Search found 970 matches

by markcoop
Mon Jul 08, 2019 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Navigating Tax Code Changes
Replies: 9
Views: 996

Re: Navigating Tax Code Changes

3. College savings. If college becomes free in the next 15 to 20 years, then will it have been a waste to put money into college saving plans? Even if college is free, I don't believe that would extend to room and board. If you go to an in-state state school that is not commutable, then room and bo...
by markcoop
Sat Jul 06, 2019 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: LTC insurance -- where do the premiums go?
Replies: 8
Views: 502

Re: LTC insurance -- where do the premiums go?

The older the policy you have the more likely it is to be a good one. Although this is probably true, I wonder if this will be true going forward. I spoke with a LTC salesperson and he used this fact as a reason to buy now vs the future. I understand the argument to lock in lower rates based on age...
by markcoop
Thu Jul 04, 2019 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Right mix of traditional vs Roth IRA
Replies: 38
Views: 2714

Re: Right mix of traditional vs Roth IRA

Although I have wondered about the optimal mix, there really is not much I can do about it. My mix right now is 78% trad'l, 22% Roth. At 53, I am currently maxing out my 401K ($25K) and Roth IRA ($7K) which is amazingly almost exactly the same ratio as my current mix. I do plan to spend a few years ...
by markcoop
Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets
Replies: 17
Views: 1322

Re: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets

2) The I-bonds mature when I will be in my 60s. Assuming I am retired at that point, it limits the amount of Roth conversions I can do from my 401K because there will be a sizable amount of income from the I-bonds when they do mature. I was hoping to have at least a few years to do conversions. Can...
by markcoop
Fri Jun 28, 2019 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets
Replies: 17
Views: 1322

Re: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets

I bought some I-bonds in the glory days (3.0+ fixed) in the early 2000s. Although I would say it was a great deal (especially buying them with credit cards earning perks), there have been a few negatives that I never imagined at the time. 1) My I-bonds count as a parental asset when calculating fin...
by markcoop
Fri Jun 28, 2019 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets
Replies: 17
Views: 1322

Re: adding series I savings bonds to taxable assets

I bought some I-bonds in the glory days (3.0+ fixed) in the early 2000s. Although I would say it was a great deal (especially buying them with credit cards earning perks), there have been a few negatives that I never imagined at the time. 1) My I-bonds count as a parental asset when calculating fina...
by markcoop
Fri Jun 28, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how much to finance a new car at .9%
Replies: 57
Views: 3862

Re: how much to finance a new car at .9%

I had a similar decision two years ago. I chose to finance the whole amount at 0.9%. In my case, it was more of a cash flow issue/preference. I just felt more comfortable having access to that cash for a few years. The investment benefit was there but marginal.
by markcoop
Thu Jun 27, 2019 9:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Swedroe: How Trading Costs Erode Factor Returns
Replies: 43
Views: 3146

Re: Larry Swedroe: How Trading Costs Erode Factor Returns

I personally don't care about the definition of active. What I do care about is how Larry and Rick have evolved in their suggestions over the years. I think I understand Larry's position that with new research and the fact that new mutual funds/ETFs are now available in invest-able forms that exploi...
by markcoop
Fri Jun 21, 2019 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: what was your worst major purchase? mine is a 2019 mazda3
Replies: 182
Views: 15843

Re: what was your worst major purchase mine is a 2019 mazda3

Oddly enough, I think my 2018 Mazda 3 was one of the better car purchases I ever made.
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Sure, I agree the decision to use an HSA/HDHP vs PPO/HMO/HRA by far outweighs this decision. But it is silly to say I presented an obscure artificial example. Many people use HSAs. If you use HSAs, then at some point you will withdraw from the HSA. I raised a question about the considerations makin...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 4:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

As for whether an high deductible insurance with an HSA plan is ideal, there are too many considerations within the plans available to answer that question here. But it by far outweighs any other consideration? Hence my comment below. One other comment. The "whole lifecycle of tax costs" is a meaty...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

One can withdraw $$ for eligible expense from HSA at anytime, but not more that what you contributed to ROTH. This is my thinking; I prefer all equities in IRA and treasuries in HSA (California). In case if I need to withdraw $$, its likely that my principal is in tact in HSA + interest. Who knows ...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

