Search found 212 matches

by NJdad6
Sun Feb 16, 2020 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought Consumer Reports lowest rated car...
Replies: 76
Views: 8824

Re: I bought Consumer Reports lowest rated car...

So less then the number of Sears shoppers. Sears is a retail store. This is a magazine. I see no correlation. Sears closes stores every few months. They will be gone in a few years if not sooner. CR has expanded their total readers. i do, sears is a dying brand that reminds me of the 70's just like...
by NJdad6
Fri Feb 14, 2020 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Protection Against Home Intruders
Replies: 194
Views: 12044

Re: Protection Against Home Intruders

Deleted
by NJdad6
Fri Feb 14, 2020 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: state income tax
Replies: 10
Views: 673

Re: state income tax

what kind of tradeoffs do states without income tax make? schools? or do they make up the lost income somewhere else? States without income tax do one of the following: - have higher than average total sales tax - have higher than average property taxes - provide lower than average services (school...
by NJdad6
Mon Feb 03, 2020 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $3 million the new rule of thumb?
Replies: 653
Views: 45684

Re: $3 million the new rule of thumb?

Just to add: In terms of baseline expenses, there is a lot of variability based on geography. For example, if you live in NJ or CT, you might have a paid off house but your taxes could be 20-25k per year. Live in the burbs: you need a car, so that has a price/cost. Those people may have baseline ex...
by NJdad6
Mon Jan 27, 2020 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First Visit to Keys and Marathon, FL
Replies: 25
Views: 2217

Re: First Visit to Keys and Marathon, FL

Hogfish grill is great. It is just over the bridge from Key West. You go through an industrial area to a nice marina. Good food right on the water. Manatees were swimming next to our table. It was pretty cool. Cold PBR on tap.
by NJdad6
Thu Jan 16, 2020 11:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AAU basketball, college scholarships and career options/choices
Replies: 59
Views: 2474

Re: AAU basketball, college scholarships and career options/choices

Some good and misleading info posted here. The numbers are correct. There are few D1 basketball scholarships. Being the best in the court is not good enough. You need to be one of the best in the state meaning first or second team all state. You also need exposure on a high ranked AAU team playing i...
by NJdad6
Thu Jan 09, 2020 9:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle
Replies: 340
Views: 19097

Re: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle

Folks, I am not interested in being in the middle class. A) The median US household income is around 60K. I am not interested in earning that much. I want to earn a multiple of that. B) The median household does not have a net worth anyway close to 1 million. Most of my neighbors do not have a net ...
by NJdad6
Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Large Purchase on Credit Card
Replies: 38
Views: 3210

Re: Large Purchase on Credit Card

Absolutely put on the card. You have additional warranty/loss protection and recourse if something goes wrong with the transaction. Probably won’t happen. I used Blue Nike in the past and they were great Also CALL YOUR CREDIT CARD COMPANY and let them know you will be making this transaction. Make s...
by NJdad6
Thu Jan 09, 2020 2:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle
Replies: 340
Views: 19097

Re: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle

you may not be familiar with the tristate. the jobs are here, in NYC and immediate suburbs. not an hour or two into PA, NY or NJ. issue is, i'm in a role that is transferable and have no real need for NYC. i am competing with finance, big law and tech professionals who probably out earn us to the c...
by NJdad6
Wed Jan 08, 2020 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle
Replies: 340
Views: 19097

Re: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle

you may not be familiar with the tristate. the jobs are here, in NYC and immediate suburbs. not an hour or two into PA, NY or NJ. issue is, i'm in a role that is transferable and have no real need for NYC. i am competing with finance, big law and tech professionals who probably out earn us to the c...
by NJdad6
Wed Jan 08, 2020 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle
Replies: 340
Views: 19097

Re: Living in a HCOL and making a middle class salary is a struggle

@ImmigrantSaver- Morristown There are towns closer in that are possibilities: Madison Chatham Maplewood West Orange Whippany Livingston Cedar Grove Again, not inexpensive, but possibilities. No way. Would take 90 minutes+ to commute to Westchester. Horrible way to live. I understand how the OP feel...
by NJdad6
Sun Jan 05, 2020 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please vote for a car option
Replies: 57
Views: 4326

