Search found 183 matches

by nguy44
Wed Nov 13, 2019 6:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone had their house repiped?
Replies: 32
Views: 3143

Re: Anyone had their house repiped?

We also repiped our house, as we had a similar situation as }b]Info_Hound[/b] mentioned above. Our house was built in 1977 and on well water. In 1996 we began to get pinhole leaks. We actually replaced it in three phases. The first was in lieu of fixing several pinhole leaks, and it was cheaper to r...
by nguy44
Wed Nov 13, 2019 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Saving seats on Southwest
Replies: 210
Views: 11061

Re: Saving seats on Southwest

Wow, a lot of folks on this thread worry about certain things a lot more than I do. Maybe it is due to my age, after flying around the world for 40+ years for work and pleasure, I have learned that there are very few travel hills I choose to die on. :happy I like Southwest. I prefer aisle seats, and...
by nguy44
Wed Nov 13, 2019 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where to park $ for about 1.5 yrs
Replies: 10
Views: 1033

Re: Where to park $ for about 1.5 yrs

High yield savings. Capital One 360 is fine. Not the best rate (Ally is 1.8% I think) but pretty good. Ally dropped their rate to 1.7% today. Capital One 360 Money Market is still at 1.9% (at least that is what my account says today). I agree with others, either a high yield savings account or Mone...
by nguy44
Wed Nov 13, 2019 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring soon and need help
Replies: 19
Views: 2163

Re: Retiring soon and need help

Priorities 1. Start his tIRA Roth conversion ASAP to get part of it done in 2019 if possible without going above 24% bracket. 2. Shift & rebalance IRA portfolio after your input on AA. Seems like these are most important first steps then I can post more questions later. Thanks for great help. Congr...
by nguy44
Wed Nov 13, 2019 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The difficulty of discarding frugality?
Replies: 95
Views: 6468

Re: The difficulty of discarding frugality?

I have been transitioning into being less frugal - perhaps more LAYM (Living At Your Means) instead of LBYM (Living Below Your Means) in the 17 months I have been retired. Last December's market dip helped (not that I am asking for it to happen again!), as I saw that it did not make a difference in ...
by nguy44
Sat Nov 09, 2019 4:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Spend It All vs. Leave $$ for the Kids
Replies: 176
Views: 13137

Re: Spend It All vs. Leave $$ for the Kids

Our current SWR projects us to never run out of money, so we are spending to have a fun and comfortable retirement. If anything is left over, most will go to our kids, some will go to other relatives and charity. Various models indicate better odds for leaving each of our kids 6 figure inheritances,...
by nguy44
Sat Nov 09, 2019 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seller's agent not letting us use a buyer's agent
Replies: 122
Views: 10453

Re: Seller's agent not letting us use a buyer's agent

About 30 years ago we bought our current house in a similar situation. To make a long story short, even though our agent took us to see 30+ houses, we found our house via an open house ad and went ourselves (we saw the ad on a Sunday morning and went the same day). The sellers agent kept telling us ...
by nguy44
Fri Nov 08, 2019 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How bad business travel is?
Replies: 61
Views: 4674

Re: How bad business travel is?

10% travel, with 90 minute flight, should be very manageable. For most of my career, I had at least 10-20% travel across the U.S. For about a third of my career I had 50%+ travel that could be worldwide. Every airport,rental car, and hotel room began to look the same. But the salary and additional p...
by nguy44
Thu Nov 07, 2019 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage to prepay or not prepay
Replies: 81
Views: 5806

Re: Mortgage to prepay or not prepay

This is something I am considering. With the 2019 tax law changes, the amount of my mortgage deduction no longer makes a difference with the 24k deduction. The rate and balance are low (2.875%, 53K), with about 8.5 years to go... so maybe it is time to pay it off early next year (I have enough cash ...
by nguy44
Thu Nov 07, 2019 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using credit cards -international travel
Replies: 17
Views: 698

Re: Using credit cards -international travel

I have traveled internationally a lot, primarily Asia and the Middle East, and always request the local currency be charged. It can make a big difference, especially on large purchases. I have never had an instance when the local currency was more than what they would have billed in USD. Many places...
by nguy44
Wed Nov 06, 2019 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What car fits comfortably 3 adults with luggages?
Replies: 63
Views: 1855

Re: What car fits comfortably 3 adults with luggages?

A mid-size or larger SUV would work. We used a Kia Sorento to get 3 adults with checked baggage from the airport and it worked. Now, 2 of the checked bags were not the largest luggage size, but in that case we would have just used the extra seat in back for that. Best thing is to check with your loc...
by nguy44
Tue Nov 05, 2019 5:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much money is really needed in retirement?
Replies: 74
Views: 9149

Re: How much money is really needed in retirement?

