Search found 3694 matches

by dratkinson
Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Emergency fund necessary with 2 RMDs?
Replies: 17
Views: 1183

Re: Is Emergency fund necessary with 2 RMDs?

The question is how does that impact your overall asset allocation according to your IPS. This is completely within the investor's control. When I do a withdrawal from my IRA (in my case, a ROTH conversion) it is immediately invested into the same thing it was in before it left the IRA. If it was g...
by dratkinson
Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Emergency fund necessary with 2 RMDs?
Replies: 17
Views: 1183

Re: Is Emergency fund necessary with 2 RMDs?

When we consider our total investments to be our EF, there is the possibility that we would need to sell in a down market. To handle that problem (selling in a down market), I've read some here advocate keeping 5-yrs of cash reserves so that never happens to them, as the market is expected to recove...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tell me about Smart TVs and cutting cable
Replies: 100
Views: 6857

Re: Tell me about Smart TVs and cutting cable

... We have liked TiVo over the years. Buying the Lifetime subscription (used to be $15/month as an option) is steep to just record OTA. If you want just a DVR, I did find one that is cheap (~$40 + external memory). It's a digital converter box with DVR and supports analog/digital TVs with RCA comp...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 21, 2017 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using 25-30 year old EE bonds to fund 529
Replies: 12
Views: 971

Re: Using 25-30 year old EE bonds to fund 529

Recall this topic being discussed before, but don't remember where. Wiki? Forum? Only remember this from that discussion. The allowed (tax-advantaged) educational spending items is more limited with savings bonds, less limited with 529 plan. So to expand allowed educational spending items, roll savi...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 21, 2017 8:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you purposely spend with companies in your investment portfolio?
Replies: 37
Views: 1678

Re: Do you purposely spend with companies in your investment portfolio?

Yes, can't help it. Why? Because I own everything.
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 20, 2017 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tell me about Smart TVs and cutting cable
Replies: 100
Views: 6857

Re: Tell me about Smart TVs and cutting cable

... thank you to all for your insightful posts regarding cutting the cord. We are still considering it and may wait until our Comcast contract is up in 18 months. By then I am thinking that the live TV streaming services will be even better. Other options to consider: Tivo Roamio OTA and Channel Ma...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 20, 2017 5:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does such a tool exist?
Replies: 2
Views: 591

Re: Does such a tool exist?

... All that said, I do this sort of thing myself in a humble spreadsheet. ... +1. Ditto. Roll your own and make it do what you want. If you input exact number of shares owned, and download daily fund prices, then your spreadsheet will update itself. (I use Gummy's macro to download fund prices, bu...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: PurePoint 1.25% online savings $10K min
Replies: 29
Views: 3950

Re: PurePoint 1.25% online savings $10K min

Several years back, got tired of rate chasing (because my HY online checking/savings dropped to ~0%, HY CD couldn't be rolled over at same rate, and my desirable PenFed CC became less so), so decided to do something different. If I had the money (I did), didn't need it for a while (I didn't), could ...
by dratkinson
Sun Mar 19, 2017 3:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Citi card Nightmare
Replies: 54
Views: 5557

Idea: switch from online payments to ABP.

Maybe you are working too hard and trying to do too much. Idea: do less online and try to relax more. How? I believe "push" transactions (from online accounts) would complicate my life. I believe "pull" transactions make my life simpler. To that end, I set up ABP (Automatic Bill ...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 17, 2017 6:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Munis or CDs?
Replies: 9
Views: 879

Re: Munis or CDs?

Went through this exercise a few years back and decided I preferred munis. Why? No rate chasing/early termination fees/rolling over, easy to add/remove money, comparable yields + better tax advantages = more after-tax income, daily accrual funds do double-duty as part of EF, and I could tolerate the...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 17, 2017 2:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I found a favorable dental plan in Denver CO
Replies: 2
Views: 333

I found a favorable dental plan in Denver CO

Disclosure. In the past I’ve believed dental insurance was a waste of money as the annual fees were higher than an annual root canal. But today I’ve changed my mind. I don’t like dentists and have avoided them for several years . Last week I chipped a crown so called for an appointment. Today as a f...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Got my budget straight, now 401k help
Replies: 11
Views: 719

Re: Got my budget straight, now 401k help

401k. All of the BlackRock funds seem to be target date retirement (TDR) funds. As there is only one of you, and you will have only one retirement date, then you only need one TDR fund. Your listed ER of the 2030 fund is not consistent with the others. Went looking but didn't identify it. Why? Found...
by dratkinson
Tue Mar 14, 2017 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any way to improve single stage snowblower?
Replies: 22
Views: 1831

Re: Any way to improve single stage snowblower?

