Search found 265 matches

by AnonJohn
Mon Dec 23, 2019 7:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?
Replies: 66
Views: 5495

Re: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?

You could treat imputed rent as a positive bond. But I think that's looking at it the wrong way. Yes, we both agree that would be silly. But doesn't that make one wonder about the wisdom of using a model where the asset (a mortage / house value as a bond) only works on the negative side of the ledg...
by AnonJohn
Fri Dec 20, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?
Replies: 66
Views: 5495

Re: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?

I have been, and will be, incorporating my mortgage as a negative bond. As per a my written strategy change 2 years ago. This means less leverage (I'm no longer borrowing money to buy stocks) and more bonds in my portfolio. I've been doing this gradually for the past 2 years and will continue for a...
by AnonJohn
Fri Dec 20, 2019 9:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?
Replies: 66
Views: 5495

Re: BUY! BUY!! BUY!!! So, is anybody hedging?

I have been, and will be, incorporating my mortgage as a negative bond. As per a my written strategy change 2 years ago. This means less leverage (I'm no longer borrowing money to buy stocks) and more bonds in my portfolio. I've been doing this gradually for the past 2 years and will continue for an...
by AnonJohn
Fri Dec 13, 2019 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Auto Sweep from HSABank to TDAmeritrade:Help!
Replies: 9
Views: 1007

Re: Auto Sweep from HSABank to TDAmeritrade:Help!

With apologies for necro'ing a thread, my question seems to fit and there aren't too many threads on the topic ... Has anyone had the HSA auto-sweep break on them? It worked fine for me for a couple of years, and then (a) ran twice, producing a negative balance and (b) borked their system enough tha...
by AnonJohn
Mon Dec 09, 2019 10:08 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Tax Exempt Bond Index vs. Active Fund
Replies: 9
Views: 1129

Re: Vanguard Intermediate Tax Exempt Index vs. Active Fund

Hi - OP - Which active fund are you referring to? @midareff - VWIUX is the admiral version of VWITX, but I'd consider it an index fund, as it tracks the BloomBarc 1-15 Year Municipal Index*. I think. If I have this right, which index fund are you thinking of with longer duration? Edit: Looking at ot...
by AnonJohn
Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?
Replies: 78
Views: 4833

Re: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?

For those long-term investors with GEHA, the HSA bank / TD Ameritrade approach is free (fees paid). The only "cost" is having to leave $100 in HSA bank. I recommend it. Nowadays you can seemingly do Vanguard ETFs free @ TD ameritrade, but I haven't moved from the SPDRs, which have lower ERs (that's...
by AnonJohn
Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?
Replies: 78
Views: 4833

Re: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?

@OP & MillenialFinance: After a long time with BCBS basic and in between the birth of my two kids, I switched to GEHA HDHP. We've been happy ever since, including in the birth year. We live in DC. Regret not doing it earlier. OP, I think you have it right --- ignore the deductible since it's "gift"...
by AnonJohn
Mon Dec 02, 2019 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wish I could ignore it...but I can't (ZILLOW!)
Replies: 68
Views: 9509

Re: I wish I could ignore it...but I can't (ZILLOW!)

I keep a net worth spreadsheet where I track a few values about my house over time: mortgage remaining, amount paid off (and percentage), and approximate current value. I base my house's percentage of my net worth based on approximate current value minus amount remaining on my mortgage. For the app...
by AnonJohn
Thu Nov 14, 2019 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?
Replies: 78
Views: 4833

Re: HDHP over BCBS Basic for Feds?

@OP & MillenialFinance: After a long time with BCBS basic and in between the birth of my two kids, I switched to GEHA HDHP. We've been happy ever since, including in the birth year. We live in DC. Regret not doing it earlier. OP, I think you have it right --- ignore the deductible since it's "gift" ...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 30, 2019 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have an issue with Corelle plates?
Replies: 38
Views: 3855

Re: Anyone have an issue with Corelle plates?

I grew up with Corelle. My parents still have the same two sets, coming up on 50 years later. They're great. Patterns are faded, a few chips, but great. When I got married I agonized long and hard about Corelle or Fiestaware. Both are American made. We went with Fiesta, random color assortment. It's...
by AnonJohn
Fri Oct 25, 2019 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does the Average Homeowner Need a Water Shut Off Valve?
Replies: 56
Views: 6014

Re: Does the Average Homeowner Need a Water Shut Off Valve?

For the record, yes, the average homeowner needs a water shut off valve.

As for an automatic shut off valve, I defer to the other comments in this thread ...
by AnonJohn
Mon Oct 21, 2019 10:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

As I was quoted, correctly, in my math describing a $70 advantage for the HSA/HDHP approach, which did not include the FSA benefit, I hasten to add a clarification. That $70 advantage is near the worst case scenario for the HDHP, when spending is exactly at the deductible level. And, as others have ...
by AnonJohn
Thu Oct 17, 2019 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to save HSA receipts?
Replies: 14
Views: 1562

Re: How to save HSA receipts?

