Search found 308 matches

by John151
Thu Jan 18, 2018 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rebalancing in last 12 months
Replies: 19
Views: 1360

Re: Rebalancing in last 12 months

I’m a retiree in my seventies. I’m about six percentage points above my desired allocation to stocks, but all of my stocks are in taxable accounts, and rebalancing would mean paying hefty capital gains taxes. So I’ve decided not to rebalance. My pension and my bond investments are enough to see me t...
by John151
Tue Jan 16, 2018 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Tax Forms Now Online
Replies: 39
Views: 2477

Re: Vanguard Tax Forms Now Online

That’s why I won’t “upgrade” unless I’m forced to.
by John151
Tue Jan 16, 2018 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Tax Forms Now Online
Replies: 39
Views: 2477

Vanguard Tax Forms Now Online

As of this morning, Vanguard Form 1099-DIV and Vanguard Form 1099-R have been posted online. This is for mutual fund investors. Brokerage investors will probably have to wait awhile.
by John151
Mon Jan 15, 2018 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Money Chimp has a Tax Calculator that figures QDI for Tax year 2018
Replies: 11
Views: 1487

Re: Money Chimp has a Tax Calculator that figures QDI for Tax year 2018

It doesn’t take into account your Foreign Tax Credit (if you have one), but if you take it as a credit (rather than as an itemized deduction), you can easily subtract your estimated credit from your “Total.”
by John151
Sun Jan 14, 2018 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long do you save tax returns?
Replies: 39
Views: 3162

Re: How long do you save tax returns?

I’ve kept all of my tax returns since I started filing them in 1973. They don’t take up much room, and I don’t see any reason to throw them out. Also, it’s interesting to review them to see how much income I had a various points in my life, and where the income came from.
by John151
Tue Jan 02, 2018 2:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Did everyone in the early 80s have their money in CDs?
Replies: 77
Views: 6147

Re: Did everyone in the early 80s have their money in CDs?

I turned forty in the 1980’s. During the first part of the decade I had almost all of my savings in bank CD’s. As interest rates dropped and my CD’s reached maturity, I gradually shifted some of that into stocks. When the decade ended, I had about a third of my investments in stocks, and that’s the ...
by John151
Mon Jan 01, 2018 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct and alternatives
Replies: 109
Views: 8341

Re: TaxAct and alternatives

I was able to lock in a special deal for TaxAct at $13.50 for the federal return. The price for a state return is currently $37.00. I’ll probably file my federal return with TaxAct and then file my state return directly with the state for free.
by John151
Sat Dec 23, 2017 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone here purchased a home for cash (no mortgages)?
Replies: 39
Views: 3861

Re: Has anyone here purchased a home for cash (no mortgages)?

I’m phobic about being in debt. I charge almost everything to my credit cards as a matter of convenience and pay off the balances each month. I didn’t buy a car until I could pay for it with cash. I didn’t buy my present condo until I could pay for it with cash. I feel much more secure knowing that ...
by John151
Fri Dec 22, 2017 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax-exempt bond funds and the new tax brackets
Replies: 1
Views: 486

Tax-exempt bond funds and the new tax brackets

The rule of thumb under our current tax brackets has been that the 25% bracket is the break-even bracket for tax-exempt bond funds. Investors in brackets lower than that should have their bond investments in taxable funds, and investors in brackets higher than that should have their bond investments...
by John151
Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Prices
Replies: 156
Views: 17866

Re: TurboTax Prices

Thank you, joe8d. Unfortunately, it looks like H&R Block’s free edition doesn’t handle Schedule D, which I have to file this year to report a capital loss carryover. The best offer I’ve had so far was from TaxAct: $13.50 for my federal return. I signed up for it. A state return is currently $37, but...
by John151
Wed Dec 13, 2017 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Prices
Replies: 156
Views: 17866

Re: TurboTax Prices

I don’t meet the qualifications for a 1040A, Alan, but I appreciate the suggestion.
by John151
Wed Dec 13, 2017 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Prices
Replies: 156
Views: 17866

TurboTax Prices

I filed my taxes with the online version of TurboTax for over fifteen years, until TurboTax started playing games with its prices and with what its prices covered. I switched to TaxAct because its prices were more straightforward and substantially less than what TurboTax was charging. Today I got an...
by John151
Sun Dec 10, 2017 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Firefox upgrade broke my add-on, switched to Waterfox
Replies: 28
Views: 3727

Re: Firefox upgrade broke my add-on, switched to Waterfox

LadyGeek, I gave Waterfox a try, and I like it. It imported all of my Firefox legacy add-ons and most of my settings flawlessly. The only glitch was that the Add-ons Manager was for some reason set to “Update Add-ons Automatically,” and Waterfox updated Stylish to a version that doesn’t work for me....
by John151
Fri Dec 08, 2017 5:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What did you do with your first RMD withdrawal money?
Replies: 63
Views: 4544

Re: What did you do with your first RMD withdrawal money?

