Search found 190 matches

by lakpr
Wed May 24, 2017 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 1629
Views: 250193

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

I have a large purchase coming up ($10,000 +) ...... Would you recommend something else? ....... My score is about 815. I recommend Chase Sapphire Preferred or Chase Sapphire Reserve cards assuming you don't already have them and you don't have more than 5 new cards in the past 24 months Both give ...
by lakpr
Fri May 19, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Variable Compensation and 401k Match
Replies: 7
Views: 520

Re: Variable Compensation and 401k Match

My company allows us to contribute specific $ amount per paycheck. So we subtract the yearly amount needed to get max match assuming no bonus from $18K and adjust the amount prior to and after the bonus check pay period.
by lakpr
Fri May 12, 2017 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unexpected Early Delivery of Child - How best to adjust Insurance/Benefits?
Replies: 8
Views: 1119

Re: Unexpected Early Delivery of Child - How best to adjust Insurance/Benefits?

Congratulations on becoming a father! - Can the insurance through your employer for your spouse be increased beyond 25,000? That's awful low. I'd shoot for at least 250,000. - Get at least a thirty year level premium term insurance for both yourself and your wife outside of your employer. Do it soon...
by lakpr
Thu May 11, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can you suggest a mortgage lender who does not resell
Replies: 67
Views: 4367

Re: Can you suggest a mortgage lender who does not resell

DCU, aka Digital Federal Credit Union, originates and services the mortgage loans for the life of the loans. Excellent customer service. I had them for the mortgage on my first house where I lived for 8 years before I sold it. You can become a member of the credit union through donating $25 or so to...
by lakpr
Tue May 09, 2017 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I refinance my resident home?
Replies: 23
Views: 1073

Re: How should I refinance my resident home?

I agree with your wife's point of view. Keep it simple, refinance everything into the 15 year mortgage. My philosophy: Do not take risks with the roof over your head, do not view it as an investment, try to be mortgage free as soon as fiscally prudent and feasible.
by lakpr
Sun May 07, 2017 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?
Replies: 7
Views: 963

Re: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?

Geico in PA offers $2500 deductible on collision and comprehensive. That is my choice. It helps if you have an $1800 loss that gooses your rates for several years if reported. Just because you do not make an insurance claim does not mean that the loss will not be reported to the insurers. There is ...
by lakpr
Sun May 07, 2017 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most Common Financial Mistakes
Replies: 108
Views: 13618

Re: Most Common Financial Mistakes

The following (in no particular order) are mistakes to avoid: Shopping at highbrow stores like Ethan Allen, Whole Foods, etc. Daycares Private schools College funds Purchasing nonfunctional fad vehicles such as Tesla Swimming pools International travel Mild disagreements here. Daycare: unavoidable ...
by lakpr
Sat May 06, 2017 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal job, "military time buyback" for pension
Replies: 22
Views: 1815

Re: Federal job, "military time buyback" for pension

We did something very similar for my wife in NJ. She's a teacher, who quit her job to take care of kids when they were born, and re-entered the teaching profession after a gap of 4.5 years. We were forced to cash out the accumulated pension benefit after 3 years of absence from the profession ... an...
by lakpr
Sat May 06, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get out of a apartment renter lease? They want $3,600
Replies: 40
Views: 3054

Re: How to get out of a apartment renter lease? They want $3,600

In your other post you said you were buying a house, and presumably that's the reason why you are breaking your lease. From what I know, the landlord can keep your security deposit and one month's rent. According to New Jersey law, the landlord should make good faith efforts to re-rent the unit with...
by lakpr
Sat May 06, 2017 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At last, 25 years in America, 1st to buy own house in my family! Help me not screw up!
Replies: 12
Views: 1317

Re: At last, 25 years in America, 1st to buy own house in my family! Help me not screw up!

Echo what sunny_socal said. I am in Central NJ (Princeton area), bought a home 5 years ago, and my closing costs were around 3200 dollars. Of which the majority expense was title insurance, around $1800. For comparison purposes, the home I bought is around 600K price range. If it helps, my lender wa...
by lakpr
Fri May 05, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medallion Signature for Vanguard Trust
Replies: 29
Views: 2173

Re: Medallion Signature for Vanguard Trust

I didn't know credit unions did Medallion Signatures. We will look into that. Thanks. Please know that by providing Medallion signatures, the signing officer and the institution are accepting liability for the accuracy of whatever form you are filling out This is the reason why banks and credit uni...
by lakpr
Fri May 05, 2017 5:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRMAA & American Health Care Act
Replies: 2
Views: 334

Re: IRMAA & American Health Care Act

No discussions about legislative effort that is not yet a law, please...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 27, 2017 5:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 1629
Views: 250193

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

https://www.penfed.org/platinum-rewards-visa-signature/ Nice sign up bonus and 'no-AF' generally don't happen often. I have this card. Note that this is essentially a 4.2% gas card, since you get rewards in terms of points and not straight cash back. Then 5880 points will need to be redeemed for $5...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 27, 2017 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase - $500 to open business checking account. Worth it?
Replies: 7
Views: 854

Re: Chase - $500 to open business checking account. Worth it?

