Search found 645 matches

by halfnine
Sun Mar 26, 2017 3:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone taken a mid-career sabbatical?
Replies: 38
Views: 4454

Re: Anyone taken a mid-career sabbatical?

Both my spouse and I have taken a year off on multiple occasions. It's given us the opportunity to enjoy each phase of our lives. I would echo the comment that taking a year out of the workforce doesn't make much of a difference. Not much really changes. I wouldn't go so far to say that everyone cou...
by halfnine
Thu Mar 23, 2017 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My son wants to move to Hong Kong
Replies: 35
Views: 4493

Re: My son wants to move to Hong Kong

Your son absolutely needs to sort out his visa situation. Utilizing a travelers visa and border runs to extend it can work great for those who have no long term commitments to a developed country since spending significant time elsewhere or returning home are not deal breakers. But it is a huge risk...
by halfnine
Thu Mar 23, 2017 4:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter Travel
Replies: 29
Views: 1910

Re: Winter Travel

Barefootgirl wrote:A group of family members ....


Cruise. And the more number of family members the more I'd recommend it.

YFamilyMV
by halfnine
Mon Mar 13, 2017 4:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2018-19 Toronto Vanc Sydney Melb Auckland housing crash?
Replies: 8
Views: 1058

Re: 2018-19 Toronto Vanc Sydney Melb Auckland housing crash?

I would say that due to currency exchange rates property in Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and most definitely now in the UK aren't as expensive as they look for foreign buyers. Hong Kong on the other hand looks insane. With the current central bank rates, low yields on fixed income, existing curre...
by halfnine
Sun Mar 12, 2017 4:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: is anything 'cheap' out there?
Replies: 82
Views: 13395

Re: is anything 'cheap' out there?

This came from our discussion of CALPERs new investment strategy in real estate (direct investment, not funds, blue chip assets). I was questioning whether this was all a bit 'late to the party'. To continue I would say this is all an example of what is confronting all multi asset investors. There ...
by halfnine
Thu Mar 09, 2017 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you spend on food in a year?
Replies: 155
Views: 6938

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

If health is your #1 priority (it is for me, no judgement for those who feel differently), it's simply a mindset. Don't put yourself in situations where the junk is available, have most of your meals at home (or prepare them at home and bring them), etc. and it is quite easy. The problem is that yo...
by halfnine
Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you spend on "stuff" for kids?
Replies: 53
Views: 3568

Re: How much do you spend on "stuff" for kids?

... For those who don't give gifts, I am curious: when you give your kid a bicycle, how was that done to ensure it is not construed as a gift?.... We buy the bike that is the next size up before they need it. Our eldest isn't ready for it yet but knows it's there and even helped unpack the box and ...
by halfnine
Sat Mar 04, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why can't I save enough to have decent vacation or restaurant meal
Replies: 125
Views: 11005

Re: Why can't I save enough to have decent vacation or restaurant meal

But once again - New York City is Ultra high cost... Not just high cost. You said, "The other thing is that areas where housing is so expensive also tend to have ridiculous salaries". You also said, "The OP is 40-ish and making 130k? Then he is not likely in an UHCOL area." Base...
by halfnine
Fri Mar 03, 2017 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: US expats abroad: should I buy health insurance even though I'm covered by employer?
Replies: 24
Views: 1233

Re: US expats abroad: should I buy health insurance even though I'm covered by employer?

.....Maybe my question can be best summed up like this: if you are a U.S. citizen who will likely be living outside the U.S. for an extended period of time (let's say > 50% chance), with a non-zero chance of changing countries, and you are also very likely to change employers often or to start your...
by halfnine
Sun Feb 26, 2017 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backpackers- weight vs utility question
Replies: 42
Views: 2585

Re: Backpackers- weight vs utility question

dixdak wrote:..We always overpack food. Best to just set the weight of food based on numbers of days out....


I prefer to not overpack food. However, experience has taught me to pack the same number of days of food as my mates. Similar gear as my mates often works out better as well.
by halfnine
Sat Feb 25, 2017 5:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: investing for internationally married expat couples
Replies: 2
Views: 296

Re: investing for internationally married expat couples

As to #2 ... If you have a joint account with your American spouse then all the assets are considered to be hers when calculating estate taxes if she were to pass before you. This will probably only be relevant though if your assets exceed the 5 million or so estate tax limit for US citizens. The ot...
by halfnine
Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backpackers- weight vs utility question
Replies: 42
Views: 2585

Re: Backpackers- weight vs utility question

I am working on my backpacking gear checklist trying to optimize weight, comfort and security. What items do you carry that are seldom on the ultralight hikers lists? Depends on who I am going with and what the mileage is like. If its a 25 mile day...as light as possible. A few miles....everything ...
by halfnine
Sat Feb 25, 2017 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backpackers- weight vs utility question
Replies: 42
Views: 2585