It's always nice to have closure (to know the solution when a problem is fixed). Thanks for sharing.
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 13, 2017 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Got my budget straight, now 401k help
Replies: 11
Views: 719

Re: Got my budget straight, now 401k help

You don't want the forum to review only your 401k options. Instead, you want the forum to review your full financial situation. Please add (edit your original post) all of the information requested in the sticky "Asking Portfolio Questions". Why? New topic, new eyes who didn't see your oth...
by dratkinson
Mon Mar 13, 2017 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Want to make large auto loan payment, Chase doesn't accept credit cards
Replies: 13
Views: 1093

Re: Want to make large auto loan payment, Chase doesn't accept credit cards

Nowizard wrote:We paid 10K on a credit card from Chase, but it was to the dealer with the rest being paid by check since 10K was the limit. Chase Freedom. Don't know if paying a dealer is different from paying on a loan.

Tim


+1. Dealer accepted CC for down payment. Loan paid off by check.
by dratkinson
Sun Mar 12, 2017 3:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finally making money and need budget advice
Replies: 19
Views: 2094

Re: Finally making money and need budget advice

... Now I gotta head over to the investing side and pick some wise mutual funds/stocks to invest in and make my money work properly. Over there, read the first sticky. Then copy the second sticky ("Asking Portfolio Questions"), and take as much time as you need to edit it offline. Then po...
by dratkinson
Sat Mar 11, 2017 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to start - converting from generator/UPS to more reasonable solar / powerwall?
Replies: 43
Views: 2756

Re: Where to start - converting from generator/UPS to more reasonable solar / powerwall?

Does the meter show power being used when the main breaker is turned off? I tried that today, much to the chagrin of my family. It moved, albeit VERY slowly. Certainly not 25% slower than before, more like 99.95% slower. Called power company, talked to some entry level clerk that tried to lie her w...
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 10, 2017 6:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finally making money and need budget advice
Replies: 19
Views: 2094

Re: Finally making money and need budget advice

Budget advice. Part* of what you make is yours to keep (* the rest goes to taxes, interest, and is wasted on impulse purchases, keeping up with the Joneses,...). You can increase the amount you keep by paying yourself first... and living within the artificially-created austere financial environment....
by dratkinson
Fri Mar 10, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to start - converting from generator/UPS to more reasonable solar / powerwall?
Replies: 43
Views: 2756

Re: Where to start - converting from generator/UPS to more reasonable solar / powerwall?

In for the ride. Vampire loads. From a past topic diagnosing same... add to your list of potential candidates: embedded driveway/sidewalk electric snow-melting system. See: http://www.google.com/search?q=electric+snow+melt+system How to read your utility meter and use it to diagnose power consumptio...
by dratkinson
Wed Mar 08, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Small (but Significant) Milestone
Replies: 26
Views: 2715

Re: Small (but Significant) Milestone

Congratulation. Best wishes for your future success.
by dratkinson
Thu Mar 02, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace gas water heater with electric?
Replies: 40
Views: 2743

Re: Replace gas water heater with electric?

For various reasons, I want to switch to just about anything else to get away from the chimney. Just curious as to why you want to get rid of a chimney vent? My last go around I almost went with a forced vent but since electrical outages are fairly common around here, I stuck with the gas chimney v...
by dratkinson
Wed Mar 01, 2017 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Family Hounding me to Purchase SUV or Minivan
Replies: 61
Views: 3793

Re: Family Hounding me to Purchase SUV or Minivan

You figured me out. Changing a few minor details I was hoping to obscure my identity. Accord/Fusion, what does it matter? Pretty much the same thing. The issue is reliability. Honda is known for it more so than Ford. Search internet for article from last year on, "most least expensive cars to ...
by dratkinson
Sun Feb 26, 2017 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?
Replies: 25
Views: 1857

Re: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?

Presumably, there are many of us who will be selling shares well into retirement that are 40 years old; it'd be nice to have a little help on Vanguard's end, ... I've got my records and software but I may not have my wherewithal at some point, unfortunately. Ditto. Noticed/thought the same things. ...
by dratkinson
Thu Feb 23, 2017 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?
Replies: 25
Views: 1857

Re: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?

^ If above directed at me (the OP), then I had to retrace my steps to understand any confusion. ^ Just bear in mind that "capital gains" reported on your 1099 are presumed to be long-term. If you've received a short-term gain distribution, it's not included in the "capital gains"...
by dratkinson
Wed Feb 22, 2017 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?
Replies: 25
Views: 1857

Re: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?

Sidebar. Another interesting lesson learned this tax year: not all monthly muni dividends may be tax-exempt. I own a single-state muni fund and it's monthly distributions are recorded exactly in my Excel tracking tool and my shared-owned are correct, so everything should be good to enter. Not. Shor...
by dratkinson
Wed Feb 22, 2017 7:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?
Replies: 25
Views: 1857

Re: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?

