Search found 47 matches

by stargazer
Mon Jun 19, 2017 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Underwriting in NY for Medigap and Medicare Advantage Coverage
Replies: 3
Views: 144

Re: Underwriting in NY for Medigap and Medicare Advantage Coverage

dm200 wrote: "Not in NY State, but as far as I understand there is generally no underwriting for Medicare Advantage or Medicare Cost Plans, except for end stage renal disease." Did not quite understand your answer. Do you mean that there is no underwriting in NY for either Medigap plans or...
by stargazer
Mon Jun 19, 2017 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Underwriting in NY for Medigap and Medicare Advantage Coverage
Replies: 3
Views: 144

Underwriting in NY for Medigap and Medicare Advantage Coverage

I have read that there is no underwriting for Medigap and Medicare Advantage insurance in NY (where I live). Q1: Is this correct? Q2: Does this mean that if I wish to switch from Medicare Advantage to Traditional Medicare/Medigap, or vice versa, or from one Medicare Advantage insurer to a different ...
by stargazer
Thu Jun 01, 2017 7:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Choosing Renewable Energy From My Electricity Supplier
Replies: 14
Views: 786

Choosing Renewable Energy From My Electricity Supplier

For an additional monthly fee, my electricity supplier (NYSEG) offers the option of designating that 200 kwh of my monthly electricity use will be derived from wind power. From the NYSEG website: "We can assure you that the wind energy you purchase is delivered to the New York power grid for st...
by stargazer
Thu Mar 02, 2017 11:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question re Bequests: Equivalence of EIN and Tax ID Number
Replies: 2
Views: 281

Question re Bequests: Equivalence of EIN and Tax ID Number

As regards estate planning, I wish to leave bequests to various non-profits. I have asked each for suggested wording to incorporate into my will (its legally correct name, address, etc.). All but one have included a tax ID number as part of the suggested wording. The remaining organization has suppl...
by stargazer
Sat Feb 11, 2017 3:32 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Your USER NAME...what does it mean?
Replies: 342
Views: 23136

Re: Your USER NAME...what does it mean?

Love looking at the night sky.

stargazer

[OT comment removed by admin LadyGeek]
by stargazer
Thu Feb 02, 2017 8:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anybody try out Sodastream?
Replies: 32
Views: 3514

Re: Anybody try out Sodastream?

Don't drink much soda or seltzer, but would be willing to use Sodastream if it would increase my chances of meeting Scarlett Johansson (company spokesperson). :happy
by stargazer
Sun Dec 25, 2016 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple TV: Third Generation vs. Fourth Generation
Replies: 4
Views: 712

Apple TV: Third Generation vs. Fourth Generation

I currently have a third generation Apple TV. The fourth generation of Apple TV has been available since September 2015. What improvements in functionality will I see if I decide to upgrade?

stargazer
by stargazer
Thu Dec 15, 2016 11:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone's Take on Blue Dolphin Magazines?
Replies: 7
Views: 2327

Anyone's Take on Blue Dolphin Magazines?

I have received a special offer (supposedly not available to the general public) from Blue Dolphin Magazines (bluedolphin.com), allowing me to subscribe to any five magazines at an annual rate of $2.00 per magazine. Has anyone heard of Blue Dolphin Magazines? Is this firm legit?

stargazer
by stargazer
Sun Dec 04, 2016 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Determining Future NFL Games To Be Broadcast In My Area
Replies: 3
Views: 438

Determining Future NFL Games To Be Broadcast In My Area

Thank you both. This site (http://506sports.com/nfl) is exactly what I have been looking for. The Bogleheads forum is a repository for knowledge of many different types, financial and otherwise.

stargazer
by stargazer
Sun Dec 04, 2016 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Determining Future NFL Games To Be Broadcast In My Area
Replies: 3
Views: 438