Re: Backpackers- weight vs utility question

Great suggestions! I have thought about bringing a pair of ultralight shoes for stream crossings and relaxing. Beach slippers seem heavy- perhaps an old pair of track shoes minus spikes? I have yet to adopt the use of hiking poles, but I can see having one very light one along for crossing rushing ...
by halfnine
Fri Feb 24, 2017 5:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market Run Ups - Now vs. Then
Replies: 88
Views: 5929

Re: Market Run Ups - Now vs. Then

Well the run up to 2000 felt the most significant to me. I took off 1999 to travel abroad. Before I left I knew only one person who actively traded stocks. When I returned from my trip all of sudden many people I knew were trading. That was my "shoeshine boy with a stock tip" moment.
by halfnine
Fri Feb 24, 2017 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Father runs an empire at age 80; not my business?
Replies: 18
Views: 4053

Re: Father runs an empire at age 80; not my business?

I think Sandtrap made some great comments but then again your culture may not be the same as your parents. I'd consider sitting down with your spouse and determining what your both feel your cultural obligations are for your father and also to some extent your siblings. There is always the possibili...
by halfnine
Mon Feb 20, 2017 5:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: economics of landlording
Replies: 46
Views: 4226

Re: economics of landlording

...I'm not attached to this property emotionally, in any way. Just want to keep it if it is a good complement to a traditional 60/40 indexed portfolio, and want to dump it if it's a drag. If it's somewhere in the middle - which has been my sense - I will probably keep it for the diversification ben...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's the secret to happiness?
Replies: 39
Views: 2681

Re: What's the secret to happiness?

If you're happy, what's your secret? I retired in 2010 and had difficulty filling the hole in my life where there used to be a career. I tried to expand my hobbies and interests and that worked. Sort of. The advice from this forum is especially effective when it explains a method (like orderliness ...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: American in Japan: Roth IRA Not Worth It Unless Retiring in America?
Replies: 13
Views: 1460

Re: American in Japan: Roth IRA Not Worth It Unless Retiring in America?

...The only reason I've heard for anyone giving up US citizenship is to avoid our draconian tax system... Let's just say the thought has crossed my mind, by it's not something I'm seriously considering at this point in time.... It isn't all that common but people do give up their US citizenship whe...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Who would quit playing if they already won?
Replies: 106
Views: 10754

Re: Who would quit playing if they already won?

At a 2% withdrawal I'd no longer worry about shallow risk and would completely focus on what I could do about deep risk. How much you need to worry about shallow risk depends to some extent on your asset allocation. Even at 2%, if you were invested in 100% stock, shallow risk at the wrong time (ie ...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 9194

Re: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?

.... Clearly the AT and PCT (and CDT) are very different in many ways, certainly worth researching before just picking the closest one geographically.... I am going to agree with this. Everything I have experienced and heard dictates these trails are all very different. Choose the one that has that...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 4:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Never-Ending Foreign Tax Credit Problem
Replies: 33
Views: 2517

Re: Never-Ending Foreign Tax Credit Problem

.. Yes, I don't want to get into the 25% bracket for conversions and I am already filling up a lot of the 15% space with dividends (which have a 0% rate). Even going too far into the 15% bracket with conversions makes me hit a 30% marginal rate (minus the tax credit bonus I described) because my di...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investing Advice for Baby/Infant
Replies: 15
Views: 1254

Re: Investing Advice for Baby/Infant

I'd be concerned about being an expat and having any tax deferred accounts for a child. Kiddie tax laws with taxable is a headache enough as rules for each country vary dramatically. A tax deferred account may not be recognized at all.
by halfnine
Thu Feb 16, 2017 5:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retire in my 30s?!
Replies: 34
Views: 5564

Re: Retire in my 30s?!

I am planning to have kids in the future so that is something I need to consider as well. The house and the kids do not necessarily have to be major expenses, however, if you have kids in the future and at some point ending up sharing custody it's unlikely you will be retired. That's your biggest r...
by halfnine
Wed Feb 15, 2017 6:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: -$280k Net Worth Has Me Up At Night
Replies: 68
Views: 8960

Re: -$280k Net Worth Has Me Up At Night

If your current debt has you up at night now how would you feel if we see another crisis like 2008 with your current assets and liabilities. While I feel there is value in diversifying assets into property rentals (more so than most Bogleheads) it might very well be time for you to sell the rental.
by halfnine
Tue Feb 14, 2017 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival
Replies: 37
Views: 2501

Re: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival

..... Danny MacAskill's Wee Day Out was one of my two favorite films..... He has quite a few other short films on YouTube or Red Bull. While they demonstrate his skill they do lack the story line and bloopers that were part of Wee Day Out. ...The other one was Metronomic with French musicians playi...
by halfnine
Tue Feb 14, 2017 5:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Who would quit playing if they already won?
Replies: 106
Views: 10754

Re: Who would quit playing if they already won?

