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by htdrag11
Sun May 17, 2015 6:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The upside of living longer
Replies: 11
Views: 2208

Re: The upside of living longer

+1.

Health is wealth. Seeing my MIL who is over 80's but in poor health and wealth, it is not living at all. Lessons learned for me.

None plan to fail but most fail to plan.
by htdrag11
Sat May 16, 2015 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 828
Views: 116116

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

I'll just my recommendation for Ex Machina. An excellent sci-fi movie ... thought provoking. An much older documentary: The Aristocrats directed by Penn and Teller. It's about the worlds dirtiest grossest joke (usually comedians just tell it to each other). There are some great great scenes in it ....
by htdrag11
Sat May 16, 2015 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 828
Views: 116116

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Mad Max: Fury Road is crazy good! http://www.nytimes.com/2015/05/15/movies/review-mad-max-fury-road-still-angry-after-all-these-years.html Bought tickets for 10:30 am showing today; will post later. The review for this one has been great, better than Avengers from couple of weeks ago (OD with too m...
by htdrag11
Sun May 10, 2015 1:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?
Replies: 6
Views: 487

Re: Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?

Yes. TSP's 0.03% is hard to beat!!!

50% MM S&P500 0.23
15% Columbia Mid Cap 0.28
15% Columbia Small Cap 0.25
20% MM MSCI EAFE Intl Idx Fd 0.51
by htdrag11
Sun May 10, 2015 7:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?
Replies: 6
Views: 487

Re: Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?

sawhorse and retiredjg, Thanks, It was a long shot. I doubted too. Of all the MM funds, only their S&P500, Mid-cap, small-cap and International are under 0.5% in expenses. There is no after-tax money here but allows a 15% max contribution to an ESPP with a 15% discount. It is amazing that stocks...
by htdrag11
Sat May 09, 2015 9:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?
Replies: 6
Views: 487

Transfer current employer's 401k to TSP feasible?

Our child has a TSP. The current employer's 401 is run by Mass Mutual which carries high expense mutual funds.

1. Can one transfer "active" 401k to TSP?
2. If yes, how many times per year?

Thanks.
by htdrag11
Thu May 07, 2015 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Re: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

(3) A good place to buy filters and other repair/maintenance materials is Rockauto (http://www.rockauto.com). They carry parts from a wide variety of OES for almost all cars and are generally cheaper by several dollars compared to Amazon even after factoring shipping costs. There is always a 5% off...
by htdrag11
Wed May 06, 2015 4:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Re: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

FrugalInvestor wrote:The mechanicals of the Lexus RX are essentially identical to the V6 Toyota Highlander.


+1.

Overall, I look at the glass as half full. It was still money safe over the Lexus dealer.

Sure it could be less costly but it was hassle free.
by htdrag11
Tue May 05, 2015 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Re: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

The interesting thing I found with the cabin filter I changed myself was that I was charged parts and labor for one during a previous service visit to the dealer not that long ago. When I pulled the thing out it was full of dirt and bugs and looked like it had NEVER been changed. I suspect that was...
by htdrag11
Tue May 05, 2015 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Re: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

snowman wrote:2. Wiper blades - ignore your wife's advise, get the full replacement, 2 minutes and you are done. No dirty hands either.



I'm not sure if the replacement wiper blade holder's quality was as good as Lexus. Anyone know about this?
by htdrag11
Tue May 05, 2015 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Re: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

Well, to all the well wishers, I've not touch my car since I was in the 20's, talking about lazy. Changing oil is dirty to say the least. As for the blade inserts, I'm OK to have someone else do it for me. In my past, I just got the whole blades from Costco and trashed the old ones but my wife said ...
by htdrag11
Tue May 05, 2015 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota
Replies: 49
Views: 3513

Frugal car maintenance - Lexus serviced by Toyota

After my "free" oil change, called my Lexus dealer for a 30k mile service estimate, about $500 before taxes. So I got my 2012 RX350 CPO serviced in a next door Toyota (different owner) dealership for a quote of $199 for regular oil, without wiper blade insert replacement. The synthetic and...
by htdrag11
Wed Apr 29, 2015 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 828
Views: 116116

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

"Once Upon a Time in Anatolia" - a Turkish murder (not gory at all) mystery gem from 2011 that won the Cannes award: http://www.imdb.com/title/tt1827487/?ref_=rvi_tt It's moving at a slower pace than we normally accustomed to. The cinematography is excellent depicting landscapes as well as...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 10:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on AA for 35 year old (1st gen immigrant)
Replies: 12
Views: 1135

