Search found 1111 matches

by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do average kids from upper middle class families get any free college money (Scholarships / non-repayable grants etc)
Replies: 266
Views: 18257

Re: Do average kids from upper middle class families get any free college money (Scholarships / non-repayable grants etc

You won't get any need based aid. You probably won't get any merit said if they are truly an average student (mostly Bs & C's). However there are a lot of small "character" and "affiliation" scholarships to be had if your kids are motivated to write a very large number of short essays about the valu...
by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roommate in a house?
Replies: 32
Views: 3074

Re: Roommate in a house?

Agreed with most of the advice above. It's likely not worth it to her to claim rental depreciation. Do you earn equal incomes? If not, why split the bills 50/50? It's up to y'all too decide what works for you, but I think it avoids fights about "fair share" to split according to income. Plus then yo...
by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 10:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: obtainable credit card for teen?
Replies: 8
Views: 541

Re: obtainable credit card for teen?

Discover, as well as many credit unions, offer secured cards intended to build credit history. You provide a deposit that equals the credit limit (can be just a couple hundred bucks) then use the card. My wife was credit averse before we met and had no score. She graduated from a secured card to a D...
by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 6:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Relationship between Living Off of Dividends and Maximizing Yield
Replies: 13
Views: 1021

Re: Relationship between Living Off of Dividends and Maximizing Yield

Yes, that is your underlying assumption. But I don't think it's a good one. Why would you let the funds determine where your income is coming from rather than choosing it yourself? I would think when tailoring retirement income I'd want to control: 1) whether it came from a taxable, tax-deferred, or...
by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 6:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Exercise ISOs or walk away?
Replies: 20
Views: 1852

Re: Exercise ISOs or walk away?

Just wanted to come back and provide an update. I did finally manage to get financial disclosures from the CFO, which indicated healthy past revenue growth, cash in the bank, current 409a valuation at 3x my strike price etc. Turns out I own 0.03% of the company based on the fully diluted share count...
by Tamarind
Thu May 31, 2018 5:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Company going public - exercise ISOs?
Replies: 5
Views: 716

Re: Company going public - exercise ISOs?

Two parts to this decision: risk management and tax planning. If you are MFJ and your normal taxable income as a couple is around $50k per your post above, then you can take some long term capital gains at 0%. Your short term gains will be at 12%. Both of these rates apply until around $77k of taxab...
by Tamarind
Mon May 28, 2018 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying house from parents below market value, gift?
Replies: 16
Views: 1452

Re: Buying house from parents below market value, gift?

Thank you for the input so far. I'll have to do further research on the bargain sale. Here are a couple different questions then. How do you determine the market value for IRS purposes? Lets say they house is worth $1 Million and I buy it for $750k? I'm already gifted the maximum amount per year, e...
by Tamarind
Sat May 26, 2018 5:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The "4% withdrawal rate"- would it apply to someone "retiring" in their 70s?
Replies: 54
Views: 4688

Re: The "4% withdrawl rate" - would it apply to someone "retiring" in their 70s?

This is a case where I would explore buying a single premium immediate annuity for a large portion of the portfolio (perhaps up to half, with the remainder in equities). You can get quotes at immediateannuities.com. Seconded. Look into COLAd annuities as an option. It may be a lot for someone who d...
by Tamarind
Thu May 24, 2018 6:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: About to retire and at an almost total loss.
Replies: 15
Views: 5106

Re: About to retire and at an almost total loss.

Just doing a little math to help others weigh in. AA: 100/0, with massive tilt toward dividends Assets: $198k in 3 individual dividend stocks $60k taxable brokerage $35k Roth IRA $40k SEP IRA $45k Checking account Home value $330k EF ~2x annual expenses Income streams: Business income stream $12k-$2...
by Tamarind
Thu May 24, 2018 5:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying Employer Shares
Replies: 18
Views: 1585

Re: Buying Employer Shares

Does anyone know if an employer has visibility into the number of your vested shares held in an ESPP or RSU plan? I've heard comments on this forum like "some employers frown upon employees immediate selling or not holding a significant amount" but I don't know if they truly have access to my accou...
by Tamarind
Thu May 24, 2018 5:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I've never budgeted sucessfully
Replies: 59
Views: 5259

Re: I've never budgeted sucessfully

The attraction of a program like Mint is precisely that it resolves what seems to be the core of your problem - aggregating income and expenses across many accounts, categorizing, and comparing them to budgeted amounts. Ie the "measuring" part of the budget. Yes, your credentials are potentially at ...
by Tamarind
Tue May 22, 2018 6:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Loan from Parents
Replies: 24
Views: 2428

