Search found 262 matches

by jasc15
Mon Jul 25, 2016 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What kind of apartment can $1k get you in your city?
Replies: 53
Views: 2558

Re: What kind of apartment can $1k get you in your city?

Quick check on Zillow shows nothing available for <= $1000 in my town. Two hits for $1100, one BR, one bath: http://photos3.zillowstatic.com/p_c/IS6qfjn4uh8tce0000000000.jpg http://photos2.zillowstatic.com/p_f/ISewhv5bypgqce0000000000.jpg About a year and a half ago, I was paying a bit over $1100 fo...
by jasc15
Thu Jul 07, 2016 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone else make things for their own use?
Replies: 42
Views: 3524

Re: Anyone else make things for their own use?

About 6 years ago, I attempted to build a working wooden pendulum clock of my own design. There are kits you can buy and assemble (which I also did), and designs you can buy and make yourself, but I wanted to design and build my own 100%. I don't mean making a clock cabinet and buying a movement to ...
by jasc15
Thu Jul 07, 2016 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many "investment" accounts do you have?
Replies: 35
Views: 2581

Re: How many "investment" accounts do you have?

I have money at 3 institutions, with several sub accounts in each: Capital One 360 ⋅ Checking ⋅ General Savings ⋅ Emergency Fund ⋅ Gifts ⋅ Flying ⋅ Vacation ⋅ Shared Savings ⋅ Home Down Payment 3 CD's 1 Regular Savings F...
by jasc15
Mon Jun 27, 2016 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reducing Electric Bill- Point of Diminishing Returns?
Replies: 34
Views: 3501

Re: Reducing Electric Bill- Point of Diminishing Returns?

it would be ~$5,500. At the end of his pitch he said all of those improvements would save me 5% of my energy bill. My average total energy bill (gas and electric) is ~150/month averaged over three years. So with a 5% savings it would take me 61 years to recoup the initial investment. Sounds like yo...
by jasc15
Mon Jun 27, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Plunge and Panic-Do You Get It Now?
Replies: 108
Views: 12229

Re: Plunge and Panic-Do You Get It Now?

I've been contributing to a 401k since 2006, but only started paying attention in early 2012 when I started reading this forum. Even in that short 4 year time period, this event barely shows up on the S&P chart.

Image

Up 42% in that period.
by jasc15
Mon Jun 27, 2016 8:24 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Move $ from 401K to Roth
Replies: 6
Views: 590

Re: Move $ from 401K to Roth

This is a timely thread for me. My mother has been out of work on disability for a while now, and will have no earned income for this year. I was thinking of having her take distributions from her existing 401k and pay the tax this year, but I hadn't considered that she could do a Roth conversion of...
by jasc15
Wed Jun 22, 2016 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Headphones, consumerism, and escalation of "needs"
Replies: 55
Views: 4340

Re: Headphones, consumerism, and escalation of "needs"

This sounds like me with every single purchase I consider. Fortunately I often get burned out by this process and experience the full novelty phase without ever having to actually buy the thing. For example, I spent a full month researching radio controlled helicopters, maybe 50 hours or so. I noti...
by jasc15
Wed Jun 22, 2016 9:49 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Employee Stock Purchase Program
Replies: 10
Views: 462

Re: Employee Stock Purchase Program

I participate in mine. The holding period is 30 days, and purchases are made twice a year. Selling fees are something like $20 plus a few cents/share if I recall correctly. Of course there is no certainty that the stock won't tank 15% in that 30 day time period, but it's worked out pretty well so fa...
by jasc15
Wed Jun 22, 2016 8:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Headphones, consumerism, and escalation of "needs"
Replies: 55
Views: 4340

Re: Headphones, consumerism, and escalation of "needs"

This sounds like me with every single purchase I consider. Fortunately I often get burned out by this process and experience the full novelty phase without ever having to actually buy the thing. For example, I spent a full month researching radio controlled helicopters, maybe 50 hours or so. I notic...
by jasc15
Wed Jun 15, 2016 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who has needed to use their umbrella insurance?
Replies: 70
Views: 6926

Re: Who has needed to use their umbrella insurance?

dustyroyal819 wrote:Am I blind?!? Where do you see how many reads?


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by jasc15
Mon Jun 13, 2016 5:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.
Replies: 16
Views: 2507

Re: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.