Re: Please vote for a car option

I bought a new 2018 Sonata during April 2018. So far, I haven't had any trouble with it, but I only have 4K miles on it so far (I'm retired and don't drive much). The 5 year bumper-to-bumper warranty was a real selling point back then vs. the 3 year warranty on other cars. I looked at a 2018 Camry ...
by NJdad6
Sun Jan 05, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please vote for a car option
Replies: 57
Views: 4326

Re: Please vote for a car option

I'm surprised 5 isn't a more common answer. I'm biased. I purchased a 2009 Hyundai Sonata when my NW was low. My sister had the Camry and it was worlds better than my Sonata. However, it costs more and my Sonata did everything her Camry could do. The Sonata has since been handed down to my mom and ...
by NJdad6
Sat Jan 04, 2020 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please vote for a car option
Replies: 57
Views: 4326

Re: Please vote for a car option

I bought a new 2018 Sonata during April 2018. So far, I haven't had any trouble with it, but I only have 4K miles on it so far (I'm retired and don't drive much). The 5 year bumper-to-bumper warranty was a real selling point back then vs. the 3 year warranty on other cars. I looked at a 2018 Camry ...
by NJdad6
Fri Dec 13, 2019 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lodging in Rome
Replies: 19
Views: 1367

Re: Lodging in Rome

The area around Termini is convenient to the trains but not very nice (understatement) and far from the primary sights. I would not stay in that area. Don’t have specific recommendations but try to stay near the Spanish Steps. Great location in the middle of everything.
by NJdad6
Fri Dec 13, 2019 6:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are you giving (or asking) for Christmas?
Replies: 77
Views: 5349

Re: What are you giving (or asking) for Christmas?

Last year I bought a pair of enChroma glasses for my brother for Christmas. He's red/green colorblind (the most common form) and these glasses correct that somewhat. He loves his glasses. He loved seeing poinsettias last Christmas and he loved seeing the changing colors of the leaves on trees this ...
by NJdad6
Fri Dec 13, 2019 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hyundai Palisade - A good option?
Replies: 29
Views: 3264

Re: Hyundai Palisade - A good option?

Toyota or Honda. Then . . . . I believe the Hyundai and Kia are rated higher than either the Pilot or Highlander. Both are most likely better built with higher reliability expectations than the Honda. Probably on par with Toyota. I did check out the Palisade at a dealer while I was there for someth...
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 12, 2019 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hyundai Palisade - A good option?
Replies: 29
Views: 3264

Re: Hyundai Palisade - A good option?

Toyota or Honda. Then . . . . I believe the Hyundai and Kia are rated higher than either the Pilot or Highlander. Both are most likely better built with higher reliability expectations than the Honda. Probably on par with Toyota. I did check out the Palisade at a dealer while I was there for someth...
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 12, 2019 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [What TV Show Have You Recently Watched?]
Replies: 1714
Views: 191045

Re: [What TV Show Have You Recently Watched?]

vasu100 wrote:
Sun Dec 01, 2019 11:54 am
The Kaminsky Merhod on Netflix. Binge watched both seasons. Loved it. Big stars. Great writing. And I can relate to the storyline. Recommended
+1. Danny DeVito was great!
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 12, 2019 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Looking to replace original sliding patio door
Replies: 20
Views: 1359

Re: Looking to replace original sliding patio door

We replaced a builders grade model in our old house with Anderson sliders that looked like French Doors. Very good quality and were very happy with them. They had a great integrated locking system. Would definitely get again if needed. The installation is important so ask around for someplace reputa...
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 12, 2019 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are you giving (or asking) for Christmas?
Replies: 77
Views: 5349

Re: What are you giving (or asking) for Christmas?

Not a fan of the season. Should be like the olympics and done once every 4 years. :D Most of the adults don’t exchange. Maybe a bottle of wine or box of goodies. Wife and I don’t exchange either. One set of our parents expect gifts (have been trying to ween them off this for years). Have been modera...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you subscribe to Consumer Reports?
Replies: 57
Views: 3911

Re: Do you subscribe to Consumer Reports?

