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Re: HMO vs PPO

Nope.
by serbeer
Thu Nov 20, 2014 4:03 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HMO vs PPO
Replies: 16
Views: 1078

Re: HMO vs PPO

I like PPO, but for some things it is much much more expensive. In our case, with HMO, for our 1st pregnancy and childbirth we paid single $20 OBGYB copay for entire pregnancy, $30 copay to see OBGYN specialist for 3rd-level ultrasound once, and $150 for hospital admission = $200 total. While the to...
by serbeer
Thu Nov 20, 2014 3:41 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HMO vs PPO
Replies: 16
Views: 1078

Re: Humidifier: How much condensation is too much?

My wife says it isn't just the one window. At least three windows on the second floor develop about a one-inch-wide strip of fog during the night that dries up during the day. So it sounds like if I care about the transient strips of condensation that persist for several hours (?) some nights but e...
by serbeer
Wed Nov 19, 2014 6:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humidifier: How much condensation is too much?
Replies: 35
Views: 2103

Re: Pension buyout offer - Accept or reject

investor wrote:I assume that the $57K could be rolled into an IRA. I would invest the $57K for 12 years, expecting about 10% average annual return. But that is just me.
investor

You are SUCH an optimist
by serbeer
Wed Nov 19, 2014 2:23 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension buyout offer - Accept or reject
Replies: 44
Views: 3530

Re: fidelity refusing custodian custodian rollover

The check thing is no big thing and justed misplaced worry on your part. I think this stems from folks actually withdrawing all the money and depositing the check in their checking account and trying to write a new check. That's not what you are going to do. If I may ask, what is wrong with cashing...
by serbeer
Mon Nov 17, 2014 2:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: fidelity refusing custodian custodian rollover
Replies: 35
Views: 2782

Re: History of American mortgages

I heard that in Europe most mortgages are still 10 or 15 years in duration nowadays, not 30 as here in US. That, obviously, heavily affects people's ability to take them out. Lending is just not as frivolous there.
by serbeer
Wed Nov 12, 2014 7:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: History of American mortgages
Replies: 11
Views: 1210

Re: Electricity costs going up

California, Hawaii, Connecticut I think you pay a lot more. Over 30 cents/ kwhr in some cases (CA by volume and time of day). Hawaii because it's cut off, 80% of its electricity comes from burning bunker fuel (ie oil). And New York City is in the 20s. That's more or less what we pay in the UK (15p ...
by serbeer
Tue Nov 11, 2014 11:13 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electricity costs going up
Replies: 46
Views: 3214

Re: Roth 401(k) vs. 401(k) Spreadsheet Attempt - Critique Pl

Cannot validate the spreadsheet, but another spreadsheet like this was put together by Harry of TFB blog and can be found at the end of this post:
http://thefinancebuff.com/roth-401k-for ... e-max.html

Feel free to compare it to your and to learn from this comparison.
by serbeer
Mon Nov 10, 2014 2:59 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Roth 401(k) vs. 401(k) Spreadsheet Attempt - Critique Please
Replies: 10
Views: 1289

Re: Electricity costs going up

Wow, here in Chicago I pay 5.99c/kWh with alternative provider, while ComEd has 7+c/KWh rate. Did not realize the discrepancy is so huge across the country. This is way more than cost of gas difference, nearly 3x.
by serbeer
Sat Nov 08, 2014 5:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electricity costs going up
Replies: 46
Views: 3214

Re: How do you automatically rebalance?

I use very complex custom Excel spreadsheet (actually set of several working together) and the two drawbacks was original effort to build it, and the ongoing need to update it with all new investments and dividends--really not a big deal, but what I really hate is the need to update the tab in the s...
by serbeer
Thu Nov 06, 2014 3:06 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do you automatically rebalance?
Replies: 34
Views: 2299

Re: "Schwab Intelligent Portfolios"--why not?

I think this is a great service. If they allow to choose custom asset allocation instead of of just 5 choices to choose from like some other services that I may not like, there would be very few reasons not to consider it given that ER of Schwab ETFs is currently the lowest on the market and even be...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 30, 2014 10:51 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Schwab Intelligent Portfolios"
Replies: 56
Views: 5919

Re: "Schwab Intelligent Portfolios"

I am curious how Schwab is going to make money on this. I am assuming the Intelligent Portfolios will use Schwab ETF's. The margins have got to be razor thin. Schwab answers that in disclaimer on the bottom of their webpage: **SIP charges no advisory fees. Schwab affiliates do earn revenue from the...
by serbeer
Wed Oct 29, 2014 2:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Schwab Intelligent Portfolios"
Replies: 56
Views: 5919

Re: How often do you change your car's oil?

