Search found 823 matches

by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Apr 15, 2018 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Far is too Far, Commuting?
Replies: 205
Views: 10656

Re: How Far is too Far, Commuting?

All else being equal, commuting should be avoided. However, usually, all is not equal. Living farther away often means less cost due to lower housing expenses, which could lead to retiring earlier. So, the time spent commuting might be earned back later. Also, often the house further away is bigger ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Apr 14, 2018 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BH travel tips?
Replies: 124
Views: 6804

Re: BH travel tips?

We're pretty good at keeping travel costs down (family of three) so thought I'd chime in too in case it is helpful to anyone (apologies for not being more succinct). For the past five years, my wife and I have each been opening up Chase credit card accounts. A typical year means we each open maybe t...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Apr 13, 2018 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Could you support family on 1 income?
Replies: 88
Views: 5624

Re: Could you support family on 1 income?

We’re currently running an experiment (monitoring our income and expenses closely) to see if we can have my wife be a stay-at-home-parent as of next year (or work minimally and have pretty much her entire income go toward retirement accounts). So far, it looks very promising that we’ll be able to ma...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Apr 11, 2018 10:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: NY (HCOL area) - 32(Him) and 31(Her) - Invest in 457 for "early" retirement?
Replies: 12
Views: 1079

Re: NY (HCOL area) - 32(Him) and 31(Her) - Invest in 457 for "early" retirement?

So you think I should stop my 403b contributions completely and only use the 457 right now? Besides expense ratios, are there any other fees that the NYS DCP has that my 403b might not? Iwas thinking this for the three funds: NYSDCB Equity Index (US stock market), ER 0.0084% International Equity Fu...
by Ron Ronnerson
Tue Apr 10, 2018 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: NY (HCOL area) - 32(Him) and 31(Her) - Invest in 457 for "early" retirement?
Replies: 12
Views: 1079

Re: NY (HCOL area) - 32(Him) and 31(Her) - Invest in 457 for "early" retirement?

Just a very quick google search indicated that you may be able to contribute to both the 403b and the 457 to the maximum, the 457 I think is $18,500 for this year per person. Our (I'm in NYSDC/457 as well) plan provides a Roth 457 option as well, same limits, but unlike a "normal" Roth there are RM...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Apr 01, 2018 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Withdrawing from a Roth Account for ACA Subsidy Reasons
Replies: 7
Views: 772

Withdrawing from a Roth Account for ACA Subsidy Reasons

Edit: Deleted - Question has been sufficiently answered. Thanks to all who responded.
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Mar 28, 2018 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

You're cutting it very close. Are you sure there won't be a bonus or dividends or capital gains or something like that that might disqualify you in the future? The plan would be to get fairly close with a little bit of margin of safety. So I wouldn't try to get qualify for the subsidy by making it ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Mar 28, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

I could use some guidance between these two choices: Option 1 BRONZE HSA HMO Monthly Premium: $3.00 after $841.93 tax credit Primary Care Visits: You pay 40% Generic Drugs: You pay 40% Yearly Deductible $9600 (May Not Apply) Total Expense Estimate: Lower or Option 2 GOLD HMO Monthly Premium: $387.4...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Mar 28, 2018 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

You're cutting it very close. Are you sure there won't be a bonus or dividends or capital gains or something like that that might disqualify you in the future? The plan would be to get fairly close with a little bit of margin of safety. So I wouldn't try to get qualify for the subsidy by making it ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Mar 28, 2018 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

Thanks for the wealth of information, jalbert; it gives me a lot to think about. I greatly appreciate the time you took to provide such a detailed response to my question.
by Ron Ronnerson
Tue Mar 27, 2018 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

I went on to the California exchange and entered my income as $80k. It said that my monthly premium for a Bronze 60 HDHP HSA HMO Plan at Kaiser would be $3/month. The subsidy is $841.93. These numbers seem very strange to me. Did I perhaps do something wrong? That is most likely correct, for this y...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Mar 25, 2018 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

If you are using the HSA for long term investments, the best deal is pretty much with a startup called Lively https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=228522 I have my HSA with them. Since you are in CA, you need to know that for state tax purposes, HSA is a taxable account. So you need...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Mar 25, 2018 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Re: Question about ACA Subsidy

Thanks for the replies, everyone. For 2019 coverage, it does look like 400% FPL is $83,120, so you would qualify. But you are very close to the edge. I would pick a HSA compatible plan if available so as to be able to reduce the income by about $6850 (the actual amount is not announced yet) for 2019...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Mar 25, 2018 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about ACA Subsidy
Replies: 20
Views: 1818

