Search found 50 matches

by rennale
Sun Nov 24, 2019 9:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Benefits of High-Yield Bonds
Replies: 71
Views: 4878

Re: Benefits of High-Yield Bonds

As a newbie (and, seemingly, destined to be a newbie forever) this thread is a great learning opportunity. But one word that seems to be missing is Tax. Why is that, what am I missing? My FA (no longer used) had quite a lot of my portfolio in high yield bonds, which I dumped during the process of re...
by rennale
Mon Nov 11, 2019 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Romantic northeast winter weekend getaway?
Replies: 28
Views: 3148

Re: Romantic northeast winter weekend getaway?

Six hours from NYC, according to Google, is the Bretton Arms Inn, which is in the grounds of the Mount Washington Hotel. Both are historic, the former being small and more romantic, the latter being grand and impressive. It's just a few minutes walk between them so you can easily use the facilities ...
by rennale
Sat Sep 07, 2019 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quebec City in October
Replies: 23
Views: 2011

Re: Quebec City in October

Don't forget that Canadian Thanksgiving is in October (Monday 14th this year) so that can impact opening times and prices. And allow you to catch two Thanksgivings. :-)
by rennale
Sun Aug 11, 2019 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your hobby and how did it come to be your hobby?
Replies: 146
Views: 16521

Re: What is your hobby and how did it come to be your hobby?

Bee keeping. - It was just something that I was always curious about. I started this year. Absolutely fascinating. A hobby that is both easy and difficult at the same time. Hives are simple to install and mostly look after themselves, but, wow, the complexities of keeping the bees alive and healthy ...
by rennale
Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DCU digital credit union Massachusetts
Replies: 25
Views: 2021

Re: DCU digital credit union Massachusetts

Heck, 31 years. All the old DECcies, I guess. :-) Anyway, the DCU doesn't support Direct Connect - which would allow Quicken etc. to directly access & download financial transactions. But it does support export of transactions into the following file formats: Excel (.csv) OFX Quicken (.qfx) QuickBoo...
by rennale
Thu Jun 20, 2019 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to stay in Hong Kong
Replies: 16
Views: 1275

Re: Where to stay in Hong Kong

Well, if you decide to completely blow your budget you could try a once-in-a-lifetime night in the Ritz Carlton. The hotel occupies floors 102-118 of the building, with the reception on the 103rd floor and the bar on the 118th.

It's quite the experience.
by rennale
Fri May 31, 2019 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downloadable Social Security Benefit Estimator (2019 Update)
Replies: 81
Views: 10037

Re: Downloadable Social Security Benefit Estimator (2019 Update)

As far as I can tell it's just a matter of being able to alter the 90% bend point PIA calculation to a different percentage. With WEP, the 90% number reduces by 5% per year for every year fewer than 30 "substantial earnings" years. So, if you only have 29 substantial earnings years (and a separate p...
by rennale
Fri May 31, 2019 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downloadable Social Security Benefit Estimator (2019 Update)
Replies: 81
Views: 10037

Re: Downloadable Social Security Benefit Estimator (2019 Update)

I'd be interested to know how to modify this excellent spreadsheet to deal with WEP (Windfall Elimination Provision). Such as adding an input cell for the WEP percentage.
by rennale
Mon May 06, 2019 7:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree Portfolio Model
Replies: 799
Views: 263548

Re: Retiree Portfolio Model

Buy a copy of Excel for Mac for $105. https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H4XBM1R Anything else will cause more grief than it's worth.... (and Excel is a good product by any measure) I really don’t want to buy MS products. Is anyone using LibreCalc successfully on a Mac with RPM? Yeah, I didn't either (I'...
by rennale
Mon May 06, 2019 6:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree Portfolio Model
Replies: 799
Views: 263548

Re: Retiree Portfolio Model

Buy a copy of Excel for Mac for $105.

