Search found 1119 matches

by deanbrew
Sat Jul 22, 2017 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2501

Re: Humid basement

I had the same idea, but it came back to bite me. Ge no longer supports/manufactures these units. Someone else took over the warranty for them. NOBODY around me (besides the company that took over the warranty) would work on it because it has the heat pump and water heater side of things. Quite ann...
by deanbrew
Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2501

Re: Humid basement

Has anyone tried the DampRid Moisture Absorber? http://www.homedepot.com/p/DampRid-64-oz-Fragrance-Free-High-Capacity-Moisture-Absorber-FG50T/100391308 My coworker swears by this stuff, so I've been thinking of getting a couple for my basement. I would think that this would only physically be able ...
by deanbrew
Fri Jul 21, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2501

Re: Humid basement

those of you using central A/C to dehumidify the basement, what setpoint do you cool to? Most of the summer, my 1st and 2nd floor living areas are pleasant enough in the mid-70s so we leave the windows open for fresh air. The basement is only 65 degrees, but 80%+ humidity if I didn't run the dehumi...
by deanbrew
Wed Jul 19, 2017 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dilemma about car dealership service bill error
Replies: 29
Views: 2276

Re: Dilemma about car dealership service bill error

I ended up talking to the service manager and he apologized for the mistake. He offered a discount on the parts and I paid over the phone. I appreciate this forum as a sounding board for any ethical gray areas pertaining to money. Thanks for all your input! I'd consider that a good outcome. :beer Y...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 18, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humid basement
Replies: 39
Views: 2501

Re: Humid basement

While a dehumidifier does indeed remove humidity, it also releases heat and raises the temperature in the room. I, too, have a basement that gets too humid and hot in the summer, partly from the gas furnace that kicks on to heat our water. I used a dehumidifier for a couple of years, but it made the...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 18, 2017 2:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dilemma about car dealership service bill error
Replies: 29
Views: 2276

Re: Dilemma about car dealership service bill error

I'm surprised so many people are saying it's OK to just not pay for the parts. They put new parts in your car, so you should pay for them. Look on rockauto-dot-com or a similar website to see what a reasonable price is for the parts and use that as a benchmark if you must. Now, complaining about the...
by deanbrew
Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Questions about security camera systems
Replies: 16
Views: 1623

Re: Questions about security camera systems

I bought a Lorex system from Costco four years ago and installed it in a family-owned store myself. 1. 8 Cameras 2. I ran most of the wires myself, and had an electrician run two of them while he was here doing other work. Probably cost a couple hundred dollars. 3. No maintenance in four years. No p...
by deanbrew
Fri Jul 14, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worker's compensation insurance
Replies: 10
Views: 632

Re: Worker's compensation insurance

Is this something that came up naturally when you were getting bids? I've never asked about workers comp insurance when hiring for work around the house. In any event, I do know that here in PA there are quite a few Amish and Mennonite companies doing construction and other similar work, including p...
by deanbrew
Thu Jul 13, 2017 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar panels
Replies: 57
Views: 3811

Re: Solar panels

Over to the revenues. Harder. You can assume electricity rates grow at Inflation. Or you can assume they stay constant in nominal terms. Neither is particularly aggressive in terms of overstating present value. A niggle. Daytime electricity prices (wholesale) could well be zero in 30 years as renew...
by deanbrew
Wed Jul 12, 2017 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Appraisal
Replies: 10
Views: 686

Re: Refinance Appraisal

Depending on the loan-to-value, some refinances are done with full appraisals and some are done with "drive-by" appraisals where the appraiser doesn't do an interior inspection. So, it is possible that the bank had an exterior-only appraisal done. These cost less than appraisals with inter...
by deanbrew
Wed Jul 12, 2017 8:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-profit accepting debit/credit cards - cost?
Replies: 12
Views: 783

Re: Non-profit accepting debit/credit cards - cost?

I have seen on sites like NetworkForGood (a site for donating to non-profits) where the default is for the donor to cover the credit card fees. E.g. $103 for a $100 donation. I don't know, but I would imagine a significant percentage of donors accept that default. That might be an option. I buy Sil...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?
Replies: 20
Views: 1773

Re: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?

Yes - but that does not explain the situations where a buyer is willing to pay interest elsewhere, has it approved - then gets zero per cent for the same purchase price. There are times when there is no "catch" that I can see. The dealer is not lending you his own money. If the store can ...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 11, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?
Replies: 20
Views: 1773

Re: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?

