Search found 4253 matches

by dratkinson
Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Fall of Consumer Reports
Replies: 44
Views: 5801

Re: The Fall of Consumer Reports

Didn't know CR was failing. Was at the library recently researching new furnaces. CR mag index didn't list a publication date reviewing furnaces. Librarian suggested using their PC and my library account to access library's research databases. CR is one of the databases. Long story short. CR's furna...
by dratkinson
Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adult piggy bank
Replies: 54
Views: 4269

Re: Adult piggy bank

I love it when one solution does double-duty. In this case: "Pay yourself first." --Set-up or increase the DD (direct-deposit) from your pay into your investment mmkt. --You will pay yourself first, and you be scrounging to use your spare change to make ends meet. So you'll have no spare change to m...
by dratkinson
Sat Aug 18, 2018 5:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping lawn service and trash pickup
Replies: 27
Views: 2021

Re: Tipping lawn service and trash pickup

I'm my own lawn service and never been tipped. For the trash guy, I don't put the trash out when the weather is miserable (deep snow, blowing blizzard, well below zero,...), so he can skip my house for a week. Only do this because he's one guy and has to get out of the truck to return the trash barr...
by dratkinson
Fri Aug 17, 2018 5:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advisor Dumped, Now How to Best Simplify
Replies: 18
Views: 1840

Re: Advisor Dumped, Now How to Best Simplify

Where is your current brokerage home? Idea. Research the transaction costs to "right your ship": --With your current brokerage, --and lower-cost brokerages (Vanguard, Fidelity*, Charles Schwab,...). (* Fidelity has recently announced some zero-fee index funds... if that interests you.) Why? You may ...
by dratkinson
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?
Replies: 13
Views: 914

Re: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?

... 1) Would you want to keep A and B relatively balanced in terms of size (e.g. $10k in A $9.5k in B)? Do you only ever touch fund B in TLH situations? 2) Wouldn't the dilemma at the end pretty much always happen since A and B are highly correlated and would thus generally both be at a loss? In th...
by dratkinson
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?
Replies: 13
Views: 914

Re: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?

My understanding is that the only way to avoid a wash sale is to neither buy 30 days before nor after the sale. So let's suppose there is a big drop. There is no way you could have known the drop would happen so you could have to wait up to 31 days just to perform the sale and another 31 days to pe...
by dratkinson
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?
Replies: 13
Views: 914

Re: Since you would want to eventually reinvest dividends/distros anyways, why wouldn't you make them automatic for TLH?

TLH problem. Automatically reinvesting distributions may cause a problem with TLHing, it is never a solution. TLHing. It's much easier to avoid the replacement-shares/wash-sale issue by collecting all distributions in taxable in a mmkt fund. (Or checking, savings. Be aware that automatically reinves...
by dratkinson
Mon Aug 13, 2018 6:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What am I missing about bonds...
Replies: 31
Views: 3821

Re: What am I missing about bonds...

... ...And looking at the rates, with savings quickly rising, why not just keep more cash in hand at savings? Will (should) they ever be more than the bond performance? ... I’m 37 and with no plans to FIRE, and have mid 6 figure saved and excellent contribution projections going forward Bonds shoul...
by dratkinson
Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How often do you check your brokerage accounts
Replies: 77
Views: 4758

Re: How often do you check your brokerage accounts

Once/month is enough for me. At monthly statements' (checking, savings, investing) reconciliations and rebalancing, I verify that shares-owned are correct, emergency fund tiers are refilled, and excess cash is invested. Rebalancing is needed due to direct deposits to mmkt (pay myself first) and chec...
by dratkinson
Fri Aug 10, 2018 9:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Evaluating Munis beyond rating
Replies: 11
Views: 877

Re: Evaluating Munis beyond rating

Might want to research "death spiral" states for a list of states to avoid. Read Swedroe's bond book, The Only Guide to a Winning Bond Strategy You'll Ever Need . After reading Swedroe, I decided individual bonds were not for me---too much work, too many gotchas. I (and my heirs will) much prefer th...
by dratkinson
Sun Aug 05, 2018 6:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How are muni rates determined?
Replies: 25
Views: 1633

Re: how are muni rates determined?

