I-Bonds a good idea?

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PerfectName
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I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by PerfectName »

I am thinking about buying some I-Bonds before the end of the year. Would welcome your thoughts!
SnowBog
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SnowBog »

Good idea "for what" and "why"?

If you potentially need the money within the next 12 months, no...

If you haven't maxed out your tax-advantaged accounts (401k, Roth, HSA, etc.) - maybe, but probably not...

If you've maxed your tax-advantaged space, and want more "tax deferred" savings, they could be.

Not enough info provided...
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JoMoney
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by JoMoney »

I like Series I Savings bonds, especially relative to the extremely low interest rates elsewhere.
After maxing out my tax deferred retirement accounts, getting Series I Savings bonds is the next bucket I fill.
As mentioned above, be sure you don't need the money in the next year as you can't redeem them in the first 12mo. from buying them (there have been a few emergency situations where that's been waived, but I wouldn't rely on that).
"To achieve satisfactory investment results is easier than most people realize; to achieve superior results is harder than it looks." - Benjamin Graham
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anon_investor
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by anon_investor »

JoMoney wrote: Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:59 pm I like Series I Savings bonds, especially relative to the extremely low interest rates elsewhere.
After maxing out my tax deferred retirement accounts, getting Series I Savings bonds is the next bucket I fill.
As mentioned above, be sure you don't need the money in the next year as you can't redeem them in the first 12mo. from buying them (there have been a few emergency situations where that's been waived, but I wouldn't rely on that).
From my understanding, you can only redeem prior to 1 year if you live in a "disaster-declared area". At least earlier this year all 50 states were "disaster-declared areas" due to the pandemic... But I think the usual situation is some kind of natural disaster.
ivgrivchuck
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ivgrivchuck »

PerfectName wrote: Sat Dec 12, 2020 10:33 pm I am thinking about buying some I-Bonds before the end of the year. Would welcome your thoughts!
It depends on your circumstances. It might be a good idea. I have some.
44% VTI | 36% VXUS | 10% I-bonds | 10% EE-bonds
JBTX
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by JBTX »

Good for building an emergency or liquidity fund, if you can live without the first year contribution each year

Good in that they are stable, safe, beat cash and money markets.

Are arguably better than more short or even intermediate bond investments at the moment
dcabler
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by dcabler »

Depends on why you want them.

I fill up my tax advantaged space every year and I don't need these for an emergency fund. What I do plan on using them for is part of a COLA'd income stream that, when added to SS, will just about meet our minimum expenses starting at age 70 and going on for about 15 years. I also hold TIPs as part of that idea. We've been buying the max amount every year + the max amount via tax refund. We make our purchases every January and this January will be the final direct purchase, though we may continue with the additional $5K tax refund for a while. After that, it's monitoring interest rates and possibly replacing any of our lower yielding Ibonds at some point in the future, if it makes sense.
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PerfectName
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by PerfectName »

Thanks to all for the replies. It is just an alternative to cash/CD/money market at this point. It is cash that I can let sit for a few years. I started late on I-bonds and so it wouldn't be a huge part of our savings. I need to rush to do the $10k this year.

If it is an exceptional deal, then I should sign up my wife ASAP as I think we can do $10k per social security number. While I am aware of the "overpay on taxes and get $5k back on I-bonds" option, I have avoided it--personal preference.
SnowBog
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SnowBog »

PerfectName wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 12:03 am Thanks to all for the replies. It is just an alternative to cash/CD/money market at this point. It is cash that I can let sit for a few years. I started late on I-bonds and so it wouldn't be a huge part of our savings. I need to rush to do the $10k this year.

If it is an exceptional deal, then I should sign up my wife ASAP as I think we can do $10k per social security number. While I am aware of the "overpay on taxes and get $5k back on I-bonds" option, I have avoided it--personal preference.
In this case, so long as you don't need the funds for a year, go for it!

They present an extra unique opportunity this year with extra low rates on other options. https://tipswatch.com/2020/10/14/unique ... nvestment/

I just started buying them this year as well.
Last edited by SnowBog on Mon Dec 14, 2020 12:38 am, edited 1 time in total.
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anon_investor
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by anon_investor »

PerfectName wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 12:03 am Thanks to all for the replies. It is just an alternative to cash/CD/money market at this point. It is cash that I can let sit for a few years. I started late on I-bonds and so it wouldn't be a huge part of our savings. I need to rush to do the $10k this year.

