Search found 603 matches

by happymob
Thu May 23, 2019 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PA 529 thoughts
Replies: 13
Views: 898

Re: PA 529 thoughts

I'm pretty sure that PA (along with MO and KS that I know of) doesn't restrict you to PA 529 plans for the tax deduction. 0.15% and 0.20% ERs are very good, so you might want to stick with PA anyway, but I don't believe you have to.
by happymob
Sat May 18, 2019 12:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to calculate exactly how much money you'll have by retirement?
Replies: 75
Views: 7787

Re: How to calculate exactly how much money you'll have by retirement?

I use a 3% return as well. Based on history, it'll be higher. Based on current market valuations, who knows? A steady 3% annual real gain seems reasonably conservative to me over the next 25 years. A lot of our income is pretty well set regardless of market performance. I know* what SS says each of ...
by happymob
Fri May 17, 2019 10:07 pm
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?

529a ("able") accounts if you have a special needs child.
by happymob
Thu May 16, 2019 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited ranch
Replies: 97
Views: 7907

Re: Inherited ranch

Another way to view this; its worth,according to real estate sales, about 480000 max to 400000. Rent payment is 3500$. Which they (pissy family members) paid twice over the last 7 years. I would rather the neighbors bought it. They're good people. So below market rent, which they can't even be both...
by happymob
Sun May 12, 2019 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited ranch
Replies: 97
Views: 7907

Re: Inherited ranch

If the family member can't get financing and you are really interested in keeping it in the family, rent it to them at market rate (can be hard to determine) and hold onto it. That might be tough to get everyone to agree to that (though other family members are free to sell on a 20-year 0% loan) wh...
by happymob
Sun May 12, 2019 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited ranch
Replies: 97
Views: 7907

Re: Inherited ranch

I would offer to sell it to the family member at market value - they are responsible for obtaining financing. Shouldn't be that hard if they start with 75% loan-to-value unless they are already deep in debt. Otherwise, sell at auction. If the family member can't get financing and you are really inte...
by happymob
Sun May 05, 2019 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Useful wedding gift you didn't expect
Replies: 26
Views: 3012

Re: Useful wedding gift you didn't expect

Nice roasting pan with roasting rack gets used ~30 time/year since marriage.
by happymob
Sun May 05, 2019 5:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Factor investing worth it?
Replies: 9
Views: 1015

Re: Factor investing worth it?

I'll let you know in 20 years.
by happymob
Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:12 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: HSA AA/Location - What you do and Why ?
Replies: 18
Views: 1342

Re: HSA AA/Location - What you do and Why ?

Yes, it's part of the overall AA. Yes, it's more aggressive (100% equities) because we expect to actually spend it later in life than some of the traditional 401k money and yes, we treat the money in a very similar manner as we would Roth money. It's a lot like Roth money, in that you want to captu...
by happymob
Sun Apr 28, 2019 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Colleague salary comparison
Replies: 54
Views: 6176

Re: Colleague salary comparison

If you work in an environment where you can view your colleagues' salaries do you? And if so, do you do anything with that information? Sure. When I worked in a public information environment, I also had no problem sharing my salary with colleagues either. And (as I was a college prof), I had no pr...
by happymob
Sun Apr 28, 2019 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle Real Estate in AA, esp w/r/t international
Replies: 13
Views: 884

Re: How to handle Real Estate in AA, esp w/r/t international

I would take the real estate investments out of your mix of stocks/bonds for asset allocation purposes. This is what we do (though in our case the real estate is farm and grassland). It's part of our net worth calculations. It certainly provides income. But it doesn't factor into our AA for the res...
by happymob
Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: HSA AA/Location - What you do and Why ?
Replies: 18
Views: 1342

Re: HSA AA/Location - What you do and Why ?

Yes, it's part of the overall AA. Yes, it's more aggressive (100% equities) because we expect to actually spend it later in life than some of the traditional 401k money and yes, we treat the money in a very similar manner as we would Roth money. It's a lot like Roth money, in that you want to captur...
by happymob
Sun Apr 28, 2019 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Gambling with "fun money" (Penny stocks, other ideas?)
Replies: 43
Views: 3329

Re: Gambling with "fun money" (Penny stocks, other ideas?)

