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Re: Mac computer people (or others) need your thoughts

The program you downloaded is known as a "Trojan Horse." It's malware, but it's not a virus. All computers are vulnerable to Trojan Horses and always have been. A Trojan Horse is a malicious program that is deliberately installed by the user because he thinks it's something else, just as t...
by verbose
Thu Apr 23, 2015 11:00 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac computer people (or others) need your thoughts
Replies: 15
Views: 1285

Re: City Tax Question

I haven't lived in Ohio for several decades, but I remember the city income taxes (and I don't miss them!). I lived in one city with an income tax and worked in a different city with an income tax. In my case, the city where I worked withheld taxes as a straight 1% of earnings. I didn't need to file...
by verbose
Thu Apr 23, 2015 10:44 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: City Tax Question
Replies: 3
Views: 415

Re: Help with ideas to buy a home in a hot market

Don't discount #1. We did a double move with (just one) 5-year-old when we built our house. I would do it again becuase it actually simplified the process. Our house had languished on the market and we were having difficulty showing it with our work schedule and our poor old dog who wasn't used to b...
by verbose
Fri Apr 17, 2015 1:11 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with ideas to buy a home in a hot market
Replies: 14
Views: 1576

Re: Incorrect 1099-MISC - Options?

You noticed there is no fillable 1099-MISC. This form is actually a carbon copy that has to be ordered from the IRS, unless you own business tax software that generates and electronically transmits the forms. Small businesses can buy special software at office supply stores and hand-enter the data. ...
by verbose
Fri Apr 17, 2015 12:15 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Incorrect 1099-MISC - Options?
Replies: 3
Views: 317

Re: Last minute tax question about deductions - need help!

On your related question, if you pay the doctor's bill in 2015 for services in 2014, you deduct it in 2015 (if you are still over the 10% cap).
by verbose
Wed Apr 15, 2015 2:20 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Last minute tax question about deductions - need help!
Replies: 11
Views: 492

Re: Last minute tax question about deductions - need help!

Medical Expenses Publication: http://www.irs.gov/pub/irs-pdf/p502.pdf Relevant quote: "You can include only the medical and dental expenses you paid this year, regardless of when the services were provided. " Scanning the document, it appears that the deduction is only based on the year th...
by verbose
Wed Apr 15, 2015 2:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Last minute tax question about deductions - need help!
Replies: 11
Views: 492

Re: Experience with Apple Pay?

I've used it a few times, mostly at McDonald's. It's available in the drive-thru, but the cashier has to pick up the credit card machine and dangle it outside the window. The cashiers aren't cheerful when they do that... I'm a single-card person, and sometimes my single card has been left in the poc...
by verbose
Tue Apr 14, 2015 4:16 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience with Apple Pay?
Replies: 32
Views: 2417

Re: Cloud-based home/asset inventory program

Many of these programs work in tandem with your home computer, which you didn't identify.

I used a Mac program called Home Inventory that has companion iPhone/iPad scanner and cloud backup apps.
by verbose
Tue Apr 14, 2015 12:58 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cloud-based home/asset inventory program
Replies: 4
Views: 714

Re: Battery or Gas Lawn Mower

I have a B&D 36V battery-powered mower that I purchased last year. Before that, I'd been using a corded electric mower. I live in a community with small yards that prohibits homeowners from using gas-powered lawn equipment. I'm very happy with the battery-powered mower. With the corded mower, th...
by verbose
Tue Apr 07, 2015 2:45 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Battery or Gas Lawn Mower
Replies: 33
Views: 2088

Re: Children's Swingset

We recently got rid of our swingset after years of non-use. There were a few things that contributed to the non-use, which I will list, but the number one intractable problem was WASPS. We continually knocked down the wasp nests, but we couldn't keep the wasps from hovering about the playset. First,...
by verbose
Thu Mar 19, 2015 1:31 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Children's Swingset
Replies: 43
Views: 2729