If it is an exceptional deal, then I should sign up my wife ASAP as I think we can do $10k per social security number. While I am aware of the "overpay on taxes and get $5k back on I-bonds" option, I have avoided it--personal preference.
For your use case, definitely both max it out. We did it this year after a CD we had expired, and I Bond rates blew everything out of the water. We have more CDs expiring in 2021 and will max out I Bonds again.
Angst
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Angst »

I Bonds are an exceptionally good and unique value these days with real rates negative across the entire real yield curve:
https://www.treasury.gov/resource-cente ... &year=2020

You can't buy a real rate inflation adjusted instrument (TIPS) paying a positive (or just a 0%) rate these days, except for I Bonds.

And given that the nominal yield curve (link below) effectively defines the breakeven inflation rates for any time period for holding I Bonds bought today vs the respective Treasury security, it will take very little inflation to simply guarantee that your I Bonds return will exceed any nominal US Treasury security you might want to buy as an alternative:
https://www.treasury.gov/resource-cente ... &year=2020
Naismith
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Naismith »

With the clarification from the OP, this would seem an appropriate move.

One huge warning though, for those who might be holding I bonds longer: consider your estate plan.

We started buying EE back in the early 1990s, and those will still be earning 4% for a few more years. We switched to I when those became available, and some are still earning over 5%.

However, Treasury Direct offers no way to name a contingent beneficiary, just one name can be added. For our estate plan, we chose to do a simple will rather than a detailed trust, because every other asset we own (including home) is titled in a way that avoids probate. So we will be liquidating those bonds over the next two years.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Hebell »

Treasurydirect solves your problem with a dual registration. Register it in the name of you and your wife, and hold it in your account. If you pass away she can easily call them and it will move to her account.

You don't need to handle this through a will.
J295
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by J295 »

We have ibonds and have named spouse as contingent beneficiary online. Easy to accomplish.

In our case we started buying upon early retirement and accumulated six figures then stopped. Just a nice safe account that we can draw on easily if needed for cash flow and/or hold and get an inflation type return. Mentally it's our tin can in the kitchen with back up cash in it. (On the non-equity side we also hold TIP, BND, CDs, and cash).
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JoMoney
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by JoMoney »

Hebell wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 6:04 pm Treasurydirect solves your problem with a dual registration. Register it in the name of you and your wife, and hold it in your account. If you pass away she can easily call them and it will move to her account.

You don't need to handle this through a will.
I believe the issue is Treasury Direct will only allow you to have 2 individuals named on a Savings Bond. Either as two owners, or one owner and one a POD beneficiary. It sounds like the other poster wants to have 3 people named, with the third as a "contingent beneficiary".
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SnowBog
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SnowBog »

Hebell wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 6:04 pm Treasurydirect solves your problem with a dual registration. Register it in the name of you and your wife, and hold it in your account. If you pass away she can easily call them and it will move to her account.

You don't need to handle this through a will.
I believe any owner can request a "re-issue" of the bonds to change the name.

In the example above, surviving spouse (if both were owners) can request the bonds reissued with a different co-owner.

In our case, we recently setup a "living trust" for both of us. So our bonds going forward will be in our name + our living trust name. If I die first, my spouse is a trustee of my living trust, so they'll be a co-owner by way of the trust and can request re-issue to themselves and their trust if they want. If we both die at the same time, our respective trustees will act in our stead (to reissue in accordance with our will/trusts).

So while there isn't a "contingent" option directly, you can active it via a trust if you want.

That said, in our case, we don't intend on having I or EE Bonds left in our estate. Currently they are intended to help bridge income needs until delayed social security and pensions kick in at 70. As such, we expect all EE Bonds to have been cashed prior to 70, and likely all I Bonds as well.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Wrench »

dcabler wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 6:17 am Depends on why you want them.