When my car's computer tell me to do that. I believe it calculates it both on milage, time, and usage.
When I had less advanced car, I followed manufacturer's suggestion in car service manual and changed oil every 7,500K miles.
by serbeer
Fri Oct 24, 2014 12:47 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How often do you change your car's oil?
Replies: 168
Views: 10936

Re: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,

That's good news, but I really wish they would raise the IRA limit, so I could put more into our Roths. Can someone explain to me why they aren't raising the IRA limit also? I'm sure there's a logical reason for it, I just don't get it. Sure. It is due to Section 219(b)(5)(A) of Internal Revenue Co...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 23, 2014 3:48 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,000)
Replies: 50
Views: 7458

Re: Gains and Losses from Periodic Investments

Thank you grayfox, this is interesting. My comments: 1) None of the 4 observations in OP are surprising the least, all could be predicted by regulars on this board. Would not be worth your efforts if you stopped there, good that you did not! 2) Longer-term chart clearly shows that even the major bea...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 23, 2014 2:30 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Gains and Losses from Periodic Investments
Replies: 13
Views: 1419

Re: TSA [is it a hassle to opt out of scanning?]

In O'Hare airport, and in Vegas airport I traveled through recently, they even found paper napkin left in my pants' pocket. What were they thinking you were going to do with that paper napkin? The scanner flagged it as suspicious item in the packet. They did patdown and found the napkin. Not exactl...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 23, 2014 1:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TSA [is it a hassle to opt out of scanning?]
Replies: 42
Views: 2244

Re: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,

TFB posted this change in his blog 2 months ago yet, calculation it early with very high degree of confidence. He does that every year btw. http://thefinancebuff.com/2015-401k-403b-simple-ira-limits.html Edit: I added a link since it used to be that it was enough to type in "TFB blog" (The...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:17 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: IRS Announces new 401(k) contribution max for 2015 ($18,000)
Replies: 50
Views: 7458

Re: TSA [is it a hassle to opt out of scanning?]

Security theatre. It's worthless (many tests show they miss planted objects like guns or bombs half the time Hm, I am not sure about that. In O'Hare airport, and in Vegas airport I traveled through recently, they even found paper napkin left in my pants' pocket. The point is, one definately cannot ...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 23, 2014 12:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TSA [is it a hassle to opt out of scanning?]
Replies: 42
Views: 2244

Re: Car Rental Return Frustration in Spain

I recall driving for good 40-60 minutes around rental returns parking lot in airport in a city in Spain trying to find an entrance. It was fenced with maze of low metal tubing fence and I simply could not find the way inside, and neither could my wife sitting next to me. Finally spotted it after get...
by serbeer
Wed Oct 22, 2014 2:42 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Rental Return Frustration in Spain
Replies: 17
Views: 1558

Re: Is FSA retroactive for child birth?

I had to deal with it before. You can pay out of FSA the expenses which happened on or after qualifying event date . The qualifying event here is child birth, so whatever medical bills have service date on or after the date on your child's birth certificate can be reimbursed. Note that if admission ...
by serbeer
Tue Oct 21, 2014 1:04 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is FSA retroactive for child birth?
Replies: 8
Views: 745

Re: Mega bus vacation with toddlers.

I do not look forward to 2hr drives with my 14 month old. I can't imagine being on a bus that long with a toddler. Bad idea, very bad idea. Yes! To clarify: bad for you, very bad for others on the bus. This is something you'd do if you had no other choice/mode of transportation, and definately not ...
by serbeer
Fri Oct 17, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mega bus vacation with toddlers.
Replies: 27
Views: 2064

Re: Allow OP to lock thread?

Locking threads should be reserved for gross violations of forum policy. Even moderators try not to lock threads at times but to warn and to edit out "offending" material from them. This is forum is rather heavily moderated as is (not that it is bad, it helps to stay on topics and prevents...
by serbeer
Fri Oct 17, 2014 1:22 pm
 
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Allow OP to lock thread?
Replies: 17
Views: 1671

Re: Vegas Vacation!

Best show in town is Le Reve (The Dream) in the Wynn hotel. Beats O Show easily, and I've just seen both so I can compare. Coinsidently, it is also not as expensive as O Show at this time. With O Show, you'd want to sit closer to the stage, with Le Reve closer to the top (but in both cases not to cl...
by serbeer
Fri Oct 17, 2014 1:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vegas Vacation!
Replies: 50
Views: 3933

Re: Does your ROTH hold risky or stable items?

