Search found 450 matches

by robertalpert
Fri Oct 16, 2020 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wellcare Pt D jump from 16.70 to $54
Replies: 45
Views: 3466

Re: Wellcare Pt D jump from 16.70 to $54

I got my 2021 Social Security benefit notice yesterday, and saw where Wellcare Part D was going from 16.70 to over $54. I'm not finding any of Wellcare premiums being close to $54. Could that $54 be the annual cost of prescription medication copays under the plan? I currently have Silverscript Choi...
by robertalpert
Thu Feb 27, 2020 12:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why does VTEAX have a purchase fee?
Replies: 32
Views: 2306

Re: Why does VTEAX have a purchase fee?

I noticed today that VTEAX no longer has a purchase fee.
And the ETF VTEB expense ratio has been lowered to 0.06 as compared to ER of 0.09 for VTEAX.

What to do????

I'm waiting till next week, then consider purchasing VTEAX to replace my VMLUX holdings.
by robertalpert
Mon Feb 17, 2020 1:58 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VTEAX Tax Exempt Bond Index Fund
Replies: 17
Views: 3293

Re: VTEAX Tax Exempt Bond Index Fund

Any guesses as to when Vanguard may get rid of the purchase fee for vteax?
by robertalpert
Fri Nov 01, 2019 8:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Treasury yield curve: changes for October 2019
Replies: 15
Views: 1896

Re: Treasury yield curve: changes for October 2019

October 1st is inverted yield curve and October 31st is normal / steeper yield curve in response to fed action. Any bets on when the inverted curve will return?
by robertalpert
Tue Aug 13, 2019 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long-Term Care Decision
Replies: 330
Views: 18130

Re: Long-Term Care Decision

A better policy would be one where you paid the first 3 years, or the first $300,000, and the insurance company paid everything after that. But it doesn't exist. This was the exact proposal as an original component of ACA. But was deleted prior to passage of ACA. Perhaps it could be included next t...
by robertalpert
Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Expense Ratio on Vanguard LifeStrategy Fund
Replies: 4
Views: 827

Re: Expense Ratio on Vanguard LifeStrategy Fund

The expense ratio is a weighted average of the component funds. But I wander about the fact that the underlying funds have "investor" level ERs. With those investor level funds now closed and replaced with admiral level funds; Anyone venture a guess about when will life strategy will lower its ER ba...
by robertalpert
Sat Jun 30, 2018 12:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation- home precautions?
Replies: 39
Views: 5629

Re: Vacation- home precautions?

If you have a reliable main valve; then shut the water to whole house.
by robertalpert
Thu Jun 21, 2018 10:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "distilled" water for wife's CPAP machine
Replies: 74
Views: 6873

Re: "distilled" water for wife's CPAP machine

My older cpap uses a separate stand-alone humidifier in which I use tap water that I change on a daily basis.

But the newer cpap models with integrated humidifier should only use distilled water (to prevent damage to the CPAP unit).
by robertalpert
Wed May 09, 2018 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare supplement policy G -does it offer guaranteed issue rights if insurance company goes bankrupt or ends?
Replies: 23
Views: 2621

Re: Medicare supplement policy G -does it offer guaranteed issue rights if insurance company goes bankrupt or ends?

Plan G is only guaranteed issue once in a lifetime --- when you first turn age 65. You can still apply for G anytime later, but will experience medical underwriting.
by robertalpert
Wed Sep 13, 2017 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing aid 101
Replies: 95
Views: 12650

Re: Hearing aid 101

I got my first pair of hearing aids about two months ago. Initially, I was skeptical of Costco; But when my family doctor said to go there He told me he got his at Costco --- then I knew it was OK. First went to an ENT doctor for ear cleaning. The ENT office wanted $4000 for a pair of hearing aids. ...
by robertalpert
Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:20 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: 401k - Moving to Canada
Replies: 4
Views: 1201

Re: 401k - Moving to Canada

Alternative would be to roll it over into an IRA (within a US based brokerage).
by robertalpert
Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Contributions to Roth 401k and Roth IRA Exceed Earned Income
Replies: 4
Views: 778

Re: Contributions to Roth 401k and Roth IRA Exceed Earned Income

i am facing a similar issue this year (2017). IS it still true --- can combined contributions to
Roth 401k and Roth IRA still permitted to exceed work-earnings?
by robertalpert
Mon Jul 17, 2017 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social secuity after divorce
Replies: 10
Views: 2325

