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Messages - Jim

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General Discussion / Re: Divorce and the clean slate
« on: January 29, 2019, 04:55:22 PM »
Sounds like a fantastic new housing situation.  Virtually no commute, 60% reduction on monthly price (albeit different amenities) and utilities thrown in as well.  Is there a time frame of when the divorce will be finalized so you aren't paying for both rooms? I'm guessing it depends on how long it takes for the second draft to be done, right?

Journals / Re: Tilting at Windmills
« on: January 03, 2019, 06:52:17 PM »
Good points on the health.  I really need to look at it as an investment.  The good news I recently moved and thus I'm cycling to work everyday (even in 0 degree days) which should only help my health.  Like you said though, I already have seen an improvement in my energy levels and I think a big part of it is due to cycling into work each day.  Thanks for the encouragement.  I'm getting the kettle bells out tonight and will start using them more consistently as well.

Journals / Re: Tilting at Windmills
« on: January 03, 2019, 04:05:51 AM »
Sorry to hear about your divorce, but I understand the key importance of having a spouse/partner on the same page with goals (not just financial either).  Looks like you have a decent financial starting place with a good income and a solid plan for the first year after the divorce to re-solidify your FI plans.

I've never been good with health goals myself since my metabolism makes me look like I'm healthy, but as I quickly approach my 30s I'm starting to see my metabolism slow down.  I'll need to keep focused on my health in the near future.

I'll be following along on your journal and am excited to see your progress.

Early Retirement / Re: FI - Am I there?
« on: October 20, 2018, 06:58:09 PM »
There are a lot of pieces in flux here sxliquin and I'm trying to understand how it would all fit together if you were to pull the retiring early trigger today.

You mention a current rental property in your portfolio, but don't mention what kind of income that generates for you.

As for your portfolio, you have enough to spend ~$30k/year as prognastat points out.  The composition of your portfolio which concerns me is the significant portion of the single stock in your portfolio.  The other composition element is how small of a taxable brokerage account you have.  I assume you would be trying to live off of that while you did some Roth conversions from the 401k into your Roth IRA and let them season for 5 years or so.  With your brokerage account (including JEC) ~$469k and withdrawing $30k/year if the market suddenly down turned I'm afraid it would be cutting it close with liquidity outside of dipping into the 401k.

This is just my intial look and concern.  If you sold the rental and JEC and invested it all in VTSAX, while doing the Roth conversions from 401k.  I think you would be fine spending the ~$30k/year especially with the cash buffer you already have.

I'm sorry to hear that K.C.  You would think property managers would find you guys to be less of a risk to rent to.  I currently rent, but I work a W-2 job and am the only income for our household.  While our rent is manageable compared to my gross pay (~19% of gross pay) I am a much greater risk than someone living off of their portfolio who has hundreds of companies paying dividends/ growing earnings to sustain their lifestyle (i.e. one income stream vs. multiple).

Would offering to pay 6 months in advance for a small discount get management interested? Could you show your checking account or past brokerage statements to show the stability?

Finally, what about going even more non-traditional in finding some longer-term Airbnb homes to rent?  Perhaps you could make good contacts with the owners of each Airbnb and then use them as your "rental history" or references on an application for a more traditional rental?  Just some thoughts which came to mind.

General Discussion / Re: credit card living?
« on: October 20, 2018, 06:30:46 PM »
I would agree with what Prognastat said as well as GCC.  In theory, the low fee of getting access to the money is market timing on steroids.  What happens if after the introductory period (say 15 months or so) the market has declined further than when you originally took the money out?  You would then be forced to sell at an even steeper discount.

My plan once I FIRE is in the case of a prolonged downturn is to cut expenses to the core minimum (i.e. no travel, discretionary, etc.) and if it continues to be painful, supplement some income with potential side hustles/part time gigs (barista, tutoring, gig economy, daily manual labor, even donating plasma) would all help damped the blow to the portfolio and increase its survival rate.

General Discussion / Re: Asset allocation?
« on: October 02, 2018, 07:33:43 PM »
llane1969 - Maybe I'm thinking of this wrong, but I've always viewed an asset allocation as trying to "smooth" out the ride in the market.  With your current AA you are in almost all equities with exposure to more growth opportunities. If you believe in the long run growth potential of your emerging markets/small cap/mid cap, then you should re-balance annually so you can pick up more of those shares with the proceeds of the items which went up, but otherwise you are exposing yourself to more volatility and currently lagging the S&P.

If you are looking for a "smoother" ride, then you need to either add some bonds (which could be risky in a rising interest rate environment) or shift more funds to CD ladders or cash equivalents.

General Discussion / Re: one more year syndrome
« on: October 02, 2018, 07:21:50 PM »
From my initial reading it sounds like you aren't 100% comfortable with your plan.  Reading in between the lines it seems a portion of your "buffer" money isn't in highly liquid form (i.e. the rental your breaking even on, but can't get out of).

