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Android smartphone with physical keyboard

I have been using Android since the first T-Mobile G1 phone in 2008, which had a physical keyboard. My next phone was the G2 in 2010, which had the same. And lastly, in September 2012, I upgraded to the Samsung Galaxy S Relay 4G , which also had a physical keyboard. My phone is on its last leg due t...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 22, 2014 2:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Android smartphone with physical keyboard
Replies: 1
Views: 20

Re: US car rental insurance for foreign tourist ?

Use her American Express credit card that gives her complimentary auto insurance? Basically, she should work on this from her end. The credit card situation is not the same in France, I don't think she has any Amex. I suppose I could put her rental car on my Amex, but I'm not sure if they would cov...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:27 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: US car rental insurance for foreign tourist ?
Replies: 6
Views: 511

US car rental insurance for foreign tourist ?

I have some family coming over from France next month. My aunt says she will rent a car and she will be the sole driver. She plans on getting the rental after she arrives. She has an international driver's license. I don't think her French auto auto insurance will be good here. What does she need to...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 19, 2014 10:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: US car rental insurance for foreign tourist ?
Replies: 6
Views: 511

Re: Should I use margin to buy a balanced fund?

market timer, Is it fair to say that he (Market Timer) was day trading? Your approach is much more likely to be successful; however, keep in mind the behavioral risks that can be brought on from market volatility. Your timing is similar to mine in summer 2007, at an all-time stock market high. Also,...
by madbrain
Fri Jul 18, 2014 11:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Should I use margin to buy a balanced fund?
Replies: 89
Views: 4549

Re: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move

If you have similarly good fund choices in the new 401k, then my vote is 2 - roll over to the new employer 401k. It will simplify things to have fewer accounts, as long as you keep access to the institutional shares. I did list them near the bottom. They aren't quite as good ERs as the Vanguard ins...
by madbrain
Thu Jul 17, 2014 8:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move
Replies: 28
Views: 2015

Re: Why does anyone use American Express?

If you pay with the Fidelity AMEX how do you get the 2% back for Costco for a total of 4%? I get 2% cashback on my Fidelity Amex, paid the next month in my Fidelity Cash account if there is at least $25 reward. And 2% from Costco as a rebate check annually for being an Executive member. I thought y...
by madbrain
Thu Jul 17, 2014 8:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why does anyone use American Express?
Replies: 146
Views: 21951

Re: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move

Questions: 1. Roll over to IRA? May be complicated because I will need to talk to Vanguard about splitting up the Roth and Pre-Tax assets. I am sure they've done this before. 2. Roll over to my current employer? 3. Stay with current employer's system with the old funds? Without seeing the list of f...
by madbrain
Thu Jul 17, 2014 8:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can't decide to keep 401k with previous employer or move
Replies: 28
Views: 2015

Re: Portfolio advice for 401K with no match & high ER

2. I was considering upping my 401K contributions to about $14,400/yr. When I started looking at the actual funds, I was pretty shocked by the expense ratios. (Yes I should have noticed sooner) Since there is no company match, should I not bother? Further, should I actually reduce or stop contribut...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 10:26 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice for 401K with no match & high ER
Replies: 15
Views: 1270

Re: Using Emergency Fund to Pay off Auto Loan

I keep beating this question to death in my head so looking to see what bogleheads would recommend. Here is the situation: Auto loan that is ~$8,000 @ 1.99% that only has 22 payments left of ~$370. This loan is currently costing you only about $13 per month of interest, and that will decline for ea...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using Emergency Fund to Pay off Auto Loan
Replies: 20
Views: 1550

Re: Why does anyone use American Express?

We shop at Costco. I think the $50 annual gets me the Costco membership for free, and I get 5% back on purchases there. We spend $5K+ there annually, so it seems like a no-brainer. Which card gives you 5% back at Costco ? I know there are some cards that offer this kind of rewards on groceries, but...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 9:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why does anyone use American Express?
Replies: 146
Views: 21951

Re: Insurance premiums for renewals versus current

My home insurance went up from $2363 to $2410 for $1.7M of coverage, only about 1% higher. This is based on the insurance company estimating the rebuilding cost at about 1% more than before. Our auto policy went down from $2005 to $1852 for 12 months and 2 recent hybrid / EV cars (2012 Leaf, 2011 Pr...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance premiums for renewals versus current
Replies: 11
Views: 1045

Re: Persistence of SV performance

steve keeps repeating the same [thing], and making the same type mistake that Bogle made If he was correct then DFA would not produce the results it did and others could replicate---but DFA does match the performance of the benchmarks used to define value, Vanguard does not---Vanguard is benchmarki...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 8:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Persistence of SV performance
Replies: 71
Views: 3773

Re: But why not 100% stock index fund?