Determining Future NFL Games To Be Broadcast In My Area

Every week I await the Friday newspaper, which lists the NFL games that will be broadcast in my area that weekend. I am referring only to CBS and FOX. I have a basic cable package, I do not have ESPN, and the Sunday night game (on NBC) is a given. I also know that the local team will always show up ...
by stargazer
Thu Dec 01, 2016 12:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backing Up iPhone Memos: iCloud Backup or Local Backup to Laptop
Replies: 7
Views: 1024

Backing Up iPhone Memos: iCloud Backup or Local Backup to Laptop

I have a great many memos stored on my (password-protected) iPhone, in the Notes app. Many of these are mundane (directions, restaurants to try, etc.). However, some memos have critical information (credit card account numbers, passwords for financial websites, etc.). I wish to back up all of these ...
by stargazer
Sun Nov 20, 2016 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Next-Generation Streaming Service for TV/Internet
Replies: 11
Views: 1698

Next-Generation Streaming Service for TV/Internet

My wife and I live in an outer-ring, semi-rural community with a small population and a low population density, and some distance from any commercial TV broadcast towers. Citing low profit margins, most cable TV/Internet providers have decided against investing either in copper-wire or fiber-optic s...
by stargazer
Sat Oct 22, 2016 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Determining My Retirement Date as Regards RMDs (Currently on Disability/Unpaid Leave)
Replies: 1
Views: 379

Determining My Retirement Date as Regards RMDs (Currently on Disability/Unpaid Leave)

My situation: I am 72 and am currently on medical disability (unpaid) leave. My last salary payment occurred in August 2016. I also received a payment from my employer's disability insurance carrier in August, but have received no employment-based income since then. My disability is not job-related....
by stargazer
Mon Sep 19, 2016 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Charitable Organizations That Help The Poor
Replies: 14
Views: 968

Charitable Organizations That Help The Poor

I make small annual charitable contributions to a variety of different organizations, including those that help overseas refugees, environmental groups, church agencies, animal welfare organizations, and the like. I am interested in contributing to an organization that helps the poor in this country...
by stargazer
Thu Aug 18, 2016 1:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Splitting a Single RMD Between Two Calendar Years
Replies: 2
Views: 415

Splitting a Single RMD Between Two Calendar Years

I understand that once I stop working, I must take my first RMD no later than April following the year that I turn 70 1/2 , and that I must take my second RMD no later than December of that same year. I also understand that I can take my entire first RMD in December of the year that I turn 70 1/2 , ...
by stargazer
Thu Jul 21, 2016 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Minimum Number of Checks in a Calendar Year to Declare Retirement
Replies: 5
Views: 1303

Minimum Number of Checks in a Calendar Year to Declare Retirement

I turned 71 earlier this year. I work in an academic environment. My employment contract started in September 2015 and extends through August 2016. My next contract will run from September 2016 through August 2017. Retirees at my institution usually declare their intentions in March, and continue wo...
by stargazer
Wed Jul 06, 2016 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unresponsiveness of Social Security Website
Replies: 5
Views: 380

Re: Unresponsiveness of Social Security Website

This has nothing to do with my password, which is current. Both sites are still down.

stargazer
by stargazer
Wed Jul 06, 2016 2:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unresponsiveness of Social Security Website
Replies: 5
Views: 380

Unresponsiveness of Social Security Website

Have been trying to log into both www.ssa.gov and www.socialsecurity.gov, but both sites have been down all day. Is there an alternative URL that the Social Security Administration uses that would allow me to view my earnings record?

stargazer
by stargazer
Fri Jun 10, 2016 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electrical Bone-Growth Stimulator: Saving Money
Replies: 5
Views: 950

Electrical Bone-Growth Stimulator: Saving Money

Several months after spine surgery, my x-rays have shown that the bone fusion process is progressing much more slowly than normal. My surgeon has suggested the use of an electrical bone-growth stimulator to hasten bone fusion. My health insurer will not cover the cost, which I will bear entirely, an...
by stargazer
Sat May 07, 2016 8:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whimsical Posting: Pneumatic Tubes
Replies: 8
Views: 1030