I fill up my tax advantaged space every year and I don't need these for an emergency fund. What I do plan on using them for is part of a COLA'd income stream that, when added to SS, will just about meet our minimum expenses starting at age 70 and going on for about 15 years. I also hold TIPs as part of that idea. We've been buying the max amount every year + the max amount via tax refund. We make our purchases every January and this January will be the final direct purchase, though we may continue with the additional $5K tax refund for a while. After that, it's monitoring interest rates and possibly replacing any of our lower yielding Ibonds at some point in the future, if it makes sense.
Wow - I do exactly the same thing! Great minds think alike? :happy My TIPS ladder and iBonds together will cover us from age 74 - 100. I was planning on filling out the TIPS ladder over the next couple years, but with TIPS rate where they are, I'll stick with iBonds unless TIPS rates improve. We still have three more years after Jan 21 before we are done with our iBonds purchases.

Wrench
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SnowBog »

Wrench wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:01 pm
dcabler wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 6:17 am Depends on why you want them.

I fill up my tax advantaged space every year and I don't need these for an emergency fund. What I do plan on using them for is part of a COLA'd income stream that, when added to SS, will just about meet our minimum expenses starting at age 70 and going on for about 15 years. I also hold TIPs as part of that idea. We've been buying the max amount every year + the max amount via tax refund. We make our purchases every January and this January will be the final direct purchase, though we may continue with the additional $5K tax refund for a while. After that, it's monitoring interest rates and possibly replacing any of our lower yielding Ibonds at some point in the future, if it makes sense.
Wow - I do exactly the same thing! Great minds think alike? :happy My TIPS ladder and iBonds together will cover us from age 74 - 100. I was planning on filling out the TIPS ladder over the next couple years, but with TIPS rate where they are, I'll stick with iBonds unless TIPS rates improve. We still have three more years after Jan 21 before we are done with our iBonds purchases.

Wrench
I'm using EE/I Bonds to bridge "retirement" until delayed SS/Pensions, so the years you currently aren't...

At current, my projection is delayed social security and pensions will cover all our essential needs and most of our wants as well.

But I haven't thought about trying to bridge the gap after social security/pensions. Something new to think about...
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Jack FFR1846 »

I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by bhjjk19 »

Is there a way to buy iBonds with Tax-Defered IRA funds so the money is not treated as a withdrawal (taxable income)?
I know that these need to be purchased from Treasury Direct and Vanguard can not do this.
Just wondering if there is away around this.

When I rebalance my portfolio in January, I already know that my 60/40 portfolio will be equity heavy (currently 64.5/35.5).
I would typically exchange excess stocks for bonds, but if the bond yields are a near zero, then I might consider not rebalancing until bond funds are more attractive or find some alternative like iBonds.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SnowBog »

Don't believe so... TD will take money out of a checking /saving account. So you'd have to get the money out of your IRA...

Ultimately, this is a "taxable" investment. (But the interest can grow tax free if you want.)
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Mel Lindauer »

bhjjk19 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 8:20 pm Is there a way to buy iBonds with Tax-Defered IRA funds so the money is not treated as a withdrawal (taxable income)?
I know that these need to be purchased from Treasury Direct and Vanguard can not do this.
Just wondering if there is away around this.

When I rebalance my portfolio in January, I already know that my 60/40 portfolio will be equity heavy (currently 64.5/35.5).
I would typically exchange excess stocks for bonds, but if the bond yields are a near zero, then I might consider not rebalancing until bond funds are more attractive or find some alternative like iBonds.
Since your IRA requires a custodian, and at present there are no custodians who will hold I Bonds, for all practical purposes they can't be held in an IRA. Besides, they're already tax-deferred and thus can expand your tax-deferred space, so there's really no benefit.
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ArtsyProf
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ArtsyProf »

hi does anyone know if you can buy I bonds at Fidelity Brokerage? is it as safe and legal as buying them from treasury direct ? thanks
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Hebell »

Nope. You have to buy them at treasurydirect
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by smectym »

Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:58 pm I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.

I too hold a similar amount in paper, haven’t bought electronic in a while. Glad I bought what I did, not looking to buy more at these rates. We are cashing about 15,000 a year in both I and EE, to avoid a tax cliff scenario about 10 or 15 years from now when both species would otherwise reach final maturity in a compressed time frame
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by dcabler »

Wrench wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:01 pm
dcabler wrote: Sun Dec 13, 2020 6:17 am Depends on why you want them.

