Search found 277 matches

by blastoff
Wed Jun 24, 2020 2:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why fancy fast car?
Replies: 13
Views: 1342

Re: Why fancy fast car?

Ever driven a performance car at 150-200 mph? Slalomed around a mud pit with 305 hp at your command? It’s fun, that’s why. :D Now people that buy such cars and just drive them to work and back? Yeah, I don’t get that, either. This. I didn't get it until I drove a 4 second car. That said, i don't th...
by blastoff
Tue May 19, 2020 8:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ford F150 Engine long term reliability - V8 versus Turbo V6?
Replies: 62
Views: 3917

Re: Ford F150 Engine long term reliability - V8 versus Turbo V6?

How are you going to use the truck? Significant towing or other heavy use? It’s a want not a need. It would rarely be for truck purposes - ie - buy stuff from home depot for diy projects. Toss bikes in bed to go ride w kids (already have a hitch bike carrier for the subaru). No towing (unless one d...
by blastoff
Tue May 19, 2020 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ford F150 Engine long term reliability - V8 versus Turbo V6?
Replies: 62
Views: 3917

Re: Ford F150 Engine long term reliability - V8 versus Turbo V6?

How are you going to use the truck?
Significant towing or other heavy use?
by blastoff
Mon Mar 23, 2020 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: re-balancing plan: increase tax efficiency and simplicity
Replies: 1
Views: 123

re-balancing plan: increase tax efficiency and simplicity

With the recent downturn in the markets, I would like to use this "opportunity" to do two things : 1. Change some investments to more tax efficient options (e.g. FSKAX --> ITOT) 2. Reduce number of funds by 1 or 2 and simplify a little. Emergency funds: 1year (+stable job) Debt: None. Tax Filing St...
by blastoff
Thu Feb 27, 2020 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: backdoor roth handholding
Replies: 2
Views: 159

Re: backdoor roth handholding

Thanks. Appreciate additional link.
by blastoff
Thu Feb 27, 2020 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: backdoor roth handholding
Replies: 2
Views: 159

backdoor roth handholding

Hi - In past years, my income was well below the Roth IRA income limit. There is a >95% chance I will be over the limit for 2020. I plan to do a "backdoor Roth" in 2020, which would be my first year doing so. I have no Traditional IRA assets, but do have an existing Roth IRA which is at Fidelity. So...
by blastoff
Mon Feb 24, 2020 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does Biomedical Engineering School Matter?
Replies: 94
Views: 6369

Re: Does Biomedical Engineering School Matter?

Do they want to work as an engineer?
by blastoff
Tue Feb 18, 2020 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Perform own oil change pros & cons?
Replies: 224
Views: 11337

Re: Perform own oil change pros & cons?

Unless you have some fancy car that takes fancy oil, you can pay less than you paid at jiffy lube at a dealer. I have a Mazda. It has a Ford engine. I take it to Ford dealerships. Usually $35-$40. Syn blend, reasonable quality filterm. Trust them more than jiffy lube. I could technically buy oil wit...
by blastoff
Sun Jan 19, 2020 7:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Anything else I need to be doing for retirement?
Replies: 25
Views: 2916

Re: Anything else I need to be doing for retirement?

We dont know your tax situation, but for me, I would be looking at contributing to a traditional pre tax retirement account until I got out of the 22% tax bracket. Once dropping below that, then a roth could be a good option. You havent given us much details about your situation. Thanks for writing...
by blastoff
Sat Jan 11, 2020 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity free Turbotax
Replies: 701
Views: 79894

Re: Fidelity Free Turbotax 2019

soyscooter wrote:
Thu Jan 09, 2020 6:32 pm
FWIW... I asked Fidelity PC Group rep today regarding qualifications needed to get a free copy of TT. $1M in taxable accounts or 120+trades per year in a taxable account. These were all that were mentioned.
Meet that criteria.
No rep.
No TT.
by blastoff
Wed Jan 08, 2020 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity free Turbotax
Replies: 701
Views: 79894

Re: Fidelity Free Turbotax 2019

I purchased the download on amazon and it was very easy. Perhaps I am missing something here? Drama. :twisted: I'm the monkey on the left https://youtu.be/meiU6TxysCg?t=78 I had never seen this video. It's outstanding - made my afternoon. I was actually curious if there was something I was missing....
by blastoff
Wed Jan 08, 2020 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity free Turbotax
Replies: 701
Views: 79894

