Search found 3821 matches

by dratkinson
Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to put a vegie garden
Replies: 12
Views: 831

Re: Where to put a vegie garden

One of the homes in my subdivision (similar front yard layout, compass orientation) has a raised bed garden approximately on top of your "West" compass point. Their garden is watered by a drip irrigation system run off their home's lawn sprinkler controller. It's fun to ride by on my bike ...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 23, 2017 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surge Protector for Refrigerator
Replies: 14
Views: 871

Re: Surge Protector for Refrigerator

+1 for the Luke Duke linked excellent Steve Jenkins article. Wish I'd read it sooner. Didn't know about the Eaton unit when I installed my GE THQLSURGE unit (it's missing the Jenkins-recommended ground leg protection: L-G, N-G). But it seems to have worked okay as my next door neighbor (we're on the...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 23, 2017 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?
Replies: 28
Views: 1614

Re: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?

Kluge 1. To save all of the ripping, burning,..., how about a CD player with built-in FM transmitter? Then play your CDs through your FM radio. See: http://www.google.com/search?q=CD+player+with+FM+transmitter Kluge 2. Or use an FM transmitter module that plugs into the output jack of your existing ...
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Income Tax Calculation?
Replies: 18
Views: 1613

Re: Income Tax Calculation?

ubermax wrote:...
I created an Excel workbook that mirrored our tax forms and determined the impact of additional annual withdrawals...


Have you tried playing with excel1040.com?
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 22, 2017 5:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VTSAX taxable buy now dividends just distributed
Replies: 9
Views: 983

Re: VTSAX taxable buy now dividends just distributed

... i am in 15% ... I am looking at 2 funds Total Stock Market and Tax Managed Fund. ... [I have] Total Stock Market ... in my Roth IRA and in my taxed deferred account. The short answer. If your only choice is between TSM and a TM fund in the 15% tax bracket, I'd pick TSM. And turn off all TSM rei...
by dratkinson
Wed Jun 21, 2017 2:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio checkup now that I have a taxable account
Replies: 3
Views: 551

Re: Portfolio checkup now that I have a taxable account

BH Portfolio checkup now that I have a taxable account Congratulations on paying off your student loans. Recommended long-term retirement investing choices. See: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Three-fund_portfolio See: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Principles_of_tax-efficient_fund_placement The 3...
by dratkinson
Tue Jun 20, 2017 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Storing funds for a house
Replies: 10
Views: 1052

Re: Storing funds for a house

i have several hundred thousand dollars I need to set aside for a few years ... 3-5 years . Recommend vehicles and time horizons when saving for future goals. --0-5yrs: FDIC/NCUA insured checking/savings/mmkt and US savings bonds (1yr lockout). --5-10yrs: safe bond funds . -->10yrs: safe stock fund...
by dratkinson
Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does a tax managed fund belong in a roth acct
Replies: 8
Views: 655

Re: Does a tax managed fund belong in a roth acct

+1 A tax-managed fund used muni bonds. Muni bonds have lower yield than taxable bonds. Muni bond use the tax code and our marginal tax bracket to boost their yield against taxable bonds in a taxable account. In a Roth IRA, that tax code boost is lost. The only thing worse than using muni bonds in a ...
by dratkinson
Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What Is The Right Amount For An Emergency Fund?
Replies: 27
Views: 2449

Re: What Is The Right Amount For An Emergency Fund?

While working: 3-12 months in cash/near-cash equivalents, or more it you like. The last/largest tier of my formal EF is a double-duty (it's also part of my bond allocation) safe/recommended bond fund so technically my EFs total >6-years in cash/near-cash equivalents. In retirement: 5-years in cash/n...
by dratkinson
Sun Jun 18, 2017 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: State Farm to Geico
Replies: 13
Views: 1107

Re: State Farm to Geico

In my youth, when I was still 10' tall and bullet-proof, bought a ~3yo New Yorker (beautiful/comfortable car) that had been previously owned by a traveling salesman (~80K interstate miles, if memory serves). Long story short: wrecked it at ~6mo and State Farm's reimbursement wasn't enough to pay for...
by dratkinson
Sat Jun 17, 2017 8:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts
Replies: 24
Views: 2755

Re: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts

General guideline: all else being equal, choose the cheapest funds. Example. If Fidelity (401k) has the cheapest stocks and Vanguard (IRA) the cheapest bonds, then hold stocks at Fidelity (TSM, TISM, EM, REIT) and bonds at Vanguard (IPS, treasuries): total of 6 funds, down from 12 funds. In your Van...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 16, 2017 8:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking Investment Advice
Replies: 6
Views: 421

Re: Seeking Investment Advice

The general advice is to invest for retirement in this order: --401k to get the company match (its free money) --IRA (probably more and better choices) --Spousal IRA (if spouse not working, qualifies based on your earned income) --401k to annual contribution limit (maximize annual tax-deferred space...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: beginner investing advice, novice to semi-medium level
Replies: 7
Views: 477

Re: beginner investing advice, novice to semi-medium level

For additional advice, you should describe your situation as in https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=6212 +1 The more we know about you, the better targeted can be the advice offered. Four major stock market lessons; you ignore them at your peril: --It’s very easy to get the mar...
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 15, 2017 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax efficient ways of liquidating S-Corp brokerage account?
Replies: 3
Views: 261

Re: Tax efficient ways of liquidating S-Corp brokerage account?

