Search found 4461 matches

by stan1
Fri Jan 20, 2017 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on buying a house from a colleague
Replies: 34
Views: 2463

Re: Thoughts on buying a house from a colleague

Well, you are kinda stuck. At first glance your wife wants a $465K house and you want a $350K house. A realtor won't help you with that situation but since you aren't familiar with what's on the market it is going to be hard for you to know whether the seller's $465K ask is reasonable. Since you are...
by stan1
Sun Jan 15, 2017 9:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Flagship Reps
Replies: 62
Views: 5012

Re: Flafship Reps

Vanguard's website has been optimized over 20+ years now and just about everything that needs to be done is self-explanatory and requests through their website are mostly reliable and accurate. That's good and for me has mostly eliminated the need to interact with a person at Vanguard. I do agree it...
by stan1
Fri Jan 06, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do we need life insurance?
Replies: 18
Views: 1139

Re: Do we need life insurance?

If you were both to pass away before the child is an adult would you want to give all money to them or leave some to a trusted caregiver? Multiple ways to handle this but one way would be to leave the inheritance to the child and the insurance payout to the caregiver. You may also be able to lower c...
by stan1
Thu Jan 05, 2017 8:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How many $ to self fund long term care?
Replies: 73
Views: 4953

Re: How many $ to self fund long term care?

All you can do is guess but could be $500K-$2M if you are in a high cost of living area and need care for two people for a long time. There are just too many variables, such as whether a healthier spouse will be able to perform as the primary care giver for the sicker spouse. Rather than trying to f...
by stan1
Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime shipping to post office for pickup?
Replies: 18
Views: 1185

Re: Amazon Prime shipping to post office for pickup?

I agree that in OPs situation USPS would have put the package out for delivery and that's why they didn't leave a note to come get it. In my area Amazon is now using their own Amazon-branded delivery trucks for many items although a few do still show up via USPS. None of their packages come by UPS a...
by stan1
Thu Jan 05, 2017 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to approach getting new wills, trusts, with a blended family
Replies: 51
Views: 2472

Re: How to approach getting new wills, trusts, with a blended family

This is an exercise in building Trust (firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability, or strength of someone). You and your spouse have to trust each other to follow through after one of you passes away. What happens if you pass away first and then spouse remarries? What happens if your spouse pass...
by stan1
Mon Jan 02, 2017 9:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PENFED 5 year CD rate 2.25%
Replies: 6
Views: 1297

Re: PENFED 5 year CD rate 2.25%

Navy Federal is offering a 17 month 2% CD right now (up to $50K). I think I'd forgo the extra 0.25% and go with the shorter term if you are eligible for Navy Federal membership (a lot more people are these days). I didn't look at the penalties for breaking since it is 17 months.
by stan1
Mon Jan 02, 2017 1:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 48
Views: 5632

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

When you register for this service, your key will become your primary method of identifying yourself (along with your user name and password) when you log on to vanguard.com from a computer. It will replace security codes, a service that sends you a one-time code to enter when you log on. You'll ne...
by stan1
Sun Jan 01, 2017 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thinking of upgrading primary residence, do you recommend?
Replies: 29
Views: 2080

Re: Thinking of upgrading primary residence, do you recommend?

Might the girls be spending more time doing activities as they head into junior high and high school so you might not even be home to "enjoy" the larger house?
by stan1
Sun Jan 01, 2017 4:07 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How to gain exposure to Alternatives?
Replies: 15
Views: 1025

Re: How to gain exposure to Alternatives?

Congrats on keeping your cost of living low so you can save while also living in NYC. What matters most is saving and investing a lot more than you are spending, and second investing with an appropriate amount of risk for your life expectancy. Don't worry about being off a few percentage points in a...
by stan1
Sun Jan 01, 2017 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it safe to use debit cards? Anybody here have one compromised?
Replies: 67
Views: 4504

Re: Is it safe to use debit cards? Anybody here have one compromised?

A friend of mine did file a police report after his credit card was skimmed a few months ago. He lives in a suburb with about 100K people not a large city. It turns out his report was assigned to a detective who decided to follow up. Once the credit card issuer realized the police were going to acti...
by stan1
Sat Dec 31, 2016 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Military Retirement; Time value of drawing a pension at 20 years
Replies: 23
Views: 2115

Re: Military Retirement; Time value of drawing a pension at 20 years

I think professional and family considerations should be the first factors because there are big differences between serving in the military and working for government as a civilian or in the private sector. Defense contractor jobs can be volatile if you work in an environment where contracts are co...
by stan1
Mon Dec 19, 2016 10:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer Requiring Travel to "No Travel" Country
Replies: 48
Views: 6748

