Search found 737 matches

by RenoJay
Tue May 21, 2013 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: can i buy my sportscar?
Replies: 129
Views: 13530

Re: can i buy my sportscar?

Do it. Your savings habit is fantastic, so if this can be a one-time splurge, enjoy it! (I'm postponing my midlife crisis until space tourism becomes a reality.)
by RenoJay
Thu May 16, 2013 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I retire?
Replies: 78
Views: 9740

Re: Can I retire?

My wife and I have been doing that since January... and it's very reassuring to see that we live very comfortably on about $4500 a month (plus $12,000 a year for vacations - so $5500 a month)... But then I realized that we're not putting anything aside for a new (used) car 5 years from now, or for ...
by RenoJay
Thu May 16, 2013 12:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reno/Tahoe/Yosemite Trip
Replies: 31
Views: 3251

Re: Reno/Tahoe/Yosemite Trip

Any restaurant recommendations in north lake/south lake? We like cheap, funky and delicious not expensive and fancy. Unfortunately the food in Tahoe is not spectacular. There are some nice high-end places and some average low end places, but nothing I'd go out of my way to drive to. If you want fun...
by RenoJay
Wed May 15, 2013 10:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I retire?
Replies: 78
Views: 9740

Re: Can I retire?

>>Personally, I feel like paying 100% of a kid's education is a major mistake. >>I personally feel the same way, but didn't want to come right out and say it. :happy Just because I can (and I can) doesn't mean that I should or that it's good for them. what's the suggestion? They take loans and grad...
by RenoJay
Wed May 15, 2013 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Another worried bond investor
Replies: 50
Views: 4344

Re: Another worried bond investor

I just called Ally (second call in an hour) and asked to speak to a supervisor. I spoke to a supervisor named Jason Parker and asked about the amendment that states that Ally needs to agree to an early withdrawl of a CD. He acknowledged that clause, and said it applies to instances where there are I...
by RenoJay
Wed May 15, 2013 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Another worried bond investor
Replies: 50
Views: 4344

Re: Another worried bond investor

TBM is yielding 1.56% right now. ...and buy some bank CDs. These won't be marked to market, so you won't see the impact of rising interest rates (which is different than saying CDs don't have interest rate risk; they do, you just won't see it). I'm trying to figure out what TBM offers that CD's do ...
by RenoJay
Wed May 15, 2013 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Another worried bond investor
Replies: 50
Views: 4344

Re: Another worried bond investor

I don't think you're crazy. It takes a while to figure out what investment strategy you're comfortable with, so I see no fault in making some changes early on. What you don't want to do is make changes after a crash when you're effectively "selling low."
by RenoJay
Wed May 15, 2013 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reno/Tahoe/Yosemite Trip
Replies: 31
Views: 3251

Re: Reno/Tahoe/Yosemite Trip

Five days is pretty tight, and as people mentioned, it's very crowded that time of year, so I'd make reservations asap. Here are some thoughts on things to do/see... 1. Rent a boat in Lake Tahoe or go for a swim. 2. Circumnavigate Lake Tahoe by car. (takes 3 - 8 hours depending what you choose to st...
by RenoJay
Mon May 13, 2013 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Just Sold Out. What do you think?
Replies: 95
Views: 9721

Re: Just Sold Out. What do you think?

I've reduced my long term plan for equity exposure based on similar thoughts to the original poster, but I would never completely cash out. I've dropped from about 90% equity exposure to about 55% which is fairly appropriate for my age. I don't think the market's a bargain, but I have no idea if it'...
by RenoJay
Mon May 13, 2013 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Just One Stock. What do you think?
Replies: 25
Views: 2224

Re: Just One Stock. What do you think?

I remember about 6-8 months ago reading about people who had 95% or so of their net worth in Apple stock. The fees and taxes would not be my biggest concern if I had such a concentrated portfolio.
by RenoJay
Mon May 13, 2013 9:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I retire?
Replies: 78
Views: 9740

Re: Can I retire?

Fire Calc says at $2.5 million portfolio and $80,000 per year spend for 50 years you will have a 100% success rate. I guess a lot of people in this thread are either overly pessimistic or don't trust Fire Calc. Personally I'm a little bit skeptical of Firecalc. I put in a hypothetical $1,000,000 po...
by RenoJay
Mon May 13, 2013 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I retire?
Replies: 78
Views: 9740

Re: Can I retire?

