Search found 36 matches

by Mr. Meow
Thu Aug 06, 2015 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Secure and Backup of Documents
Replies: 11
Views: 1377

Re: Secure and Backup of Documents

Copying files to online storage systems like Google Drive and One Drive are not the same as a backup system like CrashPlan, Carbonite and others. I agree, but sometimes have a difficult time explaining this to others in a simple, straightforward way. Can you (or someone else) give me a summary of t...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much do your children cost per month?
Replies: 83
Views: 30228

Re: How much do your children cost per month?

market timer wrote:19-month-old child
$450/month nanny
Only $450/month for a nanny? For how many hours? Is one of you a stay-at-home parent or do you have family help?
by Mr. Meow
Wed Jun 10, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA Traditional and Rising Interest Rates
Replies: 60
Views: 22142

TIAA Traditional and Rising Interest Rates

In another thread, someone suggested that it might be wise to wait on putting money into TIAA Traditional in a rising-rate environment: Interest rates are so low now that I worry that if you put it into the GRA now at 3.75%, the rates will go up but you won't be able to take advantage of those highe...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Jun 10, 2015 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)
Replies: 10
Views: 2555

Re: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)

Interest rates are so low now that I worry that if you put it into the GRA now at 3.75%, the rates will go up but you won't be able to take advantage of those higher rates. Thanks for your response. I will admit to being far from an expert on how TIAA Traditional operates, but my understanding is t...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Jun 10, 2015 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)
Replies: 10
Views: 2555

Re: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)

Is there a reason you're using the TIAA Traditional in the GRA and not GSRA? The former requires you to keep it for a period of 7 or 10 years while the latter allows transfers in and out of the fund. Also, what level is your wife's TIAA CREF employer account? Starting in a few weeks, they're splitt...
by Mr. Meow
Tue Jun 02, 2015 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finding a pediatrician - new parents
Replies: 21
Views: 1940

Re: Finding a pediatrician - new parents

Congrats on your upcoming arrival! Your post raises two separate issues: (1) finding a pediatrician, and (2) choosing a pediatrician. For finding a pediatrician, I think a good starting point is to speak to local friends or acquaintances and get some recommendations. For choosing a pediatrician, I a...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Apr 24, 2015 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Bonus" on AMEX Blue Cash and Blue Cash Preferred
Replies: 41
Views: 36618

"Bonus" on AMEX Blue Cash and Blue Cash Preferred

This has been covered before, but I haven't seen it mentioned any time lately and my family just used it to good effect, so I thought I'd remind folks. As many here know, there is an excellent cashback reward on groceries on AMEX Blue Cash (3%) and AMEX Blue Cash Preferred (6%). As you probably also...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Mar 20, 2015 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does your CPA/Tax Person help with reducing your taxes?
Replies: 66
Views: 22892

Re: Does your CPA/Tax Person help with reducing your taxes?

I have a CPA in the family. At this time of year, his goal is to just stay above water -- meaning, each day he hopes to finish a greater number of returns than the number of new returns that arrive that day. He rarely succeeds. If you're looking for some creative advice about how to lower your taxes...
by Mr. Meow
Thu Mar 12, 2015 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)
Replies: 10
Views: 2555

Re: Help with Investments (2015 Edition)

Congrats, looks like you're making a lot of progress and your portfolio looks sounds. I would take $28k from the $40k of cash and pay off the student loans immediately. That'll free up an additional $260 a month for investing, paying down your mortgage faster, additional costs with the new baby, et...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Mar 11, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)
Replies: 10
Views: 2555

Re: Help with Investments (2015 Edition)

Thanks for your response. Two questions. 1. You mention no retirement plan at work. Are you self-employed? If so then you can do a solo 401(k). Nope. I work at a very small company that offers no retirement plan. 2. Do you have dependent children? I ask because if you are on the edge of the 15/25 br...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Mar 11, 2015 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)
Replies: 10
Views: 2555

Help Mr. Meow with Investments (2015 Edition)

For a variety of reasons, it’s taken more than 16 months for me to be ready to put into action the advice I received in a previous thread (supplemented by some additional research). But now that we’re at that point, I wanted to get some feedback on where we are and where we’re headed. Again, thanks ...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job
Replies: 11
Views: 1562

