Search found 751 matches

by AAA
Tue Aug 15, 2017 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backup of Sensitive Information
Replies: 32
Views: 1855

Re: Backup of Sensitive Information

Not trying to be too pedantic about this, but this is an important point and a fundamental principle of modern encryption: the key is not stored in the dmg file. That Wikipedia reference is way over my head but I think I understand what you are saying. If the password for my encrypted file is Hello...
by AAA
Mon Aug 14, 2017 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How useful is a home security system?
Replies: 51
Views: 2997

Re: How useful is a home security system?

Last Saturday, when my wife and I went to a friend's house for dinner and my 20 year old son was sleeping in his room, some burglars smashed the double glass of my backdoor, entered the house, thoroughly searched every rooms except my son's room, found my safe, pried it open, and took away the cash...
by AAA
Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backup of Sensitive Information
Replies: 32
Views: 1855

Re: Backup of Sensitive Information

You can create a .dmg file and put in your dropbox folder. Dropbox just knows about your encrypted file, the file is accessed locally on your mac, your dmg password is never sent to dropbox. In further researching this, I was told that the .dmg encryption password is part of the .dmg file and so te...
by AAA
Sat Aug 12, 2017 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: E-delivery of transaction confirmations
Replies: 12
Views: 807

Re: E-delivery of transaction confirmations

Same here, and since I was a new customer when I signed us up, we have never once received a snail mail confirmation from Vanguard. I have bought and sold mutual funds, ETFs, brokered CDs, treasury bonds, TIPs, and corporate bonds inside our IRAs. I have bought and sold mutual funds and ETFs in our...
by AAA
Sat Aug 12, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: E-delivery of transaction confirmations
Replies: 12
Views: 807

Re: E-delivery of transaction confirmations

Sidney wrote:
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:57 pm
Was this in an IRA or a taxable account?
IRA.
by AAA
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: E-delivery of transaction confirmations
Replies: 12
Views: 807

E-delivery of transaction confirmations

Although I have opted for e-delivery of such things, today I received a transaction confirmation in paper mail that listed the details of a CD purchase at Fidelity. I don't like this as the mail has been spotty in my neighborhood, with people too often getting each other's mail. A Fidelity rep told ...
by AAA
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backup of Sensitive Information
Replies: 32
Views: 1855

Backup of Sensitive Information

I've read some threads on this topic, but things change quickly in this arena so I'm not sure if prior recommendations are up to date. Also, I have a very specific situation - I am using a Mac and have created an encrypted USB drive on which I store financial records. So I insert it into the compute...
by AAA
Tue Aug 08, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Seems like both Stocks and bonds have equal risk now...
Replies: 26
Views: 3141

Re: Seems like both Stocks and bonds have equal risk now...

JBTX wrote:If it is an inflation scare, then the risk is probably more gradual but will affect both negatively.
This has always confused me. Stock are supposed to be the better instrument for weathering inflation, yet it seems the stock market responds negatively to any whiff of higher inflation.
by AAA
Sun Aug 06, 2017 5:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LastPass Premium price increasing
Replies: 32
Views: 2776

Re: LastPass Premium price increasing

I used Excel a long time ago for my passwords. It was a hassle to use as well as to keep in sync across multiple drives so I wouldn't have a single point of failure if I lost it. At the time it wasn't very secure, mostly because passwording an Excel spreadsheet was terrible security. Just to clarif...
by AAA
Sun Aug 06, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LastPass Premium price increasing
Replies: 32
Views: 2776

Re: LastPass Premium price increasing

Can someone explain the advantage to using something like LastPass? I keep an Excel file with my passwords on encrypted USB flash drives. I don't like the idea of trusting anyone else with such things.
by AAA
Thu Aug 03, 2017 2:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help: Fidelity or Vanguard
Replies: 33
Views: 2395

Re: Help: Fidelity or Vanguard

- Roll all my 401K plan from prior employers to tRIA at Vanguard (~150K deductible and ~$20K non deductible) If you mean that there is $150K of pre-tax and $20K of after-tax money in the 401K, then my understanding is what is normally done is to move the $150K into a tIRA and the $40K into a Roth I...
by AAA
Thu Aug 03, 2017 6:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate
Replies: 6
Views: 686