Absent true insider information, I would be more comfortable betting my fun money at the racetrack on ponies than on penny stocks. And I'd have more fun too.
by happymob
Tue Apr 16, 2019 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help needed thinking through issues re: child’s disability
Replies: 22
Views: 1917

Re: Help needed thinking through issues re: child’s disability

staythecourse wrote:
Sun Apr 14, 2019 12:35 pm
8. I wouldn't over invest in 529 plan until you figure out all the above.
The account mentioned was a 529 able account, which I would over invest in. They have tremendous flexibility compared to purely educational 529 plans.
by happymob
Wed Apr 10, 2019 5:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did I read this correctly? SS and your AA
Replies: 36
Views: 4097

Re: Did I read this correctly? SS and your AA

Rather, it’s because as wealth grows, Social Security — which mimics the role of bonds in providing an income stream — represents a shrinking percentage of total income. It follows that wealthier people need to replace that missing fixed-income exposure with bonds within their financial portfolio. ...
by happymob
Sun Apr 07, 2019 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The capital gains cliff (27% tax)
Replies: 35
Views: 3386

Re: The capital gains cliff (27% tax)

I try to go to the top of 12% with Roth conversions, but try even harder to not go over for this very reason. It's not capital gains that are an issue (still working off great recession carrover losses), but have $3000 or so in qualified dividends each year that I would very much prefer to be taxed ...
by happymob
Sun Apr 07, 2019 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it bad to have nothing in taxable when you retire?
Replies: 62
Views: 6819

Re: Is it bad to have nothing in taxable when you retire?

Excluding farm and ranch land and other illiquid assets, 15% of our liquid investable money is in taxable. We've kept that very consistent throughout the years. It's a nice cushion if we want to buy a new car or move somewhere where housing is more expensive (we haven't had a mortgage in 12 years an...
by happymob
Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Those who view everything as one portfolio - how do you determine allocations and how "funded" different goals are?
Replies: 28
Views: 2209

Re: Those who view everything as one portfolio - how do you determine allocations and how "funded" different goals are?

Cash flow is key for us. We set our 401k/403b/457b contributions. Everything else goes into our bank account. Once a year, a large lump sum goes out for traditional or Roth IRA contributions. Sometimes taxes create an additional outflow; rarely, it's an inflow. If the bank balance is roughly the sam...
by happymob
Sat Apr 06, 2019 5:36 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Selling Series I Bonds
Replies: 43
Views: 3976

Re: Selling Series I Bonds

If you have kids (in college or below) and meet the income requirements, be aware of the tax deduction for qualified tuition plan.
by happymob
Thu Apr 04, 2019 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Pension math - stay in or move to retirement account
Replies: 6
Views: 812

Pension math - stay in or move to retirement account

So I became vested in the Oklahoma Teachers Retirement System. While I kno longer work there, I finally have gotten around to looking at what to do with that money. As of now: Age: 46 (male) Vested in plan with 5 years of service. That allows me to "retire" at age 65 and draw 10% of my salary ($440/...
by happymob
Thu Apr 04, 2019 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal tax refund? What are you doing with it?
Replies: 54
Views: 2483

Re: Federal tax refund? What are you doing with it?

Paying my states taxes :D

In practice, we wait to fund IRA/Roth for the previous year until we finish our taxes. Which means we had $11,000 leaving our bank account right before we would get any refunds. So the refunds, if any exist, simply partially replenish the bank account.
by happymob
Wed Apr 03, 2019 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [2018 tax return - How does it compare to previous years?]
Replies: 441
Views: 31119

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

Finally finished ours. Higher income because I started working again in May and therefore higher effective tax rate, despite our marginal rate dropping from 15% to 12%. 3 big surprises: 1) Some of our taxable Fidelity index funds (small cap index - FSSNX and extended market index - FSMAX) spun off s...
by happymob
Tue Apr 02, 2019 6:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get cash quickly
Replies: 102
Views: 6632

Re: How to get cash quickly

So why didn't you withdraw from your margin account via a wire transfer? That's how I would do it if my local bank account didn't have enough money. We don't frequently use margin on our taxable Fidelity account (the rates aren't good), but it's nice to be able to cash out some money without sellin...
by happymob
Sun Mar 24, 2019 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What would be your perfect personal bond allocation
Replies: 15
Views: 1125

What would be your perfect personal bond allocation

Where to put bonds? Vanguard total bond? Treasuries only? Corporates only? Long duration only (something like EDV)? Does junk have a place? Does international have a place? Ginnie Maes? More exotic instruments? I'm not asking about % bond allocation here. I'm also assuming that you have theoretical ...
by happymob
Sat Mar 16, 2019 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with Voya 403b
Replies: 7
Views: 628

Re: Help with Voya 403b

Another vote for getting international exposure from another account. If you need to go 100% international in an IRA (Roth or traditional) and 0% in the 403b plan, that is ok. Whatever makes things mostly balance.
by happymob
Wed Mar 13, 2019 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many companies have you worked for?
Replies: 125
Views: 6487

Re: How many companies have you worked for?

Real jobs (as opposed to high school/summer college jobs)... 6 at age 46. 1) IT networking/general hardware firm for 1 year 2) IT consulting firm for 6 years 3) Programming for a major college for 1 year 4) Teaching at a directional state college for 4 years 5) Teaching at a different directional st...
by happymob
Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 529 evaluation tools?
Replies: 21
Views: 1296

Re: 529 evaluation tools?

