Search found 822 matches

by CurlyDave
Wed Feb 13, 2019 3:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insuring a car that you don’t drive
Replies: 24
Views: 1985

Re: Insuring a car that you don’t drive

I actually had a similar situation.

I owned a car that my daughter drove, even though she lived 200 miles away.

It ended up being a separate policy for her, even though the car was in my name. My umbrella still covered it so long as the insurance had the right limits.
by CurlyDave
Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: quick double check that 85% of my SS will be subject to tax
Replies: 88
Views: 6579

Re: quick double check that 85% of my SS will be subject to tax

...That's the additional Medicare IRMAA amount that's biting you, third tier above the base amount for low income people. This is a quite different problem from the SS humps; you're well beyond the Hump Zone and 85% of your SS is being taxed, same as me... Oh, I know exactly what it is. But it is a...
by CurlyDave
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: quick double check that 85% of my SS will be subject to tax
Replies: 88
Views: 6579

Re: quick double check that 85% of my SS will be subject to tax

It is worse than you think. For instance, in 2018 my SS benefit was $22,995. BUT in addition to paying taxes on that, I had $4179.60 deducted for Medicare part B and $650.40 deducted for Medicare part D. Now in the strictest sense of the word, these are deductions, not taxes. OTOH, they are taken fr...
by CurlyDave
Mon Feb 11, 2019 6:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electrician broke ceiling heat and won't fix it
Replies: 10
Views: 2483

Re: Electrician broke ceiling heat and won't fix it

5. I would never accept a Cadet heater, but if feel you must, insist that they install it with an external thermostat, at lease 15 feet from the heater, and that they install it on exactly the same circuit as the ceiling heat. These two things will substantial increase the cost of the installation,...
by CurlyDave
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?
Replies: 38
Views: 3825

Re: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?

...The potential problem with high stock AA is sequence risk. Bernstein has argued that based on historical data, the timeframe where sequence risk doesn’t matter is 30 years or longer, not 10 years or longer. So if you were on your starter home at age 25, this would make sense. At 15 years from re...
by CurlyDave
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Diamonds are forever.
Replies: 94
Views: 10376

Re: Diamonds are forever.

... One occasionally runs across romantic tales about refugees converting their cash into diamonds before fleeing across the border of totalitarian dystopia X to build a new life in wonderful democracy Y. Always a bad idea? No plausible investment case ever for “investing in diamonds” as a store of...
by CurlyDave
Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?
Replies: 38
Views: 3825

Re: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?

sf_tech_saver wrote:
Sun Feb 10, 2019 12:04 am

...Show me a margin trading investment account with a 1.8% interest rate and I might get interested in it as well!
Probably the best available is at Interactive Brokers. 2.7% on the part of the balance over $3M.

That is a little rich for me -- the $3M part, not the 2.7%
by CurlyDave
Sun Feb 10, 2019 1:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?
Replies: 38
Views: 3825

Re: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?

...Back in the year 2000, 30 year mortgage rates averaged 8%* . U.S. stock market returns from 2000-2018 had a CAGR of 5.15%. Playing the 'arbitrage game' is far from a sure thing. Yes, you could have refinanced down the road, but there are costs for doing that and 30 year mortgage rates didn't fal...
by CurlyDave
Sat Feb 09, 2019 11:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?
Replies: 38
Views: 3825

Re: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?

The whole concept of "sleeping soundly" if one has a paid off house is nonsense to me. I sleep soundly knowing that I am benefitting from the arbitrage between mortgage rates and stock returns. Over any long enough period of time this works. We are so far ahead of this game now that there is no dan...
by CurlyDave
Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to Begin with 1M
Replies: 139
Views: 19142

Re: How to Begin with 1M

It's sad that you're hiding money from your advisor in a low interest account. I've read many posts like yours where people say "how do I fire my advisor"? Send an email: Dear Fred: Your services are no longer needed. Please get Schwab to remove your trading authority from my account today. Thanks,...
by CurlyDave
Sat Feb 09, 2019 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electrician broke ceiling heat and won't fix it
Replies: 10
Views: 2483

