Search found 12451 matches

by The Wizard
Mon Jan 14, 2019 1:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: After tax contribution OR roth conversion?
Replies: 31
Views: 824

Re: After tax contribution OR roth conversion?

Depends on your marginal tax rate now vs later.
Most of the time its not a good idea to do Roth cnversions while still working full-time...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 14, 2019 12:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TLH is called "Murky"
Replies: 17
Views: 2089

Re: TLH is called "Merky"

Most of us here who TLH are well aware of this situation and deal with it properly...
by The Wizard
Sun Jan 13, 2019 6:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do I stop jeans from ripping in the thighs?
Replies: 70
Views: 4340

Re: How do I stop jeans from ripping in the thighs?

samsdad wrote:
Sun Jan 13, 2019 5:50 pm

...Yeah, I buy $10 Wranglers at Walmart and don’t care about their longevity.
$13, not $10...
by The Wizard
Sun Jan 13, 2019 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brake fluid replacement?
Replies: 69
Views: 3978

Re: Brake fluid replacement?

...I'm 68 and I can't remember the last time I heard about brake fluid going bad in a street vehicle that wasn't used to tow something big and heavy up hills. And down hills of course. Maybe back in the '60s. Same with me on all counts. And I DOWNSHIFT on my F-150 when needed to maintain or reduce ...
by The Wizard
Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2017 State Tax Refunds Federally Taxable in 2018!!!
Replies: 16
Views: 2139

Re: 2017 State Tax Refunds Federally Taxable in 2018!!!

$8700 seems like quite a large state income tax overpayment and refund...
by The Wizard
Sat Jan 12, 2019 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth conversion
Replies: 36
Views: 2946

Re: Roth conversion

For those who are in early retirement and with significant tax deferred savings, are you doing "mega" Roth conversions... is50xenough, if you are confused about some of the answers you are seeing, that is because the term "mega....Roth" is used to describe something else. :happy I agree. Would have...
by The Wizard
Sat Jan 12, 2019 5:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth conversion
Replies: 36
Views: 2946

Re: Roth conversion

Well, if one is doing "mega" Roth conversions (whatever that means), then I would expect one's AGI to be well over $85,000 per person and well into higher Medicare IRMAA tiers at age 65 and above.
Am I correct?
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Kitces - Retirement Tax Rate Equilibrium
Replies: 23
Views: 3451

Re: Kitces - Retirement Tax Rate Equilibrium

Thanks for posting the link. I read that single pays a tax rate of 32% at just $157k. I wouldn't use "just" in association with that figure, but adding the $12K std deduction, puts at $169K. And the 32% rate is for income (AGI) over that $169K. Can't tell if that poster is aware of how tax brackets...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Kitces - Retirement Tax Rate Equilibrium
Replies: 23
Views: 3451

Re: Kitces - Retirement Tax Rate Equilibrium

WoodSpinner wrote:
Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:01 pm
...Does anyone have a better way of projecting future tax brackets?
No.
Just assume current tax law will remain roughly the same, until further notice...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?
Replies: 160
Views: 13556

Re: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?

I'm thinking the thread is getting away from the OP's question on dividends being a good thing or not...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 9:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth conversion
Replies: 36
Views: 2946

Re: Roth conversion

At age 68, basically six years into retirement and filing Single, I've been doing moderate Roth conversions of $30k to $35k the past few years, not "mega". I'm in the 24% marginal bracket this year, formerly the 28% bracket, so this level of Roth conversion simply brings my AGI up to about where it ...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 5:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?
Replies: 160
Views: 13556

Re: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?

Sometimes people miss the point on income and taxes.
Let's try a fill in the blank quiz:

"As a retiree filing single, I would LOVE to be paying $100,000+ in required Federal income taxes each year in retirement because this would mean that __________________________."
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 11:34 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Dividend Investing to Total Return Investing
Replies: 19
Views: 1511

Re: Dividend Investing to Total Return Investing

I'd probably hold on to what you've got. One thing is 100% certain. Markets recover. Markets recover, but there is no way to determine if a particular stock ever will. With the OP’s level of capital gains (assuming they are long term), the federal tax bill would be around $2300. Any state/local tax...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 10:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?
Replies: 160
Views: 13556

Re: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?

One way to lower dividends is to tilt to growth rather than value or blend. Large growth index VIGAX had dividends of 1.4% for the four quarters of 2018, based on fourth quarter reinvest price. Large value index VVIAX had dividends of 2.8%. And total market index VTSAX had dividends of 2.1%. And VIG...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 9:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?
Replies: 160
Views: 13556

Re: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?

