund if it's available, and give the church the discretion of whom to give the money to, whic...
by chocolatemuffin
Mon Nov 24, 2014 12:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating for a specific family
Replies: 43
Views: 3856

Re: Donating for a specific family

...but it sounds like you aren't actually looking to help a particular family anyways... I think the thread title says otherwise. Here's the OP's follow-up: "I went to the church pastor ( I am not a member of the church) and asked if there was a family in town that needed financial help. He sa...
by chocolatemuffin
Sun Nov 23, 2014 8:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating for a specific family
Replies: 43
Views: 3856

Re: Donating for a specific family

I went to the church pastor ( I am not a member of the church) and asked if there was a family in town that needed financial help. He said yes and I gave him $1500 for that family. The church treasurer advised my donation was not deductible. Does the church have a love fund? If so, you can just don...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Nov 12, 2014 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real estate as my "million dollar idea"
Replies: 78
Views: 8320

Re: Real estate as my "million dollar idea"

Comparing a 20 year span: - 30 properties = ~$1M investment, ~$324k/year, ~$6.5M/20 years - Subtract a high amount of $50k/year in taxes and maintenance = ~$5.5M over 20 years in rent income. - Assuming no growth, the properties should still be worth $1M if sold after 20 years, making the initial $...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed Nov 12, 2014 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real estate as my "million dollar idea"
Replies: 78
Views: 8320

Re: Real estate as my "million dollar idea"

Are there any REIT funds that buys up this kind of property? I would love to invest in a fund that gives a 30% yield (or even just 15%-20% after fees and expenses) each year.
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jul 10, 2014 12:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Increase 401k Contribution Limits through Self Loans
Replies: 12
Views: 1013

Re: Increase 401k Contribution Limits through Self Loans

Why loan the money to yourself? You can loan the money in your 401k to someone else (i.e. by buying bonds) and still earn the interest in your 401k.
by chocolatemuffin
Thu Jun 05, 2014 3:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Gold and Silver as an Insurance Policy?
Replies: 37
Views: 2340

Re: Gold and Silver as an Insurance Policy?

Barter only works if two parties have what the other needs. If society degenerates to a state of barter, won't there be a need for a new medium of exchange? Gold fills this role well. It does not tarnish. It is hard to produce. It is relatively easy to identify or to validate. It has few practical ...
by chocolatemuffin
Wed May 28, 2014 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?
Replies: 199
Views: 13869

Re: Pre-nup at only $1M networth, do I need it?

I don't know what to advise you, but for me personally, there are several times in my marriage that I probably would have pursued a divorce if it's easier. I don't know whether it's a blessing or not, but the fact that the escape route is so hideous probably forces me and my wife to work things thro...
by chocolatemuffin
Mon May 26, 2014 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay rent to spouse?
Replies: 16
Views: 2330

Re: Pay rent to spouse?

Does she actually consider it "rent", as in she claims it as income, taxes, and all that? Or, does she have a mortgage on her house and you pay half the mortgage? Sounds like you just split the bills. If you split ownership on the previous home, why is it different this time? Actually, wh...

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