Search found 67 matches

by cyclist
Tue Oct 22, 2019 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA Open Enrollment With COBRA Ending
Replies: 17
Views: 1125

Re: ACA Open Enrollment With COBRA Ending

Yes - and if you will be without COBRA in December you qualify for enrollment now for 2019 as well. (I have no idea if there’s still time for you to get December coverage in your state - it’s worth looking into that ASAP.)

Cyclist
by cyclist
Wed Oct 16, 2019 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC fan ON or auto?
Replies: 42
Views: 3856

Re: HVAC fan ON or auto?

A lot depends on the type of blower motor you have. Our old furnace had a big single-speed fan. We ran it continuously to address heat balance issues, and it sucked up a lot of electricity and made a notable impact on our bill. Several years ago we upgraded to a Carrier “Infinity” system with a vari...
by cyclist
Mon Oct 07, 2019 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2010 Prius totaled.... Now what?
Replies: 40
Views: 3725

Re: 2010 Prius totaled.... Now what?

Sorry to hear this. I hate the way this sounds, but when ours was totaled I actually paid for the ebook hawked at www.claimbuster.com. I got over $2,500 more from my insurance than they originally offered by following his script. I sound like an infomercial and I hate that, but it's exactly right. T...
by cyclist
Wed Sep 11, 2019 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bike head/rear lights
Replies: 31
Views: 1756

Re: Bike head/rear lights

There are lots of solid choices for headlights (Cygolite, L&M Urban, etc.) Tail lights can save your life. The DiNotte Quad Red is enormously, dramatically brighter than Planet Bike and similar lights. It’s made well in the USA and I can’t recommend it highly enough. It’s really expensive for a tail...
by cyclist
Tue Jun 18, 2019 5:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Transamerica Bike Race
Replies: 6
Views: 715

Re: Transamerica Bike Race

To each their own. I cycled that route in 81 days a few years back -slow enough to actually see the country I was crossing. That was tough enough for me. I did see some of the racers - briefly - and they're a different breed entirely. What they do is simply amazing.
by cyclist
Sun May 19, 2019 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?
Replies: 14
Views: 1265

Re: Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?

... your assumptions about effective tax rates above are incorrect, because they do not take into account the gradual loss of ACA subsidy under the cliff. This amounts to roughly a 10% additional tax. Thanks for this and the other helpful comments. (I'd compartmentalized the variation in ACA tax su...
by cyclist
Sat May 18, 2019 9:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?
Replies: 14
Views: 1265

Re: Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?

Have you considered that adding income under the ACA cliff creates an additional "tax" in the form of reduced premium tax credits? Yes, but I'll need to stay pretty close to that level to maintain our standard of living. Our taxable portfolio is small. I'm surprised that so many folks are favoring ...
by cyclist
Fri May 17, 2019 2:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?
Replies: 14
Views: 1265

Low-income retirement year: take capital gain, Roth convert, or tIRA withdrawal?

We're recent retirees keeping our income under the ACA cliff until Medicare and deferring SS. We've got the choice of taking a last modest bit of income for the year as capital gains in our taxable account, as a little more Roth conversion, or as simple taxable withdrawals from our taxable IRAs. I'm...
by cyclist
Tue Apr 30, 2019 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Defective audio port on new laptop
Replies: 15
Views: 844

Re: Defective audio port on new laptop

KlangFool wrote:
Tue Apr 30, 2019 6:39 pm
Option (1). There could be more things wrong at the motherboard. It is unusual for the sound port to be the only thing that is bad.
This. No question.
by cyclist
Thu Apr 25, 2019 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Folding bikes: Go Brompton or cheaper?
Replies: 27
Views: 2208

Re: Folding bikes: Go Brompton or cheaper?