Re: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job

OP here. Looks like I misread the regulations the first time around. As it stands, it looks like some of what was contributed to the HSA will be reported as income for 2015. Thanks for setting me straight.
by Mr. Meow
Tue Mar 03, 2015 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job
Replies: 11
Views: 1562

Re: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job

But from your post above, there have already been $2K of contributions into the account for this year, so it looks like you will need to remove some? As I read the IRS regulations, the employer contribution (which for us is approx. $1500) does not count toward the annual contribution limit. Am I wr...
by Mr. Meow
Tue Mar 03, 2015 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job
Replies: 11
Views: 1562

Re: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job

That's helpful, thanks. So it looks like we would be eligible to contribute 1637.50 (6550/4). And I guess there's no urgency to decide since we can make any eligible contributions before April 15, 2016 even though she's leaving her job this month. Thanks.
by Mr. Meow
Tue Mar 03, 2015 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job
Replies: 11
Views: 1562

Whether to Max Out HSA Before Wife Leaves Job

I'm in the process of putting together a post seeking advice about our overall financial picture, but need advice on an issue before then: whether to max out my wife's HSA for 2015. We have an HDHP through my wife's employer, which we've never had before (my employer does not offer insurance, and an...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Feb 13, 2015 1:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buffett/Hedge Fund Bet - Protege Partners' Excuses!
Replies: 38
Views: 5484

Re: Buffett/Hedge Fund Bet - Protege Partners' Excuses!

The real story here is that, incredibly, the hedge fund fees are beating the returns. The SP500 is an unfortunate distraction. This is exactly right. The hedge funds would have had to beat the S&P by at least 24.4% just to be tied (it's actually even more, because presumably the hedge funds' 6....
by Mr. Meow
Fri Feb 06, 2015 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How to "Undo" 2014 Traditional IRA Contribution
Replies: 1
Views: 618

How to "Undo" 2014 Traditional IRA Contribution

About two weeks ago I made a 2014 contribution to an existing traditional IRA at Vanguard and now realize I should have made the contribution to an existing Roth IRA at Vanguard instead. I haven't filed my 2014 tax return yet. What do I do? I think I mostly understand the tax implications, but what ...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Jan 30, 2015 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: The challenges of staying the course...
Replies: 67
Views: 7869

Re: The challenges of staying the course...

Part of the reason it may be difficult for you to figure out what's going on is that you have way too many holdings, many of which are redundant: We don't know if the OP has lots of accounts or not: His 401(k), her 401(k), his Roth, her Roth, his rollover IRA, her rollover IRA, his inherited IRA, h...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Jan 30, 2015 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: The challenges of staying the course...
Replies: 67
Views: 7869

Re: The challenges of staying the course...

Others have addressed your question more directly, but I just want to point out something else. By my count, you have 20 funds (if you include the money market). Here is how they break down by allocation in your portfolio: >15%: 2 funds: (18.2% and 18.4%) 10%-15%: 1 fund (12.5%) 5%-10%: 2 funds (8% ...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Oct 29, 2014 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Yet Another Post About Health Insurance
Replies: 3
Views: 688

Yet Another Post About Health Insurance

We get health insurance through my wife's employer, who will be offering two plans for 2015, both of which are HDHP/HSA. HDHP Regular Annual Premium: 171 Deductible: 5500 Employer Contribution to HSA: 1000 Coinsurance: Pays 80% after deductible Out of Pocket Max: 11,900 HDHP Plus Annual Premium: 107...
by Mr. Meow
Tue Dec 10, 2013 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Splitting costs on beach house
Replies: 18
Views: 2188

Re: Splitting costs on beach house

Simple: Have an auction for the nicest room; whichever couple is willing to pay the most gets it. Then repeat for the second-nicest room among the other two couples. The remaining couple gets the third room and pays whatever's left.
by Mr. Meow
Wed Nov 20, 2013 9:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

Mr. Meow wrote: Taxable 1.60% Bridgeway Aggressive Investors 1 (BRAGX) (0.74) 1.40% Bridgeway Ultra Small Company Market Fund (BRSIX) (0.75) 0.98% Financial Select Sector SPDR (XLF) (0.18) Those funds are probably not too tax-efficient and they make account considerations a nuissance, if not comple...
by Mr. Meow
Tue Nov 19, 2013 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Confused about AGI/MAGI

For 2014 the phaseout range for deducting an IRA contribution [using a modified adjusted gross income calculation] when you are covered by a retirement plan at work are as follows[…] • For married couples filing jointly and the spouse who makes the IRA contribution is covered by a workplace retirem...
by Mr. Meow
Sun Nov 17, 2013 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