Re: Electrician broke ceiling heat and won't fix it

1. That Cadet heater looks like a very poor substitute for ceiling radiant heating. 2. It looks to me like the thermostat on a Cadet is mounted on the heater -- the worst possible place for it to actually work as intended. 3. The Cadet will prevent placing furniture too close to it, the ceiling heat...
by CurlyDave
Sat Feb 09, 2019 1:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?
Replies: 38
Views: 3825

Re: Why borrow money in RE but not Stocks?

Callable vs non-callable debt. + 1 And, there are other very significant differences. The mortgage is a declining balance loan with periodic payments. Keep up those payments and the loan can not be touched. The margin is a loan with a fixed balance, where interest charged can automatically be added...
by CurlyDave
Fri Feb 08, 2019 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension valuation: is $100 really worth $18,000?
Replies: 87
Views: 7476

Re: Pension valuation: is $100 really worth $18,000?

Most financial planners state that you can safely assume a 4% withdraw rate for your present retirement assets that will give you a lifetime of income. So if you had $1.0M you could count on $40K per year assuming you had invested the money in a reasonable manner. So basically: (yearly withdraw rat...
by CurlyDave
Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Long Term Care Insurance worth it?
Replies: 295
Views: 11219

Re: Is Long Term Care Insurance worth it?

...UNLESS you happen to work for the government and have a LTCI plan as a benefit... Even then LTCI can be a bad deal. DW worked for the State of CA, and we bought a plan through CalPERS. The literature said that our premium would never increase, but a few years later it did start to increase. Some...
by CurlyDave
Thu Jan 31, 2019 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: An emergency fund cautionary tale
Replies: 89
Views: 10395

Re: An emergency fund cautionary tale

35 years as a fed with DW 35 years in the private sector, me just retired and her retiring in a few weeks. Spenders and savers are found in all sectors of employment. Spenders go from one mostly self-made emergency to another while savers deal with inevitable financial setbacks and surprises with a...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 30, 2019 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When taking Social Security @62 could be wise
Replies: 125
Views: 6940

Re: When taking Social Security @62 could be wise

I took it at 62 also and have no regret.

The only problem is how did they manage to only get 4.47% return on their portfolio? We are getting about twice that.
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 30, 2019 3:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buy pacific gas and electric?
Replies: 40
Views: 3402

Re: Buy pacific gas and electric?

Here is my analysis of the situation: 1. Unless a large part of CA wants to freeze in the dark very soon, PG&E must survive in the short-term. 2. Unless CA wants to return to the stone age, the physical plant must survive, be kept operating indefinitely, and even expanded. And, the employees who ope...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 28, 2019 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Helping Kids with Home Purchase
Replies: 70
Views: 4904

Re: Helping Kids with Home Purchase

This is a huge mistake. Gifting children money never teaches them how to save. Signriciant sacrifices have to be made to save for a downpayment on your first home. Many times this experience is a kick in the pants for kids who grew up UMC... There are many case where this is just plain not true. My...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 28, 2019 12:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Unconventional investment choices
Replies: 79
Views: 5776

Re: Unconventional investment choices

A lot of unconventional stuff. 1. I was 100% stocks up until last October, when reading all the stuff on this forum convinced me I needed some fixed income. But FOMO held me back. I compromised by putting trailing stops on enough of the stock to represent about 2 years of spending requirements. (Are...
by CurlyDave
Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Percentage of Your Pre-Retirement Income are You Projecting You Will Need?
Replies: 108
Views: 7049

Re: What Percentage of Your Pre-Retirement Income are You Projecting You Will Need?

I have seen some "advisers" projecting an 80% pre-retirement income need in retirement. That seems very high. What are you projecting for your needs? For those retired, what did it turn out to be? More or less than projected? I have been retired (actually more FI than retired) for 11 years, DW for ...
by CurlyDave
Sun Jan 27, 2019 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Percentage of Your Pre-Retirement Income are You Projecting You Will Need?
Replies: 108
Views: 7049

Re: What Percentage of Your Pre-Retirement Income are You Projecting You Will Need?

