Search found 447 matches

by dsmil
Wed Jan 06, 2016 10:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth vs Traditional + Taxable vs ...
Replies: 50
Views: 3944

Re: Roth vs Traditional + Taxable vs ...

I will say that one should use their effective tax rate in retirement on the funds they withdraw from their retirement accounts and NOT their marginal rate with this calculator. That reflects the actual taxes one pays on their retirement withdrawals. It doesn't matter if one pays 50% tax on the las...
by dsmil
Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savings % Target 2016?
Replies: 168
Views: 11595

Re: Savings % Target 2016?

We're shooting for 20% of gross in 2016. 10% for retirement and 10% for extra payments on student loans.
by dsmil
Wed Jan 06, 2016 8:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you organize your finances? Do you use Mint.com?
Replies: 86
Views: 10651

Re: How do you organize your finances? Do you use Mint.com?

Excel for us as well. We have a budget in excel and type in all of our monthly spending. It's tedious of course, but it keeps us on track. I also track our net worth at the end of every month in excel.
by dsmil
Tue Jan 05, 2016 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Incorporating your home into networth calculation
Replies: 107
Views: 7108

Re: Incorporating your home into networth calculation

Yes, definitely include your house and mortgage into your net worth calculation. To be conservative, you could subtract 6% (closing costs) from your home value to get the true value if you had to sell.
by dsmil
Wed Dec 23, 2015 11:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Share your current asset allocation?
Replies: 94
Views: 7718

Re: Share your current asset allocation?

All with Vanguard

44% Total U.S.
17% Developed International
10% Emerging Markets
9% Small Cap Value
10% REIT
10% Total Bond Market
by dsmil
Tue Dec 22, 2015 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?
Replies: 160
Views: 14938

Re: Biggest lucky break in your personal finances?

I could call my luckiest break both a positive or a negative to our personal finances. I changed companies in order to have more family time, and figured that I would be giving up some pay. Fortunately, I've gained the family time as planned, and the company has paid me more than I expected. The hig...
by dsmil
Tue Dec 22, 2015 10:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do you spend on groceries?
Replies: 109
Views: 9063

Re: How much do you spend on groceries?

$600 for everything that we buy at the grocery store for 2 of us and a baby, another $150 for dining out.
by dsmil
Mon Dec 21, 2015 4:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chase Ultimate Rewards - redeeming for Hyatt Hotel stays
Replies: 21
Views: 1884

Re: Chase Ultimate Rewards - redeeming for Hyatt Hotel stays

I transferred the points to Hyatt and then booked with them. Don't listen to anything that the Chase rep is telling you. You'll generally find the best "value" at the most expensive destinations. Of course you could argue that the actual "value" is whatever replacement price a no...
by dsmil
Mon Dec 21, 2015 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chase Ultimate Rewards - redeeming for Hyatt Hotel stays
Replies: 21
Views: 1884

Re: Chase Ultimate Rewards - redeeming for Hyatt Hotel stays

I redeem almost all of my Ultimate Rewards with Hyatt and it's worked out very well. I got 3 cents per point for a stay in Paris and 2 cents per point in Charleston, SC.
by dsmil
Mon Dec 07, 2015 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Verizon Cell Phone Plans
Replies: 23
Views: 2869

Re: Verizon Cell Phone Plans

When I calculated it for my wife and I, if we upgrade every 2 years, than the new plans and old plans are basically even. If we decide to wait longer than 2 years and pay the full price for the phones, we come out ahead. We chose to go with the new plan, paying $40 less per month, and will eat the f...
by dsmil
Thu Dec 03, 2015 3:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 1275
Views: 205447

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

I'm basically at 0% YTD. My worst performer is the emerging markets fund which is down 13% and is 10% of my portfolio.
by dsmil
Thu Dec 03, 2015 11:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Too much in tax-advantaged accounts?
Replies: 115
Views: 13133

Re: Too much in tax-advantaged accounts?

There is definitely such thing as having too much in tax-advantaged accounts. Most people don't need to max out every tax-advantaged account in order to have a comfortable retirement. Maxing out multiple 401k's, IRA's, etc. is a ton of money. I think that retirement money should definitely go into t...
by dsmil
Thu Dec 03, 2015 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Replacing non-vested 401(k) match as part of salary negotiations?
Replies: 2
Views: 316

Re: Replacing non-vested 401(k) match as part of salary negotiations?

