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  1. Oops a slight error on my part in the heading. I missed a key. I agree with all the posts for the most part and can see all the angles of the discussion but getting rid of my mortgage for me was the best thing I did. I just got my property tax bill and as your house value rises so do your property taxes. Nice to know though that It's a one time yearly payment now instead of a monthly mortgage payment plus property taxes plus interest. The interest you pay on owning a mortgage is pretty significant. That's a huge fee IMHO worth getting rid of. Also the mortgage tax deduction is ripe for elimination.
  2. I thought so too and that's why I PUSHED IT SO HARD. With expense ratios like that who needs Fidelity or Vanguard. This or something like it should be available to every teacher in every school district in every state.
  3. It's not that we are fast necessarily, just that business is slow on this discussion board. Covid 19 has seemed to make it even less active with so many folks working from home and struggling with other issues like teaching online or watching/helping their own children. Others may have lost a spousal income. Still if you are collecting a paycheck you should be involved in your financial future because if you don't look after yourself no-one else will. I know some teachers with small limited pensions and no savings and it's been a rough road in retirement for them and they have had to look for additional income. I probably over planned but I guess it's the better way to go. Looks like we are heading to another lockdown. Hope not. I've been doing what I normally do. i just wear a mask and carry hand sanitizer. Look to Sweden on how they have handled this Covid 19 without all the mass hysteria. I will have no problem getting the Vacine when it arrives. Others are swearing not to get it. WHY?
  4. here is a link if someone else in Virginia needs it. https://www.varetirement.org/dcp.html
  5. David I'm in Virginia and taught in Virginia. We have an excellent 457 state plan and teachers are eligible!! I got it added. Talk to someone competent who handles these things in your district about adding it. One call to VRS would give the info you need to add it. Its sooo easy to add but it's too good a secret for some reason and many school systems don't add it because they don't know about it. It has index funds galore and target /life path funds galore at Vanguard like expenses. No high fee insurance type products. Someone smart and savy was looking out for state employees with this excellent option. Also as was mentioned above by bash dash, you can put together a basic Vanguard portfolio at low cost going through NEA invest via security benefit. Read some posts about it in other recent threads on this forum before proceeding. We have discussed it ad nauseam tony
  6. Steve's portfolio is a conservative portfolio that works for him. It's well diversified. You could learn much by studying it. He always gets a decent return too . Tony
  7. But you have to live somewhere and you have to invest somewhere. You can't escape fees, expenses and taxes either way. Nothing ventured nothing gained and everything is risky. Just live under a rock!!
  8. This issue has come up from time to time on this forum . This might offer some insight. https://www.morningstar.com/articles/991262/should-you-pay-off-your-mortgage
  9. Too many choices on that list.That's a list full of losers too except for a very few. I agree you've got it made with Vanguard. Ignore the others.
  10. Just the opposite .I think who ever told you that doesn't know much about investing. You have an 80% equity allocation and 20% in bonds. To me that qualifies as an aggressive allocation. I think your current allocation is perfect and at rock bottom cost.. The only advice I can offer is that adding more bonds would make your portfolio less aggressive and depending on your age and risk tolerance you might add more bonds not less going forward. As a counterpoint If you plan on collecting a teacher's pension plus social security you could I guess go 100% equity and quit the bonds all together and count your pensions as your fixed component. However I think having some bonds adds to your diversification and bonds CAN outperform stocks at times so I wouldn't make any changes. Tony
  11. You do not have to be a member. .You have nothing to fear using Direct Invest. It's an above board option. It can be trusted. The only non above board thing is they won't openly advertise it. You pretty much have to discover it yourself as you obviously did. Spread the word by word of mouth and stay away from a Security Benefit advisor/salesperson/sales shark. Once you recruit them for any help, bad things can happen as they are on commission and will try to sell you higher priced subpar goods. NEA Direct Invest must be a 100% do it yourself option. We can help with the process if questions arise. If you can get Fidelity on board GREAT!! BUT you must stick to their index funds otherwise they have many higher cost managed funds in their choices. Their index fund choices are limited. Fidelity is a for profit company. Vanguard is not for profit as an example and has lower costs across the board. But Fidelity has a better expense ratio on their index funds but not by much. Fidelity introduced index funds to compete with Vanguard. Tony
  12. I agree but this is such an unusual year.Anything could happen.
  13. That's funny! Maybe Steve danced over to the voting precinct.
  14. Whyme I visited Canada last summer for 10 days. If it wasn't so cold there, I would move there.They have it together on several fronts and they are so much more relaxed than our country. Unless this country starts agreeing more on a non partisan basis, we all suffer and new creative retirement legislation as well as other needed changes will never happen. Just look at the stall happening on a second stimulus for families in need right now. I'm so sick of the partisanship and divide going on in this country that I may not vote Tuesday and I'm expecting violence Tuesday. Sorry for this rant but just like the article says , partisanship is what is preventing good things from happening on many fronts and both sides share the blame. Tony
  15. Well written article about retirement options and new retirement ideas beyond Social Security. https://newcenter.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/10/Retirement-1_compressed.pdf
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