Search found 480 matches

by billfromct
Wed Oct 18, 2017 8:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lump Sum Pension Guidance
Replies: 9
Views: 797

Re: Lump Sum Pension Guidance

I rolled over my company pension, administered by Fidelity, to my Vanguard rollover IRA about 2 years ago. Fidelity would not send the check directly to Vanguard, but did make out the check to "VFTC (Vanguard Fiduciary Trust Company) FBO (For Benefit Of) bill", sent it to me & I forwarded it to Vang...
by billfromct
Mon Oct 16, 2017 9:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is my prudential account worth the fees?
Replies: 21
Views: 1460

Re: Is my prudential account worth the fees?

The Vanguard Institutional Index is the S&P 500 index with an expense ratio of .12%. Probably a good place to start. Then you can research the other funds available or round out your asset allocation through your Roth IRA. With you probably being in the 15% Federal tax bracket & 35-40 years until re...
by billfromct
Mon Oct 16, 2017 8:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Giving Less in Dividends than Competitors?
Replies: 13
Views: 1978

Re: Vanguard Giving Less in Dividends than Competitors?

As sport has explained, compare the 1, 5 & 10 year total return to make the most meaningful comparison.

Of course, past performance is no guarantee of future returns.

bill
by billfromct
Thu Oct 12, 2017 8:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie investor - Roth IRA Account Set UP Timing?
Replies: 3
Views: 274

Re: Newbie investor - Roth IRA Account Set UP Timing?

As you noted, Vanguard "investor" funds require $3,000 to open but the Target Retirement funds can be opened with $1,000. The Star Fund also requires $1,000 to open as well.

Why not just dollar cost average (DCA) each month after the initial opening deposit?

bill
by billfromct
Mon Oct 09, 2017 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please look at my financial situation and give me your insights
Replies: 21
Views: 2212

Re: Please look at my financial situation and give me your insights

If she "worked on a state court", won't she get a state pension?

bill
by billfromct
Mon Oct 09, 2017 6:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First time investing--Roth IRA
Replies: 6
Views: 536

Re: First time investing--Roth IRA

The easiest would be to open a Roth IRA with the $5,500 contribution limit for her & you (if you don't already contribute to a Roth IRA). If you & your spouse were to invest more than the $11,000 for both of your Roth IRAs, then you may want to consider the self employment retirement options. The Ro...
by billfromct
Sat Oct 07, 2017 7:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I just started.
Replies: 15
Views: 1278

Re: I just started.

The .75%-1.0% fee are probably the overall fee based on assets under management (AUM) & probably doesn't include the expense ratio (ER) of each fund he has you in. The Vanguard fund ER's are generally .10%-.20% for most "investor" ($3,000 to open) index funds. The Vanguard Personal Advisor Service c...
by billfromct
Fri Oct 06, 2017 5:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with 401k Fund Selection for Small Business
Replies: 5
Views: 322

Re: Help with 401k Fund Selection for Small Business

I don't think Vanguard has an International Small Cap Value Fund. I looked on the Vanguard website but couldn't find it. Maybe I didn't look in the right place. I think the closest would be FTSE All World ex-US Small Cap Index & the International Explorer Fund, but both do not have a value tilt. The...
by billfromct
Wed Oct 04, 2017 5:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Pension Now (Age 36) or Later (Age 65)?
Replies: 45
Views: 3363

Re: Pension Now (Age 36) or Later (Age 65)?

You said that you back tested the "U.S. Total Bond market" for the past 30 years which indicated a 6% return. That doesn't work when bonds are at close to 30 year low interest rates. I believe the 30 year Treasury bond was at 2.18% on May 1, 2016. The 30 year Treasury bond rate was 8.42% on November...
by billfromct
Tue Oct 03, 2017 8:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Chickened out... Now unsure where to start.
Replies: 33
Views: 3686

Re: Chickened out... Now unsure where to start.

johnfromtexas, Under "Annual Contributions", you say: "Both mine and my wife's annual Traditional IRA contributions maxed at IRS limit. (we're not Roth-eligible)" Is this a non-deductible traditional IRA contribution, since you're "not Roth-eligible" due to income limits & the fact that you have ret...
by billfromct
Mon Oct 02, 2017 7:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Helping friend with 401k rollover to Vanguard
Replies: 9
Views: 691