It seems clear the market looks on your city’s debt obligations as poor credit and high risk. Gill And yet we have a MIG 1 rating from Moody’s. How can I reconcile that? My bond guy explained this to me once. Let me give it a try. Municipalities get approval to issue a certain number of bonds - say...
by dratkinson
Thu Aug 02, 2018 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: In Search of... the Inverted Yield Curve
Replies: 17
Views: 2252

Re: In Search of... the Inverted Yield Curve

Thanks for the interesting analysis. I wonder how well an inverted yield curve foreshadowed other recessions. And whether this effect was similar in other nations. Ben Carlson talked about that very topic this week http://awealthofcommonsense.com/2018/07/arguing-with-the-yield-curve/ Here is a rece...
by dratkinson
Wed Aug 01, 2018 5:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can someone help explain this employer retirement contribution wording?
Replies: 14
Views: 825

Re: Can someone help explain this employer retirement contribution wording?

I read that you must contribute the full voluntary 2% to get the employer match on that 2% (above the 3% mandatory) Any voluntary contributions under 2% you do not receive employer match. Any additional voluntary contributions over 2% (or above combined vol/unvol of 5%, ie 6%) --there is not employ...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 30, 2018 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie enlightened by Bogleheads
Replies: 23
Views: 3129

Re: Newbie burned by bonds

If you must have principle protection, then you need an FDIC/NCUA/treasury-insured product: savings/mmkt accounts, CDs, savings bonds,.... Data points. --Stocks can lose 50-90% during a stock crash. (Lost 40% in 2008, 90% during great depression.) --Bonds can lose 5-15% during a bond crash. --Stock/...
by dratkinson
Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]
Replies: 95
Views: 47693

Re: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]

OP. It's hard to believe a little engine speed difference (B&S vs Honda) caused the cutting difference you were seeing on your White deck + Honda engine mower? Re-read your first update. Something is not clear. When you swapped the Honda engine to the White deck, did you use the Honda blade? Or did ...
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]
Replies: 95
Views: 47693

Re: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]

... I'd already been looking at the Honda HRX series or the Toro Super Recycler series ... Ultimately, I want a mower with the best mulching performance and engine reliability. Anyone have experience with either model, particularly if they're the new-ish versions? ... Call several tool rental shops...
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 26, 2018 8:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: newcomer 21yr/o college student
Replies: 16
Views: 1158

Re: newcomer 21yr/o college student

... It's best to create your EF in a refillable account; a rIRA is not refillable. ... It's precisely because rIRAs are not refillable that they're at worst the same as a liquid EF.... ... Roth IRA contributions are made with post-tax funds, same as savings account deposits. There is no penalty for...
by dratkinson
Wed Jul 25, 2018 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: newcomer 21yr/o college student
Replies: 16
Views: 1158

Re: newcomer 21yr/o college student

BH newcomer 21yro college student * Some plan to treat their rIRA as their EF (emergency fund) and remove the principle to pay this expense. Don't do that. Why? --(1) It's stealing eggs from the goose sitting on your retirement nest egg. And it will annoy your retired self. --(2) If you plan to trea...
by dratkinson
Wed Jul 25, 2018 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]
Replies: 95
Views: 47693

Re: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]

Circular one being all cut lines were in the same direction that were adjacent to one another, Start Westbound until the line is finished, turn 90 degrees Southbound until the line is finished, then 90 degrees Eastbound then Northbound then starts allover until I work my way to the center of the ya...
by dratkinson
Tue Jul 24, 2018 1:35 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: newcomer 21yr/o college student
Replies: 16
Views: 1158

Re: newcomer 21yr/o college student

Forgot this above. Other suggested books. What I wish someone had told me when I was in my 20s. The Only Investment Guide You’ll Every Need , Andrew Tobias. (Read it, found it helpful.) Or… How to Make the Most of Your Money , Jane Bryant Quinn. (Haven't read it, but recommended by others.) Both cov...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 23, 2018 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: newbie from taiwan
Replies: 9
Views: 1009

