Search found 225 matches

by palaheel
Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AP Computer Science A online course recommendations
Replies: 29
Views: 1603

Re: AP Computer Science A online course recommendations

I always recommend taking a traditional seated course instead of online. (And I teach both.) Face-to-face time is really important for something as difficult as computer science. And yeah, I know, it's really easy--for some of "us." Teaching it has convinced me that it's not easy for most people.
by palaheel
Wed Jan 22, 2020 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?
Replies: 29
Views: 1969

Re: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?

I grew up in SC, and have lived in NC for a long time. I'd never have a house not covered by a termite contract. We once had a tunnel coming up the foundation in our crawl space. Fortunately, it was discovered before they found wood. Our neighbors, who had a termite service, were nonetheless attacke...
by palaheel
Sun Jan 12, 2020 8:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Switching from AT&T to Mint Mobile, any drawbacks?
Replies: 34
Views: 2619

Re: Switching from AT&T to Mint Mobile, any drawbacks?

The advertised prices are appealing, but don't include fees and taxes. That should be factored in when comparing to providers that include them.
by palaheel
Sun Jan 05, 2020 6:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..
Replies: 109
Views: 8399

Re: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..

The thing that is striking to me about this thread is the number of folks still at it after so many years. I started the game in earnest in 97 and am in the process of punching out now. We have done well financially so the math works. But over the last few years I have become really disillusioned b...
by palaheel
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medical school at 34 - Is this financial suicide?
Replies: 116
Views: 9664

Re: Is this financial suicide?

What's the divorce rate of someone in your situation attending medical school? Whatever that is, is it worth it? You said "we as a family." What does that mean? My sister, at 35, with 5 boys, went to medical school. When she finished her internship she returned home and said "I'm back." Her husband ...
by palaheel
Fri Jan 03, 2020 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..
Replies: 109
Views: 8399

Re: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..

Software development is a young man's game. ... Age discrimination is real, but the intensity fluctuates with the economy. ... I have no desire to compete with 26 year olds who work 60 hours a week because they have no life. Very interesting. Would you say then that it's a young person's game becau...
by palaheel
Tue Dec 31, 2019 7:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..
Replies: 109
Views: 8399

Re: For those who got out of tech industry (voluntarily or involuntarily)..

Software development is a young man's game. (Or young woman's....) I graduated in '76, worked for a couple of years, and went to grad school for an MS. I worked for mega-corp for almost 28, when I was laid off in '09 at age 55, but with a pension. Those last few years were a trial; I hated every min...
by palaheel
Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Wait Until Full Retirement Age for SSI or Apply at Age 65 ?
Replies: 28
Views: 2033

Re: Wait Until Full Retirement Age for SSI or Apply at Age 65 ?

Here is my question: Am I better off withdrawing funds from my IRA and paying the taxes on them for about a year and waiting until I reach Full Retirement Age of 66 years 2 months, or applying for SSI at age 65 ? I live in California and SSI benefits are not taxed. https://opensocialsecurity.com/ S...
by palaheel
Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Great experience with backcountry.com
Replies: 23
Views: 3302

Re: Great experience with backcountry.com

My friend ordered a monitor on Amazon and it was delayed for some shipping reason. Anyway, he thought it was lost, so he called Amazon and they said ok, we'll ship you another one. After a few days, he got two monitors. I thought this was relevant for some reason. I had a similar experience. Sendin...
by palaheel
Tue Dec 03, 2019 6:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apps or structured program for reading the Bible?
Replies: 36
Views: 2086

Re: Apps or structured program for reading the Bible?

See https://bible.com . They support computers and mobile devices, have tons of translations and reading plans, and it's free. For some versions, they will stream audio. On my commute, I use the UK version of the NIV, which is read by David Suchet (of Hercule Poirot fame). Where to start depends on ...
by palaheel
Sat Nov 30, 2019 8:13 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'm having trouble seeing why a crash isn't time to cash in my mutual fund
Replies: 26
Views: 2808

Re: I'm having trouble seeing why a crash isn't time to cash in my mutual fund

There's always the "Beat the Market" game: https://www.personalfinanceclub.com/tim ... rket-game/. How well do you do? Even when I "win," I'm a nervous wreck.
by palaheel
Wed Nov 27, 2019 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Phone Scam - Up A Notch
Replies: 59
Views: 4801

Re: New Phone Scam - Up A Notch

They also called a police officer in Wake County, NC. Her buddy took a video of the call:

https://www.newsobserver.com/news/local ... 73822.html
by palaheel
Sat Nov 16, 2019 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the best jobs to downshift into?
Replies: 51
Views: 7667

Re: What are the best jobs to downshift into?

