Search found 97 matches

by rich126
Fri Aug 17, 2018 6:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recent Trip to Naples, Italy
Replies: 14
Views: 1732

Re: Recent Trip to Naples, Italy

I was there a long time ago (mid 1990s?) for about 4-5 days for work and couldn't wait to leave. I just found the non-stop traffic, car horns, pollution, etc. to be very stressful. Obviously not long. Then I went to a Naval base in Spain (Rota) and felt like I was in paradise. The city around the ba...
by rich126
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Civil service: Long Shot Interview.. Would you go?
Replies: 33
Views: 3334

Re: Civil service: Long Shot Interview.. Would you go?

The government is messed up and they often hire people w/o proper qualifications so go for it. I've been in and out of federal government a few times and it is maddening. I have a relative who has a PhD in sociology and ended up with a government job as a statistician. The interviewer liked her desp...
by rich126
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving company - arbitration experience?
Replies: 4
Views: 685

Re: Moving company - arbitration experience?

You said moving was paid by your employer? If so, usually your employer will assist with issues you encounter. In my moves my company would provide a POC to assist with my move (the POC is with your employer) and handles issues like this one. Also with corporate moves usually the moving company will...
by rich126
Thu Aug 16, 2018 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?
Replies: 37
Views: 2191

Re: Travel delay: Can I *easily* get $60 back?

https://www.condor.com/us/help-contact/contact/complaint.jsp http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/money/holidays/article-2271213/How-claim-EU-flight-delay-compensation-EC-261-2004.html The first link is to the Condor complaint form. There is an option for flights late over three hours. The second link is t...
by rich126
Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data
Replies: 33
Views: 2716

Re: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data

Buncha amateurs. I scrap electronics for a hobby and for extra money. I can tell you that if you drill a hole in a hard drive platter, the data is recoverable. Magnets are your friend there. Breaking hundreds of disks into hundreds of pieces is your friend. But be careful, some game systems like X ...
by rich126
Tue Aug 14, 2018 6:45 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Asked my advisor about fees and here's their reply
Replies: 52
Views: 6828

Re: Asked my advisor about fees and here's their reply

I've almost always done my own investing (for better, or worse). A few years ago I hired a local guy based on his history (he had records of his own investing going back quite a few years) and the fact he invested his money along with his investors in the stocks. I also am a big believer in not putt...
by rich126
Fri Aug 10, 2018 6:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?
Replies: 33
Views: 2087

Re: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?

Usually the ultra low cost airlines are the most aggressive in measuring bags. Also internationally (my experiences in Europe, anyhow) airlines are more aggressive in enforcing policies, especially if you are on a coach ticket. Premium seat passengers get away with a lot more. Have you seen them be...
by rich126
Fri Aug 10, 2018 6:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Device to listen to while exercising?
Replies: 23
Views: 1666

Re: Device to listen to while exercising?

I've never been much of a music person but if you have a smart phone you have a number of options. There are plenty of apps that allow you to listen to live radio stations around the US (and sometimes the world). There are apps that will play old time radio shows (Superman, Sherlock Holmes, CBS Radi...
by rich126
Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prescription Price Shopping?
Replies: 37
Views: 2300

Re: Prescription Price Shopping?

During my doctor visit yesterday the PA gave me some kind of coupon card to use. I'll check it out online and see what, if any, use it will be to me. Doesn't matter for another month (next refill time). I haven't seen it suggested here (may have missed it), but another option is getting medications ...
by rich126
Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?
Replies: 33
Views: 2087

Re: Do Airlines measure checked baggages?

Usually the ultra low cost airlines are the most aggressive in measuring bags. Also internationally (my experiences in Europe, anyhow) airlines are more aggressive in enforcing policies, especially if you are on a coach ticket. Premium seat passengers get away with a lot more.
by rich126
Wed Aug 08, 2018 7:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your opinion on online courses?
Replies: 26
Views: 2122

Re: Your opinion on online courses?

I took a few graduate courses (only because my company at that time paid for it). Someone online schools are easy. I still learned stuff but if I take a class I only know how to study one way and can't say "we'll this is easy so I'll only study 60%". But, the exams were much easier than classes I to...
by rich126
Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prescription Price Shopping?
Replies: 37
Views: 2300

Re: Prescription Price Shopping?

Sitting at home, relaxing and doing stuff on the computer I don't mind. Waiting in one line only to get pushed to another line is another story, especially since I had just come out of the gym and was tired. And why couldn't the lady who was helping me do the coupon thing? Both lines were in the pha...
by rich126
Wed Aug 08, 2018 6:50 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: VITAX ( vanguard tech fund )
Replies: 14
Views: 1331

Re: VITAX ( vanguard tech fund )

I think it would make more sense just to invest in a few companies that you think have strong fundamentals and will do well going forward.
by rich126
Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prescription Price Shopping?
Replies: 37
Views: 2300

Re: Prescription Price Shopping?

