Search found 1543 matches

by michaeljc70
Thu Jul 20, 2017 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you let your teenager spend all his savings on a gaming computer?
Replies: 114
Views: 5062

Re: Would you let your teenager spend all his savings on a gaming computer?

I'd say let him do it. He earned the money. I would possibly suggest he cut back slightly on cost in case something else comes up that he wants to spend money on. If he winds up devoting too much time to playing games, you could always set limits on that.
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Much Would You Spend on a Blender?
Replies: 43
Views: 2217

Re: How Much Would You Spend on a Blender?

I've got the Ninja blender/food processor from Costco and find it perfectly good. I think it was $140 on special. I liked that I was able to get rid of my old, rarely used food processor. I also like the individual blender cups for smoothies and making things like salad dressing. If I was making alm...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 19, 2017 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Credit Card Extended Warranty for a TV
Replies: 14
Views: 918

Re: Credit Card Extended Warranty for a TV

I did this with a laptop and Amex. I had to take it somewhere to get an estimate. They paid me the cost to fix it. It wasn't worth it so I used the money toward a new one. The issue you might have is if you have to get some kind of estimate. I don't think there are many local places that fix flat pa...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 16, 2017 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 6414

Re: Personal loan to a family member

I have a 100% loss rate for personal loans to relatives. I'm convinced that the advice you always hear is not just about the need for emotional preparedness, but rather it is a hidden correlation between "needing to ask a relative for a loan" and "fiscal irresponsibility". The c...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 14, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 6414

Re: Personal loan to a family member

I am surprised at all the responses that insist this is a terrible idea with no good outcomes. Construction costs overrun budgets all the time (more often than not actually, which I can attest as a lender who does plenty of construction loans)... This may be true, although I find it a bad sign that...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 14, 2017 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 6414

Re: Personal loan to a family member

I am surprised at all the responses that insist this is a terrible idea with no good outcomes. Construction costs overrun budgets all the time (more often than not actually, which I can attest as a lender who does plenty of construction loans). Ideally clients have cash to cover that, but building ...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 14, 2017 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?
Replies: 178
Views: 7012

Re: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?

I don't think any primary home, furniture, vehicles etc. should be included as you would always need a home to live in ( or pay rent), need furniture and vehicles. Only the amount Sitting in your bank and brokerage account etc. plus any equity in rental/investment property should be counted as your...
by michaeljc70
Thu Jul 13, 2017 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?
Replies: 178
Views: 7012

Re: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?

Interesting, that it appears many of you do not file financial statements on a regular basis. I'm honestly not trying to be a jerk in asking this. We haven't applied for a mortgage in more than 20 years, but I assume that NW might be of Interest to a mortgage company. And, I hear that some high end...
by michaeljc70
Thu Jul 13, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?
Replies: 178
Views: 7012

Re: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?

I count mine, mostly because I use Quicken which makes it very easy. I depreciate them as they age (usually adjust every year or two as a depreciation expense). This is basically what I do. I have an automatic (scheduled) transaction record the depreciation each month. This way when I run a report ...
by michaeljc70
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?
Replies: 178
Views: 7012

Re: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?

Yes. Only because I use Quicken and it is already in there. It is not significant enough to make any difference though.
by michaeljc70
Thu Jul 13, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cutting the Cord: Who's Best?
Replies: 46
Views: 4804

Re: Cutting the Cord: Who's Best?

You just need to compare the different options that gives you the cheapest price for the channels you want. It used to be Playstation Vue if you were in a market that didn't have all 4 of the big 4, but they raised prices on those markets the other day. I recently ordered 2 months of DirecTVNow bec...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: instant pot [Pressure cooker]
Replies: 34
Views: 2823

Re: instant pot [Pressure cooker]

There were a bunch of posts about explosions. I got a notification and responded. Then it said I was not authorized for this topic. Anyway....I am not sure if the moderators removed the posts for some reason or if there was a technical glitch as the notifications then disappeared. Usually when post...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: instant pot [Pressure cooker]
Replies: 34
Views: 2823

Re: instant pot [Pressure cooker]

There were a bunch of posts about explosions. I got a notification and responded. Then it said I was not authorized for this topic. Anyway....I am not sure if the moderators removed the posts for some reason or if there was a technical glitch as the notifications then disappeared. Usually when posts...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Costco with a "gentle" bump for memebership