Re: newbie from taiwan

Recall a few years back that some forum members established a Bogleheads chapter in Taiwan. They should have already figured out most of the answers you want to know. Send a PM (private message) to the members who identify themselves with this chapter and plan to attend one of their meetings. See Ta...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 23, 2018 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: newcomer 21yr/o college student
Replies: 16
Views: 1158

Re: newcomer 21yr/o college student

+1 Use a rIRA (Roth IRA) for your earned income. Why? The tax benefit of a tIRA (traditional IRA) is worth very little in a low tax bracket. On the other hand, the tax-free growth of the rIRA will be more appreciated by your retired self in a higher tax bracket. Advantage: rIRA. Use a TDR (target da...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]
Replies: 95
Views: 47693

Re: Do Honda Mowers Leave Un-cut Grass Strips? [YES, but...]

BH Do Honda Mower Leave Un-cut Grass Stripes. ^^^ If you like your HR214, can put a new engine on it. If handy, can probably get new engine from a small engine supplier and do the swap yourself. This would also be the time to upgrade---commercial vs consumer grade engine. Search: http://www.google.c...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 20, 2018 7:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $800,000 Windfall. Love the 3-Fund portfolio approach. Wealth Managers in contact
Replies: 33
Views: 4233

Re: $800,000 Windfall. Love the 3-Fund portfolio approach. Wealth Managers in contact

BH $800,000 windfall. Love the 3-fund portfolio. Question. Are you planning to retire in the US? I ask because you said this was a US windfall, implying you might have other country options. If “Yes, you will retire in another country”, then some answers might change to increase tax efficiency. (I’m...
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 19, 2018 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I may have understood why it's so hard to save and invest
Replies: 75
Views: 10999

Re: I may have understood why it's so hard to save and invest

This is one advantage of automating the process. Do the work once to have the money automatically taken out of your paycheck (or bank account). Then you can sit back and relax while you slowly build up your investments. Try not to look at the balance too often, especially when the market is going d...
by dratkinson
Tue Jul 17, 2018 3:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for young colleague please
Replies: 26
Views: 2169

Re: Advice for young colleague please

"Part of what you earn is your's to keep." Recall reading this in the book The Richest Man in Babylon . Also recall it has an interesting idea on "getting out of debt". Your friend earns $80K/yr, is ~$40K (= $1.4K Chase + $3K Amex + $5K auto + $33K student loans) in debt, and if she has saved less t...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 16, 2018 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"
Replies: 107
Views: 13132

Re: For those of you who handle all the finances, how do you keep your spouse "in the know"

All my information is kept as paper in a locking file cabinet. But I did worry that I might need access to something if I were every away from home for an extended time. What to do? Remote access solution. (1) I wrote all needed information into a text file. (2) Then I used a utility intended to cre...
by dratkinson
Sun Jul 15, 2018 5:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: need help pls
Replies: 19
Views: 1133

Re: need help pls

Previously mentioned tax programs. Research them to see if you can use them. --Savers tax credit: https://www.irs.gov/retirement-plans/plan-participant-employee/retirement-savings-contributions-savers-credit --Earned income tax credit: https://www.irs.gov/credits-deductions/individuals/earned-income...
by dratkinson
Sat Jul 14, 2018 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: manual typewriters?
Replies: 43
Views: 2471

Re: manual typewriters?

I have a Smith Corona portable around here somewhere. (Looked, can't find it.) Parents bought it in the late '60s when I took a HS typing class. Then it followed me to college. Recall developing a rudimentary form of cut and paste to write a report. I assemble all of my notes by stapling them to not...
by dratkinson
Sat Jul 14, 2018 6:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: portfolio help
Replies: 12
Views: 917

Re: portfolio help

Forgot something. What? Once you've paid off your mortgage, if you need to, you can get a reverse mortgage to help make ends meets. My neighbor had a reverse mortgage. Believe she received ~50% of the home's appraised value and took the money as a monthly payment---like withdrawing from a HELOC. Qui...
by dratkinson
Sat Jul 14, 2018 5:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [How do I transfer money from Vanguard New York Municipal Money Market Fund?]
Replies: 14
Views: 729

Re: [How do I transfer money from Vanguard New York Municipal Money Market Fund?]

