Search found 735 matches

by German Expat
Sun Apr 18, 2021 6:09 am
Forum: Non-US Chapters
Topic: German Bogleheads?
Replies: 15
Views: 1169

Re: German Bogleheads?

I plan to be there. Thanks for setting it up. Sent you a PM for a calendar invite.
by German Expat
Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lease Buyout Options [car]
Replies: 11
Views: 929

Re: Lease Buyout Options [car]

You will most probably overpay the same amount for a different used car. Sure you might keep 5k in your pocket but will get a new car with 5k less value. And you will take on additional risk not knowing the car as well as your current one. If you like your current car and it has no problems buy it o...
by German Expat
Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel to Vietnam, Thailand, or India
Replies: 33
Views: 2591

Re: Travel to Vietnam, Thailand, or India

Another vote for Sri Lanka. Avoid Colombo and you can easily organize it yourself. A car and driver is inexpensive and will stay with you the whole trip. Plenty of things to do but don’t underestimate the travel times. Roads are not fast except the new highway on the coast. If you can add a couple d...
by German Expat
Sun Apr 18, 2021 2:05 am
Forum: Non-US Chapters
Topic: German Bogleheads?
Replies: 15
Views: 1169

Re: German Bogleheads?

I would be interested as well. American / German living in Switzerland. Virtual get together should be easy but we need somebody to take the initiative :happy Weekday evening or weekend better? I prefer weekday evening after dinner but can make a weekend work as well. Agenda items for first meet? I ...
by German Expat
Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SIM card questions (phones)
Replies: 8
Views: 525

Re: SIM card questions (phones)

What do you still need the US sim for in the phone while you are abroad? You might as well take it out and secure it until you return. Personally I prefer a 2nd phone and less chances to mess things up. Yes, but once you land back in the USA, will that overseas SIM work here? People may need to con...
by German Expat
Tue Apr 13, 2021 8:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SIM card questions (phones)
Replies: 8
Views: 525

Re: SIM card questions (phones)

It will still cost you money though if somebody calls your US number and you are international. But not sure it is exactly the same for prepaid and I don't think those even allow international roaming without buying an (expensive) add on plan. If it works be extra careful about your setup to make su...
by German Expat
Sun Apr 04, 2021 2:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Claiming SS early or late for non-representative sub-populations
Replies: 14
Views: 1181

Re: Claiming SS early or late for non-representative sub-populations

Using average is not the best way. When the decision comes up you already made it to 62. As a man you have 20 more years and as a woman it’s closer to 23 based on the tables here. Might be a bit lower in the COVID year. Also you know your own health and Family circumstances. https://www.ssa.gov/oact...
by German Expat
Mon Mar 29, 2021 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Curious about negative expat experiences -- why don't more people do it?
Replies: 111
Views: 10729

Re: Curious about negative expat experiences -- why don't more people do it?

Main negatives are - finding a job for a spouse if you are a 2 income family - if children are older they are harder to move - housing, US houses tend to be huge compared to other countries (look at large Asian cities) - distance to family in the US - can only stay a limited time in some countries b...
by German Expat
Mon Mar 29, 2021 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High spenders what do you spend on?
Replies: 255
Views: 25268

Re: High spenders what do you spend on?

For us it is mainly travel with (before COVID) 3 long distance trips a year and some short trips. Around 25-50k per year. Other larger spending is eating out at least once a week or more often and in Switzerland this is easily 200 and up for a family of 3 (also a lot less last 12 month). Grocery bil...
by German Expat
Sun Mar 28, 2021 8:25 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Portfolio advice - SRI portfolio for Swiss
Replies: 10
Views: 1020

Re: Portfolio advice - SRI portfolio for Swiss

You should really also look at your 2nd and 3rd pillar and add them to your totals to see your real asset allocation. I just checked my wife’s 2nd pillar and is is approx. 40 percent bonds, 40 percent stock and 20 percent real estate. I assume with your age if you worked only in Switzerland you have...
by German Expat
Wed Mar 24, 2021 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Brokerage for non profit
Replies: 2
Views: 168

Re: Brokerage for non profit

All ETF's are US based (Vangurard, Schwab, Fidelity, Interactive Brokers, can use either of the 4) for known reasons (PFIC). We won't donate enough to justify a DAF and are also not sure when we come back to the US. Currently supporting things in Switzerland but those don't really work for US tax pu...
by German Expat
Wed Mar 24, 2021 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Brokerage for non profit
Replies: 2
Views: 168

