Search found 1152 matches

by Cyclesafe
Fri Sep 18, 2020 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ring for a new girlfriend
Replies: 81
Views: 5198

Re: Ring for a new girlfriend

Definitely shop together. You'll learn a lot about each other really fast. If she pushes for something unreasonable, you can next her right there in the store. Saves both time AND money.
by Cyclesafe
Thu Sep 17, 2020 1:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Asset Allocation Across Accounts- Age and Taxable vs Non-Taxable
Replies: 20
Views: 979

Re: Asset Allocation Across Accounts- Age and Taxable vs Non-Taxable

Not sure what you are asking. AA between taxable and non-taxable depends on one's need for liquidity. When interest rates are low, it is also argued that fixed should be in taxable and the higher potential growth assets should be in non-taxable. It's popular here for younger investors, prior to immi...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Sep 16, 2020 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buying Bonds right now?
Replies: 2
Views: 533

Re: Buying Bonds right now?

Assuming you haven't breached the current 22% federal tax bracket (otherwise consider muni funds), your ballast (and hedge against sequence of returns risk when you start drawing income) in taxable should be in the form of a CD ladder. Shop around, you ought to still get 1+% for 5 year CD's (for exa...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Sep 11, 2020 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

I’m in learning mode here & trying to see if there are bits I can use. So, probing more into the reasoning, but will start with adding my congratulations & acknowledge you’ve done some strong analysis. 1) Have you looked at the relative performance of the funds between the 2 vehicles? In many cases...
by Cyclesafe
Fri Sep 11, 2020 7:21 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

This has been still bothering me. But I discovered belatedly and quite embarassingly the most important reason that it is better to place equity in a t-IRA rather than an investment variable annuity: distributions from a t-IRA are not subject to NIIT using Form 8960's branch 1 approach. Withdrawals ...
by Cyclesafe
Thu Sep 10, 2020 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

I concur that generally speaking, equity should go in a t-IRA before an investment variable annuity. But the decision should be made considering all the moving parts, including annuitization payout vs expected real investment returns (in all accounts) and whether one hopes to maximize Roth conversio...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 07, 2020 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

So, you expect that your Transamerica VA will be about $5 million when you reach age 75? Congratulations! I checked immediate annuity quotes at blueprintincome.com, and found that a 75 year old male, could buy roughly a $70,000 annual income with a $1 million premium (the largest permitted by the s...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Sep 07, 2020 11:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

Just one more comment about the single company risk. From your post, it looks like you would be exercising the withdrawal option from the VA, rather than changing the VA into a SPIA. I know that VA account values are fully matched off by assets in "separate accounts" of insurance companies, which a...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Sep 06, 2020 5:38 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Re: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

Thanks for responding, Stinky. You seem to know quite a bit about optimizing usually regretfully held variable annuities. I was hoping you would respond. I had considered the VA's higher expenses, but for some reason failed to appreciate that as sub-accounts grow, dollar expenses grow too. Serves me...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Sep 05, 2020 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA
Replies: 14
Views: 760

Asset Allocation: Existing Variable Annuity vs t-IRA

Having both an existing variable annuity and a t-IRA, I can rebalance freely and tax-free within them, and in effect , also between them. This also affords me the opportunity to load more equity in one rather than the other, with consequent effect on amounts potentially available to annuitize and fu...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Sep 02, 2020 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Brokered CDs from Vanguard.
Replies: 42
Views: 3880

Re: Brokered CDs from Vanguard.

If you bought a 2.5% coupon brokered CD at par (at 100) it pays $2.50 a year in interest and has increased in value as market interest rates have declined. IOW's if you sell it now you will book a gain. If you bought the same bond at 95, you still get the $2.50 interest, but when it matures you'll g...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Aug 30, 2020 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RO water systems... when to buy new filters
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Re: RO water systems... when to buy new filters

You're right. IMHO water companies push changing filters waaaay too often. The rule of thumb I've heard is that they should be changed when the RO water total solids exceed 10% of your tap. Also, Amazon has an ample selection of filters, so there is no reason to call anybody. My tap is currently 240...
by Cyclesafe
Sat Aug 29, 2020 5:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Home Equity & Asset Allocation
Replies: 15
Views: 1183

Re: Home Equity & Asset Allocation

Tempting yes. But doing so is a lie to yourself to justify more equity. If you think you can tolerate more volatility just pile it on. Don't hide behind your house (or your social security or SPIA's etc.).

BTW, if the stock market tanks, it might not be the best time to sell your house.
by Cyclesafe
Fri Aug 28, 2020 6:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drug Not on Formulary - Options?
Replies: 11
Views: 895

Re: Drug Not on Formulary - Options?

