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Re: New HVAC

It won't be 'many decades' to pay back the replacement of a 20 year old HVAC. You might be looking at a single decade though. If you get estimates your contractor may supply this information as part of the quote. There are also often rebates from utility companies and tax credits involved in the pro...
by Ged
Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New HVAC
Replies: 18
Views: 1021

Re: How to use Gift Wisely to Help Pay for Graduate School

I would suggest to the donor that the money be spread out so as to avoid the gift tax issue which could pose a long-term record keeping burden and even have to be accounted for in an estate tax return.
by Ged
Sat Apr 18, 2015 7:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to use Gift Wisely to Help Pay for Graduate School
Replies: 10
Views: 632

Re: Proof vinyl has higher music ceiling than mp3?

Vinyl has a large number of inherent flaws including limited dynamic range due to surface noise, distortion during playback because of the mechanical nature of the reproduction system, etc. A well-executed digital playback chain is without these problems. There is a reason why EVERY serious recordin...
by Ged
Fri Apr 17, 2015 10:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Proof vinyl has higher music ceiling than mp3?
Replies: 36
Views: 2451

Re: Portable Air Conditioners

If you don't want to use a window AC and only want to cool the bedroom it sounds like a mini-split ductless is the ticket. Probably the best units on the market are made by Mitsubishi. Others are available as well.

Prices vary quite a bit.
by Ged
Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portable Air Conditioners
Replies: 9
Views: 767

Re: Long Term Tax Efficient Investing - Is it Better to Shel

While government policy is unpredictable, so are future interest rates on bonds. All one can do is assess the current situation as being the best guess as what will happen in the future with growing uncertainty as time lengthens. If you put equities in a tax advantaged account and bonds in taxable a...
by Ged
Sun Apr 05, 2015 12:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Long Term Tax Efficient Investing - Is it Better to Shelter
Replies: 16
Views: 2370

Re: Another reason why BHs pay off mortgage early?

I didn't pay off my last mortgage until about 5 years from retirement. The reasons were: 1. Tax adjusted, the financials didn't make sense. Over the 15 years my mortgage interest rate minus the tax adjustment was much less than the additional return from adding to my 401k and Roth. 2. Homes are low ...
by Ged
Thu Apr 02, 2015 8:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another reason why BHs pay off mortgage early?
Replies: 51
Views: 6772

Re: Bear market warning sign

an_asker wrote:I will sell some, so market timers can play the trade. I've a history of helping the market rise, even when I sell 10 measly shares (of anything)!


Thank you for your contribution to my comfortable retirement.
by Ged
Tue Mar 31, 2015 8:36 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bear market warning sign
Replies: 27
Views: 5162

Re: Child's prenup

If you really want to be sure that your child maintains control of the money the way to do it is through a trust. A prenup is the wrong tool for this.

A trust has other benefits as well, including protection from creditors.
by Ged
Mon Mar 30, 2015 8:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Child's prenup
Replies: 19
Views: 2405

Re: Availability of doctors accepting Medicare

The reports I've seen are that on a national basis doctor acceptance of new medicare patients is something like 90%. However there are localities where there are issues so you need to check your particular local situation.
by Ged
Sat Mar 28, 2015 7:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Availability of doctors accepting Medicare
Replies: 12
Views: 1023

Re: Hearse as daily driver?

My uncle owned a used hearse as a car (these were the days before SUVs). It was quite practical. However he insisted on calling it an ambulance.

Funny thing though I never saw a black ambulance.
by Ged
Sat Mar 21, 2015 6:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearse as daily driver?
Replies: 58
Views: 3879

Re: Whats a good Pistol to buy?

Training and care is very important. Owning a firearm is a big responsibility. If you don't believe me look up the term 'Glock Leg". Plaxico Burress found out all about this. He was lucky to hit only his leg sticking that thing into his waistband. He could have materially affected his ability t...
by Ged
Sat Mar 21, 2015 11:01 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whats a good Pistol to buy?
Replies: 112
Views: 8787

Re: Buy a rental property in this market ?

i don't think I follow. How does 8% of your gross profit equal to 100% of net profit? In my case, I am looking to make 10% after all costs (mortgage, taxes, and management fees). I hope these are realistic goals. It's 8% of the gross rental receipts, not the net. For many that would be a large perc...
by Ged
Tue Mar 17, 2015 8:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy a rental property in this market ?
Replies: 42
Views: 2917

