Search found 154 matches

by Tal-
Sat Apr 22, 2017 8:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS refund today!
Replies: 42
Views: 2919

Re: IRS refund today!

I was expecting a refund, but got a call from the IRS that there was a big problem with my return. Turns out, I owed $5K in back taxes, and would be picked up by the sheriff if I didn't pay that day. Thankfully, once I verified my SSN, my wife's SSN, my credit card info and bank info, I was able pay...
by Tal-
Tue Apr 18, 2017 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best cruise
Replies: 50
Views: 3583

Re: Best cruise

If budget is a big factor (and it sounds like it is), I'd narrow your search to cruises in and around the US. The two most popular (and generally, best) options are the Caribbean if you like blue water, warm weather and sandy beaches, and Alaska if you like nature, wildlife, trees, and mountains. No...
by Tal-
Mon Apr 17, 2017 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dissect my plan
Replies: 10
Views: 412

Re: Dissect my plan

As mentioned above, I think the best use of that excess cash is to chip away at the student debt. Overall, it seems like you're in pretty good shape. But, I'm not sure about the 100/month for your daughter going into a Wealthfront account in her name. Setting aside cash for her is probably a good th...
by Tal-
Fri Apr 14, 2017 2:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I pay off these loans?
Replies: 24
Views: 2050

Re: Should I pay off these loans?

If I can rephrase your question: Should you pay off your other debt before you buy another house? Without knowing more, I feel like the obvious and correct answer is yes.

Would you agree?
by Tal-
Fri Mar 24, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Consolidating old 401ks question
Replies: 6
Views: 312

Re: Consolidating old 401ks question

To verify:

She contributed to her 401k in two different ways - in part as a traditional 401k (pre-tax) and in part as a Roth 401k (post-tax). Is that 100% accurate?
by Tal-
Wed Mar 22, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Series 65 Volunteer Advising?
Replies: 21
Views: 1075

Re: Series 65 Volunteer Advising?

With that said, there are risks. Because you have a 65, you actually *can't* say a bunch of stuff that you otherwise could. This is where compliance support would help. And, even if you're fully compliant and do everything right, you still run the risk of being sued. Can someone elaborate on this? ...
by Tal-
Tue Mar 21, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I would appreciate comments on my asset allocation.
Replies: 18
Views: 1278

Re: I would appreciate comments on my asset allocation.

I'm actually not a fan. I don't especially mind the 50/50 allocation or the small/mid cap tilt - but the two seem incompatible to me. Your stock/bond allocation suggests conservative investing, which is fine. Your stock portfolio suggests aggressive investing, which is also fine. At first glance, yo...
by Tal-
Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Series 65 Volunteer Advising?
Replies: 21
Views: 1075

Re: Series 65 Volunteer Advising?

I must admit that when I read the initial post, I thought it was a crazy idea. But as I research this, it's not all-together absurd. I'm pretty sure that sponsorship was required for a 65 for a long time, but my read is that sponsorship is no longer required. I also believe that a 65 would let you l...
by Tal-
Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: rental property expense question
Replies: 12
Views: 1407

Re: rental property expense question

I have my taxes done, in large part so I don't need to know this level of detail. With that said, to me, that sounds an awful lot like an improvement, and thus, capital. And, I would have figured that you can't segment out labor from parts. Meg knows this type of thing better than me - but that's my...
by Tal-
Mon Mar 20, 2017 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice: Overextending by buying? How much house to buy?
Replies: 57
Views: 4644

Re: Advice: Overextending by buying? How much house to buy?