Re: Fidelity Free Turbotax 2019

I have a feeling many people with a million invested would be happier with Fidelity if they got free TurboTax but paid 1 more basis point (albeit, still very low). Nothing for just satisfaction or money, but a convenience to download the software, within the Fido account. Or else have to purchase C...
by blastoff
Wed Jan 08, 2020 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity free Turbotax
Replies: 701
Views: 79894

Re: Fidelity Free Turbotax 2019

My guess is that only those with $5M+ or those who have generated certain revenue levels are likely to get such an offer. This makes me laugh. I'm thinking about how desperate somebody with $5M+ assets with Fidelity would be to save 20 or 50 dollars on tax software, that Fidelity would use that as ...
by blastoff
Tue Jan 07, 2020 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity free Turbotax
Replies: 701
Views: 79894

Re: Fidelity Free Turbotax 2019

Another data point: No TurboTax offer for me on Summary Page. I have received the free turbo tax offer in prior years.. maybe 2014-2016 range. I haven't got the offer the past couple years (despite my only real change being increased asset levels at fidelity). It does say "private client" when I log...
by blastoff
Sun Dec 01, 2019 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How not to feel poor...
Replies: 78
Views: 13041

Re: How not to feel poor...

I wouldn't buy too many clothes you don't want. Maybe a couple nicer things, but don't spend money on something you really don't care about. Do take some trips. It sounds like you would enjoy them, you just struggle spending. If SS will be significant for both of you, I think you are in a great place.
by blastoff
Fri Nov 29, 2019 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal
Replies: 8
Views: 1222

Re: Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal

Hi All - I used to do taxes by hand for 10+ years. Recently migrated to turbo tax. Plan to turbotax again for 2019 tax year. Fidelity doesn't seem to give free turbo tax anymore despite asset levels. So, I'll likely purchase this for 2019 tax year. I wanted to confirm several things before purchasi...
by blastoff
Fri Nov 29, 2019 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal
Replies: 8
Views: 1222

Re: Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal

Clarification please: Isn't the disc and the download version the same? Do you mean the online version and the not-online version? If so, I don't know the answer anyways. I think you are correct and that I had remembered incorrectly. I meant online vs disc/download. A quick google seems to indicate...
by blastoff
Fri Nov 29, 2019 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal
Replies: 8
Views: 1222

Turbo Tax: Questions and Current Deal

Hi All - I used to do taxes by hand for 10+ years. Recently migrated to turbo tax. Plan to turbotax again for 2019 tax year. Fidelity doesn't seem to give free turbo tax anymore despite asset levels. So, I'll likely purchase this for 2019 tax year. I wanted to confirm several things before purchasin...
by blastoff
Mon Nov 18, 2019 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much is a Roth worth?
Replies: 48
Views: 7690

Re: How much is a Roth worth?

I have done these calculations to value the benefit of having a 457 Roth option. I got similar numbers, but agree it is very tax and situation dependent. Just adding this comment as an example of one simple scenario where these "value of a Ruth" calculations would be relevant.
by blastoff
Sat Sep 14, 2019 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Phones with longest battery life?
Replies: 18
Views: 1639

Re: Phones with longest battery life?

I've got an older LG Xcharge. Battery life obviously depends on usage; I get about 4 days of *my* typical use with mine. Looks like Motorola G7 Power might be current best battery life, but that's achieved with lower res screen. G7 power if you like the phone and don't want high end. There are also...
by blastoff
Sat Sep 14, 2019 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accountant Salary Growth
Replies: 35
Views: 4803

Re: Accountant Salary Growth

This is starting post-undergrad?
by blastoff
Thu Sep 05, 2019 5:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Making Case to Employer for Mega Backdoor Roth
Replies: 20
Views: 1224

Re: Making Case to Employer for Mega Backdoor Roth

How does one figure out if their plan is a safe harbor plan? It should be clearly stated in any plan documents or communications. A safe harbor plan will not have any ADP testing of deferrals, ACP testing of employer contributions and employer contributions must be 100% immediately vested. If HCE d...
by blastoff
Thu Sep 05, 2019 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?
Replies: 180
Views: 8119

Re: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?

Not united, but topical. Wanted to chime in and say two things: 1) I have flown delta in their basic economy as a solo traveler 5-10 legs. Without fail, always back of the plane in obviously the least desirable seats. 2) I have flown american for a couple legs with another person in basic economy. E...
by blastoff
Thu Sep 05, 2019 4:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Making Case to Employer for Mega Backdoor Roth
Replies: 20
Views: 1224

Re: Making Case to Employer for Mega Backdoor Roth

Is the current 401k a safe harbor plan? Who manages the plan? What are the fees and the investment options. What is the size of the company? It's my understanding that it is safe harbor (in that employer matches are vested immediately). Fidelity manages the plan - and its my understanding that they...
by blastoff
Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2590

Re: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?

