Search found 466 matches

by Slacker
Sun Jan 21, 2018 1:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rent (free at library) or buy books?
Replies: 29
Views: 1359

Re: Rent (free at library) or buy books?

Been using the physical library for many years and over time decreased my purchasing habits to zero. I have been trying to get rid of my books for the most part. Now with Overdrive, I rarely read physical books. I have a few that were given to me, but they are too much of a PITA to deal with compare...
by Slacker
Thu Jan 18, 2018 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How will or might nonprofits be affected by tax law changes?
Replies: 36
Views: 1745

Re: How will or might nonprofits be affected by tax law changes?

Anecdotally:

We are renters so the tax law changes won't change how much we contribute to charities and we didn't accelerate donations in 2017.
by Slacker
Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I got a Roomba and think you should too
Replies: 41
Views: 3548

Re: I got a Roomba and think you should too

I had a Roomba years ago, I don't remember what model. It took more time and attention to maintain the Roomba than it did to do the cleaning with a regular vacuum. There was a nifty yahoo group for Roomba hacks, but one day it just vanished. Evidently the manufacturer complained to yahoo. It will b...
by Slacker
Thu Jan 18, 2018 2:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: $399 - New Course - Fire your Financial Advisor - By WhiteCoat Investor - Anyone?
Replies: 121
Views: 7084

Re: $399 - New Course - Fire your Financial Advisor - By WhiteCoat Investor - Anyone?

I see nothing wrong with what WCI is doing. I too am not the intended market for this product but I HAVE used a similar product from someone with a similar marketing strategy. AthleanX on Youtube is very prolific in producing videos (yes, youtubers do make money from advertisers but the information ...
by Slacker
Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique
Replies: 143
Views: 11865

Re: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique

If any of you may need medical care beyond what is available on Oahu as my family and I have for nearly the past two decades, medical travel can be an unexpected significant added expense. Hickam AFB and/or Tripler Army Medical center since the OP is going to be retired military. Tripler is where t...
by Slacker
Wed Jan 17, 2018 1:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique
Replies: 143
Views: 11865

Re: Can We Retire in Hawaii? Please Critique

He doesn't have a $1.2M portfolio to just take withdrawals from. He needs to pay for at least some portion of the house from that and 2/3 of it is in retirement funds which will require advance planning to access early. More specifically; $380k in taxable, of which say $200k is needed for the down ...
by Slacker
Tue Jan 16, 2018 8:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy - 1M or 2M
Replies: 43
Views: 3873

Re: Umbrella Policy - 1M or 2M

Expensive policy.

We recently upgraded from $1M to $2M but it was only 80 dollars more per year ($220 for $2M coverage).

I definitely sleep better at night now.
by Slacker
Sun Jan 14, 2018 12:45 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dave Ramsey's Millionaire Study
Replies: 59
Views: 10234

Re: Dave Ramsey's Millionaire Study

I found an apparent link to this survey. if you go to www.daveramsey.com/survey it automatically redirects you to www.research.net and a specific survey form that states "Our organization is studying financial indepedence in America. To see if you qualify for the study, please answer the next few qu...
by Slacker
Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you define middle class? Which class do you consider yourself in?
Replies: 23
Views: 2168

Re: How do you define middle class? Which class do you consider yourself in?

We live a middle class lifestyle on an upper middle class income. Annual spending of ~$45k/yr for 2 adults with animals renting an overly large home with a pool while earning several multiples of our annual spending. I figure, based on the estimated average savings rate in the US and household media...
by Slacker
Tue Jan 09, 2018 12:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any tools for searching bed size on VRBO?
Replies: 2
Views: 201

Any tools for searching bed size on VRBO?

Hello, Does anyone know of any tools, websites or non-obvious features of VRBO that would allow me to search for a specific size of bed? My wife and I both sleep on our backs and if the bed is Queen size (or smaller) one of us ends up sleeping with an arm hanging off the bed - usually me. We are goi...
by Slacker
Sun Jan 07, 2018 1:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downsizing to one car in retirement...
Replies: 68
Views: 3992

Re: Downsizing to one car in retirement...

We are a working couple, but our lifestyle isn't very different from retirees who stay at home or near home often due to our working from home. We used to have just one car for several years and just recently picked up a second car at the request of my wife. I personally feel it is more of a hassle ...
by Slacker
Tue Jan 02, 2018 9:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maxing 401k in January?
Replies: 11
Views: 1242

Re: Maxing 401k in January?

