Search found 490 matches

by countofmc
Sat Jun 24, 2017 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bay Area housing
Replies: 38
Views: 1914

Re: Bay Area housing

The daunting thing here is all those people who are buying with all-cash. Consider that if they're cashing out stock options, you need to cash out close to $4M to have $2M after all the taxes. Sure, the bay area is popular and minting money like crazy, but it does drive some concerns about whether ...
by countofmc
Sat Jun 24, 2017 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bay Area housing
Replies: 38
Views: 1914

Re: Bay Area housing

I hate to say it but it is true - pull the trigger asap. I tried to go boglehead conservative in 2010 and fought my wife hard to not buy a bay area home in the downturn. I was completely wrong. It's been 7 years now and even the 10 or more yrs before that there were no 'reasonable' priced times to ...
by countofmc
Sat Jun 24, 2017 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bay Area housing
Replies: 38
Views: 1914

Re: Bay Area housing

I honestly don't know what to make of the housing market here anymore. Housing prices started their recent run-up in prices around 2012. Take a look at the FAANG stocks and what their prices were around then as well. They've all basically quintupled. I personally know several people my age (mid 30s)...
by countofmc
Wed May 31, 2017 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Relative just bought a house in a hot market. Should I change my investment strategy?
Replies: 53
Views: 4881

Re: Relative just bought a house in a hot market. Should I change my investment strategy?

If a house was worth $100k and tripled in value in 5 years, it's now worth $300k. If it triples AGAIN over the next 5 years, it's worth almost $1 million. I mean I know there are lots of rich people out there these days, but I'd imagine you'd run out of buyers with both the type of money and also th...
by countofmc
Thu May 25, 2017 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Land ownership" in a high rise condo
Replies: 8
Views: 1231

"Land ownership" in a high rise condo

First of all, please correct me if I am wrong because I do fear I may have some mistaken info or assumptions here. Trying to learn and inform myself :D . In a condo situation, doesn't an owner own a sliver of the land the complex is built on in proportion to the size of their condo unit? As such it ...
by countofmc
Tue May 23, 2017 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The dot com "do over" bull market?
Replies: 82
Views: 7938

Re: The dot com "do over" bull market?

In the spirit of spitballing, and since OP is focused on tech. I guess if I had to offer an opinion, seems like there's too many "me too" companies with business models that are easily duplicated. It's not just Uber/Lyft, but I believe there are other more local competitors. There seems t...
by countofmc
Tue May 23, 2017 3:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The dot com "do over" bull market?
Replies: 82
Views: 7938

Re: The dot com "do over" bull market?

In the spirit of spitballing, and since OP is focused on tech. I guess if I had to offer an opinion, seems like there's too many "me too" companies with business models that are easily duplicated. It's not just Uber/Lyft, but I believe there are other more local competitors. There seems to...
by countofmc
Sun May 21, 2017 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point to buy new car for safety
Replies: 74
Views: 4819

Re: At what point to buy new car for safety

A lot of SUVs have rollover issues; if you look at the "least safe" list on informedforlife, you will see it dominated by SUVs due to increased rollover risk and small cars due to weight less than average. Minivans are very safe; I looked up our Honda Odyssey and it was near the top of th...
by countofmc
Sun May 21, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point to buy new car for safety
Replies: 74
Views: 4819

Re: At what point to buy new car for safety

I believe statistically the most likely type of accidents are single-driver (you lose control of your own car) or being rear-ended. Electronic Stability Control helps prevent the former, active headrests help mitigate the damage from the latter, to a certain extent. I believe ESC is required in all ...
by countofmc
Wed May 17, 2017 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?
Replies: 84
Views: 7188

Re: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?

Austin must be the most overrated city to live in the country!! It is a nice place to live. However, everyone thinks it's one of the great places to live in this country. It's not! There's no ocean. There's no mountains. No saltwater beaches. No skiing. The weather is very hot. No "trees"...
by countofmc
Wed May 17, 2017 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?
Replies: 84
Views: 7188

Re: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?

One thing I did fail to consider is changing political sentiment (I will tread carefully due to forum rules) surrounding density. As more and more younger people and immigrants who may be more conducive to tolerating density if it means they can better afford a home move into the area, there might b...
by countofmc
Tue May 16, 2017 12:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?
Replies: 84
Views: 7188

Re: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?

I'd love to see some data on this, but I haven't really found anything. What I'd like to see is what % of sales are all-cash, what % get a mortgage, what % are going to foreign buyers, etc. If the vast majority of sales are all-cash to some really wealthy people, then interest rates rising shouldn'...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?
Replies: 84
Views: 7188

Re: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?

