Search found 103 matches

by Minty
Sun Dec 10, 2017 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your big-picture ‘rules of life’ —financial or otherwise?
Replies: 101
Views: 8458

Re: "Desidoreta"

lostinjersey: This is my favorite poem. It has helped me through life. It can do the same for you and your family. Desidoreta Best wishes. Taylor What a beautiful poem. It is indeed a beautiful poem. There is a very funny [IMHO] parody of it, Deteriorata , which I post to illustrate the life lesson...
by Minty
Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay taxes on free food?
Replies: 30
Views: 3134

Re: Pay taxes on free food?

Below is an excerpt from a law review article written by an FSU law professor. I have no idea if it is correct. I suspect it is, because there are a million articles about the taxability to recipients of airline frequent flyer miles, but none that I could find about the taxability to the recipient o...
by Minty
Sat Dec 09, 2017 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay taxes on free food?
Replies: 30
Views: 3134

Re: Pay taxes on free food?

I don't know. But I'm going to bet that free food (water bottles, pens, t-shirts) is a business gift that is not taxable to the recipient.
by Minty
Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do you have any guilty pleasure investments?
Replies: 53
Views: 2915

Re: Do you have any guilty pleasure investments?

Less than 1% of our portfolio is in high dividend index funds. They've done fine.
by Minty
Tue Dec 05, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vegas on a budget
Replies: 49
Views: 3631

Re: Vegas on a budget

Of all the burgers I've had (and I've had some) my favorite is at Smith & Wollensky. My experience is that even at dinner when it may not be on the menu they will serve it if you ask. Smith & Wollensky is gone. Thanks, I did not know that. But it is coming back supposedly. https://www.smithandwolle...
by Minty
Tue Dec 05, 2017 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vegas on a budget
Replies: 49
Views: 3631

Re: Vegas on a budget

Mon Ami Gabi is fun. Of all the burgers I've had (and I've had some) my favorite is at Smith & Wollensky. My experience is that even at dinner when it may not be on the menu they will serve it if you ask. A fun Italian joint, sort of in the "Old, Local-ish Vegas" vein of the Peppermill is Casa Di Am...
by Minty
Sun Dec 03, 2017 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: About to take out Term Life Insurance - Questions for Bogleheads
Replies: 11
Views: 1072

Re: About to take out Term Life Insurance - Questions for Bogleheads

I like White Coat Investor's post on life insurance. https://www.whitecoatinvestor.com/how-to-buy-life-insurance/ With $300,000 annual income, $1 million is not nearly enough. OP has no house or significant college savings, and it looks like the bulk of the savings is retirement, i.e., it will be ta...
by Minty
Sat Dec 02, 2017 6:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wellesley Fund gender diversity and climate focus
Replies: 9
Views: 1079

Re: Wellesley Fund gender diversity and climate focus

The academic analysis from Wharton cited by OP says that the studies show a small positive effect of gender diversity in corporate leadership. As a Boglehead, I welcome positive effects on returns small and large; they add up over time. I must admit, though, that I am biased; I believe there is stil...
by Minty
Sat Dec 02, 2017 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mint.com or PersonalCapital.com
Replies: 11
Views: 1013

Re: Mint.com or PersonalCapital.com

Mint, definitely Mint, and a spreadsheet to monitor investments.
by Minty
Fri Dec 01, 2017 11:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?
Replies: 114
Views: 7715

Re: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?

The Switzerland system provided a dual system where the high school student is paid for co-op education. It is one of the better models. KlangFool Absolutely, the US could offer a different system of support than it does, and that would IMHO be better. Other countries offer a much better system, an...
by Minty
Fri Dec 01, 2017 9:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?
Replies: 114
Views: 7715

Re: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?

Minty, Please note that not all college students graduated. The graduation rate varies greatly. So, when you say show me the numbers, do you consider those dropouts as part of the average? They had the student loans but no degrees. KlangFool KlangFool, If you are suggesting that not every high scho...
by Minty
Fri Dec 01, 2017 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?
Replies: 114
Views: 7715

Re: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?

Is there any reliable data suggesting that earning a college degree is economically inadvisable? I'd be eager to see it. Minty, Do you mean A) Paying 60K per year for 4 years and then work in a video rental store as a store clerk? Or B) Worked in college while studying my BSEE and MSEE. Graduated w...
by Minty
Fri Dec 01, 2017 8:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?
Replies: 114
Views: 7715

Re: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?