Re: Home Loan from Parents

Make sure you draw up proper documentation of the loan with an interest rate that meets the IRS requirements for intra-family loans, and clear rules for the term and payment frequency. Think about what collateral, if any, you should have for the loan. I strongly advise against putting a parent on th...
by Tamarind
Mon May 21, 2018 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: private company option exercise - tax question
Replies: 11
Views: 666

Re: private company option exercise - tax question

ETA: Deleted comments on AMT as I missed that these are NQOs on first reading. I don't know of anything that would give you extra protection from having paid tax on shares that later become worthless, beyond capital loss provisions. This is one reason why one is generally advised not to exercise opt...
by Tamarind
Thu May 17, 2018 4:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hot food flavoring (sauces, spices and peppers)
Replies: 51
Views: 3392

Re: Hot food flavoring (sauces, spices and peppers)

Another vote for (carefully) making your own hot sauces and hot pepper vinegars. You can control sodium content and get the right blend of heat and flavor for your tastes. So easy to do.

Make very small batches to start, as without reduced sodium content comes a reduced shelf life.
by Tamarind
Thu May 10, 2018 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Custom suit needed for a wedding. Help me shop around!!
Replies: 30
Views: 2357

Re: Custom suit needed for a wedding. Help me shop around!!

There are also new entrants in the low-end bespoke suit market like Alton Lane that may be worth a look if they have a location near you.

Expect to spend $2k, but get a suit you can wear for a long time.
by Tamarind
Sat May 05, 2018 5:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Growing Fruit Trees and Shrubs
Replies: 30
Views: 2704

Re: Growing Fruit Trees and Shrubs

Another vote for figs, which will grow nearly anywhere with minimal care and no sprays. I grow a variety called "Hardy Chicago", which will indeed grow and fruit in Chicago if planted against a south facing wall. In my milder clime it forms a tree which last year produced 11 pounds of figs.... It's ...
by Tamarind
Thu May 03, 2018 5:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay $2500 in rent or continue living at home
Replies: 91
Views: 6744

Re: Pay $2500 in rent or continue living at home

In most cultures and most times, what you've done the last few years would be the norm, so you don't need to feel weird about living at home. But it sounds like you're ready for a change. Living at home will always be the most frugal option, but money is just a tool to get the life you want. I'd sug...
by Tamarind
Thu May 03, 2018 5:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medically Retired at Age 30 [Saving for Retirement - 100% Disabled Vet]
Replies: 20
Views: 3501

Re: Saving for Retirement - 100% Disabled Vet

How safe is the stream of funds from the VA? How long do you expect it to continue? Are there checkpoints where that amount might be changed or stopped? Does it adjust for inflation? At the moment you're essentially retired with a pension, just earlier than you expected. So make sure you understand ...
by Tamarind
Wed May 02, 2018 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have you quit eating sugar? Tell me how!
Replies: 129
Views: 11172

Re: Have you quit eating sugar? Tell me how!

Moderation in all things, including moderation. :twisted:
by Tamarind
Wed May 02, 2018 5:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax risks of exercising ISO options after 409a expires?
Replies: 2
Views: 341

Re: Tax risks of exercising ISO options after 409a expires?

Have you exercised ISOs for this company in the past? Is the company public (sounds like not)? Are your options expiring? I would probably not suggest you exercise options prior to a liquidity event just to avoid AMT-preference gains. But this is an area where a CPA with lots of experience working w...
by Tamarind
Wed May 02, 2018 5:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nontraditional Cruising
Replies: 21
Views: 2552

Re: Nontraditional Cruising

I feel the same way about "floating city" cruises. Both my suggestions use different ships that change the experience: Windjammer (in the Caribbean) or similar operations elsewhere use tallships. While the ships have engines, whenever possible they sail. Much smaller ships mean a limited number of p...
by Tamarind
Tue May 01, 2018 7:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?

If I don't exercise them they will expire. Cashless exercise is not an option or I'd have chosen that. If the option is take this loan where you never owe a penny unless you make money, or just let it expire, is there even a question? Maybe have a lawyer look over the contract to make sure there ar...
by Tamarind
Tue May 01, 2018 5:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?

[...]I wasn't aware there were commonly-available notes of the kind you describe. If the contract says explicitly that you have no obligation or promise to repay under those conditions, I see no moral hazard. I would read the contract carefully, though (and not just the salesman's summary of it). I...
by Tamarind
Tue May 01, 2018 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me get on top of some debt before college expenses arrive...
Replies: 50
Views: 3075

Re: Help me get on top of some debt before college expenses arrive...

The arbitrage game is costing you far more then the math suggests. This is a very easy problem to solve: Make your taxable investment account be 179k (500-321). Make your consumer debt zero. Use future income to rebuild your taxable account. This. You've got $30k+ per year going out in consumer deb...
by Tamarind
Tue May 01, 2018 6:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee
Replies: 261
Views: 38492

Re: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee

I'm about to sign up and try a trustee-to-trustee transfer from HealthEquity. I'm no longer eligible for HSA contributions since my new employer doesn't offer an HDHP, but at least I can get out from under HE's fees and let the balance accumulate. I LOVE that Lively lets you connect a bank account ...
by Tamarind
Mon Apr 30, 2018 5:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?