I'm 41 and am seriously considering calling it quits at 45, so I've been reading books about early-retirement and visiting early-retirement.org for discussion and support. One thing that took my by surprise: on the firecalc.com site which helps you estimate if your savings will last based on monte c...
by RenoJay
Fri May 10, 2013 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Security Camera System
Replies: 7
Views: 1412

Re: Securirty Camera System

It all really depends on how difficult camera and cable installation will be. It is not uncommon for installation cost to be 2/3 of the final price. For example, industry standard price for the installation of 1 cable drop is about $300. 5x$300 plus camera installation can easily come out to be $20...
by RenoJay
Thu May 09, 2013 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Security Camera System
Replies: 7
Views: 1412

Re: Securirty Camera System

You can get an idea of hardware costs from here (though obviously does not include installation/support) http://www.newegg.com/Home-Safety-Security/SubCategory/ID-850?Tpk=security%20camera%20system They have many brands and price ranges. Thanks. Right after I put up the initial post I did a search ...
by RenoJay
Thu May 09, 2013 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Security Camera System
Replies: 7
Views: 1412

Security Camera System

Does anyone have a professionally-installed security camera system? I got a quote from a guy who seems honest and reliable (and who we have had do our alarm monitoring for years) and it was around $3k and includes six cameras, a DVR that holds 1 terabite of data, a monitor, and all the installation ...
by RenoJay
Wed May 08, 2013 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refi or Not??
Replies: 9
Views: 740

Re: Refi or Not??

You may want to shop around. I have a similar sized mortgage and I recently refi'd at 2.75% fixed for 15 years and they ate ALL closing costs.
by RenoJay
Wed May 08, 2013 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalance using charitable contributions?
Replies: 31
Views: 1560

Re: Rebalance using charitable contributions?

Sounds like a really smart plan. Just double check that the charitable endowment will work with your chosen charity. I had a bit of cliff-hanger waiting for confirmation on that a few years ago but it came out ok.
by RenoJay
Tue May 07, 2013 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No-cost home purchase loans and no-cost refinances
Replies: 8
Views: 1247

Re: No-cost home purchase loans and no-cost refinances

I have refi'd four times with Bank of Kansas City and they've picked up ALL costs The thing is you hear people talk a lot more about no-cost refinances because this is something you can do once a year if you wanted. But it's not that common for people to buy a house every year. Curious, were these ...
by RenoJay
Mon May 06, 2013 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I sell my 2 rental properties?
Replies: 20
Views: 3054

Re: Should I sell my 2 rental properties?

Congrats on the impending addition to your family. You may want to consider dumping one home and keeping the other but using a property manager to field those 3 a.m. phone calls. Usually the property manager will take about 10% of the rent which would still keep you roughly cash flow break even.
by RenoJay
Sun May 05, 2013 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 1.5% Financial Advisor... or index fund?
Replies: 81
Views: 9200

Re: 1.5% Financial Advisor... or index fund?

In the first year invested with the adviser, all you'll know for certain is that you'll be paying him over $5,000. You'll have no idea if he'll deliver any kind of value. If he's so certain he can beat the markets, tell him he can keep half of the net winnings above the S&P 500 after five years.
by RenoJay
Sat May 04, 2013 8:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Google Invests $125 Million in Lending Club
Replies: 68
Views: 8908

Re: Google Invests $125 Million in Lending Club

I've invested a considerable sum with Lending Club and Prosper, although it represents a fairly small amount of my total portfolio. Overall, I've monitored Prosper for a few years. I never take any money out, and all pay offs and interested are automatically reinvested for me. For the past three or ...
by RenoJay
Sat May 04, 2013 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No-cost home purchase loans and no-cost refinances
Replies: 8
Views: 1247

Re: No-cost home purchase loans and no-cost refinances

I have refi'd four times with Bank of Kansas City and they've picked up ALL costs (including appraisal), charged no points, and still given me a total all-in rate that's only 1/8th higher than the best rates I can find anywhere.
by RenoJay
Sat May 04, 2013 4:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Berkshire Hathaway - Warren Buffett - Anyone own the stock?
Replies: 110
Views: 15166

Re: Berkshire Hathaway - Warren Buffett - Anyone own the sto

The only individual stocks I own are BRK-B and AAPL, and both are in my "funny money" portion of my portfolio just to help me deal with the occasional stock-picking/market-timing urge. As it turns out, my timing on BRK-B has been very good. (I owned it for about 10 year, then sold right as...
by RenoJay
Sat May 04, 2013 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: My life and investing
Replies: 23
Views: 3116

Re: My life and investing

Thanks for the original post. That's quite a life. A few thoughts: 1. It seems the people you know who outsourced their financial future to "advisers" did poorly. Seems like you belong here amongst the DIY crowd. 2. You started investing in a 401k in 2009. I can't think of a better time to...
by RenoJay
Thu May 02, 2013 9:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is investing different for the "rich"?
Replies: 34
Views: 4766

Re: Is investing different for the "rich"?

Thank you. Not my cup of tea, but I appreciate the response. I think it requires a talant that I don't have. Knowing who to trust....twice. Probably a sensible choice for many people. I wouldn't have touched this five or six years ago, but given my views of housing prices in my area, the tightness ...
by RenoJay
Thu May 02, 2013 8:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is investing different for the "rich"?
Replies: 34
Views: 4766

Re: Is investing different for the "rich"?

