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About inca911

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    Maple Grove, MN
  1. For those who have stated they do not qualify for a Roth IRA due to the income limit phase out, there is currently a "backdoor Roth IRA" option where you are still allowed to open a traditional IRA for the full Roth IRA amount (no income restrictions) and then transfer that traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. The government has been talking about closing this option; however, it is currently still wide open. Anyone can still get access to a Roth IRA via the "backdoor Roth IRA" loophole. It takes maybe 15 total minutes to do this on Vanguard, and their customer service is always available to help. Roth IRA money does not count as income in retirement, so it's an incredible advantage to have this type of income as a retirement option. Make it happen!
  2. It's so much more than that. Roth IRA distributions in retirement do not count as income, therefore it has more tax avoidance benefits as described in detail above. Traditional IRA distributions will count as income and result in significant additional tax on your SS income beyond the traditional IRA taxation that will occur. With a Roth IRA you also still have 100% access to the principle, whereas a traditional IRA has significant early withdrawal penalties. Roth IRA >> Traditional IRA. Why do you think they technically "phase out" the Roth IRA at certain income levels, and continue to discuss closing the backdoor Roth IRA loophole that lets higher earners still use it? They aren't trying to do the same for Traditional IRA, and there is a reason. The Roth IRA is simply too good a vehicle for those who truly understand the benefits! I'm in a higher bracket now than I will be in retirement; however, the tax avoidance from the Roth IRA distributions makes contributing to a Roth IRA still very worthwhile vs. a traditional IRA.
  3. One needs to factor in all the other Roth IRA benefits before making such equivalency statements. Roth IRA has so many more benefits, as described above. Once those are factored into the equation, IMHO the only thing the Roth IRA doesn't beat is free company match money in a traditional 401(k) or equivalent, or the never-taxed money that is part of a Health Savings Account's investment portfolio (i.e., and is subsequently used for health-related expenses). Note that Roth IRA does not equal Roth 401(k). If you don't have a Roth IRA currently, I can't think of a single reason to not try hard to fund one.
  4. I'm not familiar enough with transitioning between retirement options once in them. You'd need to talk with an expert on that. I'd definitely start a Roth IRA tomorrow though.
  5. I try to fund everything as early as possible; however, the main take home point is to fund a Roth IRA as soon as you are able (but not before getting free company match money). No reason to wait on getting a year's worth of tax free returns on your investment.
  6. ACTUAL CONTENT TO FOLLOW: That is not clear/correct advice. Regardless of any tax bracket differential, you should 100% be funding a Roth IRA after making sure you get all the "free" company match funds that you can in a 401(k) or equivalent. First, Roth IRA earnings are tax free, which is the first major upside to a Roth IRA. If your Roth IRA grows $500k, you pay ZERO on that money. Second, you can get the Roth IRA principle out for any reason at any time without penalty. You can't put it back in once you pull out the principle, but it's the perfect emergency fund if you ever need it. Even the Roth IRA earnings can still be accessed in many instances without penalty (e.g., $10k for first time home purchase for Roth owner or their direct family). Finally, and many people miss this, Roth IRA distributions in retirement are not counted as income for tax purposes, so you end up avoiding significant taxation on SS/401k "income" (i.e., as the Roth IRA distribution doesn't increase your income to the level where you are taxed on your SS income). The current threshold is roughly a combined income (i.e., adjusted gross income, taxable interest, and 50% of SS benefit) above $25k, after you factor in standard deduction + exemptions. With the Roth IRA supplementing additional income above the $32k of actual income (reminder that only 50% of SS benefit is counted), the tax owed can be as little as $1k on the initial $32k of "income" (i.e., 2-3% tax rate). Without the Roth, 85% of the previously untaxed SS benefits become taxable above that current threshold. Yes, 85% of previously untaxed SS "income" becomes taxable. Assuming a 25% tax rate on that $185 ($100 additional income + $85 of SS benefit taxation), you are now going to have to effectively pay $46.25 in tax (at least until you have all 85% of your SS benefits taxed). That $32k if initial can be viewed as follows: $15k SS benefit (only 50%, or $7,500, counts as combined income) <--typical monthly benefit is now ~$1,200 $17.5k from 401(k) It is simplest to view the Roth IRA as a way to also avoid paying a 46% tax rate. A mix of SS + 401(k) + Roth IRA + Cash let's you dial in a steady retirement income with the maximum tax avoidance. The Roth IRA is beyond powerful, which is why I always recommend starting one ASAP!
