Search found 2578 matches

by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 25, 2020 12:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Latest time for purchase of same day ticket
Replies: 4
Views: 473

Re: Latest time for purchase of same day ticket

A same day ticket will guarantee you extra scrutiny from security. Try going with absolutely minimal carry-on luggage, not a roll-aboard.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Thu Sep 24, 2020 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Recently Retired: Desire Simplification and More Conservative Shift of TIAA Investments
Replies: 10
Views: 769

Re: Recently Retired: Desire Simplification and More Conservative Shift of TIAA Investments

I think that the primary Boglehead recommendation is to delay SS to age 70, IF YOU ARE HEALTHY. If you have a life shortening medical condition, clearly disregard that piece of advice.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Contemplating retiring in about a year: are we ready?
Replies: 9
Views: 2389

Re: Contemplating retiring in about a year: are we ready?

How much would the age 60 pension be for the higher earner if you stop work at 55 1/2? It is frequently recommended that the lower earner take the pension early, as a single life annuity, with no contingent annuitant, and then after somewhat delaying the higher earner pension to increase the pension...
by ralph124cf
Mon Sep 21, 2020 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth IRA withdrawal question for parent nearing retirement
Replies: 21
Views: 1485

Re: Roth IRA withdrawal question for parent nearing retirement

Hi all. Terminology matters. IRA contributions are never deductible, they may be tax deferred. If tax deferred, they are not considered current income for tax purposes, but will be current income when taken out of the IRA. Yes I know what you meant, but deductible is not the same as deferred. Ralph
by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 18, 2020 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vastly different quotes for wallpaper removal and painting job
Replies: 31
Views: 1476

Re: Vastly different quotes for wallpaper removal and painting job

I frequently prefer to pay time and materials, if I can be home to watch. I know how to do most of these jobs, but at 71 I am no longer capable of doing it myself, but I know if the job is being done right. Also, if the actual boss is not around, workers have a tendency to slack off a bit, but if th...
by ralph124cf
Thu Sep 17, 2020 12:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quicken Disaster!
Replies: 185
Views: 9625

Re: Quicken Disaster!

I was running both Quicken for my personal data, and QuickBooks for my rental business and my wife's small company. When Quicken developed problems and Quicken support couldn't help me, I called my QuickBooks support (paid support subscription, not free support), and they were able to transition my ...
by ralph124cf
Tue Sep 15, 2020 6:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Variable Universal Life Insurance Experts - Seems Like a No Brainer - Please Read
Replies: 90
Views: 4450

Re: Variable Universal Life Insurance Experts - Seems Like a No Brainer - Please Read

I may have been one of the few people that has had a positive experience with Universal Life. I had a Group Term Universal Life policy through my employer. As I was approaching retirement age of 65, I realized that I would need to keep the policy in force for five more years due to how my retirement...
by ralph124cf
Tue Sep 15, 2020 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth conversion-How fast
Replies: 26
Views: 2444

Re: Roth conversion-How fast

I am still working until 01/2021. Would like to start roth conversions this year Wife retired, no income Both of us are 65y/o no pension or social security until 70y/o Small after tax accounts in cash or index fund but big enough for emergency funds. Plan to make withdrawls for income next year fro...
by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 11, 2020 5:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Managing Indoor Humidity
Replies: 62
Views: 3523

Re: Managing Indoor Humidity

If you can put the dehumidifier into the basement tub or shower, then you would not need one with a pump. You can also build or buy a shelf to put next to the current sink to hold the bigger dehumidifier. Be aware that the float switch in the dehumidifier bucket does not always shut off the dehumidi...
by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structured settlement annuity -- need advice
Replies: 4
Views: 457

Re: Structured settlement annuity -- need advice

I think that what the OP meant was that the INTEREST from the bank account was taxable, not the settlement amount.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 11, 2020 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So how does CA track residency for tax purposes?
Replies: 37
Views: 2697

Re: So how does CA track residency for tax purposes?

Generally, if you have a w-2 job in California, then that is considered your tax home. Some workers, like Airline Pilots and Flight Attendants are exempted from this general rule by Federal law. Many of them do choose to live out of state, whether for taxes or other reasons, such as spousal jobs, re...
by ralph124cf
Fri Sep 11, 2020 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Variable Annuity – should my mom keep it?
Replies: 14
Views: 1000

Re: Variable Annuity – should my mom keep it?

One question: Is this VA within a tax deferred account or outside of tax deferred?

