Search found 2793 matches

by MathWizard
Tue May 22, 2018 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone using Obitalk for Google Voice?
Replies: 22
Views: 1616

Re: Anyone using Obitalk for Google Voice?

We are transitioning to Obitalk/GV from Vonage.

I would switch right now if I could change the Google Voice number to my current number,
which my wife wants to keep.
by MathWizard
Tue May 22, 2018 3:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How have you upgraded your wardrobe?
Replies: 96
Views: 3975

Re: How have you upgraded your wardrobe?

Not a lot, but I was already dressing on the high end for people in my (former) position. I'm in IT. I always wore dress shirt/pants/shoes, but no tie or suit coat. Generally IT people look upon you as an outsider if you wear a suit. When I got promoted to a level which reported to a senior VP, I bo...
by MathWizard
Mon May 21, 2018 4:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When to and when not to “reinvest dividend and capital gains”
Replies: 24
Views: 2222

Re: When to and when not to “reinvest dividend and capital gains”

I think that reinvesting div and capital gains in a taxable account caused me tax issues when I sold. In a tax advantaged account, there is no problem. Since tax advantaged supplies a huge amount of savings now with the fairly high contribution limits when over 50, I don't need to use taxable equity...
by MathWizard
Mon May 21, 2018 4:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: recommended Roth percentage of total investments
Replies: 5
Views: 590

Re: recommended Roth percentage of total investments

The ROTH has not been around for that long. If you started your 401k or 403b before 1998, you couldn't have a ROTH, so the ROTH ratio was 0% The max contribution for 1998 was $2K for ROTH, $10K for 401k (not counting employer contribution) , but if you already have $100K in your 401k because of the ...
by MathWizard
Fri May 18, 2018 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Loan from Parents
Replies: 24
Views: 1966

Re: Home Loan from Parents

It is possible in the case of a single child, who is the only heir of the couple, that excess net worth could be used while living rather than wait until passing could make sense in terms of lessening the impact of interest payments to banks. I have considered intra-family loans in my case on both s...
by MathWizard
Fri May 18, 2018 4:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are you concerned that over 75% of IPOs are unprofitable?
Replies: 8
Views: 805

Re: Are you concerned that over 75% of IPOs are unprofitable?

No. Generally businesses do not start out profitable. (Why would such a space in the market exist?) They burn money for a certain period while getting established. People who can buy during an IPO, and see a company with tremendous growth, and increasing (but still negative) profitability, want to j...
by MathWizard
Fri May 18, 2018 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: sharing cars with two kids home from college?
Replies: 25
Views: 1466

Re: sharing cars with two kids home from college?

I won't tell you what to do, just what we did. For each of our two sons, we got ourselves a newer car, and let the kids use our old one during college. After the older got settled in at work, we deeded the car to him, and he has already replaced it (paying cash) when it required significant repairs....
by MathWizard
Thu May 17, 2018 2:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2018 401k limit is $55K - do you max it out? Why/why not?
Replies: 110
Views: 9921

Re: 2018 401k limit is $55K - do you max it out? Why/why not?

Our plan has its own limits a little lower than $55K. I max out mine, and my wife will nearly max out hers as well. We've only recently been able to, since we paid off the house and our kids are just out of college. We also maxed our ROTHs. This accounts for just under 50% of gross income, so it wou...
by MathWizard
Thu May 17, 2018 2:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why do so many people quote "You will likely be in a lower tax bracket in retirement"
Replies: 427
Views: 21104

Re: Why do so many people quote "You will likely be in a lower tax bracket in retirement"

I just saw another comment where someone was touting the benefits of a pretax 401k vs a Roth where they said most people will be in a lower tax bracket in retirement so pretax is better. While that is a pair of factually correct statements. Most people will be in a lower bracket. And if you are in ...
by MathWizard
Mon May 14, 2018 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: keyless ignitions and carbon monoxide
Replies: 81
Views: 4329

Re: keyless ignitions and carbon monoxide

I have the keyless start on my car, and I love it. I don't understand how people can walk away with their car running. Pushing the button is just as easy to remember as turning the key and removing it before leaving the vehicle. I did just that this weekend driving my wife's car. I'm not used to th...
by MathWizard
Thu May 10, 2018 3:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Questions about RMDs
Replies: 36
Views: 4249

Re: Questions about RMDs

Thank you 123. I am in the 12% tax bracket. I just ran a simulated 2018 tax calculation (my third one) and they all indicated that I would owe approximately $800 in taxes (I have no taxes taken out of my Social Security payments). You also brought up the point, as did Spirit Rider, to take money ou...
by MathWizard
Wed May 09, 2018 9:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rationale for placing high expected return funds in Roth rather than tIRA
Replies: 15
Views: 1116

