Search found 81 matches

by sjt
Wed Sep 12, 2018 2:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massive Student Loan Debt - Fiancee
Replies: 108
Views: 9870

Re: Massive Student Loan Debt - Fiancee

I have been working and strategizing since I was 12 about how I would graduate debt free and I have done so with a bachelors in finance..... I am very debt averse. I am frustrated by my fiancee's lack of understanding when it comes to numbers in general... My only concern is the validity and stabil...
by sjt
Mon Sep 10, 2018 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Florence - survival guide
Replies: 87
Views: 6388

Re: Hurricane Florence - survival guide

Thanks for posting. We're further inland (Raleigh) but many models are showing us in the path. Hopefully the storm weakens by the time it arrives here, But I still need to do our grocery shopping for the week. Hopefully the stores aren't too bad tonight :shock:
by sjt
Thu Sep 06, 2018 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I keep my financial advisor
Replies: 130
Views: 7457

Re: Should I keep my financial advisor

In last 2 years, I have roughly made about 10% per year on my investment compared to about 18% for the S&P 500 with dividends reinvested. I do not know how to calculate the return of 3 fund portfolio. In the past 12 months, Vanguard total stock returned 18%, Vanguard S&P 500 fund returned 17%. And ...
by sjt
Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Big of a Mortgage Should We Get?
Replies: 41
Views: 3035

Re: How Big of a Mortgage Should We Get?

My wife and I have been saving for awhile, and are finally in the position to buy a house. We are trying to decide (1) Whether to buy the house for all cash (2) If we get a mortgage, what kind to get (15 or 30 year), and (3) How much to put down (more than 20%?). We could pay all cash by using savi...
by sjt
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I keep my financial advisor
Replies: 130
Views: 7457

Re: Should I keep my financial advisor

I think simply review your previous year performance (inclusive of fees) compared to what your 3 fund portfolio returned. If your adviser didn't make you $5000 more than you would have made with a 3 fund - you have to ask yourself why you would pay them $5k for that....
by sjt
Thu Sep 06, 2018 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Bike Suggestion
Replies: 40
Views: 2888

Re: New Bike Suggestion

So, bottomline, get a good bike fit, get the best bike that you can afford that suits your style of riding, and then put in the miles. This is terrific advice. I think number 1 concern is: you need to buy a bike that fits you and is comfortable. Secondly, make sure it has decent components (Shimano...
by sjt
Thu Sep 06, 2018 7:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to tell which vent is dryer vent?
Replies: 40
Views: 1651

Re: How to tell which vent is dryer vent?

Run dryer and hold a plastic bag over the vent. if the bag inflates, you've found the dryer vent
by sjt
Wed Sep 05, 2018 1:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need some guidance on 401k, 403b, 457b
Replies: 6
Views: 568

Re: Need some guidance on 401k, 403b, 457b

However I found out today that as a teacher for the county public schools she also has access to a 401k plan and a 457b plan. My understanding is that she cannot contribute to both a 401k and a 403b plan. Not sure what state you're in, but my wife is a teacher in North Carolina and has access to a ...
by sjt
Tue Sep 04, 2018 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Blogs,resources, or tips for busy professional parents?
Replies: 12
Views: 813

Re: Blogs,resources, or tips for busy professional parents?

Does anyone have a good resource with useful tips and tricks for parents with demanding jobs ? Fixed the phrasing for you. Parenting is the most important "job" you have, while financially supporting the family is important also, but not top priority. I think for most people there is a lot of rushi...
by sjt
Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife got a job!
Replies: 11
Views: 1758

Re: Wife got a job!

