September 08, 2022
Listen to Podcast Episode:
On this episode of Ask Suze & KT Anything, Suze answers questions from you all about FFEL loans, taxes on retirement accounts, a special “Can I Afford It” quizzie and more.
Suze: September 8th, 2022
KT: Suze, where's the time gone? This is KT.
Suze: KT. They know it's you, who else would it be?
KT: Wait, this is KT and Suze on the Women & Money podcast. Ask Suze Anything and KT will read it and ask her anything on your behalf. But today, today everyone is our anniversary!
Suze: It is our wedding anniversary. We've
KT: been married forever. Right, Suze?
Suze: So wait, I just have to tell everybody this. Alright, so we sit down to do this and I say, you know what
Suze: today is, you know what we should say to everybody? And you know what KT says to me says, yeah, we should tell everybody that tomorrow is the birthday of our nieces, Katie and Lauren.
KT: And Suze stared at me and said and?
Suze: and she just looked at me like what else is there?
KT: I said, oh yeah, and let's talk about the interest raise and Alliant, and she said and...
KT: and I said, oh yeah, we're gonna tell everyone about Freevee which I'm going to save for Suze. She said, KT, and what else?
KT: And I looked at her and I said, she said it's our anniversary.
Suze: So for all,
KT: she got
Suze: all of you who think we are this most loving, adorable couple.
KT: We are.
Suze: If your spouse happens to forget your anniversary, just remember it's okay. That doesn't mean they don't love you.
KT: So what
KT: people don't know is we got married in South Africa.
Suze: I think many people know that KT, don't you?
KT: Yeah. And it was great. This was before it was legal in the US. It was great. Jillian Michaels was there
Suze: Yes she was.
KT: It was what Football?
Suze: The World Cup.
Suze: Yeah, the World Cup.
Suze: We all had those long horns (makes a horn sound) .
KT: Yeah, it was a big time in South Africa. We had a blast.
KT: We had
KT: so much fun.
Suze: KT, we always have fun.
KT: That wedding anniversary was really fun. We had a big barbecue...
Suze: That wasn't a wedding anniversary,
KT: Wedding day, Wedding day.
Suze: She thinks our wedding anniversary was then, but doesn't remember it today. I'm going to let her forget this. Oh, you are so wrong.
KT: Wild animals everywhere...
Suze: A few things I want to tell everybody. However, number one
Suze: I'm so glad that you loved last Sunday's podcast with Dr. Mary Gardner. You are sending in so many emails, you are sending in all kinds of things that we should know about animals and paying for them. I might just have to do another podcast on that. But I love that you loved that. I also want to thank everybody, especially Bob.
Suze: Bob who wrote in because last Thursday's podcast, before last Sunday's, at the end, I was thanking KT, because it's so true, KT. Oh my God, how many times have you had to and still have to take care of me?
Suze: And Bob is a man who wrote in and said he so can relate to this. Because for years now his husband has had to take care of him and he knows exactly how I feel. And KT actually wrote back to him. Because it was important that he heard it from the
KT: the caregiver on the other side. But but you know what Suze, a lot of people listening
KT: are in relationships or had relationships or you know miss their spouses, but it's part of love. That's all there is to it. It's not a big deal to take care of each other.
Suze: It isn't. I want to thank you for that,
Suze: and now I want to thank Alliant
Suze: guess what? Your interest is up to 1.7%.
KT: I'm making really good money on my savings account.
Suze: So all of you should do good and check into my alliant dot com slash good and learn about that. But we have a real...
KT: The biggest,
Suze: biggest news of all. And I'll let you KT
KT: First of all, we couldn't be happier if we tried. This has been in the works for many, months and it finally was launched, September first.
KT: And those of you that didn't get announcements or see notices, The Suze Orman show is back
Suze: Back baby!
KT: And it's on Freevee on Amazon for free.
KT: You can stream this. We've got 207 episodes that have been launched now and we're going and this is climbing
KT: and what's really great is that um Suze's show is available, probably all 600 episodes, by the end of this year in the United States. October will be in the UK. In January '23 we're going to be in Germany, and on and on and on. This is a worldwide event.
Suze: So yeah baby
Suze: I say the Suze Orman show is back.