Re: CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate

By the way what I did was to put half of my fixed income in a stable value fund, which effectively has zero duration. This effectively shortens my duration. These funds are coming from a stable value fund as I can get equal or better yield with CD's and they are insured. Also, the stable value fund...
by AAA
Thu Aug 03, 2017 6:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate
Replies: 6
Views: 686

Re: CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate

With direct CDs your worst case loss (the early withdrawal penalty) is easy to compute. So you could compute the break even that is more costly than accepting a lower yield by shortening the duration. Then consult your magic 8 ball to find the optimal strategy. These would be brokered CD's, so earl...
by AAA
Wed Aug 02, 2017 9:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate
Replies: 6
Views: 686

CD Ladder Duration in Current Interest Rate Climate

I will have some funds soon that I planned to use for a 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5 year CD ladder. I am wondering, given the current rising interest rate environment, whether I should shorten the ladder to either 3 or 4 years. I of course am opening myself up to being accused of trying to time the CD market, ...
by AAA
Wed Aug 02, 2017 9:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non Stick frying pan
Replies: 56
Views: 3550

Re: Non Stick frying pan

They're all terrible, every single one of them, at least as far as durability goes. I and others have been down the road you seek to follow. It leads only to frustration. That's what we have found. They all end up with scratches sooner or later. I finally convinced my wife to use a stainless steel ...
by AAA
Fri Jul 21, 2017 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2656

Re: Humid basement

An outside possibility: is there a leak in your unfinished portion, or crawl space, that you can't easily access? No leak in unfinished portion and there is no crawlspace. But that does raise the question about how the humidity gets into the basement (which is partly underground since the house is ...
by AAA
Thu Jul 20, 2017 2:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2656

Re: Humid basement

Thanks for this thread I checked on our dehumidifier we have in our basement. It must have failed recently, So I bought a new one, placed it and just put a drain hose on it. This is our 3rd dehumidifier over 30 years and we are happy with their performance. We have gas burning furnace (baseboard he...
by AAA
Wed Jul 19, 2017 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books not to read.
Replies: 155
Views: 11886

Re: Books not to read.

The Art of the Deal. I confess I have never read it, but I see it is rated 4.6 out of 5.0 on Amazon based on 2,841 reviews. Have you actually read this book, or are you just making a political statement? Me be political? Why, that's against the rules of the forum you know. Also note that there has ...
by AAA
Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books not to read.
Replies: 155
Views: 11886

Re: Books not to read.

The Art of the Deal.
by AAA
Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity Full View usefulness?
Replies: 34
Views: 2423

Re: Fidelity Full View usefulness?

2pedals wrote:I don't really care for it. I personally don't like providing usernames and passwords to external web sites.


Same here, but I understand that others may think the added convenience outweighs the added risk.
by AAA
Mon Jul 17, 2017 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2656

Re: Humid basement

are there AC supply and return ducts in the basement that feed the upstairs? If so, you should be able to tap into them for a supply and return. Not sure if that will fix the humidity issue, but it would get cold air to the basement. Have you had a HVAC tech out to the house? All the AC ducts are a...
by AAA
Mon Jul 17, 2017 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2656

Humid basement

Our house has central air conditioning except for the basement. During the dog days of summer, the basement is hot and humid and just has a grungy feel to it. For example, at midday today the humidity in the air conditioned area is 50% and it’s 68% in the basement, with the same temperature, 73 degr...
by AAA
Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can one delay medicare?
Replies: 9
Views: 681

Re: Can one delay medicare?

Regarding Medicare, I just turned 65, but am still covered by my company insurance plan so I signed up for Part A only which is free. I'll sign up for other parts when I'm not longer covered by our plan. Part A is free, but you may or may not be aware that you cannot contribute to an HSA if you hav...
by AAA
Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stop contributing to 529 on 50% chance grandparents pay
Replies: 42
Views: 3006

Re: Stop contributing to 529 on 50% chance grandparents pay

I've got a 3 year old and a 1 year old, each with about $50k in their 529 accounts. I now believe there is a 50% my in-laws will pay for my kids' college. It's not clear to me how you arrived at the 50% probability. Did they say they would do it, or are you just guessing they will? If the former, c...
by AAA
Thu Jul 06, 2017 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verizon- Why do they treat old customers worse?
Replies: 47
Views: 5207

Re: Verizon- Why do they treat old customers worse?

