Search found 16136 matches

by Watty
Tue Jun 25, 2019 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help choose COLA Pension or Not
Replies: 9
Views: 305

Re: Help choose COLA Pension or Not

One thing he should do before deciding is to have a really good physical and to ask his doctor if there are any other test that they would recommend even if his insurance will not pay for it. If he is in better than average health for someone his age that would make the cola version more attractive ...
by Watty
Tue Jun 25, 2019 11:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retired: Don't want to outlive my funds
Replies: 27
Views: 1414

Re: Retired: Don't want to outlive my funds

Now we get down to what to do with the 1 million 401k money. I am thinking of putting it in CD's. Please don't cringe. Ok, so it's only 2%, but it is SAFE and 2% of a million dollars isn't chump change. However, the RMD is going to chew up most of that. Can you see the quandary I'm in? I don't see ...
by Watty
Tue Jun 25, 2019 5:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Research Paper on Inflation
Replies: 7
Views: 1008

Re: Vanguard Research Paper on Inflation

In the day, ibonds had a fierce following here. In fact they still do. If a couple can buy the maximum ibonds for say 15 years, that's $300k. That's significant. If they have surplus assets can do so in retirement as well. You will find lots of ibond fans here. Back "in the day" you could get iBond...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 11:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Going to Ireland in July
Replies: 11
Views: 604

Re: Going to Ireland in July

I will use credit card as much as possible. Should I expect problems with using a US issued chip card? I don't really remember my cc PIN. Is it important to have a PIN for Ireland? Do taxies in Dublin take cc? Any experience with using Uber in Dublin? Here is the Rick Steves money web page. https:/...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 11:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excluding International All Together?
Replies: 39
Views: 2292

Re: Excluding International All Together?

Compared to a lot of posters here I am not a prolific international traveler but I have taken a couple of trips over the last few years and being oversea recently really makes it easy to see how strong the dollar is right now. Even ten years ago it was not nearly this strong. One of the pitfalls in ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re Buying a higher miles but higher end used vehicle... where?
Replies: 12
Views: 1148

Re: Re Buying a higher miles but higher end used vehicle... where?

One milestone in safety features which seem to be a real good thing to have is ESC, especially in cars with a high center of gravity like SUVs. ESC became standard in 2012. Before that it varied a lot as to which cars had it or not but a lot of pre-2012 cars had ESC especially higher end cars. https...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Triage in ER - charged $790
Replies: 60
Views: 3777

Re: Triage in ER - charged $790

There is a long thread by the well known poster, "White Coat Investor" who is an emergency room doctor which is titled "How to Minimize Your Emergency Care Expenses".

If you have not seen that you should read at least the first post.

viewtopic.php?f=2&t=238610
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you lower your annual expenses?
Replies: 59
Views: 3873

Re: How did you lower your annual expenses?

How did you lower your annual expenses?
By not letting them get high in the first place.

For a long time when I was in my 30s I committed to myself to save half of any future raises. Since I never got used to the extra money I never increased my spending.
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: for those of you who sold a home...
Replies: 24
Views: 3019

Re: for those of you who sold a home...

2. A quality agent wants to know the remaining mortgage amount to assure themselves that they are not getting into a short sale situation. Rightfully, they don’t want to try and sell a home that’s worth $100,000 if there’s $150,000 loan against it. All this hush-hush about the mortgage amount is a ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 8:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying Parent's Home Below Market
Replies: 28
Views: 2512

Re: Buying Parent's Home Below Market

I have told her how much she’d make if she sold it to a third party for market value and have suggested she speak to an attorney if she were really interested in selling, to me or to anyone. So regardless of what ideas I might have, nothing would transpire without a discussion and a lawyer. It woul...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chrysler Pacifica - Yes or No
Replies: 29
Views: 1666

Re: Chrysler Pacifica - Yes or No

Would likely buy pre-owned with under 30k miles and spend less than $25k OTD. Just FYI, you can normally buy the manufacturer's extended warranty up until the original warranty expires, but you might want to check if you can still do that if you are not the original owner. Normally buying extended ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Big mess (inheritance, taxes, social security, more)
Replies: 9
Views: 1265

Re: Big mess (inheritance, taxes, social security, more)

One thing to look up is how long a debt is collectable in his state. After a while a debt becomes uncollectible even if debt collectors still try to collect it. He would need to be careful that he does not do anything like even pay a dollar on the debt because that can restart the clock. Income was ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying Parent's Home Below Market
Replies: 28
Views: 2512

Re: Buying Parent's Home Below Market

Is there a way to accomplish this goal that is fair to my siblings? This gets tricky since fair may not be the same as equal, there was a thread a while back where different amounts to different kids based on their need was discussed. Defining "fair" is also difficult when on sibling has taken care...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Belt sander or disc sander for refinishing decks?
Replies: 25
Views: 1695

Re: Belt sander or disc sander for refinishing decks?

