Search found 935 matches

by littlebird
Tue Jan 24, 2017 12:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Those silly lotion containers
Replies: 27
Views: 4420

Re: Those silly lotion containers

Is there any way of pouring all of the contents and use it that way? If it is a liquid, you can try the following: Start a new container, and use it until there is some empty space available. Remove the pumps from both bottles. Invert the "empty" bottle and carefully place it on top of th...
by littlebird
Sat Jan 21, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: U.S. brokerages and retiring abroad
Replies: 22
Views: 1607

Re: U.S. brokerages and retiring abroad

Would it be possible to buy a cheap plot of land and use that for residence mailing address? Especially in places in the middle of nowhere, eg. Minnesotta, I imagine that it would both not expensive and nobody (either your "neighbors" or Schwab/Vanguard) would go out there to check on you...
by littlebird
Wed Jan 18, 2017 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone rent toys?
Replies: 27
Views: 2692

Re: Anyone rent toys?

My in-laws provided a steady stream (almost a torrent) of new toys. :annoyed The local women's shelter and hospital thrift shop provided an outlet.
by littlebird
Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?
Replies: 46
Views: 4349

Re: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?

With one modest non-COLA-ed pension and one and a half SS, and starting with an embarrassingly small nest egg on first retiring, and not pinching pennies, after 29 years our portfolio is respectable, even by Boglehead standards, and still growing. Amazingly enough, even in 2016 with my spouse now i...
by littlebird
Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?
Replies: 46
Views: 4349

Re: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?

With one modest non-COLA-ed pension and one and a half SS, and starting with an embarrassingly small nest egg on first retiring, and not pinching pennies, after 29 years our portfolio is respectable, even by Boglehead standards, and still growing. Amazingly enough, even in 2016 with my spouse now i...
by littlebird
Sun Jan 15, 2017 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?
Replies: 46
Views: 4349

Re: Retired, expenses covered but still growing portfolio, why?

The first thing that comes to mind is that these portfolios are being used to self insure against future medical and assisted living expenses. Most of the projections that I have run show retiree portfolios increasing during the first decade or so of retirement but then declining. Inflation is rele...
by littlebird
Thu Jan 12, 2017 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Doing an intra-family loan
Replies: 18
Views: 982

Re: Doing an intra-family loan

Research the issue of whether a bank will give her a mortgage with an outstanding $200,000 loan. It is my understanding that they probably will not.
by littlebird
Tue Jan 10, 2017 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice for asset protection for 70+yr old inlaws, one with advancing dementia
Replies: 13
Views: 1083

Re: Advice for asset protection for 70+yr old inlaws, one with advancing dementia

All good advice for a very difficult situation, thanks. The driving situation is particularly scary, as giving up driving is one thing he absolutely refuses to do and he'll go as far as quit family events instantly in anger if you even suggest that someone younger like myself drive everyone to the ...
by littlebird
Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many $ to self fund long term care?
Replies: 73
Views: 4967

Re: How many $ to self fund long term care?

My spouse is getting excellent care in an assisted living group home (algh) licensed by my retirement-home state to care for up to 10 patients in a home-like setting. After many years of needing increasing help from me - and near the end of this time occasional supplemental help from a home health a...
by littlebird
Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy
Replies: 99
Views: 6371

Re: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy

This isn't what you asked, but I see the being "next to a large park" as a potential problem rather than an unalloyed positive. Parks attract teen-agers late at night as well as serving as the venue for loud concerts and events, sometimes all day and looong into the night.
by littlebird
Wed Jan 04, 2017 3:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: V. annuity asset allocation
Replies: 7
Views: 606

Re: V. annuity asset allocation

You will be paying tax at the ordinary income rate for any gains from this annuity. The gains will be pro-rated with your return of principle if you annuitize, and will be paid out first if you simply withdraw. For this reason I didn't keep equity funds (which normally get the lower capitol gains ra...
by littlebird
Tue Jan 03, 2017 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A kitchen timer made in the USA.........
Replies: 22
Views: 1758

Re: A kitchen timer made in the USA.........

mouses wrote:
I have my mother's. I wouldn't be surprised if it was sixty years old and still works like a charm.


