Search found 4265 matches

by MathWizard
Mon Sep 28, 2020 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Admissions Game
Replies: 48
Views: 3998

Re: The College Admissions Game

Not in admissions, but at a state public school, your son should have absolutely have no problem getting in. 1450/1600 is something like 97th or 98th percentile. Who are they accepting of they are not accepting the top few percent of students? The bulk of the students at a state University will be f...
by MathWizard
Mon Sep 28, 2020 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Android smartphone to replace a good pocket point-and-shoot camera?
Replies: 11
Views: 507

Re: What Android smartphone to replace a good pocket point-and-shoot camera?

I use pixel 3a XL , but my wife likes her iphone11 and uses it with tracfone, so an iphone is not out of the question.

Both phones take good pictures, although I think that the iphone 11 is better, particularly in low light.
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY life style. Typical Boglehead?
Replies: 71
Views: 5173

Re: DIY life style. Typical Boglehead?

DIY is probably more common among the group. It fits with DIY investing. It also allows more money for investing. I had to DIY as poor kid, but it also gave me a sense of accomplishment. I have done almost all house and auto repair. We garden and don't eat out very much. I am doing less as my body a...
by MathWizard
Fri Sep 25, 2020 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Internet trouble, specifically ZOOM
Replies: 31
Views: 1685

Re: Internet trouble, specifically ZOOM

You need to go hardwired. For example: https://www.amazon.com/Plugable-Ethernet-Gigabit-10-100-1000-Compatible/dp/B00AQM8586 You can get a long ethernet cable if you need to extend to another room. If this is for your kid's homework, they probably need video. If it is for conference calls for you, y...
by MathWizard
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A simpler car.
Replies: 178
Views: 11129

Re: A simpler car.

The spark plugs are now so much better. I used to change plugs every spring, now they last 100K miles, so you may never have to change them. My brother bought an Avalon at 100K miles, has never changed the plugs, and it is at 250K now. So an expensive plug change is not that terrible. I did try to c...
by MathWizard
Tue Sep 22, 2020 10:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attend COVID Wedding?
Replies: 22
Views: 2067

Re: Attend COVID Wedding?

I think your daughter should make the decision not to risk your health or that of her grandmother, and not create a dilemma for you. Failing that, I'd go along with the Dr's advice. You can always have a big shindig later,say on their first anniversary after the pandemic is over. Stream the service ...
by MathWizard
Tue Sep 22, 2020 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The Magic Number; Rule of 25; 4%; etc.
Replies: 46
Views: 3028

Re: The Magic Number; Rule of 25; 4%; etc.

HomerJ and arcticpineapplecorp, I appreciate the responses. If I separate out college and weddings, my total annual expenses are still ~$250k (x25 = ~$6M). Do you see expense categories that are unusual? Am I missing any expense categories? I am assuming you are in the US, so I will use US figures....
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 20, 2020 7:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is anyone waiting until after the election?
Replies: 145
Views: 12979

Re: Is anyone waiting until after the election?

No.

I am waiting for the new year so that I can start dropping more money into retirement accounts, I'll be maxed out by the election.
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 20, 2020 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How long does it take for your 403b/401k contribution to show up after payday?
Replies: 29
Views: 1254

Re: How long does it take for your 403b/401k contribution to show up after payday?

I'm with TIAA as well, and it is usually just 3 business days after payday for me. This difference is more likely with your payroll dept. than with TIAA. Most people I know in TIAA are paid on salary rather than every 2 weeks, so the contributions can be computer and ready for a year at a time. If y...
by MathWizard
Fri Sep 18, 2020 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Reason not to rent out your old house?
Replies: 58
Views: 4637

Re: Reason not to rent out your old house?

The latter.

I have no desire to have someone in possession of a large amount of my assets when they could trash it.

That happened to my mother.

I'm much more comfortable owning pieces of a businesses (stocks).
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 17, 2020 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots at the grocery store are $35 to $65. They are free at the Dr's office. We'll wait a week and get them for free. My understanding is that Shingrix is different than "regular" flu shots. Yes, but the concept is the same. The grocery store is selling convenience, and you pay for it. The copa...
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots at the grocery store are $35 to $65. They are free at the Dr's office. We'll wait a week and get them for free. My understanding is that Shingrix is different than "regular" flu shots. Yes, but the concept is the same. The grocery store is selling convenience, and you pay for it.
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 17, 2020 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots at the grocery store are $35 to $65. They are free at the Dr's office. We'll wait a week and get them for free. Your Dr's Office does them for free?? No Charge to your insurance company? In my case - the Doctor's Office costs way more than the local drug store or grocery store - getting t...
by MathWizard
Wed Sep 16, 2020 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160
Replies: 197
Views: 12919

Re: Grocery store didn't tell me Shingrix was $160

Flu shots at the grocery store are $35 to $65.

