Search found 618 matches

by desiderium
Thu Jun 15, 2017 7:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just married - start a joint taxable account?
Replies: 18
Views: 1150

Re: Just married - start a joint taxable account?

Taxable investing is for retirement or other long term goals. Before you do this, what are your short or medium term goals? After all, you just got married. Are their kids or a home purchase or even a dream vacation in your future? If so, or if you are not sure, then maybe a joint savings account is...
by desiderium
Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSAs and "Saving Medical Receipts"
Replies: 96
Views: 6670

Re: HSAs and "Saving Medical Receipts"

What EOBs have you been unable to obtain? This cannot possibly be a serious question. It is absolutely a serious question. All of my medical expenses (Dr. visits, drugs, tests) are submitted to my insurance company. After they process them, they send the provider an EOB and also post it to my onlin...
by desiderium
Mon Jun 05, 2017 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth it to buy expensive clothes?
Replies: 90
Views: 7702

Re: Worth it to buy expensive clothes?

This is caring for your human capital. Dressing well, with good fit and attention to details shows respect for your professional role. People notice. Your clothes will last, particularly the shoes.
by desiderium
Fri Jun 02, 2017 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Carreer advice MD/PhD - private practice or academia
Replies: 4
Views: 549

Re: Carreer advice MD/PhD - private practice or academia

This is an important crossroad, and it is difficult to provide advice, as we are talking about what will make you happy in your future. Do you still love the hunt in the research world? Longer term, with your child, you will be worried about security. In the academic track, what does security look l...
by desiderium
Fri Jun 02, 2017 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?
Replies: 37
Views: 5647

Re: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?

There is a significant difference in optical quality. I have a favorite optical shop. Lenses are Pentax, but now they use another high end lens of equivalent quality. The shop is very stylish and expensive but it is a major appearance and vision spend and an infrequent purchase. So I went to Costco...
by desiderium
Fri Jun 02, 2017 7:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Early Retirement Approaches (forced) - review my situation?
Replies: 29
Views: 4898

Re: Early Retirement Approaches (forced) - review my situation?

One of the best ways to mitigate portfolio risk given your age is to maintain your human capital. I assume with your IT background and long experience you could do some freelance/consulting. It will improve portfolio survival, and you could tune the intensity to financial and social needs. This may ...
by desiderium
Sat May 20, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?
Replies: 37
Views: 5647

Re: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?

There is a significant difference in optical quality. I have a favorite optical shop. Lenses are Pentax, but now they use another high end lens of equivalent quality. The shop is very stylish and expensive but it is a major appearance and vision spend and an infrequent purchase. So I went to Costco ...
by desiderium
Mon May 01, 2017 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost of Estate Planning
Replies: 33
Views: 4148

Re: Cost of Estate Planning

I believe something missing here is the value of the long-term relationship with an estate planning attorney or firm. My initial encounter with my attorney was because we needed a will. 5 or 6 years later, our assets had changed and we went in for a review. We made a few adjustments and received a d...
by desiderium
Fri Apr 28, 2017 10:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Power of Habit
Replies: 15
Views: 3531

Re: The Power of Habit

Here is an attempt to reform the most difficult habits


https://pavlok.com
by desiderium
Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: [Should I get an advisor?]
Replies: 14
Views: 1207

Re: [Should I get an advisor?]

I am at a similar point in my career and have recently suffered a crisis of confidence in my amateur personal financial management, and I thought I might need an advisor. I think the value of an advisor for you is probably more in how to manage spending and taxes, rather than how to construct your p...
by desiderium
Sat Apr 15, 2017 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Solar panels for residence economics
Replies: 10
Views: 1250

Re: Solar panels for residence economics

The most important calculation, IMO, is your payback period. Look carefully at the net metering provisions to make sure you don't lose any credit, say when a certain date rolls around. Also, I would be careful about factoring in utility rate increases, since energy prices have not increased as proje...
by desiderium
Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Goodbye, Wells Fargo, and hello, BECU!
Replies: 17
Views: 2909

Re: Goodbye, Wells Fargo, and hello, BECU!