The catch is you just spent $30,000 on a new car. The real cost is built into that price. With interest rates so low, the cost to the auto manufacturer is very low, but if you don't take the loan and don't negotiate a lower price, they still save this cost. The manufacturer sells cars to dealers at...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?
Replies: 20
Views: 1773

Re: 0% Finance auto-loans - Whats the catch?

Although I suppose some dealerships have their own financing "deals", most of these programs are from the manufacturer. And, yes, most manufacturer incentives allow either a rebate or low-interest financing, but not both. The manufacturer uses these incentives to generate sales, particular...
by deanbrew
Tue Jul 11, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-profit accepting debit/credit cards - cost?
Replies: 12
Views: 783

Re: Non-profit accepting debit/credit cards - cost?

I am the president of a small non-profit that is associated with the neighborhood elementary school. The increased revenue that we receive by accepting credit cards more than makes up for the fees. I suspect that this is absolutely true. My wife owns a small business and is constantly complaining a...
by deanbrew
Sat Jul 08, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying off loan or not
Replies: 10
Views: 968

Re: Paying off loan or not

Where you are wrong with your thinking is the belief that even a 10-year term is OK. It's not. The opportunity cost alone is horrible. With your salary, you could pay that debt off in 2 years - easy. Just avoid lifestyle inflation and you can be free in 24 short months. While two years might be bur...
by deanbrew
Sat Jul 08, 2017 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New roof suggestions.
Replies: 29
Views: 2741

Re: New roof suggestions.

Go with the architectural, not the tab. Houses with tab shingles really stick out like sore thumbs these days. When I see them, I think, "Cheap roof." I agree. Even though you are talking about a modest home in a low cost of living area, just about every house gets architectural shingles....
by deanbrew
Sat Jul 01, 2017 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?
Replies: 47
Views: 3945

Re: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?

The OP hasn't been back to tell us what cars he is looking at. It was mentioned before, but bears repeating that a lot of new cars have a USB port, and can play music from a USB thumb drive. You can put a lot of MP3 songs on a thumbdrive for very little money. It still requires converting songs from...
by deanbrew
Fri Jun 30, 2017 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?
Replies: 40
Views: 2873

Re: Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?

It's still shocking to me lenders are handing out 72-84+ month loans on cars. I don't think we are too far off from 108 month car loans. It's just as shocking to me people walk in by the droves to sign up to rent a rapidly depreciating item under such agreement in hopes one day they will actually o...
by deanbrew
Fri Jun 30, 2017 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wrecked Vehicles and Whether or Not to Keep Them
Replies: 34
Views: 1964

Re: Wrecked Vehicles and Whether or Not to Keep Them

The frame was bent and I am surprised they didn't total it because the initial estimate the body shop gave us for repairs was over $5,000. Hmmm. Not sure what to say. I had our insurance company handle the claim (even though it was the other driver's fault and their insurance company would end up p...
by deanbrew
Fri Jun 30, 2017 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?
Replies: 40
Views: 2873

Re: Car Finance 1.49% a Good Rate?

Just for fun, I decided to do a break even calculation. Assuming that I always use a free charger for my new Tesla, I'd have to drive 888,888 miles to even out instead keeping my Wrangler that gets 20 mpg. Anything less and the Wrangler is cheaper to drive. Do people do these calculations before bu...
by deanbrew
Thu Jun 29, 2017 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help, realtors disagree. Take out bookshelves, hidden bed combo before listing?
Replies: 55
Views: 3721

Re: Help, realtors disagree. Take out bookshelves, hidden bed combo before listing?

I vote to keep it. Personally, I would like the flexibility of a room that could be a bedroom/office/flex room. Another strong agreement here. The shelves and Murphy bed sure seem like a positive feature to me, plus you don't have to paint and patch if you just leave it in place. I'd leave it in. F...
by deanbrew
Thu Jun 29, 2017 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wrecked Vehicles and Whether or Not to Keep Them
Replies: 34
Views: 1964

Re: Wrecked Vehicles and Whether or Not to Keep Them

With a FWD car, it's an uphill battle to show that the transmission was damaged due to being hit from behind. Not to say it cannot be done, but it will take some determination, conclusive proof and luck. As for driving "different", was the unibody "frame" bent in any way during t...
by deanbrew
Thu Jun 29, 2017 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pre-owned Acura's... Value of 'Certified'?
Replies: 23
Views: 2156

Re: Pre-owned Acura's... Value of 'Certified'?