I just placed an order with northwestpharmacy.com. So far so good. Saved 90% plus on my prescription. When I scanned other meds, the savings weren't anywhere near as dramatic. YMMV.
by Cyclesafe
Thu Aug 27, 2020 6:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tips vs bond fund
Replies: 15
Views: 1146

Re: Tips vs bond fund

This post illustrates the danger of making big portfolio changes because of one's unique (or close to unique) hunches. We need to embrace the cognitive dissonance that threatens to always overwhelm us. We are far from the rational beings we fancy ourselves to be.
by Cyclesafe
Mon Aug 24, 2020 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: vanguard annuity
Replies: 8
Views: 939

Re: vanguard annuity

No, you should not be very concerned. Only the customer service is changing. After the switch you will call Transamerica instead of Vanguard for service. The contract terms are not changing. The investment options are not changing. Your money is not moving. At your age I'd be more worried about the...
by Cyclesafe
Thu Aug 20, 2020 6:48 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What is your asset allocation and what future % returns are you expecting?
Replies: 91
Views: 6002

Re: What is your asset allocation and what future % returns are you expecting?

Currently 65 w/ 100 at termination, so 35 year horizon. 60/40, international 30% of equity, muni's 50% of fixed. (four fund) US equity 5%, international equity 7%, fixed 1% (cash 0.35%, muni's 1% TEY); 1% inflation. Expenses, including IRMAA, increase at 3X inflation. Marginal tax rate increases fro...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Aug 12, 2020 6:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Roth Conversions Considering Taxes
Replies: 8
Views: 842

Re: Roth Conversions Considering Taxes

For point 2), it might be entirely reasonable to decide to do Roth conversions even where no tax arbitrage exists, i.e. where future rates are equal to current rates. There is nothing set in stone that says you have to see actual arbitrage before doing a conversion, especially when you are late in ...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Aug 11, 2020 7:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Roth Conversions Considering Taxes
Replies: 8
Views: 842

Re: Roth Conversions Considering Taxes

Interest income and annuity income should occupy the lower tax tiers in your thinking when you can't easily change them in the current year. For example, if you have an SPIA that would be costly to surrender or exchange, the taxable income from that amount is a "given" and your decision about a Rot...
by Cyclesafe
Tue Aug 11, 2020 5:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Roth Conversions Considering Taxes
Replies: 8
Views: 842

Roth Conversions Considering Taxes

I'm trying to rationalize a bigger Roth conversion. Up until now I've considered my conversion amount to be the final addition to annual income that just fills a tax bracket and/or just avoids a cliff. I have been careful to keep the marginal tax rate actually paid on my conversions below the rate t...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Aug 09, 2020 6:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Inflation, TIPS and asset allocation
Replies: 74
Views: 3747

Re: Inflation, TIPS and asset allocation

Considering an entire portfolio, if 100% TIPS they would have a high opportunity cost relative to (hopefully) inflating real estate and equity.
by Cyclesafe
Sat Aug 01, 2020 7:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paying cash for a new car... should I let them run my credit?
Replies: 114
Views: 9331

Re: Paying cash for a new car... should I let them run my credit?

I paid cash for two cars at the same dealership five years apart. Both times they insisted on me providing credit info; both times I stuck with "no". The dealership spends every moment after closing a deal to extract more money from their customer. It can be confrontational at times to resist and yo...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Jul 26, 2020 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Straight Talk Annuity
Replies: 93
Views: 5898

Re: Straight Talk Annuity

Salespeople have been spinning for millenniums. Try to find one person who has not regretted being ensnared into an investment annuity of any ilk. I am a person that does not regret being ensnared in the fixed annuity that I purchased in the 1980's with a $2,000 investment. It did have a front end ...
by Cyclesafe
Sun Jul 26, 2020 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Straight Talk Annuity
Replies: 93
Views: 5898

Re: Straight Talk Annuity

Salespeople have been spinning for millenniums. Try to find one person who has not regretted being ensnared into an investment annuity of any ilk. Seriously. The fact that this person has made a good living for 17 years hoodwinking people who trusted him is no endorsement. Run far away. All that gli...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Jul 20, 2020 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: AA with Muni Bonds
Replies: 11
Views: 1024

Re: AA with Muni Bonds

Interesting. But it probably doesn't matter. If you have no intention of selling the bonds (and even if you did you wouldn't realize their market value), you might just make the call that they should be valued within the fixed portion of your portfolio at face value. We make calls all the time about...
by Cyclesafe
Mon Jul 20, 2020 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Total Newb-need advice on my Ameriprise conundrum
Replies: 32
Views: 1682

