Search found 3091 matches

by GerryL
Tue Dec 29, 2020 6:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Thinking Ahead to 2021 QCDs
Replies: 2
Views: 237

Re: Thinking Ahead to 2021 QCDs

Last year's RMD holiday, announced a few months into 2020, caused some people to consider whether they should be so quick to execute QCDs. But, 1) Another RMD holiday is probably not going to happen and 2) If you want to donate the money anyway, would a surprise RMD holiday change your mind about ta...
by GerryL
Tue Dec 29, 2020 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do Medicare/IRMAA deductions factor into calculating the taxable portion of social security?
Replies: 7
Views: 565

Re: How do Medicare/IRMAA deductions factor into calculating the taxable portion of social security?

Your use of the word "deductions" here is confusing. Are you trying to understand how MAGI is calculated for determining whether you are subject to higher Medicare premiums (IRMAA)?
by GerryL
Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement windows
Replies: 29
Views: 2388

Re: Replacement windows

When I got my windows >12 years ago I heard that it was best to get a product that is manufactured in your region, where they are more in tune with local weather conditions. (I'm in the Pacific NW.) Of course, the windows are one thing. The experience of the people who do the installation is very im...
by GerryL
Mon Dec 28, 2020 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Benefit from Previous Employer
Replies: 2
Views: 218

Re: Retirement Benefit from Previous Employer

Did they get bought/acquired by another company? I had a small pension from an employer where I worked in the 80s just long enough to get vested. Kept track of them, and when they were acquired by a different company, I kept following. In my case, they got in touch with me, which was possible becaus...
by GerryL
Sun Dec 27, 2020 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2020: Lessons learned
Replies: 237
Views: 16173

Re: 2020: Lessons learned

Don't fall for the offer by cruise companies to save a few dollars by paying with an "echeck" instead of applying charges to a card. Before making the payment, I read the T&Cs to confirm that if they cancelled the trip they would refund what I paid. They did indeed cancel, but they ins...
by GerryL
Sun Dec 27, 2020 12:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: age to start long term care ins & self-insure net worth?
Replies: 15
Views: 1895

Re: age to start long term care ins & self-insure net worth?

Something to keep in mind; 1) The term "long term care"(LTC) is a horrible misleading term that causes all sorts of problems. You will also see lots of misleading statistics about LTC. The problem is that there is not really anything that is LTC. Broadly speaking you have either; a) assis...
by GerryL
Sat Dec 26, 2020 5:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How many years of expenses to keep in safe assets?
Replies: 44
Views: 2847

Re: How many years of expenses to keep in safe assets?

As others have noted above: It depends. I choose to keep 3-4 years of expenses (that exceed my SS income) in cash-like assets, plus the current year's RMD in cash in my IRA. But since that all accounts for well under 3% of my portfolio, it's an easy decision. If cash gets too bloated, I move some t...
by GerryL
Sat Dec 26, 2020 3:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How many years of expenses to keep in safe assets?
Replies: 44
Views: 2847

Re: How many years of expenses to keep in safe assets?

As others have noted above: It depends. I choose to keep 3-4 years of expenses (that exceed my SS income) in cash-like assets, plus the current year's RMD in cash in my IRA. But since that all accounts for well under 3% of my portfolio, it's an easy decision. If cash gets too bloated, I move some to...
by GerryL
Fri Dec 25, 2020 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: age to start long term care ins & self-insure net worth?
Replies: 15
Views: 1895

Re: age to start long term care ins & self-insure net worth?

I have read that early- to mid-50s is the best time. Premiums are lower and you are covered from that point on, even if your incapacity is not age-related. I took out my policy around 53. I am solo and have a family history of Alzheimer's, so for me it is a reasonable purchase. Premiums started at ~...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 24, 2020 5:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Streaming TV ?
Replies: 33
Views: 2665

Re: Streaming TV ?

