Search found 836 matches

by ram
Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen knife set. Good quality - Recommendations
Replies: 47
Views: 3112

Re: Kitchen knife set. Good quality - Recommendations

Thank you all. At this point she is inclined to avoid buying a set. She will buy individual knives and a block. Any opinions about the classic Vs the classic Ikon Vs classic Ikon wood handle. This review http://kitchenknifeguru.com/wusthof-knives-a-buyers-guide/ claims the classic Ikon has better ba...
by ram
Sat Aug 19, 2017 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen knife set. Good quality - Recommendations
Replies: 47
Views: 3112

Kitchen knife set. Good quality - Recommendations

My wife wants to buy a high quality fairly small (4 to 5 knives) set. Budget: approx $500. She has one Wustoff knife (tomato knife) which she thinks is way better than the others (mostly Chicago cutlery brand). We eat a lot of veggies and two out of 4 in our family are vegetarians. The others mostly...
by ram
Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What % of income to buy a car is not excessive?
Replies: 48
Views: 3288

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

Personal preference. I probably wouldn't go above 10-15% of gross, as long as I could purchase with cash. Runner, I understand your sentiment and it is very prudent to be within that limit. But... The median new car (26K) costs about 50% of the median annual household income(52K). Even with the 3 m...
by ram
Sun Aug 13, 2017 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What % of income to buy a car is not excessive?
Replies: 48
Views: 3288

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

My ideal target is :
<= 3 mo income for car.
<= 3 yrs for house.

I realize that it is not possible for everybody but I it has always been true for me.
by ram
Fri Aug 11, 2017 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

rooms222 wrote:Here's how to reset the oil change (Maintenance) light: http://maint-reqd.upcsite.net/?v=Toyota%20Avalon
Did that. Worked perfectly. Thanks.
by ram
Thu Aug 10, 2017 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

The "check engine" light has gone away. Now it is a separate "maintenance required" light.
by ram
Thu Aug 10, 2017 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Its about 8 to 10 weeks and 2K miles since the initial post. I drove the car 130 miles last weekend and all the vibration is gone. In retrospect the advice to replace the 3 back coils (rather than all) was good advice. The car is running well. Now "maintenance required" light is on and when I plugge...
by ram
Sun Aug 06, 2017 1:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Heavy Duty Boxes for Long Term Permanent Storage
Replies: 20
Views: 1628

Re: Heavy Duty Boxes for Long Term Permanent Storage

If I needed these from age 50 to age 90/death I would get wooden boxes made to my specifications with a metal label holder screwed/ nailed to it. My grandfather had a few of these. I believe some grad kid still has them.
by ram
Sun Aug 06, 2017 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love your family car? Under $16,000 Used? Please share!
Replies: 39
Views: 4336

Re: Love your family car? Under $16,000? Please share!

I have a toyota Avalon. You can get a 2 to 3 yr old with 50 to 80 K miles at your price point. Also consider 2 yr old Impala from Hertz rental agency. These are big cars with trunk space comparable to hatchbacks. Considering that you want the space of a hatchback I would avoid Honda Civic, Toyota Co...
by ram
Sun Jul 23, 2017 2:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2017 Genesis
Replies: 34
Views: 3759

Re: 2017 Genesis

Two to 3 yrs ago I was in the market for a non performance luxury car. Quietness was an important feature for me.
The hyundai genesis and equas were good cars but 'noisier' than the Lexus 460 which I ultimately got.
by ram
Sat Jul 22, 2017 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Career Advice
Replies: 19
Views: 1592

Re: Career Advice

I have a similar future plan and support your 'teaching' plan. I am a physician currently treating patients, teaching medicine and doing research. My future plan is to drop the first part and stick with the other two as I get old.
by ram
Wed Jul 05, 2017 1:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Which Med school?
Replies: 162
Views: 20023

Re: Which Med school?

Update: My daughter has completed 3 years of Med school at Univ of Wisconsin, Madison. She has done well. She has maintained her full tuition scholarship for the 2nd and 3rd year and it is anticipated that she will do so for the 4th (last) year. During the initial 3 years she also did additional (op...
by ram
Wed Jul 05, 2017 12:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medical Insurance Cover a Fractured Zygoma?
Replies: 15
Views: 2041

Re: Medical Insurance Cover a Fractured Zygoma?

