Search found 300 matches

by DarkHelmetII
Fri Jun 21, 2019 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with friend's 401k plan
Replies: 13
Views: 827

Re: Help with friend's 401k plan

My two cents: 1) target date at 0.5% isn't THAT bad and as others pointed out, I agree significant behavioral risk going more complex that could outweigh a higher expense ratio 2) maybe tell this friend that - hey you can do this yourself, but keep it simpler, for example maybe don't need to pull in...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Jun 21, 2019 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Highest % cash back credit card
Replies: 77
Views: 5238

Re: Highest % cash back credit card

I have capital one visa 2% cash back all purchases. Annual fee waived in first year per terms & conditions. At one year I asked what they could do to keep me and they indefinitely waived annual fee. Did they hassle you at all for that? Venture with no annual fee would be great. I would not say that...
by DarkHelmetII
Thu Jun 20, 2019 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Highest % cash back credit card
Replies: 77
Views: 5238

Re: Highest % cash back credit card

I have capital one visa 2% cash back all purchases. Annual fee waived in first year per terms & conditions. At one year I asked what they could do to keep me and they indefinitely waived annual fee.
by DarkHelmetII
Sat Jun 15, 2019 8:11 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: [ETF vs. Mutual Fund questions]
Replies: 33
Views: 1319

Re: which is better ETF or MF ???

Old_Dollar wrote:
Sat Jun 15, 2019 6:11 am
I like mutual funds simply because the vehicles helps put another barrier in between me and the scourge of market timing.
+1
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Please critique my portfolio/investment plan
Replies: 4
Views: 597

Re: Please critique my portfolio/investment plan

1) I would personally dial back equities a little bit if you are looking at 15 year time horizon. 2) I would not lose sleep over large-cap tilt. If and when you get better small and mid-cap options, just have that percentage documented in your plan so that you are not chasing returns based on recent...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Jun 07, 2019 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Consideration for Maxing 401K with awful fee structure
Replies: 12
Views: 601

Re: Consideration for Maxing 401K with awful fee structure

What are the chances you will be at this job more than 5 years? Point is you can always move to new 401k or an IRA when you leave current position.
by DarkHelmetII
Wed Jun 05, 2019 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Any downsides to consolidating retirement accounts?
Replies: 11
Views: 999

Re: Any downsides to consolidating retirement accounts?

Upside is simplification as you point out. Other factors to consider, however, that could favor not consolidating depending on your specific situation and preferences: 1) Institutional risk - one may choose to have $$ with different institutions (e.g. Vanguard, Fidelity, Schwab) ... a mute point if ...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Jun 04, 2019 6:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401k options - Choose a bond fund or two target funds to get AA?
Replies: 16
Views: 802

Re: 401k options - Choose a bond fund or two target funds to get AA?

Can you contribute to a combination of Fidelity 500 US Index and the Vanguard 2015 target fund to achieve the equity / bond allocation you prefer?
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Total Bond Market Index in my Vanguard Taxable?
Replies: 4
Views: 405

Re: Total Bond Market Index in my Vanguard Taxable?

Why bonds are *generally* (there are always exceptions) better off in a tax-deferred account: 1) Relative to equities, a greater portion of the total return (dividends + growth in asset value) comes from dividends and dividends are taxed as they are earned (e.g. monthly / quarterly), not just went y...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Jun 04, 2019 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How do I invest 55k
Replies: 12
Views: 1387

Re: How do I invest 55k

Whether in a 401k or taxable account, look for a low-cost, passively managed, large cap blended index fund such as Vanguard's S&P 500 index (VFIAX). Basically, there are two dimensions to your question: 1) where to place the money from a tax-efficiency standpoint, and 2) what type of investment (e.g...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri May 31, 2019 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard moving clients from mutual funds to ETFs?
Replies: 34
Views: 3974

Re: Vanguard moving clients from mutual funds to ETFs?

It's just that Mr. Bogle was so very opposed to ETFs (mostly due to the temptation to trade) that it makes me wonder if this is a good idea. This is largely my aversion to ETFs as well, IMHO it's a behavioral thing. Plenty of "good" ETFs but psychologically, at least for me, I like having mutual fu...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri May 31, 2019 5:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Forgot to mail check to IRS for taxes ($4000) - what now
Replies: 24
Views: 2760

Re: Forgot to mail check to IRS for taxes ($4000) - what now

It's probably best NOT to jump the gun by trying to calculate interest and penalties yourself, that kind of helpfulness sometimes backfires. Agreed. While I have not been in this *exact* same situation with the IRS, having been the recipient of several auto-generated / "rule-driven" IRS mailings, t...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue May 28, 2019 6:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable Bond or Muni?
Replies: 18
Views: 3182

Re: Taxable Bond or Muni?

