Search found 349 matches

by harvestbook
Mon Jan 15, 2018 3:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 AND UTMA
Replies: 29
Views: 1311

Re: 529 AND UTMA

We did 529s up to about half the expected cost, then started UTMA fund with the express purpose of bribery--any money received through scholarships, the child will get that money at 21 instead of having it spent on college. But I have been selling some off to match the child's earnings in a Roth acc...
by harvestbook
Mon Jan 15, 2018 3:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can the Schiller P/E ratio be used for tactical allocation?
Replies: 13
Views: 657

Re: Can the Schiller P/E ratio be used for tactical allocation?

I don't think I could outsmart all the people who do this for a living and study global markets 16 hours a day for thirty years and still seem to be not that good at it. I'll just hold my 10 percent EM allocation and expect it to fluctuate, sometimes in step with the US and sometimes not. The Shille...
by harvestbook
Sun Jan 14, 2018 11:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opening an HSA - Vanguard Admiral Shares available
Replies: 14
Views: 1107

Re: Opening an HSA - Vanguard Admiral Shares available

We use HSA Administrators as well. I was going to change to HSA Authority but having to mail in or call to move money around doesn't appeal to me, and HSA Authority had no decent bond choices (all actively managed with ERs of .5 and up, if I remember correctly.) I know I'm paying a little more with ...
by harvestbook
Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Adding 200k to Portfolio, don't want boring old VTSAX again -your criticism, suggestion for a little extra risk?
Replies: 39
Views: 4213

Re: Adding 200k to Portfolio, don't want boring old VTSAX again -your criticism, suggestion for a little extra risk?

It's weird but making a tiny side bet may give you the emotional thrill you are seeking. I bought $100 worth of various cryptos just to learn and I spend a lot of time watching the gyrations, reading about it, and watching the psychotic personalities that swirl around it (which is enough in itself t...
by harvestbook
Sun Jan 14, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you correct cashier mistakes?
Replies: 41
Views: 2068

Re: Do you correct cashier mistakes?

Honesty is the best policy. Accuracy is the best way to conduct transactions. I've used many mechanics over the years but one time I got a bill that I thought was a little too high but not alarmingly so. A week later the shop owner called me and said "I was going over receipts since I was gone, and ...
by harvestbook
Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 100% VTSAX (Vanguard Total Stock Mkt Idx Adm)??
Replies: 70
Views: 5332

Re: 100% VTSAX (Vanguard Total Stock Mkt Idx Adm)??

Mark Cuban's entire life history is built on diversification. It's not like he's still 100 percent Yahoo.
by harvestbook
Mon Jan 08, 2018 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to learn creative writing?
Replies: 23
Views: 1293

Re: How to learn creative writing?

+1 Sandtrap covered it. I've been a professional writer for 22 years. Journalist for 12 years while I built my fiction credits and craft, full-time fiction writer since 2011. Before that I was an amateur/semi-pro writer my entire life. I had some college classes, which helped a little (learned the v...
by harvestbook
Mon Jan 08, 2018 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Use HSA money or pay out of pocket?
Replies: 36
Views: 2838

Re: Use HSA money or pay out of pocket?

We use ours as a current-expense fund but never really spend much of it so it keeps growing. I look at it as the best of both worlds-- saving certain tax-free money today while also saving some for uncertain spending ahead (I mean, I'd hate to die and never get to spend my HSA money!) But there are ...
by harvestbook
Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Simplification and Overview
Replies: 23
Views: 1617

Re: Portfolio Simplification and Overview

I'd take the Target Date funds that are 80/20 where possible (probably around the 2035 target) and then just try to 80/20 in the other funds to keep it as simple as possible. And try to get out of debt instead of doing taxable (I'd seek tax-deferred opportunities or savings instead of more Roth, and...
by harvestbook
Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Robo-Investors driving the market to insane levels?
Replies: 36
Views: 5139

Re: Are Robo-Investors driving the market to insane levels?

I think you answered your own question by saying you've only been paying attention for the last year and a half. Imagine how you would've felt in 2013, when the S & P returned 32 percent. You can find plenty of "scary" and "crash" headlines from as recently as Feb 2016, less than two years ago. "Dow...
by harvestbook
Sat Jan 06, 2018 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much are you putting in a 529?
Replies: 111
Views: 7355

Re: How much are you putting in a 529?

