Search found 1768 matches

by GerryL
Sat Sep 22, 2018 4:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Online Savings Accounts
Replies: 8
Views: 789

Re: Online Savings Accounts

I keep a chunk of cash in an Ally savings account for two reasons: It offers a slightly better rate than my credi union and I can use the debit card to get cash from ATMs when traveling in Europe. (Transaction fees apply.)
by GerryL
Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Did you really have something to retire to?
Replies: 127
Views: 10148

Re: Did you really have something to retire to?

I do still use the alarm clock, although I now allow some "snoozes" as needed. I know from experience that I need that to keep to something like a regular schedule. Otherwise I'll start staying up and getting up later each day. Funny. The only time I use an alarm is when I’m “on vacation” or have a...
by GerryL
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Planning Attorney Says Putting tIRA in a Revocable Trust is "Complicated" - True?
Replies: 42
Views: 2575

Re: Estate Planning Attorney Says Putting tIRA in a Revocable Trust is "Complicated" - True?

Perhaps the OP can explain what s/he would hope to accomplish by putting a tIRA into a trust.
by GerryL
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers
Replies: 25
Views: 1144

Re: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers

Ask if his possible recommendations include Medigap F High Deductible plans. If he gives you some song and dance about people not wanting to deal with all the paper work involved with HD plans, that may be a strong indication that he does not have clients’ best interest top of mind. That is to say, ...
by GerryL
Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MySocialSecurity and credit freeze block annoyance
Replies: 5
Views: 519

Re: MySocialSecurity and credit freeze block annoyance

Think about this: up until now (when freezing/thawing is free for everyone), we taxpayers have been paying Equifax to manage IDs for opening an SS account AND, as individuals, to thaw our freezes so we could open an account. They have/had us coming and going.
by GerryL
Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Did you really have something to retire to?
Replies: 127
Views: 10148

Re: Did you really have something to retire to?

I started planning 3 years before I intended to retire (although I took a package to retire a year earlier), so yes, I was retiring to something. That doesn’t mean I had highly defined plans, just that I was ready for the next stage. I’m doing less volunteering than I thought I would but more travel...
by GerryL
Sat Sep 01, 2018 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?
Replies: 10
Views: 935

Re: When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?

OP here. Getting an appointment at the local office is out of the question. If you can actually reach someone to make an appointment, they are booked 3 months out and don't make appointments further out than that. Which may be why they don't answer the phone. Are you talking about an in person appo...
by GerryL
Sat Sep 01, 2018 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?
Replies: 10
Views: 935

Re: When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?

OP here. Sounds like not hearing until last minute is not out of the ordinary. I'm not worried about not getting my benefits eventually. I just don't want to be in the situation of calling when I return and having someone say, "Oh. There's a problem. You should have contacted us earlier." Also, I wa...
by GerryL
Sat Sep 01, 2018 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?
Replies: 10
Views: 935

When did SSA notify you about your initial SS payment?

Ok. I'm freaking out a bit here. On Monday I leave the country and will be gone for a month. While I am away I will celebrate my 70th birthday. I still have not gotten a determination letter from SSA about my benefits, which I expect to start shortly after my return. I submitted my app online in May...
by GerryL
Sat Sep 01, 2018 11:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Don't Look and Have A Doctor Waiting When You DO
Replies: 35
Views: 5705

Re: Don't Look and Have A Doctor Waiting When You DO

Jack Bogle's comment is meant to make a point (i.e., no need to continually muck around in your investments). Should not be taken literally.
by GerryL
Sat Sep 01, 2018 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Customer Service with Vanguard
Replies: 97
Views: 6094

Re: Problems with Vanguard

Vanguard has made several mistakes with my portfolio lately and cannot seem to correct the most glaring problem with cost basis reporting in a timely manner. I wonder if anyone else with substantial assets invested in Vanguard index funds has experienced funds just disappearing from their accounts,...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 31, 2018 1:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with cash/emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 3462

Re: What to do with cash/emergency fund

My credit union recently started offering a new kind of savings account to encourage non savers to start saving -- with them. Some years back I moved the bulk of my cash savings to Ally, where I already had several CDs. The Ally money market account offered a much better interest rate, and I could u...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 31, 2018 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you store financial account information with your estate plan?
Replies: 51
Views: 3212

Re: How do you store financial account information with your estate plan?

I need to follow this discussion. On my to-do list when I return from September travels: Start work on The Book, a notebook of information that my executor/survivors will need to handle my finances, etc. when I am gone. Will likely be useful for when I'm still here if the mind starts leaving before ...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 31, 2018 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mega Downsize....
Replies: 91
Views: 8326

Re: Mega Downsize....

