Search found 89 matches

by UALflyer
Mon Nov 28, 2016 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No Appraisal Refinance
Replies: 23
Views: 1710

Re: No Appraisal Refinance

I did a no-appraisal refi back in August, worked out very well - 3 weeks from application to signing. The broker saw that we had a very good LTV and the appraisal & fee were indeed waived. YMMV, just shop around. Things tend to change quickly. As the link above demonstrates, for Fannie and Fred...
by UALflyer
Sun Nov 27, 2016 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No Appraisal Refinance
Replies: 23
Views: 1710

Re: No Appraisal Refinance

For Fannie and Freddie Mac loans, a no appraisal refi is possible if the mortgage is less than $250,000, the house is less than $1,000,000 (there are also LTV limitations, which vary on the loan type). At least two banks have disagreed. They say that's possible, but you need a waiver from Fannie/Fr...
by UALflyer
Sun Nov 27, 2016 8:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No Appraisal Refinance
Replies: 23
Views: 1710

Re: No Appraisal Refinance

For Fannie and Freddie Mac loans, a no appraisal refi is possible if the mortgage is less than $250,000, the house is less than $1,000,000 (there are also LTV limitations, which vary on the loan type).
by UALflyer
Tue Oct 18, 2016 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

Extremely high SEER ratings will require multi-stage systems, but your breakeven on the cost differential is generally going to exceed the expected life of the system. Hence, the reason that I keep mentioning that if it's energy efficiency that people are after, multi-stage/variable speed systems a...
by UALflyer
Tue Oct 18, 2016 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

This is the one I disagree with most. It is exactly the opposite of our most recent experience, when we replaced a 3-year-old system because of how terribly it performed. We had a low-end (Night & Day) single-stage furnace that was slightly oversized for our house. Ductwork for the common areas...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

And don't underestimate the quietness value of the modulating functionality. You don't even know the furnace is running most of the time. It always amazes me now when I go visit family/friends, and their old school furnace kicks off, and sounds like a jet running. You don't know what you're missing...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

...exactly hvac-talk.com... If you are suggesting that hvac-talk.com supports the statements that you've made above, then please provide some links to their threads. in short we would never install anything but a multi stage variable fan system as it is so much better and more comfortable. The diff...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 2:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

1. Just anecdotal but we had zero reliability problems with 2 variable stage and variable fan systems in 2 house over multiple years. Neighbor running same system also had zero issues in 5+ years. [/i] In general, the more complex something is, the more opportunity there is for something to fail. T...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

+1. Brand isn't the most important thing, it's the contractor quality, but it's really hard to figure out who a good contractor is in advance. You won't sometimes find out who the poor installer is until you start having problems later out. I completely agree. In addition, the fact that contractor ...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

I think it's hit or miss and depends on what equipment you need. Last summer I had a new Lennox gas furnace and AC installed through Costco. The discount brought the price about $2k below the price from other local HVAC contractors for the same/equivalent equipment (Elite series). Plus I got a cash...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

In my area, at least, Lennox is sold through Costco. I would think that their price would be competitive, and if there are problems, you would have Costco standing behind it. We recently changed our A/C system and even with the Costco discount, and we had the best discount available as executive me...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 17, 2016 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?
Replies: 34
Views: 2584

Re: recs on gas forced air furnace replacement?

We installed new forced air gas furnace (high end Trane) in our previous home. Regardless of the brand, I'd second a previous poster's recommendation to pay extra to get a unit with a variable fan and a two stage burner. Both items are worth the extra investment, the two stage burner because it is ...
by UALflyer
Mon Jul 18, 2016 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's up with 4K tv? Should I buy one?
Replies: 101
Views: 7045

Re: What's up with 4K tv? Should I buy one?

So it sounds like for now it's OK to go with my original plan for 1080p. Then when 4K takes the world over I'll consider upgrading. Will be buying everything this week. Now I just need help with the stereo receiver... Do people still buy "receivers"? I use the Sonos speaker system and abs...
by UALflyer
Sun Jun 05, 2016 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I want a house with a pool?
Replies: 96
Views: 7963

Re: Do I want a house with a pool?

