Search found 171 matches

by hirlaw
Wed Sep 13, 2017 10:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Cloud Back-Up Service For Mac
Replies: 8
Views: 866

Re: Need Cloud Back-Up Service For Mac

What about Carbonite? Has anyone had any luck with that service?
by hirlaw
Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Iphone X is $1000
Replies: 306
Views: 15493

Re: Iphone X is $1000

I have an IPhone 5. Been waiting for this to come out before I upgrade. I'm in. :D
by hirlaw
Tue Sep 12, 2017 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Cloud Back-Up Service For Mac
Replies: 8
Views: 866

Need Cloud Back-Up Service For Mac

I am looking into cloud back-up services for a Mac. My two main requirements are: 1) security and 2) ease of use. I am looking at IDrive and I like the fact that it has 256 encryption and allows a personal key not stored on their servers. However, I have read some reviews that people have had troubl...
by hirlaw
Wed Sep 06, 2017 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Advise On Getting to Patriots Game, Foxborough
Replies: 13
Views: 1062

Need Advise On Getting to Patriots Game, Foxborough

I am going to be headed to Boston later in the season to watch my team get beat by the Patriots. I will be staying in the Back Bay area. I hear that getting to and from the stadium is pretty awful. I have looked into the train that goes there and seems to be a pretty good alternative. Any hints are ...
by hirlaw
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Announces Plans To Launch Total Corporate Bond ETF
Replies: 41
Views: 6170

Re: Vanguard Announces Plans To Launch Total Corporate Bond ETF

The original and supreme Boglehead, John Bogle, has expressed concern that the Total Bond Market index is too heavy in Treasuries. Maybe this is a way to allow folks to compliment the Total Bond index by increasing corporate exposure in a "total bond" context.
by hirlaw
Mon Aug 21, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help With Travel to Prague - Vienna - Budapest
Replies: 7
Views: 611

Help With Travel to Prague - Vienna - Budapest

We are planning to go to Prague, Vienna & Budapest next May. Probably, fly into Budapest, then take trains to Vienna and Prague, flying back out of Prague. I was thinking of 3 nights in each. Do you think that is sufficient time? Any other tips, suggestions are welcome.

Thanks!!
by hirlaw
Sat Aug 12, 2017 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?
Replies: 79
Views: 5270

Re: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?

I have a 2007 Z4 which I have owned for nine years. I currently has about 52k miles on it. First, my personal situation. I am short, about 5'5" and so "roomyness" is not an issue for me (I can stretch out in tourist class!). My commute is only about 3 miles and mostly though a large park and I live ...
by hirlaw
Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Percentage CASH are you?
Replies: 90
Views: 6464

Re: What Percentage CASH are you?

OP: Are you including CD's and stable value funds in your definition of "CASH"? My guess is that a lot of people on here are using CD's in lieu of some bonds in this environment.
by hirlaw
Wed Aug 02, 2017 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How far off are Zillow's estimates?
Replies: 82
Views: 7812

Re: How far off are Zillow's estimates?

How does Zillow do its estimate in states such as Texas, where the property sales price information is not publicly available?
by hirlaw
Tue Aug 01, 2017 4:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Using VMVFX Vanguard [Global] Minimum Volatility fund for international.
Replies: 18
Views: 1821

Re: Using VMVFX Vanguard Minimum Volatility fund for international.

I have some. One thing to be aware of is that it hedges its foreign currency. That is one of the reasons for a higher cost vs. the index.
by hirlaw
Wed Jul 26, 2017 3:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: VNQ allocation [Vanguard REIT Index]
Replies: 20
Views: 1420

Re: VNQ allocation

For what its worth, I have approximately 9% of my equity holdings in the Vanguard REIT Index. This was initially motivated by David Swensen's suggested portfolio for individuals (who actually advocated having 20%, and later modified to 15%, of an individual's portfolio in real estate. Of course, he ...
by hirlaw
Mon Jul 24, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can a TIPS ladder 'fail' ?
Replies: 101
Views: 8433

Re: Can a TIPS ladder 'fail' ?

