Search found 45 matches

by muddgirl
Sun Nov 11, 2018 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Doing taxes by hand
Replies: 83
Views: 4801

Re: Doing taxes by hand

I've used freefile s/w (fed, state, efile) the past few years and like OLT, it seems to offer the most leeway for a free return for more folks. But have never used the Free Fillable Forms. How does that work? --Do we download them to our PC? How do we link them together? Can we save our intermediat...
by muddgirl
Fri Nov 09, 2018 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Doing taxes by hand
Replies: 83
Views: 4801

Re: Doing taxes by hand

I have used Free Fillable Forms for the past several years. I like that it does much of the math for me but otherwise it is exactly like doing it with pencil & paper, but I can still efile. If I have a complicated situation, I can use Turbotax online for free to double-check that my understanding ag...
by muddgirl
Sun Nov 04, 2018 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?
Replies: 51
Views: 2848

Re: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?

I I pay $50 a year which is about right. On their website today they state "Billed annually at $83.99". https://www.youneedabudget.com/method/?ar_clx=yes&ar_channel=sem&ar_campaign=36195583&ar_adgroup=1420857373&ar_ad=256856340700&gclid=CjwKCAjwsfreBRB9EiwAikSUHUrStgVBJtLG2lvMyAWJU1GWkfDMDw8l2tcdFt...
by muddgirl
Sun Nov 04, 2018 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?
Replies: 51
Views: 2848

Re: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?

It seems to me like they've done one major project per year, along with regular bug fixes and smaller improvements multiple times a week, although not every project is applicable to all users. This year's project was an API which makes it possible to integrate ynab with other apps/programs like IFTT.
by muddgirl
Sun Nov 04, 2018 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?
Replies: 51
Views: 2848

Re: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?

I should have added - I also understand the objections to a subscription-based model for payment. I am also wary of them and YNAB is one of my only monthly/annual subscriptions. However, I believe that the auto import of financial data, as well as an actually functional android app, would be impossi...
by muddgirl
Sun Nov 04, 2018 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?
Replies: 51
Views: 2848

Re: Is Cloud-Based YNAB Worth It?

I never used YNAB4 beyond a trial version and started with the new YNAB subscription model. I pay $50 a year which is about right. I like that my husband and I can both use the app to check our budget, add purchases, and move money so that our budget is accurate and so that it doesn't fall on just o...
by muddgirl
Fri Nov 02, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Engineering school
Replies: 66
Views: 4840

Re: Engineering school

I am an engineer (ME) although I went to school on the west coast. I am assuming this is for undergraduate degrees. I would look for a school with a strong liberal arts requirement. I meet many engineers in my job who struggle to craft well-written documentation. There isn't a lot of room for argume...
by muddgirl
Fri Oct 26, 2018 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I get vision insurance?
Replies: 39
Views: 4052

Re: Should I get vision insurance?

I agree with others - for our family of two, getting an exam + new glasses every two years, vision insurance does not make financial sense. First of all some medical insurance plans will cover an annual eye exam. An eye exam out of pocket is around $60, or with vision insurance it is $10-$25. Then t...
by muddgirl
Mon Oct 22, 2018 11:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shouldn't Fridays be higher than average due to 401k contributions?
Replies: 44
Views: 3216

Re: Shouldn't Fridays be higher than average due to 401k contributions?

There is very little federal regulation on how long custodians have between withholding 401k contributions and depositing them into the employees 401k account. I looked into this last year because my employer's payroll service/401k custodian took 7 business days from payday to depositing it into my ...
by muddgirl
Sat Oct 06, 2018 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY air purifier for $25
Replies: 13
Views: 1507

Re: DIY air purifier for $25

I have been running this style of DIY filter for a few years in my bedroom. My first iteration just placed the filter against the fan intake. The fan recently started making a loud bearing noise; putting a restriction on the fan intake makes the fan work harder. I recently picked up a 20" box fan fo...
by muddgirl
Wed Oct 03, 2018 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sold Home - 2 days after buyer claims they found an issue with A/C
Replies: 119
Views: 11957

Re: Sold Home - 2 days after buyer claims they found an issue with A/C

When we bought our first house the A/C went out within the first week. It didn't even occur to us to bother the seller! We knew from our home inspection that the unit was nearly 15 years old and it was factored into the price. I think the buyer got taken for a ride by a shady HVAC contractor and the...
by muddgirl
Fri Jul 20, 2018 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?
Replies: 62
Views: 3791

Re: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?

