Search found 739 matches

by RobLyons
Wed Jul 08, 2020 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity investments vs TIAA?
Replies: 2
Views: 236

Fidelity investments vs TIAA?

The retirement options my employer offers include a "Traditional TSA" which is a 403b and a Roth TSA. When I log in to my Fidelity, the retirement providers offered for my traditional TSA are Fidelity Investments or TIAA. My question is what is the difference? My limited understanding is that each c...
by RobLyons
Sun Jul 05, 2020 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pull-ups and Push-ups
Replies: 572
Views: 148330

Re: Pull-ups and Push-ups

It's nearly impossible to add muscle to legs just by doing bodyweight squats once you've already trained properly with weights for years. Same can be said for nearly every muscle group. This is the longest layoff from weights I've had in 20 years and I've lost a good amount of muscle despite a high ...
by RobLyons
Sun Jul 05, 2020 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chevrolet Tahoe?
Replies: 22
Views: 1800

Re: Chevrolet Tahoe?

While I personally would never buy a Tahoe, friends that had them really enjoyed them. I'm just not in the market for anything GM, SUV, gas guzzling, or $50k+ but if you are then I wouldn't hesitate to purchase if you like it and can easily afford. They get good reviews, higher reliability ratings t...
by RobLyons
Sun Jun 28, 2020 4:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

Re: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

We have heard you should not count pension benefits until the day you receive them , but this move has surprised some. Massachusett's largest private employer Mass General Brigham, (MGB) formerly Partners Healthcare, has decided to "temporarily" freeze all pension benefit contributions and annual p...
by RobLyons
Sat Jun 20, 2020 9:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

Re: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

KlangFool wrote:
Fri Jun 19, 2020 8:15 am
Folks,

We have a healthcare bubble and a college bubble. The bubbles have to burst sometime.

KlangFool

Could you explain further?
by RobLyons
Fri Jun 19, 2020 6:39 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

Re: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

Is this any different than my employer reducing the 401k match or making it harder to get a bonus? To me, this pension freeze is the same as any other compensation cut. Your employer has altered the terms of your employment, and you can choose to stay or move on. This does not appear to be a case o...
by RobLyons
Fri Jun 19, 2020 6:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

Re: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

Don’t count on your employer to maintain their benefit programs into perpetuity without changes. The benefits you have accrued to date are typically very safe, but anything is possible with respect to benefits offered in the future. Don’t expect dinosaurs to continue to roam the Earth. Exactly, why...
by RobLyons
Fri Jun 19, 2020 6:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

Re: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

We have heard you should not count pension benefits until the day you receive them , but this move has surprised some. Massachusett's largest private employer Mass General Brigham, (MGB) formerly Partners Healthcare, has decided to "temporarily" freeze all pension benefit contributions and annual p...
by RobLyons
Fri Jun 19, 2020 7:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A cautionary tale about pensions and wages
Replies: 76
Views: 10413

A cautionary tale about pensions and wages

We have heard you should not count pension benefits until the day you receive them, but this move has surprised some. Massachusett's largest private employer Mass General Brigham, (MGB) formerly Partners Healthcare, has decided to "temporarily" freeze all pension benefit contributions and annual pay...
by RobLyons
Tue Jun 16, 2020 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace my 4 Runner? Update on Repair Post 47
Replies: 62
Views: 3647

Re: I May Need to Replace my 2005 4 Runner :(

From the sounds of it, you are ready to buy something newer. I would do the same. Being financially able to buy whatever you want, there's no need to drive it into the ground, with the potential to break down on the side of the road, with many more expected repairs before you upgrade. So I suggest s...
by RobLyons
Mon Jun 15, 2020 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OBD2 scanner?
Replies: 28
Views: 1704

Re: OBD2 scanner?

Have you successfully repaired cars of the recent era? Not to insult you but nothing like the old 74 Chevy 350 where you can sit inside engine compartment and work on it. I suggest a scanner that can show dynamic O2 sensor reading, MAP, Throttle position sensor, etc. You can throw parts at it but s...
by RobLyons
Mon Jun 15, 2020 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OBD2 scanner?
Replies: 28
Views: 1704

Re: OBD2 scanner?

h82goslw wrote:
Sun Jun 14, 2020 8:21 am
If you’re near an autozone or Advanced Auto they usually offer to plug in their scanner and let you know what the code is for free.