  7. Same here. Are you mostly in a Vanguard Mid-Cap Index Fund?
  8. Looks like may contributing factors are likely involved, rather than a single smoking gun. Shopping $10,198.86 Uncategorized $3,878.53 - mostly ATM withdrawls... like take out $300 to goto the casino.. and many times what I win or don't lose goes back into the account later Kids $3,592.42 Travel $1,472.89 Entertainment $1,244.56 Understanding this $20k is important. $1k every month seems like *a lot* of "shopping" on top of food, dining, kids, entertainment, etc. If this $20k were eliminated, your and my annual spends would be roughly equivalent. I'm "frugal" as well.Painting $4,815.00 Overhead Door $1,770.00 Do you have a home repair budget you follow? I allocate $200/M on home repair, $150/M on car repair, and $300/M on new car ($25k/7Y). Your $6k home expenses last year is 3x my budget, and I have a good sized house.Many of your categories overlap, making it challenging to understand. Do you have a budget spreadsheet where you make a plan for variable expenses, and monitor against that plan? PM me and I can email you what I use. Below is the general monthly plan for our house, which includes $100/week entertainment/miscellaneous (easy to track mentally). As long as the credit card totals (in red) are under $2k per month, excluding car and home repair, then I know we are doing well. All the bank autopays happen monthly (in green). House and Insurance also viewed separately, as they don't change. Groceries 1200 Clothes 200 Ent./Misc 400 Car Gas 200 Car Tags 41 Car Pay 0 Cars/Boat/Life Insure 161 Water 20 Trash 12 WH Elec (Avg) 80 Natural Gas60 Phones (Boys Cells) 50 Cable 40 Internet 0 Dogs 66 Lifetime Fitness 48 Special Xfr 200 sTotal 1 (Cards) 2000 sTotal 2 (Autopays) 578 Xfr 200 Car Repair / M Fund 150 (25k/7Y Car Fund)/M 300 House Repair Fund/M 250 MONTHLY TOTAL 3478
  9. Steak = Medium Rare. It's still suprising to me that a decent steak place can still get this wrong, but things happen. I do a quick poke test (not breaching the crust) when it arrives and will tell the waiter whether it's OK or not. The waiters seem to think I'm pyschic when I tell them it's overcooked towards well, without cutting into it. They usually ask that I cut into it, and I oblige to show them the problem. Granted that I go to many steak places while traveling, and grill quite a bit. For store bought ground beef, medium is as rare as I go. I do food process my own 50-50 chuck/sirlion mix for meat loaf and often for burgers, so I can make those medium rare also. Simple to do, and certainly less risky than ground mystery meat.
  10. I like my reds cooler than room temp, but not cold, as that kills the taste. I don't do a lot of whites, but I like those cold, maybe out of the fridge for 15-20 mins. Reminder that for long term storage, reds should be stored dark, and ideally less than 70F. A stack of cut PVC pipes in the basement does the trick for me as a wine cellar, which is around 65F, also the temp I like to drink it at. In terms of open reds, oxygen is the enemy. Storing open bottles in the fridge helps prolong the wine. You can store a red upright in the fridge to save a red for a week with no real noticeable difference. If you store in on it's side, it oxidizes faster as there is more wine surface area exposed to air. Reds don't last longer than that in my house. Pinot Noirs definitely seem to turn faster, so I always plan to drink those dry (try Calista Pinot Noir or Four Graces--tasty). I'll even recork Pinots between servings to try and minimize fresh air exposure. You can buy a vacuum pump to prolong wines, or just transfer it to a smaller bottle and fill it to the top so there is no air. I've used an empty water bottle, and crunched it down to squeeze out the air. Works really well if I'm going to be gone for a week. Anything that keeps the red cool, and reduces oxygen to keep it from moving towards vinegar taste should work well.