Also consider treasuries as those don't get taxed at state level.
by DarkHelmetII
Tue May 21, 2019 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Stop contributing to 401K with hope of company match later this year?
Replies: 5
Views: 576

Re: Stop contributing to 401K with hope of company match later this year?

I would just peanut butter spread the remaining $6k from now through end of December. Technically would lose a few $$ in match but am also balancing with simplicity (e.g. avoiding the paperwork to stop contributions today, restart in August etc...).
by DarkHelmetII
Mon May 20, 2019 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Value Investing. What am I missing here?
Replies: 7
Views: 888

Re: Value Investing. What am I missing here?

I would say that the "boglehead response" would be that by exclusively buying value stocks one is in essence picking winners and losers which contradicts prevailing boglehead philosophy. BH's (stereotypically speaking) definitely hold value stocks as part of the portfolio but do not "choose" to hold...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri May 17, 2019 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What "other" tax advantaged accounts should one know about?
Replies: 7
Views: 1562

Re: What "other" tax advantaged accounts should one know about?

be weary of products such as variable annuities or VULs sold as a "holy grail" for tax efficiency. They have their (limited) time and place but in many cases one is simply better off putting money into a very low-cost, tax efficient, passively managed index fund such as VFIAX in a taxable brokerage ...
by DarkHelmetII
Thu May 16, 2019 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Taxable Account to avoid sitting on the sidelines!
Replies: 13
Views: 1084

Re: Taxable Account to avoid sitting on the sidelines!

simple tax-efficient low-cost index fund such as VFIAX. Consider all accounts, taxable and non-taxable, in determining and managing asset allocation.
by DarkHelmetII
Thu May 16, 2019 8:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reservations about job offer
Replies: 65
Views: 4096

Re: Reservations about job offer

I might be in the minority here, for better or for worse I have grown to not pay much attention to job titles. There's just so much variability as to when a VP is a "real" VP; the difference between a sales engineer and solution architect and so on... I look at three things: a) money / benefits pack...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue May 14, 2019 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: One time fee only advisor - costs?
Replies: 20
Views: 1838

Re: One time fee only advisor - costs?

I got a fee only fiduciary review for $2,000. Was helpful for an unbiased sanity check. But, regardless of how much you are willing to pay, I think it is hard to find any one professional who truly understands the nuances of real estate + all of the tax wrinkles (with and without the real estate) in...
by DarkHelmetII
Sun May 05, 2019 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Cleaning Up Old Employer HSAs
Replies: 3
Views: 229

Re: Cleaning Up Old Employer HSAs

I read through many posts here on HSAs but could not find an answer to my specific question. My wife and I both have HSAs through past employers that are now charging monthly fees. The total fees across both of us is ~$150 per year, which is significant given we have <$10k total in these accounts. ...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri May 03, 2019 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Boglehead investing through a major downturn
Replies: 36
Views: 3766

Re: Boglehead investing through a major downturn

Here is an article called "What if You Only Invested at Market Peaks?": https://awealthofcommonsense.com/2014/02/worlds-worst-market-timer/. Can read for yourself, but basically gives a point of view based on several decades of history that even if you only bought in at the single absolute worst pos...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri May 03, 2019 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Optum HSA investing: paying too much, or worth the convenience?
Replies: 7
Views: 899

Re: Optum HSA investing: paying too much, or worth the convenience?

Perhaps strike a balance between the "ideal" financially vs. convenience / reality. Consider having money go into Optum and every 6 - 12 months move money out to Fidelity. Another angle - reduce paycheck deductions to zero and claim tax break on your tax return (meaning you make such contributions d...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Apr 26, 2019 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free / Cost Effective Database for 100+GB Data
Replies: 9
Views: 1065

Re: Free / Cost Effective Database for 100+GB Data

A local database with storage in a SSD is going to be your best bet. Cloud SQL databases are probably going to be more expensive than you need for your application. A local pgsql or MS SQL Server instance will handle this just fine. I've now got 33 million rows x 125 columns in a single postgresql ...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:05 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best book on annuities
Replies: 4
Views: 409

Re: Best book on annuities

https://www.amazon.com/Truth-About-Buyi ... 0132353083

easy read. nice short, compact "chapters."
by DarkHelmetII
Wed Apr 24, 2019 5:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Inherited 401k Options: Non-Spouse, Beneficiary Age < 59.5, Deceased > 59.5 and < 70.5
Replies: 10
Views: 676

Re: Inherited 401k Options: Non-Spouse, Beneficiary Age < 59.5, Deceased > 59.5 and < 70.5

I have read some material online about disclaiming an inherited IRA (presumably we would first create the inherited IRA from the inherited 401k funds). Is that something to even consider here? To be more specific: 1) Can we specify a child as the beneficiary (to take the tax hit a lower tax bracket)...
by DarkHelmetII
Mon Apr 22, 2019 6:09 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Variable annuity
Replies: 8
Views: 998

Re: Variable annuity

"Withdrawals from a VA are tax deferred so there would never be a reason to place one in a tax-favored account like an IRA."

