Search found 514 matches

by dsmil
Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much should I fund my HSA and Why?
Replies: 21
Views: 1826

Re: How Much should I fund my HSA and Why?

I'd max the HSA before contributing to the Roth. With the HSA, you get an up-front deduction (not the case with a Roth) and can take the money out tax free for medical expenses. Even if you accumulate more in the HSA than you have in medical expenses, it simply gets taxed like a 401k would (deductio...
by dsmil
Tue Nov 07, 2017 3:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I doing HSA wrong?
Replies: 12
Views: 1224

Re: Am I doing HSA wrong?

I put my after tax money in my HSA. Like out of my bank account. Are you supose to ask your employer to deduct pretaxed money from your paycheck? How do you do this? I dont think my employer offers any match. I use hsa bank. I do the same thing as you since my company doesn't offer a way to directl...
by dsmil
Mon Oct 16, 2017 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are you driving? And would you buy your current ride again?
Replies: 130
Views: 7254

Re: What are you driving? And would you buy your current ride again?

1997 Acura Integra, which they don't make anymore, so no. But considering that I've had it since high school and now have two kids, my requirements for a new car have changed quite a bit.
by dsmil
Thu Oct 05, 2017 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Switching from High Deductible Plan when planning children
Replies: 15
Views: 1549

Re: Switching from High Deductible Plan when planning children

Your summary of benefits and coverage may estimate the costs of a child birth for you. For us, the total bills were around $12k. We had to meet our $2,600 deductible and didn't pay a penny more.
by dsmil
Thu Oct 05, 2017 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much worth house should one buy?
Replies: 73
Views: 4343

Re: How much worth house should one buy?

I prefer putting the housing costs into your budget and seeing how it looks. But if a rule of thumb is to be used, I think PITI (plus HOA if applicable) as a % of gross income is a decent place to start, and maybe make 25% your ceiling. I would also note that people with higher incomes can push the ...
by dsmil
Wed Oct 04, 2017 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this housing budget reasonable?
Replies: 28
Views: 1411

Re: Is this housing budget reasonable?

With that large down payment, the mortgage seems pretty reasonable, but it really just depends on how it fits in with the rest of your budget. The car payment is large and I'm guessing that you have daycare costs as well, so just plug it into your budget and see how it looks.
by dsmil
Tue Oct 03, 2017 2:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1584
Views: 281830

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

Up 13% YTD, but it's not an exact number. I took my total returns and divided them by the average of my ending balances each month.
by dsmil
Thu Sep 28, 2017 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 20% Down Payment Sub-optimal?
Replies: 54
Views: 4555

Re: 20% Down Payment Sub-optimal?

Does anyone know if conventional mortgage interest rates are always better with the more you put down? As in, if you put down 5%, will your rate be worse than if you put down 20%? I believe so. What about 15% instead of 20%? Just curious if there's a percentage where it plateaus. Would be a helpful...
by dsmil
Tue Sep 26, 2017 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 20% Down Payment Sub-optimal?
Replies: 54
Views: 4555

Re: 20% Down Payment Sub-optimal?

I'm about to put either 5% or 10% on a house and don't mind at all. 3.5% interest rates and monthly PMI payments for a few years is a fine deal to me. Rather than saving for another 3 years for 20%, and risking unknown interest rates, that money is going straight into the market.
by dsmil
Tue Sep 26, 2017 9:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Warren Buffett Books
Replies: 22
Views: 2151

Re: Warren Buffett Books

I read "The Snowball" and considering that I finished the book, I must have enjoyed it.
by dsmil
Fri Sep 22, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calling out the not so rich bogleheads
Replies: 233
Views: 26113

Re: Calling out the not so rich bogleheads

I'm a 30 year old not-so-rich Boglehead, but very happy with where I am. Famly of 4, own a home and have $20k of student loans, $120k income, save 12% of income towards retirement, another 12% for other savings (college, down payment), and $180k of net worth. We put 3.5% down on our first house (FHA...
by dsmil
Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying/Selling Home at Same Time
Replies: 8
Views: 662

Re: Buying/Selling Home at Same Time

Are you in agreement for what type of house you want to buy, and in what neighborhood? Are you looking online and do you have an idea of how frequently desirable houses come on the market? When we bought our current house we were not totally on the same page regarding what house to buy and really d...
by dsmil
Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying/Selling Home at Same Time
Replies: 8
Views: 662