But then why are you even investing in an HSA in the first place? Just to save payroll taxes? This is like saying, "if you ignore his hitting game, Babe Ruth was not a very good baseball player". I don't understand why anyone would consider it this way. As I said before, in this circumstance it lik...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Spending the HSA now for qualified expenses captures 95% of its lifetime tax benefit, so why not. I agree with everything you wrote above but just have a small issue with the 95% remark. I don't think you actually meant exactly 95%, so I am not commenting on that. But I don't think it's close to 95...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

1) My 401K up to employee match 2) My HSA contributions 3) My 401K contributions after match 4) My and Spouse's Roth contributions 5) Spending medical expenses out of pocket instead of raiding HSA 6) Spouse's 403B (lousy plan with high fees) 7) Company stock at small discount 8) Taxable Since I am ...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

I am not sure I follow what you don't agree with or where you are paying more/less in taxes. Let's make an example as simple as possible. Assume you already have an HSA with a balance of $10K and you are not maxing out your Roth IRAs. You have a $1K medical bill. Let's evaluate two choices that all...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Spending the HSA now for qualified expenses captures 95% of its lifetime tax benefit, so why not. I agree with everything you wrote above but just have a small issue with the 95% remark. I don't think you actually meant exactly 95%, so I am not commenting on that. But I don't think it's close to 95...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 20, 2019 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

1) My 401K up to employee match 2) My HSA contributions 3) My 401K contributions after match 4) My and Spouse's Roth contributions 5) Spending medical expenses out of pocket instead of raiding HSA 6) Spouse's 403B (lousy plan with high fees) 7) Company stock at small discount 8) Taxable Since I am ...
by markcoop
Wed Jun 19, 2019 8:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

I don't believe this has come up yet, but if you plan on bequeathing a portion of your portfolio to charity, an HSA is a great account to use for that purpose. It has no tax consequences for the receiving charity, but if a non-spouse inherits an HSA, the tax consequences are terrible since the enti...
by markcoop
Wed Jun 19, 2019 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Mark, The easy part will be contributing to both tax-advantaged accounts. No doubt. The harder part will be choosing which one to use if you can't use both to fund. Roths are terrific. I doubt you'd find many people who would argue with you. But you do have to remember that you're funding your Roth...
by markcoop
Wed Jun 19, 2019 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Since many are not maxing out every possible tax-advantaged account, then wouldn't it usually be better to pay the bill from the HSA and invest that amount in the tax-advantaged space because there are less requirements in retirement accounts? I don't agree with this. The megaposts with numbers wer...
by markcoop
Wed Jun 19, 2019 10:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

I've been spending my HSA as I go along, but I'm young (33) and have a wife/child on a HDHP. The interest rates for plain cash in my HSA are pathetic (as is normal), and they charge an extra fee for holding funds so you have to have a significant balance to make it worthwhile. So for now, I use the...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Since many are not maxing out every possible tax-advantaged account, then wouldn't it usually be better to pay the bill from the HSA and invest that amount in the tax-advantaged space because there are less requirements in retirement accounts? Yes. See post made 4 minutes before yours. :) :beer Alt...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

My whole point here is once the money is in the HSA, it is just like any other tax-advantaged account if used for medical bills. But it isn't. :) $7K pre-tax into an HSA, and growth therefrom, never gets taxed if used for medical bills. $7K pre-tax into a tIRA, and growth therefrom, is taxed on wit...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 3:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

There are many reasons to prefer one savings vehicle over another. But to think that you couldn't possibly spend $100,000 throughout your retirement on health care expenses is definitely not one of them. Lots of great points in your post. I am not questioning the need to save (or maybe even insure)...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

I am not sure I followed what you have above, but I am pretty sure the Roth will yield the same result at the end as well, assuming tax rates stay the same. Everything hinges on this part: "This would result in a tax saving of $1.75k at tax time, since HSA goes in tax free, whereas Roth does not." ...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

