Search found 207 matches

by Zott
Tue Nov 21, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Part B premium unchanged for 2018
Replies: 36
Views: 2700

Re: Medicare Part B premium unchanged for 2018

Yes - my recollection as well. That Congressional action was, over time, "revenue neutral" and the tampdown of the large increase was to be paid for by some folks over a multi-year period. Where does the "revenue neutral" increase or income come from that allowed the tampdown? Are we all paying for...
by Zott
Mon Nov 06, 2017 10:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Virginia to New Jersey income tax
Replies: 20
Views: 2142

Re: Virginia to New Jersey income tax

I'm considering a move from which most people consider a medium tax state, Virginia, to what is called a high tax state, New Jersey, where almost all my family is. I realize there are many things such as car registration fees, car taxes, real estate taxes, exemption of federal pensions, etc. that e...
by Zott
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 2648
Views: 849737

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Rediscovering Nero Wolfe and my favorite, Archie Goodwin, by Rex Stout. Just finished Too Many Cooks, now on to Plot it Yourself.
by Zott
Thu Nov 02, 2017 10:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Spam calls to cell phone...
Replies: 87
Views: 6138

Re: Spam calls to cell phone...

I've got two apps on my Android phone that seem to work pretty well- --Should I Answer blocks spam calls based on community ratings for the phone number calling. Known telemarketers get a negative rating and can be blocked. --Calls Blacklist--I use this to block all spoofed calls from my area code a...
by Zott
Thu Nov 02, 2017 9:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated
Replies: 16
Views: 1642

Re: Is Probate Required if You Fail to Include Everything in Trust, and if so what's probated

Does this "small account" have a beneficiary specified? That would usually take it out of the will.
by Zott
Sun Oct 29, 2017 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early Retirement Healthcare
Replies: 37
Views: 3689

Re: Early Retirement Healthcare

He should get on his state ACA Marketplace website starting November 1 and see what's available, and what amount of income would give him the best deal for what he wants. Don't forget to check the networks available with each policy. Did your state adopt Medicaid expansion? Could be an option but pr...
by Zott
Fri Oct 27, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing question
Replies: 17
Views: 1209

Re: Medical Billing question

Whatever the outcome, your family member should be prepared for it to happen again next year.
by Zott
Wed Oct 25, 2017 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance company will not process policy due to "unknown" cause of death
Replies: 14
Views: 2374

Re: Insurance company will not process policy due to "unknown" cause of death

Another possibility--probably unlikely--is if it is an accidental death policy (for example AD&D policies). They'd need to know the cause in that case.
by Zott
Sun Oct 08, 2017 9:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medigap Policies--So Much Conflicting Information
Replies: 29
Views: 2271

Re: Medigap Policies--So Much Conflicting Information

I guess my concern about Plan F is that the group has no new (younger) members after 2020 and the group gets sicker. Rates increase significantly as the healthier members leave since they pass underwriting. Others could get stuck with very high rates and maybe can't get out. That's a concern and al...
by Zott
Sat Sep 23, 2017 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone used Amazon to buy household goods
Replies: 26
Views: 2031

Re: Anyone used Amazon to buy household goods

Take a look at walmart.com. We have been buying a ton of household products on there with free 2 day shipping over $35. For most food related items are also cheaper than Amazon. I'll second this and note that there seems to be a better selection online than in the store---especially as the Walmarts...
by Zott
Thu Sep 14, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Deemed filing eligibility
Replies: 10
Views: 1133

Re: SS Deemed filing eligibility

Using reasonable assumptions as to expected mortality, the calculator at Bedrock Capital indicates that spouse should file for her benefit at age 68, you should then file a restricted application for a spousal benefit at age 66, then collect your increased benefit at age 70. This is "optimal" in ter...
by Zott
Fri Sep 08, 2017 10:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: inherited annuity question?
Replies: 19
Views: 1479

Re: inherited annuity question?

OP--can you find her income tax returns for the last few years? If so, you can tell whether each year's distribution was reported as fully taxable or not. That might give you a clue as to what's going on. Typically an insurance company, or a bank, would want solid documentary proof that an investmen...
by Zott
Sun Sep 03, 2017 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inheritance (Day 1)
Replies: 19
Views: 3549

Re: Inheritance (Day 1)

Sorry for your loss, but, wow, your father had the investment of a lifetime---a compounded annual return of 9.5% over 40 years! As to the logistics, you can probably have the funds wired to a brokerage account at Fidelity--into a money market fund for example. From there you can move the money where...
by Zott
Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sanity Check on Medicare Plan Compare
Replies: 6
Views: 690

Re: Sanity Check on Medicare Plan Compare

Is a Medicare Plan F -- High Deductible available in your state? If so, you may find the Scenario 1 costs more competitive in a "healthy year" using that option.
by Zott
Sat Aug 26, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: mold problem in bathroom --advice?
Replies: 18
Views: 2049

Re: mold problem in bathroom --advice?

I've been where you're at. All these mold/mildew removers contain bleach, that's the ingredient that removes the mold, nothing special. But as said, it just removes surface mold. In my case, bleach works great on the shower walls, but on the floor, the mold has apparently invaded the grout and it's ...
by Zott
Thu Aug 24, 2017 10:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: epoxy for cemetery stones.
Replies: 3
Views: 448

Re: epoxy for cemetery stones.

Another alternative is to go to www.findagrave.com and join their forum. There is a sub-forum dedicated to cemetery and stone maintenance. Not a weird question at all! And good for you for doing this. :beer It's always a shame to lose history.
by Zott
Thu Aug 24, 2017 10:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Benefits
Replies: 31
Views: 2972

Re: Social Security Benefits

OP-- I think your question is totally fair---you didn't understand a feature of SS and wanted to learn---and you have! SS has a lot of weirdnesses to it. Here's another value to the program--the survivors' and disability benefits that are available before regular retirement. For the few people that ...
by Zott
Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: School Redistricting - What should we do?
Replies: 96
Views: 7741

Re: School Redistricting - What should we do?

Your Option 3 seems like the wise and most cost-efficient course for now. If your town if anything like mine, it's quite possible that there will be another re-districting within your time frame.
by Zott
Sun Aug 20, 2017 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 2648
Views: 849737

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Strong Poison , by Dorothy L. Sayers. A woman is accused poisoning her ex, but there is a hung jury. There are only a few weeks to investigate before the new trial date. All the Wimsey stories by Sayers are terrific--detective fiction of the highest quality, IMO. My favorites are Five Red Herrings ...
by Zott
Fri Aug 18, 2017 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Decline All Parts of Medicare, Continue Contributing to my HSA?
Replies: 11
Views: 1457

Re: Decline All Parts of Medicare, Continue Contributing to my HSA?

Is there no way to claim Social Security without also enrolling in Medicare Part A? Here's information from Mike Piper's blog (who is a member here) explaining this. Note that there may be up to a 6-month retroactive entitlement to Medicare Part A when you file for SS---potentially a problem if you...
by Zott
Tue Aug 15, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Enrollment Question
Replies: 3
Views: 684

Re: Medicare Enrollment Question

I believe that if you commence your Social security benefit after age 65 you will automatically be enrolled in Part A, and therefore ineligible for HSA. Sounds like you might be planning to delay this anyway, but it's worth clarifying.
by Zott
Mon Aug 14, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retired Boglehead obsession with money- devil's advocate
Replies: 66
Views: 7703

Re: Retired Boglehead obsession with money- devil's advocate

We read your mortality probabilities and understand them. You are correct and rational in what you say. Nonetheless, deep down in each of us, we don't want to accept or believe we will pass on, no matter how we speak about it or plan for it. Our minds and emotions can't picture us dead, we don't acc...
by Zott
Sun Aug 06, 2017 10:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trip to Maine
Replies: 30
Views: 2180

Re: Trip to Maine

I enthusiastically agree with the remarks on Acadia Park and Bar Harbor (and the outlying lobster pounds!). The park has carriage roads as well as trails, and these are great to walk on or even better, rent bikes. (They were supposedly built by Rockefeller, Jr). We've spent time there in fall and it...
by Zott
Sat Aug 05, 2017 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love your family car? Under $16,000 Used? Please share!
Replies: 39
Views: 4681

Re: Love your family car? Under $16,000? Please share!

I have a Subaru Outback that's one year old and am delighted with it. Chances are you'll be happy with a used one that fits your budget. As far as the actual buying process, one approach is to visit the car dealers in the Monterey area after you arrive and see what's available in their lots. I've be...
by Zott
Sat Aug 05, 2017 10:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selected photos from my ride across Western Europe -- Amsterdam to Passau, Germany
Replies: 21
Views: 2231

Re: Selected photos from my ride across Western Europe -- Amsterdam to Passau, Germany

Passau was one of the highlights of our trip to Germany years ago, actually West Germany as it was then. I still have a pair of excellent sandals I bought there, wear 'em with socks, of course. :happy Kudos on a great adventure!
by Zott
Sat Aug 05, 2017 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with understanding - pay taxes now or in future
Replies: 59
Views: 3626

Re: Help with understanding - pay taxes now or in future

FWIW, state income taxes can be a wild card here. Many people in retirement move from high-tax states (like here in the Northeast) to low or no-tax states (like Florida). That can save ~5-6%, not an insignificant amount.
by Zott
Thu Aug 03, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "National Parks senior passes in short supply."
Replies: 34
Views: 3906

Re: "National Parks senior passes in short supply."

