Search found 756 matches

by finite_difference
Thu Jan 18, 2018 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Short Commute or Nicer House?
Replies: 68
Views: 2425

Re: Short Commute or Nicer House?

Short commute. Do some searching on this in the human psychology field. Commutes are one of the only statistically significant factors in long-term happiness, of course in the negative direction. People think that the bigger/nicer house will be worth the commute and often make that choice but you m...
by finite_difference
Sat Jan 13, 2018 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: wireless dead again - router suggestions?
Replies: 35
Views: 1679

Re: wireless dead again - router suggestions?

Linksys WRT54GL w/ DD-WRT or Tomato firmware. Run Ethernet cable if you need to extend your reach. The wireless bridge mode also works quite well. Any recommendations for a Cisco wireless router that can be gotten relatively inexpensively? That would be the next step up in my opinion. Not sure if th...
by finite_difference
Sat Jan 06, 2018 1:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: So ambitious w/ money but so risk-averse
Replies: 31
Views: 3056

Re: So ambitious w/ money but so risk-averse

Thanks all for the reply. And also for editing the misspell! I'm of course biased. I disagree with the lack of ambition. I could write multiple paragraphs to argue but that'd be pretty unproductive to this discussion. To be brutally honest, I probably had too much of an influence during my younger ...
by finite_difference
Fri Jan 05, 2018 1:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How Many Stocks Are Really Needed in Index Funds?
Replies: 52
Views: 3032

Re: How Many Stocks Are Really Needed in Index Funds?

Long term, looks like Total Market beats S&P 500 by about 0.5%. While past performance is no guarantee of future results, the additional small cap exposure and diversification provided by the Total Market Fund may lead to some advantages.

~50 basis points is nothing to sneeze at :)
by finite_difference
Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual Stocks That Went Bust
Replies: 90
Views: 5264

Re: Individual Stocks That Went Bust

saltycaper wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:50 pm
quantAndHold wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:43 pm
CppCoder wrote:
Sat Dec 30, 2017 6:18 pm
  • Sun acquired by Oracle in 2010 for $5.6B
Heh. At the height of the tech boom, the market cap for SUNW was over $160 billion.
Still, didn’t quite go bust! Another tech company that has fallen hard recently is RIM/BlackBerry.
by finite_difference
Tue Jan 02, 2018 12:17 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Individual Stocks That Went Bust
Replies: 90
Views: 5264

Re: Individual Stocks That Went Bust

Two stocks I bought during the 2008 financial crisis went to 0 and I lost it all:

* Ambac
* HSBC (I think, need to check this one.)

See also: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of ... _Recession
by finite_difference
Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is your threshold for paying down debt?
Replies: 89
Views: 5742

Re: What is your threshold for paying down debt?

1. For debt, I wouldn’t want to pay more than about 2% real. 2. Taking out a low interest mortgage, and only paying the PITI, and investing the rest in your retirement portfolio (primarily equities, e.g. 70/30), is a way to hedge against rising inflation — correct? I haven’t seen anyone mention that...
by finite_difference
Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How Do You Like My New 'Doo
Replies: 138
Views: 26882

Re: How Do You Like My New 'Doo

12) What specialized tools does an investor use to calculate return? Triceratop mentioned a spreadsheet that he uses to calculate IRR. I use Quicken. I found Quicken has problems with Growth of $10,000 if you add cash to an account. Quicken does a great job calculating IRR. I am interested in how y...
by finite_difference
Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil filled space heaters
Replies: 39
Views: 3999

Re: Oil filled space heaters

What about infrared? Aren’t those perhaps safer, at least not so easy to tip over? Otherwise yeah I’d go oil filled. Definitely get a safe model no matter.
by finite_difference
Mon Jan 01, 2018 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?
Replies: 44
Views: 3279

Re: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?

Great that several companies are sharing some of their tax cut benefits with their employees even before the firms have actually experienced the actual tax benefit. So you don't look a gift horse in the mouth. One goal of the corporate tax cut was to increase the wages of the middle class. I hope c...
by finite_difference
Sun Dec 31, 2017 12:32 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Really risk adverse, advise please ...
Replies: 14
Views: 1818

Re: Really risk adverse, advise please ...

