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Re: Been invited to wedding in Disney World. My cost?

Go if you want to go. Don't if you don't. You don't have to stay at Disney. And you don't have to buy park tickets if you don't want to. You can Priceline Express Deal a reasonable hotel for probably $100 a night in the greater Orlando area. Rent a car for $50/day. Airfare at $250. So you're at $500...
by awval999
Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Been invited to wedding in Disney World. My cost?
Replies: 53
Views: 4303

Re: How to pay real estate tax with Target Redcard

I still think it makes sense to swipe the Redcard for lunch from time to time and shop Target once or twice a month. And allow your funds to float in RedCard land for a week or two before paying back.
by awval999
Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:07 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to pay real estate tax with Target Redcard
Replies: 57
Views: 4608

Re: Who still have Cable TV?

Have Netflix and DirecTv. Both are excellent uses money. There is no other way to get local NBA or MLB games. Or other live sports. My wife watches trashy reality shows.
by awval999
Fri Apr 24, 2015 6:05 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who still have Cable TV?
Replies: 63
Views: 2722

Re: $6 billion of 401(k) loan defaults each year

While I'm in agreement that easy debt (from 401(k), equity loan or otherwise) is financial dynamite to many with spending / savings / financial management problems, I do see a place for these loans in specialized cases. That being said, the $6B in "defaults" strikes me as a sensationalize...
by awval999
Wed Apr 22, 2015 4:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $6 billion of 401(k) loan defaults each year
Replies: 9
Views: 1659

Re: New York City Tours

http://www.foodsofny.com/?no_redirect=true

Have done two food / walking tours through this company. I recommend them!!
by awval999
Sun Apr 19, 2015 6:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New York City Tours
Replies: 11
Views: 931

Re: Don't come to Europe with a new chip and sign credit car

madbrain wrote:
a_username wrote:The Barclays Arrival Plus is a PIN chip card available in the USA, and it has good rewards. 2.2% cash back on all points redeemed for travel. Also, there are no foreign transaction fees.


However, this card has a $89 annual fee.


Waved for the first year!!

LOL I sound like a salesman.
by awval999
Wed Apr 15, 2015 6:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Don't come to Europe with a new chip and sign credit card
Replies: 50
Views: 6135

Re: Capital One getting out of cash rewards credit cards?

Looks like the EU capped transaction fees.

Of note, anyone in the USA using cash pretty much pays for those (my) rewards. Thanks for the frequent flyer miles and cash back!!!
by awval999
Fri Apr 10, 2015 8:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One getting out of cash rewards credit cards?
Replies: 12
Views: 2641

Re: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?

Art of Priceline Hotel Bidding, Hi awval, your statement sounds like there is a system to using Priceline...I've never been too enamored of using priceline...if you have some Priceline tips or links to share, would surely appreciate those. BFG Not too much to it to be honest. Like the poster below ...
by awval999
Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?
Replies: 109
Views: 9610

Re: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?

There is no need to do it "big time." Getting 4 credit cards/year with 50,000 miles each, gives one 200,000 miles/year which is enough for 2 x 70,000 mile free flights to Asia + 1 x 60,000 mile free flight to Europe. Of course, in the real life the calculations are not so clean: the miles...
by awval999
Sat Apr 04, 2015 6:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?
Replies: 109
Views: 9610

Re: The Credit Card Game

Get a 2% card and not worry about it anymore? Black out dates, being restricted to a single airline, and other restrictions don't seem worth the hassle. This is something for the crazy coupon cutter to do in retirement when all of their travel is flexible and they have much free time. If you are a ...
by awval999
Thu Apr 02, 2015 5:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Credit Card Game
Replies: 32
Views: 2974

Re: The Credit Card Game

Thanks for the comments...I gotta think that some of these peeps who write the blogs and fly in super uber class around the globe (and good for them!) have lots more time on their hands, businesses they can use to generate spend or they've travelled a lot over the years and built their way up to th...
by awval999
Thu Apr 02, 2015 5:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Credit Card Game
Replies: 32
Views: 2974

Re: Childs prenup

In case you are unaware you do not get to choose if your child chooses to get a prenup or not. Nor do you get to chose who they marry. Or live. Or do. Or work.
by awval999
Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:25 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Child's prenup
Replies: 19
Views: 2419

Re: South Florida trip

Nothing beats walking around the Art Deco portion of South Beach at night when it's all lit up. I've even had good luck getting good food at the al fresco dining on the sidewalk with all the managers hollering at you with all their deals. Yeah the meal will be $100 for two but it's good with great a...
by awval999
Mon Mar 30, 2015 4:56 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: South Florida trip
Replies: 14
Views: 1787

Re: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?

