Search found 374 matches

by AAA
Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MacBook Pro Worth the money?
Replies: 67
Views: 6809

Re: MacBook Pro Worth the money?

I have only ever used Macs at home and have been fairly happy with them. But today the basic hardware (processor, memory hard drives) are generic to the Mac and PC worlds. If you look in the newspaper adds, you see that the cheapest Macbook Pro is something like $1200 and it has (I'm going by memory...
by AAA
Sat Jun 27, 2015 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is your home owner insurance going up 27% this year?
Replies: 13
Views: 1541

Re: Is your home owner insurance going up 27% this year?

I live in PA and renewed in April. Change was minimal.
by AAA
Sat Jun 20, 2015 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard's newish email alerts & security
Replies: 19
Views: 1861

Re: Vanguard's newish email alerts & security

I agree with those that think these emails should not contain such information. I get the same from an online bank whenever I make a transfer - they put the $ amount right in the email. Even if you delete an email, it remains on your internet provider's server for some period of time, so is in princ...
by AAA
Sun Jun 14, 2015 7:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA question
Replies: 1
Views: 341

Re: HSA question

by AAA
Sat Jun 13, 2015 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Netflix Ads?
Replies: 10
Views: 1421

Re: Netflix Ads?

With Verizon FIOS t.v., when you first go to the program guide it first puts up a "just for you" promo/ad (whatever you want to call it). I find it annoying and quickly hit Exit, then go back into the guide a second time to avoid it.
by AAA
Sat Jun 13, 2015 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Did I get a cheaper crown because I had dental insurance?
Replies: 8
Views: 1660

Re: Did I get a cheaper crown because I had dental insurance?

fund seeker wrote:... this crown has been a hassle and just seems to be cheaply made...


In what way has it been a hassle?
by AAA
Mon Jun 08, 2015 8:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was your experience withdrawing Soc. Sec. application?
Replies: 0
Views: 250

What was your experience withdrawing Soc. Sec. application?

There have been a couple of threads recently about Soc. Sec. strategies. If anyone has done a withdrawal of application recently, can you share your experience (I was only able to find some older threads on this). Mike Piper says in his book that the process is not as easy as the one-page form makes...
by AAA
Mon Jun 08, 2015 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Putting off Social Security until 70
Replies: 89
Views: 7506

Re: Putting off Social Security until 70

The government has been continually raising the Soc. Sec. payroll tax The payroll tax has not been raised since 1990, when it was set at 6.2% for both employee and employer. The employee payroll tax was reduced to 4.2% for two years after the 2008 crash, as an economic stimulus measure. http://www....
by AAA
Mon Jun 08, 2015 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Putting off Social Security until 70
Replies: 89
Views: 7506

Re: Putting off Social Security until 70

I am in the position of deciding what to do myself. One thing to consider is that future reductions in Soc. Sec. benefits or added means testing that reduce payments are unknown factors that can't be modeled but are nevertheless possibilities, especially as the solvency of the fund needs to be addre...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 7:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Thanks all for the input, especially Mike. I have his book and it will be a good reference. As a final post, I would like to summarize things here, in one place, just to make sure I've got it all right. I feel a bit like Lou Costello at the end of the Who's on First Routine when he finally seems to ...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

The point in favor of you waiting (either via suspending or withdrawing your application) is that it increases the amount you (as a couple) receive as long as either of you are still alive, whereas your wife waiting only increases the amount you (as a couple) receive as long as both of you are stil...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Excluding the use of a calculator, the primary two strategies I'd be considering are #2 and #3 that I described in this post . Thanks for your patience and input. Re. your #2, reproduced here: 2) You suspend your benefit until reaching age 70. Your wife does nothing until her FRA, at which point sh...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

