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by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pediatric Practice
Replies: 11
Views: 1312

Re: Pediatric Practice

Just one comment as a parent (child now well past pediatricians) - a lot of parents I know (and knew), as well as my attitude when we were in search of pediatricians, lean towards practices with multiple physicians so that they would not be dependent on just one physician in case that physician was ...
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 7:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Grandson's UTMA account
Replies: 14
Views: 533

Re: Grandson's UTMA account

In the same vein, but slightly OT, we have funded our children's Roth IRAs every year that they have had earnings in high school and college. We have not told them that one can remove contributions from a Roth IRA without any penalties nor tax consequences. :twisted: They think the money has to sta...
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 6:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Grandson's UTMA account
Replies: 14
Views: 533

Re: Grandson's UTMA account

Just remember (and be fully aware) that the custodian of an UTMA is required to turn over any unspent funds (and funds from a UTMA must be spent for the 'benefit' of the minor) probably at age 18 or 21. This age depends on applicable state law and/or options chosen when the account was opened. It do...
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I shorten my last name?
Replies: 46
Views: 2885

Re: Should I shorten my last name?

.. there are exceptions, of course. Having (for most of us) a nearly impossible name to pronouce does not seem to have hurt Mike Krzyzewski :D
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I shorten my last name?
Replies: 46
Views: 2885

Re: Should I shorten my last name?

.. there are exceptions, of course. Having (for most of us) a nearly impossible name to pronouce does not seem to have hurt Mike Krzyzewski :D
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I shorten my last name?
Replies: 46
Views: 2885

Re: Should I shorten my last name?

I would lean towards shortening/simplifying your last name. As you probably already have encountered, multiple spellings in various places can make life more difficult.
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 5000 btu open window air conditioner
Replies: 7
Views: 724

Re: 5000 btu open window air conditioner

According to what I read (mainly Consumer Reports), you do not want to have a room air conditioner of a higher capacity than what is needed to satisfactorially cool the room.
by dm200
Wed May 27, 2015 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: lump sum divorce settlement
Replies: 24
Views: 2249

Re: lump sum divorce settlement

I would lean towards getting the accounting degree in order to increase your employment income. I would also plan now for the time when the child support ends, since you will still need to pay rent, etc. even after the children do not qualify you for the chlld support. That is where, it seems to me,...
by dm200
Tue May 26, 2015 9:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

I've never heard complaints about Traditional Medicare with an established supplement-other than the cost. This "cost", though, can be significant for many folks. In this area, one "issue" (or complaint) I have heard from several friends and acquaintences about Traditional Medic...
by dm200
Mon May 25, 2015 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How To Answer Cancer Health Question
Replies: 12
Views: 1570

Re: How To Answer Cancer Health Question

The rules (and fine print) of medical/health questions that are allowed are often different for different types of insurance and may have changed. The first thing I would do is make 100% sure that the question is "ever" and not something "in the last 5 years" or "in the last...
by dm200
Mon May 25, 2015 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Just bought new car, should I buy extended warranty?
Replies: 29
Views: 1270

Re: Just bought new car, should I buy extended warranty?

We just bought a new Hyundai Genesis. Dealer recommends we buy the extended warranty which would take the 3 year bumper to bumper warranty out to 10 years. Cost is $1495. What do bogleheads think? Of course the dealer recommends such a purchase - almost always such add-on products and services are ...
by dm200
Mon May 25, 2015 4:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

In regards to desires or insistence to have "THE" top expert in whatever health/medical/surgical situation I might encounter in the future, I believe that it is unreasonable for almost any of us to have such access in our health/medical coverage. I accept (and have accepted) such limitatio...
by dm200
Mon May 25, 2015 4:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

I do not know how many other MA or MC plans have this feature, but mine does (Kaiser MC plan, Wash DC area).

Although I have no plans to use it, my plan allows me to use Traditional Medicare (TM) for any provider that accepts Medicare at the normal Medicare reimbursements, etc.
by dm200
Sun May 24, 2015 9:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

apocalips wrote:Beware Medicare "Advantage" plans. This is Orwellian manipulation of meaning. Access is severely limited when you find you really need it most. When you're not sick looks great. No free lunch.