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B07H4XBM1R

Anything else will cause more grief than it's worth.... (and Excel is a good product by any measure)
by rennale
Mon Apr 29, 2019 6:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: EXTREMELY frugal things from our parents and grandparents
Replies: 110
Views: 10389

Re: EXTREMELY frugal things from our parents and grandparents

My grandfather would turn off the car engine to free wheel down long hills and save gas. (Long before the days of steering locks!)
by rennale
Sun Mar 17, 2019 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris - Is It Safe?
Replies: 143
Views: 10357

Re: Paris - Is It Safe?

I took the Eurostar train from London to Paris on March 2nd (two weeks ago) and it was perfectly fine, if you don't count the hundreds of young school kids enjoying themselves during the trip (hint: get first class tickets!). I was in Paris for a few days and it too was absolutely fine. I steered cl...
by rennale
Fri Mar 08, 2019 5:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Things to do in Maine
Replies: 72
Views: 7023

Re: Things to do in Maine

Take the ferry from from Port Clyde or New Harbor to Monhegan Island and spend the day there. On a nice day it's a little slice of heaven.
by rennale
Sat Feb 23, 2019 3:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Safe Harbor Rule and Uneven Income
Replies: 29
Views: 2000

Re: Safe Harbor Rule and Uneven Income

Somewhat tangentially, I believe that there's an additional get-out-of-jail-free card if you retired in 2017/2018 and were over 62 years old. But I have no idea how this is entered on Form 2210. My H&R Block Tax software has no way to select this option as far as I can tell. It also seems to vaguely...
by rennale
Fri Feb 15, 2019 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Need advice on personal situation [may return to Europe]
Replies: 21
Views: 2529

Re: Need advice on personal situation

Well, per The Clash: Darling you got to let me know Should I stay or should I go? If you say that you are mine I'll be here 'til the end of time So you got to let me know Should I stay or should I go? Perhaps Darling is NYC. :-) You mention that you've been in the US five years and would possibly re...
by rennale
Thu Jan 24, 2019 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.
Replies: 177
Views: 17163

Re: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.

This topic would likely be shorter if it discussed inheritances that *did* go as planned. I haven't seen too many. My experiences sum up to: 1/ People don't die in the order that inheritance plans expect them to. 2/ Blood is much much *much* thicker than water. 3/ Blindly considering all children e...
by rennale
Wed Jan 23, 2019 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.
Replies: 177
Views: 17163

Re: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.

Oh, and two more:

5/ People fail to update their wills when circumstances change.
6/ If a will can't be found it can't be executed. And if there's only one copy, well, it can mysteriously disappear......
by rennale
Wed Jan 23, 2019 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.
Replies: 177
Views: 17163

Re: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.

This topic would likely be shorter if it discussed inheritances that *did* go as planned. I haven't seen too many. My experiences sum up to: 1/ People don't die in the order that inheritance plans expect them to. 2/ Blood is much much *much* thicker than water. 3/ Blindly considering all children eq...
by rennale
Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REGISTRATION FOR 2019 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST [Entry deadline has passed]
Replies: 696
Views: 19566

Re: REGISTRATION FOR 2019 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST

2599.12

The wisdom of crowds. My quick scan makes this the average so far, ignoring the 10 lowest and 10 highest guesses. 280 guesses.
by rennale
Sun Dec 16, 2018 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Personal Adventure - recommendations
Replies: 97
Views: 7271

Re: Personal Adventure - recommendations

How about taking a look at:

"A History of the World in 500 Walks" by Sarah Baxter.

https://www.amazon.com/History-World-50 ... 162686554X

A friend gave it to me for a present and I've been in a crisis of decision ever since. :-)
by rennale
Tue Dec 04, 2018 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement itch- when did you get it?
Replies: 145
Views: 16149

Re: Retirement itch- when did you get it?

