Search found 428 matches

by e5116
Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Interesting view of Uber/Lyft -
Replies: 26
Views: 2340

Re: Interesting view of Uber/Lyft -

https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/uber-and-lyft-are-losing-money-at-some-point-well-pay-for-it/2019/03/05/addd607c-3f95-11e9-a0d3-1210e58a94cf_story.html?utm_term=.6f7b35a55168 Never actually did a financial analysis of Uber/Lyft - but this makes a lot of sense to me. Taxis operate at relativ...
by e5116
Mon Mar 04, 2019 9:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct Joint Return vs. Separate Returns Analysis Bug?
Replies: 2
Views: 224

Re: TaxAct Joint Return vs. Separate Returns Analysis Bug?

Can anybody else check if they see the same thing (and I'm looking at it correctly) so I don't have to go through the agony of doing an entire separate return only to find out it's wrong? But if it saves me $800, then it'd be worth it....
by e5116
Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct Joint Return vs. Separate Returns Analysis Bug?
Replies: 2
Views: 224

TaxAct Joint Return vs. Separate Returns Analysis Bug?

So, I was about to file my return and decided to the run the joint return vs. separate analysis in TaxAct to give an estimate for curiousity's sake even though I was pretty sure MFJ would be superior. Much to my surprise, it told me separate would save me $800! But....I checked the report more close...
by e5116
Fri Mar 01, 2019 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Personal Capital
Replies: 20
Views: 1111

Re: Personal Capital

They call me once, at most twice, a year. Every time I tell them how much I enjoy using their software and I'm sorry to have to tell them I'm a DIY index fund guy and I actually enjoy the small work of maintaining my current portfolio. It's a pleasant, short conversation every 6-12 months with no p...
by e5116
Tue Feb 26, 2019 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Wealthfront To Vanguard Or Straight To Vanguard?
Replies: 10
Views: 456

Re: Wealthfront To Vanguard Or Straight To Vanguard?

Honestly, $670 is so little that it doesn't matter much what you do. Your savings rate is so much more important than your investments at this point. Tracking returns on $670 is a silly exercise. For myself, I wouldn't even bother jumping through hoops until I had a reasonable amount to invest. Focu...
by e5116
Tue Feb 19, 2019 8:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investing, as an American, in the London Stock Exchange (LSE) Tax Implications, Shariah Investor
Replies: 16
Views: 1137

Re: Investing, as an American, in the London Stock Exchange (LSE) Tax Implications, Shariah Investor

I have no knowledge or experience with it, but it appears wealthsimple robo advisor has a Sharia compliant portfolio option. They charge either 0.5 or 0.4 depending on asset level. No idea the underlying fund fees.
by e5116
Thu Feb 14, 2019 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [2018 tax return - How does it compare to previous years?]
Replies: 309
Views: 22449

Re: [2018 tax return - How does it compare to previous years?]

My total tax is about the same from 2017 to 2018 (adj for slight difference in income), but that's only because I had a second child this year. If I only had one child, I'd be paying slightly more. No children, even more. Two income household each earning about the same in high tax state. My deducti...
by e5116
Sun Feb 10, 2019 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?
Replies: 16
Views: 1356

Re: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?

Thank you kaneohe, boomer_techie, lstone19 for the additional information and expertise. I truly appreciate this site and those willing to help provide information just for the sake of educating others. Thanks! :beer
by e5116
Sun Feb 10, 2019 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?
Replies: 16
Views: 1356

Re: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?

Anyone paying property taxes in the range of roughly $7,000 - 9,000 should take a look at this option if they are itemizing. There are a number of variables involved in calculating the sales tax deduction figure (income, family size, state of residence), but it's just a matter of looking up the fig...
by e5116
Thu Feb 07, 2019 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?
Replies: 16
Views: 1356

Re: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?

If the numbers are close, and especially if you are limited by the SALT deduction, in many cases it is better to elect to use the Sales Tax tables in lieu of the state income tax deduction. Electing the Sales Tax deduction completely eliminates the need to jump through the hoops to calculate any am...
by e5116
Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?
Replies: 16
Views: 1356

Taxable refunds of state and local taxes - electing standard deduction to avoid?

