Search found 428 matches

by amarone
Thu Feb 16, 2017 9:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Private home sale (without agents): Where to start with price?
Replies: 34
Views: 1708

Re: Private home sale (without agents): Where to start with price?

I once bought a home from owner directly. Unfortunately after 10 years I am trying to sell it and realized I over-paid for it . He had done some "weird" upgrades that were fine to my "bachelor" eyes. I now realize those upgrades are off putting to buyers and have lowered it's va...
by amarone
Fri Feb 10, 2017 10:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken's future direction - a cause for concern
Replies: 106
Views: 8984

Re: Quicken's future direction - a cause for concern

I don't mind a subscription model (I use Office 365) - it comes down to price. I also don't care whether I can do manual transactions or not. I am never going to use a system that requires manual transaction entry. I just checked last month and had 294 transactions - no way am I going to enter those...
by amarone
Wed Feb 01, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a household for Head of Household?
Replies: 8
Views: 874

Re: What is a household for Head of Household?

'Household' does not go by who owns the house (our house is in a trust), but which people are related to each other income wise. In our house my wife and I are one household. In our house also my son and 13 year old grandson live, and there then is another household with my son being the head of hi...
by amarone
Wed Feb 01, 2017 5:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a household for Head of Household?
Replies: 8
Views: 874

Re: What is a household for Head of Household?

I have seen the definitions mentioned in the last two posts. They seem to relate to household = home = house, therefore she does not qualify because she does not pay for more than half the house costs (or more than anyone else), which was my interpretation. However, I have had someone who worked as...
by amarone
Tue Jan 31, 2017 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a household for Head of Household?
Replies: 8
Views: 874

Re: What is a household for Head of Household?

I have seen the definitions mentioned in the last two posts. They seem to relate to household = home = house, therefore she does not qualify because she does not pay for more than half the house costs (or more than anyone else), which was my interpretation. However, I have had someone who worked as ...
by amarone
Tue Jan 31, 2017 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a household for Head of Household?
Replies: 8
Views: 874

What is a household for Head of Household?

I have searched the IRS web site for a definition of "household" and come up empty. I have found "head of household" and "member of household", but if you are unsure as to what "household" is, they do not help much. The situation I have is a set of relatives i...
by amarone
Fri Jan 06, 2017 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes on sign-on bonus check
Replies: 31
Views: 2859

Re: Taxes on sign-on bonus check

The date on check determines the taxable year. I do not think that is correct. It is certainly contrary to what our tax accountant told us. Look up "constructive receipt" on the IRS site. Not sure what to say. I work in IT supporting HR and Payroll. If the check is dated 12/31/2016, it wi...
by amarone
Thu Jan 05, 2017 10:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting Subaru Legacy(4Cyl 2.5L or V6 3.6R?)
Replies: 56
Views: 4155

Re: Getting Subaru Legacy(4Cyl 2.5L or V6 3.6R?)

Had a 3.6 Outback. When it came time to replace it, decided to test drive the 2.5 also. Things were going fine until I said we need to try a highway ramp with an incline. We stopped the test drive after that and ordered another 3.6.
by amarone
Wed Jan 04, 2017 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxes on sign-on bonus check
Replies: 31
Views: 2859

Re: Taxes on sign-on bonus check

Billionaire wrote:The date on check determines the taxable year.

I do not think that is correct. It is certainly contrary to what our tax accountant told us. Look up "constructive receipt" on the IRS site.
by amarone
Wed Jan 04, 2017 8:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club desperate for investors?
Replies: 87
Views: 9480

Re: Lending Club desperate for investors?

I had $18k in Lending Club and it was one of my best investments last year. Nevertheless, I am getting out. At the end of last month I analyzed my account as I had a feeling that charge offs were increasing. Charge offs averaged 0.5% of my investment per month in 2015. Over the first five months of...
by amarone
Tue Dec 20, 2016 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy house personally or within a trust?
Replies: 4
Views: 761

Re: Buy house personally or within a trust?

When I bought my current home the bank lender would not let me title the deed in my Trusts name. They insisted it be in wife and my name. I did a bridge loan so I could live in my old home while I remodeled the new home. So when I paid it off 2 years later I then had to pay to get the deed transfer...
by amarone
Tue Dec 20, 2016 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy house personally or within a trust?
Replies: 4
Views: 761

Re: Buy house personally or within a trust?