Maybe my expectations for gap coverage are a bit high. My interest in all this results from reading "insurance for dummies" which, In the umbrella section, mentions gaps such as renting boats, ATVs, etc; assuming liability in signing contracts; events such as weddings (eg. damage caused by...
by jasc15
Mon Jun 13, 2016 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost of SIM card
Replies: 17
Views: 1340

Re: Cost of SIM card

For another data point, I set up my mother with Consumer Cellular service and they sent the SIM for free.
by jasc15
Sun Jun 12, 2016 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.
Replies: 16
Views: 2507

Re: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.

I received the complete policy terms from Geico and it simply seems like beefed up liability limits, and not much in the way of gap coverage.
by jasc15
Sat Jun 11, 2016 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.
Replies: 16
Views: 2507

Re: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.

Of course it all sounds reasonable when explained this way. Thanks for the info. It also seems standard for insurance quotes not to come with the full terms of the policy, but I will ask for them.
by jasc15
Fri Jun 10, 2016 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.
Replies: 16
Views: 2507

Geico says I wouldn't have to pay legal fees under umbrella policy.

I got a quote today for an umbrella policy with Geico. The agent informed me that, since Geico would be as interested in avoiding loss as I would, they would pay for legal fees on my behalf and that I would only be liable for the damages, as the case may be. Perhaps I didn't ask the right questions,...
by jasc15
Sun Jun 05, 2016 7:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ed Slott's Retirement Roadmap 2016 -- who's pledged?
Replies: 17
Views: 3802

Re: Ed Slott's Retirement Roadmap 2016 -- who's pledged?

Not sure everyone should run out an convert all their "forever taxed" TIRAs to Roth IRAs so that money is "never taxed"-- but maybe that is because I didn't repeat it enough times out loud. :happy I caught the very end of his presentation and got this much out of it. As I unders...
by jasc15
Mon May 09, 2016 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drill chuck only accepts 1/4" hex bits
Replies: 17
Views: 1278

Re: Drill chuck only accepts 1/4" hex bits

You wouldnt really use it for the same things as you would use a drill for. It's for sockets and other screw/nut drivers. Just get something like this:

Image

and you can use it with your existing sockets.
by jasc15
Sun May 08, 2016 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Am I about to lose $5,000/yr in taxes due to my move?
Replies: 7
Views: 1671

Re: Am I about to lose $5,000/yr in taxes due to my move?

I am guessing that your 3-5k refund was simply tax withheld throughout the year that you got back. The move would stop the withholding, and with it, the refund. Meaning that you will neither gain nor lose anything.
by jasc15
Mon Apr 18, 2016 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?
Replies: 53
Views: 3247

Re: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?

I took my own photo and cropped it to the correct size (using the link jpelder posted above), and created a 4x6 image with 6 copies, which i then printed at CVS for something like $0.29, then cut the 6 images from the one sheet and mailed one in with the forms.
by jasc15
Wed Mar 16, 2016 6:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Excel geniuses
Replies: 12
Views: 1540

Re: Excel geniuses

I've found this video useful: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3gfgZWy5778

It is a macro that allows you to grab prices from the web, so you can enter the date and the ticker symbol to get the price. It removes a lot of the tedium of updating my tracking spreadsheet.
by jasc15
Mon Mar 07, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: A Lost Engineer [Which masters program to pursue?]
Replies: 20
Views: 2927

Re: A Lost Engineer

I have a BS in Mechanical Engineering, and a Master of Engineering in Mech. Eng. When I began grad school, my advisor explained that the major difference is that the MS requires a thesis which is valuable for students who have no real way to differentiate themselves from their fellow students. Like ...
by jasc15
Mon Feb 22, 2016 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Free Shipping Is Now $50....
Replies: 74
Views: 10206

Re: Amazon Free Shipping Is Now $50....

If it's any consolation, book orders over $25 ship free. But this will certainly (or so i say) reduce my use of Amazon for the same reason: Well, looks like I'll be purchasing less from Amazon. Even at $35, my cart would often sit half full for a month or more until free shipping was achieved, often...
by jasc15
Wed Feb 17, 2016 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99
Replies: 20
Views: 1996

Re: Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99

Why wouldn't you typically purchase several 5qt jugs at Walmart, instead of a 5qt and a 1qt container? Because one container would have to remain open for extended periods. Maybe this doesn't matter though. Can I go to Walmart or my local Honda dealership and give them the Mobile 1 oil and have the...
by jasc15
Wed Feb 17, 2016 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99
Replies: 20
Views: 1996

Re: Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99

Yeah, the 5qt jug at walmart is a pretty good price. However, my engine needs 6 quarts, so I normally purchased the 5qt jug and a 1qt bottle at walmart, which is still a few dollars less than costco's normal price.
by jasc15
Wed Feb 17, 2016 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99
Replies: 20
Views: 1996

