Search found 1029 matches

by serbeer
Fri Sep 15, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did it take for Equifax to email you a security sign up?
Replies: 38
Views: 2563

Re: How long did it take for Equifax to email you a security sign up?

I never got one from my first attempt. I went back in today and was able to sign up. All the other three agencies where handled within about 3-5 minutes max. What a mess. Wait do you mean you went back and did the process again, then instantly got an email? It never sent an email. I got a confirmat...
by serbeer
Tue Sep 05, 2017 5:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience selling car to Carmax?
Replies: 82
Views: 59043

Re: Experience selling car to Carmax?

Got quote from Carmax last year and it was bad low-ball, $6.2K if I recall correctly. Did not even consider it.
Did trade-in at dealer instead, they agreed to go up as high as $9+K (though their initial offer was $6.5K)
by serbeer
Fri Aug 25, 2017 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience finding gas pump card skimmer?
Replies: 46
Views: 4118

Re: Experience finding gas pump card skimmer?

Gas pumps do not use chip function of CCs yet, at least in my area. Most of the stores now do. I think if chip transaction is used, skimmer would be useless since you need chip to be present to run the card. Not 100% sure though, perhaps one can get enough info to make the card usable at non-chip lo...
by serbeer
Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Percentage CASH are you?
Replies: 90
Views: 6455

Re: What Percentage CASH are you?

About 1.2% is kept intentionally as emergency fund. Plus, most of bond funds, REITS and many stock funds/ETFs keep some of assets as cash in reserve. It can reach 2-3% at times for some funds/ETFs! When this portion is summed up accross all our investments, even though we do not have direct access t...
by serbeer
Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backpack qualified expense for 529 plan?
Replies: 19
Views: 1514

Re: Backpack qualified expense for 529 plan?

Oh, please. Like IRS is going to go after you for buying a under $50 backpack for taking books and laptop to classes.
Common folks, the question is not even worth discussing.
by serbeer
Thu Jul 06, 2017 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it Safe to Get Your DNA Tested?
Replies: 71
Views: 6703

Re: Is it Safe to Get Your DNA Tested?

Just wait some and you will have this test done for you totally free--by your friendly government.
by serbeer
Thu Jun 22, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?
Replies: 64
Views: 5093

Re: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?

Simple evasion. You don't need to give a reason and if they ask for one they may not even care--they may just be asking to slow you down and impede you on the off chance you'll change your mind, or give them an opening for an "account retention talk." Just say, basically, "I'm closin...
by serbeer
Fri Jun 09, 2017 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: from solo proprietorship to ... what?
Replies: 11
Views: 879

Re: from solo proprietorship to ... what?

Thank you for all the feedback, it is quite eye opening to me. Yes, primary W-2 Box 5 > the Social Security (SS) Maximum Wage Base, so no SS taxes are paid on her 1099-MISC income, only Medicare taxes. I did not realize Spirit Rider that it is mandatory for an employer (including an S-Corp) to deduc...
by serbeer
Thu Jun 08, 2017 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: from solo proprietorship to ... what?
Replies: 11
Views: 879

Re: from solo proprietorship to ... what?

Well folks, I surely appreciate all the opinions. At the same time I cannot help by notice that little consensus is emerging physiorol: I totally agree about the fact that the person will not stay long once they learned the ropes. This is exactly what I told my wife. But she is just bored somewhat a...
by serbeer
Thu Jun 08, 2017 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: from solo proprietorship to ... what?
Replies: 11
Views: 879

from solo proprietorship to ... what?

Folks, my wife has a small part time business on the side (in addition to her full time job). She works for commissions in service-oriented industry earning commissions that she splits with the company she is employed by (the company provides infrastructure, support, credentials, etc while my wife f...
by serbeer
Mon Jun 05, 2017 2:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Maximizing Tax Advantaged Space
Replies: 1
Views: 262

Re: Maximizing Tax Advantaged Space

Most comprehensive list I've seen on this forum is in this locked thread:
viewtopic.php?t=105229
by serbeer
Mon Jun 05, 2017 2:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Benefits of waiting to convert $4,000,000 in IRAs into Roth
Replies: 41
Views: 4988

Re: Benefits of waiting to convert $4,000,000 in IRAs into Roth

BanditKing wrote:Also don't forget to take State taxes into account too. If you don't convert it, and then relocate to a state without income tax, or that doesn't tax retirement funds, (assuming you are in one that does now), you could save some more.

