Search found 1036 matches

by mrc
Mon Jan 22, 2018 5:27 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA and me again (and Vanguard)
Replies: 14
Views: 861

Re: TIAA and me again (and Vanguard)

Going off your previous thread, why don't you transfer your 403(b) from your former employer (with poor fund choices) to the 403(b) with your current employer (with good fund choices)? That's a good idea, move it all (unless you want a piece of TREA). I worked for a large university, and can access...
by mrc
Sun Jan 21, 2018 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: return expensive 3 year old's eye glasses?
Replies: 22
Views: 1557

Re: return expensive 3 year old's eye glasses?

60 Minutes reported on Luxottica's vertical integration a while back. They make frames (even designer) for $3 each, they own many optical shops (including LensCrafters Pearle Vision, Sears Optical, Target Optical, Sunglass Hut, Oakley), and they are EyeMed insurance! That's why my progressive lens ...
by mrc
Sun Jan 21, 2018 5:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Refinishing roughed in stairs - removing carpet
Replies: 60
Views: 3856

Re: Refinishing roughed in stairs - removing carpet

My 2cents If the oak is on the thin side, it may have cracked on a glue line. Doesn't take much stress. Overall, a glued-up board is more stable than a solid wide piece. So I wouldn't fret about the glue joints per se. Generally, the glue joints are the strongest part provided the joint is sound. Pe...
by mrc
Thu Jan 11, 2018 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trying to downsize but still too much stuff
Replies: 59
Views: 5697

Re: Trying to downsize but still too much stuff

...Personally, I've never understood keeping your wedding dress and things like that. My Mother has had hers for 50 years and not taken it out once. What is the point? My MIL was married in 1944. My wife wore the dress in 1984. It happens. It was very neat as the war-time silk was very special.
by mrc
Wed Jan 10, 2018 1:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: If I have a million with Edward Jones, in 10 years, how much money has my FA made off me?
Replies: 48
Views: 6327

Re: If I have a million with Edward Jones, in 10 years, how much money has my FA made off me?

With your folks in mind, ponder the Keep Costs Low objective of the BH philosophy. That is the graph that made me move out of managed funds at a financial institution (and employer!) into index funds with low cost providers.
by mrc
Tue Jan 09, 2018 9:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth brokerage transfers into sweep fund.
Replies: 0
Views: 113

Roth brokerage transfers into sweep fund.

My first time using a brokerage-type account for a Roth (Fidelity). Don't forget when you transfer funds to your Roth account, the funds are deposited into your sweep fund (e.g., a money market). After the transfer settles, you must then transfer the new contribution from the sweep fund into your de...
by mrc
Wed Jan 03, 2018 2:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do you eventually get accustomed to your higher balances?
Replies: 47
Views: 6771

Re: Do you eventually get accustomed to your higher balances?

I didn't come from money either. Yes you get used to it, but for me I was well into middle age. The experience was made easier by having several different accounts: current, former employers, IRAs, etc. Our '17 year-end gains (just market movement and interest/div, excluding contributions) were more...
by mrc
Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9317

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 mrc
Thu Dec 28, 2017 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Economics of a new Puppy
Replies: 113
Views: 7142

Re: The Economics of a new Puppy

We have 5 fur logs right now, and have had dogs in the house for 35+ years. We use chewy.com for food because local big box pet stores don't carry our brand, and the boutique shops that do charge a lot more. We have one on Science Diet available only from the vet. We use valleyvet.com & healthwareho...
by mrc
Wed Dec 27, 2017 3:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Confusion about prepaying property taxes
Replies: 124
Views: 12245

Re: Confusion about prepaying property taxes

Just got back from the treasurer/assessor's office in my town, where it's the rare person that doesn't itemize. People were lining up to prepay property taxes. I pre-paid the two payments that would have been due in the first half of 2018 - these are part of the 2017-18 fiscal year, so that seemed ...
by mrc
Wed Dec 27, 2017 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Confusion about prepaying property taxes
Replies: 124
Views: 12245

Re: Confusion about prepaying property taxes

My county enacted legislation during an emergency session yesterday. If you checked to see whether your jurisdiction accepts prepayments before, and they did not, you may want to check again . A few are making last-minute changes. We'll save ~30% of the tax bill by deducting '18 state/local taxes on...
by mrc
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any Instant Pot users here?
Replies: 102
Views: 10933

Re: Any Instant Pot users here?

