Search found 15420 matches

by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New job offer, pension vs diy retirement
Replies: 17
Views: 950

Re: New job offer, pension vs diy retirement

A big factor that is missing is how old you are. If you are in your late 40s and have less than 20 years to retirement then the pension might look better than if you are in your 20s and have a 40 years until you retire. No cheating and saying do both, there is only enough money for one or the other....
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sell Home Now or Wait? Relocating with Spouse
Replies: 14
Views: 890

Re: Sell Home Now or Wait? Relocating with Spouse

I would put the house on the market ASAP but price it aggressively(but still reasonable) and decline any mediocre offers. If it sells for the top dollar then that would be great, if not you could sell it for a lower price next spring. One risk that you have is that if interest rates go up or the eco...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For those who like travel, when did you retire and where are the most exciting places you travelled to?
Replies: 66
Views: 3747

Re: For those who like travel, when did you retire and where are the most exciting places you travelled to?

When you rented a car in New Zealand, did you buy full insurance, or just use the credit card insurance? You need to check the details on your credit card insurance since some countries may be excluded and often they are countries where they drive on the left. The list of excluded countries varies ...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Where to park the next dollar, beyond 401k?
Replies: 10
Views: 1091

Re: Where to park the next dollar, beyond 401k?

....looking to spend almost 550-570kish house. Possibly kids. We have set aside around 25k for downpayment for now. We won’t be buying for at least another 1.5 years. So we will be shooting to save about 90k for downpayment. In addition to the downpayment there are LOTS of other costs when you buy ...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vacation home experiences?
Replies: 21
Views: 1302

Re: Vacation home experiences?

....within 3-4 hours drive (SF Bay Area). Be sure to take into account that the drive on Friday evening might take a lot longer because of heavy traffic. It was a long time ago but when I lived in the Bay area if you tried driving up to the mountains on Friday evening during the ski season it could...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford a $1mil home?
Replies: 53
Views: 6299

Re: Can we afford a $1mil home?

There is another gold rush going on in Silicon Valley right now. If you are young and ambitious, there is literally no better place in the world for you right now. And hence the high costs. I agree, but gold rushes don't last forever. Pretty much by definition the game plan for a gold rush is it ma...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford a $1mil home?
Replies: 53
Views: 6299

Re: Can we afford a $1mil home?

Don’t buy until you’ve made your decision about grad school. I would expand that to waiting until you are through grad school if you go to grad school. A big concern is that once you graduate you are likely to find a new job, even if you stay with your current employer, and that might be at a diffe...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Credit Card for College Freshman
Replies: 46
Views: 1650

Re: Best Credit Card for College Freshman

Yes - he will have a debit card - but I think credit cards are safer and will encourage him to use that If he has a credit card there really is not any good reason to have a debit card. There are way too many ways these can be a problem if they a compromised and his account is drained. I would repl...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Clean Up Retirement Savings - Half one stock
Replies: 9
Views: 931

Re: Help Clean Up Retirement Savings - Half one stock

- What's the best way to unwind DIS? Just all at once, take the tax hit and pay $30K come April, and be done with it? Or is there something more efficient? If she supports a charity she can give them shares of stock instead of cash. Since she is still working she may also be able to max out an IRA ...
by Watty
Sat Apr 20, 2019 6:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on non warrantable condo in Bellingham
Replies: 16
Views: 1233

Re: Advice on non warrantable condo in Bellingham

It is possible that other units are owned by relatives of the large owner so the situation could be worse than looks on paper. You need to be very concerned about how salable the unit would be in a slow housing market. In a hot housing market buyers will overlook lots of problems that become critica...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 11:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY home security system
Replies: 21
Views: 1303

Re: DIY home security system

You may be able to just use your current system but just turn off the monitoring . It was with different company but I had a system like that and the way that it worked was after something like 3 years the system was yours so you could do that. Be sure to check your local burglar alarm permit requir...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For those who like travel, when did you retire and where are the most exciting places you travelled to?
Replies: 66
Views: 3747

Re: For those who like travel, when did you retire and where are the most exciting places you travelled to?

.. when did you retire.... (Your financial situations may also help, if you don't mind). Retired in 2015 when I was 58, pretty middle class compared to a lot of posters here so the travel budget is a factor. I started traveling more when I was in my early 50's I usually pick where to go based on wh...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can we retire yet? And other related questions...
Replies: 28
Views: 2423

Re: Can we retire yet? And other related questions...

