Search found 448 matches

by Tal-
Wed Nov 20, 2019 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Assessing Home Refinance
Replies: 17
Views: 1242

Re: Assessing Home Refinance

I can't view the statement from work, so I'm going of memory, but... I'm not oppose to a refi (probably a good idea with your rate), but I am oppose to a refi that adds so much to your balance. I don't know the going closing costs rate, but this really does seem high. It would take more than two yea...
by Tal-
Sun Nov 17, 2019 1:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to combine finances with your spouse? Recently married/early30s
Replies: 72
Views: 4984

Re: How to combine finances with your spouse? Recently married/early30s

LilyFleur wrote:
Thu Nov 14, 2019 11:56 pm
Actually, even in a community property state, in a divorce, if parties to the divorce brought debt and/or assets into the marriage and can prove this, it will be a factor in the division of assets.
Apparently, you're right. How little I knew. Thanks for catching this.
by Tal-
Thu Nov 14, 2019 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to combine finances with your spouse? Recently married/early30s
Replies: 72
Views: 4984

Re: How to combine finances with your spouse? Recently married/early30s

... What we are trying to do is to have: 1. a joint spending account (for mutual expenses, rent, bills, groceries etc.); 2. a joint savings account; 3. each person has an individual fun money account (things we buy the partner doesn't really have anything to do with, such as my clothes, his games, ...
by Tal-
Tue Nov 12, 2019 1:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "Tax advantaged Annuity" advised for friend
Replies: 35
Views: 1572

Re: "Tax advantaged Annuity" advised for friend

I would not advocate an annuity in this case. If I understand - she is 65 and has 270K in an annuity today generating 2.8%. I am inferring that this was funded by a life insurance settlement, and is not in a 401k (may be worth verifying with your friend). She has two plans for the 270K: A new home a...
by Tal-
Mon Nov 11, 2019 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job negotiation 101?
Replies: 14
Views: 971

Re: Job negotiation 101?

Commute and work life balance are high on my prioirty list, so I probably wouldn't be considering this as an option. But - that's your call. In negotions, try and avoid being the first one to share a number. So, as phase one, I would say something like "I view pay as just one of the parts of the com...
by Tal-
Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investment Ideas
Replies: 82
Views: 5192

Re: Investment Ideas

A few things: * The refi may not have been a great move. But, at this point, it is what it is. * The timeframe of when he would need the money is important. The plan for a 3 year vs 7 year vs 20 year timing is important. * The rest of his financial situation is also important. The right answer to vi...
by Tal-
Tue Nov 05, 2019 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement
Replies: 21
Views: 2720

Re: Retirement

You're not screwed, but you are behind.

I'll sidestep the math and expense comments which have already been made, and instead focus on the 10% saving. If you're making $160K a year, and want to get to $4M in 30 years, you do need to be saving more than 10%.
by Tal-
Tue Nov 05, 2019 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella policy with no car insurance
Replies: 18
Views: 1205

Re: Umbrella policy with no car insurance

I'm not an expert, but I have a different read on this... I think the answer is no - you (or your son) will not be able to get an umbrella policy without first having car insurance in place. Part of why an umbrella is so inexpesive is because they are not the first line of payment. So, an umbrella p...
by Tal-
Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cruises, where to book?
Replies: 17
Views: 1690

Re: Cruises, where to book?

Getting the best fare is part art and part science. Here are some highlights: Who to book with? 1: Don't book directly. You get more control if you book directly, but you can always get a better price, or better perks if you book elsewhere. 2: Costco is super popular, and is a good middle-ground if ...
by Tal-
Sat Nov 02, 2019 1:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how does Personal Umbrella Insurance work?
Replies: 28
Views: 2661

Re: how does Personal Umbrella Insurance work?

Sometimes an example can be helpful. Say a person is at-fault in an auto accident and causes $2M in damages. First their auto insurance pays, up to the limits of the policy. Lets assume the person has $500K in auto liability limits. There is $1.5M remaining to be paid. Next they might have a $1M um...
by Tal-
Sat Nov 02, 2019 12:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Interest from loans
Replies: 19
Views: 1133

Re: Interest from loans

I wouldn't think you'll get flagged, but you might. If so, I'm not sure you've done anything wrong. Be sure you're paying your taxes on the interest (which you seem to be doing), that you're compliant with any usury laws in your state. Here's a link that shows usury laws by state: https://www.cuna.o...
by Tal-
Thu Oct 31, 2019 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Budget tracking with CC "float"
Replies: 19
Views: 969

Re: Budget tracking with CC "float"

