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Old 11-05-2014, 07:40 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by Quantum Sufficit View Post
for those that carry a mortgage in retirement, Dave Ramsey likes to ask people if they had a paid off mortgage, would you go out and borrow to invest or place your money where ever it is you now have it?
That is exactly what I did. With mortgage rates near historical lows I believe that over the long run I can invest the proceeds and earn more than what I pay.

One thing to keep in mind though is that my mortgage is less than 10% of our net worth. If the mortgage would be much more of our net worth (say 50% or more) I would not be so comfortable using leverage the way I am.
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Old 11-05-2014, 09:44 AM   #62
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I listened to Dave Ramsey for a number of years, and count him as the encourager for my somewhat reluctant spouse to really get on board with our finances. Because the radio show is quite entertaining, DH came to be more interested in our financial goals, and eventually the goal of paying off our house.

I can discern the good advice given from the stuff that isn't. Just like the good parts of YMOYL. And I think Ramsey does a good public service to counsel those living paycheck to paycheck to save and get out of debt. Those folks aren't like most of us on the forum, but I used to be one of them.
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Old 11-05-2014, 10:13 AM   #63
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I've always paid off my credit cards in full each month. We paid off our mortgage this year. I do keep a fair amount of cash in a credit union account for emergencies. When I purchase a new car in the future we will probably do what we've always done and that is pay most of it in cash and take out a loan for some of it.
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Old 11-05-2014, 10:21 AM   #64
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As a side note, here is Dave Ramsey's house:

Dave Ramsey’s House: Living Like No One Else
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Old 11-05-2014, 11:02 AM   #65
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No Mortgage or car pymts. Use cash back credit card for almost all purchases. Get over $1,000 cash back each year.
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Old 11-05-2014, 11:47 AM   #66
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Any tips to maximize this tax free income?
1. Purchase Visa gift cards with your points credit card, preferably a new card that requires a high level of spend in the first few months, for a large number of points. A Visa gift card can be purchased for as little as $2 for a $500 card.

Or, Amazon has a way to transfer money from your credit card to send to a friend, like PayPal. There is no service charge.

The idea is to get as much 'charged' on the credit card to get points, and the bonus points that the new card offers.

2. Transfer the Visa gift card balances to an Amex BlueBird account, at a Walmart terminal.

3. Pay the balance on the points credit card with the balance in the BlueBird account. Or you can pay a mortgage or rent from this online checking account. Or any bill.

4. Then, you have lots of points on your credit card you can use to travel and save money. Some cards may allow you to redeem for a statement credit, which is like cash.

5. Look for a new credit card that gives another high-point reward bonus, and start at step 1.

It’s that easy...
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Old 11-05-2014, 01:28 PM   #67
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One light bulb moment we had this year on the credit card game was that it doesn't work to pay the property tax with a 2% back card because of the fees charged, but it did net out to a tidy profit to pay the property tax on a card with 50k in sign up bonus points.

Also, for those interested in the little bonus games, look out for Sharebuilder / Capital One Black Friday sign up bonus specials if you are still eligible. Last year I made around $1K between us and the kids.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:05 PM   #68
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DLDS, I'll be paying our prop taxes in January with the card that has a 70,000 point bonus.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:16 PM   #69
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DLDS, I'll be paying our prop taxes in January with the card that has a 70,000 point bonus.
What's a Point worth these days?
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:22 PM   #70
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What's a Point worth these days?
I have 300,000 points with Marriott Club. At 10,000 points for a one night room stay in a $100/night hotel, the points are worth about one cent per point.
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Old 11-05-2014, 02:29 PM   #71
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1. Purchase Visa gift cards with your points credit card, preferably a new card that requires a high level of spend in the first few months, for a large number of points. A Visa gift card can be purchased for as little as $2 for a $500 card.

Concerning purchasing Visa gift cards... I could do this in my 5% category say at Lowes or such when offered... I'm assuming sales tax is not charged on buying these? If there is, it negates any advantage for me in buying them.


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Old 11-05-2014, 02:46 PM   #72
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What's a Point worth these days?
It depends on whose they are. These are Chase Sapphire Ultimate Rewards, which are pretty darned good for my modes of travel. I swap them 1:1 for United miles, SW Air, or Marriott, or IHG, or use them on the reward website to book hotels or rental cars, depending.

Now Delta miles are a whole different story. Not as valuable, at least to me.

I keep my credit card stuff simpler than most, only juggling one initial spend at a time, and (of course) paying them off at the first of each month. I go for the middle ground on travel hacking, not like the masters who spend lots of energy getting the really big bonanzas.
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Old 11-05-2014, 03:16 PM   #73
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1. Purchase Visa gift cards with your points credit card, preferably a new card that requires a high level of spend in the first few months, for a large number of points. A Visa gift card can be purchased for as little as $2 for a $500 card.

Concerning purchasing Visa gift cards... I could do this in my 5% category say at Lowes or such when offered... I'm assuming sales tax is not charged on buying these? If there is, it negates any advantage for me in buying them.
No sales tax charged, only a service fee. The service fee is only ~$5.00 per $500. A penny a mile. But you get the bonus points, if any.
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Old 11-06-2014, 08:27 AM   #74
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Speaking of credit cards, I just got a "invitation" to apply for an American Express Platinum card in the mail a few days ago. I thought the mailer said there was a $495 annual fee (but the web site said $450.) It listed about a page of "potential benefits", none of which I would probably ever use. It doesn't matter, it's in the trash now, but I got a good laugh.

I've had credit cards all my adult life and I have never paid any fees. (no annual fees or interest) Sorry but fee based credit cards are not for me. Guess I'm spoiled.
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Old 11-06-2014, 09:29 AM   #75
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Retired debt free about 6 years ago, we pay cash or use a card I pay off each month. Having said that, last week I took out a line of credit on our brokerage account that I plan to use to buy a piece of property we'll close on in the next few days. Didn't plan to do this but will turn 59 1/2 in a few months and will use some funds from an IRA to pay it off. Found a river property only a few miles from here so we can fish and boat. Will post about it once we close.
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Old 11-06-2014, 06:28 PM   #76
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I use my AmEx card at every place that accepts it, and of course we pay it off each month.

I hate using cash, because with the credit card Quicken will download all transactions for me, and even classifies them into categories like groceries, gas, etc..., though I still have to go in occasionally and reclassify some expenses. For example, gas for the motorhome would be in the travel expense and not lumped in with normal car driving, but it really minimizes my manual record keeping.

And then, we get good money back from AmEx every year. What's not to like?
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Old 11-06-2014, 06:49 PM   #77
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Re negative interest rates: Until they put expiration dates on $100 bills (or 500 euro notes), you can always take the cash and put in an safe deposit box all be it that might cost $50/year. Anyway you can fit quite a few $100 bills in a safe deposit box.
That works until the Fed says, "We decided notes with serial numbers ending in digit (pick one) became worthless today."
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Old 11-06-2014, 07:17 PM   #78
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That works until the Fed says, "We decided notes with serial numbers ending in digit (pick one) became worthless today."
That the crazy talking? Remember who just won the elections.

But I suppose that is why you need gold, GOLD, GOLD!!! Or better yet, ammo.

*sigh*

To this day, Dad knows exactly how much in hundred dollar bills will fit into a coffee can and a shoe box. I don't think it will be much fun to be his executor when that fateful day arrives. Lucky me. At least I will not have to argue with my siblings over his vintage revolver.
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Old 11-06-2014, 07:33 PM   #79
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I use my AmEx card at every place that accepts it, ... For example, gas for the motorhome
If you used a Flying J/Pilot card (RV Plus) and had it on autopay, you would get, at least, 5˘ off the pump price.
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Old 11-06-2014, 08:12 PM   #80
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+1 Unless there is a financing rebate to take advantage of, I pay for vehicles by check. If we reach an impasse in the price of a used car, I usually write out a check to the dealer for my final offer (including tax, transfer,etc.) and don't sign it - I hand it to them and tell them I will sign it if we have a deal for the car for that amount. I'm 2 of 3 so far using that approach.

When I was buying one car I told them I wanted to pay for it by check (no financing) and they seemed to not know what to do to process a non-financed transaction.
I have two relatively new cars, but I will use that unsigned-check-strategy the next time! I too have had difficulty explaining to some dealers that no financing was involved. I remember test-driving a Lexus, not having shaved in 4 days and wearing jeans and a T-shirt, and they kept asking if I was financing or leasing. I ultimately bought the car, but they seemingly could not get over the fact there was to be no financing.

Finally, I've noticed a not-surprising pattern in the other replies about usng credit cards....but paying in full each month.
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