Search found 180 matches

by Northster
Mon Aug 03, 2020 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA Question
Replies: 20
Views: 1025

Re: TIAA Question

The issue with TIAA Traditional annuity is that it's illiquid. No lump-sum withdraws are allowed, not even in retirement. While they do provide liquidity to meed RMD requirements, the only other way one can withdraw is evenly over a ten year period. In the event a large amount for an emergency extr...
by Northster
Thu Jul 30, 2020 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I was looking at getting the 1% cash back discover card. How many of you use debit cards all the time?
Replies: 79
Views: 3660

Re: I was looking at getting the 1% cash back discover card. How many of you use debit cards all the time?

I got a 2% cash back card and don't use my debit card at all. Also nice that I pay one bill rather than having to keep track of all the debits in my checking account.
by Northster
Sat Jul 11, 2020 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many months of expenses do you have in emergency savings and why?
Replies: 45
Views: 3306

Re: How many months of expenses do you have in emergency savings and why?

With Social Security as a solid base of income and a variety of liquid investments I generally don't have an emergency fund. With the recent uncertainty and volatility I did put 2 years worth of RMD into a money market fund in my IRA and sold some investments in taxable account anticipating some Xma...
by Northster
Wed Jun 24, 2020 11:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the single best piece of exercise equipment you bought for your home?
Replies: 221
Views: 11603

Re: What is the single best piece of exercise equipment you bought for your home?

azanon wrote:
Wed Jun 24, 2020 11:20 am
A TotalGym. If i didn't have a real gym, I'd probably just use that. Does everything but cardio.
+2
by Northster
Sun Jun 21, 2020 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: A serious question from a senior about investing.
Replies: 42
Views: 3251

Re: A serious question from a senior about investing.

I let the market fall of 2008 move me from 60/40 to 40/60 and have happily remained there. I did recently increase my cash holdings, which had been minimal, to give me a cushion of a couple of years worth of RMD.
by Northster
Fri Jun 12, 2020 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TIAA-CREF After Tax Annuity
Replies: 13
Views: 2336

Re: TIAA-CREF After Tax Annuity

There are two other options to consider for TIAA Trad withdrawal -- taking interest earned each year, or taking a RMD. I have been doing the former and plan to switch to RMD when interest is insufficient to meet RMD requirement. The income is lower in early years but I think makes more sense in the ...
by Northster
Wed Jun 10, 2020 4:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Charitable Giving
Replies: 28
Views: 1487

Re: Charitable Giving

Minimum donation for Vanguard DAF is $500. I enjoy the anonymity but not good for small donations.
by Northster
Tue Jun 02, 2020 11:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why is the stock market up? [thread multi-merge]
Replies: 521
Views: 21252

Re: Why the heck is the market up?!?!

Brian , I retired in July 2009 with a 60/40 portfolio that had shrunk by 1/3. There was talk then of a ten-year Japan type event, etc. I chose to let the decline reset my portfolio to 40/60 and have stayed there every since. I think that is a good place to be in retirement if your portfolio is adequ...
by Northster
Sun May 31, 2020 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How do you keep track your investments?
Replies: 50
Views: 3598

Re: How do you keep track your investments?

I use Google Sheets to keep track of eight funds across seven accounts. By keeping the share counts on a separate page I find it easy to update and usually do so quarterly. I suppose if you do a lot of trading it would take more time, but as a buy and hold person I find it does the job. You can easi...
by Northster
Tue May 26, 2020 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Any retirees get through Covid crisis without large cash reserve?
Replies: 63
Views: 4547

Re: Any retirees get through Covid crisis without large cash reserve?

I normally carry very little cash, having a fair amount in short term bonds, but in light of the recent uncertainty (which I am not sure is over) I boosted my cash to a whopping 7% just as a cushion. With bonds paying so little I doubt it will make much difference, but I will sleep better.
by Northster
Mon Apr 27, 2020 7:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stimulus money if I owed taxes in 2019?
Replies: 11
Views: 1498

Re: Stimulus money if I owed taxes in 2019?

