Search found 99 matches

by Norton750
Wed Jul 04, 2018 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: hybrid or plug-in electric car
Replies: 70
Views: 4204

Re: hybrid or plug-in electric car

In the 14 or so CARB states, the battery for an EV or plug-in hybrid must be warrantied for a minimum of 10 years or 150K miles, I believe. If you live anywhere in the northeastern US, you may want to (quickly) check for incentives and availability of new 2017 Toyota Prius Primes in your area. The P...
by Norton750
Sun Jun 10, 2018 2:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?
Replies: 84
Views: 7227

Re: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?

RE: Not being able to plug in the Prime EV/hybrid: In my region, the plug-in Prime currently costs $11K less than the equivalent non-plug-in Prius (net of all incentives). And if you never plug it in, it still gets 54 mpg burning gasoline, which is 2 mpg better than a new non-plug-in Prius. Same 11....
by Norton750
Sun Jun 10, 2018 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?
Replies: 84
Views: 7227

Re: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?

Is the 240 better or more efficient? (cost) Or, is it just the speed of recharging with 240? I believe the 240 is more efficient (and certainly is twice as fast) - but I have not seen anything definitive on this, despite browsing a couple of different threads on this in different forums. My electri...
by Norton750
Sun Jun 10, 2018 10:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?
Replies: 84
Views: 7227

Re: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?

If your home is on the electric grid you should be OK. Any typical 15 amp 110 volt wall socket will do, nothing special is needed - just like you would use to plug in any sort of power tool or work light. You can get fancy and put in a 240 volt charger, but it's not at all necessary for this car. An...
by Norton750
Sat Jun 09, 2018 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?
Replies: 84
Views: 7227

Re: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?

stoptothink wrote: Anybody who purchases a hybrid with the rationale that it is the cheapest form of transportation is just like someone buying more home because a larger mortgage equals a larger tax write-off. The numbers just don't make sense. And, again, having put several thousand miles on both...
by Norton750
Thu Jun 07, 2018 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?
Replies: 84
Views: 7227

Re: What commuter car provides the best long term financial value?

I don't know where the OP resides, but it might be worth considering the following if a purchase is happening soon: My wife recently bought a new 2017 Prius Prime Premium model (the middle trim level of the plug-in Prius). The dealer pricing looks like this in MA: $30,000 MSRP + destination + a few ...
by Norton750
Thu May 17, 2018 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 28
Views: 6598

Re: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

My wife did recently buy a new 2017 Prius Prime (the Prius plug-in model)...and indeed the price was very attractive. Our new Prime is a "Premier" trim, the middle of three Prime trims. The Prime is attractively priced compared to the non-plug-in Prius Three Touring, the closest non-plug-in Prius ma...
by Norton750
Wed Jan 24, 2018 2:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Portfolio size needed to reach each tax bracket in retirement
Replies: 19
Views: 3063

Re: Portfolio size needed to reach each tax bracket in retirement

This qualifies as a nit, but if the married couple being profiled is age 65 or greater, their standard deduction is $26,600, not $24,000.
by Norton750
Thu Nov 30, 2017 11:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mutual Fund Dividend Trivia [qualified vs non-qualified]
Replies: 3
Views: 355

Mutual Fund Dividend Trivia [qualified vs non-qualified]

I recently learned that you can transform qualified dividends paid from a mutual fund into non-qualified dividends if your holding period for the fund is too short. At the federal level, qualified dividends are taxed at the (lower) capital gains rate and non-qualified dividends at the (higher) ordin...
by Norton750
Wed Aug 02, 2017 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?
Replies: 56
Views: 5980

Re: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?

More trust questions that have occurred to me: My wife and I hold considerable assets in taxable, traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs and I assume assets from each of these three sources would pass to both of our children. In an earlier response in this thread, bsteiner made reference to a "parallel set ...
by Norton750
Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?
Replies: 56
Views: 5980

Re: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?

bsteiner - Thanks very much for the info and the reference to your paper.
by Norton750
Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?
Replies: 56
Views: 5980

Re: Will/Trust Plan Thoughts?

