Search found 67 matches

by stevekozak2
Mon May 27, 2019 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment OVER ! New job dilemma
Replies: 32
Views: 4096

Re: Unemployment OVER ! New job dilemma

I don't have any advice to give, I just wanted to offer you congratulations on getting employed again!! Whichever job you chose, it will be great for you to start stacking assets again!! Congratulations and Good Luck!!
by stevekozak2
Mon May 27, 2019 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Too many eggs in one basket?
Replies: 43
Views: 5031

Re: Too many eggs in one basket?

Your spending on lifestyle consumption is incredible. In my humble opinion, not sure why you are even flirting with mortgage debt at this income level. Just be done with debt, you don’t need it. The margin trading and your willingness to do it again tomorrow scares the absolute heck of of me if I’m...
by stevekozak2
Mon May 27, 2019 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Too many eggs in one basket?
Replies: 43
Views: 5031

Re: Too many eggs in one basket?

Not knowing the details of where exactly you work or how stable your employment is, I would advise the following: 1) Build some kind of emergency fund, mostly to guard against the psychological pain of job loss or downsizing. Don't touch it except for medical emergencies or to keep your house out o...
by stevekozak2
Sat May 25, 2019 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PTO -- use it, or cash it out?
Replies: 23
Views: 3371

Re: PTO -- use it, or cash it out?

One thing to consider is taxes. In the agency I work for, if you cash out equivalent PTO, it is taxed at a bonus rate, so not as much comes home. So, $600 payout becomes, after the government is through with it, more like $350. But the money is not actually taxed at a higher rate, correct? That che...
by stevekozak2
Fri May 24, 2019 6:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PTO -- use it, or cash it out?
Replies: 23
Views: 3371

Re: PTO -- use it, or cash it out?

One thing to consider is taxes. In the agency I work for, if you cash out equivalent PTO, it is taxed at a bonus rate, so not as much comes home. So, $600 payout becomes, after the government is through with it, more like $350. It comes back around at tax time, but the immediate value is not there. ...
by stevekozak2
Fri May 24, 2019 6:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finance depreciating asset?
Replies: 22
Views: 1769

Re: Finance depreciating asset?

I am against financing depreciating assets, but am very curious as to what $100,000 car you are wanting to buy. :?:
by stevekozak2
Tue May 21, 2019 6:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Is an emergency just mental accounting?
Replies: 70
Views: 5885

Re: Is an emergency just mental accounting?

For me, once I put something in my "retirement" bucket, I don't like to withdraw from it. That would mess up my spreadsheets showing how much my money has grown over the years. If I have to pull 5 grand from "retirement" money to buy an new air conditioner, that just feels wrong. So yeah, maybe jus...
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take Loan for house or not
Replies: 12
Views: 1263

Re: Take Loan for house or not

Just pay cash and be done, in my opinion. You don't want to invest the money anyways (which I am against anyways). Take the known. Invest your income.
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Now or One More Year?
Replies: 40
Views: 4862

Re: Now or One More Year?

My financial brain says you should work another year and get that car paid off and that house as paid down as possible. Going into retirement with debt is a not a great idea. On the other hand, your family's history of lack of longevity steers me into the other direction completely. Live while you c...
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question
Replies: 6
Views: 530

Re: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question

You didn't ask, but have you read this to help you decide whether to contribute to the Roth or Traditional 457 options? https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Traditional_versus_Roth I think I read that a few years back when I was getting ready to invest in an IRA. I will certainly read it again, though. ...
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question
Replies: 6
Views: 530

Re: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question

My agency offers a Deferred Compensation Plan 457. There are the options of traditional and Roth 457. I have a Roth IRA through Vanguard that I am maxing out every year. Will making contributions to the Roth 457 affect my being able to max out the Roth IRA, or can I contribute the $6000 to the Roth...
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question
Replies: 6
Views: 530

Re: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question

student wrote:
Sun May 19, 2019 9:48 am
457 does not affect your Roth IRA contribution. Please make sure that you 457 is governmental. (I suspect that it is since you use the word agency.)
Thank you. Yes, I work for a government agency. I noticed the errors in my title and post. I have corrected those. :oops:
by stevekozak2
Sun May 19, 2019 9:44 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question
Replies: 6
Views: 530

Deferred Comp 457 Plan Question

My agency offers a Deferred Compensation Plan 457. There are the options of traditional and Roth 457. I have a Roth IRA through Vanguard that I am maxing out every year. Will making contributions to the Roth 457 affect my being able to max out the Roth IRA, or can I contribute the $6000 to the Roth ...
by stevekozak2
Mon May 13, 2019 5:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Move out or stay at my parents?
Replies: 70
Views: 5010

Re: Move out or stay at my parents?

