Search found 208 matches

by dandinsac
Wed Jul 12, 2017 11:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seeking Advice - Broken Sprinkler System after Home Purchase
Replies: 28
Views: 3577

Re: Seeking Advice - Broken Sprinkler System after Home Purchase

Get a second opinion on the repair costs for sure. Or, better yet, find a neighbor who can help yuo troubleshoot the system.
by dandinsac
Wed Jul 12, 2017 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relocation / small cash infusion - what is priority?
Replies: 2
Views: 363

Re: Relocation / small cash infusion - what is priority?

I would pay off the student loan and save the rest until after you relocate. Buy the house and avoid PMI. Then fund the emergency savings. Paying off the cars would help with cash flow, but I don't see it as a big priority since the rates are low.
by dandinsac
Wed Jun 14, 2017 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 66 and perplexed, hoping for some advice!
Replies: 19
Views: 3757

Re: 66 and perplexed, hoping for some advice!

You need enough guaranteed monthly income to live on so you can pay the basic expenses to survive - rent, food, utilities, etc. If social security doesn't provide this, then I suggest you look into the cost of a single premium immediate annuity that will pay you and your wife an additional monthly a...
by dandinsac
Wed May 03, 2017 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Bogle-Based Action Plan - Looking for a Second Opinion
Replies: 5
Views: 911

Re: Bogle-Based Action Plan - Looking for a Second Opinion

Looks like a good plan to me.

I'm not sure your step 2 does much if you are going to sell all the stocks and funds in it. You could sell and tranfer the resulting cash over time.
by dandinsac
Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy condo now, or wait a few years and then enter CCRC?
Replies: 26
Views: 3571

Re: Downsize now, or wait a few years and enter CCRC?

Last fall, my wife and I helped move her mother from her house into an independent living facility about 100 miles away. My FIL has passed away last year January. My wife and I spent a lot of time making this happen and luckily found someone to buy the house as is. We live about 900 miles away and w...
by dandinsac
Tue Apr 25, 2017 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping adult children
Replies: 80
Views: 11886

Re: Helping adult children

This is a great thread that got me thinking. I would be in your son #2 situation. I do not want to know if my parents provide support to my brother who has two children starting college soon. If they do provide help, that's their decision and none of my business. It's their money. If they were to of...
by dandinsac
Mon Apr 24, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New job and offer - recruiter sent a wrong $$
Replies: 43
Views: 6471

Re: New job and offer - recruiter sent a wrong $$

If the position/company provides more potential for income growth, the location is better for your lifestyle, and the cost of living is comparable, then changing would be fine. I made a couple of changes where the new work was better for where I wanted to take my career. If you are relocating, they ...
by dandinsac
Sun Apr 16, 2017 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Savings & Investments in order of priority
Replies: 7
Views: 1680

Re: Savings & Investments in order of priority

Depending on your 401K plan, you may also have an option to add after-tax money in addition to the 18K pre-tax. If you are considered a highly compensated employee at your employer, there is usually a maximum percentage of salary that can be added. In my case, I could invest up to 19% of my salary i...
by dandinsac
Sat Apr 15, 2017 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Provence and Normandy
Replies: 11
Views: 1733

Re: Provence and Normandy

I haven't used those tours as we've gone on our own. I've travelled to Brittany/Normandy (but not the WWII beaches) and throughout Provence. Realize that these areas aren't that close to each other so you'll lose most of a day travelling between the two areas. For the Normandy area, Mont St Michel i...
by dandinsac
Thu Apr 13, 2017 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please recommend-A new TV with good sound system
Replies: 15
Views: 1924

Re: Please recommend-A new TV with good sound system

Here is what I would recommend if you want very good sound without going through the whole setup of an AV receiver and surround sound... NAD D3020 Amplifier http://nadelectronics.com/product/d-3020-hybrid-digital-amplifier/ ($300-$400) NHT Speakers - Either C1 ($500/pair) or SuperOne ($350/pair) htt...
by dandinsac
Thu Apr 06, 2017 11:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calif Tax Refund Length of Time to Receive
Replies: 19
Views: 2820

Re: Calif Tax Refund Length of Time to Receive

I'm not answering your question, but for comparison purposes... I filed my CA return using Turbotax on March 3 and my refund was in my bank account on March 10.
by dandinsac
Thu Apr 06, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: When should one start including TIPS in their bond allocation?
Replies: 7
Views: 1214

Re: When should one start including TIPS in their bond allocation?