Hi Again - Just to follow up. To try to get this request in motion for adding a mega-backdoor option a 403b would it be best to: a) contact HR of employer b) contact company that manages retirement account (TIAA) c) pursue both at same time? This probably isn't knowable, but just curious what you wo...
by blastoff
Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account
Replies: 13
Views: 1819

Re: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account

I hear that Fidelity has great customer service and also a great mutual fund screener, so I went to Fidelity.com and tried screening to find all their money market / cash reserves funds. I see that there are at least 14 Fidelity money market funds that had a 30-day yield on 7/31 of more than 2%. Do...
by blastoff
Fri Aug 02, 2019 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account
Replies: 13
Views: 1819

Re: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account

SPAXX (Fidelity Government Money Market) is currently yielding 1.95%. FZDXX (Fidelity Money Market Premium Class) is yielding 2.19%. Just fyi.... 8-) FZDXX has 100k minimum. Apparently can move in 100k at beginning, and then reduce shortly thereafter to <100k and still be able to keep it (and still...
by blastoff
Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account
Replies: 13
Views: 1819

Re: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account

I do have a CMA.

For some reason, FTEXX became default at one point and have most of money market funds in there.

If SPAXX is best, that may already be the Core/sweep position and I can just move all from FTEXX to SPAXX.
by blastoff
Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account
Replies: 13
Views: 1819

Best place for cash: money market (fido) vs saving account

Hi - I live in Philadlephia, PA. So, school income tax (~4%) on non-savings account or PA/Federal based debt: https://www.phila.gov/services/payments-assistance-taxes/income-taxes/school-income-tax/ 22-24% Federal tax bracket. Likely bottom of 24% for next 5years. I have taxable accounts at Fidelity...
by blastoff
Wed Jul 10, 2019 6:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2590

Re: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?

Thanks to all that have replied. Interesting to hear the different experiences! I have never had access to mega backdoor Roth. But I am aware of it and loosely know the mechanics of it, but not in great detail. If I wanted to get a mega backdoor Roth option in the plan, what specifically needs to be...
by blastoff
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2590

Re: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?

My employer is thankfully one that offers it so I haven't had to ask. That said I seem to recall somebody posting in a relatively recent (last few months) mega-backdoor thread that they had been successful. Maybe they will post here or perhaps search recent threads on this to see if you can find th...
by blastoff
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2590

Re: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?

Hi all. I would like to be able to do a mega-backdoor roth. My new employer doesn't offer in-service distributions, or after tax contributions for their 403b. Has anyone gotten their employer to modify the plan to allow a mega backdoor Roth? Is this even feasible? What are the key considerations an...
by blastoff
Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2590

Mega backdoor Roth:. Anyone got their employer to change plan to allow it?

Hi all. I would like to be able to do a mega-backdoor roth. My new employer doesn't offer in-service distributions, or after tax contributions for their 403b. Has anyone gotten their employer to modify the plan to allow a mega backdoor Roth? Is this even feasible? What are the key considerations and...
by blastoff
Fri Jul 05, 2019 4:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 50-60k boat purchase??
Replies: 84
Views: 6649

Re: 50-60k boat purchase??

We live on the lake. We currently have a 20 year old ski boat that still gets the job done (tubing, skiing, etc).. Thinking of upgrading to a newer (not brand new) boat with less hours, better interior, few more creature comforts...to do essentially the same thing as the 20 year old boat. Looking a...
by blastoff
Tue Jul 02, 2019 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frontier or Spirit Airlines
Replies: 63
Views: 9628

Re: Frontier or Spirit Airlines

Thanks for confirming my suspicions. Some people seem to like them, but when it goes wrong it gets really bad. Guess I will continue avoiding them. Thanks for posting, OP. I'm in the process of relocating to a city where the only airlines with daily direct flights between my new home and a city I'l...
by blastoff
Tue Jul 02, 2019 6:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frontier or Spirit Airlines
Replies: 63
Views: 9628

Re: Frontier or Spirit Airlines

Seat pitch is below most other airlines as well, meaning you will feel the squeeze. This can't be emphasized enough. Think of the last time you flew on United or American (not in economy plus or main cabin extra). Felt pretty cramped, right? Now take away another 2-3 inches of leg room. That's Spir...
by blastoff
Mon Jul 01, 2019 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frontier or Spirit Airlines
Replies: 63
Views: 9628

Re: Frontier or Spirit Airlines

[Post removed by admin LadyGeek] This is the best way to put it. My biggest problem would be neighbors e who normally do not fly. I'd agree that having options in case of cancellations makes sense though. More than once, I had to fly a couple of hours in the wrong direction to catch a flight in the...
by blastoff
Sat May 25, 2019 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will my checks work?
Replies: 26
Views: 2113

Re: Will my checks work?

