Search found 30 matches

by janezoey
Fri Oct 04, 2019 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Benefits to Expect for new Fed employee?
Replies: 72
Views: 5208

Re: What Benefits to Expect for new Fed employee?

Regarding PSLF: 1. Try to fill out the employment certification every year and keep a record of your W2s for the full ten years of your loans (e.g. keep an electronic copies). Sometimes your employer will change payroll numbers, and then the loan servicer gets confused about how many payments qualif...
by janezoey
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 or mortgage?
Replies: 14
Views: 1448

Re: 529 or mortgage?

I didn't catch how much salary you make or how much emergency funds you have saved. But I look at my finances this way: I rather not have all my networth tied up in my house. Yes, there's better cash flow once the mortgage is done, but you still need to fork over a $1,000 in taxes and insurance ever...
by janezoey
Wed Mar 20, 2019 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I do a Backdoor Roth and convert a 403B to a Roth IRA the same year?
Replies: 4
Views: 401

Can I do a Backdoor Roth and convert a 403B to a Roth IRA the same year?

I usually do a Backdoor Roth IRA because I am married file separately so my earnings are not calculated into my spouse's loan payments, which is part of a loan forgiveness program. But this year, I can potentially have $10k of space below the 22% tax bracket. I was thinking of converting $20k of my ...
by janezoey
Mon Mar 18, 2019 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice on correctly reporting Backdoor Roth in Turbotax with Massachusetts complication
Replies: 6
Views: 1794

Re: Advice on correctly reporting Backdoor Roth in Turbotax with Massachusetts complication

Oh, thank you so much! This post saved me a lot of time. Thanks to chw's clue, I found the error under: 1. State Return 2. Adjustments (Click Update ) 3. (Click through the health section and interest section) 4. Several screens later, under Taxable IRA/Keogh Distributions , find " Other Contributio...
by janezoey
Thu Mar 14, 2019 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bright daughter wants to work for nonprofit
Replies: 103
Views: 8674

Re: Bright daughter wants to work for nonprofit

My spouse and I have only ever worked for non-profits and governments (though my spouse did try big law for a short period) and have degrees from places like Harvard. We could be making $400k+ a year, but we make half that much and still are in the top 5% percent of US household income. We have a ni...
by janezoey
Thu Mar 14, 2019 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massachusetts Estate Planning
Replies: 48
Views: 3037

Re: Estate Planning

A well-qualified estate lawyer would probably have the best suggestions. +1 There is a difference in being frugal and being cheap. Being cheap is thinking I can "figure out" estate planning myself while hoping I'm not leaving any holes for my executor to have to clean up. I wouldn't attempt to "fig...
by janezoey
Tue Mar 12, 2019 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Predicted RMDs Have Caught Me By Surprise
Replies: 69
Views: 7875

Re: Predicted RMDs Have Caught Me By Surprise

I can't answer your specific question, but I would point out that current federal taxes are historically low. The current tax brackets will expire in 2025, and we don't know if Congress will keep them. Just something else to consider. I know for my spouse and me in our mid-30s, he has a 401K Roth op...
by janezoey
Tue Mar 05, 2019 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College Savings - Are we going about this the wrong way?
Replies: 88
Views: 5871

Re: College Savings - Are we going about this the wrong way?

We did 50% into a 529 and 50% into a taxable/brokerage account for each kid. ... We paid ~$19k for tuition/room/board/books/meal plan/fees at the local state university this year for a college freshman. Out of curiosity, did you expect or get any financial aid? I thought one of the key benefits of ...
by janezoey
Mon Feb 25, 2019 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm essentially market timing, but can't bring myself to stop.
Replies: 71
Views: 7156

Re: I'm essentially market timing, but can't bring myself to stop.

Ok, so I have a significant chunk of excess cash ... I want to put it into the market, but I just can't bring myself to pull the trigger. I'm having the same problem as the OP. I have somewhere around $750K to invest in taxable, and based on the advice from this board, I should be allocating it to ...
by janezoey
Tue Feb 19, 2019 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Mortgage = Is it a problem?
Replies: 49
Views: 3938

Re: My Mortgage = Is it a problem?

