Search found 609 matches

Return to advanced search

Re: Global entry and Nexus (not the phone)

I have my global entry interview next week. I got a letter telling me to bring a copy of the letter, passport and drivers license to the interview. Is there anything else I need to bring to the interview?Thanks I was almost on the road when I realized I did not have the letter, went back home and p...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 21, 2014 3:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Global entry and Nexus (not the phone)
Replies: 6
Views: 337

Global entry and Nexus (not the phone)

I am just back from my interview for Global Entry; I belatedly found out that if you apply for NEXUS (this is to facilitate crossing from the US to Canada) you are automatically granted Global Entry. It was really NEXUS that I was after so when I got to the interview I asked if I could switch to the...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Global entry and Nexus (not the phone)
Replies: 6
Views: 337

Re: Kaiser vs Blue Shield

Given a choice, I'd go with Anthem BCBS over Kaiser and did I mention better doctors? Not sure how you evaluated that they were "better doctors". Research has shown that individuals are not very good at assessing the quality of their clinicians; they tend to focus on bedside manner (which...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Aug 20, 2014 10:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kaiser vs Blue Shield
Replies: 44
Views: 2063

Mortgage or pay cash

I am posting on behalf of my son and his wife... They are mid-30's, currently without offspring, and looking to purchase a first house. They are both tenure track professors and thus guaranteed employment at least the next three or four years, likely longer. Their lifestyle is modest. Combined incom...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Aug 17, 2014 7:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage or pay cash
Replies: 9
Views: 1130

Re: Best Place to Do Research on Orthopedic Surgeons

I also wouldn't put too much weight on online reviews. Many very good surgeons have zero bedside manner, but I'd still go to them for their technical expertise. -K There is ample research out there that verifies that patient satisfaction is often related to things such as: - Was I kept waiting for ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 14, 2014 9:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Place to Do Research on Orthopedic Surgeons
Replies: 28
Views: 1679

Re: Which 4 door with 250+ hp

I think the road test's 0-60 times are mostly irrelevant to the everyday consumer. These are high rev launches, wheels just this side of spinning and very brutal on the drive train. For me the times that are more relevant are 45-70 (for passing on two lane roads) and 30-75 for merging onto an inters...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Aug 10, 2014 9:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which 4 door with 250+ hp
Replies: 74
Views: 4852

Top Tier gas or ethanol free (premium)

I drive a VW with the 2.0 TSI engine, it requires 91 octane (as measured in the US). I am torn between Top Tier gas http://www.toptiergas.com/retailers.html or ethanol free. I like the higher detergency that the top tier offers me, but I like the better mileage I get with the corn-free fuel. I have ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Top Tier gas or ethanol free (premium)
Replies: 3
Views: 493

Re: Which 4 door with 250+ hp

VW GTI with the six speed. Great engine, room for four real sized people and a hatchback. They hold their value, they are a real hoot to drive and you can afford the extra costs (maintenance and premium fuel.) Enjoy life, this will cost you maybe an extra 2-3 cents a mile over the soulless (but econ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Aug 09, 2014 9:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which 4 door with 250+ hp
Replies: 74
Views: 4852

Re: Is Medigap insurance really needed?

... One example was a bill for $81,000 for an outpatient radiation treatment (!) from University of California, SF. Medicare paid its share and then sent the balance to Aetna. This gets a little bizarre as Aetna's agreement with UCSF has them paying $149,000 for the same procedure and they base the...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Aug 06, 2014 11:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Medigap insurance really needed?
Replies: 83
Views: 4132

Re: Is Medigap insurance really needed?

mur44 wrote:nisiprius,

If one have Medicare Parts A, B and D (no medigap),
there is NO OOP (Out Of Pocket) limit. This
Medicare insurance (A, B and D) setup is for
'healthy' (yours and your family) individuals.

But, there are several 'tricks' one can use to
minimize OOP expenses.

:?: :?: :?:
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Aug 04, 2014 4:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Medigap insurance really needed?
Replies: 83
Views: 4132

Re: Is Medigap insurance really needed?