Suze: The Suze Orman show that I did on CNBC for all those
Suze: years that
Suze: all of you watched and you write me and you say you only wished your kids could see it. Well guess what? Now they can, and all of you can watch them again. Again on Freevee. So
Suze: I'm so proud of that. I can't even tell you.
KT: And more come on Freevee . We'll wait and save those announcements a little bit down the road, but we're excited. You're going to see much more of Suze in the current as well.
Suze: All right. Now I'm sure
Suze: that you want us to get to Ask Suze and KT Anything.
KT: I have so many questions.
Suze: You always say that you always say you have great ones, you always remember all of that. But does she remember
KT: our anniversary?
Suze: No. 00:06:42
KT: Alright. Ready? The first one is from Cindy.
KT: Hey Suze & KT, I'm in need of advice on how to invest. I have $655,000 in a safe short term account. This is for my 89-year-old mother, who recently sold her home of 51 years. She's happily residing in assisted living, and funding her monthly expenses with her retirement income.
KT: After paying capital gains tax on the home sale, some medical bills, and setting aside a nest egg for unexpected needs, I'll have about half a million dollars to invest. I am the trustee of her revocable trust, and feel an enormous responsibility and legal obligation to make the right decisions with Mom's money. So the question is Suze,
KT: if she has only a year to liquidate after her mom's death, what should she do with this one?
Suze: Doesn’t it feel like we've answered this question a few times?
KT: Maybe. But it's her mom and it’s her question.
Suze: I'm just wondering that that if we had and I don't mind answering questions the same questions over and over and over again, because every single one of you is so important, you know to us and to yourself and your situation, especially your parent.
Suze: But this obviously is a question that a lot of you now are coming up with because a lot of us are at that age where we are responsible for taking care of a parent or our parents and their money. I will say it once, I will say it twice. I will say it over and over again. Money that you need within five years is not money that you can invest in the stock market.
Suze: And the good news for you, is interest rates are continuing to go up and up and up. This isn't just a thing where Alliant took their interest rates up from .60% a year ago, 1.0 to 1.4 to 1.6 now to 1.7, they will continue up.
Suze: So it is very possible for you now to invest in certificates of deposit and get like 3% for a year and a half, in Treasury bills or notes, or things that are really short term. So what I would do if I were you,
Suze: I would figure out if you have $500,000, how much at most do you think you need to get at within a week, within two weeks, within a few months? You leave that in a place like Alliant Credit Union where you can get 1.7%, but continue to get higher interest rates as interest rates go up. If you can get a little bit higher interest rate,
Suze: and you know that you have like a year and a half until you need the money, or some of this money, you could do like a three-year certificate of deposit again with Alliant or whoever you want. There are things like that that you can do and make a nice safe interest rate and return on your money. Again and I'll go into this more on Sunday. I don't love this market.
Suze: So many of you over the past few months when I would say I will bet you any amount of money that this market will go up and then it will go right back down, and you would write me and you would say no Suze it's gonna go up, up, up, up. We'll talk about that on Sunday,
Suze: but I'm not in love with the market. I'm not in love with what I think might happen next year in the market. So just keep this money safe and sound in the ways that I suggested, KT. Next question.
KT: OK. From Elizabeth. Hi KT and Suze, I love listening to your podcast and now I am streaming your show
KT: on Freevee.
KT: know you will never want one to take a loan from their 401k, but is it okay to take money back from a Roth IRA? However, would you recommend I could take a loan from my Roth 401k to increase the down payment for a primary residence?
KT: I would like to reduce my mortgage principal and monthly payments as much as possible. I prefer this option versus taking a distribution from my Roth IRA because the Roth 401k allows me to return this money plus interest to my Roth 401k account. What are your thoughts on this option, Suze?
Suze: So my dear Elizabeth, you know from your Roth IRA,
Suze: There is a rule that allows you to take up to $10,000, just withdraw it, up to earnings without taxes or penalties to buy a home.
Suze: You're right, I don't want you to take money from a Roth IRA because there's no way to get it back in there. While it's true if you took a loan from your Roth 401k, you do get to pay it back, and a lot of times when it's for a down payment on a home, you actually have 15 years to pay it back. Now normally,
Suze: I would say no, no, I don't want you to do either. I want you to save up enough money till you could put 20% down, and buy the house at that time. But given that, I'm not loving the markets in the long run. Maybe for the next year or two,
Suze: I don't think if you took a loan, as the markets are going down, I don't think you're going to miss out on a lot.