To those who maintain that there is little or no cost or complication involved in leaving assets to a child in trust rather than outright: Over 75% of the assets owned by my wife and I are in tax-deferred IRA accounts. I'm guessing that many others also have large percentages of their assets in tax-...
by Norton750
Wed Dec 28, 2016 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbotax Deluxe on sale at Amazon
Replies: 49
Views: 7679

TurboTax Deluxe + state now below $40 at Amazon

As has happened for each of the past few years, on December 28 (today) Amazon has dropped the price for the TT Deluxe + state disk version some $10 to $39.86. I haven't checked, but this same drop is often seen at Costco, etc. at the same time. I set a CamelCamelCamel alert on TT every year and Dece...
by Norton750
Tue Dec 20, 2016 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage door gets stuck when opening/closing
Replies: 34
Views: 5480

Re: Garage door gets stuck when opening/closing

A couple of times, I've had one of the wheels positioned above the door wear out. The cable supporting the door runs on this wheel, so it is under stress. The wheels are made of two sides which are riveted together to form a wheel. Eventually the cable actually wears a groove in the center of the wh...
by Norton750
Sun Nov 27, 2016 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question on magazine subscription economics
Replies: 12
Views: 2278

Question on magazine subscription economics

I just received a solicitation to subscribe to Rolling Stone magazine for a year for $3.89 from discountmags.com and I have a question for the forum - how does this make any sense economically? Rolling Stone is a 60-page, glossy color magazine that publishes 26 times a year - so it is on offer for l...
by Norton750
Mon Nov 07, 2016 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 28
Views: 6598

Re: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

Responses to a variety of comments in this thread: Battery Type: Prime uses Lithium Ion batteries, not NIMH: http://fortune.com/2016/10/31/toyota-prius-prime-lithium-batteries/ . Toyota seems to feel that they have now mastered the technology sufficiently, esp. with the latest control software. I be...
by Norton750
Sun Nov 06, 2016 8:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 28
Views: 6598

Re: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

No, I haven't really shopped the Volt - I just recently stumbled into this whole plug-in thing based on the Prime's pricing. But I will say that: - I'm a big fan of Toyotas and of the local dealer (based on experience) and not much of a fan of Chevys ( not based on experience, just general bad juju ...
by Norton750
Sun Nov 06, 2016 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive
Replies: 28
Views: 6598

Prius Prime Looks Interesting...Price is Very Attractive

I plan to replace my 14 year old Camry next year (it's got more than a light-second* on the odometer). The Toyota Camry is due for a complete redesign next year and I'm interested to see how both the gas engine Camry and the Camry hybrid turn out. And though it comes as a bit of a surprise to me, I'...
by Norton750
Mon May 09, 2016 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Classic Bernstein 2 — Choosing Portfolio Bond Duration
Replies: 42
Views: 8143

Re: Classic Bernstein 2 — Choosing Portfolio Bond Duration

Here's one BH who owns only Treasury funds (Short, Intermediate and TIPs) - purposely done for the reasons covered earlier in this thread: - I use bonds strictly as an an anchor for the equity side of the portfolio - If I want to take more risk in search of more return, I'll do so on the equity side...
by Norton750
Wed Apr 06, 2016 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any states that tax Roth withdrawals?
Replies: 51
Views: 7058

Re: Any states that tax Roth withdrawals?