Re: Helping friend with 401k rollover to Vanguard

The LifeStrategy Moderate Growth is 60% stocks (domestic & international), 40% bonds (domestic & international). I like the 60%/40% allocation leading up to & in retirement. I believe the Target Retirement funds move to 50% stocks/50% bonds at the target year then to 30% stocks/70% bonds, 8 years af...
by billfromct
Mon Sep 25, 2017 1:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just Getting Started
Replies: 6
Views: 551

Re: Just Getting Started

You don't say anything about retirement savings for your spouse. Does your spouse has a retirement plan at work or an IRA (Roth is probably best for retirement account tax diversity)? You should also think about maxing these out. You also don't say anything about health insurance. That will be a big...
by billfromct
Thu Sep 21, 2017 3:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investment Advice-Whole life,Vanguard,Roth IRA?
Replies: 16
Views: 814

Re: Investment Advice-Whole life,Vanguard,Roth IRA?

Definitely open a Roth IRA. I'm partial to Vanguard as I've been with them for 33 or 34 years. I believe Vanguard does what is best for their customers. Fidelity is good as well just don't invest in their high cost funds. You can open a Vanguard Target Date Retirement Fund with as little as $1,000. ...
by billfromct
Thu Sep 21, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I be worried about my AA?
Replies: 31
Views: 1509

Re: Should I be worried about my AA?

Is your IRA a Roth or tax deductible IRA? In the 15% Federal tax bracket with 35-40 years until retirement, you want to be in a Roth IRA so your Roth IRA can grow state & Federal tax free & can be taken out state & Federal tax free after age 59.5. You want to build tax diversity in your retirement a...
by billfromct
Mon Sep 18, 2017 4:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Divorced parents saving for kids college
Replies: 16
Views: 1183

Re: Divorced parents saving for kids college

Don't forget about the American Opportunity Tax Credit, a $2.5k tax credit ($2,000 for the first $2,000 paid for tuition & 25% of the next $2,000) for the first 4 years of college for each child. This can't be paid by 529 funds. I believe this tax credit expires in 2017, but I wouldn't be surprised ...
by billfromct
Sun Sep 17, 2017 3:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A bit of estate planning
Replies: 10
Views: 1129

Re: A bit of estate planning

You could open a Vanguard variable annuity for them for retirement. My mother gave each of her grandchildren (4-7 years old at the time) $5k in the mid 1990's. My brother put the money away for college & I invested the money in a Vanguard variable annuity. BTW, a variable annuity is the best way to ...
by billfromct
Tue Sep 12, 2017 6:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sanity Check: Roth IRA Asset Allocation w/ Schwab
Replies: 10
Views: 980

Re: Sanity Check: Roth IRA Asset Allocation w/ Schwab

You're not going to get much feedback unless you list the fund names & expense ratios.

Not many people have memorized the thousands of mutual fund symbols yet.

I'm still working on the 10-15 Vanguard mutual funds symbols in my Roth IRA, Rollover IRA & taxable accounts.

bill
by billfromct
Mon Sep 11, 2017 6:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Vanguard 401K
Replies: 5
Views: 522

Re: New Vanguard 401K

I believe the Vanguard Target Date Retirement Funds are 50% stocks (donestic & international)/50% bonds (domestic & international) at the target date then 30% stocks/70% bonds 7 years after the target date. I'm not sure of the glide path because Vanguard shows an elongated line graph for the glide p...
by billfromct
Fri Sep 08, 2017 8:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to decide if there is enough retirement income accrued to start retirement
Replies: 12
Views: 1903

Re: How to decide if there is enough retirement income accrued to start retirement

What about state & Federal income taxes?

Many states don't tax SS income, but you don't say how much of the $4,000/month comes from SS & how much from taxable pensions.

You/they need to calculate their after tax income in retirement.

bill
by billfromct
Fri Sep 08, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First portfolio question
Replies: 5
Views: 456

Re: First portfolio question

Your income will disqualify you from contributing to a normal Roth IRA, but you can fund a "backdoor Roth IRA" if you do not have a tax deductible traditional IRA.

