Search found 112 matches

by travelfar
Fri Jan 30, 2015 10:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cricket Ups High Speed Data on Most Plans
Replies: 6
Views: 1160

Re: Cricket Ups High Speed Data on Most Plans

Since switching to Aio (now Cricket) last spring, I have been quite happy with the service. I bought a basic smart phone, and after a few months on the $35 plan, the difference in cost from my previous plan recouped the phone purchase price. After that I have just the savings have been considerable....
by travelfar
Fri Jan 23, 2015 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TSP share prices for Quicken
Replies: 97
Views: 21678

Re: TSP share prices for Quicken

It's odd that Intuit's Quicken does not track TSP when Mint, also owned by Intuit and a free, competing platform, does so without issue.
by travelfar
Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is haggling for a used car price dead?
Replies: 22
Views: 7051

Is haggling for a used car price dead?

Leading up to my shopping for a used car over the past weekend, I did a lot of reading about the art of haggling for a car price and researched the price points for the cars I am interested in. Well, after a weekend of used car shopping, I have not been able to put my lessons to the test. The places...
by travelfar
Mon Jul 02, 2012 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAA extended warranty for used Hertz car
Replies: 1
Views: 2486

AAA extended warranty for used Hertz car

I am looking into buying a used car, and one of the places that I am considering is Hertz Car Sales. http://www.hertzcarsales.com/ I am also looking at some dealerships and considering manufacturer certified used car programs and Carmax. No matter where I buy the car, I plan to have an independent i...
by travelfar
Sat Oct 15, 2011 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the best,cheap washer & gas dryer ?
Replies: 25
Views: 2521

Try a scratch and dent appliance store. I bought my washer and dryer from a Sears Scratch and Dent outlet for a very good price about 8 years ago. Speaking of Sears, look into the regular Sear's price beating policy. They will usually match the price of a competitor with an additional 10% discount f...
by travelfar
Fri Oct 14, 2011 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cracked windshield -- how to proceed?
Replies: 33
Views: 7796

To benefit others, here are the quotes I received for a recent windshield replacement on a 2000 compact car. All the quotes include the mobile service fee for replacement at my house. I told all companies that this would be an out of pocket expense at the time of receiving the quote. The lowest thre...
by travelfar
Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for meaningful books?
Replies: 46
Views: 3208

Awakening to the Buddha Within by Lama Surya Das

The Bhagavad Gita

Essential Sufism by Frager and Fadiman

One does not need to follow the religions associated with these books to benefit from them.
by travelfar
Tue Jun 07, 2011 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Call Roofing Company or Construction Company?
Replies: 9
Views: 1181

I would get estimates from 3 high rated/recommended roofers.
by travelfar
Mon May 02, 2011 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drug store Blood Pressure machines?
Replies: 44
Views: 7229

The scientific literature suggest that these community-based blood pressure measurement devices are not very accurate. If you do buy a home blood pressure monitor, bring it in to your next physician visit to be trained on how to use it properly and to test its accuracy. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/p...
by travelfar
Wed Apr 20, 2011 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil Change Irritation - UPDATE 4/25 7:29 AM
Replies: 84
Views: 12090

I find it odd that people obsess over paying $10 less for an oil change. This is like $20-40/yr. For me it is not just about saving a few bucks on the oil change, it is about learning about cars, saving on other repairs, and being able to talk with authority with a mechanic for problems that are be...
by travelfar
Wed Mar 09, 2011 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bank Making it Really Hard to Refinance
Replies: 37
Views: 5859

I went with a local mortgage broker. Shopping around for lenders and estimates took a few hours spread over a week. After picking a mortgage broker, the closing with a locked in rate was scheduled for about 1 month in the future. The refi paperwork did not take longer than an additional 3 weeks, lea...
by travelfar
Wed Feb 16, 2011 12:28 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Using R or another program for asset allocation
Replies: 3
Views: 1256

Using R or another program for asset allocation

Can anyone suggest some packages or code in R or another program for assiting in making portfolio rebalancing choices? My portfolio is made from tax-advantaged and taxable accounts, each with only certain funds/assets that I would use. This question arises, because individual asset funds can no long...
by travelfar
Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google honors Jules Verne
Replies: 5
Views: 1208

http://www.google.com/logos/index.html



Check out some other fun Google logos.
by travelfar
Tue Feb 08, 2011 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking For A Pair Of New Casual Comfort Shoes
Replies: 39
Views: 8012