Well, here's the thing - I never got the itch. It was the calendar that did for me. For the majority of my career I was doing something that I loved, at least at a strategic level if not always at the day-to-day level. And the vast majority of my friends were at work (not an ideal situation, but it ...
by rennale
Sun Nov 18, 2018 1:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ed Slott & Roth Conversions
Replies: 45
Views: 3930

Re: Ed Slott & Roth Conversions

I'm also struggling with the convert or not convert question because I have a large LTCG. If I convert the LTCG will cross the NIIT threshold. If I don't convert, it won't. So, essentially, the conversion is going to cost an extra 3.8%. Bumping the 12% rate to 15.8% isn't so bad. But bumping the 22%...
by rennale
Wed Oct 31, 2018 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Planning first international trip - London/Paris
Replies: 74
Views: 4953

Re: Planning first international trip - London/Paris

The tradeoff is one of actually enjoying these cities versus visiting as many tourist attractions as possible in them. These are often at odds with each other, just the same as any great American city (NYC, San Francisco, etc). Struggling with a huge crowd to see the Mona Lisa or visiting Harrods ca...
by rennale
Wed Oct 17, 2018 7:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What tools do you use to track your finances?
Replies: 80
Views: 7055

Re: What tools do you use to track your finances?

+1 for Moneydance. I started using it late last year after seeing good reviews here in the forum. I previously used several homegrown spreadsheets of varying complexity. I've never tried Quicken or MS Money (which, at the time, people didn't seem to be too happy with due to cost or support issues) o...
by rennale
Sun Jun 03, 2018 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 6 hour layover on Heathrow
Replies: 54
Views: 6602

Re: 6 hour layover on Heathrow

First, check the weather. If it's raining, stay in the airport. I would keep it very simple. Heathrow Express to Paddington. Then just walk: - Perhaps to Portobello Market and the Notting Hill area. Lots of fun. or: - Down to Kensington Gardens and Hyde Park. Then down into Knightsbridge and visit H...
by rennale
Sun Jun 03, 2018 7:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: June in Paris: What to (or not to) wear, see and do?
Replies: 53
Views: 3905

Re: June in Paris: What to (or not to) wear, see and do?

Re: ....I would appreciate some suggestions for some offbeat things to see or do. Have dinner at Nos Ancêtres les Gaulois at 39 Rue Saint-Louis en l'Île (https://www.nosancetreslesgaulois.com/en) I've been a couple of times, although not for several years, and, yes, it's clearly a tourist & after-bu...
by rennale
Sat May 26, 2018 9:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 3 days in Boston with an 8 year old
Replies: 32
Views: 2939

Re: 3 days in Boston with an 8 year old

For great views of the city (50 floors up) have lunch at the Top of the Hub in the Prudential Center. Amazingly, lunch there doesn't have to be wickedly expensive. For a cheap thrill take the ferry from the Aquarium to Charlestown. Takes under 15 minutes and gives a fun view of the city, especially ...
by rennale
Wed May 23, 2018 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long does it take for SS to fix earnings record?
Replies: 17
Views: 2137

Re: How long does it take for SS to fix earnings record?

I think it's a matter of getting to talk to the right person. Like your wife, I too was missing an entire year of earnings on my SS record, and I had the W2 & Tax return. After initially going to my SS office and handing everything over, several months passed by and nothing happened. I had to go bac...
by rennale
Wed May 09, 2018 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Breaking Up and Staying On Good Terms with an Advisor
Replies: 42
Views: 5652

Re: Breaking Up and Staying On Good Terms with an Advisor

I did this, for the same reasons as you, on perfectly good terms. Simply identify a personal life deadline and tell him you'll be meeting it shortly. In my case I told my FA, several months before I retired, that after I retired I would have the time to manage my portfolio and planned to do so. So w...
by rennale
Sun Apr 29, 2018 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BH travel tips?
Replies: 193
Views: 24000

Re: BH travel tips?