I keep REITs, TIPS, and Bonds in my Roth and IRA accounts mostly--not drawing any distinctions between tax deferred and tax free accounts. For little tax deferred/free space still left in these accounts, I simply put whatever my current (and not changed for the past 8 years) AA calls for. I tax-adju...
by serbeer
Thu Oct 16, 2014 1:52 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does your ROTH hold risky or stable items?
Replies: 56
Views: 3482

Re: Spreadsheet for backtesting (includes TrevH's data)

Hello, Maybe someone already posted about this. Should the Average and Std. Dev. on rows 101 and 102 be (column)$116 : (column)$144 instead of just thru (column)$143 ? Where (column) is C thru AA. It appears the 2013 data is being left out of the Average and Std. Dev. calculations. Not a big deal a...
by serbeer
Wed Oct 15, 2014 4:23 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet for backtesting (includes TrevH's data)
Replies: 610
Views: 382532

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

http://forum.thecontrarianinvestor.com/index.php?threads/gt-advanced-technologies-inc-gtat.69/page-320#post-20215 Anyway, it is not me you should be jealous of but my mom whose account I manage and has around 415k shares and probably doesn't know GTAT is on the Nasdaq. I have to set up separate acc...
by serbeer
Tue Oct 14, 2014 1:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: When people put all their eggs in the wrong basket
Replies: 233
Views: 28772

Re: Had a bad experience with Amica

This is not an example of bad experience with Amica. Your friend was never a client of Amica. It is like saying someone had bad experience with Mensa because he was not admitted to Mensa. He simply did not make the cut. They have the right to refuse coverage but only before start of the policy perio...
by serbeer
Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Had a bad experience with Amica
Replies: 25
Views: 2103

Re: Buying more when markets are down

Well, I was waiting till all divideds are posted for Q3 to reinvest them together with the new cash--in a single swoop. So, coinsidently, purchased today. But I do not market time in general.
by serbeer
Wed Oct 01, 2014 4:43 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buying more when markets are down
Replies: 61
Views: 5328

Re: Hard Money Lending, flipping houses 12% return Lets hear

I don't know what could happen where you would lose the whole $210k. The house is not worth zero dollars; it is worth something. Being a devil's advocate, let me use example of placeholder, with the house being a former meth lab making it toxic enough not to be resellable while the OP is stuck with...
by serbeer
Wed Oct 01, 2014 3:31 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Hard Money Lending, flipping houses 12% return Lets hear it
Replies: 56
Views: 3191

Re: fidelity v.s. vanguard

Either is perfectly fine for index mutual funds. And for the largest collection of commision-free ETFs, I'd open Ameritrade account.
We use all three, but mostly Fidelity and Ameritrade.
by serbeer
Wed Oct 01, 2014 2:41 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fidelity v.s. vanguard
Replies: 18
Views: 1785

Re: CNN: 5 investing secrets of the wealthy.

The article was originally called "5 investing secrets of the wealthy Bogleheads" but later author renamed it since he did not want to go into explanations of who Bogleheads worrying that main message may be lost in explanations.


It is my theory anyway, and I am sticking to it.
:)
by serbeer
Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:54 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: CNN: 5 investing secrets of the wealthy.
Replies: 20
Views: 3757

Re: Hard Money Lending, flipping houses 12% return Lets hear

Last year I had ROR of 14+% on my total not too risky 75/25 portfolio. That with only usual "market" risk. So why would I want to invest into a single company, private company at that, with so many risks on top of market risk (because if market tanks, demand for the house in question is pr...
by serbeer
Tue Sep 30, 2014 5:35 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Hard Money Lending, flipping houses 12% return Lets hear it
Replies: 56
Views: 3191

Re: Water Powered Sump-Pump Backups?

My Basement Watchdog backup sump pump has self-diagnostic module that checks many things, including battery health and starts beeping when something is not right. I am on my 2nd battery now (in 11 years, and the first one was replaced when the Battery alarm was triggered, about 6-7 years into life o...
by serbeer
Tue Sep 30, 2014 12:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water Powered Sump-Pump Backups?
Replies: 19
Views: 1014

Re: Rebalancing Spreadsheet

Nope. Rebalancing involves both buying and selling. If a particular asset class is overweight due to market pumping it up, you have to sell it and put money into poorly performing asset classes. That's why it is called rebalancing. On the other hand, if you pour in enough money to top off lackster c...
by serbeer
Mon Sep 29, 2014 3:36 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalancing Spreadsheet
Replies: 4
Views: 561

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

Also when you are talking auto pay are you talking about paying the CC bill automatically or having monthly bills paid automatically via the CC? I do both. I was talking about CC bill being paid automatically on designated date from my checking account. That is still the case after conversion, and ...
by serbeer
Fri Sep 26, 2014 1:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

How can they keep auto pay going if its a new number? Expiration date comes around once every three years, not the same. Not sure about mechanics, but my number has changed, but the first bill I received, just as they promissed, indicates autopay active. Why would it be difficult to re-link existin...
by serbeer
Thu Sep 25, 2014 6:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

I'm thinking about having my wife get this card with the intention of taking advantage of both the 2% and the 15 month 0% APR. She has another Citi card with a high credit limit (> $30k). Does anyone know whether Citibank will allow her to move the credit limit from the pre-existing card to the new...
by serbeer
Thu Sep 25, 2014 5:08 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

I don't think you can convert and keep the account number the same. Mine changed when I converted, I was warned about it. But they kept existing auto-pay going and divident dollars were transfered. Unless you have dozens of place where you have to change the card number saved, I am not sure what is ...
by serbeer
Thu Sep 25, 2014 4:21 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

Santosh T. wrote:Oh! But why next week?

