Search found 2295 matches

by neilpilot
Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Renters Insurance
Replies: 5
Views: 1015

Re: Renters Insurance

Whether you should get an umbrella policy depends mostly on what your assets are, but also your likelihood of being sued for significant amounts of money. If have significant assets, are a public figure or a doctor, then yes you probably should because you are more likely to get sued for significan...
by neilpilot
Sat Apr 20, 2019 7:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: In which companies do you own a single share, or token amount, of stock?
Replies: 68
Views: 3290

Re: In which companies do you own a single share, or token amount, of stock?

2 shares of Bkh.b for the Geico discount. 1 share for the same reason So far 4 BHers have posted that they own 1-4 shares for the GEICO discount. When I went with GEICO I also considered buying a small amount of stock for the discount. But I learned that FREE online membership in the Freelancers Un...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: The Final Definitive Thread on Best Brokerage
Replies: 17
Views: 1158

Re: The Final Definitive Thread on Best Brokerage

I re-post my brokerage criteria from 2008, 2014, 2017, ... with some minor edits to update it. Let's face it, what a Boglehead would want from a brokerage is not what a trader would want from a brokerage. Here are some criteria in order of importance: 1. Low cost. The lowest cost is now free, so if...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fire my financial advisor now or later? (recent windfall help needed)
Replies: 40
Views: 2706

Re: Fire my financial advisor now or later? (recent windfall help needed)

....I have connections to Merrill Lynch through my family, who have used them as investment advisors for generations. Because of this, my AUM fee is supposedly much lower than a typical client of my current net worth, as I'm only being charged 0.75%. In the end, you should determine the real cost o...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability
Replies: 56
Views: 3059

Re: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability

Your umbrella policy covers you if you co-sign an auto loan for someone else. Are you aware of the full range of stuff it covers? Even though I will not be co-signing an auto loan, could you please explain why this is relevant. If you cosigned an auto loan, you shouldn't be liable for damages if th...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Door Opener Replacement
Replies: 24
Views: 1467

Re: Garage Door Opener Replacement

I watched some videos of garage door opener installations just to get some general knowledge and it seemed that the critical parts of the installation took place with the garage door closed. My garage is detached and has no light. Will that pose a problem for an installer? I can understand that if ...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Smoke detectors
Replies: 36
Views: 1649

Re: Smoke detectors

D. The newer alarms are actually hazardous waste and dont go into the trash. See lessismore.org/materials/99-smoke-detectors/ as an example on disposal. Regarding your comment, even an older ionization smoke detector shouldn't go in household trash. Ionization chamber smoke detectors contain a smal...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "The best and worst U.S. states for retirement"
Replies: 257
Views: 20999

Re: "The best and worst U.S. states for retirement"

The data shows that relative to other reasons to move to NM, retiring there seemed attractive. In terms of total number of retiree moves, FL leads the way, followed by AZ. Well I guess that sources can spin the "data" in several different ways. I watched a clip on our local news today indicating th...
by neilpilot
Fri Apr 19, 2019 6:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Door Opener Replacement
Replies: 24
Views: 1467

Re: Garage Door Opener Replacement

OP, why are you so focused on replacement of the opener or door when a simple test as I and others have recommended will help you understand the problem better? Yes....Why simply throw money at the problem and replace everything? A very simple test is to disengage the opener from the door using the...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Door Opener Replacement
Replies: 24
Views: 1467

Re: Garage Door Opener Replacement

I also would leave this repair to someone experienced. The springs are extremely powerful and can hurt you if soemthing breaks. I have also found the doors too heavy for me to lift without some engineering tricks. If the door falls suddenly due to a poor repair, it could be tragic. I would suggest ...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric smoker
Replies: 26
Views: 1064

Re: Electric smoker

A few years ago I tired of tending my charcoal smoker and gave it away. I now use my gas grill as a smoker for racks of pork ribs, and it works surprisingly well. I haven't yet tried to smoke a whole shoulder. I've served guests, a few who are certified BBQ judges, and they were shocked to learn th...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garage Door Opener Replacement
Replies: 24
Views: 1467

Re: Garage Door Opener Replacement

Increased rolling resistance or friction will cause the door to stop and reverse on the way down. Maybe the door's rollers need cleaning & lubrication, or their bearings are bad. Observe that, while the door is rolling up or down, the rollers are all turning freely. Also, if it's a chain drive the c...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric smoker
Replies: 26
Views: 1064

Re: Electric smoker

A few years ago I tired of tending my charcoal smoker and gave it away. I now use my gas grill as a smoker for racks of pork ribs, and it works surprisingly well. I haven't yet tried to smoke a whole shoulder. I've served guests, a few who are certified BBQ judges, and they were shocked to learn the...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: The Final Definitive Thread on Best Brokerage
Replies: 17
Views: 1158