Well, (having not read the entire thread) here are two simple ideas that have served me well: 1/ On the flight out put the airline's blanket all over you prior to the meals, so it acts as a huge napkin. Then, when you've inevitably spilt wine/food all over yourself before you've even got to your des...
by rennale
Fri Apr 27, 2018 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning to drive a stick [car with manual transmission]
Replies: 126
Views: 9805

Re: Learning to drive stick

There is a driving school near me that offers a 2 hour lesson for $180. They provide the car. Reviews suggest that at the end of the 2 hours, people feel comfortable enough that they could drive stick now, albeit not perfectly. Would this be a reasonable plan of action? Don't overthink this. Drivin...
by rennale
Mon Apr 23, 2018 7:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New retirees: so whatdayathink ?
Replies: 119
Views: 23205

Re: New retirees: so whatdayathink ?

For those of you who have retired within the past year or so, how is it? Have there been any major surprises or adjustments you've had to make. Anything you need help with? Retired last year at 67. How is it? It's very pleasant. I am calmer in myself, kinder to other people, and more interested in ...
by rennale
Wed Mar 28, 2018 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Office 2016 download on Ebay - how so cheap?
Replies: 23
Views: 5693

Re: Mac Office 2016 download on Ebay - how so cheap?

Unless you need Outlook, why not choose Home & Student rather than Home & Business?

Microsoft Office Home and Student for Mac (download) is currently $115 on Amazon. Provides Excel, Word, Powerpoint and OneNote. Full license with no monthly subscription.
by rennale
Fri Mar 23, 2018 7:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Safe SP500 index fund
Replies: 32
Views: 4162

Re: Safe SP500 index fund

You'd need an options based strategy. Basically buying Put options (bets on the index going down). You can do this yourself but it will get expensive over a long period of time. The closer options are to In The Money (ie exercisable for value) and the longer they are to expire, the more money they ...
by rennale
Sat Mar 10, 2018 10:12 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable Fidelity Account - FSTVX vs ITOT
Replies: 57
Views: 10928

Re: Taxable Fidelity Account - FSTVX vs ITOT

FWIW, back in 2015 Morningstar was recommending FSTVX for taxable accounts:

http://www.morningstar.com/articles/714 ... -fide.html
by rennale
Mon Feb 19, 2018 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree Portfolio Model
Replies: 799
Views: 263548

Re: Retiree Portfolio Model

I can now answer my own question. I purchased "Office 2016 for Mac" from Amazon for $130. In addition to Excel it provides Word, Powerpoint and Onenote. The original reviews for Excel for Mac back in 2016 were dismal, but I figured that a couple of years of updates would have redeemed it. So it prov...
by rennale
Wed Feb 07, 2018 8:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree Portfolio Model
Replies: 799
Views: 263548

Re: Retiree Portfolio Model

A quick question - before I waste a hundred or so bucks can anybody confirm that Excel 2016 for Mac will handle RPM fully (Macros etc)? My Mac is running High Sierra (10.13.3). https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/store/d/excel-2016-for-mac/cfq7ttc0k5f2 I've been using RPM with LibreOffice (5.4.4.2) for ...
by rennale
Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MS Money replacement
Replies: 16
Views: 2282

Re: MS Money replacement

Previous recommendations in this forum have included Moneydance, so I started using it. Seems to do everything, including Direct Connect and stock price updating. Works very well for me (no bugs/crashes/etc). Data is stored locally (not in somebody's cloud). Free trial followed by a low cost purchase.
by rennale
Wed Jan 31, 2018 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I join Linkedin?
Replies: 48
Views: 4712

Re: Should I join Linkedin?

