Search found 71 matches

by fh2000
Fri Oct 21, 2016 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Sapphire Reserve
Replies: 96
Views: 11684

Re: Chase Sapphire Reserve

My credit is frozen in all 3 bureaus.

To apply for this card, I will need to unfreeze first. Do I inform all 3 or does anyone know which bureau Chase is exclusively using?
by fh2000
Thu Oct 20, 2016 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Got Chase sapphire reserve credit card. Can I close C S preferred
Replies: 16
Views: 2017

Re: Got Chase sapphire reserve credit card. Can I close C S preferred

My recommendation would be to not close it, but convert it to either the Chase Freedom (1% cash back on all purchase, and 5% on rotating categories) or the Chase Freesom Unlimted (1.5% cash back on all purchases). Both cards have no yearly fees. I personally have both. I called chase and easily con...
by fh2000
Wed Jul 13, 2016 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will/Trust for immigrant family with small children
Replies: 6
Views: 443

Re: Will/Trust for immigrant family with small children

If their countries have large enough immigrant population in California, they normally have newspapers, yellow pages, and TVs in their own language serving new immigrants. Local law firms that tailored to new immigrants will have ads on those media. So, look into those and find one from there.
by fh2000
Sun Jul 10, 2016 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Work or stay at home mom or change careers
Replies: 64
Views: 5179

Re: Work or stay at home mom or change careers

My wife and I are older, nearing retirement now. We managed to raise 2 kids with 2 income the whole time. We each acted as backup during the time of no-income and insurance for one of us. Between the 2 of us, we had 6 lay-offs during our IT careers so having one spouse at home would be very difficul...
by fh2000
Wed Jul 06, 2016 8:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience with Honda airbag recall?
Replies: 152
Views: 30453

Re: Experience with Honda airbag recall?

My 2006 Honda Pilot driver side airbag recall was done last year. Today, I got a letter of recall for my passenger side airbag. I called the dealer and they said they will call me close to the end of August when they receive the parts. No mention of rental in the letter, nor from the dealer.
by fh2000
Wed Jul 06, 2016 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance for new driver (teenager)
Replies: 22
Views: 1358

Re: Car insurance for new driver (teenager)

The college student being >100 miles from home that people keep mentioning means >100 away from home at school WITHOUT a vehicle. Different insurance companies have different policies with this. When we were with Farmers, we have to call them each time when kids come home during break, and the summ...
by fh2000
Sun Jun 05, 2016 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sole beneficiary as executor?
Replies: 26
Views: 2145

Re: Sole beneficiary as executor?

If the vast majority of your assets transfer to beneficiaries directly, then your Probate Estate may be small enough to qualify for a greatly simplified Probate Process in your State. Doug Not to hi-jack a thread. I have a simple question in my mind regarding to this. I am in California. If most of...
by fh2000
Mon May 23, 2016 6:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I just shorted the S&P, now what do I do?
Replies: 61
Views: 6823

Re: I just shorted the S&P, now what do I do?

If OP is telling us the truth, he shorted S&P by buying 10 contracts of put. So, he actually have a long position. Each contract is now $9.35 * 100 (multiplier). 10 contracts would be $9,350. If this position expired worthless (when S&P stays above 2010), OP will lose $9,350. Puts are insura...
by fh2000
Thu May 05, 2016 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gift stock to charity. No cost base data.
Replies: 10
Views: 684

Gift stock to charity. No cost base data.

I have a stock that I own for a long time. It has gone thru splits, reverse splits, spin-off, and merger. I am not able to track down the actual cost base anymore if I sell it today. There is capital gain, and I just don't want to use $0 as my cost base, and claim the full amount as capital gain. Th...
by fh2000
Wed Apr 27, 2016 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should a 60 yr old buy her first house?
Replies: 27
Views: 2914

Re: Should a 60 yr old buy her first house?