Hey Gang, My goal is to retire by 55 years of age and as I size up my retirement plan a huge obstacle appears to be my house debt. I am debating on whether to pay it off early or invest. Here is my info. Age - 38 - Wife 34 Kids Ages 10 - 7 - 1 Combined 529 Plans - $18,000 - and we are currently put...
by janezoey
Fri Feb 15, 2019 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Invest or 529 PLan
Replies: 63
Views: 2025

Re: Invest or 529 PLan

To the OP, I’m a huge fan of the 529 and I shovel as much $$ in for my two kids who are under two but we make $200k and would be on the hook for $45k-70k a year in tuition (in today’s dollars) so we can’t cash flow. But in your case, if you are sure your kids will only go to the local state school (...
by janezoey
Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bad Idea or Good Idea? - Investing in 529 College Savings Plan
Replies: 70
Views: 4498

Re: Bad Idea or Good Idea? - Investing in 529 College Savings Plan

I always will start a post like this with "fund your retirement first and emergency fund first". Then the rest really depends on your household income and needs and the academic ability of your children. Go to a net price calculator of your state school, a dream school (e.g. Harvard or Amherst Colle...
by janezoey
Mon Feb 11, 2019 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax law expiring in 2025
Replies: 22
Views: 2189

Re: Tax law expiring in 2025

I was listening to the "Jill on Money" podcast and she was interviewing a tax expert. Basically, it is a "tax sale" between now and 2025 because the federal deficit is unsustainable. Income taxes will probably go up. But then again, it depends on politicians. I know for my own family, we're in the p...
by janezoey
Mon Feb 04, 2019 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of college and 529
Replies: 642
Views: 27326

Re: Cost of college and 529

janezoey, Do not pay off your low-interest rate 30 years mortgage and then take a high-interest rate student loan for your kid. <<I can theoretically take out a HELOC, but when I'm nearing retirement, do I really want to risk the roof over my head?>> A) Versus a student loan that you cannot get rid...
by janezoey
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of college and 529
Replies: 642
Views: 27326

Re: Cost of college and 529

529 is a tax break for rich folks. I actually agree with the gist of what KlangFool is saying. Take care of retirement and your own needs first, especially if you do not have six-figure salaries. However, I think those of us with higher incomes need to crunch some numbers. Maybe you can cash flow c...
by janezoey
Wed Jan 23, 2019 12:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any regrets not funding a 529?
Replies: 27
Views: 3964

Re: Any regrets not funding a 529?

You know what I regret? Not superfunding that 529 on Dec 24, 2018 when the S & P 500 was down to 2351. I will try to work up the nerve to superfund the 529 accounts within the next couple of years. We will not qualify for financial aid. Yet I grew up poor, so parting with that much money at once sti...
by janezoey
Sat Jan 05, 2019 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TSP vs IRA priority help
Replies: 21
Views: 1743

Re: TSP vs IRA priority help

My husband is in federal service and we try to max out his TSP retirement first. It’s because the expense ratios are incredibly low and the G Fund is unique. I think only Admiral Shares at Vanguard might be a slightly better expense ratio. When you leave for civilian service, you can’t be sure your ...
by janezoey
Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: You're smarter than me, so...
Replies: 16
Views: 4347

Re: You're smarter than me, so...

We don't have enough money each year to max out our retirement, so my idea was that $150k of our Roth IRAs will be our college saving. That way if we don't need to use it for college we still have it in our retirement accounts. Instead of putting less in retirement and funding a Coverdell or 529. W...
by janezoey
Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Sudden Needs of Cash Do You Prepare For?
Replies: 64
Views: 3959

Re: What Sudden Needs of Cash Do You Prepare For?

The same as many others have listed as well as the main sewer line needing to be replaced on our 1959 house. This could be $7k - $10k and just about the least fun way to spend money that I can imagine. I saw the home maintenance thread where someone recommended having that line inspected. Do you do...
by janezoey
Fri Jan 04, 2019 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Recommendation for Paint Color
Replies: 27
Views: 1743

Re: Need Recommendation for Paint Color

I saw a friend's living room painted "November Skies" from Benjamin Moore. I only knew because I raved about the color so much, that my host brought me to the basement to figure out the color from the leftover paint cans.
by janezoey
Fri Jan 04, 2019 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much term life insurance to buy?
Replies: 32
Views: 2833

Re: How much term life insurance to buy?

