Search found 570 matches

by lhl12
Mon Sep 18, 2017 12:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Daughter with Autism and Spouse Almost 13 Years Younger
Replies: 35
Views: 4821

Re: Daughter with Autism and Spouse Almost 13 Years Younger

What is the interest rate on the loan that retires the credit card debt?
by lhl12
Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pocket money allowance for college student
Replies: 48
Views: 2363

Re: Pocket money allowance for college student

Our son is a sophomore. For his freshman year we gave him $500/month. I wanted to give him $200/month but my wife thought that was too little and suggested $500/month instead. I strenuously objected and stuck with my guns at $200. You can see where we ended up. His bank account is a joint account w...
by lhl12
Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pocket money allowance for college student
Replies: 48
Views: 2363

Re: Pocket money allowance for college student

Our son is a sophomore. For his freshman year we gave him $500/month. I wanted to give him $200/month but my wife thought that was too little and suggested $500/month instead. I strenuously objected and stuck with my guns at $200. You can see where we ended up. His bank account is a joint account wi...
by lhl12
Sat Sep 16, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Upper Middle" Class - ditch WLI or ride it?
Replies: 34
Views: 6478

Re: "Upper Middle" Class - ditch WLI or ride it?

Doesn't it feel great to have that car fully paid for and to be debt free? Remember that feeling when you are thinking about trading in for a new car (if you're not able to pay cash for it at that time).
by lhl12
Thu Sep 07, 2017 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Advise On Getting to Patriots Game, Foxborough
Replies: 13
Views: 1051

Re: Need Advise On Getting to Patriots Game, Foxborough

I have taken the train once before and it was great! A few things to be aware of: 1) The train departs from South Station at the specified time, on time, so be sure to get to South Station in plenty of time to make the train. 2) If you want to take the MBTA (the subway) from Back Bay, your best bet ...
by lhl12
Thu Sep 07, 2017 9:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Don't know where to start at all
Replies: 21
Views: 1672

Re: Don't know where to start at all

Tips are reportable and taxable (including SS and Medicare taxes) to the IRS. Here is one page from the IRS with some info: https://www.irs.gov/businesses/small-businesses-self-employed/tip-recordkeeping-and-reporting This is why I always tip in cash. I hope the server does not report it as income,...
by lhl12
Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hiring a real estate agent to buy home
Replies: 21
Views: 1680

Re: Hiring a real estate agent to buy home

I always prefer to work through the agent listing the house rather than through a separate agent. That way the agent gets both commissions. This gives them a much stronger incentive to get the deal done with you (rather than with another buyer who has his/her own agent), and makes them willing to re...
by lhl12
Thu Aug 24, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-fiction bucket list
Replies: 109
Views: 8805

Re: Non-fiction bucket list

For those interested in the history of finance and economics, the following are all highly recommended: Niall Ferguson's two volume "biography" of the Rothschild family - "The House of Rothschild". Ron Chernow's "The House of Morgan" Ron Chernow's "Titan" (on John D. Rockefeller and the rise of Stan...
by lhl12
Tue Aug 22, 2017 12:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking Advice on Simplifying Large Taxable Retirement Portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2723

Re: Seeking Advice on Simplifying Large Taxable Retirement Portfolio

Thank you all for the additional comments and advice. I am very aware of my extremely fortunate position of having much more than I need. There is indeed an important sense where it doesn't matter what I do -- I can keep the lifestyle I want regardless. I suppose my tastes might expand or my circum...
by lhl12
Mon Aug 21, 2017 6:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking Advice on Simplifying Large Taxable Retirement Portfolio
Replies: 23
Views: 2723

Re: Seeking Advice on Simplifying Large Taxable Retirement Portfolio

I don't think it's possible to answer your questions well without having a clearer picture of what you want to happen with your assets upon your death. Under current tax law there is a step up in basis that would mean you never have to pay capital gains taxes if you never sell before you die. On the...
by lhl12
Fri Aug 18, 2017 8:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio
Replies: 45
Views: 9480

Re: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio

I think it is premature to superfund the 529's. I would wait a year or two and see how things develop. You can make ordinary annual contributions if you'd like but it is very important to maintain maximum financial flexibility until you have greater clarity on your husband's prognosis. If things go ...
by lhl12
Fri Aug 18, 2017 8:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio
Replies: 45
Views: 9480

Re: Cancer at 38. Going from high income to no income. Need help generating income from $5m portfolio

I know this must be overwhelming, but one more thing to put on your to-do list. Do you have an estate/guardianship plan for your kids if something should happen to you? You are understandably focused on your spouse right now, but that is something to have in place just in case. I am so sorry to hea...
by lhl12
Fri Aug 04, 2017 8:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Paul Singer Says Passive Investing Is ‘Devouring Capitalism’
Replies: 24
Views: 2788