Rent. Simply put, you can't afford a $2M house. That's true because of your income. It's true because you can't afford the down payment. It's true because it would kill your liquidity. It's true because it would introduce huge risk at a time in your lives where you don't need to take on that much ri...
by Tal-
Mon Mar 13, 2017 11:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another rent versus buy - moving from MCOL to VHCOL
Replies: 15
Views: 1460

Re: Another rent versus buy - moving from MCOL to VHCOL

With a big move like that I would rent for a year regardless of the "rent vs buy" numbers. That will give you a year to decide if you really want to stay there and to learn more about the area and the local housing market. Be sure to check on the tax details of the zero percent loan. I wo...
by Tal-
Mon Mar 13, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to tackle fiancee's student loan debt
Replies: 33
Views: 2703

Re: How to tackle fiancee's student loan debt

I think that my thoughts would vary drastically based on your relationship and specific plans with your fiance. Assuming that you are planning to be married for life, and plan to have joint finances, the time around marriage is when you start to merge finances. If you end up doing this a month or tw...
by Tal-
Fri Mar 10, 2017 6:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Payoff Student Loans Early? Requesting help.
Replies: 14
Views: 764

Re: Payoff Student Loans Early? Requesting help.

It's not uncommon for me to be the dissenting opinion, but it's odd for me to be the one arguing for a bigger emergency fund... I'm a big fan of door #1. At your age, with one income and a mortgage, it would take an *emergency* for me to dip into your emergency funds. This clearly doesn't qualify in...
by Tal-
Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Do You Share Expenses?
Replies: 52
Views: 4085

Re: How Do You Share Expenses?

Tough situation. I have thoughts, but zero experience in arrangements like this... 1: Don't give her an ownership stake. I'm not sure if this is on the table, but it shouldn't' be. 2: You can't do 20% of PITI or more, as you've done that in the past, and that was associated with ownership. Any arran...
by Tal-
Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: House: Pay Cash then Mortgage (Delayed Financing) - worth it?
Replies: 22
Views: 1650

Re: House: Pay Cash then Mortgage (Delayed Financing) - worth it?

Interesting concept. Sounds like the only benefit of doing delayed financing instead of traditional financing up front is to be able to offer cash and close faster. But if you're going to finance it, I guess delayed is probably better than refinancing after 6 months. Great question. Bingo, I don't ...
by Tal-
Thu Mar 09, 2017 3:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investment Portfolio Help- 31 y/o 1st time poster
Replies: 12
Views: 887

Re: Investment Portfolio Help- 31 y/o 1st time poster

You're in good shape, and have got good advice above. Like you, I lean towards a custom (low-cost) allocation rather than a target date fund, but know that there is no harm nor shame in either. With that said, I wouldn't mix-and-match between these two strategies. I think you know the issues holding...
by Tal-
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future
Replies: 35
Views: 2354

Re: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future

But I'm curious, why is it [financing rentals] "nearly always" the right call? Is it for the obvious reason that the interest is tax deductible from the rental income? More to protect yourself? Are there other underlying reasons? There are oodles of reasons. Taxes, security, liquidty and ...
by Tal-
Mon Mar 06, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is Early Retirement A Realistic Goal???
Replies: 13
Views: 1466

Re: Is Early Retirement A Realistic Goal???

Hey there. Here are my thoughts: How are you doing? Great! 326K saved is great. You're off to a great start! Props! What about your plan to invest 100K/year over the next 5 years? Absolutely yes!!! Your net worth and security will skyrocket if you do this. And regardless of your long-term goals, you...
by Tal-
Sat Mar 04, 2017 12:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future
Replies: 35
Views: 2354

Re: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future

As far as moving to a 30-yr mortgage, I don't like it. Worked hard to move to a 15-year and the thought of moving "backward" is hard to swallow. Plus the idea that we make this house a rental is still exactly that at this point - just an idea, so don't want to throw all our eggs into this...
by Tal-
Fri Mar 03, 2017 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future
Replies: 35
Views: 2354

Re: Fincancial checklist for becoming a landlord in the future

Lots going on here... Here are my thoughts: First, the good news. You have a ton working for you! You're obviously financially secure, and your property doesn't sound like a bad long-term rental (decent rent ratio, decent price-point, well rehabbed, you're familiar with it, etc.). Your income and ex...
by Tal-
Mon Feb 13, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Permanent Life Insurance
Replies: 16
Views: 1601

Re: Permanent Life Insurance

The short answer is: Run. The longer answer is that policies like this are often intuitively appealing, but are virtually never the right move. The talking points of the policies make them sound great – protecting family if you pass, doing life insurance and investments all at once, diversification ...
by Tal-
Mon Feb 06, 2017 3:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: "Fidelity Go" - any experience?
Replies: 9
Views: 1102

Re: "Fidelity Go" - any experience?