Here's a personal example: As a single, I had no expectation of a pension and was saving pre-tax without knowing anything. I married Mrs. Pingo and a change in employment brought a pension into play. Mrs. Pingo and I still didn't know anything and started contributing to a Roth IRA at ≥34.3% margin...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Nov 15, 2013 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

While you're contemplating the Roth vs. Traditional choices that you will make, I'll refer you to the current discussion: roth vs pre-tax with future pension? Being that neither of you expects a pension and that you do not live in a no-tax state, the Traditional (pre-tax) contributions become more ...
by Mr. Meow
Thu Nov 14, 2013 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Switch Entirely To Ally Bank?
Replies: 39
Views: 14837

Re: Switch Entirely To Ally Bank?

We have been using Ally almost entirely for about three months and have had a good experience so far. We also have a checking account at a local bank with about $500 in it for several reasons: (1) It gives us someplace to deposit cash (which we then transfer to Ally). (2) It gives us someplace we ca...
by Mr. Meow
Thu Nov 14, 2013 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pregnant wife's healthcare option selection
Replies: 23
Views: 2509

Re: Pregnant wife's healthcare option selection

I notice in your co-insurance calculations, you are going all the way to the family OOP max (rather than the single OOP max). Is that right, given that your wife will be incurring most/all of the charges for the delivery? I would talk to the insurance company about how individual/family charges are ...
by Mr. Meow
Wed Nov 13, 2013 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

Thanks for the responses. The after-tax 401k questions are important, but not immediately important because even if the option is available (fairly rare), there is would be no action necessary for the foreseeable future. If/when you find out let us know. In the meantime, I'll see if I can brainstor...
by Mr. Meow
Tue Nov 12, 2013 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

OP here. Thanks again for all your responses. I really appreciate you taking so much time pingo. Questions (1st installment) Mr. Meow wrote: Taxable 1.60% Bridgeway Aggressive Investors 1 (BRAGX) (0.74) 1.40% Bridgeway Ultra Small Company Market Fund (BRSIX) (0.75) 0.98% Financial Select Sector SPDR...
by Mr. Meow
Mon Nov 11, 2013 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Re: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

Thanks for all your comments so far. I'm quoting only pingo, because his comments captured the other ones that have been made. Please give the dollar amount of contributions, as specified in the recommended format for asking portfolio questions . (I don't know why, but most people put dollar amounts...
by Mr. Meow
Sat Nov 09, 2013 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)
Replies: 27
Views: 3386

Asset Allocation for Wife's Half (and Other Questions)

Thanks in advance for any help you can give us. I've learned a lot from this forum over the last few months (including helpful recommendations for the Bogleheads books, A Random Walk Down Wall Street, and The Four Pillars of Investing). I apologize in advance for the long post. I've got several ques...
by Mr. Meow
Mon Jul 22, 2013 9:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Perils Of Picking Past Winners
Replies: 28
Views: 2682

Re: The Perils Of Picking Past Winners

Are you sure it's just 1%? Or is it 1% per quarter?

http://www.appletreewealthmanagement.co ... cess/fees/
by Mr. Meow
Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about TIAA-CREF
Replies: 37
Views: 5006

Re: Questions about TIAA-CREF

Thanks again for all your responses. I've reviewed her institution's most recent plan summary, and done some digging around both the TIAA-CREF "website" for her institution and the materials at her online account. As it turns out, I think there's little benefit to moving her assets out of ...
by Mr. Meow
Fri Jun 21, 2013 6:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about TIAA-CREF
Replies: 37
Views: 5006

Re: Questions about TIAA-CREF

Thanks for all your responses. They were helpful (though I am still a bit confused -- see my questions below). DickBenson : She had several different positions in several different departments while at the institution. During her time there, the RA contract expired and was replaced with GRA. OK, I t...
by Mr. Meow
Thu Jun 20, 2013 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions about TIAA-CREF
Replies: 37
Views: 5006

Questions about TIAA-CREF

My wife (37 years old) has three accounts with TIAA-CREF from a previous job. Having not dealt with TIAA-CREF before, I'm struggling a bit to understand her holdings and how they work, so I was hoping the smart folks could help clarify. My wife has three separate accounts -- one is RA, one is GRA, a...