Good tip! But they aren't doing it now because of the pandemic.
by RobLyons
Mon Jun 15, 2020 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OBD2 scanner?
Replies: 28
Views: 1704

Re: OBD2 scanner?

Laker1 wrote:
Sun Jun 14, 2020 8:51 am
If you want to share the brand, year, model and engine in your car I might be able to help, I do this all day long...LOL


2017 Toyota Prius II with the massive 1.8L :D
by RobLyons
Sun Jun 14, 2020 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: OBD2 scanner?
Replies: 28
Views: 1704

OBD2 scanner?

In my never ending quest to cut unnecessary costs, I have run into issues with check engine lights on both the wife's vehicle and now mine. I'm considering purchasing an OBD2 scanner to discover what's wrong and attempt to fix if it's not too involved. Long story short the wife's van has been throwi...
by RobLyons
Sun Jun 14, 2020 6:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: heated driveway?
Replies: 91
Views: 4585

Re: heated driveway?

If it were me, I would completely exhaust all other options first. Friends, family, coworkers, ex coworkers, craigslist, Facebook, NextDoor, put an ad in the paper, talk to local handymen, contractors, local big box store(s), hardware stores. Buying a great snow blower (I did this for $3,500 2 years...
by RobLyons
Sun Jun 07, 2020 2:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Option for $100K life insurance policy at age 65
Replies: 11
Views: 623

Re: Option for $100K life insurance policy at age 65

Sounds like a very good deal to me!
by RobLyons
Tue Jun 02, 2020 1:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Update: No 2nd opinion has shown up for an estimate. This happens every year up here when the weather gets nice. Landscapers/contractors get so busy they either do not show up, or show up and throw out high estimates. So I'm saving my pennies for now. - Getting on a good lawn care schedule - Adding ...
by RobLyons
Sat May 30, 2020 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: COVID related charitable contributions
Replies: 6
Views: 330

Re: COVID related charitable contributions

Local food banks, homeless shelters, and the center for disaster philanthropy, and GiveDirectly Inc (links below). Personally, I find the donations of PPE and food and snacks directly to hospitals very rewarding and useful. https://disasterphilanthropy.org/cdp-fund/cdp-covid-19-response-fund/ https:...
by RobLyons
Sat May 30, 2020 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: mortgage rates
Replies: 27
Views: 2820

Re: mortgage rates

Just refi'd to a 15 year 2.35% with Northpointe Bank. Very smooth transaction. I highly recommend Ryan Bird Loan Officer NMLS 150099 p 616-726-5552 | f 616-588-6328 ryan.bird@northpointe.com That’s a great rate. What were the closing costs, if any? Net loan costs were $2843 which includes $1195 ori...
by RobLyons
Fri May 29, 2020 5:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: mortgage rates
Replies: 27
Views: 2820

Re: mortgage rates

Just refi'd to a 15 year 2.35% with Northpointe Bank. Very smooth transaction. I highly recommend

Ryan Bird
Loan Officer
NMLS 150099
p 616-726-5552 | f 616-588-6328
ryan.bird@northpointe.com
by RobLyons
Wed May 27, 2020 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

edge wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 2:42 pm
Can getting the lawn rolled smooth things out?

I've done that a few times, didn't help much.
by RobLyons
Wed May 27, 2020 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

livesoft wrote:
Tue May 26, 2020 1:33 pm
A telling photo or two or three might do wonders in helping improves the responses from the Peanut Gallery.

Absolutely.. I've never posted a pic here before could someone give me directions? I click the picture button and it gives the html but I'm not sure where to go from there.
by RobLyons
Wed May 27, 2020 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

I enjoy lawn care. It's one of my favorite pass times. But over the years for some reason my back yard has become very bumpy. There is nooks and crannies all over the place. Unsure of the cause but speculation is due to clumping fescue, or the freezing/melting from winter to spring, or possibly jus...
by RobLyons
Wed May 27, 2020 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Put less air in the lawn mower tires. Drive lawn mower slower. Problem solved! LOL the lawn mower tires are plastic, no air! But I like this line of thinking... I cut in a different pattern every time which has helped to smooth out ruts that started to develop from repeatedly going over the same ar...
by RobLyons
Wed May 27, 2020 7:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