Are they regular 4-year colleges, or junior or community colleges? Two year technical community colleges. Our school offers a wide variety of programs, from transfer programs that cover a student's freshman and sophomore years to applied degrees for employment preparation to non-credit continuing e...
by palaheel
Fri Nov 15, 2019 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the best jobs to downshift into?
Replies: 51
Views: 7667

Re: What are the best jobs to downshift into?

Teach at a community college. It can be full or part time. You can take summers or semesters off if you wish. If you're teaching online, you're free to travel anywhere there's good internet access. Generally that requires an M-degree at least, although it does depend on the subject and location. An...
by palaheel
Fri Nov 15, 2019 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the best jobs to downshift into?
Replies: 51
Views: 7667

Re: What are the best jobs to downshift into?

Teach at a community college. It can be full or part time. You can take summers or semesters off if you wish. If you're teaching online, you're free to travel anywhere there's good internet access.
by palaheel
Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R BLOCK Pre-Order 2019 Software Offer
Replies: 312
Views: 25824

Re: H&R BLOCK Pre-Order 2019 Software Offer

Here's the pricing history of H&R Block 2018 on Amazon for the past 12 months. As several people have said, around Black Friday.

https://camelcamelcamel.com/VERSION-Blo ... ext=search
by palaheel
Sat Oct 26, 2019 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do You Pay For Financial Advice?
Replies: 76
Views: 4820

Re: Do You Pay For Financial Advice?

I do it myself, but I recommended to DW that, when the time comes, she look at hybrid advisers at Vanguard, Schwab and Fidelity, and pick the one she's most comfortable with. She's plenty smart, but has no interest in the subject. I know many people here say "do it yourself--it's not hard." I used t...
by palaheel
Thu Oct 17, 2019 12:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Ex DFA CIO launches competitor which will also have ETFs
Replies: 212
Views: 23041

Re: Ex DFA CIO launches competitor which will also have ETFs

I couldn't find a source yet for the country weightings in AVEM, so I downloaded the portfolio holdings--which did include country data for each holding--and did a quick pivot table in Excel: CHINA 29.6% TAIWAN 14.1% SOUTH KOREA 13.7% BRAZIL 9.3% SOUTH AFRICA 6.3% INDIA 5.8% THAILAND 3.6% RUSSIA 3....
by palaheel
Wed Oct 16, 2019 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Why so many iPhones??? Why did you pick it? Why do you upgrade it?
Replies: 156
Views: 11155

Re: Why so many iPhones??? Why did you pick it? Why do you upgrade it?

We have two iPhone SEs, purchased 2017. We switched from Android phones. Why iPhone? 1. Total cost. My cost target is to spend no more than $100/device/year. Our use of mobile phones doesn't justify any more than that. By mid 2017, the SE was under $250. The odds of the device being updated for the ...
by palaheel
Tue Oct 15, 2019 11:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap Cell Phone Plan
Replies: 50
Views: 5856

Re: Cheap Cell Phone Plan

LSLover wrote:
Mon Oct 14, 2019 10:32 am
Those of you who prepay your annual plan on Red Pocket or any other MVNO, do you get charged local cell phone taxes/fees monthly, upfront, or not at all?
Cricket does not add extra fees etc to their plans. My plan is $30, and I pay $30.
by palaheel
Thu Sep 19, 2019 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What generalist books attempt to explain human nature?
Replies: 39
Views: 2866

Re: What generalist books attempt to explain human nature?

For background, Genesis. For how bad it can get, Judges. For a modern example of Judges, Gulag Archipelago.
by palaheel
Thu Sep 12, 2019 8:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: UPDATE: Vanguard Target Date Fund almost always better than Edward Jones?
Replies: 36
Views: 3200

Re: Vanguard Target Date Fund almost always better than Edward Jones?

Even Vanguard still has front loaded funds. I wasn't aware of this. Could you give an example or more detail? Vanguard website says otherwise. https://investor.vanguard.com/mutual-funds/fees "Fees you won't pay at Vanguard Vanguard funds never charge front-end or back-end loads or other sales commi...
by palaheel
Thu Sep 12, 2019 6:17 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: UPDATE: Vanguard Target Date Fund almost always better than Edward Jones?
Replies: 36
Views: 3200

Re: Vanguard Target Date Fund almost always better than Edward Jones?