To the OP, at 38 you are not behind the curve. At 39 I had about $235K in savings/investments. I add to the others who say that you are correct in that expenses are the most important thing. If you haven't already, now is a good time to start tracking your expenses to see what they are in detail. At...
by nguy44
Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do you consider pensions as part of your overall asset allocation?
Replies: 67
Views: 5046

Re: Do you consider pensions as part of your overall asset allocation?

I have a pension and consider it separate from my AA. With it I can choose to be more aggressive with my AA, as it can buffer increased risk. Or I can choose to be less aggressive with my AA, if have "won my game" and no longer choose to take as much risk. My pension is part of my cash flow. Pension...
by nguy44
Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC check ups?
Replies: 46
Views: 2974

Re: HVAC check ups?

We will be paying $200 per year for two checkups starting this coming spring. I wrote a check for $19,000 in early spring for a new high end variable speed Lennox heat pump, air handler and rigid insulated steel duct work and the first year of service is no-cost. I figure $200 per year is cheaper t...
by nguy44
Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much deferred maintenance would make you walk away from a home deal?
Replies: 30
Views: 2351

Re: How much deferred maintenance would make you walk away from a home deal?

We have bought 1 condo and 2 houses in our lifetime. Our "rule of thumb" was that we hoped we could go at least 5 years without having to spend on any major maintenance. Interior painting is not a biggie, so that did not matter. Before we made a offer we tried to ascertain the age of the major home ...
by nguy44
Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you plan to actually spend down your portfolio?
Replies: 104
Views: 9717

Re: Do you plan to actually spend down your portfolio?

My question is: Do (did) you REALLY intend to spend down your portfolio and ACTUALLY increase the spending when the market is good? I retired with a cash cushion to support our spending until we choose to take SS, so that we would not be forced to spend from out investment portfolio. So regardless ...
by nguy44
Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage payoff
Replies: 55
Views: 3995

Re: Mortgage payoff

Thanx to the new tax rules we no longer write off our mortgage interest, so I guess the default tax write off is more beneficial. My question, my wife and I are recently retired (62 & 59), our pensions more then cover our minimum requirements. We still have 20 yrs left on a 30 yr fixed 5% mortgage....
by nguy44
Wed Oct 02, 2019 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirees - do you hold extra cash for a bear market?
Replies: 93
Views: 9688

Re: Retirees - do you hold extra cash for a bear market?

I keep enough cash to cover my planned withdrawals (with a "fudge factor") to maintain our desired standard of living until we choose to take SS. I am 61, and currently looking at taking SS no earlier than 64. This will keep me from being forced to sell equities during market downturns (but does not...
by nguy44
Mon Sep 16, 2019 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting 60k to someone
Replies: 41
Views: 6361

Re: Gifting 60k to someone

That is what my sister and I did, when she transferred money to us from a sale of a parents house. Two checks from her, one to my wife and one to me. Two checks from her husband, one to my wife and one to me. Each check under the $15K gift limit. No forms needed. There was more but since this was d...
by nguy44
Sun Sep 15, 2019 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting 60k to someone
Replies: 41
Views: 6361

Re: Gifting 60k to someone

Sorry to dig up an old thread. I wanted to talk about the logistics of the above. Can the gift be transferred in one sitting? e.g. one $60000 check from the joint account of A and B to the joint account of X and Y Or would it be better for A to sign a $15K check to X, then A to sign a $15K check to...
by nguy44
Sun Sep 15, 2019 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting 60k to someone
Replies: 41
Views: 6361

Re: Gifting 60k to someone

That is what my sister and I did, when she transferred money to us from a sale of a parents house. Two checks from her, one to my wife and one to me. Two checks from her husband, one to my wife and one to me. Each check under the $15K gift limit. No forms needed. There was more but since this was d...
by nguy44
Sat Aug 31, 2019 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gifting 60k to someone
Replies: 41
Views: 6361

Re: Gifting 60k to someone

Sorry to dig up an old thread. I wanted to talk about the logistics of the above. Can the gift be transferred in one sitting? e.g. one $60000 check from the joint account of A and B to the joint account of X and Y Or would it be better for A to sign a $15K check to X, then A to sign a $15K check to...
by nguy44
Wed Aug 28, 2019 11:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?
Replies: 210
Views: 51368

Re: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?

I have had Geico since I bought my first car 40 years ago. The service has been fine, and dealing with claims (perhaps 10 over those years) has never been an issue, they have helped us in several of them. The rates only were high when we had multiple teenagers on our policy, but that was to be expec...
by nguy44
Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody else enjoy sitting around and doing little in retirement?
Replies: 70
Views: 8468

Re: Anybody else enjoy sitting around and doing little in retirement?

