Search found 383 matches

by Afty
Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wifi Router Advice
Replies: 34
Views: 2639

Re: Wifi Router Advice

http://thewirecutter.com/reviews/best-wi-fi-router/

(The Wirecutter generally has good reviews for electronics)
by Afty
Fri Feb 17, 2017 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Life insurance policy on kids - prudent?
Replies: 35
Views: 1961

Re: Life insurance policy on kids - prudent?

TxAg wrote:Nope.

To expound on this: The purpose of life insurance is to replace income that your family would need upon your death. Kids don't generate income, hence they don't need life insurance.

So nope.
by Afty
Fri Feb 17, 2017 6:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with cash set aside for taxes next year?
Replies: 7
Views: 523

Re: What to do with cash set aside for taxes next year?

I would stick with either the savings account or a CD to avoid any risk in such a short term. It looks like 1 yr CDs are at 1.25%. You can get 1.05% in a Goldman Sachs Bank savings account.
by Afty
Wed Feb 15, 2017 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investing Advice for Baby/Infant
Replies: 15
Views: 1173

Re: Investing Advice for Baby/Infant

We do both a 529 and UTMA for each kid. We fund the 529s, and gifts from relatives, etc., go into the UTMAs.
by Afty
Tue Feb 14, 2017 8:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogleheads not the norm?
Replies: 116
Views: 10106

Re: Bogleheads not the norm?

I think one of the main benefits of Bogleheads is to normalize the behavior of living below your means, avoiding debt, and staying the course with your investments. It can be difficult to stick with these principles when everyone else you know is living paycheck to paycheck, so having a forum full o...
by Afty
Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Closed my Roth IRA due to political uncertainty - mistake???
Replies: 102
Views: 5672

Re: Closed my Roth IRA due to political uncertainty - mistake???

I worry about losing principal because.... Hmmmm.... I don't really have a good answer. I guess losing some principal is just par for the course when having money in the market. You should read about loss aversion . It's irrational, but we all do it. The key is to know that it exists and to be able...
by Afty
Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit cards vs. Cash
Replies: 123
Views: 6403

Re: Credit cards vs. Cash

We use credit cards and do not carry cash. I believe the research that we would spend less if we used only cash, but we keep our spending under control anyway and hit our savings goals, so I see no harm in it.
by Afty
Tue Feb 14, 2017 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogleheads not the norm?
Replies: 116
Views: 10106

Re: Bogleheads not the norm?

"Bogleheads not the norm" is the understatement of the year.
by Afty
Tue Feb 14, 2017 9:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How & when to sell lots of a single stock with huge capital gains
Replies: 40
Views: 2680

Re: How & when to sell lots of a single stock with huge capital gains

I agree with the suggestions to donate appreciated shares. You mentioned that they will retire in a few years. They could also just hang onto the FB stock until they retire, then start selling it. Presumably they will be in a lower tax bracket then. I would also be worried with such a large amount c...
by Afty
Sat Feb 11, 2017 4:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Convince Wife for Honda Odyssey
Replies: 48
Views: 2631

Re: Convince Wife for Honda Odyssey

Propose that you rent a minivan and she drives it for a week. If she still wants the SUV, then go with the SUV.

We recently had a minivan as a rental, and it really changed our minds about them. They are super convenient and really great with kids.
by Afty
Sat Feb 11, 2017 3:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPhone SE 16GB - is memory adequate?
Replies: 44
Views: 1844

Re: iPhone SE 16GB - is memory adequate?

I actually made the mistake of buying a 16 GB iPhone SE for my wife, and it was not sufficient -- she quickly filled it with pictures and was constantly fooling with backing up the photos. More than once she missed a photo op of our kids because the memory filled up. I bit the bullet and traded it i...
by Afty
Mon Feb 06, 2017 12:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What other investment options I can use to save more
Replies: 18
Views: 2041

Re: What other investment options I can use to save more

Is the $24k 401k partially for a mega backdoor Roth? If so, can't you contribute up to $54k?

Barring that I would start a taxable account rather than contribute more to the 529. Don't let the tax tail wag the dog.
by Afty
Thu Feb 02, 2017 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should you stop using your antivirus software?
Replies: 36
Views: 2504

Re: Should you stop using your antivirus software?