...Many retirees will end up with a significant expense for long-term care, medical costs, or helping a family member financially. All you can do is get good insurance (for the first two) and keep a financial cushion. There is an alternate way to handle some of the risks you describe. We bought lan...
by CurlyDave
Sun Jan 27, 2019 10:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What do you think about swing trading?
Replies: 97
Views: 3670

Re: What do you think about swing trading?

I am glad you showed me that ad -- I keep getting ads which show a fetching lass claiming that amateurs can make millions in marijuana stocks. Now I am stuck -- do I put my money into swing trading or pot stocks? :confused :confused :confused * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * HOT TIP: About the ...
by CurlyDave
Fri Jan 25, 2019 4:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax question for rental property
Replies: 6
Views: 741

Re: Tax question for rental property

I am a long way from being a tax expert, but I think the time value of money comes in here in a big way. If you are going to sell the house soon, then pushing as much as possible into capital gain is good. If you are going to hold on to the house indefinitely, a deduction now may be worthwhile. My p...
by CurlyDave
Thu Jan 24, 2019 2:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 1st year with a rental property - hitting singles
Replies: 37
Views: 3958

Re: 1st year with a rental property - hitting singles

...Now that Section 8 is a protected class in Oregon, for example, I scrubbed all notions I ever had of getting a property there. I have had Section 8 tenants in Oregon. Some are good, some are bad. Don't have any right now because rents have increased enough that my units will not qualify on that ...
by CurlyDave
Thu Jan 24, 2019 12:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Combination of "Safety First" and "Probability Based" withdrawal strategies
Replies: 54
Views: 3460

Re: Combination of "Safety First" and "Probability Based" withdrawal strategies

I think there is a very significant known risk which is being completely ignored. The SS Trustees have stated plainly the the SS Trust Fund will be completely depleted in the ~2034 timeframe (which is 15 years from now). This will result in being only able to pay ~77% of current benefits. While it i...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 23, 2019 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please help me understand my Data Plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Re: Please help me understand my Data Plan

student wrote:
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:21 am

...I am a bit confused. Don't you have to click a button to join the burger joint wifi even when wifi is turned on?
Only the first time. After that it is an automatic join.
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you carry gas cans, mowers, string trimmers, etc in your car or SUV?
Replies: 48
Views: 3044

Re: Do you carry gas cans, mowers, string trimmers, etc in your car or SUV?

I live in a rural area. Essentially anyone who has reason to carry gas cans or gas equipment in his car more than a very few times a year has a whole raft of other reasons to have a pickup truck. No, it is not my daily driver it is just one of those things that you have in a rural area. In this neck...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 23, 2019 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please help me understand my Data Plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Re: Please help me understand my Data Plan

...When you send/receive data over your cellphone, how do you know that you are connected to the phone company's cell tower? Do you know about "stingray" cellphone tower simulators? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stingray_phone_tracker --vtMaps I know about "Stingrays" and "Dirt Boxes". 1. They are ...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 23, 2019 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy Land, then build house... or Construction to Permanent?
Replies: 23
Views: 1927

Re: Buy Land, then build house... or Construction to Permanent?

There is a third financing option you may want to consider. Get the owner to finance the land purchase with a contract where he will agree to "subordinate to a construction loan". This is actually a fairly common method of purchasing raw land. Most conventional lenders will not finance land, and lan...
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 22, 2019 2:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please help me understand my Data Plan
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Re: Please help me understand my Data Plan

I have my phone wifi setting set to off. I'm always using cellular. I use it for text, web use, google maps, text and talk. I've never hit even 1G in a month. My older son who is constantly streaming everything, watching videos, snap chat surfing uses about 5G a month but will use wifi when it's ap...
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How far before move-in date should I sign an apartment lease to get the best price (Boston area)
Replies: 7
Views: 836

Re: How far before move-in date should I sign an apartment lease to get the best price (Boston area)

I am a small-time landlord. My policy on renting units is simply that renting a unit is not necessarily related to living in the unit. If I have a vacancy and you want the unit today, you can start paying rent today and it is yours. OTOH if you don't want it for two months it is still for rent until...
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 22, 2019 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy Land, then build house... or Construction to Permanent?
Replies: 23
Views: 1927

Re: Buy Land, then build house... or Construction to Permanent?

