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by playtothebeat
Fri May 22, 2015 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Might sell house to a friend. What is fair?
Replies: 30
Views: 1976

Re: Might sell house to a friend. What is fair?

Look at recent sales at Zillow/redfin in your area, and use that as a guide. I just had my house appraised, and that's basically what the appraiser did (they use more "professional" services, but all info on redfin/Zillow for recent transactions is driven by public records, same as the ser...
by playtothebeat
Sat May 16, 2015 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Non-recourse investment property loans
Replies: 2
Views: 218

Re: Non-recourse investment property loans

Yes, absolutely. If this is your first deal, probably not, however. I'm a commercial real estate lender. A lot of my customers borrow on non-recourse basis. These are some of the best developers/investors/operators in my region, and have been doing this for a long time. Non-recourse will have lower ...
by playtothebeat
Mon May 11, 2015 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: much ado about coasting (through life)
Replies: 149
Views: 16852

Re: much ado about coasting (through life)

Mill, you also posted a while ago about being put on an improvement plan (viewtopic.php?t=159408) and if I recall about ultimately leaving that job (I may be wrong on that). Did these events lead to your current state?
by playtothebeat
Mon May 11, 2015 6:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Share your networth progression
Replies: 201
Views: 37396

Re: Share your networth progression

My wife and I will likely have a negative networth for several more years as a result of ~$130k of law school debt which my wife still has, in addition to consumer debt (including unexpected medical and family-related expenses which could not be avoided) she had prior to meeting me and didn't realiz...
by playtothebeat
Wed May 06, 2015 5:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Debating mortgage refinance
Replies: 8
Views: 690

Re: Debating mortgage refinance

You should be able to get a 90% loan with no PMI. I'm going through that process with a refi now (I'm still bringing like $65k to close, since we're currently around 98% LTV). I had to do a 1st/2nd combo because of the overall loan amount. You probably won't have to, and will be able to just get one...
by playtothebeat
Sat May 02, 2015 12:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sources for Down Payment
Replies: 7
Views: 934

Re: Sources for Down Payment

Sell your house, then rent for a year. There are a lot of different areas of San Francisco and the Bay Area in general. You'll like some more than others. Figure out which area suits you, and only then make a decision to buy.
by playtothebeat
Fri May 01, 2015 5:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PMI- single premium at closing?
Replies: 5
Views: 361

Re: PMI- single premium at closing?

If it's $100/month, and up-front is $2800, seems like it's worth it if he plans to be in this house for several years. That's only 28 months worth of payments (you can just about ignore time value of money if the horizon is this short).
by playtothebeat
Wed Apr 22, 2015 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark
Replies: 46
Views: 3335

Re: $139 lease for EV, $0 down, 39 month lease Chevy Spark

Great deal. I'd jump on it if I hadn't traded in my dying Mazda 6 for a Chevy Volt in August. Can't say much about the car itself, since I haven't driven it. I love my Volt, however. I rarely use any gas - I have about 42-46 miles of battery range, which is enough for me to go to work and back a cou...
by playtothebeat
Mon Apr 20, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA contributions - employee vs employer
Replies: 3
Views: 276

HSA contributions - employee vs employer

Couple of questions regarding HSA contributions.. 1) My employer offers $800 towards the HSA contribution, subject to completion of certain items (annual check up, online tests/quizzes, etc). Let's say I chose not to do the required steps to qualify for this contribution (last year, for instance, I ...
by playtothebeat
Tue Apr 14, 2015 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 10% Down 30-Year Jumbo Mortgages?
Replies: 10
Views: 1842

Re: 10% Down 3-Year Jumbo Mortgages?

I think you mean 30 year, not 3 year (in your title). I've seen 90% jumbo loans advertised. I'm going through a refi right now (or, rather, trying), and going with an 80-10 split to get to 90% overall. The second loan will be a variable rate HELOC, however. This also allows me to avoid PMI since the...
by playtothebeat
Mon Apr 13, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Input wanted from BMW owners
Replies: 44
Views: 4490

Re: Input wanted from BMW owners

I have a 2010 528i. Absolutely love to drive it and hope to continue driving it for many years. We purchased the extended warranty (6 years, 100k miles) as well as the extended service plan for it. Cost us about $5k total I believe. I consider it worth it, for the reasons many people have described....
by playtothebeat
Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gaps in newly installed flooring?
Replies: 3
Views: 615

Re: Gaps in newly installed flooring?

I live in southern California (orange county).
Not sure if it was acclimated before installation, although according to the manufacturer, it doesn't require acclimation.
by playtothebeat
Tue Apr 07, 2015 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gaps in newly installed flooring?
Replies: 3
Views: 615

Gaps in newly installed flooring?

