Search found 1598 matches

by GerryL
Thu Feb 22, 2018 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investopedia: Seniors Get a New Simplified Tax Form for 2019
Replies: 16
Views: 1302

Re: Investopedia: Seniors Get a New Simplified Tax Form for 2019

Quick question: Does the new 1040-SR form have an expiration date at the bottom which identifies the end of 2025? 8-) Edited to add: BTW, this was not an idle question, although a bit tongue in cheek. The expiration of the new tax law is something that shouldn't be ignored. Strategic defense is req...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What UN-frugal thing do you do?
Replies: 163
Views: 7690

Re: What UN-frugal thing do you do?

Reading this thread I realized that apart from travel I still have trouble being un-frugal. But I guess one thing I have done is subscribe to News in Slow French. Over $150 for a 1-year subscription, so in my book that’s not frugality. Will I renew? Don’t know yet.
by GerryL
Wed Feb 21, 2018 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investopedia: Seniors Get a New Simplified Tax Form for 2019
Replies: 16
Views: 1302

Investopedia: Seniors Get a New Simplified Tax Form for 2019

The Budget Act signed into law this month apparently will create a new simplified tax filing form especially for seniors. 1040SR, which won’t be available until 2020 for the 2019 tax year, is only for use by people 65 and up. It supports more income categories than the 1040EZ but requires the filer ...
by GerryL
Mon Feb 19, 2018 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seeking Cruise Suggestions
Replies: 36
Views: 2168

Re: Seeking Cruise Suggestions

I have been traveling with Road Scholar (55+ crowd). Last year I did an Amazon River cruise in Peru that included daily excursions to see wildlife. This year I hope to do a barge cruise in France. Unfortunately, barge cruising has become rather luxurious, and the single supplement is unpleasant. A f...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 18, 2018 8:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you have a Japanese bath in your house?
Replies: 27
Views: 3914

Re: Do you have a Japanese bath in your house?

When I first moved into my house I often dreamed of adding a Japanese bath in the little downstairs bathroom. I lived in a little 2nd floor apartment in Japan for 2 years in the 1980s. My enclosed bath was on the narrow back porch with a corrugated plastic panel for privacy between the backdoor and ...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 18, 2018 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Single People and Retirement Question
Replies: 105
Views: 9412

Re: Single People and Retirement Question

Never married female here. Age 69 and retired almost 4 years now. I am not a highly sociable person and love my solitude. Not worried about loneliness. I call myself a gregarious hermit. In fact, I have to motivate myself to extend and build my social network so that I don't find myself someday decr...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 18, 2018 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What has been your most important skill in achieving financial independence?
Replies: 164
Views: 10720

Re: What has been your most important skill in achieving financial independence?

Regarding the importance of luck: Luck plays a role in all of our lives, both good luck and bad luck. I contend that a key skill is recognizing your luck and not squandering it, neither the good nor the bad. A lot of us have been successful because we build on our good luck and learn from our bad lu...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 18, 2018 2:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What has been your most important skill in achieving financial independence?
Replies: 164
Views: 10720

Re: What has been your most important skill in achieving financial independence?

I'm sure all/most of the obvious skills and characteristics have been covered by this point in the thread, so I'm going to add one that may not seem so obvious. In fact, it may even be seen as a character flaw: I am a ditherer. A world-class ditherer. While some people might have problems with impul...
by GerryL
Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get child's skin in the game for college?
Replies: 135
Views: 6480

Re: How to get child's skin in the game for college?

I haven't read all the previous replies, so apologies if someone already covered this option: My family was not high income, but back in the 1960s, college wasn't all that expensive. The deal with my dad was that he would pay my tuition (I lived at home) but any spending money would have to come fro...
by GerryL
Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I'm Cancelling My Home Insurance
Replies: 156
Views: 10783

Re: I'm Cancelling My Home Insurance

You didn't mention WHY you want to cancel it. You buy insurance for something you can't afford to lose and you shouldn't buy what you don't need. I cancelled my life insurance years ago because our net worth could take care of my family if something were to happen to me. TravelfoFun What about all ...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 15, 2018 8:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can someone help me explain to my wife...?
Replies: 81
Views: 9335

Re: Can someone help me explain to my wife...?

arcion, The "I" in IRA stands for "individual." There is no such thing as "our Roth IRA." Whose name is on the Roth IRA? Why would you only have one account between the two of you? If your wife does not have any earned income, why does she not have her own spousal IRA -- on which she can test her ma...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 11, 2018 4:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best place to exchange dollars to euros?
Replies: 18
Views: 746

Re: Best place to exchange dollars to euros?