To everyone I live in a higher cost area (southwestern ct) I’m newly single and got out of a long term relationship so that was a huge reason I thought of moving out. Say I want to bring a girl over...I definitely could over my parents but I wouldn’t want to introduce her especially if it’s new..th...
by stevekozak2
Sat May 11, 2019 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Disability: Fibromyalgia
Replies: 31
Views: 3674

Re: Social Security Disability: Fibromyalgia

It will be very difficult to get disability for fibromyalgia. My sister-in-law had a chordoma. After her first brain surgery, she had an injury to her cranial nerve (III) that left her unable to see properly and open her left eye. She had difficulty walking due to severe dizziness and was unable to...
by stevekozak2
Sat May 11, 2019 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage or Pay Cash
Replies: 21
Views: 2261

Re: Mortgage or Pay Cash

I would hate to take on $375000 in debt at age 60 and retiring. If I were him ( all assuming he really needs such an expensive house at all) I would buy it outright cash and not have the worry of debt that he has to pay 4% on (equaling about another $125,000 in interest). I am simple and like to sle...
by stevekozak2
Sat May 11, 2019 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Am I living within my means, and opinions on AA
Replies: 11
Views: 2304

Re: Am I living within my means, and opinions on AA

It is unclear to me what your actual income is.
by stevekozak2
Wed May 01, 2019 5:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 5/5 ARM or 30yr-fixed?
Replies: 25
Views: 1997

Re: 5/5 ARM or 30yr-fixed?

With your situation, I would take the ARM and would plan to pay the house off within the 5-year period. With your income, and the relatively low amount of the mortgage, there is no reason that you should not be able to. Why would you want this millstone debt hanging around your neck for 30 years? Ge...
by stevekozak2
Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting Spouse On Board With Saving
Replies: 41
Views: 4077

Re: Getting Spouse On Board With Saving

Good advice from other posters. I see from a later post that you have a child. With that added context, your spouse’s 4-day work week makes more sense if spouse is responsible for childcare and house/family-related chores, which can be the equivalent of a part-time job. I am guessing this might not...
by stevekozak2
Fri Apr 26, 2019 6:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those with years on me...Can I afford this home?
Replies: 70
Views: 4924

Re: For those with years on me...Can I afford this home?

I don't think there is much doubt that you CAN afford the home. I am not sure you should. Ultimately only you can decide that. I do think you have house fever right now. I think your wife has probably had it for a while. I agree with earlier posters that the private pool will probably not be the boo...
by stevekozak2
Thu Apr 25, 2019 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchasing a house, downpayment vs. retirement and other considerations
Replies: 173
Views: 9698

Re: Purchasing a house, downpayment vs. retirement and other considerations

Hey all, Figured I would give a six month check in on the house. We are loving the house and the neighborhood. From a savings perspective, we have kept 401k contributions low at the match, however are maxing out both HSAs. Trying to save as much for some near term house expenses, including some lan...
by stevekozak2
Thu Apr 25, 2019 8:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advising financially unsavvy family on windfall
Replies: 77
Views: 5871

Re: Advising financially unsavvy family on windfall

I am with other posters: Don't offer advice unless they ask you for advise. Otherwise all you are doing is creating an opportunity for saying "I told you so" when they wind up blowing it all. Not worth it, unless you are just into that sort of thing.
by stevekozak2
Thu Apr 25, 2019 7:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lifestyle creep
Replies: 73
Views: 7815

Re: Lifestyle creep

***Below was my response to another similar post the other day regarding "spending and expenses while saving for retirement." It also applies to our position on what you are calling "Lifestyle Creep." Here's the thing: We decided early on after watching our own parents work so.damn.hard to only str...
by stevekozak2
Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?
Replies: 183
Views: 9030

Re: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?

After having finally read this entire thread, I have different thoughts. It seemed, in the beginning, that the husband was being horrible and unreasonable in his actions. Reading further in, however, we learn that the OP is getting everything she wants, in terms of the joint finances, other than con...
by stevekozak2
Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?
Replies: 183
Views: 9030

Re: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?

We have been married for 8 years and do separate accounts. We each put 60% of our paycheck into joint account, the rest goes into our personal account. This is enough to pay for all joint bills and a little more. Personal spending comes from your own personal account, joint bills come out of joint ...
by stevekozak2
Sat Apr 06, 2019 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?
Replies: 183
Views: 9030

Re: Married couples: can you have a team mentality with separate finances?