Hang on to it. I can assure you that the ones made in the past 20 years or so are worthless. Much as I hate the digital ones, they are now the only ones that work.
by littlebird
Mon Jan 02, 2017 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Choice Of Bond Funds For Retirees Late In Life
Replies: 11
Views: 1618

Re: Choice Of Bond Funds For Retirees Late In Life

I think the important sentence in your post is this: " I plan to be drawing on these bond funds." At any age, if your plans include drawing down your bond funds in this rising interest rate environment, I would shorten the average duration by substituting some short term bond funds for the...
by littlebird
Mon Jan 02, 2017 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on this inverse living floor plan and building a home in general
Replies: 30
Views: 2301

Re: Thoughts on this inverse living floor plan and building a home in general

I would make sure the stairway is wide enough to install an inclinator someday if needed I know you're young, but accidents can happen to anyone, even the person responsible for cooking in an upstairs kitchen. It can also be useful for bringing heavy purchases upstairs. As long as you're building a ...
by littlebird
Sat Dec 31, 2016 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Complicated Estate/Trust Questions
Replies: 22
Views: 1774

Re: Complicated Estate/Trust Questions

This sounds to me like the deceased retained what's called a "life estate", allowing him to remain in the house during his lifetime, while transferring the ownership of the house to the person you're calling the "owning heir". Is this what the owning heir thinks it is? Does s/he ...
by littlebird
Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: credit card fraud
Replies: 49
Views: 5773

Re: credit card fraud

Every card I get including a renewal requires that I call an 800 number taped on the card on my home phone which is the number on the CC co records to activate the card. Just having the CC card number is not enough. If the card is not being swiped you need the 3 or 4 digit access code to make a pur...
by littlebird
Thu Dec 29, 2016 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Paying myself a salary for investment and tax management?
Replies: 71
Views: 4359

Re: Paying myself a salary for investment and tax management?

Only if you incorporate yourself, with some kind of business purpose, then pay yourself a salary.
by littlebird
Wed Dec 28, 2016 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes
Replies: 24
Views: 2678

Re: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes

Both times that I moved interstate, the state that I left eventually wanted to see a copy of my income tax return filed with the state I moved to. Both times the state I moved to also had a state income tax, so I had a return to show. I don't know what they would have asked for had I legitimately mo...
by littlebird
Wed Dec 28, 2016 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes
Replies: 24
Views: 2678

Re: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes

Where will you receive mail - including mail from CA taxing authority - after your 1 month lease is up and you're traveling in Europe?
by littlebird
Wed Dec 28, 2016 12:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Surprise financial disaster, severe debt $300K caused by brother-in-law - Please help!
Replies: 176
Views: 28849

Re: Surprise financial disaster, severe debt $300K caused by brother-in-law - Please help!

The theory is that your mother must revoke her POA and notify her son-in-law that he is no longer her attorney-in-fact. She also notifies every financial institution where her POA has been, or may be, used that she has revoked the POA and it should not be honored any further. How exactly to do this ...
by littlebird
Mon Dec 26, 2016 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Variable Annuity - Need advice
Replies: 14
Views: 1318

Re: Vanguard Variable Annuity - Need advice

Yes, you can just withdraw from a VVA, but you'll be withdrawing gain first and paying capitol gains tax on the entire withdrawal until you deplete Are you sure about this? I've read elsewhere on this forum that the tax code can impose ordinary income tax rates on some capital gains (even long term...
by littlebird
Mon Dec 26, 2016 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Variable Annuity - Need advice
Replies: 14
Views: 1318

Re: Vanguard Variable Annuity - Need advice

Yes, you can just withdraw from a VVA, but you'll be withdrawing gain first and paying tax on the entire withdrawal as ordinary income until you deplete the gain. Then you'll be withdrawing principle and current gain and paying tax only on the current gain. If you do eventually annuitize it, your pa...
by littlebird
Wed Dec 21, 2016 11:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Sudden increase in VG TSM dividend
Replies: 19
Views: 2741

Re: Sudden increase in VG TSM dividend

Artsdoctor wrote: Equity fund dividends are really are not celebratory events.


As I told the "nice young man" at the bank, when he saw I had two checking accounts and asked "Wouldn't you like to have a savings account?: " I've done my savings. Now I'm doing my spending." :)
by littlebird
Wed Dec 21, 2016 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: End of year distribution estimates-Vanguard
Replies: 4
Views: 711

Re: End of year distribution estimates-Vanguard

I usually just go to their news section and these estimates can be found there a month or so in advance.
by littlebird
Tue Dec 20, 2016 6:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Sudden increase in VG TSM dividend
Replies: 19
Views: 2741

Re: Sudden increase in VGTSM dividend

The year-end dividend is generally the highest of the year, but this one is higher than recent year-end dividends. Happy to have it! :D If you're happy I'm happy, but why are you happy? PJW Because now, 29 years into retirement and with a spouse in an assisted living group home, I need more than ju...
by littlebird
Tue Dec 20, 2016 6:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Sudden increase in VG TSM dividend
Replies: 19
Views: 2741

