Search found 6446 matches

by jeffyscott
Sat May 20, 2017 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?
Replies: 25
Views: 2995

Re: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?

...there was no Segment Height requested or on my prescription, same for my Costco lenses. I had my prescription done elsewhere but at Costco the person behind the counter had me put the frames on when I bought them and seemed to use a pen to mark something on them. Yes, that's how they measure the...
by jeffyscott
Fri May 19, 2017 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Learning how to spend
Replies: 27
Views: 2395

Re: Learning how to spend

It seems like sometimes people who don't see a need nor have a desire to spend a lot of money feel pressure from the culture to go "enjoy their money" else they cheat themselves of a good life. I don't think that is universally true. For many of us happiness is not proportional to spendin...
by jeffyscott
Fri May 19, 2017 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Air circulation issues
Replies: 11
Views: 713

Re: Air circulation issues

Experimentation with leaving the doors slightly open plus having the HVAC fan run continuously in summer makes a significant difference. When you need a new HVAC system if you get one with a variable speed ECM blower, you can have the fan run continuously at low speed during all seasons. This suppo...
by jeffyscott
Fri May 19, 2017 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reasonable Cost / Estate Planning Ideas
Replies: 6
Views: 595

Re: Reasonable Cost / Estate Planning Ideas

I don't know if any other state does this but mine provided a form for a basic will with trust, based on this statute:

https://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/statut ... /853/II/56
by jeffyscott
Fri May 19, 2017 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?
Replies: 25
Views: 2995

Re: Opticians: is there any difference in quality of Costco glasses?

I think Costco's "HD", "digital", or whatever they are calling them, progressives are at least one notch down from the most customizable progressives. Based on the optician mentioning minimum fitting height of 18 mm, I think Costco has a fixed corridor, while top of the line free...
by jeffyscott
Thu May 18, 2017 5:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

I don't know, but as you note it is kind of silly to not make a claim because the cost of your insurance may go up. The way to avoid claims is by having a high deductible. My insurance company allows up to $25,000 deductible.
by jeffyscott
Thu May 18, 2017 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

When we had hail damage we were told by insurance agent that this is considered "an act of God" and a claim does not affect individual rates. Also the claim has already been made, it is just a question whether it is denied or not at this point. A denied claim is still a claim and can affec...
by jeffyscott
Thu May 18, 2017 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries
Replies: 30
Views: 1252

Re: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries

The really cool kids don't even have landline phones these days. If you need to walk around while you're talking on the phone, you could get one of those newfangled cellular telephones with an unlimited service plan. You can play games on it, too. :beer Been carrying one for 22 years, and use it fr...
by jeffyscott
Thu May 18, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

A string of unusually costly years for roof damage claims in Oklahoma, Kentucky, Tennessee and elsewhere has prompted some insurers to dial back the roof coverage portion of their home insurance policies, especially on older roofs. One popular trend is to offer “actual cash value,” or ACV, coverage...
by jeffyscott
Wed May 17, 2017 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

It seems like this is a giant loophole in the insurance process. A roof that is deteriorating because of age but then storms hit to make it worse...should a NEW roof be fully covered? Should an insurance company sell replacement value coverage and then not pay full replacement cost of something bec...
by jeffyscott
Wed May 17, 2017 3:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries
Replies: 30
Views: 1252

Re: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries

FWIW, my replacement batteries were cheap off-brand ones from Menards (Northern Tech) and all the handsets sit on chargers all the time. So it seems my Panasonic model does not care much about those things, since have only had one set of new batteries in 10 years.
by jeffyscott
Wed May 17, 2017 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries
Replies: 30
Views: 1252

Re: Home cordless phone recommendation, which takes AA or AAA batteries

Another Panasonic, we have had one with three handsets for 10 years and I have replaced the batteries just once. I used regular NIMH rechargeable ones without a problem. Our handsets are model KX-TGA101S, probably not current.
by jeffyscott
Wed May 17, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solid salt in water softener
Replies: 14
Views: 1385

Re: Solid salt in water softener

How should I fix this? Should I try to do it myself (with a heavier, sharper tool), have a plumber fix it, or have the water softener installer do this (the most expensive solution, I suspect). I think you may backwards on the cost of plumber vs. the softener company. My son is a technician for sof...
by jeffyscott
Tue May 16, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

That was about the age of our subdivision when our hail incident happened also. On one side we border a section that is about 15 years older. Neighbor on that side had put on a new roof maybe about 2 years before the hail event, he got another new roof after the hail. I think our hail was about 1-1....
by jeffyscott
Mon May 15, 2017 4:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 3075

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

A couple of months ago, there was a hailstorm here in my neighborhood in Texas, west of Houston. The roofing companies were out like locusts, ringing doorbells and trying to sell us new roofs, but we did what we thought was the honorable thing and called our insurer, USAA. They sent an adjuster and...
by jeffyscott
Thu May 11, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with older laptop?
Replies: 32
Views: 3221

Re: What to do with older laptop?