In Atlanta you will get around 3.5 months use of the pool and if you are like me then you will likely be out of town on vacations or weekend trips during the summer for part of that time. It is likely that you will only have about 10 to 12 weeks a year when you can use it AND are in town. Public ou...
by UALflyer
Tue May 03, 2016 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New A/C for Florida Military Rental
Replies: 15
Views: 1570

Re: New A/C for Florida Military Rental

If you ever intend to live there, I would definitely recommend a variable speed fan and compressor for comfort and operating cost considerations, even though it will cost a bit more up front. I would think long and hard about multi-stage variable speed units. It is absolutely true that they can (bu...
by UALflyer
Mon May 02, 2016 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New A/C for Florida Military Rental
Replies: 15
Views: 1570

Re: New A/C for Florida Military Rental

I don't think a "better" brand/model is necessarily more reliable, as it is possibly more complex. And a lot has to do with the initial installation. That's exactly right. A variable/multi-speed system, for instance, is significantly more complex and installation sensitive, which means no...
by UALflyer
Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New A/C for Florida Military Rental
Replies: 15
Views: 1570

Re: New A/C for Florida Military Rental

Thanks for your feedback. Our current plan is to keep the house as a rental (paid off in 12 years) so we would like to purchase a reliable unit properly sized and priced. Wolverine90 I just noticed this supplemental post. For a rental property, particularly if it's a somewhat lower end one (I don't...
by UALflyer
Sat Apr 30, 2016 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New A/C for Florida Military Rental
Replies: 15
Views: 1570

Re: New A/C for Florida Military Rental

I'd find a different contractor. They're quoting you the bottom of the line Lennox systems (personally, if you're going with Lennox and aren't expecting to immediately sell the house, I'd go with its Elite line, which is mid tier) and are charging an absolutely insane price for it. Further, the prop...
by UALflyer
Wed Mar 23, 2016 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to select good contractors. Angie's list has changed.
Replies: 33
Views: 5675

Re: How to select good contractors. Angie's list has changed.

By having a $60 yearly subscription fee Angieslist was able to ensure that service providers wouldn't be able to overwhelm them with fake reviews. If it's true that anyone will be able to write reviews on AL, you can forget about getting anything near objective information. There are plenty of ways...
by UALflyer
Wed Mar 23, 2016 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dishwasher recommendation.
Replies: 44
Views: 3767

Re: Dishwasher recommendation.

There are two types of dishwasher owners. Those with a Bosch and those who are tolerate loud machines which don't clean their dishes. It's up to you which you intend to be We recently replaced our Kitchenaid dishwasher with a Bosch 800. Frankly, the cleaning prowess is about the same, which means t...
by UALflyer
Wed Mar 23, 2016 7:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to select good contractors. Angie's list has changed.
Replies: 33
Views: 5675

Re: How to select good contractors. Angie's list has changed.

The problem with asking friends and neighbors, which I do regularly, is that those referrals are only reliable if the person knows enough to distinguish between good and bad contractors, as well as reasonable and unreasonable pricing. Time and time again I've been referred to handymen and plumbers w...
by UALflyer
Sun Feb 14, 2016 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: generator [Thinking about a generator]
Replies: 38
Views: 2682

Re: generator

I can't justify paying $6K-$12K for something that will only be used intermittently and that I may need to replace/rebuild after 10 years. I have never heard of permanently installed natural gas generators that have to be replaced/rebuilt every 10 years. With minimal maintenance, they last virtuall...
by UALflyer
Sun Feb 14, 2016 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: generator [Thinking about a generator]
Replies: 38
Views: 2682

Re: generator

Remember there is maintenance. The installer (an electrician shop) charges about $780/year. What in the world do they do for that? We have a huge whole house natural gas powered permanently installed generator, which powers multiple a/c systems, etc... The only maintenance that it requires is an oi...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 12, 2016 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 1089

Re: New air conditioner

I would submit to you that before your submission in that thread, however, no one suggested single speed over variable speed due to reliability/issues. Sure, and if you create a thread on investing on an HVAC forum, you'll get similarly low quality responses. As I mentioned above, BH is a terrific ...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 12, 2016 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New air conditioner
Replies: 8
Views: 1089