Do you mean you think property in SV will appreciate at a faster rate than other locations? I worry that it might be a bubble of sorts, which is why I get nervous thinking about buying at current prices. It's a supply/demand imbalance, not a bubble. There are enough people with a lot of cash to buy...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 9:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What Will Burst the Next Bubble?
Replies: 66
Views: 6614

Re: What Will Burst the Next Bubble?

I'll spitball. I'll tread carefully, but in the near-term seems like there could be some serious political risk. Feels like the market has run up quite a bit on the "hope" that certain things would be done by the new administration, but there are some recent things happening that's bringin...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?
Replies: 84
Views: 7188

Re: Anyone else agree with my logic on silicon valley housing?

The problem is if you need another comparable job at some point, there are a lot more of them where you are than in Austin (In terms of making 250k+ with 5 yrs experience). Some people would drastically prefer living in San Jose to Austin in terms of weather, the beach, etc. this may not apply to y...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home
Replies: 26
Views: 1605

Re: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home

Can you take a test-drive? I live in the same area and am a condo owner. Every time I think I want a SFH, or think about moving a bit further out to get a cheaper/bigger place, I try it out for a bit by house sitting for friends. Normally it's a day or two before the commute/house quirks/etc makes ...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home
Replies: 26
Views: 1605

Re: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home

I understand the dynamic and I rented for nearly a decade in the Bay Area in several different not-so-big apartments. You can find funky but cool apartment deals and I never felt like I wasn't "Keeping Up With the Jones's" because I was in great neighborhoods like Professorville Palo Alto...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home
Replies: 26
Views: 1605

Re: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home

OP, I relate to this post a lot (a few years away from the same dilemma). Ultimately, I think of my apartment rental as freedom and flexibility: it allows me to a) save well for retirement, b) buy an apt later, c) buy a SFH later, d) buy something outside of the Bay Area, etc. I try and tell myself...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home
Replies: 26
Views: 1605

Re: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home

It's even harder to compare apples and oranges when you want to compare a big apple with a small orange. I can understand where you are coming from. Is a 2 BR 2 Ba condo out of the question financially? One reason I moved out of the bay area decades ago was the choice between a huge mortgage and a ...
by countofmc
Mon May 15, 2017 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home
Replies: 26
Views: 1605

Renting a small apartment vs buying a bigger home

After going back and forth on this for years, we finally decided to explore the idea of buying a home a bit more seriously. The bank has approved us for a mortgage of $600k. We have another $200k for down payment, for a total of $800k. Unfortunately we are in the SF Bay Area, where that doesn't buy ...
by countofmc
Sun May 14, 2017 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Was there a $$$ number after which things got easier?
Replies: 72
Views: 9612

Was there a $$$ number after which things got easier?

Totally subjective, but that's what I'm looking for, opinions from our BH community. Just something I"ve been personally wrestling with, wondering if it ever does get easier and the compounding really starts taking over? So for our BH members, was there a number you hit after which it really fe...
by countofmc
Tue Mar 28, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: In-N-Out Burger - Best Chain Fast Food Burger Joint?
Replies: 157
Views: 21888

Re: In-N-Out Burger - Best Chain Fast Food Burger Joint?

I've had better fast food burgers from other places, many named already. But overall In-N-Out is my favorite as a total package. I'm biased since I grew up in California and been eating In-N-Out my whole life. But also they are consistent, good service, cheap, and the burgers and fries are pretty go...
by countofmc
Sun Mar 05, 2017 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?
Replies: 96
Views: 5562

Re: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?

The benefit of buying all cash is that you aren't as tied to the location in a housing crash or if you lose your job. When you get in trouble is buying a 1.3 million dollar house with a million dollar mortgage. Value plummets to 750k and you are stuck, or take a huge loss. You can have the house cr...
by countofmc
Sat Mar 04, 2017 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?
Replies: 96
Views: 5562

Re: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?

Slightly off-topic, but OP's and some other posters' back of the napkin calculations have monthly outlays on a fully paid off 1.3Mish house at about 2000-2500 dollars. I know for a fact some ~$1M homes in this area are being rented for about 3000-3500/month (several of my colleagues live in such arr...
by countofmc
Sat Mar 04, 2017 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?
Replies: 96
Views: 5562

Re: Windfall: should we pay cash for ~$1.3M home?

Psychologically, I'd lock that 1.3M up as "no-touch retirement" money. Well I'd add 1M of it to your retirement funds. I'd take 300k, add it to probably the 400-500k you could get in a mortgage, and look at 700-800k condos/townhomes. Bay Area homes are expensive (we live here so we know), ...
by countofmc
Sun Feb 12, 2017 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do you go to restaurants?
Replies: 229
Views: 17450

Re: Why do you go to restaurants?

