Search found 42 matches

by regularguy455
Sun Oct 14, 2018 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY Home Security: SimpliSafe vs Ooma vs Nest vs Ring vs Other?
Replies: 31
Views: 3674

Re: DIY Home Security: SimpliSafe vs Ooma vs Nest vs Ring vs Other?

I use a monitored system through Abode and integrate it with external Blink XT cameras using IFTTT. Very happy with it. The Abode internal camera isn’t great but that’s OK with my external cams.
by regularguy455
Sun Oct 07, 2018 9:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are your strategies when shopping for a house?
Replies: 38
Views: 3291

Re: What are your strategies when shopping for a house?

Redfin made the home buying process painless. It pulls directly from MLS, allowed setup of showings through the app, had nearly all paperwork electronic and we got several thousand back at closing.
by regularguy455
Fri Oct 05, 2018 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina
Replies: 205
Views: 13625

Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Compared to SoCal (where my S-I-L lives) I would say NC has SoCal beat hands down in affordability of homes, culture (especially high culture), parking facilities and crime. You totally had me until "high culture!" What the heck is high culture and how could NC ever have anything remotely resemblin...
by regularguy455
Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tackling Disney World - Discount on tickets?
Replies: 65
Views: 3657

Re: Tackling Disney World - Discount on tickets?

This is where using credit card points comes in handy. That could cover flights, transportation and off-site hotels. If you use Chase UR points, you can still use them to cover park tickets and hotel packages.
by regularguy455
Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina
Replies: 205
Views: 13625

Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

4nwestsaylng wrote:
Thu Oct 04, 2018 6:43 pm
It really is a lifestyle decision.If you want better schools and environment for your children, a move to a colder climate is probably the best. That is just reality.
???
by regularguy455
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina
Replies: 205
Views: 13625

Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

OP, I think you need to consider culture fit. I’ve seen folks move to Raleigh that loved it or hated it. Any of those cities will be VERY different than California.
by regularguy455
Wed Sep 19, 2018 5:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WSJ print edition renwal time - any discounts?
Replies: 68
Views: 4529

Re: WSJ print edition renwal time - any discounts?

Was paying full freight for digital ($40/mo). Called and asked for a better rate. Instantly granted rate of $14/mo for 6 months. Took 15 minutes.
by regularguy455
Fri Aug 17, 2018 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?
Replies: 89
Views: 5718

Re: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?

Has he considered becoming a Data Scientist? Python and R are usable skills in this field. +1 Also SQL. Definite +1 here. If he knows R + SQL + Python there is big time upside doing data science. The core technology is industry agnostic so he could work anywhere. There's nearly unlimited demand for...
by regularguy455
Sun Jul 29, 2018 11:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LTC strategy: make health your hobby
Replies: 38
Views: 3106

Re: LTC strategy: make health your hobby

Ok maybe the 70s is a stretch these days, but how many people do you know in their 80s or 90s that have rich and fulfilling lives? I’d be willing to bet many do not.
by regularguy455
Sun Jul 29, 2018 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LTC strategy: make health your hobby
Replies: 38
Views: 3106

Re: LTC strategy: make health your hobby

Walk every day. Do more if at all possible. Hate to say it, but I assume no intelligent person smokes. Other than that, moderation in all things, unless your particular medical conditions require abstinence. The other poster had an interesting point. Smoking or staying relatively unhealthy likely e...
by regularguy455
Fri Jul 27, 2018 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Routine Blood work with high deductible insurance
Replies: 25
Views: 1849

Re: Routine Blod work with high deductible insurance

Doesn’t an annual physical include routine blood work?
by regularguy455
Thu Jul 26, 2018 9:18 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: “The China Hustle”
Replies: 3
Views: 608

Re: “The China Hustle”

Nevermind, link was posted above. Deleted.
by regularguy455
Mon Jul 23, 2018 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Engineers come in.
Replies: 108
Views: 8150

Re: Engineers come in.

A calculus course is not an engineering course. He does of course need to have a firm grounding in it for ME. He could also switch to another engineering degree if calc isn’t his favorite thing. It seems that he is just starting his university adventure and is taking the pre-reqs for later courses ...
by regularguy455
Mon Jul 23, 2018 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Engineers come in.
Replies: 108
Views: 8150

Re: Engineers come in.

Did my BS in Civil Engineering from large State U. The core curriculum for the first 2-2.5 years is the same across CE/ME/AE (not sure about EE). It was a heavy focus on Calculus, Physics, Differential Equations, Thermodynamics, etc. I recall getting through Calculus 3 and thinking I made it through...
by regularguy455
Tue Jul 10, 2018 11:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which advanced tech is necessary in cars?
Replies: 86
Views: 4919

Re: Which advanced tech is necessary in cars?

