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Re: Bogleheads, anyone doing "Black Friday"

It may not seem like fun, but to many people it is. People who are on a tight budget for Christmas are often willing to do a lot of research and get up in the middle of the night to save a few dollars on a doorbuster item. It's like a quest. They map out a sequence of what stores to visit, they brin...
by prudent
Mon Nov 24, 2014 12:46 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads, any "Black Friday" [recommendations]
Replies: 57
Views: 3786

Re: Bogleheads, anyone doing "Black Friday"

I have been eying some vacuum cleaners and I desperately need a new one, I have a number in mind and if there are specials I will pull the trigger. That is all. Hate the stores will have to be online. I use gottadeal.com for researching Black Friday deals and they have listings of what deals are al...
by prudent
Sun Nov 23, 2014 8:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads, any "Black Friday" [recommendations]
Replies: 57
Views: 3786

Re: Selecting Charities for Donation

We prefer local giving - we've been there, we've seen what they do. Food bank, homeless shelter/kitchen, our church, and an "all-purpose" organization (job search help, personal finance training, emergency utility bill payments, etc.). One exception to local giving is a national organizati...
by prudent
Thu Nov 20, 2014 7:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selecting Charities for Donation
Replies: 55
Views: 3287

Re: Apple Stores - do they try to be awful?

My wife has been to the Genius bar three times and was very satisfied with her experiences. Made appointments in advance, only a small wait past her appointment time, and they fixed the issues. She has little interest in technology beyond needing to use it, so if she was satisfied they must have bee...
by prudent
Tue Nov 18, 2014 6:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple Stores - do they try to be awful?
Replies: 41
Views: 2904

Re: Heads up best reward credit card I've seen.

6% at grocery stores is nice, and perhaps reason enough to get it. But why take 3% for gas when you can get 5% with Pen Fed. And why not use the Fidelity AmEx 2% for everything else? How does this card pay the cash? I hate having to redeem it. I'm also not a fan of annual fees reducing the awards a...
by prudent
Tue Nov 18, 2014 2:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Heads up one of the better reward credit card I've seen.
Replies: 54
Views: 6261

Re: Heads up best reward credit card I've seen.

rai wrote:Is there a limit on pen fed gas rewards?


Check the fine print as the cards issued today may have changed from when we got it, but the one we have - Penfed Visa Cash Rewards - has no limits and the 5% on gas (is credited automatically to the balance monthly.
by prudent
Tue Nov 18, 2014 10:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Heads up one of the better reward credit card I've seen.
Replies: 54
Views: 6261

Re: Fixing Social Security Earnings Mistake Advice

Last year when checking earnings history I noticed my 2011 earnings were not showing. Took my W-2 to the SS office and although I had to wait about 45 minutes to be seen, when I did get called the guy fixed it on the spot in less than 5 minutes and told me they would send a letter to confirm. Went p...
by prudent
Tue Nov 18, 2014 8:16 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fixing Social Security Earnings Mistake Advice
Replies: 10
Views: 924

Re: Taylor Larimore, My Favorite Teacher

Was there ever a teacher who wouldn't love to be remembered so fondly and vividly, decades afterwards? Kudos to Taylor.
by prudent
Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:35 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Taylor Larimore, My Favorite Teacher
Replies: 13
Views: 2014

Re: Conflicting Free FICO Scores

As for the specific issues "bringing down" my scores, they are kind of BS, sort of like Dave Ramsey calls FICO score an "I love debt" score, I am now destined to be permanently penalized by having been responsible and bought a house I could afford and paying it off. I'm not deep...
by prudent
Sat Nov 15, 2014 9:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Conflicting Free FICO Scores
Replies: 11
Views: 995

Re: Can I change user name?

Want to mention for completeness that when your username is changed, I am 99% sure than the change does not show up where someone quoted your original post. So let's say someone's username was originally JoeMagaracFromPodunk, then changed to GreenLantern. If someone quoted a post they made before th...
by prudent
Fri Nov 14, 2014 3:39 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Can I change user name?
Replies: 7
Views: 661

Re: Does anyone here make "fun" purchases.

When I buy something that you wouldn't, that's because you're cheap. When you buy something that I wouldn't, that's because you're wasteful. Not really. :) But everyone has different priorities and for people who are generally frugal, there's nothing wrong with a little splurge here and there. If yo...
by prudent
Fri Nov 14, 2014 2:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anyone here make "fun" purchases.
Replies: 111
Views: 6557

Re: Can I change user name?

