Search found 156 matches

by Biil McNeal
Fri Jan 11, 2019 12:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Salary Question During Job Interview
Replies: 17
Views: 2320

Salary Question During Job Interview

I’m in discussion with a potential new employer. Salary would be something I’d need to consider to leave my company and relocate. At what point is it customary to discuss compensation during the interview process? I read that you shouldn’t ask about salary. But I don’t want to fly to an interview an...
by Biil McNeal
Sun Jan 06, 2019 4:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Currency Conversion Fee for Credit Card usage abroad
Replies: 7
Views: 491

Re: Currency Conversion Fee for Credit Card usage abroad

At the restaurants I've been to, the currency prompt comes up without intervention by the cashier; they don't even know it's a US based card. It appears the currency conversion is automatic when the card is somehow detected as a US card. Even when I specify to charge in the local currency, the recei...
by Biil McNeal
Sun Jan 06, 2019 2:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Currency Conversion Fee for Credit Card usage abroad
Replies: 7
Views: 491

Currency Conversion Fee for Credit Card usage abroad

I used my Chase Ink Preferred in Taiwan, selecting to charge my card in the local currency, NT. The card has no foreign transaction fee. But the receipt says there is a 4% currency conversion fee included in the conversion rate to USD. How do you avoid this fee?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Nov 12, 2018 2:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executive Search
Replies: 3
Views: 884

Executive Search

I'm approaching mid-career and looking to advance into my first executive, C-suite position. Based on that I've seen at my company, it makes more sense looking externally than waiting for a promotion. I have the education, experience, and keep my LinkedIn updated, but I realize that near the top of ...
by Biil McNeal
Sun Jul 08, 2018 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Term Life Without Medical Exam
Replies: 8
Views: 1408

Term Life Without Medical Exam

A family member told me he got denied term life insurance due to medical underwriting for a relatively minor condition found on physician exam. He's in good health and is not sure what do to next. Is it possible to skip the medical exam by getting multiple smaller term life policies from different a...
by Biil McNeal
Mon Jun 18, 2018 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Shorting Amazon
Replies: 44
Views: 4910

Re: Shorting Amazon

I'd tend to short the calls too, in order to pocket some of the implied volatility. Usual caveats about markets, irrationality and your solvency apply. Most discussion of shorting tech I've seen is TSLA, but I'd avoid betting against Musk even more than Bezos.
by Biil McNeal
Mon Apr 02, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for a new job in another department
Replies: 4
Views: 761

Re: Applying for a new job in another department

It seems like this is highly variable among companies. Thanks for sharing your experiences.
by Biil McNeal
Sat Mar 31, 2018 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for a new job in another department
Replies: 4
Views: 761

Applying for a new job in another department

There's a position in my large MegaCorp (GigaCorp?) that's in a different division than my current one. It would be a promotion from my current job. My manager is aware I have ambitions, but I'm worried that if I tell him I want to apply for it, it will be seen as disloyal and be branded a "flight r...
by Biil McNeal
Mon Feb 19, 2018 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Excess Contribution
Replies: 8
Views: 1068

Re: HSA Excess Contribution

Thanks. I'll go back again to the HSA custodian.
by Biil McNeal
Sun Feb 18, 2018 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Excess Contribution
Replies: 8
Views: 1068

HSA Excess Contribution

At the beginning of last year, I put the maximum full-year contribution to my HSA ($6,750 family) through my employer payroll. However, as part of a new job I started later in 2017, I changed to a non HDHP plan. From what I read, I have to request a withdrawal of the excess contribution, pro-rated f...
by Biil McNeal
Fri Jan 05, 2018 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2018 Morgage Interest Deduction
Replies: 17
Views: 2577

Re: 2018 Morgage Interest Deduction

Does the proration change as the loan balance is paid down each year? For example, if the $1.5 million LA condo loan eventually gets paid down to $750k, then going forward all interest is deductible?
by Biil McNeal
Sun Dec 31, 2017 2:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question on Mortgage Interest deduction under Trump Tax
Replies: 13
Views: 2731

Re: Question on Mortgage Interest deduction under Trump Tax

If I get a new $800k mortgage next week, does that mean only 750/800 of my total interest paid on 2018 is deductible? Or is none deductible until principal is paid down to 750k after which all interest paid is deductible?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [How do I buy] Life Insurance
Replies: 11
Views: 1945

Re: [How do I buy] Life Insurance

Usually a $1 million policy won't trigger a medical exam requirement but a $2 million policy would.

