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Old 04-10-2007, 07:03 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Old lurker New poster

Hi Everyone,

I feel I know many of you (Iím been lurking for about 6 months). I just finished reading the ď4 Pillars of InvestingĒ and decided to intro myself and ask for a few comments.

Iím 54, married with grown children that can support themselves. No debt (house, cars etc. paid off). I could retire this June with a COLA pension of $49,000. My DW would receive 100% if I die. If I wait 5 more years, I will receive $66,000 also with COLA and 100% to DW. My DW will only get $12,000 SS at 62. She is also 54. We make a little over 100 but have been spending about $50,000 take home pay. If I retire now health insurance for both of us will be $800/month (currently we pay about $200).

Total savings is $550,000 all but about 100 is tax sheltered. Divided as follows:

Vanguard Star 200
Van Life St (mod) 43
Van Wellington 18
Van Ext Market 19
Van Wellesley 38
Schwab Bal 68
Van 500 49
Scudder Bal 23
Van Prime MM 50
CDís 40

OK, I realized this is a big mix. I have thought of putting in all in Star and not worrying about it. I also thought of indexing with Vanguard about 60/40 with 15% foreign.

I loved and agreed with the 4 pillars of investing except Bernstein said at the end that most people could understand his advice but if not they should get a good fee only advisor. I probably understood about 92% of the book. It surprises me that he doesnít like balanced funds over using an advisor. Iím a little lazy so I feel a low fee balance fund might be OK for me. I do not trust advisors that make money off me. Thatís why I trust people on this forum, nothing to gain . I have ran FIRECalc and if I did it correctly the future looks good.

I still enjoy my job so I will probably work 5 more years if health stays good.
We have never really traveled (a few cruises, etc. but only every few years.)
We have two vehicles both about 5 years old. (I usually buy new, but cheap.)

You now know more than my close friends and relatives. This is strange for me.

Comments?
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Re: Old lurker New poster
Old 04-10-2007, 07:09 PM   #2
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Re: Old lurker New poster

Welcome to the board, Lucky. If you're looking for strange then you've come to the right place!

I think Bernstein feels that balanced funds are too tempted to raise their fees. There's nothing wrong with tweaking your portfolio now-- or leaving it for later to take advantage of 2008's favorable cap gains rates. Either way there are many ways to run an ER portfolio and you have to feel comfortable with what works for you.
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Old 04-14-2007, 06:34 PM   #3
Confused about dryer sheets
 
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Re: Old lurker New poster

Thanks for the comment. I don't understand you comment "2008's favorable cap gains rates" How do they change in 2008? Also most
of my savings are in a 403b, so I believe I do not need to worry about
cap gains rates for now. Is this correct?
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Old 04-15-2007, 11:45 AM   #4
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Re: Old lurker New poster

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lucky
Thanks for the comment. I don't understand you comment "2008's favorable cap gains rates" How do they change in 2008? Also most
of my savings are in a 403b, so I believe I do not need to worry about
cap gains rates for now. Is this correct?
Here's one article on 2008's lower rates for lower-income filers:
http://www.bankrate.com/brm/itax/tip...5a.asp?caret=1

But you're right, 403(b) gains are tax-deferred. I've never had one so I don't know the exact rules.
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