So, I noticed that when I filled out my taxes this year, it auto-populated my state tax refund from 2017 taxes as taxable income for the 2018 year. Okay, fine. My question is that if I'm expecting another decent sized state refund THIS year, it seems like I can avoid the above scenario for NEXT year...
by e5116
Wed Feb 06, 2019 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

It appears Taxact has fixed the glitch. I'm not sure if anyone else has been able to do it, and it didn't work for me yesterday, but it seems to be working again today. :D +1 confirmed for me too. 8606 looks about right, didn't have to check or uncheck any boxes extraordinarily on my w2. One thing ...
by e5116
Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

jambadoc wrote:
Wed Feb 06, 2019 9:52 am
It appears Taxact has fixed the glitch. I'm not sure if anyone else has been able to do it, and it didn't work for me yesterday, but it seems to be working again today. :D
Awesome! I can also confirm that putting in exactly $5500 now doesn't mess up the calculation like it did before.
by e5116
Tue Feb 05, 2019 5:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

TaxAct has acknowledged this problem. The workaround is: -- to answer the QA to state that you are NOT covered by an employer plan, AND ALSO -- Do NOT check the box when entering your w2s which state you are covered by a retirement account/plan This fixed all non-deductible Roth contributions for m...
by e5116
Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

Is there no issue if you just add the non-deductible IRA contribution to form 8606, without the backdoor roth steps? I think the answer is yes, still an issue, but want to make sure. I believe it's still an issue if you do that, but I personally did not do it in that order and don't want to retry.
by e5116
Tue Feb 05, 2019 12:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

Gah, this was driving me nuts! I'm having the same issue. Totally hangs up on Save forever. I'm actually able to get it to work kind of if I clear cookies/cache at each step. But it's definitely buggy and even worse, it's calculating things WRONG!! Seriously. If I put in a Gross Distribution of $55...
by e5116
Mon Feb 04, 2019 11:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?
Replies: 60
Views: 3455

Re: TaxAct problems? Anyone have success with a return which includes "backdoor" Roth reporting?

Gah, this was driving me nuts! I'm having the same issue. Totally hangs up on Save forever. I'm actually able to get it to work kind of if I clear cookies/cache at each step. But it's definitely buggy and even worse, it's calculating things WRONG!! Seriously. If I put in a Gross Distribution of $550...
by e5116
Mon Feb 04, 2019 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CA homes and new SALT limits
Replies: 48
Views: 5666

Re: CA homes and new SALT limits

Wow, I look at all these scenarios of $1M home with only $10k property taxes and I'm like "sign me up!!!" Hahahaha. :twisted: I'm in IL, with certainly a lower level cost of housing than CA (and lower income taxes too), but much higher property taxes. In my community, a house for around $500k would ...
by e5116
Tue Jan 01, 2019 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard International Fund down for year?
Replies: 16
Views: 912

Re: Vanguard International Fund down for year?

The report says Vanguard Into Stock returned -8.71%; how do you computer a negative return??? From Jan 1 2018 through December 31 2018 the price of the stock went down. That’s how you have a negative return. For the year it was down 14.43%. Look at the link I provided earlier. Cheers VTIAX opened o...
by e5116
Fri Dec 28, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with 1k check for 9 month old son?
Replies: 44
Views: 2985

Re: What to do with 1k check for 9 month old son?