The principal advantage of a Brompton is its very compact fold. In my view it's silly to lock a Brompton outside when it is so compact - and so valuable. If you're set on locking the bike outside, there are a slew of better-grade Terns, Dahons, and similar bikes - including used ones -- that will ri...
by cyclist
Tue Apr 16, 2019 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Considering an e bike or conversion kit
Replies: 20
Views: 1221

Re: Considering an e bike or conversion kit

I'm a long-time e-biker. Conversions can be certainly be done (I've done two) but you need to be handy and/or accept compromises in performance and reliability. If you are serious about converting a bike you already love, you can't do better than to consult the folks at ebikes.ca. They really know t...
by cyclist
Mon Mar 25, 2019 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Retiring before 65: How do you deal with health insurance?]
Replies: 88
Views: 12145

Re: [Retiring before 65: How do you deal with health insurance?]

Just retired at 62, DW is 61, and just signed up for ACA. By keeping our MAGI under 400% of poverty ($65.8k) we are eligible for over $1,300/month in subsidies. We opted for the most expensive HMO plan, which was about half the cost of continuing our existing coverage under COBRA after the subsidies...
by cyclist
Tue Mar 19, 2019 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA Drawdown questions
Replies: 6
Views: 566

Re: TIAA Drawdown questions

FWIW, DW moved all she could move directly into her Vanguard rollover IRA with the remaining TIAA funds coming to us in the 10 annual installments. We made this decision to minimize fees and for simplicity. We also had about 5% in TIAA Real Estate, but ultimately decided that it wasn’t worth even th...
by cyclist
Wed Feb 06, 2019 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warm, quiet beach for March?
Replies: 20
Views: 2064

Re: Warm, quiet beach for March?

Thanks all for the suggestions!

(Yes, we’re flying out of the Washington DC area and looking to travel March 2019.)
by cyclist
Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Warm, quiet beach for March?
Replies: 20
Views: 2064

Warm, quiet beach for March?

DW and I are ready for some serious quiet time on a seriously quiet beach. We'd like clean and safe but don't need fancy. We love good snorkeling, but that may be secondary to the beach this time. We're reluctant to plan for continental US-based beaches in March -- the weather could be unkind and we...
by cyclist
Fri Jan 25, 2019 2:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why the odd-duration CDs?
Replies: 13
Views: 1440

Why the odd-duration CDs?

Ally has their "select" 14-month CD. Local credit unions have been advertising others (25 month?) Why do they put relatively attractive rates on these funky durations? For Ally, their "High Yield" 12 Month CD is currently 2.75 APY, but their "Select" 14 Month CD is 2.85 APY. Cyclist (recently retire...
by cyclist
Fri Jan 11, 2019 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did you solve the pre-medicare healthcare riddle?
Replies: 81
Views: 6216

Re: How did you solve the pre-medicare healthcare riddle?

I’m retiring presently at 62, DW already did. Most of our assets are tax-deferred. We did Roth conversations in 2018 to make certain we had access to sufficient funds and to minimize long-term taxes. We will limit our income to stay below the ACA cliff and rely on ACA until Medicare. We consume a fa...
by cyclist
Thu Dec 20, 2018 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA [when can I enroll after leaving employer]
Replies: 14
Views: 867

Re: ACA [when can I enroll after leaving employer]

Interesting. This is exactly my situation. I plan to sign up in January. In my case by keeping income to within 400% of the federal poverty line the ACA cost of a Kaiser Gold HMO plan will be about half the COBRA cost for my current PPO plan. The difference is large enough that we plan to continue s...
by cyclist
Sun Dec 16, 2018 8:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) battery backups: Need advice
Replies: 23
Views: 1670

Re: Uninterruptible power supplies (UPS) battery backups: Need advice

As a practical matter they're nearly all replaceable if you can slide a cover off and perhaps remove a screw or two... but consider NOT buying brand-name replacements from the manufacturer. APCC, for example, marks these up enormously. Spend a few minutes, find the specifications, and order a generi...
by cyclist
Mon Nov 05, 2018 9:51 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2019!
Replies: 384
Views: 55799

Re: Roll Call for the Retirement Class of 2019!

Count me in as another 62 year old member of the Jan 15 club! Many thanks to the Bogleheads who helped me clarify my thinking and validate that I really can do this - those who responded directly to my questions and the many more who posted invaluable resources here for me to learn from. I am in you...
by cyclist
Sat Nov 03, 2018 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you allow your car stereo to run USB debug mode on your android phone?
Replies: 9
Views: 1869

Re: Would you allow your car stereo to run USB debug mode on your android phone?

