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Re: Reliability of LED televisions?

CR says: "Westinghouse is among the more repair-prone brands of flat panel LCD TVs. That's what we found when we asked about more than 177,000 flat panel LCD and plasma TVs purchased by our readers between 2010 and 2014. The graph shows the percentage of models for each brand that were repaired...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 25, 2015 10:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reliability of LED televisions?
Replies: 18
Views: 1213

Re: Rental Car Prices - is this the new normal ?

If that is airport price, check for off airport. Also one-way can sometimes be ridiculously inflated. Like a couple others we use Costco as their system is so simple. I could also use AARP but it is annoying as you have to research which coupon codes to use and check each company separately. I book ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 25, 2015 10:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental Car Prices - is this the new normal ?
Replies: 53
Views: 3791

Re: Elderly Mother in MI - Assisted Living transition

Looks like this may be a place to get some info: http://www.payingforseniorcare.com/medicaid-waivers/mi-choice-waiver-program.html But, I would first spend your time finding an assisting living place that will work for her, rather than worrying about how much of her money you can protect for her hei...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 25, 2015 10:10 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Elderly Mother in MI - Assisted Living transition
Replies: 10
Views: 1000

Re: Roth w/d v. 401k loan to pay credit card?

Probably the loan is the better option and even if you did lose the job, you could then take money from the Roth to pay back the loan. After you pay off the debt will you be maxing out your Roth and 403b? Does the 403b have good investment options? The answers to those questions relate to whether or...
by jeffyscott
Mon Jan 19, 2015 10:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth w/d v. 401k loan to pay credit card?
Replies: 3
Views: 285

Re: Savings rate, age, and home affordability

I am currently renting. My total annual rent is 14% of gross salaried income as I am not counting overtime, dividends etc. I am considering purchasing a condo and the purchase price would be 3.4x our gross salary and monthly PITI plus HOA dues would be about 22% of income. You would (hopefully) get...
by jeffyscott
Mon Jan 19, 2015 10:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Savings rate, age, and home affordability
Replies: 3
Views: 695

Re: Home Owners insurance pricing ???

4. My coverage A (dwelling) was very high for Hartford. They ran their program again and said the coverage was right. It's supposed to reflect the cost to rebuild in my area. 5. Other insurance companies that I have contacted in the past have a lower valuation for coverage A. Are they just "lo...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 18, 2015 1:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Owners insurance pricing ???
Replies: 14
Views: 1535

Re: What Should I Do With My HSA?

Meanwhile, the bank where my HSA was deposited has been acquired by a new bank, which now charges a $3 monthly fee if you don't have a minimum balance of $3k. Further, the only regular health expense I have at the moment would be my yearly eye exams, contacts, and new glasses every now and then. If...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 18, 2015 12:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Should I Do With My HSA?
Replies: 10
Views: 1092

Re: Tap IRA early or use SS early ??

Pearl1234 wrote:Nobody gets out alive.


That's one thing I am not sure how to include in this decision. Taking early is best if you die in your 60s or 70s.

A male that makes it to 62 has only a 60% chance of living to 80 and a female has a 70% chance, based on SS actuarial tables.
by jeffyscott
Mon Jan 12, 2015 5:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tap IRA early or use SS early ??
Replies: 121
Views: 7080

Re: 2000-2014

What were the returns of the Wellesley and Wellington funds during this time period? M* has 7.83% for Wellington (VWENX) and 7.86% for Wellesley, not quite the same time period as they update daily so it's for the 15 years ended 1/9/15. I've owned Wellington over that time, also Dodge and Cox balan...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 11, 2015 10:35 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2000-2014 [15 year returns]
Replies: 26
Views: 4119

Re: ubunto vs xubuntu vs lubuntu laptop

Mint linux is the most polished linux distribution I've ever used. I agree, not that I have tried all that many versions. In comparison with Xubuntu, the Mint XFCE menu search box works better and the standard included office package is better. The Mint software updater is a bit confusing with the ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 11, 2015 9:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: ubunto vs xubuntu vs lubuntu laptop
Replies: 21
Views: 2424

Re: Emergency Road Service..........