A TIPs ladder can easily fail if the goods and services you purchase outpace the real rate of return generated by TIPs. Given taxes and the basket of goods most likely purchased in retirement, I think the odds are pretty darn high long lived retirees are ill served by TIPs. +1 Just think of the ris...
by hirlaw
Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 50% Cash, 50% Stocks: The Opportunistic Portfolio
Replies: 43
Views: 4382

Re: 50% Cash, 50% Stocks: The Opportunistic Portfolio

It also depends on how you define "cash." If a 5-year CD is considered "cash", then I would consider it roughly equivalent to bonds in the present environment.
by hirlaw
Thu Jul 13, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple iMac problem?
Replies: 49
Views: 3289

Re: Apple iMac problem?

I get this sometimes when using Firefox browser on my IMac. If I switch to a different browser it solves the problem -- the beach ball has bounced off to another lucky user.
by hirlaw
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: REIT Fund Question
Replies: 11
Views: 1116

Re: REIT Fund Question

I would go with Vanguard's VNQ. Unless you plan on repeated purchases, the $5 brokerage fee to purchase at Fidelity is negligible. The IShares ETF (USRT) is too thinly traded.
by hirlaw
Sat Jul 08, 2017 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?
Replies: 61
Views: 4373

Re: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?

I also have a Vanguard variable annuity. At some point I will probably annuitize a portion of it or (depending on the rate at the time) do a 1035 exchange into another annuity and annuitize through the new annuity. I am only 61 and I think it is too early to annuitize. Also, I am hoping for higher i...
by hirlaw
Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lastpass anyone use it?
Replies: 31
Views: 3113

Re: Lastpass anyone use it?

I am still nervous about using those services.

See this >>> https://www.theguardian.com/technology/ ... nerability
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 28, 2017 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?
Replies: 170
Views: 13000

Re: How did you handle the costs of your child's wedding?

When our daughter was in college, I started a separate account that I actually called "___'s Wedding Account." I initially funded it with $25k and periodically added to it. When she married last summer, about 5 years after graduation, it had about $50k in it. This covered a good chunk of the wedding...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Yes, This Is Market Timing: If the CAPE Goes Above 30, Bring on the Larry
Replies: 142
Views: 10780

Re: Yes, This Is Market Timing: If the CAPE Goes Above 30, Bring on the Larry

If you are near retirement or in early retirement and concerned with CAPE valuations and long-term sequence of return risk, you may want to read this article: https://www.kitces.com/blog/valuation-based-tactical-asset-allocation-in-retirement-and-the-impact-of-market-valuation-on-declining-and-risin...
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 20, 2017 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Regret early retirement/downsizing
Replies: 230
Views: 40006

Re: Regret early retirement/downsizing

Question for those who retired "early". I am 61 and considering retirement (I can do it financially ). Some writers on the subject say that you shouldn't just retire from something, you should have something to retire to. I have in mind the usual suspects: reading, volunteering, some trave...
by hirlaw
Fri Jun 16, 2017 2:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ally Bank No penalty CD for parking cash, is there a catch?
Replies: 37
Views: 6507

Re: Ally Bank No penalty CD for parking cash, is there a catch?

I have a money market account (.85% interest) and a savings account (1.05% interest) at Ally. I recently moved a large chunk of the savings account to the 11 month "no penalty" CD to take advantage of the higher rate (1.35%). The only "catch" I see is that you have to leave your ...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 1:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD
Replies: 18
Views: 1870

Re: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD

Thanks all for your responses.

