Search found 119 matches

by shorty313
Sun Nov 10, 2019 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Spend It All vs. Leave $$ for the Kids
Replies: 144
Views: 10342

Re: Spend It All vs. Leave $$ for the Kids

This is a topic I think a lot about. We are in our mid thirties with two children. One has special needs. He is young so how much extra help he will need isn't completely clear, but our guess is he will need some ongoing assistance. So we're saving for two retirements. We save as much as we can in ...
by shorty313
Tue Nov 05, 2019 8:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)
Replies: 7
Views: 573

Re: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)

A follow up question - if my son is determined to be truly disabled as an adult and unable to hold down work, is he eligible to receive our death benefits for life? That $48k would make me feel way better about things. Would that supersede SSI or SSDI benefits he may be eligible for? I"m making a li...
by shorty313
Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)
Replies: 7
Views: 573

Re: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)

.... New guardian is 49, single with no children. He is also our sons godfather. He has committed to us that he will live with/support our son as long as necessary (assuming he is in good health). Questions: How do we structure this so that both guardian and kids are taken care of? Can the guardian...
by shorty313
Mon Nov 04, 2019 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)
Replies: 7
Views: 573

Re: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)

I would also not burden your daughter to act as trustee or guardian. This role can be very time consuming and emotionally draining and may cause friction between the siblings. I speak from experience. I know, but at the same time can't fathom leaving his welfare to strangers. I feel like we are in ...
by shorty313
Mon Nov 04, 2019 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)
Replies: 7
Views: 573

How should I structure this trust? (special needs child)

I’m hoping some wise minds here can help. I read Beyond the Grave and still unsure how to set things up. Background: we have decided to change guardians for our children should something happen to us, so we are rewriting our wills. We realize our assets have grown considerably since we first did the...
by shorty313
Thu Sep 19, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home energy/electricity monitoring?
Replies: 56
Views: 3002

Re: Home energy/electricity monitoring?

So just for comparison sake we used about 890 KW in August in NJ. We have a gas (stove, hot water heater and dryer) and all LED lights and LED TVs. Our house is only 2200 square foot. So to me your usage seems fine. Wall AC units aren't that efficient and it's been pretty warm recently so your usag...
by shorty313
Wed Aug 07, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Oh geeze. How should I pay for this? Walk me off the ledge
Replies: 52
Views: 6499

Re: Oh geeze. How should I pay for this? Walk me off the ledge

For a similar cost, I did #2 for braces for my eldest. I had been socking it away in the HSA for a year prior and reimbursed myself from that.
by shorty313
Tue Jul 30, 2019 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Childcare expenses as children get older
Replies: 14
Views: 1129

Re: Childcare expenses as children get older

Now that we are going to first grade, price will go down 30% (550) however will all be eaten up by the fact that we have to hire someone to pick first grader up daily and take him to daycare, because his pickup time doesnt work with the daycare nap schedule. If we could get him into after school ca...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What's your Uber passenger rating?
Replies: 118
Views: 6717

Re: What's your Uber passenger rating?

When coming back from Newark airport and wanting to get on the parkway traveling north, the Uber app tells the driver to get off in Irvington and cut through the streets. It probably saves .5 miles. It also takes you through an unsafe neighborhood that is full of traffic lights and takes maybe 10-2...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 30, 2019 12:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Childcare expenses as children get older
Replies: 14
Views: 1129

Re: Childcare expenses as children get older

When ours went to K it got cut down about half, between after care and summer camp. We live near two colleges so I usually used a sitter i found on care.com for aftercare. Fortunately my parents have started taking the kids a few weeks in summer now that they are older. This year with my oldest in 6...
by shorty313
Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Three or four-day Fall Getaways (Northeast US)
Replies: 19
Views: 1568

Re: Three or four-day Fall Getaways (Northeast US)

curious where some of your favorite getaways are in ~October? we've done southern Vermont the last few years and are looking to switch it up. Lake George? The Hamptons/Montauk? Maine (maybe too far)? not opposed to flying either. thanks! The Finger Lakes region of NY state. Perhaps Niagara Falls ar...
by shorty313
Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?
Replies: 43
Views: 2146

Re: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?