Re: Recommendation for Home Office Printer

I have a large Brother duplexing color laser printer with dual feed trays, the HL4570CDWT. In retrospect the 2nd feed tray was not really needed. However the rest is used frequently. I love the two sided printing. The only downside is that it tells me it's out of toner based on page count which is w...
by Ged
Tue Mar 17, 2015 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendation for Home Office Printer
Replies: 11
Views: 1007

Re: Retired - When to Sell to Generate Cash

I like the idea of rebalancing through sales of assets much better than having a big chunk of money in cash. If the market has gone up and you are overallocated to equities, sell that. If you equities are down relative to your allocation target, sell fixed investments.
by Ged
Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retired - When to Sell to Generate Cash
Replies: 30
Views: 1995

Re: Is PA a good state for retirees?

So are you saying if he has to go to a nursing home, exhausts his meager savings, and by that mean turn over his SS and pension checks, he'll have to sell his home for whatever he can get AND then the state can come after his children for the rest of it?? No way to protect ourselves from that? Sorr...
by Ged
Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is PA a good state for retirees?
Replies: 23
Views: 2137

Re: Where to retire in New England?

New Hampshire is probably the most retiree friendly part of NE to retire to in terms of COL. No sales tax and only unearned income is taxed (dividends and cap gains). Real estate taxes are a bit higher than average but that's par for the course for states that have no income or sales taxes. Southeas...
by Ged
Thu Mar 12, 2015 12:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to retire in New England?
Replies: 101
Views: 7763

Re: How do you use your email?

The one advantage of email is that you have a reasonable expectation of privacy. While the content is readily discerned by prying eyes, the contents are protected by legal process. There are some pretty big loopholes in that. For example if you leave a message on a 3rd party server for six months o...
by Ged
Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you use your email?
Replies: 16
Views: 1379

Re: Medicare - already covered but turning 65 ?

You generally sign up for part A.

If you have a small employer you may also need to sign up for part B.
by Ged
Wed Mar 11, 2015 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare - already covered but turning 65 ?
Replies: 11
Views: 1099

Re: Will you buy an Apple Watch?

I can see wearing a watch that has some enhanced health monitoring functionality. This isn't it.
by Ged
Tue Mar 10, 2015 8:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will you buy an Apple Watch?
Replies: 351
Views: 20960

Re: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years

I would be fine with 4% real net of average expenses for equities. However I think this is just another 'this time it's different' idea.
by Ged
Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:50 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bernstein: 2% investment returns over next 20 years
Replies: 216
Views: 23317

Re: Retires: How much do you rely on investment income?

Right now 5 percent as DW hasn't retired yet. Starting June 1st when she retires it will be about 50% for the next 5 years. After 5 years I will start taking social security causing it to drop to 20% or so. From then on I expect it to gradually decline until health care causes an increase at the end.
by Ged
Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Retirees: How much do you rely on investment income?
Replies: 31
Views: 4237

Re: How long did you stay in your starter home?

15 years and then was transferred out. Current home 23 years and no plans to sell at present.
by Ged
Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did you stay in your starter home?
Replies: 87
Views: 4767

Re: Honda fit vs VW GTI

Average Investor wrote:Fiat 500 is worth a drive as well, not sure about reliability.


Fiats were DEAD LAST in reliability in the last Consumer Reports survey.

http://jalopnik.com/fiat-chrysler-brand ... 1651337569
by Ged
Sat Mar 07, 2015 11:15 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Honda fit vs VW GTI
Replies: 54
Views: 4076

Re: Work wants me to train for promotion before giving it to

Do you want the promotion or not? Are you worried about not being able to handle the work? It sounds like you have two possibilities: 1. Take on the training and new work and hope that the compensation follows. If it doesn't you will get to the next step which is likely to be having to find a new jo...
by Ged
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Work wants me to train for promotion before giving it to me?
Replies: 18
Views: 1293

Re: Is a generator worth it?

Natural gas gives me the jitters. Just after moving to NJ there was a gas leak on a main that led to a fire that was so bad it melted cars parked near it. http://www.nytimes.com/1994/03/25/nyregion/explosion-edison-overview-new-jersey-pipeline-explosion-sets-off-panic-chaos.html Just a week ago a le...
by Ged
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is a generator worth it?
Replies: 105
Views: 5962

Re: Father in law possible elder scam victim?