If you never owned a home, I would not buy at the age of 60. The learning curve of owning a home is very steep and expensive. Too many things could go wrong at the house. It took me many years to build up a list of trusted plumber, gardener, Umbrella insurer, home owner insurer, HomeDepot location, ...
by fh2000
Tue Feb 02, 2016 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k - Highly Compensated Employee?
Replies: 27
Views: 2975

Re: 401k - Highly Compensated Employee?

This happened to my wife. When she was in accounting department, she was deemed highly compensated, and caped her 401K percentage. After she transferred to IT, she received pay raise, and was also removed her highly compensated status, and has been able to contribute the full amount. It appears that...
by fh2000
Tue Jan 12, 2016 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Share your net worth progression
Replies: 389
Views: 89381

Re: Share your networth progression

I am 60. DW is 54 1/2. We are both IT professionals. We began our career in US later in life. 1st M: took us 19 years to achieve that. Our pay was low. We bought a house, raised 2 kids. So did not save much. 2nd M: took 4 more years. 3rd M: took 3 more years. The last 6-7 years of bull market certai...
by fh2000
Sat Jan 02, 2016 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price to replace the catalytic converters in a Toyota Highlander
Replies: 50
Views: 3652

Re: Price to replace the catalytic converters in a Toyota Highlander

Toyotas go almost forever. Notice what they drive around the hellish terrain in Afghanistan? I would reset the light and keep driving until you actually notice an issue. Also, I suspect the gas cap issue already mentioned could be the cause. My wife has been driving her Toyota (07 Rav) for five yea...
by fh2000
Thu Dec 24, 2015 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Interested in driving,] Any Uber drivers here?
Replies: 32
Views: 3849

Re: Any Uber drivers here?

Uber drivers that I used are all very polite. I can sense their job opportunities are limited somewhat. One driver was a doctor from a different country, but in US, he had to put food on the table doing whatever he can. Uber is one of the sure ways to get him situated, so he is doing it. I tipped hi...
by fh2000
Wed Aug 12, 2015 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: umbrella coverage premiums
Replies: 34
Views: 3809

Re: umbrella coverage premiums

Gemini wrote:I just received quotes from GEICO.

1mil - 463
2mil - 764
3mil - 1112

Are these reasonable?


I am in California. Two cars with 2 young drivers. My quotes are higher than yours.
So, it depends on where you are, and how many cars/drivers you have.
by fh2000
Sat May 16, 2015 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much does social security factor into your retirement income?
Replies: 169
Views: 17146

Re: How much does social security factor into your retirement income?

I am 59, and plan to leave w*rk anytime now. I ran some numbers in FireCal.
If I am not counting SS, we can have 100% success rate for 25 years. If both of us start taking SS at 70, we will get more than 35 years. So, SS to us, is our longevity insurance
by fh2000
Wed Apr 08, 2015 9:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tree roots growing into sewer lines
Replies: 41
Views: 4327

Re: Tree roots growing into sewer lines

I used to call the plummer every year to snake out my drain line due to the same roots problem. Each time it would cost me $100-120 dollars. I finally bought a 50' Compact Electric Drain Cleaner from Harbor Freight for $200 during their black Friday sale: http://www.harborfreight.com/50-ft-compact-e...
by fh2000
Sun Apr 05, 2015 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Planning for career change and big drop in income
Replies: 14
Views: 2702

Re: Planning for career change and big drop in income

If you switch and your combined income reduced to $130K, you will not be able to afford your current spending pattern ($110k). You should find a way to reduce that first before you switch.
by fh2000
Fri Apr 03, 2015 8:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need advice for 20yr taking over stocks-only custodial acct
Replies: 16
Views: 1653

Re: Need advice for 20yr taking over stocks-only custodial a

I have 2 kids in California college and both have Schwab custodial accounts. I use Turbotax and file individual tax returns for both of them. I also claim both dependency on my own return. We do not qualify for education credits and they do not have financial aids. I did some practice runs in the pa...
by fh2000
Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Great ESPP not for "ME"?
Replies: 20
Views: 2496

Re: Great ESPP not for "ME"?