Is there any reliable data suggesting that earning a college degree is economically inadvisable? I'd be eager to see it.
by Minty
Fri Dec 01, 2017 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financial Advice Needed
Replies: 16
Views: 1135

Re: Financial Advice Needed

bubbadog wrote:
Fri Dec 01, 2017 1:52 pm
You are fine. Go ahead and deposit the money into your account.
I agree with this advice with the caveat that I assume OP has paid all required taxes. If not, OP should do so now, because a cash transaction report will be filed, and could lead to an inquiry.
by Minty
Sun Nov 26, 2017 1:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kidde fire extinguisher recall
Replies: 34
Views: 2565

Re: Kidde fire extinguisher recall

Thanks! All three of mine were recalled.

I hope members with actionable finance or consumer-related information like this will continue to post.
by Minty
Fri Oct 13, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many miles/years do you keep your car?
Replies: 108
Views: 7745

Re: How many miles/years do you keep your car?

'95 Accord, bought new, 220K
'04 Pilot, bought used at 232K from a friend who did all scheduled maintenance, 236K
'14 CRV, bought new, 110K.
by Minty
Sat Sep 30, 2017 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought a car without thinking too much about value
Replies: 45
Views: 4265

Re: I bought a car without thinking too much about value

I learned from posts here that there are Honda and Toyota dealers in various parts of the country selling manufacturer's extended warranties for a significant amount less than typical retail. So my vote would be cancel the warranty if OP can, and then either leave it be, or at least buy the same pro...
by Minty
Tue Sep 26, 2017 11:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is $9000 too much for a sectional sofa ?
Replies: 130
Views: 9515

Re: Is $9000 too much for a sectional sofa ?

I've just done a Google search, and if I did it correctly, I can affirm that there is a relevant pearl of wisdom that appears rarely on this forum, notwithstanding its merit: "If you have to ask, you can't afford it." (Attributed to J.P. Morgan.)
by Minty
Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spouse Money Management
Replies: 94
Views: 6565

Re: Spouse Money Management

I think we need more information. You are not married, engaged, or living together, she's living with her parents. So I am confused about why you should join finances or be responsible for each other's expenses. This is a common issue for married/otherwise permanent couples, but not, as I understand...
by Minty
Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home security advice
Replies: 15
Views: 1767

Re: Home security advice

Sorry to answer a different question, but there is a theory that buying a security alarm company sign on Ebay and putting it in front of your residence gets you most of the deterrent benefit for virtually no cost. Also, our household keeps most valuables in a bank box.
by Minty
Sun Sep 24, 2017 12:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Opinions on moving to VG
Replies: 19
Views: 1831

Re: Opinions on moving to VG

[Edited to correct error that ruralavalon noted--thanks] I was going to comment that if I had to move money today, I'd probably go to Fidelity. Fidelity's high-minimum international index fund has an ER of one basis point less than Vanguard's (FTIPX: 10 basis points; VTIAX: 11 basis points), and the...
by Minty
Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help consolidate accounts & 3-fund portfolio setup
Replies: 5
Views: 596

Re: Help consolidate accounts & 3-fund portfolio setup

~50% of our retirement is in a 403b at Fidelity (former employer). Should we retain the 403b for the extra bit of protection from creditors, or should we roll it to an IRA? Within the 403, the available funds that catch my eye are: FSKTX (total market index, 0.04 E/R), FSPNX (int'l index, 0.06 E/R)...
by Minty
Mon Sep 11, 2017 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I do 20 or 25 Year Term Life Insurance?
Replies: 49
Views: 3917

Re: Should I do 20 or 25 Year Term Life Insurance?

One anecdote: In an office of 50 professionals, with some coming and going every year, there were two premature deaths of parents of young children in the last 7 years. Their survivors were glad to have the insurance.
by Minty
Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying 4 years tuition for college to get discount?
Replies: 22
Views: 2555

Re: Paying 4 years tuition for college to get discount?