You manufacturer spend to make travel credit card sign on bonuses, not to earn 2% cash back.
by awval999
Tue Mar 24, 2015 4:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Manufactured Spending - Good Idea / Bad Idea?
Replies: 109
Views: 9610

Re: Buying a house that had a Dog

Almost all previously owned houses will have had an animal living in them at some time. A thorough carpet steam cleaning and even an exterminator if you are that worried should be enough. I do agree with the previous posters that if you are banking on any hardwood beneath carpet you should fully inv...
by awval999
Sat Mar 21, 2015 10:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house that had a Dog
Replies: 18
Views: 2627

Re: how much mortgage would you be comfortable with?

Here's a question, does the 2.5x gross salary idea change as gross income increases. I ask because the take-home percentage for a couple making $100k annually is much higher than for a couple making $700k annually. If state and local taxes are high, you could be looking at a 40+% total tax rate, co...
by awval999
Wed Mar 18, 2015 5:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how much mortgage would you be comfortable with?
Replies: 43
Views: 4430

Re: House Foundation Cracks, No big deal or RUN!

Nothing inherently wrong with knob and tube but man I've seen some really bad things done behind the walls. If a licensed electrician has to make changes to a circuit it all has to be brought up to code and that can be spendy. It's rare that the original knob and tube that's the problem. It's the r...
by awval999
Wed Mar 18, 2015 4:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: House Foundation Cracks, No big deal or RUN!
Replies: 24
Views: 2851

Re: House Foundation Cracks, No big deal or RUN!

I bought a late 1940's bungalow. It had two hairline cracks in the foundation block wall, one vertical and one horizontal. I had the structural engineer come in BEFORE the home inspector did. The two day wait was agonizing. I was already thinking of cancelling the contract. When the day came the eng...
by awval999
Tue Mar 17, 2015 3:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: House Foundation Cracks, No big deal or RUN!
Replies: 24
Views: 2851

Re: Advice for New Investor w/ Tons of Graduate Debt

If anyone would like to flesh out the argument against maxing 401k in favor of loan repayment, I'd love to hear more. But as of right now, that's my planned course of action. Thanks so much, this was immensely helpful. The question is whether investing in the 401k would give higher expected returns...
by awval999
Sun Mar 15, 2015 5:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for New Investor w/ Tons of Graduate Debt
Replies: 33
Views: 3081

Re: When to cash in your chips?

One thing you could consider on the real estate front, and it really depends how close you and your spouse are with your parents, but might your parents be interested in moving as well if you (and their grandkids) did? You could then sell both houses netting $810k after the 10% transaction costs di...
by awval999
Sat Mar 14, 2015 7:52 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to cash in your chips?
Replies: 32
Views: 4036

Re: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)

I would fill out my taxes with the $700 as taxable and attach a note stating the circumstances and that you requested a revised 1099-R but have not received one. I attached a note when I over-contributed to a Roth IRA and had to recharacterize it without having the correct 1099 which would be issue...
by awval999
Sat Mar 14, 2015 7:50 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)`
Replies: 37
Views: 4579

Re: Advice for New Investor w/ Tons of Graduate Debt

I would normally tell a health care worker with high student loans to use SoFi/Common Bond/DRB/Citizen's to consolidate. Because those jobs are much more secure. I consolidated with SoFi. But I'm a health care worker. I will tell you that they SoFI does have 'unemployment' insurance. In the respect ...
by awval999
Sat Mar 14, 2015 7:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice for New Investor w/ Tons of Graduate Debt
Replies: 33
Views: 3081

Re: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)

I wouldn't be filing that Form 4852. It screams "PLEASE AUDIT ME". You did your due diligence. If you get get a corrected 1099-R a year from now, then, file the 1040-X and amend.
by awval999
Sat Mar 14, 2015 7:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why Isn't Pension Distribution Taxable? (1099-R, Code G)`
Replies: 37
Views: 4579

Re: Fidelity Contrafund

The vast majority of my money was in contrafund, having rolled from fidelity 401k to an IRA. After finding Bogleheads, I had to convince myself that index funds were the way to go. Here's a homework assignment for you. Go to fidelity's site and hit research. Then mutual funds. At the top put contra...
by awval999
Fri Mar 13, 2015 10:44 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity Contrafund
Replies: 32
Views: 4226

Re: When to cash in your chips?