Both are constructed with 2x6 pressure treated deck boards that have what I think is solid-color stain that is peeling and flaking off in places and there are a few boards that are so rotted they need to be pulled out and replaced. Be sure to look into the risk of the dust if you sand down the pres...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tangled Portfolio Review – Looking to Streamline
Replies: 18
Views: 737

Re: Tangled Portfolio Review – Looking to Streamline

1. What's the best way to approach streamlining here? A three fund portfolio https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Three-fund_portfolio 2. How do I minimize tax hit for changing funds in non-retirement accounts? a) Set all the mutual funds to not automatically reinvest the dividends and captial gains dist...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Frugal or cheap?
Replies: 104
Views: 7771

Re: Frugal or cheap?

PS: where'd you get a $180k house, didn't know they made those anymore In probably 80% of the country you can still get an acceptable starter home for $180K or less since that is about 70% of the national median selling price of $254,800. In many areas you would not even need to go to the very low ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal retirement benefits/ court order
Replies: 15
Views: 1441

Re: Federal retirement benefits/ court order

There are two separate issues here. 1. What would happen upon the Federal employee's death. Federal employees and their spouses must decide prior to retirement whether the spouse will receive a full, reduced, or no survivor annuity. For anything less than a full survivor annuity, including no annui...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 10:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LG Washer - Try to Fix or Buy New?
Replies: 10
Views: 420

Re: LG Washer - Try to Fix or Buy New?

The first thing I would do would be to Google the exact model number and several things like 'Loud' or 'sound' to see if you can get any suggestions for a quick fix. You can also check the owners manual and you should be able to find that on line too. It could be something as simple as the washing m...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Social Security - does payoff amount change if I stop contributing?
Replies: 6
Views: 697

Re: Social Security - does payoff amount change if I stop contributing?

I don't really understand them but there are special rules for non-US citizens that are living outside of the US and what that means for their spouses to be able to receive a survivor benefit. The rules will vary depending on what country you and any spouse are a citizen of and what country you are ...
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying new construction inventory home. Seemingly standard feature appears missing. What to do?
Replies: 41
Views: 2388

Re: Buying new construction inventory home. Seemingly standard feature appears missing. What to do?

WhyNotUs wrote:
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:06 am
It is not clear what a window seat means in this case. If it is tied to the structure and extends from the face of the house it won't be added during punch list.
+1

If it is some sort of Bay window that would be difficult to add at this phase even if they wanted to.
by Watty
Mon Jun 24, 2019 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying new construction inventory home. Seemingly standard feature appears missing. What to do?
Replies: 41
Views: 2388

Re: Buying new construction inventory home. Seemingly standard feature appears missing. What to do?

The marketing materials and what is on the web site really don't mean a lot so you should focus on what was in your contract. Be sure to also know what the cost of your "plan b" is if you walk from this deal. Even if you get your earnest money back there are a lot of other costs you will not get bac...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Semi-Early Retirees: 401K to Roth IRA Conversions (Should I or Shouldn't I?)
Replies: 21
Views: 1887

Re: Semi-Early Retirees: 401K to Roth IRA Conversions (Should I or Shouldn't I?)

What do you think? Is this a good idea? We would like to leave the Roth IRA to our kids for inheritance. Your kids may very well be in a lower tax bracket than 24% federal and 9% state especially if they move to a state with lower or no state income taxes. Under the current tax law they could also ...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you approach tipping at carry-out restaurants
Replies: 111
Views: 7130

Re: How do you approach tipping at carry-out restaurants

Paying cash for takeout is one way to get around the credit card prompt for how much you want to tip.
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sale of elderly parents' home
Replies: 42
Views: 2850

Re: Sale of elderly parents' home

If the Does your dad have a life insurance policy? As others have noted, I would sorry about what happens if your dad predecessors your mom which is far more likely than the opposite. She would have a net worth of around $2.2 million dollars. A lot of it might be in home equity but there are lots of...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Developer-hired engineer inspection of neighborhood houses
Replies: 6
Views: 680

Re: Developer-hired engineer inspection of neighborhood houses

If you are adjacent to the house that is being demolished then you might want to ask the developer of they would be interested in buying your house too. If they can build two houses on one lot then with two adjacent lots there is a chance that they might be able build 5 houses so your property could...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card
Replies: 9
Views: 802

Re: Marriott Bonvoy Bold Card

Just FYI, when you stay four nights with Marriott points you get the fifth night free.

