Browsing Archive June, 2011
Sea story: Looking for an Engineer in all the wrong places
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Sea story: Looking for an Engineer in all the wrong places

Sea story? Sure, it's been a month. However, this one has morals about financial independence, early retirement, and knowing your true values. But it has a happy ending, too! Now that my daughter has finished a year of NROTC, we've started some interesting conversations about work/life balance. Submariners aren't ...

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Update on TRICARE and Congress
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Update on TRICARE and Congress

Six months ago in the Tricare debate between the Department of Defense and Congress, a task force had recommended gradually raising the Tricare Prime annual family fee from $460/year to $1260-$2460/year over the next five years. It's been nearly 16 years since the last Tricare fee increase, and many veteran's ...

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Chasing yield
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Chasing yield

Brandi F on Dollar Stretcher asked an excellent question on the "Money Rules to Break" post: I've always wondered if it was prudent for military members to keep a smaller emergency fund, given their job security and health care. I personally keep the traditional 3-6 months of expenses in my emergency fund for a few ...

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USAA: Seven Money Rules to Break
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USAA: Seven Money Rules to Break

A few weeks ago USAA article posted an article on when to break the "money rules". Here's the summary, with my comments in italics: 1. Pay off debt and build an emergency fund before saving for retirement ... ... except when your debt is of the low-rate, tax-reducing variety, such as a mortgage or student loans, and ...

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How much should you save for college?
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How much should you save for college?

After reading the earlier posts on kids & college (see below), some of you have already been thinking about the next question: "How can I save for early retirement and still save enough for my kid to go to a good college?" An earlier post already discussed whether you want to set aside any money for them to go to ...

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Retirement For Dual Military Couples
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Retirement For Dual Military Couples

Introduction Jan put up a great comment  a few weeks back: "I’m curious. The stat on how many dual military couples ACTUALLY retire is amazing to me. Your case is even more unique. How many couples have dual military retirement?" I'm afraid the short answers are "We don't know" and "Probably not very many".  A more ...

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Early retirement and the kid’s college fund
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Early retirement and the kid’s college fund

This is another perennial (and heated) topic on discussion boards like Early-Retirement.org and Bogleheads.org. I'll try to distill years of debate (and thousands of posts) into the most popular suggestions. Before we get into the mechanics of saving & investing the college fund, let's figure out why you'd want ...

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Raising a money-smart kid
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Raising a money-smart kid

Our college daughter (just survived freshman year!) spent the last couple weeks at home. As she was reviewing the packing list for next month's NROTC training, she noticed that it included traveler's checks. "Traveler's checks"?!? If you're at least in your 40s then you may have dim memories of using them in your ...

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Raising an ER-smart kid
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Raising an ER-smart kid

Short post today, but it's building the foundation of raising a financially smart kid. An earlier post talked about the challenges of retiring early when you're still raising your kids.  That raises another question: How do you raise kids to value the early-retirement lifestyle? What kind of example does that make on ...

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