On vacation, to celebrate something, or on someone else's dime would be 3 reasons. Outside of those, my wife and I usually go to some form of ethnic restaurant. Certain cuisines can be pretty involved and difficult to make to the point where it's probably more economical for 2 people to just go get ...
by countofmc
Thu Feb 02, 2017 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another can I afford this $2M house thread...
Replies: 70
Views: 7668

Re: Another can I afford this $2M house thread...

I don't disagree with you. But my anticipated timeline is 15-20 years, so I'm reasonably confident that even if we are in a bubble, my loss, if any, will be minimal 20 years from now. Naive? One final point: how long have you actually been in the workforce? I ask because at the beginning of the car...
by countofmc
Wed Feb 01, 2017 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another can I afford this $2M house thread...
Replies: 70
Views: 7668

Re: Another can I afford this $2M house thread...

I see this all the time on this board. To me, this advice is just pure market timing. For example, SF real estate values are closely related to the tech industry. Are you selling all of your tech stocks based on an impeding crash you've predicted? If not, why not buy a house with values tied to tec...
by countofmc
Tue Dec 27, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I'll never save a 20% down payment. Rent for life?
Replies: 138
Views: 13885

Re: I'll never save a 20% down payment. Rent for life?

I think income is the issue here. Honestly, everything else is just noise. I'd say hold off on things (including buying a house) until your children are in school, and then your spouse should seriously consider getting a job. I think that simple change would do the most to improve your family's fina...
by countofmc
Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?
Replies: 174
Views: 12648

Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

I have an '07 Camry that's a V6 -- 268 hp. Are you saying that's a Lexus engine? Toyota uses the 3.5 V6 in the Camry and Lexus. Hmmm... how 'bout the Avalon? I think that's got a 268 hp engine. Same engine they use it in several models. OK, thanks. It's good to know I've got a Lexus engine, if not ...
by countofmc
Mon Dec 26, 2016 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?
Replies: 174
Views: 12648

Re: At what age, income, and NW would you buy a $50k car?

Completely subjective and depends on what you value in life, I would think. If at age 35 I had 400k income with 2M net worth, I would not even hesitate. But we are talking about a car market nowadays where a well-optioned Toyota Highlander or Avalon can come in over $40k, to say nothing of a Lexus. ...
by countofmc
Tue Dec 20, 2016 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Car Value For $10K Or Less
Replies: 30
Views: 2234

Re: Best Car Value For $10K Or Less

I'd probably get a 2006 or earlier Lexus ES330. That's the ES from two generations ago. Can find some low-mileage examples that were pretty carefully driven (due to the,uh, demographic of the typical buyer of these particular models) for a couple of thousand under your 10k. These lower-tier luxury m...
by countofmc
Sat Dec 17, 2016 6:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need Help: Drowning in Debt
Replies: 60
Views: 6503

Re: Need Help: Drowning in Debt

Strangely, I wouldn't overthink it too much. Your best asset is your income. I would do two things. First would be to get your expenses under your net income (not counting bonuses). You need to be positive cash flow (even if by a small amount) each month, or it's completely pointless and hopeless. W...
by countofmc
Fri Dec 16, 2016 10:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What happens if Vanguard is wiped out?
Replies: 17
Views: 3111

Re: What happens if Vanguard is wiped out?

No country has the military capability to wipe out 1/4 of the United States short of all-out nuclear war. In that scenario you are basically contemplating armageddon, so I think investments would be the least of anyone's worries as whoever survives would be looking at a completely different and new ...
by countofmc
Mon Dec 12, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Owning CDs in 401k
Replies: 3
Views: 489

Owning CDs in 401k

My 401k is administered by Fidelity. They offer some generic stock/bond type funds, and then the option to add BrokerageLink. Is it possible to use BrokerageLink to buy/own CDs issued directly by the banks inside my 401k? I believe there's definitely a way to buy brokered CDs through this method but...
by countofmc
Wed Dec 07, 2016 10:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement: Where $200K Will Last 30 Years
Replies: 113
Views: 20292

Re: Retirement: Where $200K Will Last 30 Years

As an American I might be slightly biased, but for a rich country I always felt like the USA provides a large number of so-called "2nd tier" cities that offer a very good balance of QOL and COL. One thing I've noticed in many other rich nations in Europe or Asia is that the populations see...
by countofmc
Wed Dec 07, 2016 6:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchasing a 2016 Honda CRV EX -- the best out the door price I have found is $25,875.20 -- is this reasonable?
Replies: 22
Views: 2179

Re: Purchasing a 2016 Honda CRV EX -- the best out the door price I have found is $25,875.20 -- is this reasonable?