I fill up my tax advantaged space every year and I don't need these for an emergency fund. What I do plan on using them for is part of a COLA'd income stream that, when added to SS, will just about meet our minimum expenses starting at age 70 and going on for about 15 years. I also hold TIPs as part of that idea. We've been buying the max amount every year + the max amount via tax refund. We make our purchases every January and this January will be the final direct purchase, though we may continue with the additional $5K tax refund for a while. After that, it's monitoring interest rates and possibly replacing any of our lower yielding Ibonds at some point in the future, if it makes sense.
Wow - I do exactly the same thing! Great minds think alike? :happy My TIPS ladder and iBonds together will cover us from age 74 - 100. I was planning on filling out the TIPS ladder over the next couple years, but with TIPS rate where they are, I'll stick with iBonds unless TIPS rates improve. We still have three more years after Jan 21 before we are done with our iBonds purchases.

Wrench
Cool - so far you're the only other one I've seen doing something like this. Anyhoo, I chose to limit it to only 15 years or so which will get me to 85. At that point if we're still kicking and the rest of our portfolio looks in decent enough shape, we'll consider a SPIA. Who knows, maybe COLA'd SPIAs will be available again by then. :D
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by HRPennypacker »

Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:58 pm I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.
I'd like to see you film a rap video where you "make it rain" with your I-Bonds. Not kidding. Please do it.
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JoMoney
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by JoMoney »

HRPennypacker wrote: Tue Dec 15, 2020 10:15 am
Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:58 pm I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.
I'd like to see you film a rap video where you "make it rain" with your I-Bonds. Not kidding. Please do it.
Totally the scenario I imagine when I'm running my scheme to get credit card bonus points, over-paying tax withholding to get paper I bonds in my tax return
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ArtsyProf
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ArtsyProf »

The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ArtsyProf »

smectym wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 11:24 pm
Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:58 pm I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.

I too hold a similar amount in paper, haven’t bought electronic in a while. Glad I bought what I did, not looking to buy more at these rates. We are cashing about 15,000 a year in both I and EE, to avoid a tax cliff scenario about 10 or 15 years from now when both species would otherwise reach final maturity in a compressed time frame

Hi, can you please explain how one "can cash in any time at my DCU credit union"? Does this mean that you bought the paper bonds through the credit union? Do only credit union cash in paper bonds? I am trying to learn more about possibly buying iBonds for the first time, and the yelp reviews for TreasuryDirect say it's a nightmare. Thanks!
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by surfstar »

ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
TD is fine. We used it for the first time a couple months ago. Setup and everything was completely fine. If you can register a new credit card account and setup autopay, you can handle TD.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Hebell »

I have five treasury direct accounts. No issues setting up the personal ones and have used them for years. After that I set up the irrevocable trust, and two LLCs. After being established, those three entities were promptly put on hold until I submitted a lot more paperwork with medallion stamps. Since then everything has been fine.

Based on the experiences of others here though, I have made some notes in the executor handbook for the rest of my family. Namely, don't change the telephone numbers, email addresses or add bank accounts to the existing linked bank accounts as it may trigger another set of papers needing stamps. Live with the existing bank accounts that are already linked.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ArtsyProf »

Thank you. I also found more info here on the wiki, helpful for others: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/I_savings_bonds
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Mel Lindauer »

ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 1:00 pm
smectym wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 11:24 pm
Jack FFR1846 wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:58 pm I'm a "paper only" bond holder. I do overpay federal taxes to get $5k in paper bonds a year. I'm coming up on $400k in bonds. It's great as an emergency fund that I can cash any time at my DCU credit union.