You're not financially independent - you're on your way, but given your lifestyle and level of debt not there yet. How much in gains are embedded in those taxable investments? You are financially independent when you have 30-35x your net annual living expenses including the annual cost of health ca...
by awval999
Thu Mar 12, 2015 8:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to cash in your chips?
Replies: 32
Views: 4036

Re: Does anyone have experience with filling an RX

It's going to be much, much easier to have someone (a friend, family member, etc) fill it at your normal pharmacy that has all your records and just FedEx it to you overnight. It will be well worth the $30 in shipping. I'm a pharmacist (although I work in a hospital, and not a drug store) from my k...
by awval999
Thu Mar 12, 2015 7:36 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anyone have experience with filling an RX
Replies: 18
Views: 1539

Re: Does anyone have experience with filling an RX

It's going to be much, much easier to have someone (a friend, family member, etc) fill it at your normal pharmacy that has all your records and just FedEx it to you overnight. It will be well worth the $30 in shipping. I'm a pharmacist (although I work in a hospital, and not a drug store) from my kn...
by awval999
Thu Mar 12, 2015 7:25 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anyone have experience with filling an RX
Replies: 18
Views: 1539

Re: Fun Fund?

How about Wellesley?
by awval999
Tue Mar 10, 2015 7:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fun Fund?
Replies: 27
Views: 1896

Re: The salary you must earn to buy a home: $48,603.82

Pittsburgh housing is pretty affordable. You can buy a surprisingly nice house in a decent area for $75-80k and make it on $31k salary. But, property taxes are high, and I'm not sure if they took that into account. Also, the city school district is not even an option, so you need to account for the...
by awval999
Tue Mar 10, 2015 6:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The salary you must earn to buy a home: $48,603.82
Replies: 24
Views: 3153

Re: The salary you must earn to buy a home: $48,603.82

I bought a $195,000 house with $112,000 in gross income with 5% down (CLE for the win). I also took out a 403b loan to do it. I can feel the disapproving thoughts of my fellow forum members.

However, is that more or less Bogleheadish than buying a $400,000 house with 20% down?
by awval999
Tue Mar 10, 2015 6:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The salary you must earn to buy a home: $48,603.82
Replies: 24
Views: 3153

Re: New DOW Component

Apple makes: computers, ipads, ipods, iphones, and soon a watch. It has serious competition for these products. Why is it worth multiples more than any other Dow component? It has come close to failing on its limited product line a few times in the past. What protects it now? Because it makes the b...
by awval999
Sun Mar 08, 2015 7:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New DOW Component
Replies: 40
Views: 2787

Re: Housing Market Too Hot to Touch? Strategy?

What market are you talking about?

The prices you are mentioning don't seem too expensive. They seem like standard Midwest flair, similiar to the prices in the CLE metro area (my home). Much better than all this Bay Area talk on the forum recently.
by awval999
Thu Mar 05, 2015 8:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Housing Market Too Hot to Touch? Strategy?
Replies: 2
Views: 604

Re: Best Way to Pay Off Student Loans

Does she make enough money to get a consolidation loan from a private refinancing firm like Sofi, DRB, Citizens or Common Bond?
by awval999
Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Way to Pay Off Student Loans
Replies: 14
Views: 1082

Re: Arguing Dental Bill

Their argument is going to be "you should understand your insurance". If you try to further argue it you risk getting kicked out of the practice.

I would just pay it and move on with your life.
by awval999
Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Arguing Dental Bill
Replies: 37
Views: 2627

Re: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?

feh wrote:I can't believe this thread is this long...

Mortgage payment is simply repayment of a loan. I'm shocked how many people consider that "savings".


And retirement contributions are simply prepayments of future spending. I'm shocked how many people consider that "savings".
by awval999
Wed Mar 04, 2015 1:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you consider mortgage payments as savings?
Replies: 410
Views: 21675

Re: Lumber Liquidators Safety Issue

You always get what you pay for. If it sounds too good it usually is. Common American English sayings. And yet people wonder when they buy $0.69 sqft Chinese laminate why it's toxic. Laminate is such a terrible knockoff of hardwood I don't even understand why people buy it anyway, at any price. I wo...
by awval999
Tue Mar 03, 2015 6:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lumber Liquidators Safety Issue
Replies: 19
Views: 2026

Re: Selling multi-family - Push to Waive Inspection?