I flagged your post for moderator attention.
by prudent
Fri Nov 14, 2014 7:06 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Can I change user name?
Replies: 7
Views: 661

Re: Amazon Echo (Alexa)

Given that everything Amazon does is designed to sell you more products (not that there's anything wrong with that, but I think it's important to be aware), I have a difficult time believing that the device isn't capturing information all the time. Don't know what would be done with it - perhaps to ...
by prudent
Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:43 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Echo (Alexa)
Replies: 35
Views: 3894

Re: New Fidelity AMEX - with chip

Yes, many merchants are upgrading their terminals to accept chip cards. Some merchants already had the terminals but never enabled the chip reading capability.
by prudent
Tue Nov 11, 2014 12:07 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Fidelity AMEX - with chip
Replies: 9
Views: 784

Re: New Fidelity AMEX - with chip

These are more likely "chip and signature" cards, not "chip and PIN". The terminals are supposed to detect the presence of the chip and require you to put the card in the slot rather than swipe - if the machine is ready to accept cards with chips. Setting aside the concept that t...
by prudent
Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Fidelity AMEX - with chip
Replies: 9
Views: 784

Re: History of American mortgages

I'd be curious to know how the average mortgage length increased during that period from 1949-2000. I have to assume most people are payment-focused when buying a house, and if mortgages got longer, it's easy to take on more debt at the same monthly payment.
by prudent
Tue Nov 11, 2014 9:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: History of American mortgages
Replies: 11
Views: 1215

Re: Information on personal investment portfolios

My feeling is that you need LESS risk for items like that. When saving for something to be bought in a couple years you don't want to risk losses. It's unfortunate that savings rates are so low but if I was saving for a car or a down payment on a house, I'd only use bank CDs or savings accounts. The...
by prudent
Tue Nov 11, 2014 7:34 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Information on personal investment portfolios
Replies: 4
Views: 390

Re: New Tony Robbins Book on Financial Freedom

Recently saw a cover story in either Forbes or Fortune about Robbins and his book. The guy must be impressive - I believe the story mentioned that he's on million-dollar retainers with multiple CEOs for personal consulting.
by prudent
Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:37 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: New Tony Robbins Book on Financial Freedom
Replies: 66
Views: 11411

Re: Yet Another Credit Card Thread

I'm only interested in cashback cards so that's all I use. I don't know how to compare cashback to points cards when the value of points depends on what you use them for. I have three cashback cards I use. 1. Fidelity Investment Rewards AMEX - straight 2% on everything, no caps, no limit. 2. Penfed ...
by prudent
Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yet Another Credit Card Thread
Replies: 24
Views: 1850

Re: Local bank without any checking account fees?

It's about tradeoffs. I would bet there are credit unions available to you that have no minimum balance required, but they probably don't have ATMs on every corner and other things that you could get from WF.
by prudent
Mon Nov 10, 2014 11:47 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Local bank without any checking account fees?
Replies: 31
Views: 2314

Re: Is "comfortable confidence" in secure retirement possibl

I'm sympathetic to the OP's situation as I have the same tendency to tweak every assumption to the most pessimistic scenario when doing forecasts. Yet I know instinctively that while some of those assumptions could turn out to be right, they are not ALL going to occur. There is always room to go mor...
by prudent
Mon Nov 10, 2014 9:13 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is "comfortable confidence" in secure retirement possible?
Replies: 23
Views: 3192

Re: Cash In CC Points?

I'd take the cash now, either by requesting a check or applying it to your balance. Last thing I would do is convert cash to "points" that can be devalued at any time unless I was going to use them right away.
by prudent
Mon Nov 10, 2014 7:39 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash In CC Points?
Replies: 22
Views: 2532

Re: Attend new car "launch event" for free meal?

I would expect that at some point, a salesperson will approach you to gauge your interest in a new car but it will be low-key. They are offering the event in order to tell people about their wonderful new car and identify prospects for later follow-up. The kind of car that calls for a launch event w...
by prudent
Sat Nov 08, 2014 3:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Attend new car "launch event" for free meal?
Replies: 10
Views: 842

Re: Electricity costs going up

I spent a bunch of time evaluating offers from other suppliers and found the cheapest rate (7 c/kwh), but it required a 7-year lock-in. That seemed like a pretty good gamble, and it has turned out to be, as rates are mostly higher now. With my final cost about 11c/kwh, I mostly break even with the ...
by prudent
Sat Nov 08, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electricity costs going up
Replies: 46
Views: 3240