I would do the conversion. Skip the extra zone for now if cost is a concern. You may not need it. We partially finished our basement (incl insulation) and it is comfortable all year round. We installed a few electric in wall heaters just in case but rarely use them.
by shorty313
Fri Jul 26, 2019 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much life insurance should I get? (baby on the way)
Replies: 44
Views: 2658

Re: How much life insurance should I get? (baby on the way)

For reference, we don't have life insurance outside of the employer paid insurance (2x salary for me, 0x salary for spouse). We have enough financial assets that we can each go a year or two without each other without big consequences. Then we'd either change lifestyle, re-marry, or find another wa...
by shorty313
Fri Jul 26, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Things to do in Maine
Replies: 72
Views: 6712

Re: Things to do in Maine

Timely post as we are planning a trip to Maine for next summer. I'm eyeing two different times to go - last 10 days in June or last 10 days in Aug/Labor day weekend. Which is a better bet for crowds and/or weather? Assuming you want to be near a beach... Weather will be better near Labor Day weeken...
by shorty313
Fri Jul 26, 2019 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?
Replies: 43
Views: 2146

Re: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?

We converted back in 2005, for about $8k st the time (heater and water heater). How much of that was environmentally dismantling the oil tank? Did you dig it up and convert it to a smoker? :mrgreen: That cost is purely the HVAC cost. We had an interesting insurance situation for the tank. At the ti...
by shorty313
Thu Jul 25, 2019 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Ohio 529 any experience with this plan?
Replies: 23
Views: 1202

Re: Ohio 529 any experience with this plan?

I’m in NJ and use the Ohio plan. NJ has no tax deduction plus our plan sucks anyway. We have everything in age based vanguard plans as well. I had just started when they had those 5% cds, so I only have like $5k in that. Been very happy so far. Easy to set up contributions, change or suspend at any ...
by shorty313
Wed Jul 24, 2019 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Use HSA or pay Out Of Pocket?
Replies: 30
Views: 1956

Re: Use HSA or pay Out Of Pocket?

I've always paid for all of my medical expenses using money I put in my HSA. I guess I am in the minority here for using my account for what is was meant for. I do this, too. I didn't have access to an HSA until a year ago, and I'm still learning the ropes on this. Unfortunately, I've had to have t...
by shorty313
Wed Jul 24, 2019 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?
Replies: 43
Views: 2146

Re: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?

We converted back in 2005, for about $8k st the time (heater and water heater). Oil was almost $4/gal, and our leaking underground tank used a ton! We went from around $3k in annual heating costs to up under $1k. We also did some additional insulation that brought it down more. I am so happy to hav...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 23, 2019 9:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?
Replies: 43
Views: 2146

Re: Oil to natural gas conversion anyone?

We converted back in 2005, for about $8k st the time (heater and water heater). Oil was almost $4/gal, and our leaking underground tank used a ton! We went from around $3k in annual heating costs to up under $1k. We also did some additional insulation that brought it down more. I am so happy to have...
by shorty313
Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Things to do in Maine
Replies: 72
Views: 6712

Re: Things to do in Maine

Timely post as we are planning a trip to Maine for next summer. I'm eyeing two different times to go - last 10 days in June or last 10 days in Aug/Labor day weekend. Which is a better bet for crowds and/or weather?
by shorty313
Thu Jul 18, 2019 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Post Daycare Finances
Replies: 25
Views: 2566

Re: Post Daycare Finances

Activities like ballet, swimming, etc are all through the city at a cost of $20 per month each. You are fortunate to have such inexpensive options! Around here even YMCA classes are $80/mo for anything. For us, costs went down by about half in the elementary years. Most of the continued costs are a...
by shorty313
Fri Jul 12, 2019 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vaping: Did it work for you?
Replies: 2
Views: 573

Re: Vaping: Did it work for you?