Ok, sorry for necro'ing my old thread but I'm frustrated. I know I'm overthinking things a lot but I don't have much else to do (sad, I know), so I've been continuing to tinker with my accounts and can't decide how I want to go forward. I definitely value simplicity but after making some decisions ...
by desiderium
Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Early Retirement Calculus
Replies: 31
Views: 7271

Re: Early Retirement Calculus

This is a lot of calculating work when all of the variables are uncertain and the duration of retirement is so long. Health care and downturns have been mentioned. Unlike your portfolio, your human capital can feed you in a down market or if your wife is sick. Nothing wrong with early retirement, bu...
by desiderium
Mon Apr 10, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medicare Accountable Care Organization (ACO)
Replies: 8
Views: 1224

Re: Medicare Accountable Care Organization (ACO)

My ACO experience has been negative re patient care. As TX hold em said, the ACO gets a fixed amount of money from Medicare to take care of a group of patients. If the patients don't use medical resources, more profit to the ACO. Therefore, there is a strong discentive to deny care or minimize use ...
by desiderium
Sun Apr 09, 2017 10:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie needs a hand
Replies: 3
Views: 628

Re: Newbie needs a hand

You will definitely be better off in the long run if you learn to manage your own portfolio. The long term impact of fees and paid financial advice starting at your age is truly sobering. Take the time to read the WIKI and a couple of the recommended books. Start simple, you have the basic idea alre...
by desiderium
Thu Apr 06, 2017 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Device/Pharma Sales Reps?
Replies: 10
Views: 1219

Re: Medical Device/Pharma Sales Reps?

This area is changing and perhaps shrinking as medical care delivery becomes more consolidated around large health care companies. These companies aggressively cut costs by making purchasing decisions for their hospitals and clinics. The retail vendor rep to doctor relationship creates unwelcome int...
by desiderium
Wed Apr 05, 2017 10:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Hit my # for retirement, how do I protect it until ready to quit?
Replies: 15
Views: 2413

Re: Hit my # for retirement, how do I protect it until ready to quit?

Good luck timing the market. That may be the only useful advice anyone can give If you don't want to see any losses, put everything in a CD ladder and hope that it keeps up with inflation. Otherwise, try to imagine what kind of losses might be tolerable. Then adjust your equity allocation accordingl...
by desiderium
Tue Apr 04, 2017 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?
Replies: 69
Views: 4252

Re: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?

I think the cash vs credit card debate is maybe 10 years out of date. Money is made of plastic for most people. Cash stays in my wallet practically forever. Look at the checkout line in any store. How many people are actually using cash anymore? Fiscal discipline is challenging in a consumer society...
by desiderium
Sun Apr 02, 2017 12:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: W-2 Job and now have 1099 income - need help with investments/taxes
Replies: 2
Views: 317

Re: W-2 Job and now have 1099 income - need help with investments/taxes

Look carefully at the spectrum of business expenses and learn. Home office deduction can now be simplified, you may have expenses traveling to CME courses, or paying an accountant to do taxes for your business. You may also have state and local tax liabilities. I would definitely get an accountant t...
by desiderium
Wed Mar 29, 2017 10:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell high cost basis fund shares with a carryover loss??
Replies: 5
Views: 394

Re: Sell high cost basis fund shares with a carryover loss??

I believe if you have carryover losses they must be used to offset capital gains and that you can't harvest gains and choose to save your losses.
by desiderium
Tue Mar 28, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Energy Audit recommended actions: 28.4 year payback period??
Replies: 33
Views: 2909

Re: Home Energy Audit recommended actions: 28.4 year payback period??

How old and drafty is your house? Depending on age and quality of existing sealing, you might end up a bit more from the sealing. By using the blower door, the quality and thoroughness of work can be tested. Is your heat all electric? How much do you estimate for your annual heat expenditure? The at...
by desiderium
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Direct Primary Care doctor/clinic
Replies: 2
Views: 523

Re: Direct Primary Care doctor/clinic

Not familiar with that particular outfit, but a concierge practice works for me. I have very limited flexibility to go to doctor's appointments. With the concierge relationship, my physician is available by phone and email. Much of my medical care is delivered this way. With the existing fee for ser...
by desiderium
Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thinking about opening an account with Merrill Edge
Replies: 21
Views: 2423

Re: Thinking about opening an account with Merrill Edge

Merrill Edge is a good outfit. Customer service has been quick and efficient for me. Assuming you stick with ETFs you should have no fees. The rewards program with B of A adds ongoing value; essentially boosting your return, though credit card rewards are available elsewhere. The "premium"...
by desiderium
Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Review Request - Hoping I'm On the Right Track
Replies: 5
Views: 552

Re: Portfolio Review Request

A couple of suggestions -Consolidate the accounts. It isnt that much work, just a few forms you can fill out in an hour. It will save you much more in tracking everything. -Don't try to replicate everything in each account (e.g. Roth accounts). Simplify to hold one fund in the smaller accounts and 1...
by desiderium
Fri Mar 24, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pretirement
Replies: 18
Views: 2307

Re: Pretirement

By pretirment, I am a referring to a person partially exiting the workforce but not fully. They might pursue a lower paying job that brings more personal satisfaction, work fewer hours, or live in a locale that is more desirable but offers less wages. In other words, earn less money in the pursuit ...
by desiderium
Sat Mar 18, 2017 7:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: PI advice... international exposure, GVUL options, time for a professional?
Replies: 3
Views: 313

Re: PI advice... international exposure, GVUL options, time for a professional?