For example, compare it to this one: *You immediately suspend your benefit. *Your wife files at 62. *You unsuspend at age 68. Just to complete my understanding - You said elsewhere that if I withdraw my application I have to return what I have received up to that point. If I suspend, do I get to ke...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Excluding the use of a calculator, the primary two strategies I'd be considering are #2 and #3 that I described in this post . Thanks for your patience and input. Re. your #2, reproduced here: 2) You suspend your benefit until reaching age 70. Your wife does nothing until her FRA, at which point sh...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Okay, I'm starting to get it and I really appreciate all the input. So it appears there are three reasonable options for me: 1. I withdraw my application and return what I have collected so far. When my spouse turns 62, she files for benefits and I file for spousal benefits. That would give us $1,01...
by AAA
Fri Jun 05, 2015 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Is "file and suspend" the same as "withdrawal of application?" No. When you withdraw an application, it is as if you never filed. When you file and suspend, you have still filed, and are still considered "entitled" to benefits.* But during the period of suspension you ...
by AAA
Thu Jun 04, 2015 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Is "file and suspend" the same as "withdrawal of application?"
by AAA
Wed Jun 03, 2015 4:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Of course, please remember that all of these forecasts are merely that: guesses about the future. As my father's accountant would always say, " Tell me when you are going to die and I will tell you exactly what to do." So is this true in general - the strategies that involve waiting until...
by AAA
Tue Jun 02, 2015 5:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

Its not a substitute for reading the available literature and books, but.......heres a link to a social security "scenario" calculator on the T Rowe Price site. http://individual.troweprice.com/public/Retail/Retirement/Social-Security-Tool I've used it and it will help you get familiar wi...
by AAA
Tue Jun 02, 2015 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Re: Social Security Strategies

AAA, you might want to download Social Security Made Simple by Mike Piper, CPA - also known as ObliviousInvestor on the Bogleheads! http://www.amazon.com/Social-Security-Made-Simple-Retirement-ebook/dp/B009K7ZNDS This will definitely help with the complexity and feelings of overwhelm. I did order t...
by AAA
Mon Jun 01, 2015 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Strategies
Replies: 43
Views: 4072

Social Security Strategies

Our situation - I was the higher earner. I recently retired and started Soc. Sec. at the full retirement age rather than waiting until age 70. Spouse recently retired and will reach age 62 later this year. I thought our main decision would be whether or not she would start Soc. Sec. then or wait unt...
by AAA
Wed May 27, 2015 8:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Grandson's UTMA account
Replies: 14
Views: 780

Re: Grandson's UTMA account

Something that may not be widely known (from Forbes.com) -

"Beware the pitfalls of being the custodian of an account that you have also funded: in the event that you die before the child reaches the age of majority, that money is included as part of your estate."
by AAA
Tue May 26, 2015 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Still make sense to have AAA membership?
Replies: 74
Views: 6156

Re: Still make sense to have AAA membership?

People have provided information on whether or not you should get AAA. I just wanted to comment on one of their practices, at least AAA Mid-Atlantic. We chose not to renew a few years ago, in favor of a service provided by our insurance company. I cannot tell you how many calls we got from "AAA...
by AAA
Sun May 24, 2015 7:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Form 5498-SA from HSA Custodian
Replies: 2
Views: 331

Re: Form 5498-SA from HSA Custodian

Thank you. I checked, and my prior year 5498-SA does indeed have a Box 3 entry, so I don't have an excess 2014 contribution (which is what I thought, but wanted to make sure that the form wasn't indicating otherwise). So the IRS doesn't then just add Boxes 2 and 3 and say that there's an excess cont...
by AAA
Sat May 23, 2015 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Form 5498-SA from HSA Custodian
Replies: 2
Views: 331

Form 5498-SA from HSA Custodian

Box 2 says "Tot contributions made in 2014." Box 3 says "Tot HSA/MSA Ctb Made 15 for 14." It appears that my December 2014 payroll deduction was actually recorded in 2015 and is contained in Box 3. I'm assuming, since otherwise I went over the contribution limit for 2014, that th...
by AAA
Tue May 19, 2015 11:12 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: why they requires my username and pass word
Replies: 8
Views: 2269

Re: why they requires my username and pass word

I'm using Safari on a Mac and sometimes, not always, I am asked to log in again. I check "keep me logged in," or whatever the wording is, and do not delete cookies in-between.
by AAA
Sun May 17, 2015 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will you buy an Apple Watch?
Replies: 398
Views: 31139

Re: Will you buy an Apple Watch?