The EX is the Acura engine and transmission. For a few thousand more you could buy an Acura. While you could buy a used Lexus, i guarantee you it will cost more to repair it, unless you find yourself handy with mechanical repairs. No it's not. The CR-V has an I-4 engine and CVT combination. The Acu...
by countofmc
Mon Nov 28, 2016 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to help sister?
Replies: 71
Views: 6931

Re: Best way to help sister?

My own opinion and experience is that once people hit that age (heck even people 10-15 years younger), they usually don't change. Your desire to teach her to fish rather than giving her fish is admirable, but I've found that people kind of need to figure it out on their own. And that usually takes h...
by countofmc
Sat Nov 26, 2016 3:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing in the 80's when CD rates were 17%?
Replies: 74
Views: 8242

Re: Investing in the 80's when CD rates were 17%?

I have a relative who started working in the 80s and saved all his money in CDs, savings accounts, and real estate only. To this day he says the only money he puts in stocks is the "match" portion of his 401k, which he feels is "free money" and just can let that ride. He actually...
by countofmc
Fri Nov 25, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Bonds And The Good News About Rising Rates"
Replies: 15
Views: 2636

Re: "Bonds And The Good News About Rising Rates"

Curious, so when and will these rising rates eventually lead to jumps in interest rates for savings accounts/ CDs?
by countofmc
Fri Nov 25, 2016 2:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Unpredictable income in 2017: IRA timing?
Replies: 4
Views: 668

Unpredictable income in 2017: IRA timing?

We usually have a very good sense of our income for the coming year, and thus like to make that year's IRA contributions in January. 2017 will be the first year where due to various job/career circumstances, our income is looking quite unpredictable. I wouldn't be surprised if we make little enough ...
by countofmc
Wed Nov 23, 2016 2:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Double Check Figures: Affording $1M Home
Replies: 81
Views: 7595

Re: Double Check Figures: Affording $1M Home

We are renters in the Bay Area. Income slightly less than yours. If I were in your shoes, I'd actually go the entire opposite direction. I would SELL your current place, bank the equity, maybe kick in another 50-100k cash if necessary, and downsize to a condo or something in the East Bay and complet...
by countofmc
Sat Nov 12, 2016 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experience selling car to Carmax?
Replies: 52
Views: 30627

Re: Experience selling car to Carmax?

I sold two cars to them about 10 years or so ago. Really enjoyed the experience. The first one I sold was too old dealers were not even willing to take it as a trade-in, and Carmax actually gave me slightly more than any offer I was getting on Craigslist, so that was a pleasant surprise. Very easy p...
by countofmc
Mon Oct 31, 2016 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need to get a CPO car independently checked?
Replies: 27
Views: 2483

Do I need to get a CPO car independently checked?

So general rule of thumb in buying a used car is get it checked out by a mechanic before purchase. Do I need to do this for a CPO directly from a dealer (considering Acura or Lexus), or can I just rely on the CPO warranty for any issues? I guess I'm more concerned about unreported accident damage th...
by countofmc
Sat Oct 22, 2016 5:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?
Replies: 108
Views: 12848

Re: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?

Back when I was working in the Bay Area, by boss and I talked over lunch about the crazy cost of living. He joked that if you really like the Bay Area but hate the cost (housing, taxes, etc), it might actually be cheaper to live in Texas and fly to the Bay Area every weekend than it would be to buy...
by countofmc
Sat Oct 22, 2016 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?
Replies: 108
Views: 12848

Re: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?

If you weren't in the Bay Area, you could use that extra time and money to drive or fly back to visit family. This is a very good point too, imo. People's situations differ, but when I really think about how often I see family, it's usually only about once a month on average. Basically anywhere in ...
by countofmc
Sat Oct 22, 2016 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?
Replies: 108
Views: 12848

Re: How many have moved from California due to Cost of Living?

We live in SV as well, and struggle with a lot of the same issues you bring up, though we don't own here so makes it even tougher to justify staying long-term. FWIW, I know a number of family members, friends, and co-workers that have left for financial reasons in recent years. I am sure you do too....
by countofmc
Tue Oct 18, 2016 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-reciprocated Gift Giving?
Replies: 21
Views: 1956

Re: Non-reciprocated Gift Giving?

To a lot of families, the gift-giving isn't an important part of holidays and birthdays. If Uncle Countofmc randomly came to Thanksgiving with Christmas presents, I'd be a little weirded out, honestly. You might not see it this way, but just respect your wife's family tradition of not making a big ...

Go to advanced search