My husband did to stop cigars about 3 years ago. Unfortunately last year his mom passed and he picked up the cigars again. He went back to vaping last month. We will see how it goes. Last time it was like a 5-6 month step down.
by shorty313
Thu Jul 11, 2019 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone inherited a obligation/burden/responsibility?
Replies: 76
Views: 8268

Re: Has anyone inherited a obligation/burden/responsibility?

My mother had trouble with my uncle splitting my grandparents two homes when they passed (more on my uncles end, my mom just wanted to be done with it and not ruin the relationship). Seeing how that went down, my parents have set up their will so that my brother and I can't argue too much when they ...
by shorty313
Wed Jul 10, 2019 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Visiting Buffalo,NY / Niagara Falls area - things to see and do?
Replies: 46
Views: 2594

Re: Visiting Buffalo,NY / Niagara Falls area - things to see and do?

We were just at the falls on the canadian side 2 weeks ago. I hadn't been since I was a teen and forgot how amazing they are. Yes, the boat is called Hornblower in Canada. There are passes you can buy that gain entry into several of the sites, available at two levels. https://www.niagaraparks.com/vi...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 09, 2019 11:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?
Replies: 97
Views: 4309

Re: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?

Maybe check the GoodRX price? In my case, since I am a "captive customer" of CVS pharmacies (since Aetna is my insurance, and they literally don't consider any other pharmacy to be "in network for me), GoodRX prices are cheaper than my "negotiated price" for prescriptions in every instance I've che...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 09, 2019 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?
Replies: 97
Views: 4309

Re: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?

...2) ... exactly what several posters in this forum have said does not happen with HDHP plans. If I remember correctly , they said that under whatever plan they had, the provider is supposed to bill the insurance company, not the policyholder; the insurance company pays and they accept the negotia...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?
Replies: 97
Views: 4309

Re: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?

I don't have a horse in this race, I'm not on such a plan, and have no experience with them, but it does strike me that this is 1) ... exactly the problem I've always assumed there would be with HDHP plans, namely the consumer getting stuck personally paying "chargemaster" rates instead of customar...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 09, 2019 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?
Replies: 97
Views: 4309

Re: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?

Anyway, I came across https://www.fairhealthconsumer.org in the last hour of searching. The prices it gives look reasonable - if I take the assumption that in-network rates are roughly the same across providers for the same CPT code, it's obvious how to proceed (just pick a good doctor that doesn't...
by shorty313
Tue Jul 09, 2019 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?
Replies: 97
Views: 4309

Re: How to obtain contracted rates for medical procedures?

I have had the same frustration trying to be an informed consumer. Some things are fairly easy...my local hospital was able to give me the cash and contracted rate for an EKG for my son. But on a completely different issue for him, small outpatient medical procedure, you would have thought I was ask...
by shorty313
Sat Jul 06, 2019 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sofa or couch ( an6 difference) for new homeowners
Replies: 25
Views: 1622

Re: Sofa or couch ( an6 difference) for new homeowners

We’ve had good luck with Macy’s furniture.
by shorty313
Tue Jun 18, 2019 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can I get the new customer rate from Verizon Fios? Or should I switch to Spectrum?
Replies: 39
Views: 2907

Re: Can I get the new customer rate from Verizon Fios? Or should I switch to Spectrum?

Thanks to this thread I just finally took the time on my lunch break to online chat with verizon. I don't get the teaser rate, but cut my bill for internet (and slightly increased speed) and phone by $23/mo for 24 months. I can live with that. Only other option in my area is Comcast, and they are a ...
by shorty313
Thu Jun 13, 2019 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you repair your own appliances?
Replies: 65
Views: 3955

Re: Do you repair your own appliances?

