Search found 654 matches

by finite_difference
Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The cost of walking el Camino de Santiago
Replies: 116
Views: 21238

Re: The cost of walking el Camino de Santiago

Thanks VictoriaF. The fact that the auberges (inns) have private showers and good food makes it sound really nice. Hmm I have my first bucket list item.
by finite_difference
Mon Sep 25, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lifestyle Creep
Replies: 141
Views: 9962

Re: Lifestyle Creep

We are beginning to book longer personal flights Premium Economy. Is that creep or keeping things the same. Because I’m pretty sure Economy is worse than ever, so Premium Economy might be equal to Economy from 20 years ago. Although the iPads and entertainment options have improved massively so not...
by finite_difference
Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I won the Lottery. Need sound advice.
Replies: 204
Views: 19299

Re: I won the Lottery. Need sound advice.

1. Don't tell anyone except spouse. That implies not hiring an accountant (whatever that means) or a financial advisor. 2. Pay off all debt. 3. Set aside some "fun" money, like $50-100k. 4. Invest the rest in the 3-fund portfolio, and make sure you max out your 401k/IRA for the rest of your working ...
by finite_difference
Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The cost of walking el Camino de Santiago
Replies: 116
Views: 21238

Re: The cost of walking el Camino de Santiago

A few questions, sorry if they have been answered. 1. So you pre-planned each day how far you would walk, and where you would sleep that night? 2. What about taking a shower -- the public hostels had only public showers? Could not walk all day without a shower, and would not want to shower in a publ...
by finite_difference
Sun Sep 10, 2017 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Yes Virginia, you can lose money in bonds
Replies: 36
Views: 4544

Re: Yes Virginia, you can lose money in bonds

That's why you need to diversify, and own stocks, not just bonds. Also, a mortgage acts like a hedge in a high inflation environment. I do agree that central banks seem to have gotten much better at keeping inflation reasonable and optimized. I would hope that bonds beat inflation but as long as the...
by finite_difference
Mon Sep 04, 2017 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to break into new field?
Replies: 49
Views: 3168

Re: How to break into new field?

It sounds like you just want to make more money. But in a LCOL area with a highly secure $50k job + pension --- that's probably already enough money. And you said your wife can cover expenses anyway. You need to decide if you want to make more money, or if you want to pursue your passion or dream. E...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 30, 2017 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Evaluating risk of flooding in the "new normal"
Replies: 45
Views: 2406

Re: Evaluating risk of flooding in the "new normal"

If your flood insurance costs $5k/year then you must be in a high risk zone. Mine (FEMA) costs like 1/10 of that. I buy it for peace of mind -- I definitely think we could flood if we got unlucky (lots of rain followed by regular hurricane or just really bad hurricane with lots of rain.) Can you ins...
by finite_difference
Tue Aug 29, 2017 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to give resignation notice
Replies: 63
Views: 6099

Re: When to give resignation notice

My SO wanted to do the right thing, and gave advance notice. Instead got the boot real fast. Gotta love corporate America. I still think it was the right thing to do -- but her corp. did the wrong thing without blinking. Unless they contractually can't fire you, or you are positive that will not hap...
by finite_difference
Sun Aug 27, 2017 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: T-Mobile promotion for 55+
Replies: 84
Views: 8004

Re: T-Mobile promotion for 55+

As an aside: TMobile's coverage, eh, I think the technical terms is "sucks" compared to Verizon and ATT. We've had them all, TMobile's was appreciably worse. Also slower. And we live in a big city. If you travel outside of metro areas, forget it. IMO their technical support is also horrible. For us...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 23, 2017 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Verizon Up" rewards program - any insight?
Replies: 5
Views: 889

Re: "Verizon Up" rewards program - any insight?

Their last program was basically a cover for tracking your wireless browsing habits. I am guessing this is more of the same but would be happy to be wrong. Verizon has also been caught using "supercookies" to track your online behavior. I think they have since rescinded this "feature". But so far Ve...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 23, 2017 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accidental Injury: Health Insurance definition
Replies: 26
Views: 1458

Re: Accidental Injury: Health Insurance definition

I would think "accidental injury" would apply to any blunt force trauma or physical injury unless it was purposefully self-inflicted. An accidental injury is an injury caused by an external force or element such as a blow or fall and which requires immediate medical attention, including animal bite...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 23, 2017 11:00 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Home Page Updated
Replies: 82
Views: 5629

Re: Home Page Updated

I like the new home page but suggest having the threads show how many pages if more than one page (like before). For example [1,2], etc.
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone planning on never retiring?
Replies: 138
Views: 10407

Re: Anyone planning on never retiring?

