Search found 38 matches

by lynneny
Sat Jan 30, 2016 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: WSJ: HSAs Offer Tax Benefits Beyond 401(k)s
Replies: 21
Views: 3343

Re: WSJ: HSAs Offer Tax Benefits Beyond 401(k)s

Employers are increasingly offering only an HDHP plan, so when that decision has already been made for you, I think it's a no-brainer to set up and max out an HSA. Our company added an HDHP to our other two options about five years ago, and then at open enrollment in late 2014 told us that starting ...
by lynneny
Thu Jan 21, 2016 12:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was your % pay raise?
Replies: 100
Views: 6937

Re: What was your % pay raise?

1.5%.

For the last few years, we've been getting either 1.5% or 0.
by lynneny
Sat Jan 16, 2016 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's your company 401k contribution
Replies: 105
Views: 4648

Re: What's your company 401k contribution

Pension plan closed to new employees in 2004, and was frozen for the rest of us about 5 years ago. In lieu of pension contributions, company now contributes 2% of salary for employees with less than 5 yrs at the company; 4 % for 5-10 years, and 6% for more than 11 years (used to be 8%). No company m...
by lynneny
Wed Jan 06, 2016 4:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Our company just added a Roth 401(k) option, but....
Replies: 6
Views: 670

Re: Our company just added a Roth 401(k) option, but....

Thanks for the responses. If it's a software thing, there's likely nothing that can be done now, but knowing that the option does exist in other plans to make different investment choices for pre-tax and Roth encourages me to at least mention it to our HR department as an option I would love to have...
by lynneny
Wed Jan 06, 2016 12:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Our company just added a Roth 401(k) option, but....
Replies: 6
Views: 670

Our company just added a Roth 401(k) option, but....

I was happy to see our company's 401(k) add a Roth option this month, and planned to split my contribution between the tax-deferred option I was already using and the new Roth, with the Roth contributions invested more aggressively for growth since the Roth will probably be the last retirement savin...
by lynneny
Tue Jan 05, 2016 11:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I value the HSA tax advantages?
Replies: 4
Views: 722

Re: How should I value the HSA tax advantages?

Agree you should get local advice on this, including whether you can continue to contribute to a Roth from the U.K. You didn't ask about that, but if you claim the Foreign Earned Income Exclusion, you might not be eligible for a Roth. Regarding whether to keep U.S. insurance + HSA, when I worked in ...
by lynneny
Thu Dec 31, 2015 1:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your 2 retirement numbers?
Replies: 260
Views: 24973

Re: What are your 2 retirement numbers?

I live in a HCOL city, and tend to think more in terms of where I can afford to retire than specific numbers. At 59, it's reassuring to know that if I were laid off tomorrow, I could afford to retire in any of a number of places I really like in Latin America (I spent a lot of my career working abro...
by lynneny
Tue Dec 29, 2015 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which other 'must-read' websites and blogs do YOU read?
Replies: 42
Views: 6186

Re: Which other 'must-read' websites and blogs do YOU read?

corporette.com and thedirectrice.com (fashion blogs)
by lynneny
Thu Dec 24, 2015 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Writing checks - a Bogleheads thing to do?
Replies: 117
Views: 8013

Re: Writing checks - a Bogleheads thing to do?

IRS once a year.

Massage therapist once a month.

Monthly mortgage, so I can add extra principal (which varies, depending on whether I got a tax refund, year-end bonus, and so on).
by lynneny
Wed Dec 23, 2015 10:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?
Replies: 160
Views: 12126

Re: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?

Two things, apart from great parents and going to college long ago enough that it was affordable: 1) I'm one of very few people I know in my field, which is notorious for frequent layoffs, who has never been laid off. At 59, that's given me a financial stability that friends and colleagues who have ...
by lynneny
Fri Sep 11, 2015 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally is threatening to close my CD
Replies: 66
Views: 6070

Re: Ally is threatening to close my CD

OP again. Good points that Ally customer service reps could simply be unaware that elsewhere in the bank another group is outsourcing follow up on possibly abandoned accounts to some cut-rate** subcontractor in another state. (The rep didn't recognize the out-of-state Atlanta, Georgia P.O. Box addre...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: Do you freeze your credit?
Replies: 58
Views: 4359

Re: POLL: Do you freeze your credit?

