Search found 549 matches

by JohnFiscal
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

How do I get a google account? To create an account: Go to www.gmail.com. Click Create account. The signup form will appear. ... Review Google's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, click the check box, then click Next step. Here, you'll have an opportunity to set up recovery options. ... Your acco...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Apr 18, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

How do I get a google account? To create an account: Go to www.gmail.com. Click Create account. The signup form will appear. ... Review Google's Terms of Service and Privacy Policy, click the check box, then click Next step. Here, you'll have an opportunity to set up recovery options. ... Your acco...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Things have changed, so what do I do?
Replies: 14
Views: 1925

Re: Things have changed, so what do I do?

1. I retired 7 years ago--so I presumably have missed the 'sequence of returns risk' 2. I downsized last year--so my expenses are much lower than when I first retired and I ended up with an appreciable amount from my home sale 3. I'm getting a bit older so the need for extravagant vacations or expe...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Apr 18, 2018 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

I'm thinking between Lenovo and Chromebook, what it is that Chromebook cannot do. You could get both-in-one: Lenovo model 100e Chromebook. $199 https://www3.lenovo.com/us/en/laptops/lenovo/lenovo-n-series/100e-Chromebook/p/88ELC1S9999 I think of Chromebooks as large format smart phones, tablets, et...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AMEX Membership Rewards
Replies: 6
Views: 894

Re: AMEX Membership Rewards

I switched from my personal Green Card about 4 years ago to the Amex Delta Platinum card. Mostly for the benefits for traveling on Delta, particularly on fairly regular (annual) flights to East Asia. And now I don't know... the annual free "companion fare" (domestic only) cannot be used with the "Co...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

I have deployed about 15 Lenovo laptops over the last couple of years. I like the hardware. We don't use the OEM image so I can't comment on whether the retail versions are clogged with crapware. But if you have the license key you should be able to do a clean install without all the OEM add-ons if...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please suggest a file folder type
Replies: 21
Views: 1104

Re: Please suggest a file folder type

For 35 years I used standard manila file folders, the kind with the metal clip inside. I bought a special 2-hole punch for...the metal clip prongs hold the sheets at their top. I kept these in a 2 drawer metal file cabinet, and cardboard "Banker Boxes" work quite well too and are inexpensive. I was ...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

I swear by refurbished/used computers. I have had great luck with Ebay--make sure you understand the seller's return policy. I agree to get an SSD. My current laptop was 3 years old when I bought it 3 years ago and still runs great. I don't do much more than email and web but I often have a lot of ...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PC laptops
Replies: 89
Views: 3656

Re: PC laptops

FWIW, I suggest taking a look at Lenovo. They have models in all price range. They used to build the ThinkPads for IBM, then bought that line when IBM exited the pc business. Of course, Dell, Acer, HP. And Sony Vaio is back, though pricier than your stated range. Most of those companies I'd just dea...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Apr 13, 2018 1:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Leather Checkbook
Replies: 16
Views: 801

Re: Best Leather Checkbook

I have gotten two leather checkbooks in years past by simply ordering them from the company that printed the checks. Quite nice quality and one I still use (preferring its color over the first one's).

If you want really high prestige quality then I would use internet search for "leather checkbook"
by JohnFiscal
Fri Apr 13, 2018 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quicken servers down (again)
Replies: 7
Views: 466

Re: Quicken servers down (again)

the ability to project future cash flow and track cost basis and IRR. I do all those tasks with an Excel workbook. Yes, but Excel can't download transactions and categorize them automatically. Given the number of accounts I have, manual entry is not an option. I do wish I could simply use Excel, bu...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Apr 13, 2018 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quicken servers down (again)
Replies: 7
Views: 466

Re: Quicken servers down (again)

deskjockey wrote:
Fri Apr 13, 2018 9:58 am
the ability to project future cash flow and track cost basis and IRR.
I do all those tasks with an Excel workbook.
by JohnFiscal
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with Emergency Guardianship
Replies: 4
Views: 368

Re: Help with Emergency Guardianship

bumping up since this was waaay down the thread list with no responses. I have no real words of wisdom myself to offer. Perhaps someone else will. How old is grandmother? How old are you? What other responsibilities do you have? How did you get elected for this task, why not one of her own children?...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Alternative website for those in lower tax brackets?
Replies: 59
Views: 5200

Re: Alternative website for those in lower tax brackets?