Re: Rationale for placing high expected return funds in Roth rather than tIRA

My rationale: Roth is tax free on withdrawals. If you win big, Roth will not push you into a higher bracket. If you win , but less big, in a tIRA rather than ROTH, your RMDs are bigger, eventually pushing you into a higher bracket, especially when only one spouse is left, and so is filing single. Bi...
by MathWizard
Wed May 09, 2018 2:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund Investment Plan
Replies: 24
Views: 2413

Re: Emergency Fund Investment Plan

I don't think that there is anything wrong with what you have planned. This is just a tiered EF, with the first 2 tiers FDIC protected. Likely you will never use the higher tiers, but you must be OK with losing money in the higher tiers. You are accepting the small risk of needing the EF very soon a...
by MathWizard
Wed May 09, 2018 12:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 100% equity folks- holding any cash/bonds now?
Replies: 50
Views: 4838

Re: 100% equity folks- holding any cash/bonds now?

I'll admit that I am holding bonds now. I was 100% until about 18 months ago, and my wife was until about 3 months ago. Together we are now about 55/45 when averaged. I would have gone to 80/20 or 75/25 due to proximity to retirement, but the CAPE is so high, that it seemed prudent to have less expo...
by MathWizard
Mon May 07, 2018 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?
Replies: 43
Views: 4175

Re: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?

A recent article by Voya stated that the average health expenditure for health care in retirement for a 65 yr old woman was $134K. So this would be in the range of 4 to 6K per year for a person on Medicare, assuming between 22 and 33 yrs lifespan for a woman at age 65. Also the cost is likely loaded...
by MathWizard
Mon May 07, 2018 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Calling from landline to cellphone with long distance area code
Replies: 8
Views: 594

Re: Calling from landline to cellphone with long distance area code

My Google Fi will use Wifi for (free) calls if it can, which is available at home or at work. Cell service seems to be everywhere for the Fi, except places in the Rockies, or in Valley or tunnels, and for some places is only 3g or even 2g in remote areas, but that is OK for calls. No long distance c...
by MathWizard
Mon May 07, 2018 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: multiplier for budget number to gross income amount
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

Re: multiplier for budget number to gross income amount

As already noted, this will depend on the type(s) of gross income, particularly in a state such as NJ with its various tax policies. If you have tax software that worked for 2017 federal and state, creating a test return using your expected retirement income sources is probably the best way to answ...
by MathWizard
Sun May 06, 2018 7:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Percentage CASH are you?
Replies: 168
Views: 16861

Re: What Percentage CASH are you?

1-3% 1st tier EF.
by MathWizard
Sun May 06, 2018 4:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with in-laws investment- 100% in stocks with 5 years left to retire
Replies: 46
Views: 2987

Re: Help with in-laws investment- 100% in stocks with 5 years left to retire

Jack, My wife and I were 100% stocks until about a year ago, and about 5 yrs to retirement. I would hope that a SIL or DIL would be smart enough not to question how I invest my own money. I never discussed my FIL's finances with him. I did with my widowed MIL when she asked me, but not otherwise.
by MathWizard
Sat May 05, 2018 9:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: dad, can I have some money
Replies: 14
Views: 3291

Re: dad, can I have some money

The way to avoid SS payments being taxed, and reducing RMDs is to suspend SS payments until 70, and pull that amount of money from the tIRA. Each month suspended increases the subsequent benefit by about 2/3 of one percent. You may also want to convert from tIRA to ROTH up to the top of the 12% brac...
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?
Replies: 43
Views: 4175

Re: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?

I'm planning on 4K/yr each in today's dollars after Medicare kicks in. This because of an informal survey of my family members. This does not include end of life nursing home care. Few in my family have used this however, and nursing home care in a semi private room in a nice facility was 75K/yr for...
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?
Replies: 43
Views: 4175

Re: How much should I save or would be available for health care in retirement?

I'm planning on 4K/yr each in today's dollars after Medicare kicks in. This because of an informal survey of my family members. This does not include end of life nursing home care. Few in my family have used this however, and nursing home care in a semi private room in a nice facility was 75K/yr for...
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fast IRS refund
Replies: 41
Views: 3910

Re: Fast IRS refund

My refunds never came that fast.

My check as payment cleared really fast though!
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 11:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are the questions you would ask a Financial Advisor ?
Replies: 59
Views: 3842

Re: What are the questions you would ask a Financial Advisor ?