Re: W-2 Box 12 questions

Are you sure you aren't looking at Box 14? http://taxhelpwhenyouneedit.blogspot.com/2013/02/w-2-box-14-codes-for-defense-finance.html Code K is Non-taxable dental and vision deductions Code V is Non-taxable health benefits Since those are non-taxable, you probably don't need to do anything with thos...
by verbose
Sat Mar 14, 2015 6:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: W-2 Box 12 questions
Replies: 4
Views: 937

Re: If you could send an investment message 10 years in the

Looking back at me in 2005, money advice would not have been very helpful. Given the emotional turmoil I experienced, I probably would have found a way to waste a pile of money or sabotage the strategy. I would send myself: - The name of the doctor who correctly diagnosed and definitively fixed a me...
by verbose
Thu Mar 12, 2015 10:52 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If you could send an investment message 10 years in the past
Replies: 62
Views: 4516

Re: 15 or 30 year mortgage?

Lots to think about here. Here is a little booklet that has lots of good information for new investors: http://www.etf.com/docs/IfYouCan.pdf If you want advice, I would definitely go to Vanguard and try their manager for 0.3%/year. They won't sell you expensive funds, loaded funds, 12b-1 fee funds,...
by verbose
Wed Mar 11, 2015 12:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 or 30 year mortgage?
Replies: 37
Views: 2955

Re: Adding Central Air Conditioning to very old home.

For AC, you can often just cool the top story, and cool air will fall through the rest of the house. If you plan to do this, make sure your contractor knows it and sizes the unit appropriately. We have dual-zone AC (installed during new home construction) in a hotter climate than the NE. During the...
by verbose
Wed Mar 11, 2015 9:28 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adding Central Air Conditioning to very old home.
Replies: 20
Views: 1585

Re: Buying New Used Car - Input Appreciated

We recently bought a new used car in the same price range. I wish there was a particular method to use when buying a used car vs. a new car but if there is, we didn't do it correctly. With a used car, you are buying one particular vehicle. The dealer may only have one of what you want on that lot, a...
by verbose
Tue Mar 10, 2015 2:09 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying New Used Car - Input Appreciated
Replies: 27
Views: 2154

Re: Daycare - 501c3 and paying to hold a spot

You may be able to include this amount as qualified dependent care (form 2441), whether or not it qualifies for dependent care flex spending (which can have more stringent rules). Assuming your wife does return to work in June, then the amounts you paid to hold a spot were required for her to work. ...
by verbose
Tue Mar 10, 2015 1:35 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Daycare - 501c3 and paying to hold a spot
Replies: 4
Views: 414

Re: How do you decide when to buy car?

We waited too long last time. I like to wait until a car just isn't reliable, but we had a 2004 Ford Freestar that never really met the definition of "reliable" to begin with. In retrospect, I should have been saving for a replacement from the moment I acquired that vehicle. It was a gift ...
by verbose
Mon Mar 09, 2015 3:55 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you decide when to buy car?
Replies: 50
Views: 3561

Re: Both Spouses Opened Dependent Care FSA (DCFSA) >$5000

I did that once. In my case, we both switched employers mid-year and I switched which one of us had the dependent care plan. Due to confusion with pay periods and how the company would divide the single number given over a partial year, we were over 5K by a few hundred. Submit receipts to your emplo...
by verbose
Thu Mar 05, 2015 3:18 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Both Spouses Opened Dependent Care FSA (DCFSA) >$5000
Replies: 5
Views: 535

Re: Replace or repair dishwasher

Thanks for the replies! This one is a GE. While it was builder-installed, I chose the specific model and paid for an upgrade. In 2007, it was a mid-range model. There is no particle grinder in it. I wouldn't be surprised if something is broken. One of the items I found in the sump was a large piece ...
by verbose
Sun Mar 01, 2015 4:10 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace or repair dishwasher
Replies: 26
Views: 1322

Replace or repair dishwasher

I have a dishwasher that was new in 2007. The dishwasher worked perfectly well until the summer of 2010. As soon as I bought dishwashing detergent reformulated to remove phosphates, the dishes were not cleaned. (I didn't know at the time that was the problem, but eventually figured it out.) We have ...
by verbose
Sun Mar 01, 2015 10:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace or repair dishwasher
Replies: 26
Views: 1322