It could be a LOT more costly. If you're discovered to have a serious medical condition or illness you might not be able to find a Medigap insurer who will accept you. Are you saying that Medigap insurers can still screen for pre-existing conditions ? I thought the ACA did away with all that. Not d...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Aug 04, 2014 3:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Medigap insurance really needed?
Replies: 83
Views: 4132

Re: Sensible planning for MediGap choices given price disper

Things that might concern the pruchaser of a non-Medicare plan are not relevant to Medigap. For example, the question of networks is irrelevant, if it is a medicare provider the medigap plan will cover it. I bought the cheapest high deductible F plan I could find, they actually sent someone to my ho...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Aug 04, 2014 11:55 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sensible planning for MediGap choices given price dispersion
Replies: 18
Views: 618

Re: Is Medigap insurance really needed?

mur44, if you have only traditional Medicare--parts A, B, and let's say D, but no supplemental (Medigap) or Medicare Advantage--is there ANY upper limit to the amount you might have to pay in part B co-pays? I don't have the definitive answer but I am taking care of the medical bills for a friend w...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Aug 04, 2014 10:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Medigap insurance really needed?
Replies: 83
Views: 4132

Re: helping my mom invest

She cannot collect on her ex-spouse's benefit as she as re-married, unless the current marriage ends by death or divorce.

http://www.ssa.gov/retire2/yourdivspouse.htm
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Aug 02, 2014 6:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: helping my mom invest
Replies: 12
Views: 1056

Re: Where is your brokerage account?

I have a brokerage at Vanguard for my ETFs (which will eventually be Admiral MFs) in a Roth IRA. You should keep in mind that while going from MF to ETFs is not a taxable evnt, going from ETF to mutual fund (Admiral or otherwise) IS. :( Can I convert my conventional Vanguard mutual fund shares to V...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where is your brokerage account?
Replies: 41
Views: 2688

Re: Treasury Direct--just blowing off steam

Early on in this thread, there was a mention to give them a call; I have found, on two occasions, a very helpful and eager to please staff person on the other end of the line. If I recall, you request a call on the web site and they call you back. Anyone with a confusing problem should give this a t...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 25, 2014 9:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct--just blowing off steam
Replies: 58
Views: 4169

Re: Lawyer Up? Advice Needed

Be assured that HIV cannot live outside of the body for more than minutes, maybe hours in an extreme case. Search on "HIV fragile" and you will find many references, http://www.afanlv.org/index.php%3Foption%3Dcom_content%26view%3Darticle%26id%3D89:how-long-does-the-virus-live-outside-the-b...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Obtaining Legal Counsel?
Replies: 51
Views: 3395

Re: Gardening question

Take a bucket and half ill it with some soil mix. Then mix in the water, stirring it to be absorbed. Once it is moist all the way through, you can use it as you wish. It will not "repel" water using this technique.
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 24, 2014 12:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gardening question
Replies: 6
Views: 686

Re: Estate Trustee requests I "waive presentation of account

Not legal advice, but here goes... I (along with my sister) was executor and trustee of both my parents' wills/trusts. Lawyer also suggested getting waiver which we followed. I did send a copy of the final Vanguard statements (95% of their assets) to the beneficiaries which in addition to the two of...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 24, 2014 12:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Estate Trustee requests I "waive presentation of accounting"
Replies: 10
Views: 1361

Re: Best Used Recreational Bicycles for New Riders

I am in the buy a used bike, see that it is setup properly AND... Make sure it fits you. The trouble with Costco/Walmart/Dicks/ etc is that they do not have much choice in frame size. The length of the seat tube and top tube are essential for feeling comfortable on a bike. I guarantee you that if th...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 22, 2014 11:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Used Recreational Bicycles for New Riders
Replies: 26
Views: 2133

Re: Poll - Do you use Quicken?

Not sure how I could have overlooked this in an earlier post, but Quicken and Advantage checking accounts do not play nice. I assess that the problem is on Vanguard's end and they have offered nothing to alleviate the problem (not sure if the mooted combining of brokerage and mutual fund accounts wi...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 22, 2014 10:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll - Do you use Quicken?
Replies: 85
Views: 4995

Re: Poll - Do you use Quicken?

I started using Quicken in DOS days, it seemed a treat. Over the years it started to get overloaded and when various financial sites allowed me to enter "outside investments", I ditched Quicken. Never was one to budget or track expenses, spend what is needed, save the rest. Fast forward ei...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jul 21, 2014 8:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Poll - Do you use Quicken?
Replies: 85
Views: 4995

Re: The ultimate Boglehead exercise

The Seven minute routine, especially if you do it x2 or x3 works well for me.
http://well.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/05/09/the-scientific-7-minute-workout/

There are apps for your phone/tablet that show the exercise and have a timer, try it!
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Jul 20, 2014 6:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The ultimate Boglehead exercise
Replies: 30
Views: 3817

Re: If you own a car, do you have a car payment?

I have owned around 55 cars since 1965, none of them were purchased with borrowed $$. :happy First purchase, in 1965, was a 1960 Renault Dauphine, 3 speed, 32 horsepower, and would hit 65 mph with a good tail wind, $200. Most recent purchase, in 2012, was a 2009 Jetta Sportswagen (2.0 Turbo), $15k, ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 18, 2014 9:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: If you own a car, do you have a car payment?
Replies: 112
Views: 7377

Re: Should I buy a new(er) car, and if so what?

