Search found 204 matches

by PugetSoundguy
Tue Dec 11, 2018 11:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Desktop Computer. All in one or separate? And which one?
Replies: 16
Views: 767

Re: Desktop Computer. All in one or separate? And which one?

I splurged on a 27" iMac. Love it. But maybe not optimal for gaming... I use it primarily for photos (Lightroom). Display quality is unbelievable.. and silent.
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Dec 06, 2018 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: California 8 days road trip LA-SFO
Replies: 40
Views: 2101

Re: California 8 days road trip LA-SFO

Former San Francisco resident here and parent of two active boys. Good suggestions above. When we last visited San Francisco (a December trip), our two boys loved visiting the various abandoned military batteries and fortifications. (Mom and Dad liked it too.) They all overlook the Pacific, of cours...
by PugetSoundguy
Wed Nov 21, 2018 6:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What financial advice have you been most grateful for?
Replies: 50
Views: 4223

Re: What financial advice have you been most grateful for?

I am especially grateful for these three pieces of advice:

Figure our your risk tolerance.
Simplify with just a few low cost index funds.
And then stay the course, i.e., don't try to time the market.

In other words, what Taylor says.
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Nov 12, 2018 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Diversifying term life insurance providers
Replies: 12
Views: 801

Re: Diversifying term life insurance providers

I have never heard of a company defaulting on payment of a valid death claim. Can you provide a source? A very good question, and I don't yet have a complete and satisfactory answer. In my earlier post, I should have differentiated between insurance company "defaults" and "failures," with an actual...
by PugetSoundguy
Sun Nov 11, 2018 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 20th Anniversary vacation ideas wanted
Replies: 29
Views: 1911

Re: 20th Anniversary vacation ideas wanted

Thank you all. These are great ideas! Will post when we finally figure it out!
Hey Kimota! We have our 20th coming up next year as well. Looking forward to hearing about your decision!
by PugetSoundguy
Sun Nov 11, 2018 8:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Diversifying term life insurance providers
Replies: 12
Views: 801

Re: Diversifying term life insurance providers

I think it would be unwise to have this much coverage depend on the solvency of one insurance company. Life insurance defaults are rare, but they do happen. Quasi-insurance coverage by various "pools" can vary. In my state it is $500,000.
by PugetSoundguy
Sun Nov 11, 2018 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Revisiting Earthquake Insurance Deductible
Replies: 1
Views: 189

Re: Revisiting Earthquake Insurance Deductible

You might want to check around to see if you can get better "Loss of Use" coverage. Our "Loss of Use" covers "actual loss sustained" (no deductible) for up to 24 months. Otherwise our deductible is 10%. If there is a big earthquake, it could take forever for our house to be repaired, and meanwhile w...
by PugetSoundguy
Sun Nov 11, 2018 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Point and shoot camera
Replies: 130
Views: 6176

Re: Point and shoot camera

I've had three Canon point and shoots over the years (in addition to other cameras :beer ) and have been very happy with them. Above I suggested the super tough and waterproof Olympus point and shoots for travel. I have the TG-4. But those are $400+ and that might be more than you want to spend. I w...
by PugetSoundguy
Sat Nov 10, 2018 11:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: International Travel during Maternity/Paternity
Replies: 86
Views: 3669

Re: International Travel during Maternity/Paternity

The problem is that you don't know if you are going to have an easy baby like Obgraham's or one (like one of mine) who sucks every last bit of energy out of you, mind, body and spirit. An infant/baby/toddler who cries all day long and sleeps poorly can turn a "vacation" into a living hell due to la...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Point and shoot camera
Replies: 130
Views: 6176

Re: Point and shoot camera

I have too many cameras, but accumulating them is kind of a hobby. Here is one decent point and shoot: https://www.amazon.com/Olympus-Waterpro ... 73ea7b9899 The cool thing -- water proof. But yeah, $400. I bought an Olympus TG-4 a few years ago and it is great for travel. It is waterproof and tough...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA rollover vs. transfer
Replies: 9
Views: 439

Re: IRA rollover vs. transfer

Thanks everybody, I think I'll take one more stab at getting Union Bank to approve the paperwork I send to Vanguard for a transfer; if there is friction, I'll try to get Union Bank to make out a check as described above and then do the rollover myself by sending that check to Vanguard. Just to be fa...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA rollover vs. transfer
Replies: 9
Views: 439

Re: IRA rollover vs. transfer

Just because the Vanguard form has a place for a Medallion Signature, doesn't mean that it is required. The firm that is giving up the money is the one to decide if it's required. I think you should follow Vanguard's directions and don't worry about the MS. If Union Bank objects to completed Vangua...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 3:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA rollover vs. transfer
Replies: 9
Views: 439

Re: IRA rollover vs. transfer

I believe such transfers are limited to one per year for all your IRA accounts. So, you would not be able to do another one for a year.
Didn't know that, thank you!
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 2:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: IRA rollover vs. transfer
Replies: 9
Views: 439

IRA rollover vs. transfer

We have been attempting to transfer a relatively small IRA from Union Bank to Vanguard. The funds are in a Union Bank IRA money market. They were automatically transferred from a prior employer because the amount was relatively small ($10,000 or so). My question is whether there is any significant d...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 09, 2018 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite "free stuff"?
Replies: 137
Views: 10888

Re: Favorite "free stuff"?

