Search found 82 matches

by frequentT
Wed Dec 02, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Administrator Recommendation
Replies: 3
Views: 324

Re: HSA Administrator Recommendation

Dear Flobes,

Thanks for feedback!

It never ceases to amaze me how knowledgeable, informed and helpful the users of this can be--truly a community of experts!

Frequent T
by frequentT
Wed Dec 02, 2015 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Administrator Recommendation
Replies: 3
Views: 324

HSA Administrator Recommendation

We have decided to go with a High Deductible health insurance plan that we will purchase in the private market. Our very detailed analysis reveals that the plan is the best choice for our needs due to their PPO network. We are looking for a recommendation for a HSA plan with the following characteri...
by frequentT
Sun Nov 29, 2015 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are suitcase locks worth it?
Replies: 44
Views: 3585

Re: Are suitcase locks worth it?

I give a strong second on zip ties. They are cheap, disposable, and they keep the casual thief out. For TSA searches, they perform a 'tamper evident' function to let you know at a glance that your bag has been searched. If you don't find a TSA form inside your bag, you must perform a thorough search...
by frequentT
Sun Nov 01, 2015 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Many Credit Cards Do You Have?
Replies: 91
Views: 6471

Re: How Many Credit Cards Do You Have?

1) Fido Amex: 2% rebate. This is the default card. Will likely abandon this card when Costco issues its visa card in 2016. Previous posts have recounted hassles with this card; they are not easy to do business with (keep in wallet) 2) American Airlines MC. Pay for this one, but is invaluable for my ...
by frequentT
Sun Oct 04, 2015 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity 2% Amex: Security Annoyances
Replies: 92
Views: 8283

Re: Fidelity 2% Amex: Security Annoyances

Yes! Seriously annoying! I got this card to use at Costco to replace the Costco Amex. I had a falling out with the real Amex, and fired them. When Costco starts its new program with Visa, this card will be relegated to the bottom drawer. FIA is a second rate CC company for sure. They think their fra...
by frequentT
Fri Sep 25, 2015 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: medical billing: crime or just mistakes?
Replies: 48
Views: 4722

Re: medical billing: crime or just mistakes?

How does a Health Insurance Company make money? 1. Efficiently collect the premium. 2. Deny the claim or 3. Discount the claim or 4. Challenge the claim or 5. Hassle the patient/beneficiary to provide more documentation or 6. 'Temporarily' forget about the claim and 7. Try to collect from the patien...
by frequentT
Mon Sep 21, 2015 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare: questions on the 'finer points'
Replies: 35
Views: 2643

Re: Medicare: questions on the 'finer points'

Thank you for the comments! Toofache32 I appreciate your perspectives on how specialists view medicare. I am not so surprised. However, I would have never thought of myself as just above a charity case, yikes! Hopefully the existing relationships I have with the specialists that I will need will hel...
by frequentT
Sun Sep 20, 2015 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare: questions on the 'finer points'
Replies: 35
Views: 2643

Medicare: questions on the 'finer points'

First time enrollment is approaching for me: never thought this time would come.........however.......... I have been doing my research and have a few questions for the board experts. I am currently covered under a ACA silver PPO plan from BCBS; a very expensive premium and $3000 deductible. Medicar...
by frequentT
Mon Jun 22, 2015 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice; Band of Brothers trip retracing WW2 from Normandy to the Ardennes
Replies: 23
Views: 3373

Re: Need advice; Band of Brothers trip retracing WW2 from Normandy to the Ardennes

Hi Bruce: I have done bits and pieces of your route over the years. Others have given you good input, so let me suggest a much older piece of military history that is in Bayeux <20 miles from Caen. I was there 25+ years ago and found it very impactful. If I were anywhere close I would go again. Good...
by frequentT
Tue Jun 16, 2015 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 6 Month Away Locations
Replies: 11
Views: 1588

Re: 6 Month Away Locations

Sounds like a great adventure: Go For it! All of these suggestions are based on some amount of experience....... Your starting assortment is pretty diverse, so here is my input: Colorado: Agree w/Ft. Collins, Boulder Area has some tech overtones, also consider a small CO town like Salida CA: Beach l...
by frequentT
Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Percent Of Your Annual Expenses Are Property Taxes?
Replies: 101
Views: 7422

Re: What Percent Of Your Annual Expenses Are Property Taxes?