I have been incredibly risk adverse, although somehow there is risk in my portfolio. -1.2M in various 5 year CD's at approx 3% interest. -401k's with approx 675K with basic boggle head S&P and international index funds (no bond funds, figure i hold enough cash) -230K in stock from my company due to...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 30, 2017 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I Want to Buy a Horrible, Expensive Car
Replies: 155
Views: 9214

Re: I Want to Buy a Horrible, Expensive Car

Go for it. Much cheaper than having kids :)

I like the idea of buying gently used, or leasing it IF you can get a really good deal on the lease.
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9264

Re: Plow Guy Raised Rates

Sorry but $5 isn't even worth the effort to even write a post about it. If it bother you that much offset it by calling the cable and negotiating a better rate, etc. Yes but whether it’s $5 or $50 or $500, you shouldn’t change the price you’re charging after the fact. At least not without very good...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9264

Re: Plow Guy Raised Rates

A somewhat random question, but I live in Maine and have someone plow my driveway every snowstorm. We have a new guy this year as the previous company sold all of their customer base to this guy. In a letter from the previous company regarding the transfer of the plow company, he indicated that the...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?
Replies: 43
Views: 3142

Re: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?

Realized today while going to pay my property tax early that the 6 way power seat has always been comfy, but now after 23 years its perfectly molded to my buttockal area. Maybe I can find a car where I can just bolt on my existing seat... What’s your budget? If you want to shop around for a used ca...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 30, 2017 9:11 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is it me or does everything seem expensive?
Replies: 47
Views: 5224

Re: Is it me or does everything seem expensive?

Household help definitely seems expensive. I can't pick up day laborers from Home Depot for less than $25/hour. People who can clean the house want the same. Found someone to help me put together ikea bookshelves for $20/hour. So much for $10/hr minimum wage. Why would someone take minimum wage for...
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9264

Re: Plow Guy Raised Rates

livesoft wrote:
Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:13 am
How much do you tip the Plow Guy every year? At least a bottle of Jack Daniels, right?
Make that Allen’s Coffee Brandy — you want him to be at least half awake when he’s doing the driveway :)
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9264

Re: Plow Guy Raised Rates

It's not the increased rate that's the problem. It's the lack of notification and the fact that he doesn't see an issue with raising rates and hoping I don't notice. To be honest, if he had come to me and asked to increase the rate, I would have agreed as the rate has been at $45 since 2013. Obviou...
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?
Replies: 43
Views: 3142

Re: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?

In another thread, people talked about figuring your firm Out The Door (OTD) price but the definition was fuzzy. Does that mean a dealer 10 day plate and you go to the DMV and transfer your plates? Or does the dealer do the govt paperwork & bolt your plates on before you drive away Yes it includes ...
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?
Replies: 43
Views: 3142

Re: Buying a car advice - what's new since 1994?

the auto-braking when someone walks in front of your car enables carjacking, so I want to override it instantly or just deactivate it, if so equipped. You mean there are carjackers who step in front of a moving vehicle, with the hope that: a) it has auto-braking b) it can detect them and stop the c...
by finite_difference
Thu Dec 28, 2017 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]
Replies: 126
Views: 8249

Re: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]

Here is how I am interpreting Section 199A. In 2018, I will start a blog and in 2019 publish a related book. There will be expenses related to the blog and the book, and possibly some income, which I will treat as a sole proprietor. Here are two plausible scenarios: Scenario #1 (2018) $6,000 - expe...
by finite_difference
Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]
Replies: 126
Views: 8249

Re: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]

Here is how I am interpreting Section 199A. In 2018, I will start a blog and in 2019 publish a related book. There will be expenses related to the blog and the book, and possibly some income, which I will treat as a sole proprietor. Here are two plausible scenarios: Scenario #1 (2018) $6,000 - expe...
by finite_difference
Mon Dec 25, 2017 1:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?
Replies: 62
Views: 12845

Re: Is TIAA-CREF one of the "good guys"?

Here's TIAA's response to the Times sensationalism. https://www.tiaa-cref.org/public/pdf/C26304_2015_Farmland_Report.pdf Let me know if the Times writer has responded. Like any organization, TIAA has its benefits and limitations. That includes Vanguard, by the way. I've invested in the former organ...
by finite_difference
Mon Dec 25, 2017 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Forester - Harsh ride
Replies: 33
Views: 5823

Re: Subaru Forester - Harsh ride

I have researched this harsh ride issue extensively as my fiance has a 2014 Forester and I just got a 2018 Outback. I drove her car yesterday and couldn't believe how BAD the ride was, compared to my Outback. I has a 2009 Outback and it rode so much better, as well as my Outback but noisier. I had ...
by finite_difference
Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you donate less to Charity?
Replies: 107
Views: 6881

Re: Will you donate less to Charity?

