Search found 473 matches

by GmanJeff
Fri Oct 11, 2019 3:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: duckduckgo
Replies: 31
Views: 3770

Re: duckduckgo

Consider using a VPN, which obfuscates the origination point of your activity. Unless you sign in to Google, it will not know which user you are.
by GmanJeff
Tue Oct 08, 2019 6:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help Me Decide on a New Vehicle?
Replies: 63
Views: 4491

Re: Help Me Decide on a New Vehicle?

sk2101 wrote:
Mon Oct 07, 2019 8:29 pm
Lexus RX350, which is a more luxurious version of the Highlander.
This is likely to be a reliable option which meets the OP's desire for a larger vehicle, but the styling of the front end is polarizing, to put it politely.
by GmanJeff
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help Me Decide on a New Vehicle?
Replies: 63
Views: 4491

Re: Help Me Decide on a New Vehicle?

The RAV4 is generally characterized as a compact crossover SUV, and since you'd like more room the next logical step up would be to something typically described as mid-size. Depending on your budget, that could include possibilities like the Toyota Highlander and Honda Pilot, or European options li...
by GmanJeff
Mon Oct 07, 2019 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?
Replies: 21
Views: 1418

Re: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?

I'm afraid I disagree with you. I think going with two "simplistic" rules will get you close enough. Certainly closer than getting expensive advice tailored to your advisers pocketbook rather than yours. There are few people who couldn't be serviced with a lazy 3-fund portfolio and age-5or10 in bon...
by GmanJeff
Mon Oct 07, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?
Replies: 21
Views: 1418

Re: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?

I see what you're saying, but making the requirements to "enter" Boglehead nation too high will scare people off. It might have scared me off in 2013. I don't think it's a bad idea for someone (like me) to take a middle of the road rule of thumb (like age-5 in bonds) and get started. If you told me...
by GmanJeff
Mon Oct 07, 2019 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?
Replies: 21
Views: 1418

Re: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?

What caused you to set your asset allocation originally? What has changed to cause a change in your thinking? If your income seems fairly secure, you may indeed be too conservative if you anticipate a conventional retirement horizon with no major unplanned expenses on the way. An exercise like this...
by GmanJeff
Mon Oct 07, 2019 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?
Replies: 21
Views: 1418

Re: Asset Allocation - retirement date versus age?

What caused you to set your asset allocation originally? What has changed to cause a change in your thinking? If your income seems fairly secure, you may indeed be too conservative if you anticipate a conventional retirement horizon with no major unplanned expenses on the way. An exercise like this ...
by GmanJeff
Sat Sep 28, 2019 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Road Scholar: Unannounced Itinerary Changes
Replies: 26
Views: 2817

Re: Road Scholar: Unannounced Itinerary Changes

Has anyone had a similar experience with Road Scholar? Any advice on how to approach this when they do respond? Unless their contract says they can arbitrarily change the itinerary, sue them in small claims court. If you can manage your finance you can read up on how to file and pursue. Much easier...
by GmanJeff
Fri Sep 27, 2019 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services
Replies: 8
Views: 881

Re: Vanguard Personal Advisor Services

Use the search function with key words "PAS" and "Personal Advisor Services" for threads addressing this topic. You'll find plenty of pronouncements in uninformed postings by people who do not use the service, as well from others, so read critically. One frequent misconception you'll see is the asse...
by GmanJeff
Thu Sep 26, 2019 6:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard advisor
Replies: 22
Views: 2070

Re: Vanguard advisor

I would not be surprised that a desire for a 'moderately conservative" portfolio provides returns in line with what you're experiencing. You could construct your own hypothetical portfolio with a similar tilt towards risk aversion, and see what returns it would have provided. PAS constructs portfoli...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 23, 2019 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Physical activity suggestions for a non athletic youth
Replies: 189
Views: 8572

Re: Physical activity suggestions for a non athletic youth

1. Boy Scouts. Hiking, high adventure, and other physical activities which promote fitness and health, along with leadership training and the acquisition of other life skills like cooking, first aid, cooperation with a group, and so on. 2. Alternative martial arts which either complement or replace ...
by GmanJeff
Sat Sep 21, 2019 1:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Separate laptop for dealing with finances?
Replies: 39
Views: 2920

Re: Separate laptop for dealing with finances?

I use one. In and of itself it's not a complete safeguard against all possible attack vectors, but it's part of a comprehensive defense in depth, which includes a range of cyber hygiene practices and technologies. Using a dedicated machine which is not used for email or general Web browsing does eli...
by GmanJeff
Fri Sep 20, 2019 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How hard is it to get into college?
Replies: 167
Views: 9899

Re: How hard is it really to get into college?