When I bought my current home the bank lender would not let me title the deed in my Trusts name. They insisted it be in wife and my name. I did a bridge loan so I could live in my old home while I remodeled the new home. So when I paid it off 2 years later I then had to pay to get the deed transfer...
by amarone
Tue Dec 20, 2016 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy house personally or within a trust?
Replies: 4
Views: 761

Buy house personally or within a trust?

My wife is planning to buy a house for her mother to live in. The source of funds will be a trust fund for which my wife is both sole trustee and sole beneficiary. She can have the trust buy and own the house, or she can take a (non-taxable) distribution and then buy the house personally. There will...
by amarone
Mon Nov 14, 2016 7:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime: doing the math...is it worth it?
Replies: 111
Views: 12816

Re: Amazon Prime: doing the math...is it worth it?

It is difficult to work out the benefit in pure dollars (doing the math). We get a free Kindle book per month. Value $60 (only otherwise cheap books are available). Free shipping - as others have said, we could mostly get free shipping simply by choosing the slower option that is free to non-Prime ...
by amarone
Thu Nov 03, 2016 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club desperate for investors?
Replies: 87
Views: 9480

Re: Lending Club desperate for investors?

Some defaults look like flat out fraud to me. In my first investment of $1,000 (40 notes), two were charged off without making a single payment. That did not happen again out of 1,933 notes purchased until last month when a company president of 10+ years and a supposedly verified $100k income borrow...
by amarone
Wed Nov 02, 2016 6:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club desperate for investors?
Replies: 87
Views: 9480

Re: Lending Club desperate for investors?

I had $18k in Lending Club and it was one of my best investments last year. Nevertheless, I am getting out. At the end of last month I analyzed my account as I had a feeling that charge offs were increasing. Charge offs averaged 0.5% of my investment per month in 2015. Over the first five months of...
by amarone
Mon Oct 24, 2016 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: advice on buying a new Outback/Legacy/Camry
Replies: 20
Views: 2079

Re: advice on buying a new Outback or Legacy

Subaru's have always been known to burn some oil but supposedly have fixed this with their new engines. I think if you change your oil more frequently than the recommended 6500 miles you will have no problems. They changed the service interval on the Outback to be every 6,000 miles instead of every...
by amarone
Mon Oct 24, 2016 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: advice on buying a new Outback/Legacy/Camry
Replies: 20
Views: 2079

Re: advice on buying a new Outback or Legacy

My wife had a 2012 Outback 3.6R and replaced it with a 2016 model last December. She loves the car, but with a big BUT that means our next car may be something different. We got the Eyesight feature, which we love. I am not sure if it is related to the Eyesight feature, but the windshield is extreme...
by amarone
Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you analyze your spending? (Where is my money going?)
Replies: 69
Views: 6077

Re: How do you analyze your spending? (Where is my money going?)

Another Quicken user here. I download transactions daily in a single download, then spend less than a minute categorizing them (longer if it involves Vanguard money market transactions as VG does not do this right). I run reports quarterly and annually to see income & expenses, net worth, invest...
by amarone
Wed Oct 19, 2016 6:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quicken 2017 Windows is also available
Replies: 8
Views: 1424

Re: Quicken 2017 Windows is also available

I need to do my three-yearly upgrade. Early reviews of Quicken 2017 Premier on Amazon are better than normal for a first release of the new version. I will still hold off a bit to wait for some bug fixes. Looks a bit pricey though - $110. I know I can get some discount off this, but it still looks l...
by amarone
Fri Oct 07, 2016 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simplisafe Home Security System
Replies: 43
Views: 5399

Re: Simplisafe Home Security System

We have had three false alarms. One was while we were there - caught our son vaping at 2am :happy . The other two occasions we were not at the house and a false alarm when you are over 4 hours away is not good news. One seemed to be caused by installation of sprayfoam, and we do not know what cause...
by amarone
Fri Oct 07, 2016 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simplisafe Home Security System
Replies: 43
Views: 5399

Re: Simplisafe Home Security System

We have had three false alarms. One was while we were there - caught our son vaping at 2am :happy . The other two occasions we were not at the house and a false alarm when you are over 4 hours away is not good news. One seemed to be caused by installation of sprayfoam, and we do not know what cause...
by amarone
Fri Oct 07, 2016 6:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simplisafe Home Security System
Replies: 43
Views: 5399

Re: Simplisafe Home Security System

I have had a SS system for a little over 3 years in a second home. Overall, I am not too thrilled with the system. We have had many defective components, in particular smoke and CO detectors. I bought these detectors as soon as they became available, so maybe it was teething troubles, but it suggest...
by amarone
Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