Re: Advice on AA for 35 year old (1st gen immigrant)

nage234 wrote:I might be wrong here but my thinking was Asset preservation. With a large portion of non-liquid inheritance tied to an emerging economy was trying to be very conservative with the 30 for Bond


Got it.
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investment Report for single 30 y/o
Replies: 2
Views: 493

Re: Investment Report for single 30 y/o

Several observations. 1. Unless you've rich parents or siblings, your $10k emergency fund is rather low. Suggest $40k or 50% of your gross unless your job is rock solid. 2. Junk bonds are considered equities, not bonds. If I recalled, the state of CT has not been kind to capital gains and/or dividen...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice on AA for 35 year old (1st gen immigrant)
Replies: 12
Views: 1135

Re: Advice on AA for 35 year old (1st gen immigrant)

Welcome to the forum. I am also a 1st gen. Before you hear other answers, here is a table from Paul Merriman that I found helpful in my AA. In the long term, the KISS principle applies (I'm lazy too). http://paulmerriman.com/2014-new-site/fine-tuning-your-asset-allocation-2014/ 2. As for the interna...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax 110% Amazon Tax Refund Bonus
Replies: 22
Views: 1912

Re: Turbo Tax 110% Amazon Tax Refund Bonus

Ditto here for our child last year; it was an extra $200 of Amazon money in this case.

Sweet! :moneybag

Used H&R this year since I was miffed with the price increase from TT; I will reluctantly go back to TT for 2015.
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best (Available)Red Wine for under $15 preferrably under $10
Replies: 64
Views: 5376

Re: Best (Available)Red Wine for under $15 preferrably under

BahamaMan wrote:A Riesling is a Sweet White wine, right?


Yes. It is originally Germany based grape wine.
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 27, 2015 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Re: Terminating ADT Alarm Service

Money is credited today. I could afford a decent lunch for one. :beer

Thank you for all your insights and suggestions.
by htdrag11
Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Balanced Index from Cradle to Grave
Replies: 32
Views: 3310

Re: Vanguard Balanced Index from Cradle to Grave

A corollary to this is that it doesn't matter much whether you simply buy and hold Balanced Index, or whether you hold its two components (Total Stock and Total Bond) as separate funds in a 60/40 proportion and occasionally rebalance as needed. Or 50/50. Because the difference between 60/40 and 50/...
by htdrag11
Sun Apr 26, 2015 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV show recommendations?
Replies: 351
Views: 149581

Re: TV show recommendations?

Here is another vote for Vikings.

Just finished season 3, quite a twist. Can't wait for S4 (maybe the last?).

It's similar to Game of Thrones in terms of political intrigue and violence without the sex part.

My other favorites are PBS' BBC Masterpiece Mysteries.
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contribution limit 401k
Replies: 30
Views: 2814

Re: Contribution limit 401k

... As for Roth, I thought that if one's AGI is >= $131k, one CANNOT contribute to Roth. In this case, it's zero, not $5,500. My apologies, as I was thinking of the MFJ limit ($191k). Double-check IRS Pub 590-A, as the single limit is $129K. See: How Much Can Be Contributed? (IRS Pub 590-A) No prob...
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contribution limit 401k
Replies: 30
Views: 2814

Re: Contribution limit 401k

Spirit Rider, Ahem. You're right about the backdoor Roth. There is an existing Roth from the past due to the lower pay scale working for the government, but the good news is that there is NO T-IRA yet. Are you suggesting to put additional money into a new T-IRA and then backdoor to a Roth? What is t...
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contribution limit 401k
Replies: 30
Views: 2814

Re: Contribution limit 401k

See: Publication 590-A (2014), Contributions to Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs) As Spirit Rider implies, I believe that your child starting a new job can contribute the maximum of $18K to the employer's plan, the max to the Roth ($5,500 ($6,500 if you are age 50 or older)), and zero to a ...
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contribution limit 401k
Replies: 30
Views: 2814

Re: Contribution limit 401k

I'm still confused. Just try to advise my single child starting a new job. http://www.irs.gov/Retirement-Plans/Plan-Participant,-Employee/Retirement-Topics-401k-and-Profit-Sharing-Plan-Contribution-Limits Retirement Topics - 401(k) and Profit-Sharing Plan Contribution Limits Two annual limits apply ...
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 9:14 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Who follows Age in Bonds
Replies: 62
Views: 4723

