Search found 174 matches

by Not Law
Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable Inverter Generator vs Standby Generator
Replies: 78
Views: 3194

Re: Portable Inverter Generator vs Standby Generator

Shutting off the water and leaving taps open will avoid freezing pipes. My biggest issue is sump pump operation. Then furnace (boiler with small pump to circulate hot water heat). And the ability to make coffee in the morning!
by Not Law
Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable Inverter Generator vs Standby Generator
Replies: 78
Views: 3194

Re: Portable Inverter Generator vs Standby Generator

Portable generator tips: 1. If you buy a made in China model, it will likely require premium gasoline (at least 90 octane). 2. Make sure the fuel tank will last for eight hours (My first was a two hour tank, and it was a pain to get up every two hours to fill it over a 5 day power outage in the wint...
by Not Law
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When did the bad news start in 2008?
Replies: 135
Views: 13322

Re: When did the bad news start in 2008?

The bad news was available in 2007. When I became aware of a couple receiving public assistance who had purchased a $130,000 home with 80/20 financing. They assumed since they had been approved for the loan they would be able to afford the payments - otherwise the lender would not have loaned the mo...
by Not Law
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 401k & the Stock Market
Replies: 12
Views: 1560

Re: 401k & the Stock Market

Payroll processors like ADP make money off the float, so those contributions could be delayed by as much as a week (even two back in the 90's when electronic transfers were more cumbersome or non-existent).
by Not Law
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wow: Shiller PE is 34.52
Replies: 52
Views: 6522

Re: Wow: Shiller PE is 34.52

On a parallel note, those mutual fund 10 year historical earnings will be going sky high over the next 14 months.
by Not Law
Tue Jan 30, 2018 3:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interesting Anomaly (mutual fund credited extra cent)
Replies: 4
Views: 674

Re: Interesting Anomaly (mutual fund credited extra cent)

Must be Superman III. I did not see the other two.
by Not Law
Sun Jan 28, 2018 7:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interesting Anomaly (mutual fund credited extra cent)
Replies: 4
Views: 674

Re: Interesting Anomaly (mutual fund credited extra cent)

There was a movie in the 80"s ( I think) where those extra partial pennies were diverted and made someone millions.
by Not Law
Sun Jan 28, 2018 4:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation and Constant rate (4% rule) vs. RMD-based portfolio withdrawals
Replies: 11
Views: 1047

Re: Inflation and Constant rate (4% rule) vs. RMD-based portfolio withdrawals

As I understand it the 4% (plus inflation) rule in its pure sense only takes into account the portfolio value at the time of the initial 4% withdrawal. That is, if you start with $1m, your first withdrawal is $40k and the $40k number is increased by inflation without regard to the value of the portf...
by Not Law
Sat Jan 27, 2018 8:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you know much retirement income is needed?
Replies: 53
Views: 4018

Re: How do you know much retirement income is needed?

"What is the percentage relationship between spending to maintain a specific lifestyle in the year before retirement and spending to maintain the same lifestyle in the year after retirement?"

100%
by Not Law
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: April vacation for 2 families
Replies: 13
Views: 1095

Re: April vacation for 2 families

Puerto Rico or the Virgin Islands
by Not Law
Sat Jan 27, 2018 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Father financial trouble
Replies: 40
Views: 4634

Re: Father financial trouble

1. Bankruptcy will eliminate all collection efforts.
2. ALL Social Security is protected from collection, not just 2 months worth.
3. Dad is judgment proof, so turn the car in and stop paying the debts. Bankruptcy if you can't handle collection efforts.
by Not Law
Wed Jan 24, 2018 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Working in the real world
Replies: 118
Views: 9275

Re: Working in the real world

Back in the 90's, Money magazine ran an article about how $125,000 was low income in New York City. The family had expenses for private schools, country club membership, etc. and were hardly getting by. When I compared my income of $50,000 in middle America, I came out far ahead, using public school...
by Not Law
Mon Jan 22, 2018 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Transfer money to family members to take advantage of lower tax rates
Replies: 35
Views: 3564

Re: Transfer money to family members to take advantage of lower tax rates

The recipient of inherited stock get a stepped up basis because the actual value at the time of death is included in the deceased's estate for tax purposes. The "standard deduction" for the estate is now $11 million.
by Not Law
Sun Jan 21, 2018 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Going to one income-seeking testimonials
Replies: 101
Views: 5716