I can't be the only one to keep seeing this thread in the list and think this has something to do with Nestlé's new Quick Marijuana product.
by mrc
Thu Dec 21, 2017 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please Post Tax Bill Questions Here [was Tax Bill Omnibus Thread]
Replies: 878
Views: 48888

Re: Tax Bill Omnibus Thread

Although the new tax bill is eliminating exemptions on the tax forms, I expect there to still be exemptions in the W4. For those that use their withholding as a savings account, there should be little difference. Likewise for those of us who estimate our taxes in advance and whose W4 exemptions hav...
by mrc
Wed Dec 20, 2017 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please Post Tax Bill Questions Here [was Tax Bill Omnibus Thread]
Replies: 878
Views: 48888

Re: Tax Bill Omnibus Thread

The problem though is that your state or county has to allow the prepayment of property tax. I was getting all ready to go in and give them a $10,000 check to prepay 2018 property taxes but then checked the county website. Washington state law prohibits the payment of property tax in a year before ...
by mrc
Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Prices
Replies: 156
Views: 17995

Re: TurboTax Prices

What he said. I won't buy a copy for download. I want a product in a box. So 6 yrs from now if I have to open a file for whatever reason I can install it on what will presumably be a different computer. Also important for amending returns. Once in a blue moon, computer architectures change (e.g., M...
by mrc
Wed Dec 20, 2017 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Aprilaire Humidifier
Replies: 29
Views: 2144

Re: Aprilaire Humidifier

When you adjust the humidistat (dial) up and down, do you hear a not-so-faint click? Perhaps the solenoid isn't getting power and isn't opening.
by mrc
Wed Dec 20, 2017 5:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best place to get eyeglasses / no vision insurance
Replies: 94
Views: 14489

Re: Best place to get eyeglasses / no vision insurance

sperry8 wrote:
Tue Dec 19, 2017 11:39 pm
... Weirdly the phone rep told me to subtract 3mm from the pupillary distance I had from my eye doc. Can't understand why (he didn't explain) so I just subtracted 1mm, and will hope. ...
Were these for reading? When you focus on closer objects, your eyes turn slightly inward.
by mrc
Tue Dec 19, 2017 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does a State job make it easier to get a FED job?
Replies: 10
Views: 1102

Re: Does a State job make it easier to get a FED job?

Except for holding a license (e.g., for a state bar or a PE), probably not. There isn't really a government service job hierarchy.
by mrc
Sun Dec 17, 2017 9:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New job offer - background check
Replies: 140
Views: 7436

Re: New job offer - background check

Is there no background check to be a company comptroller? If it comes up, tell them what you told us: 14+ years ago at age 17, my dumb high school friends and I decided it would be a good idea to shoot out a bunch of car windows in a couple different towns one night. Long story short, I was charged ...
by mrc
Sun Dec 17, 2017 5:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Year end review with less nerdy spouse
Replies: 72
Views: 8124

Re: Year end review with less nerdy spouse

About once a year ... Me: On 12/31/XX, we had $X in retirement savings, and $Y in "cash." Retirement accounts are $Z in equities, the rest in bonds (60/40). Her: What happens if the stock market crazy drops? Me: Nothing. While we wait for it to come back, we live on the pension + SS, and supplement ...
by mrc
Mon Dec 11, 2017 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Upside Down On Vehicle
Replies: 16
Views: 1213

Re: Upside Down On Vehicle

Drive it. Enjoy it. And if you need to sell, don't use a stealership. These should hold their value for trades folks.
by mrc
Sun Dec 10, 2017 11:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Reasons why not to shorten target fund
Replies: 9
Views: 576

Re: Reasons why not to shorten target fund

I did the opposite with my wife and my target funds. I chose dates farther out—to be more aggressive. That was before I found BHs and the three fund portfolio. Also while we both had far lower assets.
by mrc
Sat Dec 09, 2017 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Security Camera: Post a Warning Sign or Not?
Replies: 20
Views: 2573

Re: Home Security Camera: Post a Warning Sign or Not?

If you want evidence of a crime, conceal the cameras and post no sign.

If you want the thieves to keep on walking, post conspicuous signs.