Per OP, "There is no state income tax."
by serbeer
Sat May 13, 2017 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping at All Inclusive Resort?
Replies: 67
Views: 5819

Re: Tipping at All Inclusive Resort?

When we are in all-inclusives, and are not assigned personal butler, we spend about $60 in tips per 7 night trip. I actually take 60 $1 bills with me for that. Leave tips for maids, always at sit-down dinner, and occasionally to barman when they are doing more than simply throwning liquids together....
by serbeer
Mon May 08, 2017 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Most Common Financial Mistakes
Replies: 108
Views: 14958

Re: Most Common Financial Mistakes

I don't think these have been mentioned: 1. Not making health a high enough priority. 2. Spending way too much in/on college, often for poor returning major. 3. Refinancing mortgage without big enough improvement. 4. Believing renting is most always bad. 5. Believing Roth > traditional. 6. Having l...
by serbeer
Tue May 02, 2017 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Side gig, 1099 strategy
Replies: 15
Views: 1474

Re: Side gig, 1099 strategy

Do #3, open Solo-401K and contribute just under 20% (need to calculate exact %) to it as Profi Sharing if you max out 401K at your first job. That minimizes taxes to the extent legal and is simple. Not so simple is using S-Corp and paying yourself a salary, avoiding payrol taxes on the rest. Not wor...
by serbeer
Tue May 02, 2017 9:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking of purchasing a Kindle "Voyage"
Replies: 10
Views: 1238

Re: Thinking of purchasing a Kindle "Voyage"

I have both Paperwhite gen 3 (that I use myself) and Voyage (which I purchased for my wife as b-day gift). Both are great readers, you cannot go wrong with either one. Voyage is slightly more compact, and that IMO its the most significant advantage, the rest are mostly gimmics. Yes, if I wanted to t...
by serbeer
Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you have a Billiards Table?
Replies: 5
Views: 1000

Re: Do you have a Billiards Table?

No, but I do have ping-pong table :)
by serbeer
Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts
Replies: 24
Views: 3233

Re: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts

Take a look at m I used this spreasheet as starting point and pretty much quadrupled it in size through years adding a lot of custom features on top of its original main engine (tracking of securities on account-level, automating stock quotes download, ROR and ER calculations, tracking cost basis, t...
by serbeer
Fri Apr 21, 2017 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts
Replies: 24
Views: 3233

Re: Excel Solver for Portfolio Rebalancing across Multiple Accounts

Adding $5500 to your Roth is unlikely to trigger your rebalancing bands in most cases. It's just not that important. Agreed. But in most cases the real question is what type of assets to invest these $5500 into in this Roth account. Good rebalancing spreasheet shows you what assets are below the ch...
by serbeer
Thu Apr 20, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dedicating your bonus to something
Replies: 30
Views: 3269

Re: Dedicating your bonus to something

I put mine into kid's 529 account usually
by serbeer
Wed Apr 12, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Wife wants to start retirement investing- Suggestions please
Replies: 10
Views: 1090

Re: Wife wants to start retirement investing- Suggestions please

401K plan is always for an individual. No retirirement accounts can be joint, all of them--IRA, 40K, Roth IRA, etc--are for individual only. If you open Solo 401K for her, you can be designated "plan administrator" which gives you access to account information and ability to sign contribut...
by serbeer
Thu Mar 30, 2017 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: reduce workplace tax witholding to afford more retirement contributions
Replies: 10
Views: 610

Re: reduce workplace tax witholding to afford more retirement contributions

If you are W-2 emloyee, I do not think they will let you reduce federal/state witholdings to 0. The best you can do is to to increase number of allowences you claim on W-4 form, but not sure if it is legal to do even that--without proper calculation on the worksheet. Now, if you wanted to withold mo...
by serbeer
Thu Mar 16, 2017 3:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Switching to Vanguard
Replies: 7
Views: 766

Re: Switching to Vanguard

I always suggest multiplying the per-year fees by the number of years expected. It gets imprecise as numbers get larger (always better to do it with an exponent), but can't do that in your head. For a rough approximation, it gets the point across. For example, 2% fees in a "bad" 401(k), e...
by serbeer
Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do Bogleheads handle allowance?
Replies: 38
Views: 3328

Re: How do Bogleheads handle allowance?

gmc4h232 wrote:My mom pays kids a bounty for every housefly they kill. We don't have any kids, so she usually uses this technique with any kids that show up with her house party guests.