⋅ What questions should we ask before hiring? ⋅ What to look out for in the contract? What to make sure is included, and is excluded. ⋅ How do we make sure the architect engages the right builder? We were told that a benefit of using an architect is that they will bid ...
by amarone
Thu Oct 06, 2016 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

Why would you spend $300,000 to sell a house? Why not just list the house as is and knock $300,000 off the price? Tried that (and more) - didn't work. The house has been on the market for two years. Initially, few high-end homes were selling. More recently, sales have increased but it is the renova...
by amarone
Thu Oct 06, 2016 6:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Timing of SS benefit payments to 18-year old
Replies: 0
Views: 248

Timing of SS benefit payments to 18-year old

We currently get SS benefits for my stepson because his dad is claiming. My stepson turns 18 at the beginning of January, but payments should continue until he graduates high school in May. Payments will be direct to my stepson, whereas currently they are deposited into our bank account on the fourt...
by amarone
Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

This makes me think that the property owner really isn't ready to sell. This is just a convenient stalling technique for whatever personal reasons the property owner may have. Quite the opposite - that is why he is prepared to lay out a lot of money to get the house to sell. He has not even visited...
by amarone
Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

Architects often do construction administration ("CA") which is a totally different phase of the work from the design. During CA, the architect will represent the owner, forcing the contractor to build according to specifications that were developed and agreed upon at the end of the desig...
by amarone
Wed Oct 05, 2016 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

The architect or designer will put together some pretty plans. Houses sliding down mountains sounds like a geotechnical engineer. Tearing down walls and supporting the existing structure will involve a structural engineer. In that particular area you might find a specialized engineer that does both...
by amarone
Mon Oct 03, 2016 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

Why would you spend $300,000 to sell a house? Why not just list the house as is and knock $300,000 off the price? Tried that (and more) - didn't work. The house has been on the market for two years. Initially, few high-end homes were selling. More recently, sales have increased but it is the renova...
by amarone
Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

Are you looking for an architect to design the changes (sounds like you know what is wanted) or supervise the construction? First step in any construction project is detailed plans. Its difficult to get any reliable estimates without them. Both. The main part of the work is to modernize the house b...
by amarone
Mon Oct 03, 2016 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Re: Advice on hiring an architect

My wife and I are helping her father renovate and sell a second home. We are helping mostly because we are only 2 hours from it rather than 5 rather than because we have relevant expertise (we don't). The renovations will be extensive - probably $250 - 300k, and involve significant internal structu...
by amarone
Mon Oct 03, 2016 9:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on hiring an architect
Replies: 31
Views: 2095

Advice on hiring an architect

My wife and I are helping her father renovate and sell a second home. We are helping mostly because we are only 2 hours from it rather than 5 rather than because we have relevant expertise (we don't). The renovations will be extensive - probably $250 - 300k, and involve significant internal structur...
by amarone
Wed Aug 03, 2016 3:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Lending Club - Thoughts?
Replies: 27
Views: 3704

Re: Lending Club - Thoughts?

I have similarly used some play money to try this out. I try to select people with an 800+ credit score and want to consolidate debt. I want to say that about 75%+ of my loans are people in this situation and are classified as "Low Risk" in my portfolio there. A little less than a year in...
by amarone
Wed Aug 03, 2016 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we take this insurance money?
Replies: 9
Views: 1445

Re: Should we take this insurance money?

I know someone in a similar position, except that it was for hail damage. He tried to get he insurance company to take back the check, but they would not take it back. The insurance company will not want to insure a house with a damaged roof. I had hail damage identified by someone the insurance co...
by amarone
Thu Jul 28, 2016 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Comcast - lease modem/router or buy?
Replies: 29
Views: 2087

Re: Comcast - lease modem/router or buy?

I have bought my own twice and installed them myself without needing an installation kit.
by amarone
Sat Jun 18, 2016 4:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing Error - a success story!
Replies: 16
Views: 1999

Re: Medical Billing Error - a success story!

Great to hear! The number of medical billing errors is outrageous. I can't imagine any other industry being allowed to get away with so many billing errors. Calling them "errors" is charitable in many instances. We are handling the finances of my sister-in-law, who had a stroke last Septe...
by amarone
Sat Jun 18, 2016 4:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing Error - a success story!
Replies: 16
Views: 1999

Re: Medical Billing Error - a success story!

