Search found 126 matches

by clearwater
Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Treasury Direct is a waste of time
Replies: 44
Views: 3208

Re: Treasury Direct is a waste of time

For what it's worth, the only reason I was going to do this was to hold some short-term bills (< 1 year), bought at auction, and then have them automatically reinvested in a same-term instrument. This is one thing you kind of get "for free" with TD if you want a no cost way to hold short-t...
by clearwater
Wed Jan 27, 2016 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Treasury Direct is a waste of time
Replies: 44
Views: 3208

Treasury Direct is a waste of time

I just wanted to let people know my experience with Treasury Direct echoes what others have said here, and I probably should have headed the warnings to avoid this whole mess. I set up an account using the website, which failed twice during the process. You're supposed to get an account number, appa...
by clearwater
Sat Jan 16, 2016 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Direct registration of ETFs?
Replies: 1
Views: 170

Re: Direct registration of ETFs?

As I understand it, ETFs are actually sold in "creation units". So to take direct ownership instead of having a custodian do it for you, you'd need to buy or sell in those units. Each ETF's prospectus describes them and how they are managed, but almost every ETF seems to use such a unit to...
by clearwater
Thu Jan 07, 2016 8:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: why do investors prefer cash dividends
Replies: 272
Views: 16255

Re: why do investors prefer cash dividends

In addition to my regular index funds, I used to hold some dividend stocks, probably for about 10 years. Ultimately what drove me nuts was keeping all the reinvested dividends updated in Quicken. Finally sold the last of the few holdings, and to keep myself from going back to that, bought Vanguard's...
by clearwater
Tue Jan 05, 2016 5:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Customer Service
Replies: 86
Views: 6249

Re: Vanguard Customer Service

The problem with firms like Fidelity is that they have an incentive to suck investors -- including newbie investors -- into so-called "free" advisory services. But the services are not free, and they appear to be ridden with conflicts. You can't trust any of these companies to look out fo...
by clearwater
Tue Jan 05, 2016 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Customer Service
Replies: 86
Views: 6249

Re: Vanguard Customer Service

I've had accounts with Fidelity, Schwab, and a bunch of smaller brokerage firms going back to the early '90s. Fidelity and Schwab are exceptional. I've spent a lot of time and energy trying to understand if it's worth moving to Vanguard and finally concluded they seem to be in over their heads when ...
by clearwater
Tue Dec 08, 2015 6:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Re: Revocable Trust and W-9 form

On line 2, "Business name/disregarded entity name, if different from above." This is the name of the trust. On line 3, you check off "Trust." Thank you VERY much, I really do appreciate it! It does make perfect sense as soon as someone else explains it, but the documentation on ...
by clearwater
Mon Dec 07, 2015 4:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Re: Revocable Trust and W-9 form

Is a W-9 really needed? I just don't remember seeing a W-9, although I suppose it could have been "built into" the booklet of all of the docs to be completed, and I didn't notice it as such. This only affects part of Schwab (and as far as I can tell, this only affects the banking side, no...
by clearwater
Mon Dec 07, 2015 4:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Re: Revocable Trust and W-9 form

I think I might have found the answer to this issue, thanks to some very thoughtful person at the State of Illinois: http://www.treasurer.il.gov/finances/pdf/IRS%20Form%20W-9%20FAQs.pdf which says: "For a Grantor or Revocable Trust, the grantors name must appear on Line 1, with the name of the ...
by clearwater
Mon Dec 07, 2015 3:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Re: Revocable Trust and W-9 form

bsteiner wrote:Your attorney should know to look at Treas. Reg. Ā§ 1.671-4.


