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Re: Sued and won for drycleaner losing suit, suit now found.

Two weeks ago I successfully won a judgment against a dry cleaner who lost my wife's suit. The judgment requires she pay my cost for the suit, which fortunately I had receipts for since it was practically new, plus legal fees and interest. Yesterday, one day before her appeal deadline expires, the ...
by downshiftme
Fri Mar 27, 2015 4:33 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sued and won for drycleaner losing suit, suit now found.
Replies: 54
Views: 5617

Re: Employer matching to 401K

Yes, that's basically it, except many employers only do the matching paycheck by paycheck. So that means to get the whole match you need to contribute every paycheck of the year. A few companies will true up at the end of the year, but it is not a common feature. If you are contemplating contributin...
by downshiftme
Fri Mar 27, 2015 1:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employer matching to 401K
Replies: 8
Views: 425

Re: Failed Surgery - Doctor not volunteering discount

That's not what I inferred at all. I suggested he give him a discount since the doctor had the opportunity to re-insert a tube that came out after a week and chose to "wait and see". And what would have happened if the doctor aggressively suggested another surgery to replace the tube and ...
by downshiftme
Thu Mar 26, 2015 12:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Failed Surgery - Doctor not volunteering discount
Replies: 32
Views: 2411

Re: Wise move to move some $ to cash before bear market?

Is this a new article by this author, perhaps a product of original research that this particular time is an especially good time to make such a tactical reallocation to cash. Or is this a rehash of a similar article the author wrote six months ago, and also a year ago, and also 18 months ago. How d...
by downshiftme
Thu Mar 26, 2015 12:16 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wise move to move some $ to cash before bear market?
Replies: 66
Views: 5763

Re: Should I invest my emergency fund?

Now I'm a big fan of the tiered approach to Emergency Funds, and once I have sufficient financial assets, think there is less need to keep a large chunk in immediately available cash. My question to you is: how much of expenses will you have in case of a 90% decline in equities? I can see the respon...
by downshiftme
Wed Mar 25, 2015 6:09 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I invest my emergency fund?
Replies: 71
Views: 6018

Re: Admiral Shares vs Diversity? Beginner Question

I went through a similar process when I was trying to build a diversified portfolio of index funds. My choice was to build each position to the point that it qualified for Admiral shares before I worried about the exact percentages needed to implement my preferred asset allocation. While that meant ...
by downshiftme
Tue Mar 24, 2015 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Admiral Shares vs Diversity? Beginner Question
Replies: 14
Views: 1276

Re: Nonretirement investments...

If you know that you will need to money at a specific date in the future, then you should avoid volatile investments like stock, which might be down significantly at the exact time you need to cash out. On the other hand, if you can be flexible about dates, I strongly prefer to invest my taxable mon...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 23, 2015 10:07 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Nonretirement investments...
Replies: 14
Views: 2206

Re: Math majors needed in here for loan interest rates thoug

You ask for a math solution, but you do not allow for all the variability of the situation. If you are going to specify that investments earn 9% and interest on the loan is less than that, then the mathematically optimum solution is to take as much loan as you can for a long as you can. The suggesti...
by downshiftme
Sat Mar 21, 2015 9:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math majors needed in here for loan interest rates thoughts
Replies: 36
Views: 2102

Re: Definition of financial independence?

I'm not happy with that definition of financially independent using quarterly dividends at all. It isn't required that the assets in a portfolio throw off enough income every quarter to spend. It's required that taking the expenses from a portfolio would enable that portfolio to continue to exist fo...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 16, 2015 6:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Definition of financial independence?
Replies: 52
Views: 4833

Re: Should tilters recommend tilting to beginners?

I tilt. I never recommend it to beginners. I only recommend a two fund portfolio or a target date fund. I use the two fund idea only if they seem ready to understand asset allocation and the idea of an equity/fixed split. Even so, for beginners, putting all the equity into one fund and all the fixed...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should tilters recommend tilting to beginners?
Replies: 49
Views: 2742

Re: Laptop Purchase at Costco?