My next project is trying to diagnose why the washer occasionally doesn’t spin properly leaving the clothes soaking wet at the end of cycle. This one is proving to be tricky. :annoyed Perhaps a clutch. We bought a used washer, which came with a short warranty period. Almost immediately it quit spin...
by shorty313
Tue Jun 11, 2019 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Submitting Insurance Claims for Toddler Special Needs Therapy
Replies: 8
Views: 565

Re: Submitting Insurance Claims for Toddler Special Needs Therapy

Thank you very much for the responses, this has all been very helpful. One detail is that our son is not 3 for another 7 weeks or so which seems to be a milestone that the school district advised to wait until. I will do some more research based on this guidance, thank you again. We were advised by...
by shorty313
Tue Jun 11, 2019 8:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Submitting Insurance Claims for Toddler Special Needs Therapy
Replies: 8
Views: 565

Re: Submitting Insurance Claims for Toddler Special Needs Therapy

I have nothing to add about insurance, but does the local public school not offer special ed preschool services? My son went from early intervention to the preschool program, and he qualified for their ESY (extended school year AKA summer school) between the ages of 3-6.
by shorty313
Thu Jun 06, 2019 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does a big family need 2 big cars? Question for 3 kid+ families
Replies: 58
Views: 4044

Re: Does a big family need 2 big cars? Question for 3 kid+ families

How many in boosters/car seats? We have an older mazda3. Only have two kids but end up with a kids friend at least weekly. I have done two boosters and a bigger kid and it’s tight but doable. Not sure if you have three car seats, though they do have narrow seats on the market these days. One booster...
by shorty313
Wed Jun 05, 2019 6:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are we downsizing too much?
Replies: 63
Views: 5035

Re: Are we downsizing too much?

Can you maybe find an air B and B with about the same dimensions that you can rent for a week or two and see how it feels? This is what I was going to suggest. We are currently four people in a 2100sqft 4/2.5 and it’s just right. We have been looking to a future downsizing to a 2/2....the 1400sqft ...
by shorty313
Tue Jun 04, 2019 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco or Sam's Club?
Replies: 134
Views: 9450

Re: Costco or Sam's Club?

I miss our Sam's club. It closed about 18 months ago due to Costco competition. It was closer to my work for a lunch shop, I could use 'click and pull' (pre-order) plus 2.5% back on ebates, or in store I had the option of self serve line or pay by app, where you scan as you go and pay over your phon...
by shorty313
Thu May 30, 2019 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend under-cabinet range hood?
Replies: 20
Views: 925

Re: Recommend under-cabinet range hood?

We just replaced ours this winter, and were very limited as we didn't want to mess with ducting and backsplash changes. We have been pleased with this Broan so far, it is WAY quieter than the last hood (which had broken and was cheaper to replace than repair). https://www.homedepot.com/p/Broan-Glaci...
by shorty313
Tue May 21, 2019 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: remodeling costs in san francisco
Replies: 32
Views: 3370

Re: remodeling costs in san francisco

Two years ago we redid our master bath in kind all in for just over $12k and I was deliriously happy to get that price (NJ) after many higher bids. He was just a tile guy that subbed out the plumbing and electrical. Ours was 35 sq ft, your sounds downright palatial to me :D I highly doubt you can ge...
by shorty313
Mon May 20, 2019 4:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Big credit card charges coming up, should I sign up for a bonus card?
Replies: 19
Views: 1594

Re: Big credit card charges coming up, should I sign up for a bonus card?

Daughter just got braces, cost around $4500. If I paid cash or check, they would give me a 3% discount. My math tells me (for us) the travel bonuses were more lucrative, so I opened a capital one rewards card.
by shorty313
Mon May 20, 2019 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dealing with construction noise
Replies: 27
Views: 1847

Re: Dealing with construction noise

Up until the dog part I would have suggested your local library. Could you leave the dog at home but take 2-3 short breaks to the house to visit the dog and let him out/walk him?