Re: New air conditioner

OP, please note that valuethinker's comments above primarily reflect his own thoughts as opposed to the "consensus." In fact, this board, although generally great, is not particularly well suited to a discussion of air conditioning issues, as the vast majority of the posters are just resta...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

The reason the freon is costing you so much is because it's been phased out - you won't even be able to get it soon. It's a terrible thing to do to the environment, to knowingly be leaking freon into the ozone layer. This is one of the reasons freon was replaced in the first place - it was cheaper ...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 05, 2016 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

For those of you having trouble locating the energystar.gov calculator on its website, google "seer savings calculator," which will be the third listing on that page. I can't figure out how to link directly to that page, as it requires you to download the Excel version of the calculator, b...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

Unless you live in a very high AC area (a desert, say; or a humid swamp) then these calculations are no doubt correct. As I mentioned above, this publically accessible official government calculator takes into account the number of cooling hours associated with a particular city and state, so the c...
by UALflyer
Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

Fair points - living in DFW area in Texas I tend to forget most folks can get by with a single HVAC. The fact that we're discussing replacing a single a/c does not tell you how many a/c's each house has. In our case, we have 5 a/c's, but the calculations are always done on a per unit basis, as it i...
by UALflyer
Mon Jan 04, 2016 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

In Texas some of our neighbors with builder grade ac units have $ 700-800 electric bills in the summer, while ours is 200. This isn't possible. I just ran a comparison on energystar.gov's website (the official federal government website) and, in Texas even if you have a massive 5 ton 20 SEER unit, ...
by UALflyer
Mon Jan 04, 2016 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

In Texas some of our neighbors with builder grade ac units have $ 700-800 electric bills in the summer, while ours is 200. This isn't possible. I just ran a comparison on energystar.gov's website (the official federal government website) and, in Texas even if you have a massive 5 ton 20 SEER unit, ...
by UALflyer
Mon Jan 04, 2016 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

On SEER I'd "reach" for 15/16 if you can. You are only going to do this once, and electricity never gets any cheaper. Standards will only get tighter over time. This should not be a difficult reach if you get a new system with a two stage compressor. We put in a 4-ton heat pump with 2-sta...
by UALflyer
Mon Jan 04, 2016 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement air conditioner
Replies: 46
Views: 2843

Re: Replacement air conditioner

Contrary to what a lot of posters above have advised, I would think long and hard about multi-stage variable speed units. It is absolutely true that they can increase your comfort by reducing humidity in the summer and minimizing temperature fluctuations, but there are also a number of downsides. Th...
by UALflyer
Thu Nov 05, 2015 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO
Replies: 18
Views: 2446

Re: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO

There are people out there who, when presented with a question of "HDHP vs. PPO" do not realize that in that context "PPO" is referring to a non-HDHP PPO? What do they think it means? It's a genuine question on my part. What are some of the better terms that you've seen used that...
by UALflyer
Thu Nov 05, 2015 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO
Replies: 18
Views: 2446

Re: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO

So, although an HDHP can certainly be a PPO type plan, the term "PPO" is typically used to distinguish between HDHP's and non-HDHP non-HMO plans. I know it gets used this way a lot, but it's obviously incorrect. If two objects are red, and one is square and one is round, it would be very ...
by UALflyer
Wed Nov 04, 2015 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO
Replies: 18
Views: 2446

Re: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO

nit: I wish employers and employees would stop calling the plans HSAs, when they are actually HDHP. Another nit is the constant HSA vs PPO confusion. A HDHP (whether HSA qualified or not) can be a PPO (preferred provider organization) type plan. The term PPO doesn't tell you anything about a plan's...
by UALflyer
Tue Nov 03, 2015 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO
Replies: 18
Views: 2446

Re: Math is Hard - HSA vs HRA/PPO

Worst Case Scenario (met max OOP) PPO: 2847.52 + 4850 - 1100 = 6597.52 HSA: 2553.46 + 5000 - 700 = 6853.46 Best Case Scenario (didn't use insurance at all) PPO: 2847.52 put money in FSA didn't use is lost HSA: 2553.46 plus got 700 from company and all HSA money rolls over Personally, I'd go for the...
by UALflyer
Mon Nov 02, 2015 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen Remodel - Best decisions, biggest busts for appliances
Replies: 46
Views: 5448

