Search found 95 matches

by stimulacra
Thu Nov 16, 2017 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has used furniture dropped in value dramatically?
Replies: 98
Views: 6596

Re: Has used furniture dropped in value dramatically?

I check out estate sales for fun every couple of months. You can get really nice furniture for 10% - 15% of what an equivalent would cost new. There's almost no reason to buy middle of the road furniture new at a department store or furniture store. The only thing I would buy new would be IKEA furni...
by stimulacra
Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Open Enrollment at work; they split the HSA into two options now
Replies: 4
Views: 828

Re: Open Enrollment at work; they split the HSA into two options now

Thank you everyone for the response.

Yes the employer match amount is annual, not monthly contribution.

I'm leaning towards the Choice HSA now. Need to check out some other items before the deadline of Dec 1.

Thanks again.
by stimulacra
Tue Nov 14, 2017 3:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Open Enrollment at work; they split the HSA into two options now
Replies: 4
Views: 828

Open Enrollment at work; they split the HSA into two options now

Had an HSA at work that's worked out pretty well and now for 2018 it looks like they split it into two options. Saver HSA Company contribution (individual/family): $600 / $1,200 Preventative care: $0 with no deductible Deductible (individual/family): $3,500 / $7,000 Out-of-pocket maximum (individual...
by stimulacra
Fri Oct 27, 2017 12:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 91, 01, 09. Then 19? [Year for next market crash]
Replies: 27
Views: 2564

Re: 91, 01, 09. Then 19?

One of my favorite scenes from Margin Call (Starts at 1:34)

https://youtu.be/LtFyP0qy9XU?t=1m34s

Good luck timing the market OP.
by stimulacra
Wed Oct 25, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I put all bonds in our IRAs?
Replies: 5
Views: 504

Re: Should I put all bonds in our IRAs?

Mostly curious, how would you rebalance between accounts?

I guess directing new cash flow to one versus the other is one way to rebalance but could take a while…

If my retirement portfolio consisted of bonds in the Roth IRA and equities in the TIRA, how would I have rebalanced say in 2009 or 2010?
by stimulacra
Mon Oct 23, 2017 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pant Recommendations (Business Casual)
Replies: 42
Views: 2748

Re: Pant Recommendations (Business Casual)

I alternate between brooks brothers and costco kirkland pants, in a corporate environment. I'm young and do wear pleated pants which I've always viewed as a conservative look, compared to the guy I used to work with who had tight unpleated pants on which showed off his you know what. Are pleated pa...
by stimulacra
Mon Oct 23, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pant Recommendations (Business Casual)
Replies: 42
Views: 2748

Re: Pant Recommendations (Business Casual)

Check out Jcrew's Bowery pants, they're flat front and hang on your hips. Catch them on sale for around $60-70. Pleated slacks are a valid option and serve a functional purpose but you have to realize they sit at your natural waistline. The problem is that dockers, and khakis from the Gap killed ple...
by stimulacra
Tue Oct 17, 2017 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon, sometime, maybe later
Replies: 68
Views: 7168

Re: Vanguard expects "decent sized correction" soon

Clickbait article…

The only meaningful quote they're hanging their whole premise on:

“We expect there could be a decent-sized correction at some point,”

I've gotten fortune cookies that were less vague.
by stimulacra
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Think I goofed on a recent HSA transaction
Replies: 5
Views: 635

Think I goofed on a recent HSA transaction

Had some dental work done. I told the dentist to submit the claim to my insurance company and I would pay whatever the remaining balance was with my HSA debit card. He suggested it might be easier if I paid the balance that day in his office and submit the reimbursement paperwork (which he had pre-p...
by stimulacra
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston
Replies: 35
Views: 6359

Re: With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston

I live in Houston and currently rent. Was previously a homeowner. I no longer view home ownership as a means to financial independence or even as a life milestone. I've seen too many people lose a lot of home equity making panic moves. There's a lot of mixed feelings on this debate, some people wan...
by stimulacra
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston
Replies: 35
Views: 6359

Re: With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston

I live in Houston and currently rent. Was previously a homeowner. I no longer view home ownership as a means to financial independence or even as a life milestone. I've seen too many people lose a lot of home equity making panic moves. There's a lot of mixed feelings on this debate, some people want...
by stimulacra
Thu Oct 12, 2017 9:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston
Replies: 35
Views: 6359

With panicked homeowners selling their flooded homes for 40¢ on the dollar, investors are flocking to Houston