I have participated ESPP for 3 companies that I worked for. One eventually went down to next to $0. But 2 took off quite a bit after years of continue purchasing. So, I tend to look at this as investment decision, rather than tax decision. The gain that I accumulated more than pay off the tax benefi...
by fh2000
Tue Mar 03, 2015 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tourists in Manhattan
Replies: 53
Views: 6342

Re: Tourists in Manhattan

Time Square
Central Park
China Town --- Wall street to touch that bull (just me)
by fh2000
Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: UTMA & Income/Asset Levels That Don't Receive College Aid?
Replies: 4
Views: 388

Re: UTMA & Income/Asset Levels That Don't Receive College Ai

We have a newborn and I'm thinking of opening an UTMA for gifts of cash from the grandparents. I'm estimating these gifts will amount to around $1,000 or more per year. I've read that an UTMA will negatively impact aid received for college. However, I'm not able to find out who qualifies for aid ba...
by fh2000
Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: RSU Understanding question
Replies: 8
Views: 817

Re: RSU Understanding question

The only thing I would add is that some companies "sell" some of your shares at vesting to cover your tax (basically equivalent to withholding). So in your example, when shares worth 10,000 are vested, you may only receive shares worth 7,000 because 3,000 have been used to pay the income ...
by fh2000
Thu Feb 12, 2015 11:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I need to report gains from incentive stock options?
Replies: 1
Views: 342

Re: Do I need to report gains from incentive stock options?

How did you acquire these options? Your subject line says incentive stock options, so it indicates that these are granted by the company, but they normally do not grant after you left the company. Or, did you purchase these call options from an online broker, such as TDAmeritrade, or InteractiveBrok...
by fh2000
Thu Feb 12, 2015 4:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College savings costs / number
Replies: 120
Views: 8704

Re: College savings costs / number

Our 2 kids are in one of the Univ of Cali schools. We saved $250,000. UC cost is about $31,000 a year. So, the savings are just enough to pay for both of them. If they want to go to graduate school, they will have to figure out on their own.
by fh2000
Mon Feb 02, 2015 11:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Joining the free dinner circuit? Promises, promises.
Replies: 100
Views: 10661

Re: Joining the free dinner circuit? Promises, promises.

They think they are the irresistible force. You think you are the immovable object. You can't both be right. This has nothing to do with OP, but this reminds me of the term, 'contradiction' in Chinese which is a combination of 2 words: 'spear' and 'shield'. The story goes that a merchant yells to s...
by fh2000
Wed Jan 28, 2015 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bring USD to Louisiana USA from Philippines
Replies: 19
Views: 2133

Re: Bring USD to Louisiana USA from Philippines

Does anyone have a lead / link where I can learn more on how FATCA will affect my Philippine funds once I become a resident or eventually, a citizen? Thanks again! If you do a Google search for "FATCA", you will get a lot of information. Here is one: http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertwood...
by fh2000
Wed Jan 28, 2015 1:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bring USD to Louisiana USA from Philippines
Replies: 19
Views: 2133

Re: Bring USD to Louisiana USA from Philippines

I do not know how to transfer money from foreign country to US. But, I routinely wire transfer money from my US account to a foreign country to my relatives where I came from. I pay a free to my local bank to do that: $25-$35. I make sure I do not exceed $14,000 annual gift tax upper limit. I also m...
by fh2000
Mon Jan 26, 2015 8:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do Bogleheads' Children Qualify For Need Based College Aid?
Replies: 35
Views: 3717

Re: Do Bogleheads' Children Qualify For Need Based College A

I filed once, but I think our income alone disqualified our 2 kids. So, I stopped. Both have enough in their UTMA accounts to pay for 4 years. My cost base for their 2 accounts were roughly 1/2, so I thank the market that subsidized our college cost.
by fh2000
Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Success stories of NOT buying more/too much house
Replies: 65
Views: 7831

Re: Success stories of NOT buying more/too much house

We are happy in our current home but I actively am trying to fight lifestyle creep. Sq footage is fine for current house with 2 kids and we have done nice reno to the house. Would ideally like more land but the houses we are looking at would be 2-3x the cost of our current house (which we can affor...
by fh2000
Sun Jan 25, 2015 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much umbrella insurance do I need?
Replies: 19
Views: 3311

Re: How much umbrella insurance do I need?