Here's my approach. I use an app called "app sheet", that builds off of google sheets. It is both an android app and a google sheets add on. It lets you write your own little software interface to google sheets. On our phones, my wife and I can view the spreadsheet, but, more importantly add expense...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 16, 2019 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

@UAL Flyer - I've read your previous discussions / arguments, and disagree. I'd associate myself with Tdubs here. Based on 4 years of actual EOB expense analysis, maxing HSA contributions, and a marginal rate of ~30%+, Grabiner's analysis and my analysis is borne out --- a clear win for GEHA HDHP o...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 16, 2019 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

OP: thank you for thread - hoping people keep adding as more info comes to opm site. Does anyone know if GEHA HDHP members gain access to GEHA's discounted dental network rates through its HDHP plan? I'm not talking about the HDHP plan actually paying for any dental work other than preventive clean...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

@UAL Flyer - I've read your previous discussions / arguments, and disagree. I'd associate myself with Tdubs here. Based on 4 years of actual EOB expense analysis, maxing HSA contributions, and a marginal rate of ~30%+, Grabiner's analysis and my analysis is borne out --- a clear win for GEHA HDHP ov...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

I'd like to comment on the comparison of the CareFirst HDHP to the GEHA HDHP. I am far from an expert, but I've done these comparisons many times over the years, and I think I've learned some things. Be aware that, due to the onset of blindness, I cannot read the brochures anymore, so I have been g...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 16, 2019 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

OP: thank you for thread - hoping people keep adding as more info comes to opm site. Does anyone know if GEHA HDHP members gain access to GEHA's discounted dental network rates through its HDHP plan? I'm not talking about the HDHP plan actually paying for any dental work other than preventive clean...
by AnonJohn
Thu Oct 10, 2019 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

I’m also awaiting info. I plan on switching from BCBS Basic to GEHA HDHP. I’m nervous, but have back-tested the last two years’ health expenses and I would have come out ahead in both. Time to make the leap in order to utilize the HSA! Checkbook indicates CareFirst HDHP was a better deal than GEHA ...
by AnonJohn
Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FEHB Open Season 2019
Replies: 112
Views: 9461

Re: FEHB Open Season 2019

I’m also awaiting info. I plan on switching from BCBS Basic to GEHA HDHP. I’m nervous, but have back-tested the last two years’ health expenses and I would have come out ahead in both. Time to make the leap in order to utilize the HSA! I made that switch two years ago and have only one regret: that...
by AnonJohn
Wed Oct 02, 2019 7:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Learnings/Regrets from last two recessions
Replies: 91
Views: 12730

Re: Learnings/Regrets from last two recessions

I like this thread in that it forces some reflection, alongside the opportunity to learn from you all. On reflection, I take two lessons, though neither really impacted me materially. 1. It is possible to do too little in turbulent times. In 98' Jack Bogle spoke at my workplace; I put my initial ret...
by AnonJohn
Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I Stay or Should I Go?
Replies: 18
Views: 2767

Re: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

A440 wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 9:25 am
theplayer11 wrote:
Fri Feb 01, 2019 12:36 pm
If you go there will be trouble
And if you stay it will be double

sorry, couldn't resist :D
+1 You beat me too it. :D
+2!!!
by AnonJohn
Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment
Replies: 8
Views: 666

Re: TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment

Thanks all. @kaudry - I don't have enough to pay off the mortgage outright without going to zero on the e-fund, not something I'm willing do do at the moment (both generally and also because of capital gains). As I reckon it, the G-fund rate would need to increase to be more than my mortgage. Market...
by AnonJohn
Thu Sep 05, 2019 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment
Replies: 8
Views: 666

Re: TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment

Thanks Daheld. Yes, I understand that. I should have specified: I'm pondering a general purpose loan (up to 5 years and 50k). In practice, I'd probably do a 5 year loan for ~$25k, for a savings of ~$280 / year (less $50 administrative fee, and assuming no change in G-fund interest rates).
by AnonJohn
Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment
Replies: 8
Views: 666

TSP Loan, Mortgage Pre-payment

Hi - Given a confluence of factors, I am pondering taking out a General Purpose TSP loan at 1 5/8% and pre-paying my mortgage at 2 7/8%. I would reduce my bond holdings by the pre-payment amount. I see this as free money, of order $100 / year / $12000. I'm planning on some pre-payment regardless. Op...
by AnonJohn
Thu Sep 05, 2019 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Employee Burn or Sick Leave [before retirement]
Replies: 125
Views: 10003

Re: Federal Employee Burn or Sick Leave [before retirement]

I'd join the train arguing that there's nothing unethical about using vacation when you're sick (the converse is not true!). The math on this one is interesting. Unless it becomes use or lose, annual leave $ >> sick leave $. The latter is paid out at 1 (or 1.1)% of salary * how long you expect to li...
by AnonJohn
Fri Aug 30, 2019 12:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What, besides dishes, do you run through your dishwasher?
Replies: 85
Views: 6745

Re: What, besides dishes, do you run through your dishwasher?