I didn't read all the replies in this thread, but when something similar happened to me, I personally deposited the check into my checking account (you can do that as a parent) and then invested the equivalent funds into Total Stock Market/Intl Market in a Schwab brokerage that was basically unused ...
by e5116
Mon Dec 10, 2018 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: HSA question
Replies: 7
Views: 765

Re: HSA question

You can't just compare the difference between premiums and the out-of-pocket max as you also get the tax deduction for contributions to the HSA (up to $7k/year) so if you're in the 24% tax bracket, you save another $1680. Your max out of pocket is LESS for the HSA?? Seems like a no brainer for the H...
by e5116
Sun Nov 18, 2018 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help evaluating HSA vs. Standard PPO (Adult + children)
Replies: 2
Views: 286

Re: Help evaluating HSA vs. Standard PPO (Adult + children)

Office visits: HSA : "You pay coinsurance after deductible" Does that mean they cover NOTHING until deductible is met (minus preventative services)? That's how I read it. This is the way HDHPs are required to work. (You do still get the benefit of in-network negotiated rates; if a doctor charges $1...
by e5116
Sun Nov 18, 2018 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help evaluating HSA vs. Standard PPO (Adult + children)
Replies: 2
Views: 286

Help evaluating HSA vs. Standard PPO (Adult + children)

Hey All! My wife's company offers an HSA as an option that uses the same BCBS PPO provider as her other options (based on my understanding) and uses BenefitWallet as the administrator. I honestly didn't realize she had the option before, but I am heavily considering telling her to go for it, but wan...
by e5116
Thu Nov 08, 2018 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Are We In A Real Estate Bubble?
Replies: 114
Views: 14343

Re: Are We In A Real Estate Bubble?

Yeah, in my area, prices for SFHs are currently about at 2004 levels (depending on size/price -- the largest/expensive homes haven't appreciated as much). They didn't rise all that quickly after the 2008 crash....So, I don't think they'll crash as much either if the "national bubble" bursts, but the...
by e5116
Thu Nov 01, 2018 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax refunds expected to be 26% more in 2019
Replies: 52
Views: 5924

Re: Tax refunds expected to be 26% more in 2019

I used the IRS calculator in July and shockingly it had me WAY under-withholding. I increased the withholding for both my wife and myself considerably. We'll see how accurate it is...I'd prefer not to overwithhold for the year, but the calculator frightened me so I tried to be reasonably accurate. P...
by e5116
Sat Sep 29, 2018 6:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit card charge- fraud or mistake?
Replies: 24
Views: 2445

Re: Credit card charge- fraud or mistake?

Yep agree on both accounts that sometimes the charge location doesn't make sense and that it could also have been an honest mistake and not fraud. I had a charge for a cheap one night stay in a hotel in Wisconsin once that I had never been to (and was living in Virginia at the time). Called the hote...
by e5116
Mon Sep 24, 2018 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ripped off by a locksmith
Replies: 75
Views: 5856

Re: Ripped off by a locksmith

Wow, people really suggesting to go through a 7-step process to save $22.50?!? My time is much more valuable than that. I would personally just let it go. Maybe leave a (negative) review somewhere if it makes you feel better or contact the company itself and tell them what happened. This reminds me ...
by e5116
Wed Sep 12, 2018 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard
Replies: 71
Views: 6429

Re: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard

I think any of the three are great and the differences are negligible. I have had accounts with all three and now use Schwab and Vanguard. I personally still like a few of Vanguard's functionalities that don't exist at Schwab that allow me to invest on "auto-pilot." That is probably largely a functi...
by e5116
Sun Sep 09, 2018 7:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do bogleheads save in 529?
Replies: 79
Views: 4960

Re: How much do bogleheads save in 529?

Harvard could easily be free for everybody if they chose to be. They don't (and won't) because it is already AFFORDABLE for everybody. The "sticker price" is only what those with very high income/assets pay. So, I could see schools increasing their sticker price while reducing their students average...
by e5116
Sun Sep 02, 2018 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Grandchild’s account
Replies: 4
Views: 587

Re: Grandchild’s account

If you want small cap value in taxable at Vanguard, could also consider VIOV (or IJS). It's been pretty darn efficient for that asset class. It also is more focused on small caps than VBR. And it's not as if VBR has been THAT inefficient -- just not as much as VTI or VXUS and the like. Small cap val...
by e5116
Thu Aug 30, 2018 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Backdoor Roth question
Replies: 2
Views: 298