Ordered mine online on July 6 and still waiting to receive it. They did say it would take several weeks, though.
by Zott
Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ready to retire - have I missed anything?
Replies: 24
Views: 4228

Re: Ready to retire - have I missed anything?

You may be able to purchase health insurance at a lower cost on the individual market, prior to Medicare. It's worth looking into when the time comes. If you delay your pension and live off of savings (something that early retirees have been known to do), you may even qualify for a premium subsidy u...
by Zott
Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?
Replies: 56
Views: 5089

Re: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?

My kids are just a bit older than your nieces, and not wonderful with money. I gave my will/trust a lot of thought, with my attorney, and finally decided that I would call for distributing my legacy to each over the 30 years following my death, in an approximately level annual amount. I felt that th...
by Zott
Thu Jul 27, 2017 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free Reading
Replies: 67
Views: 7125

Re: Free Reading

https://www.hathitrust.org

Has a variety of publications, but you can't download books (can only read them online).
by Zott
Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent in safer neighborhood or buy in less safe one?
Replies: 67
Views: 5068

Re: Rent in safer neighborhood or buy in less safe one?

I'd advise not purchasing in that area, as your acquaintances who live there also recommend. The most likely eventuality, unfortunately, is that the neighborhood will become part of the "war zone." Then where will you be? Seen it happen, to my hometown. My one remaining relative who lived there (in ...
by Zott
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving stepfather into long term care facility. Need advice.
Replies: 17
Views: 2067

Re: Moving stepfather into long term care facility. Need advice.

As far as the life insurance policies go, I assume the one for his ex-wife can't be changed, but perhaps he can be convinced to change the beneficiary on the other two, if he decides to keep them, to his wife. Under the circumstances, it seems that she would need the proceeds more than the son and g...
by Zott
Mon Jul 10, 2017 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When should my wife and I take our social security?
Replies: 25
Views: 3054

Re: When should my wife and I take our social security?

My wife is also one year younger than I. Our plan is for her to claim her SS benefit at 66 and I'll claim the spousal benefit which is half of that. I'll claim my SS benefit when I'm 70 and she'll claim half of that. You will only be able to do that if you are grandfathered for restricted spousal b...
by Zott
Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: any way to eat healthier at Subway (or any other quick lunch ideas)
Replies: 102
Views: 5735

Re: any way to eat healthier at Subway (or any other quick lunch ideas)

I bring my own (vegetarian) lunch to work, but sometimes a group from work goes to Subway and I go with them, and get the veggie sandwich. If you want meat at lunch, and also want to go to Subway for lunch, you could grill or otherwise cook meat on the weekends and/or evenings like you would anyway...
by Zott
Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone read Carlo Rovelli's books on physics?
Replies: 9
Views: 1218

Re: Anyone read Carlo Rovelli's books on physics?

I agree about Seven Brief Lessons, well worth reading. I'd like to read the other as well. Being just a general reader, I must say that not much of what is written sticks with me for very long, but you get the sense of wonder of what reality is.
by Zott
Sat Jul 08, 2017 9:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody retired and relocated + bought a new house?
Replies: 26
Views: 2735

Re: Anybody retired and relocated + bought a new house?

Does your current state have an income tax? If so, verify that you would be eligible for favorable treatment of capital gains on the sale of your house after you become resident in another state. I know my state allows this, not sure if all do. While you're at it, check the income tax treatment of p...
by Zott
Sun Jun 25, 2017 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: irrevocable trust for children receiving an inheritance
Replies: 54
Views: 4591

Re: irrevocable trust for children receiving an inheritance

Something is confusing, or at least I'm confused. Bsteiner's comments all involve each grandchild having "control" of the successor trust, including the right to name themselves as trustee. That would protect the assets from creditors, etc, but couldn't each grandchild remove all the funds from the ...
by Zott
Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall inheritance and new home
Replies: 20
Views: 1961

Re: Windfall inheritance and new home

It's appears that your aunt was a modern-day Hettie Green! And if you read the tale of what happened to her fortune after her death, it emphasizes what a previous poster said about estate planning and the best way to benefit your children. A trust certainly seems appropriate, if you don't have one a...
by Zott
Sat Jun 17, 2017 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When should wife take SS?
Replies: 9
Views: 1452

Re: When should wife take SS?