5/24 rule does not apply for bank accounts. It only applies to trade lines that appear on your credit report. Checking accounts don't. It will have added an inquiry to your credit report, sure, but aside from the 5 point ding on your credit score it will have no other effect. Chase I know is not inq...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 27, 2017 5:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard has switched to brokerage only accounts
Replies: 106
Views: 9628

Re: "Invited" to change to Vang Brokerage

Personally I would not bother. I don't see any specific benefit by upgrading. On the contrary I have only downside I work in the financial industry, and in my line of work one must disclose all "brokerage accounts" where one has the ability to trade individual stocks, to the Compliance off...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 27, 2017 4:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 1629
Views: 250193

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

http://www.doctorofcredit.com/fort-knox-federal-credit-union-visa-platinum-review-5-cash-back-on-gas/ No sign up bonus though. Are there any good gas rebate cards with a nice sign up bonus. I currently drive about 90 miles a day for work so looking for a good gas rewards card. No annual fee preferre...
by lakpr
Tue Apr 25, 2017 1:01 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: 1156

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

To my knowledge, yes you will have to cancel the card before reapplying and yes you do need to wait 2 years after canceling. I believe this card is also subject to 5/24 rule, meaning no more than 5 new trade lines within the past 24 months, from any issuer. The first part of this statement is incor...
by lakpr
Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:12 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: 1156

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

Bogleheads may not be the right forum for posing this question. Try Reddit churning forum. Not sure if it is permissible to post links here but you can easily google "Reddit Churning" and pick the first link. To my knowledge, yes you will have to cancel the card before reapplying and yes y...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dedicating your bonus to something
Replies: 30
Views: 2925

Re: Dedicating your bonus to something

i usually get a bonus every Feb and couple weeks before i change my 401k contribution to 100% so that whole bonus go to it. I then change back to 10%. bonus gets taxed so much that it makes more sense to just let it go to 401k. Hopefully you do know that a dollar of bonus is taxed just like any oth...
by lakpr
Thu Apr 20, 2017 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to withdraw a positive credit card balance ($2600)?
Replies: 10
Views: 1028

Re: How to withdraw a positive credit card balance ($2600)?

It's been my experience that if you leave surplus balance on your credit card for more than 2 billing cycles, at the close of second billing cycle the card company sends a check to your home. It caught me a couple of times in surprise as I was expecting that the surplus balance on my card would be d...
by lakpr
Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What kind of stuff would you never DIY, assuming you could?
Replies: 75
Views: 6085

Re: What kind of stuff would you never DIY, assuming you could?

Lawn mowing. Did it for a couple of years myself. But now have serious allergies to anything grass related, glad to pay someone $50 a pop to mow the lawn.

At least through the summer, it helps a neighborhood kid earn a little money
by lakpr
Mon Apr 17, 2017 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Closing my oldest credit card
Replies: 19
Views: 2133

Re: Closing my oldest credit card

As a general rule, you should keep your first credit card account forever. Now it is possible that such credit card might not serve your needs any more as time passes -- after all, someone who would give a credit card for people with no credit history has to be one that takes a gamble on unproven bo...
by lakpr
Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Guidelines for when to get a new credit card?
Replies: 16
Views: 1353

Re: Guidelines for when to get a new credit card?

My philosophy of when to apply for a new credit card is a simple rule: will I be better off with this new credit card by at least $300 within 12 months of obtaining the card? I apply for the card, if yes. It is not quite No if the answer is less than $300, may be I will consider more if the amount i...
by lakpr
Wed Mar 15, 2017 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2016 contributions before tax deadline. Confused!
Replies: 7
Views: 541

Re: 2016 contributions before tax deadline. Confused!

No, 403b contributions count only for the year in which they are made. If your objective is to reduce your taxable income for 2016, your alternative would only be to contribute to a traditional IRA. But this option is only available to you if you are either: (a) married filing jointly and your modif...
by lakpr
Tue Mar 14, 2017 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners Insurance - Sewer Backup necessary?
Replies: 7
Views: 656

Re: Homeowners Insurance - Sewer Backup necessary?

