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Re: Retirement luxury vehicle

I was test driving a Mercedes C250's with my daughter last weekend - very nice car, easy to drive, safe, not too big and quick - lease return w/ warranty left are available for low 20's. CLA too new, unproven? I apologize as I'm kinda working off a "stereotypical" retired older lady model...
by countofmc
Wed Aug 13, 2014 6:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement luxury vehicle
Replies: 62
Views: 4329

Re: Any Opinions on Mirrorless Cameras?

Nice summary countofmc, Samsung is another brand I looked closely at, the NX 2000 model. Amazon has a nice pink one for $299 with kit lens. Wife would like pink :happy I found several reviews where the Samsung got a refused to recognize lens error. That scarred me away from that model though the pr...
by countofmc
Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Opinions on Mirrorless Cameras?
Replies: 40
Views: 2020

Re: Retirement luxury vehicle

Kinda vague, lots of cars fit your description if you are willing to go used/ CPO. I'd say a used ES350 is as good as anything though.
by countofmc
Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement luxury vehicle
Replies: 62
Views: 4329

Re: Any Opinions on Mirrorless Cameras?

Should break it down by system : Nikon - Their mirrorless cameras use 1 inch sensors (same as in the Sony RX-100), so IQ suffers compared to some other brands. I'd say Nikon isn't very compelling in this area, but sometimes their cameras can be found very cheap, and they have good autofocus. Micro 4...
by countofmc
Wed Aug 13, 2014 5:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Opinions on Mirrorless Cameras?
Replies: 40
Views: 2020

Re: Renting forever: financial suicide?

OP here, thanks for all the great posts. Surprised nobody has mentioned the earthquake risk in the Bay Area. It's not a big factor for me, but it also is something that's on the back of my mind. Another big earthquake hitting this area is a question of when, not if. And honestly that has stopped me ...
by countofmc
Wed Aug 13, 2014 1:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting forever: financial suicide?
Replies: 90
Views: 9426

Re: Renting forever: financial suicide?

My aunt was a lifelong renter in Southern California until about age 60. As she was thinking about retiring, she was afraid of all the unexpected rent increases and what she would have to pay for rent 10, 20, 30 years down the road. We helped her locate a condo near us and she bought it, knowing he...
by countofmc
Mon Aug 11, 2014 6:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting forever: financial suicide?
Replies: 90
Views: 9426

Re: Help with massive debt repayment

I'll cut across the grain here a bit. At those interest rates, I personally wouldn't be in a hurry to pay off ANY of those loans. I'd invest the extra in a Roth IRA (or non-deductible if your income is too high), I-Bonds, etc., and just keep making minimums on those loans.
by countofmc
Mon Aug 11, 2014 5:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with massive debt repayment
Replies: 27
Views: 2570

Renting forever: financial suicide?

My wife and I are DINK, early 30s, living in the SF Bay Area. In terms of saving, debt, retirement, etc, we feel like we are finally on a good path. However, the one missing component is the purchase of a home. We both make fairly modest salaries for this area, and simply cannot afford to buy unless...
by countofmc
Mon Aug 11, 2014 5:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting forever: financial suicide?
Replies: 90
Views: 9426

Re: Relative needs mortgage assistance: good resources?

I'll also ask if anyone has info on whether my grandfather might have traditional refinancing options. His income is quite low right now and that seems to be the problem, but it's erratic and has been higher in the past.
by countofmc
Sat Aug 09, 2014 7:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relative needs mortgage assistance: good resources?
Replies: 1
Views: 286

Relative needs mortgage assistance: good resources?

My grandfather is an immigrant that speaks limited English, so I'm helping him out with this issue he's run into recently. He purchased his home about 15 years ago, so the home itself is worth a decent amount more than he owes on it. However, he is a business owner and lately the business has entere...
by countofmc
Thu Aug 07, 2014 12:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relative needs mortgage assistance: good resources?
Replies: 1
Views: 286

Re: Lexus ES 350 versus Hyundai Genesis

cannondale wrote:That's one hell of a deal you got on that lexus!


2008 was the start of the slowdown in auto sales that I don't think recovered until about 2011-2012. I was also in the market for a used Lexus during that time, and the deals were quite good.
by countofmc
Thu Aug 07, 2014 3:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lexus ES 350 versus Hyundai Genesis
Replies: 18
Views: 3439

Re: Easy careers to last me to retirement?