I love the idea that apple innovates so quickly, and so much faster than other companies, that their products are obsolete in 2-3 years. All my stuff is from Apple - laptops, iPods, Apple TV etc. - but I really don't get all the hype about how innovative Apple is. There were smartphones, MP3 player...
by AAA
Sat May 16, 2015 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Aren't we overdoing electronic auto safety features?
Replies: 193
Views: 13107

Re: Aren't we overdoing electronic auto safety features?

I'm all for safety, however, but I'm not sure that I trust software-based automatic systems very much. Maybe I've got this wrong, but my understanding is that you can't buy a new car today that doesn't have a software controlled engine and braking system. True, computers play a big role in cars tod...
by AAA
Fri May 15, 2015 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A/C Service Deals
Replies: 11
Views: 923

Re: A/C Service Deals

When we got our new unit a few years ago, it came with a 10-year warranty. I asked the salesman whether the warranty required any kind of annual maintenance and he said no. (That didn't stop the company from sending us mailings suggesting an annual checkup). So my approach has been to make sure that...
by AAA
Fri May 15, 2015 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Aren't we overdoing electronic auto safety features?
Replies: 193
Views: 13107

Re: Aren't we overdoing electronic auto safety features?

As cars become more and more similar, which they seem to be doing, manufacturers tend to add more "technology" to differentiate their products. A lot of it I don't really care about. I'm all for safety, however, but I'm not sure that I trust software-based automatic systems very much.
by AAA
Tue May 12, 2015 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I Hate Vacations
Replies: 113
Views: 9939

Re: I Hate Vacations

I also grew to dislike vacations - the hassle of traveling and the difficulty of finding the kind of food I usually eat. I guess if you could instantly transport me to a place I might enjoy it, but getting there and back too often ruined the whole thing. In recent years I have learned to enjoy "...
by AAA
Sat May 09, 2015 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Having a website
Replies: 18
Views: 1917

Having a website

In anticipation of possibly having a very small business related to one of my hobbies, I was thinking about grabbing a domain name and setting up a simple website just to have a web presence and email account - no web commerce or anything like that. My initial research into these things has left me ...
by AAA
Fri May 08, 2015 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with mink coat
Replies: 30
Views: 2468

Re: What to do with mink coat

gd wrote:It's an interesting and educational exercise in adjusting expectations of value to reality.


Based on all the responses to my post, it certainly has been interesting and educational. We thought the coat was valuable.
by AAA
Thu May 07, 2015 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with mink coat
Replies: 30
Views: 2468

What to do with mink coat

My wife was given a mink coat many years ago by her mom. She never wears it and would like to sell it, so we are seeking advice of how best to go about doing that. I've sold stuff over the years on eBay, but even if I wanted to do that (which I wouldn't even consider with something like this) I don'...
by AAA
Thu May 07, 2015 10:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will you buy self-driving car?
Replies: 235
Views: 10506

Re: Will you buy self-driving car?

No. I would not trust it. With software of any size, there are always potential bugs as not every path through the software can be tested. It's one thing if a program crashes when you try to do A, then B, then C, because that was never tested, but all you have to do is restart the program. And do an...
by AAA
Wed May 06, 2015 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: move to cash for upcoming bear market?
Replies: 68
Views: 8564

Re: move to cash for upcoming bear market?

Why not sell now, hold the cash, wait for the low and buy low? Suppose you do that and the market goes down 20%. Would that be the low you were looking for, or would you be concerned that it could go down some more and be reluctant to invest? No one knows it's a low until after it has started recov...
by AAA
Wed May 06, 2015 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Decisions - still working
Replies: 13
Views: 1211

Re: Medicare Decisions - still working

The downside to signing up for Part A, even though it is free, is that you can't contribute to an HSA if you are on Medicare. So if you have a high-deductible plan at work and contribute to an HSA, you might want to delay signing up for Medicare. Also note that if you retire and start Medicare durin...
by AAA
Sun May 03, 2015 1:28 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Selecting a post to follow
Replies: 5
Views: 1128

Selecting a post to follow

If you contribute to a post, it will show up in Quick Links under "Your Posts." What if you are interested in following a post but do not contribute to it? Is there a way to mark the post so that you can easily get to it later on to see what other people have written?
by AAA
Sat May 02, 2015 8:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: There's a monster under my bed... [CDs instead of bonds?]
Replies: 30
Views: 3715

Re: There's a monster under my bed... [CDs instead of bonds?]