Re: Going to one income-seeking testimonials

When we did it in the 80's, the loss of "take home" pay was 50% of spouse's gross wage. Eliminating commuting costs, day care and other such expenses made it pretty much a break even situation.
by Not Law
Tue Jan 16, 2018 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting your spouse on the same page
Replies: 53
Views: 5411

Re: Getting your spouse on the same page

double comma level Is that 1 million or 10 million? I am hoping you actually meant latter even though that is not the correct definition of "double comma". If you are spending like no tomorrow with the former number, you are in rude surprise. I mean 1 million in 2014, spent some and now back at 1 m...
by Not Law
Fri Jan 12, 2018 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off student loans after kid graduates?
Replies: 35
Views: 2375

Re: Pay off student loans after kid graduates?

I would make sure there is not a government or employer loan repayment program before shelling out money. Some teachers, doctors, etc. that work in certain places have loan forgiveness programs. And some employers offer a loan repayment incentive. Good reason to wait for a year or so before making t...
by Not Law
Fri Jan 12, 2018 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting your spouse on the same page
Replies: 53
Views: 5411

Re: Getting your spouse on the same page

double comma level Is that 1 million or 10 million? I am hoping you actually meant latter even though that is not the correct definition of "double comma". If you are spending like no tomorrow with the former number, you are in rude surprise. I mean 1 million in 2014, spent some and now back at 1 m...
by Not Law
Thu Jan 11, 2018 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Work affect social security benefit?
Replies: 6
Views: 553

Re: Work affect social security benefit?

A surviving spouse with a child under 16 can receive "caretaker" benefits which are subject to income limits. This is a benefit that has no bearing on one's future ability to obtain "retirement" benefits. So a 40 year old mother with an 11 year old can collect for five years, as long as income is le...
by Not Law
Thu Jan 11, 2018 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting your spouse on the same page
Replies: 53
Views: 5411

Re: Getting your spouse on the same page

I have been the primary manager for investing and long term planning. My spouse has left me to manage these things, not thinking of these funds as anything but "play money" - that is electronic blips that have no real meaning to our day to day lives. When our retirement accounts reached double comma...
by Not Law
Sun Jan 07, 2018 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgages, condos, insurance - escrow question
Replies: 7
Views: 305

Re: Mortgages, condos, insurance - escrow question

She is using the equity in her home as a means to live BEYOND her means. Unless you can convince her to live BELOW her means, your efforts will be futile.
by Not Law
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take this promotion?
Replies: 26
Views: 2222

Re: Should I take this promotion?

Ask the employer in advance to consider returning you to your happy place if the promotion does not work out. Give you an escape route. More than likely you will do just fine at the new level of responsibility.
by Not Law
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Splitting Assets in Divorce
Replies: 51
Views: 5434

Re: Splitting Assets in Divorce

Consider maintaining the home for the child, with each custodial parent moving in and out of the house for parenting time. Have an apartment on the side that either of you lives in when the other is at home with the child. Makes for a more stable childhood. You must have a lawyer familiar with draft...
by Not Law
Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security at age 62 perhaps?
Replies: 57
Views: 5648

Re: Social Security at age 62 perhaps?

I plan to live forever, so the choice is 75% of PIA forever, or 132% of PIA for forever minus 8 years.
by Not Law
Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College scholarships: How much should I pencil in for my future students?
Replies: 54
Views: 2791

Re: College scholarships: How much should I pencil in for my future students?

Looking at current pricing, I am appalled. I had a full tuition scholarship when I started college in 1973. It was renewed as long as I maintained at least a 3.0 GPA. The first year's tuition was $210 per semester! Grad school began in 1977 with tuition at $750 per semester. The current tuition for ...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 31, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Creative gifting of property
Replies: 28
Views: 2335

Re: Creative gifting of property

Understand that the reason for the stepped up basis upon inheritance is that the gain is subject to the parent's estate tax. So a gift now applied to the $11 million is the same as inheriting the same. If everything adds up to more than $11m ($22m with properly drafted trusts), then the estate will ...
by Not Law
Thu Dec 28, 2017 9:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Absolute vs percentage saving
Replies: 13
Views: 1287

Re: Absolute vs percentage saving

It is all about what you expect to spend in retirement. At your age, your saving's rate is the best you can do, and that seems reasonable. As you get closer to retirement, you have to determine what your expected expenses are, and whether your savings can sustain them.
by Not Law
Thu Dec 28, 2017 11:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to financially assist DD to help continue her Obamacare
Replies: 54
Views: 4203