  11. Bouddica is the worst, since bonus Faith for forests is only a minor help early (and fairly easy to achieve without it), and religion can be a detriment to late game from diplo penalties. The Pictish warrier (fancy Spearmen) as UU is only relevent if you have no iron and are surrounded by warmongers who don't care about your religion. By the time you are at Ceilidh Hall (Opera House), Happiness shouldn't be too much of an issue so the +3 Happy is largely wasted, and +1 Culture from that UB is also fairly useless. The only benefit is lots of forest for early chops to try and catch up to the AI. Call me unimpressed.
  12. Random thoughts: One item that's helped my BNW Immortal games is refusing embassies, especially giving an embassy to any militaristic civs. Giving an embassy let's them see your lands, which they immediately covet and come to claim.I propose Resolutions that the AI wants, to get the diplomatic benefits. Art Funding or World's Fair are passing with or without you, so you might as well propose them and get some benefit. Selecting a weak AI to host the world congress is also very helpful. The powerful civs can't dominate the World Congress, and you get a diplo bonus by giving it away and your votes typically will select the winner until you can take it for yourself.I like the early panthenon bonus. I don't bother spreading religions to other Civs due to the diplo penalties, unless I'm going Cultural for shared religoins. I usually end up founding a religion from CS faith bonuses alone, and use faith points to preserve my religious core, move CS to my religion, buy Great Engineers for Wonders, and then buy Great Scientists.I use spies to defend my capital and top city, but the rest are to rig CS elections and gain luxuries/diplo benefits (early). If I'm far behind on tech, I'll often attempt to rotate stealing tech once from each of the civs. It's a big help if successful, and penalties are low if you do it only once.I park a unit on all archaelogy sites that I can reach, to deny others from grabbing them. Helps fight against cultural victories, and the units have to sit somewhere.Patronage Tree: Consulates, to raise diplo resting point + Religion Founder: Papal Primacy = CS with your religion are all auto-friends.If you can't get a CS to be a friend early via quest or the CS isn't valuable, attack to steal a worker and immidiately sue for peace. The diplo hit fades quickly, and you'll focus on other CS until they move back to neutral.Siam thoughts: If you haven't played Siam, they are certainly worth a long look, and are one of my favorites for a tall build. Siam gets an extra 50% culture/food/faith bonus from city states (CS), which significantly helps social policies and growth. Early on, one Maritime CS Friend gives +3 food in capital. An Ally gives +4.5 capital and +1.5 in all cities. That's huge. Cultured CS are definitely the next priority to speed through the policy tree. The faith bonus from religious CS certainly helps grab an early parthenon and religion, so I prioritize one religious CS early if I can. An early archer or two to complete the CS kill barbarian quests is all it takes to get a friend for life.The Naresuan's Elephant UU holds off warmonger civs very effectively. They are weak vs. cities, but very good to crush invading or defending armies. You don't need Horses either (until upgrading them), and can ignore a lot of the bottom tech tree.The CS culture boosts + the Wat's culture benefits help against cultural victories.By the way, if you see Venice or Austria in your game, you need to prioritize killing them to not steal your CS. Diplo AI civs can be managed with CS quests, gold, and spies.The only "downside" with Siam is lack of forests from start bias, so don't plan on rushing via chop. You do tend to get a usuable amount of jungle, which I suspect is related to the avoid forest bias. Jungle + Trading Posts are juicy after Education. Also +1 Culture if you opt for Sacred Path Pantheon belief (which I've never remembered to attempt). Jungle is great to stall invaders with slow movement. I love having a jungle city for my border frontier.Siam's Victory condition versatility makes them very fun to play, and exploration becomes a priority to open up even more CS bonuses.Happy Civ-ing!
  13. I also settled in on a Hyundai Sonata, but then I test drove a used Genesis and ended up buying that instead for just a couple grand more than the base Sonata (and a couple grand less than the base Sonata Turbo). Very nice car, and definitely recommend taking a look if you are investigating Sonatas.
  14. SAVE FERRIS! (by a wide margin)
  15. Going to fire up Civ V's Brave New World and give it a go. See you next month....