Generally the local ATM will be the best option for you to use your debit card to withdraw cash in the local currency. You might want to do a little research ahead of time to make sure how to find and identify the appropriate ATM where you are going. (You can probably download an app to locate ATMs ...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 11, 2018 2:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting Rid of Ants in the House?
Replies: 46
Views: 2519

Re: Getting Rid of Ants in the House?

Here in the Portland, OR, area we had some serious ant problems last year. Every time I went to the store to stock up on the Terro, the shelves were bare and other people were looking at the empty shelves with disappointed faces. This year I am trying to stay in control (ha!) by making sure my outdo...
by GerryL
Sat Feb 10, 2018 3:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: free dinner investing seminar
Replies: 245
Views: 15844

Re: free dinner investing seminar

Each year I would get (among all the other free dinner invitations) an invite to one of these events at a Ruth's Chris Steak House. It always seemed to come at the end of the year for January dates. One year I gave serious consideration to going because I wanted to try Ruth's Chris, just once. But a...
by GerryL
Fri Feb 09, 2018 10:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should you sell your investments when they start dropping? When should you invest during this market correction?
Replies: 52
Views: 4127

Re: Should you sell your investments when they start dropping? When should you invest during this market correction?

OP:
Here is the secret for successful market timing:

Sell a day or two before the market drops.
Buy a day or two before the market goes up.

(Don't spread this around or it won't be a secret anymore.)
by GerryL
Thu Feb 08, 2018 9:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brokerage sweep fund- not worth the trouble
Replies: 5
Views: 582

Re: Brokerage sweep fund- not worth the trouble

It seems just about every brokerage account takes any cash in your account and automatically sweeps it into a MM or similar fund. I see the appeal. However, I generally keep very little cash in my brokerage accounts. I use Quicken to keep track of my finances. I get these transactions of 6 and 13 c...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Budget and Savings
Replies: 5
Views: 572

Re: Budget and Savings

OP, You asked for tips to avoid over spending. Not sure if what you have listed is spending for the past month or an actual budget, or plan for how you spend each month. In other words, do you plan to spend $460 each month on shopping and $150 on eating out, or is that just what happened? Some find ...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need advice on getting advice, SS/Medicare/allocation
Replies: 22
Views: 1052

Re: Need advice on getting advice, SS/Medicare/allocation

°Cost to me is the same whether we self enrolled or use a knowledgeable advisor. I chose an adviser and used his experience. OK - so your cost was ZERO? How and how much does the advisor get paid? Wouldn't the amount he/she gets paid depend on which plan is chosen? Would this advisor recommend a ch...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 08, 2018 3:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How to deal with regret
Replies: 87
Views: 7408

Re: How to deal with regret

Buyer's remorse is common, especially when you are doing something "new." You know that you won't need the money for many years. You also know that you can't turn back the clock. So, you can only learn to stop fretting about things you can't change and get on with life. If you want stories of experi...
by GerryL
Thu Feb 08, 2018 2:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2017 Callan Periodic Table of Investment Returns
Replies: 35
Views: 4542

Re: 2017 Callan Periodic Table of Investment Returns

I was about to post a link to a Money magazine article by Walter Updegrave on the updated Callan Periodic Table of Investment Returns, but I see that this has already been the focus of discussion of several (merged) threads. I will still post the link to the article here, because it offers a good di...
by GerryL
Tue Feb 06, 2018 1:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stay the course? Edited to Staying the course!
Replies: 22
Views: 2179

Re: Stay the course? Edited to Staying the course!

OP, When I bought my house 27 years ago, I started to have buyer's remorse at the thought that I had paid too much. Prices in the area seemed to be going down. It was a lot of years before I could see the value of my house gradually going up and my equity growing. The mortgage is now paid off and th...
by GerryL
Mon Feb 05, 2018 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rule of thumb for how much to spend on rent?
Replies: 19
Views: 1002

Re: Rule of thumb for how much to spend on rent?

Google the "50-20-30 budget" (or rule) for a simple way to figure out how much of your income you should be spending on various categories. Housing falls within the 50%, along with other necessities.
by GerryL
Mon Feb 05, 2018 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap cell phone plans
Replies: 48
Views: 3340

Re: Cheap cell phone plans

I have been on Consumer Cellular for several years. Discount from already low prices if you have AARP membership.
by GerryL
Sun Feb 04, 2018 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Age Related Discounts?
Replies: 20
Views: 1644

Re: Age Related Discounts?