No way. There are just SO many ways this can end in a Very Bad Day.
by cyclist
Thu Nov 01, 2018 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Healthcare Decision
Replies: 8
Views: 1419

Re: Healthcare Decision

If you elect COBRA, aren't you ineligible for ACA until the next open season? What should be possible, though, is to use COBRA as an in-case-of-emergency option: When employer coverage ends, apply for ACA. If nothing horrible happens, be happy when the ACA coverage starts. If something horrible does...
by cyclist
Thu Nov 01, 2018 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA application with having current insurance (but plan to lose it)
Replies: 5
Views: 420

Re: ACA application with having current insurance (but plan to lose it)

I’m planning for that transition myself. Outside of an ACA open enrollment period it seems you only qualify to apply after you have actually lost your employer-provided coverage. This would appear to imply a gap between the application date and when ACA coverage starts (typically the first of the fo...
by cyclist
Tue Oct 23, 2018 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: switch bonds to money mkt?
Replies: 8
Views: 1494

Re: switch bonds to money mkt?

vineviz wrote:
Mon Oct 22, 2018 2:52 pm
If you're not yet retired, no more than 20-25% of your bond allocation needs to be in short-term bonds and NONE of it should be in a money market account.
And for those of us on the cusp of retiring...?
by cyclist
Mon Oct 22, 2018 10:15 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Total Bond Market Fund - interest rates rising!
Replies: 147
Views: 18121

Re: Total Bond Market Fund - interest rates rising!

As outlined very clearly above - if your investment horizon is shorter than the funds average duration, you have chosen the wrong fund, but if your investment horizon is longer than the funds average duration you should be agnostic to NAV changes over the short term. When NAV falls, you should be b...
by cyclist
Sat Oct 20, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Are we really ready to take the plunge? Please check our portfolio before I jump!
Replies: 3
Views: 756

Re: Are we really ready to take the plunge? Please check our portfolio before I jump!

I'm sure you've seen the Michael Kitces article on bond tents: https://www.kitces.com/blog/managing-portfolio-size-effect-with-bond-tent-in-retirement-red-zone/ Indeed. Michael McClung's book too. In effect, both make the case for maximizing your bond holdings when you retire, then gradually drawin...
by cyclist
Sat Oct 20, 2018 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Are we really ready to take the plunge? Please check our portfolio before I jump!
Replies: 3
Views: 756

Are we really ready to take the plunge? Please check our portfolio before I jump!

I’m 62 and planning to retire at the end of the year. DW is 61, recently retired. HCOL area. Currently at 19x expenses. 56% stock, 34% bonds, 10% cash. We could adjust expenses if necessary to make things work with our $2m+ portfolio but are confident we will inherit additional assets sometime in th...
by cyclist
Wed Oct 17, 2018 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Personal Adventure - recommendations
Replies: 97
Views: 7179

Re: Personal Adventure - recommendations

I enjoyed cycling solo across the US on the TransAm trail, but I don't think it meets your criteria. It was a fabulous experience and delightful to share campsites and camaraderie with others on that popular route, but it was a lot less solo than I expected. One more +1 for the Great Divide Mountain...
by cyclist
Fri Oct 05, 2018 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimated tax payment for Q4 Roth rollovers?
Replies: 5
Views: 660

Re: Estimated tax payment for Q4 Roth rollovers?

So it sounds like my Q4 estimated tax payment -- my first -- should be for the full amount of the anticipated shortage. And don't forget about the IRMAA cliffs. Having additional tIRA withdrawals to cover the tax withholding can result in a higher medicare premium. (And since it is two years in arre...
by cyclist
Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimated tax payment for Q4 Roth rollovers?
Replies: 5
Views: 660

Estimated tax payment for Q4 Roth rollovers?