Mmkt funds are regulated by Investment Company Act of 1940 (act of congress), not banking regulations. So the banking limitation of 6-withdrawals/mo (savings/mmkt accounts) does not apply. Your money is generally available upon demand, but there many be restrictions upon redemptions, and if so then ...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 13, 2018 8:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New 18 year old need advice
Replies: 15
Views: 900

Re: New 18 year old need advice

^^^ I was editing while you were replying, so you missed the new section "gift tax" (under 529 plan). Otherwise I only made minor tweaks to wording in other sections. But please quickly rescan to ensure you didn't missing anything that might change your understanding. Chase 1yr CD rate? Had to go lo...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 13, 2018 7:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New 18 year old need advice
Replies: 15
Views: 900

Re: New 18 year old need advice

BH New 18 year old need advice. Agree. You may want to invest in some experiences between semesters, and after graduation before starting work. Agree. Putting your mother’s $30K into savings/CD-ladder sounds like a good plan to pay for your known college expenses. You could do this today: --$7K into...
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 12, 2018 8:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: portfolio help
Replies: 12
Views: 917

Re: portfolio help

BH portfolio help. looking for advice with current allocation of retirement funds/assets. We are a couple both 65, wife is retired with a STRS pension of $3500 per month, I am considering taking my SS later this year when I reach 66, will receive $1320/month. Currently have $150,000 in cash, and $35...
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 12, 2018 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Emergency fund checkup
Replies: 19
Views: 1546

Re: Emergency fund checkup

OP here, I'd like to reiterate that I'm not asking for advice for about where to put my emergency fund nor wether or not to save for moving expenses. I'm only asking as to whether or not I have reasonably estimated all one-time costs associated with selling a ~$300k house, moving ~1500 miles, and b...
by dratkinson
Wed Jul 11, 2018 2:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Emergency fund checkup
Replies: 19
Views: 1546

Re: Emergency fund checkup

What are you missing? An EF should be refillable. A rIRA (all your tax-advantaged accounts) is not. If you remove $5K from your rIRA to pay for this move, you'll lose the otherwise tax-free market growth from now until withdrawn in retirement. Assume 7% market growth over 40yrs and you are giving up...
by dratkinson
Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any Dry Powder Strategies?
Replies: 103
Views: 6131

Re: Any Dry Powder Strategies?

BH Any Dry Powder Strategies Yeah, money in equities is not "dry powder". Of course it isn't. The dry powder is the 40% bonds in the Balance Index Fund. Depends on "how dry". There are degrees of "dry powder" from dry to really dry. The fixed portion of Balanced Income Fund is "dry". CD's or CD ladd...
by dratkinson
Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What's up with Wells Fargo
Replies: 27
Views: 2979

Re: What's up with Wells Fargo

Hope OP's 3-fund portfolio is cheap and not a WF special. I'm assuming if there is activity in the account, then it is not an abandoned account. I have a low-balance savings account at a local B&M CU just to have a local financial home and a place to walk in, deposit checks, and withdraw cash. One y...
by dratkinson
Sat Jul 07, 2018 5:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Finding an adviser for lower-income immigrant couple?
Replies: 13
Views: 1097

Re: Finding an adviser for lower-income immigrant couple?

BH Finding an adviser for lower-income immigrant couple. Agree. They should find a cheaper bank. Might want to look into moving their banking to a credit union. Why? Lower cost. My COOP-linked CU has a free zero-interest checking option, mails monthly statements, and has an 800# for phone access to ...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 06, 2018 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Title - How do I have it reissued across State lines
Replies: 6
Views: 791

Re: Car Title - How do I have it reissued across State lines

Remember sending something to WY when my vehicle was paid off; that may have resulted in a reissued title. When I registered my vehicle in CO, was told by DMV that "re-titling to CO costs money and gets you nothing." So left it titled where I bought it, in WY. WY didn't care that I left it titled th...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Capping Emergency Fund
Replies: 53
Views: 4971