Does your property have any trees growing in it, and how close are their roots to the sewer path? Also, are you sure everyone in your household is knowledgeable enough to not flush stuff down the toilet such as paper towels (not toilet paper), plastic bags or their fragments, etc.? I read also on th...
by lakpr
Sat Mar 04, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opened my first Taxable Account! - Help with fund choice
Replies: 13
Views: 1737

Re: Opened my first Taxable Account! - Help with fund choice

I am open to this advice. Can you tell me: Why the 10% to TIPS? Why VBISX if I plan to make withdrawals this year? I was leaning towards VWITX because it is "Tax Exempt" Regarding 10% to TIPS: Back in the 2008/2009 when the markets crashed, Fortune magazine ran a story that a portfolio of...
by lakpr
Fri Mar 03, 2017 6:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opened my first Taxable Account! - Help with fund choice
Replies: 13
Views: 1737

Re: Opened my first Taxable Account! - Help with fund choice

Utetooth, IF I WERE YOU, I would put about 10% of the allocation into inflation protected securities. So a 50/40/10 mix than a straight 50:50 split Do you foresee that you may withdraw any money from this taxable account within the next year? I am not talking unexpected emergencies but planned purch...
by lakpr
Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to do with our extra money?
Replies: 6
Views: 1291

Re: What to do with our extra money?

1. Max out your 403(b) to $18K, that increases your contributions by 12K and reduces available balance from $3300 to $2800 approximately, taking into account that the additional 12K is not taxed 2. I did not see mention of an emergency fund. If your expenses are approximately $6300 per month, you ne...
by lakpr
Tue Feb 21, 2017 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Negotiate lowball offer? (new job)
Replies: 47
Views: 4132

Re: Negotiate lowball offer? (new job)

Taurus, How old are you? If you are below 30 years of age, I would say take this job for now, and look to move elsewhere after having about 4 or 5 years of experience under your belt. I believe you do not have much room for negotiation, especially given that your employer knows you are making $42K w...
by lakpr
Tue Feb 21, 2017 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA question
Replies: 5
Views: 681

Re: Roth IRA question

student, Do you have access to a 401(k) / 403(b) / 457(b) plan at work? If so, do those plans accept incoming rollovers from traditional IRAs? If the answer is yes to both those questions, and you have money sitting in a traditional IRA somewhere, 1. first make a non-deductible traditional IRA contr...
by lakpr
Sun Feb 19, 2017 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Progress Made - What Now? (Pay off cheap mtg or invest)
Replies: 31
Views: 3376

Re: Progress Made - What Now? (Pay off cheap mtg or invest)

She, the OP, said that the 5.125% mortgage is on a rental, not owner occupied home. Her primary mortgage is 2.75% on a 15 year term, which is such a sweet deal!
by lakpr
Sun Feb 19, 2017 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is my real taxable salary?
Replies: 12
Views: 1609

Re: What is my real taxable salary?

Winn Flak, Yes that has been my understanding, with the caveat that there is a maximum amount if wages you can earn after which the ability to contribute to both types of IRA plans goes away. Believe that limit is $68K or may be adjusted slightly higher due to inflation adjustments. I saw your wages...
by lakpr
Sun Feb 19, 2017 3:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is my real taxable salary?
Replies: 12
Views: 1609

Re: What is my real taxable salary?

Note that this is true for only Federal taxes. For some states, I know for sure only NJ and PA, the amount you defer into any employer tax deferred plans may be counted as taxable salary. Of course, I am assuming that you know you can further reduce your taxable salary by contributing to a tradition...
by lakpr
Sun Feb 19, 2017 3:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

Nekrotok, Thanks a lot for this great tool, I was not aware of it earlier. Based on my simulations usig that tool, the axiom I read in Fortune magazine from 2009, had still held valid for the years 2013 through 2016 again. If we use VTSAX for the 40% stock allocation in the portfolio, during the wor...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

VSCGX is close, yes, but I think I excluded it because the TIPS/cash reserves portion of the portfolio isnt 10%.
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

I'm wondering if, to keep it simple, there is a single fund that is close to the 40/50/10 idea? None in Vanguard family of mutual funds, I am afraid. I was researching them for the same reason, and all Life strategy funds had a minimum of 60% stocks in the portfolio, as do Target date funds. Other ...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

Also wanted to comment on your concern about tax implications. If your money is currently in CDs, then you are paying taxes at your marginal tax rates. With mutual funds, you will pay marginal rate taxes on the dividends, and a max capital gains tax rate of 20% if you hold that investment more than ...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