What is your objective? Tracking spending as it is incurred will tell you something about your behavior. Tracking cash flow (when the CC is paid) will help you to allocate surplus cash to investing. I personally look at my cash balance at the very end of the month, look up the statement balance of ...
by Tal-
Wed Oct 30, 2019 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar Panel worth it 2019? SoCal region
Replies: 46
Views: 4939

Re: Solar Panel worth it 2019? SoCal region

Just a few thoughts: 1: I would seriously consider replacing your 22 year old roof before putting on solar panels. We opted to do them at the same time, meaning in 10 years, we won't have a fully working solar system, but a roof underneath it that is end of life. 2: Go bigger. The bigger the better....
by Tal-
Tue Oct 29, 2019 6:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Curious financial advisor claim . . .
Replies: 30
Views: 4661

Re: Curious financial advisor claim . . .

I don't have any specific expertise in this area, but I do have a big concern... It's not too hard to picture a world 20 years from now when virtually all business is run through a large cap company. Today, around 75% of the US stock market (by cap) is in large companies. If that shifts to 90%, your...
by Tal-
Mon Oct 28, 2019 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions for potential new employer
Replies: 18
Views: 978

Re: Questions for potential new employer

I work on the employer side of these discussions. Here are my thoughts: You've outlined a good list of things to ask about. Though, I would include employee stock participation plans (ESPP), sabbaticals, and loan repayments, and pay increase schedule/approach to your list of questions. On a related...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 27, 2019 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions for potential new employer
Replies: 18
Views: 978

Re: Questions for potential new employer

I work on the employer side of these discussions. Here are my thoughts: You've outlined a good list of things to ask about. Though, I would include employee stock participation plans (ESPP), sabbaticals, and loan repayments, and pay increase schedule/approach to your list of questions. On a related ...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 27, 2019 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 vs 20 year term life???
Replies: 33
Views: 2291

Re: 15 vs 20 year term life???

I'm a smidgen uneasy having your primary life insurance (part of a long term plan) tied to your employer (an at-will relationship), so I often lean towards longer term life plans. Consistent with my bias, I don't see a good reason to go with the shorter-term here. At 59 with a 23 year old, you are l...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 27, 2019 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Negotiating buying leased solar panel system Calif
Replies: 16
Views: 853

Re: Negotiating buying leased solar panel system Calif

My thoughts: 1- Sorry for the loss of your brother. 2- 20,000 feels in the ballpark for that type of system. I'd wager that if you did research today, you would find that high, but not absurd. 3- I agree that you have no leverage. It's hard position to negotiate from as current prices, past payments...
by Tal-
Fri Oct 25, 2019 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who does your tax returns?
Replies: 103
Views: 5215

Re: Who does your tax returns?

Small independent tax shop. Costs around $2K/year. Our tax situation is pretty complicated, and we have found the relationship and expertise worth the cost. We tried turbotax a couple years ago, and didn't get close to finshing it. Using rough numbers, I would suggest by-hand for ~25% of people, tur...
by Tal-
Fri Oct 18, 2019 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: To retire or not to retire,,,,
Replies: 19
Views: 3486

Re: To retire or not to retire,,,,

I'm sorry, but no - you are not finacially stable enough to retire today.
by Tal-
Thu Oct 17, 2019 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: vacation home
Replies: 19
Views: 3212

Re: vacation home

Sorry for your loss. Unless you have a compelling reason to do otherwise, I would suggest selling the property (or, as Tallboy stated, at least your share of it). Dividing cash after the loss of a parent is hard. Dividing property valued at several hundred thousand dollars with 15K+ in carrying cost...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to Invest in Friends Private Business
Replies: 19
Views: 1188

Re: How to Invest in Friends Private Business

I'm a smart guy, and I have no idea how you would go about doing this. If the company says that he needs to be the one owing the stock, he does. If you find a way to earn all of the profits from a stock that he owns, I'd ask if it's you or him who really own the stock. [OT comment removed by moderat...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where to Park Funds for Down Payment
Replies: 14
Views: 1020

Re: Where to Park Funds for Down Payment

You've got good advice above:

1: For a purchase in 2-3 years, you should NOT have that money invested (unless you're willing to miss your goal).

2: #1 may be moot, and I'd be real hesitant to support a $350K house on $60K income.
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life Insurance Options
Replies: 13
Views: 1099

Re: Life Insurance Options

Got pricing and debating between the following options Option 1 - $1.9K/year - His - 20 year - $1.5M - His - 30 year - $1.0M - Hers - 20 year - $1.0M Option 2 - $2.0K/year - His - 30 year - $2.0M - Hers - 20 year - $1.0M Option 3 - $2.3K/year - His - 30 year - $2.5M - Hers - 20 year - $1.0M I’d cho...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Still contribute to my ROTH IRA?
Replies: 17
Views: 1738

Re: Still contribute to my ROTH IRA?