Within the last year or so it seems like they have really increased the number of points that you need to stay a night so I will likely cancel mine before the next annual fee is due.
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sale of elderly parents' home
Replies: 42
Views: 2850

Re: Sale of elderly parents' home

I'm familiar with recasts and am curious why that would be your preference. They don't really need the cashflow while my Dad is alive, do they? Investing the money and getting an after tax investing return that is higher than 3.5% is harder than it sounds because they will have a sequence of return...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sale of elderly parents' home
Replies: 42
Views: 2850

Re: Sale of elderly parents' home

I agree that having that expensive of a house is not ideal but as long as there is a lot of home equity they may be able to get a reverse mortage if it is needed. The OPs location is listed as "SFBA" which I assume is the San Francisco Bay area so a million dollar+ home may not be all that fancy. So...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review Needed for Near Retiree.
Replies: 8
Views: 1008

Re: Portfolio Review Needed for Near Retiree.

Have meeting w advisor this week Just for grins ask them; 1) Do you have a fiduciary responsibility to me? 2) In addition to the 1.5% fee could you explain any other fees, loads, and the expense ratios of my investments? Try to get their responses in writing since they will sometimes lie or give mi...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sale of elderly parents' home
Replies: 42
Views: 2850

Re: Sale of elderly parents' home

DD receives $7k/m pension for as long as he is alive and $2k SS. A big question is what will happen to the the pension and Social Security if either of them dies? If your mom will then get a reduced, or no pension that could be a big problem. One option that people sometimes don't know about is tha...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: roofer randomly showing up to home
Replies: 28
Views: 763

Re: roofer randomly showing up to home

I would write this roofing company off. You really want a roofing company that has their own crews and does their own work and does not use some random subcontractor. I found this out the hard way, the subcontractor didn't even attempt(or know how) to do the job right so the roof warranty is not val...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Frugal or cheap?
Replies: 104
Views: 7771

Re: Frugal or cheap?

Thanks all! House was built in 1963 and we have done upgrades cosmetically ourselves for relatively cheap. The house as is would probably sell around the 250ish range, but we like the location and are not looking to move. We have considered buying elsewhere but waterfront equivalent in a different ...
by Watty
Sun Jun 23, 2019 12:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio review and general early retirement advice
Replies: 11
Views: 1323

Re: Portfolio review and general early retirement advice

1. How is our progress towards early retirement? We're currently putting $1500/month toward the car and student loans and expect to be done with those in a little over 2 years. I'm torn between paying these loans down quickly vs making contributions to 529/mortgage/taxable/savings/etc and having mo...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I buy a condo in Chicago?
Replies: 22
Views: 2596

Re: Should I buy a condo in Chicago?

Eventually I'd like to leave biglaw for a lower-paying gig, like a government job, and would like to lock down an affordable monthly payment now. I know what neighborhood I want to live in and am confident I want to stay long-term. A big question is how likely it is that your next job will be in a ...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Scared about investing large amount of money
Replies: 24
Views: 2375

Re: Scared about investing large amount of money

A standard recommendation with a windfall is to invest in something super safe for six months or a year while you get used to having the money and come up with a long term plan. https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Managing_a_windfall A few things that I suggest when people have posts like this; 1) If yo...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I refinance my mortgage?
Replies: 15
Views: 1273

Re: Should I refinance my mortgage?

Years ago I had a similar offer from my bank, Wells Fargo, and it worked out just fine. If I had wanted to do a full refinance and paid the fees I could have gotten a lower rate if I had paid for a full refinance but I was not sure that I would be in the house long enough to make that worthwhile. I ...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone knew the answer where the money is
Replies: 20
Views: 2852

Re: Anyone knew the answer where the money is

There are plenty of glitches and unnecessary delays but I another possibility is that there was something in the transfer that triggered a security flag to be raised and it went into some sort of secondary process that their fraud prevention department has set up. Often with security processes they ...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Worried about the future/not saving enough
Replies: 39
Views: 4739

Re: Worried about the future/not saving enough

You will get better suggestions about your situation if you post your information in using the suggested guideline for asking portfolio questions, but you don't need to follow it exactly.