I had AAA for about 30 years, but wasn't buying insurance through them; I had USAA auto insurance. I kept AAA for the emergency road service, the maps and the travel discounts. I probably didn't use emergency road service more than 4-5 times in 30 years. They were usually pretty good, except for th...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 11, 2015 8:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Emergency Road Service..........
Replies: 36
Views: 2866

Re: Keeping CC Receipts

Friends have had restaurant servers give themselves an extra $10 tip by writing a "1" and then retotaling the bill after they've departed. In fact a friend's investment club went out to a fancy restaurant for a year-end dinner and everyone's CC got stiffed for an extra $10 tip. I've also ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 11, 2015 8:34 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keeping CC Receipts
Replies: 45
Views: 3522

Re: Social Security election change? Q for my 71 yr Mom

Think of it this way: Each time he was married, if he was working, he paid into SS rather than having the premium be part of the family take-home pay. Everyone with one spouse or none also pays the same tax, so your comment makes no sense as a justification. Anyway, the rules are what they are and ...
by jeffyscott
Mon Jan 05, 2015 5:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security election change? Q for my 71 yr Mom
Replies: 21
Views: 2266

Re: Investing for income during retirement

He has agreed to this in theory, but has yet to act on it. My father doesn't want to pay the attorney fees for this, so my other sister and I have agreed to pay for it ourselves. Seems to me the folks getting the $150K loan should be the one paying this. Including my father and his sister, who had ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 4:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing for income during retirement
Replies: 15
Views: 2047

Re: Purchasing foreign currency for vacations (present/futur

However AFAIK the VG TIBM fund hedges back into USD? Exchange rate changes will therefore neither benefit nor advantage you as an investor. So it's not a currency hedge. Ah, didn't know that they hedge. Some unhedged ETFs listed here: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Developed_market_bonds#Index_fun...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 10:05 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Purchasing foreign currency for vacations (present/future)
Replies: 21
Views: 1778

Re: Stock vs. bonds in a Roth?

Why can't you buy I-bonds from the comfort of your chair at treasurydirect.gov?
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:55 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Stock vs. bonds in a Roth?
Replies: 11
Views: 1748

Re: Vanguard's "Cost Compare" calculator and 3.4% expense ra

Net operating expenses in the annual report are 0, or actually less than 0.005% based on the footnote. I assume Schwab is reimbursing the fund for expenses. I assume morningstar includes the expenses of the underlying funds. I assume Vanguard is (ridiculously) adding the gross expenses (which invest...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's "Cost Compare" calculator and 3.4% expense ratios
Replies: 1
Views: 579

Re: Investing for income during retirement

Not Law, I have discussed the details of this loan with my father, and it's a terrible idea. It will be a loan to my brother-in-law. My father says that if my BIL fails to pay him back, that the amount of the principal will just be taken out of my sister's (BIL's wife) portion of my father's estate...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing for income during retirement
Replies: 15
Views: 2047

Re: The Global Portfolio

57% Stocks 43% Bonds Within stocks 49% US 39% Developed ex-US 12% EM Within bonds 28% US 65% Developed ex-US .6% EM .1% Other? Interesting, that would mean there is US and foreign market allocations are quite different, with the US at 70% stock and 30% bond, while foreign developed is 44% stock and...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 9:14 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Global Portfolio
Replies: 13
Views: 1341

Re: Purchasing foreign currency for vacations (present/futur

bpp wrote:Hedge by buying some IGOV?


That or buy Vanguard Total International Bond Index.

Buying foreign currency now would be similar to moving some assets from US bonds to foreign bonds now and then switching back after (or during) the trip(s).
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 8:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Purchasing foreign currency for vacations (present/future)
Replies: 21
Views: 1778

Re: Social Security election change? Q for my 71 yr Mom

Or is it moot, since I googled maximum SS and it appears to be around $2,600, so even if Dad got Max, then hers is over half that amount already? I can ask my dad how much his SS is, and he'd probably tell me, but don't even want to start the process if it's not possible to change. Maximum PIA appe...
by jeffyscott
Sun Jan 04, 2015 8:26 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security election change? Q for my 71 yr Mom
Replies: 21
Views: 2266

Re: Repair or Replace Car?

I had the 2002 car appraised at Carmax about 6 weeks ago and it was around $1,500. Today we got a repair bill for $850. So is it still worth $1500 as is, or is it now worth more like $650? If the need for the repair reduces the value, you have essentially already paid at least part of this repair b...
by jeffyscott
Sat Jan 03, 2015 12:59 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair or Replace Car?
Replies: 13
Views: 1703

Re: Rollover a 457 to a 457 or IRA (or not at all)?

A possible reason to keep the old 457... My understanding is you can withdraw from a 457 at any age, if you no longer work for that employer. So this may mean that if you leave the old 457 as is, you could withdraw from it today without penalty. Of course, you should check on this as I am only going...
by jeffyscott
Sat Jan 03, 2015 12:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rollover a 457 to a 457 or IRA (or not at all)?
Replies: 10
Views: 796

Re: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!

What precision means in this case it is not that straightforward. IDK, I think it is. As you point out, what matters for the numerator is "what Vanguard's accountants charge for expenses" because that is what is taken from the investors. That figure is going to be precise amount $X. The n...
by jeffyscott
Sat Jan 03, 2015 12:04 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!
Replies: 26
Views: 2886

Re: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!