Another alternative if you have access to a brokerage account in a tax-advantaged account... Starting in February during the year that you turn 37, buy a 30-year TIP at auction each year. The first year, you'd want to buy a TIP equal to about 0.67% of your portfolio. The next year, you want to buy a...
by dandinsac
Sun Apr 02, 2017 10:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bankruptcy of Westinghouse Electric
Replies: 79
Views: 10965

Re: Bankruptcy of Westinghouse Electric

Anyone in a nuclear energy career out there (like I want to be when I finish my degree) that could chime in with some thoughts or advice? I'm not in a nuclear energy field, but have worked in the utility industry for all of my career. Personally, I would be cautious about nuclear energy for these r...
by dandinsac
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best take it everywhere camera
Replies: 102
Views: 12913

Re: Best take it everywhere camera

I have had the TG3 model for 4 years, which is very similar to the TG4. I use it when hiking and kayaking as it is waterproof and shockproof. Having an optical zoom, variable aperture, bigger flash, replaceable battery, removable memory, etc. make it more useful than my iphone for travel and general...
by dandinsac
Wed Mar 15, 2017 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Newbie Needs a Plan
Replies: 17
Views: 1554

Re: Newbie Needs a Plan

Your plan looks reasonable to me. You should discuss the 50% 401K / 50% Roth issue with your tax accountant. S/he should be able to tell you how much more you would have saved in Federal and State taxes if it was all in the 401K. Being in a high-tax state myself, I fill the tax-deferred investments ...
by dandinsac
Thu Mar 09, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Coordinating 401K Plan Limits: Need to worry?
Replies: 2
Views: 495

Re: Coordinating 401K Plan Limits: Need to worry?

I don't think the IRS distinguishes between regular and catch up. When I look at my W-2, the total 401K contributions are reported. I would make sure that you don't go over the $24K limit though. It could get quite messy asking one of your employers to "back out" some of the 401K contribut...
by dandinsac
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 401K
Replies: 5
Views: 634

Re: 401K

1. Taking advantage of a match is the best way to go. A 100% match, even if invested in funds with 1% fees, still gains 99% for every dollar you invest. So, invest the 3% of salary to get the match. 2. Additional fiunds can be added to a pre-tax IRA (in the spouses name who doesn't have 401K) or to ...
by dandinsac
Mon Feb 20, 2017 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: home improvementl strategy
Replies: 19
Views: 2996

Re: home improvementl strategy

An alternative view... if the outdoor improvements add to your enjoyment this upcoming summer, I would reconsider waiting. I would apply for the HELOC. It will take a few weeks to get set up. You can also get bids for the work, especially if you're not sure exactly how much everything will cost. In ...
by dandinsac
Sun Feb 19, 2017 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Older parents advice.
Replies: 29
Views: 3493

Re: Older parents advice.

Does TD Ameritrade let you buy the treasuries at auction? Yes, there is a $25 transaction fee on TD Ameritrade for auctions. I have Vanguard Brokerage account which has no fee. I don't see Merrill Edge offering any way to buy a treasury (I mean I see it on the website but when I click on the links ...
by dandinsac
Sun Feb 19, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Older parents advice.
Replies: 29
Views: 3493

Re: Older parents advice.