Suze: And therefore as you pay the money back in monthly payments to the Roth 401k, you may be getting a better deal on the stocks that you are already having to liquidate to take the loan. So if you have to take a loan, I rather see you get the money from your Roth 401k versus your Roth IRA. If you get in trouble,
Suze: and all of a sudden you lose your job, you something you quit and that money has to be paid back all at once. You can always go to the Roth IRA, take it out from there, and paid back the Roth 401K loan. All right, KT, I normally don't give that kind of advice, you know that right?
Suze: She's laughing. She's laughing because she's so out of her body today, It's not even funny. There is no reason for you to be laughing right now.
Suze: Why are you laughing?
KT: Because I usually say to her 00:13:41
KT: I usually say that's really good advice and she gets so mad at me,
KT: she says "KT, all of my advice is good advice. Don't keep saying it's good advice." Of course.
Suze: So instead I look at her and she doesn't know what to say now. Except what's the next question?
KT: This actually here's a great question. I try to find more of these because it's so current and there's been so much confusion. This is from Monica, Suze. You gotta set everyone straight.
KT: I have federal student loans in the amount of $6,500 which have been on pause, and are now eligible for forgiveness. But I also have a commercially held FFEL student
KT: loan, which
KT: I don't know what that is. In the amount of 3,000 which did not qualify for the payment pause so I've been making monthly payments throughout the pandemic.
KT: It seems uncertain whether this FFEL loan qualifies for forgiveness. I read some online articles advising those who have an FFEL student loan,
KT: that they should consolidate them into a direct loan program at studentaid.gov. Then they would qualify for forgiveness. Suze, is this good advice?
Suze: Yes, it is good advice. And not only is it good advice, but after you do that, then you would want to go back and see if you could get a refund
Suze: for the amount of money that you paid that should have been on pause. They will do that. So go back and listen to a podcast that I did on the new student loan forgiveness thing maybe a week or two ago, and you'll read about that. But yes, hopefully they will allow this to happen.
KT: So next is from Lynn.
KT: I'm struggling with the issue of downsizing. I'm a 60-year-old widow of almost two years. I would love to be free of the hassle of home lawn maintenance by moving into a condo. The area where I would prefer to move is highly desirable because it's of walking distance to shopping, gym, restaurants, so on and so forth. But Suze, the condo would cost more than the price I could get from my house.
KT: So not a smart financial move, but one that would give me security. I feel split on the decision.
KT: I am completely debt free. I'm still working, any advice? She's 60. I, I know what I would do.
Suze: What would you do?
KT: Definitely go to the condo.
Suze: Right now?
KT: You know why? Because of one word, it gave me a great sense of security.
Suze: Here's the thing though Lynn that I want you to just keep in mind.
Suze: I get that the condo according to your email is going to cost you more than the price you could get for your house. Alright.
Suze: However, you also say that you are still working. So therefore even though you're debt free right now, your mortgage payment, and even though I know interest rates are about 5.6% currently as we are doing this podcast,
Suze: and that's a high interest rate in most of your minds, even though historically speaking it's not that high, remember you will get a tax deduction for the interest on that payment. So it's not gonna be hopefully as expensive as you think. But the point I wanted to make, is what you never take into consideration. Is that it isn't the price that you get for your home,
Suze: It's also the price of the maintenance on your home.
Suze: When something breaks on your home, when something has to be replaced, all this stuff adds up and you don't even keep track of it all, and you're probably paying more on a yearly basis then you're gonna pay for possibly the condo. So I would do it so fast, I would do it faster than a New York minute, girlfriend.
KT: Great. This next question isn't really a question but
KT: it's something that's going to make you mad.
KT: Miss Orman. My oldest son is 22 just graduated from college with his BS in Kinesiology. His father... kinesiology, kinesiology is the study of muscle testing. (KT: We used to do that.)
Suze: We still do.
KT: His father and I were veterans. So his tuition was paid. Lucky boy.