It's a bit obscure, but Kanopy is a great movie service available through many libraries, especially if you like foreign or art house movies. It's the best channel you've never heard of. HBO Max has a big selection or current and older movies, and as of last week is finally available in the Roku ec...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 23, 2020 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What exactly are YOU doing in retirement?
Replies: 93
Views: 8818

Re: What exactly are YOU doing in retirement?

I find it hard to believe I am in year seven of retirement. Most of my adult life I have not experienced boredom, except when forced to sit through some business meetings. So, boredom is not a problem for me. Even before the pandemic I was not volunteering as much as I'd intended, but that is always...
by GerryL
Tue Dec 22, 2020 7:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can I exchange mutual funds within one brokerage account without incurring taxes.
Replies: 7
Views: 477

Re: Can I exchange mutual funds within one brokerage account without incurring taxes.

I have a brokerage account with vanguard that has a couple of mutual funds in it. This is taxabale meaning if I was to sell and use the money I would be taxed on it. Keep in mind, that in a taxable account, what you (legally) do with the money you make from an investment is of no concern to the IRS...
by GerryL
Mon Dec 21, 2020 4:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What long-term real return do you now expect?
Replies: 86
Views: 8060

Re: What long-term real return do you now expect?

I created a spreadsheet to help figure out what my RMDs might look like over the next decade or so. I have columns for two different growth estimates: 5% and 8%. I also have columns for the actuals, which I update each year. My AA is 60/40, but my IRA is heavier on the bond side since my Roth is all...
by GerryL
Fri Dec 18, 2020 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll: how much annual income do you think you need in retirement?
Replies: 113
Views: 8685

Re: Poll: how much annual income do you think you need in retirement?

Oregon. Solo. Paid off mortgage. When I retired at 66 in 2014, I started with an estimated a budget of $36k, not including income tax. Then I upped it to $40k to give myself more discretionary spending and because SS and other income would cover the initial estimate. After I had my plan evaluated by...
by GerryL
Fri Dec 18, 2020 9:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does company loyalty still exist?
Replies: 64
Views: 4470

Re: Does company loyalty still exist?

Soon2BXProgrammer wrote: Fri Dec 18, 2020 6:49 pm I bought relationships with people, including a boss. I was loyal to them. No the company. Even with being loyal to the people, each of us have chosen to move on at different times.
My boss at Megacorp used to advise us: "Don't be more loyal to the company than the company is to you."
by GerryL
Fri Dec 18, 2020 5:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Questions on withdrawing funds for retirement
Replies: 12
Views: 1428

Re: Questions on withdrawing funds for retirement

Regarding auto-reinvest in your taxable account. You might want to consider turning off auto-reinvest now. Use the use the dividends/cap gains if needed or reinvest as appropriate. Make the choice each quarter. When you look forward and decide you want to start building up a new stash of cash, just ...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 17, 2020 8:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Waste collection (trash) prices
Replies: 56
Views: 2414

Re: Waste collection (trash) prices

The garbage pickups are going to use large containers lifted and dumped with a mechanical arm, ultimately using fewer employees. Probably two employees per truck instead of three. I've seen these work - half the garbage goes in the truck and the other half in the street. Hmm. Our service uses this ...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 17, 2020 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Waste collection (trash) prices
Replies: 56
Views: 2414

Re: Waste collection (trash) prices

Here in Portland (OR) suburb, I pay ~$48 every other month for one small trash bin picked up weekly and one recycle bin and one yard debris bin picked up every other week. Years ago when I was unemployed, I stopped regular pickup and just paid for on-call trash pickup every few months. When the coun...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relocation - California, Santa Cruz, Watsonville, Salinas, Monterey area
Replies: 168
Views: 9114

Re: Relocation - California, Santa Cruz, Watsonville, Salinas, Monterey area

I lived up at the Presidio from Feb to Oct in 1975 when I was in the USAF attending the Defense Language Institute. Loved the area. Have visited a few times since. I especially like Pacific Grove. Two observations: 1) I could practically set my watch by the fog coming in at about 4PM each day 2) I w...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 17, 2020 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Timing of 2021 QCDs
Replies: 10
Views: 549

