Search found 4559 matches

by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 14, 2019 7:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where should HSA Contributions go? Wife is 10 years younger.
Replies: 3
Views: 372

Re: Where should HSA Contributions go? Wife is 10 years younger.

If you both have qualifying coverage it is fine to contribute everything to one account for now since you are both under 55. Either name is fine. Once you are 55+, you will be eligible to contribute an additional $1K and that extra ¨catchup¨ contribution can´t go into hers, only into one with your n...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 14, 2019 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Doctors charging for things outside of insurance, is this Kosher?
Replies: 43
Views: 3921

Re: Doctors charging for things outside of insurance, is this Kosher?

OP, I send you all wishes that everything goes for the best. Back during my childbearing days (the 1980s--when dinosaurs roamed the earth!), there was minimal insurance coverage for fertility treatments of any sort, but particularly IVF. (I was very grateful not to need such treatments, since I unde...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 14, 2019 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: poor Boglehead sending my kids to college
Replies: 69
Views: 4999

Re: poor Boglehead sending my kids to college

Some of the very well endowed colleges (e.g., Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, Yale, Williams, Amherst, Swarthmore, etc.) have been moving in the direction of giving extremely generous need-based aid to families in your general ballpark so do not rule them out. There are free anonymous financial aid es...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 14, 2019 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating Home
Replies: 7
Views: 1005

Re: Donating Home

The estimated value of the items in our home that can be salvaged is 125k. The not for profit provided us documents that estimated our tax savings at 50k. They also "request" that you make a donation to the not for profit of 25k. If you just gave them $125K(or even $50K) worth of materials then why...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GE Pension Buyout
Replies: 69
Views: 7317

Re: GE Pension Buyout

Can lump sum pension payouts be rolled over into an IRA. Or are they considered taxable income in the year received? I had a lump sum payout on one component of my late husband´s GE pension six years ago. I was able to roll it over into an IRA at Vanguard. I remember calling Vanguard about the best...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Cancellating and Insurance Rates
Replies: 27
Views: 1347

Re: Credit Card Cancellating and Insurance Rates

My oldest credit card (44 years old!) got cancelled (due to inactivity on my part) about a year ago. The cancellation had no noticeable impact on my credit score. But then again, I had a long history with lots of other credit cards, many of them held for over 10 years. The average age of my accounts...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back
Replies: 56
Views: 4552

Re: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back

Because I play the credit card bonus game, we once got an increase in insurance rates from a company we had been with 15 years or so. They said it was due to having applied for "too many" cards. This inspired me to shop for insurance and we ended up with a rate reduction instead of an increase by c...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 12, 2019 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Received SSDI lump sum and want tp pay the taxes on it now
Replies: 12
Views: 938

Re: Received SSDI lump sum and want tp pay the taxes on it now

How is SSDI taxed? Is it taxed just like a regular SS benefit, e.g., maximum of its 85% as an ordinary income? Any special provisions? I am curious. Yes, a maximum of 85% in ordinary income. BUT the main issue specific to SSDI is that the Social Security Administration often takes years to determin...
by dodecahedron
Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back
Replies: 56
Views: 4552

Re: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back

3. BofA Preferred Rewards MasterCard - likely the best “everything else” card if you qualify for the higher rewards % due to having (I think) $100k in a BofA bank account or Merrill Edge brokerage account. The BofA Cash Rewards card comes in both Visa and MC flavors. Susan G Komen, World Wildlife F...
by dodecahedron
Fri Oct 11, 2019 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back
Replies: 56
Views: 4552

Re: Best No Annual Fee Visa Credit Card with Cash Back

Next week, I plan to call and cancel that card. No sense in paying an annual fee when other cards offer the same benefits with no annual fee. Cancelling a 20 year card, your only card, will have a big negative impact on your credit score. If I don't ever plan to obtain a loan or a mortgage, then ho...
by dodecahedron
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Crossing the IRMAA
Replies: 15
Views: 1177

