Search found 1533 matches

by Blues
Sun Nov 19, 2017 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Part B premium unchanged for 2018
Replies: 31
Views: 2096

Re: Medicare Part B premium unchanged for 2018

Just got my form from HHS to drop Medicare Part B. I had to talk to a HHS rep who tried to discourage me from dropping it. He said in addition to the form, I need to call a number to stop withdrawals of the premiums from my checking account (I do not receive SS). I crunched the numbers over the pas...
by Blues
Mon Nov 13, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FEHB open season and Checkbook.org
Replies: 4
Views: 350

Re: FEHB open season and Checkbook.org

Go to this link. It should be working now. At least it is for me...

https://www.checkbook.org/newhig2/hig.cfm
by Blues
Sun Nov 12, 2017 11:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

Blues Excellent! I have downloaded the OPM document and it does seem like I might be able to suspend and retain eligibility once my daughter is off of the insurance plan. Thank you for pointing to something new that I can use. :D Happy to help. Google is our friend (at times). At least that's how I...
by Blues
Sun Nov 12, 2017 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

You can “ suspend “ —**not cancel** — your FEHB benefits and return to using them later. Canceling results in your no longer being eligible; suspending means you CAN restart at some later open season I do not believe this is true for those who fall under survivor benefits. Can you point me to a pla...
by Blues
Sat Nov 11, 2017 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

mrc wrote:
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:30 pm
You can preorder the 2018 Guide now on the checkbook.org website
That's what I did. It's a bargain for what it provides.
by Blues
Fri Nov 10, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

The NARFE magazine out yesterday contains an article by Tammy Flanagan on this subject. She is the federal retirement guru. For any fed approaching retirement, I recommend signing up for her free weekly column in Government Executive. She did a webinar on this topic a week or so back. It should be ...
by Blues
Fri Nov 10, 2017 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

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...
by Blues
Fri Nov 10, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

It is my understanding that prescription meds have nothing to do with this decision. Part B does not cover Rx. I fully understand that Part B doesn't cover prescriptions...but the answer to my question might indicate whether folks were more apt to elect Part B because they were either already on pr...
by Blues
Thu Nov 09, 2017 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

What does Checkbook say about the relative financial merits of going with Aetna Direct (with Medicare Part B) vs BCBS standard without Medicare Part B? Hopefully you'll find the following excerpt of value. Keep in mind that this analysis is from the 2017 FEHB options, not the open season that will ...
by Blues
Thu Nov 09, 2017 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

Out of curiosity, are most of you folks who either intend to, or already have elected "Part B", under the regular care of a physician and taking prescription meds? I just can't see throwing more money into the healthcare sinkhole when I'm already entitled to Part A and have good coverage via FEHB. T...
by Blues
Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What was the main reason you retired?
Replies: 210
Views: 15047

Re: What was the main reason you retired?

Because I wanted to direct my life, activity and where I did both. Because after a career working in federal law enforcement it became more and more frustrating due to the way the law was being enforced, and the way the agency was being managed. I've never regretted the decision...14 years on and I'...
by Blues
Wed Nov 08, 2017 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you do to keep your mind sharp?
Replies: 65
Views: 4772

Re: What do you do to keep your mind sharp?

Read, do crosswords, word jumbles, math and logic puzzles.

Train with weights several days a week.

Walk a lot, usually with our dog.

Turn off the news when it makes my head hurt.
by Blues
Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

In the counties surrounding where I live, it was announced in the newspapers and TV news. Also I got a letter from BCBS saying they were getting out (even before the end of the year). I don't think this is something you need to worry about if you have not heard anything. I don't know if you ultimat...
by Blues
Fri Oct 27, 2017 7:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Taylor's New Book: The Bogleheads' Guide to The Three-Fund Portfolio
Replies: 84
Views: 11100

Re: Taylor's New Book: The Bogleheads' Guide to The Three-Fund Portfolio

Congratulations to you both...on the book and all the contributions you have made on behalf of financial literacy and well-being. :sharebeer
by Blues
Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

delamer wrote:
Mon Oct 23, 2017 3:20 pm
ester wrote:
Mon Oct 23, 2017 11:49 am
My understanding is that at age 65 FEHB w/o Part B Medicare will only pay Medicare rates, rather than what they paid prior to you turning 65, and you will be responsible for the difference.
Do you have a source for that? That is not my understanding.
Mine either.
by Blues
Mon Oct 23, 2017 8:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: FTSE All-World ex-US Small in taxable account?
Replies: 23
Views: 1162

Re: FTSE All-World ex-US Small in taxable account?