Bananas from Amazon. For some reason, Amazon gives away bananas every morning outside one of their office buildings that I walk past on my way to work. You don't have to be an Amazon employee (I'm not). I'm very suspicious and am still looking for the catch. Maybe an implanted mircrochip to monitor ...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Nov 08, 2018 6:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Harvesting 529 gains
Replies: 8
Views: 666

Re: Harvesting 529 gains

It looks like distributions from 529 accounts with earnings (such as yours) are characterized as part earnings, part contribution per IRS rules. In other words, you don't get to characterize a partial withdrawal as 100% earnings, even if there would be enough earnings in the account to cover such a ...
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Nov 05, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are we in trouble?
Replies: 106
Views: 12884

Re: Are we in trouble?

I never understand when someone is moving to a new state...why on earth they do not rent for a year? I agree in many, maybe most, situations that makes sense. In fact it is what my wife and I did (pre-kids) when we moved to a new state. Another move may be in our future. But now we have kids in sch...
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Nov 05, 2018 2:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bond alternative to balance portfolio?
Replies: 24
Views: 2113

Re: Bond alternative to balance portfolio?

Is it the interest rate risk that concerns you about bonds?

If so, you may consider short duration treasury bills, money market funds, CDs, online savings accounts, or I-bonds (up to $10,000 per year) if immediate liquidity is not required since there is a one-year holding period for I-bonds.
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Nov 05, 2018 11:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Duration matching with TIPS funds instead of buying individual TIPs
Replies: 16
Views: 1283

Re: Duration matching with TIPS funds instead of buying individual TIPs

Or you could buy a 10-year TIPS and put the interest payments into Vanguard's short-term TIPS fund. A bonus of this approach is that the expense ratio would be 0 for a large part of your investment, although simplicity is what would drive me to this approach.
by PugetSoundguy
Sat Nov 03, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help...90-10, 80-10-10, HELOC?
Replies: 11
Views: 750

Re: Help...90-10, 80-10-10, HELOC?

Our current home is for sale Maybe my understanding is incorrect, but I though many (most?) lenders are reluctant to write new HELOCs on houses that are listed for sale. If you have an established line already, then no problem. We used the 80/15 with 5 percent down back in the go-go days (2006) and...
by PugetSoundguy
Sat Nov 03, 2018 9:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Deferred Compensation Program?
Replies: 18
Views: 1300

Re: Deferred Compensation Program?

Good discussion here and a helpful, succinct presentation of your situation. We struggled with similar issues and my wife has participated in her company's deferred compensation plan. It can provide useful additional tax-deferred space, but some features make us nervous. As noted above, in case of i...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 02, 2018 4:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does a 529 plan make sense for single 37-year-old with no children?
Replies: 6
Views: 681

Re: Does a 529 plan make sense for single 37-year-old with no children?

IRS Publication 970 provides very clear and succinct background on the issues you raise.
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 02, 2018 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Term life insurance question
Replies: 4
Views: 326

Re: Term life insurance question

You could also look in to Costco’s life insurance which has a similar feature and (at least for the initial term) was the lowest priced option on the market when I looked. Great suggestion, thanks. I will check with Costco. I assume you are accounting for inflation (but mentioning it just in case)....
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 02, 2018 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Term life insurance question
Replies: 4
Views: 326

Term life insurance question

I am wondering if anyone has purchased a term life insurance policy or policies where declining coverage is desired. My wife and I are looking to replace our existing policies. Ideally, we are looking for $1 million coverage each for 10 years, with maybe $250,000 coverage for five years after that. ...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Nov 02, 2018 10:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: ROTH IRA - Bonds or Equities
Replies: 13
Views: 1248

Re: ROTH IRA - Bonds or Equities

The conventional approach is to put mostly equities in a Roth due to the greater potential for long-term tax-free gains. Hard to argue with that. But for me, I am about 60-40 in the Roth with the 40 percent bonds being TIPS because inflation-adjusted bonds are not an option in my other tax-advantage...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Nov 01, 2018 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many of you have cut the cord?
Replies: 244
Views: 28171

