Search found 1081 matches

by Kosmo
Sat Aug 27, 2016 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Upcoming Road Trip Restaurant Recommendations
Replies: 19
Views: 1133

Re: Upcoming Road Trip Restaurant Recommendations

Johns Roast Pork. Snyder Ave in south Philly.
by Kosmo
Thu Aug 25, 2016 9:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to mount winter tires?
Replies: 31
Views: 1935

Re: Where to mount winter tires?

Just about any mechanic should be able to do this. If you go to a shop that specializes in tires they can probably do it faster.
by Kosmo
Tue Aug 23, 2016 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do you view debt?
Replies: 105
Views: 5772

Re: How do you view debt?

This is one of those really divisive topics. It's almost political in nature. There are anti-debt zealots out there who think debt is an absolute evil to be avoided at all costs. Those guys are wrong. Debt is a tool. It is a means to achieve an end. It may be one of several options in any given situ...
by Kosmo
Mon Aug 15, 2016 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HOA Ruling
Replies: 34
Views: 3689

Re: HOA Ruling

What does the most recent set of rules say? It doesn't matter what the rules were when you moved in. I'm on the board of a townhouse community where I own a rental. Past boards played fast and lose with the rules and gave themselves and friends lots of leeway. So there are a number of non-conformin...
by Kosmo
Sun Aug 14, 2016 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HOA Ruling
Replies: 34
Views: 3689

Re: HOA Ruling

What does the most recent set of rules say? It doesn't matter what the rules were when you moved in. I'm on the board of a townhouse community where I own a rental. Past boards played fast and lose with the rules and gave themselves and friends lots of leeway. So there are a number of non-conforming...
by Kosmo
Tue Aug 09, 2016 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to deal with situation .Need Career advice PLZ !-Experienced Professionals !!
Replies: 34
Views: 3375

Re: How to deal with situation .Need Career advice PLZ !-Experienced Professionals !!

My immediate management perpetuated lies about to me that people saw me sleeping at my desk .. i never sleep in the day or on a chair and I excel at what I do. They did same to other person and he could not take it at all and left immediately. Why would you even consider going back to work there? T...
by Kosmo
Mon Aug 08, 2016 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience Living in an Old House?
Replies: 42
Views: 3443

Re: Experience Living in an Old House?

Thanks, everyone. You've listed a handful of things that hadn't even crossed my mind. I pointed my wife to the thread and her takeaway was that we should immediately discount the idea of buying this house. My takeaway (which I somewhat already knew, but was greatly reinforced) was that we need to do...
by Kosmo
Sun Aug 07, 2016 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience Living in an Old House?
Replies: 42
Views: 3443

Experience Living in an Old House?

Does anyone live in a very old or historic house? Any advice to those thinking of purchasing one? My wife and I are considering making an offer on a house built in the 1840s that is on the historic register in our township. It's gotten a few small additions and face lifts over the years, but the fou...
by Kosmo
Thu Aug 04, 2016 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any advice---Toyota 4 runner vs. Honda Pilot--2016 cars
Replies: 75
Views: 5151

Re: Any advice---Toyota 4 runner vs. Honda Pilot--2016 cars

I have a 2015 Pilot. I think it's underpowered, but the 2016s squeeze out a bit more hp. I don't much care for the styling; the 2016 looks like a minivan with swinging doors. I get ~19ish mpg. But 75%+ of my driving is city. The rear seats in a 4 runner don't fold flat with the cargo compartment. Th...
by Kosmo
Thu Aug 04, 2016 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Florence, Italy Hotel?
Replies: 18
Views: 870

Re: Florence, Italy Hotel?

A few years ago we stayed in Hotel La Fortezza. It was about a 15-20 minute walk to the Duomo. Can't recall the rate, but it was cheaper than the closer hotels. We were rarely in the hotel, so I couldn't tell you any amenities it had.
by Kosmo
Wed Aug 03, 2016 10:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding a bump to the next tax bracket
Replies: 34
Views: 3168

Re: Avoiding a bump to the next tax bracket

Our combined salaries are pushing us close to entering the next tax bracket, Your combined salary is not the same as your taxable income. Figure out what your taxable income will be and then see if you're approaching the tax bracket threshold. If it's close, then decide if you want to make any chan...
by Kosmo
Wed Aug 03, 2016 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding a bump to the next tax bracket
Replies: 34
Views: 3168

Re: Avoiding a bump to the next tax bracket

Our combined salaries are pushing us close to entering the next tax bracket, Your combined salary is not the same as your taxable income. Figure out what your taxable income will be and then see if you're approaching the tax bracket threshold. If it's close, then decide if you want to make any chan...
by Kosmo
Mon Aug 01, 2016 10:46 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: mortgage refi question
Replies: 4
Views: 307