I have been retired for just over a year and love it. My friends are still asking me "when are you going to do something with yourself?" I am enjoying going at my own pace. Golfing, bowling, biking, hiking, playing with computer and electronics hardware and software at my own interest, desire, and p...
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 10:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Office - Main Floor or Basement
Replies: 18
Views: 1120

Re: Home Office - Main Floor or Basement

When I worked my main home office was (and is) in the basement. It is very sound isolated from the rest of the house, so no concerns about noise from the rest of the family. It has one small window but that is fine with me. While the majority of time I would be there, I would still move around and w...
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone disenchanted with retirement?
Replies: 306
Views: 45472

Re: Anyone disenchanted with retirement?

My biggest downside so far is that I am having a hard time spending money. I was planning on a 3% withdrawal rate, with a $9-10k monthly budget. So far, I'm averaging about $2k per month. Not a bad problem to have, but I need to figure out how to get over the $ hoarding mentality! I am in the same ...
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard vs. Fidelity??
Replies: 70
Views: 6690

Re: Vanguard vs. Fidelity??

I have both, and I am happy with both. Fideliey was driven via my employer, I chose Vanguard for more/cheaper fund options at the time (Fidelity has come down in fees since then). My investments are simple, so both work for me.
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: When Did You Ease Up On Saving Aggressively?
Replies: 170
Views: 13795

Re: When Did You Ease Up On Saving Aggressively?

We kept saving aggressively until I retired. My last full year of work we got our savings rate to over 38%. But we still lived very well with that rate.
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poll: Beater or Luxury car for long daily commute
Replies: 33
Views: 1367

Re: Poll: Beater or Luxury car for long daily commute

I would go for Option 2, the comfortable car, if it was within my budget and I could still afford to save.
by nguy44
Mon Aug 19, 2019 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyonw driving Uber for fun and pocket money in retirement?
Replies: 111
Views: 11516

Re: Anyonw driving Uber for fun and pocket money in retirement?

One of my friends who drives Uber (and is not retired, does it for extra money) has been suggesting I become an Uber driver because I recently purchased an additional car. He says since it is large, nice and clean, it is the perfect Uber ride. Riders will like the experience and give me good ratings...
by nguy44
Tue Aug 06, 2019 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Three or four-day Fall Getaways (Northeast US)
Replies: 19
Views: 1590

Re: Three or four-day Fall Getaways (Northeast US)

Perhaps Niagara Falls area (BOTH US and Canadian sides). Agree with this. We did Niagara Falls several Octobers ago. Stayed on the Canadian side and visited both sides. The weather was still nice and the crowds were non-existent. We have also done Ocean City in October. No summer traffic headaches ...
by nguy44
Tue Aug 06, 2019 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Upgrading a PC, am I spending too much in too little time?
Replies: 35
Views: 2814

Re: Upgrading a PC, am I spending too much in too little time?

1. The OS on your SSD is better, since it will be accessed more than your data. I would also install your frequently used programs on the SSD as well, but keep your data on the HDD. 2. $150 for a 1TB SSD seems high, Amazon has it for $139 (free shipping of prime), and other good brands (Crucial, San...
by nguy44
Wed Jul 17, 2019 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you care about your home appreciating?
Replies: 91
Views: 5515

Re: Do you care about your home appreciating?

interesting debate y'all - I am surprised at the number of responses - basically it boils down to - what is your plan in the future? and how do you view your home? (an investment or a place you lay your head) I agree, those are the main considerations. We have been in our home almost 30 years. When...
by nguy44
Wed Jul 03, 2019 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Adult son has not controlled credit card overuse!
Replies: 106
Views: 6720

Re: Adult son has not controlled credit card overuse!

to the OP, In my view, from a financial perspective, some people do not learn until they crash and burn... I certainly was that way. I agree with those who say stay out of it. As much you want to help, sometimes folks have to learn how to help themselves, and it may take a lot of trouble before they...
by nguy44
Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you reach 100K networth?
Replies: 328
Views: 78670

Re: What age did you reach 100K networth?

31 (1989) including home equity. 35 (1993) not including home equity.
by nguy44
Wed Jul 03, 2019 6:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Pick one: $135,000 rental property or $110,000 in REITs
Replies: 89
Views: 11445

Re: Pick one: $135,000 rental property or $110,000 in REITs

I do not have the time, patience, or mentality required to be a landlord. I go with REITs.
by nguy44
Mon Jul 01, 2019 7:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Feels like never enough in savings?
Replies: 27
Views: 3167

Re: Feels like never enough in savings?

One thought is to look at it from an asset allocation perspective. What percentage of your money is in cash vs. equities or bond instruments or other investment vehicles. If it is n allocation you can sleep with, don't worry about it. Just be sure that any cash is getting the highest interest you ca...
by nguy44
Mon Jul 01, 2019 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At What Age or Point in your Career did your investments start outweighing your regular paychecks?
Replies: 85
Views: 12062

Re: At What Age or Point in your Career did your investments start outweighing your regular paychecks?