Re: Buying/Selling Home at Same Time

My wife and i just experienced this, but we were pretty lucky. By total coincidence, the person's house we were buying, also bought our house. So we just met at the closing attorney's office together, and signed all the paper work together. We both agreed we'd be out of our current properties by no...
by dsmil
Fri Sep 22, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying/Selling Home at Same Time
Replies: 8
Views: 662

Buying/Selling Home at Same Time

Does anyone have any advice or good/bad experiences regarding selling and buying a house at the same time? We are a family of four (and dog) and just put our house on the market. We are in a seller's market and the comps suggest that we will most likely have a contract to sell in under 2 weeks. Our ...
by dsmil
Tue Sep 19, 2017 10:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you spend on "entertainment"?
Replies: 50
Views: 3545

Re: How much do you spend on "entertainment"?

My wife and I (and a toddler and infant) budget $300 per month for shared entertainment, which is basically for any food or drinks consumed away from home. This is normally two small meals per week out, and a decent amount of Starbucks. Then we each budget $150 for our own things (golf, beer, sports...
by dsmil
Fri Sep 15, 2017 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it really Worth it to brown bag your lunch at work?
Replies: 313
Views: 19235

Re: Is it really Worth it to brown bag your lunch at work?

My brown bagged turkey sandwich and yogurt probably costs me around $2.50 per day in groceries, and going out everyday would be around $7, so it's worth it to me. I read the paper, have lunch and coffee provided by my company, and save $1k on food for the year.
by dsmil
Tue Sep 05, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The "interest rates are so low....why would you"arguments
Replies: 62
Views: 6680

Re: The "interest rates are so low....why would you"arguments

It's hard for me to ignore interest rates when making a housing decision. We are beginning a new house search a little earlier than I originally planned, but I'm ok with it because the interest rates are so low. If interest rates go up 1%, we lose 10% of our buying power, and some houses that fit in...
by dsmil
Tue Aug 22, 2017 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Jobs that pay over $100,000
Replies: 157
Views: 16854

Re: Jobs that pay over $100,000

Study accounting in undergrad + CPA. CPA It took me 7 years and leaving public to hit $100k and 3 more to hit $165k. Isn't 100K plus salaries for a CPA unusual? I looked on the net and most of what I found was akin to this: http://www.payscale.com/research/US/Job=Certified_Public_Accountant_(CPA)/S...
by dsmil
Tue Aug 22, 2017 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Jobs that pay over $100,000
Replies: 157
Views: 16854

Re: Jobs that pay over $100,000

I studied accounting in college, went to a public accounting firm for 3.5 years and got the CPA, and now work for an accounting department at a real estate management company. It took me 6 years to double my starting salary after college and get over $100k in a HCOL area. I make enough and like my j...
by dsmil
Wed Aug 16, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with mortgage rates-closing soon!
Replies: 11
Views: 1046

Re: Help with mortgage rates-closing soon!

You can look at aimloan.com. The rates that I saw last week were 3.625% but are now back to 3.75%. I think that your rate sounds good.
by dsmil
Thu Aug 03, 2017 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much money do you want to retire?
Replies: 276
Views: 25871

Re: A poll: How much money do you need to retire?

I'm 30, and am aiming for at least $1M in today's dollars and a paid off mortgage to retire at age 60. Saving 12% of my income with 4% real returns would get me there. This projection also assumes a cut in our social security by 1/3.
by dsmil
Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to calculate your retirement number
Replies: 95
Views: 9647

Re: How to calculate your retirement number

Whenever I calculate my number (25x expenses minus SS and taxes), it shows how misleading the "save x percentage of your income" guidance can be. My income has gone up 50% in the last 4 years, but my expected retirement expenses haven't changed, so I can technically save less as a percentage of my i...
by dsmil
Mon Jul 31, 2017 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimate for painting home interior
Replies: 19
Views: 2085

Re: Estimate for painting home interior

Our guy charges $25 per hour plus the cost of materials.
by dsmil
Fri Jul 28, 2017 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GF Picking a college major
Replies: 105
Views: 6212

Re: GF Picking a college major

Accounting is a solid major and decent students shouldn't have much trouble landing a job. The work isn't too exciting but you can always find a job at a more exciting company if you'd like. My job in accounting pays well and is low stress, and that's all that I need.
by dsmil
Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rewards Cards
Replies: 16
Views: 1705