Hi. If you're comfortable posting more about your financial situation, using the "Asking Portfolio Questions" format may help people help you better. To be in the 22% tax bracket, you'd be making over $101k annually combined. (MFJ families get a $24k standard deduction). Sounds like you have been sa...
by sjt
Fri Aug 31, 2018 10:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Financial Checkup (32 Him, 31 Her)
Replies: 7
Views: 1623

Re: Financial Checkup (32 Him, 31 Her)

Searched online and found fee info here: https://www.nysdcp.com/iApp/tcm/nysdcp/learning/brochures/index.jsp The cost of maintaining a high-quality plan Administrative services are supported by an annual per-participant account fee and an asset-based fee. The annual per-participant account fee is $2...
by sjt
Thu Aug 30, 2018 4:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Financial Checkup (32 Him, 31 Her)
Replies: 7
Views: 1623

Re: Financial Checkup (32 Him, 31 Her)

Should I be putting money to the 457 instead of my wife's Roth and my Roth? Do 457s have the same 59 1/2 requirement for withdrawal without penalty (keeping in mind though I'm only 32 right now, I would like to retire at 57 when I will have a 67% pension). I think you should be putting money into t...
by sjt
Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Allocation for her 401K Plan: Help needed to re-evaluate
Replies: 6
Views: 672

Re: Portfolio Allocation for her 401K Plan: Help needed to re-evaluate

My question is, if there is overlap in some funds? Can we simplify? As we are looking to rebalance and increase some Bond Allocation in the portfolio, we decided to reevaluate the mix as well. Would appreciate it you could give us feedback. Not being intimately familiar with all of the funds, I ima...
by sjt
Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cars... just another tool unless your a tool.
Replies: 28
Views: 2587

Re: Cars... just another tool unless your a tool.

IMO if you are a real enthusiast about cars (or anything for that matter) it will often follow that you find a more economical method to indulge your passion. Accumulating money has no purpose other than trading it for something that is important or better yet a passion. Spending money in areas tha...
by sjt
Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First time investing(401k)
Replies: 21
Views: 1090

Re: First time investing(401k)

Your target date fund expense ratio is low - I'd opt for that.

Are you funding a Roth IRA? If not, this may be a priority over Roth 401k.
by sjt
Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Men’s Underwear recommendation
Replies: 67
Views: 6745

Re: Men’s Underwear recommendation

Old Navy / Gap. Cheap and last a decent while. Waistband elastic usually stretches out after a couple years.
by sjt
Tue Aug 14, 2018 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books - Your 3 Best - (Nonfiction, Fiction, Financial/Investing)
Replies: 48
Views: 5361

Re: Books - Your 3 Best - (Nonfiction, Fiction, Financial/Investing)

Nonfiction
-Into the Wild
-A Walk in the Woods
-Walden

Fiction
-Lord of the Rings / the Hobbit
-The Old Man and the Sea
-Where the Wild Things Are


Financial/Investing
-If You Can
by sjt
Mon Aug 13, 2018 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I Do This? [borrow from relative to pay off loan]
Replies: 55
Views: 3084

Re: Should I Do This? [borrow from relative to pay off loan]

Another vote for sell the car and buy a beater. Seriously, from another post - you stated the vehicle in question is a Civic Si. No doubt insurance is expensive on this vehicle and also premium fuel adds up.

When you buy the beater, invest in a jack, jack stands, and some decent wrenches. :happy
by sjt
Mon Aug 06, 2018 7:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Moving from an advisor to DIY . . . Please Help!
Replies: 18
Views: 1606

Re: Moving from an advisor to DIY . . . Please Help!

Public School Retirement System: $65k ($1000/month payout starting at age 60 until death- option to do a traditional IRA rollover) Money Market: $27k (currently earning 1.85%- this is our emergency fund account) Checking Accounts: $23k (designated for car savings, vacation savings, health savings- ...
by sjt
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Minivan Vs SUV Experience
Replies: 111
Views: 7443

Re: Minivan Vs SUV Experience

niceguy7376 wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:18 am
How can you compare a toyota sienna with a luxury SUV like XC90? Price differential is of magnitude 15K minimum for similar trim levels.
This. Cool blog post for sure.