As you undoubtedly know, colleges and universities vary widely in selectivity. The counsel to provide your daughter is to remind her that she will have realistic chances of admission at some schools and not at others, and those chances will vary with the strength of her qualifications and how differ...
by GmanJeff
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best places to live to raise a family (cost doesn't matter)
Replies: 95
Views: 8744

Re: Best places to live to raise a family (cost doesn't matter)

Geneva, Switzerland. The International School is excellent and offers instruction in English. The city has an international airport and good train connections to the rest of Switzerland and to Europe generally, so travel is easy. The country is stable, well-developed, and safe, if somewhat xenophobi...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 16, 2019 4:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Noise
Replies: 31
Views: 2944

Re: Noise

Speak to an attorney who specializes in civil litigation.
by GmanJeff
Sun Sep 15, 2019 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Improving Lighting in a Dimly Lit Condo
Replies: 26
Views: 1574

Re: Improving Lighting in a Dimly Lit Condo

I think it depends on what you're trying the achieve. Daylight levels of brightness give you great visibility but may be too bright at times. I use that level of brightness in closets and work/storage rooms where I want to be able to see colors accurately and I need good illumination generally. Soft...
by GmanJeff
Sat Sep 14, 2019 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anybody Know Anything About Scooters?
Replies: 26
Views: 5326

Re: Anybody Know Anything About Scooters?

A major issue with smaller scooters is their inability to keep up with traffic, which increases the chances of being hit from behind and limits a rider's ability to evade other vehicles. So, if you opt for a scooter, it might be best to get one which has sufficient power to keep up with the rest of ...
by GmanJeff
Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have a mobility scooter?
Replies: 3
Views: 392

Re: Anyone have a mobility scooter?

Broken Man may be on the right track. Most mobility scooters/power chairs are meant for smooth surfaces rather than for uneven terrain, and their range is typically relatively limited. A cautionary note about ATVs, though - they can attain much higher speeds, and their ability to move over rough gro...
by GmanJeff
Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Laptop for aging parents
Replies: 43
Views: 2601

Re: Laptop for aging parents

They might like one of the new iPads, coupled to a keyboard, if their needs are as modest as you describe them.
by GmanJeff
Thu Sep 12, 2019 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard PAS initial consultation
Replies: 7
Views: 1299

Re: Vanguard PAS initial consultation

The initial meeting is intended, in part, to allow PAS to develop a portfolio proposal for you. To do that, you'll want to provide your financial goals, time lines, and risk tolerance, as well as some description of assets you might not be planning to place under management (such as TSP assets), as ...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 09, 2019 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Piano keyboard suggestion
Replies: 21
Views: 1648

Re: Piano keyboard suggestion

They are called "weighted keys". Surf the product pages for manufacturers like Yamaha, Korg, Casio, and Roland to see what's available; for a sense of pricing, you can check on-line sellers like musiciansfriend.com. More expensive models meant for performance use rather than just for individual prac...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 09, 2019 5:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years
Replies: 38
Views: 3874

Re: Hard Life Changes - Help With Looking For Employment After 10 Years

What income do you require? Will that change if you are willing to relocate to a lower cost of living area? Is your spouse likely to be able to obtain replacement employment where you are or elsewhere and, if she does work, do your personal income requirements change? Do you want to run your own bus...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me out - What am I doing wrong - Job Hunt related
Replies: 70
Views: 5018

Re: Help me out - What am I doing wrong - Job Hunt related

Maybe the interviewers could tell you weren’t enthused about the jobs. I know a big factor in my offers is “does this candidate actually want to work here?” This may well be the issue. Consider how you are responding to interview questions about why you're seeking the new position. The companies yo...
by GmanJeff
Sun Sep 08, 2019 5:05 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: need help with strategy to sort out parent's finances
Replies: 28
Views: 3492

Re: need help with strategy to sort out parent's finances

Before making changes, you probably need to have a good understanding of your parents' goals for their investments, their tax situation, and their risk tolerance. It would be helpful to know the reason for owning the properties they don't live in, as it's difficult to offer counsel about what to do ...
by GmanJeff
Thu Sep 05, 2019 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?
Replies: 180
Views: 7235

Re: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?

As a parent of a 3 and a 6 year-old I can't imagine not making sure they weren't sitting next to a parent on a flight. I think it's irresponsible to impose on other passengers, but I also think it's irresponsible to potentially put my young kids in a situation where they're alone with strangers for...
by GmanJeff
Wed Sep 04, 2019 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alumni donations to help children get into college
Replies: 64
Views: 5408

Re: Alumni donations to help children get into college

Legacy status usually matters, but often only if the applicant has applied on an irrevocable Early Decision basis. If the applicant did not apply for Early Decision, the institution will assume s/he is not committed to attending/is not really all that strongly interested, and legacy status in the ad...
by GmanJeff
Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to collaborate on net worth/retirement goals?
Replies: 16
Views: 1840

Re: Best way to collaborate on net worth/retirement goals?