I want to add that Scam Texts are also a thing, although more rare, and they can be reported if you are a customer of a major carrier : If you are an AT&T, T-Mobile, Verizon, Sprint or Bell subscriber, you can report spam texts to your carrier by copying the original message and forwarding it to the...
by muddgirl
Thu Jul 19, 2018 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?
Replies: 62
Views: 3791

Re: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?

There are two departments you should report calls to, especially if you or a loved one has lost money from the scam. One is the Treasury Inspector General and the other is the FTC . I think it's important to report if possible to help the government track these guys down. There was a big internation...
by muddgirl
Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do normal people afford the Bay Area?
Replies: 48
Views: 5530

Re: How do normal people afford the Bay Area?

The more I think about this topic, the funnier it is. "Why would anyone want to live in the SF Bay Area? Rich people pay too much in taxes, and there are so many rich people that middle class people can't afford to live there!"
by muddgirl
Fri Jul 06, 2018 5:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do normal people afford the Bay Area?
Replies: 48
Views: 5530

Re: How do normal people afford the Bay Area?

I think like most recent discourse about Silicon Valley, this is quite hyperbolic. $200k is more than twice the median household income in most cities in SF Bay Area. It is easy to look at the outliers which get a lot of press and think that is the average. As for state taxes, California has the mos...
by muddgirl
Tue Jul 03, 2018 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Transporting bikes with an SUV?
Replies: 38
Views: 2041

Re: Transporting bikes with an SUV?

We bought a hitch mount for $50 from U-Haul. There was a mixup with the hardware package, but once they got us the correct bolts it was very easy to install. On recommendations from the pilot forum, we borrowed a thread chasing kit and a torque wrench from Autozone for proper installation. With the ...
by muddgirl
Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone Tried Youtube TV Yet?
Replies: 42
Views: 4316

Re: Anyone Tried Youtube TV Yet?

We cut the cord a few years ago and lived with antenna+online streaming services. This year we switched from antenna to YouTube tv when we moved to a stucco'd rental house that defeated our antenna. The channel lineup is great for sports and I love that I get local channels. Beyond that it is hit or...
by muddgirl
Thu Jun 28, 2018 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???
Replies: 81
Views: 7174

Re: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???

I typically only use airb&b to book whole units or sometimes guest/carriage houses on an owner's property, and so I don't see it as competing with hotel stays. I see it as competing with resort condo rentals or VRBO. It would be interesting if anyone on boglehead uses airb&b for its original functio...
by muddgirl
Thu Jun 28, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???
Replies: 81
Views: 7174

Re: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???

Int resting? What area? I mainly goto Florida and San Diego beaches. One example in Memphis. I put in a random July date. But if you go back one screen to the listings page, the price displayed for this rental would be $99 per night because AirB&B includes the cleaning fee so that you are making a ...
by muddgirl
Wed Jun 27, 2018 10:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???
Replies: 81
Views: 7174

Re: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???

Additionally, AirB&B does include the cleaning fee in the price shown when you are browsing listings, and it shows both other fees on the listing page itself along with the total price for the requested length of stay.
by muddgirl
Wed Jun 27, 2018 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???
Replies: 81
Views: 7174

Re: Airbnb - cleaning fee, service fee, occupancy fee....???

My understanding is that the cleaning fee is set by the owner, the service fee is set by Airb&b, and the occupancy tax is set by the owner's local authority for short term rentals. It should be the same tax that you pay for a hotel room (which they also wait to disclose until you are on the booking ...
by muddgirl
Fri Jun 15, 2018 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I am STUNNED over how much help my friends recieved with house purchase!
Replies: 47
Views: 4207

Re: I am STUNNED over how much help my friends recieved with house purchase!

I bought my first home in a LCOL area with help from my in-laws. I had maybe $10k saved up for a down payment after 5 years of working, and my spouse who was starting a (funded) PhD program had $10k saved up from bits and bobs during school (graduation gifts, inheritance, etc). His parents gifted us...
by muddgirl
Fri May 25, 2018 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When did this start?? [Restaurant tipping on total bill]
Replies: 58
Views: 4337

Re: When did this start??

