Search found 150 matches

by birdog
Mon Sep 10, 2018 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bored
Replies: 56
Views: 9371

Re: Bored

Track your expenses (via Personal Capital or Mint) and visit MrMoneyMustache for some ideas on how to help you boost your savings rate way above the 20% you are currently at. It can be a fun (and profitable) game.
by birdog
Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Who uses the 3 fund portfolio ?
Replies: 112
Views: 18400

Re: Who uses the 3 fund portfolio ?

I don't, but within our portfolio a 2 fund approach is the core (State Street S&P Index Fund in 403(b), Vanguard Total International Stock Market in our Vanguard accounts). Those 2 account for about half of our portfolio. Once we hit age 50, we'll move toward a 3 fund approach and start moving heav...
by birdog
Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Take auto loan 0.9% if I can afford cash?
Replies: 162
Views: 10597

Re: Take auto loan 0.9% if I can afford cash?

I'm debt averse. It keeps me up at night. I also have a goal of lowering monthly recurring expenses. I would pay cash. That's just me.
by birdog
Sat Jun 23, 2018 12:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thinking about adding international
Replies: 8
Views: 738

Re: Thinking about adding international

I thought international had to be in your taxable account (not IRA) in in order to claim the foreign tax credit on your income taxes. I don't believe international should go in a Roth. JL Collins would tell you that you don't need international in any account. http://jlcollinsnh.com/2012/09/26/stock...
by birdog
Mon Jun 04, 2018 1:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it fine to have 100% of portfolio in VTSAX
Replies: 33
Views: 3716

Re: Is it fine to have 100% of portfolio in VTSAX

I think it is fine and so does JL Collins. (It would also be fine, in my opinion, to allocate 90-10 stocks to bonds.) If I had it to do all over again I would follow Collins advice and go all VTSAX. I would have much more money today if I had.
by birdog
Tue May 22, 2018 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When should we stop contributing to our 529?
Replies: 18
Views: 2118

Re: When should we stop contributing to our 529?

Bacchus01 wrote:
Mon May 21, 2018 9:13 pm
Based on your criteria, I would halt and let it ride.
+1
by birdog
Wed May 09, 2018 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experian will not lift security freeze with PIN
Replies: 16
Views: 3387

Re: Experian will not lift security freeze with PIN

They have an automated phone system that allows you to lift the freeze with a phone call. Telephone number listed on their website.
by birdog
Fri Apr 06, 2018 8:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Who uses the 3 fund portfolio ?
Replies: 112
Views: 18400

Re: Who uses the 3 fund portfolio ?

Everything is in the three-fund portfolio via ETFs with two items of note. First, BIV made more sense to me than BND. Second, due to my income tax bracket I have about a third of the bond allocation in VTEB. So technically the portfolio is VTI, VEU, BIV & VTEB. Utilizing four funds to achieve a more...
by birdog
Thu Apr 05, 2018 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Recommendations
Replies: 43
Views: 6363

Re: Credit Card Recommendations

We like USAA as our primary CC. It has no annual fee and 2% cash back if you have monthly direct deposit of at least $1000 into checking acct (we do a transfer from another checking acct). The USAA visa card that I have that requires the $1000 monthly direct deposit (USAA Limitless Cashback Rewards...
by birdog
Thu Apr 05, 2018 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Recommendations
Replies: 43
Views: 6363

Re: Credit Card Recommendations

http://madfientist.cardratings.com/

The Mad Fientist has a nice custom credit card search tool (above) and an article (below) on card usage in regards to cash back and travel hacking.

https://www.madfientist.com/other-portfolio/
by birdog
Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Backdoor Roth IRA conversion issue
Replies: 12
Views: 1640

Re: Backdoor Roth IRA conversion issue

I believe you can do another conversion for the remainder (interest?) left in the tIRA. What I think happened is that when you did the conversion you requested that $5500 be converted. Next time request that the full account be converted. If you do that, even if some interest or a dividend arrives i...
by birdog
Fri Mar 02, 2018 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Back-door Roth or Taxable?
Replies: 2
Views: 339

Back-door Roth or Taxable?