Seriously, you should make your taxable account more tax efficient. It is possible that the OP's taxable account is tax efficient. There is no way getting around dividends. For instance, Vanguard Total Stock Market Index fund pays dividends and it is considered tax-efficient for a taxable account. ...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 11, 2019 4:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?
Replies: 160
Views: 13556

Re: Around 43K in dividends last year - feel good about it ?

Vanguard total stock index fund (VTSAX), a bogleheads favorite, has a yield of 2.03% now. If your portfolio is about $2MM, then there is no way to avoid such dividends. That is a fact of investment life. Right. OP should "feel good" that he has around $2M in his taxable investment account. Many fol...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 10, 2019 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you manage credit card use with monthly budget
Replies: 37
Views: 2328

Re: How do you manage credit card use with monthly budget

I don't use budgeting or tracking software, but I try to keep UP TO $10,000 in my checking account. I'm well under that presently due to having just made a $3500 estimated tax payment to cover an end of year Roth conversion. But that's the sort of lumpy expense that makes me target a decent checking...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 10, 2019 2:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?
Replies: 113
Views: 5271

Re: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?

...The old rule about not paying taxes before one has to hasn't been a bad one to follow either. I agree, but it has to be tempered with reality and reasonableness. If your AGI increases by 5% the year you turn 70.5, that's no biggie. But if it increases by 50%, then you'll be paying a lot more inc...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 10, 2019 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel Companies Similar to "Road Scholar"?
Replies: 21
Views: 1512

Re: Travel Companies Similar to "Road Scholar"?

I've taken four trips so far with a particular volunteer organization and have several more booked though 2020. The trips I choose are generally international day hiking trips though one is bicycling along the Danube. Each trip is run with two experienced volunteer leaders and often involves an outf...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 10, 2019 10:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?
Replies: 113
Views: 5271

Re: BHers, what is your Roth IRA %?

15% of my financial assets are in my Roth IRAs presently. At start of retirement in 2013, my Roth percentage was 1-2% due to large 403(b) contributions for decades. So the change is due to a combination of Roth conversions and spend-down from my tax-deferred account. As far as optimal strategy, it m...
by The Wizard
Tue Jan 08, 2019 6:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retirees: any major goals for 2019?
Replies: 72
Views: 4455

Re: Retirees: any major goals for 2019?

Is there a specific itinerary for this trip? Which operator are you using? An inn to inn group hiking trip to West England in late July. This is through the Appalachian Mountain Club: https://activities.outdoors.org/search/index.cfm/action/details/id/101345 These AMC trips sell out quickly. And I'm...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now
Replies: 258
Views: 20289

Re: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now

WhiteMaxima wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:01 pm
OP has debt problem. Bankrupt won't solve this problem.
Wrong.
OP appears to have had a SPENDING problem in the past.
Bankruptcy may indeed solve the debt problem but if the spending problem isn't solved separately, things could recur in five years...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 07, 2019 5:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return
Replies: 39
Views: 4742

Re: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return

sambb wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:46 am
dividends just increase your taxes
That's certainly true and one reason that we recommend a TSM fund with modest dividends instead of a Dividend Aristocrat fund with much higher dividends...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return
Replies: 39
Views: 4742

Re: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return

And when we say "NAV is reduced" when dividends are paid, that doesn't necessarily mean the NAV declines that day compared to the previous day. On Friday, the S&P 500 had a large 3.4% increase in value, so an index fund such as VFIAX had the same increase in NAV. But if VFIAX had issued a quarterly ...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return
Replies: 39
Views: 4742

Re: Embarrassed to ask... dividends and Total Return

JustinR wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 12:04 am
They don't.

Dividends don't make you wealthier at all. They do just the opposite: reduce your return.
Sorry, this is incorrect...
by The Wizard
Mon Jan 07, 2019 4:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now
Replies: 258
Views: 20289

Re: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now

WhiteMaxima wrote:
Mon Jan 07, 2019 1:42 am
OPEN home equity line credit, use it pay off all credit card debt...
They just bought the house and have no equity yet.
Can't get a HELOC under those conditions...
by The Wizard
Sun Jan 06, 2019 7:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now
Replies: 258
Views: 20289

