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by kenschmidt
Sat May 16, 2015 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Switching Disability Insurance - From Guardian to Principal for Family Medicine
Replies: 6
Views: 557

Re: Switching Disability Insurance - From Guardian to Principal for Family Medicine

Mental health and nervous disorders are a leading cause, if not THE leading cause, of disability claims for physicians, so that limitation is something to consider.
by kenschmidt
Fri May 15, 2015 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: passport card faster than passport?
Replies: 32
Views: 1967

Re: passport card faster than passport?

We are traveling to Canada in June; we received our passport cards today - 4 weeks turnaround time for us. Applications were submitted Friday, April 17 near end of day. The post office told us they were running about three weeks turnaround but it took four weeks in our case.
by kenschmidt
Thu May 14, 2015 11:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employer Contribution 60%?
Replies: 29
Views: 1165

Re: Employer Contribution 60%?

Also has anyone heard of employer contributions without employee contributions? Yes. Those could be a profit sharing plan or an employer funded defined contribution plan. At my company, I am in a pension plan but new employees are entered into a defined contribution plan where the company contribut...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 8:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Should We Teach Teenagers to Trade?"
Replies: 30
Views: 2123

Re: "Should We Teach Teenagers to Trade?"

My youngest son is taking a Personal Finance class in high school and they are doing a similar "contest". It is not sponsored by anyone and there are no prizes (he is getting college credit for the course though!). I think it has been a net positive as it prompted a conversation similar to...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 8:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Active vs. Passive: Real life comparison
Replies: 9
Views: 1031

Re: Active vs. Passive: Real life comparison

ZZZ Fund Company wouldn't happen to be T. Rowe Price, would it? Because if so, T. Rowe Price, while active, is still pretty low cost and low turnover. And that's the big thing when it comes to performance index vs. active. So I would expect those funds to do well (I own a couple in my 401k actually)...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 11:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYT: 2% rebate credit cards; will they last?
Replies: 30
Views: 3270

Re: NYT: 2% rebate credit cards; will they last?

The fact that credit car company's charge an interchange fee and what that fee is, is entirely irrelevant to the consumer decision to use a cc or which one. I'm not 'paying for it either way'. I'm paying 1-2 or whatever % less by using the card compared to not using the card, assuming I can't perso...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard playsets - worth it?
Replies: 22
Views: 2550

Re: Backyard playsets - worth it?

My two sons have since moved on to cars, but we got a ton of use out of ours. I would look for something with at least two swings, a sandbox, slide and clubhouse above the sandbox. All of these got use over the years. I went the metal and plastic route since my backyard is pretty secluded and appear...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling condo should I replace carpeting?
Replies: 15
Views: 1563

Re: Selling condo should I replace carpeting?

My mother and father in law just sold a condo and their realtor recommended replacing the carpet. I would probably do that although the hardwood floor idea isn't bad either. Although people may want to pick their own color, many just want a move in ready unit and I think old carpet will negatively a...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 09, 2015 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYT: 2% rebate credit cards; will they last?
Replies: 30
Views: 3270

Re: NYT: 2% rebate credit cards; will they last?

It would probably be better if they actually lowered the merchant interchange fees to what they actually cost instead of this rebate game where it is cheaper for the consumer to use a card than any other form of payment (after rebate of course). It's not cheaper to the merchant of course so the cons...
by kenschmidt
Wed May 06, 2015 3:40 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: UI issues (especially iPad)? please evaluate alternate styles
Replies: 41
Views: 2384

Re: UI issues (especially iPad)? please evaluate alternate styles

The current style choice works well for me on my computer, my iPad (in both portrait and landscape modes) and on my Android Note 4 phone. It's what I used before, so I hope it doesn't change as the default. Adding one or more additional options is fine, but please don't take this one away as the de...
by kenschmidt
Wed May 06, 2015 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?
Replies: 123
Views: 8211

Re: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?

I would be willing to bet a large sum of money you'd have gotten that same price with Truecar and that the salesmen were just shuffling incentives behind the scenes to make it look like they were coming in under Truecar. A VERY large sum of money. Like I said, Truecar is just the MAX you will pay w...
by kenschmidt
Tue May 05, 2015 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?
Replies: 123
Views: 8211

Re: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?