OP: I suggest you check out actual data from 17 years of 401k investing starting in 1996 that I posted last year at : http://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=125568#p1840747 I have compared my actual result with 100% S&P 500, 100% Total Bond Market, and with "age in bonds&qu...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:37 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: But why not 100% stock index fund?
Replies: 76
Views: 6897

Re: But why not 100% stock index fund?

Raymond wrote:
Dutch wrote:Ok I'm calling the top of the market


Waiting for confirmation - when the kid at the Subway sandwich shop starts giving me stock tips, I'll know :P


The Subway closest to my house went out of business recently, so I will hold off a little bit longer on that "market top" call.
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:12 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: But why not 100% stock index fund?
Replies: 76
Views: 6897

Re: Who else hates choosing a car?

When it comes to the car you drive, where do you all draw the line in the battle between enjoying your car, and the car that makes the most financial sense? Obviously there are a ton of factors, including, but not limited to: - Fuel Efficiency - Safety - What your commute looks like - How much spac...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 15, 2014 6:08 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who else hates choosing a car?
Replies: 75
Views: 6241

Re: Ditch car and commute to work in 250cc scooter in Raleig

But then again you can't put DEATH on a spreadsheet so perhaps you can just ignore it. Sure you can - add the cost for additional life insurance to offset the risk to your family. :idea: Life Insurance and death are not the same thing to the person who dies. :idea: Of course, I'm aware of that. :an...
by madbrain
Mon Jul 14, 2014 10:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ditch car and commute to work in 250cc scooter in Raleigh?
Replies: 68
Views: 3940

Re: Why does anyone use American Express?

We shop at Costco. I think the $50 annual gets me the Costco membership for free, and I get 5% back on purchases there. We spend $5K+ there annually, so it seems like a no-brainer. Which card gives you 5% back at Costco ? I know there are some cards that offer this kind of rewards on groceries, but...
by madbrain
Mon Jul 14, 2014 10:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why does anyone use American Express?
Replies: 146
Views: 21951

Re: Footwear in Vietnam

I'm sorry, but this is such a straight line. Vietnam Jungle Boot : Panama sole and heel vulcanized to leather upper. Steel shank in-sole for support with leather inner sole. Nylon webbing on sides and collar. http://www.armynavyshop.com/mm5/graphics/00000002/fxoTREK.jpg.jpg The steel shank is good ...
by madbrain
Mon Jul 14, 2014 10:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Footwear in Vietnam
Replies: 18
Views: 1393

Re: Ditch car and commute to work in 250cc scooter in Raleig

Professor Emeritus wrote:But then again you can't put DEATH on a spreadsheet so perhaps you can just ignore it.


Sure you can - add the cost for additional life insurance to offset the risk to your family.
by madbrain
Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:20 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ditch car and commute to work in 250cc scooter in Raleigh?
Replies: 68
Views: 3940

Re: Car insurance... do you include car rental?

The car rental coverage in my insurance is $142 a year ($50/day for 30 days) for the two cars my wife and I own. I decided long ago (before I started to seriously build an emergency fund) it was worth it for a couple of reasons: Do you really need $50/day for rental coverage ? Usually, the insuranc...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 12, 2014 9:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car insurance... do you include car rental?
Replies: 33
Views: 2106

Re: Affordable health insurance

If the employer rates increase, COBRA participants rates increase as well. Perhaps one's employer rates didn't increase when they became ACA compliant, but most I have seen had substantial increases. For the most part I have been seeing substantial increases in health insurance premiums every year ...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 12, 2014 8:23 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Affordable health insurance
Replies: 33
Views: 2895

Re: True or False? Your risk tolerance only increases with t

over the long term. If you are in your 20s with $100,000 invested, and have been consistently doing so for 20 years... I don't see how anyone could somehow be "afraid" of the market in their 40s/50s and scale down to $10,000. Going with that theory...young investors should invest asap so ...
by madbrain
Fri Jul 11, 2014 9:58 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: True or False? Your risk tolerance only increases with time
Replies: 30
Views: 2321

Re: Light Bulb Durability

I have had CFLs last between 2 to 8 years, based on over 300 of them over more than 15 years . My LEDs are still too new to give a durability rating.
by madbrain
Thu Jul 10, 2014 7:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Light Bulb Durability
Replies: 59
Views: 4399

Re: Car did not start: To dispose? How?

BenBritt wrote:Consider a Chevy Cobalt. They are reasonably priced.