Question about ACA Subsidy

We’re considering the possibility of my wife being a stay-at-home parent as of next year (2019). Our family health insurance has been covered through my wife’s work. We’re both 43 and have one child, age 3 year 10 months. I’m a public school teacher in the Bay Area and work for a large school distri...
by Ron Ronnerson
Tue Mar 20, 2018 9:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with Retirement Investment for Teacher
Replies: 24
Views: 1715

Re: Help with Retirement Investment for Teacher

I’m a teacher in the Bay Area. My salary is about the same as yours. I’m one year younger and am 18 years away from retirement. My CalSTRS pension should look similar to yours (right around $85k if I retire at age 61.5 and select the 100% option for my wife so that she continues to receive my full p...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time/money trade-offs with work and life balance
Replies: 46
Views: 3567

Re: Time/money trade-offs with work and life balance

... On the other hand, what teachers have to deal with for their long (supposed) holidays sounds just as bad to me. That’s an interesting perspective to me. . . . I do agree that teachers do have to deal with a lot. I will just say that, at least to me, it's totally worth it. It is time well spent....
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Mar 17, 2018 12:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time/money trade-offs with work and life balance
Replies: 46
Views: 3567

Re: Time/money trade-offs with work and life balance

... On the other hand, what teachers have to deal with for their long (supposed) holidays sounds just as bad to me. That’s an interesting perspective to me. I changed careers 15 years ago from management to teaching. I love my job even though it can be stressful and difficult sometimes. I wouldn’t ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Mar 16, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the jobs with the best medical insurance?
Replies: 51
Views: 3587

Re: What are the jobs with the best medical insurance?

Here in PA, public school teachers have excellent coverage, the kind private industry used to have decades ago. This will vary by region/district. I'm a public school teacher in the Bay Area and get no health benefits from my employer. To cover our family of three, we have the option to purchase in...
by Ron Ronnerson
Thu Mar 15, 2018 9:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Those with high savings rate: why?
Replies: 187
Views: 18702

Re: Those with high savings rate: why?

Is it because you want to retire early, or You are not sure what the future holds, e.g. low job security, or You want to leave money to others, e.g. kids, grand kids, charity, or You have no interest in increasing your consumption now, including giving more money to charity etc. Any insights? We're...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Mar 14, 2018 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should a recent college grad look for a job in the Bay Area or Texas?
Replies: 39
Views: 2668

Re: Should a recent college grad look for a job in the Bay Area or Texas?

News just came out this week that San Francisco lost the largest number of residents than any other city in the fourth quarter of last year, 24% more than the second city, NYC. https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/smart-living/san-francisco-losing-more-residents-than-any-other-us-city/vp-BBJUjqo Man...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Mar 04, 2018 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Kid Expenses
Replies: 31
Views: 2301

Re: New Kid Expenses

Congratulations! You can spend a lot on a kid or not nearly as much. Our daughter will turn four this summer and things were rather inexpensive for her until just this past year (like the previous poster, we’re in the East Bay in the S.F. Bay Area as well). Gifts and used items can take care of a lo...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Feb 25, 2018 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defining "House Poor"
Replies: 299
Views: 16517

Re: Defining "House Poor"

If you have to live somewhere and pay rent or a mortgage (housing is a consumption), what makes housing any different than any other consumption? Why is no one vacation poor? Eating out poor? Car poor? Private school poor? I very much agree with this. I don’t think there is anything as “house poor....
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Feb 25, 2018 5:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make $90k, pay no Federal Income Tax in 2018? Check / critique this scenario.
Replies: 76
Views: 11993

Re: Make $90k, pay no Federal Income Tax in 2018? Check / critique this scenario.

It's totally possible. A friend of mine who is married and has three children is in a position to pay no federal income tax with an income above $200k. His California state tax would be much higher at around $1500. Deductions and the child tax credit make this possible. Wow, that is crazy tax optim...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sun Feb 25, 2018 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defining "House Poor"
Replies: 299
Views: 16517

Re: Defining "House Poor"

If you have to live somewhere and pay rent or a mortgage (housing is a consumption), what makes housing any different than any other consumption? Why is no one vacation poor? Eating out poor? Car poor? Private school poor? I very much agree with this. I don’t think there is anything as “house poor....
by Ron Ronnerson
Thu Feb 08, 2018 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: free dinner investing seminar
Replies: 287
Views: 19695

Re: free dinner investing seminar

How does one get invited to such events? I've never received any invitations of this sort. Perhaps I'm not part of the targeted demographic? (Age: 36) I was wondering the same thing. While getting a good free meal sounds enticing, it's probably a good thing that I'm not getting such invitations. I ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Feb 07, 2018 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: free dinner investing seminar
Replies: 287
Views: 19695

Re: free dinner investing seminar

My wife and I attended one at a Ruth Chris Steakhouse a few years back. I had no intention of buying what they were selling and didn’t do so. The dinner was delicious and the sales guy wasn’t aggressive at all. If he had been, that would’ve been fine with me since I have no problem saying no. I’ve a...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Feb 03, 2018 9:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I saving enough?
Replies: 34
Views: 3299

Re: Am I saving enough?