...and now I bet some of these kids bring extra flies with them when they go to her place...
by serbeer
Wed Mar 15, 2017 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PayPal - Any Disadvantages?
Replies: 49
Views: 4753

Re: PayPal - Any Disadvantages?

I agree with all of the above. I unlinked my bank account from PayPal years ago, and only use it with my Amex where required. In my experience PayPal's dispute resolution process is useless to customers. The last time I had a dispute, PayPal took the seller's word with no proof and ignored the fact...
by serbeer
Tue Mar 14, 2017 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do Bogleheads handle allowance?
Replies: 38
Views: 3328

Re: How do Bogleheads handle allowance?

Mine 6 and 8 yo get no allowences. Tooth fairy occasionally drops them a quarter, and granparents give ocasional change and golden-colored metal dollars for some greater achivements--and they dutifully collect those in their coin banks and every once in a while I can see them re-counting their riche...
by serbeer
Wed Mar 08, 2017 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safest way to encrypt pdf tax documents to send via email?
Replies: 40
Views: 3304

Re: Safest way to encrypt pdf tax documents to send via email?

I password protected pdf and called on the phone to give password when I had to do that
by serbeer
Mon Mar 06, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you spend on "stuff" for kids?
Replies: 53
Views: 4412

Re: How much do you spend on "stuff" for kids?

I completely understand and like the fact that your kids read a lot. But I am really curios why you do not use libraries most of the time? Could it be that you don not have good libraries where you live? I have 4 or 5 libraries within 5 mi radious, and 5 more on my way home from work. I take my kids...
by serbeer
Wed Feb 22, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help Please, My Identity is at Risk
Replies: 26
Views: 3541

Re: Help Please, My Identity is at Risk

Hm, well, I would immediately change all passwords since you say they were on the laptop, everything else would be done afterwards...
by serbeer
Tue Feb 21, 2017 5:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bonds bad in ROTH? Infographic:
Replies: 59
Views: 5012

Re: Bonds bad in ROTH? Infographic:

No, bonds are NOT bad in Roth. It is not easy to explain or to undestand but has to do with the fact that placement of assets in Roth vs tIRA impacts Risk in addition to after-tax return. By moving any assets from Roth to tIRA you unknowlingly impact your Risk, and therefore AA the primary purpose o...
by serbeer
Mon Feb 13, 2017 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Windshield repair gone wrong....
Replies: 19
Views: 2508

Re: Windshield repair gone wrong....

replace
by serbeer
Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPhone SE 16GB - is memory adequate?
Replies: 44
Views: 2423

Re: iPhone SE 16GB - is memory adequate?

Nope, in my experience you need 32Gb or else you'll be constantly in the process of deleting one thing to download another
by serbeer
Fri Feb 10, 2017 11:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

I see. Yes, I noticed the lines 4-7 in Schedule A, the only place that makes reference to previous years. The Schedule is where most actions take place. Only single line is transfered to Part I of 5330 itself, line 1 in my case, and part II is just tax due amount. So, if I understand you correctly, ...
by serbeer
Fri Feb 10, 2017 6:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

Spirit Rider, I spent some time today going over Form 5330 and its instructions, and have pretty good understanding what I have to file this year, as "an employer liable for the tax under section 4972 for nondeductible contributions to qualified plans." However, nowhere have I found even m...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 09, 2017 11:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

Ah, so Schedule A of 5330 is not that of 1040. Got it. I think now it is all crystal clear.

Thank you to everyone who responded with helpful suggestions, and special thanks to Spirit Rider for his expertise and very detailed indeed driving lesson! Time to buckle up I guess :)
by serbeer
Thu Feb 09, 2017 7:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

Thank you very much guys, that really helps. And thank you Spirit Rider for my first advanced solo 401K driving lesson, yes, I am pretty rookie plan manager So, if I understood you correctly, I should go ahead and send in 5330 at the same time I finish my 2016 tax return (because only then Schedule ...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 09, 2017 5:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

Well, thank you folks, this really helps. I will know for the future that I can wait till I get 1099-MISC form in the next year to finish up on Profit Share contribution! DTSC, thank you for the tip, I'll call Fidelity and see if they are equally accomodating with my situation. Yes, I'd appreciate i...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 09, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

How to handle overcontributing to Solo 401K?