Don't try to economize on tires. Buy good ones (if not top brand), and don't delay. You do a lot of miles. Those 4 bits of rubber and steel are *all* you have between you and a blowout or crash due to loss of traction. You can never (well, hardly ever) spend too much on tires and brakes. Not to buy...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 17, 2014 4:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a new(er) car, and if so what?
Replies: 19
Views: 1954

Re: mom wants to "sell" me her condo for estate planning

LadyGeek wrote:We're straying into a discussion about the Medicare 5-year lookback period, some background info is here: How Can I Safely Transfer My Assets to Get Medicaid to Pay for Long-Term Care?


Just to keep it clear, we are talking about Medicaid lookback, Medicare has no such mechanism
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Jul 13, 2014 5:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: mom wants to "sell" me her condo for estate planning
Replies: 23
Views: 3026

Re: Karen, single, 61, $2 million.

She is single, so at FRA, she should plan to file and suspend SS as discussed elsewhere on the forum.. I have read the many lengthy threads on SS and I still am haunted by the thought that I am leaving something on the table, so indulge me here. How does file and suspend advantage her as opposed to...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 11, 2014 1:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Karen, single, 61, $2 million.
Replies: 35
Views: 3746

Re: Treasury Direct error, MINE!

I won't bother you with "why did you do this"? Can't you just close out 4 of them for eternity and return to a more regular situation? I was wanting 4 accounts so that I could make $40k purchases each year; in addition, there is no "closing out" the accounts as long as they hold...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:14 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct error, MINE!
Replies: 7
Views: 942

Re: Treasury Direct error, MINE!

If #3 and #5 are the same entity, I'd just stop purchasing in one of them and call it a day. I don't have as good of google skills as sscritic when looking through the treasurydirect website, but I came across this thread from a year ago so I'd read through it and decide for yourself on what you sh...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct error, MINE!
Replies: 7
Views: 942

Treasury Direct error, MINE!

Somehow I managed to setup five accounts at Treasury Direct: #1) TheGreying Duke #2 The GreyingDuke spouse #3 The GreyingDuke, Greying Duke spouse trustees for the GreyingDuke trust #4 The GreyingDuke, Greying Duke spouse trustees for the Greying Duke spouse trust #5 The Greying Duke, trustee, Greyi...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 10, 2014 1:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasury Direct error, MINE!
Replies: 7
Views: 942

Re: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?

For years I have used the Vanguard Advantage account as my day to day checking account. BUT... it has been a bear to use this within Quicken, crazy numbers appear, not very usual checking account terminology is used and I have had conversations with Vanguard over years to see if they could assist; a...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 04, 2014 8:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?
Replies: 8
Views: 818

Re: Two month car rental

I do not see any reason to rent car if you already own a recent model - I know this is not the question OP is asking. 2200 mile road trip to Colorado on a 2011 Camry the day after it was bought 4000 mile road trip to Yellowstone & Tetons last month in a 2012 Mazda 6 The cars did fine. It is NOT...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 03, 2014 7:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two month car rental
Replies: 28
Views: 1943

Re: Two month car rental

Perhaps others can verify my experience... In the past I have flow to western cities such as Albequrque, Las Vegas, Phoenix and rented a car for a few weeks to drive the national parks, probably 2000 miles or so each time. The cars were all rented on an unlimited miles basis for return to originati...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Jul 02, 2014 9:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two month car rental
Replies: 28
Views: 1943

Re: Two month car rental

My dw and I are planning a 6-8 week cross country excursion this fall. I am considering a long-term car rental for what will likely be a 7k mile trip. A quick look shows that I can rent a Chevy Cruze or similar for around $1200 for the two months. This comes to about $.17 a mile, gets me protection...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Jun 29, 2014 8:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two month car rental
Replies: 28
Views: 1943

Two month car rental

My dw and I are planning a 6-8 week cross country excursion this fall. I am considering a long-term car rental for what will likely be a 7k mile trip. A quick look shows that I can rent a Chevy Cruze or similar for around $1200 for the two months. This comes to about $.17 a mile, gets me protection ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jun 28, 2014 8:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two month car rental
Replies: 28
Views: 1943

Re: Transfering inherited assets in-kind to Vanguard Brokera

When my mother died (assets at Vanguard) the advice we got on their end was the easiest way to proceed was to have the heirs open accounts at Vanguard, sort of strange but that was how we proceeded. As to in-kind or otherwise, I wanted to help establish some habits for two of the heirs (my nieces) a...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 26, 2014 9:27 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Transfering inherited assets in-kind to Vanguard Brokerage
Replies: 13
Views: 530

Re: Homemade Sauerkraut

Harvest time around here (Northern Vermont) has us using the kraut device that cuts it up just so, take 40 lbs., add 1 lb. kosher salt and let her rip! Depending on the room temp, within a matter of weeks it is good and tangy, then it goes in the cold side of the root cellar where it lives for the w...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 23, 2014 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homemade Sauerkraut
Replies: 15
Views: 1007

Re: Suggestions for 1-2 Days in NYC?