Re: Timing of 2021 QCDs

I execute QCDs early in the year and take the rest of my RMD late in the year, with taxes withheld to meet safe harbor amount. I do the QCDs early so I can apply for a match from my former employer before dollars run out. (Limits used to be set by quarter, and the window for applying for a match was...
by GerryL
Tue Dec 15, 2020 1:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement Planning and Social Security
Replies: 17
Views: 2624

Re: Retirement Planning and Social Security

MAGI at age 63 affects IRRMA at age 65. How exactly does the timing work? Medicare, and IRMAA, starts the month you turn 65 and IRMAA is based on the year you turned 63? So if someone's birthday is December 1, and they turned 63 on Dec. 1, 2020, then, come Dec. 2022, whether they pay IRMAA will be ...
by GerryL
Mon Dec 14, 2020 4:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Higher Tax Bracket in Retirement Folks
Replies: 13
Views: 2031

Re: Higher Tax Bracket in Retirement Folks

I am sure you will get plenty of advice here for doing Roth conversions. But I will just give you two unrelated tips: 1) Prepare your budget -- and yourself mentally -- for higher Medicare premiums due to the IRMAA rules. 2) Plan to use QCDs (Qualified Charitable Distributions) once you reach age 72...
by GerryL
Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Portfolio question
Replies: 10
Views: 1691

Re: Am I doing this managing money thing right?

Am I missing something? Didn't see anything about an emergency fund.
by GerryL
Sun Dec 13, 2020 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement Planning and Social Security
Replies: 17
Views: 2624

Re: Retirement Planning and Social Security

Tip: Be sure to read up on IRMAA so your Medicare premiums don't come as a surprise.
by GerryL
Sun Dec 13, 2020 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best < $100 purchase?
Replies: 136
Views: 16590

Re: Best < $100 purchase?

Ever? I don't know. But within recent memory (2-3 years) I'd say the low-end Roku device I got for under $30 has been very useful.

I tend to keep things for a very long time and I would guess that the things that have served me well and longest probably cost under $100.
by GerryL
Fri Dec 11, 2020 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Been just using Vanguard stock index funds
Replies: 13
Views: 2342

Re: Been just using Vanguard stock index funds

The 3-fund portfolio is the most appropriate for beginners: - On fund for U.S. stocks (e.g. VTSAX) - One fund for International stocks (e.g. VTIAX) - One bond fund (e.g. VBTLX) And it is also a fine portfolio for folks who are longer in the tooth. OP, You wrote that you intended to keep the money i...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 09, 2020 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retire at 65; Don't take Pension Until 70 ?
Replies: 12
Views: 1120

Re: Retire at 65; Don't take Pension Until 70 ?

I had access to two tiny pensions when I retired at ~66. I'd planned to postpone both so they could grow. But as I did the paperwork to retire, my company informed me that their in-house rules were that if I was already 65 when I retired, the pension stopped growing. So the decision was made for me,...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 09, 2020 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Non-Covered Share Cost Basis
Replies: 4
Views: 389

Re: Vanguard Non-Covered Share Cost Basis

Hey guys, I need to sell a few thousand dollars of VTIAX that I own. My highest cost basis shares are from 2011 and are non-covered. They are intermingled with a bunch of other non-covered VTIAX shares bought on different days. I've also sold non-covered VTIAX shares in the past (years and years ag...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 09, 2020 3:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SERP Plan Question (Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan)
Replies: 6
Views: 262

Re: SERP Plan Question (Supplemental Executive Retirement Plan)

Do you have the option of rolling it into an IRA once you retire (or leave the company)? My company had what they called a SERP that was actually a profit-sharing plan. (They eventually changed the name to Profit-Sharing Plan.) It was ALL company contributions based on salary and how well the compan...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 09, 2020 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Auto Dimming Glasses
Replies: 29
Views: 1789