Jon, No need to replicate your asset allocation in each of the accounts. Think of it as one big account. You could simplify to hold one fund in the smaller accounts and 2 or 3 in the larger accounts. Bonds in the tax-deferred accounts, where lower growth will lead to lower RMD's down the line, highe...
by desiderium
Thu Mar 16, 2017 9:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie Needs a Plan
Replies: 17
Views: 1030

Re: Newbie Needs a Plan

This is impressive. Congratulations on your upcoming marriage You are on track, so no hurry in implementing a plan. Regarding the cash, only invest what you are sure you are not going to need in at least 5 years. I would suggest waiting until after the wedding and house purchase. If you liquidate t...
by desiderium
Thu Mar 16, 2017 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: conflict of interest [CFA vs. fiduciary]
Replies: 27
Views: 2233

Re: conflict of interest [CFA vs. fiduciary]

I think there is a problem with the concepts of "fiduciary" on one hand and "conflict of interest" on the other. Ideally, a fiduciary has no conflict of interest, and I think this is perhaps something people assume and expect, and is a belief often encouraged even by advisors who...
by desiderium
Thu Mar 16, 2017 1:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie Needs a Plan
Replies: 17
Views: 1030

Re: Newbie Needs a Plan

This is impressive. Congratulations on your upcoming marriage You are on track, so no hurry in implementing a plan. Regarding the cash, only invest what you are sure you are not going to need in at least 5 years. I would suggest waiting until after the wedding and house purchase. If you liquidate th...
by desiderium
Wed Mar 15, 2017 11:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financial Checkup
Replies: 17
Views: 2769

Re: Financial Checkup

My two cents: You are on track if you stick with your plan Pay of student loan now with cash. Don't underestimate the psychological benefit. Continue to max out tax-deferred space Regular ROTH contributions while you remain eligible. Rebuild EF After you do this, can begin contributing to a taxable ...
by desiderium
Wed Mar 15, 2017 9:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Recently Retired - Portfolio Advice, Please!
Replies: 10
Views: 1468

Re: Recently Retired - Portfolio Advice, Please!

Jeff, Your situation looks ok, but it is kind of a mess. I don't think you can tell exactly what you are doing with all these accounts and funds. You have a good start with a three fund portfolio your Taxable account, so I would start by trying to implement this portfolio across your accounts. Here...
by desiderium
Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question for Docs/Surgeons/ARNPs
Replies: 23
Views: 3044

Re: Question for Docs/Surgeons/ARNPs

Does the practice have a model for ARNP's? Sounds like they don't. Free call, like any uncompensated work is a major red flag. It can lead to abuse, particularly in a large, busy practice. MGMA is an organization that publishes salary surveys, but accessing the data and going through it is challengi...
by desiderium
Wed Mar 15, 2017 12:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Recently Retired - Portfolio Advice, Please!
Replies: 10
Views: 1468

Re: Recently Retired - Portfolio Advice, Please!

Jeff, Your situation looks ok, but it is kind of a mess. I don't think you can tell exactly what you are doing with all these accounts and funds. You have a good start with a three fund portfolio your Taxable account, so I would start by trying to implement this portfolio across your accounts. Here ...
by desiderium
Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 6404

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

Got in just in time. Thanks to many for keeping the threads alive during this remarkably long run
by desiderium
Mon Mar 13, 2017 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High End Wrist Watches (Gone Crazy)
Replies: 162
Views: 15103

Re: High End Wrist Watches (Gone Crazy)

corn18 wrote:I shrunk it considerably. Just lost interest in having a bunch of different watches.

Image


Corn18,

Can you give a short intro on how and where you buy and sell your watches?
by desiderium
Sun Mar 12, 2017 1:19 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me with my portfolio - from a naive doctor
Replies: 15
Views: 2260

Re: Please help me with my portfolio from a naive doctor

QUESTIONS: -Should I fire my financial planner at Morgan Stanley? It would be difficult to do this because he is my best friend’s husband. Why did I get myself into that mess!? Yes. This is about your family and your retirement, not your best friend or her husband. -If I do, how much would it cost ...
by desiderium
Sun Mar 12, 2017 12:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Updated portfolio review (2 years later)
Replies: 4
Views: 854

Re: Updated portfolio review (2 years later)

IMO target date funds make it more complicated to follow and rebalance your asset allocation when you are managing multiple accounts. Regarding your unwanted American Funds positions with capital gains, you can't transfer these to a 529, but consider transferring them to a donor advised fund, like F...
by desiderium
Sat Mar 11, 2017 12:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cost of Solar Power
Replies: 95
Views: 7191

Re: cost of Solar Power

Perhaps the most relevant calculation is payback period. Clearly from the responses, there are a number of parameters, including system costs, production expectations, electricity costs and incentives. I investigated this for a number of years until the payback period came down to 4 years, which is ...
by desiderium
Fri Mar 10, 2017 9:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with my portfolio.
Replies: 2
Views: 333

Re: Help with my portfolio.