We've owned the fund since it opened in our taxable account. At this stage, we take the quarterly dividends from all of our taxable accounts and have them directed to a money market for play money and unexpected expenses.
by Blues
Sun Oct 22, 2017 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

I doubt the penalty will be waived...I don't think they'll be looking to do any favors for feds or former feds in the current legislative environment.
by Blues
Sun Oct 22, 2017 6:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

Some people are really enamored of not having any out-of-pocket expenses or getting bills in the mail -- it almost as if they don't realize how much they paying in premiums for that convenience. I have not made a final decision on Part B yet; I still have a year or so to make a decision. But we wou...
by Blues
Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how long did it take to get used to retirement
Replies: 105
Views: 10109

Re: how long did it take to get used to retirement

I've never spent a moment regretting my decision to retire at 51. That was over a decade ago.
by Blues
Sun Sep 24, 2017 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Age you retired
Replies: 112
Views: 8682

Re: Age you retired

I put my papers in a month before I turned 51. Haven't looked back and net worth has only grown since leaving the job. :beer
by Blues
Thu Sep 21, 2017 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?
Replies: 70
Views: 29180

Re: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?

As many others have done, I requested freezes at Equifax, Experian, TransUnion, and Innovis. But before doing the same with ChexSystems, I wanted to submit a question to one of my online banking accounts first. I believe many bogleheads have taken advantage of the 11-month no-early-withdrawal-penal...
by Blues
Mon Sep 18, 2017 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LastPass Issue
Replies: 10
Views: 1130

Re: LastPass Issue

I've noticed that happening every now and again with chromebook. I don't know if it's a factor of minor chrome updates or not but it only happens every once in a while and normally once I log back in it doesn't need to be done again.
by Blues
Sun Sep 17, 2017 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?
Replies: 70
Views: 29180

Re: Is a security freeze at Innovis really needed?

Big three + Innovis + ChexSystems is what I opted for a few years back.
by Blues
Sat Sep 02, 2017 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

I got no offer, even though I used TA the last 2 years, and 7 of the last 9. :annoyed I use the download version. For those of you getting these offers, are you online or download users. I got the offer, and I’m an online user. I didn't and I'm an online user who has used both download and online f...
by Blues
Fri Sep 01, 2017 9:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

................................ the period from July to August would have one more day since June only had 30 days. One more day would seem to imply more interest. ........................................... You seem to imply that you got shorted because the longer time period got the same interes...
by Blues
Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

I’ve questioned interest calculations on two occasions. I’ve learned that those able to answer that question usually work in a department separate from the service reps. It’s up to the rep to refer your question to that department. In the first instance, the bank applied an incorrect interest rate,...
by Blues
Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

kaneohe wrote:
Fri Sep 01, 2017 7:21 pm
btw......your question might be more appropriately directed to a supe rather than a front-line rep.
I've spoken to a supervisor, she had no clue but agreed with my take. The matter has been elevated three times since without satisfaction.

And so it goes...
by Blues
Fri Sep 01, 2017 4:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

It's a simple question, but not an easy one. The calculation is done in software, probably provided by a third party. Anyone who claimed to give an answer would probably just be making something up to make you go away. I once had a support rep relay a question from a customer who wanted to know how...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 3:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

They have a different way of counting days. For example, a CD opened on June 19 earned two days of interest on the 6/20/2017 statement because the interest accrued was $25000 x 1.35% x 2/365 = $1.84. They would rather that you started receiving the interest on day one. As a result, you will not rec...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

When did you open and fund the CD? If you opened the CD sometime in June, it is entirely possible that they credited you with 31 days of accrued interest because you started receiving interest on the account opening date not the day after. Also, they calculate interest daily based on the balance in...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

At the end of the day, it's up to their backend software writers, internal auditors, and external regulators to make sure they've calculated everything right. While financial institutions tend to be among the more competent at math, I have seen enough to know that they also cut corners when there i...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Re: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

My guess is they calculate on 30/360 rather than actual/365. Meaning they default each full month to 30 days regardless if Feb (28 days) or July (31). Most mortgages work this way such as fixed rate loans with fixed payments, for example, if you pay $1,500 per month for your mortgage, fixed, it's $...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question
Replies: 19
Views: 3376

Ally Bank: No one can answer a simple question

I recently contacted Ally bank to ask why the interest on my most recently opened "no-penalty" cd was the same amount for the June to July cycle as it was for the July to August cycle. I have received numerous emails and even a phone call (or two) and still have not received an answer to the questio...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

Automatic renew should be illegal unless specifically asked for by the customer. The reason money changers love it is they can and do steal from dead people's bank accounts. There is no charge unless you file a return using their software or online service. The automatic renewal is merely a means o...
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

Toons wrote:
Thu Aug 31, 2017 9:03 am
You can't take it with you. :happy
Oh yeah? Sez who? :greedy

You make a good point, brother. :sharebeer
by Blues
Thu Aug 31, 2017 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

I just did a quick search of the TurboTax and H&R Block sites and it appears that the cost of tax applications has gone up for all of them. Even so, as "2015" says above, the inability to pin them down to a specific price for any level of service is like trying to hold mercury down with your thumb....
by Blues
Wed Aug 30, 2017 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

