Search found 253 matches

by RetiredCSProf
Wed May 08, 2019 5:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: tech funds
Replies: 29
Views: 2278

Re: tech funds

I own shares of IXN, which is a global tech ETF fund, and SOXX, which is a semi-conductor ETF fund. Both funds were purchased for me when I was invested in an advisor-managed rollover IRA account. Both have done well in the past few years, but I can't predict the future. My best performing actively-...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon May 06, 2019 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Tours and Open Houses
Replies: 40
Views: 2092

Re: College Tours and Open Houses

I did not visit any campuses with my son until he received acceptances -- and then visited only a handful, all within state. My son feels that the most important factor is the quality of the teaching in the classrooms, which is not usually part of a campus tour. OTOH, my son declined UC Santa Barbar...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon May 06, 2019 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bathroom Remodel - Looking for Advice
Replies: 56
Views: 3993

Re: Bathroom Remodel - Looking for Advice

I had two bathrooms gutted and remodeled. The work required the following professionals: Architect to develop plans to submit to the city Designer to help in selecting finishes Demolition crew Rough Carpentry (framing) Water proofing showers Finish Carpentry (hanging doors) Installation of windows a...
by RetiredCSProf
Fri May 03, 2019 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 76 year old widowed mother needs investment advice
Replies: 19
Views: 1748

Re: 76 year old widowed mother needs investment advice

It sounds like your Mom's priority is to receive a fixed amount of money at regular intervals, so keep that in mind before making any changes. You may need some tax advice on determining the potential capital gain of selling a portion of her portfolio. I'm not a CPA, but this is my understanding of ...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Apr 29, 2019 12:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth conversions at age 70?
Replies: 12
Views: 921

Re: Roth conversions at age 70?

Pay attention to the IRMAA brackets, not just the Fed tax brackets. I turned 70.5 last year and did a small Roth conversion, after taking QCDs and completing my RMD withdrawals. I file as single, HOH, and kept my MAGI below the top of the $133.5K IRMAA bracket for singles; otherwise, my Medicare pre...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real estate capital gains
Replies: 8
Views: 929

Re: Real estate capital gains

If your MIL and your SIL own the house jointly, then I would expect that your SIL will get a stepped-up basis on the portion owned by her mother. I don't know why your MIL set it up this way. I think it would have been better for her to create a trust and to fund the trust with the house to avoid pr...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Apr 23, 2019 12:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What about small/mid caps?
Replies: 7
Views: 1446

Re: What about small/mid caps?

If you want to hold the "market cap" in mid- to small-caps then invest 20% of your US equities in this category. Consider: TRowe Diversified Mid-Cap Growth (PRDMX) TRowe also has an Extended Equity Market Index Fund (PEXMX), which is a mid-cap blend The following mid-cap and small-cap TRowe funds (w...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Apr 21, 2019 10:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: T. Rowe Price Claims they consistently beat Indexing
Replies: 39
Views: 7285

Re: T. Rowe Price Claims they consistently beat Indexing

I have been investing in TRowe (tax-deferred) for nearly 40 years, starting long before index funds and life strategy funds were a "thing." I like their US equity MFs, but not so much their bond funds or international MFs. TRowe offers no index funds, but a few funds that function similarly to "enha...
by RetiredCSProf
Fri Apr 19, 2019 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: QLAC
Replies: 6
Views: 853

Re: QLAC

A financial advisor recommended a QLAC to me in conjunction with a LTC policy, after I retired. The QLAC was suggested in response to my concern that I would possibly have extra expenses as I age before qualifying for LTC (e.g., need to hire a housekeeper, gardener). He recommended moving $100K out ...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Apr 09, 2019 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Infertility treatments/insurance/job situation
Replies: 44
Views: 3298

