Search found 858 matches

by sls239
Wed Jan 18, 2017 6:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage/Real Estate Questions
Replies: 2
Views: 289

Re: Mortgage/Real Estate Questions

Yes, yes, and yes. We've done all 3. But the only reason we were quick to buy this last time is because we were moving back to a place we had lived before, so we already knew the area. For a new area, you'll want to get to know it before purchasing. Even if that means, as it sometimes does, that chi...
by sls239
Tue Jan 17, 2017 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying new construction, looking for feedback
Replies: 3
Views: 699

Re: Buying new construction, looking for feedback

Are you familiar with what the HOA will be responsible for long term? Are the builders currently subsidizing it?
by sls239
Tue Jan 10, 2017 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family
Replies: 57
Views: 3643

Re: Alaska cruise - Help me convince my family

We did one a few years ago basically as an introduction to Alaska. We went in June and there was hardly any rain, it was sunny most of the time. And in Alaska in June, it is daylight for very long hours. It also wasn't windy. We spent a lot of time on deck because the scenery is just astounding (I'm...
by sls239
Tue Jan 10, 2017 9:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How Bad was 2008, really?
Replies: 189
Views: 12030

Re: How Bad was 2008, really?

We had our son in 2006. 2007 was when I was supposed to go back to work. Instead, my spouse was laid off. And not just any layoff, they shut down the whole facility and put a hiring freeze on most of the rest of their facilities so no transfers were offered except for those very high up - and this w...
by sls239
Tue Jan 03, 2017 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Exterior Paint vs. Vinyl Siding
Replies: 24
Views: 1244

Re: Exterior Paint vs. Vinyl Siding

Do you get hail?
by sls239
Tue Jan 03, 2017 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on this inverse living floor plan and building a home in general
Replies: 30
Views: 2297

Re: Thoughts on this inverse living floor plan and building a home in general

The good - The master is big enough to allow for the now recommended rooming-in of babies for the first several months, and many people like secondary bedrooms close to the master while the children are young. The downstairs room could be a nice playroom likely to be used extensively for play dates....
by sls239
Tue Jan 03, 2017 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yellowstone Tours Vs. Self-Guided
Replies: 28
Views: 2194

Re: Yellowstone Tours Vs. Self-Guided

We were just there in September with our 10 year old son. The best hike we did IMO was the one to mystic falls and it was only a couple miles. Like PP said, the best moments seemed to be things that couldn't be predicted. Like we took part of a tour with the ranger in the upper geyser basin, but lat...
by sls239
Wed Dec 14, 2016 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: On-line order, in-store pickup
Replies: 27
Views: 2130

Re: On-line order, in-store pickup

In my experience, Staples was the absolute worst. I was there for about an hour and the store wasn't even busy. In fact, the store isn't even there anymore.
by sls239
Mon Dec 12, 2016 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ideal two vehicle combo?
Replies: 73
Views: 6075

Re: Ideal two vehicle combo?

I'd just go with an Accord.

And many building supply places rent trucks for hauling what you buy home. If they don't, there's Penske or U-haul.

And for what it is worth - you can leave the baby carrier in the car. Most people do before too long, IME.
by sls239
Fri Dec 09, 2016 10:24 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why not have an Emergency Fund in your Roth...(for those who can't max out anyways)
Replies: 22
Views: 2230

Re: Why not have an Emergency Fund in your Roth...(for those who can't max out anyways)

One reason might be that if they qualify for the retirement savers tax credit, they are possibly better off putting more money into a TIRA instead of less money in a Roth because the tax credit doesn't distinguish. But I think a single person with no dependents with $60K / year is probably out of th...
by sls239
Mon Dec 05, 2016 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spouses and spending styles...
Replies: 53
Views: 5619

Re: Spouses and spending styles...

I fully agree with the idea of building up the EF. That was actually one of our goals until she decided we were going to stop doing that "building up the EF" doesn't sound like it has a definite end point. In order to move on to other goals, there must be an endpoint. So had you agreed on...
by sls239
Mon Dec 05, 2016 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spouses and spending styles...
Replies: 53
Views: 5619

Re: Spouses and spending styles...

