Search found 1324 matches

by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 17, 2017 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want to give money to relative traveling int'l - options?
Replies: 19
Views: 1057

Re: Want to give money to relative traveling int'l - options?

What is the "impracticality" of traveling with cash?
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 17, 2017 6:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Leasing a vehicle
Replies: 21
Views: 2664

Re: Leasing a vehicle

at Gamma Ray wrote:
Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:54 pm
It will be fun to see what happens if Volvo goes through with their plan of going all electric in 2020.


What Volvo said has been widely reported incorrectly:

[url]https://www.nytimes.com/2017/07/05/busi ... c-car.html[/url
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 10, 2017 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CIT Bank 1.3% online savings + $100 bonus
Replies: 2
Views: 578

Re: CIT Bank 1.3% online savings + $100 bonus

The thing that annoys me about CIT is that once you have an account opened your rate does NOT increase when they offer increased rates to new customers. I just moved $150k from there, I was back at a .95% rate!
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Aug 05, 2017 8:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Puts Rivals on Notice: Fee Wars Will Only Heat Up
Replies: 62
Views: 5859

Re: Vanguard Puts Rivals on Notice: Fee Wars Will Only Heat Up

Interesting discussion...

In my experience, having been with Vanguard for about 40 years and seen by portfolio rise beyond all expectations (not Vanguard's doing, just thrifty and a rising market), I have never received any solicitation from them for anything.

Chopped liver or what??
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Aug 03, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What Would You Do- Brokerage Transfer?
Replies: 9
Views: 422

Re: What Would You Do- Brokerage Transfer?

I am unclear how a "correction" in the market would help. Let's say you have funds worth $100k now with a basis of $75k. If you are in the 15% capital gains bracket you will pay $3750 in taxes and have $96250 to invest (without the advisor fee). If you get a correction and the value goes down to $75...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Aug 02, 2017 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Model 3 or Chevy Bolt?
Replies: 330
Views: 31749

Re: Tesla Model 3 or Chevy Bolt?

Longdog wrote: I have a feeling Tesla will start to include the enhanced autopilot feature as standard once the Federal tax credit ends, to compensate for that loss.
I have also thought that some adjustment in the standard specs would be made as the rebate goes away. It seems to be too sharp a financial cliff.
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Aug 02, 2017 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap notebook for surfing/watching videos
Replies: 18
Views: 1481

Re: Cheap notebook for surfing/watching videos

iPad is still the best bet for seniors. Apple has always built their hardware around an intuitive UI. Chromebooks will be a huge headache for the non-techy person as soon as they run into some incompatibility issue. iPads are more expensive for sure, but worth it for fewer headaches. My 82-year-old...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: mutual fund dividends not being sent to bank
Replies: 5
Views: 557

Re: mutual fund dividends not being sent to bank

The switch to the new brokerage "broke" the old instructions of directing dividends to an outside account. This has been documented here in past threads.

Just go to the site and instruct that you want dividends forward to an outside linked account and all will be good.
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun Jul 23, 2017 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Potential Move to the Upper Valley, NH
Replies: 24
Views: 1690

Re: Potential Move to the Upper Valley, NH

Tons of outdoor stuff: Hiking, Skiing, water sports. Hanover has quite a bit of cultural stuff especially during the school year. New London has a pretty good theater scene. For school systems the only two in the area that are public I would consider: Hanover a great school, has a very rich entitle...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 18, 2017 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dutch Elm Disease looming, maybe. Should I fight it?
Replies: 15
Views: 1574

Re: Dutch Elm Disease looming, maybe. Should I fight it?

Friends of ours in the Champlain Valley, Vermont have a huge, healthy American Elm in their yard even though all the other elms in the area were wiped out long ago. They have had researchers come out and examine the tree, I think it is being used in some small way to develop a Dutch Elm-resistant st...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jul 15, 2017 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple iMac problem?
Replies: 49
Views: 3195

Re: Apple iMac problem?

You did state that you were considering a new machine?? You are essentially using a browser and email??

Buy a Chromebook, they just work! :D
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 14, 2017 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?
Replies: 43
Views: 2438

Re: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?

TareNeko wrote:Mazda 5. Smallest "van" that can fit 6 people. It's the same length as Golf Sportwagon, weighs a bit more.