Re: Total Newb-need advice on my Ameriprise conundrum

Questions 1. How and when to get out of my investments with Ameriprise? I have considered utilizing Vanguard’s personal advisor services until my financial acumen has improved, or simply utilizing the three fund portfolio method. Tax considerations took me five years to get away from Ameriprise; pa...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Jul 01, 2020 7:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Landlord expectations: Rats in the yard
Replies: 80
Views: 5735

Re: Landlord expectations: Rats in the yard

And now for something completely different.... In New Zealand they have developed an automatic device that uses CO2 from a small gas cylinder to drive and retract a rod through the skulls of rats that poke their heads into a non-poison-baited hole. The rat corpses fall away and the trap resets. Opti...
by Cyclesafe
Thu Jun 25, 2020 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on my "equities play portfolio"?
Replies: 9
Views: 608

Re: Thoughts on my "equities play portfolio"?

You're posting in the wrong forum.
by Cyclesafe
Sun Jun 21, 2020 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Letting my company know I'm looking?
Replies: 43
Views: 4794

Re: Letting my company know I'm looking?

It would seem reasonable for you to agree to work for him until the end of August if he agrees to to keep you on until that time. If you accept a job before then, perhaps you should tell him and give him the option of cutting you loose early. That would be a win, win, win. You are on notice that you...
by Cyclesafe
Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So Are Home Renovations Worth It (Financially) Or Not?
Replies: 105
Views: 7601

Re: So Are Home Renovations Worth It (Financially) Or Not?

Tit for tat value for cost is a rule of thumb at best. And I wouldn't count on it. A buyer is looking at spruced up used houses ought to assume that recent improvements are cosmetic and made on the cheap. And whether your improvement adds value or not will be in the eye of the buyer making the offer...
by Cyclesafe
Sun May 31, 2020 7:51 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fixed rate annuity question
Replies: 2
Views: 401

Re: Fixed rate annuity question

Liquidity will be an issue - contract dependent. Fees are also an issue - contract dependent. You'll indirectly pay a hefty commission. Better to get FDIC insured 1.5% that is actually 1.5% with certain availability when needed. These could make sense only when there is a long (decades) time horizon...
by Cyclesafe
Fri May 29, 2020 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Replacement Windows in Stucco house
Replies: 19
Views: 1433

Re: Replacement Windows in Stucco house

Use high quality windows and professional installers and professional stucco contractors who will flash in the new window flanges correctly. There is wisdom here. A "replacement window" uses the frame and tie-in from the old window and adds another point of entry all around. This approach only make...
by Cyclesafe
Tue May 26, 2020 7:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Painting the house//estimates and experiences
Replies: 20
Views: 1556

Re: Painting the house//estimates and experiences

Make sure that you get the best paint. Consider eggshell or even semi-gloss for better durability.

The expensive part is labor, so splurge on materials.
by Cyclesafe
Sun May 24, 2020 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity
Replies: 11
Views: 934

Re: Annuity

This is what I plan to do with a portion of the variable annuity I was duped into in the late '80's. I'm hopefully going for a joint life annuity at age 80, though. If either of us at age 80 aren't expected to live beyond age 92 (when all payments are mortality credits), we will NOT annuitize. 15 ye...
by Cyclesafe
Sat May 23, 2020 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Approaching 40, worried about financial future
Replies: 121
Views: 12744

Re: Approaching 40, worried about financial future

You are still young enough and you have woken up. You'll be fine if you follow the advice offered here. The economic situation will improve - eventually. In my view, 67% equity is aggressive enough. After the market returns, perhaps re-evaluate your risk tolerance. Don't do anything now. Keep an eye...
by Cyclesafe
Sat May 23, 2020 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What do we do with “house” funds if we decide to rent longer term?
Replies: 9
Views: 1011

Re: What do we do with “house” funds if we decide to rent longer term?

Interesting dilemma. Brexit and post-covid WFH may depress London real estate. Always dangerous to commit to a prediction, but renting for the time being seems prudent. I certainly wouldn't look back after 10 years (if still renting) and think that based on what I could know now that I made a mistak...
by Cyclesafe
Thu May 21, 2020 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: what to do about 1000s of dandelions/weeds?
Replies: 60
Views: 5026

Re: what to do about 1000s of dandelions/weeds?

You have only two choices. Vinegar doesn't work. Turn your property into a golf course. Broadcast glyphosate to kill all emerged vegetation. Then, regrade your property to optimize drainage. Then, remove debris and amend the soil to about 6 inches, adding whatever products you need to optimize. Then...
by Cyclesafe
Thu May 21, 2020 9:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you dislike recurring billing for gyms?
Replies: 68
Views: 3712

Re: Do you dislike recurring billing for gyms?