Re: Turbo Tax(TT) question - 1099 MISC

Box 7 is non-employee compensation. From the instructions (link below) If the following four conditions are met, you must generally report a payment as nonemployee compensation. You made the payment to someone who is not your employee; You made the payment for services in the course of your trade or...
by verbose
Thu Feb 19, 2015 9:36 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbo Tax(TT) question - 1099 MISC
Replies: 5
Views: 577

AMT Assistant for 2014 is incorrect

FYI: If you use the IRS AMT Assistant for 2014 (see link below), when it asks for the amount on Line 47 of 1040, you need to provide the amount on Line 48 of 1040 instead (foreign tax credit). The printed worksheet "to see if you should fill in Form 6251" in the 1040 instructions is correc...
by verbose
Sat Feb 07, 2015 5:29 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AMT Assistant for 2014 is incorrect
Replies: 2
Views: 521

Re: Avoiding the Kiddie Tax on Capital Gains

Thanks, I didn't even realize it was in the Wiki! I will make sure to get this done.
by verbose
Sat Jan 24, 2015 7:57 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Avoiding the Kiddie Tax on Capital Gains
Replies: 4
Views: 552

Avoiding the Kiddie Tax on Capital Gains

My 13-year-old has a UTMA account with $2700 in unrealized capital gains because I transferred her into a new fund in early 2009 (which means she also still has a carry-over capital loss, but not nearly as much as the gain). I remember reading about the "kiddie tax" years ago, and I had in...
by verbose
Sat Jan 24, 2015 6:21 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Avoiding the Kiddie Tax on Capital Gains
Replies: 4
Views: 552

Re: St. Louis Chapter 2012+

I would also like to attend local events, and don't want to be a coordinator. So, since we lack a coordinator (which is OK), perhaps we should brainstorm what kind of event/locale would work for a get-together. I'm not even sure where to start! What do St. Louis Bogleheads think would be a good kind...
by verbose
Sat Apr 06, 2013 8:52 am
 
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: St. Louis Chapter 2012+
Replies: 29
Views: 4237

Re: Pay a speeding ticket or plead to non moving

I agree about the driving habits. I've received one ticket in my life, and it wasn't for speeding. However, when my husband is pulled over, he gets a ticket 100% of the time. I've been pulled over for valid reasons probably ten times in my life. I don't cry or anything... I just don't get a ticket.
by verbose
Fri Jan 25, 2013 8:06 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pay a speeding ticket or plead to non moving
Replies: 42
Views: 3313

Pay a speeding ticket or plead to non moving

I'm wondering how I should pay a speeding ticket. I have two choices: 1) Pay $135, get points on the license, and have an auto insurance increase of unknown quantity 2) Pay $120 to a lawyer plus about $315 in fines, no points, no insurance rate increase My husband usually gets about one ticket a yea...
by verbose
Thu Jan 24, 2013 11:06 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pay a speeding ticket or plead to non moving
Replies: 42
Views: 3313

Re: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?

My Certainteed is from 2007. Most of the people I know with cracked siding have siding from 2004-2008. We had a bit of a lull in building from 2008 -2011 while the builder went bankrupt. I'm not sure what material they're using on the latest new homes. It may not even be from the same manufacturer.
by verbose
Thu Sep 20, 2012 11:58 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?
Replies: 13
Views: 7494

Re: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?

I second the point about installation by qualified contractors. The first batch of houses sided in our neighborhood had more issues, and sooner, due to improper installation. The builder learned, and now we just have issues with the Certainteed material.
by verbose
Thu Sep 20, 2012 10:46 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?
Replies: 13
Views: 7494

Re: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?

Certainteed siding is on my house and a couple hundred other homes in my neighborhood built by the same developer. After a few years (conveniently past the full coverage warranty period) the siding will crack. On my house, the side of the house that faces the most sun is cracked all over, while the ...
by verbose
Thu Sep 20, 2012 6:32 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hardie or Certainteed Fiber Cement Siding?
Replies: 13
Views: 7494

Re: My 401K fee disclosure was released today...