You will want to determine where to end up and then minimize tax consequences to get there. I hope this example helps... When my FIL passed away, I helped my MIL, who will be 80 this year, reallocate her investments. Using info from Bogleheads and other sources, we came up with a conservative, but s...
by dandinsac
Mon Jan 23, 2017 10:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off mortgage in 7 years using HELOC?
Replies: 42
Views: 17036

Re: Pay off mortgage in 7 years using HELOC?

Here is an interesting article ... it has me pondering this strategy even though my HELOC interest is about 1% above my fixed mortgage rate...

http://www.claytonmorris.com/blog/2015/ ... nja-tricks
by dandinsac
Sat Jan 14, 2017 11:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job dilemma
Replies: 31
Views: 4146

Re: Job dilemma

I have made several company changes in my career, most of which included relocations to different US locations. A couple of these were well funded startups. It sounds like you've covered most of the issues relative to staying versus countering, so I'll add thoughts on some other areas In the new pos...
by dandinsac
Sat Jan 14, 2017 1:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 24 hour stop over at LHR, what all can I visit in London?
Replies: 31
Views: 2469

Re: 24 hour stop over at LHR, what all can I visit in London?

My wife and I saw a Shakespeare play at the Globe theater, which was fun. We just walked up and bought tickets. When I was in Paris we took a guided bicycle tour alomg the Seine. We got to see a lot from Notre Dame to the Eiffel tower and back. +1 on a tourbus as well. I've done those in Edinburgh a...
by dandinsac
Wed Dec 21, 2016 11:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with mother's investments
Replies: 9
Views: 884

Re: Help with mother's investments

It's great to hear how other people handle a similar situation. Thanks for that. For the IRA, are you buying individual bonds or bond funds? I will recommend 1 year treasuries or a very short duration bond fund. The IRA withdrawals are a key part of her ongoing living expenses, so this is staying v...
by dandinsac
Wed Dec 21, 2016 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with mother's investments
Replies: 9
Views: 884

Re: Help with mother's investments

My mother-in-law is in a similar situation. For what it's worth, here's my latest thinking... IRA - Keep enough cash to support the yearly withdrawals and invest the rest in short-term bonds/CDs. Taxable - Keep at least $40,000 cash in case of emergencies and to supplement her income when needed. Th...
by dandinsac
Fri Nov 04, 2016 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting San Francisco
Replies: 21
Views: 3349

Re: Visiting San Francisco

I live in Sacramento and when my brother, wife and kids visited, we rented a minivan. With a short trip, you don't want to spend too much time on transportation. Here's what we did... Day 1 - My brother and his family arrived in Sacramento - Rented car - Drive to Muir Woods - Drive to hotel in Larks...
by dandinsac
Thu Nov 03, 2016 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying an Audi A4
Replies: 73
Views: 12086

Re: Buying an Audi A4

Bogleheads, what is the best way to minimize out-of-pocket maintenance and repair costs assuming you purchase the vehicle and plan to own it for six to eight years? Thanks! Don't drive too much :D ... I'm only half joking here. If you drive it 12,000 miles per year, you won't have 100K miles in 8 y...
by dandinsac
Wed Nov 02, 2016 12:56 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with portfolio- too complex?
Replies: 18
Views: 2414

Re: Help with portfolio- too complex?

I didnt have quite the variety of funds as you have, but I think this strategy might work for you. I think the key is to limit the number of funds and, if possible, have only one fund category in all but two accounts. The first of the two accounts would be used to set the bond/stock percentage and t...
by dandinsac
Wed Oct 26, 2016 12:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend a laptop and printer
Replies: 16
Views: 2969

Re: Recommend a laptop and printer

i would buy one with the OS that is well known by whoever will help him troubleshoot it over the long term. if you're going to support him and you use a Mac everyday, then buy a Mac. If you use a Chromebook, buy a Chromebook. Having the same system makes it much easier to help your father when probl...
by dandinsac
Mon Oct 24, 2016 5:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Figuring out the next steps...
Replies: 9
Views: 1333

Re: Figuring out the next steps...