I can understand using lower prices to get new customers, but it does rankle me to be charged more for being a long-time FIOS user. I usually call up their "retention" department once a year to complain when some little discount they gave me expires and they usually placate me, although if...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water bill outlier. Leaky Toilet help
Replies: 17
Views: 1705

Re: Water bill outlier. Leaky Toilet help

I've used this in a couple of toilets recently for slow leaks that would occasionally cause the toilet to refill a little by itself: https://www.amazon.com/Korky-2003BP-EasyFix-Toilet-Flapper/dp/B001ARJR8S You put the black flush valve seat on the existing one using the silicone. Then the flapper s...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 2:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1831

Re: To shred or not to shred, that is the question

Be careful about putting lots of paper in an indoor fireplace. It the flames extend too far up the flue, they can catch any creosote on fire and burn your house down. Not an option for me. We've lived in this house for almost 30 years and never once lit the fireplace (though we did have a chimney s...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1831

Re: To shred or not to shred, that is the question

Stick the bag into the garage until your town sponsors a shredding event. My town has one twice a year where they bring in a huge industrial shredder and it literally can shred an entire car load of documents in seconds. I've done that before also. In fact, last time it was mainly my mom's document...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1831

Re: To shred or not to shred, that is the question

Toos the insurance. You can probably toss the checks too since the account has been closed for a long time.(hasn't it?). Yes, all accounts have been closed for a long time. I was thinking the insurance EOB's are probably the least risky things in there, and they possibly make up the majority of the...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1831

To shred or not to shred, that is the question

My mom passed away about 12 years ago and I finally went through a box of papers she had from a few years before I started to take over her finances. These are mostly Medicare and other insurance statements, a few tax returns from the mid-90's to early 2000's, stacks of canceled checks and bank/brok...
by AAA
Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Generic camera battery?
Replies: 20
Views: 1323

Re: Generic camera battery?

I usually feel comfortable buying a generic battery from a reputable dealer such as B&H, figuring that they've done due diligence in selecting what they sell. If fact, my recent DSLR purchase came with a second lithium-ion battery, the Watson brand. I've never had an issue with such batteries. N...
by AAA
Tue Jul 04, 2017 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water bill outlier. Leaky Toilet help
Replies: 17
Views: 1705

Re: Water bill outlier. Leaky Toilet help

I've used this in a couple of toilets recently for slow leaks that would occasionally cause the toilet to refill a little by itself: https://www.amazon.com/Korky-2003BP-EasyFix-Toilet-Flapper/dp/B001ARJR8S You put the black flush valve seat on the existing one using the silicone. Then the flapper sh...
by AAA
Tue Jul 04, 2017 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?
Replies: 149
Views: 13634

Re: Are you finding any good values at Amazon anymore?

I know they recently reduced the amount you have to spend for free shipping, but before that and to some extent even now for small items I often go to eBay and find it at a relatively low price and often with free shipping. I've ordered a lot of (mostly used) books that way also, including textbooks.
by AAA
Fri Jun 30, 2017 9:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 2 Bond Questions
Replies: 20
Views: 1885

Re: 2 Bond Questions

I 1. Holding long term bonds is necessarily bad. Nobody really knows what direction interest rates are going to know. What's important is that you understand the risk and the return. If interest rates rise over the next few years, you'll lose some principal. However, if you hold it for the long ter...
by AAA
Thu Jun 29, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting a new cooktop, gas vs electric?
Replies: 72
Views: 3869

Re: Getting a new cooktop, gas vs electric?

With gas, especially high powered gas cooktops, make sure your ventilation will be adequate. +1 We had to replace our stove a few years ago and I looked into converting to gas. Admittedly, I worry about these things more than most people, but in researching gas ovens I read that natural gas can con...
by AAA
Thu Jun 29, 2017 10:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry [Brokerage Services]
Replies: 146
Views: 15866

Re: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry

It's been a while since my account was upgraded, but there was an issue around check writing for the money market fund that previously was the settlement account. Since in the new format it had a new account number assigned, I had to re-apply for check writing and that had to be done in snail mail.
by AAA
Tue Jun 27, 2017 12:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Capital One Money Market Increases to 1.10% APY
Replies: 5
Views: 840

Re: Capital One Money Market Increases to 1.10% APY

Thanks for the heads-up but upon reflection it's indicative of how low rates have been for so long that it's even newsworthy.
by AAA
Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good camera - new baby coming
Replies: 64
Views: 4158

Re: Good camera - new baby coming

Finance-MD wrote:I was commenting on 'easy to use.'
I personally recommend a mirrorless camera or a good p&s such as the rx100.
Did you read my entire post?
I take pictures of toddlers and animals with my iPhone all the time.