I had new flooring put in throughout the downstairs recently by a contractor after a flood resulted in us having to tear out the existing flooring. The first half went in about 3 months ago, with the remainder going in a couple of weeks ago (we stopped because we thought we might remodel the kitchen...
by playtothebeat
Mon Apr 06, 2015 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Planning for career change and big drop in income
Replies: 14
Views: 2277

Re: Planning for career change and big drop in income

One thing to consider is how your benefits may change if you go from private practice to public service. For instance, a friend of mine was a partner at a law firm, and was paying around $1800/month for medical/dental/vision for a family of 5 (no subsidies as an "owner"). He recently left ...
by playtothebeat
Fri Apr 03, 2015 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: lowest cost to own CA carpool eligible car for commuting
Replies: 9
Views: 1244

Re: lowest cost to own CA carpool eligible car for commuting

http://www.autoblog.com/2015/03/23/honda-fit-ev-lease-199-month/ Very interesting. I get 34-38 MPG with my current gas Fit, figure $175 in gas per month. For someone that doesn't already have a car the EV Fit lease seems like a decent deal, but for me it would be $200+electricity, probably not a go...
by playtothebeat
Wed Apr 01, 2015 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bamboo vs Engineered Hardwood floor?
Replies: 12
Views: 1595

Re: Bamboo vs Engineered Hardwood floor?

I am looking for flooring of "value" - durability, less prone to problems, luxurious, etc. We are in the midst of a high end remodel and for the kitchen and bathrooms we are considering luxury vinyl. It's available as faux stone/porcelain tile or a faux wood plank. This is not the cheap s...
by playtothebeat
Mon Mar 30, 2015 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15, 20, or 30?
Replies: 26
Views: 3166

Re: 15, 20, or 30?

15 - if you need to move from a 10 to a 30 to make it work, you're probably spending too much. Interestingly- or perhaps not- I could actually pay cash for the home. I just think inflation will eventually rise and this feels like "cheap money". This "cheap money" mentality coupl...
by playtothebeat
Thu Mar 26, 2015 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Merging HSA accounts?
Replies: 4
Views: 322

Merging HSA accounts?

My wife recently lost her job. She and I each had had a high deductible health plan through our respective employers, and each of us had an HSA account in our own names (mine through Wells Fargo; she has two separate accounts due to switching employers - one with Optum Bank and one some other bank, ...
by playtothebeat
Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental Property - help with financing options
Replies: 4
Views: 564

Re: Rental Property - help with financing options

Keep in mind that with the HELOC, the devil is in the details. It likely has a variable rate (probably adjustable monthly), tied to Prime so something like Prime +1.99%. Prime has been at 3.25% since 2009, but at some point it is likely to go up. Figure out if there is a limit on how much it can adj...
by playtothebeat
Wed Mar 04, 2015 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Higher Downpayment a Good Idea?
Replies: 33
Views: 3331

Re: Higher Downpayment a Good Idea?

After factoring in the cost of ownership, such as taxes, insurance, increased utilities and maintenance/repair costs, sales costs, mortgage costs, I think houses are usually an inefficient investment. Buy the house you want to live in. Second, third, and fourth this. In general, no need to look at ...
by playtothebeat
Sun Mar 01, 2015 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home refi - Roth IRA
Replies: 2
Views: 298

Home refi - Roth IRA

My wife and I are going to be trying to refi our house in the next few weeks, which will require a substantial paydown from us. I'm wondering if I can use any of my Roth IRA funds as a "first time home buyer" withdrawal. I'm not currently on title or the notes (wife purchased the house bef...
by playtothebeat
Tue Feb 24, 2015 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a home in SF Bay Area [Dumbo]
Replies: 79
Views: 4809

Re: Buying a home in SF Bay Area

Until you're absolutely certain that you want to stay there long term, do not buy a house. Out of all areas, SF is one of those that just screams "bubble" - if/when the tech sector slows down, you could expect a correction in the housing prices, which would make it difficult for you to sel...
by playtothebeat
Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bridge Loan vs mortage
Replies: 2
Views: 383

Re: Bridge Loan vs mortage

What are the terms of the bridge loan? Is this a 1 year interest only loan? be careful with locking yourself into something too short term - what if you don't/can't sell your current home or get lower proceeds than you're anticipating? Is that an issue for you or will still be able to afford the ret...
by playtothebeat
Wed Feb 18, 2015 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How best to use gifted 25k. . .
Replies: 25
Views: 2062

Re: How best to use gifted 25k. . .

I'd put some in the Roth, since you can withdraw the contributions later (hopefully there isn't a massive correction and you lose 50% over the next couple of years...), and the rest in a regular savings account. With a potential baby on the way, I can tell you that those little suckers can get expen...
by playtothebeat
Tue Feb 17, 2015 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Extended car warranty - worth it?
Replies: 30
Views: 2254

Re: Extended car warranty - worth it?