Re: $40,000 in debt, bankruptcy seems to be the best option right now

Dave Ramsey really gets bashed around here sometimes but he is really great for some people. He is kind of a financial kindergarten teacher. The TA comes across to me as being in this scenario. The TA seems to not want the advice offered here and has justifications for ongoing expenses. The TA real...
by The Wizard
Sun Jan 06, 2019 4:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: how to get into a low tax bracket when retired, so as to convert from tIRA to Roth
Replies: 17
Views: 1939

Re: how to get into a low tax bracket when retired, so as to convert from tIRA to Roth

livesoft wrote:
Sun Jan 06, 2019 3:24 pm
Have more children is always helpful when trying to get into a lower tax bracket.
:twisted: :twisted: :twisted:
by The Wizard
Sun Jan 06, 2019 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How do you view a savings surplus in retirement?
Replies: 117
Views: 5983

Re: How do you view a savings surplus in retirement?

Answer depends on when the surplus occurs and in which type of account. In my case, 95% of my financial assets were in my tax deferred 403(b) account at start of retirement in 2013. I did not have a precise dollar target number for this accumulation so I never viewed any of this money as "surplus". ...
by The Wizard
Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2019 Roth all at once or over time.
Replies: 19
Views: 1429

Re: 2019 Roth all at once or over time.

Wait until you have made at least 6,000 dollars of eligible income. Why? As long as he has it to report as taxed income for 2019 he's fine. When I worked part-time for several months in 2016, I paid attention to this initially. But then I split this "bonus money" between my backdoor Roth contributi...
by The Wizard
Sat Jan 05, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA traditional and asset allocation conundrum
Replies: 7
Views: 530

Re: TIAA traditional and asset allocation conundrum

I did something similar, annuitizing with TIAA in 2013 at age 63. But only part in Traditional, the rest in TREA and CREF Stock. I'll start age 70 SS in just over a year, at which point my remaining portfolio becomes something of a slush fund, not needed on a regular monthly basis. It depends on you...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 04, 2019 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering using TIAA TPA to satisfy aggregated RMD
Replies: 4
Views: 355

Re: Considering using TIAA TPA to satisfy aggregated RMD

Correct about TREA. And yes, vintages apply to all contacts containing TIAA Traditional. Minimizing income in retirement shouldn't really be one's goal. The goal should be to have a steady Adjusted Gross Income, increasing a few percent per year without a big jump at age 70. But we don't have your e...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 04, 2019 9:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retirees: any major goals for 2019?
Replies: 72
Views: 4455

Re: Retirees: any major goals for 2019?

Starting year seven of retirement, I'll be carrying on with a decent travel agenda similar to past years: A long road trip to Arizona in March. An inn to inn group hiking trip to West England in late July. A two week trip to somewhere else in Europe in September. A dive trip to Cayman Brac in Novemb...
by The Wizard
Fri Jan 04, 2019 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Considering using TIAA TPA to satisfy aggregated RMD
Replies: 4
Views: 355

Re: Considering using TIAA TPA to satisfy aggregated RMD

As noted, the proceeds from each of the ten TPAs can stay in your tax sheltered 403(b) account in something other than Trad. I would likely use TREA instead of the MM fund. Then you can withdraw only the RMD percentage each year, starting at around 3.65%, not the whole 10%+ of the TPA. But I would l...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 3:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why large cap index fund is more tax efficient than Small cap index fund ?
Replies: 4
Views: 521

Re: Why large cap index fund is more tax efficient than Small cap index fund ?

I'm pretty sure that VSMAX has had CGDs in the past. What happens is that small startup companies are owned by VSMAX but those that grow significantly get promoted to mid caps and eventually large cap. That promotion happens when VSMAX sells all of a particular stock that has tripled in value or bet...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Porting from a family plan to Google Fi
Replies: 29
Views: 1678

Re: Porting from a family plan to Google Fi

bloom2708 wrote:
Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:31 pm

...1 year of Red Pocket (pick your favorite carrier) with 5GB of data for $240. With that you wouldn't even need to put Wi-Fi on. :wink:
But does it work seamlessly in most foreign countries?
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 2:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth Income Limit
Replies: 12
Views: 1424

Re: Roth Income Limit

Do you have a 401(k) or similar plan? If so, traditional contributions reduce your MAGI and can help keep you out of phase-out. I've wondered about this, specifically the distinction between AGI and MAGI. I read https://www.irs.gov/publications/p590a#en_US_2018_publink1000230489 but am not sure whe...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First (consumer!) purchase of 2019 and purchase recordkeeping
Replies: 32
Views: 2203

Re: First (consumer!) purchase of 2019 and purchase recordkeeping

No, I'll be contrary and say that I do not track any of my purchases or expenses, either back in my working years or in six years of retirement so far. Now back a few years prior to retirement, I did put together a detailed spreadsheet itemizing my detailed basic expenses, including $500/month for c...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Sudden Needs of Cash Do You Prepare For?
Replies: 64
Views: 3604

Re: What Sudden Needs of Cash Do You Prepare For?