Eccos when they are on clearance at The Walking Company or another store.
by travelfar
Wed Jan 05, 2011 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel Suggestions--Appalachians
Replies: 18
Views: 2704

I frequently make the drive between Lewisburg, WV and Atlanta. By far the best stop that I have found after multiple trips is Asheville, NC. I would strongly encourage you to visit the Biltmore Estate. There is no other estate as impressive as it in North America. You can often find deals online for...
by travelfar
Wed Nov 17, 2010 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Scuba diving Diehards!
Replies: 49
Views: 4795

The best diving that I have had is around Saint Martin. There were great coral reefs with plenty of fish and sea turtles. The best snorkeling I have done is just outside the cove of Baby Beach in Aruba. The fish and coral was amazing. Aruba also has good diving. Saint Martin is interesting, because ...
by travelfar
Wed Nov 03, 2010 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Using PC as a DVR
Replies: 33
Views: 4757

I have been thinking for a while of doing the very same thing. In my research, I've found this website to be informative: http://www.byopvr.com/ If the computer is connected to a high speed internet connection, you may want to consider a $8 monthly subscription to Netflix for unlimited movie downloa...
by travelfar
Sat Oct 30, 2010 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Extended Warranties------A necessary evil?
Replies: 27
Views: 3316

Many credit cards will double the manufacturer's warranty at no extra cost. Look into whether any of your credit cards offer such a policy. The entire purchase has to be made with the credit card. You will have to keep the receipts, proof of purchase, and warranty information. Some receipts do fade ...
by travelfar
Tue Oct 19, 2010 3:10 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What are index funds really doing???
Replies: 23
Views: 4222

Re: What are index funds really doing???

A fair question would be "what would happen if 90% of investors switched to index funds," and the answer is, almost nothing at all, because the 10% that remained would be more than enough to establish market-based valuations for stocks. It only requires a few people trying to become rich through ar...
by travelfar
Fri Oct 15, 2010 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brown pine needles - concern?
Replies: 13
Views: 2434

Some people pay for pine straw mulch. You get it for free.

http://www.pinestrawdirect.com/
by travelfar
Fri Oct 15, 2010 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inputs to reduce monthly expense?
Replies: 39
Views: 5191

goru1 wrote:Asked insurance company
Is there a room to increase deductible on any of the policies to reduce premium?
Autos: U dont carry any options which have deductible
Condo: U carry max deductible offered
Umbrella: Not applicable
Ask a few more insurance companies.
by travelfar
Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inputs to reduce monthly expense?
Replies: 39
Views: 5191

How do u ask? What do u say? mortgage lender to cut payment property tax reappraised negotiating with utility companies I have never done it. Thanks. When negotiating utility prices, it is good to have competing offers. When you call your utility company, you have to be ready to leave them for serv...
by travelfar
Fri Oct 15, 2010 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inputs to reduce monthly expense?
Replies: 39
Views: 5191

Shop for new insurance. For the auto portion, only insure for what you use. If the second car is only used for occassional errands, then its premium would be less than if it was used to commute to work 5 days a week. Look into increasing the insurance deductible. When you shop around for new insuran...
by travelfar
Fri Oct 15, 2010 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inputs to reduce monthly expense?
Replies: 39
Views: 5191

It does look like you can cut vacation expenses in half at least. Look into trips that you can drive to in a few hours. Plan ahead and shop for deals. Look into getting your property tax reappraised. Has the value of your condo gone down, but you are still paying taxes on its old higher value? Consi...
by travelfar
Thu Oct 14, 2010 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TDAmeritrade offers commission free ETF's
Replies: 43
Views: 17707

The same (and more) applies to Wells Fargo PMA if you have the scratch ($25,000 total assets) to meet the minimum to avoid the PMA fee. That's why some of us use WF. Brian Thanks for the information. Because Wells Fargo offers T Rowe Price funds, does this mean I can transfer over those funds witho...
by travelfar
Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Short Intense Exercise Healthier than Long Moderate Sessions
Replies: 87
Views: 16416