Funny you mention that, the Mazda5 had been my recommended choice for young families and with its demise there is nothing comprable.
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?
Replies: 43
Views: 2438

Re: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?

Thanks for the comments; with all the vehicles out there no one really suits me to own, day in, day out. I was reminded while on granddaughter duty yesterday that not only is the width an issue (fine for trips less than 3 hours) but the space between the infant seat and the back of the front seat. T...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road noise in 2017 Honda CRV?
Replies: 32
Views: 3280

Re: Road noise in 2017 Honda CRV?

I have a passing familiarity with the 2017 CRV but do know that much road noise (as opposed to engine/wind noise) is dependent on the tires. I have experience with other vehicles that changing the tires to ones that ride quieter, made a big difference.
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?
Replies: 43
Views: 2438

Re: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?

Buy something you want and rent a bigger vehicle when needed for road trips. If you must buy, any 3-row Japanese SUV would suffice. That has been my Plan B all along A minivan is possible a large SUV is definitely an 86! https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/86_(term) I did state "engaging" an SU...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?
Replies: 43
Views: 2438

Road vehicle, 4 adults, one car seat, must it be a minivan?

New grandfather here, we have taken a few road trips with son and daughter-in-law and granddaughter. Her car seat is huge and putting it in the back of our Golf Sportwagen isn't so comfortable for a 6-hour trip. Son's Impreza is worse. I am in the market for a new vehicle, must it be a mini-van? I a...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Calling Fidelity adviser about closing managed account
Replies: 15
Views: 1371

Re: Calling Fidelity adviser about closing managed account

I recently gained authorized user access to the TIRA of a relative that was under Fidelity advisor "stewardship". 1% fee on top of high fees funds, 15 of them for an account of about $500k! I called Fidelity (not the "advisor") and stated that I wanted to switch the account over ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shopping for first bike since I was a kid
Replies: 121
Views: 6726

Re: Shopping for first bike since I was a kid

I have been riding since I was 20, now almost 70, lots of bikes have passed through. The idea of someone who has not ridden in years buying a bike on Craigslist, something I have done with success, has many pitfalls. Size is critical, not just frame but the top tube, stem, the width of bars, etc. I ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Medicaid eligibility based only on income or are assets included too?
Replies: 21
Views: 1454

Re: Is Medicaid eligibility based only on income or are assets included too?

You will get an accurate answer to your question by going to your state's Medicaid site. As has been mentioned, different states deal with this differently.
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 13663

Re: Costco vs. other wholesale clubs

Long time Costco shopper here, would make a visit perhaps 8-10 times a year. My purchases were mostly food including oils, vinegar, cheeses, and vegetables and fruits in the winter. Great products (organic virgin olive oil for example) at decent prices. I was miffed recently when they discontinued a...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jul 08, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New roof suggestions.
Replies: 29
Views: 2830

Re: New roof suggestions.

If you are going to remove the existing shingles (which makes for a better job) then you need to factor in the cost of disposal, which can be very high depending on your local situation.
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jul 01, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Supplement Policies?
Replies: 56
Views: 4302

Re: Medicare Supplement Policies?

This is a frequent topic here and it is important to understand that there is no one "best" plan for everyone. When it comes to health insurance we tend to have a different perspective as compared to our ideas about other insurance (home, auto, life). In those latter instances we are delig...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 30, 2017 3:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Index fund fallacy - what we lost sight of!!
Replies: 55
Views: 6694

Re: The Index fund fallacy - what we lost sight of!!

DomDangelina wrote:P.S. Rigorously study Strunk & White, Rule 17.


:D
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 29, 2017 7:07 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry [Brokerage Services]
Replies: 146
Views: 15944

Re: Vanguard upgraded my accounts - angry

One disadvantage for the new platform is that you cannot direct dividends to your bank. In the new platform, dividends have to go to the MM settlement account and then manually transferred elsewhere. This is why all my accounts are new platform except my taxable account. I'm sure at some point VG m...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Jun 28, 2017 2:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early Retirement - what to do about healthcare?
Replies: 228
Views: 25726

Re: Early Retirement - what to do about healthcare?