My whole point here is once the money is in the HSA, it is just like any other tax-advantaged account if used for medical bills. But it isn't. :) $7K pre-tax into an HSA, and growth therefrom, never gets taxed if used for medical bills. $7K pre-tax into a tIRA, and growth therefrom, is taxed on wit...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

ok...Nice analysis. A few small mistakes that actually will demonstrate my point. 1) "All of the above are before tax." - Not actually true as some of the money was Roth money that would have been contributed post-tax. However, no harm on that point. We can assume all is tax-deffered for this examp...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

In other words, they came out the same! Need to start both scenarios with the same pre-tax amounts to get apples v. apples. If one assumes $64K to pre-tax non-HSA (401k, etc.), $7K to an HSA, and a $7K medical bill, that's $64K + $7K + $7K/0.75 = $80,333.33. If the medical bill is paid after tax, t...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Maybe my question can be simplified. Assuming all my tax-advantaged accounts (401K, 403B, Roth IRAs, HSAs) are all equal as far as choices and fees (just making this assumption to clarify the choice), then would it be adviseable to first max out everything listed above before paying medical bills w...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Maybe my question can be simplified. Assuming all my tax-advantaged accounts (401K, 403B, Roth IRAs, HSAs) are all equal as far as choices and fees (just making this assumption to clarify the choice), then would it be adviseable to first max out everything listed above before paying medical bills wi...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 18, 2019 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

Re: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

Am I looking at this correctly? Anyone see any problems with my logic? I just seem to always hear about the great advantages of HSAs, and they are great, but they involve two separate decisions. Anyone think it is worth it to cut back on Roth or 401K contributions to keep money saved in my HSA? See...
by markcoop
Mon Jun 17, 2019 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?
Replies: 73
Views: 3586

HSA - 2 parts: contribute and spend. When to spend?

HSA's are a unique product offering triple tax advantages: No taxes on the way in, possible no Social Security and Medicare on the way in (via payroll deduction) and no taxes on the way out (if used for medical expenses). Seems like a no-brainer to max-out this product if available and you are able ...
by markcoop
Mon Jun 17, 2019 1:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math
Replies: 120
Views: 9260

Re: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math

rantk81 wrote:
Mon Jun 17, 2019 12:57 pm
The $7000 into the HSA is deductible in either case.

If you are not in an HDHP, you are not eligible to contribute to an HSA.
by markcoop
Mon Jun 17, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math
Replies: 120
Views: 9260

Re: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math

These two options are really similar: 1) $6,000 annual premium + $6,000 deductible. 2) $12,000 annual premium. In fact, (1) is really superior because you may not use the whole deductible. In reality, the numbers may not be like that, but when you factor in annual maxes and employer contributions, ...
by markcoop
Mon Jun 17, 2019 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math
Replies: 120
Views: 9260

Re: Article on high deductible health plans - and the math

For the past few years I have used a HDHP and have chewed through my $6,000+ family deductible. In fact, I expected to with a family of 5 and some medications used. I still came out better than the other options. Others have mentioned it, but I think it is important enough to mention. These two opti...
by markcoop
Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: For those of you who have a factor diversified portfolio, what is yours?
Replies: 55
Views: 3998

Re: For those of you who have a factor diversified portfolio, what is yours?

I just tilt using a small value fund in my 401K run by Vanguard that tracks the Russel 2K. It has an .04% expense ratio. I have about 20% of my domestic stock in it. On the int'l side, I overweight small with Vanguard FTSE All-World ex-US Small-Cap Index in my Roth IRA. That is about 25% of my int'l...
by markcoop
Sat Jun 15, 2019 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: IPhone 6 - showing some age
Replies: 67
Views: 4548

Re: IPhone 6 - showing some age

Although I would suspect the battery to be the issue, I would recommend to do a factory reset after making sure you know how to get everything back. If something on your phone is draining power, this could clear it up. I imagine there are tools that can detect if there is a software issue, but a fac...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 11, 2019 8:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help me analyze small value in my 401K
Replies: 5
Views: 391

Re: Help me analyze small value in my 401K

Thanks for the replies. I have always just blindly used the small value fund in my 401K because it had such a low fee and Vanguard was the fund manager. Pretty surprising looking under the hood a bit and seeing such differences between small value funds (Russell 2K vs S&P 600). The return difference...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 11, 2019 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help me analyze small value in my 401K
Replies: 5
Views: 391

