Search found 948 matches

by Cyclesafe
Wed Nov 13, 2019 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Forgotten Expenses in Retirement--Travel
Replies: 27
Views: 1574

Re: Forgotten Expenses in Retirement--Travel

Avoid guided tours and cruises. Flying somewhere, renting a car, and driving from place to place is pretty economical. You can stay at B&B's, eat locally, and interact with the people you meet. Far more fun than being herded around with people from home. DW and I try to take three one month long tri...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Nov 13, 2019 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Online MBA - Worth It?
Replies: 26
Views: 1404

Re: Online MBA - Worth It?

At mid-career a complete waste of effort unless you are in a top specialized program AND already have a relevant / acceptable job waiting for you. If this isn't the case, match your proven skills set to other possible acceptable opportunities and hustle, hustle, hustle. There is nothing offered in a...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Nov 13, 2019 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The difficulty of discarding frugality?
Replies: 60
Views: 3157

Re: The difficulty of discarding frugality?

Ah, the scarce resource is now time. Invest your bounty to maximize your enjoyment of it. Sooner than latter, as one by one the options for pleasure drop away.
by Cyclesafe
Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rich people are hoarding cash
Replies: 137
Views: 20093

Re: Rich preparing for market drop

A market crash can occur with the press of a button. Whether one cares or not depends on one's situation and outlook. If sequence of returns risk is a concern and/or one questions the future, one should not be 100% in equity.
by Cyclesafe
Tue Nov 12, 2019 4:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "Tax advantaged Annuity" advised for friend
Replies: 34
Views: 1432

Re: "Tax advantaged Annuity" advised for friend

Using its lower fees as rationale, convince your friend to 1035 transfer to Vanguard (if she still can as Vanguard is passing administration of investment annuities to Transamerica by December 2020). There she will get honest advice. Her current advisor's "advice" is not in her current best interest...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:13 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for larger portfolio
Replies: 29
Views: 1912

Re: Asset Allocation for larger portfolio

IMHO net worth is indeed among the important factors to consider, but not the MOST important. Being able to "sleep at night" is the very first priority. Second, one needs to decide legacy or charitable intent for your residual. If these are important to you, you need to consider what would be better...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Nov 11, 2019 9:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying Wall-to-Wall Carpet: What Do I Need to Know?
Replies: 37
Views: 7921

Re: Buying Wall-to-Wall Carpet: What Do I Need to Know?

Using a big box store is a crap shoot. The installer will cut corners (ha ha) and cares not for the rabidly negative review you'll be leaving on Yelp. Work with a family store with a good reputation for honesty and who has a reason to maintain its standing in the community. Nylon 6,6 is the best (an...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Nov 11, 2019 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone been retro billed for IRMAA?
Replies: 7
Views: 631

Re: Has anyone been retro billed for IRMAA?

The only way one can be charged for IRMAA is when "rebilled". Don't worry, they'll find you and bill you retroactively (and proactively).
by Cyclesafe
Mon Nov 11, 2019 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Medicare & IRMAA]
Replies: 8
Views: 947

Re: [Medicare & IRMAA]

MAGI for IRMAA purposes gets no reduction from any post AGI deduction.

There is potential relief from IRMAA, however, if your situation qualifies. This is a more promising line of attack.

https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10536.pdf (page 4)
by Cyclesafe
Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fruit Fly Problem
Replies: 22
Views: 2081

Re: Fruit Fly Problem

by Cyclesafe
Sun Nov 10, 2019 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset allocation significance
Replies: 16
Views: 1557

Re: Asset allocation significance

Try to think of your portfolio as comprising the amount you can spend now and the expected amounts that your can spend - tax bracket willing - in each of many future years. Then forget about the current values of the latter. IOW's you need to not worry about interim volatility. Easier said than done...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How often should someone rebalance?
Replies: 43
Views: 3065

Re: How often should someone rebalance?

Relevant insight from Vanguard. https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/ISGGBOT.pdf Personally, I think rebalancing is over-rated. As long as one can "sleep at night", that is. I start thinking about adjusting when I reach an incremental 5% band. But if I am not nervous about a loss at that point, I just ...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Nov 05, 2019 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Neighbor Wants to Build ATV Trail Through Our Property - How to say no while preserving the peace.
Replies: 29
Views: 1893

Re: Neighbor Wants to Build ATV Trail Through Our Property - How to say no while preserving the peace.