Nope. She had reached her annual out of pocket maximum under her ACA policy and therefore had neither further deductible or coinsurance to pay. As the "mistakes" were always in the health provider's favor, I am not inclined to believe that they were always genuine mistakes. Mind you, ther...
by amarone
Fri Jun 17, 2016 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing Error - a success story!
Replies: 16
Views: 1999

Re: Medical Billing Error - a success story!

Great to hear! The number of medical billing errors is outrageous. I can't imagine any other industry being allowed to get away with so many billing errors. Calling them "errors" is charitable in many instances. We are handling the finances of my sister-in-law, who had a stroke last Septe...
by amarone
Fri Jun 17, 2016 5:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing Error - a success story!
Replies: 16
Views: 1999

Re: Medical Billing Error - a success story!

Great to hear! The number of medical billing errors is outrageous. I can't imagine any other industry being allowed to get away with so many billing errors. Calling them "errors" is charitable in many instances. We are handling the finances of my sister-in-law, who had a stroke last Septe...
by amarone
Thu Jun 16, 2016 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Uber Car and the real cost of driving
Replies: 71
Views: 9786

Re: Uber Car and the real cost of driving

The government $0.55/mile deal is for deprecation, insurance, maintenance, and fuel. There is a large range of cars, some as cheap as $16k new (Honda Fit), and some as expensive as $60k new (fully loaded mini van for example). So, if we assume the government calculated out a $30k car for 125k miles...
by amarone
Thu Jun 16, 2016 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medical Billing Error - a success story!
Replies: 16
Views: 1999

Re: Medical Billing Error - a success story!

Great to hear! The number of medical billing errors is outrageous. I can't imagine any other industry being allowed to get away with so many billing errors. Calling them "errors" is charitable in many instances. We are handling the finances of my sister-in-law, who had a stroke last Septe...
by amarone
Sun Jun 12, 2016 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 3 Row SUVs - Help Educate Me
Replies: 42
Views: 3639

Re: 3 Row SUVs - Help Educate Me

How often do you need both 3 rows in use and decent luggage space? If it is only a few times per year, then why drive a bigger (and probably less economical) car all the rest of the time just for those few occasions? Get a medium SUV and a cargo carrier for the roof.

Or a minivan.
by amarone
Sun Jun 12, 2016 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renew flood insurance?
Replies: 10
Views: 854

Re: Renew flood insurance?

I'd be much happier with a flood policy that provided up to $750K of coverage, included finished walk out levels, and that had a $10K or $15K deductible. I can write a check for a fat deductible. What I want is coverage that protects me for the tail losses I can't so easily cover, but that isn't on...
by amarone
Sun Jun 12, 2016 6:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Actionable advice in a Brexit scenario
Replies: 162
Views: 18022

Re: Actionable advice in a Brexit scenario

Iridium wrote:Otherwise, stay the course. The market has already priced in the short-term impacts.

No it hasn't. The market has priced in the possibility of short-term impacts. It has not priced in a 100% certainty. So if Brexit occurs (or does not occur) the market will adjust to the actuality.
by amarone
Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How much to keep money in bank account?
Replies: 8
Views: 1852

Re: How much to keep money in bank account?

Although I do have an online savings account, I do not try very hard to minimize the balance in my checking account. At current interest rates, there is not much to be gained - every $1,000 you can lower your average balance by is worth a whole $10/year, less taxes. If we get a big receipt, such as ...
by amarone
Sat Jun 11, 2016 10:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Lending Club desperate for investors?
Replies: 87
Views: 9480

Re: Lending Club desperate for investors?

I had $18k in Lending Club and it was one of my best investments last year. Nevertheless, I am getting out. At the end of last month I analyzed my account as I had a feeling that charge offs were increasing. Charge offs averaged 0.5% of my investment per month in 2015. Over the first five months of ...
by amarone
Mon May 30, 2016 3:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking to buy a golf cart
Replies: 15
Views: 1689

Re: Looking to buy a golf cart

Where do you live? Are you in a golf cart community? Most places (other that golf cart communities) require vehicles to be licensed and in order to get that license you need liability insurance and most insurance companies are reluctant to insure golf carts. Tru My cart is insured under my homeowne...
by amarone
Mon May 30, 2016 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking to buy a golf cart
Replies: 15
Views: 1689

Re: Looking to buy a golf cart

I would go electric. Gas carts are noisier, unresponsive (lag between putting foot down and going), less convenient to recharge, pollute more, and sometimes (based on those I have rented n golf courses) prone to backfire. I suppose the one advantage is that if you run out, you can just pour in some ...

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