Folks, I am wondering how to handle overcontributing Profit Sharing contribution portion of Solo 401K? Basic facts: My wife is W-2 emploee that contributes full $18K into her 401K plan at work. But she is also running solo proprietorship business part time that gives us some extra income. I opened S...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 02, 2017 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should you stop using your antivirus software?
Replies: 36
Views: 3170

Re: Should you stop using your antivirus software?

Depends on what you are doing on your PC: If you are browsing mainstream sites, you don't need AV. If you are downloading torrent/warez/xxx sites, I'd say get not only AV but also Malwarebytes Premium, Malwarebytes Enti-Exploit, and Zemana Antilogger to boot--and you will not be safe anyway btw but ...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 02, 2017 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Solo 401(k) purely to receive rollovers?
Replies: 21
Views: 1828

Re: Solo 401(k) purely to receive rollovers?

Nothing wrong with it. I pretty much did the same thing with Fidelity Solo401K, using the same thinking and did roth conversion from my NDIRA, as soon as I had a few dollars of self-employment income and got EIN from IRS. Now, in my case business actually took off and brings steady income, so I now ...
by serbeer
Thu Feb 02, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Natural Gas detector alarm
Replies: 2
Views: 409

Re: Natural Gas detector alarm

For what it worth, I now have had Kidde Plug-In Combination Explosive Gas/Carbon Monoxide Alarm for nearly 15 years (on my 2nd one now) plugged in into kitchen outlet at the countertop level and it is definately NOT too sensitive. In fact, on several occasions we smelled gas from stove that was not ...
by serbeer
Wed Feb 01, 2017 2:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Most of College Endowments Lost Money in 2016
Replies: 10
Views: 1957

Most of College Endowments Lost Money in 2016

"A brand-new study of 815 college endowments finds they had an average investment return in fiscal year 2016 of negative 1.9%—the lowest since the 2008-09 financial crisis."
http://time.com/money/4653978/college-e ... 3-billion/
by serbeer
Wed Jan 25, 2017 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Independent contractor solo 401k
Replies: 8
Views: 564

Re: Independent contractor solo 401k

Good article and calculator to answer all your questions
https://thefinancebuff.com/solo-401k-fo ... yment.html
by serbeer
Wed Oct 12, 2016 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using Swipe Readers
Replies: 5
Views: 864

Re: Using Swipe Readers

Looks like there are 2 types available from Paypal: free "Mobil Card Reader" and "Chip Card reader" which can also be inexpensive with enough charging volume: "$149 with $100 rebate to your PayPal account after $3,000 processed within 3 months." m On the other hand, you...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New study suggest human lifespan is limited to 115 years
Replies: 27
Views: 2376

Re: New study suggest human lifespan is limited to 115 years

OK, I guess I'll have to settle for 115. Sigh.
by serbeer
Sun Oct 02, 2016 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much Umbrella Insurance coverage needed?
Replies: 53
Views: 7392

Re: How much Umbrella Insurance coverage needed?

Question: Even if 401(k) is protected from lawsuits, if there is a judgement against your future income, will the withdraws from 401(k) be subject to the judgement? Ah, this is indeed a very good question I have not considered previously. And the answer, alas, appears to be that yes, it is possible...
by serbeer
Fri Sep 30, 2016 6:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much Umbrella Insurance coverage needed?
Replies: 53
Views: 7392

Re: How much Umbrella Insurance coverage needed?

Just to point out, some type of assets are judment-proof per state-specific law. For example, in IL where I live: - 401Ks,Rollover IRA/Roth, and 529 plans are protected 100% (which is good reason btw to avoid comingling rollover IRA funds with new contributions) - IRA/ROTH are protected up to $1M -...
by serbeer
Wed Sep 28, 2016 1:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: College Savings Calculator with Adjustable AA
Replies: 2
Views: 412

Re: College Savings Calculator with Adjustable AA

You want certain level of customization, and the particular one you are thinking about may not be offered. You pretty much have to choose between standard fixed-rate calculators and 100% flexible year-by-year ones that require a little more work to get going and are not limited to college savings on...