Re: Who follows Age in Bonds

I just use Firecalc to determine my asset allocation to get a near 100% chance of never running out of money. In my early 60's, still invest in 70-30 mix. Debt free and could afford another 2008 debacle w/o losing sleep at night. Would consider going to 60-40 at 70, unless my health deteriorate. Ye...
by htdrag11
Sat Apr 25, 2015 9:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling on eBay with local pickup using PayPal - Dangerous?
Replies: 22
Views: 1648

Re: Selling on eBay with local pickup using PayPal - Dangero

^^^^what he said. You can also call PayPal customer service to ask. Just like selling a used car, I pre-printed a standard receipt with both of our signatures as artifact, including the serial number (expensive electronic). In my case, I took cash rather than PayPal. I do use a pen to verify the bi...
by htdrag11
Fri Apr 24, 2015 4:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Re: Terminating ADT Alarm Service

Call your credit card company and dispute the bill. It's worked twice for me when a company wouldn't stop monthly billing to a credit card. In general, when I have some dead-simple you-obviously-goofed-please-fix-it situation, I give the company one chance to fix it. If they show any signs of foot-...
by htdrag11
Fri Apr 24, 2015 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Re: Terminating ADT Alarm Service

Reason I cancelled was that I changed to Google Voice Why would that change anything? We've been much happier without ADT and have been with FrontPoint for a number of years now. You're absolutely right. They just want to jack up the rate. I used to have IP phone from my cable company. When I switc...
by htdrag11
Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Re: Terminating ADT Alarm Service

ADT is the HOTEL CALIFORNIA of alarm systems - you can checkout but never leave. We cancelled at the end of our contract and knowing this, tried in vain to get SOME TYPE of confirmation #, operator name, or other proof of cancellation to no avail. They said they would send us a letter in month (the...
by htdrag11
Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Re: Terminating ADT Alarm Service

You mentioned they charge your credit card? If that charge is not legit, you have recourse by simply calling your credit card company and initiating a dispute. Ultimately this would result in a chargeback to ADT. Credit cards are consumer friendly. You will prevail via this route. I'm not concerned...
by htdrag11
Thu Apr 23, 2015 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questions
Replies: 5
Views: 559

Re: UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questi

Well, lessons learned. My BIL had either managed his paperwork/accounts poorly or still blasted from his divorce that he had no idea what happened to the settlement (other than getting dry-cleaned). Maybe it's karma. Even if he gets any part of the money, his fiancee would spend it for him anyway. H...
by htdrag11
Thu Apr 23, 2015 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Terminating ADT Alarm Service
Replies: 12
Views: 1634

Terminating ADT Alarm Service

Well, since I called ADT on February 27th to terminate, it took a month to be effective on March 27th. They charged my credit card again. Called them back last week, and has a credit of $20 plus due to one month and several days. Called again today, still got no refund though the last person promise...
by htdrag11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 7:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questions
Replies: 5
Views: 559

Re: UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questi

He will need to call the 800 number that comes with the UPRR. It will be his problem (#3) whether he wanted to drag all this old baggage up again.

As for #4, he does not have Fidelity. B of A did provide the service but that was about 2 years ago.

Thanks.
by htdrag11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 7:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I am torn about AT&T stock
Replies: 19
Views: 2027

Re: I am torn about AT&T stock

I know how you feel. Retired from T and sold all the stocks about 5 years ago, despite the high dividends. Through years of mismanagement and unfocused marketing strategy, it has lagged behind VZ after the 2008-2009 debacle. Not knowing the rest of your portfolio, it's difficult to recommend a repla...
by htdrag11
Wed Apr 22, 2015 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questions
Replies: 5
Views: 559

UPRR - Unclaimed Property and Medallion Signature questions

My brother-in-law just received an UPRR for some Canadian stocks that were purchased by another Canadian company. That is the good news. The bad news is that the stocks were held with his ex from 20 years ago after a bitter divorce. He is only interested in his 50%. Even with a 15% finder's fee and ...
by htdrag11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ROTH Setup and conversion
Replies: 4
Views: 301

Re: ROTH Setup and conversion

My wife will be 59.5 by July this year. Her Roth has only $40k from 2013.