I just bought a CPO 2106 Nissan Maxima. The only benefit I saw is that the CPO status lengthens the powertrain warranty from 5 to 7 years. It didn't lengthen the bumper-to-bumper warranty beyond the normal new car length (3 years / 36k miles in the case of Nissan), which I still have. I did not plac...
by deanbrew
Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?
Replies: 47
Views: 3945

Re: New cars w/ no CD player -- what can I do with my CDs?

What kind of cell phone do you have? Is it a smartphone? If so, and if you really want to listen to your CDs, you will need to rip them into MP3 format and load them onto your phone. Hopefully, you have a phone with an additional memory card that can hold lots of data. Then connect your phone to the...
by deanbrew
Thu Jun 22, 2017 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help with Guns in Estate [how to sell]
Replies: 56
Views: 4647

Re: Help with Guns in Estate [how to sell]

If you don't care about the price or what happens to the guns, see if there are any gun buyback programs going on in your area, where you walk in with the gun(s), hand it over to the police (or the government agency running the program), and walk out with cash money. To get rid of them, give them t...
by deanbrew
Tue Jun 20, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: House selling - timeline question
Replies: 23
Views: 1838

Re: House selling - timeline question

Interesting. What's in it for a realtor if a potential client is talking about selling the house in several years? Would they consider it good will if they talked over an improvement plan, even knowing you might not use them for several years? If so, I'd be curious about the best approach. It would...
by deanbrew
Wed Jun 07, 2017 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suit for [medical] residency interviews
Replies: 57
Views: 3431

Re: Suit for residency interviews

A $100+ tie is worth it in this situation. There is such a thing? A $100 tie? Are the silk worms fed champagne and caviar? I have no experience in the medical field, so I probably shouldn't comment, but a thousand dollar suit and hundred dollar tie seem like overkill for someone who is just getting...
by deanbrew
Wed Jun 07, 2017 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair vs Replace car for someone just starting out
Replies: 25
Views: 2044

Re: Repair vs Replace car for someone just starting out

Just wanted to give an update on what's happening. I've been looking for cars to see if a deal pops up, after deciding to not fix my AC. Well as of a day ago my transmission stopped working properly, so a new to me car it is. It also happened to be right about the same time I found a car that looke...
by deanbrew
Tue Jun 06, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why
Replies: 54
Views: 8848

Re: Favorite Thriller Authors and Why

I recognize many, but not all, of the authors mentioned. I am going to suggest Stephen King's "Bill Hodges" trilogy: Mr. Mercedes, Finders Keepers and End of Watch. I read the middle book first and absolutely loved it, and am now nearing the end of the first book. I can't vouch for the thi...
by deanbrew
Wed May 31, 2017 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?
Replies: 36
Views: 3879

Re: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?

Thanks your all for your replies and suggestions. I got both tickets at the same time, one for each child. Since I had clean record for last 5+ years, I was also surprised that cop gave me 2 tickets without any warning or instead of just 1 ticket. I was in AZ before for 3 years and the laws for sea...
by deanbrew
Wed May 31, 2017 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?
Replies: 36
Views: 3879

Re: Multiple seat belt tickets- options?

Accept responsibility and pay. An inexpensive life lesson imo. Hardly. Your insurance rates can increase dramatically, including possibly cancellation. See some of the threads on people unable to get umbrella insurance due to tickets. You have a right to pursue all avenues of the justice system. I ...
by deanbrew
Sun May 28, 2017 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

The OP makes $125k a year, is maxing retirement savings, and is obsessing about a Subaru Outback? Or more accurately, worried about a few thousand dollars and willing to trade down. Just keep the Outback and enjoy it. I agree. But if every two years he wants "new features" again this is g...
by deanbrew
Sun May 28, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

The OP makes $125k a year, is maxing retirement savings, and is obsessing about a Subaru Outback? Or more accurately, worried about a few thousand dollars and willing to trade down. Just keep the Outback and enjoy it.
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

Time is certainly a factor in cars, but less than mileage, and especially if it is stored indoors. If the OP puts very few miles on the car each year (though we don't know how many because OP has not said) then a ten year old car may have 50k miles. That's nothing on a newer car, most of which are ...
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

IMO - as someone who pays attention to Boglehead philosophy, but also likes cars - there is more to this than the numbers. I don't keep my cars 10+ years and run them into the ground. In "x" years, your 2015 Outback will have a higher resale/trade value than the 2014 Legacy, due to being a...
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

Also the Legacy and the Outback are two totally different cars. Presumably you bought the Outback for a reason? Has that reason now changed? The Legacy and Outback are not two totally different cars. They are based on the same platform and are highly similar. They are the same size and have the sam...
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Land ownership" in a high rise condo
Replies: 8
Views: 1287

Re: "Land ownership" in a high rise condo

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 seems like the amount of land a condo owner actually owns would go down if the complex is bigger and built more densely, such as in the case of a high-ri...
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I drink or sell my Pappy 12 year?
Replies: 65
Views: 7255

Re: Should I drink or sell my Pappy 12 year?