At your age & income, you need to build some tax diversity (Roth savings) in your retirement accounts.

bill
by billfromct
Fri Sep 08, 2017 4:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question Re: Max 401K Contribution
Replies: 28
Views: 2066

Re: Question Re: Max 401K Contribution

I believe as the employer, you can contribute 25% of your self employment taxable income (gross income-expenses- 1/2 self employment taxes if they apply) which would reduce your taxable income. I have never done this, so you may want to check "the Google" to be sure. I'm sure there must be a "solo 4...
by billfromct
Wed Sep 06, 2017 9:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Don't know where to start at all
Replies: 21
Views: 1754

Re: Don't know where to start at all

Vanguard is one of the best mutual fund companies to work with as they are very customer focused. They are a true "mutual" mutual fund company owned by the share holders, indirectly. I have used Vanguard for about 33 or 34 years. Definitely open a Roth IRA for retirement savings. You can contribute ...
by billfromct
Tue Sep 05, 2017 8:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: SUNY System 403(b) Annuity Options
Replies: 11
Views: 775

Re: SUNY System 403(b) Annuity Options

You don't mention if you have Roth IRAs, but if you don't, with the extra money you may want to open Roth IRAs ($6.5k/year) for both you & your husband to build some tax diversity in your retirement accounts.

bill
by billfromct
Sat Sep 02, 2017 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Need help starting off on the right foot with investments
Replies: 13
Views: 1082

Re: Need help starting off on the right foot with investments

The ability to contribute to a normal Roth IRA starts to phase out when your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) hits $118k, if single, and totally phases out when your MAGI hits $133k, if you have the ability to contribute to a retirement plan (401k, 403b, pension, etc.) It sounds like you are a ...
by billfromct
Fri Sep 01, 2017 6:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Start TSP disbursements and delay social security -- or the other way around?
Replies: 39
Views: 2564

Re: Start TSP disbursements and delay social security -- or the other way around?

Can't the low income spouse take his/her SS benefit at age 66, then the higher income spouse take spousal restricted benefits (50% of the spouse that is claiming SS benefits), then take his/her own higher SS benefits at age 70? Also the lower income spouse may be able to take a higher survivor SS be...
by billfromct
Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Starting to invest at 29 - After lots of reading, I have questions! *Long read*
Replies: 10
Views: 1254

Re: Starting to invest at 29 - After lots of reading, I have questions! *Long read*

Definitely fund a Roth IRA now as you have 30-35 years for that money to grow state & Federal tax free & you can take the money out state & Federal tax free after age 59.5. You can also take your contributions out tax/penalty free at any time, not earnings; but I would"t suggest that. The ability to...
by billfromct
Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 5yrs until retiring. 30k lump sum to invest
Replies: 25
Views: 2737

Re: 5yrs until retiring. 30k lump sum to invest

Since she was born before 1 January 1954, I believe she can collect SS spousal benefits or surviver benefits if your father is collecting SS benefits or if he is deceased. That way she can let her SS benefits grow 8%/year & take her own larger SS benefit @ age 70 or her spousal or surviver SS if lar...
by billfromct
Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: College Sophomore with 30k in Bank Account
Replies: 3
Views: 601

Re: College Sophomore with 30k in Bank Account

Do you have a U.S. Government Social Security number? I believe that you may not be able to open a mutual fund account in the U.S unles you have a SS number. Maybe someone who is experienced in this matter can comment about the requirements for a foreign student to open a U.S. brokerage account. bill
by billfromct
Tue Aug 29, 2017 5:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I be maxing out my 401k AND a roth IRA?
Replies: 8
Views: 1349

Re: Should I be maxing out my 401k AND a roth IRA?

I believe that you can withdraw Roth IRA contributions at any time, tax/penalty free.

I think the the 5 year rule is that you cannot withdraw Roth IRA earnings (tax free) until you are 59.5 & have held the Roth IRA account for 5 years.