2pedals wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 6:18 pm
Your client is retired with significant assets that can be used in retirement. What are the key components of the Investment policy statement that you will incorporate? What withdrawal strategies will you recommend?
Exactly this!
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 12:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Portfolio peepers: what do you do?
Replies: 48
Views: 3910

Re: Portfolio peepers: what do you do?

I rebalance when appropriate.

I fund my IRA in March for the previous year, once I have files my taxes.
If I find a buying opportunity this year, I would make that contribution
this year instead of waiting until Mar of next year. Only $13K, but
every bit helps.
by MathWizard
Fri May 04, 2018 11:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Investing is more like poker than chess
Replies: 91
Views: 6102

Re: Investing is more like poker than chess

I respectfully disagree. Math tells me that I cannot consistently beat the market, and that a diversified index fund with low tracking error can give the market return (before fees) so I chose one based on quality of the company and low fees. That is why I chose Vanguard for my IRAs. I invest with l...
by MathWizard
Thu May 03, 2018 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Gap in financial literacy widens for couples the longer the relationship lasts, study suggests"
Replies: 13
Views: 1780

Re: "Gap in financial literacy widens for couples the longer the relationship lasts, study suggests"

In our case, this is not true. We've actually lessened the gap, both changing our approach. This through 35 yrs. of marriage. My wife was actually better than I was when we got married, because she was more detailed. (She was also a bookkeeper.) I balanced the checkbook and would sometimes reconcile...
by MathWizard
Tue May 01, 2018 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto loan or dip into emergency fund?
Replies: 48
Views: 3363

Re: Auto loan or dip into emergency fund?

I pay cash. In fact I drained my first tier EF (savings) when I needed to replace a car last summer. That's what my first tier EF is for. The much more substantial second tier is my ROTH contributions, which is for job loss. I also insure only for liability, and do not insure my own car. With a loan...
by MathWizard
Tue May 01, 2018 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How would you handle a request for money from a niece?
Replies: 89
Views: 6841

Re: How would you handle a request for money from a niece?

If my mother did not give a granddaughter $100 I would be very angry. Whether it was my daughter or a siblings daughter. At 90 yeats9old she can't afford the $100? Are you somehow emotionally involved in this? $100 isn't worth a minute' s thought. Really? Why aren't you forking out the $100? If I h...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How would you handle a request for money from a niece?
Replies: 89
Views: 6841

Re: How would you handle a request for money from a niece?

I cannot imagine my kids having asked any of their grandparents for money. If they absolutely needed money, and could not get it elsewhere, I would hope that they would come to me, not a 90 year old. How did the idea of grandparents as an ATM start? If this person is asking, where are the parents in...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cellphone use in Europe now inexpensive
Replies: 23
Views: 2533

Re: Cellphone use in Europe now inexpensive

Google Fi is fantastic for this. I have a Nexus 5x and it just worked in England and Ireland. I lost coverage only in some tunnels and a few places on the way to Gatway airport. Data was the same price as in the US, $10/GB. I don't think there was any cost to call back to the US. I used google maps ...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 27, 2018 8:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How far I am behind in retirement savings?
Replies: 52
Views: 4656

Re: How far I am behind in retirement savings?

Yes. Replacing a zero in the best 35 yrs with $70K, means the average yearly income goes up by $2K, then if you are after the 2nd bend point, this means the PIA on a yearly basis would be .15*$2K which is $300. This also increases the spousal benefit by half that, if your spouse would be taking spou...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 25, 2018 2:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How far I am behind in retirement savings?
Replies: 52
Views: 4656

Re: How far I am behind in retirement savings?

For Social Security, it can make a big difference whether your $111K income is yours alone, or is split between the two of you. SS benefits increase more slowly as your total earnings (as individuals) increase. Sort of the opposite of the way income taxes increase faster as your earnings increase. ...
by MathWizard
Sun Apr 22, 2018 10:00 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much does tinkering hurt returns?
Replies: 16
Views: 1559

Re: How much does tinkering hurt returns?