If you think their current request is awkward, think about how more awkward it will be for you to try to revoke permission if the trail becomes commonly used for years - by everyone. It's a good way for eventually a for-all-intents-and-purposes easement to be established on your property burdening y...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moved to a new state, purchasing house -- should I amend my will and living trust?
Replies: 6
Views: 643

Re: Moved to a new state, purchasing house -- should I amend my will and living trust?

Establishing residence in a new state is a good excuse to have your trust restated. You should then have either your new attorney agree that your ancillary documents are still valid or have them redone too. This is tempting to put off, but bear in mind that eventually you would have needed to have e...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap
Replies: 46
Views: 5670

Re: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap

boomer_techie wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 5:43 am
When will 2019 TT, HR, etc. be available for folks to find out how the latest software handles this?
For TT the latter half of November.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Nov 02, 2019 4:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wait for Social Security - breakeven returns
Replies: 103
Views: 9061

Re: Wait for Social Security - breakeven returns

With Maximize My Social Security (two qualified SS histories; MFJ, both 65 y.o.) the break even for either was reaching age 87. We have an expectation that both of us will live at least to that age so we will delay taking to 70.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Nov 02, 2019 9:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Consider the next phase of our travel?
Replies: 37
Views: 2823

Re: Consider the next phase of our travel?

For those who are well travelled and not very young: (1) How do you deal with the tradeoff between the desire to travel to new places and the concern about safety? One simply needs to draw a line somewhere within a forced-ranked list of countries and be happy that there still are plenty of places a...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Nov 01, 2019 7:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Placing a variable annuity in a living trust?
Replies: 7
Views: 616

Re: Placing a variable annuity in a living trust?

Be aware that when a trust owns an annuity, if a "non natural person" eg a charity becomes the remainder or other beneficiary, the annuity will lose it's tax deferred status. Therefore, she should be careful when changing the beneficiaries of the trust. See attached article by Michael Kitces: https...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Oct 30, 2019 10:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Placing a variable annuity in a living trust?
Replies: 7
Views: 616

Re: Placing a variable annuity in a living trust?

My mother just established a revocable living trust and is preparing to move her assets into it. One asset she owns is a non-qualified variable annuity in her name which she plans to leave to her heirs. I’m wondering about the pros and cons of: A. Having the revocable trust become the owner of the ...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Oct 30, 2019 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Afraid to take the leap
Replies: 42
Views: 5087

Re: Afraid to take the leap

Human hard wiring makes OP's fear totally understandable. Every investor has felt exactly the same way and can easily relate to the dilemma he/she faces. To say otherwise is either a lie or the result of having worked through - many times - this behavioral flaw in our common DNA. First. It NEVER see...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Oct 28, 2019 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Folks age between 65-70. What’s your exercise routine
Replies: 44
Views: 4457

Re: Folks age between 65-70. What’s your exercise routine

Me 65, 6'1", 157; DW 65 5'11, 145.

Me: Run daily 6-8 miles; 20 minutes 4X per week on a home weight machine. No joint issues because of light frame and running mostly on sand.

DW: Pilates 2X per week; walks 5X per week 3 miles, also on the beach.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 26, 2019 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's variable annuity
Replies: 23
Views: 1662

Re: Mother's variable annuity

Cyclesafe, thanks for your detailed reply. First, I have to ask about your earlier post, in which you stated "I'm at age 99 with my variable annuity..." Not sure if that means (a) you have annuity set to start at age 99, or (b) you are 99 years old right now. If the former, what is the rationale fo...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 25, 2019 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's variable annuity
Replies: 23
Views: 1662

Re: Mother's variable annuity

I should also have said that I fully expected and still think she should have annuitized by now and either spend or invest any excess. I think it's time, and it was meant to be for my parents' retirement, not mine or my sibling's. OK. Lots to unpack here. First. One inheriting an investment annuity...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's variable annuity
Replies: 23
Views: 1662

Re: Mother's variable annuity

I think that you’ve pretty well nailed the options available to you. I’d definitely get out of the Prudential annuity ASAP. Whether you roll into IRA with no current taxes, or into Roth IRA and pay current taxes, is your call. If you annuitize, you’ll pay taxes as the money is paid out, but you may...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 25, 2019 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's variable annuity
Replies: 23
Views: 1662

Re: Mother's variable annuity

I was coming here to ask questions about "Wife's Variable Annuity," so hope it's OK to piggyback on this one, rather than start a new thread. Many years ago, my wife's school system handed out a list of insurance companies, encouraging teachers to invest in variable annuities as a retirement plan. ...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 18, 2019 7:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hiring an Interior Decorator
Replies: 25
Views: 2222