I spoke with the medical director of "a health insurance company" and that particular entity will typically cover the procedure. (other insurance companies will obviously make their own determination). Documentation of pain by the physician and (if true) possibility of duration and severit...
by ram
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

WOW, yup, glad you have a good paying job since you got taken for a ride on those prices. I hope you were the one that cheaped out on only replaced half the coil packs, and not the mechanic because that is extremely lazy. You can get a whole set of coil packs for 100-150 bucks plus plugs are very c...
by ram
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

WOW, yup, glad you have a good paying job since you got taken for a ride on those prices. I hope you were the one that cheaped out on only replaced half the coil packs, and not the mechanic because that is extremely lazy. You can get a whole set of coil packs for 100-150 bucks plus plugs are very c...
by ram
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

If it was misfiring long enough, it's possible that the excessive fuel going out the exhaust has fouled the catalytic converter and that could be causing some of the remaining shuddering. Particularly if the engine feels sluggish and gets worse mileage as a result of the exhaust restriction. The O2...
by ram
Thu Jun 22, 2017 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Thank you for all opinions. After driving it for 40 miles on the highway my daughter reports that the shaking is 90% better. It still has some vibrations when it slows down (such as while making turns). She will use it for next 6 weeks. Then she drops off the car with me and goes to Boston for a yea...
by ram
Thu Jun 22, 2017 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads: Please help me pick a new car
Replies: 81
Views: 7046

Re: Bogleheads: Please help me pick a new car

https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=146906 The above is my thread when I wanted to buy a car. I got Lexus LS for >40% off at 3yrs. I drove Audi A4 for 4 days as a silvercar rental. It is a good car but my lexus LS is much more comfortable and as 3yr old CPO cheaper than a new A4. The CP...
by ram
Mon Jun 19, 2017 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Replaced all plugs today. Replaced all the coils in the 3 back cylinders. (Cost about $800 including 250 labor). Daughter says that the shuddering is about 50% less.
by ram
Sun Jun 18, 2017 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

My daughter and the Avalon is home for 4 days. I just checked the codes. There are 10 of them: P0300 (multiple cylinder misfire) P0353 (Ignition coil C primary/ secondary circuit malfunction) P0300P P0301P to P0306P (misfire of cylinder 1 to cylinder 6) P0353P The car is shuddering. I will take it f...
by ram
Fri Jun 16, 2017 11:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can we discuss Investment Order
Replies: 22
Views: 2568

Re: Can we discuss Investment Order

Here is what I told my son who joined the workforce recently. ... 4. He is on parent's health insurance, so no question of HSA. If the parent's insurance is an HDHP, and the son is no longer a dependent, the son may have his own HSA - and contribute the family maximum. This is independent of what t...
by ram
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can we discuss Investment Order
Replies: 22
Views: 2568

Re: Can we discuss Investment Order

Here is what I told my son who joined the workforce recently. ... 4. He is on parent's health insurance, so no question of HSA. If the parent's insurance is an HDHP, and the son is no longer a dependent, the son may have his own HSA - and contribute the family maximum. This is independent of what t...
by ram
Wed Jun 14, 2017 10:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finishing Basement - financing?
Replies: 10
Views: 1053

Re: Finishing Basement - financing?

Borrowing 20K at 0% and instead investing it at for an average of 9 months at 1.2% will earn you $180.
There are many CCs that pay better. See nerdwallet.com.
by ram
Sun Jun 11, 2017 9:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can we discuss Investment Order
Replies: 22
Views: 2568

Re: Can we discuss Investment Order

Here is what I told my son who joined the workforce recently.
1. Contribute to 401K upto the match.
2. Roth IRA
3. Continue adding to 401K till 18K.
4. He is on parent's health insurance, so no question of HSA.
5. Taxable account.
by ram
Sat Jun 10, 2017 3:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: College admissions question - she got a "C"
Replies: 100
Views: 8692

