Adjustable rate mortgages can be dicey if money's tight
Adjustable rate mortgages can make it difficult to plan ahead. See question No. 4 of the reader mailbag for advice about how to deal with an adjustable rate mortgage if you're living paycheck to paycheck.
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I do this exact same thing, both on Etsy and on other sites. If I see an item I want, I add it to a “wish list.”Skip to next paragraph
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I find it does the exact thing that Charlene describes: it takes the edge off of the immediate desire. I can also return to those “wish lists” at a later time and determine if it was a “whim of the moment” desire or something I actually have a use for.
Often, my wife will check out my “wish lists” on various sites that I frequent and use them as a source for gifts for me at holidays and such. I often forget the things I’ve put on those lists, so the gifts are almost always a pleasant surprise.
Let’s just say whenever I find myself in the kitchen section on Amazon, I usually wind up adding a thing or two to my list.
Q10: Employer bankruptcy and 401(k)/403(b) status
My former employer has filed for bankruptcy. While it’s not been determined by the court whether or not they are allowed to file nor which type of bankruptcy they are allowed to file for (Chapter 7 or Chapter 11–each with different implications for their union and nonunion employees), I wondered if this could effect the 403b account I had with them. They didn’t contribute a match to it while I was an employee, it was all my money. The fund is through Vanguard. I left it there because I didn’t know what else to do with it and I know Vanguard is a good institution. Currently, I have TIAA-CREF through my employer and TIAA-CREF made it sound like they could easily get those funds for me (I talked to them prior to this bankruptcy activity). Do you think I could lose my 403b money in Vanguard because of this bankruptcy? What are the positives/negatives in putting all my 403b money in one place?
You shouldn’t lose a dime of the money in your 403(b) because of the collapse of your employer. The money in that account is yours and yours alone. The account was merely provided to you by an arrangement that your previous employer set up. Just because that employer is bankrupt doesn’t mean anything about the investment house.
If you’re concerned about the stability of the investment house – which you should have no reason to be in this situation – you can take out the money, but it’ll be taxed as regular income plus an additional 10% tax hit. Generally, that’s not worth it.
I’d just stay put with everything if I were you.
Got any questions? Email them to me or leave them in the comments and I’ll attempt to answer them in a future mailbag (which, by way of full disclosure, may also get re-posted on other websites that pick up my blog). However, I do receive hundreds of questions per week, so I may not necessarily be able to answer yours.
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