We got a fairly late start but now have around $46K in senior year. I stopped contributing to the 529 two years ago and switched to a UTMA account and Roth for the child. The UTMA will be the first backup, and then I will cash flow/take out of my taxable. However, based on FASFA report and what the ...
by harvestbook
Thu Jan 04, 2018 9:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hitting The Sell Button
Replies: 211
Views: 21597

Re: Hitting The Sell Button

At 55, my only nod to the bull and my age is I set my 401k to a LifeStrategy Growth Fund (80/20). My other stuff's about 93/7 and I'm riding the bull until I fall off. I expect I am still a decade away from moving to conservative mode since I can work until I am dead or dissipated in my creative fie...
by harvestbook
Thu Jan 04, 2018 4:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Cryptocurrency Exit Strategy
Replies: 52
Views: 4434

Re: Cryptocurrency Exit Strategy

I've been fascinated by the BTC median volume of transactions chart and how it correlates to the selloffs. It looks like whales start cashing out and milking the sardines who then buy back in at short-term lows "because it's a bargain." Rinse and repeat. I suspect ALL of the crypto markets are being...
by harvestbook
Tue Jan 02, 2018 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What frugal thing did you do today?
Replies: 311
Views: 22207

Re: What frugal thing did you do today?

Upgraded to fiber-optic higher-speed internet while cutting monthly bill by eliminating call-out capability (we use cell phones). Will reduce further by eliminating damage coverage once we see if everything works correctly.
by harvestbook
Thu Dec 21, 2017 8:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell taxable to fund tIRA?
Replies: 7
Views: 331

Re: Sell taxable to fund tIRA?

We're considering Roth, too, thanks. We're unable to project the tax savings because our income fluctuates a good bit. I'd rather have the tax break now in expectation we'll have lower income and tax bracket in retirement, all things being equal. We'll probably be able to judge better after we file ...
by harvestbook
Thu Dec 21, 2017 8:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell taxable to fund tIRA?
Replies: 7
Views: 331

Sell taxable to fund tIRA?

This may be a dumb question but does it make sense to sell out of a taxable account to fund a trad IRA? We had a few lucky years where we had way more to invest than our IRA max and so built up taxable accounts that are bigger than our IRAs. Now our income is declining slowly and I would rather have...
by harvestbook
Sun Dec 17, 2017 11:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ripple and Ethereum: Which exchange do you use and do you recommend it?
Replies: 14
Views: 1883

Re: Ripple and Ethereum: Which exchange do you use and do you recommend it?

Coinbase only has trouble when there's a flood of traffic and interest, not specific to Ethereum, from what I have read and observed. I opened a Coinbase account and bought $20 worth of Bitcoin just to see how it all worked. It was relatively simple (it takes a few days to verify bank account and th...
by harvestbook
Fri Dec 15, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Just not getting it [Stock Picking versus TSM]
Replies: 98
Views: 14212

Re: Just not getting it

I can think of a few uncertainties right off the bat: Facebook could easily turn into Myspace, especially given its alleged fraudulent advertising reports and millions of fake accounts; Apple could have a couple of really bad product launches in a row or become a serious focus of hackers; Amazon cou...
by harvestbook
Thu Dec 14, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buying Real Silver and Gold (Not Bitcoin)
Replies: 201
Views: 17236

Re: Buying Real Silver and Gold (Not Bitcoin)

I got 20 Silver Eagles off eBay for only a couple bucks each over spot price. (I think 20 came to around $383 earlier this year with free shipping.) It's mostly an improbable emergency fund. It seems easy to sell them the same way on eBay, too, but you will stand to lose the shipping cost. The value...
by harvestbook
Tue Dec 12, 2017 6:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do after losing $117k in stock market?
Replies: 156
Views: 16784

Re: What to do after losing $117k in stock market?

I'd suggest the book Your Money and Your Brain by Jason Zweig. It sounds like there is an emotional element here that leads you to decisions you regret. Understanding some of the impulses and biases that drive the behavior may help. It's hard to be logical about money because it pushes so many of ou...
by harvestbook
Sat Dec 09, 2017 10:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best HSA (2017)
Replies: 190
Views: 35914

Re: Best HSA (2017)

What TD Ameritrade ETFs are you using at Lively? I am considering a switch to Lively or The HSA Authority next year. I like Lively's format and basic cost but I don't want to pay trade fees on top of it to get the broad indexes. I prefer a three-fund mix instead of simply a S& P 500. (HSA Authority ...
by harvestbook
Thu Dec 07, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I received a speeding ticket via mail from IA - should I pay it?
Replies: 72
Views: 5063

Re: I received a speeding ticket via mail from IA - should I pay it?

Why in the world would you want to go the rest of your life (and even beyond) with this hanging over your head? Especially if you did it.

Not paying it would be the exact opposite of what Bogle would do. You incur tremendous risk with very little possible gain.
by harvestbook
Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Want to sell my Bitcoin, but when?
Replies: 90
Views: 8674

Re: Want to sell my Bitcoin, but when?