Re: Crossing the IRMAA

The IRMAA brackets are indexed to inflation. So the actual brackets for 2021, when your 2019 info will be used, aren't known. However, they are likely to be slightly higher than the published 2020 ones. I don't believe that they are indexed. The MAGI for couples has been $170K for a few years. At l...
by dodecahedron
Thu Oct 10, 2019 2:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Plz share what you did to minimize retirement taxes
Replies: 32
Views: 3791

Re: Plz share what you did to minimize retirement taxes

QCDs (Qualified Charitable Distributions) instead of itemized donations. We haven’t itemized since the mortgage was paid off many years ago. Not old enough for QCDs until 2024 in my case. I do plan to do QCDs at that time. Until then, I am continuing to itemize and donating appreciated securities f...
by dodecahedron
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Crossing the IRMAA
Replies: 15
Views: 1177

Re: Crossing the IRMAA

Cheese, Do you use a tax software? It should be relatively easy to get your MAGI with a tax software. I know of NO tax software that computes your MAGI for IRMAA purposes! Tax software automatically calculates MAGI for other purposes (e.g., qualifying for different types of tax credits) but those M...
by dodecahedron
Thu Oct 10, 2019 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Crossing the IRMAA
Replies: 15
Views: 1177

Re: Crossing the IRMAA

Our medical expenses are going to be WAY UP THERE this year so I’d like to deduct as much as possible to offset IRA withdrawal taxes without crossing the IRMAA line. It’s my understanding that only the taxable portion of the social security payments is included in the AGI for IRMAA purposes. Is thi...
by dodecahedron
Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NY Times $1 per week digital
Replies: 41
Views: 5802

Re: NY Times $1 per week digital

Feeling grateful that my employer has purchased an institutional digital subscription to both the NYT and WSJ. Anyone with an email address associated with my .edu employer (whether faculty, staff, or student) gets free digital access to both those newspapers. I do pay $5 per month for a personal Wa...
by dodecahedron
Tue Oct 08, 2019 12:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Economics of upgrading to latest iPhone vs one generation behind
Replies: 36
Views: 2805

Re: Economics of upgrading to latest iPhone vs one generation behind

You also have to figure in the "version skew effect." My previous (cheap Android phone) was perfectly satisfactory in every way except that an important app that I really needed announced that an update was required... and the update required a version of the OS that was not available for my phone....
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: More Nasty and Unexpected Changes With Part D Plans Next Year
Replies: 49
Views: 5593

Re: More Nasty and Unexpected Changes With Part D Plans Next Year

Wouldn’t this be a small issue compared to whether or not a pricey medication is covered? Yes. And it still makes me angry that you are required to commit for a whole year, but they are only required to stick to the formulary for 60 days. In short, you are buying a pig in a poke. You do not know wh...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: More Nasty and Unexpected Changes With Part D Plans Next Year
Replies: 49
Views: 5593

Re: More Nasty and Unexpected Changes With Part D Plans Next Year

Wouldn’t this be a small issue compared to whether or not a pricey medication is covered? Yes. And it still makes me angry that you are required to commit for a whole year, but they are only required to stick to the formulary for 60 days. In short, you are buying a pig in a poke. You do not know wh...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?
Replies: 110
Views: 6130

Re: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?

BTW, here’s info on local areas with income taxes: https://www.thebalance.com/cities-that-levy-income-taxes-3193246 I am not familiar with the details of city taxes in all the states, but I will note that the cities in NY that levy local taxes (NYC and Yonkers) would also be charging ZERO taxes to ...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?
Replies: 110
Views: 6130

Re: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?

Interesting. I was thinking of all ordinary income, both spouses under age 65 and including all state/local taxes. Does that change the result? I made them age 60 and made all $80K ordinary income (distributions from tax deferred account). Their federal tax goes to $6,300. Their NY tax goes to $3,4...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?
Replies: 110
Views: 6130

Re: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?