Why not just lower expenses and retire now? Or at least give it a shot, if it doesn't work out you can return to work in a year or two feeling refreshed. I don't think you even need to move overseas for this, there are some very low COL areas here in the USA (unless of course, you WANT to go oversea...
by countofmc
Tue Jul 08, 2014 1:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Easy careers to last me to retirement?
Replies: 92
Views: 13959

Receiving a monetary gift from overseas family member

My grandmother, who lives and is a citizen of a foreign country, wants to send me some money as a gift, a piece of my inheritance if you will. Not a huge sum, probably the equivalent of $50,000 USD. I am wondering what the tax/legal implications of this would be on my end? Unless I've gravely mistak...
by countofmc
Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Receiving a monetary gift from overseas family member
Replies: 9
Views: 1098

Re: Simple Camera for Travel?

I too was looking for a top grade point and shoot. I was able to borrow the Sony and got great shots. However, the price was way more than the Canon S110. While looking I got a great deal on the Canon (far less than 1/2 the price and went for it). Under very low light their were some differences, e...
by countofmc
Fri May 30, 2014 7:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simple Camera for Travel?
Replies: 34
Views: 1530

Re: Simple Camera for Travel?

Honestly, imo in the pocketable P&S category there is one family of cameras that are head and shoulders above everyone else that nothing else needs to be considered: the RX100 series. There are now 3 models available, although I don't know if the Mark III is available yet or will be in time for ...
by countofmc
Fri May 30, 2014 7:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simple Camera for Travel?
Replies: 34
Views: 1530

Re: Ideas for dining inexpensively

Some days are hectic and it's nice to be able to pick up food rather than have to deal with cooking and dishes at the end of a long day. About once a week, my wife and I (we don’t have kids) pick up a foot-long Subway sandwich and split it. We get it to go and have chips & drinks at home so it ...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 10:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideas for dining inexpensively
Replies: 79
Views: 4544

Re: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?

We budget a monthly amount for each of us as a "no questions asked" for fun stuff. each of us can spend that amount on whatever we wanted. If we didn't spend all of it, it just rolls over into the next month, so one can save towards a "no questions asked" larger purchase. Curren...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 10:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?
Replies: 33
Views: 2746

Re: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?

We budget a monthly amount for each of us as a "no questions asked" for fun stuff. each of us can spend that amount on whatever we wanted. If we didn't spend all of it, it just rolls over into the next month, so one can save towards a "no questions asked" larger purchase. Curren...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 9:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?
Replies: 33
Views: 2746

Re: The in-laws are broke!

My opinion is simple and may be controversial. Parents owe their kids EVERYTHING, kids own their parents NOTHING. There is not a single person alive today that made a choice to be born. Parents make the choice to have kids, as such they have a responsibility to raise and support their children. Chil...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 9:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The in-laws are broke!
Replies: 128
Views: 16430

Re: Ideas for dining inexpensively

I find take-out from Ethnic restaurants provide the best "bang for buck". My wife and I do not exactly eat like birds, but we usually still get about 3-4 total meals out of two entrees from our local Thai place.
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 8:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideas for dining inexpensively
Replies: 79
Views: 4544

Re: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?

Of course it's ok to use some money for fun. There's no correct percentage of your income that you should put aside for fun, it depends on your particular circumstances. How about this for a starting point, instead of saving 33% of your post-tax, how about trying 28% for a while and using the extra...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 8:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?
Replies: 33
Views: 2746

Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?

My wife and I are in an okay (not good nor bad) position financially, imo. We are doing the "Boglehead minimum" : we have a sufficient EF set up, putting away about 33% of our POST-tax income to retirement (on track to meet our goals), and our only debt is a modest amount of low-interest s...
by countofmc
Mon May 26, 2014 8:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting Frugal Fatigue: Save a % of income for "fun"?
Replies: 33
Views: 2746

Re: Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?

I would suggest opening a brokerage account at a firm where you will eventually make most or all of your IRA contributions. Why complicate things with a one off account for a $1000 purchase? Well then Capitlone360 might make even more sense, as I'm keeping all my ROTH IRA funds in ultra-safe saving...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 30, 2014 2:02 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?
Replies: 6
Views: 390

Re: Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?

Do you have an existing roth IRA beyond the Sharebuilder savings IRA? Or any accounts at Vanguard, Fidelity, Schwab? Yes you can buy the stock in a roth IRA. You'll need a brokerage account wherever you plan to do this. Nope, only Roth IRA is a regular savings IRA with CapitalOne360 (not a sharebui...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?
Replies: 6
Views: 390

Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?

