Search found 871 matches

by ram
Sun Oct 22, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does/can Walmart offer such inexpensive prescriptions?
Replies: 96
Views: 4872

Re: How does/can Walmart offer such inexpensive prescriptions?

I think that I am most concerned about the profit margins for medications that are vital and, unfortunately, often needed by those who can least afford them. I believe in responsible capitalism that respects the consumers. I don’t feel that exists when it come to pharmaceuticals. It is heartbreakin...
by ram
Sun Oct 22, 2017 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping college costs of grandchildren
Replies: 37
Views: 2051

Re: Helping college costs of grandchildren

This subject comes up frequently on the board and there are opposing opinions (for perfectly justifiable reasons). I wonder if family harmony can be maintained by laying down ground rules much in advance. Example: A couple has 2 kids A and B. When A and B reach young adulthood and before they procre...
by ram
Sun Oct 22, 2017 2:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WPA2 protocol used by vast majority of wifi connections has been broken
Replies: 63
Views: 5559

Re: WPA2 protocol used by vast majority of wifi connections has been broken

The protocol I've developed after seeing my own and others' mistakes in networking (including mistakes by my ISP) is that if I don't thoroughly understand the technology and keep on top of it, and I don't "really" need it, I disable it. Thus, for home networking, I have had wi-fi disabled for quite...
by ram
Sun Oct 22, 2017 1:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am i missing anything without REITs..
Replies: 5
Views: 541

Re: Am i missing anything wihtout REITs..

50% each of your investable assets are in tax deferred and taxable. As you approach retirement you may need increasing amount of space in the tax deferred space for bonds. If you hold small cap value (SCV) you need tax deferred space for those as well. I like SCV more than REITS and so REITS are bei...
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does/can Walmart offer such inexpensive prescriptions?
Replies: 96
Views: 4872

Re: How does/can Walmart offer such inexpensive prescriptions?

When I volunteer at medical camps in a 3rd world country I prescribe a pill for a chronic disease which costs $0.25 for 100 tablets (typically 100 day supply). This pill has many side effects but is a very good choice when the options are this pill or no pill. The manufacturer and pharmacy are makin...
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?
Replies: 48
Views: 3433

Re: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?

Me: Lawn care, landscaping, staining the deck. My wife: House cleaning including bathrooms, vegetable and fruit cutting, clean up after cooking, washing, laundry folding, ironing. This frees up time for her for cooking, gardening and growing vegetables and for me for bogleheading. :happy So your wi...
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?
Replies: 48
Views: 3433

Re: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?

Me: Lawn care, landscaping, staining the deck. My wife: House cleaning including bathrooms, vegetable and fruit cutting, clean up after cooking, washing, laundry folding, ironing. This frees up time for her for cooking, gardening and growing vegetables and for me for bogleheading. :happy So your wi...
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?
Replies: 48
Views: 3433

Re: What service do you pay for that you could easily do yourself?

Me: Lawn care, landscaping, staining the deck.
My wife: House cleaning including bathrooms, vegetable and fruit cutting, clean up after cooking, washing, laundry folding, ironing.
This frees up time for her for cooking, gardening and growing vegetables and for me for bogleheading. :happy
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying for medical school for son?
Replies: 79
Views: 4511

Re: Paying for medical school for son?

At high school graduation we offered each of our 2 children 250K for ALL of their education. They would keep any unused balance and take loans if more was needed. Now they had skin in the game. The older child went to state U for undergrad instead of a private prestigious school. Went to in state me...
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 1:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: Where to buy a Vanguard hat? An Update and bad news
Replies: 79
Views: 12120

Re: Where to buy a Vanguard hat? An Update and bad news

If a Vanguard representative is reading this may I suggest that Vanguard send a cup to those that have 1 million with Vanguard and a set of 6 cups to those that have 5 million.

Like the 'I reached the 2 comma club' there will be 'I got the Vanguard mug' threads.
by ram
Sat Oct 21, 2017 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How does the medical billing system work?
Replies: 34
Views: 2255

Re: How does the medical billing system work?

Hospitals would have incentive to charge reasonable transparent prices if a significant percentage of recipients of service would be willing to pay the full bill in cash at the time of service.

Getting reimbursement for the payment that they made from "their" insurance company would be upto them.
by ram
Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime - Decline in Delivery Service?
Replies: 54
Views: 4251

Re: Amazon Prime - Decline in Delivery Service?