We just did our first Roth rollovers. I understand the tax that will be due (and it's a fair bit.) Our withholding for 2018 is lower than for 2017, and I know we need to make an estimated payment before January. I believe I could avoid penalties by making payments to 110% of our 2017 tax by the Janu...
by cyclist
Mon Sep 24, 2018 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 2284

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

Besides the big dominant contractors, I'd recommend getting quotes from some smaller ones. We're in the DC area and were picky about our requirements. We were happy with what we got from mpenergyservices@gmail.com. No, they didn't do a full Manual J calculation (nobody else would do that for us eith...
by cyclist
Mon Sep 17, 2018 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Cyclists With a Brooks Saddle?
Replies: 37
Views: 5471

Re: Any Cyclists With a Brooks Saddle?

No Brooks here, they don't make recumbent seats. If they did, it probably would cost more than the bike The solution seems obvious to me: Have your recumbent seat (probably already extremely comfortable) and have Brooks saddles on your other bikes. (For me, B17s on my "regular" bike and my folder.)...
by cyclist
Sat Sep 08, 2018 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru: Crosstrek or Outback?
Replies: 81
Views: 6822

Re: Subaru: Crosstrek or Outback?

I just helped my daughter through this process. It didn't take much test driving at all to figure things out. The Crosstrek was cute and tiny and utterly unacceptable for her needs -- nowhere near enough cargo capacity. The Forester was great and so was the Outback -- but the Outback was way more co...
by cyclist
Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Bike Suggestion
Replies: 40
Views: 3330

Re: New Bike Suggestion

Well, you're getting a lot of good advice here -- and most of it is probably highly appropriate to the people who are giving it. It's hard to sort out what's relevant to your specific needs. You mention riding on trails. That's great, but what are the surfaces like? If they're smooth asphalt then mo...
by cyclist
Wed Sep 05, 2018 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: small-wheel bicycle
Replies: 19
Views: 1462

Re: small-wheel bicycle

If your use is casual you might also have a look at the enormously popular Dahon and Tern bikes. Because they're cranked out in huge volumes they're widely available new and used. My kids bought used ones for casual riding and are generally pleased with them. Like anything else, the more expensive m...
by cyclist
Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling a car to CarMax
Replies: 74
Views: 46461

Re: Selling a car to CarMax

I sold my mom's clean Lexus to Carmax. No haggling, but the offer was well higher than from the Lexus dealer.

Very straightforward, easy transaction.
by cyclist
Sun Sep 02, 2018 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: German B&M Non-Blinking vs. Blinking Bike Tail Lights
Replies: 20
Views: 1412

Re: German B&M Non-Blinking vs. Blinking Bike Tail Lights

With very bright rear taillights you do need to be mindful of riders behind you. One option is to point them down a bit so that they actually make a big red pool of light on the tarmac behind you. (Yes, they can do that.) When I commute on a dark mult-use trail I turn off my high-powered taillight. ...
by cyclist
Sun Sep 02, 2018 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: German B&M Non-Blinking vs. Blinking Bike Tail Lights
Replies: 20
Views: 1412

Re: German B&M Non-Blinking vs. Blinking Bike Tail Lights

I’m a bike commuter and tourist. The benefits of good generator-powered headlights are clear. For the rear, though, I’m a big believer in BRIGHT. High-powered USB taillights provide plainly superior visibility night and day. Most of the discussion on this forum is about money. I can’t think of a bet...
by cyclist
Tue Aug 14, 2018 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Biking with 2 young children - what gear to get?
Replies: 26
Views: 1647

Re: Biking with 2 young children - what gear to get?

2-kid trailer, definitely! Sure, they''ll outgrow it sooner or later, but good ones can have phenomenal resale values. (Our grown kids are still mad that I sold ours. They have great memories of it.) Let me add an important note on safety. My wife and I used to do quite a bit of riding on a tandem b...
by cyclist
Mon Jul 23, 2018 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone sell their car to Carmax or webuyanycar.com?
Replies: 34
Views: 11062

Re: Anyone sell their car to Carmax or webuyanycar.com?

A few years ago I sold my mom’s Lexus to Carmax. Their offer was significantly higher than the local dealer would offer. I got the impression that this was because it was a late-model vehicle in good shape and they were intending to keep the car and resell it themselves. Everything about the transac...
by cyclist
Wed Jul 18, 2018 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Prime Harvesting with a cash buffer?
Replies: 3
Views: 875

Prime Harvesting with a cash buffer?