Stay tuned for my post comparing a Civic to F250.
by sjt
Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Pay Down Question
Replies: 37
Views: 2119

Re: Credit Card Pay Down Question

Is 401k loan an option? More concerning is lack of ability to cover this with an emergency fund. I assume an emergency caused them to run up this CC debt, so an emergency fund draw down would be appropriate to pay off the high interest, then rebuild the emergency fund over the next 3-6 months. If a ...
by sjt
Fri Aug 03, 2018 7:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 26 Years Old - Seeking Investment and Savings Guidance
Replies: 6
Views: 935

Re: 26 Years Old - Seeking Investment and Savings Guidance

1. ..... What are your thoughts on the funds I picked for this? Should I look into different funds in the list above? I've read I should max out my 401k even without employer match.... If you can max your 401k even without employer match, that's great, but those funds are set aside for retirement. ...
by sjt
Fri Jul 27, 2018 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decision for Stay at Home Wife?
Replies: 84
Views: 3602

Re: Decision for Stay at Home Wife?

A very personal decision, much more than finances at stake - what does your wife want to do? For my wife, her career was important to her, and taking several years off to care for young children was not appealing. Financially, it was about a wash. It was also important to us that the children experi...
by sjt
Fri Jul 27, 2018 7:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: steel cut oats wash/rinse before cooking
Replies: 26
Views: 3289

Re: steel cut oats wash/rinse before cooking

Are there instructions on the container?

I use Bobs Red Mill and Trader Joes brands and I don't rinse before cooking.
by sjt
Thu Jul 19, 2018 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another can I afford it question
Replies: 8
Views: 1051

Re: Another can I afford it question

hifromsocal wrote:
Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:43 am
Would appreciate your thoughts and opinions.
Here's opinion: Get your monthly spend down to about $4000 until the house is paid off.
by sjt
Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Semi-Retire by 40-45, possible/realistic?
Replies: 21
Views: 3681

Re: Semi-Retire by 40-45, possible/realistic?

As someone who is of similar age and similar income, I think it's not possible if you decide to have kids. Like others have said, kids are incredibly expensive (but worth it). We pay $10k per kid for 10 months of preschool. Thankfully it's our last year of preschool. If you choose to have one parent...
by sjt
Thu Jul 19, 2018 6:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I may have understood why it's so hard to save and invest
Replies: 75
Views: 11261

Re: I may have understood why it's so hard to save and invest

When your portfolio is $500k, that same $1500 deposit will increase your portfolio by 0.3% - imagine how discouraging that will be.....


Just remember that a house is built 1 brick at a time. Adding a single brick doesn't look like much, but the finished product will be worth it!
by sjt
Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question about new construction basement houses
Replies: 19
Views: 1473

Re: Question about new construction basement houses

Cary resident here (howdy neighbor). I'm from Illinois where nearly everyone I knew had a basement (usually not walkout basements, just regular ones). When I moved to NC I was surprised to see there were very few basements, and the only homes with basements were usually walk out basements. Not sure ...
by sjt
Wed Jul 18, 2018 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling mom's house
Replies: 50
Views: 4207

Re: Selling mom's house

The house needs some TLC. Before my sister and her kids moved in, it was a nice house (only about 10 years old). After my sister moved in, the house was destroyed and now will take a lot to fix it up (new roof, new cabinets, paint, sheet rock, new decks, etc..) What recourse do we have if she refus...
by sjt
Wed Jul 18, 2018 6:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie: 35 and I have no idea what I'm doing
Replies: 9
Views: 1517

Re: Newbie: 35 and I have no idea what I'm doing

Newbie questions: What's the best way to go about rebalancing funds in the taxable account? Should I wait until the 1 year mark to rebalance for long term capital gains? I'm okay with a three fund portfolio. sjt: Probably makes sense to wait until 1 year mark to rebalance, unless some of those stoc...
by sjt
Tue Jul 17, 2018 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Excel Spread sheets -mac or. Windows?
Replies: 21
Views: 1120

Re: Excel Spread sheets -mac or. Windows?