I would install Linux and possibly add 1 GB to it. You will end up with a nice secure laptop to use to log into all your financial account websites. Take a look at Linux Mint with Xfce. It is lightweight desktop environment. I tried Mint Xfce last night. I didn't know it came with that DE. Very nic...
by jeffyscott
Wed May 10, 2017 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long Term [Care] Rates just went Through the roof!
Replies: 34
Views: 4664

Re: Long Term [Care] Rates just went Through the roof!

A relative chose to go the self insured route. He is now in an assisted living facility. If current expenses remain the same he has enough funds to last 26 years if he left his investments in cash. If he lived that long he would be the oldest person on the planet. Obviously his expenses will go up ...
by jeffyscott
Tue May 09, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Defined Benefit Pension Analysis
Replies: 18
Views: 2280

Re: Defined Benefit Pension Analysis

Interestingly, the 100% J&S quotes range from 7-9% lower than the SLA quotes. This could be because the pension is the same whether the worker is male or female. So if the pensioner is a man and the spouse is a woman, I would think there would but a slight advantage to taking survivor benefits,...
by jeffyscott
Tue May 09, 2017 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long Term [Care] Rates just went Through the roof!
Replies: 34
Views: 4664

Re: Long Term Rates just with Through the roof!

This is one of the reasons why I never bought LTC insurance. The idea behind insurance is to pay the insurance company to take the risk for you. What they are doing is pushing the cost of that risk right back to you. It's becoming prepaid long-term care, rather than insurance. The only way I'd ever...
by jeffyscott
Tue May 09, 2017 9:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will or Trust?
Replies: 13
Views: 1326

Re: Will or Trust?

My understanding is accounts that have beneficiaries named will pass to them, a will does not affect this and is not subject to probate. I recently discovered that this same arrangement can be done with real estate, to have the deed transfer on death. So in our case, I now even question the need for...
by jeffyscott
Tue May 09, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What newspaper or magazine do you pay for?
Replies: 107
Views: 4196

Re: What newspaper or magazine do you pay for?

None. Read a lot of news but what's available for free is sufficient. I prefer reading (both news and books) on my tablet as I can make everything large print. When my AA miles are about to expire, I use them to order a bunch of random magazines... You do know you could order just one and that would...
by jeffyscott
Mon May 08, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Mileage Plus CC - worth it?
Replies: 25
Views: 1657

Re: United Mileage Plus CC - worth it?

I'm not sure if you can convert from the fee version to the no-fee version; I've heard people do that with other cards. You can, after 1 year. We have done United card for the bonus a total of 3 times, when fee was waived for first year. It's not worth keeping for us. The second time my wife got th...
by jeffyscott
Sun May 07, 2017 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?
Replies: 7
Views: 962

Re: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?

Since you are in NYC, I would keep the comprehensive piece and cancel the collision, especially since comp is usually pretty cheap ($20-30 a year as you said). Unless I misunderstood, OP was paying $30 per month for comp. and is paying $30 per month for collision. I figured the high comp. was a NYC...
by jeffyscott
Sun May 07, 2017 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?
Replies: 7
Views: 962

Re: Auto Insurance - When do you drop collision insurance?

I've usually dropped when value of the car is under about $5000. Have used $1000 deductible for a very long time. It seems to me they should offer a higher deductible by now, but whenever I have asked $1000 was the highest available. I went a bit longer than I otherwise would have with our most rece...
by jeffyscott
Fri May 05, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: advice on replacing central AC unit
Replies: 20
Views: 1032

Re: advice on replacing central AC unit

I don't know about creating separate zones up and down, except that I understand it is not great for the blower to run with a lot of the ductwork or outlets closed off, which is what I presume would be the result of zoning. If you get a system with variable speed ECM blower you can run the blower co...
by jeffyscott
Thu May 04, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: advice on replacing central AC unit
Replies: 20
Views: 1032

Re: advice on replacing central AC unit

If the furnace is old, might be best to do both depending on what you have. Even if not doing full system, might consider replacing blower with ECM, if current is PSC.