Re: Infertility treatments/insurance/job situation

My "IVF" baby is a young adult now -- and worth every penny of the treatment. My doctor's office offered a discount to customers paying out-of-pocket. Luckily, my insurance covered the cost of fertility drugs. (One of my friends drove down to Tijuana for discounted fertility drugs). Make sure that t...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Apr 07, 2019 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Multiple Goals and Bond Allocation to Ret Account
Replies: 14
Views: 753

Re: Multiple Goals and Bond Allocation to Ret Account

I advise against holding your savings for a home in a bond fund if you are planning to purchase a home in the near term (1-3 years). I made that mistake in the mid-80's. Here's what happened: I had been saving for 2 to 3 years in a Dreyfus bond fund when I saw my "dream house," which was $25K more t...
by RetiredCSProf
Sat Apr 06, 2019 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Short-Term Bond vs Ltd Duration TIPS
Replies: 10
Views: 567

Short-Term Bond vs Ltd Duration TIPS

About a year ago, TRowe advised that I move from 10% AA in Short-Term bond MF (PRWBX) to 7% in Limited Duration TIPS MF (TRBFX). This is in a 60/40 tIRA, from which I am taking RMDs (and spending them, mostly on income taxes). The funds seem to have widely different purposes. A recent TRowe report o...
by RetiredCSProf
Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes
Replies: 7
Views: 610

Re: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes

Assuming I need to pay the Net Investment Income Tax on my 2019 taxes, it looks like I may need to add this amount to my safe harbor amount (add to 100% of taxes I owed for 2018): https://www.irs.gov/individuals/net-investment-income-tax If an individual has too little withholding or fails to pay en...
by RetiredCSProf
Thu Mar 21, 2019 2:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes
Replies: 7
Views: 610

Re: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes

CAsage: Thanks! the Excel spreadsheet helped me find my error -- no AMT tax. I had misunderstood the instruction on Form 6251: Part II: Line 15, where I entered zero instead of the LTCG amount. But now I see that the Excel spreadsheet adds a Net Investment Income Tax ( Schedule D and Form 6251 ) of ...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Mar 20, 2019 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes
Replies: 7
Views: 610

Re: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes

I'm using Turbo Tax online, which allows me to create only one tax return. The desktop version of Turbo Tax won't run on the current OS I have on my computer, which is memory-challenged. I may have to purchase a second copy of TT online 2018 until I'm ready for a new desktop.
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Mar 20, 2019 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes
Replies: 7
Views: 610

Looking for AMT estimator for 2019 taxes

In mid-2019, I plan to receive a sizable capital gain from the sale of gifted property. I am applying the safe harbor rules this year to avoid an under-payment penalty from the IRS, but would like to estimate taxes that will be owed for 2019. I tried a manual run-through using 2018 IRS instructions ...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Mar 19, 2019 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 92 year old father - portfolio review - how much "help"?
Replies: 12
Views: 1365

Re: 92 year old father - portfolio review - how much "help"?

Your father has enough invested in TRowe (>$250K) to be considered eligible for their private advisory services. I would schedule a phone consult with them -- you may find it useful even if you choose not to follow their recommendations. They also offer a few perks, such as $40 off TurboTax.
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Mar 18, 2019 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimating Purchase Price of Gifted Property
Replies: 3
Views: 297

Re: Estimating Purchase Price of Gifted Property

County records show that my parents agreed to a mortgage of $53K with 6% annual interest in 1968, and that the mortgage was paid off in 1975. The mortgage excluded about one-fourth of the acreage -- a working orchard. I'm unclear on the details of the purchase of the orchard -- it may be that the pr...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Mar 18, 2019 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimating Purchase Price of Gifted Property
Replies: 3
Views: 297

Estimating Purchase Price of Gifted Property

My siblings and I are on contract to sell undeveloped land that was gifted to us from our Mom, before she passed away. Because the land was gifted (not bequeathed), our cost basis is the original purchase price (with some adjustments). We all recall that our parents said they paid $75K for the prope...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Mar 12, 2019 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Guidance: Bond Choices for Retiree Portfolio
Replies: 14
Views: 1363

Re: Guidance: Bond Choices for Retiree Portfolio

My head spins, too, with the choices. I have enough invested in my TRowe tIRA to receive annual advisory consultations. Their current advice on a 50/50 portfolio includes investing in seven different bond funds (%age of portfolio): 17% in investment grade 12% in conservative fixed income (short-term...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Convert existing nondeductible IRA to Roth?
Replies: 18
Views: 1102

Re: Convert existing nondeductible IRA to Roth?