Can you use Google Sheets?
by sjt
Tue Jul 17, 2018 6:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market timing benefit? Or just pure luck?
Replies: 15
Views: 2185

Re: Market timing benefit? Or just pure luck?

5. This scenario is more tricky. I start with $0.5 each in US and ex-US stocks in 1970 again. Instead of rebalancing yearly, I assume that I try to predict the market at the beginning of each year. If I predict that I will be better off rebalancing that year, then I rebalance. Otherwise I don't. Ho...
by sjt
Fri Jul 13, 2018 1:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Boglehead - Portfolio Questions
Replies: 11
Views: 750

Re: New Boglehead - Portfolio Questions

A few points - I make about 80% of our total household income, my wife's job does not come with a retirement plan. We also have one child, and are planning on having a 2nd soon, so we are also saving up for a new car (SUV since we both currently drive sedans). I am meeting with my insurance guy soo...
by sjt
Fri Jul 13, 2018 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you trade experiences in your youth for early retirement
Replies: 81
Views: 5813

Re: Would you trade experiences in your youth for early retirement

This is an interesting question - similar to asking "Do you regret not having kids," and it will really completely depend on the individual who will usually be happy with their choice because it aligns with their priorities. Ask this on the early retirement forums, and you'll have people who live on...
by sjt
Fri Jul 13, 2018 11:09 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with extra $2500 a month?????
Replies: 36
Views: 3281

Re: What to do with extra $2500 a month?????

Thanks for all the quick responses :) Boat Issue Yes, I know this was probably a bit silly but we live on a lake and use it everyday as a family. We dive beater cars, dont go shopping often so our $250 payment is something we are comfortable with. I agree that we need to pay this off sooner than la...
by sjt
Fri Jul 13, 2018 10:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with extra $2500 a month?????
Replies: 36
Views: 3281

Re: What to do with extra $2500 a month?????

What I can ask though is how important is the boat to you? Me personally, I would sell the boat, use those funds to pay off what I can of the mortgage and use the extra $2,500 towards it aswell. Came to post this. A boat is an extravagance and comes with other costs besides the boat loan - insuranc...
by sjt
Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio analysis and savings strategy - 33 year old couple with 2 kids
Replies: 4
Views: 829

Re: Portfolio analysis and savings strategy - 33 year old couple with 2 kids

Just some random thoughts. You are putting aside a significant amount compared to salary. Your spouse can contribute to a 401k and pension? Does she contribute to SS as well? Spouse contributes to pension and SS, can put $18.5k in either 401k/403b, and can put $18.5k in a 457 (may use this if we in...
by sjt
Wed Jul 11, 2018 9:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio analysis and savings strategy - 33 year old couple with 2 kids
Replies: 4
Views: 829

Portfolio analysis and savings strategy - 33 year old couple with 2 kids

First off, a huge thanks to the BH community. I’m an active lurker here and have learned so much. I’m also a big fan of Mr Money Mustache for helping so many become more frugal and increase savings rate. We have recently been able to start contributing the maximum toward tax advantaged accounts. Eme...
by sjt
Mon Jul 09, 2018 7:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take a $60k paycut to work 4days/week
Replies: 58
Views: 5649

Re: Should I take a $60k paycut to work 4days/week

I also had a late start to my career so I’m behind in savings. About $350k in retirement currently. Behind in savings? How many 34 year olds have $350k saved for retirement? Should I wait for a few more years until the kids are older to cut down my hours or is it more important to have time with th...
by sjt
Fri Jul 06, 2018 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Teaching local communities how to save/invest
Replies: 12
Views: 991

Re: Teaching local communities how to save/invest

An admirable goal indeed - to help others improve their life. I think it would be a daunting task to try and put together material for this.... I know a few people to "teach" the Dave Ramsey method (not sure if you need to go through Dave Ramsey channels for this) which will be similar to what you a...
by sjt
Fri Jun 08, 2018 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Masonry Wood-Burning Fireplace Issues
Replies: 25
Views: 1518

Re: Masonry Wood-Burning Fireplace Issues

Any interest in looking at a wood stove? Obviously not the same ambiance as an open hearth fire, but as a bonus, they are efficient and can provide heating. All combustion would happen inside the stove, and exhaust would travel through a metal tube placed inside your existing chimney. http://www.ver...
by sjt
Thu Jun 07, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Found an FSBO home for sale. How to avoid Realtor?
Replies: 42
Views: 3814

Re: Found an FSBO home for sale. How to avoid Realtor?