Chainmail pot scrubber
DE Safety Razors (on sanitize cycle)
by AnonJohn
Fri Aug 23, 2019 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ponder this, BH's... is Ben & Jerry's worth it?
Replies: 142
Views: 11720

Re: Ponder this, BH's... is Ben & Jerry's worth it?

I'd put in a plug for Turkey Hill's "All Natural" ice creams. They really are pretty clean on the ingredients list and taste accordingly. (Putting the cream in ice cream!)

Reminds me of what Breyers used to be ...
by AnonJohn
Tue Aug 13, 2019 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Critique my exercise routine because it's not working for me
Replies: 160
Views: 10660

Re: Critique my exercise routine because it's not working for me

Describe your lifting routine. How many sets, reps, and which lifts? Goal is to do 5 sets, 8 reps per set for each exercise. I will move on to the next exercise if I get too tired to finish all the sets/reps so as not to injure myself. I try to minimize rest time between sets (around 1 minute) but ...
by AnonJohn
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Critique my exercise routine because it's not working for me
Replies: 160
Views: 10660

Re: Critique my exercise routine because it's not working for me

I've only skimmed all the answers, but will amplify some things and maybe add a few new (?) thoughts. Amplify: Lifting - compound exercises are good; HIIT is valuable for cardio; weight loss is mostly about food, not exercise. But exercise is worth doing anyway! What I haven't seen: 1. The healthies...
by AnonJohn
Tue Aug 13, 2019 11:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. stocks continue to soar!
Replies: 3038
Views: 292744

Re: U.S. stocks continue to soar!

Mostly dead is slightly alive!

I'm just here for this excellent run of well-used Princess Bride quotes. :D
by AnonJohn
Mon Jul 01, 2019 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can I add Social Security to my asset allocation of bonds?
Replies: 42
Views: 3088

Re: Can I add Social Security to my asset allocation of bonds?

I'm age 65, wife 63, we have a 55%/45% equity/bond allocation (AA) for our life savings of $1.3 million in a 3-fund portfolio. No pension but will have social security income (SSI) of $35K pretax when we soon begin to live off savings and SSI. (Sole debt is $150K mortgage with $800 monthly payment....
by AnonJohn
Mon Jul 01, 2019 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Feels like never enough in savings?
Replies: 27
Views: 3195

Re: Feels like never enough in savings?

I've self-diagnosed with savings sickness too. Latest manifestation: What if I need more cash savings to be able to maximize my 401k and IRA "catch up" contributions ... 10 years from now?

Some good advice here on how to deal with it!
by AnonJohn
Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 772

Re: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds

Ok, so you are after the tax rate arbitrage. There exists the risk that in the year(s) you have L/T capital losses resulting from this strategy, they simply go to offset L/T capital gains coming from other parts of your portfolio. In other words, you need to have the losses in years where the losse...
by AnonJohn
Thu Jun 20, 2019 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 772

Re: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds

I don't see how this makes sense unless you're in the 0% LTCG bracket. OK, some numbers. $10000 in VWITX and $500 gains. 22+8 = 30% fed + state marginal bracket. 15% + 8 = 23% LTCG rate. 1.77% SEC yield on VWITX. Scenario 1: Selling now I pay $115 in capital gains, foregoing the 1.77% / year: ~ $2 ...
by AnonJohn
Thu Jun 20, 2019 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 772

Re: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds

CoastalWinds wrote:
Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:18 am
Only makes sense if you’re in 0% LTCG bracket, and even then you’d have to wait to re-buy to avoid wash sale rule.
Wash sale doesn't apply to gains harvesting.

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Tax_gain_harvesting
by AnonJohn
Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 772

Re: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds

Hi- With the recent fall in interest rates, I could harvest capital gains at the LTCG rate in a muni bond fund (VWITX). It seems to me that this an opportunity to save a little bit on taxes. Assuming that I will hold VWITX indefinitely, and constant marginal tax rates (for me), I would sell VWITX, ...
by AnonJohn
Thu Jun 20, 2019 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds
Replies: 13
Views: 772

Tax Gain Harvesting in Muni Bonds

Hi- With the recent fall in interest rates, I could harvest capital gains at the LTCG rate in a muni bond fund (VWITX). It seems to me that this an opportunity to save a little bit on taxes. Assuming that I will hold VWITX indefinitely, and constant marginal tax rates (for me), I would sell VWITX, c...
by AnonJohn
Wed Jun 19, 2019 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinancing to 30 year fixed- which option to take?
Replies: 13
Views: 1083

Re: Refinancing to 30 year fixed- which option to take?