For a long time I was getting 'no info available' messages at IRS site, but 2 days ago was able to provide banking information.
by Northster
Wed Apr 22, 2020 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirees: Walk me thru your portfolio drawdown process
Replies: 39
Views: 3757

Re: Retirees: Walk me thru your portfolio drawdown process

Depends so much on assets vs needs. I have generally not kept much in cash, taking semiannual RMD payments from a short-term bond fund. In light of current uncertainties I did put about 18 months worth into cash in the IRA. For special needs I sell some equities in taxable account.
by Northster
Mon Apr 20, 2020 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA Traditional vs. Bonds, money market, or CDs
Replies: 20
Views: 859

Re: TIAA Traditional vs. Bonds, money market, or CDs

I am a long-time holder of TIAA Traditional and consider it a core holding. For decades I put 50% of my 403 into Trad and 50% into Cref. Also had some mutual funds in taxable account. For sure, during the 80s and 90s the Cref outperformed the Trad. I moved the Cref into an IRA when I retired, but re...
by Northster
Fri Apr 10, 2020 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Government stimulus payments]
Replies: 360
Views: 29124

Re: just got my $1200 stimulus payment

I guess mine will come as a check. I plan to give it all to charity.
by Northster
Thu Apr 09, 2020 8:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYT hit piece on Donor Advised Funds
Replies: 67
Views: 2790

Re: NYT hit piece on Donor Advised Funds

I corresponded with the reporter when this first came out, telling him that the surge in DAFs was not some nefarious plot but just normal folk like me acting before the tax law changed. He basically said, 'yeah, I should have mentioned that.' But he had his narrative to tell.
by Northster
Sat Mar 21, 2020 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How are you supporting your community?
Replies: 60
Views: 3288

Re: How are you supporting your community?

I gave some to local food bank. Also see that local United Way claims to have a group of local charities that support virus-related needs. Open to other ideas.
by Northster
Tue Mar 17, 2020 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should asset allocation depend on size of portfolio?
Replies: 20
Views: 1099

Re: Should asset allocation depend on size of portfolio?

I would say the larger the portfolio the less need to take risk. So without a need or willingness I am staying with 40/60, even though I have the ability to take more risk.
by Northster
Fri Mar 13, 2020 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retire now?
Replies: 20
Views: 2449

Re: Retire now?

I made the commitment in July 2008 to retire in July 2009, at age 63. Going into the slide I was 60/40 but the market pushed me to 40/60, where I have remained. It was an unsettling time but I made it through OK. You are coming at a better AA and facing (so far) less of a slide. Hard to say how this...
by Northster
Thu Mar 12, 2020 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How many people with 7 figure portfolios are”rejoicing ?”
Replies: 169
Views: 14406

Re: How many people with 7 figure portfolios are”rejoicing ?”

I'm retired with 40/60 (well 37/63 today) and very comfortable. Certainly feeling much better than when I entered retirement in 2008 with 60/40.
by Northster
Wed Feb 26, 2020 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where do you get financial/Investment info from the web
Replies: 12
Views: 927

Re: Where do you get financial/Investment info from the web

Depending on what you mean by 'financial information' I am rather partial to Yahoo Finance, at least for easy tracking of the markets and individual stocks/mutual funds. For real news I too rely on the NYT. As for investment information you can't beat this site.
by Northster
Mon Feb 24, 2020 9:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where's the risk in TIAA Traditional?
Replies: 20
Views: 2511

Re: Where's the risk in TIAA Traditional?

Now here's a data point. On Friday I got several spurious emails from TIAA, including acknowledgement of beneficiary change I did some months ago and EFT that occurred at least 3 weeks ago. My first thought was phishing, though odd that there were so many. Could not reach TIAA by phone. When I logge...
by Northster
Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirement Planning for Different Aged Spouses
Replies: 17
Views: 1195

Re: Retirement Planning for Different Aged Spouses

We have a slightly larger age gap but I never considered his/hers. I did however consider the gap when retirement approached and I could delay SS until 70. As an individual you can't beat SS actuaries, but since she will likely inherit my SS it seems one small step that puts us ahead in the long run.
by Northster
Wed Feb 19, 2020 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spreadsheets - Out of here!
Replies: 134
Views: 14255

Re: Spreadsheets - Out of here!

I guess everyone's needs are different, but with IRAs for both my wife and me, plus a Roth for each of us, an inherited IRA, a taxable account, and some $$$ outside Vanguard, I don't see how I could manage without a spreadsheet to handle the several funds spread across all these accounts. I have not...
by Northster
Mon Feb 17, 2020 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to withdrawal money in retirement
Replies: 12
Views: 2411

Re: Best way to withdrawal money in retirement

I keep a cash reserve at the Vanguard and have a set amount transferred from there to my bank account every month. My cash reserve is replenished every 6 months by my IRA RMD. It has been my experience that expenses are stable enough that this works most of the time. YMMV
by Northster
Sun Feb 16, 2020 5:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: At what age did you begin adding bonds?
Replies: 138
Views: 7558

Re: At what age did you begin adding bonds?