Re: How to financially assist DD to help continue her Obamacare

She can tax gain harvest up to the 138% of poverty level required to qualify for the ACA. When she files her taxes, this amount will be included in her MAGI even though the tax rate on the funds is 0%. I did this in 2012 and 2013 to make sure after the ACA that a sale would not push me over the cliff.
by Not Law
Wed Dec 27, 2017 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax 2017 - Medical deduction floor still at 10%
Replies: 11
Views: 753

Re: TurboTax 2017 - Medical deduction floor still at 10%

The bill was signed Friday of a long holiday weekend. I am shocked that the tax software companies have not already incorporated the entire bill into their software by now! I would certainly not rely on anything for at least a month, as there are many moving parts that need to be integrated, which t...
by Not Law
Sat Dec 16, 2017 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax gain harvesting
Replies: 29
Views: 3400

Re: Tax gain harvesting

In the run up to the ACA, we TGH'd about $30k in 2012 and $14k in 2013, with no federal taxes due. Prior to that from 2005 forward, we filled the 15% bracket with Roth conversions. With the ACA, Roth conversions add to MAGI, so to keep the subsidies in place, the Roth conversions have been minimal.
by Not Law
Sat Dec 16, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can/Should early retiree avoid ACA tax credits?
Replies: 55
Views: 4081

Re: Can/Should early retiree avoid ACA tax credits?

Employers are required to pay into the unemployment insurance system and ultimately repay the benefits paid out. So a self employed individual who is allowed to take unemployment as a seasonal worker would be charged by the unemployment agency to recoup the payments.
by Not Law
Thu Dec 14, 2017 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: We had a pretty successful 2017
Replies: 15
Views: 2175

Re: We had a pretty successful 2017

Withdrew $65k from retirement funds for living expenses, account balances are still $100k higher than they were on January 1st.
by Not Law
Thu Dec 14, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a Reasonable Retirement Cost of Living?
Replies: 47
Views: 6139

Re: What is a Reasonable Retirement Cost of Living?

What you currently spend less those costs that will be gone by the time you retire.
by Not Law
Thu Dec 14, 2017 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Account Stolen by Identity theft
Replies: 392
Views: 63208

Re: Retirement Account Stolen by Identity theft

Transamerica was a fiduciary. It failed in its duty to protect your father's funds. Once it became satisfied that it made a mistake (father's affidavit), it made good on the account. Based on the mishandling, I would expect your father will receive a 1099R showing a taxable distribution from his IRA...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 10, 2017 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can/Should early retiree avoid ACA tax credits?
Replies: 55
Views: 4081

Re: Can/Should early retiree avoid ACA tax credits?

I prefer the Roth conversion which gets funds totally outside the tax system. Use of those funds will not affect ACA credits down the road. I do not see an ethical issue. The tax code is what it is. You are allowed to deduct things on schedule A, regardless of your net worth. You are entitled to Soc...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 10, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with ACA problem
Replies: 10
Views: 1436

Re: Help with ACA problem

I spent a lot of time studying the threshold issues in 2013. One "qualifies" for subsidies between 138% and 400% of poverty. The penalty for exceeding 400% is the repayment of all subsidies received. At the lower end, the ACA was designed for those below 138% to be eligible for medicaid and therefor...
by Not Law
Sat Dec 09, 2017 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes and Rental Income from Live-In Significant Other
Replies: 8
Views: 876

Re: Taxes and Rental Income from Live-In Significant Other

I agree you are sharing living expenses and the "rent" you receive would not be considered income. Contrast that with setting aside a certain portion of your home for a boarder, where you would be able to depreciate that percentage of the home, but which would also be subject to recapture upon sale.
by Not Law
Sat Dec 09, 2017 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?
Replies: 193
Views: 18387

Re: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?

Funding Roth IRAs for my grandchildren.
by Not Law
Wed Dec 06, 2017 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lowering real estate agent costs when selling?
Replies: 34
Views: 2920

Re: Lowering real estate agent costs when selling?

I sold a house FSBO. Realtor lived across the street. I told her that I would pay 3% if she brought a buyer. Folks she was working with wanted to see our house. She refused to show it - told them to call us themselves. They did, we sold it to them, and the realtor across the street got nothing. The ...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 03, 2017 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How will i be taxed when switching jobs?
Replies: 25
Views: 1656

Re: How will i be taxed when switching jobs?