Re: The Final Definitive Thread on Best Brokerage

vanguard hands down-no shareholders There is no "best", but I would be well over $5k poorer if I had used Vanguard when I did our post-retirement account consolidation a few years ago. Even though all of my non-MM investments are in Vanguard MFs and ETFs. This has been explained on several other BH...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads privacy warning
Replies: 61
Views: 5181

Re: Bogleheads privacy warning

only 10% of the country have assets over 1 million, what is the possibility the millionaire lives next door to you out of 300 million? I'd take a wild guess that there is, on average, roughly a 1 in 10 chance the millionaire lives next door to someone. Do I win? Actually, I suspect many BH's homes ...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability
Replies: 56
Views: 3059

Re: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability

Getting back to the original question, I think for the reasons stated here it makes sense for the OP to keep the $1 million umbrella. However when the time comes that he/she would want additional coverage, I think it makes A lot of sense to max out the auto liability limits rather than adding a sec...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 18, 2019 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability
Replies: 56
Views: 3059

Re: dropping umbrella and increasing auto liability

As a practical matter, if you are totally at fault in a car crash or whatever, generally a plaintiffs attorney will settle for your insurance limit even if damages are more than that. Other than real property that you are on a deed for, no one knows how much money you have (assuming your name isn’t...
by neilpilot
Wed Apr 17, 2019 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buying VTI or VTSMX for retirement in fidelity brokerage
Replies: 8
Views: 701

Re: Buying VTI or VTSMX for retirement in fidelity brokerage

2. Fidelity charges $4.95 when purchasing Vanguard ETF and $4.95 when selling Vanguard ETF. In Fidelity, you purchase Fidelity funds. In Vanguard, you purchase Vanguard funds. Don't play dumb. So, lets suppose the OP's 7-figure assets were all invested in Vanguard ETFs, using the 3-fund investment ...
by neilpilot
Wed Apr 17, 2019 4:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Putting a Value on Your Value"
Replies: 7
Views: 698

Re: "Putting a Value on Your Value"

Has anyone read Vanguard's paper on "Putting a Value on Your Value" which discusses the "alpha" of a financial advisor (which they say is around 3%). If so, any thoughts? Is 3% overvaluing / undervaluing an advisor? Do you have a link? I have not read it. Google is your friend: https://www.vanguard...
by neilpilot
Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rheem Central Air with leaking coil?
Replies: 9
Views: 566

Re: Rheem Central Air with leaking coil?

If the repairman is 100% certain that the leak is in the coil, simply have him "put his money where his mouth is", i.e. withhold a significant portion of the repair cost until the new coil is in and the unit has performed sufficiently long to ensure the leak is fixed. While some repairmen will disco...
by neilpilot
Wed Apr 10, 2019 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Merrill Edge Feedback
Replies: 25
Views: 1988

Re: Merrill Edge Feedback

We maintained 5 account at Scottrade, and just prior to their acquisition by TD Ameritrade we decided to open 2 accounts at Merrill Edge with the plan to collect a generous sign on bonus and then move all other assets over from TD Ameritrade if ME worked for us. Prior to account opening we were give...
by neilpilot
Wed Apr 10, 2019 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The high cost of sound financial advice
Replies: 45
Views: 4830

Re: The high cost of sound financial advice

296 posts here and some ideas/plans haven't started to form for you? My wife and I have been diligent and intelligent in saving and investing. We've never needed a financial planner for that. But now we are entering this strange world of "withdrawing and spending." Lots of complex questions, but ma...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 08, 2019 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solution for a thick wallet
Replies: 58
Views: 4906

Re: not good to sit on a wallet

bad for your posture and back as you are off balance I use a cell phone case that has a small slot which carries 2 credits cards (one of which is also my Costco card) and my DL. Someone told me about that a few years back and I started carrying my wallet in my front pant pocket instead of the back ...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 08, 2019 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Calculating Social Security
Replies: 11
Views: 1076

Re: Calculating Social Security

Thanks everyone. The part of social security that is concerning as others I know who are looking to retire is where the SS statement says "You have earned enough credits to qualify for benefits. At your current earnings rate, if you continue working until...." Well, what if I don't keep working? I ...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 08, 2019 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solution for a thick wallet
Replies: 58
Views: 4906

Re: Solution for a thick wallet

I keep gift cards in my car center console or at home. I only carry them when I need them not every day. I only carry two credit cards and one ATM card. The rest stay at home. Membership cards all stay at home. Some are available in Apple Wallet. I also have photos of them. I keep my health insuran...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 08, 2019 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Conversion to Roth
Replies: 24
Views: 1303