My sign: Our dogs can run from back door to the fence in 1.2 seconds. Can you?
by mrc
Fri Dec 08, 2017 4:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sweet Gum Balls
Replies: 36
Views: 2579

Re: Sweet Gum Balls

Here is a link to the product in question: https://baganut.com/collections/pick-up-sweet-gum-balls/products/36-push-sweet-gum-harvester Those work great for walnuts and hickory nuts which are smooth. Not sure this would pick up buckets of gum balls. Search the questions for "gum" and see what other...
by mrc
Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mold removal from wood
Replies: 14
Views: 1355

Re: Mold removal from wood

This is the first time I'm hearing about Concrobium and have a few questions. Is this the product that would be used after a hurricane for mold remediation? Is this the product incorporated into anti-mold paints? Is the product as non-toxic as it seems? From the FAQ: Sodium Carbonate is the listed ...
by mrc
Fri Dec 08, 2017 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sweet Gum Balls
Replies: 36
Views: 2579

Re: Sweet Gum Balls

I have a half dozen each sweetgum (Liquidambar styraciflua) and sycamore (Platanus occidentalis) in my yard. The seed balls disappear soon after falling when I mow with a mulching mower. I will say that for a couple weeks when the fruits fall, the areas become no bare feet zones. But that's OK becau...
by mrc
Fri Dec 08, 2017 6:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question about IRMAA and first couple years of retirement
Replies: 17
Views: 1762

Re: Question about IRMAA and first couple years of retirement

What does the letter from your former employer need to state? Is it just a few lines stating your name and that you retired on a specific date. Or does it require address, SS number etc? Thanks Anyone who needs this should either already have your PII (personally identifiable information), or you w...
by mrc
Wed Dec 06, 2017 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Concrete vs Pavers
Replies: 18
Views: 2087

Re: Concrete vs Pavers

When I replaced an asphalt driveway concrete and pavers were about the same price. The old driveway had to be broken up and removed. The substrate for concrete was pretty much already there. The contractor installed reinforcing mesh and poured in sections. The 20' or so adjacent to the road had to b...
by mrc
Wed Dec 06, 2017 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are plasma TV's gone forever?
Replies: 36
Views: 4626

Re: Are plasma TV's gone forever?

So, when will this thread appear on the board? Can I use my old plasma TV to heat the guestroom? Our Panasonic TH42PX20 can heat the bedroom by itself. Coupled with a 300w halogen lamp and several dogs, it was like having a space heater running. I was sorry to see plasma sets be so short lived. But ...
by mrc
Wed Dec 06, 2017 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cat sitter info
Replies: 21
Views: 1078

Re: Cat sitter info

We boarded our cat rather than having someone stop by. The stress of being left alone and visited by a stranger balanced out the stress of being boarded. Techs played with the cat (she was friendly and exhibited somewhat atypical catness). Also on the up side, there were no—how do I put it—signs of ...
by mrc
Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does it make sense to drop health insurance?
Replies: 198
Views: 7764

Re: Does it make sense to drop health insurance?

Healthy people can become sick people in the blink of an eye.

If you can sleep without any insurance, great. I couldn't.

I find both dental and vision insurance more of a prepay plan. I don't see going in for an eye exam or a cleaning leading to a $64,000 bill.
by mrc
Tue Nov 28, 2017 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How Do You Stay Current With Music?
Replies: 111
Views: 5518

Re: How Do You Stay Current With Popular Music?

Easy. I didn't care for pop music when I was young, and I still don't. Maybe that's because Top 40 played the same song three times an hour. What I do hear now is mostly over-produced tripe often sung by people with awful diction and poor breath control. So I stay happily in the world of classical, ...
by mrc
Mon Nov 27, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: ESOP distribution
Replies: 13
Views: 723

Re: ESOP distribution

You cannot deduct the tIRA contribution, but you can make one. I would not opt for the cash with the penalty.
by mrc
Sun Nov 26, 2017 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Iphone 7 - locked out
Replies: 13
Views: 1126

Re: Iphone 7 - locked out

Grasshopper's head is not in the Zen space of Apple products! If the recovery methods in the support article (If you forgot the passcode for your iPhone, iPad, or iPod touch, or your device is disabled) don't work for you, contact Apple Support or take the phone to a tech at an Apple store.
by mrc
Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Uber hacked - identities of 57 million exposed
Replies: 11
Views: 2207

Re: Uber hacked - identities of 57 million exposed

TravelGeek wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:52 am
Wonder how they accounted for that payment. Misc IT Services?
Pro Fees :-)
by mrc
Tue Nov 21, 2017 5:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Uber hacked - identities of 57 million exposed
Replies: 11
Views: 2207

Uber hacked - identities of 57 million exposed

If you have used or driven for Uber, you should read about the cyber hack.
by mrc
Mon Nov 20, 2017 5:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC to Maximize Retirement Contribution
Replies: 32
Views: 3057

