Search found 430 matches

by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Jan 14, 2016 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tell me about Expected Family Contribution for college
Replies: 65
Views: 8252

Re: Tell me about Expected Family Contribution for college

You can't legally "hide" money from your FAFSA report -- it is a federal form that you promise to accurately complete, just like your taxes. But, just like your taxes, you can make more or less favorable choices that can vary your results. For example, the FAFSA formula does not include home equity ...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Wed Jan 13, 2016 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this a medical insurance "event"
Replies: 5
Views: 683

Re: Is this a medical insurance "event"

Rolling off the end of COBRA is a qualifying event for your family. Will you be in an income range where your family might get subsidies or reduced deductibles/copays for health insurance in 2016? Try taking a look at HealthSherpa.com and see if that gives you some information. There are also agents...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Wed Jan 13, 2016 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estimated tax to get $5k in I Bonds
Replies: 19
Views: 1652

Re: Estimated tax to get $5k in I Bonds

What is the advantage of paper I bonds?
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Wed Jan 13, 2016 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Convincing Dad to Fire the Firm
Replies: 31
Views: 3787

Re: Convincing Dad to Fire the Firm

I suspect that a lot of people would benefit from using a firm like that IF the advisor is actually good at helping people really sock money away and stay invested in the market. My in-laws would have been a lot better off, even paying management fees, than they were making helter-skelter investing ...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Tue Jan 12, 2016 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security tax overpayment switching from W2 to corporate (professional association) employment
Replies: 5
Views: 706

Re: Social Security tax overpayment switching from W2 to corporate (professional association) employment

The part you personally over-contributed as an employee of your S Corp will be credited back to you on your tax return. The part your S Corp paid as the Employer Share was rightfully due to the government, and won't come back to you from everything I understand. This happens routinely when people ch...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Tue Jan 12, 2016 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: REIT in taxable account screwup
Replies: 17
Views: 2880

Re: REIT in taxable account screwup

I keep waiting for SNH to slowly go back up, but it's been getting worse. I'm down about $600 because I had a small position in it. I want it to go back up a little so I can sell it and break even... or get close. What are your opinions on SNH today? I bought it early last year and wouldn't have bo...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Tue Jan 12, 2016 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New to HSA, am I planning contributions optimally/correctly?
Replies: 8
Views: 875

Re: New to HSA, am I planning contributions optimally/correctly?

You might be able to get a very inexpensive HSA option at your credit union. Mine requires a $25 share account (I think of it as a fee.) They don't charge for the HSA at all. You don't earn much interest, but if this is an HSA you'll be using to actually pay bills this year, that really doesn't matt...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Mon Jan 11, 2016 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Young Attending 401k choices / Student Loan decision
Replies: 33
Views: 3141

Re: Young Attending 401k choices / Student Loan decision

A slightly different tack: Do you and your wife both have good disability insurance? If not, I would make getting that a key priority. How much of your joint income is available for debt repayment? How much if you clamp down on expenditures? One strategy would be to sock money away in a regular taxa...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Mon Jan 11, 2016 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 5 year difference -- should I open separate 529 account for each child?
Replies: 1
Views: 608

Re: 5 year difference -- should I open separate 529 account for each child?

Please open an account for each child. Depending on the state you use for 529 plans, the minimum contribution could be as low as $25. Whatever state's plan you use, the 529 funds can eventually be used at virtually any college in the US and many overseas colleges. If there is money left in the older...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sun Jan 10, 2016 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quickbooks Desktop or Quickbooks Online: Which is better?
Replies: 7
Views: 727

Re: Quickbooks Desktop or Quickbooks Online: Which is better?

I asked my CPA about the on-line version, and her advice was to stay far, far away from it. Ditto on the Mac version. The Windows version works well and she has no trouble grabbing my file from a thumb drive in order to do the taxes. I bought it on a one day sale at Office Max for $160 using one of ...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sat Jan 09, 2016 2:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?
Replies: 21
Views: 1846

Re: Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?

Thank you for the explanation, Kevin. I was just getting ready to post a response asking why? Off to read.

I am learning so much just in reading these boards these past few weeks, and I greatly appreciate all of the wonderful information.
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sat Jan 09, 2016 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Bank Owned Life Insurance (BOLI) a good idea?
Replies: 4
Views: 621

Re: Bank Owned Life Insurance (BOLI) a good idea?

Wow. This goes way beyond "key man" insurance.

Banks are reasonably smart. Insurance companies are generally smarter.

I'll be curious to learn why this deal works.
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sat Jan 09, 2016 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Post-Deductible FSA? Greatest thing since sliced bread?
Replies: 10
Views: 3311

Re: Post-Deductible FSA? Greatest thing since sliced bread?

The first dollar availability for preventative care is quite broad. It includes prescriptions, immunizations (including those not paid by insurance, such as a shingles immunization before the insurance-company determined allowable age), weight loss programs, smoking cessation, hearing screenings "fo...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Jan 08, 2016 11:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Post-Deductible FSA? Greatest thing since sliced bread?
Replies: 10
Views: 3311

Post-Deductible FSA? Greatest thing since sliced bread?

New employer and new HDHP. Will fund the HSA for investment purposes and then fund healthcare expenses OOP unless we have a major oopsie. Now I find that the Limited FSA we also have has another benefit: it is a "post-deductible FSA" -- as soon as we've met the minimum Federal deductible for a quali...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Jan 08, 2016 10:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?
Replies: 21
Views: 1846

Re: Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?

Thanks. Much to think through.