I read Marie Kondo's book, "the life changing magic of tidying up". It was a great motivator. ^^^ This I just can’t talk to my things as I decide to get rid of them. I am afraid of the men with butterfly nets. I don't think talking to things I plan to get rid of would help me. I'd be afraid they'd ...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 28, 2018 9:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Done saving for retirement according to firecalc?
Replies: 51
Views: 4824

Re: Done saving for retirement according to firecalc?

Have you considered healthcare? I was seriously considering officially leaving Megacorp when I became eligible for early retirement at age 60. The idea was that I could leave the stress of that job and just work for subsistance until later, leaving my retirement savings to grow with no new contribut...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unique Phone Apps that you find yourself using most often?
Replies: 46
Views: 6626

Re: Unique Phone Apps that you find yourself using most often?

I'm (re)learning French, and how I wish I had tools like these way back when I learned it the first time:
Dictionary
Conjugation app
App to stream French news station so I can immerse myself in the language any time ... including while I sleep :happy
by GerryL
Tue Aug 28, 2018 8:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mega Downsize....
Replies: 91
Views: 8326

Re: Mega Downsize....

Coincidentally, I just dropped off a trunk load of stuff at Goodwill this afternoon. Then I found this thread. Maybe the conversation here will motivate me to get busy with the garage purge that I promise to do every time I go out to said garage to find something. Good news is that I did not move mu...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 27, 2018 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Man...opening a savings account with Ally is an arduous process.
Replies: 32
Views: 3051

Re: Man...opening a savings account with Ally is an arduous process.

I don't recall having any significant wait when I started dealing with Ally, but maybe it was because I was opening an account for CDs rather than savings. By the time I opened my money market account (so I could get the debit card), perhaps it went quickly because they already had money to back up ...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 27, 2018 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 28 year's old with no retirement savings.
Replies: 31
Views: 3243

Re: 28 year's old with no retirement savings.

Bonus/incentive pay is taxed at 40%, so typically I fund before tax savings from bonus-- just something to consider. :confused Is it "taxed" at 40% or is withholding at 40%? Big difference. Where I used to work the annual bonus was shrunk by the highest withholding, since the company didn't know ho...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why own 401k and traditional IRA?
Replies: 25
Views: 1528

Re: Why own 401k and traditional IRA?

Started with a tIRA way back when there was no Roth and I did not have access to a 401k. When I eventually started a job with a 401k, I stopped contributing to tIRA. When Roths became available, that's where the extra went. So for many years I had all three. Now down to just a tIRA and a Roth. Not e...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 26, 2018 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your Best Mood Boosting Books (not self-help)
Replies: 29
Views: 2345

Re: Mood Boosting Books (not self-help)

Go-to book for boosting my mood: Anguished English: An Anthology of Accidental Assaults Upon Our Language by Richard Lederer. It is a collection of typos, bloopers and grammatical disasters from school essays, insurance claims, accident reports. etc. When I learn that a friend is dealing with a seri...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 26, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 28 year's old with no retirement savings.
Replies: 31
Views: 3243

Re: 28 year's old with no retirement savings.

Agree with the advice about trying to get the 403b match -- or as much as you can manage. It's free money. Other than that I would urge you to get into a savings habit. Start small if you have to given your current income, but make it a way of life. Promise yourself that you'll put aside even $10 a ...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 26, 2018 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your stealth way to save monthly?
Replies: 87
Views: 9590

Re: What is your stealth way to save monthly?

During my working years I simply automated all my savings, including maxing out retirement plans. Then I lived on what was left -- and if I had too much left after a few months or if I got a bonus or gift, I manually added more to savings. Living on "what was left" made it fairly easy to figure out ...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 26, 2018 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shingrix [Vaccine availability]
Replies: 47
Views: 4192

Re: Shingrix

I just got my name added to the list at a local (Oregon) Costco for the 1st shot. They said the wait time is maybe 3 months. Someone had previously told me that when they get any in, they prioritize people who are waiting for their 2nd shot.
by GerryL
Sat Aug 25, 2018 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Considering opportunity in Melbourne - Florida. Any insight about the area?
Replies: 29
Views: 2366

Re: Considering opportunity in Melbourne - Florida. Any insight about the area?