Re: Backdoor Roth question

Quite a while back, I had been advised to roll over a 401K fund into a traditional Rollover IRA(and have been max-contributing to this IRA yearly). However, I had read that doing this can "block the backdoor Roth option". Is this true? Can I still open a backdoor Roth (or mega backdoor Roth) and fu...
by e5116
Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Bright Start 529 investment choices
Replies: 6
Views: 616

Re: Bright Start 529 investment choices

Ah did not realize they added that as an option, cool. I believe the IL 529 restricts changing your investment to (twice?) a year. Still probably enough, but one reason a target fund might be preferable. Otherwise, if you're comfortable with 100% equities, I say go for it. The 0.02% expense ratios c...
by e5116
Wed Aug 29, 2018 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decent compensation to move to Bay Area CA?
Replies: 290
Views: 22461

Re: Decent compensation to move to Bay Area CA?

Haven't read every post, but wanted to say to please do NOT use GreatSchools "score" as gospel to how good a school is.... They are garbage. Look at test scores, demographics, and other factors to determine if it's a good fit for your family. I realize they are prominently displayed on sites like Re...
by e5116
Mon Aug 27, 2018 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: IJS significantly beat DFSVX
Replies: 16
Views: 1026

Re: IJS significantly beat DFSVX

On morningstar, if you start with IJS and compare it to DFSVX from inception, IJS kills it. If you start with DFSVX and compare, DFSVX actually beats IJS by a little. Is the first not including capital gains whereas in the second it does? I've noticed the same. The performance charts of mutual fund...
by e5116
Sun Aug 26, 2018 9:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What non-Vanguard ETFs will you be looking to buy?
Replies: 62
Views: 7276

Re: What non-Vanguard ETFs will you be looking to buy?

For those of you debating IJS vs VIOV, why not SLYV? Its fees are 10 bp lower than IJS,5 bp lower than VIOV, and has higher trading volume than VIOV. Plus it returns 100% of securities lending unlike IJS. Why wouldn't it be the clear #1 choice among the three? Am I missing something? Something is n...
by e5116
Sat Aug 25, 2018 7:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What non-Vanguard ETFs will you be looking to buy?
Replies: 62
Views: 7276

Re: What non-Vanguard ETFs will you be looking to buy?

If I were still at Vanguard I would be looking to buy iShares, Schwab, Wisdom tree index funds that were not offered by Vanguard or are suboptimal at Vanguard for whatever reason. Some tickers: IJS, DGS, FALN, FNDE, FNDF, IVLU. The list is very short. If you don't tilt away from the market portfoli...
by e5116
Fri Aug 24, 2018 5:35 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Home equity and timing of house purchase
Replies: 17
Views: 2560

Re: Too much home equity?

Assuming I'm happy with the current house, I'd stay put. If for some reason, a move is needed and you can financially afford either, I'd make the decision based on where I'd rather want to live rather than trying to predict future house appreciation (which is very hard to do accurately). In other wo...
by e5116
Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is divorce a wise financial move?
Replies: 90
Views: 5287

Re: Is divorce a wise financial move?

You say four digits more in tax. Is this $9,999 or less? Seems like small potatoes to consider a divorce. It is very low 4 digits. I don't have the figure in front of me, but it might have been around 1.5k last year. Either way, it is enough for us to prefer having the money in our pockets. There i...
by e5116
Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to buy engagement ring?
Replies: 61
Views: 5116

Re: Where to buy engagement ring?

Get GIA or AGS certified. Other labs are not as strict. I'd say just the opposite as long as you aren't buying sight unseen. If the diamond is "eye clean" and looks good, you can save money with a lesser certification. Resale value will be poor no matter what. Well theoretically yes, but if you're ...
by e5116
Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to buy engagement ring?
Replies: 61
Views: 5116

Re: Where to buy engagement ring?