Some reading this thread may be interested in Racing Weight by Matt Fitzgerald, particularly the Training for Racing Weight chapter. He does advocate for a fairly balanced trainining regimen. One interesting point that has stuck with me is that the total weekly training distance is much better than ...
by travelfar
Thu Oct 14, 2010 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: TDAmeritrade offers commission free ETF's
Replies: 43
Views: 17707

Comparing Vanguard Total Stock Market, Total Bond Market, and Emerging Markets Stock Admiral Shares to the ETFs, it appears that the expense ratios are the same between Admiral Shares and ETF. Presumably this extends to all pairs of admiral shares and ETFs. Furthermore the Emerging Markets Stock Adm...
by travelfar
Thu Oct 14, 2010 7:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Online Banking
Replies: 25
Views: 6219

I've used online banks for at least 5 years now, and I am quite happy with them. You should receive deposit slips and no-stamp-necessary business reply envelopes for depositing checks. Sometimes they do not automatically give more than a few envelopes at a time, so I just email the banks requests fo...
by travelfar
Thu Oct 07, 2010 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Edward Jones rep in family
Replies: 43
Views: 6235

Perhaps, you could steer her away from "The Darkside" - maybe take her out for a meal in honor of her new job, and give her a gift of a couple of good books - maybe Wm Bernstein's "Four Pillars" and Swensen's book. I also vote for taking her out to dinner to celebrate her new job and perhaps giving...
by travelfar
Mon Sep 13, 2010 4:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Emergency fund location ?
Replies: 46
Views: 5124

Does anyone figure in credit access when considering the liquidity of an emergency fund? For those that have their emergency fund in their IRA, have you planned to use your credit card for immediate emergency expenses, i.e. < time required to transfer money out of IRA. The balance on the credit card...
by travelfar
Sun Sep 05, 2010 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV series to recommend?
Replies: 139
Views: 18108

gatorking wrote:Sherlock Holmes (w/ Jeremy Brett)
+1
by travelfar
Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you leave maid tip in a motel?
Replies: 78
Views: 12881

If I stay for more than one night, I like to leave a small tip each morning. That way the person who is actually taking care of the room that day receives the tip.
by travelfar
Sun Sep 05, 2010 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: TV series to recommend?
Replies: 139
Views: 18108

Foyle's War

Dexter

Arrested Development

Inspector Lynley

Spaced
by travelfar
Mon Aug 30, 2010 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much to spend on a vacation?
Replies: 30
Views: 5686

Go on the trip. Take out a Rick Steves' guide book from the library to help plan the trip. He includes cheap but decent places to stay and has good suggestions for what to see and where to eat. If you want to learn a little bit of French before you go, I suggest two online resources: http://www.coff...
by travelfar
Wed Aug 25, 2010 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Alarm recommendations?
Replies: 24
Views: 3255

Depending on where you live, Ackerman Security may be a good option. http://www.ackermansecurity.com/ Though maybe a bit of a gimmick, you might find their worksheet helpful: http://www.ackermansecurity.com/images/uploads/Questionform2.pdf I have used them for 8 years, and I am happy with them. I ha...
by travelfar
Mon Aug 23, 2010 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fitness - what works for you?
Replies: 231
Views: 39831

I like picking some goal to train towards. Instead of just running, swimming, and lifting weights, I've trained for and completed my first half marathon and sprint triathlon. Next will be improving my time in those events, increasing the distances, and doing something like the 100 push up challenge....
by travelfar
Fri Aug 20, 2010 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investment account for niece
Replies: 6
Views: 1360

I opened 529 accounts for my nephews. I picked a target fund that I thought was appropriate - not just by date. In addition to giving them a reasonable toy/book/etc for birthdays, holidays, and special events, I always make a contribution to their 529s. For each contribution, I give a certificate th...
by travelfar
Thu Aug 19, 2010 8:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Troubling incident with of BofA credit card
Replies: 5
Views: 1489

Sounds like you should request free credit reports from all 3 monitoring agencies, check the reports for unusual activity, and notify the agencies of fraud/errors. You can get free reports from https://www.annualcreditreport.com If there is nothing odd on those reports, then it reinforces the idea t...
by travelfar
Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best SAT preparation/practice books?
Replies: 39
Views: 7842

