Search found 196 matches

by mister_sparkle
Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cost Basis Method
Replies: 8
Views: 658

Re: Cost Basis Method

Specific ID is generally the recommended cost basis, as it gives you maximum flexibility in choosing which "lots" of funds to sell -- to choose between long-term and short-term, to maximize or minimize gains or losses. Vanguard makes this very easy as they now have to track the cost basis of all pur...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Nov 29, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying Health Insurance on the Marketplace - primer?
Replies: 1
Views: 241

Buying Health Insurance on the Marketplace - primer?

I'm trying to help a friend who is self-employed and has income that is variable figure out the various intricacies of the state markets, subsidies (where they kick in), etc. The answer may affect where my friend ends up living, so he's pricing out 2 different locations. Is there a good source of in...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Nov 29, 2017 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Google Finance Portfolio is about to Disappear
Replies: 6
Views: 1651

Re: Your Google Finance Portfolio is about to Disappear

I use the GoogleFinance feature in many formulas in my master investment tracking Google spreadsheet -- does anyone know if that lookup feature is going away? (Dear god I hope not :D ) Yes, I would like to know this too. One data point -- the Googlefinance price lookup feature is still working as o...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Nov 29, 2017 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A good friend has nearly $1M in BitCoin what do I tell him?
Replies: 147
Views: 15212

Re: A good friend has nearly $1M in BitCoin what do I tell him?

Granted, he “saw the light” nearly 4 years ago, when BTC was $114. He bought $10K worth. I’m thinking it might be time to take some profits. He is a working stiff, but also a business man and a smart one at that. His opinion is that if if it goes to zero, $10K won’t break him, but if he sells, he m...
by mister_sparkle
Tue Nov 28, 2017 9:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Google Finance Portfolio is about to Disappear
Replies: 6
Views: 1651

Re: Your Google Finance Portfolio is about to Disappear

I use the GoogleFinance feature in many formulas in my master investment tracking Google spreadsheet -- does anyone know if that lookup feature is going away? (Dear god I hope not :D )
by mister_sparkle
Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online
Replies: 11
Views: 918

Re: Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online

We have a pretty straightforward, tax return. Filing online through the state is so incredibly easy - honestly the most painful part is entering the W2 details. Does anyone know how the new tax rate that went in effect 7/1 will work in practice? Are they just going to do an average/blended rate? Or...
by mister_sparkle
Thu Sep 28, 2017 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where do you get your news?
Replies: 131
Views: 9151

Re: Where do you get your news?

Vdare http://www.vdare.com American Renaissance https://www.amren.com/category/commentary/ There are no better sites. From American Renaissance: https://www.amren.com/about/issues/ What we call race realism is what was considered common sense until perhaps the 1950s. It is a body of views that was ...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 27, 2017 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where do you get your news?
Replies: 131
Views: 9151

Re: Where do you get your news?

TV: ABC national news, ABC local news RSS reader (Feedly): a bunch of different sites/blogs, but I've found that's been supplanted by Twitter and Facebook for the most part. Facebook: Talking Points Memo, Crooks and Liars, Chris Hayes/Rachel Maddow (MSNBC) Twitter: A few dozen accounts. Helps to kee...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Smartest Financial Moves
Replies: 62
Views: 6317

Re: My Smartest Financial Moves

Going back into the corporate world at age 32 after 8-1/2 years of self-employment. Had tons of fun running my own business, travelled the world, mets loads of great people I still call friends, but I was burnt out on what I was doing, probably depressed, and making only $15K a year, so barely subsi...
by mister_sparkle
Fri Sep 08, 2017 9:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: the hurricane damages [Berkshire Hathaway's cash on-hand]
Replies: 25
Views: 3234

Re: the hurricane damages [Berkshire Hathaway's cash on-hand]

Also, many insurers purchase reinsurance to lay off some of their risk, which may be the case with Berkshire Hathaway.
by mister_sparkle
Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k in-service withdrawals
Replies: 22
Views: 2738

Re: 401k in-service withdrawals

The rep I spoke to made no mention of vesting, so I don't believe that is the issue. The employee benefits manual says that as long as you've been with the company X years, 100% of employer contributions are vested, and I've been here 11 years.
by mister_sparkle
Wed Aug 09, 2017 4:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k in-service withdrawals
Replies: 22
Views: 2738

Re: 401k in-service withdrawals

Piggybacking on this thread a bit... My employer's 401k plan allows in-service withdrawals of the employer match portion of my account, so I have done that twice so far. Beginning this year, my employer froze our pension plan and in lieu of that has committed to a 4% "fixed company contribution" to ...
by mister_sparkle
Sat Aug 05, 2017 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One -- Again!
Replies: 59
Views: 11337

Re: Capital One -- Again!