$7,000 isn't as bad as it could be. Hopefully there isn't a lot more than you don't know about. I would have a friendly meeting along with grand-dad with the contractors so they know that it's more than just grand-dad who is watching what is going on. And yes try to get something in writing (ideally...
by Ged
Mon Mar 02, 2015 10:31 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Father in law possible elder scam victim?
Replies: 30
Views: 1815

Re: Wife doesn't want to retire - I do

Are you a retired husband with a working wife? How does it work out for you? Do you feel guilty? Does your wife feel embarrassed? Yes, I retired about 18 months ago. I will be 65 in April. My wife is 69 and will be retiring in June. Occasionally I feel a little guilty, but turmoil at my last job wa...
by Ged
Sat Feb 28, 2015 1:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife doesn't want to retire - I do
Replies: 65
Views: 6281

Re: Cost of medication - Costco versus Walgreens

I recently visited a Medicare counselor in NJ (SHIP program) because I am in the process of choosing a supplement provider and my initial part D provider. One option that he brought up that can be economically attractive is to choose a very low cost part D provider and then use a discount pharmacy l...
by Ged
Fri Feb 27, 2015 10:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of medication - Costco versus Walgreens
Replies: 13
Views: 1106

Re: No VWIUX at Fidelity

Is there an ETF equivalent? These will have a per trade cost of $7.95 or so plus usually Admiral ERs if purchased in Fidelity.
by Ged
Thu Feb 26, 2015 8:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: No VWIUX at Fidelity
Replies: 17
Views: 1436

Re: IRA investment after retirement?

I don't think it's usually advantageous to contribute to a tIRA after retirement. The big reason to use a tIRA is to defer taxes to a time in your life when the rates will be lower. Once you go past 70 1/2 you will be taking RMDs which can boost you into a higher bracket.
by Ged
Thu Feb 26, 2015 8:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA investment after retirement?
Replies: 9
Views: 664

Re: Is a generator worth it?

I bought one, a 6KW Yamaha and had a transfer switch installed. We were without power for 12 days after Sandy. It was pretty cold in the house.

I hope I never need it.
by Ged
Thu Feb 26, 2015 8:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is a generator worth it?
Replies: 105
Views: 5962

Re: Full Faith and Credit

The US cannot default unless it wants to. I don't know how much comfort you take in that, but to me it means the US will never default. Are you going to ignore that the US already HAS, in the past, defaulted on it's obligations (see Liberty Bonds)? Past US defaults have been due to lack of ability ...
by Ged
Tue Feb 24, 2015 10:41 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Full Faith and Credit
Replies: 37
Views: 2558

Re: How much did you have saved up for retirement at age 30?

Don't feel bad. At age 30 I had close to nothing in retirement savings. However I had good human capital having finished graduate school with an engineering PhD a couple of years earlier.

In the long run that turned out to be plenty. I retired at 63 with 7 figures, no debt and a pension.
by Ged
Tue Feb 24, 2015 9:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much did you have saved up for retirement at age 30?
Replies: 173
Views: 13538

Re: Buy and Hold Forever Stocks

Those of you who generally subscribe to Bogle-osophy but also have one or more equity positions that you intend to hold onto "forever": which ones are they? I have two: BRK(b) and AAPL. I had a collection of dividend champions. P&G, Exxon, BP, IBM. Over time I learned that no stock is...
by Ged
Mon Feb 23, 2015 7:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buy and Hold Forever Stocks
Replies: 101
Views: 8444

Re: Thoughts on investing in Uber

I would not touch this with an uber pole. There are several questions about the business model and the CEO does not impress me at all.
by Ged
Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on investing in Uber
Replies: 18
Views: 1489

Re: why do some people like Fidelity?

In a word, customer service. I hold my Vanguard assets (ETFs) in my Fidelity account. I've tried Vanguard, didn't particularly like the site or my interactions with Vanguard service. I do like the funds though. When my father passed away he had his assets in Fidelity too. When I called them to infor...
by Ged
Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: why do some people like Fidelity?
Replies: 67
Views: 7072

Re: To Fence ... Or Not?