There may be a reason for that. If buying a used one, make sure to get the ignition switch fix for the recall done.
by madbrain
Thu Jul 10, 2014 3:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car did not start: To dispose? How?
Replies: 70
Views: 5445

Re: Rick Ferri's Emergency Fund

Longtimelurker wrote:- $7k in Credit Card line of credit


I wouldn't count on those as an emergency fund. The lenders can cut your credit line whenever they feel like it, and it can be the least opportune time, like during the financial crisis.
by madbrain
Wed Jul 09, 2014 3:16 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Rick Ferri's Emergency Fund
Replies: 28
Views: 6243

Re: Time to buy a tv or wait 2 years?

which kind of explains why computer monitors haven't increased much in resolution in the last 20 years. How I wish that was true ! In 1997, I had a 21" CRT with 1600x1200 resolution, ie. about 2 million pixels. It could even be pushed to 2048x1536 or 3 million pixels, but there was too much gh...
by madbrain
Wed Jul 09, 2014 12:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time to buy a tv or wait 2 years?
Replies: 66
Views: 5582

Re: Time to buy a tv or wait 2 years?

http://carltonbale.com/1080p-does-matter/ http://s3.carltonbale.com/resolution_chart.png Nice graph, but I don't think it's all that accurate. I sit about 25ft from my 106" projection screen and I can very easily tell the difference between 480p and 1080p. And anything streamed is so bad as to...
by madbrain
Wed Jul 09, 2014 12:38 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time to buy a tv or wait 2 years?
Replies: 66
Views: 5582

Re: How old is your OLDEST motor vehicle?

I don't like the poll options. 1990 or newer is not "brand new". Brand new today would be year model 2015 with a 2014 production date.
by madbrain
Wed Jul 09, 2014 12:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How old is your OLDEST motor vehicle?
Replies: 15
Views: 1273

Re: Valuing a personal residence for net worth purposes

Zillow - 10%. Same here. Zillow minus 10%. For me, anyway, it's not as important what my net worth is as much as whether it's higher or lower than it was . The relative change is what I'm looking at more than the absolute value. So if the home value that I use isn't quite perfect, at least it's imp...
by madbrain
Tue Jul 08, 2014 3:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Valuing a personal residence for net worth purposes
Replies: 73
Views: 3684

Re: Homeowner responsibility for water service line

I also live in San Jose and have received this letter many times. I have shredded it just as many times. That said, I did have a sewer line break in my 2nd year of living in our current house. It was due to tree roots. It required excavation and cost $4,000 . I had one bid at $10,000 . It's possible...
by madbrain
Mon Jul 07, 2014 12:50 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowner responsibility for water service line
Replies: 45
Views: 2012

Re: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k

I may end up having to take RMDs from it at 39.6% tax rate So you're anticipating $500,000 RMD's even after you've used your early retirement years to convert to Roth at a very low tax rate? I hadn't realized RMD's were so high. I have over $1M in my 401k so I guess I'm screwed too. To be fair, at ...
by madbrain
Sun Jul 06, 2014 8:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k
Replies: 40
Views: 4054

Re: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k

Sorry for the confusion. The $30k in annual expenses does not include taxes. I was not including healthcare in that either. I chose a high deductible plan from work. The $30k is for rent, food, gas, etc. OK. That explains it. But I thought it was strange for you to not count taxes as part of your e...
by madbrain
Sun Jul 06, 2014 8:27 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k
Replies: 40
Views: 4054

Re: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k

I have averaged around 20% annually over the last 15 years. I just don't believe this. Assuming you've picked US stocks, the SP 500 has grown about 4.34 percent annualized in the last 15 years. The 10 yr return was 7.94 percent. Looking at the small cap index fund, the respective numbers were 10 an...
by madbrain
Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k
Replies: 40
Views: 4054

Re: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k

- $100,000 gross annual income, $30,000 annual expenses (including rent) I don't believe that. With $100k of gross annual income in California and max 401k contributions, you would likely have about $20k of payroll & income taxes. Assuming the $100k is W2 income . SS + medicare = $7200 CA SDI =...
by madbrain
Sun Jul 06, 2014 3:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I think I might have too much saved in a 401k
Replies: 40
Views: 4054

Re: Tiny House Movement

Since there is little storage space, it has forced me to think hard about what possessions are truly important to me In my opinion this is the best thing about living in a small space. Possibly, but some truly important possessions can be large, like say, my 9'2" grand piano and my 8' harpsich...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 05, 2014 9:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tiny House Movement
Replies: 139
Views: 15668

Re: Want international exposure? You already have it.

StarbuxInvestor wrote:My understanding is you buy international indexes for currency reasons not for international divesification and exposure.