Any ideas for an alternative to a savings account? It depends on your situation, and what exactly you're trying to achieve. For most people, a savings account is the right place to keep all of their emergency savings. Even though it returns next-to nothing, this money should be highly liquid and hi...
by Tal-
Wed Jan 25, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth is finished... now advice to open Brokerage Acct?
Replies: 4
Views: 499

Re: Roth is finished... now advice to open Brokerage Acct?

We ended up with Fidelity because they manage a 401k, but they have been great over the years. Easy system to use. Responsive when questions come up. Good, low cost options. etc.
by Tal-
Tue Jan 24, 2017 5:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Edward Jones [Looking for alternatives]
Replies: 85
Views: 5194

Re: Edward Jones [Looking for alternatives]

You've got good advice above. Here are my thoughts: Who should you go with? Vanguard is the gold standard. They will offer you custom advising fees for a very small fee. We personally have our investments through Fidelity, but if you only want one name, Vanguard is that name. How do I move money ove...
by Tal-
Tue Jan 24, 2017 3:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for Investing $4M to get 4% Return with Least Risk
Replies: 83
Views: 9302

Re: Advice for Investing $4M to get 4% Return with Least Risk

Just some kind feedback: DO NOT PURCHASE REAL ESTATE!!!! The notion that real estate is a low risk investment feels absurd. A small multi-family may indeed be a good investment, and it may make you a lot of money. And it may work out long term. But, it is far from any "least risk" option. ...
by Tal-
Tue Jan 24, 2017 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do your own taxes?
Replies: 27
Views: 2151

Re: Do you own taxes?

We've had our taxes done for the last 10 years, since we found a mistake that we had done by hand. However, the cost of doing so has really grown (1500) and I'm now worried that I don't fully grasp what our taxes/tax benefits are. So, this year, we are doing our taxes in parallel. We'll still have t...
by Tal-
Sat Jan 21, 2017 1:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ok to pull plug and retire?
Replies: 52
Views: 7767

Re: ok to pull plug and retire?

Hey OP, I think your only risk of failure is a big bad happening. This could be anything from you making a bad timing decision, the markets crumbling with WWI, a major medical issue, really bad divorce, or so on. The biggest risk though is your spending - if your spending ramps up, all of the confid...
by Tal-
Thu Jan 19, 2017 3:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Mother handing over investments to me, not sure which route to go
Replies: 12
Views: 1630

Re: Mother handing over investments to me, not sure which route to go

I think I disagree with most others. Here are my thoughts: Sell the farmland!!! $60K in total liquid assets is a lot of money, but given that this is 100% of her liquidity, it's simply not enough. It sounds like finances are fine for now, and that she is in good health. And, the RE market is strong ...
by Tal-
Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:40 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shouldn't everyone do a traditional IRA/401k instead of a Roth?
Replies: 132
Views: 8029

Re: Shouldn't everyone do a traditional IRA/401k instead of a Roth?

It can also be about more than taxes. We use a Roth over a traditional account for two main reasons: 1 - We can save more in a Roth than in a traditional account (a dollar of post tax is worth more than a dollar of pre tax). 2 - We want the flexibility of early withdrawals or avoiding RMDs. In doing...
by Tal-
Wed Jan 11, 2017 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $600,000. Now what?
Replies: 55
Views: 10520

Re: $600,000. Now what?