I read that Wellesley thread and it is an intriguing idea, putting that taxable. But I'm not sure of the tax implications and the risk might be a bit too high for my comfort. How do you feel about the 40/50/10 idea I put forth above? Invest in funds such as Vanguard Total Stock Market Index, Vangua...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideas for tiered emergency fund
Replies: 23
Views: 1937

Re: Ideas for tiered emergency fund

Rather than sticking it all in an account that is barely earning 1%, I suggest you use that money for chasing checking and savings account bonuses in various banks. It will require some work on your part such as setting up direct deposit for a few months, and/or keeping a certain minimum balance amo...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage fees- Is this reasonable?
Replies: 14
Views: 1557

Re: Mortgage fees- Is this reasonable?

Agreed with other posters above, that everything else except attorney fees looks reasonable. When I bought my home 7 years ago, my attorney charged me $600 and that includes the closing agent fee (the attorney picked his own closing agent). I doubt that, even allowing for 7 years passage of time, re...
by lakpr
Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued
Replies: 154
Views: 18095

Re: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued

Regarding Target discount, why do we want their credit card or debit card? Their credit cards almost always give you really stingy limits, and for their debit cards you need to expose your checking account. As of my writing this post, Target gift cards are on sale at gift card resellers for 8% off, ...
by lakpr
Sun Feb 12, 2017 9:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is 130k a good salary in IT?.
Replies: 40
Views: 6143

Re: Is 130k a good salary in IT?.

It is a middle of the road salary for IT professionals in the metro New York region, for someone who has at least 10 years professional experience Since your are talking about Atlanta area which has lower cost of living than New York, I would have to say it is really a strong competitive offer, if n...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bonds as savings account?
Replies: 11
Views: 1219

Re: Bonds as savings account?

I work in financial industry, one of the first axioms that we learn is that the risk vs rewards graph looks like a hockey stick as we move from a 100% bonds to 100% stocks. The instructor said that historically, quite surprisingly, a 100% bond portfolio has an almost identical risk to a 70% bonds + ...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?
Replies: 16
Views: 897

Re: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?

There must have been a slight misunderstanding about Chase's 5/24 rule. Chase looks for number of tradelines established within the last 2 years, they do not care about the number if inquiries. I believe one poster on creditboards did get approved for Chase Sapphire Reserve with over 15 inquiries sh...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued
Replies: 154
Views: 18095

Re: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued

Does anyone have an alternative for Target? I don't shop much at either but am trying to get away from Amazon due to their slow prime shipping. Amazon replacement ideas welcome also! Target gift cards from gift card resellers. They are currently selling for about 7% discount to the face value Amazo...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?
Replies: 16
Views: 897

Re: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?

Bb123, There is NO hard inquiry on your credit report for the installment loan so there isn't a question of hurting yourself. Additionally the impact of inquiries is overrated, it just costs may be 4 or 5 points per inquiry; unless you are talking about 30 or 40 inquiries, the net effect on your FIC...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financing a $20k remodel though Lowe's vs credit card with air miles
Replies: 5
Views: 660

Re: Financing a $20k remodel though Lowe's vs credit card with air miles

You can also buy Lowes gift cards from resellers, at a substantial discount (10% or so). Buy these gift cards on new Visa/MasterCard credit cards to meet the minimum spend requirements, then pay Lowes using these gift cards. You will essentially get the 10% discount without having to apply for a Low...
by lakpr
Sat Feb 11, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?
Replies: 16
Views: 897

Re: Building Credit From Scratch Fast?

dm200: I am in no need of loans but is there a credit building loan that you would recommend? Please visit creditboards.com, and search the "Credit Forum" for the keywords "Alliant Credit Union Installment Loan Hack". It will walk you through the steps. Basically, you become a m...
by lakpr
Fri Feb 10, 2017 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Get $250 from Wells Fargo
Replies: 83
Views: 12468

Re: Get $250 from Wells Fargo

I agree with Chinto, I would not do business with Wells after the recent mess and how they treated their employees to cross-sell while management was pocketing millions. If MORE people did not give their business to companies like this, they would not have a business and there would be no fraud. I ...
by lakpr
Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued
Replies: 154
Views: 18095

Re: Sallie Mae Rewards MC being discontinued

The minimum redemption amount on the new card is only $10.00. So when the rewards transfer over to the new card after March 1, one need not make additional purchases to bring up the rewards amount to $25. One can immediately cash out

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