Because you are allowed one 529 rollover per beneficiary per year, we contribute to the Maryland 529 plan each year in order to claim the deduction and then roll the balance over to a lower cost plan (Michigan in our case, but I think NY is even cheaper) to minimize ongoing expenses. Note that some...
by happymob
Mon Mar 04, 2019 4:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Value of Vacation Experiences with Big Fam & Young Kids
Replies: 75
Views: 4435

Re: Value of Vacation Experiences with Big Fam & Young Kids

Once the first one is in school, you're locked into school breaks and suddenly all your options and prices are worse. This is one significant advantage of living of living in flyover country where schools get out by Memorial Day - traveling in very early June while most east and west coast schools ...
by happymob
Mon Mar 04, 2019 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Claim 529 deduction in 2 states? Tax question
Replies: 6
Views: 338

Re: Claim 529 deduction in 2 states? Tax question

Hi I work and have income in 2 states. I currently claim 529 deduction in one state - the state of residence. Can I 'double' claim the deduction in the second state also? Probably not but thought I should ask! Thanks It depends. First, at least one of the states needs to allow you to deduct in any ...
by happymob
Mon Mar 04, 2019 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: simplifying my financial life -- should i get rid of treasury direct?
Replies: 72
Views: 8114

Re: simplifying my financial life -- should i get rid of treasury direct?

I personally didn't bother holding individual treasuries until recently, and I can see myself living without them in the future. I originally opened a Treasury Direct account primarily to buy TIPS at auction. Then I found out I could do this on Fidelity easily. Then Vanguard offered the same on the...
by happymob
Sat Mar 02, 2019 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: how much is $49K contribution limit worth?
Replies: 13
Views: 1239

Re: how much is $49K contribution limit worth?

Since it is a 403b I don't contribute to Social Security. I don't have enough points from previous employers to get SS and even if I did, I know I cannot "double dip" and take full pension and getfull SS benefits, but my understanding is I would get a little something from SS if enough points. Many...
by happymob
Tue Feb 26, 2019 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 629

Re: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018

Voya is the 403/457 vendor Yikes, my wife is a teacher in NC, and also has Voya as the vendor for 403 / 457. The fees are quite high - luckily there is a third option - Prudential 401k which has more reasonable fees. Good on you for savings lots but is there a way to reduce fees? Our fees are actua...
by happymob
Tue Feb 26, 2019 9:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 629

Re: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018

So it took 39 days for HR to decide they had to do something about it. They hadn't it off to the financial advisor (who works for a company I have never heard of - Voya is the 403/457 vendor and this guy works for some other firm - weird, but whatever), Is it TSA Consulting Group? They handle a lot...
by happymob
Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 629

Re: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018

So it took 39 days for HR to decide they had to do something about it. They hadn't it off to the financial advisor (who works for a company I have never heard of - Voya is the 403/457 vendor and this guy works for some other firm - weird, but whatever), who is requesting that the Roth 403b contribut...
by happymob
Sun Feb 24, 2019 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA for 5 Year Old
Replies: 8
Views: 1051

Re: Roth IRA for 5 Year Old

Long before your child was born, thousands thought they to could pull one over on the IRS. No, you can't do this. Wait until you child has a legitimate job. Instead, as a smart parent, setup a 529 and fund it. And if you really want the money to be in their name, there is nothing wrong with a taxab...
by happymob
Fri Feb 22, 2019 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite youtube channels?
Replies: 81
Views: 7467

Re: Favorite youtube channels?

Hot Ones. Host interviews celebrities while eating increasingly hot wings. The premise is ludicrous, but somehow it works.
by happymob
Wed Feb 20, 2019 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA conversion - reversing the thinking
Replies: 9
Views: 1083

Re: Roth IRA conversion - reversing the thinking

What paperwork are you posting about? You put your numbers into tax prep software and it spits out a Form 8606 with all you need. I think there is a flaw in the TurboTax handling of the 8606 - which is only triggered by a contribution in THAT year. It appears if you skip a year, or don't make a non...
by happymob
Sun Feb 17, 2019 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 403(b) or 457(b) and Roth/Non-Roth for Teacher?
Replies: 7
Views: 465

Re: 403(b) or 457(b) and Roth/Non-Roth for Teacher?