My suggestion is to just increase how much money you have in the EF to whatever level will make you comfortable. There's nothing wrong with setting your savings aside, setting your EF aside, and then spending every last dime of what's left. It shouldn't feel like "stretching" to do that. T...
by sls239
Fri Dec 02, 2016 10:02 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Life-changing event just happened. Seeking portfolio review and guidance
Replies: 35
Views: 2761

Re: Life-changing event just happened. Seeking portfolio review and guidance

I don't think you should make any changes to your allocation right now.

It is too sudden.

Give it some time to see what is likely to happen. Don't panic.

But you should adjust your spending.
by sls239
Fri Dec 02, 2016 9:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What percentage of international do you hold?
Replies: 127
Views: 6216

Re: What percentage of international do you hold?

I have 20% of my equities in international. Mostly because well over a decade ago I had to pick a number and I picked 20%. I've seen the chart, yes, 30% looks better and if I were starting today I might pick 30%. But I don't think it is significant enough to change from 20%. Anyone have an updated c...
by sls239
Fri Dec 02, 2016 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 2070
Views: 557572

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

I'm reading The Big Picture by Sean Carroll, a physicist (not to be confused with Sean B Carroll, the evolutionary biologist). It is a sort of philosophy of science.
by sls239
Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Lightweight Binoculars under $200
Replies: 15
Views: 949

Re: Best Lightweight Binoculars under $200

I have a pair of Nikon Travelite that my son has used since age 8. They are 8x25 though.
by sls239
Tue Nov 29, 2016 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a Basketball Hoop
Replies: 11
Views: 785

Re: Buying a Basketball Hoop

Our cul-de-sac has one portable hoop. It has literally gone from house to house as people have moved in and out or gotten more or less interested in bball.
by sls239
Tue Nov 29, 2016 1:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 529 Plans
Replies: 5
Views: 610

Re: 529 Plans

Are the grandparents within the income range to do an ESA? Those offer the flexibility of using it on qualified education related expenses in primary and secondary school.

They have a contribution limit of $2K / year, but there's nothing that says you can't do an ESA and a 529.
by sls239
Mon Nov 21, 2016 2:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fly/Drive to Yellowstone
Replies: 21
Views: 2057

Re: Fly/Drive to Yellowstone

They release the entire next year's lodging every May.
Canyon Village is the one where you can actually reach all the major areas of Yellowstone, if you are looking for one place.
We flew in to Jackson as well.
by sls239
Fri Nov 18, 2016 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)
Replies: 36
Views: 2962

Re: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)

I know political debates aren't allowed on here, but when I said education was political in Texas I meant it. There's a bill in the state legislature right now that would take away the ability of a school counselor to maintain confidentiality. I'm sure as a physician, you are aware of the importance...
by sls239
Thu Nov 17, 2016 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)
Replies: 36
Views: 2962

Re: Portland or Dallas (Southlake area)

So my brother lives outside of Portland and my sister lives outside of Dallas. My brother is actually a conservative and he loves living in Portland. He complains about liberals all the time, but he also thinks the rail system is awesome. He likes running and drinking craft beer and you can do a ton...
by sls239
Wed Nov 02, 2016 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage Question
Replies: 7
Views: 763

Re: Mortgage Question

Since you originally scheduled closing more than 30 days out, you could consider letting the rate float and continue comparison shopping for now.

Then lock the rate when closing plus 30 is within the lock period.
by sls239
Wed Nov 02, 2016 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anything to do before ARM adjusts? [2017 Update]
Replies: 10
Views: 984

Re: Anything to do before ARM adjusts?

Oh I just got confused. I thought you were considering paying it off in December.
by sls239
Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anything to do before ARM adjusts? [2017 Update]
Replies: 10
Views: 984

Re: Anything to do before ARM adjusts?

If you have an escrow account, you will want to review that. And if property taxes are due at the end of the year, you'll want to make sure you know who is paying them.
by sls239
Mon Oct 24, 2016 7:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Declining Service Expectations. Are there any excellent companies still out there?
Replies: 81
Views: 6593

Re: Declining Service Expectations. Are there any excellent companies still out there?

