Search found 1328 matches

by Mike Scott
Sat Aug 03, 2019 9:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Clements, HumbleDollar, viewing Vanguard with unease: "Whither Vanguard?"
Replies: 54
Views: 7391

Re: Clements, HumbleDollar, viewing Vanguard with unease: "Whither Vanguard?"

So Vanguard is advertising their range of services to their account holders and visitors. The passive index thing is relatively recent given their history and only a part of what they do. It's not like they are increasing fees and dropping index funds. There are many discussions here where the thing...
by Mike Scott
Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much house can I afford (really)?
Replies: 23
Views: 2555

Re: How much house can I afford (really)?

Mortgage calculators and agents don't have to make the monthly payments, pay for insurance or the ongoing maintenance and utilities. I would set a house budget and then work up to the max mortgage amount from there and include all the other costs as well. Don't let anyone talk you "up" beyond what y...
by Mike Scott
Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 'Gas Card' for teen - best option?
Replies: 29
Views: 1394

Re: 'Gas Card' for teen - best option?

He has a job. Let him figure out how to pay for his own gas.
by Mike Scott
Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do we move or add-on? Need some grounding...
Replies: 37
Views: 1797

Re: Do we move or add-on? Need some grounding...

Why would you even consider moving from this location?
You can't afford to build or buy the more expensive house.
Take some time to study your current house for efficient and creative use of space. You may come up with some relativley inexpensive remodeling or fixes.
by Mike Scott
Thu Aug 01, 2019 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why won’t anyone hire me?
Replies: 156
Views: 14904

Re: Why won’t anyone hire me?

Perhaps get someone to look over your resume, references and the job applications you are turning in. Some agencies do "mock" interviews for practice. Maybe try the temp agency route or part-time jobs. My wife did a similar thing a few years ago and it took her several months to get into a full time...
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 27, 2019 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling old farm equipment and cars
Replies: 8
Views: 832

Re: Selling old farm equipment and cars

If you have enough good stuff, it might be worth an estate sale/auction. If it's scrap metal value then maybe not. If you want to spend more time and do it piece by peice, try Craigslist, Facebook Marketplace and the local newspaper classifieds.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 27, 2019 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RESOLVED: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?
Replies: 42
Views: 3942

Re: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?

We don't have any linked smart devices because I don't have any need for them and they would be one more thing to maintain as well as the extra cost. The idea of having "live streaming" audio and video devices in the house seems a bit creepy so they would have to have some significant value to offse...
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 27, 2019 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much to save?
Replies: 53
Views: 4673

Re: How much to save?

When I started my first full time professional position several decades ago, we were barely getting by and had some debt and no savings other than anything left in the checking account at the end of the month. Retirement seemed a long way off and I was in a good pension system and expected social se...
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 27, 2019 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RESOLVED: Non-lethal alternatives to firearms to defend against home invasions in Florida
Replies: 113
Views: 6455

Re: Non-lethal alternatives to firearms to defend against home invasions in Florida

Dogs plus the usual physical preventative measures outside and door/window upgrades etc. Someone already suggested moving. Maybe get an on the gorund consult from local police or security company?
by Mike Scott
Thu Jul 25, 2019 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DAF for church offering? [Donor Advised Fund]
Replies: 71
Views: 8811

Re: DAF for church offering? [Donor Advised Fund]

I would think this was an employer specific question. How many employers match charitable contributions in any form?
by Mike Scott
Thu Jul 25, 2019 8:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Home Purchase - Disagreement on Appraisal Contingency
Replies: 81
Views: 3442

Re: First Home Purchase - Disagreement on Appraisal Contingency

All real estate is local but in our area this would be a signal that the house was overpriced. 10% or so off list price is a typical selling price.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donate land for a tax break?
Replies: 12
Views: 709

Re: Donate land for a tax break?

Donations also require someone to actually accept the donation.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 22, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What two or three financial things to do to wind up wealthy regardless if you make numerous other financial mistakes?
Replies: 85
Views: 9014

Re: What two or three financial things to do to wind up wealthy regardless if you make numerous other financial mistakes

Choose wealthy ancestors who will leave you a trust fund and/or marry into the same. Other than having a huge bucket of money that someone else controls, I don't think there is a realistic way to make up for "numerous" other financial mistakes.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 22, 2019 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best approach for couple to take RE: investing/retirement planning?
Replies: 8
Views: 900

Re: Best approach for couple to take RE: investing/retirement planning?