Re: Rewards Cards

We opened a handful of cards in a two year period but have stopped now that we'll be in the market for a house soon. We earned a ton of rewards, used them for vacations, and still have a lot left. I cancelled every card before the fee in the beginning of the second year hit, but hold onto one annual...
by dsmil
Wed Jul 26, 2017 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Order of Operations (Retirement, Loans, Emergency Fund)
Replies: 25
Views: 1707

Re: Order of Operations (Retirement, Loans, Emergency Fund)

1) Up to match in 401k 2) Emergency fund 3) Roth max with retirement savings (if you can't max the Roth with retirement savings, than move some emergency money to the Roth) 4) After this, if you have other savings goals or haven't saved enough for retirement, I don't think that you necessarily have...
by dsmil
Wed Jul 26, 2017 9:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Time, not material goods, 'raises happiness'
Replies: 38
Views: 4474

Re: Time, not material goods, 'raises happiness'

I definitely agree with this article. Our increases in cash flow have been directed towards savings, and recently, adding a house cleaning service once per month. It has definitely been nice for myself and my wife, who has enough to take care of during the day. Going forward, if we move to a house w...
by dsmil
Tue Jul 25, 2017 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Order of Operations (Retirement, Loans, Emergency Fund)
Replies: 25
Views: 1707

Re: Order of Operations (Retirement, Loans, Emergency Fund)

1) Up to match in 401k 2) Emergency fund 3) Roth max with retirement savings (if you can't max the Roth with retirement savings, than move some emergency money to the Roth) 4) After this, if you have other savings goals or haven't saved enough for retirement, I don't think that you necessarily have ...
by dsmil
Tue Jul 25, 2017 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: making a first time home purchase w/ other debts
Replies: 14
Views: 1042

Re: making a first time home purchase w/ other debts

If you are set on buying a house, I'd see if a 5% conventional mortgage is available, rather than the FHA. The FHA also hits you with the upfront PMI premium of 1.75%, so essentially you are paying over 5% anyway.
by dsmil
Mon Jul 24, 2017 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Golfers - need to ramp up ASAP!
Replies: 42
Views: 3935

Re: Golfers - need to ramp up ASAP!

Lessons and driving range practice are definitely good ways to go. I'd try to look up some of the PGA instructors in the area and book a lesson. The most serious instructors will probably advertise that they use some type of swing measuring tool like Trackman. While this isn't really necessary in or...
by dsmil
Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PMI - Why So Much Hate? [Private Mortgage Insurance]
Replies: 13
Views: 1492

PMI - Why So Much Hate? [Private Mortgage Insurance]

PMI gets a ton of hate on this site. Is it the added cost or the process of getting it removed that gets on your nerves the most? A 3.75% mortgage with some PMI thrown on top for a few years still seems like a pretty good deal in the long term. I guess most people look at PMI itself as bad, which is...
by dsmil
Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage Rates in 3 years?
Replies: 26
Views: 2667

Re: Mortgage Rates in 3 years?

1) What's a reasonable % of take home pay for your monthly payment - (mortgage payment) + (insurance) + (taxes)? Dave Ramsey says 25% but that seems overly conservative.... The problem with the various ratios for housing costs is that income levels really change things. Someone making $1M per year ...
by dsmil
Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Options for College Savings
Replies: 17
Views: 964

Re: Options for College Savings

A $2k deduction is worth like $100 so I wouldn't go with the high-fee Massachusetts' plan. If going the 529 route, the Vanguard 529 plan (through Nevavda) would make more sense because you'll get a great selection of low-cost funds. I personally am using our Roths to save for college before investi...
by dsmil
Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Options for College Savings
Replies: 17
Views: 964

Re: Options for College Savings

I personally am using our Roths to save for college before investing heavily in the 529's, but it's a fine option.
by dsmil
Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Would You Spend on a Blender?
Replies: 43
Views: 2836

Re: How Much Would You Spend on a Blender?

I recently spent $80 on a Nutribullet Pro 900. It replaced an original Magic Bullet which I had for 10 years. We only use it to make smoothies so there isn't a need to spend more than we have to.
by dsmil
Thu Jun 08, 2017 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any tips on creating a budget for a SAHM ?
Replies: 24
Views: 2248

Re: Any tips on creating a budget for a SAHM ?

I think you need to communicate the benefits of being more frugal to your wife. My wife spends less than she used to, and it's largely due to me explaining to her the importance of retirement savings, and setting goals (down payment, payment down loans), that required us to spend less money as a fam...
by dsmil
Tue May 16, 2017 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to stay on a budget?
Replies: 31
Views: 4074

Re: How to stay on a budget?