Based on what we know, I would probably split retirement contributions 50/50 between traditional and Roth. So, if your maxing your 401k as a traditional 401k, I would put all of your IRA money into the Roth.
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Financial Advisor
Replies: 21
Views: 2281

Re: Financial Advisor

MBL wrote:
Sun Oct 13, 2019 7:44 am

... a deferred annuity ...
This is a pretty big reason to change financial planners. Generally speaking, if your financial planner was suggesting a deferred annuity, you need a new financial planner (or no financial planner).
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Struggling to understand emergency fund math
Replies: 26
Views: 2371

Re: Struggling to understand emergency fund math

I think that the correct emergency fund is much more art than science, and using a hard-and-fast rule like "thou must have 6 months in savings" is over simplified. I think the correct answer is far more nuanced, and would a far more comprehensive summary of your situation. With that said, your reaso...
by Tal-
Sun Oct 13, 2019 12:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How often do you look at your IRA or 401K Balances
Replies: 71
Views: 5763

Re: How often do you look at your IRA or 401K Balances

I check Mint daily.
I really look about once a month.
I only look with an eye open to adjustments once a year and haven't made changes since formalizing a plan 4-5 years ago.
by Tal-
Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone buying PG&E stock?
Replies: 60
Views: 5299

Re: Anyone buying PG&E stock?

I have only bought one individual stock in my life, and that was Movie Pass (HMNY). And, I kinda love the idea of buying PGE stock. This leads to two important take aways: 1: I learned my lesson from HMNY, and will pass on individual stocks in the future. 2: If I like PGE stock, you should certainly...
by Tal-
Sat Oct 12, 2019 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I invest in a ski in / ski out condo?
Replies: 50
Views: 5318

Re: Should I invest in a ski in / ski out condo?

A few things: *Avoid framing this discussion as an 'investment.' I don't mean to argue semantics, but this is a luxury question - pure and simple. *You don't need this. Even if you really valued the ski in ski out design with that specific condo, I'm certain that you could purchase a rental that exa...
by Tal-
Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Appropriate 401/Roth IRA allocation?
Replies: 15
Views: 739

Re: Appropriate 401/Roth IRA allocation?

Hey there. Congrats on being off to a good start. Here's my take: Step 1: Sell Walmart stock. I don't mind using the stock purchase plan to purchase the shares, but you need to be moving out of those shares as soon as you can. Step 2: Everything else. I would continue to try and increase your 401k c...
by Tal-
Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: extra $2000/month?
Replies: 14
Views: 2866

Re: extra $2000/month?

I'd probably put it in your taxable account. If I had to poke holes in your financial situation, it would be somewhat limited liquidity, and somewhat limited tax diversification. Neither of these are major concerns, but they are enough that I would suggest you put the $2K in a taxable account rather...
by Tal-
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about the Safe Withdraw Rate rule
Replies: 20
Views: 1521

Re: Question about the Safe Withdraw Rate rule

so $40K + (1.03) ^ 25 = $83,751? Assuming I want to retire in 25 years, I would need $80,751 x 25 = $2,093,777.93? Let me take a shot at it. If your current spending is $40,000 per year and you expect to retire in 25 years, then you need to adjust your current annual spend for inflation to determin...
by Tal-
Tue Oct 08, 2019 12:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I sell or keep my 5 year old depreciated Tesla
Replies: 89
Views: 7820

Re: Should I sell or keep my 5 year old depreciated Tesla

Another vote for sticking with the Tesla. I'm not oppose to you buying something new - I just don't see the reason to do so (and I'm not a huge fan of going from electric to gas, but that's my personal bias).
by Tal-
Mon Oct 07, 2019 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: New investor... Am I crazy?
Replies: 42
Views: 4079

Re: New investor... Am I crazy?

Welcome aboard. And congrats on your business!!! I have a few thoughts: 1: Stick with index funds. No matter your asset alloation, risk, destired return, retirment status, etc. - Index Funds should be 80%-100% of your investments. 2: It's hard to say your corret asset allocation (stocks vs bonds) ba...
by Tal-
Thu Oct 03, 2019 11:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable annuities
Replies: 11
Views: 1278

Re: Variable annuities

99% of the time, these are bad juju, and should be avoided. If you end up seriously considering one, I'd get all final paperwork and then post here with specifics to get more detailed information about the limitations. But, generally speaking, they have no place for normal people seeking to fund a n...
by Tal-
Tue Sep 24, 2019 11:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Solar panel advice & experiences
Replies: 64
Views: 2991