I invested my first RMD in a tax-exempt bond fund. Subsequent RMD’s have been going into that fund too.
by John151
Thu Dec 07, 2017 4:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I-Bonds?
Replies: 51
Views: 7028

Re: I-Bonds?

I Bonds make up about 30% of my bond holdings, and I’m adding the legal maximum to them every year. They’re safe, they offer some inflation protection, the interest they pay is tax-deferred, and their yields are better than anything I can find in bank CD’s. In my opinion, I Bonds are an excellent in...
by John151
Sat Nov 25, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone tired of the stock market going up?
Replies: 290
Views: 25945

Re: Anyone tired of the stock market going up?

I’ve had a somewhat similar reaction to the market’s rise. My stocks have more than doubled, and they’ve risen above the upper limit of my target bands. I’ve stopped adding to them, and normally I would rebalance by exchanging from stocks into bonds. But all of my stocks are in taxable accounts, and...
by John151
Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online
Replies: 11
Views: 975

Re: Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online

Thanks, guys! I appreciate it.
by John151
Wed Nov 22, 2017 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online
Replies: 11
Views: 975

Filing Illinois Income Taxes Online

Has anyone filed Illinois income taxes using the state’s online tax service? Was it difficult? Did you encounter any glitches?
by John151
Mon Nov 20, 2017 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct and alternatives
Replies: 109
Views: 8341

Re: TaxAct and alternatives

I’ve filed my taxes with TaxAct for the past two years. In August 2017 I received an offer to sign up for the online version of TaxAct Plus for tax year 2017 for $13.50. This is for the federal return only. The state return will be extra. I signed up right away.
by John151
Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Firefox upgrade broke my add-on, switched to Waterfox
Replies: 28
Views: 3727

Re: Firefox upgrade broke my add-on, switched to Waterfox

I’ve stayed with Firefox for years because of one extension: Scrapbook. It doesn’t work on Firefox 57, and although the developer is working on a compatible version, he doesn’t think it will have all the features of the original. Right now I’m using Scrapbook on Firefox 52.5.0 ESR. That should work ...
by John151
Mon Nov 20, 2017 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Returns - How Long Do you Keep?
Replies: 56
Views: 5245

Re: Tax Returns - How Long Do you Keep?

I have my returns and supporting documents going all the way back to 1973, the first year that I filed income taxes. They don’t take up a lot of space, and I don’t see any good reason to throw them out.
by John151
Fri Nov 17, 2017 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why did Vanguard drop TurboTax?
Replies: 16
Views: 3297

Why did Vanguard drop TurboTax?

Vanguard used to offer Vanguard clients discounted or even free access to TurboTax’s tax preparation services. But Vanguard dropped its discounts several years ago, saying that Vanguard considered its core mission to be investment services, not tax services. Was Vanguard’s decision to drop TurboTax ...
by John151
Sat Nov 04, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lets talk emergency funds and I-bonds
Replies: 23
Views: 2237

Re: Lets talk emergency funds and I-bonds

I bought I Bonds when the fixed rate was over three percent. I didn’t think of them as an emergency fund at the time, and I don’t think of them as an emergency fund today. Those bonds are paying more than all of my other fixed income investments, so I’m going to hang on to them until they mature. My...
by John151
Thu Oct 26, 2017 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should you rebalance when you’re in your seventies?
Replies: 25
Views: 2704

Re: Should you rebalance when you’re in your seventies?

I’m grateful to all of you for your advice. My pension has a 3% COLA, and it more than covers my basic needs. I also have a year’s worth of expenses in a money market fund that I can tap if need be. I haven’t withdrawn anything from my other investments, except for required minimum distributions, an...
by John151
Wed Oct 25, 2017 10:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emotional impact of spending down assets?
Replies: 100
Views: 10732

Re: Emotional impact of spending down assets?

I can understand the emotional impact. This is my first year for taking required minimum distributions, and it’s a bit unsettling to see the value of my retirement accounts drop, after so many years of consistent gains. And investing the distributions isn’t gratifying when the distributions are afte...
by John151
Wed Oct 25, 2017 5:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should you rebalance when you’re in your seventies?
Replies: 25
Views: 2704

Should you rebalance when you’re in your seventies?

I faithfully rebalanced into stocks during the bear market of 2000-2002, and again during the bear market of 2007-2009. That worked out quite well. Stocks eventually recovered, and the shares I bought when stock prices were low have risen in value substantially. But now that I’m in my seventies, wit...
by John151
Wed Oct 25, 2017 4:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Moved to Vanguard this year. Set target allocation. Now significantly outside target range. Now what?
Replies: 30
Views: 2083

Re: Moved to Vanguard this year. Set target allocation. Now significantly outside target range. Now what?

I’m in a similar situation. My stock funds are about five percentage points above my target, I don’t have stocks to sell in my tax-advantaged accounts, and rebalancing by selling stocks in my taxable accounts would trigger a substantial amount of capital gains taxes. That’s one reason why I’m disinc...
by John151
Sun Oct 22, 2017 3:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalance with large capital gain
Replies: 13
Views: 1477

Re: Rebalance with large capital gain

I’m in a similar situation, with my stocks allocation about five percentage points above my target. My stock funds are all in taxable accounts, and rebalancing by selling shares would mean paying a substantial amount in capital gains taxes. In addition, my stock funds are yielding about the same as ...
by John151
Wed Oct 18, 2017 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how long did it take to get used to retirement
Replies: 105
Views: 10833

Re: how long did it take to get used to retirement

It took me five minutes. To me, the two most important benefits of retirement are 1. The freedom of not having a rigid time schedule. 2. The lack of stress. For me, enjoying the lack of stress was immediate. Now, 12 years later, I still enjoy it. I also resurrected an old hobby and have enjoyed spe...
by John151
Mon Oct 16, 2017 3:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: IBonds - now or wait? [November 2017 rate]
Replies: 40
Views: 6158

Re: New I Bond Variable Rate for November 2017 - 2.48%

Good to know, LK2012. Thank you for posting this.
by John151
Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: From Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities to I Bonds?
Replies: 3
Views: 681

Re: From Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities to I Bonds?

Thank you, lazyday. You’ve convinced me that I should proceed. I started investing in I Bonds in the late 1990’s, when the fixed rates were over 3%, and I stopped buying them when the fixed rates dropped below 1%. Now I’ll start buying them again as a replacement for distributions from my Vanguard S...
by John151
Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: From Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities to I Bonds?
Replies: 3
Views: 681

From Vanguard Inflation-Protected Securities to I Bonds?

My IRA is invested in Vanguard Short-Term Inflation-Protected Securities. This is my first year for taking required minimum distributions, and that includes taking roughly $10,000 from my IRA. I realize that this amount will change over time. I’m thinking about funneling the proceeds into I-Bonds. T...
by John151
Fri Oct 13, 2017 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: IBonds - now or wait? [November 2017 rate]
Replies: 40
Views: 6158

Re: IBonds - now or wait?

The September CPI-U was released this morning. https://www.bls.gov/schedule/news_release/cpi.htm Can any of the resident experts calculate what it means for the inflation -based component of I Bonds to be issued during the six months beginning November 1? Thanks. March: 243.801 September: 246.819 (...
by John151
Thu Oct 12, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 10 year anniversary of the beginning of the Great Recession
Replies: 45
Views: 4674

Re: 10 year anniversary of the beginning of the Great Recession

As a conservative investor in my sixties, I was 35% in stocks, and 65% in bonds, when the Great Recession hit. As the stock market tanked, I bought enough shares to keep my stocks at 35%. The fact that I had most of my investments in bonds helped me resist the temptation to sell. Now that I’m in my ...
by John151
Thu Oct 12, 2017 3:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rebalancing - Personal Philosophies
Replies: 43
Views: 4001

Re: Rebalancing - Personal Philosophies

I rebalanced all through the 1990’s and during the first decade of the 2000’s. But now my stock allocation is about five percentage points above my target, and I’ve decided not to rebalance. The reason: all of my stocks are in taxable accounts, and rebalancing by selling shares would trigger signifi...
by John151
Sun Oct 08, 2017 3:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Flagship Reps
Replies: 91
Views: 9474

Re: Flagship Reps

I process exchanges myself online, and I call a Flagship rep only when I’m doing something new, such as investing in a new fund or setting up my first required minimum distribution. I’ve never had a problem.
by John151
Sat Oct 07, 2017 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirees, how and how much do you pay for health insurance?
Replies: 33
Views: 4346

Re: Retirees, how and how much do you pay for health insurance?