Re: Sudden increase in VGTSM dividend

The year-end dividend is generally the highest of the year, but this one is higher than recent year-end dividends. Happy to have it! :D
by littlebird
Mon Dec 19, 2016 10:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My "sleep well at night" number seems to be changing
Replies: 49
Views: 7997

Re: My "sleep well at night" number seems to be changing

Yes. With a spouse in assisted living (self-pay), and in anticipation of volatility, the conservative dollar value of equities that made me feel secure up until now no longer does. Lowered myself into the lowest end of generally recommended equity allocation. About age +5 in bonds
by littlebird
Thu Dec 15, 2016 6:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: anyone else moving into bond funds
Replies: 30
Views: 3402

Re: anyone else moving into bond funds

Yes. I've been doing that also. With a spouse in assisted living (self-pay) and in anticipation of volatility, the conservative dollar value of equities that made me feel secure up until now no longer does. Lowered myself into the lowest end of generally recommended equity allocation. About age +5 i...
by littlebird
Wed Dec 14, 2016 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens to those who don't invest?
Replies: 70
Views: 4341

Re: What happens to those who don't invest?

Medicaid nursing homes :shock: Are they different? My grandma shared a nursing home room, paid for by selling her house, with someone on medicaid. They were treated exactly the same. Yes, they can be very different. The nicer homes ( with private rooms ) generally don't take Medicaid. I recently sh...
by littlebird
Tue Dec 13, 2016 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: gas cooktop question
Replies: 12
Views: 1139

Re: gas cooktop question

mouses wrote:
So it looks like I will be buying a new cooktop unless I find a part in a few days.


Since you use only the one burner, why not swap out the part from one of the other burners (you might have to check to make sure it's oriented the same way).
by littlebird
Fri Dec 09, 2016 1:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Schwab brick-and-mortar store
Replies: 11
Views: 773

Re: Schwab brick-and-mortar store

I found Schwab's nearby office very convenient when transferring a trust account and an IRA account with a POA from Vanguard to them. Was able to sit down, ask questions about the forms, hand over the docs and have them make the copies. Once when I had a large check to deposit, I drove over and hand...
by littlebird
Tue Dec 06, 2016 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Eclipse viewing
Replies: 34
Views: 1878

Re: Eclipse viewing

On 8/21, there will be total solar eclipse across the United States. https://www.greatamericaneclipse.com/nation/ I live in Chicago, which is approximately a 0.9 magnitude according to the map on the link above. I think it's unlikely I'd drive 5 hours to be in the total eclipse path, but I'm curiou...
by littlebird
Sun Dec 04, 2016 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any particular oven toaster you prefer????
Replies: 23
Views: 1796

Re: Any particular oven toaster you preffer????

Tycoon wrote:Low and behold, I was just about to start researching this. My wife wants one of these for Christmas.

Does anyone have experience with the Breville brand?


I've had one for several years. It's adequate for my needs. I can prepare meals for 2 and bake brownies.
by littlebird
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?
Replies: 34
Views: 3393

Re: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?

Is this like white rice/brown rice. Where it costs less to buy the product that costs more to process :) No. Brown rice is fit for human consumption. Raw sugar is not. Sugar cane worker do chew the raw cane as it comes from the fields, but this is not raw sugar, which is minimally processed in the ...
by littlebird
Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?
Replies: 34
Views: 3393

Re: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?

When I worked in the cane sugar industry a long time ago, "raw sugar" meant unprocessed sugar right off the boat. While I've eaten it and served it to others after careful inspection, I wouldn't consider it suitable as a consumer product in the U.S. Possibly if it were packaged in the cou...
by littlebird
Sat Dec 03, 2016 3:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who will run my Ethernet Cables for me?
Replies: 25
Views: 2774

Re: Who will run my Ethernet Cables for me?

I would think a handyman could do it, as long as you provide the appropriate cabling.
by littlebird
Sat Dec 03, 2016 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?
Replies: 34
Views: 3393

Re: Why is actual raw sugar hard to find?

When I worked in the cane sugar industry a long time ago, "raw sugar" meant unprocessed sugar right off the boat. While I've eaten it and served it to others after careful inspection, I wouldn't consider it suitable as a consumer product in the U.S. Possibly if it were packaged in the coun...
by littlebird
Sat Dec 03, 2016 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime Getting Stingy?
Replies: 90
Views: 10964

Re: Amazon Prime Getting Stingy?