Read this on Bloomberg today.
https://bloom.bg/2wPCcnF

For house poor homeowners without flood insurance, many are facing grim choices. Not sure if they would benefit by waiting or cutting their losses now. Selling your primary asset at a 60% discount is a huge setback for any family.
by stimulacra
Tue Oct 10, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives
Replies: 105
Views: 19208

Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets. That is the article that lead me to revive this thread. I sent it to all my aging friends and it certainly got their attention! Sorry my bad. Yeah I read it and it ga...
by stimulacra
Tue Oct 10, 2017 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives
Replies: 105
Views: 19208

Re: Growing old without kids or younger caring relatives

Saw this article on The New Yorker about professional guardians who systemically strip the elderly of their civil rights and assets. How the Elderly Lose Their Rights Guardians can sell the assets and control the lives of senior citizens without their consent—and reap a profit from it. http://bit.ly...
by stimulacra
Thu Oct 05, 2017 12:01 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1584
Views: 281598

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

Up 13.5%. 70% stocks, 25% bonds, 5% gold.
by stimulacra
Mon Oct 02, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel camera reviews of what you own and why?
Replies: 25
Views: 1659

Re: Travel camera reviews of what you own and why?

FujiFilm X100T (purchased in 2014) 35 mm equivalent f/2 lens I bought it because it was compact, had a nice retro rangefinder look and all primary controls were mechanical in nature (had a nice tactile feel). There's a decent amount of third party accessories to help customize the camera to your spe...
by stimulacra
Wed Sep 27, 2017 10:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can I have 2 HSA accounts
Replies: 18
Views: 1797

Re: Can I have 2 HSA accounts

I have two HSA accounts (HSA Bank and Health Savings Administrators). At work I transitioned from one HDHP to another, each serviced by a different HSA vendor. I kept my Health Savings Administrators account since it had access to some Vanguard funds I prefer. My current HSA is more of a deductible ...
by stimulacra
Thu Sep 21, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

Was listening to local news radio today on the drive in. An interesting cautionary tale about home buying during hurricane season. One individual just bought a house right before Harvey hit and his previous home was still under contract. Both homes were lost were lost in the storm and neither had fl...
by stimulacra
Tue Sep 19, 2017 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calling out the not so rich bogleheads
Replies: 233
Views: 26061

Re: Calling out the not so rich bogleheads

I'm 39, divorced, and have about 2X salary saved up. Left side of the Boglehead bell curve for sure but I feel better prepared than non-bogleheads and making progress every month thanks to this site.
by stimulacra
Thu Sep 14, 2017 4:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: vanguard balances as percentages?
Replies: 4
Views: 405

Re: vanguard balances as percentages?

Account Overview > Asset Mix will break it down to Stocks / Bonds / Short Term / Uncategorized.

For more granular breakdown I import the balances monthly into a Google Spreadsheet and it spits out a bunch of visualizations for me.
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

I figured there would be a lot more crossover with Bogleheads and preppers, but maybe I'm in the minority. Being a little too over prepared isn't that dissimilar from LBYM, buying "safe" index funds, establishing an emergency fund, etc. I figured there would be more of us. :D I'm going to wager you...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

Thanks for the responses everyone. After reading them I'm inclined to do some slight tweaks and updates to my current plan. Evacuation is definitely an option for next time (if I can get a 48 hour lead) although not sure if Austin is far enough inland. Re-evaluating my digital data backup system. A ...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Total Intl Index Fund:ADMRL vs INVESTOR
Replies: 8
Views: 1319

Re: Vanguard Total Intl Index Fund:ADMRL vs INVESTOR

Related question: With the expense ratio, over time, won't there be a price-per-share drift over a long enough timeline? That half-gallon container might be more like a 3/8 gallon container after a decade.
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Would you DCA from S&P 500 to TSM?
Replies: 13
Views: 1227

Re: Would you DCA from S&P 500 to TSM?

I'd do it all at once. The two indexes correlate closely enough that there isn't too much difference between the two (Doesn't the S&P 500 constitute about 75% of TSM?).
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey relief?
Replies: 42
Views: 3353

Re: Hurricane Harvey relief?