Such a damning generalization of MA plans is, IMO, untrue, unfair and ill-informed.
by dm200
Sun May 24, 2015 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

MA plans are cost leveled, across ages. Regular MC plans are cost, aged based plans. In our region MA are cheaper than MC plans. You can make your own conclusions. I don't understand what you mean. If you mean that MC plans charge different premiums and/or fees based on age, then I can state t hat ...
by dm200
Sun May 24, 2015 9:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

In the debates of ObamaCare, one of the issues was the proposed cuts in certain plans offered in Medicare offered in the original ObamaCare bill. I am not sure of all the exact details and proposed schedule, but certain government analyses alleged that Medicare Advantage (MA) plans cost more per re...
by dm200
Sat May 23, 2015 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice For Selling A Used Car
Replies: 12
Views: 1294

Re: Advice For Selling A Used Car

When you have a buyer and have agreed on a price: If the buyer is paying "cash" (not financing) - - and will pay in "currency" - meet at the Motor Vehicle Dept, with the title, and the car (have someone there to pick you up). Take off the plates, have a "bill of sale" p...
by dm200
Fri May 22, 2015 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with car insurance coverage
Replies: 16
Views: 659

Re: Help with car insurance coverage

I've been cutting as much fluff out of our bills lately. I recently have tried doing my homework on car insurance and how much to have/need. Currently have Alllstate, and we’re paying $230/month. I've had various quotes ranging from I believe to be the bare bones, which progressive quoted $100/mont...
by dm200
Fri May 22, 2015 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Put money down on new car, dealer wants color change
Replies: 52
Views: 3875

Re: Put money down on new car, dealer wants color change

... We had reached a price agreement for the new vehicle, and the money allowed them to finalize the search for the vehicle we requested. I've never heard of having to put down money for a dealer to search for the vehicle you want. Ask for your money back, unless you are willing to accept a differe...
by dm200
Thu May 21, 2015 11:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Acceptance of 'prize' when employer pays for function?
Replies: 8
Views: 1390

Acceptance of 'prize' when employer pays for function?

I often attend functions related to volunteer activities or my part time employment that are paid for (such as a dinner/meeting) by a company or organization. Sometimes, attendees are eligible for a prize drawing - such as a $25 gift card or a Kindle Fire. Sometimes, the "prize" is even mo...
by dm200
Thu May 21, 2015 11:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Medicare supplemental insurance
Replies: 71
Views: 4670

Re: Medicare supplemental insurance

I found out to my surprise that my annual physicals weren't covered. Dr. didn't tell me this. They just stopped making my annual appointment. I was mystified until a friend retired on Medicare and ran into the same problem. I'm trying to figure out how to replace the annual. My friend simply goes a...
by dm200
Thu May 21, 2015 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Might sell house to a friend. What is fair?
Replies: 30
Views: 2060

Re: Might sell house to a friend. What is fair?

I think I would start with getting recommendations from 2 or 3 Realtors. IMO, since the sale to the friend is just a possibility, it seems fair/ethical to get such recommendations because you very well might actually list the home with one of them. This would give you a ballpark to discuss with the ...
by dm200
Tue May 19, 2015 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Penfed Auto Loan
Replies: 28
Views: 5775

Re: Penfed Auto Loan

Different credit unions may have different rules/policies concerning loans secured by a vehicle being purchased vs. pledging a free and clear title vs. refinancing a car loan at another financial institution. Some (perhaps most) credit unions may restrict or prohibit car loans on cars over a certain...
by dm200
Tue May 19, 2015 11:31 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Money Market Expense Ratios
Replies: 8
Views: 804

Re: Money Market Expense Ratios

I don't think Vanguard is eating ALL the costs of its MM funds, but is probably absorbing a part. It does make a lot of sense that the expense ratios of MM funds are higher for 2 reasons. One (as pointed out) is that the short term nature of the investments means more work for Vanguard. Another is t...
by dm200
Tue May 19, 2015 11:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.
Replies: 39
Views: 3784

Re: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.

Without getting into the disallowed discussion of particular medical issues, one (of many) things I am noticing in my Kaiser Medicare plan is that some specialists are now saying that I do not need to see them as often for routine followup/etc. as was the case where care/records/etc. were not as cen...
by dm200
Sun May 17, 2015 12:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Additional or Replacement keys for cabinets, etc.
Replies: 1
Views: 172

Additional or Replacement keys for cabinets, etc.

I just used this service again, so just in case you need replacement keys of additional keys for a generic, numbered key lock on file cabinets and similar locked things - you can probably order such keys from http://www.cubiclekeys.com/ I had some perfectly good lockable file cabinets (got free from...
by dm200
Sat May 16, 2015 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.
Replies: 39
Views: 3784

Re: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.