When I started work in 1973 I chose 50% equity fund and 50% TIAA Traditional in 403b. Over time as savings grew I added more equities in taxable account. In retrospect I was too conservative, but what did I know? Though I have heard the 70s were not great for equities. All worked out in the end.
by Northster
Fri Feb 14, 2020 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to leave money when we die
Replies: 68
Views: 5437

Re: Where to leave money when we die

I too am leery of higher ed but am much attracted to the idea of 'teach a person to fish...' Have not yet found a suitable option.
by Northster
Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Netflix - New Way Of Throttling [DVDs]?
Replies: 66
Views: 10623

Re: Netflix - New Way Of Throttling [DVDs]?

What I am finding is more current titles with 'short wait', and rather than wait they move down the queue.
by Northster
Sun Jan 19, 2020 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Scared Stiff to retire
Replies: 91
Views: 12852

Re: Scared Stiff to retire

You are in a very similar situation to where I was when I retired in 2009 at 63. That was near the market bottom and it was a little unsettling. I too delayed SS to 70 and had higher expenses than you do, but it all worked out. I would agree that adding some bonds could reduce the stress. I was 60/4...
by Northster
Mon Jan 13, 2020 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R BLOCK Pre-Order 2019 Software Offer
Replies: 317
Views: 28734

Re: H&R BLOCK Pre-Order 2019 Software Offer

For those like me that prefer the disc, Amazon has Deluxe+state for $22.50.
by Northster
Wed Sep 18, 2019 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What generalist books attempt to explain human nature?
Replies: 39
Views: 3023

Re: What generalist books attempt to explain human nature?

Some good suggestions here. I would add Sapolsky's 'Behave', which delves deeply into the origins of our actions and thoughts. Though perhaps too much neurology for some. You can see the contents and sample much of the intro on Amazon.
by Northster
Tue Sep 17, 2019 7:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheets
Replies: 77
Views: 7070

Re: Spreadsheets

Everyone's situation is different. For me, with assets spread over 8 accounts I need a spreadsheet to track and adjust asset allocation. Nothing complicated but essential for me.
by Northster
Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Target funds for Inherited IRA
Replies: 17
Views: 927

Re: Vanguard Target funds for Inherited IRA

I certainly agree a target fund would work just fine. I have an inherited IRA I got in 2002 at age 56 and have made part of my overall portfolio that was 60/40 but since 2009 has been 40/60. It started at $200K and still has $125K, and would probably be more if I hadn't taken more than the RMD one y...
by Northster
Tue Sep 03, 2019 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Learnings/Regrets from last two recessions
Replies: 91
Views: 12984

Re: Learnings/Regrets from last two recessions

During the dotcom I was not a Boglehead, but held fast and rode it out. In 2008 I was a year from retirement and had been 60% equities. So it was not a disaster, and trying to be a good Boglehead I did a bit of buying on the way down. By the bottom, with retirement looming, I was like a deer in the ...
by Northster
Tue Aug 13, 2019 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can having wealthy parents be a justification for a more aggressive investment strategy?
Replies: 97
Views: 8152

Re: Can having wealthy parents be a justification for a more aggressive investment strategy?

I have been on both sides of this. I took the conventional advice and paid no attention to any possible inheritance, with the result that I got quite a windfall. We have a lot of anecdotes on the topic; does anyone know of actual data? On the other side, I have made a point of informing our benefici...
by Northster
Wed Aug 07, 2019 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking of starting a financial advisory firm
Replies: 30
Views: 2872

Re: Thinking of starting a financial advisory firm

I prefer fee-based advisors as well, and consulted one who did a good job for. Later I found out he couldn't support his family offering a service like that, and went to work for American Express.
by Northster
Sun Aug 04, 2019 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For long time retirees, do you use a spreadsheet?
Replies: 37
Views: 3120

Re: For long time retirees, do you use a spreadsheet?