I purchased an extended warranty, as well as a service plan (for all the maintenance, etc) for our BMW. It was something like $5k out of pocket total - huge sum. Financially, it may not be the best use of the money; however, it bought me a piece of mind knowing that I did not have to worry about any...
by playtothebeat
Thu Feb 12, 2015 4:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House appraisal for a refi
Replies: 10
Views: 915

Re: House appraisal for a refi

I should have stated that we'll go with the appraiser ordered by a lender that we end up choosing, so my mistake for not stating that up front. Unfortunately, no equity in our house - at least very limited. We expect a pretty substantial paydown from our end at closing to meet a 90% CLTV requiremen...
by playtothebeat
Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House appraisal for a refi
Replies: 10
Views: 915

Re: House appraisal for a refi

I should have stated that we'll go with the appraiser ordered by a lender that we end up choosing, so my mistake for not stating that up front. Unfortunately, no equity in our house - at least very limited. We expect a pretty substantial paydown from our end at closing to meet a 90% CLTV requirement...
by playtothebeat
Thu Feb 12, 2015 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House appraisal for a refi
Replies: 10
Views: 915

House appraisal for a refi

I'm getting ready to refi my house, and thus will be ordering an appraisal in the next month or so. I wanted to see if there's anything I need to keep in mind as I do so. For instance, we recently had new flooring put in - do I need to inform the appraiser of that or do they figure stuff like that o...
by playtothebeat
Wed Feb 04, 2015 9:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pull permits for a minor remodel?
Replies: 35
Views: 3222

Pull permits for a minor remodel?

I'm planning to remodel my kitchen which will involved new cabinets and countertops. I'll also be changing out the old fluorescent light box with some canned LEDs, and installing a new junction box for a light fixture. I'm my doing any of the work myself and will hire contractors/subs etc (all licen...
by playtothebeat
Wed Jan 21, 2015 5:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any art "investors" here?
Replies: 69
Views: 6346

Re: Any art "investors" here?

We have probably 8 or 10 pieces from Peter Lik at our house. Beautiful stuff which we love to look at, and can likely sell in the future for far more than we paid for them (some pieces are no longer available in the galleries, and others have been selling quite well on artbrokerage.com). We've run o...
by playtothebeat
Wed Jan 21, 2015 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Engineered Hardwood
Replies: 29
Views: 2974

Re: Engineered Hardwood

Take a look at waterproof laminate. http://www.usfloorsllc.com/display-category/coretec-plus/ I just ordered this to be installed throughout the house (replacing a 10+ year old laminate which was damaged in a recent flood due to a plumbing issue): http://www.usfloorsllc.com/product-category/coretec-...
by playtothebeat
Mon Dec 29, 2014 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you read online reviews?
Replies: 26
Views: 1828

Do you read online reviews?

I'm currently searching for a contractor to remodel my kitchen, and this really got me thinking about how much weight we tend to put into online review and overall online presence of companies nowadays. For instance, I received a quote which seems very reasonable to me, but the company has no online...
by playtothebeat
Sun Dec 28, 2014 8:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: House flood --> time to remodel
Replies: 2
Views: 595

House flood --> time to remodel

My house had a flood issue about two weeks before Christmas. Luckily, it was only downstairs, so things could have been far worse. Insurance is covering the remediation that had to take place (rip out some dry wall, flooring, dry and dehumidify the whole area, make sure there is no molding, etc), an...
by playtothebeat
Mon Dec 15, 2014 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FSA: how much do I fund?
Replies: 16
Views: 839

Re: FSA: how much do I fund?

FYI, if you're about to lose your FSA dollars, check out www.fsastore.com. quite a bit of stuff that's FSA-eligible!
by playtothebeat
Wed Dec 10, 2014 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Eliminate PMI or add to 401K
Replies: 3
Views: 446

Re: Eliminate PMI or add to 401K

You may consider reducing your 401k just to 5% (so you get the full match), and putting the extra towards the mortgage. Depending on what your tax situation looks like, that 4.5% could mean a guaranteed after-tax return of 6% or so. how much quicker could you get rid of PMI then?
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 21, 2014 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you splurge on?
Replies: 237
Views: 25967

Re: What doyou splurge on?