There is no 28% or 25% tax bracket as of the new year. You're in the new 22% tax bracket . There’s a good chance you’re actually in the 12% tax bracket. Subtract the following from your gross income of $110k to figure out your bracket: standard deduction of $24k (or possibly more if you itemize), p...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Feb 03, 2018 5:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I saving enough?
Replies: 34
Views: 3299

Re: Am I saving enough?

No. If you are in the 28% bracket your taxable income is $150k +, so gross is more like $175k+. I mistakenly posted the wrong tax bracket. We make a combined $110k a year, with a small amount coming from my wife who works very part time. There is no 28% or 25% tax bracket as of the new year. You're...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Feb 02, 2018 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford this house?
Replies: 50
Views: 4554

Re: Can I afford this house?

I would not move (edit: out of the Bay Area). You have a lot of assets, a high income, and family in the Bay Area. Family, at least to my wife and me, is priceless. We own a townhouse like the one you're considering purchasing. It's in an area with excellent public schools and within a few minutes o...
by Ron Ronnerson
Thu Feb 01, 2018 12:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Make $90k, pay no Federal Income Tax in 2018? Check / critique this scenario.
Replies: 76
Views: 11993

Re: Make $90k, pay no Federal Income Tax in 2018? Check / critique this scenario.

Married filing Jointly 2 children under 12 Single income household $90,000. Salary $24,000. Standard deduction $18,500. Traditional §401(k) contribution $11,000. Traditional IRA contributions (self & spousal) $ 6,900. HSA contributions via cafeteria plan —————————————— $29,600 taxable income $19,05...
by Ron Ronnerson
Tue Jan 30, 2018 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The housing nowadays
Replies: 64
Views: 6099

Re: The housing nowadays

Prices can change in either direction to any degree at any time. So if you find a place you like and can comfortably afford, I would buy it if I were going to stay there for a good while. Transaction costs in Bay Area real estate are not insignificant so I would try to buy a place I would be in for ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Mon Jan 29, 2018 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?
Replies: 111
Views: 8533

Re: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?

Also, only kids always seem to feel they are on "stage" all the time unless they have a TON of nearby cousins to grow up with so they don't feel like they are always being noticed. Cousins definitely are amazing. I live next door to my sister (we share a wall between our townhouses). My wife and I ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?
Replies: 111
Views: 8533

Re: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?

I'm in the Bay Area. We have a three year old daughter. Our annual expenses so far: Food: $3000 Transportation: -$2000 (after kid was born, I was ready to replace my 15 year old car so I got a smaller, more fuel efficient vehicle and started car pooling to work. The kid fits inside my Toyota Corolla...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 27, 2018 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a house now versus waiting (Bay Area)
Replies: 35
Views: 3570

Re: Buying a house now versus waiting (Bay Area)

We were looking in the BA in 2004-2007 and were like :annoyed. We looked at a 700 sq ft, 1 bedroom home behind a larger property that sold for...$500k in 2007. :shock: We bought in 2011 after the foreclosure crisis hit and did well. We live in a top school district that's highly walkable (but admit...
by Ron Ronnerson
Wed Jan 24, 2018 1:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Working in the real world
Replies: 118
Views: 9069

Re: Working in the real world

Getting back to the point of the OP, the wages that folks claim on here are absurd, except for the few doctors and some senior managers. I think a lot of posters lie about their salaries, perhaps in part to keep up with other posters. But I recall some folks who claim to make 800k/year, tech worker...
by Ron Ronnerson
Mon Jan 22, 2018 5:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Stereo Questions
Replies: 25
Views: 1513

Re: Car Stereo Questions

Ostentatious wrote:
Sun Jan 21, 2018 8:46 pm
I would recommend the pioneer AVH line of car head units with feature rich options including navigation, Apple CarPlay or Android, waze etc.... . Newegg discounts these units fairly frequently.
Thanks for the suggestion. Are there particular reasons you make the recommendation?
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 10:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Stereo Questions
Replies: 25
Views: 1513

Re: Car Stereo Questions

I like crutchfield.com, but the comment that you don't know much about car radios concerns me. Installing isn't rocket science, but it isn't a snap either. If you don't plan to install yourself, I'd recommend a local (independent) car stereo shop. Six years ago, I had a mid-level Clarion head unit ...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Stereo Questions
Replies: 25
Views: 1513

Re: Car Stereo Questions

bottlecap wrote:
Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:49 pm
I’d look into an after market stereo. Cheaper and likely better.