If you buy a new car and keep it, costs are reasonable in my opinion. You have piece of mind that it won't break down. Maybe as important, you'll have a warranty minimizing repair costs. The bad thing to do is to buy the wrong vehicle, only to realize 2-3 years later (e.g., when you have children) t...
by dandinsac
Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Very tough career choice part 2 (ego, startup, hedge funds)
Replies: 97
Views: 14312

Re: Very tough career choice part 2 (ego, startup, hedge funds)

OP, How about wait it out and let the new guy self-destruct? KlangFool I am resentful *now* for him taking away all my tasks and, more importantly, he is not any better than me, both from a management and technical point of view (actually obviously much worse from the technical point of view), so t...
by dandinsac
Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio for recently retired mother
Replies: 9
Views: 1305

Re: Portfolio for recently retired mother

Dale_G wrote:And at a 1% AUM the expense is about 20K (not 2k)
Dale
Thanks for the correction.
by dandinsac
Sun Oct 16, 2016 10:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio for recently retired mother
Replies: 9
Views: 1305

Re: Portfolio for recently retired mother

Seems overly complex to me. My MIL is in a similar situation and my wife and I help her with the money management. My overall goals are to keep her investment costs low, the portfolio simple (to minimize my effort) and maintain safety (so she feels secure and I don't have to worry). Your mother has ...
by dandinsac
Sun Oct 16, 2016 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with parents fixed annuity
Replies: 2
Views: 564

Re: Help with parents fixed annuity

If they are getting a minimum 4% return on a tax deferred basis, it seems like leaving it alone may be the best approach. A no/low-risk 4% return isn't available in this market. The only other consideration would be if there's a significant default risk from the payer of the annuity.
by dandinsac
Thu Oct 13, 2016 5:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues
Replies: 23
Views: 3746

Re: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues

I would probably do this deal if the earnest money were enough to cover renovations should you had to have done them yourselves and of course a clause which goes into effect as soon as they touch your house where you get to keep the earnest money if they back out. That was our thought exactly. The ...
by dandinsac
Wed Oct 12, 2016 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finding a new position with a similar salary
Replies: 5
Views: 1286

Re: Finding a new position with a similar salary

The best option by far is to get hired by a company in the area that pays for the relocation from the west coast to the east coast. A few years ago, I switched companies and relocated from the east to the west coast. I really wasn't looking too hard, but a former boss contacted me about the opening....
by dandinsac
Wed Oct 12, 2016 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues
Replies: 23
Views: 3746

Re: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues

I wanted to post the "final chapter" on this thread as I often want to know, as Paul Harvey used to say, "The rest of the story." :happy I didn't mention in the original post that my in-laws were heavy smokers, and besides being dated, the house had a challenging "odor"...
by dandinsac
Sat Oct 08, 2016 1:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Camera recommendations- Not SLR
Replies: 52
Views: 6762

Re: Camera recommendations- Not SLR

i have an Olympus TG-3 for a few years. I take it hiking and also kayaking since it is waterproof and have taken it to the beach and on European trips. I have two spare batteries, but rarely need them. The TG-4 has a few more features and shoots in raw format, which would be a nice improvement.
by dandinsac
Sun Sep 25, 2016 10:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expat: Losing job and moving back to US
Replies: 10
Views: 1913

Re: Expat: Losing job and moving back to US

I was notified last week that the company does not have another position for me (there were no guarantees of a position after the assignment). They’ll move my family (spouse, 2 children) and I back to the US in December, so no issue there. Wow... three months to pick a location, find a job and a sc...
by dandinsac
Thu Sep 15, 2016 10:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Foreign Language Programs for Commute?
Replies: 19
Views: 3480

Re: Foreign Language Programs for Commute?