I’m a retired state employee, and my retirement benefits include comprehensive health insurance with all premiums to be paid by the state. I only have to make modest co-pays. Several years ago, the state tried to require state retirees to pay part of their premiums, but the state supreme court ruled...
by John151
Mon Oct 02, 2017 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you become debt free and what opportunities did it create?
Replies: 142
Views: 20827

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

I charge almost everything to my credit cards and pay off the balances each month. Other than that, I’ve never been in debt. I rented a car until I had enough cash to buy one, and I lived in rental apartments until I could pay cash for my modest condo. Being debt-free provides a sense of security I ...
by John151
Sat Sep 23, 2017 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone used Amazon to buy household goods
Replies: 26
Views: 2194

Re: Anyone used Amazon to buy household goods

I buy Hershey Bars in bulk from Amazon. It’s cheaper than buying them at the supermarket, and I like knowing that I have three pounds of Hershey Bars stashed away in case of emergency. I usually have two or three emergencies a day.
by John151
Fri Sep 22, 2017 11:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Age you retired
Replies: 112
Views: 9374

Re: Age you retired

I retired from a state government job when I became eligible at fifty-five. My pension covers most of my basic living expenses, and income from my investments covers the rest.
by John151
Wed Sep 13, 2017 2:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How often do you put money in Vanguard
Replies: 55
Views: 4845

Re: How often do you put money in Vanguard

Anything over a certain amount in my local checking account goes to Vanguard, and that’s usually once a month.
by John151
Sun Sep 03, 2017 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How old were you when you got your first credit card?
Replies: 46
Views: 2436

How old were you when you got your first credit card?

I was twenty-seven. I had recently finished graduate school, I was settling into my first full-time job, and I was earning a decent salary. I received a credit card invitation in the mail, filled it out, and was initially turned down, probably because I didn’t have a credit history. I mentioned this...
by John151
Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

runner26 wrote:
Sat Sep 02, 2017 2:14 pm
I got no offer, even though I used TA the last 2 years, and 7 of the last 9. :annoyed I use the download version. For those of you getting these offers, are you online or download users.
I got the offer, and I’m an online user.
by John151
Thu Aug 31, 2017 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

I’ve compared TaxAct’s price this year to what I paid last year and the year before: $14.98 for e-filing my federal and state returns using TaxAct Plus online for tax year 2015, and $35.50 for e-filing my federal and state returns using TaxAct Plus online for tax year 2016. This year my cost for e-f...
by John151
Wed Aug 30, 2017 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

To all the returning customers saying they didn't receive the email: I found it. I had to search through my Junk Mail folder for it, because they sent it from a different domain than usual. info@em.taxact.com Mine was sent yesterday afternoon. $13.50 Mine was sent from that email address too, and I...
by John151
Wed Aug 30, 2017 1:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

barber wrote:
Wed Aug 30, 2017 8:40 am
My email, for returning users, stated to log in and go to 2016 tax forms and to click auto pay. This is for 2017 tax act deluxe @ 13.50, state and federal.
That’s the same email that I received, except that in my case the offer was for TaxAct Plus for federal only.
by John151
Tue Aug 29, 2017 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

tetractys wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:52 pm
Never got the email. Don't see anything about it anywhere outside this thread. Maybe OP's been fished. -- Tet
I don’t think so. You don’t sign on via email. You sign on at TaxAct’s website, and I was careful to make sure that the website was truly TaxAct’s.
by John151
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

dbltrbl wrote:
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:46 pm
John,

I am a returning customer. In fact for 10 out of last 11 years, I have filed with Tax act must be some special promotion.
You may get an email offer too. They may not email everybody on the same day.
by John151
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

The offer came by email, and it’s probably a special price for returning customers. I don’t know what the price will be for first-timers. They usually post their prices later in the year, so you might want to check their website periodically.
by John151
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3834

TaxAct for $13.50

I’ve filed my income taxes with TaxAct for the last couple of years, and today I received an email from them offering TaxAct Plus for filing my 2017 federal income taxes for $13.50. The state return will be extra, at a price that hasn’t been announced. I signed up right away. The offer expires on Se...