I'm self-employed, married and in the highest tax bracket. I max my SEP-IRA every year and enjoy the tax break. When I retire early (at age 50 in 5 years) I will start a roth conversion ladder to get most of my SEP to my roth prior to RMD age at no tax or a very low tax rate. I expect to spend under...
by birdog
Mon Feb 26, 2018 7:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help - what's your Favorite muni fund and why?
Replies: 20
Views: 2487

Re: Help - what's your Favorite muni fund and why?

stlutz wrote:
Sun Feb 25, 2018 1:03 am
My general suggestion is to you VWIUX if your funds are held at Vanguard or use VTEB if you are at another broker like Schwab or Fidelity.
This is my thought as well. I’m currently at TD Ameritrade and use VTEB. If I ever move to Vanguard I’ll switch to VWIUX.
by birdog
Tue Feb 13, 2018 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Number at which to stop worrying
Replies: 169
Views: 19309

Re: Number at which to stop worrying

A long time ago I thought that if I had $100k I could quit worrying. When I reached that goal, I discovered that I continued to worry just as much as when I had nothing. So I set out to get a million, but the result was the same. I now have several million dollars and I have finally discovered ther...
by birdog
Tue Jan 30, 2018 9:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another Cancel Life Insurance Question
Replies: 7
Views: 778

Re: Another Cancel Life Insurance Question

I just cancelled three term life policies. It was easy for me as I hate to pay for insurance that I no longer need. Sounds like you no longer need these policies.
by birdog
Mon Jan 29, 2018 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What frugal thing did you do today?
Replies: 483
Views: 46446

Re: What frugal thing did you do today?

1210sda wrote:
Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:52 am
I don't mind looking maybe not "poor", but at least "not rich".

It's part of my backup Umbrella Liability Policy. :D

1210
Exactly. Be the gray man. Helps in several areas of life.
by birdog
Sat Jan 27, 2018 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pulling the plug on Scottrade
Replies: 22
Views: 2729

Re: Pulling the plug on Scottrade

Does Merrill Edge cover the investment side for the any HSAs out there?
by birdog
Sat Jan 27, 2018 6:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retreat to cash
Replies: 335
Views: 64670

Re: Retreat to cash

Well, let's see what happens. Unconvinced by the feedback here, I've decided to get out of the market for a while. .... For those of you that want the opportunity to say “I told you so.”, today’s market indexes at the time I placed the orders: Dow: 19,900 S&P: 2260 NAS: 5441 VTI: 116.34 I'm going t...
by birdog
Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TD Ameritrade & Tax Lot ID Method
Replies: 4
Views: 632

Re: TD Ameritrade & Tax Lot ID Method

I think at TDAmeritrade (and other brokers) that one can edit the tax lot allocation on a per-sale basis at any time between sale date and settlement day. I know this to be the case at WellsTrade. One shouldn't have to make a phone call unless (a) one cannot figure out the online interface to chang...
by birdog
Wed Jan 24, 2018 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TD Ameritrade & Tax Lot ID Method
Replies: 4
Views: 632

TD Ameritrade & Tax Lot ID Method

1. TD Ameritrade gives me different options for tax lot ID methods in my tax-advantaged accounts but I can actually leave that to FIFO (First-in, First-out) if I wanted because aren't the tax lot ID methods irrelevant in IRAs? 2. In my taxable account at TDA my options for tax lot ID method are Firs...
by birdog
Tue Jan 23, 2018 7:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ready to give up on bond fund, Lost 2.25% past 6 months
Replies: 85
Views: 11852

Re: Ready to give up on bond fund, Lost 2.25% past 6 months

The problem with bond funds are that their value will decrease as interest rates rise. To mitigate this, you'll be better off buying individual bonds, which you can hold to maturity. My 2 cents, altho I could be wrong. The basic problem with owning individual bonds is that you lose the simple diver...
by birdog
Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: No more TDA Apex?
Replies: 19
Views: 4520

Re: No more TDA Apex?

Poor communication on the part of TD is a good portion of why I left TD. They never seemed to be able to get their story straight. Where did you move to and are you happy with the new place? I’ve been considering leaving TDA as well (due to their comm-free ETF changes). Considering Vanguard, Fideli...
by birdog
Sat Jan 20, 2018 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I stop 529 Contributions
Replies: 14
Views: 2023

Re: Should I stop 529 Contributions

I don’t like the dollars being so restricted (can only be used for education). 529 dollars can be used for anything, at any time. Or they can be used for nothing, forever, and continue to grow tax deferred or tax free. The question is what will the tax treatment of earnings be when a distribution i...
by birdog
Sat Jan 20, 2018 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I stop 529 Contributions
Replies: 14
Views: 2023