Re: Solar panel advice & experiences

We purchased solar a couple years ago, and while we love them, we didn't have a good buying experience. I was surprised at how confusing, misleading, dishonest, and pushy the sales of solar panels has become. There is big variability in the assumptions that go into the calculations, assumptions abou...
by Tal-
Thu Sep 19, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Newly widowed need investment advice
Replies: 35
Views: 2213

Re: Newly widowed need investment advice

So sorry for your loss. My suggestion is simply to do nothing. Let yourself mourn. Don't worry about forming new relationships or long-term investment stratgies or anyting like that for now. Give yourself six months, simply drawing on your Fidelity MM during that time. Avoid big decisions. Hell - av...
by Tal-
Fri Jun 14, 2019 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity customer service
Replies: 15
Views: 1532

Re: Fidelity customer service

I've had really good customer experience at Fidelity. It sounds like you have as well for the most part, but ran into a bad interaction today. With a company the size of Fidelity, it happens.
by Tal-
Fri May 17, 2019 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tithing
Replies: 14
Views: 1609

Re: Tithing

We give to our church, but we don't base it directly on our income. We give what we think is fair, given the services provided to us and the community, and the church's needs. That turns out to be about 1%-2% of our income.

We give significantly more to other charities (non-religious).
by Tal-
Thu May 09, 2019 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you donate?
Replies: 100
Views: 8136

Re: How much do you donate?

3%-4%. More if you count cruise ship casinos.
by Tal-
Thu May 09, 2019 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: windfall management
Replies: 38
Views: 3869

Re: windfall management

You're in great shape. A few thoughts: 1: Fidelity is just fine, and some actually prefer it over Vanguard. No need to change to Vanguard. 2: Your dollar cost averaging of 20K/week is great! The standard advice of "just get it all in today" doesn't really apply here for a few reasons. I think your 2...
by Tal-
Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: window replacement: return on investment
Replies: 23
Views: 2331

Re: window replacement: return on investment

Short answer: don't replace. Longer answer: The windows should be in the range of quality as the rest of the house. If you just finished a 100K kitchen upgrade and a 50K roof - yes, you may want to replace the windows. If the house is clearly a fixer, you can probably not do anything. Most likely, y...
by Tal-
Thu Apr 11, 2019 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: One-more-year - am I done or not?
Replies: 50
Views: 7903

Re: One-more-year - am I done or not?

It's strange for me to say this, but it almost feels like money is playing too much of a factor here... To answer your question - yes, you can probably retire today, but I would like to see you do some type of variable income (95K to 65K) for the first several years. The important part of that is th...
by Tal-
Fri Mar 22, 2019 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I ditch bonds? (Because I have a mortgage)
Replies: 45
Views: 4053

Re: Should I ditch bonds? (Because I have a mortgage)

I'm not sure I follow your questions, so I apologize if I'm weighting in on something you didn't ask. If you have a large mortgage relative to your other assets, best practice says that you should not decrease your bond allocation to account for the mortgage. With that said, I don't view this as cut...
by Tal-
Sun Mar 03, 2019 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Value of Vacation Experiences with Big Fam & Young Kids
Replies: 75
Views: 4863

Re: Value of Vacation Experiences with Big Fam & Young Kids

A few thoughts, based on my own experiences First and foremost, don't think of a family vacation as your vacation!!! Family vacations are for the kids, and will probably be *more* stressful for mom and dad than simply saying at home in the normal routine. With that said, finding something that young...
by Tal-
Wed Feb 27, 2019 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What vacation travel "extras" do you find worthwhile? (and why?)
Replies: 43
Views: 4860

Re: What vacation travel "extras" do you find worthwhile? (and why?)

For us: Worth it: Food (just about anything food related) Room with a door (if with kids) Nice hotel with good value Most anything that provides time - including a taxi vs public transit. New underwear & socks Not worth it: Flight upgrades to business/first class Expensive souvenirs Cruise internet ...
by Tal-
Tue Feb 26, 2019 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity 'managed' fee of 1.17% (retirement)
Replies: 21
Views: 1918

Re: Fidelity 'managed' fee of 1.17% (retirement)

It feels like this thread has skipped a vital question: Do you need an advisor??? If yes, using this service isn't the worlds worst idea, and a fee of 1.17% on 450K is high, but not absurd. I also feel that there's no shame in needing a financial advisor. If no, then the fee is absurd. If your answe...
by Tal-
Mon Feb 25, 2019 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Philosophical Question
Replies: 18
Views: 1555

Re: Philosophical Question

Too early.

I applaud the idea and don't object to the notion, but I think bucketing when you're still so far away from financial independence is premature. For now, save for retirement using an appropriate stock/bond allocation.