OP, How do you pay 12K in income taxes with 80K of expenses (including the taxes)? KlangFool It’s possible in some states. You have to withdraw the 80K, to live off 68K. Please tell me in what state this would be true. I used NBER TaxSim to estimate taxes in the ¨usual suspect¨ high tax states. $12...
by dodecahedron
Mon Oct 07, 2019 6:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?
Replies: 110
Views: 6130

Re: What are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget?

I am having some trouble in determining what are the essential and discretionary expenses in a retirement budget. I understand that the discretionary expenses are the ones that you could cut if your financial situation becomes bleak. To facilitate discussions, here is a hypothetical annual retireme...
by dodecahedron
Sun Oct 06, 2019 6:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYS medicaid
Replies: 3
Views: 282

Re: NYS medicaid

I believe your mother´s Medicaid eligibility status will NOT be affected by your dad´s enrollment in Medicare. However, if the soon-to-be-inherited assets generate income for the household, that additional income might present issues for your mom´s qualification. If household income goes up modestly...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 05, 2019 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DAF for church offering? [Donor Advised Fund]
Replies: 81
Views: 9787

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

This thread is a little old but I don't think that I need a new thread for just one question. For the pledge at your church, how do you identify yourself and the DAF fund so the church won't come after you when you pledge with your name and the fund comes out from family fund? I'd just have a chat ...
by dodecahedron
Sat Oct 05, 2019 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much is the IRMAA Surcharge?
Replies: 13
Views: 1154

Re: How Much is the IRMAA Surcharge?

Thank you so much! Yes, I had notes about the "IRMAA cliff" and to try and avoid it. But we won't be able to avoid it entirely, as the pension is going to put is firmly in the second tier, and COLAs or investment income drawdown will eventually have us in Tier 3, according to the helpful chart you ...
by dodecahedron
Thu Oct 03, 2019 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Bank canceling credit cards??
Replies: 29
Views: 4511

Re: Chase Bank canceling credit cards??

They didn't need to give a reason at all. Some people have reported that chase ended their entire banking relationship, closing all cards and all accounts. They closed one of my accounts with no explanation and no warning. It dissapeared from online banking and I got a cashier's check and a letter ...
by dodecahedron
Tue Oct 01, 2019 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who has had a pool?
Replies: 108
Views: 9422

Re: Who has had a pool?

Great thanks all. Someone asked my biggest concerns and I guess just making a mistake and wasting money. Wouldn't want to spend a lot and then decide to move (I don't think we will but never know), and get pennies on the dollar. We actually have a small 15' temporary "pool" that we really enjoyed t...
by dodecahedron
Tue Oct 01, 2019 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are banks required to freeze accounts when notified of account holder's death
Replies: 33
Views: 3549

Re: Are banks required to freeze accounts when notified of account holder's death

My experience in several localities is that death certificates are a flat fee, plus a small fee for each additional copy. Therefore, going back for a few more isn't cheap. That said, it's not crazy expensive in the scheme of things. Our County charges $15 for one and $5 for each additional one orde...
by dodecahedron
Tue Oct 01, 2019 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are banks required to freeze accounts when notified of account holder's death
Replies: 33
Views: 3549

Re: Are banks required to freeze accounts when notified of account holder's death

Vanguard will freeze joint accounts until they receive the death certificate. Then they will open an individual account for the remaining owner, and transfer the assets to that account, with the appropriate adjustment in cost basis. They will NOT allow the 2nd joint owner to access the joint accoun...
by dodecahedron
Mon Sep 30, 2019 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Smart Giving to Reduce Future RMD
Replies: 24
Views: 1984

Re: Smart Giving to Reduce Future RMD

I definitely agree that talking to a tax lawyer as knowledgeable as Bruce Steiner would be an excellent idea, but as background you might want to read this article about how sometimes donating appreciated securities from your taxable account can be better than donating QCDs. https://www.kitces.com/b...
by dodecahedron
Sun Sep 29, 2019 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%
Replies: 89
Views: 8819

Re: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%

Only complaint is that going back to dial in voicemail seems so dated. I know they keep that on purpose! Anyone find that there's a way to add it for a couple $$ a month? I did not see that as an option. Do you have an iPhone? If not, it looks like you are out of luck. According to this Verizon FAQ...
by dodecahedron
Sun Sep 29, 2019 5:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the Foreign Tax Credit worth it?
Replies: 16
Views: 1921

Re: Is the Foreign Tax Credit worth it?