I think the reality is that they generally don't, and that it is area-specific anyway. I don't get this. Do Costco shoppers turn off their brains? I doubt it. I don't. I have all my candlepower firing when at Costco. We shop at a number of places, including Costco. Somethings are great deals, other...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Costco with a "gentle" bump for memebership

Do you Costco regulars go out to the rest of the world and do any hard core price comparisons? On things you actually buy? I think the reality is that they generally don't, and that it is area-specific anyway. I don't get this. Do Costco shoppers turn off their brains? I doubt it. I don't. I have a...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Costco with a "gentle" bump for memebership

Do you Costco regulars go out to the rest of the world and do any hard core price comparisons? On things you actually buy? I've got to think Market Basket is eating their head. Yes. I do compare prices. However, sometimes you don't have the time for that and I know Costco will overall be cheaper th...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Costco with a "gentle" bump for memebership

Firing up Quicken and doing a quick check, I spent $2400 last year at Costco. I enjoy shopping there and it is convenient to my house. I save on gas. Tires for my car. They have saved my bacon taking back high cost items that just about any other retailer would not have. I would only drop the member...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit card vrs checking account for utility bills
Replies: 23
Views: 1666

Re: Credit card vrs checking account for utility bills

I do the same as most other- put it on the credit card if they charge no fees. Why not get the points or cash back?
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 12, 2017 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 6414

Re: Personal loan to a family member

Being able to build a new house (not to mention exceeding the budget) is a luxury . I'm not inclined to finance anyone's luxuries. This is not a case where someone will die or go hungry. If they can't afford to finish the construction, how are they going to afford furnishing, decorating, landscapin...
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 11, 2017 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: instant pot [Pressure cooker]
Replies: 34
Views: 2823

Re: instant pot [Pressure cooker]

Like the OP, all of a sudden I am reading lots of favorable reviews about "Instant Pot" and wondering how it is different and better than traditional pressure cookers. More functions? Safer? They claim it has 10 levels of safety protections. It is more fool proof than a stovetop model as ...
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?
Replies: 61
Views: 4061

Re: Does anyone use ANNUITIES for SOME of their retirement funds?

Though I can see them providing peace of mind for some people, I personally want to spend all my money (or give it to my heirs) and not give part of it to an insurance company.
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 11, 2017 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: instant pot [Pressure cooker]
Replies: 34
Views: 2823

Re: instant pot [Pressure cooker]

Yes. I have a 6 qt IP. I was contemplating buying the 8qt on sale for Prime day but am trying to resist. Though there is a lot you can do with it, I use it mostly for longer cooking tougher cuts of meat like pork shoulder,ribs or chuck roast. It is also great for quick meals like bourbon chicken whe...
by michaeljc70
Mon Jul 10, 2017 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how to destroy hard disk with personal info
Replies: 99
Views: 7135

Re: how to destroy hard disk with personal info

I've beaten them with a hammer and soaked in water. If it is at all possible to recover anything from them, no one would waste their time. They go for low hanging fruit in identity theft.
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Doing dishes while camping
Replies: 38
Views: 2680

Re: Doing dishes while camping

We have two 11 QT stacking rubbermaid dish bins (Google "dish bin" and you will see a bunch). We heat water on our stove, and wash the dishes in the first bin with some soap and a sponge. Massive amounts of food/sauce is wiped out first with a paper towel and thrown away. The second bin i...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy
Replies: 13
Views: 1603

Re: Umbrella Policy

You should have it. Shop around to find a better deal. You should be able to get 1 million dollar coverage for about $200 a year. In order to get that type of deal - you might have to bundle your auto/home/umbrella policy with the same insurance company. I was going to shop around as the umbrella w...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Luggage recommendation
Replies: 32
Views: 2342

Re: Luggage recommendation

I strongly advise against a 30" suitcase as keeping it under the weight threshold is virtually impossible. I can travel 10 days in my eBags weekender backpack. I'd advise you to look for something 24-25" if you must go above carry-on size. +1 I have a 25" that expands. It is more fle...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Luggage recommendation
Replies: 32
Views: 2342