Re: Hiring an Interior Decorator

Pay the designer for the plan, then buy your own services/stuff. Why give this person an additional (and uncontrollable) means of gigging you for additional profit? Never underestimate how much middle-people and suppliers will collude to extract as much money as possible from your wallet. Just becau...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Oct 15, 2019 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Mother's variable annuity
Replies: 23
Views: 1662

Re: Mother's variable annuity

Mel Lindauer wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 8:10 pm
I'm surprised that she hasn't been forced to annuitize, since age 85 is normally the contract annuitization age and you have to specifically request to get that changed to age 90 which is the latest date they'll normally allow.
I'm at age 99 with my variable annuity currently at Vanguard.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 12, 2019 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Municipal Bond Now vs In Retirement?
Replies: 12
Views: 1080

Re: Municipal Bond Now vs In Retirement?

Gains in fixed are primarily due to lower interest rates. If rates stabilize, NAV will decline as appreciated bonds mature or are sold off. If rates go up, then current NAV's will decline more. If rates go down, then... This will be true for muni's and non-muni's. Just how sure are you that your tax...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: CD or invest?
Replies: 13
Views: 1407

Re: CD or invest?

I'd look at cash possibly needed for financing future dotage. These funds, if invested in equity, may face a mini sequence of returns issue. Good health is ethereal for us all.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Updated longevity calculator - from the actuaries
Replies: 21
Views: 2477

Re: Updated longevity calculator - from the actuaries

I found this calculator very helpful. Thanks for posting!
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 12, 2019 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Total Bond or Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt in taxable?
Replies: 16
Views: 1693

Re: Total Bond or Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt in taxable?

Search here for discussions regarding using SEC vs distribution yields in forecasting actuals. Use SEC yield to compare different investments. Distribution yield is backwards looking as can be seen by distribution yield trends as market interest rates fluctuate. If one is concerned about short term ...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Total Bond or Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt in taxable?
Replies: 16
Views: 1693

Re: Total Bond or Intermediate-Term Tax-Exempt in taxable?

Along with after tax yield, I'd also run TurboTax to see if any income tiers for items such as IRMAA, ACA, NIIT, SS taxation etc are breached. Same with state income tax. Run TT with muni's and without to see what the incremental effect will be on your taxes. Avoid it's-too late-now kinds of surpris...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 11, 2019 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Joshua Tree National Park
Replies: 14
Views: 1499

Re: Joshua Tree National Park

Assuming you are flying into Palm Springs and not LAX. 5-6 hours would make a rushed, but worthwhile tour of JTNP. There are no services at the south end, so it might be better from that side, ending in Joshua Tree where you can fuel up so-to-speak and drive back to Palm Springs after dark. Hit the ...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on Annuity Contract Maturity for an 82yo
Replies: 2
Views: 250

Re: Advice on Annuity Contract Maturity for an 82yo

The maturity date of an investment annuity is meaningless. Extend the date of the contract changes nothing as to what your options are. IOW's nothing has changed. Extend the maturity date and carry on. Any annuitization or any withdrawal from an investment annuity in a t-IRA will be 100% taxable. Su...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Oct 05, 2019 2:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap
Replies: 46
Views: 5670

Re: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap

Intrigued, I played around a bit more with 2018 TT. Adding $30k of phantom mortgage interest to my capped $10k of SALT by default converts me to itemized and Form 8960 and its worksheet are filled out without forcing. Form 8960 is $10,000, not $11,971. So, according to TT, only if one itemizes, one ...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Oct 04, 2019 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap
Replies: 46
Views: 5670

Re: Net Investment Income Tax and SALT deduction cap

A final note. I also looked at the difference between itemizing vs. standard deduction. In my current case, my itemized deductions are greater than standard deduction. I went in and deleted my mortgage interest which put me back below the standard deduction. H&R Block then switched me to standard d...
by Cyclesafe
Thu Oct 03, 2019 4:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SPIA and your health
Replies: 25
Views: 2420

Re: SPIA and your health

If one is only considering age at death, joint life SPIA's should not be entered into if the survivor is certain to die before reaching roughly age 92. At that point the couple, hopefully, but at least the survivor, will be paid by the investment of other less fortunate annuitants. "Roughly age 92" ...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 30, 2019 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideal income bracket target?
Replies: 49
Views: 5012

Re: Ideal income bracket target?