I use a Google sheet that pulls fund prices from Google Finance. In addition to tracking portfolio total it also tracks asset allocation so I can easily make adjustments as needed. I do an update quarterly or when trades are made.
by Northster
Sun Jul 21, 2019 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD Withdrawal Method
Replies: 27
Views: 2119

Re: RMD Withdrawl Method

I take a modest payout from TIAA monthly for living expenses and a larger IRA RMD semiannually since I don't want to put it directly into checking and would like to keep it working longer than an annual payout would do. But just personal preference.
by Northster
Thu Jul 18, 2019 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Organization
Replies: 57
Views: 5380

Re: Garage Organization

I wrestled with the matter of hanging garden tools and finally found I could build something that suited me better than what is on the market. Basically a horizontal strip of wood with wooden pegs. I have found I could better customize shelves by buying brackets and making my own. I do use a peg boa...
by Northster
Thu Jul 11, 2019 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimating 2019 federal income taxes (to pay in 2020)
Replies: 10
Views: 1619

Re: Estimating 2019 federal income taxes (to pay in 2020)

I use my tax software (from 2018) to create a '2019proj' return that I can customize as needed.
by Northster
Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retired: Do you withdraw from investments or cash ?
Replies: 74
Views: 10735

Re: Retired: Do you withdraw from investments or cash ?

I keep very little cash but have a fair amount in a short-term bond fund and use that as a source for my RMD, with a twice a year pay out. In my taxable account if I need cash for a special purchase I sell from whichever fund is out of balance. I have never really understood the bucket approach.
by Northster
Wed May 29, 2019 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does TIAA-CREF work?
Replies: 17
Views: 1836

Re: How does TIAA-CREF work?

I have TIAA traditional and have chosen an option I don't often see discussed -- taking an RMD. I did a spreadsheet comparing the annuity vs RMD and found that while the annuity gave greater returns in early years, when I looked at income received+assets remaining, the RMD seemed more favorable. Of ...
by Northster
Mon May 06, 2019 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roku
Replies: 37
Views: 4936

Re: Roku

I have the Ultra with a Sony receiver and Harmony remote. I use it for all my streaming and have been very pleased. Previously I used a Tivo but it sometimes stalled when streaming, even with ethernet connection. No such problems with Roku. I will say the Roku remote is not quite as ergonomic as the...
by Northster
Mon May 06, 2019 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody try the Blue Apron or the like?
Replies: 77
Views: 6683

Re: Anybody try the Blue Apron or the like?

Some good recipes but we felt we were kind of slaves to the constantly arriving packages.
by Northster
Mon Apr 15, 2019 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations on treadmill purchase
Replies: 16
Views: 1479

Re: Recommendations on treadmill purchase

Nothing but good to say about our 20-year old Landice. Very basic but a real workhorse.
by Northster
Fri Apr 12, 2019 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: YouTube TV is increasing their price - will you cancel it?
Replies: 66
Views: 6555

Re: YouTube TV is increasing their price - will you cancel it?

I have been considering canceling anyhow. I had been looking forward to Nat Geo & Smithsonian but find most of the offerings are dreck and have ads to boot. Not that impressed with the DVR nor the remote, which lacks an easy way to advance through ads. I think I will be better off just paying Amazon...
by Northster
Sat Mar 23, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fama-French benchmark portfolios: last chance to download them!
Replies: 1
Views: 419

Re: Fama-French benchmark portfolios: last chance to download them!

FWIW, from Copyright Office: 'Your work is under copyright protection the moment it is created and fixed in a tangible form...'
Registration is voluntary.
by Northster
Wed Jan 30, 2019 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax cannot import Vanguard 1099
Replies: 39
Views: 3385

Re: TurboTax cannot import Vanguard 1099

HR Block told me that export not ready until 1/31. Maybe posting on Vanguard and making export available are slightly out of sync.
by Northster
Mon Jan 21, 2019 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have you searched for your unclaimed property?
Replies: 64
Views: 6602

Re: Have you searched for your unclaimed property?

I had an interesting experience a few years ago when a vendor I had used (and not a large one), took the time to check and notify me of some lost funds. I too thought I was pretty careful, but this one fell through the cracks.
by Northster
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Under $100k Avg Annual Income Millionaires and How You Did It?
Replies: 117
Views: 15294

Re: Under $100k Avg Annual Income Millionaires and How You Did It?

First a generous 403b at about 15% of salary, plus more savings. Also helped to be in the market in the 80s and 90s. I was actually pretty conservative, with half my 403 to TIAA Trad and half to equities.
by Northster
Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Way to get rid of leaves
Replies: 83
Views: 9439

Re: Best Way to get rid of leaves

I was lucky to have some space at the back of the yard and piled the leaves there. Even in Minnesota they were gone by spring, as if by magic. I had way too many to mulch and even piles that were knee deep composted nicely.