There are many protected and non protected classes of assets, which vary from state to state. Typical protected classes include social security, disability, welfare, unemployment, your primary residence, 401(k)s, pensions, and HSAs. There is state to state variability on whole or variable universal...
by fh2000
Mon Dec 29, 2014 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I declare foreign salary to avoid double taxation?
Replies: 16
Views: 2552

Re: Should I declare foreign salary to avoid double taxation

Does your spouse work and have income? I am not an expert, but according to this piece from Tubotax, you do not need to file if your income does not exceed standard deduction ($12,400) plus one exemption ($3,950). https://turbotax.intuit.com/tax-tools/tax-tips/IRS-Tax-Return/Does-Everyone-Need-to-Fi...
by fh2000
Thu Dec 25, 2014 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering a pay cut for a career change
Replies: 19
Views: 3438

Re: Considering a pay cut for a career change

After a decent amount of effort, I have landed an equity research job and I am about to finish the MBA soon. Happy Holidays! Sounds like you have a great potential in this new job area. Maybe you can combine your software development skills in the new job, that might be even better. If I was in you...
by fh2000
Wed Dec 10, 2014 10:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employee Stock Purchase Plans - What are your thoughts?
Replies: 23
Views: 2035

Re: Employee Stock Purchase Plans - What are your thoughts?

I would only do it for 15% discount. There is too much fluctuation in the stock price and you may be in a loss by the time ready to be issued the stock. There is too much tax calculation head-ache that I would not do it for just 5% discount.
by fh2000
Wed Dec 10, 2014 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Leaving my job. Moving to Shanghai. Help with finances!
Replies: 24
Views: 3559

Re: Leaving my job. Moving to Shanghai. Help with finances!

5. Health Insurance: I'm going to be getting insurance while abroad to cover emergency medical, travel insurance, etc. But I'm not planning to maintain US health insurance at this point, since I'll be living abroad for the remainder of 2015 almost as soon as I leave work. This means I will have to ...
by fh2000
Tue Dec 09, 2014 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Have you ever been let go?
Replies: 74
Views: 7068

Re: Have you ever been let go?

DW and I worked the same number of years in IT: 27. We both experienced 2 lay-offs and received severance and unemployment. We found new employment each time before our severance ran out. Now, we are planning on retirement. We both hope to be laid off again though that does not look like easy to get...
by fh2000
Fri Dec 05, 2014 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D
Replies: 223
Views: 37076

Re: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D

I always download my brokerage Gain/loss files and directly import into TT to prepare Schedule D. I didn't even know this was possible. Are you using data files from your broker, or PDFs of tax forms? Yes. Two that I use have TT format download files. It is proprietary format for TT. This is helpfu...
by fh2000
Fri Dec 05, 2014 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D
Replies: 223
Views: 37076

Re: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D

hi, Thanks for the rich information posted here regarding to TT. I have been using TT Deluxe for years (from Costco), and I always download my brokerage Gain/loss files and directly import into TT to prepare Schedule D. Does anyone know if I need to continue with this practice, will Deluxe work, or ...
by fh2000
Fri Nov 28, 2014 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I get tax credits for my brother college fees?
Replies: 13
Views: 1690

Re: Can I get tax credits for my brother college fees?

I suspect your income alone will disqualify you: ------------------------------------------------ The American Opportunity credit covers up to $2,500 of undergraduate costs Income phase-out rule The American Opportunity credit is phased out if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) exceeds certa...
by fh2000
Thu Nov 27, 2014 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it end?
Replies: 156
Views: 17847

Re: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it en

DW and I met at graduate school. We both started in IT career the same year. 27 years later, we are still in it. Likely to call it done in 2015.
by fh2000
Thu Nov 27, 2014 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?
Replies: 322
Views: 66825

Re: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?