While working, we had to keep in mind to be sure each time we saw a new doctor, he/she was in-network. After you start Medicare and if you are no longer working, Medicare is your "network". You need to ask if a new doctor accepts Medicare assignment (which is different than Medicare payme...
by dm200
Sat May 16, 2015 10:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.
Replies: 39
Views: 3784

Re: MediCare and ? What are your out of pocket costs please.

I have been on Medicare just over 4 years - all on Kaiser's Medicare plan (Washington DC area). I pay the $105/mo part B and $25 per month to Kaiser. There are many and different Kaiser Medicare plans in different areas, although they probably share many features. My plan is "Medicare Cost"...
by dm200
Wed May 13, 2015 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can a room with only a toilet be considered a bathroom?
Replies: 28
Views: 2280

Re: Can a toilet alone in a room be considered a bathroom?

That is EXACTLY what is in the (partially finished) basement of our house, which was built in 1939. Ours does have a door and wooden walls, and is right next to the sink (appears to be original to the house) that also is used to drain the washer. From the appearance of the wood walls, I am guessing ...
by dm200
Wed May 13, 2015 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is this a dumb thing to do? [Pied-a-terre to share with daughter]
Replies: 41
Views: 4887

Re: Is this a dumb thing to do? [Help daughter purchase condo]

What is the "right" or "best" thing to do (or not do) depends on all the individual facts and circumstances. Just my opinion on one possible way to approach this. IF your daughter wants to have/own/reside in a condo, and is ready/willing/able to make payments on a mortgage - [wit...
by dm200
Tue May 12, 2015 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes on renting a room in my home to a friend
Replies: 30
Views: 1771

Re: Taxes on renting a room in my home to a friend

My guess is that there may be multiple, "correct" ways of doing this. This is what a friend of mine (single at the time) did when he bought a four bedroom, three bath single family house, in which he lived. While I don't know of recall the exact details, what he did (income and tax-wise) w...
by dm200
Mon May 11, 2015 10:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paying or Not Paying Extra for Amazon Delivery
Replies: 19
Views: 2013

Paying or Not Paying Extra for Amazon Delivery

I buy (either for personal use or for an organization I manage) a moderate number of items from Amazon.com (some are from separate sellers through Amazon) and I never pay any extra for earlier delivery. My "sample size" is small and I have not tracked this for each delivery by day of deliv...
by dm200
Mon May 11, 2015 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tenants left and we end up with a flooded basement and no insurance coverage
Replies: 35
Views: 3585

Re: Tenants left and we end up with a flooded basement and no insurance coverage

Just a thought - suppose the roles here (landlord and tenant) were reversed. What would the current landlord do about utilities if he were a renter and chose to vacate a rental property a few days or weeks before the end of the lease? Would he continue to pay and be obligated for charges when he has...
by dm200
Mon May 11, 2015 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New car, lease or buy?
Replies: 33
Views: 1318

Re: New car, lease or buy?

I believe there's a $15 or so a month charge tacked on, but I believe that's for sales taxes... maybe it's property taxes. I'm a little embarrassed I don't know this. Regardless, it's my understanding that you would be paying taxes only on the portion you "use". Some jurisdictions impose ...
by dm200
Mon May 11, 2015 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: escrow increase...
Replies: 28
Views: 1871

Re: escrow increase...

The "rules", and related computations/calculations for escrow (taxes and insurance, normally) are both fairly well defined (now) and often required by the mortgage holder. The "key" is whether the information (taxes and insurance paid and future amounts due) is correct when the m...
by dm200
Mon May 11, 2015 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New car, lease or buy?
Replies: 33
Views: 1318

Re: New car, lease or buy?

My recommendation is to buy, not lease. 1. A lease is actually a balloon loan, amortized over a long period, with the balloon payment due at lease termination. The lease wraps a value guarantee of "value" at the end of the lease. My "logic" is that somebody has to pay the leasing...
by dm200
Sun May 10, 2015 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tenants left and we end up with a flooded basement and no insurance coverage
Replies: 35
Views: 3585

Re: Tenants left and we end up with a flooded basement and no insurance coverage

I don't know how the lease reads on this, or what is "customary" - but it seems to me that the tenants should have been instructed (and the landlord or property manager should have authorized) that utilities be changed to the landlord upon the tenants vacating the property.
by dm200
Fri May 08, 2015 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Does My Kindle Case Work?
Replies: 11
Views: 827

Re: How Does My Kindle Case Work?

