Showing posts from January, 2018

IRA vs Roth IRA - Bro

I recently had a reader question if a Roth IRA or a Traditional IRA is better. Of course the answer is (not) simple! All info contained in this blog post is to the best of my knowledge (and research). Please do your own homework before you make any money moves.

Step 0: What is a Roth or Traditional IRA? Roth IRA: The money that you put in there is already taxed and is taken out without paying any more taxes*.
EX: If you make 50,000 as a couple it would cost you $6,470 ($970 in taxes) to make the $5,500 contribution. When you get to retirement you will owe no taxes on what you take out. 
Traditional IRA: The money that you put in there is before taxes and when it is taken out it is taxed.
EX: You make your $5,500 before you pay any tax on it. When you withdraw the money you pay taxes on it as if it were normal income. In this case if you were to withdraw $5,500 after the age of 60 and your income was 50,000 as a couple you would pay 15% tax or $825.
There is no difference in the amount of mo…

The beauty of adversity - Bro

Adversity and difficulty are things that most people try to avoid. It is painful to be "behind the eight ball". Nobody likes to miss a meal (due to travel, being too busy to eat, or having a tight budget). The thing is the major growth in my life has been because of adversity.

When my wife and I got married we bought a house and had a plan. We cut things a bit close financially between our 20% down payment (part of which was supplied via a short term family loan), furnishings for our new home, parts of the honey moon, and the few wedding expenses not covered by my in-laws. Then adversity snuck up. Due to my mother-in-law losing her job we were suddenly on the hook for more of the wedding expense. At this point two things could happen. First, my wife and I could freak the hell out and fight each other due to the stress. Second, my wife and I could grow closer together (very fast) and take on the world as an “us”. Lucky for me we went the second route and made it work. To this…

The Year of the HSA - Sis

This is going to be another big year for my family! We are welcoming another baby into our home this July. This is going to dramatically change our family's budget for the year.

Our first challenge is our health insurance plan changed. We now have a high deductible health plan which includes a HSA. It cost more per paycheck then last year. Also, it requires more money upfront but once you reach your deductible coverage is 100%. One advantage is my husband’s employer contributes $1000 per year to our HSA.

Let's take a step back for a minute and talk about what a HSA, or Health Savings Account is. You have to be enrolled in a high deductible health plan to qualify. The money you put into the account is not taxed and it is also not taxed when paying medical bills. This is a huge advantage. The funds rollover year to year. The annual contribution is limited to $4,450 for singles and $7,900 per family in 2018.

We are going to have planety of medical bills. Between doctor visi…

The Five Year Plan - Bro

I recently read a blog post by Zach over at “Four Pillar Freedom” titled “How to be in a Better Place Five Years from Now: Stop Looking Around and Start Looking Ahead” and it got me thinking about long term planning. Five years is a short enough time that the “end” does not seem out of reach but it is far enough away that you have to room to make many small efforts to make a large impact. This is not a New Year's resolution. I see it as more of a direction instead of a destination. Without further ado here is my (first attempt at a) five year Plan.


This area of my life is one of the more contentious areas. I am the sole breadwinner in my family. My primary focus is typically providing for my family (I find this to be a large motivator in wanting to be FI). To achieve the goal of providing for my family aspects of my relationship gets sacrificed. This includes things like missed anniversaries, school events, and holidays. To make up for this I plan to work on improving my rel…

Stock Gift Giving Experiment Part 2 - Sis

As promised I would like update you on the experiment my husband and I tried this year. See part 1 for the background. First, we decided to open a Robinhood account for our trades. Since we were only buying a few shares of stocks it did not make sense to pay $7.99, ect. per trade. If at some point we want to grow our portfolio more, we can pay $75 to transfer all our stocks to a different company. My husband got me a share of Jack Daniels Whiskey, (BF. B, $68.78) and a share of Coca- Cola, (COKE, $216.83). That is my drink! Isn’t he so creative. I currently am pregnant so I can’t drink right now, but this is almost better. I got my husband a share of, Johnson & Johnson (JNJ, $140.56). Like I said, we have baby number two on the way. He is going to be buying a lot of baby products in the near future. At least this way he will feel like he is supporting his portfolio each purchase! Bonus- My husband decided to ask his parents for a share of Berkshire Hathaway B (BRK.B, $199…