Brokerage for non profit

My son's school has a non profit and I was looking to donate some appreciated ETF's. But they currently use Stifel Nicolaus as the broker and their fees are very high. The school is in Switzerland but has a US foundation so we can get the (US) tax benefit. Minimum 50$ charge and 15$ for outgoing wir...
by German Expat
Sat Mar 20, 2021 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Irish Whiskey
Replies: 32
Views: 2920

Re: Irish Whiskey

I like Jameson for price value at a bar but also have a bottle at home. My nice Irish whiskeys are Redbreast 21 and recently found a Middleton very rare.
by German Expat
Sun Mar 14, 2021 5:20 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Borrowing money from a EU bank, but there's a twist :)
Replies: 21
Views: 2206

Re: Borrowing money from a EU bank, but there's a twist :)

Credit Suisse offers Lombard loans and here's what they have to say about that: The loan-to-value ratio applied when the loan is granted will be reviewed at regular intervals. If the securities held in your safekeeping account decline in value and/or their loan-to-value ratios are adjusted, you wil...
by German Expat
Sat Mar 13, 2021 6:37 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Borrowing money from a EU bank, but there's a twist :)
Replies: 21
Views: 2206

Re: Borrowing money from a EU bank, but there's a twist :)

The amount you are looking for is way too small for any bank to offer you anything else but their cookie cutter products. If you use ETF's or other things it is possible but most banks will want you to turn them over so you couldn't easily trade them. What you want is best accomplished with a margin...
by German Expat
Fri Feb 12, 2021 7:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help find an unbiased news source...
Replies: 90
Views: 4616

Re: Help find an unbiased news source...

First thing is you need to understand what your own point of view is. Then you need to understand that there is (close to always) bias in news. As long as you understand it you can form your own opinion. What does help is to read or see various sources so you don't end up in an echo chamber. For exa...
by German Expat
Sat Feb 06, 2021 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: UTMA account vs. alternatives
Replies: 18
Views: 1579

Re: UTMA account vs. alternatives

Our son has a UTMA and we put any presents in there and also a bit extra from our side. Instead of buying I transfer funds with gains and tax gain harvest them up to the max. Used to be a bit better before the tax law changes but you can still do a total of 2200 in dividends and tax gains. You could...
by German Expat
Mon Feb 01, 2021 4:41 am
Forum: Non-US Chapters
Topic: [Looking for Bogleheads in] Switzerland
Replies: 9
Views: 3773

Re: [Looking for Bogleheads in] Switzerland

Due to the number of threads from investors living in Switzerland and discussing the specificities of the Swiss system, would this be the time to consider a Swiss chapter and meet up after the virus is contained? I would be interested but there is a larger difference between cases like myself (US c...
by German Expat
Tue Jan 19, 2021 3:36 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: US citizen facing early retirement in Germany..How to go about managing finances
Replies: 15
Views: 1878

Re: US citizen facing early retirement in Germany..How to go about managing finances

I am not familiar (anymore) with German taxes but the taxes tend to be higher and when you sell gains have higher taxes compared to the US. You would need to do some modelling if its better to reset your cost base and pay the US taxes (maybe at least for some money you need the first couple years) v...
by German Expat
Mon Jan 18, 2021 9:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy and sell bond fund to double dip yield
Replies: 32
Views: 1363

Re: Buy and sell bond fund to double dip yield

'This would work as long as the funds’ share prices don’t change much between the ex-dates.'

And here is your assumption that is not true. Also you will pay higher taxes if its in taxable.
by German Expat
Thu Jan 07, 2021 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

Something to think about. Although Transferwise says it is slower, ACH pull seems to be safer than ACH push. There have been numerous stories on these forums of ACH pushes getting lost, and the bank you pushed from won't go any further than to say "we sent the money, there's nothing more we ca...
by German Expat
Thu Jan 07, 2021 2:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

I initiated ACH from IB to pull monies from a bank. It took IB one week to make the monies available. Now, I initiated ACH from the same bank to pull the monies from IB and IB has been rejecting my ACH requests. I pinged support and they busted out this 44-day hold nonsense because it is different ...
by German Expat
Mon Jan 04, 2021 6:32 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Using Margin as Emergency Fund?
Replies: 29
Views: 2122

Re: Using Margin as Emergency Fund?