Another possibility is the Independent 529 plan. I understand the way it works is parents pay some or all of the expected costs now, and if a child later goes to any one of the 300 participating private schools, they get proportional credit based on the tuition at the time of contribution. On the ot...
by Minty
Sun Sep 10, 2017 11:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: University of California Retirement Plan Proprietary Funds
Replies: 7
Views: 880

Re: University of California Retirement Plan Proprietary Funds

Thanks, everyone, for the helpful comments. I feel a tiny bit like I am putting all my eggs in one basket by having UC employment and UC retirement savings. However, I know the the actual assets in the UC 403(b) funds are held by third parties, just like any other 403(b), so it is not like having a ...
by Minty
Sat Sep 09, 2017 1:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with Mother's Portfolio
Replies: 18
Views: 1561

Re: Help with Mother's Portfolio

My 2 cents is that your thinking is on the right track. I suspect the Wells Fargo products are expensive, so for that reason as well as convenience it would be nice for them to be consolidated into Vanguard. If your mother needs 10K per year, she is set for the next seven years with cash on hand. In...
by Minty
Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with Mother's Portfolio
Replies: 18
Views: 1561

Re: Help with Mother's Portfolio

Quick questions: Are there capital gains in the taxable accounts? And what are the costs associated with the new living situation? i.e., is there a buy-in, or is this a month-to-month situation?
by Minty
Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: University of California Retirement Plan Proprietary Funds
Replies: 7
Views: 880

University of California Retirement Plan Proprietary Funds

There have been several useful threads about changes to the University of California Retirement Plan 403(b) and 457 programs in the last couple of years. https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=166455, https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=165805, https://www.bogleheads.org/forum...
by Minty
Fri Sep 08, 2017 7:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I do 20 or 25 Year Term Life Insurance?
Replies: 49
Views: 3917

Re: Should I do 20 or 25 Year Term Life Insurance?

My vote is 25, or 30. The way I look at it is, if you want to maximize, don't buy insurance at all. Insurance is a hedge, not a positive expectancy investment. But it may well be a huge problem if 18-year-olds no longer have the support of family income.
by Minty
Thu Sep 07, 2017 11:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Guaranteed 7% Real Estate Deal: Pull from Stock Market?
Replies: 36
Views: 4091

Re: Guaranteed 7% Real Estate Deal: Pull from Stock Market?

OP, you use the word "we" a lot in your initial post. If you are a real estate investor doing a deal, negotiating with Fortune 500 companies, you can judge if it makes sense. If you are not, if you are being asked to put some money in someone else's deal, my advice as an internet stranger is "no way...
by Minty
Mon Sep 04, 2017 10:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: new 401k options
Replies: 7
Views: 565

Re: new 401k options

I know this isn't what you asked, but, having been in a similar boat, we went through the hassle of choosing the cheapest set of available Vanguard, Fidelity and TIAA-CREF funds to achieve our desired asset allocation. On the one hand, it is just five (or however many) basis points. On the other, it...
by Minty
Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New 401k Help with Options
Replies: 6
Views: 587

Re: New 401k Help with Options

Given the ok-at-best choices in this new 401K, I'd consider not rolling your old 401K into it, and instead rolling the old 401K into a Vanguard/Schwab/Fidelity Rollover IRA with better investment options. As for what you put it in the new 401K, I'd take a look at the Wiki to help you make some decis...
by Minty
Thu Aug 10, 2017 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I really need a trust?
Replies: 55
Views: 6244

Re: Do I really need a trust?

I am a California lawyer, and even though it kills me that I can't get someone to do it for me for free, I just pay for my will and trust. Seen too many car crashes with diy in this area.
by Minty
Mon Aug 07, 2017 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: kids think lazy if retire?
Replies: 70
Views: 8535

Re: kids think lazy if retire?

I agree with the other posters who say you are entitled to do what you want; the kids will be fine. I've often thought of taking a couple of years off. The only consideration I have not seen discussed in this thread is the question of whether you will be able to return to your career if you need or ...
by Minty
Mon Aug 07, 2017 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Santa Fe New Mexico - recommendations
Replies: 26
Views: 2089

Re: Santa Fe New Mexico - recommendations

Really loved the Coyote Cafe and Cantina for dinner. One of our favorite meals ever.
by Minty
Sun Jul 16, 2017 11:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 8224

Re: Personal loan to a family member

I worry about anyone who would get into a construction project without a sufficient contingency reserve. I myself would, as others have said, stay out of it, give the money as a gift, or buy the house, be in first position, and rent it to the relative. From the perspective of the relative who borrow...
by Minty
Thu Jul 13, 2017 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hotel tipping: how much to leave?
Replies: 72
Views: 4562

Re: Hotel tipping: how much to leave?

2 to 5 per night, related to the cost of the room. I tipped with the dollar coins for a while when the mint would let you buy with credit cards and ship for free. Now I have to try to remember to have plenty of ones.
by Minty
Fri Jul 07, 2017 8:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Term Life Insurance - what age to buy?
Replies: 13
Views: 1162

Re: Term Life Insurance - what age to buy?