So basically a gamble. I've never purchased or sold an individual stock (outside of company shares), and don't really have plans to do so in the future. I envision this being two transactions. Buying the stock relatively soon, and then selling sometime down the line. I want to buy $1000 worth of Twi...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 30, 2014 1:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Going to buy ONE individual stock : Sharebuilder ok?
Replies: 6
Views: 390

Sell, trade, or keep 2nd car?

Car in question is a 2008 BMW 328 with 35k miles on it. I recently moved close enough to work to not need to drive anymore. My wife still needs a car, so we are going to keep hers no matter what. However, I'm not sure what I should do. While right now I don't need a car, I'm not sure how long I'll b...
by countofmc
Tue Apr 22, 2014 7:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell, trade, or keep 2nd car?
Replies: 10
Views: 844

Re: US NEWS 9 Most Affordable Placs 2 Retire

Living in the Bay Area, I've lost touch with how low COL can be in other parts of this country. I was watching House Hunters the other day and a couple in Fort Worth, TX purchased a 2200 sq ft home that looked terrific in what ostensibly looked like a good neighborhood for $175,000. Even that sounds...
by countofmc
Tue Apr 22, 2014 7:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: US NEWS 9 Most Affordable Placs 2 Retire
Replies: 21
Views: 2935

Re: Death of co-worker

My opinion is that it's just the fear of death, that mainly comes from the fear of the unknown. That's why, like you said, people of any age want to hang on to life. But generally people with terminal illnesses that know when their time will be up gradually accept that and come to peace with their ...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 02, 2014 3:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Death of co-worker

Building a good size portfolio is not with the intent to go crazy living lavishly, it's to provide peace of mind and smooth out the bumps when curve balls come along. Agree. I found it harder to stay on course and save when the goal was some distant and vague notion of retirement. But once I refram...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Frugal Fatigue

Human psychology in regards to spending/saving fascinates me, and I don't understand all of it, even my own. One thing that sometimes helps control my spending is the knowledge that I have the power to buy that at any time. So say I was tempted by a $5000 wristwatch or something. Well if I have the ...
by countofmc
Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:34 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal Fatigue
Replies: 96
Views: 11102

Re: Death of co-worker

Good thread. It is still wise to plan for the future in spite of our own mortality. There should be a balance between the saving for tomorrow and the spending during the now. My condolences to the OP. Exactly. It's a false dichotomy to say that you have to either save for the future or enjoy today....
by countofmc
Wed Apr 02, 2014 1:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Decently written article on retirement

The first example is a guy that had $130k in his retirement account in his 50s after a career of working. I just can't wrap my head around people like that of that age group (baby boomers mostly) who have that little saved. How the hell do you come of age in an era when tuition was what it was, an ...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 3:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decently written article on retirement
Replies: 22
Views: 3375

Re: Time and benefits vs. money.

What did Gordon Gekko say in the 2nd movie? "Money is not the prime asset in life, time is"? Or something like that? I'm a firm believer in that. You give me the choice between a higher paying job with less free time and a lower paying job with more free time that would still give me enoug...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:54 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Time and benefits vs. money.
Replies: 21
Views: 1670

Re: Death of co-worker

I wonder how retirement planning would change if there wasn't such a stigma attached to suicide. I think it's not as much a stigma as a mis-prediction of one's future self. At the age of 30, or 40, or 50, it's easy to say, "When I run out of money or health, whichever comes first, I will check...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Death of co-worker

I wonder how retirement planning would change if there wasn't such a stigma attached to suicide.

Kind of like the movie Looper.
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Decently written article on retirement

The first example is a guy that had $130k in his retirement account in his 50s after a career of working. I just can't wrap my head around people like that of that age group (baby boomers mostly) who have that little saved. How the hell do you come of age in an era when tuition was what it was, an e...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Decently written article on retirement
Replies: 22
Views: 3375

Re: Death of co-worker

Contrary to popular belief, it's my opinion that retirement obsession is for fools. Life is the journey, and the biggest regrets are of actions not taken. Living on Ramen noodles for 40 years only to die a few months after retirement is a lot more common than you think. Live the life you enjoy livi...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 31, 2014 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Death of co-worker
Replies: 94
Views: 10111

Re: Asset Protection and California Homestead Exemption

Just bumping this for the weekend crowd
by countofmc
Sat Mar 29, 2014 4:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Asset Protection and California Homestead Exemption
Replies: 6
Views: 532

Re: What age did you reach 100K networth?