Thanks, I did have a copy of that, but still unsure what to do with the W-9 filing. I'm really trying to avoid a 5 minute phone call to my former accountants that is going to cost me a hundred bucks, is all.
by clearwater
Mon Dec 07, 2015 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Re: Revocable Trust and W-9 form

Didn't you fill one of these out when you opened the account? Maybe call them and ask why they sent it to you now. The account has been open a very long time. I think this is part of the new banking laws that went into effect a year or two ago. Schwab said they started sending out various forms las...
by clearwater
Mon Dec 07, 2015 5:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Revocable Trust and W-9 form
Replies: 11
Views: 691

Revocable Trust and W-9 form

(edited: this account is actually one at Schwab BANK, not the brokerage side... something I just noticed. So apparently may be part of the Dodd-Frank banking act, and doesn't seem to apply to investment accounts, as I received no such notice for the brokerage account titled in the name of the Trust)...
by clearwater
Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AT&T changed me to Uverse without my consent
Replies: 18
Views: 2105

Re: AT&T changed me to Uverse without my consent

I very rarely post here anymore, but I have deep experience in this area professionally so can tell you the cold, hard facts. - Ultimately everyone is going to end up on some digital network. The copper cable plant is being replaced, piece by piece. It's being maintained at this point mainly as a po...
by clearwater
Mon Jun 08, 2015 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a New Construction Home - what do I need to consider
Replies: 32
Views: 3194

Re: Buying a New Construction Home - what do I need to consider

Find your own General Contractor and Inspector, and bring them in to do their OWN inspections during construction. Insist on this in the contract. You probably don't want to hear this, but the reality is you cannot trust ANYONE in the real estate game. Land sellers, builders, contractors, "real...
by clearwater
Wed Jan 21, 2015 3:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard direct purchase of bond question
Replies: 4
Views: 577

Re: Vanguard direct purchase of bond question

Thanks to all for the feedback. It looks like I should finally just switch to Vanguard and be done with it. If I start thinking about a service provider, it's usually a sign I'm spending too much energy on the problem. Many years ago I had a Fidelity account and found the resources there excellent. ...
by clearwater
Tue Jan 20, 2015 5:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I Declare Victory and Pack It In?
Replies: 173
Views: 18199

Re: Should I Declare Victory and Pack It In?

Once I read "2.7" with an "M" after it, you didn't need to say anymore. Wow, you're done. All your hard work paid off, there is no need to do this anymore (unless you want to). Go retire. Relax and take it easy. The vast majority of people will never be in your situation. You'd h...
by clearwater
Tue Jan 20, 2015 4:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard direct purchase of bond question
Replies: 4
Views: 577

Vanguard direct purchase of bond question

I am currently at Schwab, and have been a very happy customer there for a long time (about 12 years). All my funds are Vanguard, Schwab is just the custodian. They have a pretty good website, and phone support is great. All the same, my 9 fund tilted-to-small cap+value+REIT fund portfolio is pretty ...
by clearwater
Mon Jan 12, 2015 1:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Treasury funds - combining for duration
Replies: 4
Views: 478

Treasury funds - combining for duration

I'd like to get a duration in Treasuries of about 10 years. Since in the Treasury fund universe we have three options: short, medium, long, of various durations, you can mix and match to get the duration you're looking for. Intermediate Treasuries (VFITX) are 5.2 years, and Long term Treasuries (VUS...
by clearwater
Fri Jan 02, 2015 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting Traditional Film Developed
Replies: 23
Views: 2481

Re: Getting Traditional Film Developed

Sorry that you are not getting an answer to your simple question. I'd encourage you to use film. You can ignore all the Internet commentators who will drone on about why you should use this or that, none of which gets you closer to your goal. Most consumer processing (the local drugstore, CostCo, et...
by clearwater
Thu Nov 13, 2014 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dealing with pressure for "social donations" at work
Replies: 181
Views: 17845

Re: Dealing with pressure for "social donations" at work

For all the angst this is causing you, and the borderline illegality of what this business is doing, I'd recommend you look for another job. Seriously.
by clearwater
Sat Nov 08, 2014 2:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What if I Never Buy a House?
Replies: 57
Views: 8007

Re: What if I Never Buy a House?