When I am looking at hotels (usually Wyndham or Choice) or rental cars, there is a drop-down for various "codes" that generally includes AARP/senior and AAA among others. Of course, you can only get one discount. I try both AARP and AAA to see if one is better than the other. Usually they are the sa...
by GerryL
Sun Feb 04, 2018 3:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: what to do in retirement
Replies: 11
Views: 2118

Re: what to do in retirement

BTW from the title of this post, I figured it had to do with how to spend time in retirement so as not to become a couch potato.
by GerryL
Sun Feb 04, 2018 3:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: what to do in retirement
Replies: 11
Views: 2118

Re: what to do in retirement

Check out the book Get What's Yours (Social Security) See http://www.getwhatsyours.org/. Be sure to look for the most recent edition as there have been changes to the program since the title originally came out. When speaking to anyone at the SS office, it's good to be somewhat knowledgeable about t...
by GerryL
Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CCRC advice needed [Continuing Care Retirement Community]
Replies: 28
Views: 1672

Re: CCRC advice needed [Continuing Care Retirement Community]

Can you qualify for the CCRC with a portion of your income not included in your "financial picture"? That is, can you go back and revise your financial disclosure and tell them that you would like to be evaluated without one of your accounts being included in the calculation and hold that money outs...
by GerryL
Sat Feb 03, 2018 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you live on a budget?
Replies: 65
Views: 3431

Re: Do you live on a budget?

I do what I call after-the-fact budgeting. Like many of the previous commenters, my technique has long been 1) save, 2) pay necessary expenses, 3) spend what I want from the remainder ... or save it. I've been keeping track of my expenses in Quicken for over 2 years and can see how I'm doing over th...
by GerryL
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: WSJ: Wall Street to Vanguard: We’re Not Your Doormat [Fidelity charging some plans to hold Vanguard funds]
Replies: 63
Views: 10468

Re: Wall Street to Vanguard: We’re Not Your Doormat

I wanted to buy a Vanguard fund in my Fidelity Roth IRA but the cost was $75 for the transaction. There was an easy solution to that problem. I transferred the whole fund to Vanguard. My former company's 401k was with Fidelity. As some point, while I was still employed there, they dramatically reor...
by GerryL
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris Hotel Recommendations
Replies: 21
Views: 1541

Re: Paris Hotel Recommendations

tripadvisor.com is a great website for travel. You can get good recommendations for hotels, sightseeing, etc. from travelers who know Paris well as well as locals. Tip: research on Trip Advisor or another aggregator site (actually multiple sites, if you want to find small hotels that may not be cov...
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 1099-B
Replies: 15
Views: 1130

Re: 2017 1099-B

Vanguard says to expect 1099-B around middle of February. Never mind that everyone tells you to file your taxes as soon as possible to avoid ID-theft scams.
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Automatic investing: once/month or twice/month?
Replies: 10
Views: 843

Re: Automatic investing: once/month or twice/month?

I based my auto-investing on my cashflow. Check at the beginning of month included mortgage payment. Check at the middle of the month included money to be invested and put into savings accounts. Of course, 401k contributions we taken out of every paycheck.
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto accident - use insurance or self pay
Replies: 11
Views: 692

Re: Auto accident - use insurance or self pay

That rental reimbursement is not for the other party; it's for you (when you need a rental). When the party you hit needs a rental, that is covered under your liability policy. Not sure about that. When I was rear-ended by an insured driver, my rental during repairs was covered. Soon after I was re...
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris Hotel Recommendations
Replies: 21
Views: 1541

Re: Paris Hotel Recommendations

I prefer to stay in the 5th arrondisement. On my last trip I stayed at Home Latin, which is practically in the thick of things near Blvd St Michel and easily walkable to Ile de la Cite and Luxembourg Gardens, but on a very quite side street. It is a small, modest hotel. I would definitely stay there...
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 3:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Alarm Systems
Replies: 16
Views: 1509

Re: Home Alarm Systems

My home has been alarmed for most of the 27 years I have lived in it. Started with a local company (because they did monitoring locally, and my friend worked there) but they were bought by Protection One, and I am still with them. Over the years I have had to have changes made to the system as the t...
by GerryL
Mon Jan 29, 2018 3:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What if Your Play Money Blows Up?
Replies: 31
Views: 4066

Re: What if Your Play Money Blows Up?

If I were to set aside 5% to play with, I would play with that 5% unless and until it disappeared. If it grew beyond 5%, I would still play with just the 5%. In other words, I would take my winnings off the table. "Off the table" could mean folding into the investment portfolio or using the cash for...
by GerryL
Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?
Replies: 48
Views: 1924

Re: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?