Fundamentally disagree. Of our retirement assets (we have twice that in taxable assets), 70% are in my name, 30% in my wife's. Of that 30%, I contributed probably 70% of it. While legally in each of our names, and treated that way if one of us passes and for designating beneficiaries, this is OUR m...
by stevekozak2
Sun Mar 31, 2019 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mom retired with not quite enough savings, questions about annuity
Replies: 44
Views: 5624

Re: Mom retired with not quite enough savings, questions about annuity

What is the balance on her mortgage? How much equity does she have in it? Refi'ing a 30 year at 60 seems like a really poor plan.
by stevekozak2
Wed Jun 13, 2018 6:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best use for a $2k raise for a middle-income teacher
Replies: 35
Views: 4172

Re: Best use for a $2k raise for a middle-income teacher

My suggestion is that you use the money to pay off your car, and then start saving for your bpnext car, so that you can buy with cash. Buying depreciating assets on credit is asinine to me. If you get to a point you have extra, throw it at your mortgage. Being debt free is a wonderful thing!! I don...
by stevekozak2
Tue Jun 12, 2018 5:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Next Steps for Single 34 Year Old with Savings and Roth IRA (VASGX)
Replies: 37
Views: 3509

Re: Next Steps for Single 34 Year Old with Savings and Roth IRA (VASGX)

The traditional IRA is the safer option. If a Roth account wins it is unlikely to be by much and the trad is likely to win by a fair amount. The OP might consider deciding how much of the savings account is needed as an emergency fund, and set up a taxable investment account to be considered part o...
by stevekozak2
Sat Jun 09, 2018 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?
Replies: 148
Views: 13222

Re: Are you including SS in your planning model? Are the benefits really that high?

I dont include it in my planning because I think, at a minimum, I will be means-tested out by that point. If I do receive any benefits, well then I can increase my charitable giving!
by stevekozak2
Sat Jun 09, 2018 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best use for a $2k raise for a middle-income teacher
Replies: 35
Views: 4172

Re: Best use for a $2k raise for a middle-income teacher

My suggestion is that you use the money to pay off your car, and then start saving for your bpnext car, so that you can buy with cash. Buying depreciating assets on credit is asinine to me. If you get to a point you have extra, throw it at your mortgage. Being debt free is a wonderful thing!!
by stevekozak2
Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:00 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: At a crossroads. Does my plan make sense?
Replies: 29
Views: 3172

Re: At a crossroads. Does my plan make sense?

So here are some questions: 1. Does my plan make sense? Or is there something I’m missing that makes a lot more sense? To me it does but I would move the money to Vanguard anyway. 2. Would I be better off transferring the entire amount of the Account Balance plan to a Vanguard IRA and annuitizing t...
by stevekozak2
Sat Mar 10, 2018 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Would YOU retire
Replies: 67
Views: 10273

Re: Would YOU retire

In a heartbeat!
by stevekozak2
Tue Feb 13, 2018 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why paying off loans would be better than fully funding 401k?
Replies: 97
Views: 8971

Re: Why paying off loans would be better than fully funding 401k?

OP, I am fairly new to investing, and would not offer advice on that, but your problem is one of personal finance. You and your wife have had horrible spending habits. I think, based on your early posts, that your wife has had "docitis" meaning she has been in a mode of "I grew up poor and struggled...
by stevekozak2
Tue Feb 13, 2018 6:35 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Did you learn anything from the market correction?
Replies: 160
Views: 14852

Re: Did you learn anything from the market correction?

I am brand new in the market. Just got my Roth IRA going towards the end of January, fully funded 2017, DCAing 2018. Have lost money and continue to contribute my monthly amount. I learned that I am committed to my course. I learned that the silver lining to the market dropping is that my monthly co...
by stevekozak2
Thu Feb 01, 2018 6:13 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Here is how things stand, any comments welcome
Replies: 9
Views: 1376

Re: Here is how things stand, any comments welcome

Congratulations, Peter! I think you are doing great! Being 100% debt-free including your house means you can concentrate your income on investing (even if some do not realize it). I do agree with an above poster that you should go ahead and max your 2017 Roth IRA while you still have time. You are o...
by stevekozak2
Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard help
Replies: 6
Views: 967

Re: Vanguard help

OK, finally to someone on the phone at Vanguard and got it figured out. If the mods want to just delete this thread, that would be fine.
by stevekozak2
Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard help
Replies: 6
Views: 967