RenoJay, I hate to pry, and you're under no obligation to tell us, but I for one would be vastly interested to know what fixed income investments would be significantly superior to bonds. Yes, that was my immediate thought as well. Do Tell! Though I get pitches to invest in small companies, or thei...
by RenoJay
Thu May 02, 2013 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have You Done a FSBO? Did It Go OK?
Replies: 33
Views: 4942

Re: Have You Done a FSBO? Did It Go OK?

I did a purchase as a FSBO and later sold the same house FSBO. I was in Chicago at the time and there was lots of FSBO activity. When I lived in the Bay Area, however, everyone used a Realtor and it seemed it would be hard to get attention without one. So I think it depends partly on location. If yo...
by RenoJay
Thu May 02, 2013 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The golden age of retirement - is now??
Replies: 21
Views: 5236

Re: The golden age of retirement - is now??

One question I wonder about is whether all the studies that show that seniors have very little saved for retirement actually look at ALL of a senior's assets. The other day I was doing some Boglehead-type advising for a friend who showed me her finances. She had three moderately funded IRAs/401k, bu...
by RenoJay
Thu May 02, 2013 6:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is investing different for the "rich"?
Replies: 34
Views: 4766

Re: Is investing different for the "rich"?

I'm not quite in the eight-figure club, but I can say that having a reasonably sized portfolio has affected my decisions in the following ways: 1. I keep more than my age in fixed income because I don't feel I need to experience as much of the volatility risk of equities as if I were needing to seri...
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 30, 2013 9:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella insurance
Replies: 46
Views: 9792

Re: Umbrella insurance

Sounds a bit high. I have three properties (two for me, one rental) and two cars, and a moving violation in the past three years and am paying $167 per $1 million in coverage. That said, maybe your policy includes things mine doesn't. My policy is with RLI and was less expensive than what my State F...
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 30, 2013 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: FundSource - Conservative Growth Optimal Blend - V3
Replies: 5
Views: 3991

Re: FundSource - Conservative Growth Optimal Blend - V3

Thank you! This is great stuff. I copied the posts above and emailed to my friend, along with a need infographic I found about how fees are the enemy of returns. Here's the graphic: http://www.pbs.org/wgbh/pages/frontline/business-economy-financial-crisis/retirement-gamble/how-retirement-fees-cost-y...
by RenoJay
Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can You Ace FINRA's Financial Literacy Quiz?
Replies: 111
Views: 9922

Re: Can You Ace FINRA's Financial Literacy Quiz?

Scored 100%. Too easy. If you give me a quiz on English Lit, however, I'd probably not be boasting nearly as much. :happy
by RenoJay
Mon Apr 29, 2013 8:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: FundSource - Conservative Growth Optimal Blend - V3
Replies: 5
Views: 3991

FundSource - Conservative Growth Optimal Blend - V3

I have a friend who informed me the other day that, upon the advice of an advisor, she put 80% of her assets into the stock market. (Never mind that she sold out of the market in 2008, and bought in 2013, thereby missing a 100%+ rally.) I'm trying to research the fund the guy sold her so I can infor...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 28, 2013 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting lower cable rates by threatening to cancel
Replies: 67
Views: 9685

Re: Getting lower cable rates by threatening to cancel

I do this every year. I call in, make a stink about the latest price increase, service reduction, etc. and let them know I'm not excited to leave but that DirecTV, Dish, etc. is offering such and such a deal. It usually results in something good. The trick is not to come in like a mad raving lunatic...
by RenoJay
Mon Apr 22, 2013 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Hourly financial planner...help with spousal spending
Replies: 23
Views: 3229

Re: Hourly financial planner...help with spousal spending

You don't need a financial planner if you are willing to put a small amount of effort by just reading and following the wisdom on this board. If you need hard real numbers to explain to your spouse, start with creating a budget and work through that. Ditto that. A few years ago I put together not j...
by RenoJay
Fri Apr 19, 2013 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Money & Relationships
Replies: 69
Views: 8149

Re: Money & Relationships

I wish my wife outearned me. No such luck. I think I'm much more intimidated by women who are taller than me than by those who earn more.
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downshifting: Self Employment/Early Retirement & Insurance
Replies: 18
Views: 2890

Re: Downshifting: Self Employment/Early Retirement & Insura

Try a health insurance broker. A broker can generically submit applications to the various companies and get quotes. If you apply for Health insurance and are turned down, the results can be entered into the Medical Insurance Board. One company will insure with history of Depression, for instance, ...
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 16, 2013 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Checking Net Worth Only Once a Year
Replies: 41
Views: 5858