I would not do this until I was sure there was no possible way I would ever run out of money again, plus I gave heavily to charity and plus that giving included carbon offsets. I did actually do grading on my own house, for waaaay more than you suggest, but that was to stop water getting into my ho...
by RobLyons
Mon May 25, 2020 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Put less air in the lawn mower tires. Drive lawn mower slower. Problem solved! LOL the lawn mower tires are plastic, no air! But I like this line of thinking... I cut in a different pattern every time which has helped to smooth out ruts that started to develop from repeatedly going over the same ar...
by RobLyons
Sun May 24, 2020 4:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

For $250 one time investment, you can maintain your flat lawn for life. https://www.ruralking.com/36-inch-drum-spike-275-lb-capacity-aerator?utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=shopping&utm_content=66290184&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpb7M1YLJ6QIVDtbACh0nLgxPEAQYBSABEgKfefD_BwE I've aerated almost ...
by RobLyons
Sun May 24, 2020 4:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tips to stick to a weight loss diet?
Replies: 183
Views: 9825

Re: Tips to stick to a weight loss diet?

Trial and error. What works for one person may not work for another. My most success came from counting macros, adding more fruits and veggies and weighing myself daily. Other tips: Not buying the food that makes you over consume (ice cream and sweets for me) Increasing lean protein intake Increasin...
by RobLyons
Sat May 23, 2020 7:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

For $250 one time investment, you can maintain your flat lawn for life. https://www.ruralking.com/36-inch-drum-spike-275-lb-capacity-aerator?utm_medium=cpc&utm_source=google&utm_campaign=shopping&utm_content=66290184&gclid=EAIaIQobChMIpb7M1YLJ6QIVDtbACh0nLgxPEAQYBSABEgKfefD_BwE I've aerated almost ...
by RobLyons
Sat May 23, 2020 7:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Poorman wrote:
Sat May 23, 2020 6:48 am
Put less air in the lawn mower tires. Drive lawn mower slower. Problem solved!

LOL the lawn mower tires are plastic, no air! But I like this line of thinking...
by RobLyons
Sat May 23, 2020 7:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

I would not hire a landscaper to do this unless they have proven experience doing it. In my area there are specialized lawn leveling companies that do nothing but leveling. I would get a price from one of them and lean toward hiring a company that specializes in this if the price is anything close....
by RobLyons
Sat May 23, 2020 6:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Not something I'd do but I don't care if the yard is uneven. In fact, if it weren't for the loose HOA guidelines (not really an HOA) I wouldn't have a yard at all. I'd convert to field grasses and wildflowers. You didn't say where you live. Around here, seeding in the spring is the same as lighting...
by RobLyons
Sat May 23, 2020 6:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Re: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

Not something I'd do but I don't care if the yard is uneven. In fact, if it weren't for the loose HOA guidelines (not really an HOA) I wouldn't have a yard at all. I'd convert to field grasses and wildflowers. You didn't say where you live. Around here, seeding in the spring is the same as lighting...
by RobLyons
Fri May 22, 2020 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?
Replies: 56
Views: 5548

Should I pay $1,600 for this lawn care fix?

I enjoy lawn care. It's one of my favorite pass times. But over the years for some reason my back yard has become very bumpy. There is nooks and crannies all over the place. Unsure of the cause but speculation is due to clumping fescue, or the freezing/melting from winter to spring, or possibly just...
by RobLyons
Fri May 22, 2020 6:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your most luxury/expensive hobby.
Replies: 264
Views: 20273

Re: What is your most luxury/expensive hobby.

Lawn care. $1800+ annually easy for DIY. Every year I try to add one or two tools to the mix like a new lawn mower or blade, weed wacker, grinder to sharpen the blade, shovel, dethatcher, leveling rake, sprinkler or hoses, spreader and so on. Equipment: $300 Loam: $200+ Renting equipment: $200+ Seed...
by RobLyons
Thu May 21, 2020 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you dislike recurring billing for gyms?
Replies: 68
Views: 3618

Re: Do you dislike recurring billing for gyms?