At the mon and pop pace my daughter worked with counter service only, the owner kept 100% of tip jar. That's illegal but unfortunately no employee is going to complain. What they can do is mandate to their employees how the tip jar is divided, but owners and supervisors can't be part of the tip poo...
by muddgirl
Fri May 18, 2018 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: prearranged funeral plans-Neptune Society
Replies: 10
Views: 1111

Re: prearranged funeral plans-Neptune Society

I have no first-hand experience (yet) but I have heard good recommendations for the local chapters of the non-profit Funeral Consumers Alliance. Here is the website of their national organization: https://funerals.org. My local chapter offers pre-negotiated rates for direct cremation or simple buria...
by muddgirl
Tue May 15, 2018 12:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I working with the wrong realtor?
Replies: 22
Views: 2926

Re: Am I working with the wrong realtor?

When I was a first-time homebuyer, I found this guide to be very helpful and thorough . Real estate is extremely local. What is usual in one city could be strange and off-putting in another, so it is difficult to get good advice online. I know that when I sold my house and I accepted the buyers offe...
by muddgirl
Mon May 07, 2018 11:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When to buy new underwear?
Replies: 86
Views: 7019

Re: When to buy new underwear?

This must be one of those family traditions passed down as law, like the woman who cuts off the ends of the roast to fit her grandmother's pan. If I only had two pairs of underwear (one to wear while the other is washed and drying), they'd certainly wear out faster. But I have at least a week's wort...
by muddgirl
Wed Apr 11, 2018 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Help completing the TN state tax return]
Replies: 73
Views: 3058

Re: Why is TurboTax saying I need to file multiple state tax returns?

When I have done partial year resident returns in the past, I look at it from a cash basis perspective (don't know if I'm using that term right). I make a spreadsheet showing the date of receipt of income, interest, dividends, capital gains, etc. Then I can divide it between the dates I was in one s...
by muddgirl
Thu Mar 29, 2018 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Correcting an ineliglble Roth IRA contribution
Replies: 2
Views: 276

Re: Correcting an ineliglble Roth IRA contribution

Have you looked into the rules for Solo 401(k) or SEP IRA? Do you qualify for either of these? Or can you have your contract restructured so that you do comply? Other options are (1) HSA - I don't think you need earned income to contribute to an HSA, (2) Tax-efficient investing in taxable accounts, ...
by muddgirl
Wed Mar 28, 2018 11:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?
Replies: 247
Views: 16430

Re: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?

I eat leftovers with rice for lunch. This is another great point. Someone else in this thread calculated that $1200 a month is "only" $6 per person per meal if you cook three meals a day, but my husband and I don't cook three meals a day. We normally eat a cold breakfast (which costs $6 per person ...
by muddgirl
Wed Mar 28, 2018 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?
Replies: 247
Views: 16430

Re: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?

Organic/non-GMO meat is expensive. We shop almost entirely at Trader Joe's and we eat on average 1 meat dish per week. Our grocery bill for two people is about $100 weekly. Now we don't always buy the organic produce so to upgrade to organic, let's add $20 per bill. That's still half your budget. Ea...
by muddgirl
Fri Mar 23, 2018 10:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Married filing Separately Roth IRA help
Replies: 12
Views: 1146

Re: Married filing Separately Roth IRA help

The tax bill ended the ability to recharacterize Roth conversions back to traditional IRAs, but I believe it is still allowed to recharacterize a contribution.
by muddgirl
Mon Mar 12, 2018 9:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody use Lemonade Homeowner's Insurance?
Replies: 22
Views: 2434

Re: Anybody use Lemonade Homeowner's Insurance?

I have just signed up for Lemonade for renter's insurance, but I don't think I would have made the same decision for homeowners insurance. I could quite easily "self-insure" all of my home goods but I am required to have renters insurance per my lease so premium cost is very important. I have never ...
by muddgirl
Wed Feb 28, 2018 3:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Carrier Switch Advice From AT&T To?
Replies: 9
Views: 604

Re: Cell Carrier Switch Advice From AT&T To?

Even AT&T's pre-paid account (used to be called GoPhone) is only $45 per month for 6 GB of data, $60 per month for "unlimited" data. It is $5 per month cheaper if you sign up for autopay but I get a bigger discount by using an online calling card broker. Even at the $60 per month level you'll make u...
by muddgirl
Mon Feb 19, 2018 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which states are similar to NJ in the sense that they do not allow one to deduct contributions to 403b, 457, TSP, etc?
Replies: 16
Views: 2509

Re: Which states are similar to NJ in the sense that they do not allow one to deduct contributions to 403b, 457, TSP, et

I live in PA. My understanding is that PA taxes contributions to 401k, traditional IRA, TSP, etc etc. However, they do not tax qualified distributions. This means that you could get double-taxed if you contribute in PA and retire in another state, or you could pay zero state taxes if you contribute ...
by muddgirl
Tue Feb 06, 2018 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [New MA & VT Tax reporting]- 1099-K threshold reduced to $600
Replies: 105
Views: 7967