Re: Checking Net Worth Only Once a Year

I officially check mine once a month, but I spend way too much time reading Yahoo finance articles (which occasionally trick me into doing stupid things), reading Money Magazine, etc. For those with the discipline not to check frequently, any advice HOW to get over the mental urge to check more often?
by RenoJay
Wed Apr 10, 2013 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Franchise Tax Board letters to someone else at my address!
Replies: 2
Views: 1248

Re: Franchise Tax Board letters to someone else at my addres

I think you're best to just keep returning to sender. If a drifter lived in your house temporarily and is now in trouble with the FTB, that's not really your problem in my opinion and as much as you have a good soul for wanting to do the right thing, I think this issue is between FTB and unknown per...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What would a bond market 'blow-up' look like?
Replies: 15
Views: 2175

Re: What would a bond market 'blow-up' look like?

http://www.ritholtz.com/blog/2012/01/222-years-of-long-term-interest-rates/ has a chart showing the history of long term interest rates in the US going back two centuries. Wow, that chart is pretty amazing if it's accurate. It seems that there really are 20 - 40 year cycles with interest rates wher...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 07, 2013 9:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Berkshire hathaway vs. closed-end fund
Replies: 24
Views: 4582

Re: Berkshire hathaway vs. closed-end fund

I would assume that Berkshire Hathaway is not regulated under the Investment Company Act of 1940, and that a closed-end fund is. I don't understand why people are so eager to argue that Berkshire Hathaway isn't a stock. I think it must be a desire to believe that it must not be risky because it has...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advice: $5M allocation
Replies: 18
Views: 3045

Re: Advice: $5M allocation

mhc wrote:Easy, three fund portfolio: http://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/3-fund_portfolio

I would go 50/50 AA with 30% international.
Does this mean 30% of the equity portion should be international, or 30% of the total allocation?
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 07, 2013 8:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Berkshire hathaway vs. closed-end fund
Replies: 24
Views: 4582

Re: Berkshire hathaway vs. closed-end fund

I know nothing about closed end funds, but BRK is the one of only two individual stocks I own and I like it because the accounting is clean, it seems to grow consistently, and Buffett has stated numerous times that he'll sweep in and buy shares if they dip below 120% of book value, so that effective...
by RenoJay
Sun Apr 07, 2013 11:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can the average investor make money in real estate?
Replies: 50
Views: 6313

Re: Can the average investor make money in real estate?

I have a lot of money in real estate and I consider it a large contributor to the fixed income portion of my portfolio since I'm a bond bear. I don't think it's synonymous with timing the stock market. I'd liken it more to running a business. Start small, see if you like it or hate it and if you're ...
by RenoJay
Fri Apr 05, 2013 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you need Emergency Fund if you have no expenses?
Replies: 32
Views: 3676

Re: Do you need Emergency Fund if you have no expenses?

Given the high return on the emergency fund, I'd keep it while still aggressively paying down the student loan. Once the student loan is almost gone, I wouldn't be surprised if the unexpected "emergency" is that you decide you want to live on your own or that your parents decide it's time ...
by RenoJay
Thu Apr 04, 2013 9:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Windfall / Sell of business - AA advice
Replies: 15
Views: 1682

Re: Windfall / Sell of business - AA advice

Congratulations on the sale! I don't have great advice for most of your questions, but I think you're absolutely right to try to manage this yourself. You're obviously a smart entrepreneurial type. There's very little the investment advisors can do for you that you won't learn on your own pretty qui...
by RenoJay
Wed Apr 03, 2013 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Childrens' Allowance
Replies: 71
Views: 10322

Re: Childrens' Allowance

Thanks for all the great advice on this thread!! I have a lot to think about.
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 02, 2013 10:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Childrens' Allowance
Replies: 71
Views: 10322

Childrens' Allowance

Questions for Bogleheads with kids in the house: 1. At what age do you think it's appropriate to start an allowance? 2. How much should it be? 3. Should the allowance be based on chores, housework, attitude, etc. or is it a unconditional income? 4. What else should I consider? My kids are currently ...
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stockman Warns of Crash of Fed-Fueled Bubble Economy
Replies: 20
Views: 2028

Re: Stockman Warns of Crash of Fed-Fueled Bubble Economy

I just watched an interview with Stockman on Yahoo finance and the last question was, "Do you keep all your money in cash?" to which Stockman replied "Yes." At least he eats his own cooking. (I also like the irony of a guy with the name Stockman who completely eschews stocks!&quo...
by RenoJay
Tue Apr 02, 2013 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you account for future inheritance?
Replies: 45
Views: 3649

Re: Do you account for future inheritance?

I believe I'm in line for a large inheritance. I do not count it at all in my plans or my projections. I figure that if my parents have a change of personality and decide to start splurging on expensive vacations, toys or charitable giving or if their end of life care becomes much more expensive tha...