Making money last through retirement

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pinebath
Posts: 5
Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:06 pm

Making money last through retirement

Post by pinebath » Sun Aug 12, 2018 11:26 pm

I am 70 and am not retired. At this point I have no plans to retire but know realistically I'll have to slow down by 80. My wife is 54, a long way from retirement. Our combined income is around 60K, including my two jobs, social security, and my wife's job.We have a special needs daughter and a son who will be attending college in two years.

Tax Status:

Married filing jointly
Federal Tax bracket 15%
State tax 4.63% (Colorado)

Assets as follows:

My Vanguard IRA around $58K VFIAX
Vanguard other investment around $60K VTSAX
Wife's TIAA 401k around $90K QCSCPX (employer contribution 6% per paycheck)
529 for son's college around $26K (12.5% Stocks, 87.5% Bonds)
Special needs trust for daughter funded through American Funds around $27K ABALX, CWGIX, ANCFX, AGTHX, ANWPX, NEWFX, SMCWF

I am new to thinking about investing. I put an inheritance into the Vanguard accounts about 7 years ago, and have only added to the IRA at the maximum allowable rate ever since. I recently got advice from a financial consultant for Transamerica to convert all of these accounts to variable annuities, except for the 529, which she advised to convert to a form of whole life insurance. The variable annuity for my IRA would pay out 5% guaranteed throughout mine and my wife's life (after my age 80). The annuity she recommended for the other Vanguard account was to have an additional death distribution of 30%. My daughter is 14, and the recommended annuity was supposed to grow quite a bit (maybe up to 400K by the time she was forty).

I decided to do some research before signing anything. I will probably not do anything with Transamerica, because I found out that they are a multilevel marketing type company, which is a deal breaker for me. That leaves me with questions about what to do instead, as follows:

1. Should I keep the Vanguard accounts as they are? I've considered a more conservative mixture of stocks and bonds, but also am still open to the annuity idea. Would there be a capital gains tax if I switched to another Vanguard fund? At this point there have been gains within both Vanguard accounts since 2011. I believe they are both index funds, and one option is to just let them grow until I am 80. Vanguard is already issuing the RMD for the IRA, which I have them deposit in the other account.

2. Would it be better to put the money (from both Vanguard funds) in an annuity to protect it? I read about annuities in the Boglehead's Guide to Investing, but I still don't get what happens to the money.

3. Should my wife be considering different options for the TIAA fund she currently has?

4. The money for my son's college fund is small, and we will need advice on how to pay for college. Are there people who specialize in just putting together college financing? Are there better options than a 529 account? Our current contribution is $400 per month.

5. Should we do anything with our daughter's fund or leave it as it is? We are the trustees on the account and will ultimately have to turn that responsibility over to our son.

Thank you so much for any advice or thoughts you have.

Dave

BogleMelon
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by BogleMelon » Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:11 am

I will answer only the things that I know, and will leave the rest to others..
pinebath wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 11:26 pm
1. Should I keep the Vanguard accounts as they are?
Yes
I've considered a more conservative mixture of stocks and bonds, but also am still open to the annuity idea.

If you want an annuity then consider a SPIA. All other annuity products (variable ones that combines annuity with investing, have high expenses that goes to the salesman pocket) You can get a quote from here www.immediateannuities.com

2. Would it be better to put the money (from both Vanguard funds) in an annuity to protect it? I read about annuities in the Boglehead's Guide to Investing, but I still don't get what happens to the money.
Annuity is basically an insurance product. It is an insurance against you outlive your savings. Insurance company wins if you die early or younger than anticipated. You win if you lived long live that you would spend all your savings if you didn't buy the annuity. Whether it is better or not, depends on so many factors.
"One of the funny things about stock market, every time one is buying another is selling, and both think they are astute" - William Feather

retiredjg
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by retiredjg » Mon Aug 13, 2018 8:39 am

1. Should I keep the Vanguard accounts as they are? I've considered a more conservative mixture of stocks and bonds, but also am still open to the annuity idea. Would there be a capital gains tax if I switched to another Vanguard fund? At this point there have been gains within both Vanguard accounts since 2011. I believe they are both index funds, and one option is to just let them grow until I am 80. Vanguard is already issuing the RMD for the IRA, which I have them deposit in the other account.
Probably not. It appears your Vanguard accounts are 100% stocks. That is too risky for your age and your needs. With your low income, you could probably pay a 0% tax rate on long term capital gains if you sold something in the taxable account. Or you could exchange the IRA into bonds to make the overall stock to bond ratio less risky.