Putting together the two previous responses: the effective rate of return on the $15k is ... never mind: SovereignInvestor beat me to it. :) Another point: Your home value will be assessed by the lendor. These assessments can be quite unpredictable. If they disagree with your value too much, you cou...
by AnonJohn
Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Waiting to prepay mortgage until you can pay the whole thing off?
Replies: 28
Views: 3539

Re: Waiting to prepay mortgage until you can pay the whole thing off?

I'm waiting until I can pay off the whole thing, amassing bonds of comparable duration. I get an inflation hedge (seemingly not worth much!), liquidity, and optionality for the tax-adjusted difference between investment returns and my low mortgage rate (2.85%). Thus far this is proved an advantage. ...
by AnonJohn
Tue Jun 18, 2019 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Transamerica Bike Race
Replies: 6
Views: 726

Re: Transamerica Bike Race

Holy moly. I'm lucky to get 250 miles in a month ...

Props to the 78 year old bringing up the rear! At 44 miles / day, which is not nothing ...
by AnonJohn
Sun Jun 16, 2019 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: weighted blankets
Replies: 23
Views: 5020

Re: weighted blankets

I've used one for a year and a half. I'd recommend, but with caveats: 1. Heat is an issue. I'm an absurdly hot sleeper. My wife is often buried beneath blankets while I'm going to lower the thermostat. By buying the most breathable one I could find this is mitigated but not resolved. 2. It doesn't h...
by AnonJohn
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: de-googling my life: Keep Notes alternatives
Replies: 46
Views: 6941

Re: de-googling my life: Keep Notes alternatives

I've used Evernote and OneNote extensively. Both were ultimately unacceptable for my use cases and preferences. Can't see myself ever going back to either. Mind sharing what was unacceptable? I'm a current Evernote user but never been thrilled. I settled on zim-wiki, and truly love it. Some idiosyn...
by AnonJohn
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Mint Mobile customers here?
Replies: 37
Views: 2649

Re: Any Mint Mobile customers here?

I have Mint. As does my wife, brother, and parents. All on the ~$15 / month lowest tier, which is fine with good wireless coverage in many locations. Pay by the year for that price. Big thumbs up.
by AnonJohn
Wed May 22, 2019 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Inexpensive way to gain weight
Replies: 54
Views: 2828

Re: Inexpensive way to gain weight

You need weightlifting. On the food side, eat real food. Include protein in multiple meals (you can't metabolize it all at once). More specifics: nuts are good; high reps can add mass (lower reps build strength); you may want to experiment with time restricted feeding, but probably not if you're jus...
by AnonJohn
Tue May 21, 2019 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: de-googling my life: Keep Notes alternatives
Replies: 46
Views: 6941

Re: de-googling my life: Keep Notes alternatives

Thanks for flagging standardnotes; it's new in this space since I last looked (2014). Offers a lot. I've used Evernote and OneNote extensively. Both were ultimately unacceptable for my use cases and preferences. Can't see myself ever going back to either. I settled on zim-wiki, and truly love it. So...
by AnonJohn
Thu May 09, 2019 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rarely used items that are worth having?
Replies: 112
Views: 12892

Re: Rarely used items that are worth having?

I have several bike tools that fit in this category. For instance, the massive Park pedal wrench, cup wrench, and guide for cutting head tubes. Would second a car battery charger. I find my sawzall fits in this category too, if barely (might not be worth having!). In the kitchen: immersion blender.
by AnonJohn
Wed May 01, 2019 8:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My solar investment experience
Replies: 100
Views: 10055

Re: My solar investment experience

Some data: I purchased a system in the fall of 2015 in Washington DC. I have just hit break even (3.5 years in) after the Fed tax credit. 73% of my return has come from SRECs, the balance in avoided electrical costs [implication: 10 year break-even w/o SRECs]. The system has produced just over 100% ...
by AnonJohn
Fri Apr 26, 2019 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help/Suggestions Buying Car next Week
Replies: 40
Views: 1593

Re: Help/Suggestions Buying Car next Week

Kia Niro sits atop my list, likely to buy. Have driven and talked to owners in my neighborhood. Like it. Great crash ratings and mileage.
by AnonJohn
Tue Apr 23, 2019 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At a crossroads on how much to put down towards new home
Replies: 32
Views: 2497

Re: At a crossroads on how much to put down towards new home

I brought my twins home to our 1,050 Sq ft home and proceeded to live there another 10 years. It can be done. You might even find what you want is different next year once the kids are there. Whether or not this is actionable for OP, I wanted to say thanks for this anecdote. Thinking about having a...