We reached 3M this year, thanks to the rising stock market. DW and I are both IT professional with steady income for 27 years, and we saved a lot. We have no debt other than one 15 year mortgage on our 2nd home. It took us 24 years to accumulate the first 2M; 3 years to accumulate the 3rd M. We thin...
by fh2000
Sun Sep 21, 2014 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: hoiuh
Replies: 46
Views: 5405

Re: Need help protecting assets (marriage)

I would not bother with just 100K asset. If you expect a very large inheritance in the future, that might be different story. In the grand scheme of things (say 30 years of marriage), 100K is simply too little asset to go thru this trouble in my opinion. This leaves bad taste in her and her family. ...
by fh2000
Sun Sep 14, 2014 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco vs Amazon?
Replies: 60
Views: 6558

Re: Costco vs Amazon?

Costco by default for food, and household stuff for us. Anything we can not find there, we then go to Amazon. From Costco, I bought a 49' Sony HD flat TV when they had a discount price. Wife wanted a bigger one, but since we are retiring soon, probably won't sit in front watching too much. We will d...
by fh2000
Thu Aug 28, 2014 12:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: California residents - do you have earthquake insurance?
Replies: 54
Views: 4696

Re: California residents - do you have earthquake insurance?

We live 10 miles from Northridge. When it hit in 1994 in early morning, it shook very bad. A lot of my glasses and dishes broke. My daughter was only 3 days old. I was sleeping right next to her and I jumped to cover her when a wall picture fell on top of us. I had no earthquake insurance but home o...
by fh2000
Sun Jun 01, 2014 4:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Young guy, looking to retire at 45-50...help me invest!
Replies: 17
Views: 3715

Re: Young guy, looking to retire at 45-50...help me invest!

[quote="Investonewbie"]- every second year, I'll have access to $50-75k to invest - in 1-2 years, I MAY have access to $300k up to $2m due to stock...this is a big unknown for me. Could be on the million side or it could be a few $100ks...these figures are after income tax. [/quote] You ar...
by fh2000
Mon May 26, 2014 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many of you negotiated benefits with a new job?
Replies: 25
Views: 2972

Re: How many of you negotiated benefits with a new job?

I found it easier to negotiate with HR or recruiting department and I was successully getting more money, or annual bonus percentage in past job searches. I just politely mentioned that I was expecting a little more than their offer. HR seems to have an obligation to bring my feedback to hiring mana...
by fh2000
Wed May 14, 2014 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Health Insurance for Early Retirement?
Replies: 3
Views: 945

Re: Health Insurance for Early Retirement?

We plan to begin purchasing thru ACA next year. If we purchase Bronze HSA plan for a family of 4, with income controlled under $75,000, the premium will be around $6,000. OOP will be around $13,000. This does not cover dentail or vision. We plan to self insure this portion. So, I budget $19,000 annu...
by fh2000
Fri May 09, 2014 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should wife take new job offer- pregnant? FMLA issues?
Replies: 24
Views: 1693

Re: Should wife take new job offer- pregnant? FMLA issues?

When I was younger, I thought getting pregnant for my wife would be just like all our other life experences: you plan, you execuate on your schedule. But, as we have found out, life does not always happen like that. It took us 8 years of trying until our first child was conceived. If this is the job...
by fh2000
Sun Feb 16, 2014 12:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Q's for my mum
Replies: 11
Views: 1160

Re: Social Security Q's for my mum

sscritic,

Not going to a dim sum place for breakfast on a Sunday?
So, a widow can claim widow's benefits even though spouse never started SS benefits?
by fh2000
Sat Dec 28, 2013 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security estimates if early retiring?
Replies: 15
Views: 1837

Re: Social Security estimates if early retiring?

I use this one: http://www.socialsecurity.gov/OACT/quickcalc/index.html I plan to early retire next year at the age of 58. So, I entered all my earnings history and leave $0 for the very last entry (2013 and beyond). It then gave me amounts if I take it at 62, 66-4month, or 70. Maybe I will try it a...

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