2. Would it be better to put the money (from both Vanguard funds) in an annuity to protect it? I read about annuities in the Boglehead's Guide to Investing, but I still don't get what happens to the money.
I don't see how that would help you at this stage.

3. Should my wife be considering different options for the TIAA fund she currently has?
Maybe. We don't really know what the fund is or what expense ratio she is paying for it at TIAA or what else she has available.

4. The money for my son's college fund is small, and we will need advice on how to pay for college. Are there people who specialize in just putting together college financing? Are there better options than a 529 account? Our current contribution is $400 per month.
This will seem harsh, but it does not appear you can afford to pay for your son's college. Yes, it would be nice, but you have your own retirement to cover (so you won't be a burden to him) and you have the special needs daughter to consider. I think that $400 a month needs to be going into retirement accounts.

5. Should we do anything with our daughter's fund or leave it as it is? We are the trustees on the account and will ultimately have to turn that responsibility over to our son.
I don't know what those funds are, but if they are American Funds they will have higher expense ratios than necessary. I would consider moving the trust to a place where you can get low cost index funds.


You will likely get more answers if you will post more information. For example, posting ticker symbols without fund names and expense ratios means that many people just won't bother to look up the tickers - in other words, you will get less help.

CFOKevin
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by CFOKevin » Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:47 am

Dave,

Welcome to the forum. You've found the best place on the internet to ask your questions.

First, congrats on seeing through the sales pitch from Transamerica. Stay away from that "advisor".

1. Pick an asset allocation you are comfortable with. Given your circumstances, most would pick something like 40-60% stocks with the remainder in bonds.

2. No need to annuitize for safety, you should be fine without moving in that direction.

3. Look for a target date fund with a low expense ratio. That is best for a "set and forget" approach.

4. I'd stick with your current approach until college and encourage your son to make a college choice that is affordable. Stick with State schools and also consider starting at community college to keep costs down. My oldest did that and is now getting her doctorate at Hopkins. Once you graduate undergrad, nobody asks where you started :)

5. You might want to get a "second to die" insurance policy to fund the trust when the second parent passes. This is pretty common in the special needs world. Also, educate yourself on the DAC (Disabled Adult Child) benefit under Social Security and all other programs that might provide funding your daughter needs. Feel free to make a separate post about your daughter's situation as there are a number of posters (myself included) with a kid with special needs.

Good Luck,

Kevin

b42
Posts: 294
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by b42 » Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:59 am

Welcome to the forums!

You are right to ignore the sales pitch from Transamerica. The variable annuities and whole life policies they are trying to sell you are a great deal...for the salesperson. These types of products get them big commissions, and even though they have their uses, they are almost always not sold for that purpose.

Funds in a tax-sheltered account like an IRA can be moved around without tax issues other than withdrawing as income.

I would add in a bond fund to help even out the stock/bond mix, since with your high stock percentage, another recession could hit your balances hard.

As for paying for college, I would see what options are available and the costs (community college, public university, private, etc.). Each option has a financial aid office you can ask questions to get a better picture of what the actual cost would be. The other option is to have your son take out some student loans.

eldinerocheapo
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by eldinerocheapo » Mon Aug 13, 2018 10:13 am

You've received advice on the retirement savings side of your questions, so I'd like to opine on college savings for your Son. Many scholarships are out there and a few go unclaimed because students don't know they exist. Online searches and contacting the school of his choice should result in quite a few options through them, or via charitable and civic organizations in your town. I'd suggest two years at a local community college to get his AA degree out of the way, unless a larger college offers a full scholarship based on academics or athletics. Both my kids got generous scholarships at in state colleges and while we had many out of pocket expenses, they were only a fraction of what it would've cost overall. This will take time but should be well worth the effort. Good luck in your journey.

pinebath
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Joined: Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:06 pm

Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by pinebath » Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:40 am

Thanks to everyone who has posted so far.