I think it is more noticeable now because there has been slow growth. Companies are still hesitant to add staff, and yet more people are interested in buying so there's more for the staff to do.
by sls239
Fri Oct 21, 2016 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 15 year mortgage or 401(k)?
Replies: 29
Views: 2323

Re: 15 year mortgage or 401(k)?

We went with a 7/1 mortgage that offered a 30 year amortization but at the rate of a 15 year mortgage.

Right now we are paying at the 30 year rate and putting more into the 401(k).

But if interest rates were to go up significantly, we could reverse that strategy.
by sls239
Tue Oct 04, 2016 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Min. length of record of income for mortgage?
Replies: 11
Views: 1010

Re: Min. length of record of income for mortgage?

The first question to ask is if you can qualify for the loan based just on your spouse's income. And you might be surprised at how large a loan you can qualify for on just one income.

This is especially true if you have no other debts.
by sls239
Tue Oct 04, 2016 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First time negotiating for a car. Have questions
Replies: 44
Views: 4477

Re: First time negotiating for a car. Have questions

In business-speak, you need a BATNA - best alternative to a negotiated agreement. If you are buying new, might as well start with something in the lower 1/3 of the distribution on the truecar graph. Just know the point at which you want to walk away because your BATNA is better. For the trade-in, se...
by sls239
Wed Sep 14, 2016 5:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Company clawing back retirement contributions
Replies: 59
Views: 7144

Re: Company clawing back retirement contributions

I'm guessing here but I suspect that there were differences in what was considered compensation for the purposes of matching, and that in practice, they did not adhere to what the plan documents defined as compensation. And it sounds like that would make it an operation failure. And part of that wou...
by sls239
Tue Sep 13, 2016 8:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: An "out of sample" test of two specific factor-based portfolios published pre-2008
Replies: 76
Views: 5859

Re: An "out of sample" test of two specific factor-based portfolios published pre-2008

So basically, only a few special people can do factor based investing correctly and they aren't sharing it with people in a way they could implement on their own.

Alright then.
by sls239
Mon Sep 12, 2016 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend me an odorless antimicrobial surface cleaner for work
Replies: 16
Views: 1148

Re: Recommend me an odorless antimicrobial surface cleaner for work

One thing you need to understand is that the surface needs to be clean before it can be sanitized. So sprays are not going to be effective on surfaces. There are wipes that can both clean and sanitize, but they can't do both in one swipe. But I personally favor plain soap and water on a damp washclo...
by sls239
Thu Sep 01, 2016 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Magazines for young readers....
Replies: 18
Views: 1559

Re: Magazines for young readers....

Ask or Cricket.
by sls239
Tue Aug 30, 2016 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Shopping - Early 2000s Mid-Sized Car Reliability under $5k?
Replies: 37
Views: 2836

Re: Car Shopping - Early 2000s Mid-Sized Car Reliability under $5k?

My spouse drives an '04 Accord, 4 cylinder with about 2 50K miles on it. There have been some small repairs, a window motor, an O2 sensor. But in my experience, the parts have not been expensive nor labor intensive. And there haven't been any mysterious recurring problems or hard to diagnose glitche...
by sls239
Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your system for dealing with coins?
Replies: 123
Views: 8464

Re: What is your system for dealing with coins?

The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority pretty much takes my entire year's worth of coins in the one or two trips I make each year.
by sls239
Wed Aug 17, 2016 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Double Income No Kids (but expect kids in future) - How much home can we afford?
Replies: 28
Views: 3050

Re: Double Income No Kids (but expect kids in future) - How much home can we afford?

Tooooooo soon to buy a house. Once you get your first kid then start looking. Until then you are just wasting your time and your money. Personally I think it's nice to be settled in before having kids. For example, finding the house when pregnant. Trying to find a house with an infant is not easy -...
by sls239
Wed Aug 17, 2016 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help. My boss is expecting me to read her mind.
Replies: 53
Views: 3943

Re: Help. My boss is expecting me to read her mind.