However I don't know how to proceed. I suspect that once we start 'working' with the realtor any house we find will somehow be claimed by them. They'll want a finders fee (2-3% of sale price.) What to do? Email the owner privately and see if we can view the house? Maybe make a deal before even look...
by sjt
Thu Jun 07, 2018 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Masonry Wood-Burning Fireplace Issues
Replies: 25
Views: 1518

Re: Masonry Wood-Burning Fireplace Issues

We recently had an inspection of a recently purchased chimney (was included with purchase of house). House and chimney were built in 1978, and inside is lined with fireblock. They swept it and used a camera to inspect the interior of the chimney, and they were able to show me the holes and deteriora...
by sjt
Wed Mar 28, 2018 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?
Replies: 247
Views: 15684

Re: Healthy eaters -- is this grocery budget normal to you?

Anyway, we do eat lots of meat! OK - that may be the key to your higher costs. "The science says" high consumption of meat is very unhealthy - so you are paying a premium to harm your health. Your choice - but no longer mine. What science says this? I eat 3 lbs of lean ground turkey, 2.5 lbs of chi...
by sjt
Tue Mar 27, 2018 8:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anything else we should be doing to be ready for retirement or increase wealth?
Replies: 33
Views: 4130

Re: Anything else we should be doing to be ready for retirement or increase wealth?

We know there is a link to the preferred format somewhere, but we can't locate it. Below is my best estimate of what the format requires. Both husband and wife are 33. Total household income: $135,000 - $75,000 for husband and $50,000 for wife. Take home pay is a total of about $7,253/month. This i...
by sjt
Thu Mar 22, 2018 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Much gratitude!
Replies: 5
Views: 566

Re: Much gratitude!

Congrats! It seems that some people dislike these type of posts, but they inspire me to reach my goal - thanks for sharing!
by sjt
Thu Mar 22, 2018 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Budget? Do you keep one?
Replies: 116
Views: 8909

Re: What Budget? Do you keep one?

We use an incredibly simple budgeting app that both DW and I can update called "goodbudget". This mostly accounts for our discretionary / credit card spend (repeating monthly costs like mortgage, childcare, utilities are not tracked on our budget since we have little to no control). We have differen...
by sjt
Thu Mar 22, 2018 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Repayment
Replies: 31
Views: 2994

Re: Student Loan Repayment

This requires soul searching about where to cut and what parts of your lifestyle you can part with. It's really hard to lower your standard of living, which is why people recommend living like a student until you've finished the loans off. Quoted for truth. To be honest, I typed up two responses ye...
by sjt
Wed Mar 21, 2018 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make
Replies: 64
Views: 5251

Re: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make

Because, when you buy a house, you gain equity. Therefore, all other needs/emotions being equal, sometimes it's advantageous to buy a house vs renting. This is what I'm hoping somebody understands. OP: I bolded one of your statements here. You are correct that Sometimes it is advantageous to buy. S...
by sjt
Thu Mar 08, 2018 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice re: Flat Fee Real Estate Brokers.
Replies: 59
Views: 3823

Re: Advice re: Flat Fee Real Estate Brokers.

I did this last year - Houses in Raleigh area are selling like hotcakes. I did the market research, took all the photos with our Canon DLSR, and paid $500 to a local flat fee realtor with good reviews. He listed on the local MLS and provided a lawn sign and lockbox for the door. The realtor worked w...