Just to answer a few questions. Insurance is Federal Blue Cross/Blue Shield The drug is not generic and from my research there isn't an equivalent generic at this time, it involves how it is absorbed into the body. The price isn't something that causes me to change my life but it is the first time I...
by rich126
Mon Aug 06, 2018 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prescription Price Shopping?
Replies: 37
Views: 2300

Prescription Price Shopping?

I know there are online sites that allows you to compare prices of medication but that is without insurance. If I have insurance does it pay to check with various pharmacies to see which one is cheapest? I don't know how insurance on prescriptions work. Does insurance simple cover x% of the retail p...
by rich126
Mon Aug 06, 2018 9:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Few weeks into new job recieved significantly better offer elsewhere
Replies: 103
Views: 9871

Re: Few weeks into new job recieved significantly better offer elsewhere

You don't want to burn bridges but you also have to do what feels best. My shortest tenure at any job was 1-2 months. I had left a job that I had for 15 yrs and took one with a smaller company with good people. While they were looking for the best place to put me, I received a call from a head hunte...
by rich126
Sun Aug 05, 2018 2:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Would buy and hold work if Japan's lost decade happens?
Replies: 64
Views: 7564

Re: Would buy and hold work if Japan's lost decade happens?

Well, the good news is at least inflation was minimal.
100 Yen on 6/1/88 went to 116 on 6/1/2018 so a total of 16% inflation.

Compared to the US
$100 -> $210.

Still would have been terrible.

http://fxtop.com/en/inflation-calculator.php
by rich126
Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Realtor Compensation (Couldn't sell, so renting)
Replies: 21
Views: 2269

Re: Realtor Compensation (Couldn't sell, so renting)

Not an attorney here but you may need to consider a variety of things (I've been renting out a SFH in AZ for 5+ years): 1. Consider moving it into a LLC for liability purposes. But this can also be a bad idea if you have a mortgage on the property because the mortgage holder can demand payoff of mo...
by rich126
Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bonds, CDs with Vanguard
Replies: 8
Views: 835

Re: Bonds, CDs with Vanguard

1. The Treasury is free from federal taxes A Treasury is not free from Federal taxes, it is Federally taxable. It is free from state and local taxes. Municipal bonds are free from Federal taxes. 2. Maybe if you expected rates to decline you'd want the longer term (not something I'd bet on but I've ...
by rich126
Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bonds, CDs with Vanguard
Replies: 8
Views: 835

Bonds, CDs with Vanguard

I'm not a fixed income investor but during discussions here I've seen explanations as to how to buy them through Vanguard Brokerage. I was playing around (well, trying to navigate and look at the products) and have a couple of questions. When I get to a page that is titled "Find CDs and Bonds" I see...
by rich126
Fri Aug 03, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Realtor Compensation (Couldn't sell, so renting)
Replies: 21
Views: 2269

Re: Realtor Compensation (Couldn't sell, so renting)

Not an attorney here but you may need to consider a variety of things (I've been renting out a SFH in AZ for 5+ years): 1. Consider moving it into a LLC for liability purposes. But this can also be a bad idea if you have a mortgage on the property because the mortgage holder can demand payoff of mor...
by rich126
Thu Aug 02, 2018 7:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Interesting TSP question
Replies: 17
Views: 1074

Re: Interesting TSP question

EBIS has been replaced by GRB. Government retirement and benefits. It is tool/interface that allows you to manage and view your benefits.
by rich126
Wed Aug 01, 2018 12:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to find a conscientious/competent estate attorney?
Replies: 49
Views: 3599

Re: How to find a conscientious/competent estate attorney?

I hard trouble with a firm that specialized in trusts. I figured I would go with them because they are large and maybe I'd pay more but at least it would be done right but it wasn't. When I returned back east and had an attorney I had used for other stuff years ago look at it, he pointed out a lot o...
by rich126
Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tips for staying active / injury-free into older age
Replies: 130
Views: 9371

Re: Tips for staying active / injury-free into older age

Trying to avoid injuries, especially to legs I think is important. I often see people with various injuries which limits exercise and that triggers weight gain which leads to more problems and a nasty cycle. I messed up my ankle years ago and things never healed right and surgery may not improve thi...
by rich126
Wed Jul 25, 2018 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Theater vs. Soundbar
Replies: 67
Views: 5523