That could change some of the answers you got.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auditing risk of small business
Replies: 5
Views: 459

Re: Auditing risk of small business

I have a CPA friend who says that "If you don't get audited, you're not trying hard enough."

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Wed Sep 09, 2020 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Father received large sum from the passing of his mother - he (I) needs guidance
Replies: 18
Views: 2368

Re: Father received large sum from the passing of his mother - he (I) needs guidance

I think that the primary reason for the $15K suggestions is the simplicity of not needing to fill out a gift tax return.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sun Sep 06, 2020 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to pay for work shift
Replies: 35
Views: 2262

Re: Best way to pay for work shift

I think the best board to answer this question would be whitecoatinvestor.com.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sun Sep 06, 2020 4:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Assessing your investment behavior during the pandemic
Replies: 35
Views: 2201

Re: Assessing your investment behavior during the pandemic

When the law changed to not require RMDs this year, I converted what would have been my year's RMD to Roth, by transferring stock in kind. The market was down, so I got more stock into my Roth than I would have if I had waited. I am paying the tax by having 90% of my pension withheld for taxes, and ...
by ralph124cf
Sun Sep 06, 2020 4:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Assessing your investment behavior during the pandemic
Replies: 35
Views: 2201

Re: Assessing your investment behavior during the pandemic

When the law changed to not require RMDs this year, I converted what would have been my year's RMD to Roth, by transferring stock in kind. The market was down, so I got more stock into my Roth than I would have if I had waited. I am paying the tax by having 90% of my pension withheld for taxes, and ...
by ralph124cf
Sun Sep 06, 2020 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Prepay student loans OR megabackdoor Roth? (26 y/o in Biglaw; 190k salary; 180k debt)
Replies: 82
Views: 5054

Re: Prepay student loans OR megabackdoor Roth? (26 y/o in Biglaw; 190k salary; 180k debt)

I think that the most important thing for you to consider right now is taxes. For somebody with your income, Federal income tax is the lowest that it has been for the last 100 years, and tax rates under current law are scheduled to snap back up in five years. I make no predictions about future tax l...
by ralph124cf
Thu Sep 03, 2020 8:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life Insurance Question - Take Cash Surrender Value
Replies: 15
Views: 1112

Re: Life Insurance Question - Take Cash Surrender Value

If you are in a position to dump $100K into this policy, it may be worthwhile keeping it for the guaranteed interest. You would have to check if this would be allowed. I would not just keep paying the premiums.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: New Member- Thinking of Leaving Asset Builder-DFA
Replies: 3
Views: 284

Re: New Member- Thinking of Leaving Asset Builder-DFA

Any of the three options work, and nobody is stealing from you.

You can only know what was the best option when you die.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:59 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: High Tax bracket strategies
Replies: 71
Views: 9811

Re: High Tax bracket strategies

Interestingly, In Illinois, all pension, Social Security, 401(k) and Ira income is tax free (this year).

This does distort tax planning for IL residents, especially not knowing what future law changes may bring.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Mon Aug 31, 2020 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is TIAA? Investment company? Insurance company? A mix?
Replies: 31
Views: 1900

Re: What is TIAA? Investment company? Insurance company? A mix?

TIAA annuity contracts function essentially identically to any commercial annuity you would purchase with your retirement funds, although TIAA does offer a slight chance of a slightly increased payout. Annuitizing a CREF account or the Real Estate account works differently. Each account has shares, ...
by ralph124cf
Mon Aug 31, 2020 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Continuing Care Retirement Community Entrance Fee
Replies: 106
Views: 7353

Re: Continuing Care Retirement Community Entrance Fee

We have visited some local CCRCs, and they have a lot of different plans. In two of the CCRCs, the monthly fees went up if you paid less up front. In two others the monthly fee stayed the same.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If you invest in REITs, are you sticking with VNQ/VGSLX or getting selective
Replies: 21
Views: 3025

Re: If you invest in REITs, are you sticking with VNQ/VGSLX or getting selective

About 25 years ago I was having a home in LA remodeled, and I needed a place to store furniture. I went to Public Storage (PSA) to rent a space, and they refused to give me a contract. Everything was month to month, and seemed to go up about 1% per month. I decided that if storage space was that tig...
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Please check this plan - 68 yo retiree with TIAA 403B
Replies: 25
Views: 1863

Re: Please check this plan - 68 yo retiree with TIAA 403B

Ralph - thanks for the heads up on the CREF Stock annuities. I'll take a look at the contracts. I've tried to convince her to skip the guarantee to no avail. She doesn't like the idea that the money she saved might disappear if she dies. I told her I'd rather her have more money to spend on herself...
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 1st Job - What to look for? Examples of how to begin?
Replies: 3
Views: 223

Re: 1st Job - What to look for? Examples of how to begin?