For discount broadway tickets go here: http://www.tdf.org/TKTSBoards.aspx
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 23, 2014 7:10 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suggestions for 1-2 Days in NYC?
Replies: 51
Views: 3367

Re: Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet

The test, as I understand it for spousal benefits, is that your own benefit cannot be larger than 50% of the spouse's; in this instance that test cannot be met.
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 13, 2014 4:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet
Replies: 5
Views: 893

Re: Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet

Major problem is that formula for cell L9 (and later in col L) assume 12% annual return on the 66-70 SocSec benefit. You're adding 1% of the account balance to the reduced SocSec payment, not 1%/12. And a couple other minor quibbles: The increase factor in cell C2 assumes a 7% increase each year of...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 13, 2014 12:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet
Replies: 5
Views: 893

Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet

I have been talking with a friend about SS strategies, when to take it. He has prepared a spreadsheet that shows that his best approach is to take it at 66 (FRA), invest the benefits, and then at 70 begin living on the interest of the accrued benefits plus the monthly check My reaction was that &quo...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 13, 2014 8:04 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Curious SS "when do I take it" spreadsheet
Replies: 5
Views: 893

How do I post/link a spreadsheet

I am talking with a friend about social security strategies, relating much of what I have learned here. He has written a spreadsheet that makes a slam dunk argument for collecting at FRA (66). I always thought the issues were more subtle and I would like to post his excel sheet for comment. How shou...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 12, 2014 10:02 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: How do I post/link a spreadsheet
Replies: 7
Views: 641

Re: Inherited Unit trusts and individual bonds

In investigating the unit trusts, they are in various (mostly municipal) bonds paying roughly 4.5-5.5% and the indivdual bonds have similar interest rates most of them maturing around 2030-2035. I was planning on keeping the vast majority of this inherited IRA in Total Bond Market Index Admiral sha...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 12, 2014 9:57 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inherited Unit trusts and individual bonds
Replies: 8
Views: 543

Re: Medicare Advantage to Medigap

I use Medigap Plan F Hi Deductible. It has worked out very well for me and is affordable. The thing that makes it so sweet is that Medicare negotiates the regular price down to a much smaller amount and then medicare Plan B pays for 80% of the dr or hospital charges so that 20% left over is usually...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 09, 2014 5:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Advantage to Medigap
Replies: 14
Views: 1442

Re: capital gains on land sale?

MN Finance wrote:I read this as: she's selling some land, but retaining the house and the rest of the land?


Yes, thanks for the clarifying comment
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 02, 2014 9:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: capital gains on land sale?
Replies: 5
Views: 422

capital gains on land sale?

My friend Susan bought a house and 18 acres in 1986 for let's say $125K. She is now contemplating selling 5 acres for about $140k. How does she figure her capital gains (the house is her primary residence.) House and land is assessed at $225k by the town, if that matters.
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 02, 2014 8:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: capital gains on land sale?
Replies: 5
Views: 422

Re: Should I buy a house?

I'd also like to have a steady and controllable living situation during retirement, so I would like to have a house paid off prior to that. Any advice? WWYD? I suggest disconnecting what you think you will want in 30 years from the current situation. As a now 66 year old, my thoughts of what I woul...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu May 29, 2014 8:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I buy a house?
Replies: 11
Views: 887

Re: Thinking of buying a 1974 Corvette

I know from shinola about Crovettes but I can tell you that 1974 model year was the nadir of emissions and ugly bumpers. Lots of plumbing under the hood to choke things up, never ran right (at least that was true for my 1974 Valiant :) )
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed May 28, 2014 10:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of buying a 1974 Corvette
Replies: 22
Views: 1508

Re: NYC for the day… what to do with the car

Given the brevity of the visit and the fact that you will be there in Saturday, it might make more sense to brave a short drive into Manhattan. Get off the GSP at exit 129 and take the NJ Turnpike into the Manhattan (Lincoln Tunnel) and park somewhere around 11th Ave and 34th, good chance of finding...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon May 26, 2014 8:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NYC for the day… what to do with the car
Replies: 18
Views: 1097

Re: Google Voice Not Supported on OBi Devices After May 15 2

There is an updated Talkatone app for Android that allows continued linking to Google Voice and free incoming calls; outgoing calls will cost you about 1.5 cents a minute
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon May 26, 2014 8:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google Voice Not Supported on OBi Devices After May 15 2014
Replies: 97
Views: 9970
Next

Return to advanced search