My state also had a state run plan for small businesses so I could have also done something like a dog walking business to get into that but I suspect the coverage was not all that good. My wife and I retired (me, 59, she 55) in 2007, pre- ACA. Vermont approved small business plans (I needed to joi...
by TheGreyingDuke
Wed Jun 28, 2017 6:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard Voice Verification
Replies: 27
Views: 2066

Re: Vanguard Voice Verification

I have an intermittently, chronic condition that affects my voice (sometimes). When the condition is operant I am led through three phrases to repeat, when it is inactive I am done wth "At Vanguard, my voice is my password".
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jun 27, 2017 7:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Illinois: A slow swimming black swan?
Replies: 32
Views: 4767

Re: Illinois: A slow swimming black swan?

I inherited an Illinois bond, issued in 2002 with a coupon of 5.75%, matures 6/15/2018 with two more interest payments due. It is rated as AA- by S&P and is a "Sales Tax Rev" bond.

It has a face value of $30k and it looks like it will make it across the finish line.
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jun 24, 2017 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to put a vegie garden
Replies: 13
Views: 1283

Re: Where to put a vegie garden

Not knowing your location... Gardens want about 1 inch of rain a week, there are ways to minimize watering needs (close planting, mulch) and it is best to water it all at once rather than small watering. The deep watering way encourages deep roots, which in turn allows the plants to access the miner...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 23, 2017 9:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to put a vegie garden
Replies: 13
Views: 1283

Re: Where to put a vegie garden

I have raised our vegetables for over 40 years and have never used a potent pesticide or herbicide. There are some pesticides that are permitted under organic guidelines, they tend to be not very pervasive nor toxic (Spinosad for example). There really isn't any need for these products gardening on ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 19, 2017 9:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity web snafu
Replies: 3
Views: 477

Re: Fidelity web snafu

I went with changing the password, it was due anyway, and that got me logged in with no further input. BTW, the service I received was exemplary, I was wanting to transfer the account of an older relative from managed (1%, 21 different assets in an IRA of less that $500k) to the do it yourself side ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon Jun 19, 2017 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity web snafu
Replies: 3
Views: 477

Fidelity web snafu

A recent thread (mostly) lambasted Vanguard's website, with which I have rarely had problems. Today, trying to log into Fidelity's site I get a password error message telling me that if I use a password manager (I use LastPass) I need to manually enter my password and username. That is a 30 characte...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sat Jun 17, 2017 11:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NFC (near field communication) desirability
Replies: 22
Views: 2084

Re: NFC (near field communication) desirability

OP here, I bought a slightly used Samsung 7 edge, $300, and it has nfc, use it frequently
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 09, 2017 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Camper rental, by owner
Replies: 6
Views: 759

Re: Camper rental, by owner

I am looking here https://rvshare.com/

Apart from a breakdown hundreds of miles from the owner, the various clauses, sub-clauses, and conditions imposed under the contract are daunting and not understandable by the average person.
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri Jun 09, 2017 7:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Camper rental, by owner
Replies: 6
Views: 759

Re: Camper rental, by owner

The information on the Costco card is confusing; on the web page it states that coverage in the US is secondary to one's own insurance. In the pamphlet accessed online it states that the card's insurance is primary in the US.

This of course does not address the particulars of this type of rental.
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 08, 2017 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Camper rental, by owner
Replies: 6
Views: 759

Camper rental, by owner

We are contemplating a 2-3 week camping tour through Texas and New Mexico this winter. Focused on getting to Big Bend late February (before spring break) and wandering the region. There are campers available directly from the individual owner rather than a rental company. Has anyone utilized one of ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 08, 2017 7:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do I get monthly checks from my investments in retirement?
Replies: 15
Views: 2678

Re: How do I get monthly checks from my investments in retirement?

As an earlier post stated, there are many recipes to get this done, mine works like this: I am 69 yo, not collecting SS for another year and get two small pensions. The pensions and all dividends from taxable go into a high yield savings account (CIT in my case, there are other options). Each month ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: EZPass not read, rental car, high fee
Replies: 18
Views: 2340

Re: EZPass not read, rental car, high fee

Right, I can see that registering the tag is the sure fire way to go. Never had to do so in the past, although when I am in my registered vehicle I get, from time to time, "Call EZPass" on the board as I pass through the toll. Never have so I assume they do as suggested above and match the...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: EZPass not read, rental car, high fee
Replies: 18
Views: 2340