401(k) to the match is first.

Then the emergency fund.

Then everything else.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 29, 2020 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Please check this plan - 68 yo retiree with TIAA 403B
Replies: 25
Views: 1863

Re: Please check this plan - 68 yo retiree with TIAA 403B

I would question the need for the 20 year guarantee of the TIAA traditional annuity. Why not just single life? The payout should be higher than with the guarantee. Is there somebody in particular that is being protected by the guarantee? I would say that if a person does not need life insurance, the...
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 28, 2020 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Inherited IRA but I’m in top tax bracket?!?
Replies: 46
Views: 3189

Re: Inherited IRA but I’m in top tax bracket?!?

Is it possible to disclaim an inherited IRA in favor of a DAF or specific charity? That way you would have neither the income nor the deduction to worry about.

In any case this is probably a rounding error in your total financial picture.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 28, 2020 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: REIT Index Fund Location - VGSLX
Replies: 6
Views: 705

Re: REIT Index Fund Location - VGSLX

OK, a REIT is a stock, so it is not unreasonable to have it in a Roth. However I believe that it would fit best in tax deferred, and riskier, potentially higher return non-REIT stock investments should go into the Roth. Only if you have your tax deferred account full of bonds would I put a REIT in a...
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 28, 2020 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advisor Cannot Use Vanguard?
Replies: 50
Views: 3323

Re: Advisor Cannot Use Vanguard?

I'm speaking with a few advisors (flat fee/non-AUM). One in particular says they cannot work with Vanguard and have to switch my accounts over to Schwab. They're also pitching DFA over Vanguard funds. I don't necessarily think they're being dishonest, but I would like to know the full motivations. ...
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 28, 2020 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage shelves?
Replies: 29
Views: 2460

Re: Garage shelves?

Check out globalindustrial.com. Very heavy duty shelving, including some with wheel kits.

Also consider peg board on the wall. Use 1/4" tempered pegboard. Some lumber salesmen will not even know what tempered pegboard is. Shop elsewhere.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 28, 2020 12:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brother printer 'trips' my battery backups
Replies: 47
Views: 2525

Re: Brother printer 'trips' my battery backups

I've yet to figure out the "deadly" combination, but sometimes when I turn on the printer or use the microwave, it knocks the power out to my desktop computer. Which is weird, because it's plugged into a battery backup. Sounds like your battery backup isn't. I bet if you unplug it from the wall, yo...
by ralph124cf
Tue Aug 25, 2020 2:01 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with Rollover IRA that is too high for Roth conversion?
Replies: 9
Views: 871

Re: What to do with Rollover IRA that is too high for Roth conversion?

If it is all pretax money, there is no limit on what you can convert. If some is post tax, it gets more complicated.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Tue Aug 25, 2020 1:58 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions for 100x moonshots
Replies: 71
Views: 8851

Re: Suggestions for 100x moonshots

SPCE, that is Virgin Galactic. Possibility of 100X price move, also possibility of real moonshot. I think that the real moonshot is more likely than 100X price gain.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 22, 2020 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Time to buy Tesla?
Replies: 61
Views: 8809

Re: Time to buy Tesla?

I predict SPCE will be next one to go insane like TSLA I disagree. I'm starting to see Tesla as an energy company that builds cars. In the space arena, SpaceX has similar potential doing many different things from exploration to Internet-in-the-sky, so if they were public they would be huge. Note: ...
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 20, 2020 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Please review my de-risking/cash-out plan
Replies: 111
Views: 5477

Re: Please review my de-risking/cash-out plan

An SPIA at under 60 years old is not a good idea. 70 at the youngest, preferably 75. This is because insurance expenses outweigh mortality credits until about age 70, and we are also in a time of historically low interest rates.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 20, 2020 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth Conversion vs ISO Exercise and IRMAA
Replies: 10
Views: 696

Re: Roth Conversion vs ISO Exercise and IRMAA

Our tax rates now are the lowest they have been in the last 100 years, and current law says that they will go up in 5 years. I believe that we are in a temporary period of low Federal income taxes, and that we should take advantage of it while we can. I would advise going into the 24% tax bracket wh...
by ralph124cf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My new hobby investing in luxury rugs.
Replies: 24
Views: 2216

Re: My new hobby investing in luxury rugs.