Thanks for all the reponses. I hadn’t considered implications relating to my employer match so I’ve reached out to my benefits team to clarify. Unfortunately my employer match is pretty lousy and the only language I can find stipulates that it “will match 50% of up to the first $4k you contribute t...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to use up my FSA account?
Replies: 13
Views: 1163

Re: How to use up my FSA account?

Get a prescription for massages...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 22, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?
Replies: 260
Views: 20014

Re: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?

I estimate about a 1.5-2% increase in take home pay. Is that "meaningful"?

However, I'll likely put us partially into Roth 401Ks at work and balance it back at to net zero change in take home pay.
by Slacker
Thu Dec 21, 2017 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you include your house in your net worth if you own it outright?
Replies: 89
Views: 6461

Re: Do you include your house in your net worth if you own it outright?

We don't own any real estate outright, but all real estate we own is in the form of rental properties so we do include it in our networth.
by Slacker
Tue Dec 19, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement question for a federal employee
Replies: 3
Views: 555

Re: Retirement question for a federal employee

Does your wife's workplace plan offer after tax contributions with an in-service rollover? This is the so-called "megabackdoor Roth".

It seems, that such workplace plans are more common for medical professionals.
by Slacker
Sat Dec 16, 2017 6:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you spend on food per month, per person?
Replies: 151
Views: 8986

Re: How much do you spend on food per month, per person?

Household goods, pet food, groceries for 2 adults + 3 animals = $500/month
Additional Eating out = $200/month

Total spending per person is $350/month, but I don't separately track household items and pet related items from our groceries.
by Slacker
Sat Dec 16, 2017 1:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2nd million is easier!
Replies: 123
Views: 23609

Re: 2nd million is easier!

Congrats to the OP! We're still climbing toward the first million Happy for you. So you contributed 300-350k of new funds in last 46 months? Can’t be retirement accounts. Your income must be super high $500k- 1M a year? 2016 my wife and I earned less than $200K and saved $65K (contributions and matc...
by Slacker
Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Utilizing Intro 0% APR Credit Card offers the right way
Replies: 9
Views: 524

Re: Utilizing Intro 0% APR Credit Card offers the right way

Okay, thanks for the clarification.

That wouldn't work well for us as we don't spend very much in a month (which is why we'd have the cashflow to take out a chunk now on a balance transfer and then pay it off before the 0% period is over).
by Slacker
Thu Dec 14, 2017 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Utilizing Intro 0% APR Credit Card offers the right way
Replies: 9
Views: 524

Re: Utilizing Intro 0% APR Credit Card offers the right way

Are there very many that don't have a 3% up front fee? Last time I checked (about 12 months ago), there was only one I found without the fee and it had the shortest 0% interest period (12 months). All of the others I found (with anywhere from 12 months to 24 months 0% apr) included a transfer fee.
by Slacker
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can rental home generate small income?
Replies: 56
Views: 4161

Re: Can rental home generate small income?

I'm looking for some guidance and feedback please. Goal: Is it possible to invest $50-100K and generate a small stable income of $400-500 for an expat? After some discussions, I'm told that using that amount as downpayment for a 250K rental home can do that. Location for buying the home is Round Ro...
by Slacker
Wed Dec 13, 2017 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much did you contribute to your 401k in 2017?
Replies: 155
Views: 10531

Re: How much did you contribute to your 401k in 2017?

Both of us around 40.

Both of us maxed our retirement accounts (pre-tax). Our plan doesn't offer after-tax contributions.
by Slacker
Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sinking fund for dream cars
Replies: 23
Views: 1674

Re: Sinking fund for dream cars

In your retirement budget planning, just plan for expenses that include a much more expensive car so you can buy whatever strikes your fancy at the time of retirement. No need to make a separate fund just for a car purchase 17 years from now.
by Slacker
Wed Dec 13, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: buying Vanguard VTI in my Etrade acct verses Vanguard?
Replies: 4
Views: 272

Re: buying Vanguard VTI in my Etrade acct verses Vanguard?

I've been looking around recently to pull my account from TDAmeritrade (due to the change of commission free ETFs). You may want to consider Merrill Edge if you have more than $50,000 in your taxable account as this qualifies you as "Platinum". They give you 30 free trades a month when you are "Plat...
by Slacker
Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.
Replies: 144
Views: 17154

Re: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.

If you go see the same move 10 times I suspect they'd be interested in that too. Someone may be interested in knowing if someone goes to see the same movie 10 times, but they will not find that information through MoviePass. MoviePass will only pay for you to view a movie one time. i'm assuming eng...
by Slacker
Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best cashback credit card ?
Replies: 47
Views: 3839

Re: best cashback credit card ?