Re: College admissions question - she got a "C"

My son had a few 'C's in 'band' class. This did not prevent him from getting admitted to more than half a dozen well known schools and getting a full tuition scholarship. (He did have all A's in STEM subjects)
by ram
Mon May 29, 2017 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High School Graduation Gifts
Replies: 21
Views: 2256

Re: High School Graduation Gifts

I always give cash. (as in paper money). Typically $25 to $100. My two children who graduated from HS in the last decade preferred cash. Many HS graduates may not have a bank account. My son held on to his checks for two months till he opened a bank account in the city that he went to college. He ha...
by ram
Tue May 23, 2017 7:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First house - penny wise?
Replies: 12
Views: 2836

Re: First house - penny wise?

I would go with the higher cost option. Take a 30 yr mortgage but plan on paying it off in 20 yrs.
by ram
Mon May 22, 2017 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Well-made quality handbags
Replies: 32
Views: 3442

Re: Well-made quality handbags

My wife likes her tumi handbag. I like their suitcases.
by ram
Mon May 15, 2017 11:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Thanks everybody. I did not actually ask the mechanic what the codes were. Will try doing so. I did order the $13 code reader that was recommended. In the future I will at least know what the likely problem is before taking it to the mechanic. I did look at videos of replacing spark plugs etc. There...
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Thanks Watty and everybody else. Inspection is not needed for registration in my state. ( Edit: for rural counties, which is where I live)
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

As mentioned, you need to know the codes. I have a Subaru with a P0420 code (catalytic converter efficiency below minimum) which means one of a number of things. None of these things are safety related. I'm working on the solutions one at a time and resetting the code (I have a code reader) to chec...
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Re: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

Flickering means the engine is misfiring (spark plug fires but the gasoline does not ignite). That can be due to relatively minor issues like a valve cover gasket leaking oil in the spark plug well, or bad coil pack, or it could be a serious issue like a failed engine internal component. As far as ...
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: American Funds beat out Vanguard Index over lifetime?
Replies: 63
Views: 7943

Re: American Funds beat out Vanguard Index over lifetime?

Reading this thread I get the impression that American Funds are good enough to match returns of equivalent Vanguard funds. In other words they are at least able to cover their extra costs through their superior returns, at least in a retirement account (where tax drag would not matter) Thus under o...
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 65
Views: 5413

Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]

I have a Toyota Avalon 2006 which I purchased used in 2008. It was a company fleet vehicle for its initial 1.5 years and 90K miles and has served my family well for last 9 years. I have taken good care of it with usual timely maintenance. Currently my daughter who is in college 150 miles away uses t...
by ram
Sun May 14, 2017 1:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Current rebalancing opportunities (November 2016 update)
Replies: 41
Views: 11418

Re: Current rebalancing opportunities (November 2016 update)

Is it time to rebalance into REITs. Almost all other classes of equities are at or near their 12 month peaks.
by ram
Wed May 10, 2017 6:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why not Vanguard(other MF houses) have 'Fee-only-advisors' ??
Replies: 5
Views: 819

Re: Why not Vanguard(other MF houses) have 'Fee-only-advisors' ??

Why would Edward Jones want to have a fee only adviser who would presumably have to recommend the customer to invest in low cost index MFs from Vanguard or Fido.
The aim of these investment houses is to make money.
by ram
Sun May 07, 2017 9:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Preparing for Tax Loss Harvest
Replies: 27
Views: 1141

Re: Preparing for Tax Loss Harvest

This is a taxable account. So given a choice of keeping only one of these funds in taxable I would keep small cap. So how about: - add only to small cap. - sell only small cap value for tax loss harvesting purpose till you have sold it all. At that point: -Wait 30 days. -Start buying small cap value...
by ram
Sun May 07, 2017 8:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Aggressive index funds
Replies: 15
Views: 1806

Re: Aggressive index funds

I suggest always giving the names of funds along with their ticker symbols the first time you mention them, as most of us haven't memorized them (and many Vanguard funds have two ticker symbols commonly used in the forum, one for the $3,000-minimum "investor" share class and another for t...
by ram
Sun May 07, 2017 7:54 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Acceptable Success Rate to Retire using Firecalc
Replies: 41
Views: 3441