A few related comments: The RMD schedule for a non-spouse inheriting an IRA (Traditional or Roth) is not as favorable as the schedule for taking RMDs from your own traditional IRA, but a 60-year old can still stretch such an inherited IRA into their mid-80s. Basically the recipient looks up their li...
by Norton750
Tue Feb 23, 2016 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering $ impacts of a move from MA to NH
Replies: 12
Views: 5515

Re: Considering $ impacts of a move from MA to NH

psycoslowmatic: At the link you posted it also explains that a further $1,200 per person exemption is granted to anyone over 65. This is how I arrived at the $7,200 annual exemption for the two of us: (2400 * 2) + (1200 * 2) = 7200. As I said, RMDs approach for us, so $7,200 it is for us. And thanks...
by Norton750
Mon Feb 15, 2016 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering $ impacts of a move from MA to NH
Replies: 12
Views: 5515

Considering $ impacts of a move from MA to NH

I’m interested in opinions on the financial aspects of a potential move from MA to NH. I know there’s more to it than finances, but I'm concentrating on finances at this time. I’m retired and my wife will retire soon, so jobs are not an issue. We live in northern MA and will be downsizing soon to a ...
by Norton750
Fri Dec 18, 2015 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Lowest cost Vanguard international fund for taxable account?
Replies: 13
Views: 2032

Re: Lowest cost Vanguard international fund for taxable account?

OP here. livesoft - Thanks for the quick and thorough response. Much appreciated. Since there doesn't appear to be an obvious tax efficiency winner, I will go with my original inclination of using Total International Index. I'm just as glad, since this is likely to be a step-up basis account to be i...
by Norton750
Thu Dec 17, 2015 8:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Lowest cost Vanguard international fund for taxable account?
Replies: 13
Views: 2032

Lowest cost Vanguard international fund for taxable account?

I am looking to open a fairly broad-based Vanguard international fund in a taxable account. Not interested in ETFs. Normally I would just go with the Total International Index fund, but I do have a concern about expenses when including tax considerations. I know that there was a Tax-Managed Internat...
by Norton750
Wed Dec 16, 2015 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting from a joint account
Replies: 2
Views: 507

Gifting from a joint account

If a single $28K gift is made to a child from a joint mutual fund account held by the parents, can it be assumed that the IRS will understand that $14K came from each parent, thereby staying within the individual $14K gift tax exclusion?

Nick
by Norton750
Sat Dec 12, 2015 6:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car
Replies: 433
Views: 56377

Re: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car

2002 Toyota Camry, bought new, 188,000 miles
2009 Toyota Matrix, bought new, 87,000 miles
2004 Suzuki DL650, bought used in 2004 with 4,000 miles, now 40,000 miles
by Norton750
Tue Nov 03, 2015 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changes to Social Security
Replies: 477
Views: 60722

Re: Changes to Social Security

My situation (just squeaking in before the door slams shut): DW’s FRA is in 2/2019 (she is now 62), my FRA is in 3/2016 (I am now 65). We will both delay taking our own SS benefits until we turn 70. As long as I file and suspend after reaching my FRA and before the end of the new law’s 180-day deadl...
by Norton750
Mon Sep 28, 2015 6:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AB Trust Questions
Replies: 2
Views: 566

Re: AB Trust Questions

bsteiner - Thank you very much for taking the time to reply so thoroughly. I read both of your referenced articles and it's obvious that I have a lot more to learn. My comment about "downsides" has to do with the fact that although my wife and I have built up a sizable portfolio, we have managed to ...
by Norton750
Fri Sep 25, 2015 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AB Trust Questions
Replies: 2
Views: 566

AB Trust Questions

My wife and I are not currently in any danger of paying any Federal estate tax (and yes, that could change in the future with the whims of Congress). But our state has an estate tax with an exemption of one million $ and no portability. Our estates are susceptible to state estate taxes and we are co...
by Norton750
Tue Sep 08, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity
Replies: 4
Views: 957

Re: Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity

I wanted to follow up on this topic - it has a bit of a surprise ending. Although there are notes in this forum that touch on the topic, I was not aware that there is now a completely different payout option available to the beneficiaries of Vanguard (and many other) variable annuities: The "Non-Qua...
by Norton750
Sat Aug 01, 2015 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The last 18 months of work-things to think about?
Replies: 9
Views: 1781

Re: The last 18 months of work-things to think about?