Whimsical Posting: Pneumatic Tubes

When I was a kid growing up in Philadelphia, I was fascinated when my mother took me along when she shopped for apparel in the Strawbridge and Clothier department store (flagship store, 8th and Market Streets). The source of my fascination was the use of pneumatic tubes. The salesperson with whom sh...
by stargazer
Sat Nov 14, 2015 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question re Digital Concert Hall of Berlin Philharmonic
Replies: 2
Views: 485

Question re Digital Concert Hall of Berlin Philharmonic

I love classical music. For many years I had a subscription to my local symphony orchestra. For various reasons, I cannot attended live performances any longer. Watching the instrumentalists perform while listening brings me much more pleasure than simply listening to a CD on my home sound system. I...
by stargazer
Sun Aug 30, 2015 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Watching NFL Games Via Webstream
Replies: 16
Views: 2778

Watching NFL Games Via Webstream

I have a basic cable-TV package: channels 2-21 (includes ABC, CBS, NBC, FOX; does not include ESPN; does not include the NFL Network). I have a fast home Internet connection with wifi, and AT&T wireless for cell phone service. I do not wish to upgrade my cable-TV package (I watch little TV other...
by stargazer
Sat Aug 22, 2015 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting New York City this weekend. What pizza should I try?
Replies: 55
Views: 5905

Re: Visiting New York City this weekend. What pizza should I try?

uncaD wrote: "Ray's. Original Ray's. Famous Ray's. Famous Original Ray's. They're all good..." There were trademark battles in the 1980s-90's that led to the proliferation of the various Ray's names on pizza locations. There is even a place in Brooklyn whose name is "Not Ray's Pizza.&...
by stargazer
Wed Aug 12, 2015 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Meaning of Equifax Credit Score
Replies: 4
Views: 832

Meaning of Equifax Credit Score

Via my MasterCard account, I have been able to access my credit score. The bank website (Citibank) states that this is an Equifax FICO score. My score has always been in the range of 850-860 (some fluctuation month-to-month). My understanding is that Equifax credit scores have 850 as their upper lim...
by stargazer
Tue Jul 07, 2015 5:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Information re Unsafe Areas While Traveling
Replies: 11
Views: 1543

Information re Unsafe Areas While Traveling

Tour books available from many sources (Frommer, AAA, etc.) lay out in great detail which sites to see when traveling domestically and abroad (museums, shopping districts, natural vistas, etc.). It is well known that specific neighborhoods of some American cities (and some entire towns) are unsafe. ...
by stargazer
Mon Feb 02, 2015 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Social Security Check After Turning 70
Replies: 9
Views: 3260

Re: First Social Security Check After Turning 70

After posting the message that started this thread, I received a letter from Social Security urging me to apply for retirement benefits sooner rather than later. I did so, and today received an award letter informing me of the monthly benefit I would receive upon turning 70 in June 2015 (initial pay...
by stargazer
Sun Jan 04, 2015 2:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Social Security Check After Turning 70
Replies: 9
Views: 3260

First Social Security Check After Turning 70

I will turn 70 on June 21, 2015. Three months prior to that date, I will apply for my maximum Social Security benefit, to begin at 70. My benefit will be based upon my own work record. Will I receive my first check in July? Or in August? (i.e., must I wait one complete calendar month AFTER turning 7...
by stargazer
Tue Dec 23, 2014 3:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for Pellet Stove, 40,000 BTU Output
Replies: 4
Views: 1174

Recommendations for Pellet Stove, 40,000 BTU Output

Am looking to replace a Harmon P38 pellet stove; the distribution blower and/or control board are shot. Also, this model lacks an igniter, meaning that I have to ignite the pellets manually by use of a fire-starting gel, which is a pain. Am looking for a stove with an igniter, large hopper, good mai...
by stargazer
Wed Nov 05, 2014 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Required Start Date For Required Minimum Distributions
Replies: 4
Views: 898