I too hold a similar amount in paper, haven’t bought electronic in a while. Glad I bought what I did, not looking to buy more at these rates. We are cashing about 15,000 a year in both I and EE, to avoid a tax cliff scenario about 10 or 15 years from now when both species would otherwise reach final maturity in a compressed time frame

Hi, can you please explain how one "can cash in any time at my DCU credit union"? Does this mean that you bought the paper bonds through the credit union? Do only credit union cash in paper bonds? I am trying to learn more about possibly buying iBonds for the first time, and the yelp reviews for TreasuryDirect say it's a nightmare. Thanks!
No. the paper bonds are purchased via an overpayment in your Federal income taxes (up to $5000 per year). They can be redeemed at many commercial banks and credit unions, more easily if you have an account there.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by SmileyFace »

ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
But 93% of folks who take the post-use survey that actually use Treasury Direct website rate it either EXECELLENT or GOOD.
More specifically:71% of the users say it's excellent and another 22% say it's Good (4% Fair and 3% Poor).
I just logged in this morning to plan my 2021 purchase - these numbers are current.
It's not a glitzy commercial website but it works well in my experience.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Noobvestor »

SmileyFace wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 1:21 pm
ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
But 93% of folks who take the post-use survey that actually use Treasury Direct website rate it either EXECELLENT or GOOD.
More specifically:71% of the users say it's excellent and another 22% say it's Good (4% Fair and 3% Poor).
I just logged in this morning to plan my 2021 purchase - these numbers are current.
It's not a glitzy commercial website but it works well in my experience.
Just bought my I and EE bonds for the year - took me ~ten minutes. I will never understand what all the fuss is about. If you want a glitzy, state-of-the-art UI and pictures of smiling families I guess you could forego the free lunches offered, but if you just want to make $$$ with fixed income: easy as pie.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by HockeyFan99 »

Noobvestor wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 7:55 pm
SmileyFace wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 1:21 pm
ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
But 93% of folks who take the post-use survey that actually use Treasury Direct website rate it either EXECELLENT or GOOD.
More specifically:71% of the users say it's excellent and another 22% say it's Good (4% Fair and 3% Poor).
I just logged in this morning to plan my 2021 purchase - these numbers are current.
It's not a glitzy commercial website but it works well in my experience.
Just bought my I and EE bonds for the year - took me ~ten minutes. I will never understand what all the fuss is about. If you want a glitzy, state-of-the-art UI and pictures of smiling families I guess you could forego the free lunches offered, but if you just want to make $$$ with fixed income: easy as pie.
+1. If you’re able to post questions on this forum about buying I Bonds you’ll almost certainly be able to navigate the TD website and buy them once you decide to do so.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by APX32 »

I’ve never understood the complaints about the TD website. I literally use it about 20x a year total. Once a month or so to check balances and a couple more times to schedule/confirm my annual purchase. And overall, it’s not that bad, it’s secure and gets the job done.

Most import of all, I get to buy arguably the best fixed income product currently available in the form of I-bonds. If only I could buy more than the $10k limit.

(I know, there are ways around it, but it would be nice to have a higher individual limit without the hacks).
40% SPY | 10% GLD | 5% BTC | 45% Cash (cold hard cash)
Hebell
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Hebell »

dcabler wrote: Tue Dec 15, 2020 5:11 am
Wrench wrote: Mon Dec 14, 2020 7:01 pm Wow - I do exactly the same thing! Great minds think alike? :happy My TIPS ladder and iBonds together will cover us from age 74 - 100. I was planning on filling out the TIPS ladder over the next couple years, but with TIPS rate where they are, I'll stick with iBonds unless TIPS rates improve. We still have three more years after Jan 21 before we are done with our iBonds purchases.

Wrench
Cool - so far you're the only other one I've seen doing something like this. Anyhoo, I chose to limit it to only 15 years or so which will get me to 85. At that point if we're still kicking and the rest of our portfolio looks in decent enough shape, we'll consider a SPIA. Who knows, maybe COLA'd SPIAs will be available again by then. :D
You are not alone. 10-year TIPS ladders, I and EE bonds every year plus laddered 3-year MYGAs. Won the game; goal is preservation of purchasing power.
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BrandonBogle
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by BrandonBogle »

Noobvestor wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 7:55 pm Just bought my I and EE bonds for the year - took me ~ten minutes. I will never understand what all the fuss is about. If you want a glitzy, state-of-the-art UI and pictures of smiling families I guess you could forego the free lunches offered, but if you just want to make $$$ with fixed income: easy as pie.
APX32 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:32 pm I’ve never understood the complaints about the TD website. I literally use it about 20x a year total. Once a month or so to check balances and a couple more times to schedule/confirm my annual purchase. And overall, it’s not that bad, it’s secure and gets the job done.