My wife almost talked me into getting a bitcoin about a year ago when it popped up on NPR and I was investigating it because it sounded cool. I am pretty sure I would've sold it after a 25 percent gain and called myself lucky. I'd be wacky if I had kept it. We just talked about it a few minutes ago....
by harvestbook
Tue Dec 05, 2017 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Input on HSA Providers
Replies: 4
Views: 456

Re: Input on HSA Providers

Morningstar has a PDF comparing many of the larger plans: http://corporate1.morningstar.com/ResearchLibrary/article/813893/2017-health-savings-account-landscape/ There are also multiple threads on it here if you search. Best HSA (2017) http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=207051 It depend...
by harvestbook
Tue Dec 05, 2017 10:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: After financial independence, do you lose motivation for work?
Replies: 156
Views: 11550

Re: After financial independence, do you lose motivation for work?

I work for myself and have no need to ever retire (creative field), yet I hate my boss.
by harvestbook
Wed Nov 29, 2017 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FIRE [financial independence/retire early]
Replies: 140
Views: 13942

Re: FIRE [financial independence/retire early]

I embrace both Boglehead and FIRE principles but I'm not a purist by any means. I don't see any contradiction between the two. Reading the Mustache forum, it seems many of the people there use cheap index funds (there are some rentals people, but I think that's more of a case of them tending to be m...
by harvestbook
Wed Nov 29, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A good friend has nearly $1M in BitCoin what do I tell him?
Replies: 149
Views: 16667

Re: A good friend has nearly $1M in BitCoin what do I tell him?

Depends on how annoying he is about it. if he brings it up every time he sees you, I'd say, "Dude, hold all the way up!" And then keep quiet when it crashed. I was seriously looking at getting in at the end of last year, but there were just too many things I didn't understand. Even if I had, I'm qui...
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 27, 2017 7:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Interesting ride so far - Crypto-curriencies
Replies: 112
Views: 8454

Re: Interesting ride so far - Crypto-curriencies

One begins to wonder how many bots and trolls are invading the financial forums of the world, since so very few people actually own bitcoin, and so much of the bitcoin pool is held by a very small percentage of the players.
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 26, 2017 8:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600
Replies: 138
Views: 11139

Re: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600

Even if you happen to win the lottery, it doesn't mean you're not an idiot for having played.
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 26, 2017 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with S Corp - costs, benefits, etc
Replies: 15
Views: 1032

Re: Help with S Corp - costs, benefits, etc

We use an S-Corp with my wife and me as sole employees. Monthly payroll costs us $65 through our CPA. In addition to FICA, we also have to pay state unemployment and an annual filing fee to keep the S-Corp active with the NC Secretary of State. Getting our taxes done costs somewhere around $400, so ...
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 26, 2017 8:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much to REALLY save for college (529s)
Replies: 13
Views: 1007

Re: How much to REALLY save for college (529s)

I settled on funding half of expected costs in a 529 and then a taxable account after that, along with the expectation of cash-flowing some of it if we don't get any scholarships or aid.
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 26, 2017 3:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Common Sense on Mutual Funds
Replies: 20
Views: 2217

Re: Common Sense on Mutual Funds

I can't live Bogle's life or invest in his timeline. I also don't have to accept his biases. It's possible the US economy is peaking right now. All the claims of American economic exceptionalism can be rebutted or not assumed to continue. But invest however you feel like. Bogle himself says "Nobody ...
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 20, 2017 4:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 or not 529?
Replies: 21
Views: 2000

Re: 529 or not 529?

I like the plan of starting one mostly with the idea of using it for the later kids. That way you can be a little more aggressive since you won't be forced into using it even if the market takes a downturn. My daughter starts next year and it's 60 percent stocks/40 percent bonds, but I quit adding t...
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 20, 2017 7:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Survivorship bias and stock for the long term
Replies: 4
Views: 648

Re: Survivorship bias and stock for the long term

That's why I invest like it's 1900 and keep a global cap weight, because nobody knows what the next 100 years will bring. But I assume if we're still around as a species, it is because we had growth, improvements, technological breakthroughs, and enough social stability to achieve those things. As t...
by harvestbook
Thu Nov 16, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing help family of four....Do nothing?
Replies: 22
Views: 2032

Re: Investing help family of four....Do nothing?