Re: [New MA & VT Tax reporting]- 1099-K threshold reduced to $600

I read the link to the general faqs provided, but- 1). The faqs state that one is only to receive a 1099-K if one has over 200 transaction and over $20,000 in transaction receipts- Does this preclude me from reporting any of these transactions, even though the MA DOR does? It seems because MA DOR h...
by muddgirl
Tue Feb 06, 2018 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [New MA & VT Tax reporting]- 1099-K threshold reduced to $600
Replies: 105
Views: 7967

Re: [New MA & VT Tax reporting]- 1099-K threshold reduced to $600

General FAQs on Payment Card and Third Party Network Transactions " I received Form 1099-K. How do I report it on my tax return? Separate reporting of these transactions is not required. However, you should follow the return instructions on the form you are completing to report your gross receipts ...
by muddgirl
Mon Feb 05, 2018 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [New MA & VT Tax reporting]- 1099-K threshold reduced to $600
Replies: 105
Views: 7967

Re: New to me tax issue - Paypal 1099-k for selling personal property

On schedule C, under "Part I Income" in the mini worksheet for gross receipts/sales, line C asks for the total from Forms 1099-K. So my concern is if I just ignore it I'm going to get an audit letter. I'm curious as to what mini-worksheet you are talking about. I don't see one on the 2017 schedule ...
by muddgirl
Fri Jan 26, 2018 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Help Joint vs Separate
Replies: 18
Views: 1047

Re: Tax Help Joint vs Separate

You cannot deduct student loan interest if you file separate, along with a host of other restrictions.
by muddgirl
Tue Jan 16, 2018 1:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Wife's 2017 roth ira contribution: joint after-tax income OK?
Replies: 2
Views: 268

Re: Wife's 2017 roth ira contribution: joint after-tax income OK?

Yes you've got it. This is called the Spousal IRA or Kay Bailey Hutchinson IRA.
by muddgirl
Thu Jan 11, 2018 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poll: BHs who rent - what % of gross do you spend on rent?
Replies: 84
Views: 6270

Re: Poll: BHs who rent - what % of gross do you spend on rent?

11% - two incomes, no kids, renting a 3 BR 1.5 BA rowhouse in a rust belt city. Anecdotally we are paying lower than average rent for our area because we live in a home that has not had significant upgrades since the 1950s. That means no dishwasher and no central air. If we lived in an upgraded mult...
by muddgirl
Wed Sep 27, 2017 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finding a Driver
Replies: 26
Views: 3678

Re: Finding a Driver

I think that there are very few drivers who would agree to do this through the Uber/Lyft app: (1) it may be against their contract with the car hiring service (2) they will be getting paid Uber rates but will be missing out on fares. However, it is normal to meet a good driver, get their card if the...
by muddgirl
Sun Jan 29, 2017 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Parents as dependents on tax return
Replies: 54
Views: 3984

Re: Parents as dependents on tax return

It sounds like you are confused because you think that you report both your income and your dependents income on the same tax return. I don't think that's ever true. Dependents still file their own tax return when they are required to or when they want to get a refund. But you will list them as a de...
by muddgirl
Wed Jan 04, 2017 4:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to calculate the IRA Deduction Limits
Replies: 17
Views: 1427

Re: How to calculate the IRA Deduction Limits

If you are covered but your spouse is NOT they can contribute fully and you can do a Roth. Which is what we do, Less complicated If one person is covered but their spouse is not, both people have a phaseout range, but the spouse's is higher - from $184-194k. Source: https://www.irs.gov/retirement-p...
by muddgirl
Thu Aug 25, 2016 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Problem-Solving as a Business
Replies: 4
Views: 814

Re: Problem-Solving as a Business

I worked for a large R&D firm that did this kind of thing as part of their business. Usually for much larger businesses (IE, we were the "little guy" who helped out a GE or a Toyota or a municipal electric company), but it can work on a smaller scale too. The trick is to go into a meeting with one t...
by muddgirl
Wed Aug 17, 2016 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help. My boss is expecting me to read her mind.
Replies: 53
Views: 5404

Re: Help. My boss is expecting me to read her mind.

I worked for many years as a government contractor. A few years ago there was a new policy and we had to start spelling out or defining all "uncommon" abbreviations on expense reports. Yes, "uncommon" is poorly defined. Yes, there is little room on an expense report. But a policy is a policy. Here a...