Do people who don't want to go through an exam just get two $1 million policies from separate carriers to avoid this?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Dec 11, 2017 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Commercial property as part of your portfolio anyone?
Replies: 7
Views: 1177

Re: Commercial property as part of your portfolio anyone?

Anyone know the best ways to find commercial property investments available? Is there am equivalent to MLS?
by Biil McNeal
Wed Sep 20, 2017 1:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting over emotional attachment to house
Replies: 70
Views: 7765

Re: Getting over emotional attachment to house

Some people like water views, other people like big yards. Still others will pay over $100 to see Justin Bieber impersonate a musician. Not for me, but there are people out there that value it and will pay.
by Biil McNeal
Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:26 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Should this site highlight posts from the OP?
Replies: 7
Views: 3440

Re: Should this site highlight posts from the OP?

This is the single feature of greatest need for this site.
by Biil McNeal
Wed Aug 02, 2017 10:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Commercial property as part of your portfolio anyone?
Replies: 7
Views: 1177

Re: Commercial property as part of your portfolio anyone?

How do you find opportunities for multi family or commercial real estate? Is there an equivalent to an MLS for them?
by Biil McNeal
Wed Jul 26, 2017 7:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First-time home buying: New Construction Condo in Atlanta
Replies: 12
Views: 1682

Re: First-time home buying: New Construction Condo in Atlanta

Agree with others. Condos are great for singles but if you plan to have a family someday, you'll want more space for junior to run around, not to mention better schools, which is why Buckhead is popular. If you work at Emory and need to be close, renting there is safer for now. A lot can change betw...
by Biil McNeal
Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?
Replies: 40
Views: 4942

Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?

I'm considering buying a car, and the manufacturer is offering 72-month financing at 1.49%. Is that a good rate, or do banks offer better? It so happens that the monthly payment comes very close to a 36 month lease with similar down payment. It is expensive (almost 6 figures) but there are tax incen...
by Biil McNeal
Sat Jun 17, 2017 1:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Regret early retirement/downsizing
Replies: 230
Views: 51564

Re: Regret early retirement/downsizing

Even if you disdain electronic forms of entertainment as a hobby, people would do well to consider it during retirement as there is evidence it delays cognitive decline.
by Biil McNeal
Wed May 17, 2017 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: REITs: Count as Stocks or Bonds?
Replies: 49
Views: 5781

REITs: Count as Stocks or Bonds?

I have some REITs in tax advantaged space for some diversification flavor in my portfolio. Should I count that as stocks or bonds in my asset allocation?

How much REITs do you have in your portfolio?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Apr 17, 2017 6:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bill Paying Apps: Which Do You Use?
Replies: 0
Views: 501

Bill Paying Apps: Which Do You Use?

I used Mint Bills to track all of my credit card statements and bills. It got discontinued and users got pushed to the Mint app, which appears to lack this functionality and is more focused on tracking spending.

Anyone know of a good app that tracks credit card transactions, balances and due dates?
by Biil McNeal
Thu Mar 02, 2017 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physician Mortgage
Replies: 1
Views: 577

Physician Mortgage

I heard some banks had special mortgages just for physicians. These include 5% down or less and no PMI products. Has anyone had experience with this? What lenders have such programs?
by Biil McNeal
Sun Feb 26, 2017 9:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Technical Analysis
Replies: 37
Views: 3419

Technical Analysis

I've seen segments discussing technical analysis on CNBC news shows like Fast Money, but don't quite get their concepts or terminology. Does anyone know how reliable it is as an indicator to buy or sell? There seems to be a cottage industry about professional technical analysts that break down price...
by Biil McNeal
Wed Jan 11, 2017 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multiple Job Offers
Replies: 5
Views: 1033

Multiple Job Offers

My sister's in the interviewing process for a new job. Due to scheduling, her preferred company won't be able to interview her until after the others. She's worried that if she receives an offer from the less-preferred company, she will be forced to either accept it without knowing the outcome of he...
by Biil McNeal
Mon Dec 26, 2016 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investment Property Remodeling
Replies: 1
Views: 478

Investment Property Remodeling

I'm interested in your opinion on an investment house that I'm thinking of either selling or renting out. Its interior is outdated and I'm considering a renovation of undetermined scale. If I sell, I could remodel with all-new kitchen/baths and try to recoup that cost in my asking price. However, I ...
by Biil McNeal
Sun Nov 27, 2016 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would You Move For A Promotion?
Replies: 22
Views: 4087

Re: Would You Move For A Promotion?