My checks from 10+ years ago and 6 addresses ago still work.

My general experience in life is that when you try to give people money, they don't care about details like the address. When they have to give you money...
by blastoff
Mon May 20, 2019 10:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car repairs: what to do next time
Replies: 42
Views: 2959

Re: Car repairs: what to do next time

Don't "clean" the injectors (not necessary). I didn't see any repairs, just expensive (overcharged?) maintenance. Only the brakes were more costly item, especially if they really did replace the rotors and drums. OP, do you know how they cleaned the fuel injectors? My idle was getting a little irre...
by blastoff
Tue Apr 30, 2019 11:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations
Replies: 12
Views: 878

Re: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations

The 457b pre-tax accounts total ~40k. So, not a huge amount. My roth balances are larger (which I purposely done so for tax reasons - moving forward I will focus on pre-tax contributions). That depends on your lifestyle. $40k would cover most of my expenses for a year, even if taxed as ordinary inc...
by blastoff
Tue Apr 30, 2019 9:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations
Replies: 12
Views: 878

Re: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations

Maybe I misspoke.

I think my 457bs are governmental. Both from work at a state university.

In the event they are employer based, both of these universities are going to exist in 30 years.
by blastoff
Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations
Replies: 12
Views: 878

Re: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations

Both are governmental 457b. Agree that I should probably roll over the roth 403b to a roth IRA just for sake of simplicity. The 457b pre-tax accounts total ~40k. So, not a huge amount. My roth balances are larger (which I purposely done so for tax reasons - moving forward I will focus on pre-tax con...
by blastoff
Mon Apr 29, 2019 8:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 457 rollover and general rollover considerations
Replies: 12
Views: 878

457 rollover and general rollover considerations

Hi All. I am debating whether I should roll-over prior workplace retirement accounts. Considerations are 1) convenience of not having multiple accounts. 2) Losing any 457 benefit (I don't think I"ll use it). 3) Available investment choices at future employer and costs 4) Any other smart things you t...
by blastoff
Fri Apr 26, 2019 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Minivan alternatives?
Replies: 54
Views: 5236

Re: Minivan alternatives?

Something like a Highlander or pilot?
by blastoff
Sat Apr 06, 2019 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401k plan value
Replies: 7
Views: 680

Re: 401k plan value

You could consider creating a simple spreadsheet to model the two scenarios. 1. Tax-deferred 401k contributions at 35% marginal, plus match 2. Invest the equivalent post-tax amount efficiently in taxable account Naturally, for #2 to come out ahead, her salary will need to increase with he new job. ...
by blastoff
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on Grand Pianos?
Replies: 57
Views: 3638

Re: Advice on Grand Pianos?

A good upright is better than a cheap grand. It will be difficult to impossible to get a good grand or baby grand for under $10k. An under $10k grand could require significant restoration and if you decided to get rid of it would require someone naive to purchase if it hasn’t been restored. I would...
by blastoff
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of Buying a Watch - Recommendations?
Replies: 74
Views: 5709

Re: Thinking of Buying a Watch - Recommendations?

Only buy rolex watches. Eventhough it is expensive, but the value of the watch retains and appreciates. How have they done compared to other investments -- Total US Stock Market, for example? It does better than the stock market. Go research about it. An increase of at least 20% yoy for the past fe...
by blastoff
Sat Mar 02, 2019 5:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Priority boarding - Why?
Replies: 147
Views: 9631

Re: Priority boarding - Why?

I wish they would do away entirely with carry on luggage and give every one free bag check. It is a mess with both boarding and off-boarding taking enormous amount of time and the bags can be dangerous when they are humongous and heavy. Amen on this. +1-2-3 This is you whole solution. No carry on b...
by blastoff
Sat Feb 16, 2019 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental Car Company Preferences
Replies: 26
Views: 1939

Re: Rental Car Company Preferences

I'm frugal but would not do Fox even if it was free.

Maybe they are better now, or at different locations.
by blastoff
Sun Jan 27, 2019 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Acela (Amtrak) service worth it?
Replies: 42
Views: 3774

Re: Is Acela (Amtrak) service worth it?

NE regional does 120-125 mph between Newark and Philly. The problem with Amtrak is not top speeds. It's the slow speed areas and stops that waste time... doing 85mph in areas that are currently 40mph helps a lot more than doing 160 where it is currently 130mph. this was the surprising part train fr...