Get whatever features you want in it. I think it’s easier to have nav on my phone.

JT
Thanks, this is helpful input. The built in navigation seems to be a somewhat expensive feature so maybe I'll skip it.
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Stereo Questions
Replies: 25
Views: 1513

Re: Car Stereo Questions

If you were considering going aftermarket anyway ("I don’t really like the original manufacturer stereo as it’s basic and clunky"), you should consider doing it now, instead of helping the dealer make his next boat payment. Crutchfield is an excellent source for all things aftermarket car audio and...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Stereo Questions
Replies: 25
Views: 1513

Car Stereo Questions

I have a base 2015 Toyota Corolla (no longer under warranty) and am having problems with the car stereo. When the car turns on, the stereo works for about 30 seconds. After that, nothing on the touch screen works. Sometimes, I’m also unable to lower the volume or turn the stereo off while the car is...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Lower tax rates for 7 yrs.-Are you switching to Roth 401K
Replies: 65
Views: 5850

Re: Lower tax rates for 7 yrs.-Are you switching to Roth 401K

With the personal tax rates lowering in 2018 (but only for the next 7 yrs), is anyone going to start contributing more to their Roth 401K vs Traditional 401K? If you invest in the Roth 401K for the next 7 years you know you will be in a lower tax bracket, at least until 2025. After 2025, we know th...
by Ron Ronnerson
Sat Jan 20, 2018 8:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's your annual cost of living (expenses)?
Replies: 40
Views: 3424

Re: What's your annual cost of living (expenses)?

$85k (includes property tax but not income tax)
Married
1 child (age 3)
VHCOL Area (Bay Area)
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Jan 12, 2018 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CalSTRS 457(b) options
Replies: 15
Views: 662

Re: CalSTRS 457(b) options

Perhaps so, but I'm with facepalm on this. That 0.25% bugs me too! Our previous 457b vendor used to be TIAA-CREF and they charged 0.33%. So it's gone down some since they converted from TIAA-CREF to CalSTRS Pension 2. I'd be just fine if it went down a tad further. I'm not holding my breath for thi...
by Ron Ronnerson
Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CalSTRS 457(b) options
Replies: 15
Views: 662

Re: CalSTRS 457(b) options

The .25% irks me, though. I guess it is worth it when you consider the tax savings. That's a very reasonable plan charge. The funds are low cost and probably don't have revenue sharing. The costs of operating employer-based plans (statements, loans, compliance, etc.) have to be paid by somebody, an...
by Ron Ronnerson
Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CalSTRS 457(b) options
Replies: 15
Views: 662

Re: CalSTRS 457(b) options

I'm a teacher in California and have both Vanguard and CalSTRS Pension 2 as available vendors in a 403b. Prior to starting contributions to a 403b, I already had a 457b with CalSTRS Pension 2 so I opened a 403b with them as well. It makes things really easy to manage since both accounts show up toge...
by Ron Ronnerson
Mon Jan 01, 2018 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your threshold for paying down debt?
Replies: 89
Views: 6240

Re: What is your threshold for paying down debt?

Two part question: Why are Bogleheads so afraid of debt and what is your threshold between aggressively paying it down or redirecting those payments into investments? I won't make an attempt at the first part of your question but can try for the second. For me, there isn't a "threshold" in terms of...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?
Replies: 19
Views: 1811

Re: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?

I'm unclear on why a $5,500 Roth contribution converts to a $5,500 403b contribution. At a 30% tax rate a $5,500 Roth contribution consumes $7,857 of gross income, so it is equivalent to a $7,857 403b contribution. However, the $7,857 is not accurate because a portion of the gross income falls into...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?
Replies: 19
Views: 1811

Re: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?

Another important consideration: How good is your 403(b)? If you have to pay 1% per year on your investments (an issue with many 403(b) plans), that is a greater cost than any tax savings from using a traditional rather than a Roth account. If it is with a low-cost provider such as Vanguard, Fideli...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sign Up Bonuses/Offers
Replies: 8
Views: 1168

Re: Sign Up Bonuses/Offers

You may want to check out Doctor of Credit https://www.doctorofcredit.com/best-bank-account-bonuses The site does a decent job of providing all the terms of the various offers. We (wife and I) have done the following during 2017 though I’m sure some of the offers have expired: BBVA checking account:...
by Ron Ronnerson
Fri Dec 29, 2017 7:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?
Replies: 19
Views: 1811

Re: Tax Bracket going from 15% to 22%. Should I change type of account to invest in for retirement?

Another important consideration: How good is your 403(b)? If you have to pay 1% per year on your investments (an issue with many 403(b) plans), that is a greater cost than any tax savings from using a traditional rather than a Roth account. If it is with a low-cost provider such as Vanguard, Fideli...