Re: Employer Requiring Travel to "No Travel" Country

I've been to several places on the warning list for work (including Saudi Arabia, Cameroon, Ukraine, Turkey) plus a few more that aren't on the list but probably could be. The trips have been memorable highlights of my career that I've learned a lot from. I would not hesitate to go back to parts of ...
by stan1
Thu Dec 15, 2016 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gift bag recommendation $5 to $15
Replies: 18
Views: 1380

Re: Gift bag recommendation $5 to $15

This year I went to the grocery store and bought an assortment of pre-packaged dried fruits (apricots, plantains) and "fancy" snack items such as wasabi peas.
by stan1
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do You Consider Dividends As Income?
Replies: 65
Views: 4170

Re: Do You Consider Dividends As Income?

Since dividends are reinvested (tax deferred) or swept into a money market account (taxable) proceeds stay in my investing accounts and I count them as investing returns for tracking purposes. Of course they get reported to the IRS appropriately. Dividends are about 10% of taxable annual income so n...
by stan1
Sun Dec 04, 2016 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Blue Cross Standard versus Basic
Replies: 40
Views: 2626

Re: Federal Blue Cross Standard versus Basic

Agreed. But in our case it will work. We're out of pocket at least a grand on contact lenses alone... Wow. How many people wearing contacts? Unless you've already exhausted other medical options and have no other choice look into getting your contacts from a lower priced source or tell your optomet...
by stan1
Sat Dec 03, 2016 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Blue Cross Standard versus Basic
Replies: 40
Views: 2626

Re: Federal Blue Cross Standard versus Basic

I think Basic is best for many people who live in locations where BCBS has a dominant presence and who don't need high priced medication. I found two main differences: 1) Out of network providers. When I had emergency surgery a few years ago a random physician (assisting anesthesiologist) who I neve...
by stan1
Sat Dec 03, 2016 12:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Not happy with my realtor
Replies: 48
Views: 4483

Re: Not happy with my realtor

Did you ask him if he would contact residents in your desired neighborhood? What did he say? It is not normal and recipients who might be potential future clients as a seller could find it annoying (as I do). I've generally seen it done by very inexperienced agents, low volume agents, or agents who ...
by stan1
Fri Dec 02, 2016 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?
Replies: 38
Views: 1968

Re: CBP (INS) Global Entry program worth it?

It does somewhat depend. If you are flying through major hubs like ORD, LAX, EWR, IAD, etc. that have many flights arriving at the same time then absolutely yes. I usually fly into a smaller airport that has only one international flight arriving at a time. This airport also has automated self servi...
by stan1
Fri Dec 02, 2016 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: European Riverboat Tours
Replies: 22
Views: 2726

Re: European Riverboat Tours

Some river cruises turn into bus tours because of water levels in the river. Water too high: boats can't get under bridges. Water too low: boats run aground. It is a risk you have to be prepared for with European river cruises. Some rivers (such as the Rhine out of Basel) are more susceptible than o...
by stan1
Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to discuss salary offer as a manager?
Replies: 29
Views: 2696

Re: How to discuss salary offer as a manager?

Also be sure to check with the supervisors of this prospect. If they can't recommend them for a promotion and/or internal transfer, they will hate you for the rest of your career if not life. This can backfire also. "Oh sure he's a great guy -- when do you want him to start? He's available tom...
by stan1
Tue Nov 29, 2016 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to discuss salary offer as a manager?
Replies: 29
Views: 2696

Re: How to discuss salary offer as a manager?

Lol at an internal candidate EXPECTING to go from $54,000 to $65,000 to $88,000 in just a few months. Do they get a merit increase in January as well? :). Right, this salary progression over a few months would be a no-go in many companies (big and small) unless the individual was clearly in a pay i...
by stan1
Fri Nov 11, 2016 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homeowners Insurance in a high risk fire area
Replies: 18
Views: 1227

Re: Homeowners Insurance in a high risk fire area

I'd suggest talking to your neighbors and other insurance brokers in your neighborhood. Market is changing very fast and companies who used to offer high risk policies are no longer doing so.
by stan1
Fri Nov 11, 2016 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Equivalent "Do Not Call" List for Wireless?
Replies: 18
Views: 1683

Re: Equivalent "Do Not Call" List for Wireless?