Since you have a new child on the way, I would at least get a 25-year term life insurance. You're more likely to have health issues when you're in your 50s, yet you or your partner won't be able to touch the retirement funds penalty free until 59 1/2 (unless you are willing to take out contributions...
by janezoey
Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contributing too much to a 529?
Replies: 43
Views: 3710

Re: Contributing too much to a 529?

Have you done the math of maintaining a 529 vs a taxable account? In a taxable account, if you're federal tax income bracket is above $77,000, you would pay a capital gains tax of 15%. With a beginning balance of $2,300 and adding $200 a month, your principle contributions would be $45,500 over 18 y...
by janezoey
Sun Dec 30, 2018 12:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529s for the poor man?
Replies: 22
Views: 2253

Re: 529s for the poor man?

You’re by no means “poor” but the 529 wasn’t designed to have maximum advantage for your income bracket. Google “Brookings Institute Dream Hoarders 529” and there’s a useful article illustrating which income brackets 529 plans benefit the most. If you don’t have time to read it, the main point is th...
by janezoey
Sat Dec 29, 2018 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tips on preventative home maintenance?
Replies: 43
Views: 5256

Re: Tips on preventative home maintenance?

Have a plumbing company inspect your lateral sewer lines with a camera to look out for cracks and tree roots and make sure no debris like rocks or soil is clogging the pipe. Trust me, you don’t want that line to back up and damaged your ceilings or floors. You can be out of water for two weeks becau...
by janezoey
Tue Nov 20, 2018 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my husband ready to quit tenured professorship to pursue side hustle?
Replies: 97
Views: 11006

Re: Is my husband ready to quit tenured professorship to pursue side hustle?

I would wait until after 2020 to see if there will be a recession. I used to work for a college, and during the Great Recession of 2008, the college was begging tenured faculty and staff to leave their positions. They were called the "lucky duckies" because other people were getting laid off but the...
by janezoey
Tue Oct 23, 2018 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust vs Will Gotchas
Replies: 24
Views: 3759

Re: Trust vs Will Gotchas

An estate tax doesn't apply to the OP because the parents are Iowa, but he might want to look into inheritance taxes (e.g. what if he inherited from a sibling?) I hope this explains why some people are eager to create trusts as part of their estate planning. One "gotcha" about estate planning is tha...
by janezoey
Thu Sep 27, 2018 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: School Loan debt vs
Replies: 15
Views: 1354

Re: School Loan debt vs

If these are federal loans, look into loan forgiveness and calculate whether paying minimum or paying faster makes more sense. If they are private loans, considering refinancing to SoFi. I'm going to argue the alternative. Depending on your housing market, you need to weigh carefully whether buying ...
by janezoey
Fri Sep 14, 2018 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off 3.125% 152k mortgage early?
Replies: 37
Views: 3467

Re: Pay off 3.125% 152k mortgage early?

With three kids, you'll be paying for college for about 10 years, with two years where two are in college at the same time. I would not pay off a mortgage with a rate of 3.125% because it's barely above inflation and the payment is small compared to the rest of your annual income. I don't think we'l...
by janezoey
Thu Sep 13, 2018 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massive Student Loan Debt - Fiancee
Replies: 108
Views: 11303

Re: Massive Student Loan Debt - Fiancee

I married someone who had $190K in law school and undergraduate debt. A third of that amount was probably interest alone. Like your partner, my partner took out loans for tuition AND living expenses while in law school. By the time it is forgiven, it would have ballooned to $210K despite the money h...
by janezoey
Mon Aug 06, 2018 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Universal life policy – continue, contribute, or cash out
Replies: 12
Views: 1369

Re: Universal life policy – continue, contribute, or cash out

I have a similar universal life policy that my parents started for me when I was a child. I pay a premium of $575 a year, I get 4.5% interest (though there are some fees). My cash value is $22K+. My death benefit is $50K. I have been very tempted to cash out the policy, but I had my first child rece...