Search found 185 matches

by ReadyOrNot
Mon Nov 12, 2018 2:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can you suggest where to live if work at UCLA
Replies: 27
Views: 2084

Re: Can you suggest where to live if work at UCLA

I am mystified how anyone who works for a living could afford to buy a house near UCLA. Anyway, renting first is a good idea to become familiar with the area. Surely their recruitment or employment info packet includes some helpful information. The student housing office has informative neighborhood...
by ReadyOrNot
Thu Nov 08, 2018 3:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where can I go to print a very high-quality book?
Replies: 14
Views: 921

Re: Where can I go to print a very high-quality book?

I don't know if universities still keep printed versions either, but when they did, they generally all had a printing service which could handle the printing and binding of archival copies of theses and dissertations. I don't remember the details, because they could take care of all the details. I t...
by ReadyOrNot
Sun Nov 04, 2018 2:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: AA with Bonds & Defined Benefit Pension(s)
Replies: 10
Views: 780

Re: AA with Bonds & Defined Benefit Pension(s)

Most people worry more about what rate they can safely withdraw and if it is enough to cover their expenses. But if your pension will cover your expenses, you don't have to worry about it at all. So you should be able to use any asset allocation with minimal worry. Just make it whatever will allow y...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Oct 30, 2018 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calculating ROI for PhD
Replies: 86
Views: 4737

Re: Calculating ROI for PhD

When I went back full-time for a PhD, I knew it didn't make sense financially. But I figured I would never be satisfied if I didn't go for it. Also I actually wanted to do research and teach. As it turned out, I never did get into teaching or research, and it took me excessive years to finish.(Also ...
by ReadyOrNot
Thu Oct 25, 2018 3:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: In retirement, when do you stop withdrawing from stocks in a downturn?
Replies: 141
Views: 9233

Re: In retirement, when do you stop withdrawing from stocks in a downturn?

Perhaps it would ease your mind if you pictured the sequence as: Withdraw what you need from your most cash-like liquid asset. Then re-balance your assets to the desired allocation. Now instead of this, you can calculate what would have been the equivalent total changes, and make those in one step i...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Oct 23, 2018 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: "The market always comes back"
Replies: 20
Views: 4022

Re: "The market always comes back"

Isn't this concern mostly what the "age in bonds" suggested guideline (and its variations) supposed to address? You may not agree with "age in bonds", but at least it should make you consider something like it to adapt to the time you have.
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Oct 23, 2018 4:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: So...what’s Plan B [for your retirement security]?
Replies: 32
Views: 3512

Re: So...what’s Plan B [for your retirement security]?

I think the question was what to do if the 4% rule (or something close to it) failed. I think I do not depend on a rule like that. I should be able to live on my meager Social Security. So everything else is for extras. If I lose everything, I would have to do without any extras. If expenses blew up...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Oct 15, 2018 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relocation to California
Replies: 49
Views: 4243

Re: Relocation to California

Previous advice to rent in person is good. Lots of good and bad neighborhoods mixed together, and extreme trade-off in traffic and commute time vs. good or affordable neighborhoods. You have to be there to experience it to understand what will work for you.
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Oct 12, 2018 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lost Power for 24 hours - what food to toss?
Replies: 49
Views: 3514

Re: Lost Power for 24 hours - what food to toss?

I thought if you did not open your refrigerator or freezer doors, most refrigerators were supposed to keep the food cold for 24 hrs. I guess you should be able to tell if your frozen food thawed or not.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed Sep 26, 2018 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Someone stole my check from the mail, changed the amount, and deposited it
Replies: 61
Views: 7924

Re: Someone stole my check from the mail, changed the amount, and deposited it

Some pens are sold as particularly good for signing documents because their ink is supposed to be resistant to washing from paper fibers. Some of them may have gel ink. But not all gel inks are permanent.
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Sep 21, 2018 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Out of network care
Replies: 96
Views: 7288

Re: Out of network care

Basically Kaiser only gives (and covers) care through its own network except for emergencies. You can ask them if they have anything in an area you intend to visit. Before Group Health became part of Kaiser they were similar. They did have some kind of arrangement with Kaiser so if you happened to b...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Sep 21, 2018 4:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: For those who use a 2 year cash(like) buffer, how do you know when to use it?
Replies: 67
Views: 5656

Re: For those who use a 2 year cash(like) buffer, how do you know when to use it?

I think you got it.
The usual method is the cash is part of the asset allocation. It's the most liquid part, so it is natural to spend from it. Then it can be replenished with rebalancing. Or maybe it didn't need replenishing if all other assets were reduced more.
by ReadyOrNot
Sun Sep 16, 2018 5:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I "buying high" if I transfer stable value funds over to stock index fund now?
Replies: 26
Views: 1935

Re: Am I "buying high" if I transfer stable value funds over to stock index fund now?