Looking for a mid-range laptop for a college freshman, Costco had the best machines at attractive prices. We are happy with the choice and the laptop has served the student well.
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:12 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptop Purchase at Costco?
Replies: 13
Views: 1733

Re: John Bogle's Don't Peek Challenge

Absolutely no way. This is a terrible idea. I've gotten pretty good at being able to peek and not take action whether the totals are up or down. As a victim of attempted account takeover at a bank, there is no way I would ever allow an account of mine to go unexamined for years or decades. Being abl...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 16, 2015 12:08 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: John Bogle's Don't Peek Challenge
Replies: 103
Views: 8688

Re: when did/would you terminate disability insurance?

There is no specific age at which I would terminate disability insurance. Being close to retirement age isn't the trigger I would use to decide to carry or terminate disability insurance. I did terminate disability insurance when my investments were sufficient to allow me to live on (albeit at a sli...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 16, 2015 11:59 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: when did/would you terminate disability insurance?
Replies: 35
Views: 2667

Re: Any other investors with 70/30 portfolio?

Not quite 60 years old, I took the Vanguard risk questionnaire (current topic in another thread: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=160855&newpost=2417318 ) and it recommended 70/30 when I opened my Vanguard accounts. I was inspired by the other thread to repeat the questio...
by downshiftme
Sat Mar 14, 2015 12:08 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Any other investors with 70/30 portfolio?
Replies: 60
Views: 6829

Re: Corporate America: Procedure/Process to get Fired

Without more information about your specific situation, it's difficult to speculate what your company might do. There is no standard. Every company can do it differently and unless there are specific work rules, such as a union agreement, the same company can do it differently for each employee. Oft...
by downshiftme
Fri Mar 13, 2015 3:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Corporate America: Procedure/Process to get Fired
Replies: 9
Views: 946

Re: non-compete question

Lesson here is don't sign a ridiculous non-compete. I have usually found this advice to be impractical. Companies who present a non-compete agreement to be signed are NOT offering a choice. You either sign or you are out. Even if it's not explicitly stated that way, it's always been clear that anyo...
by downshiftme
Tue Mar 10, 2015 10:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: non-compete question
Replies: 23
Views: 2073

Re: Paris France help/suggestions for women

Worst places for pickpockets in my experience were on Paris Metro, both in the stations and on the trains. Pickpockets took advantage of the press of bodies and the timing of doors to make snatch and grab attempts. Both back pockets and anything carried (backpack, purse, etc) were significant target...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 02, 2015 7:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris France help/suggestions for women
Replies: 22
Views: 1626

Re: Landlord requested addendum to lease

I'm impressed at the sheer nerve of the landlords to even propose such a thing. From your point of view, it's hard to imagine what possible benefit there could be to you to assume a maintenance responsibility that should belong to the landlords. Will you receive a significant reduction in rent? Sign...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 02, 2015 4:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Landlord requested addendum to lease
Replies: 24
Views: 2131

Re: Father in law possible elder scam victim?

Maybe it is time to consider having someone else manage his finances without him being able to write his own checks. If these checks were written because the handymen were in the house doing actual work, you may have some leverage to insure payback with whatever state agency licenses their kind of ...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 02, 2015 1:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Father in law possible elder scam victim?
Replies: 30
Views: 1787

Re: Paris France help/suggestions for women

As a visitor, my daughter had good success with a pouch on a string that she hung over her neck and under her sweater. I've seen these called passport holders, or commonly used in industrial settings as badge holders (although visible, not hidden, for use displaying a badge.) Later when she stayed f...
by downshiftme
Mon Mar 02, 2015 1:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paris France help/suggestions for women
Replies: 22
Views: 1626

Fidelity offer to match IRA contributions

Fidelity is reportedly offering to match IRA contributions for the next three years, up to 10%, for investors who transfer an IRA to them during the promotion. While I can find lots of news stories about the offer, I haven't been able to find any Fidelity official communication or web page that desc...
by downshiftme
Sat Feb 28, 2015 1:38 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity offer to match IRA contributions
Replies: 12
Views: 2200

Re: Erroneous NY Ezpass violation - Any tips?