Most import of all, I get to buy arguably the best fixed income product currently available in the form of I-bonds. If only I could buy more than the $10k limit.

(I know, there are ways around it, but it would be nice to have a higher individual limit without the hacks).
I’m in the “I hate TreasuryDirect” camp. For me, it isn’t the website itself per say, it’s the craziness when you need to make a change.

Change a phone number? Fill out some paperwork, get a signature guarantee, mail it in. Change linked bank accounts? Have fun getting your bank to give you a medallion guarantee just so you can change the TD link to another bank account.

I made the mistake of linking TD to my main checking account when I first created my account. Now I pray I never have fraud and have to change my checking account number!
dcabler
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by dcabler »

APX32 wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 9:32 pm I’ve never understood the complaints about the TD website. I literally use it about 20x a year total. Once a month or so to check balances and a couple more times to schedule/confirm my annual purchase. And overall, it’s not that bad, it’s secure and gets the job done.

Most import of all, I get to buy arguably the best fixed income product currently available in the form of I-bonds. If only I could buy more than the $10k limit.

(I know, there are ways around it, but it would be nice to have a higher individual limit without the hacks).
It's the quirkiest portal among all the ones I use for my investments, that's for certain. From the weird way you enter passwords to having needed to be hit upside the head several times before learning that you should never, ever click "go back" on your browser. I can certainly see, though, how some less tech savvy types might have some issues navigating around it as it really is unlike a lot of other sites.

I also wish I could put more in easily, but I can live with the $10K for each of us plus the $5K from my tax refund.

Other than changing registration, which is an easy process once you figure out which registration type you want, I've never had to make any changes to otherwise. I have seen on the forum, though, that some people are required to have a signature guarantee for some changes while others aren't - I wonder what might trigger the difference.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by 17outs »

dcabler wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:40 am

It's the quirkiest portal among all the ones I use for my investments, that's for certain. From the weird way you enter passwords to...
This is the part I hate. My Dashlane password keeper is of no use here.
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by Fran K »

ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
Super easy. Took me 7 minutes to buy for the first time last month.
You make more money selling advice than following it. -Steve Forbes
ivgrivchuck
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ivgrivchuck »

Fran K wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:44 pm
ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
Super easy. Took me 7 minutes to buy for the first time last month.
+1. I can't understand all this whining about the website.
44% VTI | 36% VXUS | 10% I-bonds | 10% EE-bonds
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BrandonBogle
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by BrandonBogle »

ivgrivchuck wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:54 pm
Fran K wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:44 pm
ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
Super easy. Took me 7 minutes to buy for the first time last month.
+1. I can't understand all this whining about the website.
At least here in this thread, other than one comment about logging in, the website isn’t what we whine about, but the processes are.
ArtsyProf
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ArtsyProf »

Fran K wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 6:44 pm
ArtsyProf wrote: Mon Jan 04, 2021 12:58 pm The Yelp reviews of TreasuryDirect website all say the website is a nightmare. Is there any other way to buy iBonds, like through a bank or brokerage? Has anyone here had a user-friendly experience w/TD? If one buys paper bonds with their tax refund, is the idea to keep the paper bonds in a safe place for years until redemption/ What if you lose the paper bonds? Thanks!
Super easy. Took me 7 minutes to buy for the first time last month.
Good to hear. Thx
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ohboy! »

How do I do the extra $5k from tax refund? Overpay my fed taxes by $5k and then?
ivgrivchuck
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ivgrivchuck »

ohboy! wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 11:48 pm How do I do the extra $5k from tax refund? Overpay my fed taxes by $5k and then?
https://www.irs.gov/refunds/using-your- ... ings-bonds
44% VTI | 36% VXUS | 10% I-bonds | 10% EE-bonds
ohboy!
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Re: I-Bonds a good idea?

Post by ohboy! »

ivgrivchuck wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 11:53 pm
ohboy! wrote: Tue Jan 05, 2021 11:48 pm How do I do the extra $5k from tax refund? Overpay my fed taxes by $5k and then?
https://www.irs.gov/refunds/using-your- ... ings-bonds
Thanks. Wonder if my CPA will charge to file that extra sheet of paper with my tax returns. Once charged me $100 to file zero for a business return. Of course he has saved me quite a bit with business taxes in general.
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