First, congrats. I'm sure that much of how you got here is luck, but much of it is also hard work, frugal living, and research. It's not a path that I would advocate, but it has worked out for you thus far. So, an honest congratulations for being off to a good start on a long journey. Now, to your q...
by Tal-
Thu Jan 05, 2017 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: selling property without real estate agent
Replies: 19
Views: 1498

Re: selling property without real estate agent

Yes, you can. And in this case, it probably makes sense to do the deal without an agent. The two parties will need to develop and sign a contract. A standard real estate contract is available via Google, but you could also draft something in Word and be just fine. You should specify: Price Closing D...
by Tal-
Wed Jan 04, 2017 12:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell or Refinance/Rent Condo?
Replies: 6
Views: 555

Re: Sell or Refinance/Rent Condo?

I'd probably sell. As a rental, it's not a great investment. A positive cashflow of $300-$400/month in an ideal month on a 280K house is only slightly better than breaking even when you factor in long-term costs. When you factor in that you would need to refi, do not have a PM, do not have an intere...
by Tal-
Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much term life insurance?
Replies: 12
Views: 941

Re: How much term life insurance?

And on your point about my net worth - I graduated from business school 3 and a half years ago, which has two implications: 1) I've only had this income for a few years (and, in fact, was closer to $175k three years ago out of business school, so I haven't been at my current income level for even t...
by Tal-
Tue Jan 03, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much term life insurance?
Replies: 12
Views: 941

Re: How much term life insurance?

You're probably in the right range. I could be talked into anything from $1M to 3M. This means that $2M is a viable number, but going up another $1M doesn't seem unreasonable. If you do increase your life insurance, I would go with a shorter term than 30 years. I think a 10 or 20 year plan for 1M on...
by Tal-
Sun Jan 01, 2017 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy or keep renting in Manhattan?
Replies: 25
Views: 3177

Re: Buy or keep renting in Manhattan?

Rent. Normally, this is a nuanced decision in my eyes - but this one feels pretty clear... Buying introduces huge risk to your long-term financial security, and it is risk that would be highly correlated with both your liquid assets and income. Congrats on your wonderful financial situation. But, I ...
by Tal-
Sat Dec 31, 2016 1:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Landlord Insurance - What To Look For?
Replies: 4
Views: 388

Re: Landlord Insurance - What To Look For?

1. What should I look for when shopping for landlord insurance? property damage, liability insurance are in my list of things to cover. The coverage is basically the same as for your primary - though you will want to expand your liability coverage. 2. How much damage should the insurance cover? The ...
by Tal-
Fri Dec 30, 2016 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Intro & Critique of portfolio
Replies: 9
Views: 969

Re: Intro & Critique of portfolio

You're in great shape, but here are my thoughts: 1 - Congrats on the kiddo! 2 - You can't go wrong either way, but I'd would probably prioritize taxable accounts (stocks/bonds) over your student debt. This is largely due to the upcoming kiddo, and partly due to the need for flexibility. Either way, ...
by Tal-
Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for staying the course
Replies: 20
Views: 2047

Re: Advice for staying the course

I write it down. In addition to writing down my short term goals, long term goals, and plans for the coming year, I write down my own views. For me, I believe in dollar cost averaging. I believe that a balanced portfolio will increase in value over the long term. I believe that the price of an asset...
by Tal-
Fri Dec 30, 2016 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Monthly Expenses in line or too much
Replies: 81
Views: 7325

Re: Monthly Expenses in line or too much

I try to keep track of my expenses and see that my expenses are around 4700 per month, not including mortgage. It does include pretty much everything else . Kids are in good public schools ( thankfully ) so no private school expenses . We drive older cars so do have a few hundred dollars yearly in ...
by Tal-
Fri Dec 30, 2016 12:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When is it "OK" to get a car loan?
Replies: 42
Views: 3730

Re: When is it "OK" to get a car loan?

- But third, you you shouldn't dip into an emergency fund for a hobby. You shouldn't dip into it $50k to buy the Porche outright, and you shouldn't dip into it $15K to pay the difference between the two. This is not what an emergency fund is for! I believe the Boglehead rule of thumb is to have a m...
by Tal-
Thu Dec 29, 2016 3:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin Purchase
Replies: 38
Views: 4128

Re: Bitcoin Investment

I've made similar "investments" in gold, but not Bitcoin. The two are similar in several ways: both fun to have, high speculative, highly volatile, and variations on "money." And while I do not feel that gold is a good investment, I think Bitcoin is a silly investment. Twenty yea...
by Tal-
Thu Dec 29, 2016 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When is it "OK" to get a car loan?
Replies: 42
Views: 3730

Re: When is it "OK" to get a car loan?