I had some similar problems with a similar system in another state. In a case where the responder readers went offline, everyone passing through was photo captured and sent a bill, including the photo reading surcharge, despite the fact that I had a valid and functioning responder. They had zero int...
by downshiftme
Fri Feb 27, 2015 6:17 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Erroneous NY Ezpass violation - Any tips?
Replies: 20
Views: 2148

Re: Suggest an infrared temperture gun

Got a no name Chinese one from Amazon for about $25. It was completely worthless and neither accurate nor repeatable. I assume you need sufficient quality components to get an accurate and reliable measurement.
by downshiftme
Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suggest an infrared temperture gun
Replies: 21
Views: 1696

Re: Pick-Pockets

First time, on the Paris Metro. Two men, timing their robbery to the opening and closing of the subway doors. On my last trip to Paris I was repeatedly warned about the Metro, and they were right. Once, I was hit by a guy doing something like the quote above, then out the closing door before anyone...
by downshiftme
Mon Feb 23, 2015 5:51 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pick-Pockets
Replies: 63
Views: 5304

Re: Are banks required to deposit third party endorsed check

I have rarely had to deposit a third party check with an endorsement "Pay to the order of Downshiftme signed by the original payee" but have never had a problem when doing so. How much history do you have with your bank? I'd suggest either asking a branch manager to intervene or just do an...
by downshiftme
Fri Feb 20, 2015 4:13 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are banks required to deposit third party endorsed checks?
Replies: 52
Views: 2874

Re: "Don't Be Dogmatic About Retirement-Portfolio Withdrawal

Even with no change in tax rates, you may experience a change in your personal tax rate. Moving from paid employment to retirement may have several years before RMD kicks in, which could be prime time to tap Trad IRA or do Roth conversions while tapping taxable accounts in order to prevent much high...
by downshiftme
Fri Feb 20, 2015 1:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Don't Be Dogmatic About Retirement-Portfolio Withdrawals."
Replies: 10
Views: 1467

Re: Time to stop driving for 85 yo MIL

Sad part is she actually purchased the car after telling us she's "just looking". Very hard to face my MIL now, to me this was a selfish act. As far as doing what is necessary, my problem now is MIL says she will have no relations with my wife if we report her. And people wonder where MIL...
by downshiftme
Thu Feb 19, 2015 3:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time to stop driving for 85 yo MIL
Replies: 89
Views: 5972

Re: New career as Financial Planner late in Life?

As a profession, it might be hard to get a large enough book of business to be worthwhile if you are recommending low fee index funds and Boglehead philosophy. But if you are doing it as an early retirement project to promote the concepts and don't actually need the income, it could make an interest...
by downshiftme
Thu Jan 29, 2015 4:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New career as Financial Planner late in Life?
Replies: 29
Views: 2845

Re: Do Bogleheads' Children Qualify For Need Based College A

One child was given a substantial merit award, but only to attend a school he didn't want to go to. Ended up paying full list price (plus out of state supplement in one case) for each child. Most all the awards are needs based and with good salary and good savings we didn't qualify for any of it. Li...
by downshiftme
Mon Jan 26, 2015 5:39 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do Bogleheads' Children Qualify For Need Based College Aid?
Replies: 35
Views: 3225

Re: How much food to you really keep?