Nonrecourse loans are also treated differently under our tax laws. [...] Whether this is a good idea boils down to whether the surrendered upside has less value to you than the downside protection. Thanks for weighing in. I would not make this investment if I couldn't find an investor willing to ma...
by Tamarind
Mon Apr 30, 2018 4:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?

A non-recourse loan still includes a promise to repay it. If you don't repay it, (a) you are acting in poor faith, violating your word (your promise to repay it), and (b) your credit report will show the loan as defaulted, which presumably has severe credit consequences. Non-recourse means "we can'...
by Tamarind
Mon Apr 30, 2018 2:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Non-recourse loan to exercise options? What are the downsides?

Hello, I've posted before about deciding whether or not to exercise vested options in a private company. Very risky, illiquid, not much info to go on. I concluded I would not risk my own money to exercise. But there may be another option. I'm looking at a company that offers non-recourse loans secur...
by Tamarind
Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Daughter and Girlfriend, age 19, taking cross country road trip. Advice?
Replies: 187
Views: 9609

Re: Daughter and Girlfriend, age 19, taking cross country road trip. Advice?

Advise them to enjoy at least one desert sunrise. Sounds like a great trip.

As college students, I guarantee they already know to watch each other's drinks.
by Tamarind
Mon Apr 30, 2018 6:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Money vs. Work-life balance
Replies: 68
Views: 8054

Re: Money vs. Work-life balance

I'd stay put. Work life balance is important, a great boss is a rare thing, and your current job is well over my definition of "enough" money. What would you plan to do with the extra if you took a new job? Extra money: save, but definitely not all. Expenses would go to 1) house maintenance 2) hous...
by Tamarind
Sat Apr 28, 2018 11:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Money vs. Work-life balance
Replies: 68
Views: 8054

Re: Money vs. Work-life balance

I'd stay put. Work life balance is important, a great boss is a rare thing, and your current job is well over my definition of "enough" money.

What would you plan to do with the extra if you took a new job?
by Tamarind
Sat Apr 28, 2018 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Charging Monthly Fee - How to Avoid it?
Replies: 6
Views: 672

Re: HSA Charging Monthly Fee - How to Avoid it?

Change HSA custodians. Almost all will charge you something, especially to invest the money. A couple will not charge you to hold cash.

What is your goal for the money? Are you keeping it in cash and using for medical expenses? Or using for investment?
by Tamarind
Sat Apr 28, 2018 8:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Received late earnings check from Roth 401k rollover
Replies: 3
Views: 341

Re: Received late earnings check from Roth 401k rollover

Earl Lemongrab wrote:
Sat Apr 28, 2018 11:45 am
There are two options. Indirect rollover or keep the money. Which is better for you?
Keeping the money will save me $0.50 in postage.
by Tamarind
Sat Apr 28, 2018 7:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Received late earnings check from Roth 401k rollover
Replies: 3
Views: 341

Received late earnings check from Roth 401k rollover

Got a silly situation. I recently changed jobs. My existing 401k contained both Roth and Pre-tax contributions. While waiting to get access to the new 401k, I went ahead and rolled over my Roth money to my Roth IRA. Everything went smoothly. Then I determined that new 401k was indeed better, and sta...
by Tamarind
Sat Apr 28, 2018 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee
Replies: 261
Views: 38492

Re: New HSA provider Lively offers investments for $30/yr fee

I'm about to sign up and try a trustee-to-trustee transfer from HealthEquity. I'm no longer eligible for HSA contributions since my new employer doesn't offer an HDHP, but at least I can get out from under HE's fees and let the balance accumulate. I LOVE that Lively lets you connect a bank account ...
by Tamarind
Thu Apr 26, 2018 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ikea Quality
Replies: 37
Views: 3114

Re: Ikea Quality

I love my Billy bookcases and they've aged very well, but Billy was redesigned in the last few years (not for the better). I was extremely impressed with a set of Kallax units I helped my parents install after a move last month, though we don't know long term how they will hold up. I still own some ...
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 20, 2018 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to ask town to build a sidewalk?
Replies: 22
Views: 1380

Re: How to ask town to build a sidewalk?

Varies but try the planning department or your elected town executives (council, aldermen, manager, etc). The more neighborhood support you have the better. Be aware that sidewalks are insanely expensive to construct per linear foot, so it will take time. Your task is to convince those with budgetar...
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 20, 2018 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage refinance rate shopping?
Replies: 14
Views: 1252

Re: Mortgage refinance rate shopping?