Re: Paul Singer Says Passive Investing Is ‘Devouring Capitalism’

There is an interesting question here. Ownership of a stock carries with it the right to vote on matters affecting the company. When institutional shareholders own a stock "actively", they are (or should be) keenly interested in matters that come to a vote. If an activist shareholder (e.g. a hedge f...
by lhl12
Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did you shop for a title company
Replies: 4
Views: 511

Re: Did you shop for a title company

I have had success in the past getting an agent to rebate me part of the commission they receive in order to write the business through them (threatening to move to a different agent if they don't agree to a rebate). You might give this a try, but there is a dollar price for the house (and associate...
by lhl12
Sun Jul 23, 2017 11:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Recommendation for Good Book on Personal Financial Planning?
Replies: 15
Views: 2012

Re: Recommendation for Good Book on Personal Financial Planning?

+1 for "How to Make the Most of your Money" by Jane Bryant Quinn - fantastic. Be sure to get the most recent edition.
by lhl12
Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering pension plan in asset allocation
Replies: 37
Views: 1692

Re: Considering pension plan in asset allocation

Question: Should I consider the pension when determining my 80/20 allocation? If so, how? Do I consider it a "bond"? If it were me, I would consider it in the light of how well my pension will cover my eventual living expenses in retirement. Given that, it will indirectly affect how more or less ri...
by lhl12
Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering pension plan in asset allocation
Replies: 37
Views: 1692

Re: Considering pension plan in asset allocation

... Because the return is a guaranteed fixed income return (4% in your case) I think it is appropriate to view the entire balance of the plan as part of your fixed income allocation, earning a 4% fixed income return. ... To paraphrase Bill Clinton, that depends on what your definition of "guarantee...
by lhl12
Thu Jul 20, 2017 12:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering pension plan in asset allocation
Replies: 37
Views: 1692

Re: Considering pension plan in asset allocation

To clarify, I can't just roll the cash balance into a tIRA any time I want - I have to terminate my employment first. As to whether I take the lump sum and roll it over or choose an annuity, that may depend on *when* I leave the company. Since I'm 43, I have a ways to go. A lot can happen between n...
by lhl12
Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:40 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering pension plan in asset allocation
Replies: 37
Views: 1692

Re: Considering pension plan in asset allocation

By the way, since your cash balance plan earns the greater of 4% or the 10-year Treasury rate, then $1.00 of cash balance is worth more than $1.00 in an IRA only if the 10-year Treasury rate is below 4%. If the 10-year rate rises to 4% (or greater) then $1.00 of cash balance would be identical to $1...
by lhl12
Thu Jul 20, 2017 11:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering pension plan in asset allocation
Replies: 37
Views: 1692

Re: Considering pension plan in asset allocation

I believe one should absolutely consider a cash balance pension plan as part of one's asset allocation. The problem is more complicated when it comes to defined benefit pension plans (although I think there is a plausible argument for those to be treated as part of one's asset allocation as well) bu...
by lhl12
Thu Jul 13, 2017 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: can a city mandate garbage & recycling service? is that legal?
Replies: 36
Views: 2442

Re: can a city mandate garbage & recycling service? is that legal?

All municipalities are created by and are subject to the legal jurisdiction of the state in which they are located. The state is sovereign and has almost total legal authority to manage its counties and municipalities as it sees fit (including dissolving or merging them if it wishes). A good example...
by lhl12
Tue Jul 04, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?
Replies: 149
Views: 14064

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

Two significant advantages with Amazon 1. Ratings - this is worth a lot to me. It isn't foolproof, but it puts you at a significant advantage as a customer / consumer. Agreed! For example, I would never have had the confidence to purchase my Hutzler 571 Banana Slicer without reading the reviews fir...
by lhl12
Mon Jun 19, 2017 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Wife is having our 5th child. What is an appropriately extravagant push gift?
Replies: 90
Views: 7815

Re: My Wife is having our 5th child. What is an appropriately extravagant push gift?

It may be too late for this suggestion, but I recommend a case of the wine she really likes. Set aside (and store properly) three bottles as an engagement present for the child when he/she gets engaged. Then, you and your wife can open one of the other nine bottles on your wedding anniversaries. Wit...
by lhl12
Wed Jun 14, 2017 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multi-page scanner?
Replies: 26
Views: 1852

Re: Multi-page scanner?

Another vote for the Fujitsu ScanSnap ix500 -- a fantastic piece of equipment!
by lhl12
Mon Jun 05, 2017 8:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When a company spins off part of itself, do you keep the new company stock?
Replies: 17
Views: 971

Re: When a company spins off part of itself, do you keep the new company stock?