Pete's Coffee - slightly more expensive than many other brands, but I love it. Recently trying to buy more grass fed chicken and beef. Also over the past few months I noticed that I'm willing to pay more for kitchen appliances that are of higher quality. I.e. a Vitamix, a Breville juicer, a Breville...
by playtothebeat
Sun Nov 09, 2014 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 33344

Re: War on Debt

$175/week would be a bargain, but I live in a high cost of living state. I wouldn't be surprised if we are talking $800/month. I think you maybe right, we are for all intents and purposes are close to bankruptcy, even I had mentioned it numerous times to her, but it seemed to have no effect other t...
by playtothebeat
Sun Nov 09, 2014 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 33344

Re: War on Debt

One issue is that you need to both pay off your debt (consumer debt is your priority, I don't disagree personally) AND get an emergency fund before the baby is born. I hope you don't have to deal with this, but what if your baby had any sort of medial issues? Or what if your wife does? Hell, you mig...
by playtothebeat
Sat Nov 08, 2014 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: War on Debt
Replies: 247
Views: 33344

Re: War on Debt

Technofox, how did you go from $62k of student loan debt in 2009 (from a post you published on Bogleheads in 2009) to $200k in student loans today? I am guessing you guys were working jobs then and out of school. You came on here with similar questions and responses in 2009... it looks like you guy...
by playtothebeat
Sat Nov 08, 2014 1:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 22, I want to be rich, looking for a high reward fund
Replies: 67
Views: 7282

Re: 22, I want to be rich, looking for a high reward fund

I am going to put this investment in during a down market day this week (started my Roth in mid october during a dip and have pretty good returns so far). How do you know when the market is down? Is there a certain dip from current levels that you're looking for? Don't try to time it. Dollar cost a...
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 07, 2014 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we refinance?
Replies: 30
Views: 2248

Re: Should we refinance?

Why should he refi a mortgage that he's only been in 12-14 months? This doesn't make sense to me at all. Take advantage of the higher value, which will allow him to eliminate PMI I'm not aware of any way to eliminate PMI unless your LTV is 80% or less. He is nowhere near that. It's quite possible. ...
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 07, 2014 4:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we refinance?
Replies: 30
Views: 2248

Re: Should we refinance?

nelson1015 wrote:Why should he refi a mortgage that he's only been in 12-14 months? This doesn't make sense to me at all.


Take advantage of the higher value, which will allow him to eliminate PMI
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 07, 2014 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we refinance?
Replies: 30
Views: 2248

Re: Should we refinance?

If my math is correct.. your current payment is $1,091/month. If you refi with Discover, it goes down to $962 (I assume you're not rolling the fees into the loan).

Do that, and keep making your current payment, and your 30 year mortgage gets repaid in 23.7 years.
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 07, 2014 1:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 22, I want to be rich, looking for a high reward fund
Replies: 67
Views: 7282

Re: 22, I want to be rich, looking for a high reward fund

Historically, small cap returns are higher than large cap. Value are higher than growth. Of course risk goes up as well, and there is no guarantee that the pattern will continue. And even though in the long term it probably will, there is nothing to say that you won't have a 10 year drought in a cer...
by playtothebeat
Fri Nov 07, 2014 1:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buy commercial real estate
Replies: 18
Views: 3205

Re: Buy commercial real estate

If you just discovered loopnet, you are not ready to be a commercial real estate investor...

Now that that is out of the way.. CRE returns vary greatly. Far too many variables. I work in commercial real estate for what it's worth (I'm on the lending side).
by playtothebeat
Thu Nov 06, 2014 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage decisions
Replies: 16
Views: 1394

Re: Mortgage decisions

I'm in a similar boat, albeit at much higher amounts ($740k combined loans, house value about the same; 1st loan at 6.5% interest only - OUCH, 2nd at 8.5% with minimal amortization and a huge balloon in about 8 years - OUCH). I'm doing some similar analysis, but hoping that the year end bonus and sa...
by playtothebeat
Thu Nov 06, 2014 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investing when one spouse is older
Replies: 10
Views: 1116

Investing when one spouse is older

I tried searching to see if this was explicitly addressed before, but wasn't able to find anything specific. What are some factors to consider when it comes investment/retirement planning strategy, if one spouse is older than the other? My wife and I have a 12-year gap between the two of us. Given t...
by playtothebeat
Thu Nov 06, 2014 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tough spot, decided to lease a car
Replies: 209
Views: 15637

Re: Tough spot, decided to lease a car

Sit down with your wife with all the numbers in front of you. Figure out what you bring in. Figure out what your bills are. Whatever is left, figure out how you want to spend it/save it/pay off debt with it. Tell your wife she gets $200 cash (or $100 or whatever) each month. Period. she can do whate...
by playtothebeat
Tue Nov 04, 2014 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tough spot, decided to lease a car
Replies: 209
Views: 15637

Re: Tough spot, decided to lease a car

There are a lot of different issues going on in your discussion. First of all, you need to have a serious conversation with your wife about her lifestyle. It doesn't sound like it's overly exuberant (I agree that family, friends, fitness, etc are important), but given that you have limited financial...

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