Besides that, noise canceling headphones.
by shorty313
Fri May 10, 2019 7:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Phone Plan/Carrier Recommendation?
Replies: 59
Views: 6680

Re: Cell Phone Plan/Carrier Recommendation?

Another total wireless user here for about 2 years now, 3 lines for ~$87. Two features I wish it had - hot spot and wi-fi calling. My interior office has shit service, and when I was with Verizon I could do wifi calling to make up for it. Still not an incentive to go back to verizon, but I miss the...
by shorty313
Thu May 09, 2019 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Phone Plan/Carrier Recommendation?
Replies: 59
Views: 6680

Re: Cell Phone Plan/Carrier Recommendation?

Another total wireless user here for about 2 years now, 3 lines for ~$87. Two features I wish it had - hot spot and wi-fi calling. My interior office has shit service, and when I was with Verizon I could do wifi calling to make up for it. Still not an incentive to go back to verizon, but I miss the ...
by shorty313
Fri Apr 26, 2019 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Washer - Frontload or HE Top Load
Replies: 77
Views: 10924

Re: New Washer - Frontload or HE Top Load

We have a top loader LG (for about a year now) and couldn’t be happier.
by shorty313
Sun Apr 21, 2019 7:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Montana / Wyoming Summer Trip Ideas
Replies: 29
Views: 2569

Re: Montana / Wyoming Summer Trip Ideas

A few summers ago when the kids were six and eight we did a two week trip of South Dakota and Wyoming. We flew into Rapid City, explored the Black Hills and Badlands for a week (both amazing), and then drove to Cody Wyoming and into Yellowstone park. We stayed four days in the park in two different ...
by shorty313
Thu Apr 18, 2019 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: microwave that doesnt beep forever?
Replies: 24
Views: 1664

Re: microwave that doesnt beep forever?

z91 wrote:
Wed Apr 17, 2019 3:50 pm
I have a Panasonic with inverter technology (on my phone now, but look this up as it's quite good as far as microwave tech goes) that only beeps once. Have had it the past 2 years and would recommend it.
This is what we have. No extra beep at all. I have forgotten a cup of tea a time or two. :P
by shorty313
Tue Apr 16, 2019 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Migrating to better weather in retirement -- rent a timeshare or buy a vacation home?
Replies: 21
Views: 2183

Re: Migrating to better weather in retirement -- rent a timeshare or buy a vacation home?

Hi BH community, We are 15-20yrs away from retirement. During retirement, we want to be able to live in a mild climate region for a few months out of the year. We will keep our house here in the Midwest to return and see family, but how should we go about securing a vacation/2nd home ? A senior cow...
by shorty313
Mon Apr 15, 2019 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Women, How Much Do You Pay for Haircut
Replies: 94
Views: 6313

Re: Women, How Much Do You Pay for Haircut

In NJ salon, $65 plus tip for cut and dry. I've tried a few different salons and they are all within $5 of each other (except great clips, supercuts, etc). I go every 8 weeks. When I want highlights, I'm looking at $175+ including tip, usually 2x a year. I cover my own grey every 5 weeks or so at ho...
by shorty313
Fri Apr 12, 2019 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Remote control solution for my parents.
Replies: 38
Views: 2527

Re: Remote control solution for my parents.

Get a remote start for your car. Use it to start your car and drive over to your parent’s house because “the TV is broken again”. I’m only half joking. This is so much more funny when it happens to someone else. DH goes to his dad’s house at least once a month just to hit the ‘source’ button. :oops:
by shorty313
Thu Mar 28, 2019 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Know a good restaurant in Miami?
Replies: 8
Views: 653

Re: Know a good restaurant in Miami?

If they like Cuban one of our favorites is Sazon on Collins Ave at 73rd in Miami Beach.