Hi.

Just one comment: It appears that the rug in the linked website labeled as China is actually from Iran.

I picked up two very nice handmade rugs in Iran 45 years ago, and they appear to be just about indestructible. It would not be reasonable for an American to go there now.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to pay short term capital gains tax early?
Replies: 16
Views: 804

Re: How to pay short term capital gains tax early?

I do prefer to the paycheck method, but just trying to look for other options. I'm also wondering what unemployed people to do or people who trade for a living do to pay taxes. Payroll deduction is easiest. Many pensions allow taxes to be withheld. Same with Social Security. Many others need to pay...
by ralph124cf
Mon Aug 17, 2020 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I convert Traditional IRA/401(k) to Roth?
Replies: 10
Views: 850

Re: Should I convert Traditional IRA/401(k) to Roth?

If you are at 24% now, that changes in 2026, when the current law snaps back to higher rates. Figuring future tax rates is a guessing game.

The tax rates now are the lowest in the last 100 years.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sun Aug 16, 2020 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books that changed your life
Replies: 242
Views: 22478

Re: Books that changed your life

"Take Back your Government" by Robert Heinlein. This book finally convinced me that I needed to become politically involved.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 15, 2020 8:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: in addition to Merrill/BOA: HSBC perks
Replies: 9
Views: 820

Re: in addition to Merrill/BOA: HSBC perks

I have been an HSBC premier customer for 15 years, and I agree that the credit and debit cards are the best for a frequent international traveler. Most cards that SAY that they don't charge a fee for international purchases have a "stealth" fee hidden in the exchange rate. I first found this about 2...
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 15, 2020 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Corporate Defined Benefit Pension —when to tap
Replies: 18
Views: 1272

Re: Corporate Defined Benefit Pension —when to tap

An interesting data point: My company went Chapter 11 when I was 58. The pension plan was taken over by the PBGC. My earned pension at the time was well over the PBGC cap, so the then year cap was what I was forever stuck at. The PBGC pension increases every year that you delay past 65. I worked til...
by ralph124cf
Sat Aug 15, 2020 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth contributions and conversions to reduce RMD
Replies: 12
Views: 1167

Re: Roth contributions and conversions to reduce RMD

Your spouse has a decent size tIRA. Just do the conversions from that tIRA to ROTH. No need to mess with the 401(k).

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Fri Aug 14, 2020 11:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why to buy pension credit from pre tax 457?
Replies: 8
Views: 807

Re: Why to buy pension credit from pre tax 457?

joetro29 wrote: Sun Aug 09, 2020 11:32 am Tier 5 in TRS - decades till retirement. Just curious as seems the recommendation is to use pre tax. I think all pension income is taxable.
It is subject to federal income tax, but some states partially or completely exempt pension income from state income tax.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 13, 2020 7:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Grappling with the New Reality of Zero Bond Yields Virtually Everywhere
Replies: 69
Views: 6078

Re: Grappling with the New Reality of Zero Bond Yields Virtually Everywhere

This is why I don't invest in bonds. CDs, money market, and "high yield" savings accounts fill that space.

Ralph
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 13, 2020 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Precious metal equity
Replies: 17
Views: 892

Re: Precious metal equity

Yes there is single company stock risk, but a mutual fund will mitigate that risk, though there will be a necessarily higher than average ER. The higher ER is needed because of the high rate of fraud in gold mining, going back to the days of the Pharaohs. The mutual fund has to send a mining engine...
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 13, 2020 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions to my 18y son
Replies: 40
Views: 2330

Re: Suggestions to my 18y son

I'm sure others will disagree, but I would say no bonds for an 18 year old. Also, with $10k, it is harder to justify ETFs instead of mutual funds. Ralph Thank you, Ralph. Could you explain why you believe mutual funds are better? For mutual funds you invest dollar amounts. In ETFs (usually) you hav...
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 13, 2020 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Precious metal equity
Replies: 17
Views: 892

Re: Precious metal equity

The advantage of gold mining stock over pure gold is that the miners make money, and pay dividends, if the price of gold stays steady. If you own gold, and the price stays the same, you lose money three ways: 1) You lose any interest that might have been earned, 2) You have the cost of secure storag...
by ralph124cf
Thu Aug 13, 2020 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Suggestions to my 18y son
Replies: 40
Views: 2330

Re: Suggestions to my 18y son

I'm sure others will disagree, but I would say no bonds for an 18 year old.

Also, with $10k, it is harder to justify ETFs instead of mutual funds.

Ralph