KT: He took out loans for personal expenses. Now he has his first job making $25 an hour. One of his clients, in my opinion, is a
KT: predator. Ready
KT: Suze? You ready? And is trying to get my son to buy whole life insurance.
KT: I always remembered from your show that it's not a good investment. He won't listen to me. It's his life, but I think he's making a big mistake. Do you have a website I can refer him to that will explain this? I miss your show. Well guess what Miss Koopa, not for long. Go to Freevee, and you can be a forever fan again. And get your son to go to freevee and watch the Suze Orman show.
KT: But how can you convince her son not to get a whole life and he's 22 years old, Suze.
Suze: Yeah. I think you need to find one of the podcast that I talk about whole life insurance, or absolutely one of the episodes of The Suze Orman show on Freevee, or
KT: the books or
Suze: whatever books. But maybe he could just listen to this podcast right here.
Suze: He's in a little bit of a hard position. because it's one of his clients. And so he's gotta be respectful of his client, because his client is selling whole life insurance. So he can't just say to his client, no I'm not going to do this, it's a waste of money. It's a rip off. It's this and that.
Suze: I would simply try to explain to your son, and have him listen to this podcast, the only reason one would buy insurance if somebody is financially dependent upon you, and if you happen to die, they would
Suze: be in a financially stressed position. Nobody is reliant upon you for money, you probably are reliant on a whole lot of people, like maybe your parents, for money at this point in time.
Suze: So therefore it's such a waste of money, it's not even funny. You would be far better off taking that money and putting it into a Roth IRA, and dollar cost averaging, invest it. So just don't fall prey to this salesman, who really wants to make a serious sum of money on you.
Suze: But be respectful of your client and say, you know what, I don't have enough money to do that right now, and I would rather put it into a Roth IRA, but I'll let you know if I'm ever interested in doing so. So be respectful of this person
Suze: because this person is your client. Now, KT I didn't get mad at that.
KT: Good Suze.
Suze: Are you proud of me?
KT: I'm proud of you. Next is from Eileen, Suze, Hi Suze and KT. I am 58 I recently switched jobs after 20 plus years. I have a 401k worth around $100,000 from my former employer. I recently opened a Roth IRA listening to you,
KT: and I’m married, my husband recently retired. Should I leave my 401k where it is at the old job and this is where someone is a little bit not sure of how to do a rollover Suze. So I hope you can help her.
Suze: Is she working currently?
KT: Yeah. Listen to this.
Suze: Is she working?
KT: Yes she just switched, she said she just switched jobs. She switched her job
Suze: so she's not retired but her husband is.
KT: Yes but listen to this. I'm not sure if they're charging a fee.
KT: Should I transfer it to a vanguard IRA, or take a tax hit and move it to my Roth IRA?
KT: We own a home, have no debt, good amount of savings, blah blah blah. So Eileen needs to know what a rollover is.
Suze: No that isn't what she needs to
Suze: know. Because
Suze: that's not what she needs to know. You know what's funny, KT is sometimes people think they need to know something and that's not what they need to know. They need to know what they need to know according to what I think they need to know.
KT: What do you think Eileen needs to know?
Suze: So given the fact that your husband has just retired,
Suze: right? And you have $100,000 in your 401k at an old job, and you're 58 years of age, I would start converting this money from my old 401k, either to an IRA, and then to a Roth IRA, even if it was $10,000, 20,000 dollars a year.
Suze: Especially because you want to get, by the time you are on Medicare, you want to make sure that all the money that is in your taxable 401k is in a Roth IRA, because then when you go to make distributions from that Roth IRA it's not going to count towards your Medicare premiums. So you will save money in the long run.
Suze: So if I were you, I would plan it to convert X amount of money every single year, so that at least by the time that I'm 65 all the money in my 401k is in a Roth IRA. Again, you can do it by just leaving it where it is, you can ask if they charge for it or not,
Suze: they'll tell you. Right, or do an IRA rollover, which is simply where you open up an account at a discount brokerage firm such as Schwab or Fidelity, or you choose which ones you want, you open up an IRA with them, they contact your ex-employer, and your ex employer sends the money directly to them.
Suze: No tax consequences at all for you, no 20% withholding, and then you convert from there to a Roth IRA. Now you say that you've recently opened a Roth IRA. You can put the money that you convert into the Roth IRA that you have already opened. You don't need to open another one.