The problem is not the idea of AV software, but the fact that AV vendors often don't know what they're doing and do hacky things that actually introduce vulnerabilities. The article mentions a number of serious vulnerabilities in Symantec/Norton antivirus products. There was a critical vulnerability...
by Afty
Sun Jan 29, 2017 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer Delaying 2016 401k Match
Replies: 17
Views: 1459

Re: Employer Delaying 2016 401k Match

I think you guys are being too easy on the employer. While this might be technically legal, it makes for a pretty crappy 401k plan if your employer can just unilaterally declare there's no match for a given year, or pay it whenever they feel like. There are other companies out there that do not try ...
by Afty
Sat Jan 28, 2017 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nissan? (Cars.)
Replies: 52
Views: 3312

Re: Nissan? (Cars.)

I have two answers for you. The first is the boring, but better answer: Look at the data. Check Consumer Reports and look at the reliability ratings for the models you're interested in. We can all tell you our anecdotes, but each is just a single data point. The second is my anecdotes. I grew up in ...
by Afty
Tue Jan 24, 2017 1:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to do with bonus
Replies: 12
Views: 1537

Re: What to do with bonus

Meg77 wrote:4. Make all charitable donations in the largest year(s) of expected income. Minimize donations in lower earning years.

She could open a donor advised fund to front load charitable contributions to the high income year, then disperse the funds in lower income years.
by Afty
Tue Jan 24, 2017 1:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Phishing Email after Order
Replies: 16
Views: 1917

Re: Amazon Phishing Email after Order

It's random. Spammers send out millions of these. By sheer chance some of them are going to go to people who just ordered something from Amazon.
by Afty
Sat Jan 21, 2017 8:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone tried Cenegenics?
Replies: 5
Views: 793

Re: Anyone tried Cenegenics?

That website screams "snake oil" to me.
by Afty
Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Doing email with a Chromebook
Replies: 16
Views: 1335

Re: Doing email with a Chromebook

Verizon has a web email interface: https://webmail.verizon.com/

You're not locked into Gmail. Think of a Chromebook as a computer with only one app -- a web browser. You can do anything you can do on a normal computer through a web browser.
by Afty
Thu Jan 12, 2017 12:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: thoughts about financial advisors comments regarding roth 401k
Replies: 30
Views: 3275

Re: thoughts about financial advisors comments regarding roth 401k

If (1) you are a resident, and (2) you post on Bogleheads, there's a good chance you will save enough to be in a higher tax bracket in retirement. I think a Roth 401k would be a good choice for you right now. I assume that once you become an attending, you will use a traditional 401k, so you'll end ...
by Afty
Wed Jan 11, 2017 12:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to politely fire my financial advisor
Replies: 66
Views: 6748

Re: How to politely fire my financial advisor

I did it over the phone. I prepared a little spiel and got really worked up about it. In reality, my advisor knew what was coming -- he had already gotten signals when I started asking about fees, index investing, etc. He didn't push back at all and it was actually quite pleasant.
by Afty
Sun Jan 08, 2017 7:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The funk - gym clothes
Replies: 46
Views: 4053

Re: The funk - gym clothes

There are special detergents for funky gym clothes. I've used Nathan Sport-Wash before with good results.
by Afty
Sun Jan 08, 2017 12:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?
Replies: 57
Views: 4140

Re: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?

It's not the problem with technologies but how companies are handling database with people's fingerprints. Just like Yahoo users didn't lose their password, but Yahoo itself lost its users' passwords and other personal information. I think the fingerprint technology is safe and vanguard is trustwor...
by Afty
Sat Jan 07, 2017 1:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?
Replies: 57
Views: 4140

Re: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?

Note also that phones occasionally ask for the PIN even when you are using fingerprint authentication. This prevents extended misuse even if attackers can duplicate your fingerprints.
by Afty
Fri Jan 06, 2017 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One 360 Money Market and External Accounts
Replies: 7
Views: 736

Re: Capital One 360 Money Market and External Accounts

The money market account limits you to 6 withdrawals/transactions per month; this is a standard limitation on savings accounts. This may make it infeasible to use it for frequent recurring payments.
by Afty
Fri Jan 06, 2017 12:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?
Replies: 57
Views: 4140

Re: Is Iphone/Ipad fingerprint signin reasonably secure?

I'm not a fan of the fingerprint id for logins. I can change passwords, but, if for any reason now or in the future, my fingerprint is compromised, I can't change it ever. The fingerprint on your phone is only stored locally, so it is only good on that one device. I.e. if someone steals your finger...
by Afty
Tue Jan 03, 2017 2:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Younger people funding 529 Plans?
Replies: 109
Views: 7514

Re: Are Younger people funding 529 Plans?