Re: Social secuity after divorce

As a divorced person (long term marriage) I'm fairly sure my whole benefit is less than 50% of my former spouse's. Currently I plan to take that at full retirement age, but if it would help me retire earlier I may take it before that. I'm currently in my mid-50s. Is it possible to find out now what...
by robertalpert
Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What am I missing here? [I'm a bachelor]
Replies: 51
Views: 4740

Re: What am I missing here? [I'm a bachelor]

Purchasing our home back in 1978 was a natural need for a growing family. If you plan to stay long term in same city; Owning a home outright (eventually) will become an additional source of stability in life.
by robertalpert
Fri Jul 14, 2017 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 11179

Re: Personal loan to a family member

Watty wrote:
I would think that it would be better to buy the house in your name then let them rent it from you.
+1
by robertalpert
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Ready to Take the Plunge - Am I doing my 4-fund portfolio right? (Dumbest Post Ever?)
Replies: 7
Views: 1269

Re: Ready to Take the Plunge - Am I doing my 4-fund portfolio right? (Dumbest Post Ever?)

If you have less than $50,000; then just use a LIFE STRATEGY growth fund which has an 80 / 20 allocation. If you are investing at least $50,000; then you could use all admiral-class funds in a THREE-fund portfolio. (correction) If you are investing at least $250,000; then you could use all admiral-c...
by robertalpert
Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fascinating Morningstar Article - Mutual Fund Flows
Replies: 25
Views: 3445

Re: Fascinating Morningstar Article - Mutual Fund Flows

All of my assets were with Vanguard (other than cash and my 401k). Recently I retired and moved my 401k to Fidelity. Fidelity made the transfer really easy. Does Vanguard accommodate transferring in from a 401K? What is primary reason you chose Fidelity for your 401-k transfer destination?
by robertalpert
Tue Jul 11, 2017 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on buying a musical instrument
Replies: 24
Views: 2534

Re: Advice on buying a musical instrument

Ask your violin teacher to join you in testing out violins for purchase. I bought a Haynes Clarinet Manual and found it very valuable in addressing many adjustment issues, including purchasing instruments. There exist a Haynes Violin Manual that may provide you with similar assistance. http://www.am...
by robertalpert
Sat Jun 24, 2017 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Is my pension a Fixed asset?
Replies: 37
Views: 7277

Re: Is my pension a Fixed asset?

Only the vested portion of pension can be considered a bond or annuity. If not yet vested or able to draw, then the "pension" has zero value; Except perhaps for that vested portion that you could retrieve if leaving your employment today.
by robertalpert
Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Collecting Canada Pension, will Social Security benefits be reduced?
Replies: 3
Views: 842

Re: Collecting Canada Pension, will Social Security benefits be reduced?

The SSA website documents an agreement with other countries, including Canada. Your benefits apparently would be affected by "windfall elimination". If so, then your SSA benefits may be reduced by about half. http://www.ssa.gov/international/Agreement_Pamphlets/canada.html Edit: But on the other han...
by robertalpert
Mon May 22, 2017 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Yield Curve and the Next Stock Market Correction
Replies: 36
Views: 5395

Re: Yield Curve and the Next Stock Market Correction

Some rules of thumb (from a book about yield curves by Deborah Weir) Economic Trends (treasury yields) 3_month > 10_Year Sell 3_month > 30_Year sell (10_year > 30_year) sell These become actionable sell criteria when combined with increased quality spreads (AA to junk) moves from the 3% normal sprea...
by robertalpert
Wed May 10, 2017 4:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long Term [Care] Rates just went Through the roof!
Replies: 34
Views: 6054

Re: Long Term [Care] Rates just went Through the roof!

WolfgangPauli wrote:
Remove the inflation rider

The inflation rider is most likely premiumed at your new / current age.
by robertalpert
Tue May 09, 2017 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Survivor Benefits
Replies: 13
Views: 2131

Re: SS Survivor Benefits

TinyTim wrote:Will she receive the same higher amount that I get by waiting to take SS until age 70?
Assuming you're married more than 10-years; Then her benefit for drawing social security based on your earnings record was maxed when you reached age-66.
But waiting till age-70 will increase your benefit.
by robertalpert
Fri May 05, 2017 6:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Supplement Policies?
Replies: 56
Views: 7852

Re: Medicare Supplement Policies?