They are reporting the figures incorrectly. For example from this: The funds expenses are paid as they're accrued, totaled up at the end of the year, and listed as a dollar figure in the funds annual report. For example: The Vanguard Total Stock Market Fund Annual Report for the period ending 12/31/...
by jeffyscott
Sat Jan 03, 2015 10:43 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!
Replies: 26
Views: 2886

Re: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!

I would think that some expenses are a set percent of assets, such as a management fee, these would be a precise percentage and presumably have, at most, 2 decimal places. Other expenses of running the fund are whatever they happen to be and would not be expected to be exactly a two decimal place pe...
by jeffyscott
Fri Jan 02, 2015 5:40 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard states ERs to 3 places!
Replies: 26
Views: 2886

Re: Is a bond's SEC yield a good predictor of it's returns?

SEC yield is in the ballpark of average YTM (will be slightly different due to the 30-day averaging for SEC yield; on 11/30/2014 average YTM for Vanguard Total Bond Index Fund, VBMFX, was 2.1% and SEC yield was 2.06%). I think SEC yield is after fund expenses and YTM is not. That is not much of a f...
by jeffyscott
Fri Jan 02, 2015 5:19 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is a bond's SEC yield a good predictor of it's returns?
Replies: 8
Views: 900

Re: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?

2 pieces: Paul Krugman blog on Zoneland and Flatland (the latter is places like Texas, where the urban area grows without real limit, and the real price of housing doesn't move much; the former is Boston-NYC-SF-LA ie where zoning constrains growth (upward or outward) and demand pretty consistently ...
by jeffyscott
Thu Jan 01, 2015 10:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?
Replies: 46
Views: 4833

Re: Why donate to charity?

I'm surprised at all the odd (to me) ways people think about this. If I donate a dollar, It means I get $0, the IRS gets $0, and the charity gets $1. If I do not donate then I pay the IRS $0.33 and keep $0.67. So it's: donate the $1 Me: $0 IRS: $0 Charity: $1 do not donate the $1 Me: $0.67 IRS: $0.3...
by jeffyscott
Thu Jan 01, 2015 9:24 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why donate to charity?
Replies: 61
Views: 4127

Re: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?

Others I speak to in Seattle about housing seem to think that the prices can only continue to go up because of the growth, jobs, etc but based on my gut feeling I don't see how it can continue. As the article implies, it's all about the interest rates. Since most buyers are far more concerned with ...
by jeffyscott
Thu Jan 01, 2015 8:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Home Price-to-Income ratios - unhealthy?
Replies: 46
Views: 4833

Re: Poll: Total cost of 2-yr cell phone ownership?

That was the easiest poll to answer ever. The <$1000 cost is so far above what we spend on cell phones, there was no effort needed to determine the category.

Of course, we are oddballs in that our phones are used for making and receiving cellular calls and texts.
by jeffyscott
Wed Dec 31, 2014 12:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Poll: Total cost of 2-yr cell phone ownership?
Replies: 54
Views: 3166

Re: Snow blower maintenance and repair

Since then never drain the gas and have had no problems with the engine, I just replace or clean the spark plug and change the oil. This snow blower is now 18 years old. I also always have used the normal ethanol gas. Forgot to mention had same experience with lawn mower. Never drained (ethanol) ga...
by jeffyscott
Mon Dec 29, 2014 5:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snow blower maintenance and repair
Replies: 26
Views: 2376

Re: Home Ownership in Retirement

celia wrote:above +1
Also look at utility costs. If the winters are severe, the heating costs could rise substantially. If the summers are dry (ie, dought), your water bill could be higher than average.


Home and auto insurance would be another potential cost difference to look at.
by jeffyscott
Mon Dec 29, 2014 5:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Ownership in Retirement
Replies: 18
Views: 3113

Re: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash

That approach fails to differentiate a 200K home from a 2 million home. Yes, because it is impossible for one to realize that if they sold the $2 million home and bought a $200,000 one that they would have $800,000 to invest and/or spend on other things. You cant analyze your "need" for i...
by jeffyscott
Mon Dec 29, 2014 4:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash flow
Replies: 83
Views: 7073

Re: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?

The reason that store bought chicken nuggets don't taste as good as fast food chain chicken nuggets is because the fast food ones have an absolutely incredible amount of fat and salt in them. Comparison of McNuggets to Perdue shows them to be about the same, based on what I see online. 56% of calor...
by jeffyscott
Sun Dec 28, 2014 10:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?
Replies: 23
Views: 1979

Re: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?