Three charities that are no-brainers in this instance: American Red Cross. You can text HARVEY to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Greater Houston Community Foundation to donate to the Hurricane Harvey Relief Fund. https://ghcf.org United Way of Greater Houston https://www.unitedwayhouston.org/flood/fl...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

What strikes me about the OP's post is that he is back to some semblance of "normal". Being 1500 mi. away from this tragedy, it is hard for me to put it in perspective from what I can see in the media. While there is an appalling degree of loss and misery to be sure, what I can't tell is what perce...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

An important consideration is computer backup. If you keep some of your backup devices in a bank's safe deposit box, and both your home and your bank become flooded, you are likely to lose all copies of your files. Backing up to a cloud would solve this issue, but it brings up concerns about the cl...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 31, 2017 6:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Re: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

I would have left town on 8/23 , I think that's your biggest mistake. You gambled and got lucky and your house didn't flood, but whats to say it would be the case next time. You could have decamped to Austin for a couple of days. On 8/23 I knew a tropical storm was hitting Texas, there was zero ind...
by stimulacra
Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations
Replies: 72
Views: 6591

Hurricane Harvey has me rethinking my approach to disaster preparations

Was curious if there was a Boglehead consensus on disaster preparations? I live in Houston, just outside of downtown, and was fortunate in being largely unaffected by the storm this past weekend and all of the subsequent flooding. I know a lot of people that are not as lucky. Many have had their hom...
by stimulacra
Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SUV thread (with a twist)
Replies: 44
Views: 4437

Re: SUV thread (with a twist)

I would look at: 1) Subaru Forrester (Tall compact crossover SUV). Pretty affordable and the interior ranges from spartan to nice. 2) Subaru Outback (Sedan based wagon with AWD). They can get pricey quick with the 3.6 engine but think they're very nice and hold their value well. 3) Honda CRV (Compac...
by stimulacra
Mon Aug 21, 2017 2:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice
Replies: 61
Views: 5366

Re: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice

Michael Alden wrote:
Mon Aug 21, 2017 12:08 pm
She was in fixed income, i.e., money market. How did that give her benefit of bull bond market? Also, I've never been married, nor have any desire to ever do so, so my assets are not a consideration.
Sorry my bad. I understood “fixed income” to be bonds.
by stimulacra
Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice
Replies: 61
Views: 5366

Re: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice

Image

Based on the age you gave, it would seem like she at least had the benefit of a long bull bond market.

Could have been worse.

Blue is Total Bond
Red is Money Market
Orange S&P 500
by stimulacra
Mon Aug 21, 2017 10:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice
Replies: 61
Views: 5366

Re: My girlfriend and her 401K, need to give her advice

IMHO damage is done… 

If I were in her shoes I would direct all new money to equities and gradually shift over to 50/50 allocation.

If you guys are planning on getting married maybe consider her retirement accounts to be the bond portion…
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone planning on never retiring?
Replies: 138
Views: 11213

Re: Anyone planning on never retiring?

There's a good talk by Mr. Money Mustache on Youtube somewhere about retiring at age 30 (by saving 60% of your take home salary). “Work is better when you don't need the money”. 1) You can do the work you truly care about. 2) You can be honest. 3) You can devote time to making your world a better pl...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opening an HSA tomorrow...
Replies: 10
Views: 698

Re: Opening an HSA tomorrow...

Yes, in my instance, the custodial fees aren't noticeable yet. The $45 admin fees eclipse it by a magnitude. I have a few years to go, just started my HSA in Jan and there's some moderate out of pocket expenses I can use it for this coming fall so I'm debating what to do (pay out of pocket and save ...
by stimulacra
Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opening an HSA tomorrow...
Replies: 10
Views: 698

Re: Opening an HSA tomorrow...

I use Health Savings Administrators. It's very easy to assemble a three fund portfolio there (VTSAX, VTIAX, VBTLX). The annual account administrative fees are a smidge high ($45/year). Other than that no real complaints. The interface isn't great but I only log in 2-3 times a year. It's easy enough ...
by stimulacra
Wed Aug 16, 2017 9:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: bitcoin makes you rich
Replies: 49
Views: 3926

Re: bitcoin makes you rich

Bitcoin was released in 2009. I didn't hear about it till 2012…  IMHO it's a speculative bubble… but am considering adding cryptocurrency to my allocation at some point eventually: it would augment or replace what I use gold for. Probably waiting for a correction on that front. No big rush or sense ...
by stimulacra
Sat Aug 12, 2017 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your Movie Collection?
Replies: 43
Views: 3728

Re: Your Movie Collection?