Concerning my IRA with Vanguard. It sounds like there would be no tax liability at this point on the gain if I just switch funds with in Vanguard. How about on the other account? I am convinced now I should go for a much more conservative mix, but will I have to pay tax on that transfer if I stay within Vanguard?

Thanks for the continuing advice about college. The 529 is there just to help out, and we will definitely need some mixture of scholarships and other aid or loans. We'll start with the advisor for our state university. Even after 10th grade, my son has earned some college credit and will acquire much more in the next two years.

Here is more specific information on my Vanguard and American Funds accounts:

Vanguard taxable investment
VTSAX Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares (Expense Ratio .04%)

Vanguard IRA
VFIAX Vanguard 500 Index Fund Admiral Shares (Expense Ratio .04%)

American Funds (my daughter's special needs trust)
ABALX American Balanced Fund (.57%)
CWGIX Capital World Growth and Income Fund (.77%)
ANCFX Fundamental Investors (.60%)
AGTHX The Growth Fund of America (.64%)
ANWPX New Perspective Fund (.75%)
NEWFX New World Fund (1.04%)
SMCWX Small Cap World Fund (1.07%)

Again, thanks for the posts so far. I may create separate posts in the future to address specifically college and special needs.

Dave

retiredjg
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by retiredjg » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:18 pm

pinebath wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:40 am
Concerning my IRA with Vanguard. It sounds like there would be no tax liability at this point on the gain if I just switch funds with in Vanguard. How about on the other account? I am convinced now I should go for a much more conservative mix, but will I have to pay tax on that transfer if I stay within Vanguard?
It depends on many things. Staying within Vanguard is not one of them. That is irrelevant.

1 - Capital gains can be long term (shares held more than a year) or short term (shares held less than a year). I know a share held 365 days falls into one classification or the other, but never remember which.

2 - Long term capital gains will be taxed at either 0% (if your taxable income including the gains is less than $77,200 for married filing jointly) or at 15% (for the part of your taxable income that is more than $77,200.). So if your combined income is about $60k, you can sell over $40k long term gains with no tax at all. If you sell more than that, the extra would be taxed at 15%.

Of course, those numbers are just an approximation based on very little information about your income. But it should give you an idea of how much you could sell to buy some bonds if that is what you have in mind.


American Funds (my daughter's special needs trust)
ABALX American Balanced Fund (.57%)
CWGIX Capital World Growth and Income Fund (.77%)
ANCFX Fundamental Investors (.60%)
AGTHX The Growth Fund of America (.64%)
ANWPX New Perspective Fund (.75%)
NEWFX New World Fund (1.04%)
SMCWX Small Cap World Fund (1.07%)
The expense ratios for these funds are higher than you need to pay. I have no opinion on how to invest money for this (the stock to bond ratio) but I do know you could cut costs significantly. In the long run, that could mean a lot more money for your daughter.

See the chart near the bottom of this link for an illustration. The fees you are paying are not as high as in that chart, but it should give you an idea of how much fees can hurt.

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Mutual_funds_and_fees
Last edited by retiredjg on Mon Aug 13, 2018 3:28 pm, edited 1 time in total.

billfromct
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by billfromct » Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:59 pm

It's my understanding that the Federal tax brackets are based on taxable income (after deductions) & not the modified adjusted gross income (MAGI, before deductions) figure.

So if your taxable income (married filing jointly) is under $77k, then there would be $0 long term capital gains for any LT Cap gains within the $77k taxable income. I believe that any capital gains which brings your taxable income over the $77k amount would be taxed at the 15% LT capital gains rate.

Since the standard deduction is $24k for married filing jointly, theoretically you could have a MAGI of about $101k, & still be in the 2018 12% Federal tax bracket which protects the 0% LT capital gains rate. ($101k MAGI-$24k standard deduction=$77k of taxable income)

I believe that the Federal Child Tax Credit would not effect your MAGI or your taxable income.

I'm no tax expert, so maybe someone else will correct me if I'm wrong.

bill

retiredjg
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by retiredjg » Mon Aug 13, 2018 3:24 pm

billfromct wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 1:59 pm
I'm no tax expert, so maybe someone else will correct me if I'm wrong.

bill
No, you are absolutely right. I should have said "taxable income" instead of MAGI and I'll change my post. Thanks.