I used to. But I decided it wasn't worth it for me any longer. So I cancelled my print subscription, and signed up for digital. Then I dropped the digital access. Perhaps if furnishing a new home, replacing appliances, or buying a new vehicle I would find it useful. Those type purchases aren't freq...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Preventative car maintenance (oil changes) costs
Replies: 55
Views: 3767

Re: Preventative car maintenance (oil changes) costs

I think Amsoil is overpriced. Pennzoil Platinum is almost as good for $15 a jug at Pep Boys after rebate. Pair with a Fram Ultra (gold can) and you should be good. The Fram (arguably the best filter made according to some on that oil site listed above) is made for synthetic oil and can go 20,000 mil...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Friendly States
Replies: 397
Views: 27062

Re: Retirement Friendly States

It’s not so clear that higher taxes and spending leads to better services. DC spends almost $20,000 per student on its public schools but one reason we left is we would never send our child to a public school there. Where we live now spends roughly half per student and has a far superior school sys...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?
Replies: 143
Views: 11769

Re: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?

Here is another perspective: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/68/wr/mm6810a7.htm The cost of living is dramatically reduced if you're dead. There are a number of reasons to describe these results. Good and bad places in every state. I would hope that if I did move to one of the highlighted states I...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Friendly States
Replies: 397
Views: 27062

Re: Retirement Friendly States

That is absolutely true. But, depending on the service, in some cases you end up paying for it directly instead of through your taxes, so the net savings is not as much as people think. Maybe. But remember that not everyone desires the same level of services and so would not pay for them directly. ...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 09, 2019 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Friendly States
Replies: 397
Views: 27062

Re: Retirement Friendly States

as has been pointed out states have to fund services somehow. To be fair, some states offer far fewer (and/or lower quality) services. But in general, the tax base has to come from somewhere. That is absolutely true. But, depending on the service, in some cases you end up paying for it directly ins...
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 05, 2019 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?
Replies: 143
Views: 11769

Re: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?

Here is another perspective: https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/68/wr/mm6810a7.htm The cost of living is dramatically reduced if you're dead. There are a number of reasons to describe these results. Good and bad places in every state. I would hope that if I did move to one of the highlighted states I...
by NJdad6
Thu Dec 05, 2019 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?
Replies: 143
Views: 11769

Re: How much money can retirees really save by moving to a state without income tax?

We changed our domicile from Illinois to Florida. Instantly, the income tax we paid went away. Property tax for the Florida place is actually $5,000 lower than the Illinois place, but the value of the Florida place is double the Illinois place (and FL value increasing, IL declining). The sales tax ...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

I was just scrolling through the scholarship website at one of the schools DS was accepted to and it is very clear which scholarships are merit only and which have a need-based component. It specifically states that FAFSA needs to be filled out for the need based, but you would receive full conside...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

College applications and acceptance can be highly variable and more of an art then science. They attempt to apply scientific principles and best practices based upon past experiences. Times change and so does what society places and emphasis as “important”. Today’s valuable skill may be obsolete or...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

I was just scrolling through the scholarship website at one of the schools DS was accepted to and it is very clear which scholarships are merit only and which have a need-based component. It specifically states that FAFSA needs to be filled out for the need based, but you would receive full conside...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another roofing question - roofing color/surface?
Replies: 19
Views: 1297

Re: Another roofing question - roofing color/surface?

It is a common combination. Drive around the neighborhood and try to find another house with that combo. If you have a lot of brick houses it should be easy to find.
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how much to tip the cleaning lady
Replies: 76
Views: 5296

Re: how much to tip the cleaning lady

I always give the cost of one session. My housekeeper makes $120 for each session; she comes every other week. I give her $120 at Christmas. I gave it to her yesterday so that she'll have it to spend well in advance of the holiday. Same here. $120 every other week so I tip the cost of one appointme...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: how much to tip the cleaning lady
Replies: 76
Views: 5296

Re: how much to tip the cleaning lady

I always give the cost of one session. My housekeeper makes $120 for each session; she comes every other week. I give her $120 at Christmas. I gave it to her yesterday so that she'll have it to spend well in advance of the holiday. Same here. $120 every other week so I tip the cost of one appointme...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another roofing question - roofing color/surface?
Replies: 19
Views: 1297

Re: Another roofing question - roofing color/surface?

Charcoal gray/weathered black. Will match the brick (actually looks great with brick). You can paint shutters and/or door to match. They look great through their life and hide stains well. They might make your attic a little hotter in summer but it will be minimal. As others said the staining is mol...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the safest position in a minivan to put car-seats.
Replies: 26
Views: 1524

Re: What is the safest position in a minivan to put car-seats.