While I appreciate the wisdom and practicality of the Bogleheads forum, I often find the advice here (and other investment sites) slanted toward those with hefty investment accounts. ... I'll offer up two more: This used to be the MSN Money forum when they still had forums at msn.com. People moved ...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Apr 09, 2018 3:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund
Replies: 34
Views: 2274

Re: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund

Interesting that you have a higher overall IIR (or is that just for the single purchase?) than VGHAX, when 10 year performance of VGHAX was higher than VPMAX. Timing of the purchases may account for the difference. Besides these two, what was your IIR? Any discrepancies have to be due to timing. I ...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund
Replies: 34
Views: 2274

Re: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund

That all said and done, I have held this fund (VGHAX) since 2004-2005 (a bit late in my investing/saving career). I put in $31,375 at that time (2 purchases about 15 months apart). Last summer I was realigning accounts in preparation for upcoming retirement and sold $32K of this fund. Today my balan...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Apr 06, 2018 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund
Replies: 34
Views: 2274

Re: Entire $24,000 SEP IRA in Vanguard Health Care Fund

AAPL has beaten the healthcare fund since inception of the fund: ... Shiny expensive phones aren't going anywhere. It's obvious what the better investment is. :moneybag :greedy I think you're comparing Apples to Oranges. Investing only in AAPL potentially would be quite risky, no diversification, v...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Apr 06, 2018 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Undecided students and STEM majors
Replies: 44
Views: 3113

Re: Undecided students and STEM majors

I am an engineer and it seems unusual to me that a current student must declare a major immediately upon entering (or before). As was described, students entering the engineering curriculum may not have a perfect handle on the field they wish to go into. In my experience and observations, the first ...
by JohnFiscal
Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with math problem
Replies: 7
Views: 771

Re: Help with math problem

oops sorry. I now see that you're taking 5% monthly That makes my table incorrect. I'll update it after lunch, wife gets upset if I'm late. okay, back from lunch. and I see your later post says you draw 5% per year on a monthly draw. In that case, the table below will be fairly close n P i P + i A P...
by JohnFiscal
Thu Apr 05, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: SS Benefit Calculators?
Replies: 24
Views: 1720

Re: SS Benefit Calculators?

I have run a number of SS calculators that 'maximized' SS for us (MFJ). After spending some time doing that I then started using calculators that took into consideration SS, taxes, RMD's etc and found that my time with the SS only calculators was a waste. ...Once we came to this view we no longer s...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 03, 2018 9:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop
Replies: 53
Views: 3969

Re: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop

A suggestion: pony up the $800 now. Then you'll always have the ducting for external venting available. If the over-the-range microwave doesn't "suck" well enough (or maybe it just "sucks") then you would be in good shape upgrade later to a good hood and a microwave placed elsewhere. Just make certa...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Apr 03, 2018 8:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop
Replies: 53
Views: 3969

Re: Builder wants $800 to vent a gas cooktop

We paid more than that to have a hole bored through a CMU wall for an exterior exhaust, plus mounting a new microwave above the range. Result was very disappointing. The blower provided with a microwave just cannot compare with a range hood. I knew that going in but 'the boss' wanted that configurat...
by JohnFiscal
Sun Apr 01, 2018 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Survivor Benefit Eligibility
Replies: 4
Views: 388

Re: SS Survivor Benefit Eligibility

Her father died in February and the question is about her mother's eligibility to receive a survivor benefit. Both are/were over 70 and at least her father was receiving SS . Don't know (for sure) if her mother was receiving a SS benefit or not. I don't want to bother my SIL with more questions rig...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 30, 2018 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for Medicare - now or later?
Replies: 20
Views: 1605

Re: Applying for Medicare - now or later?

CAREFUL! When I turned 65 I wasn't sure what to do about Medicare so only signed up for Part A (it's free), figuring I'd deal with the Part B decision once I knew a more about it. That COULD have been a big mistake! When I studied a bit more and decided I DID want to sign up for Part B, I could not...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 30, 2018 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for Medicare - now or later?
Replies: 20
Views: 1605

Re: Applying for Medicare - now or later?

Thank you all for the tips and info.

Note, I do have MC Part A, which I took last year at age 65.

I think I'll proceed with Part B. It may cost me some extra cash monthly but this may just be for a short while, meaning the pain won't be too bad.
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 30, 2018 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hot water safty
Replies: 8
Views: 1011

Re: Hot water safty

Due to the potential for nasty organisms to grow in the tank...for a year...I would drain and clean and decontaminate the tank, then let it dry out. I recall reading some articles about how even Keurig "K-cup" coffee makers are prone to developing organic slime (means something is growing...is it sa...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for Medicare - now or later?
Replies: 20
Views: 1605

Applying for Medicare - now or later?