KT: Okay this is from Laura. Hi Suze. If a person has a regular 401k, not a Roth,
KT: And is at the age of having to withdraw funds,
Suze: so that means she's 72 years of age,
KT: how does the IRS determine how much tax to take out? Is the person's tax bracket determined by the prior year, or by the last
KT: few years, or by the highest paid years of that person's salary?
Suze: Laura. Just know, whatever money you take out of a traditional 401K will be taxed to you that year as ordinary income.
Suze: And it will also apply to your Medicare premiums, part B and D as well if you're over a certain limit. Alright
KT: Ready? Next question is an I Bond question. Good morning Suze. I have started investing in I bonds since June 1st 2022.
KT: I listened to your podcast as much as I can to help me understand the process. One thing I have not heard. Is it okay to have your account set for automatic withdraw, in my case $1,000 at the first of the month, as opposed to putting $10,000 in all at once?
KT: Am I wasting valuable time at 63 doing it this way? (Suze: Yes.)
Suze: Jackie, would you want a dollar cost average into a Series I bond if you have the money to do a lump sum? So if you have $10,000,
Suze: you want to do it absolutely all at once. Also you said that you're having them do it at the first of the month. Why are you having them do it at the first of the month? If you put money into an I bond at the end of a month,
Suze: as long as it's in there before the month ends, they credit you as if you put it in on the first of the month. So why would you want to wait? If you do $1,000 a month you might miss out on the 9.62% because November 1st it might not be that. So anyway, it could very well go down. We'll have to see what happens. So no you do it all at once girlfriend.
Suze: So, you know what time it is now?
KT: It's quizzie time!
Suze: That you remember!
KT: I know it's our anniversary but it's quizzie time.
Suze: That you remember. Now KT, in honor of the Suze Orman Show that is on Freevee now, the favorite segment of that show was "Can I Afford It?"
KT: "Can I Afford It?" Everyone loved it!
Suze: Loved it.
KT: Love, love, loved it.
Suze: So this quizzie... and by the way, for those of you who don't know,
Suze: right? The quizzie isn't just for KT. It's for you as well, how would you answer this question? So now you have to pretend that you're me, and this person is calling you,
KT: on “Can I afford it?”
Suze: “Can I afford it?” And asking you if they can afford something and you have to approve or deny based on the information that I'm about to give you.
Suze: All right? So listen closely. Do you want to write anything down?
KT: I have my pen. I'll take notes if I need them.
Suze: Seems to me you need notes lately. Okay. Anyway,
KT: I remember today.
Suze: This is from Clay.
Suze: Hi, Suze. I want to buy myself a Rolex, but my husband is skeptical, and I would like to get your blessing. I'm 37 with around $ 160,000 in a 401k. $55,000 in company stock, and another $40,000 in checking and savings that is burning a hole in my pocket.
Suze: We also own a home that has increased in value from $175,000 to around $600,000, and will be paid off in 10 years. I would like to spend a $9,250 on a Rolex that I've had my eye on for years, and with the secondary watch market currently crashing, I think now is the time.
Suze: That's what he wants to know.
KT: So show me the money, Suze. That's what you say. Show me the money.
Suze: All right. A few other things, truthfully right about Clay, is that he has with his husband, expenses of about $5,000 a month,
Suze: they split those expenses equally, they have two cars that are fully paid for, right? And he doesn't like the stock market. He's afraid to lose money, he wants to know where to put money that he does have that’s 100% guaranteed, Blah Blah Blah Blah. So that is the picture of Clay. Would you approve Clay to spend $9,250
Suze: on a Rolex, given his current financial situation?
KT: Want me to give you my answer? Denied, denied, denied!
KT: Because of the emotional decision. Not whether he can afford it. I don't think he can afford emotionally to upset his husband. Why would he do that?
KT: Why Clay? You're 37, your husband's very skeptical, why don't you wait till your husband and both of you feel great about it? Let him buy it for you as an anniversary or birthday or something. Denied.
Suze: And how would all of you answer that? What do you think everybody?
Suze: So KT,
KT: How would you answer?