It's basically like asking for a signing bonus. Hopefully there isn't any harm in asking, anything is negotiable.
by dsmil
Thu Dec 03, 2015 9:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Traditional or Roth 401k for GF?
Replies: 12
Views: 897

Re: Traditional or Roth 401k for GF?

Her gross income is at the very top of the 15% federal bracket. We aren't married yet. I'm in the 25% bracket, and together we would be in the 25% bracket. Keep in mind that tax brackets are determined by taxable income, not gross income. At a minimum, your taxable income includes the standard dedu...
by dsmil
Wed Dec 02, 2015 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you hit $100,000?
Replies: 136
Views: 21017

Re: What age did you hit $100,000?

Fingers crossed, we should go from $85k to $115k next year from savings and debt repayment, in our upper 20's
by dsmil
Wed Dec 02, 2015 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boglehead cell phone strategy
Replies: 143
Views: 18579

Re: Boglehead cell phone strategy

The new strategy of not subsidizing phones is perfect for Bogleheads. Instead of paying $40 per month, I'd much rather pay $20 per month and be able to decide if it's ever worth getting a new phone. It seems like you'll come out the same by waiting 2 years, but will come out ahead by waiting more t...
by dsmil
Tue Dec 01, 2015 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boglehead cell phone strategy
Replies: 143
Views: 18579

Re: Boglehead cell phone strategy

The new strategy of not subsidizing phones is perfect for Bogleheads. Instead of paying $40 per month, I'd much rather pay $20 per month and be able to decide if it's ever worth getting a new phone. It seems like you'll come out the same by waiting 2 years, but will come out ahead by waiting more th...
by dsmil
Tue Dec 01, 2015 8:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Effective placement in Roth vs Traditional tax advantaged space
Replies: 9
Views: 1597

Re: Effective placement in Roth vs Traditional tax advantaged space

If you are using both Roth and Traditional options, keep as many bonds in the Traditional space as possible. You want the least amount of gains in Traditional since everything gets taxed eventually.
by dsmil
Wed Nov 25, 2015 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New car vs used car
Replies: 26
Views: 2995

Re: New car vs used car

I would say buy new if you are going to run it into the ground, buy used if you will be selling it after a few years. The depreciation hit in the first year doesn't matter if you are running it into the ground anyway.
by dsmil
Wed Nov 25, 2015 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 23 year old wanting to retire before 50
Replies: 44
Views: 8302

Re: 23 year old wanting to retire before 50

For most people, your projected portfolio size would be large enough for some type of early retirement, but it's all about controlling your expenses. Retiring at 45 might mean living off of $30k per year for the next 45 years. Retiring at 60 might give you $100k for 30 years. Keep investing and keep...
by dsmil
Tue Nov 24, 2015 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How One Calculates 25 Times Income for Retirement Needs
Replies: 12
Views: 2268

Re: How One Calculates 25 Times Income for Retirement Needs

25x annual retirement expenses is what you'd need. Basing retirement needs on income doesn't make much sense once you're near retirement, because two couples can be at vastly different income levels, but have the same retirement needs based on expenses.
by dsmil
Sun Nov 22, 2015 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

Re: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future

Next year it appears that you are adding $8 - $9K to 401k and $6K of NEW money to Roth IRAs. Does your spouse plan to return to work at some point? Otherwise, I think you will find it challenging to overfund your retirement to the point that it will cover both retirement and college. No, we aren't ...
by dsmil
Sat Nov 21, 2015 11:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

Re: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future

But in any case, if you use your retirement funds to pay for college, what are you going to use for retirement? You can get loans for college but not retirement. My hope is that we overfund these "retirement" accounts, so I'm not actually using funds needed for retirement to pay for colle...
by dsmil
Sat Nov 21, 2015 11:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

Re: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future

The PMI is expensive, how much does that cost you each year and what would it take to get rid of it? It's about $3k per year and we're about $50k in principal away from getting rid of this. Normal mortgage payments would get rid of this is 7 years. You averaged out the student loans so you must hav...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 20, 2015 9:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

Re: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future

2. I think you are confusing your ability to withdraw your own contributions for your Roth IRA with options for a Roth 401k. The problem with trying to use your Roth 401K for college education is that Roth 401k rules are very similar to traditional 401K rules and only give you limited options to ta...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 20, 2015 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting a bonus this year?
Replies: 75
Views: 9803

Re: Getting a bonus this year?