Mondelez has a funny name, but it is actually a huge company ($71 billion market cap) with very well known brands (Oreo, Chips Ahoy, Triscuits, Nabisco, Toblerone, Cadbury, Trident, Dentyne, and many more.) Lamb Weston is smaller, but is the largest potato company in North America. I believe they ar...
by lhl12
Mon Jun 05, 2017 7:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When a company spins off part of itself, do you keep the new company stock?
Replies: 17
Views: 971

Re: When a company spins off part of itself, do you keep the new company stock?

I believe the academic literature indicates that over the long run restructurings of this sort (where one company spins off a subsidiary into a new publicly traded company) tend to outperform the rest of the market. So, when this sort of thing happens I typically hold both stocks.
by lhl12
Sun May 28, 2017 5:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for advice/reassurance on what to do with $4-5m
Replies: 63
Views: 6392

Re: Looking for advice/reassurance on what to do with $4-5m

0.40% to the banker is excessive and ill-advised. Note that you can get a similar service from Vanguard (the Portfolio Advisory Service) for 0.30%. I agree that you should negotiate his fee lower. I would aim for 0.20% (as livesoft suggested), but in no event greater than 0.30%. I would also insist ...
by lhl12
Sat May 13, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options
Replies: 44
Views: 3471

Re: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options

My husband died one week ago, and I find myself looking at the payout choices of a term life insurance policy. I would like to understand them all and wonder if anyone could help with that?? Option 1 - lump sum. Option 2 - keep money at insurance company, will earn 3% interest per year (minimum), p...
by lhl12
Thu May 04, 2017 9:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with inheritance
Replies: 37
Views: 3882

Re: What to do with inheritance

A 529 is a great option for college savings for your kids. You and your husband may each contribute $14,000 per child per year to a 529 for that child and you are allowed to front-end load five years of contributions into a single year. So, if you wanted to you could theoretically immediately contri...
by lhl12
Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Advice needed for mother's inheritance/finances.]
Replies: 129
Views: 14970

Re: Too much inheritance to handle. Advice needed

I get saddened reading such scumbaggery. What makes you think that this is without a doubt, scumbaggery? I don't know nearly as much as most of you do, but everyone is saying get out. What are the red flags that you see and everyone else is seeing? THe read red flag that I saw was the fees attached...
by lhl12
Sun Apr 16, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to invest my children's inheritance
Replies: 33
Views: 3108

Re: How to invest my children's inheritance

How old are the children? I think that has a bearing on the answer.
by lhl12
Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Parents paying second home's expenses, but not paying rent?
Replies: 13
Views: 2141

Re: Parents paying second home's expenses, but not paying rent?

Could you not consider it a gift from them to you? There is a $14,000 annual exclusion. Yes, exactly this. As long as the total forgiveness is $28,000 or less, then the difference can just be accounted for as an imputed annual gift from you to your parents (so long as they are both living). If one ...
by lhl12
Mon Mar 20, 2017 2:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Harvard endowment beats S&P 500 by 2% a year over last 40 years
Replies: 50
Views: 6804

Re: Harvard endowment beats S&P 500 by 2% a year over last 40 years

Even if Harvard slightly lagged the S&P 500 over that period, that is still an excellent result. Harvard would never have set an asset allocation that was 100% S&P 500. A much more reasonable reference for that 40 year period would be a portfolio that was 70% equities and 30% fixed income, w...
by lhl12
Wed Mar 08, 2017 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension Options
Replies: 41
Views: 2483

Re: Pension Options

My wife was in a similar situation in her mid 20's. She had worked for a large company with a pension plan for a few years (just long enough to vest) then stopped working to have kids. She could have remained in the plan for the next 40 years and collected a small monthly pension for life at about a...
by lhl12
Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Companies should have "dividend shares"
Replies: 10
Views: 839

Re: Companies should have "dividend shares"

It's an interesting idea, but there are a few practical issues that come to mind: 1) BIZ-D and BIZ-R won't necessarily trade at the same price. That might be fine, but you might end up paying premium to buy one share class or the other. Similarly, when the time comes to sell, you might only be able ...
by lhl12
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash Balance Defined Benefit Plan
Replies: 12
Views: 1270

Re: Cash Balance Defined Benefit Plan

I agree that you should max it out. At your tax bracket, the savings are enormous, even if it returns very little. If interest rates rise significantly (which is always a possibility) you'll be earning some extra return. Also, even if you end up staying in until age 62, you and your wife will still ...
by lhl12
Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ethical dilemma involving birthdays and wine..
Replies: 35
Views: 4081

Re: Ethical dilemma involving birthdays and wine..