Have you looked into the Learning Express Library? It has online test prep material for the SAT and many other exams. I haven't tried it myself, but I did notice that it is offered for free through my county public library system. (I have taken online language courses through my library and thought ...
by travelfar
Tue Jul 13, 2010 10:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hooked up TV to internet... now want more
Replies: 26
Views: 4263

Have you thought about building your own DVR or adding an arial tv antenna? I've been looking into what to do with an old desktop computer when I came across this: http://www.byopvr.com/ I haven't put it together yet, but I thought it would be an interesting little project. You might too. Also don't...
by travelfar
Wed Jun 30, 2010 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advice Requested - Georgia Aquarium and CNN Tour
Replies: 6
Views: 1483

Oh, and you may not be staying long enough to make the City Pass worth it, but it is something to keep in mind:


http://www.citypass.com/atlanta
by travelfar
Wed Jun 30, 2010 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Advice Requested - Georgia Aquarium and CNN Tour
Replies: 6
Views: 1483

The CNN Center, aquarium, and Coke are all close to each other, so you could do all of them on the same day. I would plan the most time for the aquarium. Other attractions to consider are the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, Atlanta Zoo, Stone Mountain (especially on laser light show nights), Shakespeare ...
by travelfar
Tue Jun 29, 2010 6:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google Voice
Replies: 44
Views: 8260

How much if any of this is possible: If I have a wifi capable phone, can I receive free calls through Google Voice when I am on a wifi network? This way I avoid minutes on received calls. This would be a substitute for a home phone. I already have a home wifi network. Is it possible to make cheap ou...
by travelfar
Tue Jun 29, 2010 11:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market weight of all global assests and portfolio allocation
Replies: 7
Views: 2099

I disagree with the OP's basic premise that anyone SHOULD asset allocate and diversify according to the economic weights of either the home country or world. If you choose to create a rule for yourself, fine. You can define it any way you like. But there is no SHOULD involved. I wasn't suggesting a...
by travelfar
Tue Jun 29, 2010 7:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market weight of all global assests and portfolio allocation
Replies: 7
Views: 2099

Does this help? info is alittle old http://www.aametrics.com/pdfs/world_stock_and_bond_markets_nov2009.pdf It does help a bit. At least it shows the bond market is about twice as big as stocks. Not some wacky proportion like I was lead to believe. I am still interested in knowing the size of the re...
by travelfar
Mon Jun 28, 2010 5:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market weight of all global assests and portfolio allocation
Replies: 7
Views: 2099

Market weight of all global assests and portfolio allocation

Does anyone know the global weight of all financial assets in the global economy, i.e. stocks (large, small, international), bonds (U.S., international), real estate, commodities, etc? One model of asset allocation is to do it based on the global economy. An investor may pick their U.S.:internationa...
by travelfar
Mon Jun 28, 2010 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Czech, Austria, and Hungary walking tour - tips?
Replies: 40
Views: 4367

Oh, a couple of more tips. Check on getting an international package for your cell phone. Hopfully your phone is already capable of working on the European networks, and you just have to activate it. I activated the service the day I left and cancelled it the day I returned, so I paid a prorated ra...
by travelfar
Mon Jun 28, 2010 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Czech, Austria, and Hungary walking tour - tips?
Replies: 40
Views: 4367

Oh, a couple of more tips. Check on getting an international package for your cell phone. Hopfully your phone is already capable of working on the European networks, and you just have to activate it. I activated the service the day I left and cancelled it the day I returned, so I paid a prorated rat...
by travelfar
Mon Jun 28, 2010 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Czech, Austria, and Hungary walking tour - tips?
Replies: 40
Views: 4367

My wife and I actually went to the exact same 3 countries in May 2009. Instead of typing all sorts of advice on what to see and do, I suggest just getting Rick Steves travel guides. They made for a great trip. A few other points from our trip: We tore out key pages from Rick's book we owned and phot...
by travelfar
Thu Jun 24, 2010 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Isner and Mahut in world record marathon tennis match
Replies: 15
Views: 1863

Well, they have started up again. Looks like 63 all. I cannot watch the game; I just read headlines and the score update. Supposedly they are both showing strain from yesterday's games.