Costco: 6 quarts of Mobil 1 $27.99, normally $37.99

I happen to need an oil change soon, and noticed the $10 manufacturer discount at Costco. I picked up a 6 pack, but will probably pick up 2 or 3 more before the end of the promotion on 2/21/16. Mobil website says the shelf life is 5 years for unopened motor oil. http://www.costco.com/Mobil-1-Advance...
by jasc15
Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help Ditching Ameriprise
Replies: 12
Views: 1589

Re: Help Ditching Ameriprise

I did a transfer of shares from ameriprise to fidelity a few months ago. It was only about $20 per account to close. I initiated the transfer from the fidelity side, and they simply asked for the account numbers and that I upload a recent statement from ameriprise. It was really quite easy, except f...
by jasc15
Thu Feb 11, 2016 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone travel without hacking?
Replies: 103
Views: 12664

Re: Anyone travel without hacking?

Once I created my AAdvantage account for american airlines, I was able to browse flights and saw that they were indeed available, but with something like $750 in fees attached. I have recently booked two round trip flights to Europe with miles on American Airlines, one to Madrid and one to Paris. I...
by jasc15
Thu Feb 11, 2016 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone travel without hacking?
Replies: 103
Views: 12664

Re: Anyone travel without hacking?

There was something like a 60k signup bonus in early 2014 if I remember correctly. My wife and I were planning our wedding and honeymoon, and thought it would be a perfect plan to each get a card since we would easily meet the minimum spending for the first 3 months. Flights to Europe were 60k miles...
by jasc15
Fri Feb 05, 2016 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone travel without hacking?
Replies: 103
Views: 12664

Re: Anyone travel without hacking?

I've had an American Express blue card for about 8 years now. It gives $100 of bonus toward travel for every $7500 spent (so 1.33% on all purchases. Still seems rather competitive these days). That credit is worth less for other things like gift cards, etc. I've used it a few times to pay for an air...
by jasc15
Wed Feb 03, 2016 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody budget for daycare like it is college?
Replies: 54
Views: 3701

Re: Anybody budget for daycare like it is college?

Has it always been this way for two working parents? Somehow my parents pieced together other ways for my sister and I to be taken care of before school age, and after school, etc. (And it wasn't grandma). There is no way they could have afforded a second mortgage payment each month. Some of us wit...
by jasc15
Tue Feb 02, 2016 8:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody budget for daycare like it is college?
Replies: 54
Views: 3701

Re: Anybody budget for daycare like it is college?

Has it always been this way for two working parents? Somehow my parents pieced together other ways for my sister and I to be taken care of before school age, and after school, etc. (And it wasn't grandma). There is no way they could have afforded a second mortgage payment each month. Some of us with...
by jasc15
Fri Jan 22, 2016 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What was your biggest unexpected home expense?
Replies: 87
Views: 8271

Re: What was your biggest unexpected home expense?

How did you folks pay for all this? Cash? HELOC?
by jasc15
Wed Jan 20, 2016 9:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Company stock purchase plan
Replies: 14
Views: 1139

Re: Company stock purchase plan

I am participating the max (10% of gross salary) to my company ESPP. We get a 15% discount on the price at the time of purchase, which is on June 30 and December 31. The stock is down since December 31, but less than 15%. I can sell on January 31 (or the 29th, I suppose).
by jasc15
Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Who's buyin' today?
Replies: 127
Views: 12151

Re: Who's buyin' today?

I've been in the process of converting an inheritance from high cost funds into a simple 3 or 4-fund portfolio, so I will likely be buying in the next few days.
by jasc15
Thu Jan 14, 2016 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's your company 401k contribution
Replies: 105
Views: 5741

Re: What's your company 401k contribution

100% up to 3% of salary, 50% from 3% to 6%, 0% over 6% for a max of 4.5% of salary. No pension. Major aerospace corporation.

Surprising number of low cost funds, including 4 Vanguard funds.
by jasc15
Sat Jan 02, 2016 2:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RC Monster Truck recommendations
Replies: 8
Views: 752

Re: RC Monster Truck recommendations

I last messed with rc cars in the late 90's, so I'm not up on what's new. I know Losi is still around and they made top notch products then. Take a look at this:

http://www.losi.com/Products/Default.as ... D=LOS04004

Other brands to look for are traxxas, hpi, tamiya.
by jasc15
Mon Dec 28, 2015 12:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Overtime and taxes clarification
Replies: 13
Views: 1215

Re: Overtime and taxes clarification

This is the same as claims that bonuses are taxed at a higher rate that I hear around the office whenever they are given. The feeling of the higher withholding is not easily remedied by the knowledge that it will all be worked out at tax time.
by jasc15
Wed Dec 23, 2015 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Looking for new family room] Furniture
Replies: 23
Views: 1799

Re: Furniture

La-z-boy? I have a la-z-boy sectional sofa which I bought about 5 years ago. I paid what now seems an absurd $2200. It still looks good after 5 years of daily use by my wife and I, but the build quality is rather poor. The recliners are a bit wobbly, but they have been that way since new. I went wi...
by jasc15
Thu Dec 17, 2015 12:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with house down payment fund?
Replies: 6
Views: 462

Re: What to do with house down payment fund?