Until you have built a house you may not believe this, but the closing costs are a very, very small percentage of the total costs. On a house of any normal size, you will spend/save more by going up or down one quality grade in bathroom fixtures than the difference in closing costs you are contempla...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 21, 2019 1:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Son moving to Denver from California
Replies: 47
Views: 3362

Re: Son moving to Denver from California

And a ice scraper the length of your arm. A bunch of blankets wouldn’t hurt either. Good suggestions. Every winter (mid-October) I put a sleeping bag and several types of remove-snow-from-windows devices in the car. Take them out in the Spring. If he is at all active, sooner or later he will have a...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 21, 2019 1:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement savings new research
Replies: 29
Views: 6114

Re: Retirement savings new research

...About a year ago, I came across the Cheap RV Living channel on YouTube. It's all about people who live part-time or full-time, usually the latter, in a car, van, school bus, or small RV. They do so for very little expense, with many of them living on $1k monthly or even less and many having done...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 21, 2019 12:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much money does one need to setup a private S&P 500 fund?
Replies: 114
Views: 8924

Re: How much money does one need to setup a private S&P 500 fund?

...The reason to do this is to avoid management fees. Even at .04% it adds up but not like the old days... Considering the time and effort involved I suspect one would be financially better off to just buy the index fund and devote the spare time generated to honest labor -- flipping burgers would ...
by CurlyDave
Thu Jan 17, 2019 1:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ever encountered a toxic advisor? How did you handle it?
Replies: 25
Views: 3112

Re: Ever encountered a toxic advisor? How did you handle it?

I don't know if this counts as an "advisor", but back in the mid 70s a guy came over to my house trying to sell me silver futures. I had forgotten he was coming and was out in the driveway under my car doing something greasy and dirty when he showed up. I crawled out from under the car holding a 12"...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 16, 2019 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Life transition, what's next
Replies: 25
Views: 3219

Re: Life transition, what's next

Just wanted to chime, MJT. There is absolutely nothing wrong with your scenario of part-time work at HD to keep from having to dip into the savings. From all the reading I have been doing this past year, yours is a very normal path that many take in some, if not many, of the transition years - whet...
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Biggest Investment Mistake
Replies: 164
Views: 11573

Re: Biggest Investment Mistake

Sometime in the mid-1990s I had about $150k in my 401(k) and spent a few weeks agonizing over whether to go all in on 5 shares of BRK.A which was just under $30,000/share at the time. I decided that as long as Warren Buffet was alive and well the stock would be great, but that there was a big risk w...
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Super Aggressive MF or ETFs?
Replies: 20
Views: 1142

Re: Super Aggressive MF or ETFs?

I hold:

QQQ
XBI
FFTY

Have had the QQQ for many years and the results have been just short of spectacular. XBI and FFTY are more recent additions and are slightly underwater from the recent bear market. But, I intend to stay the course.
by CurlyDave
Tue Jan 15, 2019 11:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping up with inflation?
Replies: 18
Views: 2408

Re: Keeping up with inflation?

When I was born, gas was $0.25 per gallon. Had lots of lead in it too. I once paid $0.139 per gallon. I was 21 at the time, and there was a "gas war". Not a foreign operation involving the military, but a price competition between a few stations all in the same small area. I didn't pay for gas when...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving from escrow to Savings
Replies: 6
Views: 637

Re: Moving from escrow to Savings

I gave up impound accounts for mortgages 30 years ago. Many advantages. The bid disadvantage is that mortgage companies do not like to give up the interest free money they hold and will not willingly do it on an existing loan. For a new loan or a re-finance they usually charge about 1/4% more intere...
by CurlyDave
Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping up with inflation?
Replies: 18
Views: 2408

Re: Keeping up with inflation?