At a 2% withdrawal I'd no longer worry about shallow risk and would completely focus on what I could do about deep risk.
by halfnine
Tue Feb 14, 2017 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Kids in Apartment Sharing Bedroom - Workable?
Replies: 55
Views: 3464

Re: Kids in Apartment Sharing Bedroom - Workable?

We have 2 bedrooms and 200 sq ft less than you. Kids are a few years older but so far so good. We kept the youngest in our room until around 3. The kids sleep was paramount in our house as a good sleep (for them) meant they were loads easier the following day. Where we live families in 1000 sq ft ap...
by halfnine
Tue Feb 14, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare
Replies: 26
Views: 4331

Re: Early Retirement in Mexico, Healthcare

I still do not quite understand what people do when they move there for black swan health events. If you have something smaller you can just pay out of pocket since most things are much cheaper. But what if you have something that requires long term expensive treatment and want to come back to the ...
by halfnine
Tue Feb 14, 2017 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: American in Japan: Roth IRA Not Worth It Unless Retiring in America?
Replies: 13
Views: 1460

Re: American in Japan: Roth IRA Not Worth It Unless Retiring in America?

Since Japan doesn't recognize dual citizenships I am going to assume it is unlikely you'll ever become a Japanese citizen. For permanent residents many countries let you leave the country for up to around 2 years or so without losing permanent residency. If this is true for Japan then at some point ...
by halfnine
Sun Feb 12, 2017 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival
Replies: 37
Views: 2501

Re: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival

The Banff Mountain Film Festival is now showing in various locations around the U.K. You have two programs, Red and Blue. If you can't do both, I'd recommend the Red one. I don't make it to film festivals these days . Not sure why. Probably for a variety of reasons. But you made me look. I have act...
by halfnine
Sun Feb 12, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which 25X is it? [Planning for retirement]
Replies: 51
Views: 3138

Re: Which 25X is it? [Planning for retirement]

Not there yet but tentatively

C.

Where value of Social Security + Pensions + Annuities is capped at 40% of expenses
imputed rent is considered an expense
house value is considered an asset in the 25x
by halfnine
Mon Feb 06, 2017 5:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival
Replies: 37
Views: 2501

Re: Attending Banff Mountain Film Festival

Over the years I too have enjoyed many mountain film festivals including the Banff Film World Tour but have also never attended the Banff Mountain Film Festival in Banff itself. Anyway, a couple of thoughts/speculations. Would not necessarily be limited to taking a bus one could always walk :) I am ...
by halfnine
Thu Feb 02, 2017 4:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Unsure which country i'm retiring in - investing advice?!
Replies: 4
Views: 707

Re: Unsure which country i'm retiring in - investing advice?!

Search through the posts by TedSwippet. Should find many of the answers you are looking for. It sounds like you will be in the USA for a while but if you change your mind I would at least aim for working for 10 years in the USA to become eligible for Social Security benefits. The USA SS benefit is o...
by halfnine
Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are you changing your AA based on current events?
Replies: 68
Views: 3406

Re: Are you changing your AA based on current events?

Back in 2011 the world as we saw it was increasingly getting more nationalist and populist than we were accustomed to. It gave us pause to make adjustments to our asset allocations based on our revised willingness and need to take risk. Whether that risk finally shows up....I have no idea. Bur, rece...
by halfnine
Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annual Vacation Budget
Replies: 320
Views: 23930

Re: Annual Vacation Budget

[...]Personally, I despise paying twice for accommodation while traveling. As such during the times when we do travel while maintaining a residence it is generally geared towards camping. For instance, a few years back we drove around Iceland camping as we went.[...] I fail to get your rationale be...
by halfnine
Wed Jan 25, 2017 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Storing pictures on long trips
Replies: 24
Views: 1347

Re: Storing pictures on long trips

Can't really help as the technology has changed dramatically since my last long trip. However, I came across this article by Alastair Humphreys a little while back. Although, unlikely required for most anyone's trips it even goes a step further in that sans laptop it can also be sans electrical outl...
by halfnine
Mon Jan 23, 2017 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annual Vacation Budget
Replies: 320
Views: 23930

Re: Annual Vacation Budget

We have never had an annual vacation budget. We've always tried to keep costs down though. Generally by bulking a lot of travel together into multi-month or year long trips. And then, alternatively, going many years without travel at all. Personally, I despise paying twice for accommodation while tr...
by halfnine
Sun Jan 22, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: U.S. brokerages and retiring abroad
Replies: 24
Views: 2049