Image

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by DarkHelmetII
Sun Apr 21, 2019 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investing for siblings
Replies: 21
Views: 2150

Re: Investing for siblings

Agreed that there is an absolute void of information. Said that, I would also throw out there for consideration Vanguard's Tax-Managed Balanced Fund. Far crazier things you could invest in. But target date funds also make a lot of sense.
by DarkHelmetII
Sun Apr 21, 2019 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Free / Cost Effective Database for 100+GB Data
Replies: 9
Views: 1065

Free / Cost Effective Database for 100+GB Data

I want to store 100+ GB of data in the cloud or on my computer in a database. Six tables, simple structured data; just a lot of it. Any ideas on cost effective services? More specifics: 1) Security is not a significant issue as raw data is from the public domain 2) Must be able to connect to the dat...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Apr 19, 2019 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Back door Roth question
Replies: 8
Views: 442

Re: Back door Roth question

Yes. Might have to dig hard for low-cost 401k options ... I have seen plans for example where all of the "junk" (high cost actively managed) stuff is on top / up front, and tucked all the way at the end is a low cost S&P 500 fund.
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Apr 19, 2019 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rollover 401k to new employer vs roll into IRA
Replies: 5
Views: 428

Re: Rollover 401k to new employer vs roll into IRA

I think that keeping funds in a 401k (as opposed to IRA) makes sense, for the reasons you have outlined - 1) avoid pro-rata rule on backdoor roth, and 2) greater asset protection.
by DarkHelmetII
Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Inherited 401k Options: Non-Spouse, Beneficiary Age < 59.5, Deceased > 59.5 and < 70.5
Replies: 10
Views: 676

Inherited 401k Options: Non-Spouse, Beneficiary Age < 59.5, Deceased > 59.5 and < 70.5

Please help me understand the possible ways to absorb an inherited 401k. The Facts 1) The beneficiary is not a spouse of the deceased 2) Beneficiary is < 59.5 3) The deceased is > 59.5 and < 70.5 4) Beneficiary has a 401k and IRA; let's assume the 401k accepts in-coming rollovers Which of the follow...
by DarkHelmetII
Thu Apr 18, 2019 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

Went through this about 2 years ago... 1. Interview real estate agents experienced in the area and with selling houses held by an estate or trust. The right one will have a conbination of business savvy and a "rolodex" full of referrals of estate sales people, handymen, painters, cleaners, gardener...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

Good advice. A two hour flight means 1000+ miles away. The will usually names a successor executor if the appointed executor cannot serve. If not hire an attorney and petition the probate court for relief. Take it from me your spouse doesn't need this headache. What does "petition the probate court...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

The "Facts" 1) Spouse is executor for the will of a recently deceased family member 6) House in bad shape: a) incredibly cluttered, b) kitchen needs substantial work, c) bathroom needs substantial work, d) some of the floors feel like they are sloping, and e) some noticeable cracks in the wall (inf...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help understanding mom's Transamerica variable annuity
Replies: 17
Views: 639

Re: Help understanding mom's Transamerica variable annuity

"Withdrawals from a VA are tax deferred so there would never be a reason to place one in a tax-favored account like an IRA." Ugghhhhhhhghh :oops: :oops: :oops: :oops: Thanks for this - I'll show it to her. I would assume there are no surrender fees given this VA was started years ago. But I want ot...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help understanding mom's Transamerica variable annuity
Replies: 17
Views: 639

Re: Help understanding mom's Transamerica variable annuity

"Withdrawals from a VA are tax deferred so there would never be a reason to place one in a tax-favored account like an IRA."

Image

Image
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 10:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

All - thank you for the inputs, very helpful. Good pointers on checking if the homeowners insurance will still be good and some companies to remove junk or manage estate sales. Another wrinkle ... my spouse has floated the idea of using "our" money to payoff the $55k remaining mortgage while we sort...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

There is already some tension within family on how to handle house - not a money grab (there's not much equity given the condition, and beyond that I don't see people grabbing for money) but on how to handle given the condition No idea what this means. Does a family member want to purchase the home...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 16, 2019 5:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 84
Views: 6553

Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

The "Facts" 1) Spouse is executor for the will of a recently deceased family member 2) House is part of the estate 3) $55k owed on the house, I do not know the interest rate 4) Taxes ~ $500 / month (high real estate tax area) 5) Comparable house in "normal" condition worth around $180k (very high l...
by DarkHelmetII
Tue Apr 09, 2019 9:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: HSA in NJ -- is it worth it?
Replies: 14
Views: 863

Re: HSA in NJ -- is it worth it?