Re: How many of you have cut the cord?

is there a service yet that you can pay a low monthly or on demand fee to stream sports events on national networks, espn, and local networks in full HD? If I can do this Im cancelling my cable without hesitation. The local sports networks seem to be the problem, at least here in Seattle. I would p...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Nov 01, 2018 12:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I Bond fixed rate = 0.5%
Replies: 86
Views: 7799

Re: I Bond fixed rate = 0.5%

The tax deferral aspect is huge for people like me who are in a very high tax bracket and who plan on retiring early in a no tax state at a much lower tax bracket. Being in a lower federal income tax bracket will help when you redeem the bonds, but being in a no tax state does not matter because in...
by PugetSoundguy
Wed Oct 17, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to complain about Hertz bait-and-switch?
Replies: 58
Views: 6085

Re: Best way to complain about Hertz bait-and-switch?

Yes, car rental agencies are hard core criminals for the most part and I have plenty of experience to back that up. But, once in a great while, they are OK so I have to tell this quick story. It was the early 1990s and I flew into Dulles to visit my youngest brother and his family in Charlottesville...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Oct 11, 2018 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How important is it that dentist is member of ADA?
Replies: 13
Views: 1285

Re: How important is it that dentist is member of ADA?

If dentistry is at all like medicine then not at all. My wife is a family physician and gets almost as many spam mailings from the AMA trying to get her to join as I now get from AARP and AAA since turning 50. None of her colleagues in the HMO she works with are AMA members. She says it's more for ...
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Oct 09, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Short Term Bond yield over 3%
Replies: 74
Views: 10633

Re: Short Term Bond yield over 3%

KlangFool wrote: ↑Tue Oct 09, 2018 4:06 pm OP, Please explain to me why folks are paying off the fixed-rate low-interest mortgage when the interest rate is going up. At the rate of interest rate increases, cash in the money market fund may pay a higher interest rate than their mortgages in the futu...
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Sep 18, 2018 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Equity in house / Do you use it?
Replies: 56
Views: 3605

Re: Equity in house / Do you use it?

If by using home equity you mean a home equity loan, aren't you really just asking: Do you borrow a bunch of money and agree to give up your house if you can't pay it back?
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Side Hustle Options/Suggestions.
Replies: 99
Views: 10447

Re: Side Hustle Options/Suggestions.

sports referee. basketball, volleyball, and lacrosse are good. get exercise etc... the money is made on the weekends though. b-ball on the weekends in the winter is o.k. here in chicago though. gets you off the couch on cold winter days. a lot of people don't claim this income as long as you don't ...
by PugetSoundguy
Sat Sep 08, 2018 8:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good photo book printer for image quality
Replies: 24
Views: 1617

Re: Good photo book printer for image quality

LifeIsGood wrote:
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:43 am
I’ve been using Adoramapix for quite a few years and really like them.

Lay flat books
Nice quality thick paper
Easy web based design interface
Reasonable prices
Good customer service
Another vote for Adoramapix. Great results over the years. They are real pros.
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Minivan for family of 4.
Replies: 34
Views: 3005

Re: Minivan for family of 4.

We have a family of four and our 2010 Toyota Sienna minivan has worked out perfectly for us for the last eight years. On a vacation this summer, we rented a Pacifica minivan (not a hybrid). I was surprised at the quality, having rented a Chrysler minivan a few years ago and having been somewhat disa...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lock Suitcases on International Flight or Not?
Replies: 32
Views: 2796

Re: Lock Suitcases on International Flight or Not?

I just use nail clippers. One in my pocket, also one in an unlocked pouch on the outside of the bag in case an overzealous TSA person takes the clippers from me. Has worked for years.
by PugetSoundguy
Thu Aug 16, 2018 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lock Suitcases on International Flight or Not?
Replies: 32
Views: 2796

Re: Lock Suitcases on International Flight or Not?

We just use disposable cable ties so the zipper on the bag won't accidentally slide open. Easy enough for the Customs/security people to clip if they need to look inside the bag.
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Jun 04, 2018 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?
Replies: 276
Views: 15449

Re: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?

Thanks coach. By the way, I am in awe of my kids' teachers. I don't know how they do it. It truly is a calling.
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Jun 04, 2018 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?
Replies: 276
Views: 15449

Re: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?

I think you do a great job highlighting the difference between knowledge and wisdom here especially for our younger and more impressionable readers. The OP obviously is very adept at the knowledge side, judging from his previous academic accomplishments and his career. It seems glaring to me howeve...
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Jun 04, 2018 12:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?
Replies: 276
Views: 15449

Re: Can a Retired 60 yo MD, MBA Start a Law Career?