They are free at the Dr's office.

We'll wait a week and get them for free.
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you estimate post-retirement income tax?
Replies: 21
Views: 1958

Re: How do you estimate post-retirement income tax?

Besides taxcaster, which is excellent, smartassets has a calculator for federal and state.
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Question regarding password security]
Replies: 101
Views: 3226

Re: Security question on one's passwords

i have several bank+brokerage accounts plus other accounts for which you need a password (like email, utility companies etc). I am becoming more conscious of taking precautions to ensure these accounts are not hacked. Is it ok to choose a pretty complicated password but the same for all accounts? I...
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 13, 2020 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone have a Net Worth in the 1% by age?
Replies: 42
Views: 5159

Re: Anyone have a Net Worth in the 1% by age?

Only in the top 10% of US, last time I looked, but that put me in the top 1% of the world. Never more than top 20th percentile of US household income, and coming from a family well below the poverty level.

How: frugal nature, invested in education.
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 10, 2020 10:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What does Medicare A do, if one is still working with health coverage?
Replies: 19
Views: 1071

Re: What does Medicare A do, if one is still working with health coverage?

Typical employers require Medicare to be the primary insurance

You will likely pay less for your employer plan when it in effect a Medigap policy.

For my spouse and I, the health insurance is about $13K per year pre-Medicare, about half that once we both are on Medicare.
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 10, 2020 9:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are the days of 7% avg index returns over?
Replies: 65
Views: 9562

Re: Are the days of 7% avg index returns over?

In Jerome Powell's latest interview on NPR it was hinted that this may be the case since more and more people are investing. Moving forward would it be more realistic to expect returns of 3-4% on average now? I think even Bogle mentioned something like this in the past where he thought the average ...
by MathWizard
Tue Sep 08, 2020 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to build an emergency fund?
Replies: 95
Views: 6434

Re: Best way to build an emergency fund?

401k loans are also possible, using this as a 2nd tier in case of an emergency
beyond what your current EF can handle. This seems a better strategy than not
maxing your 401k's just to build up a large cash balance EF.
by MathWizard
Tue Sep 08, 2020 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: ROTH vs. Traditional - How Did You Choose?
Replies: 34
Views: 2074

Re: ROTH vs. Traditional - How Did You Choose?

1. When in the 15% (currently 12%) federal tax bracket, Roth Contributions made the most sense, as I was sure I would never be under that bracket. 2. Roth contributions could be withdrawn penalty and tax free, so it mad sense as a 2nd tier Emergency fund, also as a college savings fund (thankfully n...
by MathWizard
Sun Sep 06, 2020 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: plug in streaming device
Replies: 38
Views: 2195

Re: plug in streaming device

My apple tv , bought 3 years ago has a wired ethernet plus wireless.

Both my Samsung TVs can take either wired or wireless ethernet, and have apps for Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime and CBS all access, so no external would be needed for those devices.
by MathWizard
Fri Sep 04, 2020 7:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is it really passive index if S&P actively excludes Tesla?
Replies: 145
Views: 10336

Re: Is it really passive index if S&P actively excludes Tesla?

S&P 500 does not represent the total US market.

VTSAX is much closer, essentially mirroring the total US
stock market.
by MathWizard
Fri Sep 04, 2020 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Double checking: Double Roth contributions possible, right?
Replies: 20
Views: 1468

Re: Double checking: Double Roth contributions possible, right?

The Oblivious Investor has discussed this: https://obliviousinvestor.com/can-you-double-count-earnings-for-ira-and-401k-contributions/ It's clear that you thought about needing at least $6K in the ROTH 401k so that he shows at least that much in earned income rather than deferred income, as $20 K i...
by MathWizard
Fri Sep 04, 2020 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Double checking: Double Roth contributions possible, right?
Replies: 20
Views: 1468

Re: Double checking: Double Roth contributions possible, right?

The Oblivious Investor has discussed this: https://obliviousinvestor.com/can-you-double-count-earnings-for-ira-and-401k-contributions/ It's clear that you thought about needing at least $6K in the ROTH 401k so that he shows at least that much in earned income rather than deferred income, as $20 K in...
by MathWizard
Thu Sep 03, 2020 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth 403b to Roth IRA rollovers
Replies: 4
Views: 195

Re: Roth 403b to Roth IRA rollovers

120K contributions
or up to all of it using 42t. SEPP
by MathWizard
Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:39 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Husband doesn’t want to follow my investment plan
Replies: 47
Views: 4857

Re: Husband doesn’t want to follow my investment plan

Max out your tax deferred options, and have him as well. Let him make his own decision and you make yours. Between 2 401k's and 2 IRAs you can sock a lot of money away. These are individual accounts, so make the choices individually. All the 401k's that I know just have funds of one kind or another,...
by MathWizard
Sun Aug 30, 2020 6:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Well, where *can* I go to learn about economic/monetary theory?
Replies: 11
Views: 743

Re: Well, where *can* I go to learn about economic/monetary theory?