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dogagility
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by dogagility » Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:05 pm

pinebath wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:40 am
Thanks for the continuing advice about college. The 529 is there just to help out, and we will definitely need some mixture of scholarships and other aid or loans. We'll start with the advisor for our state university.
College is expensive, but costs can be minimized. There are three types of aid: 1) loans to the student or parent; 2) grant aid from the federal government (Pell) or the college itself; and merit aid from the college. Merit aid is based largely upon the student's GPA and standardized test scores (e.g. the SAT).

Your family may or may not be eligible for all three types of aid. To get an estimate of what college might cost, you should run the Net Price Calculator for a few different types of colleges. This NPC is located on the website of every college. Pick a few colleges of various sorts (e.g. local community college; University of Colorado; University of Northern Colorado; Colorado College) and run the NPC for each college.

You will likely find the cheapest option will be for your son to live at home and go to a local college to earn his bachelor's degree. The second cheapest option will be for your son to live at home and attend a community college for the first two years and then go away to a public university for the remaining two years.

If your son is an excellent student (high GPA and test scores), the options for finding a relatively cheap college via large merit awards will be much greater. If that is the case, then private colleges are an option.

Finally, I suggest heading over to College Confidential. This is a website devoted to all things college, just like Bogleheads is all things investing. Lots of great information there for both selecting a college and paying for college.

Final, final, thought: The worst thing you can do for your son (in my opinion) is to saddle him or your family with a lot of student loan debt. Choose college wisely.
:sharebeer
Taking "risk" since 1995.

Jablean
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Jablean » Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:10 am

Another thing to remember on college funding is that you can take money out of IRAs to pay college expenses. I'm not so sure that 529s at your age make sense unless you are in a state that gives you a break on state taxes. I'd put the money into your wife's IRA - you should be able to do 5500 a year now and 6500 next year (5500 plus 1000 for >55).

LK2012
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by LK2012 » Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:20 pm

Jablean wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:10 am
Another thing to remember on college funding is that you can take money out of IRAs to pay college expenses. I'm not so sure that 529s at your age make sense unless you are in a state that gives you a break on state taxes. I'd put the money into your wife's IRA - you should be able to do 5500 a year now and 6500 next year (5500 plus 1000 for >55).
It's $6500 per year after age 50

pinebath
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by pinebath » Wed Aug 15, 2018 8:23 am

Thanks to all of you for your postings. It's clear to me now why I joined this site. I have three immediate action steps: add funds to my wife's IRA, create a more conservative mix with my IRA and taxable funds, and research college confidential. Beyond that, I will change my daughter's mix which will take deeper research on my part.

Dave

ncbill
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by ncbill » Wed Aug 15, 2018 10:51 am

pinebath wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:40 am
Thanks to everyone who has posted so far.

Concerning my IRA with Vanguard. It sounds like there would be no tax liability at this point on the gain if I just switch funds with in Vanguard. How about on the other account? I am convinced now I should go for a much more conservative mix, but will I have to pay tax on that transfer if I stay within Vanguard?

Thanks for the continuing advice about college. The 529 is there just to help out, and we will definitely need some mixture of scholarships and other aid or loans. We'll start with the advisor for our state university. Even after 10th grade, my son has earned some college credit and will acquire much more in the next two years...
Live at home, attend community college for 2 years, then transfer to 4 year in-state.

Some U.S. states mandate 4-year state schools give full credit for courses done at community colleges.

Also, in several states joining the Guard pays 100% tuition & fees at state schools.

EDIT: looks like just tuition for Colorado: https://www.colorado.gov/pacific/dmva/t ... assistance

Or enlistment with the GI Bill waiting when he gets out.

HereToLearn
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by HereToLearn » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:03 am

As others have advised, run the NPCs. An income of $60K will offer a full ride at most highly selective colleges, but your son has to be admitted first.

If his SAT or ACT scores are stellar, he could qualify for an automatic full ride at a couple of state schools. I believe Alabama and Oklahoma had offered full ride plus stipend to National Merit Finalists. The scholarship opportunities change a bit from year to year.