I don't find them stingy at all. Of course, it never crossed my mind to expect a free month of Prime if something goes awry. Generally as soon as I tap the return link and start to type in in the problem, they offer me a pre-paid return or another shipment if a sufficient number of days have elapsed...
by littlebird
Fri Dec 02, 2016 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Not happy with my realtor
Replies: 48
Views: 4495

Re: Not happy with my realtor

I'm a buyer and he's shown me 5 or 6 houses. I'm looking in a particular and relatively small neighborhood. Would it be unreasonable or inappropriate for me to ask him to contact the homeowners there to see if any might be interested in selling? It doesn't happen often, but every once in a while I ...
by littlebird
Thu Dec 01, 2016 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card for HNW Retirees
Replies: 12
Views: 1063

Re: Credit Card for HNW Retirees

Since retirement I've always considered my "income" to be my SS and pension plus the average total return on a 50/50 investment portfolio: ~ 7.5%/year over the past 90 years or so. Now that my actual allocation is not 50/50, I adjust for it . This is my income when I need to report such to...
by littlebird
Tue Nov 29, 2016 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gift To Self
Replies: 69
Views: 7595

Re: Gift To Self

A 10 year old big tomcat from Petsmart shelter program. A real gentleman.
by littlebird
Sun Nov 27, 2016 12:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare billing question
Replies: 16
Views: 2125

Re: Medicare billing question

In the 25 years my DH has been on regular Medicare, they refused to pay for a test once, but I called the doc's office and they added a code to explain why the test was ordered and Medicare paid. In my 9 years on Medicare I had a similar situation once with a similar resolution. Ordinarily we don't ...
by littlebird
Sat Nov 26, 2016 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Variable Annuities
Replies: 8
Views: 665

Re: Vanguard Variable Annuities

As far as I know that's the only cost, unless you want certain guarantees or insurance-like features. Vanguard is transparent about its costs and will not try to bamboozle you if you call and ask. I've had VVAs for many years (have even annuitized one) and have been very satisfied. I previously had ...
by littlebird
Sun Nov 13, 2016 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]
Replies: 18
Views: 1339

Re: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]

]1.[/b] is your suggestion that we name the minor as beneficiary of bank/brokerage/retirement/RealEstate accounts INSTEAD OF or IN ADDITION TO a Testamentary Trust? 2. would naming the child as beneficiary and with NO Testamentary Trusts avoid probate if child is still minor at the time of death of...
by littlebird
Sun Nov 13, 2016 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]
Replies: 18
Views: 1339

Re: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]

Just to make sure: I did Not mean Titling the accounts/assets in the Testamentary Trust's name. But designating the Testamentary Trust as Beneficiary on death. Does this change any of what you said above? No. Since it seems there's no way to avoid probate with a Testamentary Trust, what would yo sa...
by littlebird
Sun Nov 13, 2016 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]
Replies: 18
Views: 1339

Re: Does Testamentary Trust As Beneficiary/POD/TOD Avoid Probate? [FLORIDA]

No. By definition, a testamentary trust is set up in a will and comes into effect only when the will is adjudicated to be valid, i.e,. "probated". From a practical point of view no trust can be set up without trust documents. The trust documents here are in a will and no financial institut...
by littlebird
Thu Nov 10, 2016 1:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Barbell strategies?
Replies: 14
Views: 1960

Re: Barbell strategies?

I assume BH AA implementations are based on taking a middle-of-the-road approach to investing, e.g., some mix of total stock and total bond markets. This is in contrast to barbell strategies such as those espoused by Taleb and others that supposedly place greater emphasis on avoiding black swan eve...
by littlebird
Wed Nov 09, 2016 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "No Referral Needed" Medicare speak
Replies: 32
Views: 1704

Re: "No Referral Needed" Medicare speak

I have regular Medicare with an employer supplied supplemental plan. I did not had a p.c.p. for many years and occasionally self referred without any problems.
by littlebird
Tue Nov 08, 2016 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question for folks who early retired - Approx 50 or earlier
Replies: 11
Views: 2769

Re: Question for folks who early retired - Approx 50 or earlier

C'mon in the water's fine. Retired in mid-forties (spouse much older) in what was ( from the point of view of 2016) a different era: 1987. Had much less money than most folks on this forum are planning on, but had an easier social climate. 1 modest pension, ( full) healthcare insurance for 2, potent...
by littlebird
Sat Nov 05, 2016 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning (90 and 93 year old)
Replies: 23
Views: 2626

Re: Estate Planning (90 and 93 year old)

It is possible that they don't wish to "hide" assets. Have they asked about it? I don't think they care so long as their children get more of their money than a nursing home would - lol. The nursing home gets paid in any case. The question is: does the money come from the people who can a...

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