I hope to never want to retire (continue to love my job.)

But I also hope to be financially independent by 55 or so. I don't want to feel like I have to work for money.
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 21, 2017 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Accidental Injury: Health Insurance definition
Replies: 26
Views: 1458

Re: Accidental Injury: Health Insurance definition

You mean aside from the common sense one? I would think "accidental injury" would apply to any blunt force trauma or physical injury unless it was purposefully self-inflicted. So I would not think "accidental injury" would apply to appendicitis or an ear infection. You are not allowed to ask for med...
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it worth it? [demanding jobs vs time with family]
Replies: 182
Views: 11901

Re: Is it worth it? [demanding jobs vs time with family]

If you both work 65 hours a week, when do you see your kids? That's 9.3 hours working per day, 7 days per week. Assume a commute of 0.7 hours per day, so that's 10 hours working per day. Assume your kids sleep 10-12 hours per day. So if you spend every minute outside of work with your kids that leav...
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DUI lawyer - need advice
Replies: 85
Views: 7127

Re: DUI lawyer - need advice

Definitely get a good lawyer. The US legal system is approximately fair if you have adequate representation. Otherwise you are at a huge disadvantage. I cannot believe that some posters here are suggesting to use the US legal system as a substitute for parenting.
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I'm Giving Up Golf
Replies: 57
Views: 12275

Re: I'm Giving Up Golf

If it was just your game getting worse, I'd say you could continue but just "let go" of comparing to your past performance. But if it's causing you physical pain and detrimental to your health you definitely should quit. Focus on activities that are good for your health! I hope to practice Kungfu (a...
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 10:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I'm Giving Up Golf
Replies: 57
Views: 12275

Re: I'm Giving Up Golf

Double post.
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any reason to refinance low balance mortgage?
Replies: 13
Views: 935

Re: Any reason to refinance low balance mortgage?

If you can get at least 0.5% lower on say a 7-10 year mortgage it would be worth it -- if it's a no-cost refinance. If you have to pay fees to refinance that will quickly kill any money you save since you only have 8 years left. Also you'll want to pay at least as much as you are paying now with the...
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 19, 2017 7:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension question: purchase 0.35 yrs of previous service?
Replies: 22
Views: 2240

Re: Pension question: purchase 0.35 yrs of previous service?

Let's assume you work there at least 20 years and you retire at 63 so you get the full pension. Then one year of service is worth 2%. Then 0.35 years is worth 0.7%. If your salary is $66k then each year it would earn you $462/year. So after 10 years you earn $4,620. If you retire at 55 (still after ...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?
Replies: 66
Views: 6457

Re: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?

You can grow the cost of anything for "inflation" over the next 35 years and have it be a scary number. The whole idea of inflation is that wages and everything else will keep up with it. Your health care example: $404,253 * 1.0547^35 = $2.6M? Honda Accord (E-XL model) - decent car but not ridiculo...
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 16, 2017 10:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: please help...am I overextended - first home
Replies: 78
Views: 6642

Re: please help...am I overextended - first home

I am sure OP has invested a lot of his time into the whole house hunting process. So hate to just shoot it down without knowing all info. It depends on, - where you live, - your expected monthly expenses other than mortgage/HOA (food, car/transportation, entertainment, home repair/maintenance, etc)...
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How or if to use TIAA annuity
Replies: 32
Views: 2001

Re: How or if to use TIAA annuity

How does the TIAA lifetime income (available for the TIAA annuity products) compare to an SPIA? I guess no matter what, you should take their quote and compare it to immediateannuities.com. Just curious if they are generally viewed as a good deal or not. TIAA is a better deal, based on my two exper...
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?
Replies: 66
Views: 6457

Re: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?

"Medical expenses will grow at a rate of 5-6% every year." Corollary: "Health care mutual funds will grow at a rate of 5-6% per year." It doesn't follow. More likely would be a decrease in profits (and stock prices) due to a squeeze by insurance companies and political pressure. Yes but then medica...
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 14, 2017 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What % of income to buy a car is not excessive?
Replies: 48
Views: 3600

Re: What % of income to buy a car is not excessive?

I think 30% of gross income and keep it for 12 years/150,000 miles would be a decent rule of thumb.