We take the approach of combining everything for investment management purposes with the expectation that my wife will live longer than me. It turns out that this plan has no particular negative effect if I am the survivor.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 22, 2019 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: **Most Cost, Time Effective Way to Repair Yard after Septic Repair? (with pictures)
Replies: 27
Views: 1566

Re: **Most Cost, Time Effective Way to Repair Yard after Septic Repair? (with pictures)

If you do nothing, you may have a surface that needs refinishing when it cools down enough to plant. The seed will probably not germinate now but it might later. The straw cover will help with surface erosion and give it a more finished look for selling. You will probably get some weeds growing that...
by Mike Scott
Sun Jul 21, 2019 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prescription drug cost and manufacturer coupon
Replies: 8
Views: 449

Re: Prescription drug cost and manufacturer coupon

Read the fine print on the coupon/copay website. It will tell you exactly what the program will do. Some of them have more than one option depending on how it interacts with your health insurance and pharmacy benefits.
by Mike Scott
Sun Jul 21, 2019 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: **Most Cost, Time Effective Way to Repair Yard after Septic Repair? (with pictures)
Replies: 27
Views: 1566

Re: **Most Cost, Time Effective Way to Repair Yard after Septic Repair? (with pictures)

It's probably worth $200 to get a straw cover on it to slow down erosion and it looks more finished than bare dirt. I would wait to see if the buyer requested an allowance for seeding before offering it.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 20, 2019 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should relative incomes be a factor in wedding gift?
Replies: 107
Views: 6508

Re: Should relative incomes be a factor in wedding gift?

A "cash" wedding sounds like a good one to skip.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 20, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 60/40 VS 30/70 "Center Of Gravity"@@ Allocation for Retirees ??? Bernstein VS Ferri ?? -- What Would You Do?
Replies: 157
Views: 14164

Re: 60/40 VS 30/70 "Center Of Gravity"@@ Allocation for Retirees ??? Bernstein VS Ferri ?? -- What Would You Do?

My personal circumstances and choices have left me with a range of a high of 75/25 moving toward a low of 50/50 at retirement. I've been about 65/35 and holding for a while. i do find the 60/40 arguments compelling in general and am probably not deviating far enough from it to make any particular di...
by Mike Scott
Fri Jul 19, 2019 8:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gardening 2019
Replies: 111
Views: 9798

Re: Gardening 2019

Even though our garden has taken a major hit from the weather this summer, we have been picking tomatos and peppers. The native grasses and wildflowers that I planted last winter are looking pretty good.
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 17, 2019 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Ferri? Or Vanguard PAS?
Replies: 64
Views: 5436

Re: Ferri? Or Vanguard PAS?

A first look at what Vanguard will probably recommend would be their Life Strategy, Target Date and/or Retirement Income all-in-one combo funds. Pick your overall AA and decide whether you want it to glide (change over time) or not. For simplicity, you just buy the fund you selected. For tax efficie...
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 17, 2019 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How unpleasant is the home buying/selling experience??
Replies: 40
Views: 3673

Re: How unpleasant is the home buying/selling experience??

Either rent for a while or do option two if you can afford it. It's too much trouble and expense to buy/sell for five years unless you want to keep the cheaper house as a rental when you move.
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 17, 2019 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Organization
Replies: 57
Views: 4233

Re: Garage Organization

I'm very much in the pile stuff where I use it system. It's not very likely to change anytime soon.
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 17, 2019 1:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: replacing mulch bed recommendations
Replies: 35
Views: 2403

Re: replacing mulch bed recommendations

I think rock beds are harder to clean and maintain than mulch. I would go for pavers or brick if you want hardscaping.
by Mike Scott
Thu Jul 11, 2019 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 25 years to retirement; assume 0 future contributions
Replies: 21
Views: 2534

Re: 25 years to retirement; assume 0 future contributions

Chances are SS and pension would cover most of your expenses at "normal" retirement. Plus you would start with a million more in savings/investments than most people would ever have. Invest the million somewhere between 60/40 and 80/20 and let it ride.
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grill Mat
Replies: 29
Views: 2468

Re: Grill Mat

You can get stainless steel grilling trays for the small stuff if you want. I just let the raccoons clean the grill and then burn it off with the next fire.
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 10, 2019 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: applying for business credit card
Replies: 10
Views: 787

Re: applying for business credit card

Business credit cards are pretty easy to get. You have a small business as a sole proprietor. You have revenues of $1200 per year. You have expenses of ??? You also put in your total income. You have almost 100% chance of getting approved. They often do not have all the same consumer protections tha...
by Mike Scott
Tue Jul 09, 2019 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grilling with wood fire
Replies: 12
Views: 1196

Re: Grilling with wood fire

I don't know where you are but you can start with charcoal while you look for a source of wood. Many campgrounds and convenience stores near camp grounds have wood for sale if you do not have a local firewood market to purchase from. Although transport of firewood has become an increasing concern fo...
by Mike Scott
Tue Jul 09, 2019 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grilling with wood fire
Replies: 12
Views: 1196

Re: Grilling with wood fire

Grilling over a live fire is fun but you have to pay attention and adjust the cooking surface as needed. I will use whatever dry wood I have or sometimes use charcoal for a small quick fire. My firepit has a fixed height grill but it is a 4'x4' surface so I can adjust temperature by using different ...
by Mike Scott
Tue Jul 09, 2019 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: paper gold or physical gold?
Replies: 37
Views: 2340

Re: paper gold or physical gold?