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:21 pm

Even Vanguard still has front loaded funds.
I wasn't aware of this. Could you give an example or more detail?
by palaheel
Thu Sep 12, 2019 5:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Calling all iPhone SE Bogleheads
Replies: 61
Views: 5057

Re: Calling all iPhone SE Bogleheads

We've had two SEs for two and a half years. One was a refurb, the other new. I like the form factor, but the eyes are getting to the point where my next phone will be a bit bigger.
by palaheel
Mon Sep 02, 2019 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best college towns in the Southeastern US for retirees?
Replies: 80
Views: 9203

Re: Best college towns in the Southeastern US for retirees?

Raleigh, Durham, Winston-Salem, and Columbia are cities where a university or two reside. Chapel Hill, Clemson, Athens, and Boone are what one would really call a "college town." Greenville, NC and Asheville are probably somewhere in the middle. I've heard that Greenville, SC is a much nicer place t...
by palaheel
Sun Aug 25, 2019 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth five year rule.
Replies: 7
Views: 1192

Re: Roth five year rule.

Silk McCue wrote:
Sat Aug 24, 2019 7:40 pm
palaheel wrote:
Sat Aug 24, 2019 6:55 pm
I have a related question. Does it matter if he opened the Roth in January 1999 or December 1999?
A tax year 1999 Roth could have been funded up to April 15 2000 and the clock would have started as of January 1, 1999.

Cheers
Thank you.
by palaheel
Sat Aug 24, 2019 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth five year rule.
Replies: 7
Views: 1192

Re: Roth five year rule.

I have a related question. Does it matter if he opened the Roth in January 1999 or December 1999?
by palaheel
Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...
Replies: 40
Views: 4847

Re: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...

Schwab charges 30 bucks per month. Wonder if there's would be sufficient I think t Rowe Price has a service at 0.5 bps? Schwab also has that cash drag built into the portfolio. It has to be considered a cost. I think it's still a good, low cost solution, but it's not just $30/month, either. The "ca...
by palaheel
Wed Aug 21, 2019 4:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...
Replies: 40
Views: 4847

Re: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...

tj wrote:
Wed Aug 21, 2019 2:11 am
Schwab charges 30 bucks per month. Wonder if there's would be sufficient I think t Rowe Price has a service at 0.5 bps?
Schwab also has that cash drag built into the portfolio. It has to be considered a cost. I think it's still a good, low cost solution, but it's not just $30/month, either.
by palaheel
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?
Replies: 278
Views: 28344

Re: Does it matter what type of college one goes to?

It's your last school that matters. If you want an MD from Harvard, your undergrad school has to be good enough to get you into Harvard Medical School. Beyond that, your undergrad doesn't matter, as no one will look beyond "Harvard MD." If your last school is your undergrad one, and you plan to ente...
by palaheel
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to read (and retain)?
Replies: 92
Views: 6127

Re: How to read (and retain)?

The brain science says that taking notes by hand is important. It helps retention even if you never look at the notes again. Evidently, typing them on a computer doesn't help, or at least not as much. And the brain knows best. (Now, if only we knew our brains better...) Here's a "Scientific America...
by palaheel
Mon Aug 19, 2019 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to read (and retain)?
Replies: 92
Views: 6127

Re: How to read (and retain)?

The brain science says that taking notes by hand is important. It helps retention even if you never look at the notes again. Evidently, typing them on a computer doesn't help, or at least not as much.
by palaheel
Fri Aug 16, 2019 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5696

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

Thanks for all the replies!! I knew this forum would be of help. As I said not sure of what I wanted to program more than just learn how to, but I got to thinking I would like to try to fool around with game making if that makes a difference to the recommendations. Sorry that I didn’t lead with tha...
by palaheel
Thu Aug 15, 2019 5:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5696

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

For Java: ... for a development environment, get Java 8 from Oracle. It's free for personal use. Yes, I'm aware of OpenJDK and Java 11; get Java 8 from Oracle. I'm curious why you recommend Java 8 from Oracle? It's the installation complexity with the OpenJDK stuff. For real product development, I ...
by palaheel
Wed Aug 14, 2019 7:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5696

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

I recommend a community college course, if spending a little money is not an issue. If you really want to go it yourself, For Java: book: google "How to think like a computer scientist java" There are free electronic versions. for a development environment, get Java 8 from Oracle. It's free for pers...
by palaheel
Mon Aug 12, 2019 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70
Replies: 329
Views: 29922