Would appreciate comments on my applying for Medicare Part B. I am still working so I'm covered under my employer's health insurance. My 66th birthday (my FRA) is in 2 months. I'll likely continue working for a month or more beyond my FRA. I have not yet determined if I actually will retire at that ...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hot water safty
Replies: 8
Views: 1011

Re: Hot water safty

personally, I wouldn't use it for drinking or cooking. I myself wouldn't even bathe with it. All sorts of bacteria and microorganisms can be growing in there, even if the water came from a municipal treatment plant a year ago. "stagnant" water is never good.
by JohnFiscal
Thu Mar 29, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is 100% VTSAX (+ bonds) the best portfolio?
Replies: 14
Views: 1540

Re: Is 100% VTSAX (+ bonds) the best portfolio?

bikechuck wrote:
Thu Mar 29, 2018 5:26 pm
What in Heaven's name is VTSAX ?
Vanguard Total Stock Market Index Fund Admiral Shares
by JohnFiscal
Wed Mar 28, 2018 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac Office 2016 download on Ebay - how so cheap?
Replies: 21
Views: 1489

Re: Mac Office 2016 download on Ebay - how so cheap?

My SO bought an Office 2007 CD-ROM install for me recently. I had a new laptop and did not want to "move up" to Office 2016 at that time. The CD-ROM was bought from Amazon. SO installed (rather tried) for me after having some problems...had to do some legwork because the new laptop didn't have a CD ...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Mar 28, 2018 10:15 am
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: A lot of heavy hitters this morning
Replies: 244
Views: 17063

Re: A lot of heavy hitters this morning

On my lunchtime walk yesterday, I found a dime in the parking lot. When I got home, I showed my wife and told her all about it. It's why we'll be able to retire with 50X spending. :D That's an awesome find! It might have been a leftover Rockefeller dime https://wealthymatters.com/2012/06/02/john-d-...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Mar 28, 2018 10:14 am
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: A lot of heavy hitters this morning
Replies: 244
Views: 17063

Re: A lot of heavy hitters this morning

not to worry. The posts I myself saw were those desperate to retire and get SS ASAP at 62. Not so heavy hitters.
by JohnFiscal
Mon Mar 26, 2018 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to Take Social Security (again...)
Replies: 62
Views: 5135

Re: When to Take Social Security (again...)

... My wife is 17 years younger than me so the odds are pretty good at least one of us is going to live long enough to put us well over the break even point in lifetime benefits. ... Friend, I feel your pain with that age difference. See my long post above. The one good thing about it is we get to ...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Mar 26, 2018 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to Take Social Security (again...)
Replies: 62
Views: 5135

Re: When to Take Social Security (again...)

To illustrate my comments above with actual numbers, I made a number of runs in ORP this morning, using the same input values for control while changing only a few inputs slightly. I use the word "result(s)" and by that I refer to what ORP reports as the net spending cash remaining in the first year...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Mar 26, 2018 7:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any hand written letter services out there that write and mail on your behalf?
Replies: 25
Views: 2328

Re: Any hand written letter services out there that write and mail on your behalf?

This might be a good business for someone to set up in a retirement home. People with nice old-school penmanship, maybe needing a few bucks for pocket money, and wanting something to do.
by JohnFiscal
Sun Mar 25, 2018 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to Take Social Security (again...)
Replies: 62
Views: 5135

Re: When to Take Social Security (again...)

You can think of your assets as being in two pots — the pot you spend down to get to your SS and the pot that you will spend down at the 4% rate once you get to SS. This exactly. Well, at second look it's not exactly what I was thinking of. I'm thinking more that there are two pots...as the money c...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 16, 2018 9:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: i-ORP: Short or Long input form ?
Replies: 6
Views: 493

Re: i-ORP: Short or Long input form ?

I-ORP website is not working for me when I input all the numbers. When I click Run ORP I get a pop-up that eventually shows: 404 - File or directory not found. The resource you are looking for might have been removed, had its name changed, or is temporarily unavailable. I also will occasionally get...
by JohnFiscal
Fri Mar 16, 2018 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: i-ORP: Short or Long input form ?
Replies: 6
Views: 493

i-ORP: Short or Long input form ?

Continuing to explore i-ORP. What do most people use, the short or the long input form? (Essential versus Extended) In the past I pretty much used the long form. I'm getting back to using ORP in earnest and used the short form for a particular study. Also I felt that it would be useful to let it pic...
by JohnFiscal
Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal Finance Software - for spending
Replies: 5
Views: 451

Re: Personal Finance Software - for spending

I'm a big fan of Kotlikoff so the MaxiFi has sounded intriguing to me.

