Search found 652 matches

by N1CKV
Tue Oct 10, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cash and landlines in disasters
Replies: 21
Views: 2304

Re: cash and landlines in disasters

I live in a hurricane prone area. Communication: Telephone lines are just as reliable as power, a tree can easily take both out at the same time. Mobile phones have limited reliability and are routinely overwhelmed during large events, however in recent years those systems have been fortified to bet...
by N1CKV
Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grass trimmer
Replies: 67
Views: 4383

Re: Grass trimmer

Brand name is not everything. Most of the big brands have "Consumer Line" products sold at the big box stores and "Pro Line" products only available from authorized dealers. Sometimes it matters, sometimes it doesn't. For FWIW, I currently have a Kobalt 80V cordless string trimmer from Lowes. I find...
by N1CKV
Tue Sep 19, 2017 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco vs sams club vs neither.
Replies: 77
Views: 4575

Re: Costco vs sams club vs neither.

It sounds like a lot may have changed since your previous experience with wholesale clubs. Rupert has good advice. Both now generally accept major credit cards. Both specialize in "bulk" sale (it is a wholesale club). Costco typically has items a notch higher in quality for generic brands. They both...
by N1CKV
Fri Sep 15, 2017 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The 10 year car ownership "rule"
Replies: 95
Views: 10652

Re: The 10 year car ownership "rule"

If there is *another* BH in this forum who can replace (and have replaced) his own engine on his car, please stand up! I have a feeling that you are THE ONLY ONE here!! Average BH can NOT change his own brake pads if his life depended on it. I haven't had to change my own, but I have changed the en...
by N1CKV
Wed Sep 13, 2017 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategy for smartphones.
Replies: 31
Views: 2647

Re: Strategy for smartphones.

My wife recently went through this. After evaluating she realized she did not need the newly released Samsung S8, the Asus that cost a couple hundred new did everything she needed/ wanted. OTOH, I use my phone's NFC capabilities pretty extensively, the phone she chose would not be satisfactory to me...
by N1CKV
Tue Sep 12, 2017 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Assets tangled with in laws, how to minimize future liabilities
Replies: 26
Views: 1473

Re: Assets tangled with in laws, how to minimize future liabilities

Start the conversation with your husband.
It goes something like this:
I am concerned about.....
Here is the potential impact I perceive......
Here is what I think we should do about it.....
by N1CKV
Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing Old Shower handles
Replies: 21
Views: 2040

Re: Replacing Old Shower handles

I can not see the picture, photobucket reports an issue. If I could see it I could probably identify it from the look alone, I spent several years in the wholesale plumbing industry. Getting replacement handles is always an option. There are few that manufacturers don't have options for and even the...
by N1CKV
Mon Sep 11, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hurricane Harvey relief?
Replies: 42
Views: 3191

Re: Hurricane Harvey relief?

By now I think (or at least hope) everyone has heard of the Cajun Navy, a loose affiliation of south Louisiana shallow drive boat operators that carried out search and rescue missions on behalf of local authorities. They have a counterpart for recovery, the Cajun Army. The mission of the Cajun Army ...
by N1CKV
Thu Sep 07, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wanting a Portable Auto GPS
Replies: 65
Views: 3532

Re: Wanting a Portable Auto GPS

but does that place still exist? how's the traffic getting there? is there a newer route? I use my Android smartphone. I get live traffic and re-routing if there is a problem ahead. If you do not want a data plan or may need to use it in an area with sparse connectivity you can download maps ahead o...
by N1CKV
Wed Sep 06, 2017 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Waterproof container for documents-pending Florida hurricane
Replies: 29
Views: 2374

Re: Waterproof container for documents-pending Florida hurricane

Ziploc bags work just fine. Keep in mind that excess air will cause problems with the container wanting to float or burst. On a surprising note: When my house flooded I had my documents in a small Sentry file safe on the floor of a small closet. The safe floated and landed upright. The documents ins...
by N1CKV
Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Evaluating risk of flooding in the "new normal"
Replies: 45
Views: 2470