I just did this and had trouble finding a good shopping tool. I ended up with Third Federal based on a recommendation here. Mortgage professor was not helpful for my particular situation but could be a helpful place to find comparison rates without spamming. Zillow also offered some useful rates bef...
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 20, 2018 7:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Credit Rating of Ally Bank?
Replies: 6
Views: 1183

Re: Credit Rating of Ally Bank?

I would not buy Ally Bank's bonds to invest in them as a company (except insofar as they are included in the Total Bond Index holdings: ~$50M out of $200B net assets).

I never keep more than the insured limit in any bank.
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying BRK.B to save $94 annually on insurance?
Replies: 29
Views: 3514

Re: Buying BRK.B to save $94 annually on insurance?

I would hunt around for cheaper insurance first. You might be able to get a better deal elsewhere, removing the need to buy the shares.
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 20, 2018 6:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How old are you and how much do you save for retirement a year
Replies: 244
Views: 31338

Re: How old are you and how much do you save for retirement a year

30/32 DINK (for now), moderate COL area Joint income $164k (both got new jobs this year!). The biggest difference for us financially has been hitting the steep part of the career growth curve in a location with plentiful jobs at a time when wages are rising. Income has more than doubled in 5 years. ...
by Tamarind
Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Broke up with my girlfriend for financial reasons: crazy?
Replies: 53
Views: 3839

Re: Broke up with my girlfriend for financial reasons: crazy?

It doesn't sound like you were compatible. One one hand, there's no way she could afford to split things with you equally even if you both wanted to be frugal. Fairly splitting based on income would still have you paying 90%. Since you agreed to go out to eat, would you have felt better if you'd onl...
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 13, 2018 11:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which would you choose if you were me ?
Replies: 29
Views: 3257

Re: Which would you choose if you were me ?

Probably neither, but the annuity is likely better than the HY fund.
by Tamarind
Fri Apr 13, 2018 6:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will I catch up saving for retirement?
Replies: 54
Views: 4948

Re: Will I catch up saving for retirement?

If I were you I'd be on track to retire in luxury (for me) at about age 45, when I hit 3M. The only thing between you and retiring whenever you want is your savings rate. 37% and less than 1x saved suggests you're on track for your early 60s. That's fine, and for a normal earner 37% is an excellent ...
by Tamarind
Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Crazy to start 529 without kids??
Replies: 49
Views: 3963

Re: Crazy to start 529 without kids??

Unusual but not crazy. If you understand that future events might change your plans and it's still worth it to you, then go ahead. But also take the time to read this: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Managing_a_windfall
by Tamarind
Thu Apr 12, 2018 5:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why traditional IRA better than Roth IRA
Replies: 87
Views: 8221

Re: Why traditional IRA better than Roth IRA

It's not always wrong. The thing about capital gains and dividend rates is just irrelevant, but if you didn't save much, your tax rate will probably be lower in retirement, making tIRA the better choice (in retrospect). However, your relative may be in for a rude awakening if they are expecting to h...
by Tamarind
Wed Apr 11, 2018 6:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How can I Invest 4 million dollars to earn 120k (inflation adjusted) a year for life?
Replies: 93
Views: 18325

Re: How can I Invest 4 million dollars to earn 120k (inflation adjusted) a year for life?

You can easily do #s 1, 4, 5, 6 and 7 all together. That's just the Boglehead method. Build a 3-fund portfolio as tax-efficiently as possible. You have somewhat more than $4M including your emergency cash. I'm assuming you have some minimal amount of money in tax-advantaged accounts. Unfortunately b...
by Tamarind
Tue Apr 10, 2018 4:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just paid off my debt, have some questions going forward
Replies: 29
Views: 1889

Re: Just paid off my debt, have some questions going forward

Should we be changing our investment allocations at all? Is a backdoor Roth, in practice, something we really only do once we've maxed out our 401ks? Your allocation looks fine to me, though more risky than I chose to have. Were you invested at all in 2008? Ever been through a crash? I think it mak...
by Tamarind
Tue Apr 10, 2018 2:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Just paid off my debt, have some questions going forward
Replies: 29
Views: 1889

Re: Just paid off my debt, have some questions going forward

Should we be changing our investment allocations at all? Is a backdoor Roth, in practice, something we really only do once we've maxed out our 401ks? Your allocation looks fine to me, though more risky than I chose to have. Were you invested at all in 2008? Ever been through a crash? I think it mak...
by Tamarind
Tue Apr 10, 2018 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I refi and still get a lower rate right now? UPDATE: Bonus HELOC??
Replies: 31
Views: 2552

Re: Can I refi and still get a lower rate right now?

An update: so far the process has been smooth. All documentation was done online and over email. We're approved and just need to file the new deed so they can pull it. I also got a surprise along with the approval letter. They are offering a HELOC along with the mortgage, provided we accept before c...