That's certainly not the reason I buy them :).
by madbrain
Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:48 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Want international exposure? You already have it.
Replies: 65
Views: 6278

Re: Valuing a personal residence for net worth purposes

For net worth purposes I value our home at the purchase price. From everything I know it has most definitely appreciated but I don't want to count on that because there are lots of costs associated with selling a house. How do other people valuae their home for net worth purposes? I look at the val...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:43 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Valuing a personal residence for net worth purposes
Replies: 73
Views: 3684

Re: Tiny House Movement

They decided to do this because they were sick of struggling financially and by leaving their 2,200 square foot home and living in their new tiny home they are now living completely mortgage and debt free and doing what they love. Well, what is it that they love doing so much ? Surely it doesn't in...
by madbrain
Sat Jul 05, 2014 11:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tiny House Movement
Replies: 139
Views: 15668

Re: Do you tell your kids how much you make?

I have never told my cats how much I made.

That would just encourage them to chew even more USB and audio cables.
by madbrain
Fri Jul 04, 2014 5:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you tell your kids how much you make?
Replies: 58
Views: 5749

Re: Can no longer purchase Admiral Shares at Schwab

Maybe they feel if they had more of your business directly at Vanguard they would make more profit and maintain or lower costs.. Seems like it would raise costs. Servicing accounts costs money. Are you saying costs would be higher for Vanguard if the funds were held indirectly at Schwab as opposed ...
by madbrain
Fri Jul 04, 2014 4:50 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can no longer purchase Admiral Shares at Schwab
Replies: 27
Views: 2295

Re: Having Doubts About My 60/40 Allocation

letsgobobby wrote:Going 90/10 from 60/40 after a 200% increase in stocks sounds like a sucker's bet to me.


+1
by madbrain
Fri Jul 04, 2014 4:20 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Having Doubts About My 60/40 Allocation
Replies: 43
Views: 3067

Re: Having Doubts About My 60/40 Allocation

So I am wondering, is it a good idea to be almost exclusively in stocks for the time being and staying away from bond funds for now? No, it isn't. Also, I like to horde cash, although I don’t like the idea of my dollar losing its value over time. Well, there is a contradiction... If you invest 90% ...
by madbrain
Fri Jul 04, 2014 4:20 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Having Doubts About My 60/40 Allocation
Replies: 43
Views: 3067

Re: Retirees - What % of your income is for basic essentials

I'm not retired, but my reaction to your poll was: The true bare essentials in retirement are public knowledge: you can rent a room for $300, and can enjoy a basic healthy diet for $10 per day, etc. I'd stick everything else in the same "luxury" bucket, whether you spend an additional $1,...
by madbrain
Fri Jul 04, 2014 12:30 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirees - What % of your income is for basic essentials
Replies: 25
Views: 2180

Re: Do you set financial goals annually?

I set financial goals each year for the following categories. I was wondering what goals other people might set. Tax Advantaged Account Balance Taxable Account Balance I don't set any annual account balance goals, because most of that is outside my control. The balance is driven primarily by invest...
by madbrain
Thu Jul 03, 2014 11:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you set financial goals annually?
Replies: 44
Views: 2373

Re: Are You Re-Balancing?

Now, I'm within less than 2% of where I want to be for all asset classes, not enough to make any move. The only rebalancing I have done was to redirect new 401k contributions to Stable value for the last 9 months, and that has been enough to keep the portfolio in check . Current AA is 31.9% internat...
by madbrain
Thu Jul 03, 2014 10:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: POLL: Are You Re-Balancing?
Replies: 70
Views: 4939

Re: How are you doing through the first half of 2014?

Investment returns per Quicken are 5.2% YTD, which excludes contributions.

Net worth is up 5.5% YTD due to savings & debt payments.
by madbrain
Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:42 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How are you doing through the first half of 2014?
Replies: 91
Views: 9294

Re: Should I go back?

<snip> There's a reason you left, remember it :beer When I was a hiring manager, I would not "take back" a person that left the company, for any reason. It wasn't a spite move, but in the back of my mind I always remembered that the person left due to whatever reason I worked for one comp...
by madbrain
Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:40 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I go back?
Replies: 32
Views: 3145

Re: The Truth Hurts: CNBC

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:- This must be the new 1 percent! Who needs $280K annually to be able to retire today?


Well, it all depends on what your "needs" are :-).
by madbrain
Wed Jul 02, 2014 7:25 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Truth Hurts: CNBC
Replies: 17
Views: 3492

Re: The Millionaire Next Door: Are You One?

Definitely not, anyone can tell from my home that I'm a millionaire.
by madbrain
Wed Jul 02, 2014 6:54 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Millionaire Next Door: Are You One?
Replies: 187
Views: 22042
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