If i thought gold was necessary, I would want physical gold (and silver). For now, gold and silver are for making jewelry.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 08, 2019 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Practices for longer-term house guests?
Replies: 35
Views: 3407

Re: Best Practices for longer-term house guests?

You could send a list of links to local hotels and BnBs.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Finding an adviser to pay for advice
Replies: 16
Views: 1546

Re: Finding an adviser to pay for advice

There is a format for posting here if you want...
viewtopic.php?t=6212

I predict that the general advice will be to move to a three fund (or all in one fund) and manage it yourself if you want. Second place is Vanguard PAS if you still want an advisor.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: St. Louis Travel/Tourism
Replies: 20
Views: 1285

Re: St. Louis Travel/Tourism

We make day trips into St Louis often and there are some fantastic places to visit. The crime rates are lower than in our rural county.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 08, 2019 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone itching to dabble in crypto?
Replies: 46
Views: 3116

Re: Anyone itching to dabble in crypto?

There will probably be a strong crypto in the future. But which one will win and which one will lose?
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 08, 2019 11:22 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Americans believe they need $1.7 million, on average, to retire
Replies: 284
Views: 28454

Re: Americans believe they need $1.7 million, on average, to retire

Most of the retirees that I know live on Social Security. Some have a pension to add to that. I will guess half own a house and half rent. The vast majority have no savings or investments other than what is in their checking account or maybe an actual stash of cash under the mattress. That's reality...
by Mike Scott
Sun Jul 07, 2019 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Lump Sum pension -Investment
Replies: 8
Views: 495

Re: Lump Sum pension -Investment

For a one fund at Vanguard, I would look at the Life Strategy, Target Retirement or Target Date funds.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 06, 2019 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Under age 50 and have a stock allocation less than 50%?
Replies: 25
Views: 2646

Re: Under age 50 and have a stock allocation less than 50%?

Risk is a very individual thing. No one knows you as well as you. My bottom end is 50/50 but then I'm not you.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 06, 2019 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying PA Income Tax By Credit Card
Replies: 5
Views: 413

Re: Paying PA Income Tax By Credit Card

"Next... a way to make mortgage payments and get CC points...! :confused"

Some use Plastiq for mortgage payments in the credit card game but it's too fussy for not enough $ in my mind.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 06, 2019 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Customer negotiating invoice payment
Replies: 17
Views: 1633

Re: Customer negotiating invoice payment

Contract or not, I think my first response would be "we agreed on 12K, is there a problem with my work"?
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Job Promotion - How to Show on Resume
Replies: 40
Views: 3386

Re: Job Promotion - How to Show on Resume

Can you say that you are in training for the new position?
by Mike Scott
Sat Jul 06, 2019 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chest freezer not quite cold enough
Replies: 11
Views: 730

Re: Chest freezer not quite cold enough

I would get a new one asap before it quits completely and you lose the contents.
by Mike Scott
Fri Jul 05, 2019 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much did FIRE affect your SS payments?
Replies: 17
Views: 2505

Re: How much did FIRE affect your SS payments?

spreadsheet recently updated from this site

viewtopic.php?t=262772
by Mike Scott
Wed Jul 03, 2019 10:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Preparing my wife for financial life without me.
Replies: 95
Views: 11054

Re: Preparing my wife for financial life without me.

search the forum for past discussions on a "death book"
by Mike Scott
Tue Jul 02, 2019 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do Target Date Retirement Funds Have a Down Side?
Replies: 29
Views: 3345

Re: Do Target Date Retirement Funds Have a Down Side?

They may include funds that you don't really want to have.
by Mike Scott
Tue Jul 02, 2019 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how do couples work together on home finance
Replies: 60
Views: 4668

Re: how do couples work together on home finance

My wife has the same access that I have to all of our financial records, accounts and written plans. I don't think she has looked at them in 30+ years. I do ask her to balance our primary/hub bank account each month. This provides a check on my record keeping and calculator skills as well as an over...
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 01, 2019 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would we regret buying a 2nd home?
Replies: 90
Views: 8353

Re: Would we regret buying a 2nd home?

It may be different after I retire, but I do not really have the time to do all the upkeep on one home/small farm. I can't imagine having two.
by Mike Scott
Mon Jul 01, 2019 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Need asset allocation help
Replies: 13
Views: 407

Re: Need asset allocation help

You could pick one of the Vanguard Life Strategy Funds as a single fund to hold or you could duplicate it with individual funds across your accounts.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jun 29, 2019 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Recommended Vanguard Fund(s) for Taxable Investments
Replies: 26
Views: 2655

Re: Recommended Vanguard Fund(s) for Taxable Investments

Something like VTSAX or VTI (total stock market mutal or etf funds) would be more tax efficient than a target date fund.
by Mike Scott
Sat Jun 29, 2019 2:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Best of Strategies for the Worst of Times: Can Portfolios be Crisis Proofed?
Replies: 21
Views: 2613

Re: The Best of Strategies for the Worst of Times: Can Portfolios be Crisis Proofed?

If you had enough of them, a 100% TIPS portfolio should be about as crisis proof as humanly possible.