With the older crowd on this forum, I would definitely recommend the backup camera and blind spot monitoring. Both are nearly standard on all new cars and make it significantly easier to prevent an accident. It’s important to keep in mind that your risk of being in an accident increases as you age. ...
by regularguy455
Mon Jul 02, 2018 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why visa
Replies: 55
Views: 5832

Re: Why visa

The cost of the visa transaction fee is built into prices. If you use cash, you are paying extra (typically 2% more you’d get from a cash back credit card). Ironically this means people who use cash (read: most vulnerable) are subsidizing those who don’t.
by regularguy455
Fri Jun 29, 2018 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Determining "Fair Market Value" for a home
Replies: 14
Views: 1171

Re: Determining "Fair Market Value" for a home

The cheap way is to take an ensemble approach and average across several different real estate websites. That should give you a rough idea.

A licensed appraisal would be definitive.
by regularguy455
Mon Jun 25, 2018 7:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: House seller fudging disclosure re: buried oil tank?
Replies: 36
Views: 4352

Re: House seller fudging disclosure re: buried oil tank?

In my state, they typically fill them with concrete. The process involves getting a soil sample and submitting paperwork to the Department of Environmental Quality to verify it was done properly. You might want to see if there is a record somewhere. But ultimately I don’t think it’s that big of a de...
by regularguy455
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most vs. Least satisfying home impovements
Replies: 35
Views: 3799

Re: Most vs. Least satisfying home impovements

Most: Professional landscaping, building my own pergola, Plantation shutters

Least: Mulching plant beds
by regularguy455
Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chipmunk Repellent?
Replies: 36
Views: 2969

Re: Chipmunk Repellent?

If you're looking for a humane solution, might want to look at motion sensor sprinklers. It has kept deer and rabbits out of our plants.
by regularguy455
Sat Jun 09, 2018 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Advice You Never Took
Replies: 100
Views: 14392

Re: Best Advice You Never Took

Not looking into Bitcoin more seriously when I encountered it. I was busy studying for my engineering classes so when I tried setting up a miner and hit a snag, I never finished.

7 years later I never used any of those engineering skills.
by regularguy455
Thu Jun 07, 2018 9:26 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill
Replies: 17
Views: 2917

Re: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill

triceratop wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 6:26 pm
yeahman wrote:
Wed Jun 06, 2018 5:44 pm
Now I know what new Excel spreadsheet I'm making tonight.
This one? viewtopic.php?f=10&t=242137

At least this has actual data you can play with and verify.
Great spreadsheet! Looks like you did all the thinking for us already. Thank you.
by regularguy455
Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill
Replies: 17
Views: 2917

Re: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill

That thread appears to discuss the difference in ER between funds. This article quantifies tracking error and taxes which I have not seen on this forum as a consideration for fund selection. Those issues account for significantly more cost than the ER alone.
by regularguy455
Tue Jun 05, 2018 9:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill
Replies: 17
Views: 2917

Re: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill

Not sure why people think this article is a waste of time. It brings up the fact that there are non-zero differences in SP500 ETFs that, over the long term, are significantly larger than the ER. That’s news to me.
by regularguy455
Tue Jun 05, 2018 8:22 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill
Replies: 17
Views: 2917

[WSJ] What Really Matters for an Index fund: Tax Skill

Not sure if this is behind a paywall, but here's a direct link: https://www.wsj.com/articles/what-really-matters-for-an-index-fund-tax-skill-1528078020 There seems to be a small, but real difference between SP500 index funds based on the ability of management to handle inflows and outflows of capita...
by regularguy455
Sat May 12, 2018 6:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lucrative careers?
Replies: 467
Views: 43754

Re: Lucrative careers?

If you have an affinity towards computers, definitely take a look at computer science or data science. You will easily hit $100k with a good pedigree and some skill. Lots of opportunities in both fields and you can get in and out of school quickly for a reasonable price. They are also very broad so ...
by regularguy455
Tue Apr 10, 2018 12:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: PPO vs. HDHP w/HSA for Pregnancy decision
Replies: 16
Views: 1410

Re: PPO vs. HDHP w/HSA for Pregnancy decision

Might want to look into indemnity insurance through someone like AFLAK if it’s offered through an employer. Ours pays up to $2000 for birth. It also requires having coverage for at least 10 months (to prevent people signing up while pregnant).
by regularguy455
Sun Apr 01, 2018 8:25 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: China Hustle Movie
Replies: 35
Views: 5136

China Hustle Movie

I read a few articles about it in Marketwatch (https://www.marketwatch.com/story/finance-documentary-the-china-hustle-revisits-chinese-reverse-mergers-and-activist-short-sellers-2018-03-30) and in Forbes (https://www.forbes.com/sites/markhughes/2018/03/30/review-the-china-hustle/). I haven’t seen it...
by regularguy455
Mon Feb 12, 2018 10:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Blockchain Technology Companies and Funds/ETFs/Futures
Replies: 20
Views: 2315