I've read McClung's book, and Prime Harvesting has a lot of appeal. I'm considering it when I pull the trigger I'm hoping that will be soon, when I'm 63 and DW 62. We plan to defer SS to 70 and know we'll need to draw heavily from our portfolio before Medicare and the end of our modest mortgage (aro...
by cyclist
Tue Jun 05, 2018 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Which bridge to SS?
Replies: 8
Views: 1087

Re: Which bridge to SS?

Could/would you accelerate/pay-off your mortgage? So less need to hold as much cash/short term bonds for expenses. That's possible, but it would be a significant chunk of my available after-tax resources. It would force me to withdraw more from pre-tax funds, increasing my income and my healthcare ...
by cyclist
Tue Jun 05, 2018 11:38 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Which bridge to SS?
Replies: 8
Views: 1087

Re: Which bridge to SS?

So as of next January 1st, you want 120K per year for the next 7-8 years. That's 840-960K. You have about 350K between cash/CD/Taxable, with the rest in pre-tax accounts (which you plan to rollover). Does the 120K include the tax on 401 --> Roth conversions? No, but I've accounted for that as a sep...
by cyclist
Tue Jun 05, 2018 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Which bridge to SS?
Replies: 8
Views: 1087

Which bridge to SS?

DW has stopped working; I hope to do so around the end of the year. We have no pensions and plan to defer SS until 70, so we’ll draw heavily on assets for 7-8 years until then. I’m trying to pick the best strategy for that period. We’ve traditionally kept minimal taxable accounts and little cash. I’...
by cyclist
Mon May 21, 2018 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: When I retire, what do I sell?
Replies: 11
Views: 2751

Re: When I retire, what do I sell?

wilked wrote:
Sun May 20, 2018 6:33 pm
Your alarm clock
This may be the best bit of advice I've received yet!

(I appreciate the others too.)
by cyclist
Sat May 19, 2018 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: When I retire, what do I sell?
Replies: 11
Views: 2751

Re: When I retire, what do I sell?

Where is the other 15%? Taxable is currently 30% Total stock, 15% Intermediate Tax-Exempt bonds, the rest in CDs or Prime. Have you ever projected your taxes for your expected income and RMDs at age 71, after you take SS and the RMDs need to be withdrawn? Yes. What tax bracket will you be in then? ...
by cyclist
Sat May 19, 2018 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: When I retire, what do I sell?
Replies: 11
Views: 2751

When I retire, what do I sell?

I've got plenty of experience accumulating, but I look forward to that phase ending soon. I've re-balanced to keep my desired AA with new money and with shifts in rollover IRAs for years, but soon it will be time to start pulling money out. Do I simply sell assets to maintain my desired AA going for...
by cyclist
Wed May 09, 2018 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's the view on dogs running free?
Replies: 110
Views: 8215

Re: What's the view on dogs running free?

I suppose my name here tells you what I think. In many jurisdictions, including ours, it is illegal to let a dog run free. I had the opportunity to share that thought with an owner whose "bad dog" charged me just a couple of weeks ago. There was nothing wrong with the dog, but I'm none too pleased w...
by cyclist
Wed May 09, 2018 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental Cars:National, Budget, Alamo or Thrifty
Replies: 33
Views: 3073

Re: Rental Cars:National, Budget, Alamo or Thrifty

My experience is that they're essentially comparable... and a lot cheaper if you book through Hotwire. You can see the price but not the vendor. You find out who the vendor is after you book. We've had excellent experience with this. No up-selling, and all of the rentals have been from the tradition...
by cyclist
Fri Apr 06, 2018 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Keep TIAA Real Estate when moving everything else to Vanguard?
Replies: 4
Views: 757

Keep TIAA Real Estate when moving everything else to Vanguard?

We're looking ahead to when DW is ready to roll her TIAA-CREF retirement funds over to Vanguard. We currently have something over 3% of our assets in the TIAA Real Estate portfolio. I've liked having that tiny bit of diversity in what is otherwise a fairly standard 60/40 portfolio, but I'm far from ...