Re: mortgage refi question

would cost me 1.14 points and about $4k in closing costs. Monthly cost would be nearly the same. 1 minute analysis: Doesn't make sense. You're paying ~$6500 up front to shed 1 year off the term. If you're willing to spend that much at once, put it all towards the existing mortgage. Unrelated to the...
by Kosmo
Sun Jul 31, 2016 6:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: PA529 - College Saving Plan
Replies: 12
Views: 705

Re: PA529 - College Saving Plan

I live in PA and use the New York 529 plan for my 2 kids. PA's plan has gotten much better in recent years.
by Kosmo
Fri Jul 29, 2016 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice, dealer sold me wrong year golf cart
Replies: 35
Views: 2199

Re: Need advice, dealer sold me wrong year golf cart

Either he will somehow produce a 2012 or he will be forced to come get this cart from me. You're not at all forcing him to come get the cart. His options are drive out to you and pick up the cart and return your money, or do nothing. Unfortunately he has the upper hand because he has your money and...
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 28, 2016 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Driving - Yielding/Right of Way at Uncontrolled 4 Way Intersection
Replies: 34
Views: 1368

Re: Driving - Yielding/Right of Way at Uncontrolled 4 Way Intersection

Here's a common driving scenario that has been a source of confusion :confused There doesn't seem to be universal agreement on the correct/legal way to drive through it. I'm interested in how you would drive through it. ... There is a 4 way intersection with no controls; no signs or signals. Is thi...
by Kosmo
Sat Jul 23, 2016 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall
Replies: 43
Views: 2804

Re: HVAC replacement,is that too risky to wait until this fall

How about fixing the leaks? They can replace the evaporator coils fairly easily. If the leak is in the condenser that's a different story. And it won't take 3 days to find a leak that drained the system almost entirely of refrigerant in a month. A hole that big is obvious. Look for a pool of oil.
by Kosmo
Fri Jul 22, 2016 6:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Renovate or replace 12yr old SUV?
Replies: 45
Views: 2408

Re: Renovate or replace 12yr old SUV?

Most of those items are routine maintenance. It should not come as a surprise you'd need to do these things. If "Front Main Window" = windshield, contact insurance as that may be covered without cost. I can't say anything about the upholstery, but if you only drive it on the weekends it wo...
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 21, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Beginner Question
Replies: 37
Views: 2486

Re: Beginner Question

1) My plan is to buy a total market index fund that is invested 80% stocks and 20% in bonds and re-balance once or twice a year depending on the returns. Is this a wise plan for a someone in my situation? Possibly too aggressive. Only you can decide that. I'd guess the majority of people on this bo...
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 21, 2016 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Adopt my Girlfriend???
Replies: 38
Views: 6618

Re: Adopt my Girlfriend???

Would you be allowed to adopt her if there clearly is no father/daughter type relationship? I think a judge would see right past your scheme. Earlier this year my wife was adopted by her mother's husband (her biological father passed away a while back). We had to state our case before a judge for th...
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 21, 2016 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Orlando Disney Parks
Replies: 41
Views: 3144

Re: Orlando Disney Parks

Is it a good idea to take one day break after each day of park? Take an afternoon break each day, then go back to the park in the evening. That is, if you need and/or desire a break. But be aware that a significant chunk of that break may be transportation time. Disney World is not really the place...
by Kosmo
Tue Jul 19, 2016 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yet another new/used car post. Help me replace a car
Replies: 39
Views: 3138

Re: Yet another new/used car post. Help me replace a car

I was going to suggest a Subaru. You can get an Impreza with a manual transmission, but that might be too small for you. A base model Legacy lists for $22k.
by Kosmo
Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Orlando Disney Parks
Replies: 41
Views: 3144

Re: Orlando Disney Parks

It's not a bad plan. My wife plans our Disney trips. It's already booked for next March. We've only bought park tickets direct from the resort. Plan out what you're going to do on what day. You'll need park hopper tickets if you plan on going to multiple parks in a single day. To/from the hotel you'...
by Kosmo
Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Problem with Costco Citi Card Online
Replies: 5
Views: 928

Re: Problem with Costco Citi Card Online

I have no issues using Firefox. Sometimes after I log in I get a message that says my browser is incompatible, but it goes away after a refresh. I've had no problems downloading statements as PDFs.
by Kosmo
Sat Jul 16, 2016 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you find a tenant for rental house?
Replies: 37
Views: 2166

Re: How do you find a tenant for rental house?

I used a realtor. The only thing I had to do was final tenant selection. She took pictures, advertised, showed the house, took applications, screened them, ran credit reports, and whittled it down to a few final candidates and made a recommendation on which to pick. It was about 2 weeks from signing...
by Kosmo
Fri Jul 15, 2016 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Township wants me to pay business tax on my rental property income. Are they right?
Replies: 15
Views: 1867

Re: Township wants me to pay business tax on my rental property income. Are they right?