Re: Should I stop 529 Contributions

I am of the opinion it is better to underfund than overfund a 529k. I love the one thousand dollar state tax credit I get every year and I started early as well to let compounding do it’s thing but I plan to err on the low side because I don’t like the dollars being so restricted (can only be used f...
by birdog
Fri Jan 19, 2018 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mint vs Personal Capital
Replies: 19
Views: 3559

Re: Mint vs Personal Capital

I use personal capital only. I like that I can track my total portfolio, monitor net worth, track spending, evaluate asset allocation and plan retirement spending and cash flow all at one place.
by birdog
Wed Jan 17, 2018 6:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car accident - was directed to sign release
Replies: 71
Views: 5986

Re: Car accident - was directed to sign release

Simple.....I googled the topic but failed to read the entire article. After more discussion, I did much more reading and PMed the OP with some of the original NHTSA proposals before their final recommendation. Seems that the definition of a minor crash was revised after a lobbing effort of the chil...
by birdog
Tue Jan 16, 2018 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best High Interest Banking Accounts (With Bill Pay): (Checking/Savings/MMA?)
Replies: 8
Views: 1137

Re: Best High Interest Banking Accounts (With Bill Pay): (Checking/Savings/MMA?)

+1 for Alliant. I researched all available options last spring and chose Alliant.
by birdog
Tue Jan 16, 2018 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Self pay vs insurance
Replies: 10
Views: 1069

Re: Self pay vs insurance

I ask the provider what their self-pay price is. It is often lower than the insurance contracted price. If it is, I simply tell them I want to self-pay. I have a very high deductible that we have only met one year. Providers that I have dealt with like self-pay because they don't have to file with i...
by birdog
Fri Jan 12, 2018 8:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance: Who do you use? (Auto/Home)
Replies: 32
Views: 2530

Re: Insurance: Who do you use? (Auto/Home)

USAA for home, auto and term life.
by birdog
Thu Jan 11, 2018 9:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buffett on bonds
Replies: 34
Views: 5653

Re: Buffett on bonds

I think the story of Warren Buffett is amazing. That said, his advice is very general to the ordinary investor. I find myself following Jack Bogle's advice more. That said I would not sleep well with no bonds with 90% in stocks and 10% in cash. Best. I thought Buffett advocated 90% stocks and 10% g...
by birdog
Tue Jan 09, 2018 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early Retirement Math - What I am not thinking of?
Replies: 26
Views: 4611

Re: Early Retirement Math - What I am not thinking of?

https://www.madfientist.com/first-year-of-freedom/ Congratulations on your financial independence! At the same time, I understand your hesitation/thoughtfulness surrounding extreme early retirement. You might check out the above link from the Mad Fientist detailing his first year of extreme early re...
by birdog
Mon Jan 08, 2018 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much are you putting in a 529?
Replies: 111
Views: 10373

Re: How much are you putting in a 529?

Two kids. My state offers a tax incentive up to 5K so that is the what I contribute each year. Only have one account for the sake of simplicity. I plan to stop contributing at some point because I would rather under-fund than over-fund an account with use restrictions like this one.
by birdog
Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Consolidate to Single Financial Institution?
Replies: 30
Views: 2890

Re: Consolidate to Single Financial Institution?

nasrullah: For most of us, I think a single (strong) institution is much better than having investments spread among several institutions. I picked Vanguard in 1986 to hold all our securities and I am very satisfied. Her's why: 1.Vanguard has strength, honesty, and integrity instilled by its founde...
by birdog
Tue Jan 02, 2018 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My 2017 Budget
Replies: 36
Views: 5025

Re: My 2017 Budget

Thank you for sharing. I started tracking expenses a few months ago and was horrified by what we spend. We are in the process now of cutting unnecesssary spending. I am leaning towards cancelling Amazon Prime ($99 year) because the only benefits I see are free two-day shipping. It it my understandin...
by birdog
Mon Jan 01, 2018 9:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Instant Pot users here?
Replies: 104
Views: 13210

Re: Any Instant Pot users here?

LOVE my instapot! There are several really great groups on facebook (yes!) for Insta pot users. I am in this one - https://www.facebook.com/groups/InstantPotVeganRecipes/ even if you are not vegan there are great recipes. https://www.forksoverknives.com/recipes/red-lentil-chili/ Thank you for shari...
by birdog
Mon Jan 01, 2018 6:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Early retirement pros and cons:
Replies: 78
Views: 10777

Re: Early retirement pros and cons:

All I wanted was a less demanding job not early retirement - work kept me busy, healthy and gave a daily objective. Now I am striving to not stop working as long as I can. Vacation is enjoyable after work - whole life cannot be vacation - it is meaningless. Unless you plan to work until your dying ...
by birdog
Sun Dec 31, 2017 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?
Replies: 44
Views: 3767

Re: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?