If you have foreign dividends in taxable, then CLAIMING the foreign tax credit is 100% worthwhile. Otherwise you end up double taxed on the dividends. If you are having your taxes done by a CPA instead of doing them yourself, then paying for his time for filling out the form may outweigh the saving...
by dodecahedron
Sun Sep 29, 2019 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Kaiser Medicare Plan is "converting" from Cost to Advantage!
Replies: 36
Views: 3302

Re: My Kaiser Medicare Plan is "converting" from Cost to Advantage!

I think the folks now in MC plans that are being terminated who are most adversely affected are those who spend significant time out of their MC plan area (such as going to Florida or Arizona in the winter). I suppose such folks will need to return to Original Medicare with a supplement. Is this po...
by dodecahedron
Fri Sep 27, 2019 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity vs Vanguard: Free wire!
Replies: 22
Views: 1993

Re: Fidelity vs Vanguard: Free wire!

Don't get me wrong, its great to have the service, but I was wondering if there really is a high need for wire transfers? I don't think I have ever needed large sums of money that could not wait 2-3 business days. Does anyone here need money transferred fast on a regular basis? Interesting question...
by dodecahedron
Fri Sep 27, 2019 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protection From Catastrophic Medical Costs When Fully Insured
Replies: 109
Views: 4689

Re: Protection From Catastrophic Medical Costs When Fully Insured

However, if this person has most of his assets in ERISA accounts, bankruptcy would thankfully not affect those at all. Have we established that this is the case? If he's been financially responsible and saving money, he likely has many assets outside retirement accounts. The fact that he's 63 and i...
by dodecahedron
Thu Sep 26, 2019 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Idea for a basic drawing book for granddaughter...
Replies: 28
Views: 1458

Re: Idea for a basic drawing book for granddaughter...

For adults following this thread, here is a TEDx talk "Why people believe they can’t draw - and how to prove they can" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7TXEZ4tP06c . Victoria This is an awesome video. I am one of those people who spent her whole life thinking she was no good at art, but I am taking ...
by dodecahedron
Thu Sep 26, 2019 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Billing Dispute/High Spender/WWYD - RESOLVED
Replies: 36
Views: 4162

Re: Credit Card Billing Dispute/High Spender/WWYD

I guess I’m not clear on why a bank should pay you back for your decision to prepay with a company that went bankrupt? Seems like this was your decision and your risk calculation. We think of this with every custom furniture and other purchases with significant lead time. The OP used a credit card ...
by dodecahedron
Thu Sep 26, 2019 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Billing Dispute/High Spender/WWYD - RESOLVED
Replies: 36
Views: 4162

Re: Credit Card Billing Dispute/High Spender/WWYD

9/25 Update: BoA is putting the $9k back on my card. They will give vendor 30days to respond (expect them not to, as a Travel Agency article says they've gone dark and not followed-up on larger amounts). Thank you to BH and the FTC boilerplate letter. It took about 2 hrs to cobble together the arti...
by dodecahedron
Thu Sep 26, 2019 8:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dear VictoriaF
Replies: 25
Views: 8257

Re: Dear VictoriaF

VictoriaF wrote:
Thu Sep 26, 2019 7:52 am
Apart from this mundane work, I am fine and looking forward to my next trip to the Bogleheads 2019 conference.