Assuming it's going to be $25 for state as it was last year...not a great bargain, imho. (Though last year I managed to file for free based upon an offer I became aware of here on bogleheads.)
by Blues
Wed Aug 30, 2017 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct for $13.50
Replies: 41
Views: 3490

Re: TaxAct for $13.50

(I had a good experience with FreetaxUSA.com for 2016 when TaxAct raised their prices last year) No offer via email for me either...and I've been with them every year for over 10 years. On the other hand, I am seriously considering FreeTaxUSA for this year and almost went that route last filing sea...
by Blues
Fri Aug 25, 2017 7:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Miles Davis: Kind of Blue - Question for Jazz experts
Replies: 49
Views: 3451

Re: Miles Davis: Kind of Blue - Question for Jazz experts

Just home from a trip so I haven't had to read the other replies but off the top of my head: Oliver Nelson: The Blues & The Abstract Truth Grant Green: Idle Moments Charles Mingus: Mingus Ah-Um John Coltrane: Coltrane Plays The Blues or Lush Life Thelonious Monk: Brilliant Corners or Thelonious Monk...
by Blues
Thu Jul 27, 2017 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3055
Views: 902150

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

"Hacksaw Ridge" - a tale of uncommon valor. Good film, great story.

"Snowden" - Interesting and thought provoking
by Blues
Mon Jul 17, 2017 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have a second home in The NC mountains?
Replies: 25
Views: 3171

Re: Anyone have a second home in The NC mountains?

No summer home...when I decided to retire from federal law enforcement I bought a home in the western NC mountains several months before actually pulling the plug and leaving the job. Any of the areas you mentioned would be great. We live a few miles from Brevard out in the county at an elevation of...
by Blues
Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DirectTV Install
Replies: 14
Views: 1165

Re: DirectTV Install

We live on a wooded lot. Our dish is on the back of the house, low on a corner of the roof, and is not visible from the road. The dish has a clear view of the sky and is not encumbered by any of the trees surrounding our home. We have had no leaks or issues due to the presence of the dish through sp...
by Blues
Thu Jul 13, 2017 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?
Replies: 203
Views: 11350

Re: Do you count vehicle equity in net worth?

I don't but I don't even count my home's estimated value.

I simply total up the value of my investments in equities, bonds, CDs etc.

The value of home and vehicles are gravy. Not the technically correct way of doing things but it is the method I prefer.
by Blues
Mon Jun 26, 2017 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare
Replies: 150
Views: 9413

Re: Federal Retiree Health Care with/Medicare

Everybody's mileage may vary but I only intend to elect Part A when I apply in the next few months.

I'll remain with my current FEHB provider.

(If my decision changes somewhere down the road, so be it.)
by Blues
Sun Jun 25, 2017 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning
Replies: 68
Views: 10115

Re: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning

It may just be an Ally internal policy. I had no problem opening a new savings account at another financial institution where I already had a banking relationship. YMMV indeed. Maybe so. I was never able to determine if it was a matter of policy or they simply were unable to access my credit info. ...
by Blues
Sun Jun 25, 2017 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning
Replies: 68
Views: 10115

Re: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning

Hard pull or softpull? I already have their savings (which was softpull) and I know to open a checking its a hardpull... We have checking, savings and 1 CD at Ally. Opened a second CD on Tuesday with no issues and we both have our credit frozen. But was your credit frozen when you opened your first...
by Blues
Sun Jun 25, 2017 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning
Replies: 68
Views: 10115

Re: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning

Hard pull or softpull? I already have their savings (which was softpull) and I know to open a checking its a hardpull... We have checking, savings and 1 CD at Ally. Opened a second CD on Tuesday with no issues and we both have our credit frozen. This seems consistent with our experience. We opened ...
by Blues
Fri Jun 23, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP
Replies: 112
Views: 16255

Re: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP

If you have it all in one and you need to take some out, you have to withdraw the entire CD. It's possible that at the time you need to do so the rates may be lower. If you have three CDs, you might only break one and leave the others intact. ETA: Looks like someone beat me to it. Well, you got two ...
by Blues
Thu Jun 22, 2017 7:55 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: fed employees & all the eggs in the TSP basket
Replies: 22
Views: 2640

Re: fed employees & all the eggs in the TSP basket

"Bailey" was a significant "pro" in our decision to move to NC 14 years ago, in addition to many other pros both financial and otherwise. I'm not planning on touching the TSP for several more years until RMD's will force me to begin making withdrawals. Like ChrisC, we have been converting my wife's ...
by Blues
Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP
Replies: 112
Views: 16255

Re: Ally Bank 1.25% 11 month with no EWP

You close out the prior "No Penalty CD", keep the interest you've accrued and suffer no penalty. Easy peasy.