The "top of the 24% bracket is actually 27.8%, just saying. Since the $250k (MFJ) "exclusion" from the 3.8% NIIT is purposely not adjusted for inflation, this, like the AMT of yore, will affect more and more people as the years go by. Still another reason to convert now when taxes are comparatively...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Naive long term treasury question
Replies: 4
Views: 594

Re: Naive long term treasury question

^^^^^^+1 Although it is profoundly satisfying to be able to precisely model the effect of present assumptions, these projections are never accurate because as reality bites, one finds that "outlier" commitments today just don't tend to pan out. Things will be different than what we assume today. For...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 30, 2019 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: high toilet
Replies: 33
Views: 3258

Re: high toilet

Consider also putting in a grab bar. Do it now so you won't disturb things again later.
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 30, 2019 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideal income bracket target?
Replies: 49
Views: 5012

Re: Ideal income bracket target?

The "top of the 24% bracket is actually 27.8%, just saying. Since the $250k (MFJ) "exclusion" from the 3.8% NIIT is purposely not adjusted for inflation, this, like the AMT of yore, will affect more and more people as the years go by. Still another reason to convert now when taxes are comparatively ...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Sep 29, 2019 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you know what your partner spends money on?
Replies: 80
Views: 6522

Re: Do you know what your partner spends money on?

I turned all the day-to-day stuff over to my wife's exclusive control decades ago. I direct deposit several income streams into her account and would top off if needed, but she's much more often transferring excess into our Vanguard settlement account. She still hides new shoes, but I think she feel...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideal income bracket target?
Replies: 49
Views: 5012

Re: Ideal income bracket target?

I am dealing with this for my parents. Mu suggestion is to Max out the bracket you are in. For most here they will be in the 12% bracket once they retire but before SS and RMDs. With my parents, we are Roth converting each year from the older parent up to the max of the bracket and will continue th...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Sep 29, 2019 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ideal income bracket target?
Replies: 49
Views: 5012

Re: Ideal income bracket target?

Wish I saw this thread earlier. All I seem to think about lately is this issue: how to maximize the present value of lifetime spendable funds while in decumulation. Pinch a balloon and it expands somewhere else. Tweak your spreadsheet and there are far-reaching unanticipated effects down the line. M...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Sep 28, 2019 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Threw me a curve [unexpected layoff]
Replies: 36
Views: 5895

Re: Threw me a curve [unexpected layoff]

I was laid off twice. I would echo the above: step back and assess before you actually do anything. Then do nothing for a bit longer. If no other job with health insurance is readily apparent, figure out how you can bridge to Medicare. An ACA subsidy would be available if you limit your income to be...
by Cyclesafe
Thu Sep 26, 2019 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement Withdrawal Strategy Advice Needed
Replies: 6
Views: 1304

Re: Retirement Withdrawal Strategy Advice Needed

I... I'm targeting about $120k to $140k per year income, after taxes. My strategy is to maximize returns and minimize taxes , by maximizing withdrawals from the taxable brokerage accounts first, in the early years, as much as possible. As long as my AGI is below $77,800 there will be no federal tax...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Sep 22, 2019 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: State Taxation of Federal Money Market Funds?
Replies: 7
Views: 575

Re: State Taxation of Federal Money Market Funds?

https://personal.vanguard.com/pdf/USGO_022018.pdf

IIRC, one must make a manual entry in TurboTax to effect this.
by Cyclesafe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 9:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I buy separate corporate and treasure bond instead of total bond?
Replies: 6
Views: 943

Re: Should I buy separate corporate and treasure bond instead of total bond?

Every time I run the numbers with 9.3% Cali tax, I am better off leaving VBTLX in tax deferred rather than busting it up to put treasuries in taxable. The difference with weighted SEC yields was only 2 basis points, perhaps coincidentally reflecting the .07% expense ratio of each of the components v...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Asset Placement: t-IRA vs (non-annuitized) Variable Annuity
Replies: 5
Views: 242

Re: Asset Placement: t-IRA vs (non-annuitized) Variable Annuity

Also in the interim, my thoughts are to minimize eventual RMD's by preferentially locating likely lower-performing fixed in my t-IRA and likely higher-performing equity in my variable annuity. One alternative would be to liquidate the annuity completely, allowing you to reinvest the after-tax proce...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Asset Placement: t-IRA vs (non-annuitized) Variable Annuity
Replies: 5
Views: 242

Re: Asset Placement: t-IRA vs (non-annuitized) Variable Annuity

cyclesafe, I think you are correct on both counts. The total return will be the same regardless of placement (neglecting the small additional expense of the VA), but locating the expected lower return assets in the IRA should reduce the forced income from RMDs. You then have a choice about when to ...