Beehave
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Beehave » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:24 am

CFOKevin wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:47 am
Dave,

Welcome to the forum. You've found the best place on the internet to ask your questions.

First, congrats on seeing through the sales pitch from Transamerica. Stay away from that "advisor".

1. Pick an asset allocation you are comfortable with. Given your circumstances, most would pick something like 40-60% stocks with the remainder in bonds.

2. No need to annuitize for safety, you should be fine without moving in that direction.

3. Look for a target date fund with a low expense ratio. That is best for a "set and forget" approach.

4. I'd stick with your current approach until college and encourage your son to make a college choice that is affordable. Stick with State schools and also consider starting at community college to keep costs down. My oldest did that and is now getting her doctorate at Hopkins. Once you graduate undergrad, nobody asks where you started :)

5. You might want to get a "second to die" insurance policy to fund the trust when the second parent passes. This is pretty common in the special needs world. Also, educate yourself on the DAC (Disabled Adult Child) benefit under Social Security and all other programs that might provide funding your daughter needs. Feel free to make a separate post about your daughter's situation as there are a number of posters (myself included) with a kid with special needs.

Good Luck,

Kevin
I'm retired from corporate life. Before corporate work I taught at a very good, large state university. Now retired, I'm back to teaching part-time at a local community college. I very strongly agree with the post above about considering community college for the first two years of your son's education. The classes are small. In fact they are comparable in size to classes at incredibly expensive private colleges! Faculty can be iffy (but this is true everywhere), however, an interested student can figure out which sections are taught by the outstanding faculty sure to be present at the school. I would say that students truly brilliant in physics and math would do much better to go to a four year school, but for nearly all others a good community college (with its small class size and many instructors actually dedicated to undergraduate teaching) can provide a solid first-two-years-of-college background. Community college campus life of course cannot compare to the State U, but the savings will be huge and if that facilitates completing the four-year degree and possibly even some post-undergrad education then all the trade-offs can be well-worth it, and this evaluation is based on solid experience with both sides of the question.

I also agree with posts above that the OP, at age 70 and with a special-needs child, needs to focus savings and investment on retirement and the special-needs child - - and thus the special benefits of community college seem to apply very strongly here.

I wish OP and family the very best.

HereToLearn
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by HereToLearn » Wed Aug 15, 2018 11:30 am

Not to take anything away from community colleges, but if the student has high stats and the parents' income is $60K, attending a four year private college will cost them nothing whereas attending CC would cost at least the tuition, plus transportation and food.

The trick is being admitted to the selective colleges, as generally speaking, those tend to be the schools with the largest per capita endowments and generous financial aid policies.

pinebath
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by pinebath » Thu Aug 16, 2018 8:31 am

I should have mentioned that my son is in the top 5% of his class with an adjusted GPA (for honors classes) of 4.78. He has already earned some college credit (which may only be recognized in Colorado).

pinebath
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by pinebath » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:25 pm

Should I stop investing in a 529 for my son and put the money into a different kind of investment for him? If so, what (other than diverting it to our retirement accounts, already suggested)?

Minty
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Minty » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:36 pm

Hopefully you will not need it for decades, but if you have affordable life insurance through work, I would get it.

Also, I second HereToLearn's observation about selective colleges, which are likely to offer a lot of need-based financial aid. They also tend to have higher retention and graduation rates than other schools.
Core Four with nominal bonds and TIPS.

Tdubs
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Tdubs » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:43 pm

Regarding your wife's TIAA-CREF social choice R2 fund. What other options does she have in TIAA? Usually SC underperforms other funds and I always avoided it. It doesn't have a really high ER, but you could just put it in their S&P fund for less.

Others have noted you are heavy into stocks, and my question is whether your wife has access to TIAA traditional. If so, is it the 9 years and a day version? That would give you 4 percent interest right now and would be a very good bond substitute.

retiredjg
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by retiredjg » Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:44 pm

What happens to money in a 529 if you do not use it for the education of your son? I'm asking 'cause I don't know for sure, but I do have some ideas.

Let's say he gets a full ride. Your current $26k has grown to $30k and he didn't need any of it. If the money is withdrawn, but not used for education, I think there is a penalty?

But can't you transfer 529 that to another child? I would think a special needs child has plenty of need for money for education. I don't think a 529 has to be used only for college.