You won't get any recommendations here other than using an FDIC insured account, especially for such a short period of time. I have my home down payment in an FDIC savings account earning 0.4% per year or something. It's been in there for more than 5 yeas as I have continued to add to it. I just cou...
by jasc15
Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car
Replies: 251
Views: 20324

Re: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car

My father in law has a 1998 mercury mountaineer with 186,000 miles. He lives in rural Pennsylvania with a steep bumpy gravel driveway. He is one of those self taught diy folks so I'm not sure of the quality of his repairs, but whatever he does the car is still going.
by jasc15
Mon Dec 14, 2015 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Replacing Quicken with Excel
Replies: 5
Views: 1014

Re: Replacing Quicken with Excel

I never used quicken, but I use excel for bullets 3 and 4 of the OP's list using this macro I found which eliminates the manual copying of investment prices I used to do each month. Now I just enter the date for each row, and update shares owned if they change.
by jasc15
Mon Dec 14, 2015 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car
Replies: 251
Views: 20324

Re: Flaunt Your High-Mileage Car

Bought a 2007 Volvo V50 in March 2014 with ~65,000 miles for $11,400 with tax, etc. Just broke 90,000 miles this week. We've had to do some maintenance, but it was all end of life repairs: tires, brakes & rotors, wheel bearings, spark plugs. That combined with air filters and oil changes cost ~$...
by jasc15
Mon Dec 07, 2015 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Just on The Great Courses
Replies: 20
Views: 2246

Re: Just on The Great Courses

I received The Joy of Mathematics several years ago as a christmas gift. The instructor's enthusiasm for the subject is great, and it was a great refresher for some subjects that I was not 100% clear on. I even watched it with a musician friend of mine who has no math education beyond high school an...
by jasc15
Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Re: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

It seems the last several responses simply say that gold is harder to reproduce than paper money, thus limiting rates of inflation in a gold standard. This is my original point, that gold is convenient to represent value since it it relatively hard to reproduce, not that it is valuable on its own. I...
by jasc15
Fri Dec 04, 2015 10:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Re: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

This, combined with compelling arguments from folks like Warren Buffett that gold has no intrinsic value, made me wonder why the dollar ever was backed by gold, and what use it was. Do you have a link where Buffet argues that gold has no intrinsic value? Well, I was about to link to the 2011 Berksh...
by jasc15
Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Re: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

As tludwig23 says, are these inflationary events because paper money was used rather than gold-backed, or were these a result of other catastrophes? Correlation does not mean causation.
by jasc15
Wed Dec 02, 2015 12:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Re: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

Does that help answer your question? PJW Wow, lots of great information. Benjamin Roth, in his diary, continuously refers to the Panic of 1893 as a roadmap for the depression he is experiencing. I suppose I never picked up on the fact that the "gold standard" did nothing to ease or mitiga...
by jasc15
Wed Dec 02, 2015 11:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Re: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

I see how gold is resistant to some of the weaknesses (it's harder to mint more gold coins than to print paper money) of paper currency, but are there other reasons gold was/is seen as a superior currency?
by jasc15
Wed Dec 02, 2015 11:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?
Replies: 70
Views: 4379

Historically, was gold's "value" simply that it was a convenient, yet hard to counterfeit symbol?

Or was there something else valuable about gold? I was thinking about this while reading The Great Depression: A Diary , when the author constantly worried about the US going off the gold standard, and reducing the dollar's gold content. This, combined with compelling arguments from folks like Warre...
by jasc15
Mon Nov 30, 2015 5:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Received inheritance, but am keeping it for mother's benefit. How should I invest?
Replies: 10
Views: 1869

Re: Received inheritance, but am keeping it for mother's benefit. How should I invest?

Thanks again for the info. Here is an update: The asset transfer has been completed successfully, and I moved all of it to a taxable account at Fidelity with the same allocation as listed above. I won't make any moves before Jan 1, at which time I will sell as many of the mutual funds as I can whose...

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