I know this question is sort of vague but at what point did the earnings from your investments significantly outweigh any regular income you receive from your 9-5 job? I am still youngish at 29 but with 100k in investments, it already feels more significant than my 60k a year in salary income. Or a...
by nguy44
Thu Jun 27, 2019 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you lower your annual expenses?
Replies: 145
Views: 13838

Re: How did you lower your annual expenses?

Some of the things we did: - First figured out what we wanted to save/invest, put that away, and then figured out how to live on the rest. - Tracked credit card usage to never charge more than we could pay off completely and avoid interest charges. - Bought slightly more expensive but a better brand...
by nguy44
Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fixing financial "leakage" - what do you do?
Replies: 23
Views: 3568

Re: Fixing financial "leakage" - what do you do?

Good suggestions here, many of which we have used. Just a few more: - To avoid overdraft fees, we disciplined ourselves to keep a "buffer" of $1000 in our checking account and pretend it is not there. So we treat our balance when close to zero as if it actually is. Several times a year timing has oc...
by nguy44
Thu Jun 13, 2019 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Professional work titles
Replies: 30
Views: 2845

Re: Professional work titles

When my former company decider to enhance the career path for technical professionals who did not want to go into management, they added several titles to show the advancement through the career path ladder. The top 2 levels were considered corporate executive levels - pretty good for not having any...
by nguy44
Mon May 27, 2019 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you calculate your savings?
Replies: 8
Views: 819

Re: How do you calculate your savings?

I keep it simple and use the gross. (all income - all expenses)/all income = our savings rate.
by nguy44
Tue May 21, 2019 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to do when you have enough?
Replies: 31
Views: 4200

Re: What to do when you have enough?

I had a very interesting conversation with a friend who's Dad recently passed away. She has inherited a huge lump sum of money and I was telling her how it's best not to touch the principal and live off the interest. She had a very good question that I want to ask everyone here. She asked, "When do...
by nguy44
Mon May 20, 2019 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Class action law suits
Replies: 52
Views: 5630

Re: Class action law suits

.The best one for me was the GM Saturn transmission class action lawsuit. I was lucky that my transmission died after the lawsuit was settled and before GM declared bankruptcy during the great recession, which let them walk away from further claims. A $5000 repair ended up costing me only $800. I al...
by nguy44
Mon May 20, 2019 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frustration dealing with contractors....am I doing something wrong?
Replies: 43
Views: 4707

Re: Frustration dealing with contractors....am I doing something wrong?

I had had similar experiences. The best luck I have had with contractors is either via the recommendation of a trusted friend, or actually seeing them doing work at another site and taking to them there. I have rarely found one via cold calling and getting.estimates.
by nguy44
Mon May 20, 2019 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FIRE - What am I missing in the News Stories
Replies: 223
Views: 15582

Re: FIRE - What am I missing in the News Stories

I consider myself FIREd, though later than many. I did it at age 60. In theory I could have done it as early as 51, when my pension become vested with Megacorp. However, my definition of FIRE was to "retire and do anything I desired without money being a factor". Note the key word is "desired". So I...
by nguy44
Sat May 18, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Aiming to Retire End of 2019 - Abit Scared
Replies: 45
Views: 6082

Re: Aiming to Retire End of 2019 - Abit Scared

To the OP, your numbers are very similar to mine when I retired end of June 2018 at 60. I had a little more in assets (2.4 M). My retirement planning budget was $125K. I also have the choice of a NO-COLA pension at 73K or a lump sum. I decided to take the pension to diversify my retirement income st...
by nguy44
Sat May 04, 2019 12:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Questions for Folks that Does Not Need Their 401k/IRA Funds in Retirement
Replies: 67
Views: 5577

Re: Questions for Folks that Does Not Need Their 401k/IRA Funds in Retirement

If my retirement planning remains as it has gone (HA!), once we take SS, that plus pension will exceed our planned annual expenses. Throw in cash and income from taxable investments and it is likely we can choose not to touch my 401K. However, I have no regrets. Most of my contributions occurred whe...
by nguy44
Sat May 04, 2019 12:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: virtual calling card ?
Replies: 8
Views: 801

Re: virtual calling card ?

I have used this site to get virtual calling cards for international calls, they also seem to have them for domestic: https://www.zaptel.com/ . You indicate where you are calling from/to and you get a list of various virtual card options and their associated rates. I have used this to reach relative...
by nguy44
Sat May 04, 2019 12:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rarely used items that are worth having?
Replies: 112
Views: 12764

Re: Rarely used items that are worth having?

Jumper cables. When I was young and drove old cars I needed them a lot. Not so much now, but it will also give you a chance to be a Good Samaritan occasionally. When I acquire a new car, the first thing I buy is a set of jumper cables to keep in it. They see use every couple years or so...sometimes...