T So, my questions are: 1.) I'd like to have an 80/20 stock/bond allocation. What is the best way to achieve that given the investment options I have? I've been thinking about eliminating the small cap index from my 401k portfolio and divying that up between the aggregate bond and the large cap so ...
by desiderium
Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: rachio smart sprinkler controller
Replies: 6
Views: 578

Re: rachio smart sprinkler controller

I have one and I love it. Not sure if I've saved money. In the past I would turn it off some of the times when it would rain then forget to turn it back on, so was watering inappropriately and withholding water inappropriately. My yard looks great and it is easy to tweak. Seems like an optimal use o...
by desiderium
Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking advice for 457(b) Portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 644

Re: Seeking advice for 457(b) Portfolio

When you have several accounts, target retirement funds make asset allocation more difficult to track. Think of everything as one portfolio, then put the investments into each account, so that the total investment in each fund meets your target. The smaller accounts will have only one fund, and the ...
by desiderium
Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Advice
Replies: 10
Views: 818

Re: Portfolio Advice

Here is another way to look at this. Your investments are spread across 7 accounts. When you have mixed investment funds within these accounts (target date, balanced funds etc) it can be difficult to track your asset allocation. A simpler way might be to think about all your accounts as one entity. ...
by desiderium
Mon Mar 06, 2017 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sonos Wireless sound?
Replies: 19
Views: 1929

Re: Sonos Wireless sound?

We have had various Sonos components for several years, and love the sound and convenience. We recently added a Sonos Subwoofer in our living room. It is an absolutely remarkable addition. Small speakers simply can't deliver the low end like this. It works flawlessly and I would strongly recommend i...
by desiderium
Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Searched forum, unsuccessful, how to find doctors who take Medicare
Replies: 62
Views: 3479

Re: Searched forum, unsuccessful, how to find doctors who take Medicsre

The issue here is "payer mix" Most physicians and health care organizations indeed take medicare. But there is a significant gap between payments from medicare and private insurance for the same services. So for a given practice, the mix of government (medicare, medicaid, tricare) vs priva...
by desiderium
Tue Feb 28, 2017 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Alternatives to bond funds (or stick with bond funds)
Replies: 3
Views: 645

Re: Alternatives to bond funds (or stick with bond funds)

Check out the threads on Andrews Federal Credit Union. They are offering a 3% CD. It is a 7-year CD but has a 6 month, 1.5% early withdrawal penalty. So if interest rates rise in the future, you can consider rolling part or all of your balance to a higher yielding account, taking a limited hit on yo...
by desiderium
Sun Feb 26, 2017 5:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: A little guidance needed to get started
Replies: 8
Views: 812

Re: A little guidance needed to get started

Hey everyone, this is my first post. I just wanted to get some recommendations on where I should start putting my money now that I opened 2 roths and are maxed for the moments and we are going to be paying off our home shortly and after the transaction I was planning on taking around 1,000 a month ...
by desiderium
Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie Portfolio questions
Replies: 5
Views: 528

Re: Newbie Portfolio questions

Nice work on saving. Since you are going a buy an apartment, build your savings in cash, using a high-yield online savings account. Sell the high ER funds and use index funds that match your allocation. The fees are parasitic Consider using your upcoming 401k for holding your bonds if there are good...
by desiderium
Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Donating Vanguard Admiral shares to Fidelity Charitable
Replies: 11
Views: 950

Re: Donating Vanguard Admiral shares to Fidelity Charitable

Thanks. I have donated ETFs and investor shares from Vanguard to Fidelity charitable multiple times. I wasn't planning to sell anything. My major question: Can fidelity charitable handle Vanguard admiral shares or do I have to convert them to ETF class first (tax-free conversion at Vanguard). The o...
by desiderium
Sat Feb 25, 2017 6:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Selling Individual Stocks With Capital Gains
Replies: 9
Views: 795

Re: Selling Individual Stocks With Capital Gains

If no losses now, you might have some with newer equity positions in the future, so you can consider harvesting both losses and some of the unwanted shares with gains together when it happens. If you give to charity, you could reduce your unwanted positions by donating some of the shares with long t...
by desiderium
Sat Feb 25, 2017 1:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Montreal x 8 hrs
Replies: 2
Views: 605

Re: Montreal x 8 hrs

Vieux Port district, lots of places to walk around, views of the river, places to hang out, etc.

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