She has to make sure that what they are reimbursing qualifies for reimbursement. The government can get in huge trouble for reimbursing an expense that is not reimbursable. Moreso than most private organizations. Remember that everything your boss does is likely very highly scrutinized as well becau...
by sls239
Mon Aug 15, 2016 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Request for recommendations: English Mystery TV series
Replies: 82
Views: 5594

Re: Request for recommendations: English Mystery TV series

Top of the Lake is good, but it's more like The Killing than Midsomer Murders.
by sls239
Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Double Income No Kids (but expect kids in future) - How much home can we afford?
Replies: 28
Views: 3050

Re: Double Income No Kids (but expect kids in future) - How much home can we afford?

I'm curious as to why you are interested in buying when you are expecting major changes in other areas of your life.

Might it not be better to wait until you are dealing with reality rather than expectations?

Buying too soon or buying wrong can be just as expensive as buying too much house.
by sls239
Mon Aug 15, 2016 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: buying used car smarter than buying new?
Replies: 89
Views: 5548

Re: buying used car smarter than buying new?

Don't believe the "rough calculations." I bought my car at a year and a half old, 14K miles for 28% less than the original purchaser. I know because the paperwork was still in the glovebox. Just understand that listed prices for used cars are jacked way up . They do that for two reasons 1)...
by sls239
Mon Aug 15, 2016 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Barrier to credit card warranty protection claim
Replies: 22
Views: 1804

Re: Barrier to credit card warranty protection claim

The account number should be on your credit report.

If the account number doesn't suffice, I'd file a complaint with the CFPB.
by sls239
Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Better to sell house ~ every 15 years?
Replies: 40
Views: 5119

Re: Better to sell house ~ every 15 years?

Unless you are lucky and find yourself in a fairly hot market, you'd probably have trouble selling a house with a 15 year old roof, HVAC, paint and carpet.
by sls239
Sat Aug 13, 2016 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any lawyers out there. Bike hits car, minor and parents have no insurance
Replies: 91
Views: 7400

Re: Any lawyers out there. Bike hits car, minor and parents have no insurance

Can I tell you something about the clothing? Some poor kids need to be dressed nice because otherwise they risk being seen as a um, troublemaker. Please don't judge their finances on their clothing. (For adults, this also applies to cars). If you've never felt the need to dress a certain way to avoi...
by sls239
Sat Aug 13, 2016 2:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Going short to negate going long [socially responsible investing]
Replies: 59
Views: 3456

Re: Going short to negate going long

Thanks everyone for your responses, and especially Valuethinker for your in-depth analysis! You've definitely addressed my core question -- sounds like shorting is a terrible idea. And apologies for skirting the forum guidelines in my specifics -- I recognize the need to keep this forum neutral so ...
by sls239
Sat Aug 13, 2016 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $67 Auto Lease??
Replies: 12
Views: 1734

Re: $67 Auto Lease??

How much would you be out if the car were totaled in an accident?

You don't want to be stuck paying the new car price and getting used car value from the insurance company.
by sls239
Thu Aug 04, 2016 3:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: closet organizing system
Replies: 33
Views: 3463

Re: closet organizing system

Elfa is awesome. And it goes on sale regularly. I've done two laundry rooms (different houses) a reach in closet, and a garage. It was specifically complimented by buyers and an appraiser.

And if your needs change, the closet can change.
by sls239
Thu Jul 21, 2016 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HOA Swimming Pool Trespassing Issue
Replies: 100
Views: 7746

Re: HOA Swimming Pool Trespassing Issue

Are there any police officers that live in the community?
by sls239
Tue Jul 19, 2016 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement for Women(?)
Replies: 34
Views: 3676

Re: Retirement for Women(?)

The reason they assigned gender to the message is because absent assignment, the message would be seen as geared towards men because men are the default, especially when it comes to finance.
by sls239
Sat Jul 16, 2016 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?
Replies: 12
Views: 1387

Re: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?

Lots of places offer 0% financing. Then tack on a fixed dollar "financing fee" or other type of fees.

If you can negotiate those down to zero as well, more power to you.
by sls239
Sat Jul 16, 2016 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hatchback to match Camry on price/comfort/reliability?
Replies: 42
Views: 3409

Re: Hatchback to match Camry on price/comfort/reliability?

No, there's really not unfortunately.

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