My experience having moved nearly 30 times, is that moving is good for you. I owned my first house for about five years, and did no work other than rake the leaves and mow the lawn. Not so bad. I sold it essentially for what I paid, and after taxes, fees, and the like, turned out I lived there "...
by clearwater
Mon Sep 22, 2014 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Novaform Mattresses at Costco
Replies: 14
Views: 2440

Re: Novaform Mattresses at Costco

I went through several innerspring mattresses a few years ago... in the recent era mattresses are made like junk, and break down fast. Was shopping at Ikea for something else and thought I'd look at their mattresses. Bought a "Sultan" standard foam (more like what your sofa cushions are ma...
by clearwater
Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard - set up multiple new accounts, same type
Replies: 7
Views: 979

Re: Vanguard - set up multiple new accounts, same type

Thanks for the very handy feedback so far. I'm starting to think I might be solving a problem that doesn't need to be solved. Every now and then I read something like this: http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=144837&start=50#p2161750 and think long and hard whether I really w...
by clearwater
Wed Aug 20, 2014 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard - set up multiple new accounts, same type
Replies: 7
Views: 979

Vanguard - set up multiple new accounts, same type

It's too late in the day to call Vanguard and ask, and probably someone else has set up a new account like this. I have a Trust account currently at Schwab -- am possibly moving it to Vanguard. There are two accounts (unique account numbers) at Schwab, both titled exactly the same. The reason for th...
by clearwater
Wed Aug 06, 2014 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Confessions from the Peanut Gallery
Replies: 9
Views: 1088

Re: Confessions from the Peanut Gallery

Insurance. Wow, what a scam, huh? Prices will just keep going up up up, no matter how great you are as a customer (which means, you never have a claim, and are basically an ATM for the carrier). Had Fireman's Fund for a long time. Service was fine (they never bothered me), but the prices just were r...
by clearwater
Sat Jul 26, 2014 9:03 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: favorite bogleheads posts?
Replies: 83
Views: 13422

Re: favorite bogleheads posts?

What? You say you don't know what time it is? Paging Petrocelli. :) http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=27707 Edited to add: In all seriousness, Taylor's "Three Fund Portfolio" postings win hands down for the best thing I've ever read on any finance site, anywhere, eve...
by clearwater
Fri Jul 25, 2014 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct--just blowing off steam
Replies: 58
Views: 5120

Re: Treasury Direct--just blowing off steam

At one point I was going to purchase some Treasuries and set up a Treasury Direct account. But years ago reading these kinds of tales made me realize it was a terrible idea to consider it. This is a case of just flat out incompetence when it comes to running a service. The stories convinced me that ...
by clearwater
Sun Jul 06, 2014 2:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buffett 2-fund portfolio and 75/50
Replies: 18
Views: 3032

Re: Buffett 2-fund portfolio and 75/50

You are over-thinking this and have gone from very complicated to still much too complicated. This same question has been asked here hundreds (maybe thousands!) of times, and usually it gets the same answer: The Three Fund Portfolio. You can backtest, believe in the S&P 500 fund over Total Marke...
by clearwater
Wed Jul 02, 2014 2:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help With Costless Collar Option Implementation
Replies: 17
Views: 1174

Re: Help With Costless Collar Option Implementation

There's a joke in here somewhere about wandering into the wrong party.
by clearwater
Sun Jun 15, 2014 8:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cutting the cable cord - how did you do it?
Replies: 110
Views: 11610

Re: Cutting the cable cord - how did you do it?

Well over a year ago I took my big, heavy, CRT television to a donation place where they happily accepted it. I never bought another TV. It's the best decision I ever made. Life's too short. Television is just physical and mental noise. Try going a month without TV and you'll be amazed how much bett...
by clearwater
Sun Jun 15, 2014 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Talk me out of buying a Porsche Convertible. DISASTER!!!
Replies: 45
Views: 7952

Re: Talk me out of buying a Porsche Convertible. DISASTER!!!