It's quite easy on the Vanguard site to enter ANY investments, in the "Outside Investments" section. I have all our assets showing in Vanguard in this way, including an HSA and my wife's retirement accounts that are held at Fidelity Net Benefits. You can also enter things like bank balances. Vangua...
by GmanJeff
Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Any 1811 on this forum???
Replies: 11
Views: 1502

Re: Any 1811 on this forum???

Ask, and I'm sure you'll get responses from your target audience. Feel free to send a PM, if preferred.
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 02, 2019 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best college towns in the Southeastern US for retirees?
Replies: 80
Views: 8636

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

Williamsburg, VA, home to The College of William and Mary, the second-oldest university in the nation, and to Colonial Williamsburg. Several communities particularly suited to retirees are located in the area, including Ford's Colony, Governor's Land at Two Rivers, Kingsmill on the James, and Coloni...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 02, 2019 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help With New Car Purchase - Macan S versus...
Replies: 57
Views: 4917

Re: Help With New Car Purchase - Macan S versus...

] Doesn't sound like the OP's wife is really concerned about performance, so not sure how this is particularly relevant. The OP lists a Porsche, a AMG, and higher engine variants of non-M BMWs as vehicles he is considering, with prices reaching to the levels one could expect to pay for those I list...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 02, 2019 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help With New Car Purchase - Macan S versus...
Replies: 57
Views: 4917

Re: Help With New Car Purchase - Macan S versus...

BMW X3M or MB GLC 63 AMG. Either will post better numbers than a Macan Turbo, maybe even the newly announced 2020 model which has yet to make an appearance for testing; the Turbo with Performance Package power upgrade has not been announced so it's unclear whether it will even be offered going forwa...
by GmanJeff
Mon Sep 02, 2019 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard money market
Replies: 5
Views: 1066

Re: Vanguard money market

Compare returns. My money market account at my credit union is paying about what Vanguard is on cash. In those circumstances whatever is more convenient may be the better election.
by GmanJeff
Sun Sep 01, 2019 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Avoid grandson poverty
Replies: 76
Views: 9473

Re: Avoid grandson poverty

One potential issue involves what might, without more information, be disregard for the parents' prerogatives and preferences in all this. The parents may, for example, feel strongly that giving the giving of money to their child is not in their child's best interests, possibly for one or more of th...
by GmanJeff
Sat Aug 31, 2019 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anyone have a dishwasher they recommend?
Replies: 47
Views: 2907

Re: Does anyone have a dishwasher they recommend?

I recently purchased a high end Bosch and am happy with it. It does not get dishes completely dry when using the "automatic" setting, but does when in "normal" mode. It holds less than my 10-year old previous unit, so I run it a little more often, but I expect it is more efficient with energy and wa...
by GmanJeff
Thu Aug 22, 2019 5:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best undergrad majors ahead of Law school?
Replies: 75
Views: 3728

Re: Best undergrad majors ahead of Law school?

I agree with those who suggest philosophy, not because it will matter in the admissions decision but because the writing and analytical skills involved are very helpful once admitted and beyond. The caveat is that philosophy is a classic liberal arts-type major, with little direct vocational applica...
by GmanJeff
Thu Aug 22, 2019 2:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Change to Personal Adviser Services
Replies: 29
Views: 2768

Re: Vanguard Change to Personal Adviser Services

The other postings in this thread are mostly from individuals who do not use the service, including a former employee in an unknown role within Vanguard, who have strongly held views about it. A search of the forum for postings from actual PAS clients can provide other perspectives. As the former e...
by GmanJeff
Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...
Replies: 40
Views: 4631

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

I dare say many clients consider the fee to be relatively trivial if returns and risk are improved even a little over do-it-yourself or more expensive alternatives. :confused How would you know this? Because the conclusion follows from the premise, making the statement valid if the premise is valid...
by GmanJeff
Thu Aug 22, 2019 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Change to Personal Adviser Services
Replies: 29
Views: 2768

Re: Vanguard Change to Personal Adviser Services

Chip Munk, thank you for your post. It is reassuring that the change evidently has to do with Flagship Services and not with Vanguard Personal Advisory Service. It sounds like if you are a VPAS client that you still get to keep your advisor. It would be good to hear from other VPAS clients about th...
by GmanJeff
Mon Aug 19, 2019 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I'm signing up for Vanguard PAS...
Replies: 40
Views: 4631

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

The OP did not ask "should we use PAS", although most responses so far are answering that unasked question. In response to the actual question, I'd offer that the policy cited seems to have no downside. It may curb impulsiveness, but in the end the client always controls their assets and can do as h...
by GmanJeff
Mon Aug 12, 2019 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Travel Insurance Caveats?
Replies: 19
Views: 996

Re: Travel Insurance Caveats?