So, on brokered CD's (and individual bonds), what is everyone doing with the periodic interest payments? Are you just putting them in a money market, putting them in a bond fund?
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 11:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Direct CD vs. Brokered CD
Replies: 18
Views: 1870

Direct CD vs. Brokered CD

I have several direct CD's at Ally and CIT. It would certainly be more convenient to have brokered CD's through Fidelity, but besides the liquidity issue, the brokered CD's do not compound interest. The interest is paid out periodically, rather than being rolled back into the CD. This creates a prob...
by hirlaw
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: JP Morgan Marked Linked CD
Replies: 21
Views: 1601

Re: JP Morgan Marked Linked CD

You can also do a homemade market linked CD, without the expense. If you want to invest $100,000, put about $89,300 into a regular 5-year CD earning 2.3%. Put the remaining $10,700 in the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index fund or ETF. You now have guaranteed that you will receive a minimum of $100,0...
by hirlaw
Sat Jun 10, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Difficulties with CIT bank website
Replies: 3
Views: 385

Re: Difficulties with CIT bank website

I currently have 4 CD's at CIT. I had no trouble registering, but I agree that the website navigation is very poor. I also have accounts/CD's at Ally. If the rates and terms being offered are relatively equal, I would much prefer Ally.
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 06, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are CD investors more likely (than bond investors) to have sustainable withdrawals?
Replies: 13
Views: 1763

Re: Are CD investors more likely (than bond investors) to have sustainable withdrawals?

Would the fact that 5-year CD's are paying 2.2% and 5-year treasuries are only paying 1.7% make a difference in the comparison analysis?
by hirlaw
Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anti virus protection
Replies: 27
Views: 2564

Re: Anti virus protection

Avast for Mac.
by hirlaw
Mon Jun 05, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why
Replies: 54
Views: 9285

Re: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why

I will try to limit this to some of my favorite current thriller writers (leaving off past greats like Clancy, Crichton, Ludlum)

Douglas Preston & Lincoln Childs - Pendergast Series

James Rollins – Sigma Force Series

I Am Pilgrim – Terry Hayes
by hirlaw
Fri Jun 02, 2017 9:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice with a whole life policy
Replies: 9
Views: 867

Re: Advice with a whole life policy

I second (third?) the idea of a 1035 exchange into a low cost (e.g. Vanguard) annuity. I did this several years ago with a NWM policy.

While the annuities have a cost downside, the upside in some states is that they are exempt from creditor collection.
by hirlaw
Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About to retire
Replies: 11
Views: 1882

Re: About to retire

I am withdrawing from my tIRA during my bridge years to reduce my future RMDs.


Question: Rather than make withdrawals from the IRA during the bridge years, would it make sense to instead do Roth conversions?

Thanks
by hirlaw
Tue May 30, 2017 2:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is anyone here allocated 30/70 a la Rick Ferri's "new center of gravity?"
Replies: 35
Views: 5710

Re: Is anyone here allocated 30/70 a la Rick Ferri's "new center of gravity?"

We are 61/62. Over the last 5 years we have moved from 55/45 to about 40/60, mainly due to sequence of return risk concerns close to retirement. I would like to move to about 35/65, but I am running out of room to re-balance to fixed income in our after-tax accounts and don't won't to incur capital ...
by hirlaw
Tue May 30, 2017 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptop Purchase at Costco?
Replies: 45
Views: 21352

Re: Laptop Purchase at Costco?

Agree that the ability to return is the biggest factor, especially when you are buying a finicky item such as a computer. Nothing worse than being stuck with a frozen or weird acting computer with only the ability to call the useless support line.
by hirlaw
Thu May 25, 2017 10:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: DFA Retirement Income Strategies
Replies: 83
Views: 9494

Re: DFA Retirement Income Strategies

A bit off topic, but does anyone share my concern that TIPS may not actually keep up with actual inflation from a retiree's viewpoint? Currently, actual health care cost inflation exceeds the govt. inflation rate. Health care costs, especially in later retirement, may make up a significant portion o...
by hirlaw
Wed May 24, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity customer protection guarantee-void if you use Mint?
Replies: 39
Views: 3539

Re: Fidelity customer protection guarantee-void if you use Mint?