One more thought. Delaying Social Security to get a larger check later is in effect buying an inflation adjusted annuity that is better than what you can buy. It likely would not make any sense to buy a SPIA if you are not delaying at least one of your Social Security start dates until you are 70.
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Starting daughter's savings plan
Replies: 12
Views: 883

Re: Starting daughter's savings plan

Any quick thoughts? Does she have an emergency fund in addition to the $1,500 to invest? If not then that would be the first priority. Right now some unexpected large expense could cause her to have credit card debt that can be very difficult to catch up on. Once she gets a job she may also have a ...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can we retire yet? And other related questions...
Replies: 28
Views: 2423

Re: Can we retire yet? And other related questions...

I agree with the other poster, on reducing some of your 100% equity holdings. Another +1 on that. For comparison the Vanguard 2020 Target date fund is 55% stocks and 45% bonds. https://investor.vanguard.com/mutual-funds/profile/VTWNX 100% stocks is way high. Debt: None, rent at 2300/mo How does the...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How far would you commute?
Replies: 72
Views: 2673

Re: How far would you commute?

Now I have to decide between a severance package or a commute. The big question is how much the severance is and what your other job options are. You also have to consider how variable your commute will be. If it is an hour each way on a good day there will also be days when it is not so good, bad,...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?
Replies: 88
Views: 2944

Re: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?

If it damages something or hurts someone when it falls your insuance company will not pay the damages. I don't believe this is a correct statement. If indeed they deny coverage for trees that are dead, please provide a link or citation. A quick Google search found this. However, homeowners insuranc...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?
Replies: 88
Views: 2944

Re: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?

When I was a teenager I worked in a nursing home as a summer job. The residents were all elderly except for one buy that was in his 30's who was a quadraplegic. He had tried to save money by putting on his own roof but he had fallen off the roof and broke his back. When it come to work involving ris...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedging against hyperinflation scenario
Replies: 47
Views: 2907

Re: Hedging against hyperinflation scenario

There are so many ways that things can play out that diversification would be the key to surviving economic upheaval.
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 8:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: This could be the biggest risk that retirees face?
Replies: 117
Views: 7876

Re: This could be the biggest risk that retirees face?

Very few private pensions are indexed for inflation so even moderate inflation will be a big problem if you retire at 65 and then live to be 100. Even at their peak only about a third of retirees had a significant pension so the "good old days" were not really as good as people like to think. How be...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dealership vs independent mechanics
Replies: 23
Views: 1528

Re: Dealership vs independent mechanics

One more con of a dealership is that they will try to use much more new expensive manufacture parts when good third party or rebuilt parts may be available. I forget if it was a Honda or Toyota but I have had a dealership try to sell be the manufactures battery claiming that it was better than other...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: keep or sell the home
Replies: 4
Views: 745

Re: keep or sell the home

Rent covers the monthly mortage payments + property management firm fee + the ocassional maintenance calls. I didn't try to crunch the numbers but I doubt that the numbers would make it an attractive rental property if you did not already own it. One thing you might do is to look into doing a 1301 ...
by Watty
Fri Apr 19, 2019 1:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 80
Views: 5521

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

One thing to remember is that the current homeowner's insurance probably lapses after the house is unoccupied for 30 days . You'll have to either find other coverage (difficult to get and expensive) or have the estate take on the risk of an uninsured house. So, does this mean of I were to take a 6-...
by Watty
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Newbie international traveler
Replies: 62
Views: 3199

Re: Newbie international traveler

Rick Steves has a bunch of info on traveling in Europe Look way over on the right side. Helped us a lot https://www.ricksteves.com/travel-forum If traveling by train look at https://www.seat61.com/ lots and lots to see there. He really can lay out a schedule to make train travel easy +1 On Rick Ste...
by Watty
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition
Replies: 80
Views: 5521

Re: Executor of Will - Selling House in Poor Condition

3) Get opinion of two realtors on "a" vs. "b" - point is not to over-analyze, but to complete a minimal "due diligence" so that we can move forward based on some external / objective / "expert" opinion I would do telephone interviews with at least six real estate agents to find one that would do a ...
by Watty
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it a no brainier to donate appreciated shares to a charity?
Replies: 13
Views: 1440

Re: Is it a no brainier to donate appreciated shares to a charity?