The tax impact of converting from an IRA to a Roth is explained in the Bogleheads wiki: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Non-deductible_traditional_IRA In calculating the income tax on a conversion, IRAs are lumped together, regardless of whether the contributions were split between deductible and no...
by RetiredCSProf
Fri Mar 01, 2019 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you currently or are planning to spend over $120k/year in retirement, what is your projected budget?
Replies: 196
Views: 14736

Re: If you currently or are planning to spend over $120k/year in retirement, what is your projected budget?

Everyone's situation is different. I don't know how you can compare your expenses without qualifying your situation. I'm a retired single parent in a HCOL area with one child in college and living at home. Annual expenses (not counting income taxes or donations): -- College tuition $50K (but that's ...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Moving from Fidelity to Edward Jones
Replies: 26
Views: 3129

Re: Moving from Fidelity to Edward Jones

The subject line grabbed me in. A friendly Edward Jones guy moved into my neighborhood a few months ago. I think I was outside working on my yard when he first approached me. He keeps dropping by to chat -- brought me homemade cookies on a rainy Valentine's Day. So far, he's not been pushy at all. I...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 27, 2019 12:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Withholding Suddenly Changed 2 Months into 2019
Replies: 22
Views: 1423

Re: Withholding Suddenly Changed 2 Months into 2019

The withholding on my pension changed as well. My pension is paid monthly, on the first of each month. The company that distributes the pension calculates withholding two weeks before the payment shows up in my bank account. So, in mid-December, they estimated the withholding based on 2018 tables. B...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Feb 25, 2019 10:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to figure out taxable income by Dec. 31 for Roth?
Replies: 26
Views: 2482

Re: How to figure out taxable income by Dec. 31 for Roth?

I'l like to suggest that "top of your current tax bracket" might not be an optimal target. It seems likely you are on Medicare. Are you familiar with the IRMAA limits? If you go over the IRMAA limits by even $1, your Medicare premiums go up two years later. If you are married, they go up for both o...
by RetiredCSProf
Fri Feb 22, 2019 6:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 Plan, AOTC and Turbo Tax
Replies: 19
Views: 983

Re: 529 Plan, AOTC and Turbo Tax

Not sure -- but you may be having the same issue I had with Turbo Tax. The software entered an amount by default that I needed to zero out.
See viewtopic.php?f=2&t=272132
by RetiredCSProf
Thu Feb 14, 2019 12:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of college and 529
Replies: 642
Views: 25647

Re: Cost of college and 529

As a professor, I can certainly say that students with jobs tend to perform better academically than those without them, and this has been the experience of my colleagues as well. As a professor, my experience has been quite different from this. I had one student, who was quite capable, but was fal...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 13, 2019 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Good time to invest in emerging markets?
Replies: 22
Views: 2865

Re: Good time to invest in emerging markets?

Your post referenced TRowe publications. I am invested in three TRowe funds that hold EM, but are closed to new investors: Emerging Market Stock (PRMSX), Global Tech (PRGTX), and International Discovery (PRIDX). TRowe EM bonds (PREMX) is open. Last year, I sold an EM ETF, Flexshs Morningstar Emergin...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Feb 12, 2019 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2 years in community college, then transfer? need opinion please
Replies: 118
Views: 5698

Re: 2 years in community college, then transfer? need opinion please

The California schools have separate paths for STEM majors vs liberal arts majors. I don't know if it's like this in Texas. In CA, a STEM major needs to focus on their math / science / engineering courses, starting in their freshman year. If they have already taken AP Calculus and AP Comp Sci in hig...
by RetiredCSProf
Sat Feb 09, 2019 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity tIRA -> Roth conversion
Replies: 7
Views: 649