This is all good insight. Quality of life in a new environment is hard to tell if you've never lived there before.
by Biil McNeal
Sun Nov 06, 2016 8:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would You Move For A Promotion?
Replies: 22
Views: 4087

Would You Move For A Promotion?

Obviously everyone's situation is different in terms of roots and connections to your local community. Perhaps a better phrasing of the question I have is, "Would you move for a promotion into a C-suite position?" At my organization, the senior executives appear entrenched and the visibility for int...
by Biil McNeal
Sun Jun 19, 2016 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Capital Gains Exclusion a Good Reason to Sell House?
Replies: 15
Views: 2020

Capital Gains Exclusion a Good Reason to Sell House?

Is taking advantage of the capital gains exclusion for sale of a residence a reason to sell? Recently we moved out of the SF Bay area, and our house is being rented out. We figured to be long-term landlords and are sentimental toward the house and area. However it dawned on me that the window for th...
by Biil McNeal
Mon Feb 01, 2016 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How To Select A Tax Accountant
Replies: 5
Views: 698

How To Select A Tax Accountant

How do you find a tax accountant? Sure there's yellow pages and now Google, but I'd like to find one that's well-reviewed. Is there a Yelp for tax preparers? I happen to be in the Atlanta area and my returns are fairly straightforward.
by Biil McNeal
Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Buy Luxury Watches/Jewelry
Replies: 16
Views: 3471

How to Buy Luxury Watches/Jewelry

I'd like to buy a nice watch, and am eyeing a Cartier. The prices are pretty serious and am hoping to find a deal. Do these items ever go on sale? Any gift card or credit card point strategies that can lower the cost? I want to buy new.
by Biil McNeal
Fri Dec 11, 2015 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Georgia Municipal Bonds
Replies: 18
Views: 3305

Re: Georgia Municipal Bonds

Thank you for your input grabiner. To clarify, you recommend a Vanguard national muni fund instead of higher-cost GA muni funds?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Nov 16, 2015 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Georgia Municipal Bonds
Replies: 18
Views: 3305

Georgia Municipal Bonds

I'm considering moving to the Atlanta area. I realize that I have to decide what to do with my muni bond portion of my AA, which is now in California Muni Bond funds from Vanguard. I see Franklin and Nuveen have Georgia muni bond funds at a hefty price (0.67% ER and up) and see no Vanguard product. ...
by Biil McNeal
Fri Nov 13, 2015 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Expense Ratios of Funds of Funds
Replies: 6
Views: 921

Expense Ratios of Funds of Funds

Are the listed expense ratios of funds of funds inclusive of the ERs of its subfunds?

Example: Vanguard Target Date 2040 VIRSX is listed at 0.10% ER and one of its major holdings is VITSX (0.04%).

Would the portion of my VIRSX holdings that consists of VITSX be subject to a 0.10% or a 0.14% ER?
by Biil McNeal
Mon Jun 01, 2015 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW
Replies: 80
Views: 21112

Re: Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW

Thanks again to all who have provided feedback, either directly or indirectly related to my query. I'd like to offer an epilogue, as I always appreciate when OPs of threads come back to provide follow-up. I hope by sharing my experience will help others with families who may also be buying a car in ...
by Biil McNeal
Wed May 20, 2015 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW
Replies: 80
Views: 21112

Re: Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW

Thank you all for your insights. I misused "compact" as meaning "not full size" but that is the vehicle class I'm looking for. So far, sentiment is toward the RX. I have not owned any of these vehicle makes before so I'm not sure what owners' experiences regarding reliability and maintenance is like...
by Biil McNeal
Wed May 20, 2015 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW
Replies: 80
Views: 21112

Lexus vs. MB vs. BMW

I'm looking for a compact SUV, and thus far I've got it down to the RX 350 vs. the M-class vs. the X5. I'm leaning towards the RX due to lower cost, although I'm not sure if ongoing service costs are similar. The RX is coming out with an all new model later this year, but I'm not fond of the look. I...
by Biil McNeal
Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to Invest in Gold
Replies: 70
Views: 9927

How to Invest in Gold

How do you determine what % of gold should be in your AA? Is it a fixed 5% or change with your age?