Re: Your very first email

BITNET then uucp. My e-mails in those days were work related. Wow, you had a bang-path address! That's even before MY time. :) My first email was probably 1978 or 79. A software vendor we used implemented email for support issues for those who could use email. Our company was just starting to look ...
by prudent
Thu Nov 06, 2014 12:56 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your very first email
Replies: 60
Views: 2376

Re: Self directed brokerage account 401K

Our 401k is run by Prudential, and if we elect to have an SDBA it is held by Prudential as well - no other option. I was able to get all relevant information in advance - which fund families are no transaction fee, which are not, annual fee of $50, no limit on how much of the 401k can be put in the ...
by prudent
Mon Nov 03, 2014 9:25 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Self directed brokerage account 401K
Replies: 7
Views: 625

Re: Investing in Art, Antiques, and Collectibles and wines

Having seen a few boom/bust cycles in one area of collectibles, it's my opinion that they are not appropriate as an investment. It doesn't take away the enjoyment that comes with finding an item you have been searching for, and associating with others in the hobby, though. As the market heats up, ne...
by prudent
Mon Nov 03, 2014 12:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in Art, Antiques, and Collectibles and wines
Replies: 53
Views: 3788

Re: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years

I don't think insurers really care if they keep your business or not. I don't recall hearing any stories of current insurers making big changes to quotes in order to keep a customer. Seems that they are OK with getting whatever business they can get as long as it's at their price. Our homeowners wen...
by prudent
Fri Oct 31, 2014 11:41 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners Policy Increased 26% in 2 Years
Replies: 29
Views: 2581

Re: Group Legal through work - Hyatt Legal

If you are going to get those documents prepared anyway, and yours will not be complicated, I think you'll be satisfied. Although I doubt they would cover the POA for your father (you would be the plan member, not him). Their website has a pretty straightforward explanation of what is covered and wh...
by prudent
Thu Oct 30, 2014 2:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Group Legal through work - Hyatt Legal
Replies: 6
Views: 577

Re: That stress-relieving thing you do at work

Lately, it has been eating out of the vending machine and today has been particularly bad. Twinkies AND a donut and that's AFTER I had lunch at 11:30. Not good. Not good at all.
by prudent
Thu Oct 30, 2014 12:28 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: That stress-relieving thing you do at work
Replies: 45
Views: 2871

Re: What online banks do you like for savings or MMA?

You can join PenFed even if not a veteran, by joining an affiliated organization.

Although I do not use them, many people seem to be happy with Alliant Credit Union.
by prudent
Wed Oct 29, 2014 5:57 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What online banks do you like for savings or MMA?
Replies: 44
Views: 3096

Re: Huntsville, AL Bogleheads Local Chapter Established

Hope your group is successful. Used to go to HSV a couple times a year for work back in the 1990's-2000's. Nice place and nice people there.
by prudent
Wed Oct 22, 2014 6:59 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Huntsville, AL Bogleheads Local Chapter Established
Replies: 18
Views: 3815

Re: "I've had it" at work - how often

I counsel new nurses that this is a thankless job and that they should start a journal of the positive experiences to reflect back on when things are tough. I have a great go to supply of such stories. That's great advice - not just for nurses, but for anyone who will have to deal with the public w...
by prudent
Mon Oct 20, 2014 8:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "I've had it" at work - how often
Replies: 151
Views: 12641

Re: Advice sought for $6M investment

Congratulations on your success.

I see no problems with a simple portfolio as you outlined. Consider multiple smaller CDs rather than a single $120K CD for each year in your ladder - if you decide you want some of the money early, you'll have a smaller penalty.
by prudent
Sun Oct 19, 2014 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Advice sought for $6M investment
Replies: 36
Views: 3756

Re: Allow OP to lock thread?

Allan wrote:I wish there was a Tag function where you could tag a post for future reference. I'm sure this has been asked for before and can only assume it is not an easy function to implement.