Re: Luggage recommendation

I usually buy Samsonite at Marshalls or TJ Maxx or Costco. I bought a set by Ricardo at Costco and that has been good. I had another Ricardo suitcase and the wheel came off on its first trip. Needless to say it was a pain as it was the beginning of the trip. Some of those cobblestone sidewalks/roads...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Closing Credit Cards - Advice on Oldest
Replies: 7
Views: 761

Re: Closing Credit Cards - Advice on Oldest

I keep open a few older cards I really don't use due to the way credit scores are calculated. To be honest, I think it is completely unfair. It should be based on the length of your credit file and not how long certain accounts are open. I find it hard to believe you are a bigger credit risk if you ...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to wear for job interview - skip the tie?
Replies: 54
Views: 3934

Re: What to wear for job interview - skip the tie?

I work in IT and always wear a suit and tie to an interview unless told otherwise. I do consulting so I have been to many different companies. Granted, almost all are fortune 1000 and not start-up type operations. Obviously most offices don't wear suits and ties anymore, but that doesn't matter. It ...
by michaeljc70
Sun Jul 09, 2017 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do not buy new cellphones on ebay
Replies: 38
Views: 3946

Re: Do not buy new cellphones on ebay

Make sure you are buying the US version of the phone. Otherwise the warranty will be useless. T-mobile is not just a US company so T-mobile branded doesn't guarantee the phone works in the US or is a US version. I would forget about that and make sure it support T-mobile USA bands and has a US warra...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your health insurance stats?
Replies: 89
Views: 5016

Re: What are your health insurance stats?

Reading this thread makes me feel that early retirees without some kind of subsidized health insurances are very rare. Reading this I now realize how expensive health insurance is. I had full employer paid coverage my entire adult life, medical bills were just a nuisance and not lifestyle changing....
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy
Replies: 13
Views: 1603

Re: Umbrella Policy

Even if most of your assets are protected, I don't think this is something you want to be dealing with. Do you want to be stuck not selling your home due to having to wait out a statute of limitations? What about if you get an inheritance? The chances of needing the umbrella are low, but it just isn...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your health insurance stats?
Replies: 89
Views: 5016

Re: What are your health insurance stats?

Insured: 47 yo and 40 yo
Type: Individual Market
Premium: $720/mo
Deductible: $7k
Out of pocket max: $14k
Network: Narrow
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Residential Home for $125K. Rent for $1,400 / mo.
Replies: 43
Views: 2567

Re: Residential Home for $125K. Rent for $1,400 / mo.

Are you sure about the monthly rent amounts? Where I live (Chicago) there is no way you can get 1% or more of sales price for monthly rent.
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Better hurry if you want a gas-engine Volvo
Replies: 96
Views: 4526

Re: Better hurry if you want a gas-engine Volvo

As far as I can tell, in the US Volvo currently only offers 1 hybrid and zero all electric cars (I don't know about in other markets). That is what is surprising about this announcement to me. 2019 is pretty close. It sounds like a marketing effort to stand out. Volvo is a pretty small player in the...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unable to Escape from Quicken Island ...
Replies: 28
Views: 2247

Re: Unable to Escape from Quicken Island ...

3) Likewise I have followed with interest the exploration of Quicken alternatives. Like many I reject out-of-hand, any "solution" that puts my data in the cloud. 7) In reflecting on all this, I continue to be amazed that there is not a genuinely viable Quicken alternative. One quote proba...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jul 07, 2017 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unable to Escape from Quicken Island ...
Replies: 28
Views: 2247

Re: Unable to Escape from Quicken Island ...

I have a love-hate relationship with Quicken. I have used it for 20+ years and love having accessing to all that data. I am a detail oriented numbers kind of guy and like being able to whip up a report on anything finance related. I hate the lack of stability in some versions, lack of new features/i...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 05, 2017 6:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I still buy index funds now at such a high price before an impending recession?
Replies: 59
Views: 7750

Re: Should I still buy index funds now at such a high price before an impending recession?

When did the price become "high"? When will it become "low" again? There is always an "impending" recession.

Either keep what you have or move it into index funds. Don't try to time the market.
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To shred or not to shred, that is the question
Replies: 17
Views: 1771

Re: To shred or not to shred, that is the question

rob wrote:BBQ / Fire starters until the next shredding event :-)


I've done this in the fireplace or on the grill. I've also brought stuff to work (broken into smaller quantities) and put it in their locked shredder bins.
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 05, 2017 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: UberX or UberXL??
Replies: 15
Views: 1440

Re: UberX or UberXL??