So far I've just checked my credit report periodically, but with data theft so common, I should freeze my credit. This may be a dumb question, but would freezing my credit help prevent someone from filing a false tax return in my name to collect a refund, or fraudulently using my health insurance? I...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally is threatening to close my CD
Replies: 66
Views: 6070

Re: Ally is threatening to close my CD

OP again. Just spoke to Ally. The plot thickens. The very nice customer service rep checked and said my CD is in good standing, and confirmed that Ally didn't send me any letter saying that due to lack of activity the account would be considered abandoned and the funds excheated to the state of NY u...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 10, 2015 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally is threatening to close my CD
Replies: 66
Views: 6070

Re: Ally is threatening to close my CD

OP here. Thanks for your responses. I'll call the Ally number on my quarterly statements, and plan on mailing back the form after I verify/complain a bit on the phone. I think one of the CDs is a renewal of one that matured, so maybe that triggered this. I did call earlier but got tired of being on ...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 10, 2015 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally is threatening to close my CD
Replies: 66
Views: 6070

Ally is threatening to close my CD

Have I done something wrong? I just got a letter from Ally Bank, where I'm halfway through several 5-year CDs, saying that my account "has had no activity" and so will be reclassified as "presumptively abandoned and your funds will be excheated to the state of New York." They off...
by lynneny
Sun May 10, 2015 11:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: are we moving to awful 401(k)?
Replies: 5
Views: 962

Re: are we moving to awful 401(k)?

OP here. Thank you for all your insights into the 401(k) experience! I guess I should be glad our new plan has some inexpensive options, and that as a longtime employee the new $100/yr fee is a relatively small part of my sizeable balance (although I feel badly that young colleagues, with still tiny...
by lynneny
Sun May 10, 2015 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: are we moving to awful 401(k)?
Replies: 5
Views: 962

are we moving to awful 401(k)?

Our company is moving our 401(k) plan to Principal Financial Group. Do any Bogleheads have experience with Principal as their 401(k) provider, and if so, what do you think of it? From the info our company has provided about the new plan, I already have a few concerns: 1. Each employee at our 1,000-p...
by lynneny
Mon Feb 09, 2015 11:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?
Replies: 16
Views: 1878

Re: My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?

OP again. A new twist: Our HR head said today that instead of going with HSA Bank, our company will use our healthcare provider Aetna's own HSA account manager business PayFlex. She said there will be "investment opportunities" but doesn't know yet what they are (she politely didn't add &q...
by lynneny
Sun Feb 08, 2015 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?
Replies: 16
Views: 1878

Re: My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?

Thanks for the helpful responses! Livesoft -- you're absolutely right, most of my colleagues won't care about the investment options (although I've tried to explain them! Or at least make people aware that the option exists, since our company makes no effort to point it out). Perhaps selfish of me t...
by lynneny
Sun Feb 08, 2015 1:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?
Replies: 16
Views: 1878

My co. is switching HSA providers; Is HSA Bank best?

The company I work at uses JP Morgan Chase as its HSA provider, but Chase is exiting that business and selling its HSA unit to HSA Bank. Our HR person mentioned this to me because I complained about Chase's poor HSA investment options--9 mediocre but pricey actively-managed funds. I've read the Bogl...
by lynneny
Sun Jan 18, 2015 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Options for moving our pets across country
Replies: 47
Views: 3015

Re: Options for moving our pets across country

For OP, I like the idea of having your family member or trusted college student fly out with the cat later. Every cat is different, but in our experience a shorter trip, even by plane, is less stressful than days of travel. We've done international moves between U.S. and Europe with two cats. They b...
by lynneny
Sat Jan 10, 2015 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cat water fountain
Replies: 75
Views: 6018

Re: cat water fountain

My cats won't drink from their water dish either, and they ignore the cat fountain I bought them. But for some unknown reason they like drinking from the flower vase in the living room, so I just add fresh water to that every day (and no longer put flowers in it). They'll also drink water from a run...
by lynneny
Sat Oct 11, 2014 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Support that HSAs might not be the best option for you
Replies: 38
Views: 4087

Re: Support that HSAs might not be the best option for you

Whether to choose an HDDP plan is becoming a moot point for many of us as our employers drop the other options. My company went from offering two PPO plans to adding the HDDP as a third option. After several years, some of us had switched (in my case, because I was attracted by the HSA) but not a lo...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 18, 2014 10:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help! Are we making a huge [career] mistake?
Replies: 46
Views: 7519

Re: Help! Are we making a huge mistake?

A contrarian view: It sounds like you'll be well off financially no matter what you do, so unless your family is really homesick, if it were me I'd go for the more exciting opportunity to live in another foreign country. I'm back in the U.S., and it's fine, but the six countries outside the U.S. tha...
by lynneny
Thu Sep 18, 2014 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Preparation Cost
Replies: 19
Views: 1297

Re: Tax Preparation Cost

For my 2013 taxes: $245. Not wasting time procrastinating for months before finally doing my taxes at the last minute: priceless.