And I was commenting on responsiveness (shutter lag, etc.).
by AAA
Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: is luxury car a smarter purchase?
Replies: 102
Views: 7049

Re: is luxury car a smarter purchase?

Today, buying any car other than a self-driving car(Tesla?) is not a smart purchase. There is a revolution coming in the automobile world. Few more years, and all current car ownerships and insurance models will be history. We are living in the last years of manual driving. I've seen predictions su...
by AAA
Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good camera - new baby coming
Replies: 64
Views: 4158

Re: Good camera - new baby coming

If you want 'easy-to-use' - i would definitely not get a SLR. iPhones are so easy to use, and I find that most people who go the SLR route just give up; just not worth it. I'm not sure of your statistics regarding SLR's, but as the OP's child grows into an active toddler he may find that a smartpho...
by AAA
Thu Jun 15, 2017 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step
Replies: 15
Views: 1179

Re: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step

And as an aside, this is also why it isn't always easy for individuals to know which employer health insurance option is the best fit for a specific family...high deductible,co-pay, etc.. It really comes down to crunching numbers, looking at family health history and medical costs for family member...
by AAA
Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: internet cost saving strategy
Replies: 38
Views: 3132

Re: internet cost saving strategy

Verizon (and probably all other providers) has a "retention department." Call and ask to speak with them directly. Ask about any discount they can give you. It's worth a try if you haven't already done so.
by AAA
Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step
Replies: 15
Views: 1179

Re: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step

No, it's the insurance company that makes the determination. We spoke with HR during the enrollment period to verify that. Maybe it's just a matter of semantics, but in my case, eligibility had to be verified by the insurance company but it was my company's policy that they were following. It could...
by AAA
Thu Jun 15, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GE dishwasher rack coating
Replies: 18
Views: 1015

Re: GE dishwasher rack coating

We have had little luck with different brands of dishwashers over the years. Our latest one started giving us trouble after what I'm sure is less than five years. Frankly, with just two of us in the house most of the time, I find it easy to just wash the dishes by hand and we haven't bothered gettin...
by AAA
Wed Jun 14, 2017 8:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step
Replies: 15
Views: 1179

Re: Disabled dependent son ( temporarily?) on health insurance past age 26. Need input for next step

Isn't it your spouse's company's policy that determines eligibility and not the particular carrier that they select any given year? Note that even with the same carrier you may have to have coverage re-certified annually. Also, is it possible that coverage would continue even when your spouse is on ...
by AAA
Tue Jun 13, 2017 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone enrolled in Part B of Medicare?
Replies: 25
Views: 1566

Re: Anyone enrolled in Part B of Medicare?

Be aware that Medicare does not have an annual out-of-pocket limit on expenses. That's why it's usually advisable to get a supplemental plan.
by AAA
Wed Jun 07, 2017 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAA Cost
Replies: 85
Views: 6775

Re: AAA Cost

Despite my username here (which is about bond ratings not roadside assistance companies ) - we dropped AAA a few years ago and went with someone else and then eventually ended up with something from our auto insurance company. You might want to check with yours to see what they offer. I don't rememb...
by AAA
Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY Toilet Repair Questions
Replies: 6
Views: 912

Re: DIY Toilet Repair Questions

Don't try to buy a look-a-like gasket. Run over to Home Depot and get a new fill valve assembly for around $8.00. That's what I did. The washer I replaced was in the supply hose that connects to the toilet. It's good to know I probably don't have to deal with the other washers between the tank and ...
by AAA
Tue Jun 06, 2017 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY Toilet Repair Questions
Replies: 6
Views: 912

DIY Toilet Repair Questions

I was replacing the fill valve and noticed that the cone washer in the supply hose was leaving black marks on my hand when it was touched, so I figured that meant it was deteriorating to some extent. I bought a small pack of various size cone washers that included some "friction rings." I ...
by AAA
Tue May 30, 2017 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 Withdrawals for Room and Board
Replies: 10
Views: 1444

Re: 529 Withdrawals for Room and Board

EATaxGuy wrote:https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/26/529

The word "employment" does not appear in section 529 of the internal revenue code.


OK, thanks.