Re: Evaluating risk of flooding in the "new normal"

My house is built two feet above the previous flood of record. FEMA Flood Zone X only requires one foot. I took on 31" of water last year (considered a 500 year or 1,000 year flood depending on who you talk to). I am quite a bit higher than what surrounds me and not in danger of a dam burst. The wat...
by N1CKV
Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much sooner could you retire with NO property taxes?
Replies: 116
Views: 7345

Re: How much sooner could you retire with NO property taxes?

My state income taxes are under $1,500.00 this year, property taxes were $32.00 last year (not a typo).

This year my property taxes will be under $400. In retirement my pension will be exempt from state income tax.

So to answer the question: It's not a factor.
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Geico a bait and switcher?
Replies: 32
Views: 4352

Re: Is Geico a bait and switcher?

Geico beat everyone else by a substantial amount when I switched to them a few years back. Only claim I had was when we lost my wife's car to a flood (parked in the garage, not being operated at the time). The claim was handled fairly. The replacement vehicle was worth twice as much but even cheaper...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 29, 2017 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Harvey flood damage [tenant's property has flooded - actions?]
Replies: 28
Views: 4652

Re: Harvey flood damage [tenant's property has flooded - actions?]

I have recent flood experience. I flooded last year in S. Louisiana with almost 3 feet. As a landlord your flood insurance policy is (or should have been) structural only. Your tenant would have to have had their own FLOOD policy to cover contents/ personal property, the policies exist but are extr...
by N1CKV
Mon Aug 28, 2017 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Desperate to get rid of mosquitoes, what else could we try?
Replies: 56
Views: 3280

Re: Desperate to get rid of mosquitoes, what else could we try?

Thermacell .........excellent product. Been using them for 5-6 years with great results. Couple of noteworthy points: 1). They only work well in a stationary setting...i.e., sitting on the deck or porch. Not at all effective if moving around in garden, lawn etc. 2). For maximum results, you might n...
by N1CKV
Wed Aug 23, 2017 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lowes vs Home Depot
Replies: 60
Views: 7156

Re: Lowes vs Home Depot

I prefer Lowe's, it is closer to me by a little bit and within the same taxing jurisdiction that I live, Home Depot is not significantly further, but is not in my taxing district. There is a Home Depot across town that seems better than the one closer to me. Lowe's has better lumber. Home Depot beat...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 22, 2017 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I did it and feel great about it (paid off mortgage)
Replies: 53
Views: 5782

Re: I did it and feel great about it (paid off mortgage)

Congratulations. I did the same a couple months back. It still hasn't sunk in, I seem to find something to spend the money on every month. Eventually I will sell the current house and almost certainly have a (small) mortgage on the next, in the mean time I will enjoy seeing the "payments to savings"...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 22, 2017 8:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 457 vs. HSA vs. Backdoor Roth
Replies: 6
Views: 739

Re: 457 vs. HSA vs. Backdoor Roth

Thanks. That's kind of what I was leaning towards, but I didn't know if the tax diversification of the Roth would be more beneficial, or if the HSA would be a pain, or if the 457 should've considered unreliable because of its inherent nature. I will probably then contribute to the pension, max the ...
by N1CKV
Wed Aug 16, 2017 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with mortgage rates-closing soon!
Replies: 11
Views: 987

Re: Help with mortgage rates-closing soon!

A few years ago like you are seeing, I received a much lower rate than I could find "online". The only way to get a firm rate quote is to actually apply. If you are already working with a lender and their rates have dropped you can request to "re-lock" your rate. This is what it sounds like you nego...
by N1CKV
Fri Aug 04, 2017 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else have trouble spending?
Replies: 91
Views: 6002

Re: Anyone else have trouble spending?