8.5%

property taxes + mort. interest + med exp. = sizable 1040 deductions
by frequentT
Tue May 26, 2015 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone met with Fidelity Advisor before?
Replies: 19
Views: 2818

Re: Anyone met with Fidelity Advisor before?

You will find the Fido people very easy to work with. You have already done more prep than most so feel good about that. I would prepare two more items: (1) Your top 5 goals that require financial resources (2) 3-5 questions that you would like addressed, or if you just want 2nd opinions on your pro...
by frequentT
Mon May 11, 2015 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Epoxy garage floor?
Replies: 20
Views: 2656

Re: Epoxy garage floor?

Do it! Definitely worth the effort!

The prep is everything-take your time.

I used the HD kit. I recommend buying extra flakes so you can get 'the look' you want. If you have any areas that are extra rough or cracked, heavier flakes will disguise.

Good luck.
by frequentT
Thu May 07, 2015 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 7041

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

It is a frequent food/coffee/break stop for us also on the way to NM or CO. TX has a good place to live for everyone's taste, however, Amarillo would not make the list. Look elsewhere in TX and you will likely find 'your place'.
by frequentT
Fri Apr 17, 2015 12:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Defined Benefit Plan help
Replies: 9
Views: 856

Re: Defined Benefit Plan help

Before you go too much further: find out if the plan has a cola provision? If so, it could knock out a lump sum option. A DB with cola is unusual, but very attractive to go for the monthly payout. Of course one must make a judgement, on health and longevity prospects as well. All in all, I like to s...
by frequentT
Mon Apr 13, 2015 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Declining to continue Interview Process
Replies: 26
Views: 3690

Re: Declining to continue Interview Process

Whatever you say, surround it with lots of compliments and praise for target company, its business, and all of the people that you spoke to. Be sure to write thank you letters to all the key people you encountered. Many of these folks will be industry contacts, or even colleagues in the future. Beco...
by frequentT
Sun Jan 11, 2015 4:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity Customers, What Do You Hold at FIDO?
Replies: 43
Views: 4946

Re: Fidelity Customers, What Do You Hold at FIDO?

I use Fido as a broker and custodian for most of my assets: I really don't pay a lot of attention to the Fidelity products/funds. I have owned their spartan funds in the past as well as their no-fee etfs. Currently, the only Fido branded fund I own is the floating rate MF. I have also owned many van...
by frequentT
Mon Dec 01, 2014 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Downhill Skis
Replies: 10
Views: 1464

Re: Downhill Skis

A couple of thoughts for you: Skiing is an expensive sport! However, it is my favorite. Remember equipment is only one of the constituent costs in addition to transport, lift ticket$, food, and possibly lodging. Good equipment will last a long time. Spend generously and carefully on comfortable, wel...
by frequentT
Fri Sep 19, 2014 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home/Auto insurance: Amica or Travelers?
Replies: 26
Views: 2259

Re: Home/Auto insurance: Amica or Travelers?

I really like my local State Farm agent, however, their price increases have been VERY aggressive. After I renewed for 2014 I received Warren Buffet's shareholder letter and all became clear. Next year I will be moving a Amica. pg 7 "If our premiums exceed the total of our expenses and eventual...
by frequentT
Thu Sep 18, 2014 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retiree Next Door
Replies: 26
Views: 4702

Re: Retiree Next Door

The Bogleheads are an exceptionally savvy group when it comes to money. They know how to invest, how to budget, and how project cash flow. Most know how to maximize their spending in ways that maximizes happiness. I am guessing the area where we all can improve is increasing our health, and living a...
by frequentT
Sat Sep 13, 2014 7:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Clean, quiet, safe and cheap. Is there such a travel place?
Replies: 75
Views: 6607

Re: Clean, quiet, safe and cheap. Is there such a travel pla

Boquette, Panama: meets all your criteria + pleasant climate
by frequentT
Fri Jul 04, 2014 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?
Replies: 8
Views: 1070

Re: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?