So if you wanted to buy a $27k car you would want a gross income of $90k.
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 14, 2017 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should $100K for remodeling come from savings or from refinance?
Replies: 14
Views: 1881

Re: Should $100K for remodeling come from savings or from refinance?

If you don't have enough cash/taxable investments to use, I'd break it into smaller pieces and "cash flow" it from my annual retirement expenses/withdrawals. It's also easier to price/plan out $25k remodels of a particular room than a house wide $100k remodel.
by finite_difference
Sun Aug 13, 2017 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?
Replies: 66
Views: 6457

Re: Expect to spend $2.6M on healthcare?

"Medical expenses will grow at a rate of 5-6% every year."

Corollary: "Health care mutual funds will grow at a rate of 5-6% per year."
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 12, 2017 1:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How or if to use TIAA annuity
Replies: 32
Views: 2001

Re: How or if to use TIAA annuity

How does the TIAA lifetime income (available for the TIAA annuity products) compare to an SPIA?

I guess no matter what, you should take their quote and compare it to immediateannuities.com. Just curious if they are generally viewed as a good deal or not.
by finite_difference
Sat Aug 12, 2017 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When does renting make sense
Replies: 112
Views: 9426

Re: When does renting make sense

When you own and have noise, moving out is much more difficult than when you rent and are bothered by noise. Victoria I've been told this a few times. However, is it really practical to switch apartments every time you get a loud neighbor? For one, you'll have a lease which will most likely last on...
by finite_difference
Fri Aug 11, 2017 9:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best place (with warm weather) to raise children
Replies: 107
Views: 17424

Re: Best place (with warm weather) to raise children

CA has been covered extensively so..

Hawaii.

Singapore.

Depending on your definition of warm, the Tri-State (NYC/NJ/CT area) has hot summers, a very pleasant spring and fall but pretty cold winters (not much snow though).

Kansas supposedly has mild winters and a great school system.
by finite_difference
Fri Aug 11, 2017 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Big family, small house dilemma -- kid bedrooms in basement?
Replies: 23
Views: 2682

Re: Big family, small house dilemma -- kid bedrooms in basement?

If the air quality is good, I don't see an issue with having a bedrooms in the basement. Check for Radon. And mold. And fire safety -- so being able to climb out of the windows, fire detectors in each bedroom, etc. $100k seems expensive but if it makes it really nice then would be worth it. If you c...
by finite_difference
Thu Aug 10, 2017 6:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on picking a dentist
Replies: 19
Views: 1713

Re: Advice on picking a dentist

Look for a fellow or master of the Academy of General Dentistry.
by finite_difference
Thu Aug 10, 2017 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?
Replies: 79
Views: 5281

Re: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?

What about the Audi TT? I like the aesthetic and seems to get good reviews.
by finite_difference
Wed Aug 09, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: First Portfolio Review! 31 and 30 y.o. NYC married couple
Replies: 29
Views: 2402

Re: First Portfolio Review! 31 and 30 y.o. NYC married couple

Hello LITeacher, You are doing great try and reduce your self imposed stress. Question - What is the pension estimate for your job in various future years? We have been on LI for many years now and our friends that are teachers have retired pretty well mostly just on the pensions alone. I get nervo...
by finite_difference
Tue Aug 08, 2017 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: kids think lazy if retire?
Replies: 70
Views: 8049

Re: kids think lazy if retire?

I will say that my parents inspired me to work hard primarily through their actions of working extremely hard, and values respecting honest and hard work. Parents: note that it took a long while for it to sink in, at least personally (probably didn't start working truly hard until University.) So yo...
by finite_difference
Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When does renting make sense
Replies: 112
Views: 9426

Re: When does renting make sense

In our case the rental cost of a 3 bedroom apartment equaled the PITI on a 4 bedroom house after a 20% down payment. But the house has additional maintenance costs and a bit more utility costs (about 20-25% extra). Definitely a better lifestyle and more space, and the home is building equity, but at...
by finite_difference
Tue Aug 08, 2017 8:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace car battery after X years or wait till it dies?
Replies: 124
Views: 12157

Re: Replace car battery after X years or wait till it dies?

For an OEM battery I'd get it checked annually after 4 years at Auto Zone (free). If it's weak or fails then I replace it with one of Auto Zone's platinum/3-year warranty batteries. For a non OEM battery I'd check annually after 3 years.
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 07, 2017 9:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I Buy a New Car?
Replies: 42
Views: 3043

Re: Should I Buy a New Car?