I've used several SS calculators and have a question. I will turn 65 this year and my wife will be 62.We are considering having her claim SS when she turns 62. However, the various calculators suggest having her wait until 63. The difference is only about $100/mo. Does the fact that I will be FRA w...
by Zott
Fri Jun 09, 2017 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: (Very) Early Retirement vs Parenthood
Replies: 74
Views: 5564

Re: (Very) Early Retirement vs Parenthood

You mentioned adoption in a post. Then you can turn the question around and do it backwards, like me. Retire in your early 40's and THEN adopt. The kids will help you spend your excess retirement funds, and excess free time in retirement. Seriously, what the agency said about adoption is also true o...
by Zott
Mon Jun 05, 2017 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why
Replies: 54
Views: 9715

Re: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why

I'm a little more than half-way through my first Patricia Highsmith book (Talented Mr. Ripley). So far it's been very engaging, can't wait to pick it up again later this evening.
by Zott
Mon May 29, 2017 10:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bedrock Capital's SSAnalyze is really buggy
Replies: 7
Views: 876

Re: Bedrock Capital's SSAnalyze is really buggy

I have seen a number of threads on this forum mention Bedrock Capital’s ‘SSAnalyze’ online calculator. I tried it out and I think there are some serious bugs in it. In this post, I will present two scenarios that clearly demonstrate some of the problems I see. Consider the following married couple:...
by Zott
Sun May 21, 2017 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please check my SS spousal benefit calculations
Replies: 12
Views: 1360

Re: Please check my SS spousal benefit calculations

Chip-
Have you seen the SS analyzer at Bedrock Capital? I think you would enjoy experimenting with it, you seem like a "numbers guy". I'm certain that it will confirm your proposed strategy as optimal (in terms of present values).

http://www.bedrockcapital.com/ssanalyze/
by Zott
Sat May 13, 2017 9:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good 4 inch android phone
Replies: 7
Views: 901

Re: Good 4 inch android phone

It's going to be tough to find a phone that's a flat 4" nowadays. If I translate 4" into just "smaller phone", you have some options. My first choice would be the Galaxy S6 edge. It's technically a 5.1" screen, but is only ever so slightly wider in the hand than the iPhone 5 or SE, and therefore as...
by Zott
Thu May 11, 2017 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: in laws social security options
Replies: 3
Views: 458

Re: in laws social security options

I think MIL would be eligible to file a "restricted application" at age 66, under the grandfather rule, and receive half FIL's PIA. Her own benefit would increase by delayed retirement credits to age 70. I think this would likely be the best approach, especially as her benefit is the greater.
by Zott
Thu May 11, 2017 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's So Magical About Age 59-1/2?
Replies: 3
Views: 1757

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

If my memory is correct, the age 59 1/2 provision goes back to the old "Keough" or "HR-10" plans, long before IRA's were created. These plans were for self-employed people.
by Zott
Thu May 11, 2017 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to maximize SS
Replies: 6
Views: 1011

Re: How to maximize SS

Check out this calculator which shows the option with the highest "present value". It may be that starting your own benefit at age 62 would produce the largest present value even though your spousal benefit would also be reduced due to you starting early (I've seen that). That could occur because af...
by Zott
Tue May 02, 2017 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Minimalist May
Replies: 21
Views: 2344

Re: Minimalist May

I try to be minimalist, and do many of the things on your list. I would recommend joining a gym, if you haven't already. You can find them as low as $10/month, go a few times per week, get fit, and enjoy yourself (at least I do).
by Zott
Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If I delay SS to age 70, could spousal benefit start earlier?
Replies: 22
Views: 2551

Re: If I delay SS to age 70, could spousal benefit start earlier?

Yes, all your points are correct. You would have to commence SS for her to claim spousal benefits.
by Zott
Sat Apr 22, 2017 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Insurance Plans
Replies: 43
Views: 3638

Re: Medigap Insurance Plans

What is the best way to wade through the deciding what options you might have and then selecting the best choice? Go to the link below at Medicare.gov, put in your zip code and a summary of plans available in your area will come up. You can click on the link that lists all companies which offer a s...