We use American Express Blue Cash Preferred for Groceries (6% back) and Gasoline (3% back). Discover for the occasional 5% categories. Chase Sapphire Reserved for dining out & travel related expenses (3x miles) USAA for everything else (2.5%). Is USAA really 2.5%? The web site seems to advertise on...
by Slacker
Tue Dec 12, 2017 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best cashback credit card ?
Replies: 47
Views: 3839

Re: best cashback credit card ?

We use American Express Blue Cash Preferred for Groceries (6% back) and Gasoline (3% back). Discover for the occasional 5% categories. Chase Sapphire Reserved for dining out & travel related expenses (3x miles) USAA for everything else (2.5%). My wife gets a little annoyed at all this fumbling arou...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 11, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best cashback credit card ?
Replies: 47
Views: 3839

Re: best cashback credit card ?

We use American Express Blue Cash Preferred for Groceries (6% back) and Gasoline (3% back). Discover for the occasional 5% categories. Chase Sapphire Reserved for dining out & travel related expenses (3x miles) USAA for everything else (2.5%). My wife gets a little annoyed at all this fumbling aroun...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 11, 2017 4:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TSP allocation
Replies: 9
Views: 502

Re: TSP allocation

5% withdrawal rate is not likely to be sustainable for a very long retirement, especially at a 30/70 stock/bond portfolio. CFiresim tells me: 33% success rate over a 35yr retirement 48% success rate over a 30yr retirement 63% success over over a 25yr retirement 91% succes rate over a 20yr retirement...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 11, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Done gone and did it [Retire]
Replies: 80
Views: 7999

Re: Done gone and did it

Congratulations!
by Slacker
Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does this happen to you? Educating friends about personal finance
Replies: 104
Views: 6185

Re: Does this happen to you? Educating friends about personal finance

I usually recommend bogleheads website, Mr. Moneymustache website or Dave Ramsey depending on if the person is just looking for an investing framework, trying to retire early or deep in debt. If someone asks me a specific question I will state what I do and why. If they don't make the choice that I ...
by Slacker
Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do indoor cats need flea/tick/heartworm prevention year round?
Replies: 15
Views: 1116

Re: Do indoor cats need flea/tick/heartworm prevention year round?

Posting to Follow. I do have some small information to say that Heartworms are a problem when the weather outside would lead to mosquitoes. I don't typically treat our dog for heartworms during the winter months in cold places like Colorado, but I treat her year round in warmer places like AZ. I hav...
by Slacker
Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Question about Roth TSP for active duty military
Replies: 9
Views: 705

Re: Question about Roth TSP for active duty military

Are you sure you can stay in the military another 12 years? My dad was forced out (mandatory retirement) at around 25 or 26 years because he didn't make E-9. Do you still have a GI Bill? You can transfer that to a dependent if you haven't used it and don't plan on using it (this covers part of colle...
by Slacker
Sat Dec 09, 2017 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What MPG App Do You Use To Track Fuel Usage ?
Replies: 61
Views: 2568

Re: What MPG App Do You Use To Track Fuel Usage ?

I use to track it in Excel by recording miles just traveled and gallons filled up off the receipt. Now I just reference the car's reading. The Prius tells us daily/weekly/monthly MPG logs, MPG over lifetime of the vehicle, MPG on current trip (since last starting the vehicle), MPG over the typical A...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommended places to live
Replies: 54
Views: 5476

Re: Recommended places to live

Several recommendations for Washington, Arizona, Colorado, and Tennessee have been given. Based on the above, what are the advantages/disadvantages of these and the other recommendations? We need more info from you. How much are you willing to spend for housing? Do you need a large airport nearby? ...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 08, 2017 10:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I am buying a car: Most/Least Reliable Makes?
Replies: 83
Views: 5420

Re: I am buying a car: Most/Least Reliable Makes?

I am buying a car before the year is over. I've heard the deals are the best at the end of the year. What are the most/least reliable makes to look at and avoid? I know it depends on the model but I'm interested in overall brand quality. Longest lasting, least problems. This is my impression from r...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Think you can time the stock market? Look at this chart first"
Replies: 42
Views: 4310

Re: "Think you can time the stock market? Look at this chart first"

I think comments about impact of the best and worst days miss the point, which is that the market is unpredictably volatile. There are two ways to win: 1) be really, really, really lucky; or 2) ride the roller coaster and reap the long-term return. Reminds of a worthwhile "cute" comment I've heard ...
by Slacker
Thu Dec 07, 2017 1:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommended places to live
Replies: 54
Views: 5476

Re: Recommended places to live

I think the Colorado Front Range and Prescott AZ are both good options for mountains and four seasons. I'm not sure about allergies, but I don't remember having issues in Colorado (I've never lived in Prescott, only visited so I can't say for sure about allergies there). In the Seattle area (which s...
by Slacker
Wed Dec 06, 2017 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you know you are FI? [Financially Independent]
Replies: 48
Views: 3968

Re: How do you know you are FI?