Withholding tables essentially take your annualized income, less your standard deduction and exemptions and assume your tax is as per the tax tables. Divide that by the number of annual pay periods and that is what is withheld. So, you need to declare additional dependents if you file a schedule A w...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 03, 2017 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which RMD table does a surviving spouse use....
Replies: 5
Views: 572

Re: Which RMD table does a surviving spouse use....

Please note that a beneficiary spouse can opt to take the funds in a beneficiary IRA. There are no RMDs until the decedent would have turned 70.5, and there is no 10% penalty for early withdrawals (unlike if it were a rollover IRA). Especially helpful if the surviving spouse is well below the 59.5 t...
by Not Law
Sun Dec 03, 2017 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: moved to another state in 2017 -- best tax software?
Replies: 6
Views: 769

Re: moved to another state in 2017 -- best tax software?

You can purchase a second state for the 2017 tax year. Turbo Tax will offer that when you indicate that you have a second state return to file.
by Not Law
Sun Dec 03, 2017 6:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Spousal Benefit
Replies: 23
Views: 2630

Re: Social Security Spousal Benefit

Our numbers: Higher earner 62, PIA ~$2400 ($3150 at 70), so spousal benefit is ~$1200. Lower earner almost 65, PIA at 66 is ~$1000 ($1320 at 70). Plan is for lower earner to take benefit at FRA(66), then bump up to $1200 at just before 73 when high earner takes at 70. Low earner could forego the $1k...
by Not Law
Thu Nov 30, 2017 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Taxes
Replies: 6
Views: 974

Re: Social Security Taxes

While in the "hump", for every dollar earned, you have to pay taxes on $1.85.
by Not Law
Sat Nov 18, 2017 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why did Vanguard drop TurboTax?
Replies: 16
Views: 3603

Re: Why did Vanguard drop TurboTax?

I always wonder how much more information these electronic filing platforms provide the IRS than my mailed in forms provide. I cannot file electronically because of the infinite loop associated with ACA premiums (for a self employed person) and MAGI. I use tax preparation software, but I always chec...
by Not Law
Fri Oct 06, 2017 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: We're Debt Free (Except our House)!
Replies: 34
Views: 3894

Re: We're Debt Free (Except our House)!

I suggest considering the following: First, anything in taxed deferred funds, including whatever earnings, capital gains and dividends (even tax free government bonds) are taxed as ordinary income. Second, most earnings on taxable accounts are taxed at a lower long term capital gain/dividend rate. A...
by Not Law
Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you become debt free and what opportunities did it create?
Replies: 142
Views: 22111

Re: What age did you become debt free and what opportunities did it create?

Last car loan was paid off in 1988 at age 33 - I pay cash only for quality used cars. Student loans paid off in 1988. Credit cards used for rewards, paid in full every month since the early 90's (used GM card points to buy a new car for $4200 in 1995, Norwegian Cruise in the late 90's). Home mortgag...
by Not Law
Tue Aug 22, 2017 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When have you achieved financial independence?
Replies: 27
Views: 4828

Re: When have you achieved financial independence?

How to make Scenario A work, assume 5% return. Some rounding for ease of explanation. Year 1 Start a Roth ladder, move $24k. First 10k is tax free, 10k at 10%, 4k at 15%. $1600 taxes by year 2 Withdraw $2k/ month from Taxable, average balance for the year is $88k, earns $4400. Beginning of year 2 st...
by Not Law
Sun Aug 20, 2017 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ObamaCare 2018
Replies: 74
Views: 10241

Re: ObamaCare 2018

Just a few thoughts from someone who welcomed the ACA In 2013, pre ACA, our married couple monthly basic health insurance premium was over $1800. We could not switch policies, even with the same carrier, without invoking a pre-existing condition issue. Even without subsidies, the ACA would have redu...
by Not Law
Sun Aug 13, 2017 6:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are we house poor? [Property Tax Madness]
Replies: 79
Views: 9509

Re: Property Tax Madness

If you and your neighbor have identical homes, and your tax base is lower, resulting in lower annual property taxes, most buyers would pick your home over the neighbor's at the same price for the lower taxes. Therefore, your house should command a higher price if it comes with lower taxes.