Few people in general fund 529s. 3% of all investors, and only 7% of those who expect major educational expenses in the next 5-10 years. I think most people are either not saving at all, or (correctly) prioritizing their retirement funds. http://www.howtogeek.com/224342/how-to-clean-install-windows-...
by Afty
Mon Jan 02, 2017 7:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 48
Views: 6026

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

FWIW, Google recently published a paper on their switch from OTPs to U2F (security keys) for all employees. The switch was a huge success, reducing account compromises while improving usability. (I acknowledge that Google employees are a very different user population than Vanguard customers.) http:...
by Afty
Mon Jan 02, 2017 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Luck with DirectTV Now?
Replies: 35
Views: 4257

Re: Luck with DirectTV Now?

I signed up for DIRECTV Now and have been using it for a week or so. It's been great for me so far, much better than Sling. No buffering and good picture quality. I've been mostly using it from the browser and on my Chromecast. I haven't tried PlayStation Vue, but I've heard good things. I used to s...
by Afty
Mon Jan 02, 2017 5:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone looking at the GM EV2 aka Chevy Bolt (not Volt)?
Replies: 12
Views: 1048

Re: Anyone looking at the GM EV2 aka Chevy Bolt (not Volt)?

I'm considering getting one. I get free charging at work, and the carpool lane sticker (CA) would really help with my commute. I will probably wait for the 2018 model to shake out the early bugs though, since our current cars are running fine.
by Afty
Sun Dec 25, 2016 3:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I being smart with this car purchase?
Replies: 58
Views: 4943

Re: Am I being smart with this car purchase?

I would not buy an i3 right now. The Chevy Bolt is about to come out, and IMO it's going to make every other non-Tesla EV obsolete. It has 2-3x the range of any non-Tesla EV, but costs only $30k after the federal tax rebate. Motor Trend just picked it for their Car of the Year . If I were you and in...
by Afty
Sun Dec 25, 2016 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I contact my landlady for lease renewal ?
Replies: 18
Views: 2366

Re: Should I contact my landlady for lease renewal ?

I don't see any harm in asking. My guess is that she has just forgotten that renewal time has come up.
by Afty
Sat Dec 24, 2016 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I Buy an IPhone 5S?
Replies: 36
Views: 3148

Re: Should I Buy an IPhone 5S?

I agree that if you can get a 5s in good condition for $150, that's hard to beat. But if buying from EBay, I would be concerned about battery life and possible stolen phones.

The SE is an excellent phone. It's basically a 6s in a 5/5s-sized body. My wife has one and loves hers.
by Afty
Sat Dec 24, 2016 8:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: too aggressive with college saving for the kids?
Replies: 15
Views: 2345

Re: too aggressive with college saving for the kids?

We save a bit less in the 529s and aim to have $150k in each when the kids are college aged. We plan to cash flow whatever is not covered by the 529s.
by Afty
Thu Dec 22, 2016 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I volunteer while on short term disability?
Replies: 27
Views: 1418

Re: Can I volunteer while on short term disability?

At our company you would not be allowed to work while on short term disability, because part of short term disability is paid by the state of CA, and if you can work even a bit, they think you can work 100%. We actually had this issue with an employee who was out on SDI. He continued to work on his ...
by Afty
Mon Dec 19, 2016 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hard Endeavor/Exercise in Middle Age
Replies: 118
Views: 7188

Re: Hard Endeavor/Exercise in Middle Age

+1 running. I also hated it as a kid, but I picked it up again in my mid-20s and have been doing it pretty seriously for the last 10 years or so. There's a mental hurdle you have to get over around wanting to push hard on every run vs. holding back -- if every run sucks, you're not going to be able ...
by Afty
Mon Dec 19, 2016 11:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Inheriting individual equities--please help
Replies: 13
Views: 717

Re: Inheriting individual equities--please help

Keeping these individual stocks will complicate your tax returns needlessly. I would sell now. I would research the muni bonds. The market can be quite opaque, so it is hard to determine if the broker is getting you a fair price. +1. Sell the stocks, research the muni bonds. Muni bonds are less liq...
by Afty
Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on SUV for retirement.
Replies: 54
Views: 4655

Re: Thoughts on SUV for retirement.

I personally would not get a GX unless you are planning on off-roading. The GX is a real body-on-frame SUV that will be great off-road but makes compromises on-road. I am not sure what those compromises are? I've heard some of these arguments when I asked opinions too, mostly from people who haven'...
by Afty
Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on SUV for retirement.
Replies: 54
Views: 4655

Re: Thoughts on SUV for retirement.