Re: Capping Emergency Fund

I believe 6-12mos of liquid savings is about right for a 1st-tier EF (checking, savings, mmkt, CDs,...). Why? --I worry about liquidity if I have only 6mos. --I worry about lost return if I have more than 12mos. Keeping 6-12mos in 1st-tier EFs seems to be the sweet spot to avoid day-to-day worry (li...
by dratkinson
Fri Jul 06, 2018 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: “We have a lot to do, and very little time, so we must work slowly.”
Replies: 21
Views: 3963

Re: “We have a lot to do, and very little time, so we must work slowly.”

"There is never enough time to do it right the first time, but there is always enough time to do it over." Related to Murphy's law.
by dratkinson
Thu Jul 05, 2018 11:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 47 and clueless - direction needed
Replies: 60
Views: 8316

Re: 47 and clueless - direction needed

... [Thanks.] Taking a break now. Happy 4th of July!! :sharebeer Looks like you've made a good start. Return when you are ready to take the next bite out of the elephant. When you do return, it would be better to resume in a new topic. Why? Otherwise your current situation description/questions wou...
by dratkinson
Mon Jul 02, 2018 3:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 47 and clueless - direction needed
Replies: 60
Views: 8316

Re: 47 and clueless - direction needed

... I have definitely gone in circles looking at Target Retirement 2040 fund, LifeStrategy Growth 80/20 and LifeStrategy Moderate Growth 60/40. I moved the TR 2040 fund off the table because I didn't really want it changing on me at the wrong time or any surprises. I chose the LS Growth 80/20 becau...
by dratkinson
Sun Jul 01, 2018 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are these Bank & Credit Union Fees?
Replies: 16
Views: 1499

Re: What are these Bank & Credit Union Fees?

I've recently rediscovered that my bank and CU have telephone access systems (bank by phone). And have begun using that to check account balances, transactions completed,... because it's faster than going online or waiting on the phone to talk to a human.
by dratkinson
Sun Jul 01, 2018 1:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 47 and clueless - direction needed
Replies: 60
Views: 8316

Re: 47 and clueless - direction needed

... To update: 1. I have done an "in kind" transfer w/ both of the funds I had, FBLAX (Franklin Balanced Fund Class A) and FKINX (Franklin Income Fund Class A) 2. Within that transfer time the price of them dropped a bit (of course) and I really wanted to "time" the market but from ALL of my readin...
by dratkinson
Sat Jun 30, 2018 10:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need help starting with taxable investing
Replies: 9
Views: 654

Re: Need help starting with taxable investing

Extended EF tier. If you use your EF (emergency fund) for a home down payment, then you will have no EF to fix the small things you find when you move in. To that end, maybe you would want to consider building an extended EF tier. VTSMX is part of the recommended 3-fund portfolio which also include...
by dratkinson
Sat Jun 30, 2018 8:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need some math help with Solin based portfolio
Replies: 9
Views: 833

Re: Need some math help with Solin based portfolio

Could use M*'s Xray feature.
--See what sector weights are created by Solin's recommended portfolio.
--Then attempt to replicate it by starting with VTSMX and adding sector funds to create similar weights.

Achieving an approximate match is probably good enough.
by dratkinson
Fri Jun 29, 2018 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 47 and clueless - direction needed
Replies: 60
Views: 8316

Re: 47 and clueless - direction needed

This article* provides links to recommended calculators to help you wag your retirement finances. See: Financial Calculators: http://www.humbledollar.com/money-guide/financial-calculators/ * Author is a respected financial writer and suggests we use 6% as a conservative growth rate in our retirement...
by dratkinson
Mon Jun 25, 2018 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why tax amount determined by software lower than schedule?
Replies: 8
Views: 827

Re: Why tax amount determined by software lower than schedule?

Been there, done that.

1040 line 44, says see instructions.

Instructions, last sentence, says use CG worksheet if you meet conditions.

It's a useful exercise to work through the CG worksheet, as it reinforces the wisdom in the Wiki topic on "Principles of tax-efficient fund placement".