Don't know answer but lots to be found by searching....
http://www.google.com/search?q=S+corp+l ... ence+avoid

Answer may be above the pay grade of a CPA, may need a business tax lawyer to unravel at lowest tax cost.
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 15, 2017 6:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Child reaching majority Custodian Acct- fund advice TRowePrice
Replies: 11
Views: 686

Re: Child reaching majority Custodian Acct- fund advice TRowePrice

Research ALL costs at your new investment brokerage home. Why? A recent forum topic identified that some low cost brokers have a small fee to close an account... which would happen if you again decided to change investment brokerage homes. Don't remember which ones charged the fees.
by dratkinson
Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Watch Batteries
Replies: 53
Views: 2251

Re: Watch Batteries

Bought my last watch battery from Radio Shack and clerk installed it for free. Don't remember price, but it seemed reasonable at the time.
by dratkinson
Tue Jun 13, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Create another tier in EF? Recommendations?
Replies: 12
Views: 634

Re: Create another tier in EF? Recommendations?

When I went through this drill a few years back, I made the same decision... invest excess EF in the market. However I didn't want to invest in stocks, so decided upon muni bonds as being less risky. Why? Because I follow forum's advice that stocks can lose 50% during a crash, bonds can lose 15% dur...
by dratkinson
Mon Jun 12, 2017 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto-Debit May Not Be Such a Good Idea
Replies: 25
Views: 3075

Re: Auto-Debit May Not Be Such a Good Idea

... So I get a paper bill each month, open it, and see when my auto pay is going to happen (it literally says this on the paper). So that's reassuring. +1. Love paper statements with a date when ABP will be withdrawn. The ~2-week notice gives me plenty of time to make other arrangements and stop AB...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 09, 2017 9:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: need help...acquired 150,000...what do I do?
Replies: 10
Views: 1621

Re: need help...acquired 150,000...what do I do?

BH need help...acquired 150,000...what do I do? This says the AZ state income tax range is 2.59% to 4.54%. See: https://smartasset.com/taxes/arizona-tax-calculator When I played with this scenario in the 15% fed tax bracket, my best choices were, in order, at that time: --single-state muni. (Will re...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 09, 2017 8:13 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: need help...acquired 150,000...what do I do?
Replies: 10
Views: 1621

Re: need help...acquired 150,000...what do I do?

BolderBoy wrote:What is your marginal tax rate, both federal and state?


And what is your state of residency?
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 08, 2017 5:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laundry lifestyle creep
Replies: 84
Views: 13867

Re: Laundry lifestyle creep

America's Test Kitchen (TV cooking show) recently had an episode in which they tested laundry stain remover pretreatments. Recall they preferred powdered OxiClean in a tub. Nothing in this thread explains why OP prefers frozen OJ to fresh! Bottled isn't necessarily the same thing as fresh. +1. Havin...
by dratkinson
Tue Jun 06, 2017 6:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investment advice for taxable account
Replies: 11
Views: 898

Re: Investment advice for taxable account

I recommend you look into the tax implications of this "gift." +1. And don't forget the personal implications. With the money in your account, you will owe fed/state personal income taxes on the annual distributions. Assuming 2.5% annual distributions, that's ~$7500/yr (=2.5% x $300K) add...
by dratkinson
Mon Jun 05, 2017 7:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Discouraged by Starting Late
Replies: 21
Views: 3435

Re: Discouraged by Starting Late

I started much later than you and am doing fine. You'll do fine, too. Spousal IRA. She should qualify for a spousal IRA based on your earned income in sales. See: http://www.google.com/search?q=spousal+ira Can you hire your wife to work for your rental property business, and start an employer retire...
by dratkinson
Mon Jun 05, 2017 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mouse In Apartment
Replies: 39
Views: 3747

Re: Mouse In Apartment

Search YouTube for "ultimate mouse trap". You'll find many variants on this 5-gal bucket theme. Assuming you have many mice, it traps them as fast as they enter, and is immediately ready for the next. It's your choice to fill the bottom of the bucket with water, or antifreeze (vacant vacat...
by dratkinson
Sun Jun 04, 2017 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please explain how Medicare Billing works?
Replies: 62
Views: 3792

Re: Please explain how Medicare Billing works?