It's no big deal that you sat out of the markets for a few months during a turbulent time in your financial life. If you had a sudden windfall it would have been considered fine. You missed a few months of whatever happened in the market, but you made no big mistakes and had no losses. Now you have ...
by ReadyOrNot
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax-exempt interest to reduce IRMAA?
Replies: 15
Views: 963

Tax-exempt interest to reduce IRMAA?

I always just tried to maximize interest income and just paid the income tax, so I am not familiar with tax-exempt interest. But now that I am aware of higher Medicare IRMAA with higher income, it may just be simpler to try to minimize the federal taxes and IRMAA. If I just move most of my taxable s...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Sep 04, 2018 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase savings question
Replies: 6
Views: 832

Re: Chase savings question

Don't know. But doesn't the monthly statement have a page telling you the conditions for avoiding charges and which ones you met that month? ( I think that is the case for checking accounts at least.) And since the interest rate is almost zero, could you just replace your savings account with a seco...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Sep 04, 2018 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Establishing residency after relocation
Replies: 14
Views: 773

Re: Establishing residency after relocation

As someone else already posted, Washington answers for you -- the state requires you to get driver and vehicle licenses right away. With no income tax, they don't want to waste any time collecting the associated taxes and fees. You can register to vote when you get your driver's license, on the same...
by ReadyOrNot
Sat Sep 01, 2018 4:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Complete Beginner Advice
Replies: 26
Views: 2146

Re: Complete Beginner Advice

Somewhat confusing. You have a $5500 annual limit on how much you can contribute to an IRA, for new contributions. Transfers or rollovers from existing retirement accounts don't count in that annual limit. There is an annual income limit for Roth IRA or for tax-deductible contributions for tradition...
by ReadyOrNot
Sat Sep 01, 2018 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The twenty dollar rule
Replies: 44
Views: 3944

Re: The twenty dollar rule

pondering only said spouse must tell him, not that it should stop her. This should work if you record what she tells you, as well as your major expenditures. Then you evaluate your recorded information and decide if your system "works" i.e. are you getting enough information about what you are spend...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Aug 28, 2018 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend a good SOCK. Yes, I said SOCK!
Replies: 48
Views: 4057

Re: Recommend a good SOCK. Yes, I said SOCK!

Strange that you didn't see Gildan socks at Walmart. Maybe they were out of stock. I thought they normally stock them. As someone else posted, you can get them online from Walmart. I think they are pushing in-store delivery these days, so you should be able to order them and get them at your local s...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Aug 27, 2018 11:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unexpected Tax Underpayment - When and how should I pay?
Replies: 23
Views: 1708

Re: Unexpected Tax Underpayment - When and how should I pay?

Seems simple enough to pay the estimated extra tax on the extra income for this quarter before the deadline for this quarter. Then you probably won't owe any penalty. If you make a mistake, the penalty should be small. If you miss the deadline by a few days, the penalty is some interest on those few...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Aug 27, 2018 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you calculate net worth with pensions?
Replies: 105
Views: 6777

Re: How do you calculate net worth with pensions?

My suggestion: Suppose you want to know how much you have to make an all-cash offer to buy a house. If you convert everything you have to cash, and subtract out your costs and liabilities, how much cash can you put up? If you can't cash out your pension, don't count it. If you might be able to find ...
by ReadyOrNot
Sun Aug 26, 2018 2:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Calculating the average combined return of several mutual funds?
Replies: 5
Views: 363

Re: Calculating the average combined return of several mutual funds?

Generally you use the weighted average to combine things. Multiply the return of each fund by its proportional "weight", then add. I.e. if you add just the proportional weights together, the total is 1. By using these proportions you don't need to divide. This isn't exactly right because the individ...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free Tire Change of Flat
Replies: 21
Views: 1753

Re: Free Tire Change of Flat

If you don't have a spare, they just tow. There's a good chance the tow operator may damage the low pressure sensor (if it is not already damaged) which may cost more than a small tire.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted
Replies: 26
Views: 2184

Re: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted

Family-friendly areas with low crime and good schools. Glendale has a good reputation for cities of that size. Northern Glendale and La Crescenta are nice but farther and less accessible than parts near downtown. Other good areas near light rail link to downtown LA could be good. Consider within wal...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 4% rule .. but when?
Replies: 35
Views: 4316

Re: 4% rule .. but when?

I like the idea of taking a reasonable fixed percentage of the balance, slightly smaller than the expected average return as a guideline. 4% is reasonable for a balanced portfolio. It would last indefinitely. It would work if you can live with the fluctuations. It would be less when your balance shr...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Watch winder that does not require strap?
Replies: 3
Views: 404

Re: Watch winder that does not require strap?