Usually XL is somewhat more expensive than X, but not that much more expensive. You can get fare estimates at either uber.com (scroll down until you get to the fare estimate), or from uberestimate.com. While the estimate will be as of now rather than as of when you go, it will give you some idea of...
by michaeljc70
Wed Jul 05, 2017 9:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: UberX or UberXL??
Replies: 15
Views: 1440

Re: UberX or UberXL??

UberXL is much more expensive. As others have said, you will not be guaranteed a car that will fit everything you need to with an UberX. You might try to get an UberX that will fit everything using the cancel technique. However, with all that stuff and kids, I doubt you want to be fooling around wit...
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Just found out my mom is in serious financial crisis. Need help ASAP.
Replies: 58
Views: 8881

Re: Just found out my mom is in serious financial crisis. Need help ASAP.

I'm not sure where she lives and if she could find a place to live that would be a lot less expensive. Though she has a good income and can pay down these debts with that, I would worry about her retirement. Even if she plans to work for years, sometimes health issues prevent it. The social social s...
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long term care insurance - is it worth it?
Replies: 156
Views: 9479

Re: Long term care insurance - is it worth it?

The great Dave Ramsey suggested getting Long Term Care insurance at around 60 so I took his advice. My sister, who works in insurance, decided to self fund. After a couple of years of over 4k premiums the cost went up to over 5k for me and my wife. I decided to cancel the policy after paying about ...
by michaeljc70
Tue Jul 04, 2017 11:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars
Replies: 173
Views: 12791

Re: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars

For all those folks saying they need the latest safety features, how do they rationalize the fact that they've been driving "unsafe" vehicles all that time previously? Wouldn't the rational thing have been not to drive at all? In fact, they risked more years ( being younger) driving those...
by michaeljc70
Mon Jul 03, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Sam's Club vs. Costco

I don't know if this is the same in other cities, but where I live (Chicago) the Sam's tend to be in "off" locations. By "off" I mean away from other stores and things I go to. In the Chicagoland area they tend to be in lower income (but not low income) areas than Costcos. This m...
by michaeljc70
Mon Jul 03, 2017 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Sam's Club vs. Costco

This conversation has gotten nutty. It is a fact that Costco caters to a more affluent crowd, and it is a fact that Sam's Club historically has not. The business models of the two companies have been fairly extensively documented in the business media. It is also a fact that Costco has been the mor...
by michaeljc70
Mon Jul 03, 2017 8:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Sam's Club, Costco, BJ's, and other wholesaler clubs]
Replies: 274
Views: 12871

Re: Sam's Club vs. Costco

The search feature on Costco's website is basically non-functional. It's actually exceedingly difficult to locate anything on their website. They may as well not bother having a website, because it's totally useless. Really?I probably have the lowest level computer skillls on this forum and their s...
by michaeljc70
Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need Credit Card for International Travel
Replies: 45
Views: 2743

Re: Need Credit Card for International Travel

I was in Europe in Feb and had issues, so I would make sure I had a backup. Luckily I was traveling with someone. I had 2 credit cards that didn't work in some locations. I also had an ATM card that didn't work. The brokerage company for the ATM said it was the bank that declined it, but I tried 5 d...
by michaeljc70
Sat Jul 01, 2017 5:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars
Replies: 173
Views: 12791

Re: Bogleheads: you should be buying 10-year old cars

Financially, it would probably be most efficient if we all lived in studio apartments.....in the bad part of town. I kept my last new car 13 years. Then I bought another new one. I think buying such an old car (10 years) could really leave you with a lot of problems. In my view, buying a car that ha...
by michaeljc70
Fri Jun 30, 2017 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideas for a week in Spain
Replies: 42
Views: 2410

Re: Ideas for a week in Spain

Personally, Malaga and Vigo are not somewhere I'd want to spend a week. There is not a lot to do and they are smaller port cities. Comparing Barcelona to Vigo would be like comparing Chicago to Des Moines. I haven't been to the others except Valencia which I thought was very nice. Have you been to ...

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