ARB57 wrote:...At present, my CD's are earning an average of 3%...


Where do you have these CD's such that the average return is 3%?
by AAA
Sat Apr 25, 2015 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your experiences of high inflation periods
Replies: 60
Views: 3389

Re: Your experiences of high inflation periods

I bought a house about 1979. Back then you could "assume" someone else's loan. I remember being told this was really great because my mortgage interest rate would only be 7% (or was it 9%) and that was WAY better than getting a new loan which IIRC was about 15% or thereabouts. I was young...
by AAA
Thu Apr 23, 2015 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Dealership Credit Report
Replies: 34
Views: 2838

Re: Car Dealership Credit Report

A similar experience - bought a car with cash in 2004 and the salesman said he needed our social security numbers to complete the vehicle registration form. We gave them to him but next day I called our state dept. of transportation and they said the numbers are not required. Wrote to the manager of...
by AAA
Sat Apr 18, 2015 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who is covered by your HSA?
Replies: 8
Views: 976

Re: Who is covered by your HSA?

1. Correct, a non-dependent's out of pocket expenses are not qualified expenses for their parent's HSA(s). 2. No, this is true regardless whether they remain on the parent's HDHP plan or have their own plan. However, if they remain on their parent's HDHP plan, they are eligible to make the full fam...
by AAA
Fri Apr 17, 2015 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who is covered by your HSA?
Replies: 8
Views: 976

Re: Who is covered by your HSA?

I think the only thing that is not ripe for confusion is that if in this situation, the older spouse has his or her HSA, she can no longer contribute to that HSA when she takes in Medicare, yet the younger spouse can still keep the HDHP-Family Plan and still make HSA contributions in his own HSA. T...
by AAA
Fri Apr 17, 2015 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who is covered by your HSA?
Replies: 8
Views: 976

Who is covered by your HSA?

Let's say you have a high deductible health plan at work, covering you, spouse and kids, and have set up an HSA in your name. Initially, the qualified expenses of all family members, you, spouse and dependents, are eligible for reimbursement by the HSA. I'm trying to understand how things change as ...
by AAA
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you drive, and why?
Replies: 249
Views: 26025

Re: What do you drive, and why?

Volvo S60 for safety.

Also Camry for reliability (and safety - it even has an airbag for your knees).
by AAA
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: yea or nay to 5 years CDs
Replies: 21
Views: 2646

Re: yea or nay to 5 years CDs

Build out your CD ladder starting with 6 months and build out to 5 years. Don't be afraid to buy CDs from corporations or international banks. Just make sure they are investment grade. You can find much better rates and can spread your money out. What's better to you, getting 5% and taking a $5,000...
by AAA
Thu Apr 16, 2015 3:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: yea or nay to 5 years CDs
Replies: 21
Views: 2646

Re: yea or nay to 5 years CDs

Ally recently added wording to their CD agreement, saying something like "you can, with our approval, make an early withdrawal from your CD account."

So it's not guaranteed that you can break a CD if you wanted to.
by AAA
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I purchase an Umbrella policy?
Replies: 54
Views: 5865

Re: Should I purchase an Umbrella policy?

DTSC wrote:No offense, but you don't have $1m in assets, so why do you need so much coverage?


Why would a settlement necessarily be limited to a person's assets? Couldn't it also involve future earnings?
by AAA
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree-Health Insurance question
Replies: 2
Views: 433

Re: Retiree-Health Insurance question

I was in a similar situation but HR had advised me beforehand to ignore the Cobra mailing.
by AAA
Sun Apr 12, 2015 7:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ally Raise Your Rate CD
Replies: 2
Views: 890

Ally Raise Your Rate CD

This product has been discussed before but not recently so I thought I'd get some input about this CD, and maybe some people's actual experience with it. The concern is that the option to raise your rate is based on Ally's rate for this product, not some more general "interest rate" target...

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