Re: Help me analyze small value in my 401K

How does it compare to VTWV, Vanguard's R2K Value ETF? I haven't looked in a while but I thought R2K was pretty close to S&P600 in terms of median market cap. Both were about 1/2 of Vanguard's preferred CRSP based fund (VBR is the ETF). I did not know about VTWV. The fund in my 401K appears to trac...
by markcoop
Tue Jun 11, 2019 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help me analyze small value in my 401K
Replies: 5
Views: 391

Help me analyze small value in my 401K

With all the recent factor threads, I've been trying to understand the small value fund offered in my 401K. As it doesn't map to a known fund, I was hoping to get some input from people here as to how it compares to other small cap value funds as far as size and value. It uses the Russell 2000 Value...
by markcoop
Thu Jun 06, 2019 1:02 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Excellent Larry Swedroe Podcast Interview: Factors For The Long Run
Replies: 337
Views: 18806

Re: Excellent Larry Swedroe Podcast Interview: Factors For The Long Run

I have found this thread very interesting. Thanks to the contributors. I have always been a small tilter (approx 85% TSM + 15% SV). Have been doing this over the past couple of decades having read some of Larry's and Rick's books. I work for a large company, so in addition to the factor play, I have...
by markcoop
Tue May 28, 2019 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: For those of us that can't max contribute
Replies: 74
Views: 6970

Re: For those of us that can't max contribute

I think sometimes these priority lists are looked at incorrectly. If the item in the list is concerning the same goal, it's fine to say don't do B before A. But when there are mixed goals, I think one may want to save for multiple goals. You just want to give priority, not exclusivity, to the higher...
by markcoop
Fri May 24, 2019 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Options for Roth conversions
Replies: 3
Views: 415

Re: Options for Roth conversions

Thanks for the responses. So it looks like I will have some flexibility in how I get money into Roth accounts. Hopefully they don't change the rules for doing Roth conversions. It seems to me it is a really important step in the retirement process.
by markcoop
Thu May 23, 2019 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Options for Roth conversions
Replies: 3
Views: 415

Options for Roth conversions

I'm starting to think about how I will do Roth conversions after I retire. I still have a few years to go, but want to understand some of the rules better. 1) Can I do a Roth conversion from a traditional 401K to a Roth IRA? My research showed it can be done with a two-step process: First, convert t...
by markcoop
Wed May 22, 2019 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you think we can stop funding our 529 plan?
Replies: 41
Views: 2973

Re: Do you think we can stop funding our 529 plan?

This is the Texas Promise Fund. You buy tuition credits that are indexed to the most expensive public university program in Texas (a nursing program, if I recall correctly). I didn't set up the plan, my ex did. We ended up funding 100% tuition, then realized that all other public programs are cheap...
by markcoop
Wed May 22, 2019 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you think we can stop funding our 529 plan?
Replies: 41
Views: 2973

Re: Do you think we can stop funding our 529 plan?

Hydromod wrote:
Wed May 22, 2019 11:24 am
Also, make sure that you know whether the 529 can be used for room and board. Some don't allow this, as I found out to my chagrin.
Please explain. It's not up to the 529 plan to decide whether you withdrew the money for a qualified expense including room and board.
by markcoop
Thu May 09, 2019 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: alternatives to 529 plans
Replies: 47
Views: 2888

Re: 529 plan limitations

It's an annoying limitation. One loophole is if you have multiple kids. You can move money around between their plans and change investment options at that time.
by markcoop
Tue May 07, 2019 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 Question--one per child, or one per family?
Replies: 13
Views: 1079

Re: 529 Question--one per child, or one per family?

I had one 529 for my 3 kids. I did it for a few reasons: 1) Simplicity during the accumulation phase. 2) Didn't really want to deal with rates of returns not being equal (should one get more because of something beyond their control?). 3) Didn't want to deal with college inflation - The cost for a y...
by markcoop
Wed May 01, 2019 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Ever Too Much in HSA?
Replies: 53
Views: 5128

Re: Ever Too Much in HSA?

I feel there really are two decisions to be made: 1) Should you max out the HSA contributions? 2) Should you pay for medical bills out of pocket or from the HSA? I think (1) should be the high priority mentioned above (right after 401K company match). For (2) however, I think you really need to look...