Get GIA or AGS certified. Other labs are not as strict. Blue Nile is good to search, but not always the best. Pricescope is a good site but the people on the forum there have extremely high diamond standards (particularly for cut), so you'll pay a bit more at their recommended vendors like Whiteflas...
by e5116
Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where to put the first $5000
Replies: 24
Views: 1951

Re: Where to put the first $5000

just do VTI or VTSMX and keep reading about investing. Is VTI better than VTSMX better, in terms of the current U.S. market valuation? they are exactly the same thing. OK. I thought VTI is Vanguard total international. Ha, I could see how somebody new to the game sees "VTI" and thinks it's an acron...
by e5116
Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Automatic Investment in a Taxable Account
Replies: 20
Views: 2079

Re: Automatic Investment in a Taxable Account

I really wouldn't worry about the "tax inefficiency" of mutual funds. As long as you're sticking to total US/intl stock, they're pretty darn efficient. The convenience factor of automatic investing far outweighs it. As stated, at Vanguard, they're equally efficient too. I've had automatic investing ...
by e5116
Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seattle- mandatory affordable housing units affect single family home values?
Replies: 47
Views: 3706

Re: Seattle- mandatory affordable housing units affect single family home values?

Ironically, I have a 54-unit five story building that overlooks my backyard and I like it. Admittedly, it was there before I purchased my home and is comprised of $200-$300k condos (which is probably "affordable housing" in Seattle!) And my city actually requires developers to have a certain percent...
by e5116
Thu Aug 16, 2018 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Teachers Who Have Net Worth of $1 million +
Replies: 191
Views: 29088

Re: Teachers Who Have Net Worth of $1 million +

It very much depends on where you live and teach. I know quite a few teachers. Most do not seem to be concerned so much about net worth. Their pensions are, or will be, 87.5% of salary after 35 years (plus SS in my state) and they are now well into middle age making in the $80K to $95K range. Newer...
by e5116
Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Almost 30 - Check In
Replies: 33
Views: 4043

Re: Almost 30 - Check In

I realize this is a financial forum, but basically anytime somebody brings up buying an engagement ring, people say it's too expensive and not worth it. The person I'd ask about that is your girlfriend. You know her better than anonymous people on the internet. Many women -- not all -- really want a...
by e5116
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 33 Male, how am I doing?
Replies: 28
Views: 2926

Re: 33 Male, how am I doing?

I think you're doing pretty well overall and should be pleased. One thing I don't understand is that you say you contribute to a Roth but you have only $12k at age 33? You must have just started a couple years ago on contributions to the Roth. Similarly, I'd expect more than $39k in taxable brokerag...
by e5116
Sun Aug 12, 2018 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Joint checking accounts.
Replies: 26
Views: 2206

Re: Joint checking accounts.

I think a lot of the philosophy on this stems from WHEN people get married. If you're both in your 40s and have had independent careers for a while, you're used to having your own account and may want to keep it that way for autonomy. If you get married young before careers and assets have been deve...
by e5116
Fri Aug 10, 2018 3:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Landlord advice needed with section 8
Replies: 38
Views: 3901

Re: Landlord advice needed with section 8

Maybe they are a nice family, but they are unable to pay the market rent. They need either a benevolent landlord who wants to accept below market rent, or they will have to move to a lower cost abode. Good behavior alone does not qualify them as good tenants if they cannot afford to pay the market ...
by e5116
Tue Aug 07, 2018 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VIOV + VSIAX
Replies: 9
Views: 1162

Re: VIOV + VSIAX

I've historically held VSIAX but recently moved to VIOV for more small cap value exposure in my tax deferred accounts. However, because of large unrealized gains in taxable, I still have a decent chunk of VSIAX. I think it's fine that I have both, but isn't a concerted strategy on my side. Although ...
by e5116
Tue Jul 31, 2018 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Index Funds - Schwab and Vanguard
Replies: 7
Views: 865

Re: Index Funds - Schwab and Vanguard

Schwab International Index is not the same as Vanguard's as it's only Developed Markets Large Cap (excludes small caps and emerging markets). So, you'd have to use Schwab ETFs to fill the void. I agree with others and wouldn't choose Schwab just because it's expense ratios are a tiny bit lower. It's...