To rephrase what others have said, it depends entirely on your expenses. When you have a portfolio that is 25X - 30X your annual living expenses, you have achieved FI. Isn't this based on retiring at age 65 with maybe 25-30 years (mileage) left on the clock? but not necessarily for someone younger?...
by Slacker
Wed Dec 06, 2017 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do people still use AAA?
Replies: 242
Views: 15648

Re: Do people still use AAA?

I've signed up with AAA in the past for discounts that were greater than the yearly membership cost. Penske rental truck was at a roughly $150 discount for AAA membership vs the roughly $55 membership fee. However, for roadside assitance we had coverage on our insurance policy until I realized our C...
by Slacker
Tue Dec 05, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you need to drive a car to keep battery charged and everything else OK?
Replies: 36
Views: 2852

Re: How much do you need to drive a car to keep battery charged and everything else OK?

Reading this thread with all the issues related to maintaining a seldom used internal combustion powered vehicle it makes one think that the best vehicle for an infrequent driver would be an electric vehicle. Right now, we recently added a second vehicle to our household and I find myself "forced" t...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you need to drive a car to keep battery charged and everything else OK?
Replies: 36
Views: 2852

Re: How much do you need to drive a car to keep battery charged and everything else OK?

I don't know, but I recently discovered that for about $15 you can buy a gadget that plugs into a 12V power outlet that not only provides two USB outlets, but also displays the battery voltage: When I wonder about the battery, I turn the ignition to "ACC" first (so that the charging system isn't op...
by Slacker
Mon Dec 04, 2017 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any reason to keep my Life Insurance (FEGLI)?
Replies: 17
Views: 1255

Re: Any reason to keep my Life Insurance (FEGLI)?

You may not have an insurable need at all, and If you are in good health and otherwise insurable, FEGLI may not be that great a deal compared to alternatives on the term insurance market. But when you are comparison shopping, make sure you are comparing the correct amounts. FEGLI basic automaticall...
by Slacker
Sun Dec 03, 2017 2:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any thoughts on The Aurora Report? [Arora Report]
Replies: 48
Views: 8868

Re: Any thoughts on The Aurora Report? [Arora Report]

I have not been here for some time and undoubtedly the answer to my question has likely been answered multiple times. But I arrived here googling reviews of the Arora Report as well. In the past few months, I've been looking at many financial websites (always with the perspective of skepticism). Th...
by Slacker
Sat Dec 02, 2017 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to convince DW that high miles used car is OK
Replies: 106
Views: 6949

Re: How to convince DW that high miles used car is OK

150,000+ mile car for you
Newer car for her

Maybe Uber or Lyft on her phone in case of breakdowns. Maybe AAA or Roadside assistance & rental car service on the car insurance policy for her peace of mind???
by Slacker
Sat Dec 02, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do I convince my employees to invest more?
Replies: 92
Views: 5422

Re: How do I convince my employees to invest more?

I don't buy all these arguments of $40-60K not going far enough. That is only true if people spend all their money on useless crap. First job out of college I made just under $40k / year 12 years ago as a single father paying child support for 2 kids and yet I was still able to put 5% in my 401K to ...
by Slacker
Sat Dec 02, 2017 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do I convince my employees to invest more?
Replies: 92
Views: 5422

Re: How do I convince my employees to invest more?

Next annual meeting I would let them know that the new company policy is for everyone to be opted in unless they specifically sign a document which informs them of what they are giving up by opting out. Maybe have it phase in at 1% of salary every couple months until it is at the 3% match after 6 mo...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I Can "Afford" This Right? (New Car)
Replies: 60
Views: 4790

Re: I Can "Afford" This Right? (New Car)

I'm somewhat seriously considering buying a car (not sure on used or new - leaning towards used) that would cost anywhere from $55k-$75k. Just looking for opinions. A friend who is financially like-minded as me says I should do it but wanted another outside perspective. Age: 32 and single Income: $...
by Slacker
Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is there any reason to invest in real estate?
Replies: 98
Views: 7920

Re: Is there any reason to invest in real estate?

If you know that for a fact, you may want to read these links. https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/plan-participant-employee/retirement-topics-prohibited-transactions https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/4975 (See paragraph (c)(1)(c)) https://www.irs.gov/compliance/whistleblower-informant-aw...