Re: Home Theater vs. Soundbar

I'm not an audiophile. Personally I'd never use a soundbar in a room where I could use 5.1. The sound isn't as good. I have two soundbars in my office and my bedroom since it wasn't practical to do a 5.1 setup in those areas (too many cable runs, no interest in running things through walls, etc.).
by rich126
Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turned down for credit card
Replies: 35
Views: 2783

Re: Turned down for credit card

Just google for no credit history cards and there are a number of cards that will accept people in that situation. I knew a lady that didn't have any history because she was from Europe and had to start out with a prepaid card. This is one of the reasons it is better to get some loans and several ca...
by rich126
Tue Jul 24, 2018 6:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I want to sell my home, but I don't want to fix it up
Replies: 65
Views: 6245

Re: I want to sell my home, but I don't want to fix it up

The deduction in house value almost always exceeds the repair costs. Buyers rarely will look at something that requires $10K in repairs and say, "We'll just offer $10K less than asking price". Just like you don't want the hassle, the buyers usually don't want the hassles either. Also the more repair...
by rich126
Fri Jul 20, 2018 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I get a mortgage if retiring?
Replies: 37
Views: 5148

Re: Can I get a mortgage if retiring?

I'll be curious as well. From what I've seen, sure you can get one, but it is easier when you are still employed.
The article below discusses the topic.

https://www.thebalance.com/how-to-get-a ... ed-2388738
by rich126
Thu Jul 19, 2018 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Advisor
Replies: 25
Views: 2552

Re: Vanguard Advisor

I suspect you could abort now without incurring a fee. However it's probably worth the investment to get some time with the PAS advisor. The 30 bps is the annual fee, which comes out to $300 per $100,000 invested. You can however unenroll from the service any time. Trying it out for a few months wo...
by rich126
Wed Jul 18, 2018 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 35 minute connection for flight, long enough?
Replies: 65
Views: 3641

Re: 35 minute connection for flight, long enough?

If everything is on the same ticket and you miss the flight, the airline will (eventually) get you to your destination. Personally I'm not a fan of short connections. At Christmas things could be tighter since flights fill up. Whether you buy though Chase's portal or transfer to United would depend ...
by rich126
Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime Day 2018
Replies: 88
Views: 10187

Re: Amazon Prime Day 2018

A few movies I had my eye on were actually priced higher. So much for that. The 4-5 items I checked on CamelCamelCamel were all priced at the highest price in the last 12 months... Amazon pricing just seems to suck in the past few years. They have turned into Southwest Airlines. Once upon a time So...
by rich126
Tue Jul 17, 2018 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wills
Replies: 54
Views: 3117

Re: Wills

Make sure you understand how wills and beneficiaries work. Sometimes things aren't as obvious as it may seem to a non-legal person. I'm assuming you are a USA citizen but if not, things work differently in other countries. You may also need things like a medical directive, power of attorney for heal...
by rich126
Mon Jul 16, 2018 6:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on IT Certification program
Replies: 93
Views: 4060

Re: Advice on IT Certification program

A really good engineer or IT person is rare to find. You can train some people to a basic level but there is a level of intelligence, problem solving skills, tenacity you can't train. No amount of money or training will help at the advanced level.
by rich126
Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are Credit Cards Actually Convenient?
Replies: 91
Views: 6804

Re: Are Credit Cards Actually Convenient?

I use my credit cards nearly 100% of the time (gas, restaurants, doctors, etc.) and nothing has gone wrong 99+% of the time. I always carry multiple ones in case something happens (or to optimize the bonus categories). I did have one card that was declined at a gas station. When I called the issue w...
by rich126
Mon Jul 16, 2018 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Value of Arizona State Retirement System
Replies: 13
Views: 1225

Re: Value of Arizona State Retirement System

11% taken out of the paycheck is a lot but they are also putting in 11%. As far as what you should do, that has to be your decision. 11 years, when you aren't happy, is a lifetime. I went back to a federal government job for a variety of reasons but one was to boost my pension (based on years and hi...
by rich126
Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Building a Pool
Replies: 64
Views: 7387

Re: Building a Pool

Pools are definitely a luxury item (in ground ones) and are expensive to maintain. I ended up with a pool when I bought a place in AZ. It wasn't one my must have list but the house had everything else I wanted (price, location, condition, etc.). I'm guessing it probably costs a couple hundred per mo...
by rich126
Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surface Pro(2017) vs 9.7" iPad 2018 (edited)
Replies: 35
Views: 2618

Re: Surface Pro(2017) vs 9.7" iPad 2018 (edited)

I don't think this is even close to a good comparison. A SP is basically a laptop and an iPad is not. An iPad is best suited for reading stuff, email, browsing, and some other basic functions. Even with an external keyboard there are limits. A SP is a computer with much more power and function. I ha...
by rich126
Sun Jul 15, 2018 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How often do you buy a primary residence?
Replies: 46
Views: 3969

Re: How often do you buy a primary residence?