You will find a lot of people on Bogleheads that insist that a "Japanese" brand vehcile is more reliable. Ignore that. It is ignorant. My "American" truck just rolled 103k miles and has never left me stranded. It had dual zone a/c issues (stripped actuator motor) early on, but never a mechanical iss...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 01, 2017 2:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finance as a college major?
Replies: 50
Views: 4344

Re: Finance as a college major?

In general, folks like Business Admin because it's relatively easy. 2. The payscale data I linked is ENTIRELY comparing apples to apples, in that it only compares people with Bachelors degrees who never got any other further degree. If it compares all Philo BAs to Business BAs, it would make Busine...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 01, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sell inherited investments to pay off mortgage?
Replies: 23
Views: 2172

Re: Sell inherited investments to pay off mortgage?

I'm always curious, though, why being in the property long-term would make a mortgage more or less advantageous. First, plans and circumstances change. Also, a fixed mortgage is basically a negative bond with both an implied put (early payoff) and call (sale). Neither of those factors appear terrib...
by N1CKV
Tue Aug 01, 2017 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: what should my parents do with $100k they just received.
Replies: 12
Views: 1828

Re: what should my parents do with $100k they just received.

there is a wiki for that: https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Managing_a_windfall On edit: I am not trying to be rude. After re-reading what I typed, I apologize if it came out that way. We have no idea about the entire picture and there is many moving parts and I would hate to lead you wrong. I recomme...
by N1CKV
Wed Jul 26, 2017 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Post Nuptial agreement guaranteeing alimony?
Replies: 113
Views: 7130

Re: Post Nuptial agreement guaranteeing alimony?

To calm everyone's worries - declining another job brought this thought up. The offer was at a competing company for a competing position and we felt it was in our best interest for me to decline after my husband's company made it clear that they disapproved of the conflict . His next promotion cou...
by N1CKV
Tue Jul 25, 2017 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Driveway On Neighbours Land
Replies: 30
Views: 2299

Re: Driveway On Neighbours Land

Re: Driveway On Neighbours Land
You are in the United States, the proper spelling is "Neighbor".
by N1CKV
Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Commuters (that drive), what do you listen to?
Replies: 60
Views: 3331

Re: Commuters (that drive), what do you listen to?

I take advantage of my Amazon Prime account and listen to the Prime Music App, which integrates perfectly through Android Auto within my vehicles head unit. I always listen to music mindlessly so that I can concentrate on driving, there is enough other people on the road concentrating on stuff other...
by N1CKV
Fri Jul 21, 2017 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How is U-Haul for getting a trailer hitch?
Replies: 28
Views: 2156

Re: How is U-Haul for getting a trailer hitch?

This thread reminded me that I never added a hitch to my wife's Highlander. I just checked U-Haul rates and it was $224 +tax w/ free shipping, or add $105 for install. Amazon has the Curt brand hitch plus wiring harness for ~$171 w/ free shipping. Rust is not a concern for me in the deep south. I ca...
by N1CKV
Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting a new cooktop, gas vs electric?
Replies: 72
Views: 4413

Re: Getting a new cooktop, gas vs electric?

I prefer gas by a wide margin. That being said, I just put in electric - my house is electric only with no gas even run down my street. I previously had a coil style burner, now a glass cooktop. Your concerns about heating slower are unfounded, it's actually quite the opposite. I find the smooth top...
by N1CKV
Wed Jun 28, 2017 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you buy phone outright or pay it off monthly...
Replies: 62
Views: 3800

Re: Do you buy phone outright or pay it off monthly...

