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  2. It looks like IL will get a state-run 457 plan in the near future, according to this newspaper article. You will probably learn about its details before we do. Please send us a link to any article on it you come across. Teachers who are part of either the Tier 1 or the Tier 2 pension plans can enroll, although Martwick acknowledged it will most appeal to teachers in the Tier 2 plan that has far less generous benefits. But it’s going to be a while before the new program is available. TRS spokesman Dave Urbanek said it won’t be available before June 30, 2019, the end of the current fiscal year. https://www.sj-r.com/news/20180915/teachers-will-get-new-retirement-savings-plan-eventually The forum discussion of this article is here:
  3. You may have lucked out with the Lincoln Investment Participant Direct Platform! There is at least one Chicago area district that is allowed to use it, but you will have to call to see if your district is allowed. The annual fee is either $35 or $65--it seems to vary. You should call a Lincoln Investment regional office to ask for permission. They are the only source of the application form, which states the rules for the plan. They will email you a link to the application form if they allow your district to use it. A local LI rep can't give you permission but would be able to give you the number to call. You can read about the plan in this thread from last year. https://board.403bwise.com/topic/6780-lincoln-investments-participant-direct/ There is nothing on the internet about this option, except on this forum and on the bogglehead.com forum. Lincoln Investment obviously wants to control its use. I have a link to an out of date form and will send it to you if you send me your email address in a Private Message.
  4. Thank you all so much! I have some investigating to do. Dan-no problem on the delay. I can’t explain how much your podcast has helped me and I’ve been passing it along to fellow teachers who love it just as much, so thank you! I am teaching in Illinois (Cicero to be exact). I do not have a Roth IRA, but definitely interested in looking into that option.
  5. Hi Megan, Welcome to the site and I apologize for my tardiness in getting you approved to post. Do you have a Roth IRA? If not, you could start with that at say Vanguard and then work to get better 403(b) choices. Here's a story comparing the 403(b) and the Roth IRA: https://403bwise.com/k12/content/23 Also, what state are you in? - Dan
  6. Sorry for your loss. Lost my husband 3.5 years ago too. I am a retired teacher with a CalSTRS pension, and I was not eligible from my husband's SS either. Here is the law that affects both of us: https://www.ssa.gov/pubs/EN-05-10007.pdf
  7. Hi Megan, You got excellent feedback. BTW, welcome to the 403(b) world with K12 school districts.
  8. I second everything krow said. I also want to encourage you to reform your district’s 403b/457b program. I was able to get Fidelity and Vanguard added to my district and I hope to eventually get rid of the predatory vendors. I’m happy to help you figure out how to do this if you’re so inclined.
  9. None of those 5 vendors are a slam dunk like Vanguard, Fidelity and Security Benefit (only their NEA Direct Invest) would be. However, if you are teaching in NJ, Lincoln Investment has an excellent low-cost 403b and 457 plan that you could use. It's also available in a few districts in NY and near Chicago. VALIC, and VOYA Financial may offer mutual fund based 403b(7) plans in addition to their very expensive annuity based 403b plans. You would have to talk to each of them and study their admin fees as well as the expense ratios of their mutual funds. Please do not let them sign you up to an annuity 403b!! Lincoln Investment does offer a mutual fund based 403b(7) plan that they call their Retirement Solutions Premier. It has a Management/Wrap fee of 1.25% but does offer many low-cost Vanguard Investor class funds. So this is far from ideal, and getting Vanguard or Fidelity added to the vendor list would be the way to go and worth the effort! Many states have a very low-cost state-run 457 plan that is available to school district employees. Teachers can contribute to both a 403b and a 457 plan (a maximum of 19k to each). What state are you teaching in? Does your district have a 457 vendor list? It’s possible that a state 457 plan would be all you need until later in your career?
  10. Last week
  11. I strongly do not endorse VALIC. I had to deal with them for years before getting out. However it is worth checking out what funds they have offered for your district's plan. It could be different in your area.
  12. Sorry for your loss. Did the Social Security Administration give you a reason why you are being denied benefits?
  13. Email your payroll specialist and ask if Vanguard can be put on the list. I asked my district if they would add Vanguard as a vendor for our 403b and 2-3 months later it happened! I couldn’t believe it.
  14. Hi! I'm a 5th year teacher and just now getting a handle on the 403b lifestyle. After listening to the podcast, I'm so upset my district does not offer Vanguard. If you had to pick the "next best thing" which would you choose between VALIC, Metlife, Lincoln Investments, VOYA Financial, or AXA. My district endorses VALIC, but they all seem like salesmen to me and seem to not have my best interest in mind. Thanks so much in advance!