Re: Fidelity tIRA -> Roth conversion

1. To do a Roth conversion from your tIRA at Fido, you will first need to create a Roth account and name a beneficiary. Then you can convert funds in-kind from your tIRA account to your Roth account. The only caveat is that you can convert by quantity of shares and not by dollar amounts. If you want...
by RetiredCSProf
Sat Feb 09, 2019 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tilt / Overweight -- what percentage?
Replies: 24
Views: 2191

Re: Tilt / Overweight -- what percentage?

[Note: I'm the OP and I changed the subject line to avoid confusion with reports about increased obesity in the US] OK. Then 10-15% more (or less) than the market index is an overweight (or underweight). I am invested in the FMI International Fund (FMIJX), which states the following in their 4th qua...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 06, 2019 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income
Replies: 6
Views: 551

Re: Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income

Thanks! I see that now. I thought I was required to enter the information. The TT answer is: the taxpayer should enter the information and leave it up to TT to decide if it needs to be reported. Now that I fixed the problem I was having, the numbers show up only on the worksheets.
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 06, 2019 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income
Replies: 6
Views: 551

Re: Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income

There is a bug in the TT software. My MAGI is too high (>$90K) to take the American Opportunity or Lifetime Learning Credit. TT software assumes that I will want to take these credits, even though I am ineligible, and subtracts $10K from my eligible QHEE. My son will likely still be in college when ...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Feb 06, 2019 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income
Replies: 6
Views: 551

Turbo Tax showing 529 distribution as taxable income

There's a documented "bug" in TT: I'm working on my taxes and was surprised to see qualified educational distributions from my son's Vanguard 529 plan show up as taxable income. Apparently, this happens because TT's Education Optimizer does not support distributions reported on a 1099-Q form. And is...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Feb 03, 2019 11:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tilt / Overweight -- what percentage?
Replies: 24
Views: 2191

Re: Overweight -- what percentage?

I read one review that described the IXUS ETF as "overweight in EM," but gave no specifics. The Morningstar report states: The portfolio’s [IXUS] sector weightings are comparable to its average Morningstar Category peer, and it allocates 10% more than the category average to emerging-markets stocks....
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Feb 03, 2019 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tilt / Overweight -- what percentage?
Replies: 24
Views: 2191

Tilt / Overweight -- what percentage?

I've read posts in the forum regarding overweight of a style (e.g., small value). What percentage (style or sector) is considered an "overweight" versus "noise"? For example, given that US equities are 80% large-cap, is 70% in large-cap considered an overweight in mid- and small-caps? I hold iShares...
by RetiredCSProf
Thu Jan 31, 2019 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of college and 529
Replies: 642
Views: 25647

Re: Cost of college and 529

Although my son is already in college, I cannot predict the cost of his undergraduate college education, because he may change schools this fall and he may move out (has been commuting from home). What I can predict is that it will take him six years to finish a BA. Before he started kindergarten, I...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Jan 27, 2019 6:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emergency Fund
Replies: 24
Views: 2382

Re: Emergency Fund

I don't think it's an "emergency fund" if you have to pay a penalty to withdraw the funds. My neighbor's son is a border patrol agent. Luckily, he followed his father's advice and had six months of readily available cash in his emergency fund at the start of the partial government shutdown. That is,...
by RetiredCSProf
Tue Jan 22, 2019 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rethinking the bond percentage.
Replies: 43
Views: 3807

Re: Rethinking the bond percentage.

Until I retired, a few years ago, I paid little attention to my AA of equities vs bonds. I was driven more by fear of missing out than by fear of a loss. I am 70 and my AA is currently 67% equities. Not sure, but I think I was at about 80/20 when I retired. What is your planned retirement date? When...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Jan 20, 2019 1:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is California worth the premium?
Replies: 89
Views: 5427

Re: Is California worth the premium?