Do you buy physical gold and store it, or buy a gold ETF or the miners?

I would prefer not to invest in bitcoins.
by Biil McNeal
Thu Oct 23, 2014 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Paying Estimated Taxes
Replies: 6
Views: 808

Paying Estimated Taxes

I unexpectedly realized a sizable short term capital gain. I don't know how to pay estimated taxes using my TaxACT software since I already filed this year's tax return and there is no apparent way to pay mid-year estimated tax. Can I avoid a penalty for underpayment with paying tax using alternativ...
by Biil McNeal
Tue Oct 21, 2014 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "Differentiated" vs. "Segregated" asset allocation
Replies: 3
Views: 626

"Differentiated" vs. "Segregated" asset allocation

I was researching some roboadvisors and a white paper caught my attention. It says the typical taxable/retirement account segregation based on tax efficiency is not ideal if you have substantial assets in a taxable account: https://blog.wealthfront.com/differentiated-asset-location-a-case-for-certai...
by Biil McNeal
Tue May 27, 2014 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rental Property
Replies: 5
Views: 896

Rental Property

I'd like to get started in rental property. This would be in the San Francisco area. I've never owned any property to rent out before. From what I've read so far, at this time I would not meet the definition of real estate professional and will be subject to the 3.8% surtax on rental income. Also, I...
by Biil McNeal
Thu Feb 13, 2014 4:04 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: FATCA for VWO and foreign funds?
Replies: 4
Views: 743

Re: FATCA for VWO and foreign funds?

Anyone come across this issue for this year?
by Biil McNeal
Fri Feb 07, 2014 5:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone feed the birds?
Replies: 84
Views: 9764

Re: Anyone feed the birds?

I thought squirrels would get all the spillage.
by Biil McNeal
Wed Feb 05, 2014 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VEU Changes
Replies: 7
Views: 1330

Re: VEU Changes

Vanguard's pages for these show that VEU median market cap is larger than VXUS. But its turnover rate is higher and Yahoo Finance shows a dividend, but VXUS apparently does not have a dividend. Even though VXUS has an ER 1 bp higher, doesn't the lower turnover and no dividend mean that it's more tax...
by Biil McNeal
Sat Feb 01, 2014 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial Agreement
Replies: 34
Views: 4467

Prenuptial Agreement

My uncle is getting married and is bringing in substantially more assets than his fiancé. Is a prenuptial agreement a good idea? This is in TX although the ceremony might be in another state due to family. My mom is afraid to broach this topic with him. What's the best way to start this conversation?
by Biil McNeal
Tue Jan 28, 2014 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone feed the birds?
Replies: 84
Views: 9764

Re: Anyone feed the birds?

Interesting map. Thank you for the site.

I've seen at one hummingbird in the last week visit the feeder. I imagine the warmer temperatures keep them around here longer.
by Biil McNeal
Mon Jan 27, 2014 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone feed the birds?
Replies: 84
Views: 9764

Re: Anyone feed the birds?

Anyone see hummingbirds yet? I wonder if I should put up my feeder yet. I'm in California.
by Biil McNeal
Sun Jan 26, 2014 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VEU Changes
Replies: 7
Views: 1330

Re: VEU Changes

Thanks David. So according to what I'm seeing of their funds,

VXUS = VEU + VSS

Although ER of VSS is about 10 bps higher than the others.
by Biil McNeal
Sat Jan 25, 2014 10:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VEU Changes
Replies: 7
Views: 1330

VEU Changes

I read a while back that with the release of VXUS there would be changes to VEU because of overlap. Is VEU going to be folded into VXUS (which has 5x the assets)? Or will VEU and VXUS coexist without changes into the future?