To me, it doesn't look all that different -- maybe a bit more "app"-ish with big buttons and larger text and a lot of white space. But yes, no more check images when you click on a deposited check.
by mister_sparkle
Thu Aug 03, 2017 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much money do you want to retire?
Replies: 276
Views: 26357

Re: A poll: How much money do you need to retire?

I am 51 with about $1.1M in assets. Years ago I had targeted $2M as my GTFO milemarker, but lately I've been more focused on refining my calculations based on my actual scenario -- including a pension at 65 and SS at 67 or whatever that number gets moved to by Congress. So right now my GTFO date is ...
by mister_sparkle
Sat Jun 17, 2017 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reversed 2016 Roth contributions, Vanguard still showing 2016 contribution
Replies: 0
Views: 278

Reversed 2016 Roth contributions, Vanguard still showing 2016 contribution

I contributed the max $6500 to my 2016 Roth IRA early in 2016, but wound up needing to reverse the contribution in January of 2017 as I would not be able to contribute anything in 2016 due to filing taxes Married Filing Separately (due to a divorce) and exceeding the $10,000 income limit. I don't re...
by mister_sparkle
Fri Jun 09, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One 360 - no more free ATMs at 7-11
Replies: 5
Views: 1351

Capital One 360 - no more free ATMs at 7-11

I just got an e-mail from Capital One 360 saying that 7-11 is leaving the Allpoint ATM network effective July 1, so their ATMs will no longer be fee-free for C1360 customers. A bit of a bummer, as 7-11s were shorthand for "free ATM" to me.
by mister_sparkle
Tue May 16, 2017 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale in Year of Divorce
Replies: 15
Views: 2442

Re: House Sale in Year of Divorce

I don't want to deal with her on anything in the future. It's stipulated in our settlement agreement that we each have to file MFS for 2016.
by mister_sparkle
Tue May 16, 2017 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale in Year of Divorce
Replies: 15
Views: 2442

Re: House Sale in Year of Divorce

More follow-up questions, now that I'm doing my 2016 taxes (via Turbotax)... We signed a Certification for No Information Reporting on the Sale or Exchange of a Principal Residence form at the time of the sale in 2016, so no 1099-S was issued. No capital gains are due on the sale. So my questions ar...
by mister_sparkle
Sun May 14, 2017 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much to tip movers?
Replies: 71
Views: 6680

Re: How much to tip movers?

I have a lot of heavy stuff like books, records, CDs, etc., so I error on the side of tipping super generously -- $120 to $150 per guy for a 4-hour move.
by mister_sparkle
Thu May 11, 2017 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's So Magical About Age 59-1/2?
Replies: 3
Views: 1765

What's So Magical About Age 59-1/2?

Does anyone know the historical basis for why age 59-1/2 was chosen for the age that most people can begin withdrawing from IRAs? I'm assuming it's based on historical longevity statistics but couldn't find anything in the Wikipedia article about the ERISA law of 1974 that created IRAs.
by mister_sparkle
Thu May 11, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel tips for first time visitors to England and France?
Replies: 55
Views: 5340

Re: Travel tips for first time visitors to England and France?

For the Eiffel Tower, I recommend buying your ticket months in advance. I went last month and ended up having to buy a ticket with a tour company (Fat Tire Tours) as almost every available timeslot was sold out 6 weeks in advance. There are two levels of the Eiffel Tower and I found that the first l...
by mister_sparkle
Wed May 10, 2017 2:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review/Advice - "Windfall" Funds
Replies: 4
Views: 773

Re: Portfolio Review/Advice - "Windfall" Funds

Thanks for the inputs. I am going to split the baby down the middle and purchase half of my new Bond allocation in VWITX (Vanguard Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt Fund Investor Shares) in my taxable account and sell off some of my USA and International stock funds in my IRAs in order to buy more VBTLX....
by mister_sparkle
Tue May 09, 2017 9:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review/Advice - "Windfall" Funds
Replies: 4
Views: 773