You haven't completed the process either if you haven't actually gone to the dealer to see if they will honor their quote. Too many stories that you can find with a search about folks who did that and got the old bait and switch. The dealer quote means nothing unless it is *guaranteed. No, I have. ...
by kenschmidt
Sun May 03, 2015 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?
Replies: 123
Views: 8211

Re: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?

In my case, sticker was $32995, negotiated price was $28,106.

All price quotes, including the TrueCar price, were quoted price + $250 deal prep (standard per Ohio law) + tax, title and registration.
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?
Replies: 123
Views: 8211

Re: Truecar -- isn't this just a car buying scam?

In my one experience with TrueCar, I started with them to purchase a 2014 Honda Odyssey EX. The TrueCar price quoted was $3500 off sticker which I thought was pretty good. I received an email from one dealership immediately and went in the next day for a test drive. After the test drive, as we were ...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 12:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: MS X-Ray Gotcha! [Morningstar Instant X-Ray]
Replies: 9
Views: 794

Re: MS X-Ray Gotcha!

Interesting. I am a subscriber.

It looks like maybe M* has an out of date link to an old version of the x-Ray tool on their site? Well, regardless, glad it is resolved for you!
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 9:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: MS X-Ray Gotcha! [Morningstar Instant X-Ray]
Replies: 9
Views: 794

Re: MS X-Ray Gotcha!

I have seen this happen before, but that said, I own VGSLX (REIT Admiral) and it resolves correctly in X-Ray for me. Are you using the free instant x-ray or the portfolio x-ray included with M* membership? Maybe there is a difference there?
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with Property Taxes (2nd year New Build)
Replies: 18
Views: 944

Re: Help with Property Taxes (2nd year New Build)

A 10k difference in appraised value is insignificant in my opinion. Unless your appraisal is way off, I don't think you will get anywhere with an appeal.
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation Ideas out west
Replies: 42
Views: 3068

Re: Vacation Ideas out west

I would also just remember that everything is really far apart out west. Next state over has a whole different meaning in the eastern U.S. versus the western U.S. For example, OKC to Grand Canyon is 14 hours. Not a day trip...
by kenschmidt
Sat May 02, 2015 9:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do Active Bond Funds Beat Index Bond Funds?
Replies: 27
Views: 2049

Re: Do Active Bond Funds Beat Index Bond Funds?

I think that the "average" bond index fund tends to follow the Lehman Aggregate Bond Index, which contains a significant amount of treasury securities as well as excludes certain other types of bonds. The "average" active bond fund tends to hold more corporates, some junk, less t...
by kenschmidt
Fri May 01, 2015 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oh Hail! [fix hard to see hail damage to car?]
Replies: 24
Views: 1615

Re: Oh Hail!

Taylor and Ken - the State Farm estimator indicated that there would be more body work involved than just dent repair. Including pulling down the headliner to get to the roof dents. I would still take it to a dent repair specialist and ask them what they think they can do. Even if they get 80% of t...
by kenschmidt
Fri May 01, 2015 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oh Hail! [fix hard to see hail damage to car?]
Replies: 24
Views: 1615

Re: Oh Hail!

Take the check and then go find a paintless dent repair shop. Rather than fill, sand and re-paint or replace body parts and re-paint, these shops use a variety of techniques to smooth the damage. Significantly cheaper than traditional body work and great results can be achieved.
by kenschmidt
Tue Apr 28, 2015 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [get music from a smartphone to an old car stereo]
Replies: 14
Views: 1009

Re: [get music from a smartphone to an old car stereo]

If your car stereo has input for a CD changer, you can possibly buy an adapter that plugs into the CD changer (usually located on the back of the stereo) that will let you plug in your phone. I installed one of these in my 2005 Camry for hooking up my iPod. I purchased it from Crutchfield and instal...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 26, 2015 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience with transporting oversized art piece?
Replies: 7
Views: 545

Re: Experience with transporting oversized art piece?