Husband and I have same employer, same 401k through The Standard. I wasn't terribly surprised because it's a small company. We pay 69 bps on top of every expense ratio. There are some very low fund ERs in the 401k, such as Vanguard 500 Index Signal at 5 bps, which becomes 74 bps. I already knew the ...
by verbose
Fri Aug 31, 2012 6:38 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: My 401K fee disclosure was released today...
Replies: 26
Views: 5394

Re: health insurance "hospital" billing question

OP, you have been tricked, either by the physical therapy office, hospital billing or the insurance company. I haven't figured out which one is responsible, but somebody needed to say something to you about billing, and didn't. This has happened to me. A family member was receiving regular physical ...
by verbose
Thu Aug 16, 2012 9:52 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: health insurance "hospital" billing question
Replies: 42
Views: 4009

Re: When it is advantageous to convert to a Roth IRA?

Thanks for the replies. I've had rollover funds in TIRAs since the mid-90s. There's no way we can predict how long either of us will work for the current employer. It's a much better situation than our last few jobs, and could be many years. I'm not willing to roll into an expensive 401k just for th...
by verbose
Tue Aug 14, 2012 6:48 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When it is advantageous to convert to a Roth IRA?
Replies: 17
Views: 4244

When it is advantageous to convert to a Roth IRA?

I've been thinking for years that we should have some of our retirement assets in Roth IRAs, but it never works out. I wonder when it's best to convert existing IRAs? We are both programmers who switch jobs frequently, so most of our retirement savings are in TIRAs that have been funded by 401k roll...
by verbose
Sat Aug 11, 2012 11:31 am
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: When it is advantageous to convert to a Roth IRA?
Replies: 17
Views: 4244

Re: Adopting an adult dog

We adopted a five year old Labrador Retriever as our first dog. She was already trained and socialized (including kids and cats), though we had no idea. Being a typical Lab, she adjusted to our family within 24 hours. She has never chewed up our possessions. Until she reached age 12, we didn't have ...
by verbose
Fri Jul 20, 2012 1:37 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adopting an adult dog
Replies: 42
Views: 6262

Re: Elementary private school education a scam??

Perhaps a better question for this thread (and less likely to get it locked), would be: Do you or did you send your children to private elementary school? Why, how did it turn out and what did it cost? That information may be more useful for parents of very young children and future parents. My chil...
by verbose
Thu Jul 12, 2012 7:14 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is elementary private school education worth the price?
Replies: 104
Views: 7676

Re: Post your AA

Age: 39
Aggregate US Equities (sans REIT): 40%
Aggregate US REIT: 10%
Aggregate Intl Equities (sans REIT): 20%
Aggregate Intl REIT: 0%
Aggregate Nominal Bonds: 25%
Aggregate Inflation Bonds: 5%
Any Sector or Commodity plays: 0%
by verbose
Tue Jul 10, 2012 8:11 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Post your AA
Replies: 135
Views: 16405

Re: IT job satisfaction

My husband and I are both in IT and we are both job-hoppers. I don't know how else we'd keep our careers going. The hardest thing about it are the benefits. Staffing and consulting firms have horrible benefits, probably just a step above those for retail workers. Almost every 401k we've had consiste...
by verbose
Thu Jun 21, 2012 7:17 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IT job satisfaction
Replies: 54
Views: 6518

Re: Help with some financial basics - new to this site

1- Save a small emergency fund 2- Save $4000 3- Sell the car, use the $4k to pay the difference You're paying about $500/month for a car that you don't need and can't afford. The decision to buy it is in the past, but every day it's not for sale, you make the decision to keep it. When you need a car...
by verbose
Tue May 22, 2012 5:00 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with some financial basics - new to this site
Replies: 34
Views: 1545

Re: Investing UGMA money

My 10-year-old kid has a UGMA in Vanguard LifeStrategy Moderate Growth (VSMGX). At some point in the coming years, I will move these funds to the conservative, then the income LifeStrategy funds. See the link below for more on these funds: https://personal.vanguard.com/us/funds/vanguard/LifeStrategy...
by verbose
Sat May 12, 2012 4:15 pm
 
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing UGMA money
Replies: 2
Views: 269

Re: Are you preparing the increase in taxes for 2013?