Yeah, a seller hinting that they want me to waive the inspection is a red flag.

Just let them have the inspection. Offer them the set amount as a credit to "fix" whatever and be done with it.
by awval999
Sun Mar 01, 2015 9:29 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling multi-family - Push to Waive Inspection?
Replies: 23
Views: 1370

Re: Life insurance - how much is needed

I would say an additional $1MM 25 or 30 year term. In addition your wife + children would get survivors benefits from SS if something would happen to you. I hesitate to recommend going over the top on life insurance.
by awval999
Fri Feb 27, 2015 7:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance - how much is needed
Replies: 18
Views: 1437

Re: Should you always/usually go with the lower expense rati

I would go with Fund A and gladly pay the higher expense ratio if they would guarantee that +1.25% over index performance for the next decade.
by awval999
Fri Feb 20, 2015 5:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should you always/usually go with the lower expense ratio?
Replies: 20
Views: 1280

Re: Selling older home with old knob and tube wiring

Recently bought a house with some knob and tube. In my case the kitchen and bathrooms were updated and the electrical was updated there as well. The only knob and tube that remains is ceiling lights and a few outlets which I try not to use. Lots of of misinformation on knob and tube out there. It's ...
by awval999
Thu Feb 19, 2015 12:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling older home with old knob and tube wiring
Replies: 34
Views: 2815

Re: Dave Ramsey Lashes Out at His Financial Critics

If it wasn't for watching Suze Orman and listening to Dave Ramsey I would have never found Bogleheads. Look at some of the posts here, about SWR calculations, I-bonds, back door Roth IRAs, Small Value premiums. These are advanced topics. Nearly everyone of us here would still be able to retire if we...
by awval999
Thu Feb 19, 2015 10:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dave Ramsey Lashes Out at His Financial Critics
Replies: 89
Views: 10238

Re: 401k Loan for house

Take the loan. I did.

You are paying yourself the money back. It's your money.
by awval999
Wed Feb 11, 2015 9:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k Loan for house
Replies: 22
Views: 1721

Re: With rates this low, should LPMI be considered?

I bought a house and got a mortgage in September 2014. I only had 5% down. I took LPMI. Personally, I absolutely disagree with having 20% down, especially for millennials. My student loan interest rates (even post re-finance with SoFi) are higher than my mortgage. Just make sure you buy under your m...
by awval999
Thu Feb 05, 2015 9:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: With rates this low, should LPMI be considered?
Replies: 1
Views: 254

Re: 2.875% mortgage pay-off financially justifiable?

As other posters have made clear, financially it is NOT justifiable. But, I do bet it feels good not to have a mortgage anymore.
by awval999
Fri Jan 30, 2015 5:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2.875% mortgage pay-off financially justifiable?
Replies: 35
Views: 4054

Re: Is my term life policy quote too high?

28 years old, 30 year term, $1M, $58.xx/month TransAmerica. Preferred plus. 2014.
by awval999
Sat Jan 24, 2015 9:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my term life policy quote too high?
Replies: 39
Views: 2631

Re: Is my term life policy quote too high?

No way he's going to get Preferred Plus with a family history of cancer. Go to term4sale.com and play around with the website and you can get a ballpark. I'm getting ~$80s/month for you with $1MM, 32 years old with a "preferred" rating. When I change the rating to "Regular Plus"...
by awval999
Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my term life policy quote too high?
Replies: 39
Views: 2631

Re: Is my term life policy quote too high?

No way he's going to get Preferred Plus with a family history of cancer. Go to term4sale.com and play around with the website and you can get a ballpark. I'm getting ~$80s/month for you with $1MM, 32 years old with a "preferred" rating. When I change the rating to "Regular Plus" ...
by awval999
Sat Jan 24, 2015 1:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is my term life policy quote too high?
Replies: 39
Views: 2631

Re: Thinking about selling my house...

You're 26. Find an apartment downtown and experience that for a bit.
by awval999
Thu Jan 22, 2015 6:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking about selling my house...
Replies: 11
Views: 1099
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