A few notes about your work benefits, especially if you are not retiring directly at the end of a calendar year. - If you have access to a retirement savings plan at work, you may wish to increase your % of salary saved in order to add as much as possible for the final year. Some plans allow saving ...
by Norton750
Mon Jul 27, 2015 1:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity
Replies: 4
Views: 957

Re: Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity

Dale, I was trying to ask what others thought of this option of annuitizing but taking a variable rather than a fixed payment. I was not trying to ask how anyone thought it fit into my objectives or my portfolio. That's why the "mad money" comment - nothing that is going to affect my life or my othe...
by Norton750
Mon Jul 27, 2015 11:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity
Replies: 4
Views: 957

Variable Option For Annuitizing a Vanguard Annuity

My wife is the beneficiary of a Vanguard Variable Annuity and we are trying to decide amongst the different options for receiving the payout. This is "mad money" for us, nothing that will really matter to our lifestyle. I've made a similar decision before when deciding whether to annuitize a pension...
by Norton750
Wed Jul 01, 2015 6:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using an Ally savings account from Vanguard
Replies: 18
Views: 5870

Re: Using an Ally savings account from Vanguard

Thanks to all who responded - very much appreciated. I'm now in the process of setting this all up.
by Norton750
Tue Jun 30, 2015 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using an Ally savings account from Vanguard
Replies: 18
Views: 5870

Using an Ally savings account from Vanguard

I'm looking to set up a savings/MM account at an online bank. I want to link this new account to Vanguard and I would plan to initiate all transfers in and out of the new account from within Vanguard (doing a buy or sell from Vanguard and using this new account as the provider or the recipient of th...
by Norton750
Tue Mar 31, 2015 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did you learn anything from 2008?
Replies: 105
Views: 13392

Re: Did you learn anything from 2008?

I learned that I was able to tolerate a market crash - but it was absolutely no fun whatsoever. I was not feeling confident, but I was darn sure not going to switch horses mid-stream, so I rebalanced into equities all the way to the bottom into early 2009. I learned that short and intermediate term ...
by Norton750
Wed Mar 11, 2015 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Blues (music)
Replies: 57
Views: 6346

Re: Blues (music)

OK, I'll post a few favorite YouTube blues links: Howlin' Wolf (with a few other notables on stage) doing Smokestack Lightning: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09j6vMdKi3E A young Jeff Healey and Stevie Ray Vaughan tearing up Look at Little Sister: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2HmLFyvFxTc Ronnie ...
by Norton750
Thu Feb 26, 2015 7:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will VSS, VNQI ER Estimates Be Lowered Soon? [Yes]
Replies: 29
Views: 4054

Re: Will VSS, VNQI ER Estimates Be Lowered Soon? [Yes]

Note that the 0.36% ER for the VINEX (Vanguard International Explorer) fund is a target, not a hard fact. And not that I want to complain about superior performance, but such performance does cause the fund's ER to rise, just as poor performance can cause it to drop. From the October, 2014 VINEX Ann...
by Norton750
Wed Feb 11, 2015 5:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which light bulbs are best bang for the buck?
Replies: 41
Views: 5877

Re: Which light bulbs are best bang for the buck?

I recently went to nearly 100% LEDs. I am in agreement with the general dislike of CFLs - slow warm up, fairly high failure rate. I made the full switch to LEDs when I realized that I could purchase: - Cree LED 60 Watt equivalent standard bulbs directly from the local utility for $4.00 apiece - Feit...
by Norton750
Wed Feb 11, 2015 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth Upgrading to LED Lighting?
Replies: 70
Views: 10575

Re: Worth Upgrading to LED Lighting?