Thanks. Followed link to IRS topic from linked post. Code "B" with "0" correction seems to apply. (Note to self: order Form 8949 instructions next year.) Tax software. I'm using OLT (online freefile s/w), and unfortunately it is only quick-entry (tables to populate, not interview...
by dratkinson
Tue Feb 21, 2017 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?
Replies: 25
Views: 1857

How to report 1099B cost basis discrepancy on non-covered shares?

Just checking to ensure I’m doing this correctly. When Vanguard converted my non-covered VFWIX shares to Admiral, they converted all lots into one VFWAX share lot---treating them as having an average cost basis, so losing the cost basis information on the original VFWIX lots. I was very clear with t...
by dratkinson
Mon Feb 20, 2017 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1770

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

For the Vanguard Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt Fund, you're not concerned by possible interest rate increases? Not too much. The mainstream wisdom says the bond fund price will recover as old bond issues are replaced by new issue. (Note SEC yield will also rise during this time. Same reason.) Expect...
by dratkinson
Mon Feb 20, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Recommended books and resources to fully understand how the world stock market works.
Replies: 36
Views: 2460

Re: Recommended books and resources to fully understand how the world stock market works.

You could read Mandelbrot's The (mis)behavior of Markets . It was interesting, but not directly useful as I didn't find any simple "action steps". Why? My takeaway from the book was "...markets are more risky than we know and that risk can not be quantified." So I made a consciou...
by dratkinson
Sat Feb 18, 2017 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1770

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

I believe investments pay a higher return than bank accounts. To that end you could research municipal bond funds. The Wiki has a topic on them. And the Wiki list of recommended bond "books" (search term) also covers them. The largest tier of my formal emergency funds is in a "daily a...
by dratkinson
Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Money in the bank seems to lead to better life satisfaction
Replies: 9
Views: 1195

Re: Money in the bank seems to lead to better life satisfaction

Cash in the bank. I've noticed two often-repeated themes on the forum. --Money sitting in the bank makes us happy, so some accumulate too much at the expense of their retirement investing. --Money lying fallow in the bank makes us sad, so some chase rates and needlessly complicate their lives. I've ...
by dratkinson
Wed Feb 15, 2017 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Wall Street Journal to close Google loophole entirely
Replies: 114
Views: 11705

Re: The Wall Street Journal to close Google loophole entirely

imbogled wrote:Check your local library sometimes they subscribe to the online WSJ and offer it as a database to library patrons. Mine does. Your mileage may vary.


+1

After logging into my public library account from home, WSJ (plus lots more) is found under a "Reference Databases" tab.
by dratkinson
Sat Feb 11, 2017 2:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Recommended books and resources to fully understand how the world stock market works.
Replies: 36
Views: 2460

Re: Recommended books and resources to fully understand how the world stock market works.

I recall the book Capital Ideas to have been an interesting read in explaining the origins of Wall Street. The BH list of recommended books contains other interesting books on market history. Search Wiki (link: screen top right) for "books". Bottom line. People need goods and services. Bus...
by dratkinson
Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seeking comfortable car seat
Replies: 19
Views: 1162

Re: Seeking comfortable car seat

Idea. If you find a known comfortable car seat, could try installing a replacement copy into your current vehicle. A local body shop probably has experience doing this and matching upholstery.
See: http://www.google.com/search?q=replacement+car+seat
by dratkinson
Sat Feb 04, 2017 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seeking comfortable car seat
Replies: 19
Views: 1162

Re: Seeking comfortable car seat

kenschmidt wrote:You can definitely take a car for a greater than one hour test drive once the dealer knows you are really serious about the car. As others said, some will allow you to take it overnight. ...


Option. Could maybe rent a car for a week-long trial.
by dratkinson
Thu Feb 02, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Milestone and gotta tell someone
Replies: 61
Views: 5542

Re: Milestone and gotta tell someone

Congratulations. Do you have any special plan for the freed up mortgage payment? Or just more for retirement investing?
by dratkinson
Tue Jan 31, 2017 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sump pump and power outage
Replies: 53
Views: 3526

Re: Sump pump and power outage

... Cords. From the generator under the garage door, through a cat door in the garage-to-house door , one cord to furnace, one up to kitchen for fridge and incidentals. ... Believe this to be a dangerous situation. CO detectors required. --Note generator warning against running in enclosed structur...
by dratkinson
Mon Jan 30, 2017 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sump pump and power outage
Replies: 53
Views: 3526

Re: Sump pump and power outage

smitcat wrote:... genset running about 80% of the time - about 7 gph overall while running. ...