Re: Auto Dimming Glasses

I am very light sensitive, so long ago I asked my eye doc about Transition lenses. He warned that the thicker your lenses are the slower they are to darken. I have a very strong prescription (can't really function outside without glasses) and the lenses were rather thick, and he told me that the dar...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 03, 2020 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way to shop for medigap plan
Replies: 39
Views: 2788

Re: best way to shop for medigap plan

I wonder: is there a Boglehead consensus on whether or not to get Medigap coverage? There is a recent thread on that topic here: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=331347 So I'll call this the Insurance company's: "get Medigap early or we'll try to screw you later" g...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 03, 2020 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Solar Shingles
Replies: 5
Views: 878

Re: Tesla Solar Shingles

Hi There, Does anyone have any experience with the Tesla Solar Shingles? I need to redo my roof and I am exploring doing solar in the process, so curious to get people's thoughts if they have experience. My biggest hang up is how terrible Tesla customer service & repair is known to be should I ...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 03, 2020 7:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to take out money in Retirement
Replies: 14
Views: 2355

Re: How to take out money in Retirement

OP, Book recommendation: How to Make Your Money Last by Jane Bryant Quinn. (Author is now retired and living by her own guidance!) This book outlines a variety of strategies for different circumstances. And I will second the advice about being aware of how withdrawing money from different kinds of a...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 03, 2020 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way to shop for medigap plan
Replies: 39
Views: 2788

Re: best way to shop for medigap plan

So far, I've stayed with Traditional Medicare (A+B) plus a Part D drug plan. I don't have any Medigap yet. From what I've read above, I think I'll wait another year or more before jumping on the Medigap ride. If you signed up for Medicare Part B at age 65, that starts a 6 month Open Enrollment peri...
by GerryL
Thu Dec 03, 2020 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way to shop for medigap plan
Replies: 39
Views: 2788

Re: best way to shop for medigap plan

I believe that the rates are per year. They ranges from over $2,000 to over $4,000 for plans F and G. The total premium cost for B+D+supplement may easily go over $10,000 for a couple. This must vary by zip code. In 92210, the cheapest G is State Farm which is $1400ish per year. In round numbers, a...
by GerryL
Wed Dec 02, 2020 3:43 pm
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)

I remember growing up outside of Detroit in the 60's and 70's when we had the three major network channels, PBS and a few independents plus one Canadian channel...and always complaining there was nothing to watch on TV. In some aspects, even with hundred's of channels, there is still nothing to wat...
by GerryL
Tue Dec 01, 2020 8:03 pm
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)

I pay only $8.99 (one device at a time and no HD) and that plan did not go up. Still, I am debating how much longer I will stick with it once I go through a few more programs. Too many options available to fill my evening tv viewing time, and not as much being added that I want to watch. I may decid...
by GerryL
Tue Dec 01, 2020 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: best way to shop for medigap plan
Replies: 39
Views: 2788

Re: best way to shop for medigap plan

I researched medigap plans earlier this year. I kept getting told that the plans offered by different providers are the same, only the premiums are different. But that's not really true. Can you share some examples of differences that you found (between the same letter plans but different insurance...
by GerryL
Thu Nov 26, 2020 9:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thanksgiving: Are you Funding your DAF now?
Replies: 10
Views: 862

Re: Thanksgiving: Are you Funding your DAF now?

I funded my DAF (for two years) early in the year. Lucky I did, because the share price of the company stock I use to fund it was unusually high and has since gone down quite a bit.