Is it possible to buy ready-made, frozen, eat-at-home chicken nuggets that are comparable to fast-food-chain chicken nuggets? If not, does anyone have a theory as to why not? Do you have a deep fryer at home? Do you at least fry the home nuggets in oil or do you put them in the oven and bake them? ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?
Replies: 23
Views: 1979

Re: new tablet/smart phone question

http://www.amazon.com/BlackBerry-Classic-Smartphone-Factory-Unlocked/dp/B00OYZZ3VS/ref=cm_cr_pr_product_top You do realize that has just a 3.5 inch screen? They have one called "Passport" that has a 4.5 inch screen, included in reviews here: http://www.cnet.com/news/great-qwerty-smartphon...
by jeffyscott
Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:37 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: new tablet/smart phone question
Replies: 23
Views: 2381

Re: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash

Why don't you explain how, in your view, one can make better portfolio allocation decisions after converting everything to its present value? Your portfolio is one part of your overall assets. it can range from 0% to 100% Your overall assets have to match your overall risk tolerance. If your portfo...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash flow
Replies: 83
Views: 7073

Re: Parent liability for young adult child

He's named on your umbrella policy and he's keeping his cars in your driveway. Both of those look like obvious red flags to any layman. What if he has a potential customer (or anyone else for that matter) come over to look at a car on your property? They wouldn't even have to touch the car in order...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:02 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Parent liability for young adult child
Replies: 31
Views: 3029

Re: Parent liability for young adult child

But if it's not really a business? Let's say I sell a piece of my valuable IKEA furniture on Craigslist and someone comes over to my house to pick up their purchase and falls down my stairs. Is that not a comparable situation? Not comparable as the two kids have bought and sold a dozen cars in a fe...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 6:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Parent liability for young adult child
Replies: 31
Views: 3029

Re: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash

What do you do with ANY net worth number? for our purposes you use it to determine your portfolio asset allocation. If I have a million dollar pension and a half million dollar SS and your have neither, and we are both 63 and retired we do not have the same inputs to our portfolio asset allocation....
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 5:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash flow
Replies: 83
Views: 7073

Re: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash

Let's say I know I am going to get $20,000 per year from SS and that I want to have $50,000 per year to live on in retirement (in my debt-free home). If look at things as they actually are, I can then estimate that I will need about $750,000-$1 million in stocks, bonds, cash to have a good chance o...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 12:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash flow
Replies: 83
Views: 7073

Re: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash

What do you do with ANY net worth number? for our purposes you use it to determine your portfolio asset allocation. If I have a million dollar pension and a half million dollar SS and your have neither, and we are both 63 and retired we do not have the same inputs to our portfolio asset allocation....
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 12:24 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Square pegs won't go in round holes! Net Worth and Cash flow
Replies: 83
Views: 7073

Re: I'll take double!

In that period, We personally have gone from 80% to 50% equities, taking money off the table. We've gone from about 50% to about 35% in that time, but there is more money on the stock table anyway. A smaller percentage of a much larger number ends up being bigger than the larger percentage of the s...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 12:05 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'll take double!
Replies: 9
Views: 1960

Re: Snow blower maintenance and repair

Once you get it fixed, at the end of the season, run the engine until it runs out of gas. Don't save gas in the can for another season. I did this initially with my toro snowblower. Early on, like the second or third year, it required carb to be cleaned, I was told by the dealer/repair shop to leav...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:54 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snow blower maintenance and repair
Replies: 26
Views: 2376

Re: Parent liability for young adult child

As others have mentioned, he probably required to be licensed by DMV as a dealer. In my state, if you sell over 5 vehicles in a year you are a dealer and required to be licensed.

One thing that comes to mind is he may be running an unlicensed dealership on your property.
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Parent liability for young adult child
Replies: 31
Views: 3029

Re: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?

For me it would be more about texture. McNuggets are made with a pumpable chicken slurry which results in that gross, spongy texture. In contrast, Culvers chicken fingers are actual strips of solid chicken meat. So to me it is about finding ones that are made from actual chunks of chicken meat, rath...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 11:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Goodish frozen supermarket chicken nuggets?
Replies: 23
Views: 1979

Re: Home Ownership in Retirement

Nearly every retirement guide I read, warns against property tax creep - but in this situation, since I'll be paying cash - doesn't it make sense that a lower purchase price is more important than property taxes? It all depends on the trade off. For example, all else being equal, I wouldn't pay $10...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 10:53 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Ownership in Retirement
Replies: 18
Views: 3113

Re: Increasing expenditure

We have been the same. We were married as students and had a kid while still at college. When we had just my income, we lived on that without really saving anything. We had a couple more kids and my wife did not start working until the kids were in school and that is when we started saving, by not r...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 10:10 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Increasing expenditure
Replies: 10
Views: 998

Re: Financial helps for a 29 yr old

She should go to healthcare.gov and sign up for an insurance plan. For coverage starting in 2015, the Open Enrollment Period is November 15, 2014–February 15, 2015. If you don’t have coverage in 2015, you’ll pay the higher of these two amounts: 2% of your yearly household income. (Only the amount of...
by jeffyscott
Sat Dec 27, 2014 9:51 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financial helps for a 29 yr old
Replies: 3
Views: 845
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