After 20+ years at my gym and I LOVE recurring billing for the gym. Just set it and forget it. And really this is the way it's been since I started in 1999. Never any issues besides updating my CC info on occasion And during this pandemic they have not billed me since March. I think many people are ...
by RobLyons
Sat May 16, 2020 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Re: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Update After I left a negative google review, the shop manager called me back and offered a refund of the $110 alignment, requesting I take down the negative review, and also took no responsibility for the winch mechanism. He speculated the winch becomes stuck when retracted/extended with no weight...
by RobLyons
Sat May 16, 2020 10:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancel for any reason - travel insurance
Replies: 21
Views: 1271

Re: Cancel for any reason - travel insurance

I can't think of any reason NOT to do it. I purchased the only travel insurance offered by the website (TripMate) and they do not cover cancelation for any reason. Very frustrating at this point trying to get a refund.
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 4:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Re: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Update After I left a negative google review, the shop manager called me back and offered a refund of the $110 alignment, requesting I take down the negative review, and also took no responsibility for the winch mechanism. He speculated the winch becomes stuck when retracted/extended with no weight ...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Peloton Treadmill: Anyone here own one..,,
Replies: 59
Views: 4944

Re: Peloton Treadmill: Anyone here own one..,,

There is a lot of hype around Peloton these days and if the wife really wants it and the interactive classes then go for it but I actually prefer our Horizon T101 due to the price. The Horizon T101 is about 3 years old and currently sells for $599 at Dick's Sporting Goods, a savings of $3,601. They...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Re: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Those winch things are complete garbage. They are exposed to the elements and often fail. I had one on a Yukon XL that held a nice full sized spare. When selling the truck, the buyer asked "what's that?" as the place where you put in the bar to move the winch has a factory lock. I unlocked it and t...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Re: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Those winch things are complete garbage. They are exposed to the elements and often fail. I had one on a Yukon XL that held a nice full sized spare. When selling the truck, the buyer asked "what's that?" as the place where you put in the bar to move the winch has a factory lock. I unlocked it and t...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Re: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Was the winch really working when you took the van to the tire shop - did you lower the spare all the way to the ground and then raise it before taking it to the repair shop? It's hard to imagine how such a simple mechanism can be broken by use, although somebody in a hurry with an air tool ... I w...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Peloton Treadmill: Anyone here own one..,,
Replies: 59
Views: 4944

Re: Peloton Treadmill: Anyone here own one..,,

There is a lot of hype around Peloton these days and if the wife really wants it and the interactive classes then go for it but I actually prefer our Horizon T101 due to the price. The Horizon T101 is about 3 years old and currently sells for $599 at Dick's Sporting Goods, a savings of $3,601. They ...
by RobLyons
Fri May 15, 2020 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!
Replies: 27
Views: 1862

Tire shop returned my van with a broken part!

Good morning. I have two unusual issues that I experienced yesterday with a local tire shop and was wondering what's the best way to go about it. Last week DW's van had a flat tire so I changed the tire and several days later I was able to get an appointment with the tire shop where we bought the ti...
by RobLyons
Thu May 14, 2020 6:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dental estimate for a gold crown
Replies: 28
Views: 2017

Re: Dental estimate for a gold crown

We have had good luck getting a 2nd estimate / quote if we feel the service or price is in question.
by RobLyons
Thu May 14, 2020 6:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Cash out refi to invest 100k
Replies: 30
Views: 2299

Re: Cash out refi to invest 100k

Don't do it. Refi to a 15 year (around 2.5 - 2.75%) and aggressively pay off that mortgage.
by RobLyons
Thu May 07, 2020 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coronavirus Flight Cancel Thread
Replies: 236
Views: 14555

Re: Coronavirus Flight Cancel Thread

I booked our August 2020 Azores trip through Cheap O Air (COA) and purchased travel protection (via 3rd party Trip Mate). COA is offering cancellation with a $75 fee per ticket ($675 for the 9 of us). Not doing that. Hold times are extensive with Trip Mate. Visa is closed so I may try Monday mornin...
by RobLyons
Thu May 07, 2020 7:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Worth Buying a Used Phone on Swappa?
Replies: 28
Views: 1587

Re: Worth Buying a Used Phone on Swappa?

Has anyone bought phones off of Swappa? There are phones that have a few scratches on them for 40ish% off on a phone that is only a year old. The only thing I am worried about is the battery but can a phones battery really be that bad after only a year of use? Has anyone had good or bad experiences...
by RobLyons
Wed May 06, 2020 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pull-ups and Push-ups
Replies: 572
Views: 148330

Re: Need to be able to do 30 chin-ups

I would take a progressive overload approach, in which you increase either volume, resistance (weighted chin ups), intensity, or training frequency. Hard to give advice without knowing your training schedule at this point but that's my general advice. Also, increase protein intake and try to get mor...