My dad lived near Sebastian, about 20-30 minutes south of Melbourne, so I visited the area frequently. (Now mostly visit the center of the state.) Hurricanes, already mentioned. Friends have been posting recent news articles about serious water quality problems in parts of Florida due to changes in ...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 24, 2018 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trip to the Steens Mountains in Oregon
Replies: 13
Views: 1221

Re: Trip to the Steens Mountains in Oregon

Also to see: Malheur National Wildlife Refuge. (In the news a few years ago for non-wildlife reasons, but apparently it has gotten back to normal.) And if you're into rockhounding, 30-40 miles west of Burns (by way of Hwy 20) is Glass Butte, which includes BLM land where you can pick up obsidian. Tr...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?
Replies: 102
Views: 7763

Re: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?

I'm looking at cc's now. Looking at the Capital one Savor or Savor One. I like Visa since we shop at Costco don't want the Costco card since the membership we're not the primary holders of the membership. We dine out often and of course food shop alot too. We don't buy stuff from Amazon. I was draw...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 24, 2018 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?
Replies: 102
Views: 7763

Re: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?

I'm aware there are a lot of cc threads but I was just curious if anyone has transitioned from using mostly cash to mostly cc's. I guess I am one of those who has transitioned recently. Before retiring I only used my credit cards for larger purchases, filling the gas tank, eating out maybe (which I...
by GerryL
Thu Aug 23, 2018 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How come people use Amazon Locker?
Replies: 15
Views: 1538

Re: How come people use Amazon Locker?

People who have been the victim of "porch pirates". In many locations people now drive around looking for front porch packages to grab. If you aren't home until the end of the day someone might grab your package - instead you can pick it up from a secure place on your way home. I don't buy often th...
by GerryL
Thu Aug 23, 2018 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security
Replies: 7
Views: 973

Re: Social Security

Is your credit frozen? You cannot sign up with a frozen credit. You might also have answered a question or two incorrectly. Some of the questions are tricky. ahh, that would be it... frozen credit You can opt to unfreeze your credit temporarily or go into an SS office to create your SS online accou...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 21, 2018 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Giving away donation receipts
Replies: 22
Views: 1587

Re: Giving away donation receipts

I used to write software reviews and got to keep the software. If I wasn't going to use the software after I had submitted the review, I would sometimes drop it off at Goodwill. I was talking to someone about how much I might claim as a deduction for a pricey (at that time) software package and he a...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 21, 2018 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Composite Decking Material
Replies: 41
Views: 3297

Re: Composite Decking Material

https://www.lowes.com/pd/Olympic-319-9-fl-oz-Biodegradable-Deck-Cleaner/3043830 For everyone that has a composite deck and has mold/mildew issues. You can thank me later. This is the best stuff I ever came across for cleaning. Very simply...you dump this in one of those spraying containers (like th...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 20, 2018 4:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirees: Timing your withdrawals
Replies: 40
Views: 3699

Re: Retirees: Timing your withdrawals

Retired 4 years and have not yet had to withdraw anything. When SS starts next month (!!!), that should cover most expenses. When RMDs start next year, I intend to execute QCDs in the first half of the year and then take the remainder of the RMD in the second half of the year, with taxes withheld. W...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 20, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: No advance notice to employer
Replies: 42
Views: 3988

Re: No advance notice to employer

I worked in the high tech sector where stock options were the norm. During the go-go 90s we would sometimes notice that someone was no longer around. "Oh, he called in rich. Doesn't work here anymore." Plenty of people fantasized about calling in rich with the idea that they would never have to work...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Composite Decking Material
Replies: 41
Views: 3297

Re: Composite Decking Material

I had my small wooden deck replaced with a composite decking material from Lowe's (not sure if it was Trex or Choice). The guy who installed it apparently placed the boards too close together. There was no gap for the rain to drain off and, given Oregon's weather and shade trees, I soon had a mold/m...
by GerryL
Mon Aug 20, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you put away in investments?
Replies: 66
Views: 5439

Re: How much do you put away in investments?

Hello everyone, Im just curious to see how much everyone puts away every year into investments and what percentage of gross income that is. I personally put away about 65k a year total into 401, IRA, taxable accounts at about 15% of my gross income. I feel like we should be putting more into invest...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 19, 2018 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you go for annual Medicare preventive tests and screening?
Replies: 84
Views: 5095

Re: Do you go for annual Medicare preventive tests and screening?

Just a reminder for those soon to go on Medicare: After that initial "Welcome to Medicare" visit, the annual "Wellness Visit" is NOT a physical exam. It's mostly a chance to talk with the doc and possibly set up subsequent visits to investigate any physical complaints you may bring up. If the Wellne...
by GerryL
Sat Aug 18, 2018 11:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your major and investing/finance?
Replies: 99
Views: 5069

Re: Your major and investing/finance?