I'm bundling my deductions into even-numbered years.
by GerryL
Wed Nov 25, 2020 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SilverScript SmartRx - Medicare Part D
Replies: 10
Views: 663

Re: SilverScript SmartRx - Medicare Part D

I just switched to SiverScript SmartRx for 2021. My premium will be $6.30, less than half of the cheap program I've been on for the past 2-3 years. $0 for my generic meds. CVS is the online pharmacy. The company I was with, Envision, just changed their name to Elixir. They appear to have ... um ......
by GerryL
Wed Nov 25, 2020 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SilverScript SmartRx - Medicare Part D
Replies: 10
Views: 663

Re: SilverScript SmartRx - Medicare Part D

I just switched to SiverScript SmartRx for 2021. My premium will be $6.30, less than half of the cheap program I've been on for the past 2-3 years. $0 for my generic meds. CVS is the online pharmacy. The company I was with, Envision, just changed their name to Elixir. They appear to have ... um ... ...
by GerryL
Wed Nov 25, 2020 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tips on "Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!"
Replies: 26
Views: 2066

Re: Tips on "Don't Just Do Something, Stand There!"

I don't really worry about rebalancing that much. The only time I take any action is early in the year when I move $$ in my IRA into the settlement account to cover that year's RMD. I just move the $$ to nudge the AA back into line.

Maybe my tip is: Think of it as an unenjoyable task.
by GerryL
Tue Nov 24, 2020 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dentist billing in advance
Replies: 84
Views: 6529

Re: Dentist billing in advance

I pay for my basic treatment a year in advance. My long-time dentist offers this option as a loyalty plan, because he hates dealing with insurance companies. I've been paying a flat fee each year for all of my cleanings, x-rays and exams. The fee has not changed since we started at least 3 years ago...
by GerryL
Mon Nov 23, 2020 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary
Replies: 51
Views: 5232

Re: Having no luck finding a professional fiduciary

Thanks Everyone for this discussion. An update. Ms No-Show has made no contact. As far as I'm concerned, that door has closed. Yesterday I heard back from one of the PF businesses I recently contacted, and after a brief discussion set up a face-to-face meeting for when I return from an upcoming tri...
by GerryL
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: what do bogleheads do with taxable acct?
Replies: 32
Views: 3688

Re: what do bogleheads do with taxable acct?

I hold US and international stock index funds in my taxable account. When I was working I contributed on a regular basis with every paycheck, now that I'm retired, I take most of the dividends for monthly spending. Regards, I did the same with Balanced Index fund. Just kept growing it with regular ...
by GerryL
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:52 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Are you a Boglehead?
Replies: 114
Views: 6131

Re: Are you a Boglehead?

I used to call myself Boglehead-lite because I was under the mistaken impression that in addition to simple index investing I was supposed to make "interesting moves" with my money. Then I read more and joined this forum. Now I'm just a plain Boglehead. Not a purist, though.
by GerryL
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Need Help With My Mom's Cash Hoard!
Replies: 28
Views: 3626

Re: Need Help With My Mom's Cash Hoard!

Have you pointed out to her that her cash is losing value due to inflation? Can you show her a graph that illustrates how much her cash will lose to inflation over the next 10-20 years?
by GerryL
Sat Nov 21, 2020 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Books for Post Retirement
Replies: 19
Views: 2625

Re: Best Books for Post Retirement

I haven't seen anyone yet call out the Jane Bryant Quinn book How to Make Your Money Last.
by GerryL
Thu Nov 19, 2020 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptops for seniors
Replies: 26
Views: 1467

Re: Laptops for seniors

Do they use it on their lap or sitting at a desk or table? You could go with a large screen as someone else suggested if it normally sits at a table anyway - monitors have become so cheap. Then if they want to take it with them to the couch, etc. they can unplug and use the smaller screen. I would ...
by GerryL
Thu Nov 19, 2020 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Starting late at 37 and requesting your expertise/advise
Replies: 38
Views: 3093

Re: Starting late at 37 and requesting your expertise/advise

OP, To address your concern about starting "late": Although I was always frugal and avoided debt, I did not really get started investing for retirement until I was in my early 40s. Consistent, disciplined saving and Boglehead-like investing enabled me to comfortably retire at 66. Soo, it s...