I had a neighbor who did something like this, and in fact more egregiously. Mowed 3' over the property line. Planted a maple tree. Shed was over the line by a few inches when it's supposed to be set back 3'. I had a talk to him. He didn't seem to care. My lawyer said you have two choices, ignore it ...
by Ged
Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To Fence ... Or Not?
Replies: 93
Views: 8458

Re: Letters to my Senators/Congressman re Bogle Medal of Fre

It wouldn't hurt to send a copy to the guy actually making the decision, the President of the United States. One might scoff that such a thing would never get read, but some 40 years ago I wrote to Gerry Ford about a problem my wife and I were having with the INS. The results were dramatic and posit...
by Ged
Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Letters to my Senators/Congressman re Bogle Medal of Freedom
Replies: 5
Views: 483

Re: On line product reviews vs Consumers Reports

I look at both. Additional information is not a bad thing.
by Ged
Sat Feb 21, 2015 7:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: On line product reviews vs Consumers Reports
Replies: 37
Views: 2789

Re: What is your favorite consumer product?

Reese's Peanut Butter Cups, King Size
Ocean Spray Cranberry Juice Cocktail
Thorlo Socks
Oppo Bluray players

And yes Logitech Squeezebox. I am so pissed these were discontinued. I have 4 and am planning to buy another used off of Ebay soon.
by Ged
Fri Feb 20, 2015 12:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your favorite consumer product?
Replies: 174
Views: 11657

Re: Car Battery in Unusual Cold

When I lived in Syracuse area there was one morning when the temperature was -26F. The car was kept in a garage so it was probably a bit warmer. It started ok. So I wouldn't worry too much about 0F if your battery does not seem weak on a normal freezing day. One thing to keep in mind about car batte...
by Ged
Thu Feb 19, 2015 11:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Battery in Unusual Cold
Replies: 87
Views: 4004

Re: What video games are you currently playing?

Video games I've played in the past few months: Guildwars 2. This is a MMORG that has a bit different business model in that it has no monthly charge. I like it because there is a lot of ad-hoc group formation to achieve game goals. Civilization 5. Latest from a great classic turn based strategy gam...
by Ged
Wed Feb 18, 2015 10:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What video games are you currently playing?
Replies: 172
Views: 10997

Re: 250K or more with Vanguard

MF Global paid back all of it's investor's money. http://dealbook.nytimes.com/2014/04/03/mf-global-customers-to-be-paid-back-in-full/?_r=0 Of course having to wait 2.5 years for restitution is still very bad. Much worse us a deeply criminal and fraudulent enterprise ala Madoff. In that case there we...
by Ged
Tue Feb 17, 2015 10:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 250K or more with Vanguard
Replies: 17
Views: 5471

Re: apple pay v. google wallet

There is a need here, and it is security. Both Google Wallet and Apple Pay issue single use transaction keys making them far more secure than a credit card number.
by Ged
Tue Feb 17, 2015 12:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: apple pay v. google wallet
Replies: 16
Views: 1106

Re: Not clearing snow from driveway

Where I am now there is an ordinance requiring the sidewalks be cleared within a mile of schools. There have been times where I've skipped clearing the driveway but that was before I bought a snowblower. When I lived further north, in Syracuse I had a plowing service and cars were always parked in m...
by Ged
Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not clearing snow from driveway
Replies: 81
Views: 6022

Re: Did you overestimate your retirement spending?

Perhaps, but it's pretty clear to me that my legacy will be very helpful to my children for a variety of reasons so I don't mind it.
by Ged
Sun Feb 15, 2015 9:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did you overestimate your retirement spending?
Replies: 17
Views: 2339

Samsung Strikes Again .. Ad Injection

Some internet stories are now appearing that Samsung is injecting advertisements into streaming apps. http://www.cnet.com/au/news/samsung-smart-tvs-forcing-ads-into-video-streaming-apps/ http://arstechnica.com/gadgets/2015/02/samsung-smart-tvs-inserting-ads-into-third-party-apps/ While you can avoid...
by Ged
Tue Feb 10, 2015 11:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Samsung Strikes Again .. Ad Injection
Replies: 17
Views: 554

Re: Your Future According to Yale Star Robert J. Shiller

I would not underestimate the economic dislocations that occurred due to farm mechanization. In a lot of ways this was more fundamental than the transition from manufacturing to service industries that we have had more recently.
by Ged
Tue Feb 10, 2015 10:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Your Future According to Yale Star Robert J. Shiller
Replies: 86
Views: 10546
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