Another excellent choice used by a lot of bogleheads is the free iORP software (www.i-orp.com). It can take some work to understand if you want to dig into the details but it is an excellent piece of work.
by JohnFiscal
Sun Mar 11, 2018 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Calculations - married, 10 years apart
Replies: 23
Views: 2143

Re: Social Security Calculations - married, 10 years apart

I have gone through the sorts of scenarios that you are investigating now. My wife is 11 years younger than I am. We married late and she has no US work record (she is Canadian). I am 65 and she is 54. Be aware that the SS site gives you benefits at ages beyond FRA but the fine print indicates that ...
by JohnFiscal
Thu Mar 08, 2018 3:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tracking multiple savings goals in one account
Replies: 13
Views: 778

Re: Tracking multiple savings goals in one account

"nother one here using Excel for this purpose. I love Excel. (*) I do use Google sheets for sharing data with others, and for easily getting them to enter data. * ETA: as it is a very powerful, very flexible electronic tool that can be used for just about anything. I have even programmed it to use a...
by JohnFiscal
Wed Mar 07, 2018 7:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Switching to online bank. Keep brick/mortar bank account open?
Replies: 54
Views: 2958

Re: Switching to online bank. Keep brick/mortar bank account open?

You raise a valid concern. I currently primarily use Capital One 360, an online-only bank, for banking needs (followed it from Netbank to ING Orange to Capital One 360), although in the past I used a local bank (wife used the Netbank account for her own use) until they closed up shop and moved out o...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I really need umbrella insurance?
Replies: 21
Views: 1551

Do I really need umbrella insurance?

Like the title asks. To get umbrella insurance through the same national company as my auto policy (this company doesn't offer homeowner insurance in this state) I would have to increase my auto liability slightly, for about $50 per year. Also requires that my homeowner's liability was at least $300...
by JohnFiscal
Tue Mar 06, 2018 2:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Online customer review denied
Replies: 33
Views: 3623

Re: Online customer review denied

okay, maybe unrelated. Once my review of a 2 gallon plastic "jerry" gasoline can was rejected by H*m* D*p*t. As a professional engineer, I found the product to be egregiously dangerous. Not the can itself but the government-mandated safety cap. The implementation of the safety cap was, in my view, e...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: wild caught sockeye salmon
Replies: 27
Views: 2790

Re: wild caught sockeye salmon

I also got this at the local supermarket for my wife, then they stopped selling it. Eventually I asked and they said that it is seasonal. There's a fishing season and the fresh salmon is available only then.
by JohnFiscal
Mon Mar 05, 2018 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Etiquette of hanging up on live telemarketers
Replies: 77
Views: 3569

Re: Etiquette of hanging up on live telemarketers

My personal experience is that when I have tried to make some explanation that I am not interested they proceed to hang up on me. Which certainly is rude of them (they called me). But hanging up is likely the best mode. Or say "notinnerestedgottagobye", which is more in line of my actual response now.
by JohnFiscal
Wed Feb 28, 2018 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Resume Question
Replies: 7
Views: 626

Re: Resume Question

personally, I would tend to downplay the introduction of the third-party company. Just indicate the main company, your position, duties, and supervisor. Further explanation can be provided if questioned.
by JohnFiscal
Tue Feb 20, 2018 3:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mixing fuel octanes for cars
Replies: 57
Views: 3772

Re: Mixing fuel octanes for cars

Credit cards can be finicky too since it would be two temp transactions, and you run the risk of the second one getting declined due to possible fraud, then ruining the rest of your day by having to talk to the issuer and explain that the transaction was intended. This happens to me all the time wh...
by JohnFiscal
Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A Simple and Safe Retirement Income Strategy that beats many others
Replies: 14
Views: 2947

Re: A Simple and Safe Retirement Income Strategy that beats many others

...if possible, they shouldn’t start Social Security benefits or begin withdrawing from savings to pay for living expenses...
This makes me chortle. So how does one live for those intervening years? They should just have said "work until you're 70"
by JohnFiscal
Thu Feb 01, 2018 3:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Healthcare Fund
Replies: 8
Views: 963

Re: Vanguard Healthcare Fund

Some time back it was stylish even for Vanguard to offer sector funds. That was a big thing in the 1990's and early aughts. I don't know how much this is still the case since they offer so many different funds now and I am recalling the days when I had a little paper booklet that listed available fu...