I'm in the midst of pivoting to a lifestyle that will be less stressful and a cheaper cost of living by moving to a different department within my company (which will also involve relocating).  Perhaps you could transition to something less stressful while padding your "buffer" money in more accessible places.

Of course, GCC wrapped it up pretty well in that there is no prize for retiring early and you need to be comfortable with the life you will be living once you do retire. I'd be curious to see what you end up deciding.  Good luck!

General Discussion / Re: Best Strategy to (Re)Organize?
« on: June 21, 2018, 04:09:16 AM »
I think you have several questions you are contemplating all at once (how to simplify your current portfolio holdings across several account types, what to do with your cash and commercial property, what your investment strategy is now vs. after you are done working, etc.).

My personal suggestions would be:
1) Rollover all of your IRAs to Vanguard and either invest them all in VTSAX or the same Target Date fund your current 401k is invested in. Since you are in a high tax bracket, you will want to make sure you roll traditional account to traditional IRA and Roth accounts to Roth IRA.

2) $7k in Roth IRAs should match your asset allocation (most likely the same target date fund since you don't like to re-balance from the sound of things)

3) You mention wanting to start a taxable brokerage account.  Using the $300k in cash, you could start putting that to work in a Vanguard taxable brokerage account (either VTSAX or your target date fund). 

4) As for the balloon on the commercial property, it might be wise to shop around some interest rates now.  If you could refinance at a similar rate, then you could deploy all of your cash in the market.  If the rates are significantly higher, might want to deploy the cash to pay off the property.  I'm not entirely sure how the property fits into your overall financial strategy and plan.

Let me know if any of this helps or you have clarifying questions.  Of course, this is my personal preference and how I would change things around, but you might have different goals and are a little bit older than me and probably have a different perspective.

My wife and I took our kids (ages 4 and 2 at the time) to Japan for a couple of weeks in 2017 and wish we had more time to slow visit.  We were fortunate to stay with friends and didn't have to have any need for an Airbnb.  I would definitely recommend going to Osaka, and also getting out into some of the more rural places as well.  Japan is a beautiful country.  We enjoyed going to Nara Park and spent most of our time in Nara prefecture since our friends lived there.

Also, if you are going in April, make sure you get there in time for the cherry blossoms.  We caught the tail end of them (due to some work conflicts), but wish we could have been there during the peak times.  They are simply beautiful and are everywhere.  Incredible.

I haven't been to any of the other areas mentioned on your list, but if you want more details about Japan, let me know or you can visit my blog as I have a 3 part series I wrote about it there.

Taxes / Re: Capital Gains Harvesting - Understanding?
« on: May 29, 2018, 04:51:26 AM »
Thanks Jeremy.  I'm guessing when we are saving a large percentage of income the normal "hassles" others consider is inconsequential for the FIRE crowd.  Appreciate the forum.

I know this is an older posting, but was wondering if you've tried to connecting to some other small business owners to be a virtual assistant or do other back office type of work.  I know of a co-worker of mine who does some quickbooks work for some food truck vendors and makes some small, but reasonable money for her efforts.  We are both accountants so it helps she already has a knowledge base.  Maybe you could do something similar?  Although, it would be a fairly consistent schedule and with your "peak" times it could be too much.  Could you do something that's an off-shoot of your current business?

Travel hacking / Re: Delta miles
« on: May 28, 2018, 07:44:13 PM »
Mountaintown - Thanks for the link.  I'm definitely checking it out as I'm planning our next trip.  Sorry I didn't respond sooner as it's been a busy couple of months for me.  Have you tried any of the Amex cards that Jeremy suggested?

Taxes / Re: Capital Gains Harvesting - Understanding?
« on: May 28, 2018, 07:40:18 PM »
The tax gain strategy is hard to pull off during your working years as most people have too much earned income to be able to do so.  Fortunately, I read GCC's post on it and was able to pull it off last year for a modest ~$600 capital gain.  Mostly because I have a moderate income and am MFJ with 2 kids. 

My question for Jeremy is I have been using ETFs at Vanguard since I can easily buy and sell in real time for this annual event, but the purchasing of shares throughout the year can be a hassle as I have to purchase whole shares and have to deal with bid/ask spreads.  Do you just buy the index funds (non-ETFs) and then how do the mechanics of the gain harvesting work?  Do you wait a few days for everything to settle and buy a different but similar fund (to avoid trading back in to the same fund before 60 days)?

General Discussion / Re: Keto on a Budget
« on: May 28, 2018, 07:32:54 PM »
I've been interested in going more of a keto diet to maintain my health, but was concerned about blowing my food budget to do so.  This seems like a decent list for me to get started.  Thanks for sharing and keep posting if you find more recipes that work well.

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