A Civic will be a downgrade compared to a Camry in terms of room, comfort and potentially safety. You'd need to look at the Accord for feature parity. I think it would take lot of driving to make up $8k comparing 30 mpg to 40 mpg. Assuming you drive 100k miles that would use 2500 gallons @ 40 mpg or...
by finite_difference
Mon Aug 07, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do kids cost in a high COLA?
Replies: 57
Views: 3948

Re: How much do kids cost in a high COLA?

I think $200/month for diapers, etc. sounds reasonable. Add the cost of daycare and medical insurance and babysitting. Clothes and toys and books can be cheap. You'll need a car seat and a stroller and a bouncer and a swing. As a single parent, it is going to be really, really hard. You will at mini...
by finite_difference
Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice
Replies: 37
Views: 3728

Re: New 2018 Honda Odyssey Problem - Need Advice

is it the new car "smell"? Yeah my new Odyssey made me nauseous from the new car smell. It was pretty bad. For the first couple months you have to drive with the windows down. Crack the windows and leave the car out in the sun when you know it's not going to rain. Some car manufacturers are better ...
by finite_difference
Sat Jul 29, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to calculate your retirement number
Replies: 95
Views: 8981

Re: How to calcuate your retirement number

Picking brains here. How do you guys calculate your retirement number? Figure out your expenses in retirement (this will be tough if you are in your 30s with kids, easier if you are 53 with only one high school kid left at home). EXPENSES, not income. Figure out how much you are spending (or want t...
by finite_difference
Sat Jul 29, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Treasury ends myRA program
Replies: 32
Views: 3614

Re: Treasury ends myRA program

Why not just let anyone buy the G fund in their IRA? And let IRA brokers charge some nominal overhead fee. Seems a lot less kludgey than a whole separate program.
by finite_difference
Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford it ? [A new car]
Replies: 95
Views: 6300

Re: Can I afford it ? [A new car]

Yes you can. I don't think you need to pay cash if you can get a loan with 0-1.7% APR (under inflation). There are/will be some really good deals on luxury cars (it's a buyer's market) so you should be able to negotiate a good price.
by finite_difference
Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?
Replies: 79
Views: 5281

Re: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?

Whereas the Z3 will go into history as an iconic car, such as the Alfa Spider or the 300SL, those Nissans are ugly as sin. I disagree, I like the look of the Nissan 350Z over the Z3. Beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and all that. But speaking of classic compact sports cars, I raise you an MG M...
by finite_difference
Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?
Replies: 79
Views: 5281

Re: BMW Z3 or Z4 or nothing at all?

Would rather a 350z to be honest. A bit bias since I have a 2006. Nothing better than hearing that purrrrfect exhaust note with the windows down. On top of that the car is quick, has great handling and its cheaper than a bmw I came here to ask that, too. What about the Nissan 350Z? Or Infiniti G37/...
by finite_difference
Wed Jul 26, 2017 10:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Options - Honda Accord Incredibly Uncomfortable Seats
Replies: 81
Views: 5295

Re: Need Options - Honda Accord Incredibly Uncomfortable Seats

Does your Accord have leather seats?

Is it not possible to replace a car seat for $1-2k? And keep the old car seat if you want to reinstall it back to stock? Could take a car seat from a used Acura or something?
by finite_difference
Wed Jul 26, 2017 10:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books not to read.
Replies: 155
Views: 12350

Re: Books not to read.

Any book not written in its original language. And most translations are garbage. Usually it's possible to find one good English translation... but not always.

Edit: And Ethan Frome.
by finite_difference
Sat Jul 22, 2017 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Healthiest Beer for the Buck
Replies: 35
Views: 3673

Re: Healthiest Beer for the Buck

SrGrumpy wrote:A nice thick Guinness has shockingly few calories. Not sure about the maltose/dextrose factor.
Guinness++.

Not just least alcohol/calories, but also natural ingredients. German beer should also be high-quality (Reinheitsgebot). Also probably good American craft beer.
by finite_difference
Fri Jul 21, 2017 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scooter for local commute - Honda PCX 150, etc...
Replies: 44
Views: 2444

Re: Scooter for local commute - Honda PCX 150, etc...

I vote Vespa Primavera based on style and price. If you had parking, could look at Volt, Leaf, Prius, Smart Car.