Point 1: Treasuries held in a vanilla taxable account are taxed at the Federal level but not state level. Point 2: NJ (and CA) does not recognized tax benefits of HSAs, though the tax benefits at the Federal level remain. Conclusion: US Treasury Bonds are a logical choice for an invested HSA for som...
by DarkHelmetII
Sun Apr 07, 2019 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Change MFS vs. MFJ Status After Filing Extension?
Replies: 1
Views: 149

Change MFS vs. MFJ Status After Filing Extension?

Hello - after filing a Federal tax extension with the IRS, can my wife and I change our MFS vs. MFJ status? We are going to pay the IRS before April 15 because we owe a chunk of $$ either way, but I am not 100% confident I will have a final answer in the next week on the optimal filing status. If I ...
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Apr 05, 2019 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The high cost of sound financial advice
Replies: 45
Views: 5149

Re: The high cost of sound financial advice

I have yet to find a professional who truly understands both the investments and tax aspects. Personally, I have found that for the average joe (e.g. not somebody with $10+ mil and can spend $30k on financial advice) there is a three-pronged approach if you are looking for some external advice: 1) F...
by DarkHelmetII
Thu Apr 04, 2019 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disability Insurance - where to start
Replies: 2
Views: 228

Disability Insurance - where to start

Where does one start in shopping for disability insurance? Mid-30's male, married, first baby on the way. Has had some back problems in the past, so impetus of looking into disability insurance is largely around hedging risk around re-injuring the back not being able to work. My more targeted questi...
by DarkHelmetII
Thu Apr 04, 2019 6:06 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Dead soon...Where to Invest?
Replies: 19
Views: 4334

Re: Dead soon...Where to Invest?

I will provide two inputs, one more academic / philosophical and one more actionable. Please take both with a grain of salt. 1) Based on my own 15 - 20 year investing experience and having read various books etc..., I believe it is very hard, if not impossible, for most "regular" people to time the ...
by DarkHelmetII
Wed Apr 03, 2019 8:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Missed RMD: Input on Options
Replies: 9
Views: 689

Re: Missed RMD: Input on Options

123 wrote:
Wed Apr 03, 2019 7:25 pm
I would go for #2 (pending additional information).

How old is the account holder? What year did the account holder stop working for the employer who's (account) RMD was missed? Is the this the first missed RMD?
First missed RMD. Separated ~ 15 years ago from employer.
by DarkHelmetII
Wed Apr 03, 2019 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Missed RMD: Input on Options
Replies: 9
Views: 689

Missed RMD: Input on Options

Hello - writing on behalf of my parents who missed a ~ $10,000 RMD from their employer-sponsored retirement plan (of the 401k / 403(b) / TSP flavor). They missed the RMD in 2018, just realized it a few days ago, and have already requested the distribution to come out as soon as they realized it (so ...
by DarkHelmetII
Wed Mar 27, 2019 5:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How can I tell if I'm eligible to contribute to an HSA?
Replies: 8
Views: 621

Re: How can I tell if I'm eligible to contribute to an HSA?

if your plan is a PPO, it's not HSA-eligible I do not believe this is true. Think of a health plan as having two components: 1) network, and 2) financial arrangement (including whether or not the plan is HSA eligible). Factors #1 and #2 and pretty much independent. PPO describes the type of network...
by DarkHelmetII
Sun Mar 24, 2019 5:46 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 1035 exchange
Replies: 7
Views: 749

Re: 1035 exchange

MIL is beneficiary of recently deceased FIL nonqualified annuity. I was quite surprised, disappointed, when the insurance company said that they would not do a 1035 exchange and would be cutting a check. Is it even possible for an insurance company to outright disallow a 1035 exchange? I could imag...
by DarkHelmetII
Sat Mar 23, 2019 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: High Tax bracket strategies
Replies: 49
Views: 4872

Re: High Tax bracket strategies

I don't see anything glaringly missing. Most people claiming a neat workaround are trying to sell overpriced insurance products. Only comment is to make sure you are contemplating mega back door Roth (your post only said backdoor so was ambiguous to me), subject to your employer's rules.
by DarkHelmetII
Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to pay the IRS now
Replies: 16
Views: 1185

Re: How to pay the IRS now

jebmke wrote:
Fri Mar 22, 2019 11:42 am
You can also use directpay. EFTPS takes some time to setup.

https://www.irs.gov/payments/direct-pay
"directpay" sounds, well, more direct. What then is the advantage of EFTPS over directpay?

Thank you all for the input!