Recent Posts

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Taxes / Roth Conversion tax bracket question
« Last post by Travis on Today at 12:22:55 AM »
I think in 5 years when I retire I will want to turn my TSP (today's value $290k) into a traditional IRA so I can convert it and add it to my Roth IRA.  If I understand how this works, this will save me from taking RMDs from my TSP after age 70 which get progressively bigger each year (and therefore jacking up my tax bill).  Is taking conversions early in retirement at the 12% tax rate the right way to do this since it's added to my ordinary income which will be filled mostly with pension and unqualified dividends?

Also on the tax planning front, I have a couple questions about Tax Gain Harvesting.  The goal of TGH is to reset the cost basis so when you go to sell the shares for good you've accumulated almost no LTCG, correct?  Assuming early in retirement I don't need the money right away, I could sell $11k worth of shares and re-buy them inside my Roth IRAs ensuring I never pay taxes on that money again, correct?  Over time this would appear to also reduce the amount of unqualified dividends I'm receiving from my taxable account adding to my ordinary income.

Both the conversions and TGH seem like strategies to fold my TSP and taxable accounts into my Roth IRA keeping my tax bill low throughout retirement (assuming I didn't miss anything).  The pension reduces the amount of tax space I have to work with, but also ensures I have enough money to get by while moving retirement funds around to better tax treatments. Am I making sense?
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My wife and I wanted to get back into fitness.  We were really into crossfit a few years ago but life kinda got in the way/made excuses, etc.  Anyways, she went and checked out the local CF gym and she liked it but she also brought home the prices... it was going to be like $350/month for both of us.  I was like hell no because she wants to keep her yoga membership too which I support, but our rym budget was not going to balloon 3x.   

So we decided to start doing workouts on our own in our backyard.  It's been fantastic.  We do mostly bodyweight stuff, lots of burpees, situps, pushups, running up the hills in the neighborhood, etc.  We are using old yoga mats, bought a jumprope, a few weights and a medicine ball.  It has been a great experience.  It's a great activity for us to do together and we motivate each other.  We get to write our own workouts which is great because we can focus on what we want to.  Our music too! 

It's had other benefits too... I was not really happy with our backyard in our new house and now I see it's actually not that bad because it suits our workout needs really well.  We have an elevated wooden platform that we are using.  We have realized how well shaded, secluded and pleasant our lot actually is.   

Also, because of my work schedule (I work nights) I end up doing workouts in the late afternoon or evening, in plenty of heat which I've always complained about.  Ever since I've started working out and just embraced the heat instead of complaining about it, the warm temps just don't even bother me that much. 

Our fitness has improved, I know I really feel better and we spent a minimal amount of dough to really improve our lives in a number of aspects. 
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Ask a Mustachian / Re: income imbalance in a relationship
« Last post by Villanelle on Today at 12:14:10 AM »
Even your follow up posts smacks of judgement. (The comment about how he's not using his 401k, for example.)

I think you want to be someone who doesn't care what your partner does or makes but you are not that person.  So you pay lip service to it, but you can't actually integrate the concept in to your life because it isn't true to your feelings. 

I don't think you necessarily need to break up with him.  But I think you need to be far more honest with yourself and with him about your feelings surrounding money, and this is even more true since you plan to marry.  Maybe he will get that raise.  I suspect that if he does, he is likely reaching the high end of his earning potential.  Ever.  Sure, he might get lucky, but he has a skill set that is a dime a dozen, from the sounds of it, and has nothing about it (danger, unpleasant conditions, etc.) that makes it worth much on the labor market.  So this is your life with him, probably forever.  *If* he gets that $5-8k raise, and that is the only raise he sees for the next decade, excepting *maybe* a couple percent a year for inflation, can you *truly* live with that?  if so, under what terms?  Personally, I'd think I'd be okay with a medium-income earner (which is what he is), but not if he wasn't contributing to rent and transportation expenses, among other things.  I'd be okay paying more than 50%, but never, ever 100% when he has the means to contribute.  I've seen several friends split things based on % of income.  If you make 75% of the household income, you pay 75% of the bills.  This seems fair and reasonable, though there are several other fair and reasonable ways to divide things as well.  Generally, "I pay all of X, Y, and Z and you pay none, even though you have a reasonable income" isn't one of them and few people are going to live that way long term and not feel resentment (for the higher earner/payer) or shame and excessive obligation and perhaps resentment at not getting as much of a say (for the low earner/non-payer).  And based on your posts, it seems like you are feeling the things associated with the latter, but you are trying to tell yourself you are okay with it, rather than dealing with it and having hard conversations in which you guys might have some very difficult and awkward disagreements.