There are two kinds of economics, micro-economics and macro-economics. Micro-economics would include personal finance. That topic is discussed here all the time. I assume you mean macro economics. That is a topic many people get wrong, because you really need to discuss a socio-economic system, whic...
by MathWizard
Sat Aug 29, 2020 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What purchases are you planning now for the Fall/Winter to get ahead of demand?
Replies: 57
Views: 6845

Re: What purchases are you planning now for the Fall/Winter to get ahead of demand?

Blizzak tires for my hybrid. The low rolling resistance tires that came with it are not the best in snow.

Cheap generator to power essentials. After decades of nothing more an interruption for a blown transformer, we've had 3 days long outages in 4 years.
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 27, 2020 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expenses>Income new widow-should I worry?
Replies: 27
Views: 3129

Re: Expenses>Income new widow-should I worry?

You have my sympathy. I know you have probably have been advised to make major changes in the first few months to a year. Remember to factor in your estimated Social Security Retirement Benefits and those you may be able to draw on your husband's earnings. They may be more substantial than you think...
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 27, 2020 2:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Whose being naughty and keeping some dry powder around?
Replies: 110
Views: 9235

Re: Whose being naughty and keeping some dry powder around?

I am building up some cash because I am already putting much I can into tax advantaged, 50% of gross this year, pandemic has created uncertainty I am near retirement. The dry powder is really just an expanded EF or as I refer to it, short term liquidity fund. It amounts to about 18 months of expenses.
by MathWizard
Wed Aug 26, 2020 11:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: EE bonds to mitigate college wealth tax?
Replies: 38
Views: 2073

Re: EE bonds to mitigate college wealth tax?

I recall no contribution to the EFC from assets. There is a fairly generous exemption amount. Parental income and student income/assets was the determining factor. We earned under $100K but the only fin. aid was subsidized loans. There USED to be a fairly generous asset protection amount. It has sh...
by MathWizard
Wed Aug 26, 2020 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll of the retirees among us--spending in retirement
Replies: 76
Views: 6694

Re: Poll of the retirees among us--spending in retirement

Retired 10/1998 age 65 Spending averages after that in 4 year increment averages 1999-2002 56,285 2003-2006 57,806 2007-2010 60,879 2011-2014 68,923 2015-2019 70,977 (note this avg is the last 5 years) Well, so much for Kitces' article. It shows that you are who you are. We aren't the same. Where w...
by MathWizard
Tue Aug 25, 2020 8:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: EE bonds to mitigate college wealth tax?
Replies: 38
Views: 2073

Re: EE bonds to mitigate college wealth tax?

I recall no contribution to the EFC from assets. There is a fairly generous exemption amount.

Parental income and student income/assets was the determining factor.

We earned under $100K but the only fin. aid was subsidized loans.
by MathWizard
Tue Aug 25, 2020 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: charging an EV
Replies: 250
Views: 14842

Re: charging an EV

I like the idea of reducing pollution so I'm looking at buying an electric vehicle. My main concern is that the small number of charging stations which would limit long-distance trips. Also, having to wait more than 20 min for a full charge is just too much time. Anyone have similar hesitation? Yes...
by MathWizard
Tue Aug 25, 2020 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Job Offer - $100,000 Raise - Would I Be a Fool to Not Accept?
Replies: 94
Views: 7821

Re: New Job Offer - $100,000 Raise - Would I Be a Fool to Not Accept?

I'm confused why you applied for this position if you were not planning in taking it. I understand if the job was nothing like you expected, or if you felt that they were not going to compensate you well, but it does not sound like that is the case. Many other have to work long hours or spend lots o...
by MathWizard
Tue Aug 25, 2020 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll of the retirees among us--spending in retirement
Replies: 76
Views: 6694

Re: Poll of the retirees among us--spending in retirement

I do expect spending to look like a "smile", 10 years of go-go higher spending getting all the big trips that we have delayed due to kids and work, 10 years of go slow as we will have all the big trips taken, and don't want to be away from home as much, final years of non-go low expenses as we stay ...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 24, 2020 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Inheriting a non-spousal traditional IRA?
Replies: 36
Views: 2105

Re: Inheriting a non-spousal traditional IRA?