Michel Thomas is another excellent choice. I've done the Spanish course, and I'd consider it a better version of Pimsleur. It has better explanations, it will teach you more vocabulary and it's more tailored to suit the specific language pairs (like Spanish though English), rather than the more gen...
by dandinsac
Mon Sep 12, 2016 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 30-year STRIPS vs T-bonds
Replies: 7
Views: 1164

Re: 30-year STRIPS vs T-bonds

You may consider TIPS or iBonds as both of these provide deflationary protection in addition to Inflationary protection. I am creating a TIPS / iBonds ladder that adds to my expected social security and pension income each year of my retirement to provide a total of ~$6,000/month income.
by dandinsac
Sat Sep 03, 2016 12:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate planning options for tricky family situation
Replies: 28
Views: 4222

Re: Estate planning options for tricky family situation

The minimum was more seat of the pants than anything too strategic or as a result of a detailed analysis. I think they settled on a $400/month minimum, which is enough to make a difference, but not too much to run out of money if needed for other purposes. 1-1.5% is my projection based on expected i...
by dandinsac
Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate planning options for tricky family situation
Replies: 28
Views: 4222

Re: Estate planning options for tricky family situation

My wife is facing a similar situation. She will, someday in the future, administer her sibling's portion of the inheritance, which will be maintained in the trust and includes a moderate monthly amount, which will total to 1% or 1.5% of the sibling's share each year. (Which, as you know, is a very s...
by dandinsac
Mon Aug 29, 2016 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues
Replies: 23
Views: 3746

Re: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues

OP here... I appreciate the advice. In thinking more about it, the "what-ifs" (damages, contractor liens, worker injuries, leaving the place unlocked, etc.) were getting to be a bit much. We'll ask the agent to revise the offer without any work being done befoe closing.
by dandinsac
Mon Aug 29, 2016 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling house to our real estate agent - issues
Replies: 23
Views: 3746

Selling house to our real estate agent - issues

My wife and I are helping my MIL sell her house. The house is a bit over 20 years old and hasn't had much, if any remodeling since the mid 90's. Our real estate agent has provided us a very competitive offer, which we are inclined to accept. The standard state association of realtors agreement was u...
by dandinsac
Sun Aug 28, 2016 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Megacorp VP is Recruiting--advice please
Replies: 16
Views: 4510

Re: Megacorp VP is Recruiting--advice please

I've switched companies six times over the past 30 years. The last two times, I was rehired by a previous employer. (I worked for company A -> B -> C -> D-> E -> D -> E.) The industry that I'm in has expanded over the past two decades in ways that I never really expected way back when when I worked ...
by dandinsac
Wed Aug 24, 2016 12:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Parents have enough for retirement?
Replies: 26
Views: 4842

Re: Parents have enough for retirement?

If they can transition into retirement with $2000/month in Social Security and $660,000 in savings, with a budget of $4000 per month, they will have 27 years of income. This covers your mother until 88. So, they might be okay, but there is no margin for error, e.g., long term care, home repairs, etc...
by dandinsac
Tue Aug 23, 2016 12:17 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TIPS ladder - Have experience?
Replies: 11
Views: 2306

Re: TIPS ladder - Have experience?

I started building a TIPS ladder by buying in the secondary market with maturity dates from 2042-2045. I tracked the prices for a week or so and pulled the trigger on a small dip. I am watching the ones for 2040 and 2041 now, and plan to buy them within the next 6 months. In the upcoming auction in ...
by dandinsac
Mon Aug 22, 2016 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for First Time Homebuyer
Replies: 17
Views: 1980

Re: Advice for First Time Homebuyer

Financially, I would think that the townhouse would be a good move, as long as you know for sure it will be a place you want to be for the next 7-10 years. Alternatively, it has to be a property that attracts renters (e.g., close to a university, hospital, etc.) and you have to be willing to rent it...
by dandinsac
Sat Aug 20, 2016 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Instant oatmeal vs "regular" oatmeal
Replies: 88
Views: 21628

Re: Instant oatmeal vs "regular" oatmeal

When you say cold oatmeal you mean cooked then cooled or raw oats?
I assume it was cooked and then cooled. My grandfather was born about 1900 and was part of large family. Maybe by the time he got his share, it was cold????