Required Start Date For Required Minimum Distributions

My situation. I am employed by an academic institution. My academic-year contract renews every year in September and concludes the following August, at which time it renews again (I am tenured). I will turn 70 in May 2015, and 70.5 in November 2015. My employer's 403(b) plan and IRS regs permit me t...
by stargazer
Thu Sep 11, 2014 8:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2015 Contribution Limits For 403(b)/401(k) Accounts
Replies: 2
Views: 871

2015 Contribution Limits For 403(b)/401(k) Accounts

The IRS typically does not release the 403(b)/401(k) contribution limits for the next calendar year until mid-October. I am asking whether anyone on this forum is familiar enough with the formula that the IRS uses (CPI and whatnot) to calculate what those numbers might be for 2015. I am interested i...
by stargazer
Fri Sep 05, 2014 11:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Proper Way To Wear Suspenders
Replies: 29
Views: 3964

Proper Way To Wear Suspenders

Not sure what the proper forum is for this topic. I have always worn a leather belt as part of business attire. I wish to try suspenders. Should I dispense with the belt entirely and have the weight of the trousers carried entirely by the alligator clips of the suspenders? (The concern is that the a...
by stargazer
Tue Jun 24, 2014 10:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Value of VIN Etch Coding for New Car
Replies: 8
Views: 1005

Value of VIN Etch Coding for New Car

Am purchasing a new car (2014 Prius 2). The litany of add-ons presented by the sales manager included VIN Etch Coding of the four windows/two windshields. Cost: $99.00. Is this worth doing? Will VIN Etch Coding make the car less inviting to thieves? If the car is stolen, will VIN Etch Coding make re...
by stargazer
Sun Mar 23, 2014 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Eligibility for Social Security Spousal Benefits: Timeline
Replies: 1
Views: 456

Eligibility for Social Security Spousal Benefits: Timeline

I will soon turn 70 and intend to start collecting Social Security benefits at that time. I will marry for the first time soon thereafter (long story). I had always understood that, after one year of marriage, my wife would be entitled to claim spousal benefits based on my work record. However, a st...
by stargazer
Mon Mar 03, 2014 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Frequently Should A CO Detector Be Replaced?
Replies: 27
Views: 2276

How Frequently Should A CO Detector Be Replaced?

I have read various advice regarding how often a home, plug-in, carbon monoxide (CO) detector should be replaced, ranging from every five years to every seven years. Does anyone posting on this forum have a technical background to clarify this matter? As a follow-up, the CO detectors that I have see...
by stargazer
Wed Jul 17, 2013 9:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Five-Year Rule on Roth Conversions
Replies: 6
Views: 1163

Re: Five-Year Rule on Roth Conversions

I find the syntax of the Fairmark.com statement confusing. The last sentence states: If withdrawn before the first day of the fifth year after the year you first established a Roth IRA, taxable as ordinary income; also subject to the 10% early withdrawal penalty if you're under age 59Ā½ unless an exc...
by stargazer
Wed Jul 17, 2013 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Five-Year Rule on Roth Conversions
Replies: 6
Views: 1163

Five-Year Rule on Roth Conversions

I am 68, my wife is 60. Each of us is still working. Each of us has a single Roth IRA dating to 2004; the only funds in these accounts came from contributions. Each of us is contemplating rolling over/converting assets from a 403(b) or Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA (Roth conversions). Can someone pl...
by stargazer
Wed Dec 05, 2012 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Equity Loan to Fund Roth IRAs
Replies: 3
Views: 1277

Home Equity Loan to Fund Roth IRAs

Here is our situation. My wife and I are both college profs. I am in my late 60's, she is in her early 60's. Our entire retirement accumulation of $2.2 million is invested with TIAA-CREF. I plan on working full-time for two more years, she plans on working for five more years. We have always been ab...
by stargazer
Mon Nov 12, 2012 12:40 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Capital Gains Rate for Those in Lowest Two Tax Brackets
Replies: 3
Views: 561