I'm retired and therefore don't need a true Emergency Fund. But I target I keeping $10,000 in checking to cover lumpy expenses, some predictable, some discretionary, none incredibly "sudden". Toward the end of 2017, I paid an additional six months of property tax for 2018 on short notice to take adv...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Porting from a family plan to Google Fi
Replies: 29
Views: 1678

Re: Porting from a family plan to Google Fi

Why are these low data usage plans for ~$25/month better than a 2GB plan from Mint or RedPocket for much less? Is the Google name/brand the appeal? I just like to understand the world. :| My data usage varies considerably depending if I'm "home" or on the road someplace. I enjoy Fi's flexible billi...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 11:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help me Tax Loss Harvest
Replies: 5
Views: 258

Re: Help me Tax Loss Harvest

...My plan is to hold the funds in savings and then re-buy the fund (I believe it’s 1 month later?) I would not move the $$ from a stock fund "TLH" into savings or a MM fund. That is not true TLHing. You want to EXCHANGE the proceeds from one international fund sale into a similar international fun...
by The Wizard
Thu Jan 03, 2019 9:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Total International
Replies: 14
Views: 1661

Re: Total International

Thoughts on Int’l currently? Oversold? Great buy? Or tax loss harvest and run for the hills? None of the above; if you tax lost harvest you would only do so to another international fund, so "running" wouldn't be the appropriate term... Right. There seems to be some confusion among some folks about...
by The Wizard
Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Budgeting
Replies: 10
Views: 1481

Re: Retirement Budgeting

It's good to go through the exercise of understanding where your money is presently going on an annual basis, including the split between Basic Expenses and Discretionary Expenses. But if you haven't been "budgeting" during working years, it may not be needed in retirement. This is especially true i...
by The Wizard
Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using less plastic
Replies: 69
Views: 1857

Re: Using less plastic

moehoward wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:12 am
...I use alternate bags when possible but the biggest change I done is using a high end water bottle...
I use low-end water bottles.
I have about a dozen 20-oz plastic Dr Pepper bottles that I reuse.
I keep several in my truck, a few in the Mustang and one on each bicycle...
by The Wizard
Wed Jan 02, 2019 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using less plastic
Replies: 69
Views: 1857

Re: Using less plastic

livesoft wrote:
Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:15 am
If one camps near the top of the highest mountain in Texas and looks east, then all the way to the horizon is lit up at night with burning gas flares in an area where virtually no one lives.
I'll be hiking up that mountain in March, on my return from Arizona...
by The Wizard
Wed Jan 02, 2019 8:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Paying taxes on Roth conversion made in 2019
Replies: 21
Views: 1485

Re: Paying taxes on Roth conversion made in 2019

I converted an additional $16k to Roth IRA in mid December once I had a handle on my total income for the year. So I'll be doing an estimated Federal tax payment of around $3500 shortly. I might be safe harbored already but I don't want to monkey around with the IRS. I'll be filing in early February...
by The Wizard
Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REGISTRATION FOR 2019 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST [Entry deadline has passed]
Replies: 674
Views: 12450

Re: REGISTRATION FOR 2019 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST

My guess is 2697.37, which is 7.6% above 2018's close...
by The Wizard
Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Orphaned Roth IRA
Replies: 19
Views: 1361

Re: Orphaned Roth IRA

powermega wrote:
Tue Jan 01, 2019 10:37 am
I don't understand why the rIRA cannot be contributed to any more. What am I missing?
I think the OP is unaware of the backdoor Roth contribution option...
by The Wizard
Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing
Replies: 16
Views: 855

Re: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing

...If necessary, I would further argue that you won’t be taking the RMD until 2020 as that is your right and that there is no mandatory RMD required in 2019. Good luck with the argument, but I doubt you will prevail. But what if you told them you already took your entire RMD from a different custod...
by The Wizard
Tue Jan 01, 2019 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing
Replies: 16
Views: 855

Re: RMD and IRA Transfer Timing

My understanding is that you must complete your RMD for each year before you can move any of the rest of that tax deferred money to a different custodian.
So if you take care of this by the end of 2019, you'll be able to do QCDs in 2020, assuming you are over 70.5 years of age...