Re: HELOC to Maximize Retirement Contribution

Jane Bryant Quinn (and others) recommend funding your retirement before paying for child's college. I would not borrow against a house to pay for either. Kids can secure loans for school, but you can't really borrow for your retirement.
by mrc
Fri Nov 17, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My dad's army jacket
Replies: 76
Views: 6118

Re: My dad's army jacket

I think wearing the jacket is a nice tribute to your dad's service if: it fits you and looks nice you know what the patches mean and can explain his service to others, especially veterans it's clear you are not suggesting his service and honors are your own you leave the pins in a safe place So, I s...
by mrc
Thu Nov 16, 2017 6:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Request for Promotion letter to Senior Management
Replies: 155
Views: 13438

Re: Request for Promotion letter to Senior Management

Palatineman wrote:
Thu Nov 16, 2017 5:51 pm
<snip>
Maybe you could send your resume in and we can see if there is an open position for the skills and experience you have acquired over the years.
I've changed my mind about the letter from the OP. I think Palatineman should go ahead and send it, as is.
by mrc
Tue Nov 14, 2017 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Creating External Exhaust for Microwave over Range - Need Reality Check
Replies: 26
Views: 2250

Re: Creating External Exhaust for Microwave over Range - Need Reality Check

For the type of cooking you are doing a "properly sized" externally vented hood would do a much better job of ventilating your kitchen. People in the trades have told me a microwave with a vent is marginal at best, regardless of how it is vented. We have a GE SpaceSaver with a built in vent. It's n...
by mrc
Tue Nov 14, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does a mere mortal navigate healthcare/insurance issues
Replies: 55
Views: 6425

Re: How does a mere mortal navigate healthcare/insurance issues

What is the point of charging $2800 in the first place, if they will accept $180 in most cases? Do any other businesses/professions operate this way? This is the insurance game. Insurance bases many of their fees as a percentage of what is charged out. If the anesthesia group charges $180, insuranc...
by mrc
Mon Nov 13, 2017 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a new smartphone as a surprise gift
Replies: 8
Views: 890

Re: Buying a new smartphone as a surprise gift

Are you sure she wants a smartphone? I know people that do not like them.
by mrc
Sun Nov 12, 2017 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2018 FEHB HDHP Recommendations
Replies: 49
Views: 4431

Re: 2018 FEHB HDHP Recommendations

Many feds like checkbook.org (preorders for 2018 available now) for just this research. OPM and carrier plans are out there, but this site puts everything together. You can subscribe to a hard copy, online access (search/select), or both. Good to do the first time.
by mrc
Sun Nov 12, 2017 3:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Investing HOA reserve money?
Replies: 24
Views: 1309

Re: Investing HOA reserve money?

Unless this is for long term, it's not investing, it's savings you want. Ally online savings 1.3% is way better than passbook savings. And liquid in a day or two.

ETA: Just a thought. If you have so much, or will have it lying around for so long, maybe consider the HOA dues are too high?
by mrc
Sat Nov 11, 2017 9:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Septic tank - deal killer?
Replies: 47
Views: 4323

Re: Septic tank - deal killer?

My understanding is that the pumping process removes material at the bottom that cannot/will not degrade. If it's not done there's a risk of solids getting into the drain field and causing serious problems. Problems you do NOT want to have. ... That is my understanding as well. If you let solids ac...
by mrc
Sat Nov 11, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Swedish Death Cleaning [De-clutter your home]
Replies: 63
Views: 7312

Re: Swedish Death Cleaning

I also don't take many photos when I travel. I find it more intriguing to experience the feel of the city and not spend time clicking around with a camera, accumulating more digital photos to figure out where to store. ... Me too! I see so many people with their smartphones in front of their faces ...
by mrc
Sat Nov 11, 2017 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Swedish Death Cleaning [De-clutter your home]
Replies: 63
Views: 7312

Re: Swedish Death Cleaning

I've deconstructed several households using a 6 pile system ... 1) Items to keep because they are used regularly 2) Items to store (with label & date; revisit every 5 years) because of irregular use or not ready to part with yet 3) Sell if item has value and it's worth the hassle 4) Donate if item h...
by mrc
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 159
Views: 11788

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

Do you know when the next checkbook will be available? Your quotes are causing me to think of some questions I had not thought of. It's all such a crap shoot, but I would NEVER grumble...considering what others are facing these days. I fully agree with your sentiment. I am very thankful for my heal...