Yes. I live in a rural area where deliveries are likely not efficient. Most are by USPS.
by ram
Sun Oct 15, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annuities - how does insurance company know you died?
Replies: 49
Views: 2689

Re: Annuities - how does insurance company know you died?

A friend gets a pension from another country. He has to produce an annual "life certificate". This can be done by walking into the pension office or a certificate from a notary or a physician. Our local news reported that a an apparently 103 yr old lady was getting SS payments. Actually her son was ...
by ram
Sat Oct 07, 2017 1:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Has your "risk tolerance" been tested?
Replies: 105
Views: 6528

Re: Has your "risk tolerance" been tested?

Yes.
In 2008-09. Was stock:bond 90-10%. Stayed with the AA all through the downturn. In fact overbalanced in stocks by Mar 2009.
But now that I am in my 50's and thinking of retirement my risk tolerance (and need for risk) has decreased and I am currently 67-33%
by ram
Fri Oct 06, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Daughter's auto repair shop problems, what should we do now?
Replies: 34
Views: 3419

Re: Daughter's auto repair shop problems, what should we do now?

Also consider option 6) Offer the car to the shop as full payment for the work that they have done. ( Added: Get it in writing)

Assuming that they accept and assuming that " almost worthless" < $800 you should come out ahead.
by ram
Fri Oct 06, 2017 9:41 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Third time in my 32 year career I have been laid off
Replies: 87
Views: 10080

Re: Third time in my 32 year career I have been laid off

Let's consider the worst case scenario. Your income was 125 K. To amass the net worth that you have, let's assume you were saving 20% (25K). That leaves 100K. Assuming you retire as of today you should be saving about 20K in taxes based on retirement income as compared to current income. In other wo...
by ram
Sat Sep 30, 2017 7:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2017 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST -- Third Quarter Leaders
Replies: 13
Views: 1889

Re: 2017 BOGLEHEAD CONTEST -- Third Quarter Leaders

I am #183 and happy that the S&P is ahead of my forecast.
by ram
Sat Sep 30, 2017 7:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: $10 million+ - Still Working and LBYM
Replies: 162
Views: 16320

Re: 3 Comma Club - Still Working and LBYM

Convert it to Yen and you are in the 3 comma club. (I need to convert to Zimbabwean dollar to reach the 3 comma club :) ). We used to live on 110 to 120% of our income when I made 40K. (had gone back for additional medical training/ fellowship). Now that we make >400K /yr we spend somewhat more free...
by ram
Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which bogleheads have a "high need to take risk"?
Replies: 51
Views: 4533

Re: Which bogleheads have a "high need to take risk"?

Our family had a need for high returns in the 529 accounts set up for our kids. My wife and I were willing to put "X" for their education. But the cost of their education "potentially" could be 150 to 200% of "X" With the belief that all/most of the cost of education should be paid from the 529 acco...
by ram
Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Expert's Dilemma - How can I know I'm getting a good physician without being one myself?
Replies: 125
Views: 8444

Re: The Expert's Dilemma - How can I know I'm getting a good physician without being one myself?

BogleFanGal wrote:
Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:20 am
Do PCPs who recommend a specific specialist ever receive financial incentives to do so?
It is illegal.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stark_Law
by ram
Sun Sep 24, 2017 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Expert's Dilemma - How can I know I'm getting a good physician without being one myself?
Replies: 125
Views: 8444

Re: The Expert's Dilemma - How can I know I'm getting a good physician without being one myself?

Don't forget to rule out the physicians who have had disciplinary actions against them and have been sued too many times. You can get this information from licensing boards and state court records. You may have to exclude 99% of surgeons. The best way to avoid a physician who has not been sued is t...
by ram
Tue Sep 19, 2017 8:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals
Replies: 55
Views: 3503

Re: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals

I grew up in a rural area that once had a local rural hospital and many primary care physicians (General Practioners as they were called back then). Over time, that hospital closed and folks have to travel longer distances to hospitals and there are fewer physicians there. Now, I live in a very lar...
by ram
Tue Sep 19, 2017 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finding contractor for small-ish, hourly job (deck carpentry)
Replies: 19
Views: 1106

Re: Finding contractor for small-ish, hourly job (deck carpentry)

Labor is costly/ not easily available. Lumbar is cheap. I dont like to reuse damaged lumbar.
by ram
Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals
Replies: 55
Views: 3503

Re: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals

Speaking from a patient point of view (and having no medical training), my understanding is that an important aspect of the quality of care from a provider is how much experience the provider has with the condition/treatment. I suppose (depending on the details) physicians in rural areas may have f...
by ram
Mon Sep 18, 2017 9:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals
Replies: 55
Views: 3503