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=6212
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Frugal or cheap?
Replies: 104
Views: 7771

Re: Frugal or cheap?

Bought in 2011 when the market was down, on the water close to work. Like the location and others on our street around 2500 sq ft have sold in the 300-350k range recently so not outpricing the neighborhood Even with that I would be real cautious about putting that much money into a house since hous...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 5:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suggestions for Wintering Over 2020
Replies: 14
Views: 1692

Re: Suggestions for Wintering Over 2020

Please suggest any known and pleasant watering holes....interests are hiking, live music, swimming and a bit of socializing. I'm a bit of a bohemian if that makes a difference. Short list: SW Florida and possibly, the Panhandle Most of north Florida including the panhandle will most likely not be w...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing to Oblivion
Replies: 39
Views: 2783

Re: Rebalancing to Oblivion

I know we can’t keep rebalancing into oblivion – so what might I do instead? We have most of our money invested in a target retirement account so it rebalances automatically daily we we do not even see it. This means that we never need to make any decisions about doing a big rebalance. Any of the L...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you approach tipping at carry-out restaurants
Replies: 111
Views: 7130

Re: How do you approach tipping at carry-out restaurants

Zero, for takeout, anyplace I order at the counter, or if I am expected to clear off my table.
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife considering returning to work
Replies: 33
Views: 3397

Re: Wife considering returning to work

Olemiss540 wrote:
Sat Jun 22, 2019 10:19 am
Why not just work on kid #2 now and then have her go back to work once they are in school?
That is a good point.

Any financial gains by her working now could quickly be lost if expensive fertility treatments are needed later.

Kids that are closer in age will usually play together better too.
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you Casino? What do you play? Have you won?
Replies: 82
Views: 4342

Re: Do you Casino? What do you play? Have you won?

The guy to my left had a big stack of chips before I sat and had a larger stack when I left. He didn't look impressed when I got up, but then...i also didn't see him in the private concierge area of the ship where we're staying (sorry for making that sound snooty). I don't know how common it is now...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 11:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bitcoin Talk
Replies: 16
Views: 1435

Re: Bitcoin Talk

I may be a bit of a simpleton but as far as I can see there are several reasons to be interested in Cryptocurrency; 1) As a speculation on the value of the cryptocurrencies vs the dollar. 2) As a stable store of value but they are far from stable. 3) As a good means of exchange, but we are not there...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife considering returning to work
Replies: 33
Views: 3397

Re: Wife considering returning to work

A big factor is what your wife wants to do since you could make it work either way. My wife wanted to be a stay at home parent so she ended up doing daycare in our home to help make that work out financially. She took care of one or two kids when my son was a toddler and since the other kids were ab...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help! Any Credit Card Rewards for Excellence Resorts (friend's wedding in Mexico)
Replies: 9
Views: 667

Re: Help! Any Credit Card Rewards for Excellence Resorts (friend's wedding in Mexico)

You should check the web sites like Expedia, they will often have discounted flight and hotel bundles. One trick is that if you want to stay there for three nights then also check for an additional night the day before or after you need to be there. There will sometimes be deals where you get the fo...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Are there any tips / best practices for an Inherited IRA?
Replies: 26
Views: 2223

Re: Are there any tips / best practices for an Inherited IRA?

That plan will reduce future RMDs from the Inherited IRA but increase the RMDs in the 401k by even more (since the 401K RMDs have more time to grow than the Inherited IRA withdrawals which are starting in the year after death). A better idea might be to contribute to a Roth 401k instead since you a...
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lightest weight backpack for laptop?
Replies: 35
Views: 1746

Re: Lightest weight backpack for laptop?

If weight is that critical then you might consider switching from a laptop to tablet if possible.
by Watty
Sat Jun 22, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone moved cross country. How did you manage to do it without going nuts??
Replies: 46
Views: 3709

Re: Anyone moved cross country. How did you manage to do it without going nuts??

One more thing, now would be a good time to scan/copy your most important family photos and have them someplace save when you are doing a the move since there is a risk that something could happen to them even if you plan on carrying them with you. Almost anything else can be replaced. I wouldn't mi...