An index fund's low ER comes partially from minimal transaction costs, so if you have a lot of tinkering you may lose out on being in a low ER fund. The other part is chasing returns. If you believe in return to mean, then moving into a fund that outperformed would guarantee underperformance for a b...
by MathWizard
Fri Apr 20, 2018 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Undecided students and STEM majors
Replies: 51
Views: 4182

Re: Undecided students and STEM majors

No it is not the same everywhere. Both kids went into Engr. programs. Both declared a major, then switched. The first took longer because he switched to MIS in the Business college, and that added lots of Business College credits. The second switched to another Engr. major and graduated in 4 years p...
by MathWizard
Thu Apr 19, 2018 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimating Future College Costs
Replies: 18
Views: 1396

Re: Estimating Future College Costs

I was worried as H**L about college costs, only able to start saving for it when the older of my two kids was 12. (Our own college loans + house purchase) Beyond 15% in 401K, and maxing ROTHs, I saved about 1/4 of the cost of college. We just suspended ROTH contributions while the two kids were in c...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 18, 2018 10:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car at 80
Replies: 59
Views: 4501

Re: car at 80

We just bought a Buick, all of ours turn the light off automatically, and all have traction control which is really helpful when getting going on hard snow or ice. Many of the models we test drove had features like lane departure warning adaptive cruise These can be quite helpful, though we did not...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 18, 2018 10:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Are you keeping more in cash?
Replies: 31
Views: 4475

Re: Are you keeping more in cash?

No. We're actually a little low in cash right now, and building back up. Cash is just for the short term expenses, & first tier EF. I don't consider it a part of my investment portfolio, because I don't see it as providing a return above inflation. Something that does not earn a real return is not a...
by MathWizard
Tue Apr 17, 2018 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car at 80
Replies: 59
Views: 4501

Re: car at 80

We just bought a Buick, all of ours turn the light off automatically, and all have traction control which is really helpful when getting going on hard snow or ice. Many of the models we test drove had features like lane departure warning adaptive cruise These can be quite helpful, though we did not ...
by MathWizard
Mon Apr 16, 2018 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BH travel tips?
Replies: 192
Views: 13643

Re: BH travel tips?

If you wear glasses, bring along a backup pair (the pair you had before the current ones) in a hard plastic glasses case. On my last business trip, I stumbled, my glasses flew off, and my suitcase landed perfectly on them. Luckily this was heading home, and though the frames were badly bent, one len...
by MathWizard
Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young
Replies: 111
Views: 10404

Re: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young

Definitely contact a recruiter. They can give you better advice (and better leads) than we can.
by MathWizard
Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Angel investor breakfast
Replies: 19
Views: 2388

Re: Angel investor breakfast

I had breakfast this morning with a long-time family friend (and his son) who is a fairly accomplished angel investor. Over the past 20 years, his angel portfolio has delivered a ~30%+ return. His son, on the other hand, is a dyed-in-the-wool Boglehead (he put his bar mitzvah money in VOO) and thin...
by MathWizard
Sun Apr 15, 2018 10:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do about withdrawal this year if market doesn't go up?
Replies: 32
Views: 3035

Re: What to do about withdrawal this year if market doesn't go up?

Why wouldn’t you sell shares as usual? If we are lucky, durong retirement many years are up and relatively few are down. However, if you have sufficient sssets to support your retirement, there seems no reason not to continue to sell asserts to fund your retirement expenses even when you confront a...
by MathWizard
Sat Apr 14, 2018 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it necessary to replace brake fluid on a car every 3 years?
Replies: 56
Views: 4194

Re: Is it necessary to replace brake fluid on a car every 3 years?

I've never replaced Brake Fluid except for leaks, and topping up after brake change and beading the lines.

All cars were either GM , Dodge or Ford.
by MathWizard
Sat Apr 14, 2018 4:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why traditional IRA better than Roth IRA
Replies: 87
Views: 7328

Re: Why traditional IRA better than Roth IRA

families normally don't move up in tax brackets when they retire. Except on this forum, of course, with our Prodigious Accumulators of Wealth. :wink: BHs are definitely not the norm. I feel like I'm on the low end of NW for my age on this board, even while being in the top 10% of wealth for the US.
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not annuitize most of portfolio?
Replies: 104
Views: 8429

Re: Why not annuitize most of portfolio?

Wanting to annuitize is a good argument for delaying SS benefits. We've been over this already. Max SS benefit at 70 is way less than $4000/month. If you need $10,000/month to carry on, then you gotta look elsewhere as well. Especially if you retire well before age 70... Sorry, missed the earlier c...
by MathWizard
Wed Apr 11, 2018 7:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I being unreasonable? [Send daughter to private kindergarten]
Replies: 70
Views: 4114

Re: Am I being unreasonable?

As much as I hold to 20% down, if faced with 20K per year
(It will never end, you'll pay for private K-12 then on to 60K tuition at a private University.

I would forgo the down payment, and put the 20K towards a house where you child can go to public school, and pay PMI.