100% middle row. 3rd row is the LEAST safe place in the vehicle. There was a study a few years back that support this. Very little protection against a strong rear collision. Think about it. The back of the seat is only a foot or less from the rear window and hatch. There is very little structure to...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kia Sportage
Replies: 19
Views: 1753

Re: Kia Sportage

Virtually every bit of information over the past 5+ years (reviews, customer feedback and quality reports) show that KIA/Hyundai are on par with Honda and Toyota. In fact, they are rated significantly higher than Honda for initial quality and reliability. From personal experience I would rate KIA/Hy...
by NJdad6
Wed Dec 04, 2019 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

Good question. A little of everything I suppose. Mostly the cost associated with sending children to school. What is not sustainable will not sustain. Politics are OT here, but I think I’m within guidelines to say that the current costs for college are not sustainable, and thus will have to change....
by NJdad6
Tue Dec 03, 2019 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

My children are still of grade school level, but after reading this thread , well it's pretty depressing! What about it is depressing? The arguments about engineering vs. liberal arts, as though either one is right and best for everyone? Or the wisdom that smart and motivated students can do well w...
by NJdad6
Tue Dec 03, 2019 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

Last few years and still looking. I have done extensive research on this. Merit awards are strictly based on merit. Anything that incorporates need based is financial aid no matter what they are being called. There are still a lot of merit awards available for high achieving students even at very h...
by NJdad6
Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

Re-read the OP's post. He asks about a school that costs 80k/year and kids that are "good but not great" students. He is in the 35% marginal tax bracket, so a good earner with (presumably) a decent net worth. Given those facts, I can feel pretty comfortable saying that the kids are not going to get...
by NJdad6
Tue Dec 03, 2019 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

Last few years and still looking. I have done extensive research on this. Merit awards are strictly based on merit. Anything that incorporates need based is financial aid no matter what they are being called. There are still a lot of merit awards available for high achieving students even at very h...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 02, 2019 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

Confusing. Thought merit scholarships did not depend on financial assets/income? Are you talking about elite schools only? It's truly astounding to see how many merit scholarships are actually "need aware" merit. In general, the more elite the school, the less likely any merit is awarded without fa...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 02, 2019 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airline overhead bins...do you think they're assigned?
Replies: 135
Views: 6545

Re: Airline overhead bins...do you think they're assigned?

HomeStretch wrote:
Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:20 pm
Overhead bins are on a first come basis. Buy a good pair of headphones to ignore other passengers when necessary.
+1. You were 100% in the right. I also board early and put my bag in the bin across from my seat so I can see it when someone is in the bin.
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 02, 2019 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

By definition Merit awards are NOT financial aid. They are awards based on performance/qualifications. Many of the higher rated schools do not offer Merit awards at all, only financial aid. This includes the ivies and at least a few others. Meaning if someone says they got a scholarship to Yale the...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 02, 2019 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

I think liberal arts degree do not require the discipline and excellence they once did. STEM degrees mean you know something nowadays. Liberal arts degrees nowadays - and my degree was in Philosophy - mean that you spent four years and a quarter million dollars to get a piece of paper. I don't want...
by NJdad6
Mon Dec 02, 2019 3:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High income and college costs question
Replies: 317
Views: 14621

Re: High income and college costs question

At your income/asset level, you will not qualify for merit scholarships. I am paying full freight at an elite private university for a kid with 35 ACTs who was valedictorian of his HS class and had tons of extracurriculars. Meanwhile, my son’s roommate is on a full-ride ROTC scholarship. It’s a maj...
by NJdad6
Sun Dec 01, 2019 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amex cost to restaurant
Replies: 41
Views: 4497

Re: Amex cost to restaurant

Typically Amex is more expensive however it depends on the card processor the restaurant is using. The merchant works with them, not Amex (or Visa/MC). The rate is based on the network not the issuer. Meaning your card will be treated as an Amex card. A WF Visa card would be treated as a Visa transa...
by NJdad6
Sun Dec 01, 2019 3:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirement Friendly States
Replies: 397
Views: 27062

Re: Retirement Friendly States

Depends. There are states that are very tax friendly that you couldn't pay me to live in. I'll be staying in Massachusetts. +1, staying in N.J. :D Yikes! We are counting the days until we can leave NJ. It was nice while we are here but the high cost of living, taxes, and poorly run government is wh...