I don't mean to get caught up in word-choice, but I don't think you can afford the Porche. Hear me out... First, you should sell the Viper before buying another car. That's the obvious part. The second, and almost as obvious part is that you shouldn't take out a loan for a hobby. Easy peesy. But thi...
by Tal-
Mon Dec 19, 2016 12:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying Rental Property w/Cash
Replies: 4
Views: 750

Re: Buying Rental Property w/Cash

Yes - I've purchased using cash and then financed using the delayed financing rules. It's a sound strategy, but has a lot of pitfalls! First, very few banks play with delayed financing. Virtually all of them instead stick with the standard refinancing rules, which have different guidelines. Second, ...
by Tal-
Fri Dec 16, 2016 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement Planning Advice PLEASE
Replies: 16
Views: 2081

Re: Retirement Planning Advice PLEASE

Welcome to the forum. A lot going on here. Here are my thoughts: 1- You need to: 1 - drastically decrease your exposure to real estate, 2 - Keep working for several more years, or 3 - get lucky with them. 2 - Ignore the prices you paid for the properties... that's mostly irrelevant to today's decisi...
by Tal-
Tue Dec 13, 2016 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust fund for under 100k [finding a trustee]
Replies: 9
Views: 766

Re: Trust fund for under 100k [finding a trustee]

The funds are to be used for the children's educational, medical and extracurricular expenses. They are currently 1 and 2 years of age. This is helpful. Here's what I'd propose: At 100K, finding a paid third-party to act as the trustee is not a good idea. This is in part due to expenses, and in par...
by Tal-
Tue Dec 13, 2016 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust fund for under 100k [finding a trustee]
Replies: 9
Views: 766

Re: Trust fund for under 100k [finding a trustee]

I'm talking out of my pay grade on this, but I think my read of a trust is a bit different than yours. My take is that the trustee does more than just distribute funds. Specifically, they must manage the funds in a specific way (generally following an approximation of some standard portfolio/allocat...
by Tal-
Wed Dec 07, 2016 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELP: salary negotiation
Replies: 17
Views: 2417

Re: HELP: salary negotiation

Hey there, Congrats on the new job offer! Regardless of outcome, that should feel good. I do think that you can, and probably should negotiate a higher salary. Here's how I would suggest doing so: 1: Always lead, and close with affirmations that you want the job, and are excited about the job. The s...
by Tal-
Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turning Primary Residence Into a Rental
Replies: 16
Views: 1438

Re: Turning Primary Residence Into a Rental

- 2BR/2BA Townhouse (in a HCOL city center) - purchase price: ~$650k (2012) - mortgage: ~$440k (remaining), 30 yr, 3.5% fixed - PITI (plus HOA fee): $3000/mo. - estimated rent: $3500 - $3750 /mo. I wouldn't. The ROI is marginal for a concentrated risk and your equity is based on a generally hot &qu...
by Tal-
Tue Nov 29, 2016 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Rate Question
Replies: 7
Views: 694

Re: Tax Rate Question

Your heart is clearly in the right place, but your analysis is missing, in my opinion, two big things. The first is the difference between marginal tax rate (the % you pay on the last dollar earned) vs effective tax rate (the average % paid on all dollars earned). Lots of people misunderstand the di...
by Tal-
Mon Nov 28, 2016 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should We Buy or Rent?
Replies: 48
Views: 4969

Re: Should We Buy or Rent?

I have a pretty clear "rent" view on this. Here's why: 1: Your income is insufficient to justify the price tag. 2: Your income is not stable enough to justify the ongoing obligation (one income, in a profession with a lot of turnover). 3: Rent is cheaper, by far, per month than a mortgage....

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