Alan, there is no "free" lunch. Thanks for pointing out. I might consider cashing out some of my I-bonds instead instead of incurring LTCG.
by htdrag11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Broken Oxygen Sensor on Car
Replies: 43
Views: 2903

Re: Broken Oxygen Sensor on Car

livesoft wrote:My friends replace the O2 sensors themselves. So do-it-yourself. A web search says the part is less than $50. Labor would be $0.

Check out repairpal.com for estimates.


I checked out repairpal.com for both Toyota and Lexus SUV on a 30k miles service; the former is cheaper by a whopping 50%!!!
by htdrag11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 3:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ROTH Setup and conversion
Replies: 4
Views: 301

Re: ROTH Setup and conversion

The picture will be clearer toward the end of the year, depending on the gains and losses. Most likely would still be in the 25% bracket, not 15 as in 2014.

Yes, there will be more paperwork in 2 accounts. Thanks.
by htdrag11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MB vs Volvo vs. Other?
Replies: 48
Views: 3758

Re: MB vs Volvo vs. Other?

Did not own either one but their reliability is not impressive; just Google them or check out Consumer Reports from your local library. We did had a MB back in the '80s, great car while it is not in the shop; ditto for BMWs and Saabs. Our friend's leased Audi and Evoque are fun but problematic. Curr...
by htdrag11
Tue Apr 21, 2015 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ROTH Setup and conversion
Replies: 4
Views: 301

ROTH Setup and conversion

Over 59.5 in age, we both are retired and have no wage income. We could live of our interest/dividends and LTCG w/o touching the "principle" so far. I've a TD managed T-IRA for over 10 years and a self managed Vanguard account with both T-IRA and Roth, as well as a taxable account where we...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Single best piece of personal finance advice ever received?
Replies: 90
Views: 7091

Re: Single best piece of personal finance advice ever receiv

Got introduced to this forum from my neighbor. :D
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 20, 2015 6:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking
Replies: 127
Views: 17689

Re: Cast Iron Skillet Cooking

We've got an assortment of sizes from the flea markets and cleaned them, round as well as square/rectangle shape. With warmer weather coming up, we use them outdoor to fry fish, especially if they not as fresh as we like them to be. Obviously steaks are great, but so are lamb chops, tuna, blue fin, ...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 20, 2015 9:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: ROTH 5 year rule
Replies: 21
Views: 2586

Re: ROTH 5 year rule

Learn something new every day; it's great to be alive! :D
by htdrag11
Fri Apr 17, 2015 10:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

The other cheap steaming option that hasn't been mentioned is Chromecast. $29 ChromeCast http://www.amazon.com/Google-Chromecast-Streaming-Media-Player/dp/B00DR0PDNE $30 HDMI to RCA Converter http://www.amazon.com/ViewHD-Premium-Extractor-Converter-VHD-H2HSAs/dp/B00KBHX072/ref=sr_1_1?s=electronics&...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Input wanted from BMW owners
Replies: 44
Views: 4484

Re: Input wanted from BMW owners

If I recall, the X5's battery is underneath the seat, pretty hard to get to. Also it needed to be vented. It was the most expensive $300 I ever spent on any car battery. As for the $130 oil change, it was done at the dealer vs. $100 by my local mechanic. The bill said 8 quarts of synthetic oil, plus...
by htdrag11
Mon Apr 13, 2015 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Household Gross Income Poll
Replies: 134
Views: 12831

Re: Household Gross Income Poll

Ahem! Fit in and inferiority complex - imagine that you're an Asian immigrant who did not even speak English. Being a geek did not help either, except maybe these days. I just count my blessings that somehow we managed to struggle through junior, high school, college and work our behinds of to save ...
by htdrag11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Input wanted from BMW owners
Replies: 44
Views: 4484

Re: Input wanted from BMW OWNERS

Congrats and enjoy! BTW, there is no such thing as a mature adult behind a BMW or maybe just me. :twisted: Our was a 1st year car, so there were quite a few issues but some were fixed under warranty. - rear lift gate (probably several thousands if you have to pay for it) - battery was $300 including...
by htdrag11
Sun Apr 12, 2015 5:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wall Street Fees Wipe Out $2.5 Billion in NYC Pensions
Replies: 17
Views: 2638

Re: "NYC pension fees are a $2.5B lesson for investors"

"There's a sucker born every minute."

Thanks for sharing.

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