I recently went to nearly 100% LEDs. I am in agreement with the general dislike of CFLs - slow warm up, fairly high failure rate. I made the full switch to LEDs when I realized that I could purchase: - Cree 60 Watt equivalent standard bulbs directly from the local utility for $4.00 apiece - Feit BR3...
by Norton750
Mon Jan 26, 2015 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winter Coat
Replies: 65
Views: 11842

Re: Winter Coat

Most posters seem to be ignoring the OP's sleeve length. I share his 36-inch sleeve size and many of the recommendations here will not offer jackets that will fit. I strongly recommend Eddie Bauer. Every jacket they sell is available in tall sizes. And their tall sizes are truly tall. I've had hit-a...
by Norton750
Sun Jan 18, 2015 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?
Replies: 322
Views: 74443

Re: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?

How long did it take you to go from $1.5M to $3M ?

Four to five years - as equities recovered coming out of the Great Recession.
by Norton750
Sun Jan 18, 2015 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?
Replies: 322
Views: 74443

Re: If your networth is over $3 million, how did you do it?

1). Met my future spouse while in night school studying software engineering. So I met a smart, ambitious woman - whom I stayed married to. 2). Had two good incomes (whilst raising two children). 3). Lived frugally and saved. Put every cent we have ever been able to into tax advantaged accounts. 4)....
by Norton750
Tue Jan 13, 2015 3:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the international portion of your portfolio and why?
Replies: 140
Views: 19058

Re: What is the international portion of your portfolio and

Within my equity holdings, my targets for international funds are: - 9% VEUSX (European Index - Admiral) - 9% VPADX (Pacific Index - Admiral) - 9% VEMAX (Emerging Markets Index - Admiral) - 9% VINEX (International Explorer) Looking back at what happened with Japanese stocks in the 1980s, I was wary ...
by Norton750
Fri Dec 26, 2014 8:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ultimate Boglehead Year End Checklist
Replies: 30
Views: 3797

Re: Ultimate Boglehead Year End Checklist

I'm bunching itemized deductions on alternate years. So in "heavy" years I am making the next year's charitable contributions in December and also paying ahead the next 6 months of property taxes (the most my town allows to be prepaid). Also, in January of a "heavy" year I am paying the overdue prop...
by Norton750
Fri Dec 12, 2014 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon.com price roller coster
Replies: 34
Views: 6851

Re: Amazon.com price roller coster

Regarding Amazon matching its own price drops: My experience on this is quite positive. Amazon used to match it's own price for 30 days after the item was shipped (if you ordered from Amazon, not a third party). They have now dropped that to 7 days - but they did let me squeak through once just afte...
by Norton750
Fri Dec 12, 2014 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon.com price roller coster
Replies: 34
Views: 6851

Re: Amazon.com price roller coster

I became a big-time believer in camelcamelcamel (C3) after using it to track a fancy guitar book on Amazon that I was considering giving as a special gift. The MSRP is $1,500, the book is a numbered, limited edition that measures nearly 2 ft. by 1 ft., weighs 21 pounds and it comes in a fitted Strat...
by Norton750
Sat Dec 06, 2014 8:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it end?
Replies: 156
Views: 20133

Re: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it en

Started programming in the mid 70's. Had a bunch of jobs, enjoyed work much/most of the time. Liked the flexibility. Got a Master in Computer Science at night - and met my future wife at school. Got laid off three times since 2000 and spent a total of 12 months out of work. Finally tried a job in a ...
by Norton750
Tue Nov 04, 2014 6:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What have you done to cut costs this year?
Replies: 134
Views: 17845

Re: What have you done to cut costs this year?

Started to bunch tax deductions every other year, saving perhaps $700 per year. Saved $250 by shopping around for a lower cost MRI provider. Did not buy that new motorcycle I was falling in lust with (that counts, right?) Replaced lots of incandescent and CFL (hate 'em) bulbs with $4 LED bulbs from ...
by Norton750
Tue Nov 04, 2014 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Volatility of Amazon Pricing
Replies: 23
Views: 2965

Re: The Volatility of Amazon Pricing

My biggest disappointment with Amazon happened with Subscribe & Save (S&S). I spent a considerable amount of time selecting staple items that were available on S&S, the delivery schedules, etc. etc. And over the next 6 to 12 months every single item was either unavailable or the price increased subs...