Try NoMoRobo (but it is $1.99/month) The do not call list is obsolete. The spammers are usually operating from outside the US placing voice over IP calls and are masquerading the caller ID. U.S. laws are not enforceable. I do not answer my cell phone unless caller ID shows up or I am expecting a call.
by stan1
Fri Nov 11, 2016 12:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: FERS TSP contribution percentage: How to
Replies: 5
Views: 437

Re: FERS TSP contribution percentage: How to

The method for setting up TSP contributions varies by department/agency. I do it through my department's HR website not through the website used for payroll. We can choose whether to make the contribution as a percentage of pay or fixed dollar amount each pay period. You'll need to log into the webs...
by stan1
Fri Nov 11, 2016 9:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home shopping, Potential roof leaking despite new roof
Replies: 22
Views: 1359

Re: Home shopping, Potential roof leaking despite new roof

This is your decision not the realtors. 1) Is this a highly desirable house due to location, a special fit for your needs, or are there dozens of similar houses on the market that meet your needs? The more desirable the property or better fit for your needs the more I'd be willing to work with the s...
by stan1
Fri Nov 11, 2016 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Problem with Graduate School
Replies: 30
Views: 4332

Re: Problem with Graduate School

I don't want to go into all the details because it's not my story to tell. That being said there were some issues with an illness and because of that the department head and a couple of profs didn't feel that it was good fit with their school. And yes, there is evidence that grades were changed as ...
by stan1
Thu Nov 10, 2016 10:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Would a Computer Science certificate benefit my career?
Replies: 29
Views: 1941

Re: Would a Computer Science certificate benefit my career?

Since its free why not? But it would be more for fun. Someone making $160K/year needs relevant work experience not just a certificate (even if it is from Stanford). I don't think this will get you in the door at a company like Google unless they happen to also need your specialized mechanical engine...
by stan1
Thu Nov 10, 2016 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Problem with Graduate School
Replies: 30
Views: 4332

Re: Problem with Graduate School

This doesn't make sense. I'd smile and wish him good luck (since you are asking for a friend, right?)
by stan1
Fri Nov 04, 2016 6:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying an Audi A4
Replies: 73
Views: 5537

Re: Buying an Audi A4

It's been a few years since I bought one but pricing on extended warranties is negotiable with the dealer. Just make sure you are getting the official Audi backed extended warranty. We've never regretted buying a manufacturers extended warranty on a German car (and have regretted NOT buying one).
by stan1
Thu Nov 03, 2016 9:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dress shoes
Replies: 33
Views: 3618

Re: Dress shoes

I only buy shoes with synthetic soles. I have Eccos and an Allen-Edmonds but to be honest what I've been wearing most for the past few years are Dunhams by New Balance. They fit my needs just fine.
by stan1
Wed Nov 02, 2016 8:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff Mortgage or Save for College
Replies: 15
Views: 1392

Re: Payoff Mortgage or Save for College

Why not keep some funds in taxable investment accounts that could be used when you were more certain of either paying the mortgage or for your kid's college? This gives you flexibility and it sounds like you don't have a taxable investing account right now. I'd do some taxable investing and some pa...
by stan1
Mon Oct 31, 2016 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pre-approval for a mortgage
Replies: 4
Views: 605

Re: Pre-approval for a mortgage

If you are self-employed (non-W2 income) definitely expect a lot of questions, documentation, and explanations along the way. You will be exasperated and feel like you have been put through the wringer. Best thing to do is ask your lender to tell you exactly what they will need from you rather than ...
by stan1
Sun Oct 30, 2016 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing run-flat tires on BMW
Replies: 34
Views: 2877

Re: Replacing run-flat tires on BMW

The latest generation of Bridgestone run-flats are an improvement over the OEM Bridgestone tires I had in 2010 and the replacements I bought around 2013.
by stan1
Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At Fault in Auto Accident - Insurance Complications?
Replies: 16
Views: 1439

Re: At Fault in Auto Accident - Insurance Complications?

I was a juror on a civil auto accident case about 15 years ago. It gave me a lot more confidence that insurance companies are competent and will do their job because they don't want to pay settlements. The defendant had a very capable and quick attorney provided by her insurer. I'm guessing the plai...
by stan1
Tue Oct 25, 2016 8:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dream house sold yesterday :(
Replies: 41
Views: 6975

Re: Dream house sold yesterday :(

You say really unique. Is that unique as in special and appreciated, or unique as in highly customized to just a few people's tastes. Realtors being realtors they think about resale when they walk through a house. Some "really unique" properties are very hard to sell.
by stan1
Mon Oct 24, 2016 9:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At Fault in Auto Accident - Insurance Complications?
Replies: 16
Views: 1439

Re: At Fault in Auto Accident - Insurance Complications?