Even so, you don't seem to have any Roth IRAs right now. I'd put that $400 a month into Roth IRA. Contributions, not earnings, to Roth IRA can be withdrawn any time for any reason (although it does have to be reported on your taxes). If more money is needed for education, the money could be taken from the Roth IRA with no penalty.

I also think (again, never been there so I don't know for sure) that having money is Roth IRA is a better picture for your family than a big 529 when it comes to getting financial aid. With your son's scholastic achievement and your moderately low income, I would aggressively pursue scholarships and grants as well. I would think he is a very good candidate. Good luck!

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celia
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by celia » Sat Aug 18, 2018 2:40 pm

I think your son has a good chance of getting financial aid for college. You/he will be applying for it at the same time he is applying to get in. Most colleges grant aid using the FAFSA and some colleges have their own form in addition.

Private colleges tend to have bigger endowments than the public colleges and since private colleges tend to have fewer students, there is less competition among the families as to who gets the money. The FAFSA (which is usually submitted in February or March) is now based off of the tax return from two years previous (the year just closed would not yet have tax returns due). I encourage you to fill out a practice form using last year's return to see what your family qualifies for. Even though you will get a number showing how much the family is expected to pay, the rest (or some) of the remaining cost might be covered by the college, depending on what funds they have available and who the neediest students are. So each college has its own pool of students for which it needs to spread its own money/grants around. And most financial aid packages start with a federal loan of a few thousand before (free) grants/scholarships are given.

In some cases, families find that it costs them less to send the student to an expensive private school (eg, Harvard would likely pay ALL of the costs if he could get in), so don't ignore them. But he also needs to apply to in-state public colleges that the family can afford (or not). The competition for grants there is tough, just because there are so many more students.

It's been over a decade since we had kids in college, so I don't know if it is still true. But money saved in retirement accounts or the value of your house were not considered. So only the value of your taxable accounts (as opposed to retirement accounts) were taken into account when calculating what the family should pay.

When you apply for financial aid, also send a letter to the financial aid offices where he applies, explaining about the current and future costs for the special needs child, since I don't think that is on the FAFSA form. They can then make adjustments to their calculations, compared to a similar family with a second child who isn't special needs.

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:26 pm

LK2012 wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 9:20 pm
Jablean wrote:
Tue Aug 14, 2018 2:10 am
Another thing to remember on college funding is that you can take money out of IRAs to pay college expenses. I'm not so sure that 529s at your age make sense unless you are in a state that gives you a break on state taxes. I'd put the money into your wife's IRA - you should be able to do 5500 a year now and 6500 next year (5500 plus 1000 for >55).
It's $6500 per year after age 50
Do not use an IRA to save for college. There are no loans for retirement. Although loans are not ideal, your son will have a long time to pay it back, he’ll have lots of human capital. You being close to retirement has much less human capital, you need to keep that financial capital for yourself. Do not let any college admissions officer convince you to take money from retirement savings to pay for it.
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

Grt2bOutdoors
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Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by Grt2bOutdoors » Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:29 pm

retiredjg wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:44 pm
What happens to money in a 529 if you do not use it for the education of your son? I'm asking 'cause I don't know for sure, but I do have some ideas.

Let's say he gets a full ride. Your current $26k has grown to $30k and he didn't need any of it. If the money is withdrawn, but not used for education, I think there is a penalty?
The 10% withdrawal penalty on earnings is waived. The earnings are taxed.


I also think (again, never been there so I don't know for sure) that having money is Roth IRA is a better picture for your family than a big 529 when it comes to getting financial aid. With your son's scholastic achievement and your moderately low income, I would aggressively pursue scholarships and grants as well. I would think he is a very good candidate. Good luck!
"One should invest based on their need, ability and willingness to take risk - Larry Swedroe" Asking Portfolio Questions

retiredjg
Posts: 34186
Joined: Thu Jan 10, 2008 12:56 pm

Re: Making money last through retirement

Post by retiredjg » Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:38 pm

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
Sat Aug 18, 2018 3:29 pm
The 10% withdrawal penalty on earnings is waived. The earnings are taxed.
If the penalty is waived, there is no downside to saving too much in a 529. Is that really true?

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