AH! Must be the magnet that also holds the cover closed.

Thank you all! Mystery solved.
by dm200
Fri May 08, 2015 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sellers not signing cancellation of escrow?
Replies: 7
Views: 1112

Re: Sellers not signing cancellation of escrow?

Their RE agent keeps saying that the sellers cannot be reached.


I wonder if the RE agent received a full price, cash, no contingency offer if they could be reached?
by dm200
Fri May 08, 2015 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Does My Kindle Case Work?
Replies: 11
Views: 827

How Does My Kindle Case Work?

I bought a Kindle Fire HD7 - with a case. When I open the case (turn flap back), the Kindle turns on and when I close the case - it turns off. My wife has one - but she did not want the case - and she has to push a small button on top to turn hers off and on. My case does not do anything with that s...
by dm200
Fri May 08, 2015 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit union question
Replies: 16
Views: 1585

Re: Credit union question

Think of Miracle on 34th Street when the run on the bank happens and people ask for the money but he can't give them cash because he already loaned it out.


Wasn't that "It's a Wonderful Life"?
by dm200
Thu May 07, 2015 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit union question
Replies: 16
Views: 1585

Re: Credit union question

As other posts suggest, I would make sure this credit union is federally insured by NCUA. Privately insured credit unions are almost all fine institutions, but private insurance does not, in my opinion, have the size to handle many of their credit unions failing. As long as this credit union offers ...
by dm200
Wed May 06, 2015 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit union: "once a member, always a member"?
Replies: 22
Views: 1636

Re: Credit union: "once a member, always a member"?

I am in this business (and have been for a long time). Some of the above posts have correct information and some do not. There is also some "history" involved, as well as rules/requirements changing over time. 1. EVERY U.S. credit union has a state of federal (depending on the charter) def...
by dm200
Tue May 05, 2015 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toronto Vacation - Finding a hotel
Replies: 36
Views: 2166

Re: Toronto Vacation - Finding a hotel

It has been many years, but the Metro (subway) system is great (as best I recall), so I would look for a hotel where you could go to most of the places you wish by public transportation. Staying downtown could be OK as well. I suggest considering a "classic" if you stay downtown. Many year...
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Insurance Claim Question
Replies: 7
Views: 577

Re: Car Insurance Claim Question

IF (as some recommend) you do not file a claim for the $800 - then it is "illogical" (in my opinion) to have (and pay for) a deductible of only $500 - instead of having (and paying for) $1,000 deductible. We have had $1,000 deductible on our cars for over 30 years - and I am sure this has...
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Insurance Claim Question
Replies: 7
Views: 577

Re: Car Insurance Claim Question

IF (as some recommend) you do not file a claim for the $800 - then it is "illogical" (in my opinion) to have (and pay for) a deductible of only $500 - instead of having (and paying for) $1,000 deductible. We have had $1,000 deductible on our cars for over 30 years - and I am sure this has...
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 6:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Where are the dividends with Funds??
Replies: 21
Views: 2614

Re: Where are the dividends with Funds??

Many stocks held in many index funds (because that is the index) pay low or very low dividends, especially compared to several of the stocks you cite. Although Vanguard Index funds have a low (or very low) expense ratio, nonetheless it is not zero. Dividends on holding of a fund first offset fund ex...
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used vehicle purchase disaster
Replies: 37
Views: 3792

Re: Used vehicle purchase disaster

What about this - who knows. Tell the dealer that you want to cancel the deal, give back the vehicle and you get 100% of your money back. As you describe it, they represented supplying a 90 day warranty - but they could not "deliver".
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking for specific type Radio/CD player
Replies: 1
Views: 223

Looking for specific type Radio/CD player

I am looking for a low cost, not fancy at all, Radio and CD player component unit (without its own speakers), preferably with the audio out with RCA plugs - that will hook up with an existing building amolification/speaker system. The CD player part can be either a single CD player or one that hoids...
by dm200
Mon May 04, 2015 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used vehicle purchase disaster
Replies: 37
Views: 3792

Re: Used vehicle purchase disaster

Since (apparently) the dealer sold you the wrranty and the dealer certainly knew the mileage, it seems to me that the dealer should bear some responsibility. Suppose, the mileage had been 149,000 and this happened, would the warranty have covered the repair? If covered, how much would it have paid? ...

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