It is like other forms of insurance in that it covers what the contract specifies, and nothing else. If you want "cancel for any reason" coverage, you'll pay a lot more but will have very broad coverage. Be conscious of the dollar reimbursement limits for covered situations, especially when trying t...
by GmanJeff
Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used car purchase, non daily driver, new teen driver, thoughts please?
Replies: 28
Views: 1473

Re: Used car purchase, non daily driver, new teen driver, thoughts please?

BMWs are expensive to maintain, so if you're trying to economize that's probably not the way to go. Minis are not known for reliability, and are not very big, either, which likely makes one less than ideal for your use case. AWD wagons are a small part of the market, so by focusing on that type of v...
by GmanJeff
Sun Aug 11, 2019 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle Air horn
Replies: 29
Views: 2453

Re: Vehicle Air horn

In my experience, electronic (non-compressor) and compressor air horns definitely get attention from the distracted and inattentive, not only due to being louder than the average stock factory horn, but because they provide a different and unexpected sound. They can be quite entertaining due to the ...
by GmanJeff
Sat Aug 10, 2019 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Laid Off - Want to Retire / Am I OK
Replies: 145
Views: 18846

Re: Laid Off - Want to Retire / Am I OK

A few weeks in and all these replies have been great for context. A couple of updates and one question. 3) Not sure I want to return to work because that will require relocation at my level. What are ideas for finding consulting or other forms of part time work, if I decide at some point I want to ...
by GmanJeff
Mon Aug 05, 2019 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Flagship service [using PAS] vs Fee only advisor
Replies: 11
Views: 1002

Re: Vanguard Flagship service [using PAS] vs Fee only advisor

You could move your Fidelity assets to Vanguard and have PAS manage your portfolio as a whole. PAS would thereby have complete visibility into all your investment assets, enabling a more refined asset allocation for your objectives, timelines, and risk tolerance. As the assets you ask PAS to manage ...
by GmanJeff
Thu Aug 01, 2019 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Johannesburg, VicFalls, Capetown suggestions
Replies: 10
Views: 556

Re: Johannesburg, VicFalls, Capetown suggestions

Do your due diligence re crime in the areas you propose to visit, and be prepared accordingly. Cape Town is particularly notorious in that regard.
by GmanJeff
Wed Jul 31, 2019 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: "How active management survives"
Replies: 26
Views: 3744

Re: "How active management survives"

I'd suggest that active management appeals to some investors because actively managed funds can outperform; even after their higher expenses, they do not all lag behind index funds. It's no simple feat to identify which funds, of any type, will outperform relative to a given index or other benchmark...
by GmanJeff
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vacation real estate investments
Replies: 8
Views: 820

Re: Vacation real estate investments

On the face of it, this seems like a bad idea. You'll be in a business partnership with a personal friend, which brings with it all the interpersonal dynamics and potential for conflict that implies. You're speaking of investing in a small number of properties in what sounds like the same area, so t...
by GmanJeff
Mon Jul 29, 2019 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a rental property a good way to diversify my income to protect against job loss and / or stock market decline?
Replies: 21
Views: 1771

Re: Is a rental property a good way to diversify my income to protect against job loss and / or stock market decline?

A significant issue with rental property is the lack of diversification. For individuals, It's a usually a single narrow asset type (houses or maybe condos, rather than commercial or apartment buildings), expenses can be unpredictable, cash flow can be unpredictable, and the property (ies) is/are su...
by GmanJeff
Sat Jul 27, 2019 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RESOLVED: Non-lethal alternatives to firearms to defend against home invasions in Florida
Replies: 113
Views: 6577

Re: Non-lethal alternatives to firearms to defend against home invasions in Florida

Seems to me the only good non-lethal alternative against a home invasion is making sure the perps never get inside in the first place. Once they are in, non-lethal alternatives all seem like a really bad idea. Except for a big protective dog. You gotta be prepared to take the invader(s) out. This. ...
by GmanJeff
Mon Jul 22, 2019 4:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What two or three financial things to do to wind up wealthy regardless if you make numerous other financial mistakes?
Replies: 85
Views: 9201

Re: What two or three financial things to do to wind up wealthy regardless if you make numerous other financial mistakes

Spend less than your income. The less you spend relative to your income, the faster you'll increase your wealth, and the wealthier you may be. The second factor is to sensibly invest the difference over a long period of time, while not taking on excessive risk which may destroy your accumulated weal...