You aren't doing yourself, him, or your relationship any favors but not being more candid and by not acknowledging that you clearly *do* have some negative feelings about the current set up.  It does seem a bit off to me that as a student, you paid your way, but as a lower (than you) income earner, he is not.  You aren't a greedy bitch for not being okay with that.  It does seem inequitable and unreasonable.  If that's what you feel, that's fine and normal and reasonable.  But that situation is that way because you've let it be.  So no longer let it be.

In your shoes, I think I'd tell him that in 3 months, he needs to have transportation, and that once his transportation is sorted out, you really need him to start contributing to the mortgage, and that you propose (but are willing to negotiate or try a different approach is he has other suggestions) a % of his income proportion to the % of his income that makes up your total household income. 

Also, it sounds like you really need to hash out things like shared expenses. (What about when the a/c dies or you need a new roof?) And especially retirement.  I don't think this relationship is fatally flawed by any means, but if you don't address your clear resentments head on, you may well be dealing it a fatal blow.  Similarly, if he isn't willing to step up and start using is sufficient income to actually contribute to the things in life he uses, he may be killing the relationship, but if that is the case, the sooner you know the better.

Good luck.  Brutal assessment and the resulting conversations can be painful and tough, but it's what is necessary. 
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Post-FIRE / Re: Tracking your assets values post retirement
« Last post by moneytaichi on Today at 12:13:53 AM »
I use a spreadsheet that captures the snapshots of the networth. I can review their historical tends and feel pretty encouraged. I do it either monthly or quarterly. If the market is done, I will pause it for a while, to avoid feeling discouraged ;-) Sooner or later, the networth will be back up again.
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Welcome and General Discussion / Re: Which job would you have took?
« Last post by Herbert Derp on Today at 12:07:27 AM »
#2 seems favorable because it is close to home, and considering the larger bonus, pays more than #1 and almost as much as #3. Unlike #1, you don't have to relocate, and unlike #3, you get to work alongside your colleagues at the office. In my opinion, working from home is isolating and hinders career growth. There's something to be said for being able to walk to work.

Overall, I think #2 has the most potential for growth, with the potential to surpass the others in pay if you can get that promotion. Also having the office one mile from your current home is great.
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In our neighbour village (Switzerland) it would be 2650 per child for 5 days/week. Where I work it can go over 3000 CHF.
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Meetups and Social Events / Re: Perth Meetup! (Australia)
« Last post by nnls on Today at 12:02:40 AM »
Dates:
Sunday 29 July
Saturday 4 August
Sunday 5 August
Saturday 18 August
Sunday 19 August
Saturday 25 August
Sunday 26 August
Saturday 1 September

Should we start discussing possible dates for an August or September meetup?
Yes please! I'd like it booked in nice & early :)

Me too! I need my life planned out weeks in advance :-P

I can do

Sunday 29 July
Saturday 25 August
Sunday 26 August

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Ask a Mustachian / Re: Tips for going to school and working full-time
« Last post by Spendy Stache on July 18, 2018, 11:59:58 PM »
I did my MA while working full time, and a few tips that worked for me:

 -Master the art of Google calendar. As soon as you get the syllabus for the course, put all the due dates into your calendar and get used to checking it every Friday. Then spend all Saturday hammering out everything that will be due that week. Spend all Sunday running errands and meal prepping. The logistics may be different for you, but the concept works. If you know you have to work and go to class all week, you can't procrastinate on assignments.
-Be really clear with people (professors, bosses, etc) that you deal with life in week-long chunks. If people expect a week turnaround from you, you'll always have a weekend to get things done.
-If you take the bus to commute, it's a great time to get reading for class done.

I know planning on spending all weekend doing homework and all week working and then going to class doesn't sound like much of a life, but the semesters go by quickly. As for general encouragement, you can do it! Just capitalize on the ways that you work best.
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Throw Down the Gauntlet / Re: 30 Days of Self-Compassion
« Last post by jooniFLORisploo on July 18, 2018, 11:57:51 PM »
Maybe I am YOUR fuzzy pink pig mascot! You can cuddle me while you make the call for your first appt...

That or sit under a tree next to some water. This week, I managed to make my second and third of three recent, rare phone calls this way!
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Share Your Badassity / Re: 4-digit Dividend
« Last post by force majeure on July 18, 2018, 11:52:42 PM »
Yes, the same ETF as I have.

23500 units.

Can I ask you, what % are you paying in tax, because I am hit for 56%, being a higher rate taxpayer.

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