Tip - use the subway always and hold onto your stub! So easy to use, never waited more than 5 minutes at any station, but some make you reenter the stub at the exit which was weird to me. Buy tickets at the airport. This was also confusing - you need two seperate sets. One ticket, more costly, is f...
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 10:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Does anyone not rebalance?
Replies: 66
Views: 4594

Re: Does anyone not rebalance?

My AA is a little out of whack, so I've been nudging it back by not reinvesting dividends in my stock funds but using them to buy more shares in bonds.
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off mortgage with Roth IRA?
Replies: 23
Views: 1351

Re: Pay off mortgage with Roth IRA?

OP: Suggest you play around with an amortization calculator (you can search for one on the web) and see what a loan looks like over time. Making extra payments in the early days of the mortgage can make a lot of interest disappear because you are lowering the principal ahead of schedule. But once th...
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off mortgage with Roth IRA?
Replies: 23
Views: 1351

Re: Pay off mortgage with Roth IRA?

Bad idea. Roth space is precious. OP wrote: Then starting next month ... start putting 500 a month back in my Roth. So it's kind of like borrowing from it I guess? No, it's not like borrowing from the Roth. The most important thing in your Roth is the time it has to grow ... tax free. You will be l...
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?
Replies: 48
Views: 1924

Re: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?

Timely thread. I will be in Paris in the first week of April. Any suggestions on the local sim card? Thanks for tips and suggestions. I went with LeFrenchMobile because 1) you can buy it in US ahead of time (by mail) and 2) support is in English. (Even though I speak French, I don't speak SIM.) You...
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you lost your job
Replies: 19
Views: 2575

Re: If you lost your job

This did happen to me, just a year after I bought a house with a 10% mortgage. It was during an economic downturn and I was older than 40. I had only recently moved to the state and was afraid I would lose my house. Quite grim. After 18 months the networking I had been spending a lot of time on paid...
by GerryL
Sat Jan 27, 2018 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?
Replies: 48
Views: 1924

Re: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?

Food tip: Freshly made sandwiches (on baguette) are a very economical lunch option, for France. You can find them stacked up in the windows of bakeries and there are also chain stores that do a booming business around lunch time. (Skip the serve-yourself stores where the sandwiches are wrapped in pl...
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Podcast suggestions
Replies: 6
Views: 907

Re: Podcast suggestions

I subscribe to Better Off with Jill Schlesinger.
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?
Replies: 48
Views: 1924

Re: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?

Thanks ellvizzle - I will look up Paris Greeters and yes I kind of feel like I'm ok without Versailles but we will see! Yes. Paris Greeters. You may want to set up something with them before you leave for Paris because it can take a bit of time to arrange a Greeter around your schedule, and theirs....
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 9:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Multiple portfolios?
Replies: 17
Views: 1367

Re: Multiple portfolios?

I don't have multiple portfolios, but I have assets that I do not include in my portfolio for retirement planning purposes. (I am in retirement.) [*]tIRA and Roth IRA and a hefty taxable account are in-portfolio when it comes to AA and planning. [*]Cash intended for living expenses and a chunk of co...
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 8:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Don't market time...i know, i know.
Replies: 34
Views: 4537

Re: Don't market time...i know, i know.

I have a retirement date about 2 yrs from now. The markets are beyond my wildest imagination; more in my nest egg than I need. Is there a way to 'set some aside'? Sure, flame me, but I've been an invest and hold guy for 30 yrs. Never touched my 95% equities holdings even during 2007 era. Now stocks...
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?
Replies: 48
Views: 1924

Re: April in Paris - Your favorites or suggestions?

Not far from your neighborhood is a 1960s era skyscraper (Tour Montparnasse) that looks somewhat out of place, but the views from the top floor are spectacular. And no lines when we went. The French will tell you that the best view in Paris is from the top of the Tour Montparnasse ... because from ...
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I focus on paying down student loans during a Bear Market?
Replies: 14
Views: 1071

Re: Should I focus on paying down student loans during a Bear Market?

OP, If you were ready to buy a house, but the prices in the neighborhoods where you intend to buy were a bit depressed, would you wait until the housing market got hot again and the prices shot up before you buy? By all means, come up with a plan to use your extra savings to accelerate paying off yo...
by GerryL
Fri Jan 26, 2018 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [UPDATED 1/26/2018 ] 55+ Early retirement offer.
Replies: 90
Views: 12868

Re: [UPDATED 1/26/2018 ] 55+ Early retirement offer.

Congratulations. Now the question is "Are you going to retire-retire or retire and work somewhere else?" When I got a similar offer in 2014 -- a year before I planned to retire -- I came here and asked for feedback. I was a bit older than you but the offer was similar to yours with 39 weeks pay plus...