If I am wrong, please correct me.

bill
by billfromct
Mon Aug 28, 2017 5:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with transferring accounts from Ameriprise to Vanguard
Replies: 14
Views: 847

Re: Help with transferring accounts from Ameriprise to Vanguard

Have Ameriprise convert all the retirement accounts to cash (as already suggested) then you must have Ameriprise perform a "trustee to trustee" transfer. Ameriprise will send the checks to you. They will make the check out for the full amount for each retirement account to "VFTC FBO DeepW". VFTC is ...
by billfromct
Fri Aug 25, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My Master Plan
Replies: 9
Views: 1210

Re: My Master Plan

The price earnings ratio (PE) for the Vanguard Small Cap Growth Index Fund is 27.8 while the PE for the Vanguard Small Cap Value Index Fund is 16.4. $1 of earnings in the Small Cap Growth IndexFund will cost you $27.80 while $1 of earnings in the Small Cap Value Index Fund will cost you $16.40. Of c...
by billfromct
Mon Aug 21, 2017 8:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with my recently widowed mom's finances
Replies: 22
Views: 1356

Re: Help with my recently widowed mom's finances

I believe that if she stayed with survivor benefits until age 70, then took her own SS benefits at age 70, her own SS benefit would increase by 8%/year. Maybe her finances won't allow this, but it's something to think about. This wouldn't apply to your mom, but I think there were SS changes for spou...
by billfromct
Thu Aug 17, 2017 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Left Financial Planner - New Baby - Looking for advice
Replies: 11
Views: 943

Re: Left Financial Planner - New Baby - Looking for advice

You may want to continue some amount of life insurance on your wife when she is a SAHM to cover child care should something happen to her. I did not have any life insurance on my wife & when she passed away, after school/summer child care was very expensive for a 5 & 8 year old. I could have gotten ...
by billfromct
Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?
Replies: 25
Views: 3204

Re: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?

Get an "out the door" listing all the charges that will be listed in the written "purchase & sales agreement" that the dealer will give you when you pick up the car. If the "out the door" itemized list that the dealer e-mails you does not match the written "purchase & sales agreement", walk out. The...
by billfromct
Wed Aug 09, 2017 8:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for retiring parent
Replies: 11
Views: 1241

Re: Advice for retiring parent

If they put their retirement accounts into a money market fund earning 1.1%, their retirement account will double in about 70 years. Not a very good prospect. I will retire in a year or two (68 now). My retirement accounts are 60% stocks & 40% bonds. The bonds are split 40% short term corporate/60% ...
by billfromct
Tue Aug 08, 2017 6:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review
Replies: 13
Views: 1283

Re: Portfolio Review

What about a 529 college savings plan for the two "dependent children"?

bill
by billfromct
Sun Aug 06, 2017 10:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Another fund for Roth?
Replies: 8
Views: 745

Re: Another fund for Roth?

I believe that the ability to contribute to a tax deductible IRA starts to phase out when your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) hits $62k if you are single. MAGI is the bottom line of the front page of the 1040 Federal tax form with some "above the line deductions" added back in, such as studen...
by billfromct
Tue Aug 01, 2017 7:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any issues with rollovers from Fidelity to Vanguard?
Replies: 19
Views: 1429

Re: Any issues with rollovers from Fidelity to Vanguard?

When I transferred money from my company Fidelity 401k (still kept some money in my company 401k since I'm still working) to send over to my Vanguard Rollover IRA, Fidelity followed the same process. Fidelity would not send the money directly to Vanguard, but made the check out to "VFTC FBO billfrom...
by billfromct
Mon Jul 31, 2017 10:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $300k at 32. Doing well?
Replies: 14
Views: 3021

Re: How are they doing? $300k at 32

When you say they each contribute $5,500 to a "traditional IRA", is that a tax deductible IRA or non-deductible IRA? If one is "covered by a retirement plan at work" (401k, 403b, pension, etc.), then the ability to contribute to a tax deductible IRA starts to phase out when the adjusted gross income...
by billfromct
Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: suggestions on self-employed investing low cost account
Replies: 24
Views: 1289

Re: suggestions on self-employed investing low cost account

The easiest thing to do would be to open a Roth IRA. You (as a spouse with supposedly no earned income) & your spouse can contribute up to $5,500 each year as long as you declare $11,000 of earned income between both of you, which it appears you do. You can open a Vanguard Roth IRA (after tax contri...
by billfromct
Sun Jul 30, 2017 7:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 403 b Plan Company Doesn't Match
Replies: 7
Views: 548