When I was born, gas was $0.25 per gallon. Had lots of lead in it too. I once paid $0.139 per gallon. I was 21 at the time, and there was a "gas war". Not a foreign operation involving the military, but a price competition between a few stations all in the same small area. I didn't pay for gas when...
by CurlyDave
Sun Jan 13, 2019 2:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 5 days. What to do in Las Vegas and Grand Canyon
Replies: 48
Views: 2642

Re: 5 days. What to do in Las Vegas and Grand Canyon

Around 25 years ago I was stuck near there with an engine failure and while waiting a couple of days for parts went to visit the Grand Canyon Caverns. At the time the advertising signs made me suspect that it was the worst sort of tourist trap and I was very skeptical, but desperate for something to...
by CurlyDave
Fri Jan 11, 2019 7:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SS/Pension/etc as bond allocation?
Replies: 25
Views: 1676

Re: SS/Pension/etc as bond allocation?

OP, you've been here long enough to know... pension is income/cash flow, it has nothing to do with bonds in your portfolio... it simply means that the portfolio won't need to supply as much in your retirement ... But I have been here long enough to realize that Jack Bogle himself recommends treatin...
by CurlyDave
Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I get umbrella liability insurance?
Replies: 56
Views: 4810

Re: Should I get umbrella liability insurance?

The other thing that an umbrella policy does is it incentivizes your insurance company to provide the very best lawyers they have in the case of any lawsuit against you where they might have to pay up. Your agent may well ask a question along the lines of: "how many assets are you protecting?" and i...
by CurlyDave
Thu Jan 10, 2019 9:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Salary, Portfolio size, and Asset Allocation
Replies: 33
Views: 2821

Re: Salary, Portfolio size, and Asset Allocation

Bonds represent a contractual obligation. With few examples, salaries have no contractual guarantee. Therefore, it cannot be thought of as a bond. Human capital is its own thing, neither stock nor bond. Of course this is correct, BUT it does represent an asset class that we frequently do not take i...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for moving from urban to rural ~ real estate issues?
Replies: 10
Views: 777

Re: Advice for moving from urban to rural ~ real estate issues?

We retired to a rural area. Things to ask about: 1. High Speed Internet -- a lot of rural places are still on dial-up, or at best DSL stretched well beyond its usual distance limitations. We got less than 1 MBPS when we had DSL. Satellite is possible, but there are usage caps and huge latency. They ...
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice for moving from urban to rural ~ real estate issues?
Replies: 10
Views: 777

Re: Advice for moving from urban to rural ~ real estate issues?

123 wrote:
Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:54 pm
HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Wed Jan 09, 2019 3:19 pm
Well water and septic tank systems.

Reasons I will never live in the country.
And some of the rest of us see those as marvelous indicators of self-sufficiency and independence. We'd want those kind of places first.
+ 1
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you take inheritance into account when calculating net worth?
Replies: 68
Views: 4559

Re: Do you take inheritance into account when calculating net worth?

Someone else's money isn't yours so you can't count it as an asset. +1,000,000 thumbs up At a young age, I overheard one of my parents say "we don't have to save money for retirement; our inheritance will be our retirement." At the time, I didn't fully understand the implications of this statement....
by CurlyDave
Wed Jan 09, 2019 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to save on prescription drug costs?
Replies: 43
Views: 2722

Re: How to save on prescription drug costs?

People, can you share the names of the Canadian pharmacies you use? https://www.globalpharmacyplus.com I have used them for over 5 years with no problems. Almost all low-cost Canadian pharmacies supply drugs made in India. This has a lot to do with labor costs and how drug patents work in the Briti...