It sounds like Chase is (or has already by now) allowing Mint access without sharing passwords.
http://fortune.com/2017/01/25/chase-intuit-mint-password/
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1181

Re: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

Spirit Rider: We normally pay, rather than receive a refund. Last year we paid about $8k. If the taxes on the partnership distribution are around $50K, that would be about $60k in withholding to add to the current withholding. Sounds like a lot.
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1181

Re: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

nordsteve: I don't think that would work for us, especially considering that we would be starting so late in the year.
by hirlaw
Thu Apr 20, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)
Replies: 13
Views: 1181

How to Handle Taxes on One Time Windfall (sale)

I own a share of a limited partnership that is selling its major asset. In about a week I will be receiving funds and will incur about a $220K long term gain. Any suggestions on how to deal with the taxes to avoid penalties? I have read about the "safe harbor" provision for estimating taxe...
by hirlaw
Wed Apr 19, 2017 1:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule
Replies: 2
Views: 454

Re: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule

Thank you for your detailed response!
by hirlaw
Wed Apr 19, 2017 10:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule
Replies: 2
Views: 454

Roth IRA Conversion Question -- 5 year rule

Hi All: I am 60. I have a regular post-tax IRA's. I also have a Roth 401k. If I do a partial conversion of my IRA to a Roth IRA, does that start the 5 year rule clock running even for later contributions? For example, if I convert half in 2017 and half in 2020, does the five years end in 2022 for bo...
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lastpass bug
Replies: 18
Views: 2269

Re: Lastpass bug

I am concerned about a dishonest employee or principal of the company. Also, I worry about a company going out of business -- how secure will the servers/security be in a liquidation setting.
by hirlaw
Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 24
Views: 4526

Re: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

Do we even know whether Federal tax credits will be available if a plug-in vehicle is purchased in 2017? Isn't there a possibility that a "tax overhaul" would remove or limit these credits?
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 23, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why buy short-term bond funds when you can get 1% in savings acct?
Replies: 29
Views: 3393

Re: Why buy short-term bond funds when you can get 1% in savings acct?

You may consider mixing. For the short portion of the yield curve, I have money in ALLY money market and CD's. However, I also have funds in the following (which are also available as mutual funds). Vanguard Short Term Bond ETF (BSV): Duration 2.68, yield 1.78% Vanguard Short Term Corporate Bond ETF...
by hirlaw
Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller says market is "way overpriced" - what a shocker
Replies: 34
Views: 4712

Re: Shiller says market is "way overpriced" - what a shocker

Clickbait. If you watch the interview, he never said that and in fact said that he doesn't know which way the market will go --- He even said that this could be like 1997 where the market did just fine with a high CAPE.
by hirlaw
Thu Mar 09, 2017 5:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Open bond fund now or wait till Fed rate increase next week
Replies: 15
Views: 1616

Re: Open bond fund now or wait till Fed rate increase next week

No one really knows.

When the Fed raised rates in December 2015, the 10 year rate actually went down rather significantly afterwards.
by hirlaw
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to buy municipal bonds
Replies: 11
Views: 1497

Re: How to by municipal bonds

If you have a Fidelity brokerage account, their website has a very good bond screener wherein you can select individual muni (or other type) individual bonds. You will be able to screen ratings, maturity, yield, etc. I am sure other brokerage companies have similar online features.
by hirlaw
Tue Jan 31, 2017 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement
Replies: 39
Views: 3003

Re: Utilizing a trainer to maintain fitness in retirement

I'm 60 and have been going to the gym for over 30 years. I don't use a trainer, but I can see the benefit of a good trainer setting up a program for you to then follow on your own. I currently go at least 3 days a week. Many days you won't feel like going, so I recommend setting specific days to go ...
by hirlaw
Tue Jan 17, 2017 12:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Short Term TIPS in retirement portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2554

Re: Short Term TIPS in retirement portfolio

I am in about the same time frame as you in starting withdrawals (but I don't plan on taking withdrawals from the TIPs for a while). I presently only have about 5% of my fixed income in TIP funds. Like you, I am unsure of short vs. intermediate TIPS. I decided to split the difference and have half i...