I realize its stressful but this is why you have insurance; your insurance company hires a lawyer to represent you if needed. Give your insurance company the facts but do not speculate. How do you know the individual in the vehicle you hit was in an earlier accident? If this individual told you so y...
by stan1
Fri Oct 14, 2016 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rear ended
Replies: 14
Views: 1278

Re: Rear ended

Same happened to me a few months ago (got hit by a guy driving a truck for a business). I filed with my insurance and let them deal with the other guy's insurer. My insurer automatically waived deductible. Only slight hassle was with rental car but my insurer and Enterprise worked it out between the...
by stan1
Fri Oct 14, 2016 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: twisted real estate / condo situation
Replies: 3
Views: 1038

Re: twisted real estate / condo situation

The residential management company is taking direction from the HOA board not acting unilaterally. Management company would not stop paying to the commercial property owner without the board's direction. Have you been to the board meetings? What is the board's attorney saying? Sounds like you need t...
by stan1
Fri Oct 14, 2016 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Handle Saving for (Large) Future Purchases?
Replies: 7
Views: 509

Re: How to Handle Saving for (Large) Future Purchases?

I'll actually chime in with what I do right now. I have three accounts currently that aren't retirement or emergency money. One is a holding account so I can start saving for next year's Roth. One is a revolving account where I save for insurance and other semi-annual expenses. One is a short term/...
by stan1
Fri Oct 14, 2016 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Handle Saving for (Large) Future Purchases?
Replies: 7
Views: 509

Re: How to Handle Saving for (Large) Future Purchases?

I have a tiered approach (and have done all of the below in various situations): 1) Checking account (NCUA insured) 2) Money market savings account and CDs (NCUA insured) 3) Tax exempt bond funds (possible capital gains tax) 4) Equity funds/ETFs in taxable account (possible capital gains tax) I'm at...
by stan1
Wed Oct 12, 2016 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen Remodel question
Replies: 44
Views: 3412

Re: Kitchen Remodel question

A microwave shelf will need an outlet but not a dedicated circuit. Easy to do if you are still designing cabinets and have the space. The high end answer would be a Sharp microwave drawer but that would be for me if I had the space not for a buyer. I would not do that if I was selling the house and ...
by stan1
Mon Oct 10, 2016 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair for Car Seat (Leather) Rip?
Replies: 12
Views: 1208

Re: Repair for Car Seat (Leather) Rip?

Search for "leather seat repair" + your city
by stan1
Sat Oct 08, 2016 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How To Retire Comfortably With Just $500,000
Replies: 44
Views: 9484

Re: How To Retire Comfortably With Just $500,000

Well the article is about investing in equities with a dividend growth strategy. Variations of that idea has been around for decades. Vanguard has plenty of happy Wellington, Wellesley, and Windsor investors investing in value funds (value funds invest in equities that are undervalued and likely to ...
by stan1
Fri Oct 07, 2016 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Negotiating additional days off
Replies: 10
Views: 1043

Re: Negotiating additional days off

I think leave without pay will be better for all parties than additional days off, but you have to watch to make sure benefits as a full time employee aren't impacted. A salary reduction is permanent; leave without pay is taken as he needs it. Extra days off opens up similar requests from other empl...
by stan1
Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Concurrently buy/sell house
Replies: 21
Views: 2024

Re: Concurrently buy/sell house

With the stats you gave I think it will be difficult to find a lender would approve you on a new purchase mortgage unless the previous home was sold. Just saw OP's income post and I tend to agree. I think OP will have a very hard time finding a lender who won't insist upon having the old house in e...
by stan1
Thu Oct 06, 2016 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Concurrently buy/sell house
Replies: 21
Views: 2024

Re: Concurrently buy/sell house

You have several things to consider. You need cash for down payment but you also need lender to approve the loan for the new house. Lenders are very cautious about these situations (although maybe less so than they were 3 to 5 years ago). Your lender for the new house may insist that you have the ol...
by stan1
Tue Oct 04, 2016 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SS as a Bond
Replies: 46
Views: 3828

Re: SS as a Bond

Seems like counting SS as a bond could be a thinly veiled rationalization for having a higher percentage of equities in the portfolio. Along the lines of "taking my age minus 10 means I should have 30% in bonds but because I'm counting SS as a bond I can build my portfolio with 15% in bonds and...
by stan1
Sun Oct 02, 2016 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling a House in a Foreign Country
Replies: 2
Views: 366

Re: Selling a House in a Foreign Country

I don't think internet advice will do in this situation and would look for an attorney in the Filipino-American community who knows how to do this. I'd guess it is fairly common.
by stan1
Sat Oct 01, 2016 8:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does your employer use SAT/ACT scores?
Replies: 51
Views: 2879

Re: Does your employer use SAT/ACT scores?

I don't remember. What then?

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