Hello LiveSoft: I do not use the CMA account in this way, or expect it to be this accurate, time-wise. It could have something to do with the 'receivers' electronic process/completion. The full view side has this type of accuracy to track transactions (every time you 'refresh'). Since I check full v...
by frequentT
Fri Jul 04, 2014 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?
Replies: 8
Views: 1070

Re: Decumulation accounts, Open Fidelity Cash MGT?

I cannot say enough good things about how well Fidelity can help you manage your financial life. Their system is transparent, flexible, easy to use and help is just a phone call away. Best of all, you can see all transactions at one site. We have a fairly complex financial life; Fido's capabilities ...
by frequentT
Wed Jun 11, 2014 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to take a Non-COLA Pension
Replies: 17
Views: 1402

Re: When to take a Non-COLA Pension

Additionally, it is a little known fact that companies sometimes do not correctly calculate pension payouts correctly. I have a friend who is a plan manager in an actuarial firm who has seen mistakes from client company's HR departments. As DB pensions have become a rarity, HR benefit expertise has ...
by frequentT
Wed Jun 04, 2014 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to take a Non-COLA Pension
Replies: 17
Views: 1402

Re: When to take a Non-COLA Pension

Value Thinker makes some good comments: not many people are willing to delay SS >66. If you did, that is very valid. Also, have you gathered the survivors options? If your spouse needs to have the income and you are allowed a joint life payout, it could impact your decision. Additionally, it is a li...
by frequentT
Sun May 11, 2014 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why do these people want to buy my home?
Replies: 24
Views: 4680

Re: Why do these people want to buy my home?

I receive these letters at least 1x a year for an investment property that I own. When I have time I reply with the following form letter--never received a reply, but at least I give them something to do......... +++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++...
by frequentT
Wed Apr 09, 2014 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Property and Causalty Insurance
Replies: 4
Views: 464

Re: Property and Causalty Insurance

Thanks for the suggestions! The comparison chart of companies was helpful; it is more or less in-line with other ratings I have seen for autos. Though I did not word my request carefully enough, I am looking for a fill-in myself spreadsheet to compare quotes by line item and perhaps qualitative info...
by frequentT
Wed Apr 09, 2014 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Property and Causalty Insurance
Replies: 4
Views: 464

Property and Causalty Insurance

I am beginning a search for alternative insurance carriers. I have been a State Farm policy holder since 1982. State Farm has increased our HO policy by 15%+ pa for the last 3 years. Last year, I moved our umbrella policy to Marsh (corp. group policy) due to the same price increase issues. We have n...
by frequentT
Tue Apr 08, 2014 10:47 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?
Replies: 452
Views: 83110

Re: Mr. Money Mustache: Hero or Foolish?

How could you not like this guy? He has a philosophy, a point of view, and he sticks to it. Many people, particularly those starting careers with debt could learn a lot from him. Many of the young material accumulators will be a long time realizing there is an alternative approach. MMM should be rec...
by frequentT
Mon Mar 31, 2014 9:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Purchasing New Tires for Car and Need Suggestions
Replies: 38
Views: 3688

Re: Purchasing New Tires for Car and Need Suggestions

I recently bought Pirelli tires at Discount Tire after some diligent shopping. I am usually not a performance tire guy, however, Nissan specified this size and speed rating for my AWD vehicle. I do a good bit of highway driving, mountain driving and occasionally drive in snow on ski trips. 2500 mi. ...
by frequentT
Mon Feb 24, 2014 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unexpected vacation opportunity.
Replies: 13
Views: 1746

Re: Unexpected vacation opportunity.