Suze: How is Suze going to answer. Through all the years of the Suze Orman show,
Suze: I really had to separate emotions from finances, whether I agreed with them or not. Whether they wanted to spend $100,000 on cloning their dog, or which I approved by the way, or $7,000 for a sun room for a pet Iguana,
Suze: Alright. Or $6,000 to go to Elf School, with somebody who had so much debt it wasn't even funny, so the question is can I afford it.
Suze: Can Clay afford it? And Clay, this is how I look at your situation.
Suze: You have $175,000 of a house that you purchase that's worth 600,000. Well that's great Clay, but you live in that house. That money is not liquid to you. And there is no way I'm gonna let you take out any cash from that house in a rising interest rate environment. You say you have $160,000 in a 401k.
Suze: First of all, not only is it taxable, but it's a 10% penalty because you're not of age. You can't touch that money either. You say you have 55,000 in stock, this is not the time to be selling stock no matter what, so you can't touch that as well. You say you have $40,000 in a checking and savings account
Suze: that's burning a hole in your
Suze: pocket. I
Suze: think it's burning a hole, my love in your head. Right? There's no way money can ever burn a hole in your pocket. You have this yearning desire to buy something that you've wanted to buy for years, and so you're using that as an excuse. If you want to buy this, you have $9,250 you're going to have to spend,
Suze: take that from the 40,000, which brings you down to approximately $30,000 left. You say that you also split the $5,000 in monthly expenses with your husband. So that means you need $2500 a month as an emergency fund, so for 12 months you have that 30,000.
Suze: So on some level, financially truthfully, can you afford it at this point in time? You can, you are approved financially.
Suze: However, you are such a smart man. You're saving money, you're saving money with your husband, nothing's going wrong. I mean, everything is on track to how it should be. But here is the real question at hand, everybody. So KT, I know you denied him, but
Suze: EHHHH. He could afford it.
KT: I denied you emotionally.
Suze: Yes. But the question is, can I afford
Suze: it? All
Suze: right. You can now, Clay, but listen to me,
Suze: here's the question, which is how all of you need to look at something.
Suze: If Clay took $9,250 right now,
Suze: and he invested it,
Suze: and let's say over the next 33 years, Clay, when you're going to be 70, KT's age, the age that is perfect if you ask me, although she can't remember our anniversary. But that's besides the point. Right. Do you know at just a 5% rate of return, which over 33 years is so low, I can't even tell you,
Suze: you would have approximately $47,000. So that 9250 would turn into $47,000.
Suze: Is this watch worth $47,000 seriously, Clay? I don't know. It's something that you need to think about. Also, when you have a watch, like a Rolex, don't think that there aren't costs to maintain it.
Suze: So you have to make sure you get a watch winder for it so that when you don't have it on, it's constantly winding it, don't think you're not going to have to have it repaired over those years because you are. And remember, a watch can always be stolen. All kinds of things can happen to that. You're therefore going to have to ensure it, I don't know Clay.
Suze: If I were you, I would take that money, you know, open up a Roth IRA for this year, open up a Roth for next year, take advantage of the fact that the markets are down. But can you afford it? You have been approved.
Suze: How is that KT?
Suze: Did that make
Suze: you miss "Can I Afford It?"
KT: Yeah, that was a great ending. Approved. Now, the question is Clay, will you listen to Suze's approved, or Suze's voice of reason. So let's see what happens.
Suze: Or KT's voice of love. All right, everybody.
KT: Happy Anniversary Suze.
Suze: Oh KT you remembered!
KT: Let's go celebrate. We're gonna go celebrate. Will you buy me a watch? Just kidding. Let's go celebrate everybody.
Suze: All right. But I want all of you to celebrate, by watching all those hundreds of episodes.
KT: 600. The Suze Orman Show baby. Go to Freevee, go to Amazon,
KT: just plug it right in. It's free and love it up, enjoy it.
Suze: And you are all approved to do that. So until Sunday KT, we only want one thing for everybody. And that's for them to be safe, strong,
KT: and secure and safe and secure.
Suze: She just doesn't like that smart.
KT: They're already smart. They're listening. They're they're already smart. All of you listening are already smart. But to be safe, strong and secure, we all need a little more of that in our lives.
Suze: Alright until Sunday, you take care.
KT and Suze: Bye bye.
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