Re: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70

Using opensocialsecurity.com, I'm 65, wife is 64 and will be taking spousal benefits. Our optimum strategy is to file when I'm 68 and 8 months. If I assume a 9% reduction in 2034, the optimum strategy changes to age 66 and 9 months. So that's "significant" for you? Yes, two years of my life is sign...
by palaheel
Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70
Replies: 329
Views: 29922

Re: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70

3) if one thinks SS will reduce payments by 20+% in 2034, filing early is a no brainer. (Arguing the politics of it is a no-no, but it is a real assumption that should be modeled. And if your best estimate today is a ~23% reduction, then that is what you should use, but that 23% itself should be pr...
by palaheel
Sun Aug 11, 2019 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70
Replies: 329
Views: 29922

Re: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70

3) if one thinks SS will reduce payments by 20+% in 2034, filing early is a no brainer. (Arguing the politics of it is a no-no, but it is a real assumption that should be modeled. And if your best estimate today is a ~23% reduction, then that is what you should use, but that 23% itself should be pr...
by palaheel
Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with expired passports?
Replies: 22
Views: 2877

Re: What to do with expired passports?

We keep them for the memories.
by palaheel
Sat Aug 03, 2019 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Dropped our advisor--need portfolio review
Replies: 24
Views: 2462

Re: Dropped our advisor--need portfolio review

Thank you for publishing this. My "Hubby falls off planet" letter tells DW to choose the Vanguard, Fidelity or Schwab hybrid-robo service. This portfolio is exhibit A in why Bill Bernstein said "If you assume that every financial professional you interact with is a hardened criminal, you’ll do okay....
by palaheel
Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70
Replies: 329
Views: 29922

Re: Social Security -- Take it at 62, 67 or 70

At https://opensocialsecurity.com, play with decreasing the payout in 2034 a bit. Even a modest decrease or 6% changed my optimal retirement date significantly.
by palaheel
Tue Jul 30, 2019 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Request feedback for using an annuity to reduce sequence of returns risk
Replies: 19
Views: 2327

Re: Request feedback for using an annuity to reduce sequence of returns risk

Many many thanks to everyone. It's always comforting to hear "you don't have that problem." I guess I'm the Alfred E. Neuman opposite: "What, me NOT worry?" Taking your advice, I simulated DW's situation if I keeled over early. She seemed to do ok. She'd have to make a few lifestyle changes, like no...
by palaheel
Sun Jul 28, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Request feedback for using an annuity to reduce sequence of returns risk
Replies: 19
Views: 2327

Request feedback for using an annuity to reduce sequence of returns risk

I would appreciate feedback on this plan: Currently: Age 65, employed Spouse 64, not employed Pension, $28.8k/yr, no cola, 100% survivor payment 401(k): $650k Current gross income: $87k/yr I would like to retire in January, 2022, and at least replace my current income of $87k/yr. A bit more to have ...
by palaheel
Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2935

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

Make sure you stay with some flavor of Python 3. Python 2 is dying, and not strictly upward compatible. It can be unfortunately easy to get an old version.
by palaheel
Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2935

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

JetBrains also has PyCharm Edu, which has wonderful "see and do" tutorials.
by palaheel
Tue Jul 23, 2019 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2935

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

Also, the community edition of PyCharm is free from jetbrains.com. I think it's the most popular development environment.
by palaheel
Tue Jul 23, 2019 3:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2935

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

Google "how to think like a computer scientist python." It's a free online book with dead tree versions available for purchase, if you so choose.
by palaheel
Fri Jul 19, 2019 1:39 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Any Experience with Fidelity Hybrid Robo Advisor?
Replies: 2
Views: 306

Re: Any Experience with Fidelity Hybrid Robo Advisor?

tj wrote:
Fri Jul 19, 2019 1:20 pm
Does the hybrid use the fidelity go funds? If not, I would pass.
Thanks. I'll look into their typical portfolios.
by palaheel
Fri Jul 19, 2019 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Any Experience with Fidelity Hybrid Robo Advisor?
Replies: 2
Views: 306

Any Experience with Fidelity Hybrid Robo Advisor?

Does anyone have experience with Fidelity's hybrid robo advisor? They charge 0.5% AUM. I have a list of advisors DW should consider if I fall off the earth tomorrow, and Vanguard PAS and Schwab Intelligent Portfolios Premium are already on it. I wonder if I should add Fidelity. They have an office i...