I plan on asking the shop to reimburse me the $7K for the engine rebuild, the $700 for the IMS bearing (it was destroyed when the oil was filled with shrapnel and can't be reused), plus the rental truck, trailer, hotel rooms, air fare, basically everything. It will come to almost $10K. If they refu...
by clearwater
Wed May 14, 2014 1:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Talk me out of buying a Porsche convertible. Turning 40 soon
Replies: 42
Views: 5894

Re: Talk me out of buying a Porsche convertible. Turning 40

The Boxter is a great, fun car. With one significant issue which can make for much unhappiness. If it doesn't happen, you have a great ride. If so, well.... Google "IMS bearing failure". That's the Boxster's fatal flaw. You can fix it ahead of time, which is a good idea. If you're an engin...
by clearwater
Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Maintenance $$'s spent over the lifetime on your Car
Replies: 38
Views: 3570

Re: Maintenance $$'s spent over the lifetime on your Car

What tread depth do I replace tires? That's exactly what I'm saying. I don't replace the tire until it's broken. The tread wears down, then some weird metal-like stuff starts showing through, then the tire will either break while I'm driving or I'll go outside one morning and the tire will be flat....
by clearwater
Wed Apr 02, 2014 12:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Our Accountant Over-Charging Us?
Replies: 30
Views: 4819

Re: Is Our Accountant Over-Charging Us?

If this were me, the first words I would use when I talk to my accountant next time would be "you're fired". Someone is paying for their people to apparently learn on the job, and that someone is you. My story: I used an accountant to prepare my taxes for years and years. I'd spend a ton o...
by clearwater
Sat Mar 15, 2014 11:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 8 hour layover in Honolulu. How to use time.
Replies: 62
Views: 8668

Re: 8 hour layover in Honolulu. How to use time.

People don't want to trade individual stocks, and recommend the three fund portfolio for a reason -- keep it simple. You are trying to do WAY too much, with WAY too many unknowns. What if your flight gets in late? What if the weather is bad and you had turbulence across the ocean and everyone is bea...
by clearwater
Tue Mar 11, 2014 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stopping Junk Mail
Replies: 17
Views: 2538

Re: Stopping Junk Mail

Put it in an envelope along with a BIG NOTE to remove you from their mailing list or you will keep sending everything back to them. Send it to their CEO at the corporate HQ address, and write that SAME address in the return address area at top left. Drop it in the mail. It will arrive at their HQ PO...
by clearwater
Fri Mar 07, 2014 5:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved
Replies: 76
Views: 5530

Re: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved

From September 2008...data from Moody's and S&P http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-110hrpt835/html/CRPT-110hrpt835.htm WOW! That's dramatic. If anything, that helps me think that using Interm. Tax Exempt along with Total Bond is acceptable, since high quality munis sure look pretty safe. That li...
by clearwater
Fri Mar 07, 2014 4:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved
Replies: 76
Views: 5530

Re: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved

I've been thinking more on this topic and not sure what to do (I suppose that's a good sign). As Taylor says "when experts disagree, it's probably because it doesn't matter". I've come up with just a few ideas: a) Interm Tax Exempt (VWITX) + Total Bond (BND / VBMFX) -- this is what I have ...
by clearwater
Thu Mar 06, 2014 3:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved
Replies: 76
Views: 5530

Re: Tax Exempt Bonds - Risks Involved

Wow, this is timely. I am going through this process right at this very moment. I am a former business owner and semi-retired. Some part of my bond income is used for living expenses. In the not to distant past, I had a little bit of Vanguard High Yield (VWEHX) following Rick Ferri's recommendation....
by clearwater
Fri Feb 28, 2014 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy polo shirts?
Replies: 63
Views: 12641

Re: Where to buy polo shirts?

I have a bunch of experience with this (maybe too much). LL Bean until three years ago had the best polo shirts, hands down. They fit great, fair price, lots of colors. If you didn't put them in the dryer they would last forever. Then they fixed what wasn't broken, and treated the fabric so they are...
by clearwater
Mon Jan 06, 2014 2:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Way to fetch SEC yields from Vanguard (for spreadsheet)?
Replies: 3
Views: 388

Re: Way to fetch SEC yields from Vanguard (for spreadsheet)?