Some things to keep in mind; 1) The step up in capital gains for your estate might not always exist so you cannot really count on that. 2) The estate tax limits have changed many times and might be lower in the future. 3) The stock mutual fund generates dividends and capital gains distributions each...
by Watty
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trip to Central Asia. Do you need a CC?
Replies: 44
Views: 2203

Re: Trip to Central Asia. Do you need a CC?

lilyn20 wrote:
Mon Apr 15, 2019 6:13 pm
.....and I can probably use it in a major hospital.
This is important.

I don't know about those countries but I have heard stories about needing to prepay for medical care in some countries.
by Watty
Tue Apr 16, 2019 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buy a house or wait in bay area
Replies: 48
Views: 9625

Re: Buy a house or wait in bay area

....and we will be expanding the family next year. That could require expensive fertility treatments or adoption expenses. If the new kid has even moderate and temporary health issues that might make daycare difficult or impossible. It would be good to look at your numbers with just one income just...
by Watty
Mon Mar 11, 2019 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TSP in Retirement
Replies: 41
Views: 3823

Re: TSP in Retirement

Before I change my will to name my children named directly as secondary TSP beneficiaries, I will need to research to see if TSP funds can be transferred to an inherited IRA in ANOTHER institution as a non-taxable event after my death. I am not a tax pro but I am pretty sure that how the beneficiar...
by Watty
Sun Mar 10, 2019 11:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TSP in Retirement
Replies: 41
Views: 3823

Re: TSP in Retirement

You need to be sure to understand that the TSP inhertance rules are different from IRA inhertance rules and that they are much less favorable in some situations. Here is what I have posted on that before. Whenever someone post about having a large TSP I try to point out the inheritance problems that...
by Watty
Sat Mar 09, 2019 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?
Replies: 69
Views: 4837

Re: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?

For about the last five years I actually cut my 401k contributions back to be just enough to get the employer match so that I could start spending more on things like travel before I retired. Can you go more into your thinking about this? Besides wanting to spend more pre-retirement, what other fac...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 11:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I just buy the townhouse I'm currently renting
Replies: 33
Views: 2872

Re: Should I just buy the townhouse I'm currently renting

Even though you know the place you should still have an inspection since there could be issues you do not know about.
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 10:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the maximum I can spend on a car?
Replies: 36
Views: 2886

Re: What is the maximum I can spend on a car?

The purchase price is just one componet of the total cost of car ownership. It would be good to look at all the costs over the next ten years to find out what car buying stragety will give you the best results. Some cars are safer than others so you also have to consider what the safety is worth to ...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: simple will for a catastrophic event
Replies: 88
Views: 3196

Re: simple will for a catastrophic event

In addition to the will you also need to have all the related paperwork that will control who will make medical decisions for you if you are incapacitated. Likewise if you are in a coma someone will need to manage your finances for you so someone needs to have the power of attourney paperwork. These...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your Opinions on a Masters in Information Systems & Business Analytics
Replies: 17
Views: 983

Re: Your Opinions on a Masters in Information Systems & Business Analytics

3. As hiring managers, would the combination of experience in IT and a topical Masters make you more likely to hire a candidate over one without a Masters? I was not a hiring manager before I retired and I am more familiar with Computer Science degrees but one problem with getting a masters in Comp...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?
Replies: 69
Views: 4837

Re: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?

One thing that has not been mentioned is that as your retirement accounts get large your future contributions may be very small compared to how much the value of your accounts change each year. Before I retired I had got a 3% 401k match with a 6% contribution so it always made sense to contribute th...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I rebalance for tax efficiency and/or extend retirement age?
Replies: 8
Views: 763

Re: Should I rebalance for tax efficiency and/or extend retirement age?

1. I am assuming a living budget at $150 K net/yr once we retire. Should we ramp up savings or reallocate investments to minimize tax burden in the future? A couple of points. 1) If you need $150K net then you will likely need something like $200K before taxes so be sure to budget for that. 2) Be s...
by Watty
Fri Mar 08, 2019 1:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?
Replies: 69
Views: 4837

Re: When were you able to max out your 401k, IRAs?