I buy my phones unlocked. On iPhone7 the Apple Store had carrier phones or unlocked, same price. The AT&T version did not have CDMA capabilities. The Verizon version did not have GSM capabilities. The unlocked version could work with both. I have been with AT&T for a very long time. They have superi...
by N1CKV
Tue Jun 27, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pet insurance
Replies: 10
Views: 887

Re: Pet insurance

I don't have health insurance for my two dogs (I do have a homeowner's rider for pet liability). We do have a "Pet Assure" membership that offers substantial discounts. Our Vet takes it, not all do. My dog, a pure bred, has had knee surgeries on both knees (multiple on each). I ran the numbers and I...
by N1CKV
Tue Jun 27, 2017 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Elderly Relative Reluctant to give POA
Replies: 30
Views: 2670

Re: Elderly Relative Reluctant to give POA

I have always had no problems depositing checks with "For Deposit Only" and the account number written in the endorsement - until one time.... (actually twice, two different banks): *Ally bank does NOT allow this type of endorsement. While I have had several checks deposited this way, I had one occa...
by N1CKV
Mon Jun 26, 2017 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bitcoin in the event of owner death
Replies: 10
Views: 1370

Re: Bitcoin in the event of owner death

Write the keys down. Do not include any information that alluding to the fact of what they actually mean or go to. I could give you a full list of my passwords, but if you don't know what they go to they are useless. Stop overthinking it. I did this with my safe combination. I gave it to an individu...
by N1CKV
Thu Jun 22, 2017 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did I just get seriously ripped off?? (Car lease)
Replies: 54
Views: 5477

Re: Did I just get seriously ripped off?? (Car lease)

The fees are all the nonsense dealership costs - freigh/pdi, wax, nitro , etc. I think they wound up reducing the price of the car by $1,000, and writing off a bunch of those fees to the tune of $1,308. So not exactly a 5% reduction, but also something... *If you are paying for some special "sealan...
by N1CKV
Wed Jun 21, 2017 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tracking towards a million and retiring at 55.
Replies: 38
Views: 6086

Re: Tracking towards a million and retiring at 55.

The rental--is this the condo you want to move back into? The tax implications are a little weird but basically any gain when you go to sale after you have lived there a min of 2 years is averaged out over the whole time you owned the property . Example 100k gain in value you owned it for 10 years,...
by N1CKV
Tue Jun 20, 2017 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Planning Around Partner's Student Loans
Replies: 30
Views: 2588

Re: Planning Around Partner's Student Loans

Repay this as a team. If you are committed to her as much as you say you are then you should treat everything equally. Trying to skirt this for some hypothetical outcome 30+ years from now is likely to cause more stress and other issues in the long run than the financial price to pay for what she go...
by N1CKV
Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Liability with dogs, hypothetical
Replies: 67
Views: 3826

Re: Liability with dogs, hypothetical

Check your homeowner's policy and your umbrella policy. My homeowner's policy specifically excludes coverage for dogs, however they do offer a rider to "buy back" that coverage (which I have). If you do not have that coverage because you failed to purchase it your umbrella may not provide the covera...
by N1CKV
Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roof Replacement - options
Replies: 6
Views: 971

Re: Roof Replacement - options

You need to carefully read what you signed with the roofer. If that document obligates you to use him you may have a penalty for breaking the contract. Roofers are shady like this, they will hold your hand if you let them, but you pay for it. Never mention insurance to a roofer - that will escalate ...
by N1CKV
Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Box Spring?
Replies: 22
Views: 1570

Re: New Box Spring?

Note that most of what is sold today is NOT a "box spring" - it is a "Foundation". The difference? A foundation is nothing but a box covered in fabric. There is no spring. I built one using 2X4s and cedar fence boards (looks like a pallet when complete). Finish it with a bedskirt and no one knows th...
by N1CKV
Mon Jun 12, 2017 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Name Change After Getting Married
Replies: 17
Views: 2266

Re: Name Change After Getting Married

My wife changed almost everything as soon as we returned from our honeymoon. The only thing she didn't change was the title and registration on her car. The car was destroyed a little over a year after we were married which solved that problem. Our insurance company was a little confused, at first t...
by N1CKV
Tue May 16, 2017 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Privacy vs $$$$
Replies: 31
Views: 4265

Re: Privacy vs $$$$

For those purposes:
Phone number: (area code) 867-5309
email: me@here.com
Name: I give my Dog's Name
Address: It depends, but my dog has received junk mail before ;-)

My dog gets all kinds of free promotional stuff in the mail, he seem to like signing up for stuff. He also has a MyLowes card.
by N1CKV
Tue Apr 25, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: co-worker had a baby, chipping in on gift- how much?
Replies: 57
Views: 4238

Re: co-worker had a baby chipping in on gift- how much?