I am thinking about investing more of our emergency fund and use margin for a relative rare event. We did not need the emergency fund the last years and our emergency fund is less than 5% of our taxable investments. I would reduce it to between 25% and 50% to allow for a bit of flexibility in case w...
by German Expat
Sat Jan 02, 2021 3:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedge against housing bubble
Replies: 20
Views: 2443

Re: Hedge against housing bubble

Most of you are using US information but this is Switzerland where the longest mortgage is usually 10 years and can only be canceled or refinanced with a high penalty. You could also go for a variable mortgage but then you have a higher interest risk. So you have 2 issues here a) In e.g. 10 years yo...
by German Expat
Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedge against housing bubble
Replies: 20
Views: 2443

Re: Hedge against housing bubble

Europe there are generally poor, aging demographics. Unless unlikely levels of immigration are to be allowed. Bottom line if you know you will be holding on for 10 years buying in Switzerland may be worth it. Otherwise probably not. Swiss demographics because of immigration are not aging. It is act...
by German Expat
Fri Jan 01, 2021 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing a career
Replies: 112
Views: 6943

Re: Choosing a career

The Washington Post had an article about it and recommend high schoolers to look what jobs pay well. But even with this information out seems like it has not much influence on decisions. There are also links in it to various salary information with postgraduate earning information. https://www.washi...
by German Expat
Fri Jan 01, 2021 12:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Hedge against housing bubble
Replies: 20
Views: 2443

Re: Hedge against housing bubble

We are also in Switzerland and at this time made the decision not to buy. Probably would have worked out better if we bought in 2014 when we arrived but we thought at the time that real estate in the Zurich area is quite pricy and also inventory is very low so you don't have many choices. Also we we...
by German Expat
Fri Jan 01, 2021 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]
Replies: 3500
Views: 582782

Re: What are you up YTD? [Year To Date]

Up 21.23% with a 70/30 portfolio. We are renters and all is invested except emergency fund. Staying the course and some rebalancing during the downturn helped. The numbers do still include savings as well but the bulk is return.
by German Expat
Mon Dec 28, 2020 6:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

Up to now only currency conversions and no issues. I am thinking about doing some investments though to be in good standing. I am also interested in their stock yield enhancement program and will give it a spin with smaller amounts.
by German Expat
Sun Dec 27, 2020 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

I'm not following what they are saying: If funds are withdrawn to a bank other than the originating bank via ACH, a 44-business-day withdrawal hold period will be applied. EDIT: I think I see it. If I pull from Bank A into IB and withdraw to Bank B, there would be some hold period. How do they real...
by German Expat
Sun Dec 27, 2020 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

Really great to know, thank you occambogle and German Expat. In my case transferring monies into IB shouldn't be a problem, as I should be able to use ACH between US banks & IB. Currency conversion and sending monies to a foreign bank I was concerned with, but IB seems to take care of it too. K...
by German Expat
Sun Dec 27, 2020 3:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

Is it really the case that IBLLC (US) Lite / Pro can link up with pretty much any banks around the world, and perform currency conversions for cheap? This sounds too good :D IKBR has a decent amount of currencies you can use for withdrawals but not all. e.g. Philippine Peso is not on list, UAE Dirh...
by German Expat
Wed Dec 16, 2020 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Managing Google Drive
Replies: 12
Views: 716

Re: Managing Google Drive

Click on the storage (where it states 14.6 GB of 15 GB used) and it will show you all files sorted descending by size.
by German Expat
Sun Dec 13, 2020 4:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Weird Google drive access question
Replies: 18
Views: 1311

Re: Weird Google drive access question

Somebody else already answered it. If the owner of a document is deleted the documents are gone (technically they will stay for a bit but only the admin of the .edu account can see and recover them so for all practical purposes they are gone for you). As long as you still have access to them via you...
by German Expat
Sat Dec 12, 2020 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who's keeping Netflix now? (price increased to $13.99)
Replies: 200
Views: 14308

Re: Who's keeping Netflix now? (price increased to $13.99)

We will stay but I hope a larger amount of people cancels. I am sure they are looking at the numbers and if nobody cancels after the price hike the next one will just come sooner.
by German Expat
Sat Dec 05, 2020 5:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in the US and another country (retirement planning)
Replies: 97
Views: 6608

Re: Living in the US and another country (retirement planning)

There is a lot of web sites out that rent out furnished apartments. There are local country specific sites that you can google. Most of the people renting out are themselves away for an assignment but don't want to loose their apartment (e.g. in Germany rents are going way up for new rental and in t...
by German Expat
Fri Dec 04, 2020 3:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in the US and another country (retirement planning)
Replies: 97
Views: 6608

Re: Living in the US and another country (retirement planning)