That is sort of a trick question since the contribution limits have gotten a lot larger over the years and 401k's only really became common about 20 years ago in the late 1990's so before then few people had access to a 401k. I retired a few years ago and I was never able to max out my 401k and IRA ...
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Puzzled: How to add more bonds+international after running out of tax-advantaged room?
Replies: 15
Views: 1541

Re: Puzzled: How to add more bonds+international after running out of tax-advantaged room?

~$500k in Vanguard Treasury MM Fund (VUSXX) - first home down payment (want to buy within 1 year) Since you are in such a high tax bracket I would take a hard look at using any additional money and the funds in the taxable account to pay more on the house. That could get you to the point where you ...
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to prepare for retirement?
Replies: 11
Views: 1929

Re: How to prepare for retirement?

How can you prepare psychologically? I had one year in my 50's when I went to three funerals of people that were more or less my age. I was not real close to any of them but it does get you thinking. I have also seen several relative that naturally slowed down by the time they were in their early t...
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Very small inherited IRA question
Replies: 11
Views: 1045

Re: Very small inherited IRA question

One other thing I thought of is that you might be charged an account closing fee of maybe $75 to $150 dollars so you should check their fee schedule before you close the account. I don't know if you can get around that by withdrawing $499 dollars or asking them to waive that since the account is so ...
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical and Living in Germany
Replies: 32
Views: 2454

Re: Medical and Living in Germany

One other thing is to look into how care in the US will be handled if you have to come back for on short notice for a family emergency or a routine visit.
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Pension or lump sum?
Replies: 35
Views: 2529

Re: Pension or lump sum?

Pensioner wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 8:15 am
The SS train has left the station so that option is off the table.
I am not sure what the current rules are since there have been some changes but if you change your mind about Social Security you can likely suspend it.
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Recent Death of Father and Looking At Life Insurance Payout Options
Replies: 25
Views: 1982

Re: Recent Death of Father and Looking At Life Insurance Payout Options

jt123 wrote:
Thu Mar 07, 2019 12:39 pm
So there is not a need for income now.
That makes the lump sum choice easy.

If she needs the income later then buying a single premium immediate annunity(SPIA) would be a reasonable option to consider then.
by Watty
Thu Mar 07, 2019 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Very small inherited IRA question
Replies: 11
Views: 1045

Re: Very small inherited IRA question

If you elegible for an IRA or 401k that you would not otherwise be maxing out you can contribute an additional $500 to that account and it will usually offset the inherited IRA withdrawl when you do your taxes.
by Watty
Wed Mar 06, 2019 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Pension or lump sum?
Replies: 35
Views: 2529

Re: Pension or lump sum?

You might want to edit your post to take the company name out of it. One thing to check on is that sometimes things like retiree health benefits will be linked to taking the pension option so if you take the lump sum you might lose that. I am 66, spouse is 61.. Low seven figures in 401k. ..... SS pr...
by Watty
Wed Mar 06, 2019 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Did you diversify companies when buying annuities? Which companies are safest?
Replies: 9
Views: 671

Re: Did you diversify companies when buying annuities? Which companies are safest?

Why do you want to give up control of your funds rather than manage them yourself? Insurance companies may fee-away a nice chunk of that IRA. A SPIA can make a lot of sense in right situation especially if it is only one part of a larger portfolio so people can safely spend a higher percentage of t...
by Watty
Wed Mar 06, 2019 12:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security Question
Replies: 9
Views: 757

Re: Social Security Question

I plugged in you being 66 and your spouse being 70 into opensocialsecurity.com at several levels of PIA for you and zero PIA for your spouse and it always came up with you both filing immediately as best. The increase in PV was about $20k more than waiting until 70/74 if your PIA was $2500. That is...
by Watty
Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Winning the robo spam wars
Replies: 35
Views: 1852

Re: Winning the robo spam wars

After I press 1, an Indian gentlemen called Steve, or Dave, or Bill asks if I have any high interest rate credit cards. If you do that they will just sell your numbers as a phone number that gets to a live person and you will get even more spam calls. We just don't answer the phone. Lately I have b...
by Watty
Wed Mar 06, 2019 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice at 60
Replies: 52
Views: 4790

Re: Advice at 60

Looking back over this thread one thing to keep in mind is that you have a net worth that is the better part of a million dollars, likely have a good work history so you should get a good Social Security check someday, and from what you have said it sounds like you are in relatively good health. Man...