In my city you would be required to acquire a general business license and pay business taxes because you're in the residential rental business. This is exactly how my rental property is treated. The income taxes are something ridiculously small though. It's <1% of gross rent. I think I paid under ...
by Kosmo
Tue Jul 12, 2016 9:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much did you earn in capital gains?
Replies: 7
Views: 782

Re: How much did you earn in capital gains?

The closest I can come to answering your question is saying how much of my 401k balance is contributions. It's not necessarily the cost basis because of employer matching and dividend reinvestment. But in retirement accounts cost basis doesn't matter. Contributions: 43% Employer match: 29% Gains and...
by Kosmo
Fri Jul 08, 2016 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home inspection items for repair
Replies: 32
Views: 1855

Re: Home inspection items for repair

Can't believe all the replies to run away. This is small potatoes. The mold could be a bit of work to root-cause and resolve, the rest is super easy. This was my thought also. Aside from installing a radon mitigation system (which might not even be necessary) these are relatively cheap and easy fix...
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best full featured online checking?
Replies: 40
Views: 3351

Re: Best full featured online checking?

I use Alliant Credit Union. They meet most, if not all, of those requirements and options. I don't use all the things you listed, so I can't say for certain.
by Kosmo
Thu Jul 07, 2016 7:25 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employer contribution-yearly vs biweekly
Replies: 13
Views: 1013

Re: Employer contribution-yearly vs biweekly

The disadvantages to the employee are advantages to the company. They've certainly weighed these options and it's highly unlikely you're going to change anyone's mind. And since that system is already in place, it's additional cost for them to change it. You'd need to make an exceptional business ca...
by Kosmo
Fri Jul 01, 2016 8:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not legal advice [Seeking advice about HOA ban on swimming pool use]
Replies: 62
Views: 5727

Re: Not legal advice

Don't know about other states, but in PA individual members of the board cannot be personally sued for their actions as members of the board. You do not understand how the legal system works. I accept your representation that there is a law that protects individual board members in PA, but that doe...
by Kosmo
Thu Jun 30, 2016 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not legal advice [Seeking advice about HOA ban on swimming pool use]
Replies: 62
Views: 5727

Re: Not legal advice

You are first placing a lien on the property. The vast majority of people will pay after a letter from the attorney. If they don't, they are most likely having financial issues and may also not be paying the mortgage. Letting someone get to 20k may be putting all the other homeowners at risk. The l...
by Kosmo
Thu Jun 30, 2016 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not legal advice [Seeking advice about HOA ban on swimming pool use]
Replies: 62
Views: 5727

Re: Not legal advice

If it doesn't, then take every one of their petty dictator asses to small claims court for the cost of a summer's worth of pool dues. Make each and every one drive down to the courthouse and explain what a nutjob control freak they are. Don't know about other states, but in PA individual members of...
by Kosmo
Wed Jun 29, 2016 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Not legal advice [Seeking advice about HOA ban on swimming pool use]
Replies: 62
Views: 5727

Re: Not legal advice

For the HOAs I'm familiar with (2 of them, both in PA, I am/have been on the board of both): 1) Yes, the wife can be banned. The owners of a home are treated as a single entity and can be jointly held responsible (or suffer the consequences) for the actions of one person. In other words, a unit of m...
by Kosmo
Wed Jun 29, 2016 6:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house that doesn't get any bids. Having Cold Feet!
Replies: 13
Views: 1888

Re: Buying a house that doesn't get any bids. Having Cold Feet!

If there is an HOA make sure they are in good financial standing. The house may be sitting there because the HOA is severely underfunded and a large assessment is coming. You don't want to buy the house and then get hit with an unexpected bill for $20k. If there is an HOA (these are very state-depen...
by Kosmo
Tue Jun 28, 2016 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15K Deposit after Attorney Review. Buying a house. Is this Normal???
Replies: 31
Views: 2694

Re: 15K Deposit after Attorney Review. Buying a house. Is this Normal???

Deposits are common. You have to put some skin in the game. It has nothing to do with motivation for them, it's protection in case you decide to walk away. $10-15k is reasonable. I wrote a $10k check that went along with the offer on my house. Incidentally that purchase price was also $300k.
by Kosmo
Tue Jun 28, 2016 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS says we owe over $2 million -- when to round amounts?
Replies: 20
Views: 5571

Re: IRS says we owe over $2 million -- when to round amounts?