I'm a big fan of Mazda, and the CX-5 and CX-3 are both excellent. We love ours that we own in Japan. (Here all Mazda are diesel, which is welcome because the engines have more power and lower cost fuel.) Mazda has a new CX-9 that has 3 rows and gets excellent reviews. Also consider an Infiniti QX60...
by Afty
Sat Dec 17, 2016 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sous Vide?
Replies: 41
Views: 4417

Re: Sous Vide?

No offense taken, I agree it is operator error. Problem is I don't cook steak often enough to fine tune the process. And I forget what I did the last time by the time I cook steak the next time. :annoyed I keep a document with notes on how I cook things and how they turned out. Then when I cook som...
by Afty
Fri Dec 16, 2016 11:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Grandparent wants to max gift 529, but Im confused.
Replies: 20
Views: 1860

Re: Grandparent wants to max gift 529, but Im confused.

One other possibility is for grandma to max out her yearly gift exclusion now, and when your daughter is in college, she can pay tuition directly to the school. Tuition paid directly to the school does not count as a gift. All of this assumes she wants to gift as much as possible to avoid estate tax...
by Afty
Fri Dec 16, 2016 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideal two vehicle combo?
Replies: 73
Views: 6273

Re: Ideal two vehicle combo?

I don't try to pretend that my preference for a manual is practical in any way. I just think it's more fun.
by Afty
Fri Dec 16, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideal two vehicle combo?
Replies: 73
Views: 6273

Re: Ideal two vehicle combo?

We have two young kids with no plans for a 3rd. My wife drives a Kia Sorento 3-row SUV, and I drive an Infiniti G35 sedan with a manual. IMO it's an ideal two vehicle combo for 2 kids. I have a fun-but-practical car to drive day to day, and we have the SUV for trips or ferrying around our kids' frie...
by Afty
Sat Dec 10, 2016 12:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 48
Views: 6026

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

Is there a link to an explanation of why Yubikey is preferable to the current 2-factor method of receiving a code? There are a few reasons: 1) It's easy to pretend to be someone else and convince the telephone company to send your SMSes somewhere else. See https://www.wired.com/2016/06/hey-stop-usi...
by Afty
Sat Dec 10, 2016 10:37 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 48
Views: 6026

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

Is there a link to an explanation of why Yubikey is preferable to the current 2-factor method of receiving a code? There are a few reasons: 1) It's easy to pretend to be someone else and convince the telephone company to send your SMSes somewhere else. See https://www.wired.com/2016/06/hey-stop-usi...
by Afty
Wed Dec 07, 2016 11:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone still upgrading their PC build? (Not replacing the machine)
Replies: 41
Views: 2502

Re: Anyone still upgrading their PC build? (Not replacing the machine)

I'm sort of a lapsed PC gamer. I still enjoy it but don't have as much time to play these days. Every couple of years I get the bug again and go through a round of PC upgrades so I can play the newest games. Recently I've upgraded the following: ⋅  Monitor: 23" 1080p --> 27" 4k &...
by Afty
Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retirement with $8M in investments
Replies: 164
Views: 19399

Re: Retirement with $8M in investments

Money is never enough. You ask W Buffet what he is satisfied with his $100bil. He is 80s and still worry about that 100bil is enough for his retirement. This is my favorite article about that: http://www.theatlantic.com/magazine/archive/2011/04/secret-fears-of-the-super-rich/308419/ "Roughly 1...
by Afty
Mon Dec 05, 2016 1:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sous Vide?
Replies: 41
Views: 4417

Re: Sous Vide?

+1 on the Anova, Cambro, and zip-lock bag recommendations. I have that setup and use it once or twice a week. I use a cast iron skillet for searing. Cooked a pork loin last night, and it came out incredibly tender. Also did a turkey breast for Thanksgiving, and it was almost too tender -- next time ...
by Afty
Sun Dec 04, 2016 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 32 GB or 128GB storage for a new smartphone?
Replies: 35
Views: 2880

Re: 32 GB or 128GB storage for a new smartphone?

FWIW, I have 32 GB on my Nexus 6P and around 8 GB free after a year of use. I'm a pretty heavy user as well. I do use Google Photos to back up my photos and videos, though I haven't deleted a single photo from my phone since I got it. With a bit of cleanup I'm pretty sure I could free up 4-5 GB. How...

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