Re: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals

I do not now the details of CAH payments/copays/reimbursement, I would just be careful not pulling to much care away from you CAH. My understanding is yes, they do get a better reimbursement, but I did not think that affected the patient's out of pocket cost (especially with suplemental insurance)....
by ram
Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals
Replies: 55
Views: 3503

Re: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals

As a doctor I disagree that good physicians are at city hospitals. I think for sure better facilities and greater acuity is at larger sites. But physician quality depends on the services-outpatient or ambulatory care vs surgical/ trauma. Many enterprising docs from prestigious locations choose smal...
by ram
Mon Sep 18, 2017 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals
Replies: 55
Views: 3503

Re: Medicare patients pay FAR MORE at 1300 rural Critical Access Hospitals

Why would you get a colonoscopy at a hospital? That makes it more expensive than it needs to be, so the patient should pay those excessive charges. We get colonoscopies at the clinic part of our medical group. We are in and out in about 2 hours and it doesn't cost us anything. Medicare pays for all...
by ram
Sat Sep 16, 2017 5:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?
Replies: 75
Views: 7011

Re: Distressing news -> Flight to Safety ?

People have been coming here for 3 years talking about now being the time for "dry powder". I wonder how the folks who converted to dry powder 3 years ago now. For the last about 12 months I have 5% of assets as dry powder (Stable value fund). It obviously has not panned out. (?yet). But it pays me...
by ram
Sat Sep 16, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New or used Lexus ES300h?
Replies: 25
Views: 2432

Re: New or used Lexus ES300h?

viewtopic.php?t=146906

With the help of 'Livesoft advisory service' I was able to get a LS at 40% off at 3 yrs certified used. Running fine for 2 yrs now. No issues. Changed a set of tires and synthetic oil twice.
by ram
Fri Sep 15, 2017 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Let's talk about your FI # and family income [Financial Independence]
Replies: 165
Views: 15456

Re: Let's talk about your FI # and family income

Current HH income >400K. (but highly variable over our lifetime) Target FI >5 M. At one point my income was 50K (in today's dollars) with my wife being SAHM. At that time some months savings was <0%. As income increased we increased our spending but initially spent $1 of every extra $2 earned , late...
by ram
Wed Sep 06, 2017 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYT > Under ‘Observation,’ Some Hospital Patients Face Big Bills
Replies: 23
Views: 2737

Re: NYT > Under ‘Observation,’ Some Hospital Patients Face Big Bills

Any thoughts on what, as a practical matter, you should do if you're a patient in this situation? Nisiprius, I think that the answer is 'nothing'. Two parties much more knowledgeable than the average patient are already slugging it out. The hospital system typically will want to get the "admitted s...
by ram
Tue Aug 29, 2017 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Bargain" house in HCOL area
Replies: 34
Views: 3789

Re: "Bargain" house in HCOL area

If you are a MD making about 700 K/yr, how much free time do you have to fix this house. Will your wife/ parents in law be able to help with the fixing.
by ram
Sat Aug 26, 2017 5:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How and when do you decide to do Tax Loss Harvesting?
Replies: 24
Views: 2409

Re: How and when do you decide to do Tax Loss Harvesting?

There were significant TLH opportunities in Feb 2016. I put in some effort to make sure I have at least 3000 of loss by 12/31 of each year. Typically I will not TLH for <1000.
by ram
Sat Aug 26, 2017 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Major career decision.. offer on table. Huge relocation decision.
Replies: 29
Views: 3149

Re: Major career decision.. offer on table. Huge relocation decision.

1. Think of your current job as a bond : stable , steady. Think of the new job as a stock: high risk, high return. You are young so go with the risk. 2. I have moved many times. Mostly >1000 miles. Stopped moving once the oldest kid was in high school. If you do not like this place there is enough t...
by ram
Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Check engine light. Toyota Avalon 2006, 155K miles [safety issue?]
Replies: 66
Views: 6072

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

Yes. The oil was changed 2000 miles ago. But apparently the mechanic did not reset the light.
by ram
Sun Aug 20, 2017 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen knife set. Good quality - Recommendations
Replies: 55
Views: 4519

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: 55
Views: 4519

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: 3731

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: 3731

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: 66
Views: 6072

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: 66
Views: 6072

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: 66
Views: 6072

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: 1790

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: 4481

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: 3908

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: 1730

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: 20709

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: 2199

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 severity of pain ...
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: 66
Views: 6072

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: 66
Views: 6072

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...