Within past year, received a Medicare notice saying claim for an exam had been denied. Called Medicare. Got a human surprisingly fast. Human said claim had already been resolved and doctor paid. Human said Medicare paperwork is only mailed quarterly, and only then if you have a claim during the quar...
by dratkinson
Sun Jun 04, 2017 6:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Problem with SavingsBonds.com
Replies: 8
Views: 922

Re: Problem with SavingsBonds.com

They keep track of my paper ee bonds and each month update the new value of bonds and color code bonds so l know which bonds to redeem and not lose any interest. Perhaps its automated, sends you an email? The Treasury Direct link above does the same for me, manually, with a date change and hit ente...
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 02, 2017 6:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Losing money on vehicle, should I or shouldn't I?
Replies: 24
Views: 2551

Re: Losing money on vehicle, should I or shouldn't I?

^^^ Something similar is reported to happen on the Simple Tractors forum; you get a tractor built the way you want it (hydraulic transaxle and lift, power steering, multiple quick connect attachments,...) and suddenly it becomes HER tractor. If you discover a need for a new attachment for your (plur...
by dratkinson
Thu Jun 01, 2017 7:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What do you hold while waiting for a good CD?
Replies: 20
Views: 1747

Re: What do you hold while waiting for a good CD?

I went through this drill in 2015 and decided I preferred muni funds over CDs. Over fund them ~18% (=1/(1-.15), assuming worst case 15% bond crash) and call it good. And after skewing holdings toward longer term national/single-state (but not HY to avoid AMT), the taxable-equivalent yields have rema...
by dratkinson
Wed May 31, 2017 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Florida Solar Breakeven Period for a Small Business?
Replies: 5
Views: 398

Re: Florida Solar Breakeven Period for a Small Business?

Recall englishgirl lives in Florida, has a solar system with battery backup up. Recall she discussed her system when forum was talking about emergency generators. Can search for her post.
by dratkinson
Wed May 31, 2017 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Green Investor
Replies: 8
Views: 737

Re: Green Investor

Four major stock market lessons; you ignore them at your peril: --It’s very easy to get the market return, just buy index funds. --It’s so impossible difficult to get more than the market return, that it's not worth trying. --The short-term market return is mostly noise, so should be ignored. --If y...
by dratkinson
Wed May 31, 2017 7:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stock Market vs. Mutual Funds
Replies: 22
Views: 1566

Re: Stock Market vs. Mutual Funds

A recent topic reminded us of four major stock market lessons: --It’s very easy to get the market return. (Just buy index funds.) --It’s so impossible difficult to get more than the market return, that it's not worth trying. (Apple is high today. It hasn't always been so.) --The short-term market re...
by dratkinson
Wed May 31, 2017 7:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Really trying to understand no bonds in taxable
Replies: 46
Views: 3130

Re: Really trying to understand no bonds in taxable

BH Really trying to understand no bonds in taxable Disclosure. All my bonds are in taxable and I use only municipal bonds. Why? I'm shooting for the moon in my tax-advantaged space. I'm shooting for the moon with no bonds in taxable. I have equities in my Roth IRAs and they are doing great. I like b...
by dratkinson
Tue May 30, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: how do you invest the bond portion of your portfolio
Replies: 19
Views: 1861

Re: how do you invest the bond portion of your portfolio

Then. Use to own all the right stuff: IT treasury and inflation-protected securities in tax-advantaged; CDs and savings bonds in taxable. Eventually learned (after ~5yrs) the safe low yields and additional management requirements bored me to tears. Now. Only own munis in taxable: IT national, LT nat...
by dratkinson
Mon May 29, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A more modest inheritance
Replies: 16
Views: 2533

Re: A more modest inheritance

In case you missed the unspoken point, you get a stepped up cost basis on an inheritance. Meaning your cost basis on your $170K inheritance was $170K on the date of your inheritance. See: https://www.irs.gov/publications/p551/ar02.html#en_US_201612_publink1000257012 Example. If you had already recei...
by dratkinson
Mon May 29, 2017 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Losing money on vehicle, should I or shouldn't I?
Replies: 24
Views: 2551

Re: Losing money on vehicle, should I or shouldn't I?

Off road breaks toys. In larger vehicles, automatics are preferred over clutches. Why? The torque converter dissipates the abuse as heat that would otherwise be clutch wear. I've 200K miles on my Montero's clutch and it was driven some off road in it early life, not so much now. A friend can exhibit...
by dratkinson
Mon May 29, 2017 6:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just realized I have been doing wrong my whole life financially.
Replies: 10
Views: 2943

Re: Just realized I have been doing wrong my whole life financially.

Could you work part time (evenings, weekends) in a local civilian shop to go over 40hrs/week? It would seem like a natural fit.