SrGrumpy wrote:
Sat Jan 19, 2019 7:36 pm
Too many people here already. You won't like it. Look elsewhere. :twisted:
+1
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Jan 20, 2019 1:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 Details
Replies: 28
Views: 2096

Re: 529 Details

1. As others have noted, your 19-year old is considered a dependent as long as he/she is a full-time student (minimum 12 units for at least 5 months out of the year) until the year that he/she turns 24. 2. Payment for spring semester tuition and fees depends on the school. My son's current school re...
by RetiredCSProf
Sat Jan 19, 2019 11:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: PRHSX (T. Rowe Price Health Sciences Fund) vs VHT (Vanguard Health Care ETF)
Replies: 12
Views: 1122

Re: PRHSX (T. Rowe Price Health Sciences Fund) vs VHT (Vanguard Health Care ETF)

I held PRHSX (TRowe Health Sci) in tax-deferred for many years, but sold it in 2018. As an actively-managed fund, its returns over the past ten years cannot be attributed to the current manager, as it has gone through more than one manager change during that time. When managers changed in 2016, many...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Jan 16, 2019 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Four in One Fund for a Starter
Replies: 7
Views: 579

Re: Fidelity Four in One Fund for a Starter

Fidelity Four in One is a good choice; however, Fido has removed minimum initial deposit on most of their funds, so there are many options.
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Jan 16, 2019 12:26 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Super Aggressive MF or ETFs?
Replies: 20
Views: 1186

Re: Super Aggressive MF or ETFs?

Highest risk does not necessarily equate to highest return. Generally, the more narrow the fund holdings, the higher the risk. Fidelity ranks their mf's risk rating by category, from 1 .. 10, with 10 being the riskiest category. The "riskiest" fund category that I have held in Fido is China Region (...
by RetiredCSProf
Mon Jan 14, 2019 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Planning to transfer assets from Vanguard to Fidelity, any bonus
Replies: 12
Views: 1667

Re: Planning to transfer assets from Vanguard to Fidelity, any bonus

I transferred about $200K tIRA to Fido 3 years ago. I was given about 12 free trades. At the time, trades were $7.95 each, but Fido has since reduced the cost of trades. I was moving out of a managed account that was allocated to over 20 etfs, only a few of which were commission-free at Fido. Also, ...
by RetiredCSProf
Sun Jan 13, 2019 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long term care insurance policy
Replies: 140
Views: 4693

Re: Long term care insurance policy

What does "self-insure" mean? "Insurance" implies that I'm pooling money together with a group of people, such that the cost of care is spread across the group. When I had dental insurance, I came out ahead most of time. When I had pet insurance for my dog, the insurance company came out ahead, all ...
by RetiredCSProf
Fri Jan 11, 2019 8:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long term care insurance policy
Replies: 140
Views: 4693

Re: Long term care insurance policy

I purchased a single-premium, hybrid, life insurance policy with LTC insurance through a financial advisor. If I need it, I expect the LTC to supplement my expenses; the rest will come from pension and SS. There are posters on this forum who think a hybrid policy is a bad idea, but it makes the most...
by RetiredCSProf
Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing
Replies: 16
Views: 879

Re: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing

I did this in 2018, just before turning 70.5, without any issues. I transferred a tIRA from one custodian to another before taking any QCDs or RMDs. I had considered one other option, but chose not to pursue it: I could have taken an RMD from the fund I was planning to transfer and then converted th...
by RetiredCSProf
Wed Jan 09, 2019 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?
Replies: 137
Views: 7909

Re: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?

Is there an ideal ratio of Roth IRA to tax-deferred IRA? I have been wondering how to arrive at an ideal ratio, if it exists. I retired at age 64 with nothing in Roth. At that time, I consulted with a financial advisor who dodged my questions on Roth conversion and recommended a QLAC, which I declin...