I grew up learning to cook in a large family, and still tend to shop that way. When I had teenagers at home, they would easily take care of any excess. Not that it's just me, it can take a long time to work my way through a typical stockpile. I'd be willing to join your challenge of eating through a...
by downshiftme
Thu Jan 15, 2015 2:26 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much food to you really keep?
Replies: 57
Views: 4276

Re: Dentist Bill from 2011

I would always pay my bills for services provided to me. But in this case I would have several questions before paying. If the interest and late changes are primarily due to the dentist failing to bill in a timely manner, I would expect those to be removed. If there was supposed to be dental insuran...
by downshiftme
Wed Dec 24, 2014 1:30 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dentist Bill from 2011
Replies: 62
Views: 3876

Re: Helping out family members

In my family experience, there are a lot of ways this can go badly, even if it works. In another family I know of a few loans between sibings that were repaid slowly, and a lot of resentment on both sides came from that. Both the lender and the borrower came to resent the other. In another case, the...
by downshiftme
Thu Dec 18, 2014 1:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping out family members
Replies: 64
Views: 4886

Re: Social Security maximum earnings limit question.

One year of earnings which is exactly at the earnings limit, is worth the same (in terms of your benefits) regardless of when it was earned. That's my understanding anyway, but I'm hardly an expert. This is mostly true, with some minor exceptions. Levels for years before 1982 were set by law and no...
by downshiftme
Mon Dec 15, 2014 9:47 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Social Security maximum earnings limit question.
Replies: 11
Views: 765

Re: Seattle Local Chapter? The answer is "Yes"

I'd be interested to know when a Seattle meeting might happen. Is meetup an appropriate way to arrange one?
by downshiftme
Mon Dec 15, 2014 12:20 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Seattle Local Chapter? The answer is "Yes"
Replies: 60
Views: 17970

Re: do people still steal portable GPSs from cars?

I had an old GPS worth nor more than the $30 that I paid for it (used) that was stolen from my car. In another incident, they stole a handful of change that I keep for feeding parking meters. It doesn't have to be valuable to attract thieves.
by downshiftme
Sun Dec 14, 2014 2:22 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: do people still steal portable GPSs from cars?
Replies: 13
Views: 1982

Re: What would you change about your retirement plan at work

Our plan is through a well known insurance company, so our ER are very high. Most over 1%. There are also separate account fees which are levied quarterly. This is an improvement over the previous plan, where the ER were all between 2% and 3%. I like that we are a Safe Harbor plan, so no problems wi...
by downshiftme
Fri Dec 12, 2014 7:03 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What would you change about your retirement plan at work?
Replies: 23
Views: 1606

Re: Stolen computer

In fact, some of my most sensitive info I have is in Google Drive.


Change your Google password - NOW - as quickly as possible. Changing all your online passwords seems like a prudent precaution if you have concerns the thief could attempt to access any of your accounts or online services.
by downshiftme
Fri Dec 12, 2014 3:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stolen computer
Replies: 29
Views: 2480

Re: help! suspicious call asking about my SS application

As a general rule, do NOT respond ever to anyone who calls you requesting banking, financial or personal identity information. If you think they are legitimate, get an extension number or id number for THEM, and call back to a KNOWN phone number that you lookup yourself. Never assume a number they g...
by downshiftme
Fri Dec 12, 2014 1:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: help! suspicious call asking about my SS application
Replies: 12
Views: 1462

Re: If you don't need the Soc Sec, when to start taking it?

Actuarialy, it is supposed to not matter that much. But the important consideration not mentioned is that the situation is NOT symmetric. For the payer, it doesn't matter if you take SS early or late, on average they will pay out the same amount. For the payee (especially if single and not leaving ...
by downshiftme
Thu Dec 11, 2014 1:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you don't need the Soc Sec, when to start taking it?
Replies: 39
Views: 4491

Re: Toddlers first flight

A supply of familiar snacks and favorite toys can keep them occupied for a long time. Also, a few new toys they haven't seen before can be very useful to have in reserve in case things don't seem to be going well. Don't overestimate toddler attention spans. You will need to be focused and engaged wi...
by downshiftme
Thu Dec 11, 2014 1:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toddlers first flight
Replies: 30
Views: 2030

Re: Helping Wife After I'm Gone

My plan has always been to simplify the portfolio down to an easy 3 or 4 funds with very simple rebalancing, or if that seems too much go for an all in one fund solution. Make it so simple an adviser is NOT needed, and avoid the problem of being upsold into higher price funds and annuities. For taxe...
by downshiftme
Wed Dec 10, 2014 11:40 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping Wife After I'm Gone
Replies: 14
Views: 2972

Re: Have you ever been let go?