Portfolio Review/Advice - "Windfall" Funds

LadyGeek suggested I post in this forum with my questions concerning investing a large chunk of money from my house sale, so below is my current profile/situation. I am using the Three-Fund Portfolio with a few minor exceptions -- my 401k offers only a few Vanguard funds, so I am using 100% Wellingt...
by mister_sparkle
Tue May 09, 2017 3:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Three-Fund Portfolio
Replies: 1932
Views: 1185564

Re: The Three-Fund Portfolio

I have a minor dilemma facing me this week and was hoping to get opinions from others who follow the Three-Fund Portfolio route like I do. I have received the proceeds from selling my house last summer. Proceeds are $231K, so my bond allocation from this will be 30% or $69K. Right now in my taxable ...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Apr 05, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale in Year of Divorce
Replies: 15
Views: 2442

Re: House Sale in Year of Divorce

I have a follow-up question to my original question. My soon to be ex-wife and I have an agreement on splitting our house sale on our 2016 tax return. We are filing our taxes Married Filing Separately. My question is how the sale of the house is entered on our tax returns. As an example, we bought t...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else taking less risk
Replies: 115
Views: 11930

Re: Anyone else taking less risk

I'll be receiving my share of the funds from selling my marital house last June, sometime in April I hope. While I'm at 70/30 stocks/bonds, I will probably be modifying this ratio to 60/40 when I invest this money, and likely DCAing over a period of several months. Just a hunch as I feel like things...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Mar 22, 2017 7:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard keeps saying my e-mail address doesn't work
Replies: 10
Views: 981

Vanguard keeps saying my e-mail address doesn't work

The past 2-3 weeks, Vanguard shows a message for me every time I log in, saying that my e-mail address has been rejecting their e-mails, and to enter a new e-mail address (or verify my existing one). I've even gotten paper mailers from them to the same effect. I have a Gmail account that I've used f...
by mister_sparkle
Fri Feb 10, 2017 5:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Odd issues with establishing employee vs. IC status
Replies: 5
Views: 426

Odd issues with establishing employee vs. IC status

A friend of mine is relocating to Illinois to be an independent sales rep for a Kansas-based business. The company is telling her various odd things about how she should be set up and some of these to me seem a bit paranoid, so I thought I'd see if others had any experience with this. They are sayin...
by mister_sparkle
Tue Feb 07, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car
Replies: 51
Views: 6511

Rule of Thumb for Getting Rid of Car

I have a 2005 Mini Cooper with 87K miles on it that is starting to show its age in certain ways. Mostly minor things, such as the rear windshield wiper rotting out and falling off, the latch that opens the hood no longer working, extremely rusted out wheel/axel parts I noticed while using a replacem...
by mister_sparkle
Fri Jan 27, 2017 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What sort of doctor specialty should I see?
Replies: 4
Views: 765

What sort of doctor specialty should I see?

I've been dealing with pain in the left side of my body for the past few weeks and really need to see a doctor about it, but I don't know what specialty I should be searching for under my BCBS plan website. Symptoms: Pain ranging from my upper left shoulder/neck area down to my left forearm. Especia...
by mister_sparkle
Mon Jan 23, 2017 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax is playing games again.
Replies: 52
Views: 10842

Re: TurboTax is playing games again.

Are you sure about that? I have TurboTax Deluxe and was able to input my Vanguard 1099-B trade info. Granted, I haven't finished my taxes yet so don't know if this will generate a Schedule D.
by mister_sparkle
Fri Jan 06, 2017 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kansas City trip advice
Replies: 23
Views: 1939

Re: Kansas City trip advice

If you want terrific BBQ in a 'dive-type' setting, then go to LC's Bar-B-Q . David I went to LCs before a Royals game this summer and thought it was just OK -- and the ribs were absolutely drowning in sauce. Nice atmosphere but a little lacking. Spent NYE weekend in KC and got to try Q39, and every...
by mister_sparkle
Tue Jan 03, 2017 6:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1617
Views: 290470

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

2016 was a Good Year for me:

Up 9.02% overall -- 2.97% of that dividends and 6.06% investment performance. I do a simple calculation based on YE 2015 balance change, so doesn't take into account increase on any contributions made during the year.
by mister_sparkle
Thu Dec 22, 2016 7:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I rebalance with each deposit?
Replies: 16
Views: 1678

Re: Should I rebalance with each deposit?