I agree with a lot of the advice above. Notably: 1) Go with Roth/Traditional IRA before the employer plan due to lower fees (assumes no employer match) 2) Go with Roth when in 12% tax bracket and traditional if in 22% tax bracket. Some people might have to mix the 2 if they are a just a bit into 22%...
by happymob
Thu Feb 14, 2019 7:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [2018 tax return - How does it compare to previous years?]
Replies: 441
Views: 31119

Re: Smaller tax refunds this year? Clear explanation please

Not sure why so many people forgot about the increase in their take-home pay that occurred in Feb/Mar of 2018 when the withholding tables were updated? I know we're unusual (not for Bogleheads, but in general) as we rarely review our bank account because we aren't living paycheck to paycheck. Maybe...
by happymob
Fri Feb 08, 2019 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Teachers Who Have Net Worth of $1 million +
Replies: 191
Views: 29621

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

As a retired teacher, I'm interested in hearing from my fellow Life-Giving Educators who were able to devote their lives to teaching, invest over time, may have started side businesses, and have amassed over $1 million net. How did you do it? Perhaps share your net worth as a testament to other you...
by happymob
Fri Feb 08, 2019 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Double dipping on 529 contributions
Replies: 0
Views: 171

Double dipping on 529 contributions

This isn't going to apply to many people, but... 7 states (AZ, AR, KS, MN, MO, MT, PA) allow you to deduct 529 contributions to any 529 plan, even if it is hosted by another state. So if you happen to have taxable income in one of those 7 states and one of the other 23 states that give a tax deducti...
by happymob
Thu Feb 07, 2019 6:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What do you use for your bond exposure?
Replies: 47
Views: 3264

Re: What do you use for your bond exposure?

It's all over the map and my IPS allows me to use any mostly safe item yielding over 10-year treasury rates as bonds. So we've got some total bond. We've got some TIPS index fund. We've got some 30-year (at least when I purchased the) TIPS purchased at auction. We've got some TIAA Traditional (stabl...
by happymob
Wed Jan 30, 2019 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please share some lifestyle creep you regret.
Replies: 130
Views: 11162

Re: Please share some lifestyle creep you regret.

A smaller lifestyle creep has been Scotch. At one point we were spending $80-$100 a bottle with and every now and then purchases getting close to $200. We have cut back to about $50 bottles and see no change in our pleasure from drinking them. Agree with this as I would buy expensive (and mostly re...
by happymob
Wed Jan 30, 2019 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA for child
Replies: 49
Views: 4999

Re: 8 year old investing help

It's good the kid is interested in investing. But, at 8 years old I would question if they're emotionally developed enough to handle ups and downs of the market. Could they really handle losing 10% or 25% of their savings? But learning that indexes could go down, but they will (likely - there is st...
by happymob
Tue Jan 29, 2019 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 529 and taxes
Replies: 4
Views: 420

Re: 529 and taxes

Would be for CO. Up front deduction of state tax = 4.63% savings. Grows tax free. When used for college, do you have to pay any taxes (state or fed) on withdrawal? Also wondering if it is better to just fund a back door Roth IRA? Can take out contributions tax and penalty free, correct? 1) That see...
by happymob
Sat Jan 26, 2019 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Millionaire by 40 and How you Did it?
Replies: 162
Views: 22631

Re: Millionaire by 40 and How you Did it?

Factors that were important for us: 1) High-ish income. 2x median household income helps. 2) High savings rate. At least 33% of income. 3) No debt. Helps with cash flow and makes #2 possible. 4) Bull market in stocks and a fairly aggressive stock/bond ratio. 5) Living in a LCOL area with good enough...
by happymob
Thu Jan 24, 2019 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you carry gas cans, mowers, string trimmers, etc in your car or SUV?
Replies: 48
Views: 3183

Re: Do you carry gas cans, mowers, string trimmers, etc in your car or SUV?

Once in a blue moon? We just don't need to transport things with IC engines very often and we refill our mower gas tank from a station 2 blocks away from us, so we walk.
by happymob
Tue Jan 22, 2019 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement plan “improvements” (Fidelity vs. TIAA)
Replies: 18
Views: 1518

Re: Retirement plan “improvements” (Fidelity vs. TIAA)

I know you are focused on Vanguard funds, but what is your access to TIAA funds, particularly TIAA traditional (and which version of traditional) and real estate (QREARX)? Both are available. I’m not really familiar with either one, but the real estate fund looks pretty expensive, with an ER of 0.7...
by happymob
Wed Jan 16, 2019 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 629

Re: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018

I should have done more Googling before posting. 1) Yes, it's an excess contribution 2) IRS has guidance on what needs to happen to correct this (and the correction needs to happen before April 15) https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/403b-plan-fix-it-guide-your-403b-plan-didnt-limit-elective-defer...
by happymob
Wed Jan 16, 2019 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 629

Re: 403(b) plan - did we over-contribute in 2018

I should have done more Googling before posting. 1) Yes, it's an excess contribution 2) IRS has guidance on what needs to happen to correct this (and the correction needs to happen before April 15) https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/403b-plan-fix-it-guide-your-403b-plan-didnt-limit-elective-deferr...