Masters in Library Studies. I like to say "Librarians don't have all the answers … but we have the questions." We don't just look up information, we formulate questions to be sure we are searching for the right information. I think this skill may be useful for getting to the BH investing philosophy ...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best (most practical, low cost) Luggage for Airline Travel
Replies: 56
Views: 3810

Re: Best (most practical, low cost) Luggage for Airline Travel

Decision to make: Spend big bucks for well-made luggage and worry about the airlines damaging it or buy an economy suitcase that meets your needs and assume that it will eventually be damaged and you'll simply replace it. I have been buying too much luggage since retiring and opted for the latter ph...
by GerryL
Sun Aug 12, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comfortably Retired and charity giving?
Replies: 25
Views: 2113

Re: Comfortably Retired and charity giving?

I address these comments to those of us taking RMDs, who are over age 70.5, and have a desire to make charitable contributions whether small or large. Consider the tax benefits under the new federal tax laws that are in effect for tax year 2018. Many of us at this age no longer itemize deductions a...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comfortably Retired and charity giving?
Replies: 25
Views: 2113

Re: Comfortably Retired and charity giving?

Four years into retirement and I am in a similar situation as to having more than I need to meet my needs and my wants. I have never calculated as far as a percentage of my income for charitable giving, but when I start taking RMDs next year I intend to put around 1/3 toward QCDs. If RMDs start gett...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 1:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ: When to Pick Mutual Fund over ETF?
Replies: 16
Views: 1744

Re: WSJ: When to Pick Mutual Fund over ETF?

GAAP wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:47 pm
GerryL wrote:
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:39 pm
As Jack Bogle says: There's nothing wrong with exchange-traded funds … as long as you don't trade them.
That's equally true for mutual funds...
Yes. I believe that was his point. He is not a fan of a product that seems to promote trading.
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest Threats to Financial Well-Being
Replies: 99
Views: 9444

Re: Biggest Threats to Financial Well-Being

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pound and six, result misery. Not living below your means and not investing or greed. +1 Not having at least some sort of budget so you 1) know where your money is ...
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ: When to Pick Mutual Fund over ETF?
Replies: 16
Views: 1744

Re: WSJ: When to Pick Mutual Fund over ETF?

As Jack Bogle says: There's nothing wrong with exchange-traded funds … as long as you don't trade them.
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paper checks yes or no?
Replies: 116
Views: 6759

Re: Paper checks yes or no?

I finally stopped carrying my checkbook with me just a couple of years ago, but I intend to keep it handy for those few occasions when a check is the most convenient (for both me and recipient) way to pay. Only a few times a year, but twice in the past month or so.
by GerryL
Fri Aug 10, 2018 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does it matter which mutual fund goes into my Roth IRA vs. Traditional IRA?
Replies: 8
Views: 432

Re: Does it matter which mutual fund goes into my Roth IRA vs. Traditional IRA?

Another consideration is how long before you intend to tap the Roth IRA. If you don't intend to use the $$ in your Roth until long after you start taking RMDs -- if ever -- you can accept more volatility. The VG CFP I worked with recently recommended filling up my Roth space with the bulk of my Tota...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 07, 2018 7:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: SPIA for an older retired relative
Replies: 11
Views: 1034

Re: SPIA for an older retired relative

Uniquehorn, Two bits of advice to add on: 1) She should shop around as not all SPIAs will be equal. 2) She should develop a budget that includes a line item for those "travel and shopping" expenses, not just the necessities. That way she can know where she stands and can enjoy those things that are ...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 07, 2018 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Medicare cards. Get yours?
Replies: 25
Views: 2458

Re: New SS cards. Get yours?

Now... to get this number into the medical and insurance systems. That should be lots of "fun"! Problem is, I'm *sure* that the old SS number will remain right there. This new, separate Medicare number is probably only useful for the youngsters who are just entering the system and won't need to giv...
by GerryL
Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Medicare cards. Get yours?
Replies: 25
Views: 2458

Re: New SS cards. Get yours?

My new Medicare card came early in the second round. But I had already gone out to the Medicare site and printed off a copy of the new card, an idea I got from someone on this forum.
by GerryL
Mon Aug 06, 2018 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I close a newly opened card that I no longer use?
Replies: 18
Views: 979

Re: Should I close a newly opened card that I no longer use?

As long as there is no annual fee, you can file it away and either not use it or only use it a few times a year. But be sure to keep track of the account -- and open and read all mail regarding the account.