Recall seeing a "side hustle" topic on the forum. Can search for it.
by dratkinson
Sat May 27, 2017 8:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on this portfolio
Replies: 6
Views: 835

Re: Advice on this portfolio

5% VTV Vanguard Value 5 % VUG Vanguard Growth 5% EFAV iShs Edge MSCI MV 15% CSJ iShares Barclays 1-3 Year Credit Bond Fd 19% CIU iShares Lehman Intermdte Credit Bnd 30% PIMIX PIMCO Income Fund Institutional Class 20% BIICX BlackRock Multi-Asset Income Portfolio Institutional Shares Thanks, Beensabu...
by dratkinson
Sat May 27, 2017 3:19 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!
Replies: 161
Views: 18127

Re: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!

Miriam2 wrote:Here is how engineers cook roast beef (note - I am quoting, I did not make this up :D ):

Sous vide?

I'm updating my self-reported retirement date to 1 Dec 2017.
by dratkinson
Fri May 26, 2017 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stockpile Website
Replies: 7
Views: 1254

Re: Stockpile Website

I give a mmkt check. If they ask, "What's a tax-exempt money market fund, and how do I get one?", then I also give them the BH book.
by dratkinson
Fri May 26, 2017 6:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Really trying to understand no bonds in taxable
Replies: 46
Views: 3130

Re: Really trying to understand no bonds in taxable

In other words, yes, this is a true statement: "I started with $900,000 in total stock market and it went to $450,000 wouldn't I be in more trouble than if I had a mix of stocks and bonds in taxable?" This is what I am really wondering. If you were retiring early say 53 y/o WITHOUT a pens...
by dratkinson
Thu May 25, 2017 6:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Livesoft: Worst day?
Replies: 64
Views: 21087

Re: Livesoft: Worst day?

How do apply a RBD calculation to a mutual fund? Just run the numbers for the corresponding ETF? For the Fund you are looking to buy see the corresponding ETF. 1. Has the ETF dropped in value today? 2. Is this drop greater than 2.5%? 3. Is this drop greater than the 4th largest drop in the past 151...
by dratkinson
Wed May 24, 2017 4:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do you keep extra money available for investing
Replies: 37
Views: 3387

Re: Do you keep extra money available for investing

No. Yes.

I consider bonds in taxable to be: part of my AA, last/largest formal tier of my EFs, home project/new car fund, and dry power.

But lately, the EF/project duties have taken center stage, so haven't wanted to press my luck.
by dratkinson
Wed May 24, 2017 1:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maximize number of ETFs in taxable account to maximize Tax Loss Harvesting opportunities?
Replies: 18
Views: 911

Re: Maximize number of ETFs in taxable account to maximize Tax Loss Harvesting opportunities?

Tax loss harvesting is NOT a good thing. You can't TLH unless you have losses. You can recoup a small fraction of your losses with TLH. So you still suffer the majority of your losses. TLH is a "least bad" thing. I would not structure my portfolio around "least bad" Hold on, doe...
by dratkinson
Tue May 23, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie investor needs inputs on portfolio overhaul
Replies: 1
Views: 241

Re: Newbie investor needs inputs on portfolio overhaul

401k(s) and IRAs. If you own a TDR (target date retirement fund), and also own S&P500 + international equity + bond funds, then that combination results in overlap---more complexity/work to rebalance, without a reasonable expectation of greater return. All you really need is one TDR fund in each...
by dratkinson
Mon May 22, 2017 7:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle recommendation for large family
Replies: 32
Views: 1853

Re: Vehicle recommendation for large family

The most comfortable vehicle I've test driven recently was a Honda Pilot, and was hoping it would be big enough for you as it had 8 seats. But unfortunately, the Pilot seems to be a smaller vehicle than the Odyssey. See: http://www.thecarconnection.com/car-compare-results/honda_odyssey_2017-vs-honda...
by dratkinson
Mon May 22, 2017 6:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Disclosure: My Colorado muni bond fund: WTCOX.
Replies: 4
Views: 822

Belated due diligence, or confirmation bias.

The most recent mailed summary prospectus for the Westcore Colorado Tax-Exempt Fund included an announcement that a Thomson Reuters Lipper award was received by Denver Investments for their management of the Westcore fixed income funds: "Best Fixed Income---Small Fund Group". Had to go loo...
by dratkinson
Sun May 21, 2017 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: We have a lot going on .... Input Requested.
Replies: 62
Views: 6798

Re: We have a lot going on .... Input Requested.

Topic: Your saving for your kids' education vs for your retirement. +1 on bayview's comments. Your kids can get a loan to pay for their education, you can't get a loan to pay for your retirement. (Or they can work PT, or work FT and go to school part time. I did.) Bottom line. Your kids have more fl...

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