Re: Conversion to Roth

Perhaps Roth conversions up to slightly below the first IRMAA bracket. That's about 20k below the top of the 22% tax bracket MFJ, as it is Medicare MAGI based vs taxable income. Use caution when going higher in the 22% bracket or into the 24% bracket. When you use the full IRMAA bracket, it adds 3....
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 08, 2019 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Conversion to Roth
Replies: 24
Views: 1303

Re: Conversion to Roth

Not enough info to determine your retirement & medicare status. If high RMDs will likely put your future MAGI in the IRMAA range, than earlier conversion to Roth could decrease future Medicare IRMAA surcharge territory. There's plenty of other threads that discuss the 2 year income look-back regardi...
by neilpilot
Thu Apr 04, 2019 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surveyor lingo: does 21" ext /swc mean anything to you?
Replies: 4
Views: 695

Re: Surveyor lingo: does 21" ext /swc mean anything to you?

When a surveyor marks a post SWC, it typically means southwest corner.
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 01, 2019 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boglehead Pilots...advice
Replies: 36
Views: 3217

Re: Boglehead Pilots...advice

Since I did my basic training almost 50 years ago, my advice is limited and my opinion: 2.) I'm a little concerned that I'll complete ground school well ahead of flight training and will be rusty when it becomes necessary to apply the knowledge. Is it better to take ground school concurrent with fli...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 01, 2019 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Summer Europe trip - overwhelming to plan!
Replies: 29
Views: 1954

Re: Summer Europe trip - overwhelming to plan!

How to make it all work without it costing an arm and a leg? - Fly from place to place? Fast but expensive Have you looked at some of the discount airlines in Europe? If you have some flexibility and ticket in advance, there are often some very low priced OW tickets available. Just be sure to pack ...
by neilpilot
Mon Apr 01, 2019 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I shut off water in a vacant home in winter?
Replies: 22
Views: 10907

Re: Should I shut off water in a vacant home in winter?

Do you still shut off water supply if you have a fire sprinkler system in the house ? That would not be smart. Maybe BHs are unfamiliar with the hydraulics of residential fire systems? Assuming there's a city water supply, the fire system supply typically is split before the supply meter. There's a...
by neilpilot
Sun Mar 31, 2019 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good computer with solid state drive (SSD)
Replies: 36
Views: 2072

Re: Good computer with solid state detector (SSD)

Xrayman69 wrote:
Sun Mar 31, 2019 11:06 am
Any thoughts on best value for a desk top computer or lap top with a solid state detector instead of typical hard drive.

Thanks
SSD = Solid State Detector Drive
by neilpilot
Sat Mar 30, 2019 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I sign up with a brokerage with a local branch?
Replies: 34
Views: 1316

Re: Should I sign up with a brokerage with a local branch?

I'm trying to decide between TD Ameritrade vs Fidelity. I'm a novice investor and I hear TD has a lot education videos geared toward people like me. Any personal experiences with these platforms? It’s likely you can access those videos even without a TDA account. Last time I looked TDA was still of...
by neilpilot
Sat Mar 30, 2019 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "The best and worst U.S. states for retirement"
Replies: 257
Views: 20999

Re: "The best and worst U.S. states for retirement"

If I die, never having been to FL, I will die happy. Nothing would entice me to move there. But I think it's great that other people like it ... they are less likely to want to move to the places I would choose to live in! As always, the specifics matter. If you're in retirement and you've organize...
by neilpilot
Sat Mar 30, 2019 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about Cashiers Check for tentative car purchase
Replies: 34
Views: 1546

Re: Question about Cashiers Check for tentative car purchase

I know my reply is too late for the OP, and most of the replies above failed to answer the OP's question but instead explained how a cashier's check is not needed. To the OP: it's likely the bank will have told you to get the cashier's check made out to " Dealer or Tamales " That way the dealer can ...
by neilpilot
Sat Mar 30, 2019 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help with South Carolina Itinerary
Replies: 15
Views: 1056

Re: Help with South Carolina Itinerary

We spend 3 weeks house sitting in Mt Pleasant, a suburb of Charleston, last year. If you like gardens, consider a 1.5hr drive up the coast to Brookgreen Gardens, in Murrells Inlet just south of Myrtle Beach.
by neilpilot
Sat Mar 30, 2019 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to take social security for maximum inheritance?
Replies: 31
Views: 2774

Re: When to take social security for maximum inheritance?

I don't see that the answer is any different from the dozens of threads on when to take SS. This is debated at least weekly on this board.

Isn't max inheritance irrelevant to the discussion?
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 4:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How often do you check your net worth?
Replies: 257
Views: 13971

Re: How often do you check your net worth?