I think it's about creating a realistic budget and tracking your expenses. If a visit to the vet throws off your budget, than it's not a good budget. We've been keeping a budget for years now, and although it's annoying to write all of our expenses down, it helps keep us on track. We have a $500 per...
by dsmil
Mon May 15, 2017 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping for restaurants where you order at the counter
Replies: 106
Views: 10225

Re: Tipping for restaurants where you order at the counter

No for 1 and 2, and depends on #3. For #3, we have 2 small, locally owned restaurants where we tip in this situation. We like the places and they know us there, so we don't mind giving them a few more dollars. We then have a larger, chain restaurant which also fits into this category, and we don't g...
by dsmil
Mon May 08, 2017 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stay home with kids?
Replies: 103
Views: 8792

Re: Stay home with kids?

I would do whatever would make you the most happy because your happiness will be noticed by the kids. Staying at home (and being good at it) is a large sacrifice and is easier for parents who are not giving up rewarding careers and who are very committed and excited to stay at home. Staying at home ...
by dsmil
Tue Apr 25, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First post be gentle... credit card 24 month rule? [cancel then reapply to get the bonus]
Replies: 15
Views: 1419

Re: First post be gentle... credit card 24 month rule? [cancel then reapply to get the bonus]

I believe that normally with Chase, you can basically get the bonus every 24 months, assuming that you've already cancelled the card. So if you got the bonus 4 years ago, you could cancel the card, and then immediately sign up and get the bonus again.
by dsmil
Mon Apr 10, 2017 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?
Replies: 51
Views: 5526

Re: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?

I don't think it's that big of a deal assuming that you are comfortable with the slightly higher payment. Maybe you can see if a 80/10/10 (10% down, 10% HELOC) or 80/5/15 (15% down, 5% HELOC) loan is available instead of definitely going the PMI route.
by dsmil
Wed Apr 05, 2017 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy new iPhone
Replies: 41
Views: 4865

Re: Where to buy new iPhone

In January, I got an iphone 7 at the Verizon store for $10 per month for 2 years.
by dsmil
Tue Apr 04, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security for Millennials
Replies: 159
Views: 19515

Re: Social Security for Millennials

pennstater2005 wrote:Am I a millennial? I'm 38.


It seems like the most often cited range is people born from 1980-1996, but there are other ranges out there.
by dsmil
Tue Apr 04, 2017 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security for Millennials
Replies: 159
Views: 19515

Re: Social Security for Millennials

I think Bogleheads is the wrong place to ask this question. Millennials on Bogleheads will tend to be good planners/savers and will have enough to live off by retirement, making any SS "gravy". However, I imagine a vast majority of millennials will be depending on SS as a primary source o...
by dsmil
Tue Apr 04, 2017 8:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security for Millennials
Replies: 159
Views: 19515

Re: Social Security for Millennials

I've put together a retirement budget and feel like I'll need an income replacement closer to 50%, not 85%. I'm 30+ years away from full SS retirement age, but if income stays consistent, I save 12% of gross income, and I'm getting 5% real return, I should replace 100% of my income. With a 3% real r...
by dsmil
Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Do You Share Expenses?
Replies: 52
Views: 4724

Re: How Do You Share Expenses?

We've always shared accounts and written down all of our spending. This was easy because we moved in together after college and didn't really have any money. I like that we've always been very open about money because it lets us focus on hitting goals together.
by dsmil
Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pay off student loan OR more to Roth IRA
Replies: 18
Views: 941

Re: Pay off student loan OR more to Roth IRA

Are you already contributing a good amount towards retirement? Do you have a good emergency fund? I think it's good to build up an emergency fund first, and it can be done so in the Roth. If you have the emergency fund are already contributing a good amount towards retirement, than paying off the lo...
by dsmil
Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Fire TV Stick with KODI - Anyone try this?
Replies: 17
Views: 3719

Re: Amazon Fire TV Stick with KODI - Anyone try this?

The jailbroken ones are definitely shady legally, but are pretty awesome.
by dsmil
Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you spend on food in a year?
Replies: 155
Views: 9434

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Our family of 2 adults and a toddler spends $7k annually at the grocery store (including toiletries, cleaning supplies, OTC medicine, etc), 3k dining out (including drinks/coffee), and another 1k on vacation. We don't go out for lunch during the week, but we do usually go out for a couple of inexpen...