I gave away my moderately sized DVD collection a couple of years ago. Still have a decent amount of Blu-Ray movies but it's cumbersome to hook up my PS3 to play them. All of my films now are on iTunes, I pay full price for Disney and Pixar films (they seldom go on sale), everything else I wait till ...
by stimulacra
Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Individual stocks for fun
Replies: 24
Views: 1870

Re: Individual stocks for fun

Question for the group: How much fun money do you shore up before buying an individual stock? A few hundred dollars and it seems like fees and transaction costs would be a drag…  For me somewhere around $3k – $5k seems to be the area where you can buy a meaningful block of shares, transaction costs ...
by stimulacra
Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Metal vs Vinyl sheds
Replies: 25
Views: 1958

Re: Metal vs Vinyl sheds

One thing to note with metal sheds…  I had one in my last house and stored some fertilizer there. One box of fertilizer was leaning up on the interior wall and in between seasons had created a corroded hole due to the humidity in Houston interacting with the phosphate. The hole got pretty big over t...
by stimulacra
Sat Aug 05, 2017 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me pick a car
Replies: 54
Views: 4712

Re: Help me pick a car

Short list of viable family cars that are not SUV's or Crossovers. Honda Accord (sedan) Subaru Outback (AWD wagon) Subaru Legacy (AWD sedan) Mazda 6 (sedan) Mazda 3 (5-door hatch) Nissan Maxima (sedan) Offbeat choice that's technically not a SUV and meets your criteria: 2017 - 2018 Honda Ridgeline (...
by stimulacra
Sat Aug 05, 2017 9:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does the Tony Robbins/Ray Dalio portfolio make sense at today's low rates?
Replies: 17
Views: 1639

Re: Does the Tony Robbins/Ray Dalio portfolio make sense at today's low rates?

Tony Robbins' version is a dumbed down version without leverage. He wanted to create a lazy portfolio based on Ray Dalio's risk parity model; something that could be communicated in a self-help book. Ray Dalio uses leverage on the bonds portion (via bond futures) to increase volatility and juice ret...
by stimulacra
Fri Aug 04, 2017 1:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Paul Singer Says Passive Investing Is ‘Devouring Capitalism’
Replies: 24
Views: 2977

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

I'm a fan of Bloomberg but the article doesn't make much sense. “In a passive investing world, small shareholders have little-to-no voice and no realistic possibility of banding together, while the biggest shareholders have no (repeat, no) skin in the game so long as the money manager does not under...
by stimulacra
Wed Aug 02, 2017 9:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: belts for dress pants
Replies: 37
Views: 2627

Re: belts for dress pants

Usually it makes sense to buy dress belts when I buy dress shoes. You can get a good match on leather, finish and color. For office wear, I buy them at Allen Edmonds when I get a new pair of shoes. I typically wait for a coupon or semi-annual sale. Try to target $40-50 for a belt that lasts 3-4 seas...
by stimulacra
Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Will my older self thank me?
Replies: 38
Views: 3315

Re: Will my older self thank me?

My fashion sense at age 26 was a bit cringe-worthy 13 years later. All that stuff eventually went to Goodwill and in my head I thought about what it could have been worth if I invested in a 3-fund portfolio. I still dress nicely but adhere to more of a capsule wardrobe philosophy (Google “personal u...
by stimulacra
Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k Eligibility: Should I have to wait 17.5 months?
Replies: 8
Views: 989

Re: 401k Eligibility: Should I have to wait 17.5 months?

In a previous job I was told one thing about my 401k eligibility during the initial job negotiations with the owner/CEO and was told something else after the fact by the HR representative when I was onboarded. I forget the specifics but I was kept out of the company's 401k for a few months more than...
by stimulacra
Tue Aug 01, 2017 10:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 100K milestone - Thank you BH!
Replies: 15
Views: 2112

Re: 100K milestone - Thank you BH!

Congrats! At your age I was further behind you financially. You're in great shape.
by stimulacra
Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bloomberg article on the impact of passive investing.
Replies: 1
Views: 436

Bloomberg article on the impact of passive investing.

What Impact Is Passive Investing Having on the Market? Try None https://bloom.bg/2uS6Qyh Interesting read for those worried that passive index funds might be distorting the market. After running the numbers, Macro Risk Advisors’s Pravit Chintawongvanich estimates that $3.3 trillion, or 14.4 percent...
by stimulacra
Sun Jul 30, 2017 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice
Replies: 39
Views: 5397

Re: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice

The new Honda Odyssey is not built on a truck (body-on-frame) platform … quite the opposite; the Pilot, Acura MDX and Honda Ridgeline are built on the Odyssey (unibody) platform. Car dealerships are not in the business of taking back vehicles after the first complaint or inkling of buyers remorse. Y...