I would send him a note saying that you were about to re-engage him for a new retirement plan, but when you received this year's bottle of wine you were offended by how inexpensive and poor quality it was and are going to a competitor instead. Next year you will either get nothing or you will get a ...
by lhl12
Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: charitable giving & transaction fees/costs
Replies: 4
Views: 362

Re: charitable giving & transaction fees/costs

I make virtually all charitable contributions via check, for the reason you describe. I do the same with political contributions as well. For all other expenditures, I use a credit card.
by lhl12
Mon Feb 13, 2017 9:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing a foundation's endowment
Replies: 15
Views: 1625

Re: Investing a foundation's endowment

You might also consider the TIFF Multi-Asset Fund, which is designed for entities like this. See:

https://www.tiff.org/MutualFunds/FundOverviews/maf.aspx
by lhl12
Sun Feb 12, 2017 10:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing a foundation's endowment
Replies: 15
Views: 1625

Re: Investing a foundation's endowment

My base case would be 70/30 - 70% S&P 500 and 30% of whichever bond fund most closely approximates the Barclays Aggregate Bond Index. You could implement this passively at Vanguard and rebalancing annually or semiannually should be fine. The next thing I'd consider is substituting a TIPS fund fo...
by lhl12
Sun Feb 12, 2017 10:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I count value of homes in my Swensen AA?
Replies: 15
Views: 1149

Re: Should I count value of homes in my Swensen AA?

As I see it, there are really three separate questions here that need to be considered separately. 1. Should your primary residence be considered part of your overall asset base and asset allocation? 2. Should your vacation residence be considered part of your overall asset base and asset allocation...
by lhl12
Thu Feb 09, 2017 8:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for a soon-to-be MLB draftee
Replies: 68
Views: 10468

Re: Advice for a soon-to-be MLB draftee

Revisiting this thread..... The draftee, who is 21 years old, received his second installment of his signing bonus and now has about $260,000. Due to investing inertia he has it all sitting in a savings account at a local bank. Most day-to-day living expenses are covered by the team (he is off to s...
by lhl12
Wed Feb 08, 2017 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please help with real estate question
Replies: 40
Views: 2763

Re: Please help with real estate question

Another issue is that if you own the house and they live in it "rent-free" then as far as the IRS is concerned you are making a gift to them of the fair market value of the rent each year. Let's imagine that fair market value of the rent for a house like that would be $3,000/month or $36,0...
by lhl12
Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In-Laws Estate Planning - Wisdom Wanted
Replies: 50
Views: 2779

Re: In-Laws Estate Planning - Wisdom Wanted

In most situations, a property for sale subject to a ROFR is worth less than the identical one without. How much less is hard to quantify, but many buyers won't want to make a firm offer when they're not sure they will get the property even if their price is accepted.
by lhl12
Mon Feb 06, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In-Laws Estate Planning - Wisdom Wanted
Replies: 50
Views: 2779

Re: In-Laws Estate Planning - Wisdom Wanted

Are your children genetic descendants of your spouse? (i.e. would they pass the "blood to blood" test?) Are they genetic descendants of yourself? If the answer to either question is "no", then that might be part of the problem.
by lhl12
Tue Jan 31, 2017 6:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: seeking advice - need to advise newly widowed mother in deep debt
Replies: 46
Views: 4577

Re: seeking advice - need to advise newly widowed mother in deep debt

If your parents used their home equity to fund college education for their children, it seems that part of the discussion should be how you and your brother can assist your mother financially. You have no legal obligation to do so and if you or your brother can't afford to do that, that's one thing...
by lhl12
Thu Jan 26, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is a good laptop to buy?
Replies: 90
Views: 8325

Re: What is a good laptop to buy?

Most of the other 17" laptops I have found are much bulkier and heavier than I would like. Since Dell and Apple are able to make a 15" so thin and light, I don't understand why no one else has done something comparable in a 17" format. I've heard it opined that a 15" laptop is t...
by lhl12
Thu Jan 26, 2017 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is a good laptop to buy?
Replies: 90
Views: 8325

Re: What is a good laptop to buy?

I am also looking for a new laptop with many of the same constraints as the OP. It must be 17" and must run Windows 10 - no Macs, no Chromebooks. I am willing to pay more than the OP, however. I would also like it to be as thin and light as reasonably possible, with a modern CPU and modern grap...
by lhl12
Sat Jan 21, 2017 12:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: want to leave EJ but dont know what to do with what currently have
Replies: 21
Views: 1695

Re: want to leave EJ but dont know what to do with what currently have

Welcome! You have definitely come to the right place to figure all this out. There will be a lot of jargon ()like "ER") that will not be obvious to you at first. Don't worry about that at all. Ask questions about anything you don't understand or that is not clear. We tend to use a shorthan...
by lhl12
Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to factor pension into asset allocation?
Replies: 18
Views: 1809

Re: How to factor pension into asset allocation?

If you ignore the pension until it is fully vested, you will be following an absolute approach rather than a probabilistic approach. This might fit with your risk tolerance, but you should be aware of what you are doing. I believe the better way to handle this is to be mindful that you have this add...