Or a wrist-size sweatband or Velcro strap or wrist wallet.
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Dollar Tree Store" favorites
Replies: 84
Views: 6881

Re: "Dollar Tree Store" favorites

Toilet paper (made in USA, by the way. And these fit the old toilet tissue roll fixtures in old houses. For some reason, only cheap toilet tissue comes in rolls with diameters small enough. I am not going to update bathroom fixtures to accommodate current oversize rolls if I can help it. The dollar ...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Jul 31, 2018 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Internal Transfer (not Geographic) - being recruited from within
Replies: 1
Views: 203

Re: Internal Transfer (not Geographic) - being recruited from within

Seems like a normal thing to do at a big company. At my former employers, no one took offense at someone moving to better or different positions internally.
Sometimes a position which looks better turns out not to be as advertised or what you expected, but that's life. Don't burn any bridges.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Verifying that IRS has processed my estimated tax?
Replies: 27
Views: 9823

Re: Verifying that IRS has processed my estimated tax?

It just like paying a bill. You can go to EFTPS each time you want to pay. You tell it how much you want the payment to be, and when, each time.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed Jul 25, 2018 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any brick and mortar banks/CUs paying close to online rates?
Replies: 11
Views: 1286

Re: Any brick and mortar banks/CUs paying close to online rates?

I had a credit union for employees of my employer which tried to pay high interest to savers. I left that employer, but kept the account although the nearest branch was 30 miles, now 1100 miles away. They currently pay competitive rates. They are members of a credit union network which has reciproca...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Jul 10, 2018 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retirement location and things to consider
Replies: 12
Views: 1774

Re: Retirement location and things to consider

Trying out places on vacation is a good idea. Also renting for a while before you buy. Don't give up your low property tax until you are sure. Rain or cloudiness all the time is a big change from sunny all the time. Some people like it, not everyone. Note that if you are east of the mountains in the...
by ReadyOrNot
Wed Jul 04, 2018 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just divide what you've got by what you'll spend??
Replies: 21
Views: 3023

Re: Just divide what you've got by what you'll spend??

Sure, it's a rough estimate. If you need to spend $40k and you have $1 million, you get 25 years. Most people here say starting with a 4% withdrawal rate and increasing with inflation, you are safe to have it last 30 years. So you would be more conservative by about 20%. (Or is it 17%?) But there ar...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Jun 25, 2018 2:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help! Late Saver Approaching Retirement
Replies: 24
Views: 1650

Re: Help! Late Saver Approaching Retirement

I guess if you are in California, your property tax may still be low if you bought long ago. So that might make you reluctant to sell and move, to pay new property tax. Still you should consider moving to a lower cost home; compare costs. Most other retirees with CA homes probably end up selling. Fr...
by ReadyOrNot
Sun Jun 24, 2018 11:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does a guaranteed income stream affect stock/bond ratio?
Replies: 21
Views: 2227

Re: How does a guaranteed income stream affect stock/bond ratio?

The previously posted view that if the guaranteed income is greater than the needed income, you can invest in any way you want is probably the closest to a Boglehead view. The optimum is probably as much in stocks as what lets you sleep well and stay the course through any future downturn, to maximi...
by ReadyOrNot
Thu Jun 21, 2018 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What does it mean: Rule No. 1: Never lose money
Replies: 75
Views: 7347

Re: What does it mean: Rule No. 1: Never lose money

I can't say what someone really means, but you can phrase this rule so it seems to make sense, and seems to be consistent with what Mr. Buffett appears to do and Boglehead advice: Invest in such a way that you will never have to sell at a loss. That would mean investing for the long haul, in quality...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Jun 18, 2018 12:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: One handed Android phone?
Replies: 38
Views: 2069

Re: One handed Android phone?

Why isn't a generic Android phone with 5" touchscreen a one-handed phone? I do use a stylus because I can't hit precise points with a finger.
Anyway, the phones are less than 3" wide, so could probably be manipulated using a thumb while laying on the fingers of the same hand.
by ReadyOrNot
Sun Jun 17, 2018 1:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you read books?
Replies: 34
Views: 3356

Re: How do you read books?

A professor once pointed out that grad students and effective learners spent a lot more time reading the preface, introduction, and table of contents than undergrads (who often ignored those sections). A rapid reading book also recommended doing this kind of pre-reading as well. The author tries to ...
by ReadyOrNot
Tue Jun 12, 2018 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Imagine a 10 year, 0%, noncallable loan
Replies: 49
Views: 3361

Re: Imagine a 10 year, 0%, noncallable loan

Effectively, you are asking what would be the cost of a 10-year mortgage based on the total payments you would need to make. Say you want the total of the payments to be 100,000. You go backwards to find out how much loan you need at the beginning. Suppose you needed to take out a 49,000 mortgage to...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Jun 11, 2018 8:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Left Advisory Portfolio to do it myself and fear I made mess of things
Replies: 35
Views: 2968

Re: Left Advisory Portfolio to do it myself and fear I made mess of things

You can look at the advisory portfolios on www.401411.com/att for reasonable examples of how to get close to recommended index funds in your 401K. The low-cost stock index fund which is mostly large cap stocks is close enough to SP500 which is close enough to the total stock market index for all pra...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon Jun 11, 2018 2:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to convince my co-worker to invest more?
Replies: 47
Views: 3682

Re: How to convince my co-worker to invest more?