I'm a bourbon drinker who has tried enough scotch to know that I don't really care for scotch. If somebody gave me a $500 bottle of scotch, I would sell it or gift it to a friend who is a scotch connoisseur. I'd much rather have 10 bottles of interesting bourbons (or a good gift for somebody who wi...
by deanbrew
Fri May 26, 2017 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

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? I think you a...
by deanbrew
Tue May 23, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

What exact model do you have? Limited? 4 or 6 cylinder? Did you actually pay $36k, or was that the MSRP? How many miles does your car have on it? Have you looked for similar vehicles near you on cars.com and autotrader.com?
by deanbrew
Tue May 23, 2017 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?
Replies: 71
Views: 5744

Re: Sell 2015 Subaru or Keep?

I also think you should keep the Subaru. It's a very nice, reliable car. And you've already taken the largest depreciation hit - the first two years of ownership. Actually, nearly three, as the 2018 models will be out in about four months. I would chalk this up as a learning lesson, as selling it is...
by deanbrew
Tue May 23, 2017 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I'm calling "tails" on all the tosses of this coin...
Replies: 12
Views: 1721

Re: I'm calling "tails" on all the tosses of this coin...

Agreed, it's absolutely a fake. But the link could have explained how it's made. People think if they don't see a seam around the edge then it wasn't fabricated. But the way it's done is to cut a genuine coin just inside the rim (like a can opener does) so it makes a piece like a dish - the entire ...
by deanbrew
Fri May 19, 2017 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to sell a house?
Replies: 22
Views: 2124

Re: How to sell a house?

The above auction idea is excellent. It's somewhat of a crapshoot, as it all depends on who shows up at the auction. But, it's a very easy and efficient way to go.
by deanbrew
Fri May 19, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to pick up good tires for the car?
Replies: 22
Views: 1555

Re: How to pick up good tires for the car?

Most sources consider Michelin to be at the top of the heap in tire quality, and also in cost. It seems you can get tires of varying quality from Continental, Goodyear and other brands. If you want to get more miles out of a set of tires, you need to look at how many miles the warranty is. While a 6...
by deanbrew
Fri May 19, 2017 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to sell a house?
Replies: 22
Views: 2124

Re: How to sell a house?

I agree. Most people want to come in and renovate or just gut the house and redesign it the way that they like. It's not worth the headaches and the cost to you to do it yourself. My stepfather did this and lost money, even though they tried to do a few minimal upgrades and keep them neutral. It st...
by deanbrew
Thu May 18, 2017 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to sell a house?
Replies: 22
Views: 2124

Re: How to sell a house?

Agree on ignoring Zillow. It may be reasonably accurate, but I've seen lots of times it is off by more than 50 percent. Interview three real estate agents who are active in your market and: a) have them prepare a market analysis telling you what the property is worth; b) have them tell you how to ma...
by deanbrew
Thu May 18, 2017 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Negotiating an apartment lease
Replies: 7
Views: 781

Re: Negotiating an apartment lease

It doesn't hurt to ask in a nice, polite way, but a $25 increase is peanuts. I imagine the landlord's real estate tax, insurance and other expenses have gone up far more than that. But, yes, keeping you there for another year eliminates some turnover cost. I probably would just agree to pay the extr...
by deanbrew
Thu May 18, 2017 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solid salt in water softener
Replies: 14
Views: 1610

Re: Solid salt in water softener

Has the salt grid collapsed, is that why the salt got wet and solidified? If so, I would think that all the salt will need to be removed to replace that. If not, then I'd be worried about breaking that grid in trying to break up the salt. Hmmm ... this makes me insecure, since I'm not sure what the...
by deanbrew
Thu May 18, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Death in family a week before cruise
Replies: 30
Views: 3642

Re: Death in family a week before cruise

This is what I would do. Call the tour company and see if you can reschedule or get a credit for another trip. Explain the situation. If you can't get any help from the tour company, talk to family members about your awkward situation and hopefully they will understand. It would look really bad to ...

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