What is a "Direct CD" ?
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Jan 08, 2016 6:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?
Replies: 21
Views: 1846

Should SS Affect Asset Allocation Strategy for Me?

I'm trying to think through asset allocation as we have 5-8 years until likely retirement. I know how much we spend by category down to the penny (thanks, YNAB!) for years now, and have built frugal, ordinary and lavish retirement budgets based on that. I included a hefty chunk for medical, but we h...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Jan 07, 2016 11:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Want to Retire to North Coast of San Diego in 15-20 years
Replies: 14
Views: 3350

Re: Want to Retire to North Coast of San Diego in 15-20 years

Things change. I lived in Del Mar in the mid-seventies when it was still a quiet little town and when there were lots of flower farms up on the hillsides as you went north to Leucadia. Now it is wall-to-wall houses. Not at all the same place to me.
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Jan 07, 2016 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Resort in Scottsdale, AZ
Replies: 23
Views: 2852

Re: Resort in Scottsdale, AZ

Scottsdale is one LONG city. It is a good 40 minutes to drive from the northernmost part to the southernmost. Keep that in mind in case you want to do something while you're there like watch spring baseball. Up north, the Fairmont Scottsdale Princess is lovely. Further south, Westin Keirland, Firesk...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2016 Subaru Crosstrek
Replies: 44
Views: 11539

Re: 2016 Subaru Crosstrek

Why get rid of a perfectly working Civic with 98K miles? :shock:

(And I say that as a long-time very happy Subaru Outback owner.)
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Jan 07, 2016 12:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sales reward - not sure what to pick
Replies: 42
Views: 3662

Re: Sales reward - not sure what to pick

Depending on where you live -- a wired-in, gas fired generator?
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Mon Jan 04, 2016 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Student Loan Question
Replies: 2
Views: 483

Re: Student Loan Question

Payments on federal student loans are a little strange. When you make a payment to a federal loan servicer (Sallie Mae, Nelnet,...) the loan servicer MUST first apply the payment to accrued interest. After that it gets a little trickier -- if you have multiple loans in repayment (this is common -- a...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Mon Jan 04, 2016 8:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: live-in caregiver - employee or independent contractor?
Replies: 16
Views: 2325

Re: live-in caregiver - employee or independent contractor?

One of my father-in-law's caregivers seriously injured her back while lifting him. Luckily, we had workman's comp coverage -- she had medical expenses, lost wages, and ultimately retraining expenses as she was no longer able to do caregiving. MIL was able to get a workman's comp rider on her homeown...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Thu Dec 31, 2015 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Is it too late to do a 2015 Roth conversion?
Replies: 10
Views: 1298

Re: Is it too late to do a 2015 Roth conversion?

I did one today around 4:30 pm EST with Fidelity. The rep had to do it to make sure it happened with today's date, but it took longer to listen to the disclosure than it did to make the transfer. I like Fidelity. :happy (We had that weird 27th paycheck today and I wasn't quite sure where we were goi...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Wed Dec 30, 2015 1:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax Premier 2015 Free @ Fidelity (premium customers)
Replies: 36
Views: 14677

Re: Turbo Tax Premier 2015 Free @ Fidelity (premium customers)

We're a premium customer, and I'm just seeing the standard $20 off an inflated price offer. :(
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Tue Dec 29, 2015 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using professional help vs DIY for small business corp
Replies: 12
Views: 2137

Re: Using professional help vs DIY for small business corp

You are in California? I would do a LOT to avoid having to file returns with the Employment Development Department (EDD). They are a complete and total PITA. Whatever a service costs to handle it for you will be worth it. These are the same folks who managed to implement a new online system that cou...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sun Dec 27, 2015 11:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Steps to Open a Solo 401K
Replies: 17
Views: 2224

Re: Steps to Open a Solo 401K

Strangely enough, I just set up a solo 401K with Fidelity on Thursday. A very helpful rep walked me through the paperwork (11 pages total) and saved me a bunch of time and avoiding several pitfalls. She created an account number, I put that at the top of the docs, faxed it in, and snail mailed the p...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Sat Dec 26, 2015 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First Time Travelling for Work- Looking for Tips/Advice/Suggestions
Replies: 39
Views: 3143

Re: First Time Travelling for Work- Looking for Tips/Advice/Suggestions

- Consider setting up a separate checking account for travel reimbursements, and seeding it with a starting amount. The last year I traveled heavily on business my travel expenses were very close to my annual salary. It was a huge help to keep those funds segregated, and to use a separate credit car...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Dec 25, 2015 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Specifying an annuity in a will?
Replies: 9
Views: 895

Re: Specifying an annuity in a will?

Very interesting idea on paying her to delay SS. This is indeed a brain trust! If I am still alive (hope so!) when she is 65 I will simply being gifting her money monthly. I need to think through directions to the person handling my affairs if I become incompetent. We do have an estate planning atto...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Dec 25, 2015 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Specifying an annuity in a will?
Replies: 9
Views: 895

Specifying an annuity in a will?

One of my much younger sisters spent years taking care of our disabled mother in addition to working relatively low paid jobs. I would like to designate a chunk o'money in my will to provide her with some additional retirement income on a monthly basis beginning at age 65 or whenever I die. For vari...
by GreenGrowTheDollars
Fri Dec 18, 2015 11:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Security on the phone
Replies: 7
Views: 860

Re: Security on the phone

My college attempts something similar -- during fund drives, they call, and alway express surprise that I am unwilling to give them a credit card number for my donation. And, they're a top business school. :oops: