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Old 12-23-2010, 02:01 PM   #61
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Best: Deciding to let my hair go gray, I have not paid for a dye job or had my hair cut for 6 months. I hate to add up how much that would have normally cost me.

Worst: Buying a condo in Hawaii. We always knew it was more of an emotional decision than financial, however it is a price we were willing to pay.
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Old 12-23-2010, 03:50 PM   #62
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.... I have not paid for a dye job or had my hair cut for 6 months. I hate to add up how much that would have normally cost me....
Six months: $540 but on the good spending side as part of an attempt to spend up to PF's potential. Bought an unnecessary iPhone; still using all the E-gadgets, good or bad remains to be seen on AT&T contract.

Converted a chunk of bond IRA to equity Roth.

Closed two extra checking accounts.

Aquired a free Christmas tree on Dec. 20. Decided to buy nothing new for it even when advised it could use one of those cottony stand hiders.

Switching to better food items.

All good.
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Old 12-23-2010, 04:01 PM   #63
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Best- Sold 300 shares of UCO for $12.50 that I bought for $8.00
Bought a new toaster oven at Salvation Army for $6.00
Bought another house as it was to good of a deal to pass up
Bought a 2005 Jag that was to good of a deal to pass up. I drive maybe 50 miles a month (4 cars 2 drivers)
Moved one step closer to ER (hope to be in class of 2011)
Started focusing more on my health and eating better
Continued to work on different cashflow streams
Bought 37 months into Colorado retirement system for $5280
Getting CINC house on board with budget #s close to when I retire

Worst- Bought another house as it was too good of a deal to pass up
Bought a 2005 Jag that was to good of a deal to pass up. I drive maybe 50 miles a month (4 cars 2 drivers)
Had to start focusing more on my health and eating better

I am sure the list goes on and on.

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Old 12-23-2010, 04:02 PM   #64
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Originally Posted by Tomcat98 View Post
Best- Sold 300 shares of UCO for $12.50 that I bought for $8.00
Bought a new toaster oven at Salvation Army for $6.00
Bought another house as it was to good of a deal to pass up
Bought a 2005 Jag that was to good of a deal to pass up. I drive maybe 50 miles a month (4 cars 2 drivers)
Moved one step closer to ER (hope to be in class of 2011)
Started focusing more on my health and eating better
Continued to work on different cashflow streams
Bought 37 months into Colorado retirement system for $5280
Getting CINC house on board with budget #s close to when I retire

Worst- Bought another house as it was too good of a deal to pass up
Bought a 2005 Jag that was to good of a deal to pass up. I drive maybe 50 miles a month (4 cars 2 drivers)
Had to start focusing more on my health and eating better

I am sure the list goes on and on.

Tomcat98

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Oh yeah switched to Net-10 on cellphone which cut monthly bill by 75%
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Old 12-23-2010, 04:54 PM   #65
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Although I have a feeling I might be opening myself up for a few snarky comments by saying this, my best financial move was claiming unemployment benefits for the entire year and not only covering all my living expenses without having to dip into savings, but being able to save a few thousand too.

As for the worst financial move, I don't really have one, but would like to quote a piece from a recent interview in a British newspaper with the musician and TV presenter Jools Holland. When asked what his most extravagant purchase had been, he replied,

"Itís relative. You could buy a house for £500,000 but sell it for £2 million, which means it hasnít been extravagant. Buying coffee at motorway services is the most extravagant thing Iíve done. Itís £2.90 and horrible and you have to make it yourself Ė thatís the most extravagant thing youíll ever buy."
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:06 PM   #66
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Best financial move ion 2010 - ditched Ameriprise

Worst financial move in 2010 - converted TIRA to Roth IRA without fully understanding the tax consequences; almost cost us $30k in taxes. I read a lot and thought I had it understood, turned out I didn't. Was able to reclassify back to TIRA but it taught me that asking for expert advice is not a bad thing.
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Old 12-23-2010, 05:06 PM   #67
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Best (top 2): 1. Staying the course. Continued investing monthly. Rebalanced once at just the right time. 2. Found a new job. Haven't started yet, but it is looking to be better than the current one in most respects (financial and quality of life particularly).
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I disagree your best financial move was not loaning money to your SIL. Pat yourself on the back for that one.
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:33 PM   #68
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Best: Deciding to let my hair go gray, I have not paid for a dye job or had my hair cut for 6 months. I hate to add up how much that would have normally cost me.
Oh, I love this one! I had a haircut (chin length?) in May 2009 and then decided what the heck, if I'm going to retire what do I care about looking professional? So I've been letting it grow ever since then. It's mid-back now... I've been thinking perhaps a trim would be good. And the amount of money I saved is enormous. I am fortunate and basically not greying yet so I don't dye my hair. I like this casual retirement thing.

All my friends say I'm much more relaxed and happy - imagine that!
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:37 PM   #69
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Best financial move ion 2010 - ditched Ameriprise

Worst financial move in 2010 - converted TIRA to Roth IRA without fully understanding the tax consequences; almost cost us $30k in taxes. I read a lot and thought I had it understood, turned out I didn't. Was able to reclassify back to TIRA but it taught me that asking for expert advice is not a bad thing.
Can you still convert it to Roth again? You can pay the taxes over 2 years 2011/2012 (half each year) - a special deal for 2010 Roth conversions. This is probably something you know but maybe not. I am doing that and it helped with the taxes, enormously.
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Old 12-23-2010, 06:58 PM   #70
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(keep in mind: when I retired 3 yrs ago, I took the lump sum, like everyone else in my company. However, everyone else hired a financial advisor to invest their money for them. These people were smart, too, most smarter than me. Anyway, I felt extra pressure since I decided to invest for myself.)

Best move: Starting to watch Jim Cramer on Mad Money. I know a lot of people criticize him. I find him funny and entertaining. I ignore about 90% of his pontifications, but I have picked up several good ideas and for that I am grateful. The most significant thing I learned from him was to invest in dividend producing stocks. While most of my retirement money IS in Vanguard Tot Stock Market, I had a CD mature and I did not want to put that money back into a CD at 1%. So, instead, I started investing that money in dividend producing stocks and I've done real well. Thanks Jim!

Worst move: Ignoring all those people who said to invest in gold. wow, missed that one!
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Old 12-23-2010, 07:03 PM   #71
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I disagree your best financial move was not loaning money to your SIL. Pat yourself on the back for that one.
+1, Fuego!
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Old 12-23-2010, 08:55 PM   #72
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... I started investing that money in dividend producing stocks and I've done real well. Thanks Jim!
Well, the market has been generally rising this year. Stock owners either win big or win small.

In order to count, a "good" stock has to beat the S&P500. I have plenty that do, and I do not watch Cramer.

PS. High-beta stocks beat the S&P500 on the way up, but also go faster on the way down too.
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Old 12-23-2010, 10:12 PM   #73
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Best: Holding out for "one more year" to get a departure package for early next year.

Worst: Nothing too bad comes to mind...carelessly let my checking balance get too low a couple times, not realizing that I had to pay a fee when it got under $500--I hate bank fees! Or splurging on a Droid smartphone, increasing my monthly phone costs from under $10/month to over $60. Or missing out on the gold rush, even though I did think about it.
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Old 12-23-2010, 11:03 PM   #74
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Can you still convert it to Roth again? You can pay the taxes over 2 years 2011/2012 (half each year) - a special deal for 2010 Roth conversions. This is probably something you know but maybe not. I am doing that and it helped with the taxes, enormously.
We can still convert to Roth again but we'll wait until retired.
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Old 12-24-2010, 08:07 AM   #75
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Best: Paying off the house. Although we'd made more keeping the money in the portfolio, it feels good. Something about paying off the house makes my wife for the first time feel we are "okay" financially.

Worst: It is probably not tracking our spending more closely. Or time may tell it may be the decision to buy some cattle.
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Old 12-24-2010, 08:34 AM   #76
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Best move: Submitting a ridiculously low limit order to buy on May 6th and having it fill.

Worst move: Filling out a FAFSA. What a waste of time.
FAFSA is a waste. I refused to do it since I knew that I wasn't going to get a penny of help given our income and assets and I didn't want to share that information with some gov't bureaucrats and college admissions people. DW and daughter were not happy since it closed daughter out of some private scholarships.

Luckily, daughter was a good student and got a reasonable scholarship (effectively a discount on tuition). Still, I was happy after seeing the last tuition bill.
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Old 12-24-2010, 11:32 AM   #77
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My best financial move : keep working.

My worst financial move : investing in CDs only
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Old 12-24-2010, 01:31 PM   #78
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FAFSA is a waste. I refused to do it since I knew that I wasn't going to get a penny of help given our income and assets and I didn't want to share that information with some gov't bureaucrats and college admissions people. DW and daughter were not happy since it closed daughter out of some private scholarships.

Luckily, daughter was a good student and got a reasonable scholarship (effectively a discount on tuition). Still, I was happy after seeing the last tuition bill.
Except for the happy part about the tuition bill, I thought the same, but after first year my daughter's grades were "not up to her parent determined potential" so, as I had warned, she is now contributing to her costs via FAFSA student loan (I think anybody gets this)... it costs her interest which could be considered silly since we have cash and lower interest credit but I think it is worth the constant reminder that her free lunch now has a real cost to her... and grades improved this semester.
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Old 12-24-2010, 03:21 PM   #79
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Except for the happy part about the tuition bill, I thought the same, but after first year my daughter's grades were "not up to her parent determined potential" so, as I had warned, she is now contributing to her costs via FAFSA student loan (I think anybody gets this)... it costs her interest which could be considered silly since we have cash and lower interest credit but I think it is worth the constant reminder that her free lunch now has a real cost to her... and grades improved this semester.
While daughter was a motivated student, son was not (even with 20% skin in the game) and is now living at home and working. The "new deal" is if/when he returns to school that he pays for the first semester himself and if he does well (B's or better) he will get 100% reinbursement and can turn around and use the proceeds for the next semester. You can lead a horse to water......
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Old 12-24-2010, 03:55 PM   #80
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While daughter was a motivated student, son was not (even with 20% skin in the game) and is now living at home and working. The "new deal" is if/when he returns to school that he pays for the first semester himself and if he does well (B's or better) he will get 100% reinbursement and can turn around and use the proceeds for the next semester. You can lead a horse to water......
That sounds like a terrific method of motivating him, and I'll bet it works really well! Very good parenting, it seems to me.
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