Re: U.S. brokerages and retiring abroad

My recommendations:

- multiple brokerages
- etfs
- mail forwarding address
- VPN when logging in
by halfnine
Fri Jan 20, 2017 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: East Coast And Work/Life Balance
Replies: 68
Views: 5883

Re: East Coast And Work/Life Balance

.... I note that you are not working more hours in the day. I used to go in very late when my kids were toddlers so we could spend the morning having fun while they were nice and perky! Wife would pick them up around 3:30pm (started work at 7:00am) after I dropped them off at 9:30am which kept thei...
by halfnine
Wed Jan 18, 2017 3:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement contributions when self-employed in year with zero income
Replies: 6
Views: 517

Re: Retirement contributions when self-employed in year with zero income

Actually, 2016 would have been a good time to have done a ROTH conversion.
by halfnine
Sat Jan 14, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emergency fund of a different kind [funds held outside of US]
Replies: 53
Views: 2462

Re: Emergency fund of a different kind [funds held outside of US]

.... How would you do this? Well, what I did was marry a foreigner and spent many years living and working abroad. Enough so that between us we have citizenship in countries on four continents, some semblance of state pensions (i.e. Social Security) available to us in three countries, national heal...
by halfnine
Fri Jan 13, 2017 5:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 24 hour stop over at LHR, what all can I visit in London?
Replies: 31
Views: 1840

Re: 24 hour stop over at LHR, what all can I visit in London?

With 24 hours in London you can do whatever you want in the sense if there is something you really want to do you won't be time limited. Now, if there isn't a top of the list must visit attraction in London for you, then the hop-on hop-off bus mentioned previously is certainly viable. The walk down ...
by halfnine
Fri Jan 13, 2017 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: downhill skiing
Replies: 32
Views: 2362

Re: downhill skiing

If lift tickets have you down you can look into the alternatives- ski touring (cheaper) and cat/heli skiing (more expensive). Yes. Years ago in graduate school price got to be too much, and the crowds were no fun either. Was living in Boulder. Picked up used back-country gear and headed into the hi...
by halfnine
Thu Jan 12, 2017 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to approach getting new wills, trusts, with a blended family
Replies: 51
Views: 2635

Re: How to approach getting new wills, trusts, with a blended family

I'd ask your kids each individually what they feel would be a fair arrangement in regards to how the inheritance is split and how its administered. I'd gently remind them that life has unexpected surprises and to take into consideration that they may face their own longevity or health risks and so m...
by halfnine
Mon Jan 09, 2017 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family
Replies: 60
Views: 4427

Re: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family

Aren't there other places that everyone would like to go? There are lots of places to see in the world, or even in the continental US. You can't have seen them all. I don't get to go on lots of vacations, and would not be happy with an Alaskan vacation. For nuclear family...sure. For extended famil...
by halfnine
Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family
Replies: 60
Views: 4427

Re: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family

I think if I was going with family and especially extended family I'd opt for the Caribbean. We did that with about 40 or us a few years back. I couldn't imagine doing an Alaskan cruise with those same family members with the same success. FWIW, though, I haven't actually done an Alaskan cruise on a...
by halfnine
Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to dress for winter vacation in Alberta
Replies: 45
Views: 2501

Re: How to dress for winter vacation in Alberta

If you are going to be outside exercising you won't need much in the way of layering. Especially so if you are cross country skiing. For cross country skiing you will definitely not want insulated ski pants. When skiing I prefer my trouser outer layers to be full zip as then I don't have to bother t...
by halfnine
Mon Jan 02, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Analyzing schools for an advanced child
Replies: 65
Views: 4258

Re: Analyzing schools for an advanced child

Another friend teaches at a catholic school. She said she wouldn't send her own kids there because it's too homogeneous (which I would agree with) and politely hinted that some of the teachers weren't good. What is wrong with "homogeneous"? I think the bad teachers of her school is a bigg...
by halfnine
Mon Jan 02, 2017 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental Properties and Asset Allocation
Replies: 12
Views: 1421

Re: Rental Properties and Asset Allocation

I consider real estate a separate asset class. I include primary residence when determining exposure to real estate. I believe every asset class has risk and that the fact that risk hasn't shown up in the past doesn't mean it won't show up in the future. As such I limit each asset class to no more t...
by halfnine
Mon Jan 02, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What gets cheap when the dollar gets strong
Replies: 32
Views: 5707

Re: What gets cheap when the dollar gets strong

Other currencies get cheap. Since I think currency--foreign exchange, FOREX--is proverbially one of the riskiest and most speculative things you can do with money, I wouldn't touch it myself. It seems as if every few years we read about some superbank losing a few billion dollars on a clever curren...

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