Capital Gains Rate for Those in Lowest Two Tax Brackets

My understanding is that the current federal capital gains tax rate for those in the 10% and 15% tax brackets is 5%. Is this correct? How will this change in January 2013 with the expiration of the tax cuts resulting from the Economic Growth and Tax Relief Reconciliation Act of 2001 and the Jobs and...
by stargazer
Sun Aug 26, 2012 10:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Medicare makes 65 de facto retirement age & early retirement
Replies: 126
Views: 10210

Re: Medicare makes 65 de facto retirement age & early retire

Jack at 1:11 PM, August 24, 2012: "There is evidence that preventive care actually reduces costs so your "this is a fact" is not the slam dunk you think it is." From "Does Preventive Care Save Money? Health Economics and the Presidential Candidates" in The New England J...
by stargazer
Thu Jun 14, 2012 4:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Spousal Benefits: Length-of-Marriage Requirement?
Replies: 4
Views: 1031

SS Spousal Benefits: Length-of-Marriage Requirement?

Is there a length-of-marriage requirement for claiming Social Security spousal benefits? I am not referring to a divorced couple, but rather to a couple that is currently married.
by stargazer
Mon Jun 11, 2012 9:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Now in Wiki: TIAA-CREF
Replies: 6
Views: 861

Re: Now in Wiki: TIAA-CREF

The section that reads "Transfer Payout Annuities: For TIAA traditional holdings." should read "Transfer Payout Annuities: For TIAA traditional holdings within a Retirement Annuity or Group Retirement Annuity." Furthermore, the explanation that follows ("This withdrawal opti...
by stargazer
Sat Jun 09, 2012 9:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Re TIAA-CREF: Why Assume Investment Risk If There Is No Need
Replies: 8
Views: 1141

TIAA-CREF: Why Assume Investment Risk If There Is No Need

Clarification: The ~$700k outside of retirement accounts are entirely invested in individual stocks and equity mutual funds.
by stargazer
Sat Jun 09, 2012 8:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Re TIAA-CREF: Why Assume Investment Risk If There Is No Need
Replies: 8
Views: 1141

Re TIAA-CREF: Why Assume Investment Risk If There Is No Need

Here is my situation. My wife and I are both college profs. I am in my late 60's, she is in her early 60's. Our entire retirement accumulation of $2.1 million is invested with TIAA-CREF. (We also have ~$700K in individual stocks and mutual funds outside of retirement accounts). My current AA is 40% ...
by stargazer
Thu Oct 20, 2011 5:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Contribution Limits for 403(b)/401(k) Accounts for 2012
Replies: 12
Views: 5066

Contribution Limits for 403(b)/401(k) Accounts for 2012

The IRS has published the 2012 contribution limits for 403(b)/401(k) accounts. The general limit will be $17,000 (an increase of $500 from 2011). The catch-up contribution limit (for those over 50) will be $5,500 (unchanged from 2011). The relevant announcement can be viewed at http://www.irs.gov/ne...
by stargazer
Tue Oct 11, 2011 9:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Contribution Limits for 403(b)/401(k) Accounts for 2012
Replies: 12
Views: 5066

Contribution Limits for 403(b)/401(k) Accounts for 2012

Has the IRS published the 403(b)/401(k) contribution limits for 2012? I am interested in the general limit as well as the catch-up amount available for those over 55. Likewise, has the IRS published the 2012 contribution limits for IRAs (both classic and Roth)? If the answer is yes to either questio...
by stargazer
Fri Jul 22, 2011 8:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who has retired early? What age and what amount did you have
Replies: 108
Views: 24117

Use of Term "Obamacare" in Postings

Several posters have referred to "Obamacare." I thought that moderators had previously declared that term to be political, and thus off limits.
by stargazer
Thu Jan 27, 2011 10:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Part B Late Enrollment Penalty
Replies: 3
Views: 1609

Medicare Part B Late Enrollment Penalty

I am nearly 66 and am still employed. I am covered by group health insurance provided through my (opposite-sex) domestic partner's employer. Thus, I have declined to sign up for Medicare Part B for now. I intend to sign up for Medicare Part B at the age of 70 during a Special Enrollment Period at th...

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