If you are feeling generous, give what you see fit. In my workplace we have something called the "Flower Fund". This is composed of strictly employee funds, you pay a membership every year (I think ~$20) and in exchange there is a set benefits list that the fund will pay for according to t...
by N1CKV
Thu Mar 30, 2017 8:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Few questions to those who switched to Ally Checking
Replies: 69
Views: 6732

Re: Few questions to those who switched to Ally Checking

The 0.6% is only available if your balance is over $15k. How much cash do you NEED in checking on a regular basis? I ask because you can get 1.0% in Ally Savings. Transfers between Savings and Checking are instant (or can be scheduled for future dates). You can also set up an automatic overdraft wi...
by N1CKV
Wed Mar 29, 2017 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?
Replies: 105
Views: 5922

Re: What's your personal criteria for deciding whether or not to rent a car?

I don't even consider renting a car unless my own vehicle is incapacitated.
by N1CKV
Wed Mar 29, 2017 8:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Few questions to those who switched to Ally Checking
Replies: 69
Views: 6732

Re: Few questions to those who switched to Ally Checking

The 0.6% is only available if your balance is over $15k. How much cash do you NEED in checking on a regular basis? I ask because you can get 1.0% in Ally Savings. Transfers between Savings and Checking are instant (or can be scheduled for future dates). You can also set up an automatic overdraft wit...
by N1CKV
Wed Mar 22, 2017 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Recommended emergency fund for middle class households: $13,800
Replies: 64
Views: 7653

Re: Recommended emergency fund for middle class households: $13,800

Ok now just curious? Not enough or wrong kind of insurance to put you in that position. By all means, I'm sure your family suffered and I am sympathetic. Just trying to learn from this board from everyone's experiences. I didn't have 6 figures available, but I did have a very adequate cash reserve ...
by N1CKV
Thu Mar 16, 2017 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?
Replies: 188
Views: 20673

Re: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?

Back in August of last year I was sitting on 6 months of emergency funds + a sizable amount dedicated to down payment on my next house. August 13th I the water started to rise, literally. I fled my home in my truck with very little, barely escaping an impending flood. My home was built 2' over the b...
by N1CKV
Fri Mar 10, 2017 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Do You Share Expenses?
Replies: 52
Views: 4630

Re: How Do You Share Expenses?

I keep separate finances from my wife also. In my case, she pays me roughly 1/2 of my house note as "rent". I pay regular utilities. She wanted internet and cable so she pays for that. We have a joint credit card that we put all joint expenses on. At the end of every statement cycle I send...
by N1CKV
Thu Mar 09, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Diamond earrings
Replies: 19
Views: 2440

Re: Diamond earrings

Finally, be very careful about buying diamonds in pawn shops, second hand or places you "think you are getting a great deal". If you do, ask if the diamonds come with the GIA certification. That way you know exactly what you are buying. So many customers get bad diamonds (poor clarify, po...
by N1CKV
Tue Mar 07, 2017 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension Options
Replies: 41
Views: 2611

Re: Pension Options

The Big 4 used to be the Big 5, I'd take the money and run.
by N1CKV
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wedding cash gift
Replies: 68
Views: 4937

Re: Wedding cash gift

Most importantly figure out what your wife really wants. My wife didn't want much so it was easy. We had a small wedding with about 50 people. We spent under $5,000 total on venue, buffet catering, open bar, DJ and photographer. My only regret was not getting a better photographer. We kept it super ...