Since he is over 50, then he has room for $26K in employee contributions in his 401k, assuming he has one. If he is not using the $26K already, then have his benefits office put the amount of the IRA or $26K whichever is less into his 401K, and withdraw that amount from the inherited IRA. He could ...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Inheriting a non-spousal traditional IRA?
Replies: 36
Views: 2105

Re: Inheriting a non-spousal traditional IRA?

Since he is over 50, then he has room for $26K in employee contributions in his 401k, assuming he has one. If he is not using the $26K already, then have his benefits office put the amount of the IRA or $26K whichever is less into his 401K, and withdraw that amount from the inherited IRA. He could a...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 24, 2020 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At what point do you start hiring advisors?
Replies: 28
Views: 2854

Re: At what point do you start hiring advisors?

I've tried a couple of CPAs, and they were not much help. Lawyers, definitely for wills, partnership agreements, or any transaction that has the potential to go to court. The problem with financial advisors is 1) most are really just salespeople, and 2) by the time you know enough to pick a good one...
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 20, 2020 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how often do you check your net worth?
Replies: 153
Views: 9626

Re: how often do you check your net worth?

I check investments weekly.

I check the value of my house once a year when assessments come out. My house is about 10% of my NW.
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 20, 2020 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to quit a job for retirement
Replies: 61
Views: 5240

Re: How to quit a job for retirement

Unless you have a contract that requires it, or you work in some special field where more notice is expected, like medicine where you need to pass off patients to a new doctor, then two weeks is all that you should give. The company can always ask you to stay longer if they will really need you. I ...
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 20, 2020 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What is your asset allocation and what future % returns are you expecting?
Replies: 91
Views: 6046

Re: What is your asset allocation and what future % returns are you expecting?

Plan to stay between 60/40 and 70/30.

I am using 3% real for long term planning.
by MathWizard
Thu Aug 20, 2020 8:57 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How often are you adding to taxable accounts?
Replies: 78
Views: 4923

Re: How often are you adding to taxable accounts?

Zero. All investment is being done in tax advantaged. I have some money in a taxable account,but am not currently adding to it. I will put 50% of gross pay in tax advantaged this year. During the pandemic we have been saving 22% more, but putting that in savings rather than an investment account. We...
by MathWizard
Tue Aug 18, 2020 11:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much did you save?
Replies: 102
Views: 13809

Re: How much did you save?

Unless just in the last year, I did not use a brokerage account for retirement. There is plenty of room in tax advantaged if you have a 401k or 403b or equivalent. For me, I saved 15% of my salary every year since 1989 plus maxing Roth IRAs for my wife and I since 1999. (starting with a 32K salary i...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When should one share financials with their children?
Replies: 205
Views: 13144

Re: When should one share financials with their children?

I showed most to my oldest when I turned 62. We named him as the one who will take over finances if my wife and I cannot do so, and showed him where we keep the information. I shared it then so that he knew that we had the funds and he would not bear any financial burden other than managing the fund...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 17, 2020 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College costs for 4 kids -- is my plan unrealistic?
Replies: 31
Views: 2813

Re: College costs for 4 kids -- is my plan unrealistic?

per the American Opportunity Tax Credit Yes this is annually per child, up to 4 years. This is for qualified expenses, the easiest being tuition, based on spending $4K. (Assumes you have that much in taxes, which is easy for you.) Must be undergrad study, and student must be a dependent. By annually...
by MathWizard
Mon Aug 17, 2020 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS
Replies: 19
Views: 863

Re: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS

Assume we will have 40K SS benefits, and will pull 37K from tax def. This will mean that 85% of SS benefits will be taxed. Not correct; only $17,050 of the $40,000 SS will be taxed. [1] This is one reason why, as 02nz says in the previous post, "bunching isn't a good idea". Using 2020 tax brackets ...
by MathWizard
Sun Aug 16, 2020 9:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS
Replies: 19
Views: 863

Re: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS

The Personal Toolbox (Calc Tab) is your friend here in this instance. Plugging in $37000 tIRA and $40000, only 43% of your SS is taxable income ($17050). Raising the tIRA to $65000 will cause 85% of your SS income ($34000) to be taxable. Thanks I am looking at this. There is a wealth of tools in th...
by MathWizard
Sun Aug 16, 2020 9:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS
Replies: 19
Views: 863

Re: Bunch Tax Def Withdrawals to minimize tax on SS

Assume we will have 40K SS benefits, and will pull 37K from tax def. This will mean that 85% of SS benefits will be taxed. Not correct; only $17,050 of the $40,000 SS will be taxed. [1] This is one reason why, as 02nz says in the previous post, "bunching isn't a good idea". Using 2020 tax brackets ...