Vanguard help

I finally got my Vanguard account opened (had to mail in the application, etc) Got back into the account today (had to reenter a lot of things) However, I can't find my money. My bank account shows the $5500 is pending as a Vanguard Buy, but when I go on Vanguard to purchase my fund (VTSMX) it asks ...
by stevekozak2
Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Quick answer
Replies: 8
Views: 789

Re: Quick answer

Thank you all for your replies! These answered my questions perfectly!
by stevekozak2
Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Quick answer
Replies: 8
Views: 789

Re: Quick answer

It doesn't matter now and can be changed at any time you want. In some of our Roths, we have dividends automatically reinvested and in other Roths we don't. Thank you for your reply. If my purpose is to just let this grow in an index fund, would the reinvestment idea be correct? I am happy to know ...
by stevekozak2
Tue Dec 26, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Quick answer
Replies: 8
Views: 789

Quick answer

I am setting up a Roth at Vanguard. In the application process, it asks if dividends and capital gains are to be reinvested or placed in a settlement fund. I am assuming for my retirement investing purposes that they should be reinvested. Is this the correct answer?
by stevekozak2
Tue Dec 26, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Which Vanguard funds would work best?
Replies: 8
Views: 1858

Re: Which Vanguard funds would work best?

VTI, VTSAX, and VTSMX are different classes of the same fund. VTSMX is the regular mutual fund. It has a $3000 minimum initial investment and a higher expense ratio. VTSAX are Admiral shares. There is a $10,000 minimum to start, but the expense ratio is lower. VTI is the ETF version. It trades like...
by stevekozak2
Mon Dec 25, 2017 6:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: First time Roth
Replies: 5
Views: 738

Re: First time Roth

So, just a targeted retirement fund? For both sets of money? Suggestions? I am debt-free and committed to staying the course, once I determine what the course is. Am I only able to put a total of 5500 each year into a combination of Roth and TIRA, or 5500 in each (I realize my rollover of 14000 will...
by stevekozak2
Sun Dec 24, 2017 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: First time Roth
Replies: 5
Views: 738

First time Roth

I am about to open a Roth, to get my hands-on retirement going. I have been a state government worker for most of my career (social worker) and the only retirement I have, at age 42, is what goes into my state retirement plan (which is basically a pension). I don't make a lot of money (around 36,000...
by stevekozak2
Sun Dec 10, 2017 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Which Vanguard MMF?
Replies: 13
Views: 2927

Re: Which Vanguard MMF?

You could also link an FDIC insured Ally high-yield savings account directly to Vanguard brokerage. When using mutual funds, you can make same day buy's and sell's directly from/to an external account. I believe Ally savings is currently paying >1.2% yield, so pretty competitive with MMF This was m...
by stevekozak2
Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance student loan? (Federal->Private)
Replies: 6
Views: 1018

Re: Refinance student loan? (Federal->Private)

11.8k? Why don't you just buckle down and get it paid off quickly so you can put ypur money to work for ypu, instead of messing around for 8 years flipping interest rates?
by stevekozak2
Tue Oct 10, 2017 6:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please look at my financial situation and give me your insights
Replies: 21
Views: 2989

Re: Please look at my financial situation and give me your insights

I think a necessary component of your retirement plan is for your wife and you to learn to work together on finances. Having one person with out of control spending (as the other sees it) leaves the "saver" nervous, afraid, and resentful. She spender would see the saver as over bearing, and be rese...
by stevekozak2
Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to prioritize? Or hire a financial advisor?
Replies: 10
Views: 1404

Re: What to prioritize? Or hire a financial advisor?

1. Pay off car
2. Pay off student loans
3. Increase ER (it seems low for what you are making)
4. Retirement to 15%
5. College funding
6. Everything else
by stevekozak2
Sun Jun 25, 2017 10:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I need a strategy to address debt and savings
Replies: 38
Views: 5885

Re: I need a strategy to address debt and savings

Buckle down and tighten up your budget considerably. Try to increase your income, if possible. Hit the credit cards fast and hard, and then knock out that car loan. Attack the school loan with a vengence! You should be debt free in less than 4 years, if you get after it! Good luck!
by stevekozak2
Sun May 21, 2017 7:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job change--crazy financial move?
Replies: 9
Views: 1803

Re: Job change--crazy financial move?

To me, unless you are just miserable in Job 1, it seems that, long term, it will get you to freedom sooner. With the amount of time you get off (9-12 weeks!) you should be able to travel to see family and soak up some culture as much as you want. Early retirement, properly funded, means you get to d...