Re: 403 b Plan Company Doesn't Match

If I were a "recent grad" (22 or 23 years old?), probably in the 15% or low end of the 25% tax bracket, I would fund my Roth IRA first since a Roth IRA would grow tax free (40-45 years) & be able to take withdrawals out state & Federal tax free after age 59.5. The maximum contribution to a Roth IRA ...
by billfromct
Sun Jul 23, 2017 12:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $725,000 Portfolio Review and Suggestions
Replies: 15
Views: 2703

Re: $725,000 Portfolio Review and Suggestions

Since their modified adjustible gross income (MAGI) is probably under $186k (the MAGI amount when the ability to fund a Roth IRA starts to phase out for a married couple), I would assume that they would just fund their Roth IRA via the normal contribution method. I don't understand why one would do ...
by billfromct
Sat Jul 22, 2017 7:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 50K USD: Investing via Vanguard Personal Advisor vs DIY
Replies: 12
Views: 1213

Re: 50K USD: Investing via Vanguard Personal Advisor vs DIY

You said that if you pick the funds, "I own the risk of losing money because of wrong selection of funds". You own the risk if the Vanguard PAS picks the funds as well. You own the risk either way. I agree that a Vanguard Target date fund would be appropriate for you starting out with a 2045 or 2050...
by billfromct
Sat Jul 22, 2017 6:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping parents invest IRA
Replies: 10
Views: 642

Re: Helping parents invest IRA

It sounds like the IRA is in your mother's name.

When she turns 70.5 she will have to start taking required minimum distributions (RMDs).

Just thought I would mention that in case it wasn't known.

bill
by billfromct
Sat Jul 22, 2017 6:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: $725,000 Portfolio Review and Suggestions
Replies: 15
Views: 2703

Re: $725,000 Portfolio Review and Suggestions

How come you don't fund a Roth IRA for your spouse as well? It looks like you need some tax diversification (Roth accounts) in your retirement savings. You can start her Roth IRA this year based on your income. She doesn't need earned income as long as you have earned income to cover both of you. bill
by billfromct
Fri Jul 21, 2017 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First Time Check-in - How am I doing?
Replies: 12
Views: 1608

Re: First Time Check-in - How am I doing?

Your tax rate won't be "0" in retirement if you build up your Roth retirement accounts while in the 15% Federal tax bracket. Since you are in your mid-20s & already contributing to your retirement accounts, you have 35-40 years of retirement contributions ahead. As you get older, get raises & your w...
by billfromct
Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with 78 yo widow's investments
Replies: 8
Views: 903

Re: Help with 78 yo widow's investments

Did your dad pass away in 2017? If he did, your mom would be able to file Federal married jointly for 2017. The 15% tax bracket (married, filing jointly) goes up to a taxable income of about $75k. That's after deductions. As others have indicated, if you are in the 15% Federal tax bracket, long term...
by billfromct
Tue Jul 18, 2017 5:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Expense Ratios, how high is too high
Replies: 72
Views: 4642

Re: Expense Ratios, how high is too high

I believe the Fidelity Total Stock Market Premium Fund Class ER is .045% which has a $10k minimum contribution requirement.

I think the Fidelity S&P 500 Premium Class Fund also has a .045% with that same $10k minimum.

bill
by billfromct
Sun Jul 16, 2017 5:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Transferred Roth from NWM to Fidelity, now what?
Replies: 14
Views: 943

Re: Transferred Roth from NWM to Fidelity, now what?

I'm not that all that familiar with the Fidelity funds, but I believe now the Fidelity Freedom Funds are their target date funds. Their index funds are either Investor ($2.5k minimum) or Premium Funds ($10k minimum). In the case of the Fidelity Total Stock Market Index Fund, the Investor shares have...
by billfromct
Sat Jul 15, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Moving from TRP healthcare to Vanguard healthcare we
Replies: 6
Views: 540

Re: Moving from TRP healthcare to Vanguard healthcare we

The Vanguard Healthcare managed fund returned 11.43%/year over the past 10 years with an ER of .37% while the Vanguard Healthcare ETF with an ER of .10% returned 11.13%/year over the past 10 years. Pretty close. I do have some Roth IRA money in the Vanguard Healthcare Mutual Fund. I had some money i...