Early 30s, was pretty damn excited about it, until I found this thread.
by countofmc
Fri Mar 28, 2014 2:44 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What age did you reach 100K networth?
Replies: 264
Views: 34107

Asset Protection and California Homestead Exemption

I'll try to keep this as brief and succinct as possible. I think generally for most people the Homestead Exemption here in California is 100k. For the expensive coastal cities, 100k can just be a standard down payment on a 500k home. So not hard to imagine the equity in your home could exceed 100k f...
by countofmc
Fri Mar 28, 2014 2:38 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Asset Protection and California Homestead Exemption
Replies: 6
Views: 532

Re: Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad,

"A happy wife..." and all of that. Your BMW is six years old, and though it only has 40k miles, I would bet on some significant maintenance expenses. New car warranty, better MPG and little or no maintenance for several years. No, you won't come out ahead on a strictly financial basis, bu...
by countofmc
Thu Mar 27, 2014 4:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad, wash
Replies: 26
Views: 2310

Re: Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad,

Consumer reports consistantly rates cars better for cost and reliability. However, BMW isn't exactly cheap to maintain (I've had a few of them). Smaller SUVs, crossovers and "tall cars" are all melding together. One that's new in 2013 is the Subaru Crosstrek. We bought one to replace an O...
by countofmc
Thu Mar 27, 2014 12:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad, wash
Replies: 26
Views: 2310

Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad, wash

We have 2 cars, one of them is a 2008 BMW 3-series with about 40,000 miles on it. We are at a different point in our lives with a more "suburban" lifestyle, and kind of desire the utility of a small SUV. Plus my wife is quite short, so she likes the higher ride height as it helps her see. ...
by countofmc
Wed Mar 26, 2014 10:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to trade car for Small SUV: Financially good, bad, wash
Replies: 26
Views: 2310

Re: How do I stop worrying about money?

I'm pretty neurotic about money (among other things) but since this your thread I'll keep it short: I'm paranoid almost daily that something will wipe out all that I've worked for. Not just a market crash, but getting sued over something stupid, a massive bank software error that zeroes out my accou...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do I stop worrying about money?
Replies: 72
Views: 8352

Re: Should we break lease and move closer to work?

Any way you can negotiate with the new apartment complex for some months at the lower price? Sounds a little fishy to me, but if it was an honest mistake, perhaps they can apologize financially. No, these apartments are so popular they'll laugh, give us back our deposit, and tell us good luck. But ...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 10, 2014 10:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we break lease and move closer to work?
Replies: 9
Views: 463

Re: Should we break lease and move closer to work?

Sounds a little like bait and switch, but maybe they just got a lot of interest in the apt, so they felt that the high demand justified the higher monthly rent. Someone will pay it, if not you. Do you have 2 cars? If the new place is so close to your workplaces, maybe you can start carpooling/using...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:53 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we break lease and move closer to work?
Replies: 9
Views: 463

Re: Should we break lease and move closer to work?

Thanks for the advice so far. I was thinking of making a separate thread for this issue, but maybe some of you will see this and provide some input. So if we move, we will be vacating our apartment a month early. Already talked to landlord, the one month rent is cheaper than the lease break fee that...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we break lease and move closer to work?
Replies: 9
Views: 463

Should we break lease and move closer to work?

Currently my wife and I both have roughly 10 miles (30 minutes or so) each way commutes. We live in a big city, so this isn't too bad. However, there is a popular apartment complex much closer to both of our jobs that would cut our commutes in half and would let us carpool. 1 bedrooms (the type we a...
by countofmc
Mon Mar 10, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we break lease and move closer to work?
Replies: 9
Views: 463

Modest windfall from selling company stock: tax issues

My filing status for 2014 will be MFJ, anticipating about 110k gross income before stock sale. In January, I sold off some company stock from a former employer I purchased through the exercise of Incentive Stock Options. I exercised the options about 6 years ago. I received about $30,000 through thi...
by countofmc
Sun Mar 02, 2014 6:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Modest windfall from selling company stock: tax issues
Replies: 7
Views: 545

Re: Took the Plunge, Bought an Accord Hybrid

Did you get the passenger-mounted turning camera that shows the blind spot when turning left? I wonder how it works. Wait one review says it shows the right side and they want it on the left. Seems like a great car... It shows the right (passenger) side blind spot. It activates when you turn on the...
by countofmc
Sat Feb 22, 2014 1:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Took the Plunge, Bought an Accord Hybrid
Replies: 45
Views: 4368
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