Mr. Larimore's post makes me think I may be wrong, because he knows a lot. But: 20 some years ago, I was in your position, and I bought term life insurance. I never regretted it, and wish I had purchased more; I failed to account for my income increasing. When I wanted more, I had small health issue...
by Minty
Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Leaving big law for public interest- how to save/allocate 1 year of salary the best way to prep for this
Replies: 10
Views: 1191

Re: Leaving big law for public interest- how to save/allocate 1 year of salary the best way to prep for this

I made that move some years ago. My advice would be to reduce fixed expenses. Paying off debt with a bonus seems smart. On top of that, I would start living now on the salary you expect in 1.5 years. I agree with the suggestion to halt 529 payments. Your marginal tax rate will be low so the tax-free...
by Minty
Sun Jun 18, 2017 2:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Siblings in disagreement over mom's house.
Replies: 241
Views: 21828

Re: Siblings in disagreement over mom's house.

Just a thought: Could the siblings agree to rent it, as a way of paying for maintenance and insurance, and once it is cash-flowing, funds for a mortgage or division might become available.
by Minty
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying cost vs renting (specifically for me)... can anyone fact check this?
Replies: 36
Views: 2565

Re: Buying cost vs renting (specifically for me)... can anyone fact check this?

The assumed 5% appreciation is a red flag. Owning a home with a mortgage is a leveraged commitment. "Your equity is at the top and you own it all the way to the bottom." On preview, I agree with SoonerD.
by Minty
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would you take a 25% pay cut for more professional satisfaction?
Replies: 57
Views: 4523

Re: Would you take a 25% pay cut for more professional satisfaction?

In my 20s, took a 70% pay cut for a more desirable job. The new path proved to be sufficiently lucrative. I would not have done it if I couldn't make it on the reduced salary.
by Minty
Sat May 13, 2017 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options
Replies: 44
Views: 3690

Re: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options

If you are thinking about Option 2, the creditworthiness of the insurance company becomes very important because you are essentially making them an unsecured loan. It might be reasonable if they are very sound. [Edit: Actually, apparently some of these retained assets accounts are covered by state i...
by Minty
Sat May 13, 2017 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options
Replies: 44
Views: 3690

Re: recent widow needs help with life insurance payout options

I am sorry for your loss. Option 3 is the insurance company offering to sell you an annuity in exchange for your insurance proceeds. The question is how you want your portfolio to be invested and, if an annuity fits into your plan, whether this particular insurance company is offering the best rate-...
by Minty
Fri May 05, 2017 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pension vs 401k
Replies: 33
Views: 2858

Re: Pension vs 401k

One thing to consider is that if you have a vested DBP, it is possible to double-dip by collecting a full salary from new uni and a full retirement from the old place, as a number of my colleagues have done. I've faced the OP's dilemma three times. The first two I elected the DCP and waived the trad...
by Minty
Sun Apr 30, 2017 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lowest hassle, highest return way to buy real estate in a far-away location for use as a hedge?
Replies: 16
Views: 2135

Re: Lowest hassle, highest return way to buy real estate in a far-away location for use as a hedge?

There's a saying in real estate: "Your equity is on the top, and you own it all the way to the bottom." If you predict real estate will outperform, buy REITs on margin. If you want to be leveraged, you can do that in securities. However, notwithstanding the temptation (which I share) I would not rec...
by Minty
Sun Apr 30, 2017 12:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: So what's the theory behind this active vs Passive report
Replies: 15
Views: 1594

Re: So what's the theory behind this active vs Passive report

Before fees, active and passive for the general publically available stock market must give the same result, on average. This is just plain arithmetic. Don't get me wrong, my investments are completely indexed, but does this claim take into account such things as securities lending, leverage, curre...
by Minty
Sun Apr 30, 2017 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to ask when refinancing mortgage
Replies: 8
Views: 871

Re: What to ask when refinancing mortgage

I refinanced last Fall. The original lender gave us a quote for recasting, but they were not competitive with the on-line rates. If you are interested in simply paying the smallest amount of money, check out on-line lenders as well.
by Minty
Sat Apr 15, 2017 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New home expenses versus a high (overly-high?) savings & investment rate
Replies: 20
Views: 2962

Re: New home expenses versus a high (overly-high?) savings & investment rate

I would be concerned if the soil next to the foundation was continuously wet. That is a problem I would solve before saving for retirement.