Here's one simple calculator, results seem reasonable for our house: https://www.alpinehomeair.com/estimator.cfm
by jeffyscott
Mon May 01, 2017 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 403 and 457
Replies: 4
Views: 577

Re: 403 and 457

457 allows penalty free withdrawals at any age, after you have left the employer. If you move to an IRA, you can't do that until the year you turn 59 or 60. I would leave the 457 for that reason, if it were me. I'm not sure, but there may be somewhat better protection for money left in 403b or 457 v...
by jeffyscott
Mon May 01, 2017 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Withdrawing Funds early from a state retirement system
Replies: 7
Views: 664

Re: Withdrawing Funds early from a state retirement system

If this is website: https://www.azasrs.gov/content/refunding-your-account-and-terminating-asrs-membership One thing mentioned is access to and even contributions toward health insurance, with just 5 years of service. It also mentions potential increases based on returns, so it seems the $130 may not...
by jeffyscott
Sun Apr 30, 2017 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "What Role Should Taxes Play in Your Relocation Decision?"
Replies: 5
Views: 783

Re: "What Role Should Taxes Play in Your Relocation Decision?"

dbr wrote:Our poor author who is paying so much in property taxes could cut that bill by living in a less ritzy property.


And then he could reduce his income, since he wouldn't have the tax and other bills associated with that ritzy property, and this would reduce his income tax bill.
by jeffyscott
Sun Apr 30, 2017 7:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "What Role Should Taxes Play in Your Relocation Decision?"
Replies: 5
Views: 783

Re: "What Role Should Taxes Play in Your Relocation Decision?"

The same goes for many of the other statewide comparisons at the linked article, crime rates, schools, commute times, etc. Someone living in Decatur, IL is not really affected by crime in Chicago or East St. Louis, for example. At a minimum these sort of comparisons should look at metro areas or som...
by jeffyscott
Sat Apr 29, 2017 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to consider Long Term Care Insurance
Replies: 38
Views: 2759

Re: When to concider Long Term Care Insurance

Most people are adamant about staying tin their home if care is needed. Worst case scenario is care needed for 24 hours a day. At just 20 per hour that amounts to about 500 a day, 15,000 a month and 180,000 per year. Just because someone wants something does not mean the insurance is going to cover...
by jeffyscott
Tue Apr 04, 2017 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?
Replies: 51
Views: 4816

Re: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?

I tried letgo and close5 (dumb new name for what had been ebay classified). I had listed same 2 items there and on Craigslist. Both items ended up selling on Craigslist. I imagine the popularity varies by location. I find being forced to use an app annoying, but would do it stuff sold faster. These ...
by jeffyscott
Mon Apr 03, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?
Replies: 51
Views: 4816

Re: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?

Craiglist still works okay for me, but can be annoying as there seem to be a lot of no shows. How are you making and (re-)confirming the appointments? A phone call within two hours of the appointment might help. Mostly by email. Don't really want to make or receive phone calls. But, I do give the p...
by jeffyscott
Mon Apr 03, 2017 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?
Replies: 51
Views: 4816

Re: Is Craigslist still the main site to sell stuff locally?

In some areas, there are big Facebook "Buy Sell Trade" groups that crop up, some are more active than others. If on Facebook you type in a location and "buy sell" you'll probably find one in most regions. Thanks, I was unaware of this option. Found several in my area. I think I ...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 31, 2017 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: running tax software on Linux using Windows virtual machine
Replies: 27
Views: 1698

Re: running tax software on Linux using Windows virtual machine

You could also set-up a dual boot. I did that initially when I transitioned to Linux about 3.5 years ago. I used windows very infrequently for a while, then not at all. My wife transitioned a couple years ago when windows was broken on her laptop and she decided to try Linux since we were going to h...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Adjusting budget given figures below, when going from employer plan to Medicare
Replies: 1
Views: 178

Re: How to adjust budget when going from employer insurance to Medicare

A concern is a med which would cost $1500 a month withiut insurance but where all but $10 is covered now due to our insurance.


On the Medicare site you can put in your medications when choosing a plan and see what the coverage would be for those.
by jeffyscott
Sat Mar 11, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cuttting the cable tv negotiation & the scam
Replies: 33
Views: 3325

Re: Cuttting the cable tv negotiation & the scam

the wife wants the TCM old movies that are only on Optimum cable. Any advice? I'd think there'd be a lot of ways to get old movies with commercials (and maybe even without), without paying for cable. I've not done so often, but some free sources I've used are snagfilms, internet archive, and crackl...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 10, 2017 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA and Medicaid - proof of MAGI?
Replies: 2
Views: 360

Re: IRA and Medicaid - proof of MAGI?

Thanks for finding that. No IRA for 2016, but tax form shows income well below the Medicaid limit. I see that document also says for income verification: "When entering income from pay stubs, do not include in the gross any pretaxed amounts such as deductions for IRA". This relates to anot...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA and Medicaid - proof of MAGI?
Replies: 2
Views: 360

IRA and Medicaid - proof of MAGI?