I have a fairly simple federal/state/local return for a single person who itemizes, has a mortgage, and some interest/dividend income.
by lynneny
Sun Sep 14, 2014 10:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: On the Road/Air/Water Retirement
Replies: 57
Views: 6134

Re: On the Road/Air/Water Retirement

Barefootgirl- The American woman mentioned by an earlier poster who became a nomad after retirement, living in different countries for 3 to 6 months at a time with her husband, is Lynne Martin. She wrote about it in the Wall Street Journal: http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB100008723963904437202...
by lynneny
Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice on job opportunity abroad: taxes, cost of living, etc
Replies: 13
Views: 1774

Re: Advice on job opportunity abroad: taxes, cost of living,

Go for it! As others have said, Mexico's cost of living is lower, so the financial hit won't be huge, and now is the ideal time, before you have other commitments like a family, mortgage, etc. Also, at a growing number of big U.S. and other multinational companies, executives eventually hit a glass ...
by lynneny
Mon Sep 01, 2014 12:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will Vanguard fire me if I retire overseas? (Schwab better?)
Replies: 14
Views: 2618

Re: Will Vanguard fire me if I retire overseas? (Schwab bett

OP here. Many thanks for all the helpful responses, especially from those living in exotic places overseas! --Sounds like I'll be ok with Vanguard, since after I retire I'll just want to reinvest dividends and periodically sell investments, and Vanguard rep said that's fine to do from overseas as lo...
by lynneny
Fri Aug 29, 2014 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will Vanguard fire me if I retire overseas? (Schwab better?)
Replies: 14
Views: 2618

Will Vanguard fire me if I retire overseas? (Schwab better?)

I'm 58, and a lot more likely to be laid off in next couple years in corporate America than to be able to work till 66 or so and save as much as I'd like to. If I'm pushed into early retirement, I plan to retire to warmer, more affordable Latin America, where I was based earlier in my career and am ...
by lynneny
Fri Mar 21, 2014 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alert. Scam with callers posing as IRS agents...
Replies: 46
Views: 4378

Re: Alert. Scam with callers posing as IRS agents...

My IRS scammer lost interest when I offered to go to his IRS office with my tax preparer and all my documentation from past tax years. I got the Microsoft "there's something wrong your computer" call too, and promised to pass his message on to our IT department that looks after all my devi...
by lynneny
Sun Mar 16, 2014 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?
Replies: 24
Views: 2750

Re: Has anyone purchased an inflation adjusted SPIA?

I do plan to buy inflation-adjusted SPIAs when I'm older--65 or so (I'm 57 now). I consider it dementia insurance. Alzheimer's is common in my family, and we saw my mother and my grandparents makes some very poor financial decisions in the early stages when they were still managing their own finance...
by lynneny
Wed Feb 19, 2014 11:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Experiences with Eli Lilly Credit Union for HSA?
Replies: 69
Views: 17886

Re: Experiences with Eli Lilly Credit Union for HSA?

We have a Chase HSA through my employer with no index funds. I need to keep it so contributions are made pre-FICA taxes, which can only be done as payroll deductions. But thanks to The Finance Buff and threads like this one, I'm going to open a second HSA at ELFCU, and do a rollover once a year into...
by lynneny
Sun Feb 09, 2014 1:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your mortgage type, if any [POLL]
Replies: 63
Views: 4129

Re: Your mortgage type, if any [POLL]

I bought my co-op with a 30-yr loan in 2003 at 5.29% through my financial advisor's bank; they were so slow and incompetent I almost lost the apartment. Fast forward 10 years: I did a re-fi into a 15-yr loan at 3.2% last year. My financial advisor asked me to pls try them again, promising that since...
by lynneny
Wed Jan 01, 2014 11:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity HSA- $48/year
Replies: 15
Views: 1742

Re: Fidelity HSA- $48/year

Your new HSA with Fidelity sounds awesome. Our company uses Chase for our HSA. The fees are fine at $2.50/month, but the fund choices aren't good. We only have 9 choices, and all are expensive, actively-managed funds. Not an index fund among them. I've lobbied management to add index funds--pointing...
by lynneny
Wed Dec 25, 2013 7:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Deductible Health Plan question
Replies: 35
Views: 2171

Re: High Deductible Health Plan question

I'm not the OP, but I have a related question: for the purposes of meeting my high deductible ($1,400), does the insurance company (Aetna in my case) keep track of how much of my deductible I've met by the Explanation of Benefits (EOB) they send me after getting bills from the health care provider? ...
by lynneny
Fri Dec 21, 2012 2:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions for 2013 Roth Contribution? Help!
Replies: 1
Views: 388

Suggestions for 2013 Roth Contribution? Help!

I usually contribute to my Roth IRA at Vanguard in January ($6,500 for 2013). I generally invest in Vanguard's high-yield bond, REIT (VNQ) or TIPS funds, all funds I want to hold in a tax-sheltered account but that aren't available in my 401(K). All three funds have done so well that they're pretty ...
by lynneny
Sun Apr 15, 2012 11:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: OK to use Schwab ETFS (in 401K) as stand-ins for VG funds?
Replies: 12
Views: 3468

OK to use Schwab ETFS (in 401K) as stand-ins for VG funds?

First-time poster here! Our company is expanding the Schwab PCRA brokerage window in our 401K to include ETFs (before, we only had access to mutual funds) My question: are Schwab's own ETFs, which don't have a very long track record yet, good enough to use as substitutes for similar Vanguard funds? ...

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