Ask what percentage Social Security takes, and if your co-worker thinks Social Security, thought to provide a decent return if it were considered an equivalent investment and insurance, will provide a good enough retirement. If not, wouldn't you want to save and invest at a somewhat higher rate than...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Jun 01, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any aerospace engineers? Pros v. cons of working for NASA v. private sector
Replies: 50
Views: 5007

Re: Any aerospace engineers? Pros v. cons of working for NASA v. private sector

The aerospace industry is extremely cyclical. Sometimes it is hard to hire engineers, and sometimes there are mass layoffs. So if there are great opportunities now, I couldn't advise against them. When times were bad, lots of students coming out of school, with BS, MS, or PhD, couldn't get jobs in t...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Jun 01, 2018 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I think I made an Traditional IRA mistake- Can it be fixed?
Replies: 60
Views: 3915

Re: I think I made an Traditional IRA mistake- Can it be fixed?

Yes, it sounds like the original poster is confused about how you contribute to a traditional IRA. Nobody has some source of untaxed dollars to deposit into an untaxed traditional IRA. Everybody just makes a deposit to a traditional IRA from whatever funds you have available (probably originally fro...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Instant oatmeal vs "regular" oatmeal
Replies: 88
Views: 12105

Re: Instant oatmeal vs "regular" oatmeal

Back to the original question, if you actually have "quick" oats which look almost the same as regular oats, rather than ground-up instant oats: If you just undercook the quick oats a little, they aren't that much different from regular oats. Even the glycemic index should be lower with undercooking...
by ReadyOrNot
Fri Jun 01, 2018 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheap options for retirement?
Replies: 17
Views: 2661

Re: Cheap options for retirement?

Seems like you are projecting reaching retirement age with close to the median projected American retirement savings. So if you are willing to move to a low-cost-of-living area, you should be at least as well-off as the majority of Americans, whether you stay in the US or not. Plenty of people live ...
by ReadyOrNot
Sat May 19, 2018 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What’s your phone/internet bill?
Replies: 92
Views: 6913

Re: What’s your phone/internet bill?

$35/mo for pre-paid smart phone "unlimited talk/text/data with 5Gb of data using 4G" (plus 10% state sales tax + $1 for some oddball state tax for cellular 911 cost using pre-paid phone cards; don't know if I will be able to avoid tax by paying another way).
No other phone or internet connection.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed May 16, 2018 12:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there a boglehead muscle car?
Replies: 140
Views: 9703

Re: Is there a boglehead muscle car?

For straight-ahead performance, the Toyota Prius was an economical choice which people tried out after hearing (years ago) that Al Gore's son (also named Al Gore) had been caught speeding over 100 mph in a Prius. It became known that it's top speed, well over 100 mph, was actually software-limited t...
by ReadyOrNot
Wed May 16, 2018 12:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a <median household save 1 year of expenses every year?
Replies: 158
Views: 9880

Re: Can a <median household save 1 year of expenses every year?

At the tail end of the Great Recession, I remember being laid off and spending considerably less than unemployment benefits. I must have been saving at least as much as my expenses. I guess I didn't feel like spending much. I did not have any mortgage or car payments. Pre-ACA very high deductible he...
by ReadyOrNot
Wed May 09, 2018 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 36" or 42" wide Refrigerator?
Replies: 33
Views: 3185

Re: 36" or 42" wide Refrigerator?

Since refrigerators have to get replaced, it's nice to have the space it sits in be a bit more than required by the particular refrigerator you get now.
by ReadyOrNot
Wed May 09, 2018 1:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed dollar bond allocation
Replies: 6
Views: 1008

Re: Fixed dollar bond allocation

There are many ways to look at it. I think most people would say the risk doesn't change as you get older, but your tolerance for risk goes down, since you have less time to recover. Many people consider risk to be determined by asset allocation percentages, but many instead consider safety to be gi...
by ReadyOrNot
Mon May 07, 2018 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $1 State income tax refund from CA - Why?
Replies: 9
Views: 1621

Re: $1 State income tax refund from CA - Why?

Suppose you can't use the tax table and must calculate your tax with a formula which is not an even number of dollars. Do you round that and the amount of payments you made over the year (also not an even number of dollars), and find the difference between the two rounded amounts? Or do you calculat...