There are a lot of hidden costs (not to mention stress) when it comes to moving, unless a company is paying for it. Having said that, getting stuck in a house that isn't rising as fast as others may doom you to stay where you are living (which is fine if that is your final resting place). My worst h...
by rich126
Fri Jul 13, 2018 2:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing close to retirement and reconsidering location
Replies: 9
Views: 960

Re: European expat investing close to retirement reconsidering location

I'm just curious as to where happiness comes into this decision? Doesn't it matter where you live? A while ago an older guy I knew was planning to retire to Costa Rico and finally took a trip there (not sure how you plan to retire somewhere w/o first checking it out!). When I saw him after the trip ...
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 1:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The value of international stocks, in pictures
Replies: 62
Views: 7757

Re: The value of international stocks, in pictures

Obviously we only have historical data to look at but I think it is foolish to think the future will continue to resemble the past. You have a rapidly aging US population (even more so if immigration is reduced), technology that is providing advantages to many countries, an education system that has...
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I move all my investments to Vanguard?
Replies: 31
Views: 2469

Re: Should I move all my investments to Vanguard?

Another vote for Vanguard, they are outstanding, and nearly free to trade. ($5 per trade.) I assume you meant “Fidelity”, which charges $4.95 per trade. Vanguard charges quite a bit more unless you have $500,000 or more. I'm might sure I follow, or maybe I just don't agree. Vanguard charges $7 per ...
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:21 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018
Replies: 76
Views: 10632

Re: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018

Is it also possible that a small percentage of the stocks in the index are doing poorly and dragging the overall numbers down disproportionately?
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: looking for a new (online) savings account home
Replies: 23
Views: 2054

Re: looking for a new (online) savings account home

When I read this post, I thought I had written the original post. I got an Emigrant Direct account a long time ago for the same reasons (also an ING account) and have been lazy in closing it and moving it to somewhere else with better rates. Partly because I have a small amount going to ED from my p...
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surge protector for new refrigerator?
Replies: 10
Views: 757

Re: Surge protector for new refrigerator?

My current house has power problems all the time. You think living in a very desirable, high income (well by averages in the US, not by this board) area, power would be more reliable but they refuse to bury the power lines. With tons of old trees around, my power goes out at least 6 times a year and...
by rich126
Wed Jul 11, 2018 6:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 30 Year vs 15 Year Mortgage
Replies: 79
Views: 4763

Re: 30 Year vs 15 Year Mortgage

If you are doing the 30 yr path then the best way to ensure you pay extra each month is to set up an auto pay from your bank account. I'm not a huge fan of auto bill pay but for mortgages/car loans I can see its use. I've had anything from 10 yr to 30 yr to adjustable loans and it all depends on the...
by rich126
Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surge protector for new refrigerator?
Replies: 10
Views: 757

Re: Surge protector for new refrigerator?

I'm not sure I would do that. A refrigerator is not that sensitive to power surges (unlike tvs, computers). Depending on your overall power situation, sometimes getting a whole house surge protector can be useful.
by rich126
Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Masterbath Remodel - Tub or No Tub ?
Replies: 57
Views: 3436

Re: Masterbath Remodel - Tub or No Tub ?

Generally the rule of thumb is that you should have one tub so that parents can bathe their kids in it. After that it rarely matters. Probably ends up like my question to a realtor about fireplace or wood stove? I currently have a fireplace. The agent said pretty much it is a 50/50 thing so don't wa...
by rich126
Tue Jul 10, 2018 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel credit cards
Replies: 18
Views: 1573

Re: Travel credit cards

It really depends on your needs. Most likely you both could get the same card and double the bonus depending on your spending ability/needs. I wouldn't worry about the credit pull unless you got something strange going on (tons of pulls for some reason). I got a ton of cards but have never been deni...
by rich126
Tue Jul 10, 2018 6:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Soon to retire Fed in the TSP
Replies: 20
Views: 1576

Re: Soon to retire Fed in the TSP

Assuming you're a CSRS employee, before you retire you can make a voluntary contribution of 10% of your lifetime earnings (your "paystub" will show your 7% CSRS contribution, which you can multiply by 10/7), which you can roll over to a Roth IRA tax-free. Any interest on the contribution between wh...
by rich126
Thu Jul 05, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Insurance company canceeling homeowners policy. Hell
Replies: 13
Views: 1668

Re: Insurance company canceeling homeowners policy. Hell

I've only had one insurance policy canceled in my life and it was my home owners insurance policy and I thought it was so dumb. They claimed because I hadn't fix some issue with my garage (it was separate from my house) they were going to cancel the policy. I was planning to fix it but since the hou...