One can't safely withdraw 3% of one's house per year. That might be why some people choose not to include their homes in these calculations. Personal finance =/= corporate finance; different strategies for different circumstances. Some people live in areas where real estate appreciation defines the...
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement: What expenses did you reduce?
Replies: 63
Views: 4142

Re: Retirement: What expenses did you reduce?

dm200 wrote:
Fri Mar 29, 2019 12:27 pm
When 65 or over, you pay less in both state and federal income taxes.
Don't you think that depends on the state? That's certainly not true for me.
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water Heater Anode Replacement
Replies: 24
Views: 1650

Re: Water Heater Anode Replacement

We have a 24-year old Sears water heater, still working. I recently had a conversation with the director of our local utility company about a water heater in a property we are looking at. When I mentioned that we were still using a 24-year old water heater in our own home, he immediately offered th...
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I sign up with a brokerage with a local branch?
Replies: 34
Views: 1316

Re: Should I sign up with a brokerage with a local branch?

When I retired in 2015 and decided to consolidate my accounts, I only considered 4 discount brokers with local offices: Schwab, Fidelity, Scottrade (now TDA) and Merrill Edge. I decided to go with the best bonus, Scottrade. I've since tested ME, but due to poor customer service that relationship onl...
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance immediately following closing on home
Replies: 6
Views: 493

Re: Refinance immediately following closing on home

Many years ago, with rates around 17% (not a typo) I refinanced 1 week after a home purchase and again about 6 months later. It worked well for me, with no significant issues except for my time spent. Just be sure the refi costs are clearly defined.
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shut off water before a vacation
Replies: 78
Views: 5698

Re: Shut off water before a vacation

We also shut off the water before leaving on trips. One thing I to add though: a plumber me to turn a faucet on after shutting off the water to bleed off pressure still in the lines, so now I do that too. I also suggest you open a small bleed on both hot and cold water systems when turning the wate...
by neilpilot
Fri Mar 29, 2019 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement: What expenses did you reduce?
Replies: 63
Views: 4142

Re: Retirement: What expenses did you reduce?

If annual mileage has dropped significantly notify your auto insurer. They may reduce your premiums.

Some professional societies change your membership to emeritus when you retire, but you have to ask. I maintain membership at $10/year in an organization that changed over $120 while I was working.
by neilpilot
Thu Mar 28, 2019 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why would one NOT do Roth Conversions?
Replies: 22
Views: 2706

Re: Why would one NOT do Roth Conversions?

Eastern Tenn, no state income tax [OT comment removed by admin LadyGeek] , I only live a couple hours from there in North Carolina but don’t think I can get DW to move :oops: Actually, the TN state income tax still exists but is being phased out. A portion of our dividends and interest is taxed, bu...
by neilpilot
Thu Mar 28, 2019 2:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why would one NOT do Roth Conversions?
Replies: 22
Views: 2706

Re: Why would one NOT do Roth Conversions?

Since OP plans to retire this year, they should consider doing the max tIRA-to-Roth conversions this year and next. The third year maybe 2 tax years prior to their start of Medicare. When they turn 65, SSA will do a look back to the year they turn 63. Conversions in that year and subsequent years ma...
by neilpilot
Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need clarification on foreign transaction fees for international CC use
Replies: 19
Views: 1113

Re: Need clarification on foreign transaction fees for international CC use

MichCPA wrote:
Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:35 am
I have heard that Mastercard has a better exchange rate than Visa. Can anyone confirm?
Seems to be correct, but by an exceeding small difference
https://www.moneysavingexpert.com/credi ... visa-amex/
by neilpilot
Thu Mar 28, 2019 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEICO is not a Insurance Co
Replies: 31
Views: 5067

Re: GEICO is not a Insurance Co

When to started to insure my auto with GEICO in 2015, I "joined" an organization online to obtain a discount equivalent to what they give for owning BRK stock. My online membership was free, and GEICO gave me the discount without even asking for proof of membership. Much easier than buying 1 share o...
by neilpilot
Tue Mar 26, 2019 10:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What frugal thing did you do today?
Replies: 784
Views: 76336

Re: What frugal thing did you do today?

I did not tip the Uber drivers today (two trips). Another example of cheap, not frugal. I took a lyft home from the airport last night, used a 10% off promo and tipped the driver $4. Still saved about $10 off a taxi. I don’t use uber regularly. Are you expected to tip on Uber? You have the option o...
by neilpilot
Tue Mar 26, 2019 8:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What frugal thing did you do today?
Replies: 784
Views: 76336

Re: What frugal thing did you do today?

Trader Joe wrote:
Mon Mar 25, 2019 5:24 pm
I did not tip the Uber drivers today (two trips).
Another example of cheap, not frugal. I took a lyft home from the airport last night, used a 10% off promo and tipped the driver $4. Still saved about $10 off a taxi.