For a taxable account, I would probably lean towards making just one purchase of one fund to keep record keeping simpler and buying the most under-allocated sector. For me lately, that's been Total Bonds. You can also just buy the Money Market and wait 'til you have a meaningful chunk to invest a fe...
by mister_sparkle
Mon Dec 19, 2016 2:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions
Replies: 8
Views: 1155

Re: VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions

Yes, December 9, 2016 for both. I don't own either fund, but since the distributions for both funds were announced, the distributions tabs for these funds at vanguard.com MUST have the real numbers now and not estimates. Do they? I didn't look. Thanks, as I didn't think to do that. It says the paym...
by mister_sparkle
Mon Dec 19, 2016 1:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions
Replies: 8
Views: 1155

Re: VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions

Paying. I found a different link showing the Record Date for both funds as December 16.
by mister_sparkle
Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions
Replies: 8
Views: 1155

VTSAX and VTIAX YE Distributions

Does anyone know what day Vanguard will be posting year-end distributions for VTSAX and VTIAX?
by mister_sparkle
Tue Nov 15, 2016 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Commission-only sales position -- typical rate?
Replies: 8
Views: 1436

Commission-only sales position -- typical rate?

I have a friend who works in real estate at the moment and has been offered a sales job with a company that specializes in build-outs of customized retail and restaurant interiors. Jobs range from $50K on up, with a typical contract being worth around $100K. He is wondering what sort of commission w...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?
Replies: 19
Views: 1393

Re: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?

If you have contributed to Roth IRA for 2016, you may have to make it un-happen. The income limits for married filing separately are very low. Over $1 in income, and the Roth maximum phases out. Over $10K, and you can't contribute at all. I contributed to my Roth in January, so I will have to rever...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?
Replies: 19
Views: 1393

Re: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?

Not an option due to the hostility between us. Plus, I have no idea how she's handled any of her earnings or tax payments this year given that she's not a W-2 employee, so that's a hornets nest I am staying away from. Some things will need to be coordinated. For example, if you file MFS, you both h...
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?
Replies: 19
Views: 1393

Re: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?

Not an option due to the hostility between us. Plus, I have no idea how she's handled any of her earnings or tax payments this year given that she's not a W-2 employee, so that's a hornets nest I am staying away from.
by mister_sparkle
Wed Sep 28, 2016 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?
Replies: 19
Views: 1393

Tax filing status if divorce not finalized?

I am in the process of getting divorced, and believe that the final court hearing won't happen until early 2017. My soon to be ex-spouse and I have separated our living situations and we will be filing our taxes separately for 2016. I'm just wondering how a filing status of married filing separately...
by mister_sparkle
Tue Jul 12, 2016 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living Trust Necessary?
Replies: 6
Views: 909

Living Trust Necessary?

I recently contacted an attorney through my legal plan at my employer to update my documents to reflect a recent divorce. As part of the package the attorney sent me, she included a living trust document, along with a will, PoA, medical directives, burial instructions, etc. I'm just wondering if I e...
by mister_sparkle
Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale in Year of Divorce
Replies: 15
Views: 2442

Re: House Sale in Year of Divorce

In that situation, and if you do not receive a 1099S early next year I believe you don't have to address the issue at all. When you closed, did you sign a statement saying that this was your personal residence and that you had lived in it for at least 2 of the last 5 years? If yes, you probably won...
by mister_sparkle
Thu Jul 07, 2016 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale in Year of Divorce
Replies: 15
Views: 2442

House Sale in Year of Divorce

My soon to be ex-wife and I recently sold our house, and we will be divorced before the end of the year. Sale price was between $250,000 and $500,000 over the purchase price. We have not yet come to an agreement on how to handle the house sale on our 2016 taxes, so I am looking for advice on how bes...
by mister_sparkle
Tue Jun 14, 2016 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale Proceeds Before Divorce Is Final?
Replies: 7
Views: 1413

Re: House Sale Proceeds Before Divorce Is Final?

Felix, did you have any sort of written agreement regarding the funds?
by mister_sparkle
Mon Jun 13, 2016 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Sale Proceeds Before Divorce Is Final?
Replies: 7
Views: 1413

House Sale Proceeds Before Divorce Is Final?

My wife and I are in the process of divorcing, and also in the process of selling our primary residence, which we both own jointly. The house sale is going to happen before the divorce is finalized. We are not splitting the proceeds evenly (she is getting a larger %) but I want to have the proceeds ...
by mister_sparkle
Mon May 30, 2016 2:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How persnickety are you with your rebalance bands?
Replies: 39
Views: 3728

Re: How persnickety are you with your rebalance bands?

Do you reinvest your dividends or take them in cash? That may be a way of truing up your AA.