I'm advising a family of 3, who's annual income recently increased from about $24,000 to $30-35K, that they can maintain eligibility for Medicaid by contributing to deductible IRAs (not eligible for 401K at this time). I understand how the rules work in theory, but wondering about complications in a...
by jeffyscott
Sun Mar 05, 2017 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV and/or Speakers for Enhanced Voice Clarity [UPDATE]
Replies: 35
Views: 2022

Re: TV and/or Speakers for Enhanced Voice Clarity

He suggested that before we buy something more expensive or a newer TV, that we first connect the sound box directly to cable box and bypass the processing of the TV. This talks about checking the sound configuration of cable box, blu ray etc. to be sure it knows you have only 2 speakers: https://w...
by jeffyscott
Sun Mar 05, 2017 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV and/or Speakers for Enhanced Voice Clarity [UPDATE]
Replies: 35
Views: 2022

Re: TV and/or Speakers for Enhanced Voice Clarity

If the TV sound settings have an equalizer, you might make some adjustments there that will improve voice clarity.

I've done this, I think it helps me. I think I used this source for ideas on settings to use:
https://larryjordan.com/articles/eq-war ... e-diction/
by jeffyscott
Sun Mar 05, 2017 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rental Car Insurance (No Collision Insurance)
Replies: 7
Views: 928

Re: Rental Car Insurance (No Collision Insurance)

I have no collision coverage on our cars. My understanding is the credit card coverage still works. Chase Visa Platinum brochure explicitly states: "...if you do not have automobile insurance, you do not have to claim payment from any other source of insurance before receiving coverage..."...
by jeffyscott
Sun Mar 05, 2017 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying Zero Income Tax on $100,000 Income? Really? Let's see if we can give new life to this old topic!
Replies: 68
Views: 8076

Re: Paying Zero Income Tax on $100,000 Income? Really? Let's see if we can give new life to this old topic!

I decided to check in with Livesoft who has posted informative conversations on this topic. Livesoft responded immediately in agreement to revisit this topic. :D Maybe I am not recalling correctly, but wasn't this originally about paying $0 tax while spending $100,000 per year in retirement? If it ...
by jeffyscott
Sun Mar 05, 2017 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to retire early??? Possible?
Replies: 16
Views: 2240

Re: How to retire early??? Possible?

I don't think accessing retirement accounts early is that difficult. My understanding is you would just need to make "substantially equal" withdrawals. This just requires some extra forms and records, doesn't it? Being able to save enough is the important and more difficult part. Besides m...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 03, 2017 2:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Brokerage only option at Vg?
Replies: 10
Views: 674

Re: Brokerage only option at Vg?

Dodge & Cox is #7 overall here: http://www.investmentnews.com/article/20110816/CHART02/110819945/the-100-largest-mutual-fund-families My ranking was based on not considering those between them and T rowe to be "no load" fund families. I could be wrong, but in any case the point is ther...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 03, 2017 11:52 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Brokerage only option at Vg?
Replies: 10
Views: 674

Re: Brokerage only option at Vg?

I did find other threads before posting, but wanted to check on the specific situation of an existing client that just wants a new type of account and has no interest in brokerage. Thought maybe someone else had experience with this and could answer the specific question. I don't believe this is the...
by jeffyscott
Fri Mar 03, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Brokerage only option at Vg?
Replies: 10
Views: 674

Brokerage only option at Vg?

Have had Roth IRA at Vanguard for a long time. This year for tax reasons, I am opening a small traditional IRA account. I was surprised when I got near the end of the process that the new account was going to be a brokerage account. I sent a message to Vanguard asking how to open a traditional IRA, ...
by jeffyscott
Tue Feb 07, 2017 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Walmart.com vs. Amazon.com
Replies: 41
Views: 5243

Re: Walmart.com vs. Amazon.com

Don't order a whole lot online but when I do I prefer buying from walmart.com over amazon, they have a store right next to the Costco we go to, so I can order ship to store with no minimum. I prefer being able to return stuff for any reason in person, so never have used amazon much. I will look anyw...
by jeffyscott
Tue Feb 07, 2017 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help! Savers credit for taxes
Replies: 5
Views: 1037

Re: Help! Savers credit for taxes

Saver's credit is magical, if you hit the correct income. I am reducing our AGI to $37,000 this year with deductible IRA because of the saver's tax credit. The credit will reduce taxes to $0, but if we contributed $1 less to deductible IRA then taxes would jump to $833. This is because the saver's c...

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