I don't see any scenario where you can either carry these on or gate check them. They are over 5 feet long. Although it would make for a good post from the cabin crew over on the Flyertalk forum :D

I think your best best is to ship them via one of the major carriers - DHL, FedEx, UPS, etc.
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 26, 2015 8:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how to ask friend my money back?
Replies: 32
Views: 3399

Re: how to ask friend my money back?

You: Hey, remember that one time when I picked up food for, like, 20 people at your party?
Friend: Yeah
You: And remember paying me back?
Friend: Ummm...
You: So, ya know...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 26, 2015 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 25 year old baseball cards and coins worth anything?
Replies: 16
Views: 3204

Re: 25 year old baseball cards and coins worth anything?

The market was flooded with baseball cards starting in the 80's and so there is a good chance those are not worth much. I bought two giant boxes of baseball and football cards from the 80's and 90's from my neighbor at a garage sale; thousands of cards for $15 and he begged me to take them. On the o...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 26, 2015 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost to replace a side view mirror
Replies: 22
Views: 1401

Re: Cost to replace a side view mirror

If you want everything to match, Amazon sells DIY spray paint kits specific to your vehicle's color; primer, base coat and clear coat that provide a decent match to the original.
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 25, 2015 12:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: taking break from computer use - to avoid back pain
Replies: 17
Views: 624

Re: taking break from computer use - to avoid back pain

Have you looked into a FitBit?
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 24, 2015 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My PC is driving me nuts.
Replies: 28
Views: 2117

Re: My PC is driving me nuts.

Google Chrome browser plus Ad-Block Plus beats IE11 in my opinion.

MalwareBytes is also a good idea.
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is too long to stay the course?
Replies: 50
Views: 3777

Re: What is too long to stay the course?

The Captain of the Titanic stayed on course too long. :happy I will simply repeat that "stay the course" is a horse racing not a maritime term :happy https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=10&t=130693#p1924995 It's rumored Nelson said this at Trafalgar: "Stay the course...
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 24, 2015 8:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is too long to stay the course?
Replies: 50
Views: 3777

Re: What is too long to stay the course?

One, you have the luxury of hindsight to be able to pick out a particular point in time and say, look - zero return for the past 15 years. While that is true, it is also true that at the beginning of that period of time, you really would have had no idea how things would look 15 years later. Yes, yo...
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 24, 2015 7:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who still have Cable TV?
Replies: 63
Views: 3082

Re: Who still have Cable TV?

It seems like a must if you like to watch live sports. For example, the NCAA final four semi finals were only on TBS this year.
by kenschmidt
Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone Manually Manage Quicken?
Replies: 46
Views: 2258

Re: Anyone Manually Manage Quicken?

I manually enter checking account transactions twice a month when I pay bills, including entering credit card data broken out to expense categories. I reconcile this to my paper bank statement once a month using the reconcile feature in Quicken. I do download transactions from Vanguard and Capital O...
by kenschmidt
Thu Apr 23, 2015 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?
Replies: 28
Views: 1909

Re: Adequate alternatives to TurboTax?

great news, thanks. Looks like I should try TaxAct next go around. Can I import info to TaxAct from 2014 with files derived from TT? I realize this seems like an ignorant question, but I am ignorant in this regard. Thanks If you saved a copy of your return in PDF format from TurboTax, TaxAct is abl...
by kenschmidt
Wed Apr 22, 2015 7:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Nashville during the summer
Replies: 34
Views: 1598

Re: Visiting Nashville during the summer

I enjoyed the General Jackson riverboat cruise (historical in concept at least); while you are there, it is worth walking through the Gaylord Opryland Hotel as well.
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do parents still charge their kids room and board?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Re: Do parents still charge their kids room and board?

amitb00 wrote:If you charge, is it because you need the rent or you want kids to learn life lessons?


It would be to learn responsibility and ease them into the world of paying your way.
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do parents still charge their kids room and board?
Replies: 9
Views: 852

Do parents still charge their kids room and board?