What an opportunity!

Australia is the place: overnight flight from CA, all of tour outdoor sports can be done there with excellent infrastructure/support.

Very friendly natives!
by frequentT
Thu Feb 06, 2014 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your Experience With Costco Mail Order Pharmacy?
Replies: 10
Views: 1476

Re: Your Experience With Costco Mail Order Pharmacy?

Both Costco retail and mail order can beat our insurance plan often on price for generics. Mail order Costco is easy to deal with and offers very prompt fulfillment and shipping. Don't hesitate to use them.
by frequentT
Fri Dec 27, 2013 12:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying individual bonds for retail investor
Replies: 93
Views: 4622

Re: Buying individual bonds for retail investor

All of your requirements can be done via the Fidelity website. There are adequate new issue bonds to build your portfolio over time. Their bond portfolio analysis tool is excellent and will allow you to slice and dice your portfolio to look at it in a way that works for you. Graphic or tabular. They...
by frequentT
Sun Dec 08, 2013 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pharmaceutical Co-pay Coupon
Replies: 11
Views: 911

Re: Pharmaceutical Co-pay Coupon

None of the parties to this RX transaction own the high moral ground: Medicare/the government taxpayer/voter the insurance company the pharmacy the pharmaceutical manufacturer They all have their own perverse reasons for behaving the way that they do. The physician accepts the coupon in order to hel...
by frequentT
Mon Dec 02, 2013 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: buying car from dealership not close to your house?
Replies: 39
Views: 2798

Re: buying car from dealership not close to your house?

I have shopped away from the closest the last 2x and would not hesitate to do it again: Purchased: Volvo= 140 mi. for $1150 savings Nissan= 35 mi for $1270 Both local service departments have been very happy to have the business, particularly the Volvo dealer. I have only been to the Nissan dealer o...
by frequentT
Fri Nov 29, 2013 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AWD (All Wheel Drive): cost and safety
Replies: 20
Views: 2113

Re: AWD (All Wheel Drive): cost and safety

I was shopping for a rwd Nissan, however, the dealer offered awd for the same price and I took it. About 1 mph less.

IMO, if you are in snow just 1-2x a year, its worth it. We have had the fwd capability pull us out of parking sports where the rw could not get traction.
by frequentT
Thu Nov 28, 2013 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Eyeglass Lenses @ Costco
Replies: 29
Views: 14332

Re: Eyeglass Lenses @ Costco

Costco Optical is excellent. Staff is well trained and aim to please. We have given them challenging assignments and they have been able to meet them all: from single vision, progressives, adjustments for computer monitors, RX sunglasses, high refractive index lenses. Experts I know in the field tel...
by frequentT
Mon Nov 25, 2013 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: COBRA Questions
Replies: 19
Views: 1934

Re: COBRA Questions

I have been in this situation 3x and can give you input from a lot of experience with corp. supplied healthcare. 1. Yes, there is opportunity to 'game the system' or I would be more professional, and say 'hedge your bets' or PROTECT your family, and your budget, whatever gaming is required. 2. Corp....
by frequentT
Fri Nov 01, 2013 6:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much Total Bond fund to produce $10k of steady income
Replies: 38
Views: 3952

Re: How much Total Bond fund to produce $10k of steady incom

I suggest a laddered portfolio of individual quality bonds. Then you will not have to worry about risk of principle decline as rates rise. You control the interest rate, maturity, and duration. With $400-500k to invest you can diversify. Visitors to this site love bond funds vs. individual bonds, so...
by frequentT
Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA Robust Spread Sheet Analytical Tool?
Replies: 2
Views: 393

Re: ACA Robust Spread Sheet Analytical Tool?

I was surprised to find no Platinum plans on-offer in our area. I was expecting to buy a platinum.....
by frequentT
Tue Oct 29, 2013 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA Robust Spread Sheet Analytical Tool?
Replies: 2
Views: 393

ACA Robust Spread Sheet Analytical Tool?