Typo? Seems high.
by dratkinson
Mon Jan 30, 2017 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sump pump and power outage
Replies: 53
Views: 3526

Re: Sump pump and power outage

... rather than buy a bunch of batteries and repurchase them each 3-4 years while continually charging them we bough a small inverter genset. It was a bit less than $1,000 and runs the sump pumps, reefer, powers the oil burner (heat and hot water) and allows us some lights and to use and charge the...
by dratkinson
Sun Jan 29, 2017 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sump pump and power outage
Replies: 53
Views: 3526

Re: Sump pump and power outage

Don't have a sump pump. Know nothing about practical solutions. But... Idea: Build battery bank to give extended runtime to battery-powered sump pump. If worried about the limited run time of a single-battery battery-powered sump pump, then should be able to gang multiple batteries together to give ...
by dratkinson
Wed Jan 25, 2017 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have experience with plumbing issues or any Plumbers here?
Replies: 30
Views: 2323

Re: Anyone have experience with plumbing issues or any Plumbers here?

Automatic Whole House Water Shutoff Valves.

They do exist. Some use sensors (wired or wireless). Some sense water flow (wrong time or too much/long = possible broken pipe). I remember one brand was "Water Cop" (name stuck in my mind). All required electric power. Can search for them.
by dratkinson
Sun Jan 22, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling diamond engagement ring
Replies: 40
Views: 4778

Re: Selling diamond engagement ring

Another option. Long ago, gf gave my ring back. I made it into a stickpin and wear it occasionally. I also have a tell a story while wearing it that seems to always receive the same reactions. Me, wearing diamond stickpin: "My gf gave it to me. Well, actually, she gave it back to me." Husb...
by dratkinson
Fri Jan 20, 2017 5:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Memory Bank 1.5%
Replies: 4
Views: 981

Re: Memory Bank 1.5%

BH Memory bank 1.5% Chasing rates. I don’t do that any more; but I do have to stop and remind myself why. High teaser rates go away. I still have online HY checking account (Presidential bank: 4.5% when opened, .12% now) and savings account (HSBC: 5.05% when opened, 0.1% now) left over from 2007 whe...
by dratkinson
Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toaster Oven Recommendations
Replies: 34
Views: 2038

Re: Toaster Oven Recommendations

I've successfully done this twice with throw-away kitchen appliances*. --First was all-mechanical pop-up toaster (no electronics). Ran it through a dishwasher cycle. --Second was automatic coffeemaker with electronic module. Removed module, then ran it through a dishwasher cycle and reinstalled modu...
by dratkinson
Thu Jan 19, 2017 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toaster Oven Recommendations
Replies: 34
Views: 2038

Re: Toaster Oven Recommendations

Recall America's Test Kitchen recently reviewed toaster ovens. Recall #1 was $200+, #2 was ~$100, but don't remember names.

This search should find ATK episode: http://www.google.com/search?q=recommen ... st+kitchen
by dratkinson
Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to get HID (Xenon) kit?
Replies: 20
Views: 1407

Re: Where to get HID (Xenon) kit?

A trick I have used on numerous cars is to use some relays to turn on the low beams and fog lights whenever the high beams are activated. ... I thought about this too, but decided against the idea. Why? 1. In researching (probably on candlepowerforums.com) learned that when (high beams are on) you ...
by dratkinson
Tue Jan 17, 2017 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to get HID (Xenon) kit?
Replies: 20
Views: 1407

Re: Where to get HID (Xenon) kit?

If your car came with halogen bulbs, then halogen is all you can reinstall in original headlight housing. No HID. No Xenon. No LED. No nothing else. Period. If your headlight lens are cloudy, then have them polished or the headlight housings replaced. If your headlight lens and reflectors are both i...
by dratkinson
Mon Jan 16, 2017 7:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to allocate 3-6 million in assets to achieve goals?
Replies: 72
Views: 7712

Re: How to allocate 3-6 million in assets to achieve goals?

Disclosure. This is my taxable AA. --VTSAX (TSM) --VFWAX (TISM) --VWLUX (daily accrual LT national muni) --WTCOX (monthly accrual IT single-state muni) --VWIUX (daily accrual IT national muni: largest tier of my formal EF, dry powder, and new car fund) International allocation. The recommended alloc...
by dratkinson
Mon Jan 16, 2017 7:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for home paper shredder
Replies: 52
Views: 2373

Re: Recommendations for home paper shredder

Hint: you don't need to buy fancy shredder oil or lubrication sheets. Just use a few drops of Canola oil every time you change the bag which isn't that often because the bin is a good large size. where specifically do you put the oil? Watch the youtube videos on this. :) I've not oiled my shredder ...
by dratkinson
Sun Jan 15, 2017 5:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for home paper shredder
Replies: 52
Views: 2373

Re: Recommendations for home paper shredder

My current shredder is too small/slow for your requirements, but I do have a shredder mounting suggestion. Shredder mounting suggestion. My shredder is in my garage and mounted through a hole in a shelf above my trash barrel. Meaning it's incredibly easy to use as all of the chaff falls into the tra...

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