I have plan G and from my view it is the best choice. If you have a pre-existing condition, then this may be your only opportunity to ever get plan G with guaranteed issue. I'm in Ohio and the best carrier (lowest premiums) for plan G is with Medical Mutual of Ohio. But they do not sell in other sta...
by robertalpert
Thu May 04, 2017 5:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Dilemma: TDFs in tax advantaged accounts, but want to open a taxable account
Replies: 4
Views: 643

Re: Dilemma: TDFs in tax advantaged accounts, but want to open a taxable account

Approximate with 90% vtsax and 10% tax-exempt municipal bond fund.
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 22, 2017 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Insurance Plans
Replies: 43
Views: 4778

Re: Medigap Insurance Plans

rennman100 wrote: Can people comment on their G providers?
Here in Ohio, I am enrolled in plan G with Medical Mutual of Ohio. It's the best carrier I found within Ohio, But one needs to be an Ohio resident to enroll.
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 22, 2017 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Insurance Plans
Replies: 43
Views: 4778

Re: Medigap Insurance Plans

I personally like plan-G the best; but there is no guaranteed issue if you are changing. But if you are VERY healthy, It could be a good time to change to G. I thought you could change plans without medical underwriting during open enrollment each year, so long as the new plan had a lower level of ...
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 22, 2017 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Insurance Plans
Replies: 43
Views: 4778

Re: Medigap Insurance Plans

F will only be closed off to new people. If you're in F, you can stay as long as your carrier still has an F. I personally like plan-G the best; but there is no guaranteed issue if you are changing. But if you are VERY healthy, It could be a good time to change to G. Unless there is Kaiser Permanent...
by robertalpert
Tue Apr 18, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Do Taxes Work With Rollover Roth IRA?
Replies: 11
Views: 1187

Re: How Do Taxes Work With Rollover Roth IRA?

You meant "convert to a Roth IRA". Yes, particularly if you have good future potential for advancement and increasing salary, now is the time to convert incremental amounts each year. Convert the whole 20k but not above the top of the 15% bracket if you can. By converting only to top of 15% bracket...
by robertalpert
Tue Apr 18, 2017 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Do Taxes Work With Rollover Roth IRA?
Replies: 11
Views: 1187

Re: How Do Taxes Work With Rollover Roth IRA?

Is the 4012k Traditional or Roth?
by robertalpert
Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How often should I contribute to my taxable account?
Replies: 23
Views: 4169

Re: How often should I contribute to my taxable account?

I prefer direct deposit -- directly from employer payroll department to Vanguard money market in taxable account every week.

Then whenever I get around to it, I exchange from money market to (50:50) Total-stock-market and Limited-term-tax-exempt.
by robertalpert
Fri Apr 14, 2017 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing Aid Benefits
Replies: 24
Views: 2491

Re: Hearing Aid Benefits

My brother is a very dedicated public high school teacher, teaching in a low income area. He's also hearing impaired and wears expensive hearing aids. It's time for his hearing aids to be upgraded to stronger units and they are very expensive and not covered by his insurance. Are any of you aware o...
by robertalpert
Fri Apr 14, 2017 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Washer/dryer suggestions?
Replies: 46
Views: 8130

Re: Washer/dryer suggestions?

We have a front load LG washer. It runs acceptably, I guess, but I dislike the thumping / out of balance noise when spinning. We had a mildew problem, but solved that by putting a small amount of chlorine bleach in with the detergent each and every load (no exceptions) . No more mildew odor. Our LG ...
by robertalpert
Tue Apr 04, 2017 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roll Over 401k to Vanguard for access to closed funds
Replies: 9
Views: 1044

Re: Roll Over 401k to Vanguard for access to closed funds

It may be easier to manage the portfolio when all at one brokerage.

Is the 401K traditional or roth?

If roth, the employer match portion may be pre-tax and could result in comingled funds in your Vanguard IRA, unless you sort out and separate the amounts in advance.
by robertalpert
Mon Apr 03, 2017 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Plan F Increases
Replies: 37
Views: 4790

Re: Medigap Plan F Increases

Here in Ohio, My wife (age 67) had an 8% increase for plan F in 2017. She now pays $162 /month.

I have plan G and had a zero percent increase in 2017 (age 66) @ $126 / month.

Nearly all plans in Ohio increase with attained age. Is your state an attained age state(s) or an issue age state?
by robertalpert
Sun Apr 02, 2017 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: nursing home & medicaid
Replies: 21
Views: 2602

Re: nursing home & medicaid

You certainly need an elder law attorney. I have heard that paying off all debt (including mortgage debt) would help limit the assets that nursing homes would attempt to take. They also cannot take the primary home or primary car. You may considering selling one or both homes and then purchase a hom...
by robertalpert
Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Core Bond Fund (VCORX) One Year on:
Replies: 63
Views: 20163

Re: Vanguard Core Bond Fund (VCORX) One Year on:

Core bond's largest holding ($490 million) is "Japan Treasury Discount Bill". That's 74 percent of Core Bond's total assets. What does this mean about the character of Core Bond's portfolio? huh? http://portfolios.morningstar.com/fund/holdings?t=VCORX®ion=usa&culture=en-US I see my error, I was ...
by robertalpert
Sun Apr 02, 2017 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Core Bond Fund (VCORX) One Year on:
Replies: 63
Views: 20163

Re: Vanguard Core Bond Fund (VCORX) One Year on:

Core bond's largest holding ($490 million) is "Japan Treasury Discount Bill". That's 74 percent of Core Bond's total assets. What does this mean about the character of Core Bond's portfolio?
by robertalpert
Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social secuity after divorce
Replies: 10
Views: 2325

Re: Social secuity after divorce

I recently read some social security literature and the following is my understanding: If married more than 10-years; And divorced more than two years ago; And you have not re-married; And wage earner (ex-spouse) is age-66 or older Then you can qualify for 50% SSA benefit based on your ex-spouse wor...
by robertalpert
Wed Mar 29, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to "sell" fund no longer want
Replies: 8
Views: 1099

Re: Best way to "sell" fund no longer want

Just be sure you have held all shares of FNMIX for 91 days or more. There is a 1% redemption fee if held less than 90-days.
by robertalpert
Sat Mar 25, 2017 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 100% stocks w/pension?
Replies: 40
Views: 6462

Re: 100% stocks w/pension?

Que1999 wrote:Myself and the wife are 35 years old. I have a very favorable pension that earns 8.25%. After 20 years of service, my pension requirements are met in full
You should not treat your pension as a bond until the 20 years of service is actually completed.
by robertalpert
Wed Mar 08, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting - Anyone Going?
Replies: 16
Views: 3303

Re: Berkshire Hathaway Annual Meeting - Anyone Going?

Hi all, Just wondering if any one of you is planning to attend Berkshire Hathaway's Annual Meeting. Also, if you own a mutual fund that invests in BRK.A and BRK.B, will I be eligible to attend the annual meeting? I own the Sequoia Fund (SEQUX) and the top holdings are class A and class B stocks in ...
by robertalpert
Tue Feb 21, 2017 11:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do companies match after-tax 401k contributions?
Replies: 32
Views: 5317

Re: Do companies match after-tax 401k contributions?

I think you meant to say that your employer pays a match ON your Roth 401k contributions, but the match is PAID INTO the pre tax account. Employer does match ON the Roth 401K, but a separate pre-tax account is not visible to me. But can view the assets by source: "Employee_contribution" and "Employ...
by robertalpert
Tue Feb 21, 2017 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Split Pension
Replies: 58
Views: 6265

Re: How to Split Pension

When I retired, we chose the option with 100% of the joint pension going to the surviving spouse (with pop-up). Meaning that surviving spouse gets 100% of our joint pension. If the worker survives the spouse, then surviving worker's pension pops up to the originally single annuity. This is the only ...
by robertalpert
Tue Feb 21, 2017 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do companies match after-tax 401k contributions?
Replies: 32
Views: 5317

Re: Do companies match after-tax 401k contributions?

My employer does a match into my Roth 401-K, But the employer match portion is pre-tax. They may appear co-mingled, but Merrill Lynch keeps track of the match amount versus the employee contributions. When I asked, --- Merrill Lynch agreed that each portion can be transferred out separately into sep...
by robertalpert
Wed Feb 01, 2017 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medigap Plan G vs Plan F?
Replies: 107
Views: 34377

Re: Medigap Plan G vs Plan F?

I just signed up for insurance through United Medicare Advisors. They were very helpful. Jason, the agent, told me about dental, vision and hearing coverage through Central United Life, whose parent company is Manhatten Life. I have had a Medicare supplemental policy G for a couple of years with Ma...
by robertalpert
Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not put it all in TIPS?
Replies: 87
Views: 7623

Re: Why not put it all in TIPS?

Tips only protects you from unexpected inflation; not from inflation in general.

But if you split bond holdings 50% short / intermediate tips plus 50% short / intermediate nominal treasuries --- that could protect from both expected inflation and expected inflation.
by robertalpert
Tue Dec 20, 2016 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "Trump Rally" with any basis or doomed to come down to earth soon?
Replies: 16
Views: 2337

Re: "Trump Rally" with any basis or doomed to come down to earth soon?

Slow growth is boring and effective. That is how it should be. That's how it's been for past 8 years. He will most certainly stimulate the economy till over-stimulated; then the crash. Keeping close eye on yield curve. Rebalance (or perhaps market-timing) opportunity on the horizon. Got in before th...