If you get a state tax credit for 529, then it is a good choice for some of the money. Don't forget that the 529 is not for a specific one-time expenditure--like, your tenth grader won't be needing the money just in three years, but in three, four, five, and six years. Whether that's time enough to ...
by harvestbook
Thu Nov 16, 2017 9:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The passive investing trap
Replies: 23
Views: 4795

Re: The passive investing trap

I've noticed a lot of financial writers/bloggers conflate ETFs with passive indexing with low-cost investing. I suppose ETFs make it more tempting to trade around but I don't consider ETFs "passive." I consider "passive" an investing style, not a trading vehicle. For many of us, it's about cost. If ...
by harvestbook
Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Shiller is 'concerned' after lowest sentiment data readings in over 16 years
Replies: 8
Views: 2146

Re: Shiller is 'concerned' after lowest sentiment data readings in over 16 years

He is rambling and throwing lots of stuff at the wall, from investor sentiment to politically-driven market moves to his pet math formula, yet he has a rare moment of clarity and honesty when he admits he "could be wrong."
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with daughters first investments
Replies: 12
Views: 791

Re: Help with daughters first investments

I'd be more aggressive, like the newest target-date fund. Depends on if the intent is maximum risk/return or to give her encouragement to do it herself. My daughter is almost 18 and I use aggressive funds for her (60 percent small-cap tilt, the rest is mix of total US and international). If the draw...
by harvestbook
Tue Nov 07, 2017 8:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: From 100% equity to 80/20. Overnight or over a year?
Replies: 23
Views: 2124

Re: From 100% equity to 80/20. Overnight or over a year?

Would you be selling stocks from a taxable account to buy the bonds? I'm about 90/10 but most of my forward contributions will be to a Vanguard LifeStrategy Growth fund (80/20) in my solo 401k. So I am letting that slow move toward 80/20 over a few years work for me. Not thrilled about the low inter...
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 06, 2017 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much should I fund my HSA and Why?
Replies: 21
Views: 2060

Re: How Much should I fund my HSA and Why?

Second on maxing the HSA after getting 401k match. Don't forget that savings on next year's income tax can go to other investments or expenses, so that $2800 or so is saving you hundreds of dollars immediately. The only downside is you need to be committed to building it--there are no HSAs that let ...
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 06, 2017 3:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: Slaughtering The High Dividend Sacred Cow
Replies: 192
Views: 13888

Re: Larry Swedroe: Slaughtering The High Dividend Sacred Cow

I look at reinvested dividends as a way to buy more shares of the funds, which price-per-share growth doesn't do. But I understand it's a zero-sum game anyway--whether you have more shares of slightly lower value or fewer shares of slightly greater value is a wash.
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dividends make up for high mutual fund fees
Replies: 31
Views: 2243

Re: Dividends make up for high mutual fund fees

In situations like this, it is best not to appear too smart, or the whole room will be knocking down your door in a decade when they're all broke and don't know why.
by harvestbook
Mon Nov 06, 2017 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I Cut the Cord yesterday!
Replies: 51
Views: 4660

Re: I Cut the Cord yesterday!

Its odd that people brag about cutting the cable then they purchase other services to replace cutting the cable. Netflix, hulu, youtube tv, playstation tv, etc etc. Cutting from $100 a month to $30 or so is not nothing. I've never had cable but I don't mind paying $10 a month for Netflix (and we ge...
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 05, 2017 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A small inheritance, student loans, and a wedding...I want to invest.
Replies: 27
Views: 1829

Re: A small inheritance, student loans, and a wedding...I want to invest.

If she's set on the $20K then I guess that is that, but I'd push more to meet in the middle at $10k. If she needs some incentive, take her to a compounding calculator like https://www.investor.gov/additional-resources/free-financial-planning-tools/compound-interest-calculator and plug in $20,000 and...
by harvestbook
Sun Nov 05, 2017 8:02 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: U.S. & International Allocation
Replies: 36
Views: 4043

Re: U.S. & International Allocation

Let's face it, we are all active managers making active investment decisions, even when we think we're using a three-fund portfolio to "capture what the market gives us." I doubt anyone in the entire world has an exact global weight allocation. This is one of my favorite blog posts showing the true ...
by harvestbook
Sat Nov 04, 2017 4:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in index funds at this moment
Replies: 50
Views: 3940

Re: Investing in index funds at this moment

The longer you wait, the more shares and dividends I will be able to accumulate. I don't mind sharing, but I'm not forcing anyone into the market, either.
by harvestbook
Sat Nov 04, 2017 5:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: This is why I'm glad I started investing at 23
Replies: 27
Views: 4899

Re: This is why I'm glad I started investing at 23

For me the entire goal is financial independence. Retirement and all the rest is optional! I turned down promotions in my job because I knew I wanted a real career working for myself. Now I have that career and it will last as long as my brain is viable, if I want. Investing sure helps with the "ind...
by harvestbook
Fri Nov 03, 2017 7:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alway contribute to HSA if incurring medical expenses?
Replies: 10
Views: 1129

Re: Alway contribute to HSA if incurring medical expenses?

Even if you can't max it, it is certainly smart to at least use it for current medical expenses. Cutting $3,000 off your taxable income saves real money. I consider it the best tax break in America if you're eligible.