Re: Acceptable Success Rate to Retire using Firecalc

As Taylor Larimore has written here, before the days of online calculators, he and his wife "spent more in the good years and less in the lean years" (paraphrased). That's my plan, too. The only problem I have with that plan is if the lean years come early when I am healthiest and most ab...
by ram
Sat May 06, 2017 12:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Birthday Rebalance - Quick Quesiton
Replies: 8
Views: 731

Re: Birthday Rebalance - Quick Quesiton

This is my issue with rebalancing as well. Different asses in different accounts. Do not keep any "asses". Just get rid of them. The OP's choice of assets is good. Those can be used for replacing. OP: I wouldn't worry about this level of rebalancing. New money over the next year or so can...
by ram
Thu May 04, 2017 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a luxury car (how dumb would it be to do this?)
Replies: 216
Views: 20180

Re: Buying a luxury car (how dumb would it be to do this?)

After driving hondas and toyotas for many years I got a Lexus LS 460 about 18 months ago. We like it. No regrets . Got it used(CPO) for about 60% of the initial cost.
by ram
Thu May 04, 2017 7:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Two night trip
Replies: 9
Views: 951

Re: Two night trip

Last year we took a 8 day driving vacation and went around lake Michigan.
I would recommend Holland , Traverse city (sleeping bear sand dunes) or Lake Geneva. I would put madison lowest, but perhaps that is because I go there frequently.
by ram
Tue May 02, 2017 8:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How quick is too quick for a job offer?
Replies: 29
Views: 3603

Re: How quick is too quick for a job offer?

We typically hire physicians with face to face interview lasting a single day. There is an approx 60 min phone interview before inviting for in person interview. Typical salary range 200- 300K.
by ram
Sat Apr 29, 2017 10:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please poke holes in my tax strategy
Replies: 38
Views: 6037

Re: Please poke holes in my tax strategy

Please poke holes in my tax strategy.

Sorry. I can't. The strategy looks good.
by ram
Sat Apr 29, 2017 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Deceptive Billing by Dermatologist?
Replies: 33
Views: 3683

Re: Deceptive Billing by Dermatologist?

DW contacts local dermatologist practice to inquire about having a few lesions frozen as a cash / customer pay transaction. She is given a number as a flat fee for freezing up to xx number of lesions. She arrives at office and again explains her reason for visiting and pays up front the flat fee. O...
by ram
Sat Apr 29, 2017 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for a new role with same employer - salary negotiation
Replies: 13
Views: 1088

Re: Applying for a new role with same employer - salary negotiation

I once worked for an employer that had such bands. It was understood by all that the new person will automatically be at the lowest end of the band. At 1 year you go up.
by ram
Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping adult children
Replies: 81
Views: 9024

Re: Helping adult children

Two of my parents' children became physicians and one a school teacher. All education costs for the children were paid by parents. The medical education costs were higher than the non medical education. All children were happy that parents paid for the education. There was no separate payment made ...
by ram
Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: If you pay a high AMT, would you take out $1M mortgage?
Replies: 45
Views: 4086

Re: If you pay a high AMT, would you take out $1M mortgage?

If you are in AMT region with potential significant future increases in income realize that you may tunnel through the AMT income range and come out on the other side with no AMT. In other words with still higher income your regular taxes will be high enough that AMT will not apply.
by ram
Thu Apr 27, 2017 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping adult children
Replies: 81
Views: 9024

Re: Helping adult children

Two of my parents' children became physicians and one a school teacher. All education costs for the children were paid by parents. The medical education costs were higher than the non medical education. All children were happy that parents paid for the education. There was no separate payment made t...
by ram
Wed Apr 26, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Doctor bill question
Replies: 29
Views: 2222

Re: Doctor bill question

In most states NP's require physician supervision. The extent of the supervision is variable in different states. It is reasonable to assume that you got the benefit of a MD's knowledge even though you did not meet face to face with him. At the very least it was available if required. Whether the ch...