The AMT patch has already expired for 2012. I have a tax forecast spreadsheet set up for 2012. If I use the AMT exemption that is currently law ($45,000 for joint), then we will owe $6114 in April 2013. If I use the AMT exemption from 2011 ($74,450 for joint), then we get a refund of $182. So, shoul...
by verbose
Sat Apr 28, 2012 8:22 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How are you preparing the increase in taxes for 2013?
Replies: 56
Views: 5008

Re: Strange IRS Letter

In some cases, you can leave certain fields blank and the IRS will figure your tax for you, and send you a bill or a refund. I don't know if there's a difference between zero and blank when entered in the IRS computers, thus the IRS might have figured this return needed to have tax calculated for it...
by verbose
Mon Apr 23, 2012 6:01 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strange IRS Letter
Replies: 5
Views: 1117

Re: Your Dumbest Financial Move

Dumbest financial moves, roughly in chronological order: - Throwing away a full-ride 4-year scholarship to a private university after 2 years because I was more interested in boys than college. - Not carrying collision/comp on a car that was a gift that we couldn't afford to replace, and being too p...
by verbose
Mon Apr 16, 2012 7:32 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Your Dumbest Financial Move
Replies: 166
Views: 13581

Re: Why does anyone use American Express?

I cancelled AMEX a few years ago. We were getting ready to close on a new house, so there was a lot of money moving between our accounts. I attempted to pay the AMEX bill from a money market savings using ACH, rather than wait for the transfer to checking to clear (different banks). The money market...
by verbose
Wed Mar 28, 2012 6:45 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why does anyone use American Express?
Replies: 146
Views: 69624

Re: Indoor TV Antennas?

We live on the edge of a large metro area, so an indoor antenna didn't work for us. Instead, we installed an outdoor antenna in the attic. It's in the attic for two reasons: 1) Midwestern storms would probably take it down every couple of years and 2) although federal law gives us the right to put i...
by verbose
Mon Mar 26, 2012 6:35 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Indoor TV Antennas?
Replies: 26
Views: 2515

Re: Repair or replace car?

I fell in love with my '85 Accord. I miss that car. It was rusting, the interior was crumbling, the dash vents didn't work, both bumpers were crooked (replaced several times), paint was faded on one side (other side repainted in repair) and it needed an alignment with every oil change. Yet, I feel I...
by verbose
Wed Mar 21, 2012 3:05 pm
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair or replace car?
Replies: 25
Views: 2224

Re: What are some profitable careers?

Software engineering. Requires no graduate school (even college is optional). Starting pay in the major cities is around $120k (salary + bonus + equity), but could be more if you are lucky (you join a startup and it does well) or good (raises + bigger bonuses), and will go up as your equity refresh...
by verbose
Sat Mar 17, 2012 9:48 am
 
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are some profitable careers?
Replies: 140
Views: 8418

Re: Not good places for emergency funds : CapOne, Amex

I am also trying to refinance, and I'm closing my ING Direct account after it's all over. The underwriters wanted a statement of account activity in the middle of the month. ING doesn't do that--it's simply not available. The closing has now been delayed. I'm still waiting for the February statement...
by verbose
Fri Mar 02, 2012 9:49 pm
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Not good places for emergency funds : CapOne, Amex
Replies: 47
Views: 5853

Re: Poll: Cost of cheapest option in your 401K/403B/457/etc.

I don't know the total cost of my 401k choices. I work for a contract company that provides workers to clients who don't want the expense of hiring employees. My 401k is with John Hancock. I know that all the options include a .5% management fee on top of the expense ratio. I also know that the comm...
by verbose
Sat Feb 11, 2012 9:29 am
 
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Poll: Cost of cheapest option in your 401K/403B/457/etc.?
Replies: 27
Views: 1463

Re: Many Sad Stories of the Downwardly Mobile

Maybe it's just the article's framing, but it seems like it's time for these families to stop idealizing the past. They are anchoring on past earnings. The family waiting to be foreclosed on must be living with an incredible emotional burden. I wonder if it would help them to sell almost everything ...
by verbose
Sun Feb 05, 2012 10:02 am
 
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Many Sad Stories of the Downwardly Mobile
Replies: 42
Views: 2508
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