My wife and I live six months each year in the USA, where we own a home, and six months in an EU country, where we rent an apartment -- except this year due to Covid-19. Residency: My wife's a dual citizen. I've obtained permanent residency in the EU country so I can live, work, and travel througho...
by German Expat
Sat Nov 28, 2020 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Golf simulators
Replies: 1
Views: 197

Re: Golf simulators

I don't play much golf but bumped into a sale at Costco. No idea how well it works.

https://www.costco.com/trugolf-vista-10 ... 63214.html
by German Expat
Thu Nov 12, 2020 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WiFi Extender with DSL
Replies: 15
Views: 831

Re: WiFi Extender with DSL

Another vote for mesh routers. Amazon just brought out their new versions of the eero Wi-Fi 6 so already new stand ard. First review was a bit mixed but with 10 Mbit won't matter. We use Orbi but they can be a bit finicky. Google is a good choice as well.
by German Expat
Sun Nov 08, 2020 3:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?
Replies: 56
Views: 10855

Re: TransferWise versus Interactive Brokers - thread?

Hello, Interested in this topic since I will start making some five figures (XX,XXX) transfers USD>EUR in the future. Regarding the IBRK Lite account: Does that one have a Cash Management option and access to their debit card? Can I Link my US and Portuguese bank accounts to it the IBRK lite accoun...
by German Expat
Wed Nov 04, 2020 10:30 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Advice on planning to move to Germany from the US
Replies: 5
Views: 1364

Re: Advice on planning to move to Germany from the US

Investments will be extremely painful for you except if you drop your US green card and fully split the accounts from your wife and file separate taxes. Then you are just a German and don't have to worry to file US taxes. Then you can invest without running into problems e.g. via Interactivebrokers....
by German Expat
Sat Oct 03, 2020 4:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you pay for healthcare (50-65 year olds)
Replies: 83
Views: 9301

Re: How much do you pay for healthcare (50-65 year olds)

I am currently in Switzerland and here you pay health insurance 100% yourself even if you are employed. 56 years old, around 260 USD per month (no dental) with higher deductible (2600 USD) and some additional co pays. Switzerland is supposedly second highest in the world for health costs but looking...
by German Expat
Sat Oct 03, 2020 4:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can 529 plan be used for overseas k12 school?
Replies: 7
Views: 1933

Re: Can 529 plan be used for overseas k12 school?

I didn't look into it the previous years and now trying to see if this is still possible for 2020 or not. Our son's high school is US recognized (New England Association of Schools and College3s) and it should be ok from that side. But now with the wording around state I am not sure anymore if it is...
by German Expat
Sun Sep 27, 2020 2:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Battery issues - SHORT Drive due to COVID (Work From Home)
Replies: 86
Views: 5416

Re: Car Battery issues - SHORT Drive due to COVID (Work From Home)

Drive your car once in a while a bit longer because otherwise your oil will also get issues (will collect humidity). Drive it once a week for a while to get it into operating temperature. Another issue to watch out for is how old your gasoline gets (how often do you refill?). Wear and tear will be q...
by German Expat
Wed Sep 23, 2020 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microsoft One Drive Security
Replies: 3
Views: 487

Re: Microsoft One Drive Security

Short answer is yes if you do it correctly. Longer answer: 1. Make sure you have 2-factor authentication on for One Drive (in general this is best practice anyway regardless if your files are password protected on One Drive or not) 2. Make sure you use a new version of Excel and a long password Exce...
by German Expat
Mon Sep 21, 2020 4:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quiet treadmill for apartment
Replies: 6
Views: 794

Re: Quiet treadmill for apartment

Another vote for an elliptical. We have a Lifefitness X1 and its in the room next to our son's bedroom. He never wakes up when we use it and if the door to the room is closed I can't hear anywhere else.
by German Expat
Wed Sep 02, 2020 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to create a hotspot and conduct online meetings using a mobile device?
Replies: 11
Views: 825

Re: How to create a hotspot and conduct online meetings using a mobile device?

Thank you, all for the responses. You are not providing enough information about the meetings. You also do mention hotspot but then state that you want to join the meeting from your phone. A hotspot is only needed if you want to use a laptop or other device (tablet etc.) that does not have its own ...
by German Expat
Tue Sep 01, 2020 6:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to create a hotspot and conduct online meetings using a mobile device?
Replies: 11
Views: 825

Re: How to create a hotspot and conduct online meetings using a mobile device?

You are not providing enough information about the meetings. You also do mention hotspot but then state that you want to join the meeting from your phone. A hotspot is only needed if you want to use a laptop or other device (tablet etc.) that does not have its own data plan and connect it via your p...