Why not?
by serbeer
Fri Sep 05, 2014 10:27 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi

The Sallie Mae Visa can get you 5% at amazon & bookstores/gas/groceries. But monthly purchase limits are $750/$250/$250, after that it's 1%. Sallie Mae does not offer Visa card per their website. Perhaps they did in the past. They have Mastercard with 5% groceries/gas and stated limit (which I ...
by serbeer
Sat Aug 30, 2014 12:19 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New 2% cash back Mastercard from Citi
Replies: 237
Views: 32514

Re: Possible formula error for 'Total-Unbalanced (N) values

Please check formula in cells C77-G77 in the Compare_Portfolios sheet (version 14d). I believe the first cell reference should C$58 through G$58 to index each column rather than $C$58 under the "Total-Unbalanced (N)" values. Confirmed (in version 13 d). Sharp eye Steve. Most people will n...
by serbeer
Fri Aug 29, 2014 10:40 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Spreadsheet for backtesting (includes TrevH's data)
Replies: 610
Views: 382532

Re: What are you up YTD?

75/25
+7.7%
by serbeer
Tue Aug 26, 2014 5:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What are you up YTD?
Replies: 213
Views: 18600

Re: Implementing Two-Factor Authentication for Fidelity Acco

The problem with Yubikey (and the reason I asked Fidelity for Verisign hardware token instead) is that Yubikey requires access to USB port, and while it is avaialble 95% of the time, the remaining 5% I may want to access Fidelity from terminal where the computer itself, and USB port on it is not ava...
by serbeer
Tue Aug 26, 2014 10:00 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Implementing Two-Factor Authentication for Fidelity Accounts
Replies: 48
Views: 12711

Re: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?

One more thing... Let's say you have a $2 million umbrella policy like I had. You sell a house that you know has $1 million in defects without disclosing it. Are you saying your insurance company would be obligated to defend you? What an unbelievable "Get out of jail" free card this would...
by serbeer
Thu Aug 21, 2014 4:48 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?
Replies: 20
Views: 1691

Re: Implementing Two-Factor Authentication for Fidelity Acco

Well that's interesting. I have MUCH less than $250K outside of my rollover IRA and rollover Roth IRA and I have two-factor authentication on my accounts. I have way more than $250K in total but the vast bulk of my retirement money is in tax advantaged accounts. Did Fidelity screw up when they gave...
by serbeer
Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Implementing Two-Factor Authentication for Fidelity Accounts
Replies: 48
Views: 12711

Re: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?

I was the victim of a frivolous lawsuit that went on for nearly two years. ... Total bill ended up being about $35,000. If you don't mind me asking, did you have an umbrella insurance at the time? If so, why didn't you let their lawyers handle the case? Yes, I have a $2MM umbrella policy that I hav...
by serbeer
Thu Aug 21, 2014 2:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?
Replies: 20
Views: 1691

Re: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?

epitomist wrote:I was the victim of a frivolous lawsuit that went on for nearly two years. ... Total bill ended up being about $35,000.


If you don't mind me asking, did you have an umbrella insurance at the time? If so, why didn't you let their lawyers handle the case?
by serbeer
Thu Aug 21, 2014 11:49 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?
Replies: 20
Views: 1691

Re: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?

Definately consult an attorney, but in attempt to be more helpful than other responses, I can tell you that in IL, where I live, in civil cases (non-IRS): - 401K,Rollover IRA/Roth, and 529 plans are protected 100% - IRA/ROTH are protected up to $1M - Houses are protected only up to $15K (but obviusl...
by serbeer
Wed Aug 20, 2014 12:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What assets are protected from state court proceedings?
Replies: 20
Views: 1691

Re: 529 - in-state only up to deduction amount?

Forget about the state tax deduction. You will be living with the fund you chose and its expense ratio for up to 18 years. Pick the best. A one time deduction on only the state taxes is insignificant in the big picture......Gordon Edit...I fund 6 of the 529 plans for grandchildren using the Nevada ...
by serbeer
Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:50 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 - in-state only up to deduction amount?
Replies: 9
Views: 669

Re: Which is King: Income Stream or $ Invested

$ invested. Because you can always turn it into income stream through SPIA, but not the other way around (at least not even close to market rate).
by serbeer
Tue Jul 29, 2014 2:46 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which is King: Income Stream or $ Invested
Replies: 52
Views: 4760
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