Everyone at my company gets a holiday bonus of some sort, although I have no idea how "the man" comes up with the amount. I'm expecting something around 3% of my salary as usual. Straight to the emergency fund it goes.
by dsmil
Fri Nov 20, 2015 12:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

Re: Plans Going Forward for New Parents

1. What do you expect your tax bracket to be when you retire / withdrawal the money? 2. I like that idea myself. 3. One thing to consider is if you're jumping the gun paying all the taxes now. People can do very well in retirement and withdraw pre-tax money at close to 0% - https://www.bogleheads.o...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 20, 2015 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future
Replies: 15
Views: 2763

New Parents and Members of the 15% Club - Planning Future

Bogleheads, We've recently moved to a one-income household after our first child was born, and will enter the 15% tax bracket in 2016, where we should stay for awhile. We've historically contributed 10-15% of our income to retirement, and I'd like to build on this while starting to save for our son'...
by dsmil
Thu Nov 12, 2015 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Complete Car Noob- Help Making First Vehicle Purchase
Replies: 72
Views: 8177

Re: Complete Car Noob- Help Making First Vehicle Purchase

However, I think I'm going to hold off on buying a new car for now because I think my 2003 accord still has a few years left on it. It's only at 115,000 and as posters mentioned above, it's not really necessary to buy a new car unless I really want a new one. Smart choice! You should get a lot of y...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 06, 2015 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Use of Ultimate Rewards Points
Replies: 109
Views: 13058

Re: Best Use of Ultimate Rewards Points

I'd be inclined to cash out the points unless it's a really bad value versus transferring to Southwest, which we do use a few times per year. If you are going to use Southwest a few times per year than you should just use the points towards Southwest rather than cashing them out. I think you'll get...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 06, 2015 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to take advantage of 15% tax bracket?
Replies: 37
Views: 5040

Re: How to take advantage of 15% tax bracket?

I'm interested in this as well as I'll be a new member to the 15% club in 2016. My only plan of action so far is to convert everything in my traditional IRA to my Roth. I've been tempted to stay away from 529 plans but my guess is that we'll only be in the 15% bracket for a handful of years so I thi...
by dsmil
Fri Nov 06, 2015 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Use of Ultimate Rewards Points
Replies: 109
Views: 13058

Re: Best Use of Ultimate Rewards Points

Hyatt is often referred to as being the best use of UR points. The problem is, at least for me, when I visit central London or Paris, I don't feel like staying in a $500+ per night hotel, nor blowing large volume of points on said hotel, even though, yes, I would be getting maximum $ per point. It'...
by dsmil
Wed Nov 04, 2015 9:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 401k options..WWYD?
Replies: 23
Views: 1895

Re: 401k options..WWYD?

Without knowing too much detail, if your employer doesn't match, than I don't see the incentive in using the 401k over your own IRA. I'd most likely put $5,500 into a Roth and then use your 401k if you have any leftover money to invest.
by dsmil
Mon Nov 02, 2015 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Protein Bars and Smoothies
Replies: 61
Views: 4006

Re: Protein Bars and Smoothies

For easy protein in drinkable form, you could just mix milk and whey powder. Plain greek yogurt is great in case you'll look outside of smoothies and bars. I personally make smoothies after working out and like them to have a lot of calories. My usual smoothie is milk, whey powder, oats, banana, fro...
by dsmil
Fri Oct 30, 2015 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much of your total income are you worth?
Replies: 51
Views: 7440

Re: How much of your total income are you worth?

We are at 10% (net worth/pre-tax income) after getting to positive net worth 2 years ago. Going forward, we'll be hovering around 20% on a monthly basis (monthly change in net worth/monthly pre-tax income).
by dsmil
Thu Oct 29, 2015 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me with tax-efficient placement and AA!
Replies: 11
Views: 741

Re: Help me with tax-efficient placement and AA!

https://bogleheads.org/wiki/Principles_ ... _placement

I believe that the general condenses is to place bonds in tax advantaged accounts, but the argument against it is that your large gains will come from stocks, so you may want those to be in tax advantaged accounts instead.
by dsmil
Wed Oct 21, 2015 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Travel rewards credit card?
Replies: 100
Views: 15034

Re: Travel rewards credit card?

Plenty of good cards have been recommended. If you want to go a slightly different route I recommend waiting until Southwest has a few of their cards for 50k points up. What you do is apply for 2 southwest cards at the same time. I got a personal card and a personal preferred card. The deal will be...
by dsmil
Wed Oct 14, 2015 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fair share of expenses for spouses?
Replies: 100
Views: 10411

Re: Fair share of expenses for spouses?