Thank you all,
Victoria
Looking forward to seeing you at BH 2019 next month!
by dodecahedron
Wed Sep 25, 2019 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thought provoking non-fiction for 3rd grader
Replies: 51
Views: 2244

Re: Thought provoking non-fiction for 3rd grader

Isaac Asimov wrote a lot of nonfiction, which my kids loved when they were young. Also, Godel, Escher, Bach.
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 11:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Uber - first time user - will I get picked up
Replies: 36
Views: 3533

Re: Uber - first time user - will I get picked up

It's a common run, and (especially going to the airport) Uber drivers are all but guaranteed to have someone wanting to take them home. That is likely true for much of the day, but not for an early morning departure, at least at airports like mine (Albany, NY). I need to get to the airport an hour ...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Downsides to leaving fixed-income allocation in cash?
Replies: 68
Views: 4297

Re: Downsides to leaving fixed-income allocation in cash?

"Bond duration should be equal to one's investment horizon." What would the investment horizon be for a 71 year old retiree in good health? I just do 5-7 year CDs because I don't want to lock in rates any longer. I just do intermediate funds because Larry Swedroe said that was the sweet spot. He sa...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off Phone Bill via Amex Platinum or Debit Card?
Replies: 33
Views: 1715

Re: Pay off Phone Bill via Amex Platinum or Debit Card?

As for the OP´s question, I am mulling over switching to a prepaid plan myself. If and when I do, I would definitely opt for saving $5 per line over cash back, even though I get 2.625% cash back on credit card payments.
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off Phone Bill via Amex Platinum or Debit Card?
Replies: 33
Views: 1715

Re: Pay off Phone Bill via Amex Platinum or Debit Card?

Burn your debit card. They are dangerous. How would you be able to get cash then? And direct deposit for work? I specifically requested (and got) an ATM-only card at Bank of America. It does not have debit card functionality, but it does allow me to get cash at any ATM anywhere for free. (As a Plat...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For those who see doctors 3~5 times a year, your medical costs between ACA and Medicare?
Replies: 15
Views: 1698

Re: For those who see doctors 3~5 times a year, your medical costs between ACA and Medicare?

Based on my understanding, ACA premium could be very inexpensive, maybe cheaper than Medicare co-pay, if you don't see doctors. But that would discourage me from seeing doctors for something not very serious. Frankly speaking, I don't like any deductibles. I will say that I apparently have very dif...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For those who see doctors 3~5 times a year, your medical costs between ACA and Medicare?
Replies: 15
Views: 1698

Re: For those who see doctors 3~5 times a year, your medical costs between ACA and Medicare?

Neither ACA nor Medicare is a monolith. There are many different choices under the ACA and many distinctly different choices under Medicare. The set of choices available (under both options, but especially under ACA) can depend critically on income level. I had an ACA Bronze very high deductible pol...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Elite liberal art colleges or bigger selective universities?
Replies: 59
Views: 4313

Re: Elite liberal art colleges or bigger selective universities?

Both the elite liberal arts colleges, and the Ivy League, are in the Northeast (there may be an elite LAC outside of that region - I don't know that group as well). Pomona is an elite LAC in southern California, Grinnell is an elite LAC in the midwest, just to take a couple of examples. The Ivy Lea...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%
Replies: 89
Views: 8819

Re: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%

Only complaint is that going back to dial in voicemail seems so dated. I know they keep that on purpose! Anyone find that there's a way to add it for a couple $$ a month? I did not see that as an option. Do you have an iPhone? If not, it looks like you are out of luck. According to this Verizon FAQ...
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%
Replies: 89
Views: 8819

Re: Switched from Verizon's postpaid plan to prepaid: Saved 38%

willthrill81 wrote:
Sat Sep 14, 2019 8:15 pm
So if you have Verizon service with a postpaid plan, you might want to consider switching to a prepaid plan.
Were there any glitches or discontinuities during the transition? I.e., did you experience a transition day with no service or was the transition entirely invisible to you?
by dodecahedron
Tue Sep 24, 2019 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: SS Claiming options
Replies: 5
Views: 606

Re: SS Claiming options

If not, will her entitlement be computed based on my delayed entitlement or my FRA entitlement? Her spousal benefit will be 50% of your FRA entitlement. However, if you die before she does, her survivor benefit will be 100% of your benefit at the time of your death, including your delayed retiremen...