I was expecting a Christmas bonus, like I get every year, but this year I got a one year subscription to the jelly-of-the-month club. I was NOT happy because I was going to use the money to put in a pool in the spring.
by birdog
Sat Dec 30, 2017 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where I need to keep my Emergency cash
Replies: 24
Views: 2505

Re: Where I need to keep my Emergency cash

I use a savings account with Alliant Credit Union. Their interest rates are always the same as or a bit better than Ally.
by birdog
Fri Dec 29, 2017 3:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do people still use AAA?
Replies: 293
Views: 25251

Re: Do people still use AAA?

I discontinued my AAA membership. The only benefit I ever got from it was a discounted hotel room once. Typically the military discount I get at hotels is larger. I’ve never been stranded and if my battery is needing replaced I replace it myself. I have a hard time with paid subscription services ho...
by birdog
Thu Dec 28, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you sign a non-compete for a side-gig consulting agreement?
Replies: 44
Views: 2962

Re: Would you sign a non-compete for a side-gig consulting agreement?

I have ran into this a few times. I recommend you tell a lawyer what conditions you must have in the proposed agreement and have him/her edit it to say such. Contact the employer verbally and let them know your conditions and why (example: I will not do a non-compete because I don't agree that one p...
by birdog
Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Galaxy S7 from ebay?
Replies: 11
Views: 1441

Re: Galaxy S7 from ebay?

eBay and swappa are great. I’ll never buy a new phone again.
by birdog
Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:19 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where to save/invest $4.7k per month for next 10 years
Replies: 16
Views: 3094

Re: Where to save/invest $4.7k per month for next 10 years

I would maintain the emergency fund and continue to fund the retirement accounts and very aggressively throw any extra money at the mortgage to eliminate it as soon as possible. Don’t try to make it complicated.
by birdog
Tue Dec 26, 2017 6:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: REIT or No REIT
Replies: 98
Views: 14600

Re: REIT or No REIT

No REIT
by birdog
Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:15 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: My Christmas Present to You
Replies: 90
Views: 9915

Re: My Christmas Present to You

You men were truly amazing.
by birdog
Mon Dec 25, 2017 6:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Call the top! - Bitcoin
Replies: 182
Views: 20225

Re: Call the top! - Bitcoin

OkieIndexer wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 4:49 am
Here's a Bitcoin parody from Dec. 22 Late Night with Seth Meyers you guys might enjoy :mrgreen: :

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aeMv9uKpAZg
And I thank you for that, sir!
by birdog
Sun Dec 24, 2017 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accountant fees reasonable?
Replies: 39
Views: 3921

Re: Accountant fees reasonable?

In situations in the past where I've taken over doing taxes for some elderly relatives I ask for a copy of their prior year return so I don't miss anything in the transition. When they've used a commercial preparer (CPA, bookkeeper, accountant etc) I usually see a large volume of forrns and schedul...
by birdog
Sun Dec 24, 2017 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you donate less to Charity?
Replies: 109
Views: 8898

Re: Will you donate less to Charity?

Actually looking to give more this year. (I’m working towards 10% but not there yet.) IMO, the act of giving is primary while the act of maximizing a deduction (while still important to proper money management) is secondary. I don’t want to let the secondary dictate the primary. Besides, you only re...
by birdog
Sat Dec 23, 2017 7:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Early retirement pros and cons:
Replies: 78
Views: 10777

Re: Early retirement pros and cons:

But you have a much longer time frame to get bored. My FIL retired at 62 and lived until 91. That’s almost 40 years of practically doing nothing. When I mean nothing, I don’t mean just sitting at home and drinking beer. Doing nothing? That's a personal choice. Retirement is what you make of it. My ...
by birdog
Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Early retirement pros and cons:
Replies: 78
Views: 10777

Re: Early retirement pros and cons:

...it seems rather imprudent to walk away from good paying jobs in our peak earning years. This is the part I struggle with as well. I am mid 40's and have enough to lead a comfortable (but not extravagant) life without additional W-2 income. I had a very serious health scare several years ago, tha...