Allan


At the top of each post is the thread title - that's a link to that specific post, which you can bookmark.
by prudent
Sat Oct 18, 2014 7:17 am
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Allow OP to lock thread?
Replies: 17
Views: 1686

Re: Question - Being a Trustee

I am a trustee of a family trust but I would have a lot of questions - questions that I would ask my own attorney - about this type of set up. And I'm taking a copy of the not-yet-executed trust document with me. What exactly does the trust say about the trustee's role and powers? Does the trust ind...
by prudent
Thu Oct 16, 2014 8:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question - Being a Trustee
Replies: 19
Views: 1282

Re: Helping cash poor, land rich relative

Thanks for the update and glad to hear things are working out.
by prudent
Thu Oct 16, 2014 5:42 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping cash poor, land rich relative
Replies: 24
Views: 3946

Re: Interesting statistical observations

Point 1 is accurate but a bit misleading - that 68% drop equates to only about $8,000 ($11K vs. $3K). What's more distressing to me is the change in the 35-44 age group - in 1984 the median net worth was $71K, and 25 years later it was only about $40k in 2009 (inflation adjusted dollars). I don't kn...
by prudent
Fri Oct 10, 2014 10:09 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Interesting statistical observations
Replies: 8
Views: 816

Re: Best Place To Buy Actual Gold Coins

I have some friends in the business and they tell me they are seeing more and better counterfeits from China. Unless I was very, very confident in my ability to detect a fake I would only buy from a trusted dealer - never from an individual on ebay or craigslist. If you were buying fakes from China ...
by prudent
Thu Oct 09, 2014 8:21 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Place To Buy Actual Gold Coins
Replies: 28
Views: 2424

Re: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket

This one is the worst post so far: I am totally numb...[snip] Ugh! :( That's heartbreaking. A person who KNOWS she is not experienced puts all the money into a stock and lets someone else call the shots, and resists her own instincts to bail out. Thinks she's going to lose her home. I wonder who th...
by prudent
Wed Oct 08, 2014 10:59 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket
Replies: 233
Views: 28869

Re: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket

My goodness, that one person lost $800K - everything he had saved for 15 years! In one stock! And it appears that group of people was following the company as closely as humanly possible, then had the rug pulled out. I wonder how many others are doing the same thing - putting everything in one hot s...
by prudent
Wed Oct 08, 2014 5:49 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket
Replies: 233
Views: 28869

Re: File and suspend Social Security

Interesting point about taking a lump sum of suspended benefits. It sounds like someone who didn't intend to collect until 70, and is facing a fatal illness after FRA, could take their retroactive benefits prior to death - but if they passed prior to doing that, there is nothing (other than possible...
by prudent
Sat Oct 04, 2014 7:19 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: File and suspend Social Security
Replies: 8
Views: 1342

Re: Buy Local

I could save some money buying more things online but I've decided part of the "value" of a purchase extends beyond my cost. Buying local helps employ local residents who are all paying wage tax, property tax, etc. It enables those local businesses to support little league, the library, th...
by prudent
Tue Sep 30, 2014 10:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buy Local
Replies: 29
Views: 4589

Re: Starting a railroad career

I also recommend the trains.com forums to get more information on specifics. RRs are looking at hiring huge numbers of people due to retirements - last forecast I saw in December predicted 11,000 new hires in 2014. Consider visiting industry trade magazine sites which have good information on the bu...
by prudent
Mon Sep 29, 2014 6:03 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Starting a railroad career
Replies: 11
Views: 1675

Re: Should an executor retitle stocks to the estate right aw

Are you saying the will mandates that the stocks cannot be sold?

What if the market takes a dump between now and the eventual disbursement? How will the heirs feel watching their inheritance dwindling? What is the best course of action the executor could take to protect the value of the estate?
by prudent
Sun Sep 28, 2014 8:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should an executor retitle stocks to the estate right away?
Replies: 13
Views: 996

Re: Recommendation on coin appraiser in Southwest Ohio

Just to add to kenschmidt's excellent guidance, you might want to make clear to whomever you use exactly what you want out of the appraisal. Most dealers I know will charge $100/hour to provide a written appraisal, with the fee waived if you sell them the collection. Some will charge less (or someti...
by prudent
Sun Sep 28, 2014 11:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendation on coin appraiser in Southwest Ohio
Replies: 2
Views: 207

Re: Thank you Alex Frakt and Larry Auton!!

Thanks to the forum owners for providing this site! I can only wonder how many people have been helped.
by prudent
Sat Sep 27, 2014 11:29 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Thank you Alex Frakt and Larry Auton!!
Replies: 11
Views: 1279

Re: Can anyone help w/ Debt & Credit Score?

I have found that creditboards.com credit forum to have good advice for credit repair strategies but much reading is necessary before taking action.
by prudent
Wed Sep 24, 2014 6:11 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can anyone help w/ Debt & Credit Score?
Replies: 19
Views: 1119
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