The HR department of the company I worked for (prior to retirement) used LinkedIn extensively to find candidates for open job positions. In fact, aside from looking at the resumes of people who applied for jobs directly through the company's website, it wasn't clear that the recruiters bothered to d...
by rennale
Fri Dec 08, 2017 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about IRMAA and first couple years of retirement
Replies: 17
Views: 2583

Re: Question about IRMAA and first couple years of retirement

Re: Went through this personally. The Monday after I left my job, DW and I marched down to the SS office and filed the paperwork. You need the termination letter from your employer. Keep the termination letter, because they’ll keep trying to add the IRMAA every year until you file taxes with the low...
by rennale
Tue Nov 21, 2017 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why not take Social Security at 62
Replies: 334
Views: 34770

Re: Why not take Social Security at 62

As an unscientific comment I have observed no evidence that family longevity history is in any way meaningful in assessing one's own potential lifespan. I've been to too many funerals where a parent has survived long enough to bury a child. (Surely life's cruelest blow.) And on the other hand my par...
by rennale
Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:27 am
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Master Thread for Metro Boston's Chapter
Replies: 414
Views: 127065

Re: Master Thread for Metro Boston's Chapter

Ditto.

It'll be my first ever meeting. Very much looking forward to it. The social too! :-)
by rennale
Mon Oct 16, 2017 6:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Questions - Please Help
Replies: 24
Views: 2051

Re: Medicare Questions - Please Help

I recently went through the same process (deciding which Medicare Advantage to purchase) and came to the conclusion that dental was mostly a waste of time. The insurance provisions are minimal, it's mostly a pre-payment system. For example, in my area a cleaning is about $150 and the MA programs see...
by rennale
Sun Oct 15, 2017 11:26 am
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!
Replies: 325
Views: 71581

Re: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!

Another update. My last day at megacorp was 1st September. Whoo-hoo. Now six weeks in and just treating life like a series of back-to-back weekends. I've decided to chill until the New Year to unwind and take stock (figurative, not literal). Then sort out something constructive to do. It's amazing h...
by rennale
Wed Oct 11, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Boston area Relocation...major decision points
Replies: 34
Views: 4193

Re: Boston area Relocation...major decision points

As a previous reply mentioned, there isn't much of a reverse commute to be had. But, as also mentioned, living in central Boston and driving north out to Woburn is definitely manageable. This would put you living in the city of Boston (the Back Bay or Beacon Hill, perhaps), or Cambridge, or Charlest...
by rennale
Sun Aug 20, 2017 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone planning on never retiring?
Replies: 138
Views: 15354

Re: Anyone planning on never retiring?

So I am now 67 and retire at the end of this month. I think I have the necessary financial security and my job has become boring. I don't have the "retire to something not from something" figured out, so I'm terrified of the coming months. But unless I work until I drop dead that hurdle must be face...
by rennale
Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Regret early retirement/downsizing
Replies: 230
Views: 54775

Re: Regret early retirement/downsizing

I have watched this thread with great interest, although I would prefer one on "Regret *late* retirement/downsizing." I think I've dealt with the early retirement problem by keeping working until my 67th birthday earlier this month. But, that said, the prospect of boredom in retirement is still a si...
by rennale
Tue May 30, 2017 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any hope of getting my Social Security earnings corrected?
Replies: 25
Views: 3043

Re: Any hope of getting my Social Security earnings corrected?

I too am trying to fix this problem. I have one year (1991) where the SSA reports zero earnings, and another (1992) that reports partial earnings. I'm not sure why this happened but blithely assumed that there was no rush to fix it. I also made the mistake of not realizing that the earnings were adj...
by rennale
Sat May 20, 2017 4:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Delay SS, but claim if market plunges
Replies: 49
Views: 6227

Re: Delay SS, but claim if market plunges

Apologies for topic drift but earlier, Watty mentioned: > The Vanguard 2015 target date fund has an asset allocation of 50% stocks and a 50% bonds so ...... The Fidelity 2015 target date fund is the same and I'm curious about it. Presumably the typical investor in these funds is now 67 or thereabout...
by rennale
Sun Apr 23, 2017 7:16 am
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!
Replies: 325
Views: 71581

Re: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2017!

First post. Not likely to be the last! Got to start somewhere. I also plan to retire this year, when I get to 67. Basically terrified. Been in the IT industry since college. Enough already. Was once wisely advised to not retire from something, but to retire to something. But the "from" takes so many...