I am seeking a spread sheet model that perhaps someone has built, or found, to help me select the best plan for my spouse and I. The simple tools on healthcare.gov and Kaiser Foundation are just too superficial for the job. We consume a lot of healthcare service. We have very complete historical dat...
by frequentT
Sat Jul 13, 2013 10:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Larry Kotlikoff
Replies: 17
Views: 2302

Re: Larry Kotlikoff

I have alot of respect for Prof. Kotlikoff. The ESP software is very robust and was very helpful in discussions with my CPA regarding tax planning. It provided another retirement planning forecast that validated several others that I had done using other methodologies. It gave me confidence in my pl...
by frequentT
Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Premium Products That Are Worth It To You
Replies: 361
Views: 45684

Re: Premium Products That Are Worth It To You

Patagonia Goretex rain jacket Smart wool socks--they have a sock for every occasion, and they are cooler in summer Kean shoes Osprey Duffel Bags Spectacles: lightest possible frames with high index lenses from Costco; their opticians aim to please! Apple notebooks--get the extra warranty Battery dri...
by frequentT
Fri Jun 21, 2013 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap Razors
Replies: 81
Views: 7649

Re: Cheap Razors

You can also extend blade life by shaking out excess water after using, tamping it on a towel, and giving it an air blast from a can of dust off with the red concentrator tip attached to the can's nozzle: Nice and dry = longer life.
by frequentT
Thu May 09, 2013 12:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED light bulbs: on line shopping destination
Replies: 18
Views: 2540

Re: LED light bulbs: on line shopping destination

For the outdoor application, we have 'coach lanterns' that require the small threaded stems with the candle globes (not the flickering type). I purchased a 3 pack for about $18 about 4 months ago. Went back and it looks like Costco has discontinued. Maybe not a fast enough mover....... I put 2 in on...
by frequentT
Thu May 09, 2013 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED light bulbs: on line shopping destination
Replies: 18
Views: 2540

LED light bulbs: on line shopping destination

I have gradually been converting my home lighting over to LEDs. LEDs have been very impressive in those areas where a particularly bright light is needed, ie. kitchen and baths. My outdoor lights that I have recently put on timers for convenience and security are next to be upgraded since they are o...
by frequentT
Mon May 06, 2013 8:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: HOWTO roll your own high-level munis fund?? Help appreciated
Replies: 19
Views: 1632

Re: HOWTO roll your own high-level munis fund?? Help appreci

All of your requirements can be done via the Fidelity website. There are adequate new issue bonds to build your portfolio over time. Their bond portfolio analysis tool is excellent and will allow you to slice and dice your portfolio to look at it in a way that works for you. Graphic or tabular. They...
by frequentT
Wed Apr 17, 2013 9:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Invest to Win: Earn & Keep Profits in Bull & Bear Markets wi
Replies: 4
Views: 750

Invest to Win: Earn & Keep Profits in Bull & Bear Markets wi

Has anyone read this book? I heard an interview with the author today. It sounded interesting.
Thanks for your comments! :happy
by frequentT
Sun Apr 14, 2013 9:47 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Post your asset allocation here:
Replies: 136
Views: 11912

Re: Post your asset allocation here:

small cap growth 1% mid-cap growth 1% large cap growth 10% small cap value 1% mid cap value 2% large cap value 24% US Equity 39% Int. 5% emerging 1% Int. Equity 7% TOTAL EQUITY 46% real estate 1% precious metals 1% cash 7% bond 46% TOTAL 100%
by frequentT
Fri Mar 15, 2013 4:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Advice for Upcoming Life Events
Replies: 10
Views: 1061

Re: Portfolio Advice for Upcoming Life Events

Durham real estate: lease to own would make sense if you can get monthly lease payments close to breakeven on cash flow. It can be advantageous for the seller and buyer if both get what they need. The contract terms have to satisfy both. If you have renter/buyer who does not have the down payment an...

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