I can't find anything about using fractions of cents: no doubt someone in the IRS is saying, "And people wonder why our tax code is 500,000 pages long. Now we have to explicitly write a regulation saying not to use fractional cents." :twisted: Here's the authoritative reference, which is ...
by Kosmo
Fri Jun 24, 2016 3:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Housing/mortgages the boglehead way
Replies: 20
Views: 1838

Re: Housing/mortgages the boglehead way

What's the reason for wanting to move? I've yet to see a reason. And I don't see any benefit. If it ain't broke...
by Kosmo
Thu Jun 23, 2016 8:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Bank Account for Rental?
Replies: 10
Views: 956

Re: New Bank Account for Rental?

I got a separate checking account and separate credit card. Both exclusively used for rental expenses.
by Kosmo
Tue Jun 21, 2016 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone else have problems with appliances from Home Depot?
Replies: 29
Views: 2044

Re: Anyone else have problems with appliances from Home Depot?

First problem arose with refrigerator. I have a 36" opening and refrigerator was supposed to be 35.75" wide. I told delivery guy that the fit would be tight, but that it should fit and he may want to measure. The refrigerator bulges on the sides and delivery guy tried to force into the op...
by Kosmo
Fri Jun 17, 2016 3:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Real Estate Vs Stock Market
Replies: 22
Views: 2056

Re: Real Estate Vs Stock Market

Does someone have anecdotal experience of something "breaking in the middle of the night." This seems super rare, and anything short of a main water line breaking can wait until morning. On Monday the deck at my rental property partially collapsed at 8:30pm. I was there with a jack and cr...
by Kosmo
Thu Jun 16, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I want to be Handyman for my tasks
Replies: 85
Views: 4848

Re: I want to be Handyman for my tasks

I love tools, and even I think your list is overkill. Start with some simple hand tools: hammer, screwdrivers, utility knife, adjustable wrench, pliers, tape measure. When you can't get the job done with those, figure out the right tool and buy it. Just got the mail and the Father's Day Lowes ad was...
by Kosmo
Thu Jun 16, 2016 8:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinancing - should I add wife to title/deed?
Replies: 23
Views: 2254

Re: Refinancing - should I add wife to title/deed?

Will the lender let you have her name on the title but not on the mortgage? Mine wouldn't. It gives her a claim to the property, but no obligation to pay for it.
by Kosmo
Wed Jun 08, 2016 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best state to get married in?
Replies: 11
Views: 817

Re: Best state to get married in?

It doesn't matter what state you get married in, provided you follow that state's laws for marriage requirements. In the event of a separation, it matters what state you live in. My cousin lives in NYC and got married in Italy. One of my good friends lives in PA and got married in the Bahamas. Anoth...
by Kosmo
Wed Jun 08, 2016 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Window replacement - any advice? Lessons learned?
Replies: 30
Views: 2335

Re: Window replacement - any advice? Lessons learned?

I replaced my windows last summer with Okna windows. I had 4 local installers out for quotes and didn't even contact Andersen or Pella. In addition to windows (22 I think) I also did a sliding glass door, front door, storm door, and shutters. All through the same company, all installed at the same t...
by Kosmo
Mon Jun 06, 2016 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DIY project or need landscaper help
Replies: 13
Views: 1123

Re: DIY project or need landscaper help

By doing so, you also have recourse if they damage underground utilities. By that I refer not only to electric, telephone and gas lines, but also that sprinkler stem you installed. As far as I know, and definitely in PA, the homeowner is responsible for marking underground utilities not the contrac...
by Kosmo
Mon Jun 06, 2016 9:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Nuts & Bolts - hardware question
Replies: 40
Views: 2617

Re: Nuts & Bolts - hardware question

It's most likely a specialty bolt with a defined lag and threaded length and is in metric. It doesn't really matter though. Bring the bolt to a hardware store and find the closest match. If you can't get the exact right length use extra washers to fill the gap or cut it down to the right length (thi...
by Kosmo
Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DIY project or need landscaper help
Replies: 13
Views: 1123

Re: DIY project or need landscaper help

If you only have to go down 18", you can rent a trencher and do it yourself. My local Home Depot says it's $64 for 4 hours or $92 per day. I doubt you'd need more than a few hours to trench 30 ft. You can most likely get away with using schedule 40 conduit which is in the neighborhood of $6 per...
by Kosmo
Fri Jun 03, 2016 8:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What TYPE of books do you like to read?
Replies: 48
Views: 2236

Re: What TYPE of books do you like to read?

TXJuice wrote:Check out Jeff Shaara

I've always bypassed him because his books are fiction. But I do have Killer Angels laying around somewhere...
by Kosmo
Fri Jun 03, 2016 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What TYPE of books do you like to read?
Replies: 48
Views: 2236

Re: What TYPE of books do you like to read?

I read mostly history books. Primarily military history, mostly American. If anyone had a recommendation for a book on the War of 1812, I'd appreciate it.

Every so often I'll read a fiction book. I've read most of Stephen King's books. And I'm a sucker for Dan Brown style books.

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