  15. Pushing this financial literacy announcement up. Register here: https://www.utla.net/contact/financial_literacy_101_signup
  16. I’m pretty sure that as part of my employment termination package, I had to sign an NDA. So let’s just say I continue to hold the opinion that US corporations believe they’re in a zero sum game against their employees. At the time my portfolio was in the very lowest range where retirement could be contemplated. I was certainly emotional, but my reasoning was still entirely sound. I had an intense desire to say goodbye to US work culture forever. A couple business days later I was lucky enough to get a great job offer that would require me to start working within a few weeks. I just relaxed as much as possible and let things take their natural course and during that time my emotions subsided. For a variety of reasons I decided I didn’t want to retire just yet, and I’m happy I didn’t miss out on my current job because of an early decision influenced by emotion.
  17. I am a retired calpers employee, my husband just died and social security told me I am not entitled to widows benefits. Who do I call for help?
  18. Isn't it bizarre to think our emails get flagged and our helpful sharing of articles have to be distributed discreetly? You'd think we were....403(b) sales reps with something to hide! Oh that's right, they have free access. I don't think we're putting aside reform, but I do agree that we are taking one of the two-pronged approaches here. 100% right Ed, it's about building relationships, and face to face, and holding their hands. That is gold. Great work getting your former colleagues a lower cost plan.
  19. Cal Newport wrote a book called Deep Work. I just borrowed it yesterday from one of the many wonderful libraries in my area. From what I've read so far (and heard him say on his recent podcast interview) we all have period's of time during the day that is better suited for deep work. Mine is in the morning so I'll be reading your post then. Thanks in advance for sharing, Ed.
  20. I didn't either, but you brought it to the surface! That is why I begin the Fin Lit unit identifying and ranking values. Yes, behavioral economics is a relatively new field of study. Captivating to me too. And that is why I've been MIA for a while! I am a fan of letting things percolate after gathering as much information as possible, asking questions and exposing every possible scenario. I've sought guidance from several valued mentors and have done research, read and created. And physical workouts are always therapeutic for me. I am almost finished writing a PD to present to teachers on the state of 403(b)'s which includes the basics of financial literacy in language they understand, not in salesman language. I will be proposing it in June to the PD committee and pushing to present it a couple of weeks later. I'll collect data and market it to area schools and seek approval for CTLE credits for attendees. Looking ahead, I will seek sponsorships. What's the worst that will happen? I'll help a teacher and do a lot of volunteer work. I also have a teacher interview in May and today I had a Skype interview for an international teaching position! It would be easier for me to discard scenarios early but I usually don't do that. How did you manage during your mental volatility between job switches? Are you happy with your move?
  21. It is well worth anybody's time. I know you've posted it here in the past. Wish I could duplicate it on the east coast. Baby steps...
  22. Earlier
  23. Pushing this up. Register here: https://www.utla.net/contact/financial_literacy_101_signup It's a FREE workshop with tons of useful information. 5 PD credit hours are provided for LAUSD educators.
  24. That’s a great way to get rid of inappropriate investments that have racked up large gains! A 6% effective tax rate is very workable! I suppose these pensions are going to limit a lot of educators. That’s a pretty healthy income . Oddly enough, I hope not to join you in that 😀. Who knows what’ll happen with this tax code. I’m not as knowledgeable on the Republican rewrite as I’d like to be, but I’m under the impression that the tax cuts for businesses are permanent and the tax cuts for individuals are set to expire sometime within ten years of when the legislation began? Speaking selfishly, I’m not terribly worried about the tax code, but health care has me quite concerned. It would be a relief to join the rest of the industrialized world before I get too much older!
  25. I don't have time to read up on Act 5, but if you MUST have four vendors then I'd do everything you can to make sure only the best vendors are selected. I documented and ranked the best vendors I've found in the state of Florida (which is a good proxy for the nation) here. Fidelity Vanguard Security Benefit's NEA DirectInvest Aspire PlanMember DirectInvest The problem is that both Security Benefit and PlanMember have predatory plans that they push hard. If you could find a fourth vendor local to your area that could be added to Fidelity, Vanguard, and Aspire, then you might be able to entirely eliminate predatory vendors from your district. I'd use this opportunity to nip this in the bud before folks like AXA can establish a foothold and sink their teeth into people.
  26. That's exactly what I was going to say! Still, my portfolio is at an all time high in terms of profit and balance...I'm going to really enjoy this before the next downturn 🙂
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