Re: Kitchen remodel

Indeed, forget the fancy fridges they are problem prone and expensive to fix. Modern standalone fridges are generally built to last approximately 10 years. Modern built-in/integrated refrigerators are built to last 20 years, which accounts for some of the price differences. Additional features foun...
by UALflyer
Thu Feb 06, 2014 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying the most expensive house you can afford
Replies: 101
Views: 18417

Re: Buying the most expensive house you can afford

While the posters mentioning all the perils of overbuying are absolutely correct, there's also a flip side to this, where you are penny wise but pound foolish. There are substantial transaction costs that are associated with moving, and buying a house that you will be likely to outgrow in 3 years ca...
by UALflyer
Fri Jan 10, 2014 11:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

Intellectually, they know that it's a terrible idea but knowing something intellectually and seeing their balances plummeting before their very eyes are two very different things and the vast majority of investors just do not have the stomach to withstand the volatility. I think it goes further tha...
by UALflyer
Fri Jan 10, 2014 10:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

If you are not prone to this phenomenon, then mathematically, bonds do significantly and adversely affect your overall performance. Bonds adversely affect your return at the end of a good year for stocks. Bonds increase the return of your portfolio at the end of a bad year for stocks. So does liter...
by UALflyer
Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

We're diverging a bit from the thread -- but I think no-one should be talking about absolute returns except as a numerator to be divided by risk. Again, given the possibility of cheap leverage or simply investing in the riskiest stocks it's a pretty meaningless concept. The OP's message didn't read...
by UALflyer
Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

I have bonds for the same reason anyone else has bonds - to reduce volatility in an otherwise risky portfolio. That's just a very general answer, but in what specific way is volatility a problem in your particular situation? I am not trying to suggest an answer by asking this question. For instance...
by UALflyer
Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

ogd wrote:If you do use risk-adjusted returns, bonds in a portfolio actually improve them.
That's exactly right, but we are talking about absolute returns here.
by UALflyer
Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

... rest assured that trying to guess your way to wealth won't work. That's true, but you can also rest assured that blindly following some asset allocation formula that you saw somewhere without understanding the rationale behind it and ensuring its applicability to your specific situation won't w...
by UALflyer
Thu Jan 09, 2014 5:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k
Replies: 86
Views: 8459

Re: How to weather the upcoming bond crash in my 401k

At your age it's a good idea to have 20-30% of bonds in your portfolio. This is the threshold issue, isn't it? People keep bonds in their portfolios for quite a few reasons. Depending on those reasons, a person in the OP's situation may be well advised to shorten their duration or to move his money...
by UALflyer
Mon Oct 21, 2013 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many square feet is your home?
Replies: 162
Views: 13090

Re: How many square feet is your home?

We know quite a few couples with 1-3 kids who have 6,000 sq. ft. to 10,000 sq. ft. of living space (when you count finished basements) and are quite happy with it. You do realize how wealthy your friends must be. Anything above 6,000 sq. ft. puts your house in the top 0.5% percent of homes by size,...
by UALflyer
Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many square feet is your home?
Replies: 162
Views: 13090

Re: How many square feet is your home?

I think 2000 sq ft per person is about right. Anything less is crowded. I mean, how do you get away from your spouse and kids? Go to a bar? I can't tell if that's sarcastic or not...but if it's not...I think it's WAY off from what many out there would consider to be "enough space" without...
by UALflyer
Thu Oct 17, 2013 11:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Stock-heavy AA -- Does it matter?
Replies: 43
Views: 3869

Re: Stock-heavy AA -- Does it matter?

#1. When the (not if, but when) the market tanks 35% or 40% you will be using what exactly to load up the truck for the fire sale? So, you are suggesting that investors should sell their bonds during severe market downturns and load up on equities, thereby making their positions more aggressive? On...
by UALflyer
Wed May 29, 2013 2:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: California affordable care act rates for 2014 released
Replies: 143
Views: 16588

Re: California affordable care act rates for 2014 released

The most important part of any health insurance policy is the annual maximum expense... Please tell me that you aren't making these types of statements to your clients. If you have two hypothetical plans (for comparison purposes, let's assume that they are otherwise identical in their networks, mon...

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