EZPass not read, rental car, high fee

I was using my EZPass when in a rental in MA. One toll did not get read (there were several others over the days of rental that did get read) and Budget hit me with a $20 fee plus $6.50 for the toll. If EZPass had worked the toll would have been around $3.00 A call to Budget got the admin fee remove...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Jun 06, 2017 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gas station prices and quality
Replies: 43
Views: 3192

Re: Gas station prices and quality

My dilemma is how to blend Top Tier with non-ethanol fuel, which I believe each impart advantages. Most (all?) of the non-ethanol stations are not branded, not Top Tier. The TopTier stations all have ethanol. I drive a VW 2.0 TSI engined car, it requires 91 Octane and I have had the habit of mixing ...
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Flagship membership status worth a $50 [transaction] fee?
Replies: 40
Views: 5534

Re: Is Flagship membership status worth a $50 one time fee?

The only tangible benefit I got was when I was living in China and needed some paperwork submitted, they paid for the FedEx.

Otherwise, not worth much to me,
by TheGreyingDuke
Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Senility: How do you plan on protecting your money when you lose your mental capacities?
Replies: 72
Views: 6486

Re: Senility: How do you plan on protecting your money when you lose your mental capacities?

A couple of comments on the suggestion to establish a "test" that the elder takes to demonstrate competence or lack thereof. I had an older friend who suggested, when she was in her early 70's, that we do an annual driving test to assess her ability to continue driving. She was never a gre...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon May 29, 2017 9:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?
Replies: 36
Views: 4062

Re: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?

My wife recently got a speeding ticket in NY (our state of residence) and was offered the chance to take an online "safety" course. The cost was the same as the ticket but it wiped the offense (and the points) from her record. You might want to check with the court in the county in which y...
by TheGreyingDuke
Mon May 29, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does a new car purchase make sense?
Replies: 40
Views: 3449

Re: Does a new car purchase make sense?

One safety related item only now being assessed by the various reviewers is headlights. This is especially relevant for those of us into our 6th decade and those who travel on two-lane rural roads. Even some cars equipped with the latest technology in lights (LED, xenon) fail in providing decent cov...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri May 26, 2017 6:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 6120

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

So I test drove a Toyota Camry and Subaru Legacy. Both are 2014 Certified. I really like the Subaru Legacy much better and the Subaru dealer is willing to give me more money on my trade. The certified 2014 Subaru Legacy base model w/ 50k miles is coming to $15k out the door. Thoughts? Try this exer...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun May 21, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxes on Series EE bonds issued in 1987
Replies: 13
Views: 1131

Re: Taxes on Series EE bonds issued in 1987

ALways search first!! While some families may be aware that these bonds can be utilized tax free for current college expenses, many may not realize that contributions to a qualified tuition plan (i.e., a 529 plan) are also eligible for the tax-free treatment. The bond owner would cash out the bond a...
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun May 21, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Taxes on Series EE bonds issued in 1987
Replies: 13
Views: 1131

Re: Taxes on Series EE bonds issued in 1987

Is there a way to fund a 529 with the bonds? I too have some bonds purchased in the 1990's, never used them for my son's education. Now I am funding a 529 for my granddaughter and can I cash them and put them in the 529 can I avoid the taxes??
by TheGreyingDuke
Sun May 14, 2017 2:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light comes on, need advice
Replies: 27
Views: 1461

Re: Check engine light comes on, need advice

You ignore this at your peril, it could indicate a serious problem that will not go away, even if the light does. I had a 2009 VW, notorious for clogging their PCV and when it does it puts greater pressure on the engine, leads to a blown rear engine seal and a $1200 repair. Find out what the problem...
by TheGreyingDuke
Fri May 12, 2017 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New car sales down, discounts up
Replies: 15
Views: 2505

New car sales down, discounts up

Given the frequent posting on "what car shall I buy" this article describes the flattening of car sales and the rise of discounts. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/05/11/automobiles/wheels/car-dealers-discounts-price-cuts.html?ref=automobiles One relevant tidbit is that the discounts are often...
by TheGreyingDuke
Tue Apr 25, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Purchase new, but older model cell phone - Best method?
Replies: 11
Views: 1096

Re: Purchase new, but older model cell phone - Best method?

The Moto G5 shares the same form factor as the SG5, but will be much more powerful, have a warranty, and the latest software. All for $229 from amazon. Keep in mind that, inexplicably, the new Moto, at least it US version, lacks NFC. It has caused me, a loyal Moto G user (the original and the 3) to...