Thanks for the replies. I agree that Vanguard is unlikely to do this kind of thing -- it's not their focus. It's really no big deal since as you said I can have my code just screen scrape it as needed. Yahoo Finance's tool is pretty slick since you just pass it a parameter and they return raw data; ...
by clearwater
Fri Jan 03, 2014 6:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Way to fetch SEC yields from Vanguard (for spreadsheet)?
Replies: 3
Views: 388

Way to fetch SEC yields from Vanguard (for spreadsheet)?

There may be a real simple way to do this, but I can't find it. Is there a way from Vanguard to download the current SEC yield for a fund programatically? I have an automated system (some Python code) to import current yields into my spreadsheet from Yahoo and Google. Yahoo shows TTM yields, Google ...
by clearwater
Thu Jan 02, 2014 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What does a Bogle TV look like?
Replies: 78
Views: 4939

Re: What does a Bogle TV look like?

I got rid of my TV about seven months ago. It was one of the best things I've ever done.
by clearwater
Wed Dec 04, 2013 5:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Wellesley (VWINX) + Berkshire (BRK.B)?
Replies: 1
Views: 744

Vanguard Wellesley (VWINX) + Berkshire (BRK.B)?

Summary: Considering combining Berkshire Hathaway (BRK.B) with Vanguard Wellesley (VWINX) in its own standalone account. I have three accounts: my "core" account which is your standard Bogleheads type portfolio; a "stock" account where I hold some individual securities; and a Rot...
by clearwater
Mon Sep 30, 2013 8:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hertz PlatePass Program--Feel Burned
Replies: 27
Views: 4387

Re: Hertz PlatePass Program--Feel Burned

I am almost 60 years old and have done a lot of business in my life. It truly seems that just the last few years, I am finding myself tricked and trapped more and more by companies doing stuff like this. Perhaps I am just imagining it. But I am far from the most casual and careless consumer around....
by clearwater
Mon Sep 30, 2013 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Jewelry repair at Ben Bridge?
Replies: 3
Views: 462

Re: Jewelry repair at Ben Bridge?

A caution on Ben Bridge. They will add you to their mailing list. You will find it a real job to get removed. I ultimately wrote a letter to Mr. Bridge himself, who to his credit wrote back and apologized. Then I took in my watch to get a battery replaced, and it started all over again. I had to wri...
by clearwater
Wed Sep 18, 2013 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flooring fiasco
Replies: 22
Views: 2273

Re: Flooring fiasco

I did not have a contractor. We purchased this flooring through a local flooring store. They used their own installers (some didn't speak much English). No one checked to see if the floor was level. .... The basement was a mess of thin strips of wood after they finished putting in the floor. You've...
by clearwater
Mon Sep 09, 2013 3:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Warning on "free" Morningstar trial
Replies: 24
Views: 2440

Warning on "free" Morningstar trial

Take note that you may want to steer clear of Morningstar's "free" 14 day trial. You'll have to sign up with credit card number, etc, then you have 14 days to cancel. BUT -- there is no "CANCEL ME" button on the web page, and instead you have to call their 800 number where they s...
by clearwater
Wed Jul 10, 2013 1:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International funds not popular at Vanguard?
Replies: 8
Views: 1831

Re: International funds not popular at Vanguard?

(edited to include mutual fund classes, some additional comments): You're right in that they are very, very new. I'd just have expected a faster influx of buyers if there was demand. Comparing to the mutual funds: Vanguard REIT Index Adm (VGSLX): 34.5B Vanguard Global ex-US Rel Est Idx Inv (VGXRX): ...
by clearwater
Wed Jul 10, 2013 1:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: International funds not popular at Vanguard?
Replies: 8
Views: 1831

International funds not popular at Vanguard?

I try to follow a 70/30 U.S. / International split in all sectors. Some time ago I implemented this across Real Estate Index (VNQ), and International Real Estate (VNQI). Looking today I was somewhat amazed to see the International Real Estate Fund only has 788 million in assets, compared to 17.82 bi...

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