Multiple sources of income is good insurance against losing one of the sources. But this can be hard to do as a traditional employee in tech firms. Most of my jobs have expected considerable overtime and in many cases, the fact that I was working other angles on problems, outside my day job respons...
by downshiftme
Tue Dec 09, 2014 10:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Have you ever been let go?
Replies: 74
Views: 5911

Re: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it en

randomguy wrote:Sure but doesn't this demonstrate why companies don't want to hire old workers? I would think that is obvious. There is a measurable increase in cost but hard to quantify increase in capabilities. Engineers are traditionally very difficult for management to value properly since much...
by downshiftme
Tue Dec 09, 2014 9:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long did your IT career last? At what age did it end?
Replies: 156
Views: 15354

Re: Have you ever been let go?

In high tech, layoffs and involuntarily finding myself out of work seemed to be part of the industry norms. For about the first ten years of my career I saw many layoffs, sometimes more than one each year, but was never selected to be laid off myself. Then I found a new job and quit my old one just ...
by downshiftme
Tue Dec 09, 2014 9:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Have you ever been let go?
Replies: 74
Views: 5911

Re: 23 year old... Can I afford a Rolex?

I would not feel safe walking around with $5000 on my wrist. I would rather not be a target. When I am asked on the street if I know the time, I am glad I am NOT pulling out a Rolex and marking myself as a target. Let the other folks look like millionaires. I'm much happier looking like an average ...
by downshiftme
Mon Nov 24, 2014 6:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 23 year old... Can I afford a Rolex?
Replies: 167
Views: 17276

Re: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?

You are bringing up a good point. If the seats were needed for pilots, who had to fly out from Hawaii immediately upon arrival of the OP's flight, the pilots' rest and comfort were needed for the safety of their flight, which is always a priority I don't think the pilots can count time spent flying...
by downshiftme
Mon Nov 24, 2014 4:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bumped out of first class at boarding - compensation?
Replies: 61
Views: 8974

Re: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL

That sounds like those golden handcuffs are indeed working as the company intended. Meanwhile, I just saw this story about a company that actually deposited an annual bonus in employees accounts, then later changed their mind and tied it to a future corporate event and tried to claw back the already...
by downshiftme
Sat Nov 22, 2014 11:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL
Replies: 13
Views: 1610

Re: How should wife counter salary offer within current co.?

@downshiftme, your post is nice and says to lower expectations (at least I interpret it that way). But it does not say do not negotiate nor does it say do not ask for higher compensation. I'm sorry but I do not know how to give such advice without understanding a lot more of the particulars, and po...
by downshiftme
Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should wife counter salary offer within current co.?
Replies: 60
Views: 5885

Re: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL

If he takes that advice literally, he could never resign Well, certainly there is always next year's bonus or some other intervening date that would roll on forever. I only meant to wait until after the confirmation that I had indeed received - actually got - the last significant bonus I wanted to ...
by downshiftme
Sat Nov 22, 2014 10:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL
Replies: 13
Views: 1610

Re: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL

I am not a lawyer and if I was I wouldn't give you advice unless you were actually my client. Whenever I have left an employer, I have always given notice AFTER the last relevant date for any bonus compensation due me. For example, for an annual performance bonus I wait until not just the end of the...
by downshiftme
Sat Nov 22, 2014 9:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A friend asked about about resignation timing, but IANAL
Replies: 13
Views: 1610
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