No. I am working my way up to 1% of gross, and will continue, tax breaks or not. Should get there in a year or two. And if I can ever max retirement accounts, then I will want to increase it above that, try for 2%, 3%, etc. Mainly now I’m focused on giving to the best charities I can with the money ...
by finite_difference
Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric Energy Usage
Replies: 86
Views: 5363

Re: Electric Energy Usage

Those of you claiming that "heat pumps don't work in PA" are referring to woefully outdated information. They absolutely work, and at much colder climates than that. They have > 1 COP down to 10 or 20 degrees below zero. https://energy.gov/eere/buildings/articles/cold-climate-air-source-heat-pumps-...
by finite_difference
Sun Dec 24, 2017 8:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: REIT or No REIT
Replies: 85
Views: 7629

Re: REIT or No REIT

I only like to hold a REIT fund when it has a chance of increasing in value. The past year has not been one of those times, so I have not held a REIT fund in quite a while. I will predict that 2018 will also be such a year of no increase in value. I believe the recently passed tax bill is favorable...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]
Replies: 126
Views: 8249

Re: Question about pass through income in new tax law

finite_difference, Please feel free to hijack the thread. I wanted to break out the pass through issues from the other tax issues because I felt it was specific enough (and confusing enough) to deserve its own thread. I think I have a good grasp on the deduction as it relates to a sole prop. I'll a...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Ever tempted to shut it down once you have “enough”?
Replies: 37
Views: 4227

Re: Ever tempted to shut it down once you have “enough”?

Personally I think 10/90 is riskier than 25/75. I think you should have at least 25% in stocks. So if you are very conservative, stick with 25% stocks. Even if the market drops by 75% you are only down by like 20%. Personally I think I’d settle on 50/50 as the most conservative I’d want to go. But I...
by finite_difference
Sat Dec 23, 2017 12:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]
Replies: 126
Views: 8249

Re: Question about pass through income in new tax law

2. So that’s a savings of $2892, or 37%. Is the above calculation correct? If not, how should it be calculated? I am not sure about whether it’s still 15.3% self employment tax or if it’s 7.65%. SE Tax hasn't changed. You still owe the 15.3% as before. You are simply getting an extra deduction for ...
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Pass-Thru Entities Questions Thread]
Replies: 126
Views: 8249

Re: Question about pass through income in new tax law

I posted this question in the Omnibus thread but got zero replies. I think there are so many questions so that thread is just getting completely swamped. OP: Let me know if you don’t want me to hijack this thread and I’ll delete my post and repost a separate topic. I hoped the questions might be hel...
by finite_difference
Thu Dec 21, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please Post Tax Bill Questions Here [was Tax Bill Omnibus Thread]
Replies: 878
Views: 48591

Re: Tax Bill Omnibus Thread

So for those of us with "side hustle" 1099 income (eg solo consulting, separate from our W2 day job wages) who are excluded from pass through tax relief, does it make any sense to become a C-corp? And to expand on this further, is there a way to become a C-corp and convert our W2 day job wages? Or ...
by finite_difference
Fri Dec 08, 2017 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Call the top! - Bitcoin
Replies: 180
Views: 17075

Re: Call the top! - Bitcoin

there is a large backlog for bitcoin transaction confirmations at the moment (which have improvements from the community on the way), especially given the spike of activity in the last couple days. that said, just taking the above at face value: 20 hours for a bitcoin confirmation (at the lowest fe...
by finite_difference
Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thankful for the Debt we Took - Should we Try Again?
Replies: 95
Views: 9232

Re: Thankful for the Debt we Took - Should we Try Again?

Why not max your tax advantaged space without taking the loan?

I would not personally take out a HELOC to invest money in the stock market. That’s pretty risky. I’d rather change my AA to 100% and save more — that would be the most i would want to maximize risk.
by finite_difference
Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Basic DESKTOP?
Replies: 72
Views: 4982

Re: Best Basic DESKTOP?

I've been buying Dell Desktops for years. My last purchase didn't feel as good. I get the impression that Dell isn't what it used to be. Therefore, in preparation for my next Desktop purchase, can you recommend any good companies? I like the idea of getting an Apple because I won't have to worry so...
by finite_difference
Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Basic DESKTOP?
Replies: 72
Views: 4982

Re: Best Basic DESKTOP?

I think a Mac Mini for $499 is a pretty good basic desktop. I wish they had an SSD option though (a small SSD for cheap and a larger SSD for $$.) The thing I didn’t like about the cheaper traditional Dell desktops was that there was no SSD option. Lenovo let’s you do a lot more customization of the ...
by finite_difference
Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Got $1 million to retire? Here’s how long it will last, by U.S. state"
Replies: 50
Views: 10760

Re: "Got $1 million to retire? Here’s how long it will last, by U.S. state"

I think I might prefer to retire 13 years in Hawaii and go broke than spend 25 years in Mississippi :twisted:. (Although I hear the beaches in MS are not bad.) Here’s the source article: https://howmuch.net/articles/one-million-retirement-by-state It would be cool if they crunched the numbers for ot...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Public or Montessori Private School
Replies: 60
Views: 4340

Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Next year 2018 our little one would be starting Kindergarten. We are not sure between the choices. She plays violin, can play about 16 songs out of memory and loves to perform on stage Know her Multiplication tables upto 10 and numbers upto 100 and understands decimal place system Can write like ki...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Public or Montessori Private School
Replies: 60
Views: 4340

Re: Public or Montessori Private School

We sent our daughter to the absolutely best private kindergarten in our county. She had to apply, pass exams, and get interviewed (and so did her parents). After that kindergarten we sent her to public school for grades 1-12. At the time in our area, private kindergarten was a full-day program, but...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Concerned parent :(
Replies: 56
Views: 7444

Re: Concerned parent :(

Great post, but I disagree with this. Let them do whatever they want. Make sure they know what they're getting in to in terms of debt and income. I think some discussion is warranted. I graduated with a degree that didn't help me earn a living. Ended up with a technical certificate for programming....
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:09 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Concerned parent :(
Replies: 56
Views: 7444

Re: Concerned parent :(

Thanks everyone !! What I can hear from most of you are to open a 529 plan. My concern is if there occurs any urgent family emergency situation and I need money, then we should be able to take from this account. but with 529 plan, we can't right ? So that directs me to ask - What is your opinion ab...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Concerned parent :(
Replies: 56
Views: 7444

Re: Concerned parent :(

2) Guide him into a field of study that has a strong expected ROI for the money invested in education. Great post, but I disagree with this. Let them do whatever they want. Make sure they know what they're getting in to in terms of debt and income. I think some discussion is warranted. I graduated ...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:14 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Interesting ride so far - Crypto-curriencies
Replies: 112
Views: 8469

Re: Interesting ride so far - Crypto-curriencies

Sell! Sell! Sell! No sir! There is a lot more money to be made! Cryptocurrencies are extremely risky. As long as you are prepared to lose it all, and do not depend on this money for anything, and have a stomach of steel, then proceed — with caution. I think cryptocurrencies are very cool and I do t...
by finite_difference
Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Concerned parent :(
Replies: 56
Views: 7444

Re: Concerned parent :(

Thanks everyone !! What I can hear from most of you are to open a 529 plan. My concern is if there occurs any urgent family emergency situation and I need money, then we should be able to take from this account. but with 529 plan, we can't right ? So that directs me to ask - What is your opinion ab...
by finite_difference
Tue Nov 21, 2017 12:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is holding bonds now dangerous?
Replies: 162
Views: 16990

Re: Is holding bonds now dangerous?

I wish, when people discussed bond returns, that they would use real return . I don’t care how much your savings account nominally earned in the 80s, since inflation was so high. What’s the real return . In portfoliovisualizer, it’s really nice that they have the inflation-adjusted CAGR if you hover...
by finite_difference
Sun Nov 19, 2017 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The valet smashed my Tesla into a brick wall!
Replies: 108
Views: 13199

Re: The valet smashed my Tesla into a brick wall!

If you can’t afford to repair it, including dealing with issues like “diminished value”, then you can’t afford to drive it.
by finite_difference
Sat Nov 18, 2017 5:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: TSP Modernization Act Signed Into Law
Replies: 22
Views: 4188

Re: TSP Modernization Act now law

Is the plan to let you withdraw different amounts from Roth and Trad? My understanding was that currently you could not choose how much Roth and Trad you wanted to withdraw. You just picked the $ amount and if your account was 50/50 Roth/Trad then they withdrew 50/50 from each.
by finite_difference
Fri Nov 17, 2017 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has used furniture dropped in value dramatically?
Replies: 108
Views: 9143

Re: Has used furniture dropped in value dramatically?

I would tend to agree with the buyer’s rationale but that doesn’t mean he is not trying to get a low price from you. I think it’s nice to keep dining room furniture, etc, in the family as well if it has sentimental value. I agree, Im 32 and wouldn't touch that furniture. Looks just like all of the o...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 15, 2017 10:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Have you had this issue with Subaru Forester windshield replacement?
Replies: 28
Views: 4333

Re: Have you had this issue with Subaru Forester windshield replacement?

Proud owner of brand new 2017 Forester until... 2 broken windshields in 3 months! I've owned cars for 40 years with 0 broken windshields. There's got to be something wrong w the windshields or the car. Subaru tells me they are impact cracks and not their fault. I'm VERY disappointed @ my new Subaru...
by finite_difference
Wed Nov 15, 2017 7:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Been thinking about this post for a while...Mom's retirement
Replies: 13
Views: 1651

Re: Been thinking about this post for a while...Mom's retirement

I think your 1 and 2 are good ideas. I think an SPIA (your 4) is a good answer to 3. Could buy one $100k SPIA at 70, one at 75, one at 80.