I wouldn't let anyone charge my card without permission. Make them earn your business. What if you can't or don't want to go? Life happens. Even a discount wouldn't be enough for me. Credit card companies are fine with reversing charges until they aren't.
by Cyclesafe
Fri May 15, 2020 8:44 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: sort by thread not post?
Replies: 13
Views: 1138

Re: sort by thread not post?

On the overall forum listing page, click on "first" at the top of the column of times/days. Perfect! The retro look of that page had me thinking something was wrong with my browser/css load and I sort of dismissed it. Now that I see that functionality there, I like it! thanks for all your help. -ji...
by Cyclesafe
Thu May 14, 2020 9:11 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: New bogleheads induction [Request for new subforum]
Replies: 59
Views: 4659

Re: New bogleheads induction

I’ve noticed that the vast majority of new posters on this forum are still convinced regarding market timing and other similar themes. The experienced, long term posters spend a lot of time trying to (often unsuccessfully) teach these newbies. Personally, I’m starting to find it quite tiring. Wonde...
by Cyclesafe
Fri May 08, 2020 9:14 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Forecast new COVID wave in Autumn and dollar cost averaging
Replies: 11
Views: 1692

Re: Forecast new COVID wave in Autumn and dollar cost averaging

Market timing. Have an emergency fund sufficient to likely tide you over, then invest according to your risk tolerance. You might get lucky and benefit from your analysis or you might not. My success over the decades of using my superior knowledge to second guess the market has not been consistent. ...
by Cyclesafe
Wed May 06, 2020 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Understanding Adjusted Gross Income
Replies: 24
Views: 1968

Re: Understanding Adjusted Gross Income

When calculating "AGI" one must always consider the purpose it is being calculated for. The definition changes with different applications. It's best to use the appropriate tax form as a guide. The devil in in the details... perhaps you thinking of MAGI? AGI is unique is my understanding. Yes. Don'...
by Cyclesafe
Wed May 06, 2020 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: pay off mortgage vs. invest in the time of covid
Replies: 19
Views: 2744

Re: pay off mortgage vs. invest in the time of covid

Well, we did it today! Sold the most in 5 minutes that I ever hope to have to sell. My wife and I are elated. Can't wait to send it to the mortgage bank. Rebalancing 401ks and IRAs next. Thanks for the consideration and ideas everyone. Cyclesafe, what do you mean about the increased tax liability o...
by Cyclesafe
Wed May 06, 2020 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Glide Path" for asset allocation
Replies: 26
Views: 1864

Re: "Glide Path" for asset allocation

I view AA and SOR risk co-equally. I am in decumulation.

I sleep well with an equity allocation of 60% and fixed allocation of 20X+ expenses (including taxes). Fortunately for me, these can be maintained for my 35 year investment horizon, obviating a need for a glide path.
by Cyclesafe
Wed May 06, 2020 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Understanding Adjusted Gross Income
Replies: 24
Views: 1968

Re: Understanding Adjusted Gross Income

When calculating "AGI" one must always consider the purpose it is being calculated for. The definition changes with different applications.

It's best to use the appropriate tax form as a guide. The devil in in the details...
by Cyclesafe
Wed May 06, 2020 7:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Princess Cruise: Take Cash or Greater Future Credit
Replies: 23
Views: 2128

Re: Princess Cruise: Take Cash or Greater Future Credit

One would have to be extremely lucky to actually get a refund from Carnival (Princess) at this very late date. Best to both apply for the refund and get a file going right now with your credit card company. The latter should be immediately cancelled by you - if by some chance - Carnival comes throug...
by Cyclesafe
Tue May 05, 2020 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: September Kenya Travel
Replies: 31
Views: 1909

Re: September Kenya Travel

After, actually if, you fully receive your 90% refund, make a claim to your credit card company for the 10% held back. Try not to agree to a release, but even if you do, you still have the defense of duress . It is impossible for your vendor to hold up their side of the bargain and it doesn't matter...
by Cyclesafe
Mon May 04, 2020 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Steel-framed Residential Entry Doors
Replies: 34
Views: 2439

Re: Steel-framed Residential Entry Doors

Stay away from box stores and their installers. Properly installing a functional door/frame is a very big deal. It needs to exclude others, fit, be water tight, and be attractive. Beware of installers who take shortcuts and can't be found when there are issues years down the road. Selecting a suffic...
by Cyclesafe
Sun May 03, 2020 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decide on keeping/selling the house
Replies: 22
Views: 2629

Re: Decide on keeping/selling the house

Nearly everyone buying a home in Cali since 1974 thinks they overpaid. When the economy dipped and they feared losing their job, anxiety spiked. And home mortgage rates were crazy, reaching as much as 15% in 1980. Despite this, Cali homeowners have seen their home equity soar. Even in relatively rec...