A recent thread about kids returning from college and living at home made me think about this topic. When I graduated from college, I moved back home for a year. My mom said you are welcome to live here as long as you'd like, but asked me to pay "room and board" of $125. I was fine with th...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 7:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Single best piece of personal finance advice ever received?
Replies: 90
Views: 7094

Re: Single best piece of personal finance advice ever receiv

Save as much as you can as early as you can.
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 4:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Guaranteed Return Would You Require to Move All Assets
Replies: 54
Views: 3390

Re: What Guaranteed Return Would You Require to Move All Ass

5% Real as that would get me to my "best case" goal for retirement age.
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New York New York casino
Replies: 9
Views: 1478

Re: New York New York casino

Taking my son here before he leaves for another tour of duty overseas. Any good restaurants or ideas Etc? My wife and I are Harrah's regulars. So it's just me and my son. He wanted NYNY. How fast are the cocktail girls with the drinks when I'm gambling. Cause Harrah's and PH are really good, I usua...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to Help Parents - No EOI Life Insurance?
Replies: 22
Views: 1581

Re: Trying to Help Parents - No EOI Life Insurance?

I am sorry to hear of your situation. I do have a question - if your mom is terminally ill, what need does your father have for a term life insurance policy? Do you still have dependent brothers and sisters living at home for which your father needs to be able to provide for? If not, it seems like a...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

That is a pretty cool solution... As to sound quality, MP3 is not is good as CD. But, can you hear the difference? Based on some double blind studies I have seen, most people cannot reliably pick out the CD version vs. the MP3 version, although most people believe that they can going into the experi...
by kenschmidt
Sun Apr 19, 2015 10:26 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Coming to terms with low risk tolerance
Replies: 46
Views: 3573

Re: Coming to terms with low risk tolerance

In my opinion, what will hurt you the most is to set your allocation risk too high, and then panic and sell at the bottom. The investment world is littered with people who are overly aggressive when the market is hitting new highs, only to find out they can't stick to their plan when times get rocky...
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there a good IPOD alternative?
Replies: 27
Views: 1824

Re: Is there a good IPOD alternative?

Well I would like to use it for mostly audiobooks and music. Audiobooks come in different formats, I believe. You would be able to listen to audiobooks on an iPod touch, as well as music; you could likely even read eBooks on the touch. My library lets me use the Overdrive app as mentioned above to ...
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

Seems like it should work based on everything I have seen. It looks like WinAmp bounced around a bit - originally developed by Nullsoft, then sold to AOL and then some other company bought it - but it looks to be well supported now with a forum etc. at Winamp.com. Not sure what the llama reference i...
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Is The Worst Car You Have Ever Owned?
Replies: 39
Views: 1885

Re: What Is The Worst Car You Have Ever Owned?

I am lucky to be able to say I have never owned a really bad car looking back through the list of cars my wife and I have owned (some before we met): 72 Pontiac Catalina (bought $700, sold $400 - aka "The Chief" - my high school ride) 78 Chevy Impala (Dad's ex-company car - bought for $500...
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

Looks like maybe WinAmp is back...
by kenschmidt
Sat Apr 18, 2015 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

If you want to do something quick and easy, an Android phone or iPod would work. I plug my iPod into the RCA input jacks on the front of stereo receiver using a $10 cable I bought on Amazon. There's two options - either use the output from the headphone jack on the phone or for a little better qual...
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 17, 2015 2:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Collecting: A Hobby First, Investment Second
Replies: 33
Views: 2955

Re: Collecting: A Hobby First, Investment Second

As a coin collector, I enjoyed reading the article and agree - collect because you are interested in what you are collecting, not as an investment or with expectation that it will increase in value. Collectibles can come and go in popularity and most modern collectibles bought after they have become...
by kenschmidt
Fri Apr 17, 2015 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home stereo system conversion to digital
Replies: 27
Views: 1968

Re: Home stereo system conversion to digital

If you want to do something quick and easy, an Android phone or iPod would work. I plug my iPod into the RCA input jacks on the front of stereo receiver using a $10 cable I bought on Amazon. There's two options - either use the output from the headphone jack on the phone or for a little better quali...
by kenschmidt
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Proof vinyl has higher music ceiling than mp3?
Replies: 36
Views: 2595

Re: Proof vinyl has higher music ceiling than mp3?

I remember when CD's first came out - just the ability to play an album and not have to deal with the clicks, pops and other noise of vinyl seemed to trump any perceived differences in sound. Sure, your average Led Zeppelin LP had enough sound volume to drown it out, but put on a classical LP or eve...

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