I went to law school at night at a middle-ranked state school because I wasn't sure I wanted to give up my other career. I was an "older" student -- all of age 28 when I started! But to be fair there were a few students in their 40s. It worked out and I switched to law. A few years later, I was a vo...
by PugetSoundguy
Wed May 23, 2018 4:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Trend: Bonds in Roth IRA
Replies: 16
Views: 2903

Re: New Trend: Bonds in Roth IRA

One reason I have some bonds in a Roth is because the particular form of bonds (TIPS) is not available in my other tax-advantaged accounts. Others who have tax-advantaged accounts that may have somewhat restricted offerings, such as employer-sponsored 401k plans or the federal Thrift Savings Plan, m...
by PugetSoundguy
Tue May 08, 2018 6:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which City to spend 4-6 weeks?
Replies: 48
Views: 5505

Re: Which City to spend 4-6 weeks?

Paris. We just can't get enough of that city. Meets all your criteria except maybe not as bicycle friendly as some. But you've been there so you can evaluate that. Rail center of Europe. Fabulous daytrips in every direction. We even got a screaming deal on train tickets to London so did a London day...
by PugetSoundguy
Thu May 03, 2018 11:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Better Inflation Protection: Vanguard REIT, TIAA Real Estate or Schwab Fundamental Global REIT?
Replies: 10
Views: 1140

Re: Better Inflation Protection: Vanguard REIT, TIAA Real Estate or Schwab Fundamental Global REIT?

Maybe those options will handle inflation, maybe they won't. Nobody knows. Why not just increase your exposure to TIPS, which will absolutely handle inflation since that is your concern?
by PugetSoundguy
Thu May 03, 2018 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Receiving house after parents pass away - legal issues with siblings?
Replies: 35
Views: 3874

Re: Receiving house after parents pass away - legal issues with siblings?

Far better to spend a little bit on a lawyer right now rather than spending lots and lots on lawyers later.
by PugetSoundguy
Mon Apr 23, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rebating buyer's agent for 1st time single-family home purchase
Replies: 40
Views: 3526

Re: Rebating buyer's agent for 1st time single-family home purchase

About 10 years ago we found a house we liked but at that moment did not have a buyer's agent. A colleague suggested an agent that he had used. We called her and she was happy to negotiate a rebate since we had already found a house. She was incredibly helpful in negotiating and closing the deal (it ...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds vs. Fixed/Guaranteed Income
Replies: 21
Views: 2695

Re: Bonds vs. Fixed/Guaranteed Income

My overriding question is: should we incorporate cds/treasuries in our fixed income component for diversity and stability, even though we don't need the guarantee? In my mind this is not a kind of bucket system (although I guess it might be considered such). And as Livesoft has indicated, this is n...
by PugetSoundguy
Fri Apr 20, 2018 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another discussion about private vs public schools?
Replies: 79
Views: 5405

Re: Another discussion about private vs public schools?

Hi BuckyBadger: First, congratulations! You are going to have so much fun. Second, one of the recurring themes here with which I agree is that you have time to see how things develop. Yes, the time will go by quickly but you do have a few years. One thing an earlier poster said that turned out to be...
by PugetSoundguy
Wed Apr 18, 2018 1:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wealthfront's Risk Parity Fund expense reduced
Replies: 5
Views: 819

Re: Wealthfront's Risk Parity Fund expense reduced

car733 wrote:
Wed Apr 18, 2018 1:31 pm
We want to share that success with you in the same way Vanguard does because we believe it’s the right thing to do.
Unless fund participants now own the company, they are not doing it at all the "same way Vanguard does." Something seems sketchy about this whole explanation.
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: underwater camera advice
Replies: 18
Views: 1096

Re: underwater camera advice

I have a TG-5 and it's awesome, a big improvement from the TG-4. It uses a standard micro-USB charger cable so it's compatible with almost any charger or external battery pack, plus its internal swappable battery has a reasonably long life. Didn't know they got rid of the silly proprietary plug. Go...
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: underwater camera advice
Replies: 18
Views: 1096

Re: underwater camera advice

I have used an Olympus TG-4 for a couple of years. The newer version is the TG-5, about $400. Not cheap, but it really is waterproof, is tough generally, and also is a good pocket camera for more conventional shots. You could always sell it on eBay after using it. Suggestions if you get it: At least...
by PugetSoundguy
Tue Apr 17, 2018 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Europe- Zurich<->Paris- 10 days
Replies: 34
Views: 2948

Re: Europe- Zurich<->Paris- 10 days

Whether it makes sense to try to fit in Swiss mountains depends on when folks are arriving at Zurich and Paris. For a quick recommendation of Swiss mountains, I would head to the Berner Oberland area (Interlaken is the main train station for that region). It looks to be about a 2 to 2.5 hour train t...