Different couples prefer different arrangements so just go with something that both of you will be happy with.

I've always been happy with keeping everything joint with my wife and letting her spend the same amount or more play money per month, whether she was at a lower paying job, or staying home.
by dsmil
Mon Sep 28, 2015 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Regrets Getting Rid of Land Line?
Replies: 74
Views: 6755

Re: Any Regrets Getting Rid of Land Line?

We've never had one and I don't regret it.
by dsmil
Wed Sep 16, 2015 2:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Government 457b help for 25 yr old newbie
Replies: 23
Views: 1861

Re: Government 457b help for 25 yr old newbie

Without knowing too much info, I'd go with a Roth IRA over the 457b. You seem to be at the lower end of your earning potential at this point so paying taxes now will be better than paying them in the future, which you'd do with a 457b. Also, you'll be able to access your contributions in case of an ...
by dsmil
Fri Sep 11, 2015 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Budgeting by the week
Replies: 29
Views: 2882

Re: Budgeting by the week

First I'd see if a 50/30/20 budget will actually work. Figure out if your needs are actually 50%, or if they are more or less. Then figure out a target savings rate which you could automate. Whatever is left can be spent, and you keep track of it on a monthly or weekly basis by writing things down. ...
by dsmil
Fri Aug 28, 2015 8:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: College student looking for advice on retirement investing
Replies: 36
Views: 2290

Re: College student looking for advice on retirement investing

I would move your Roth over to Vanguard and throw whatever you can into a Target Retirement Fund ($1k minimum) and enjoy college. If you have some spare time, keep browsing this website and pick up a book such as "The Bogleheads Guide to Investing" or "A Random Walk down Wall Street&q...
by dsmil
Fri Aug 14, 2015 8:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emerging Markets Equity % of AA
Replies: 24
Views: 2527

Re: Emerging Markets Equity % of AA

My emerging markets fund is about 10% of my portfolio and my other international fund is developed markets only. My split between the two is 38% emerging and 62% developed.
by dsmil
Wed Aug 12, 2015 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash Flowing College by Overfunding Retirement
Replies: 6
Views: 655

Re: Cash Flowing College by Overfunding Retirement

There are of course Roth IRA contribution withdrawals, 401k loans, or even tapping home equity if you need additional resources (although I wouldn't recommend too much of it). This is waaaaaay down the road but with us pondering my wife staying at home, we'll likely have to tap other sources as cas...
by dsmil
Wed Aug 12, 2015 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your First Job
Replies: 113
Views: 9132

Re: Your First Job

Camp counselor at age 16. Pretty easy job but they paid me a rate for the entire summer, which had to be well below minimum wage if you count the hours. My best job before the real world was a tennis camp instructor. Although the pay wasn't great, it allowed me to play free golf in the afternoon!
by dsmil
Wed Aug 12, 2015 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash Flowing College by Overfunding Retirement
Replies: 6
Views: 655

Cash Flowing College by Overfunding Retirement

I see a lot of people proposing the strategy of overfunding the retirement accounts to "save" for college and then using as much cash flow as possible to pay the tuition bills (while possibly not contributing to retirement accounts during those years). My question is how do you come up wit...
by dsmil
Tue Aug 11, 2015 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verizon Killing off 2-Year Contracts & Phone Subsidies
Replies: 129
Views: 14265

Re: Verizon Killing off 2-Year Contracts & Phone Subsidies

This seems like the more fair way to do things. If you aren't the type that wants a phone every 2 years, you'll come out ahead. If you get a phone every 2 years it will be pretty much a wash. And if you need a new phone every year, than you are stupid or rich.
by dsmil
Tue Aug 11, 2015 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interesting Argument in Favor of Roth
Replies: 53
Views: 7307

Re: Interesting Argument in Favor of Roth

My easy case for the Roth is that it's not even a fair comparison unless you were to invest the full amount of the up front tax break that you get from the Traditional contribution. This isn't an easy task when you get a tax refund and your spouse wants to go on vacation with the money! And if you a...
by dsmil
Fri Aug 07, 2015 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris Itinerary questions
Replies: 33
Views: 2215

Re: Paris Itinerary questions

The best thing we did in Paris last year was a bike tour. We got to see a ton of sights and the guide was great. The biking isn't tiresome but you'll have to be bold at times as you're trying to stay with a group while biking with the street traffic. http://www.bluebiketours.com/paris/night-bike-tour

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