Re: Blockchain Technology Companies and Funds/ETFs/Futures

Sit tight. This technology is young and will be adopted by big business in time. Big companies have the funding and scale to make wide spread adoption happen. IMHO, adoption, not technological innovation, is the name of the game. Cryptocurrencies filled a void, but there are many industries where th...
by regularguy455
Sun Jan 21, 2018 12:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard will use blockchain to share index data
Replies: 56
Views: 6765

Re: Vanguard will use blockchain to share index data

The closest comparison is if you walk to your cable/wireless provider (verizon for me) and pay in cash. However, those USD are issued by the Federal Reserve (centralized government) rather than a decentralized system like bitcoin. If I pay Verizon via MasterCard, there are third party fees. Bitcoin...
by regularguy455
Mon Jan 15, 2018 12:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Consulting side gig while at mega corp
Replies: 25
Views: 2505

Re: Consulting side gig while at mega corp

Thanks for all the thoughtful responses. From the way I wrote the original post, you can probably tell I am on the fence. Regarding my leverage comment, the example given of a database designer creating databases for another company is not far off. Mega corp may have an issue with me doing this on t...
by regularguy455
Sat Jan 13, 2018 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Consulting side gig while at mega corp
Replies: 25
Views: 2505

Consulting side gig while at mega corp

I have a good, stable job at mega corp with about 5 years of experience there. I am about to be promoted and will likely get a 7-10% raise and will be eligible for a 5% bonus. I am also going to participate in a 3-4 year management development program starting sometime this year. That said, one of m...
by regularguy455
Sat Dec 30, 2017 10:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your travel tips for Vienna and Budapest?
Replies: 23
Views: 1631

Re: Your travel tips for Vienna and Budapest?

I really enjoyed the military history museum in Vienna. Had a lot of interesting historical artifacts in amazing condition.

DW and I also went on a tour to Hallstatt. Beautiful landscape, but it was an all day trip.
by regularguy455
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 450,000 American Airlines MILES gifted to me - how to book
Replies: 25
Views: 2784

Re: 450,000 American Airlines gifted to me - how to book

Airline miles do expire due to inactivity. You typically have to pay exorbitant sums to reactive them, so make sure he keeps the account active. I can also confirm booking tickets for others is a common and acceptable use of miles. Just be careful that American does not think the tickets were sold t...
by regularguy455
Tue Oct 31, 2017 11:56 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Parking emergency fund in Roth CD?
Replies: 4
Views: 792

Re: Parking emergency fund in Roth CD?

Yes, DW and I max our 401ks. Based on tax reform discussion, it appears that may have been prudent. I'm less concerned about FDIC insurance and more concerned about protecting downside legal risk. Knowing assets are protected in a worst case scenario makes me feel good. I'm not a big fan of the Roth...
by regularguy455
Tue Oct 31, 2017 10:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Parking emergency fund in Roth CD?
Replies: 4
Views: 792

Parking emergency fund in Roth CD?

Hi everyone, I have around 3 months of cash savings in a checking account as an emergency fund. Psychologically, I like the idea of having liquid assets in case of an emergency. I recently added an umbrella policy on top of my Home Owners/Auto insurance for extra protection. I would like to continue...
by regularguy455
Tue Oct 03, 2017 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HSA Maximum Contribution, Married not Family Plan
Replies: 2
Views: 445

HSA Maximum Contribution, Married not Family Plan

Hi everyone, My wife recently joined a new employer that offers a payroll-deducted HSA. We both enrolled on her plan when she started her job and started contributing aggressively to attempt to max out the plan ($6750). When I checked the HSA account, it appears that the maximum amount we are allowe...
by regularguy455
Fri Sep 08, 2017 12:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Bitcoin] question
Replies: 131
Views: 13464

Re: If Ethereum was hacked then the creators edited the ledger, doesnt that mean...

So if 51% of the miners (by computer power) decide they'd rather see a different ledger and account balances they are free to create it? Frankly that doesn't sound very secure. At all... It has all of the risks of using a credit card with all of the risks of carrying cash. It's the worst of both wo...
by regularguy455
Wed Sep 06, 2017 12:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bought crypto currency
Replies: 67
Views: 5674

Re: Bought crypto currency

The fact that Beanie Babies and tulip bulbs keep getting brought up in these threads demonstrates just how dismissive and uninformed people are and remain about blockchain and cryptographic assets. Fortune just ran a front-page spread on blockchain. Here's an interesting introductory video the mag ...
by regularguy455
Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:53 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Bought crypto currency
Replies: 67
Views: 5674

Re: Bought crypto currency

Bitcoin has all the signs of a bubble. Extremely complicated, yet attracts naive investors. Hockey stick growth, so everyone is getting rich. Fundamentals (in terms of use as a currency) have DECLINED over time (i.e. Only 3 of the top 500 orgs accept it as a currency, down from 5: http://www.busines...
by regularguy455
Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Florence Hotels.......
Replies: 25
Views: 2093

Re: Florence Hotels.......

The Westin in Florence is fantastic. One of the nicest hotels I've been to. I believe it was an embassy they converted into a hotel.