Search found 173 matches

by Quercus Palustris
Mon Aug 03, 2020 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best Non-Fidelity HSA for Investing?
Replies: 5
Views: 329

Re: Best Non-Fidelity HSA for Investing?

I use Lively. They were fee free before Fidelity got into the HSA game and have a pretty nice website and good help documentation. The downside for some might be that they use TDAmeritrade as their brokerage - ETFs are free to trade, but their selection of load/fee free mutual funds is much more lim...
by Quercus Palustris
Sat Aug 01, 2020 10:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best mesh wifi system on the market?
Replies: 50
Views: 3373

Re: best mesh wifi system on the market?

Anyone using Unifi equipment? Considering adding a dream machine and a couple of access points. Yes, Unifi is great if you are a techie and like to be able to configure your system exactly the way you want. Eg: different settings on different access points. The Wifi 6 access points are still in "ea...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Jul 31, 2020 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: QuickSilver 1.5% back from CapOne - Anyone Using This?
Replies: 25
Views: 1537

Re: QuickSilver 1.5% back from CapOne - Anyone Using This?

I've had one for a few years now, they offered and I converted my normal, no benefits card into Quicksilver one day. Don't use it anymore as the PenFed 2% cash back card has all the same features (no annual fee, no foreign transaction fee, usual Visa Signature benefits), but I keep the QS as a backu...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Jul 27, 2020 9:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unsuccessful Savings Bond Purchase with 2019 Tax Refund
Replies: 10
Views: 1306

Re: Unsuccessful Savings Bond Purchase with 2019 Tax Refund

... Happened to us for our 2018 taxes. Did a payment to get the refund over $5000, filed by paper (thanks FreeTaxUSA :annoyed), thought I did the form 8888 correctly... Got a check from IRS for full amount, I think there was a note about a problem processing our refund form. Didn't try this year :c...
by Quercus Palustris
Sun Jul 26, 2020 10:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unsuccessful Savings Bond Purchase with 2019 Tax Refund
Replies: 10
Views: 1306

Re: Unsuccessful Savings Bond Purchase with 2019 Tax Refund

Happened to us for our 2018 taxes. Did a payment to get the refund over $5000, filed by paper (thanks FreeTaxUSA :annoyed), thought I did the form 8888 correctly... Got a check from IRS for full amount, I think there was a note about a problem processing our refund form. Didn't try this year :confused
by Quercus Palustris
Sat Jul 25, 2020 12:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard BBQ - easy
Replies: 38
Views: 2838

Re: Backyard BBQ - easy

Our only grill is a charcoal Weber smokey joe gold, probably close to 30 years old. It's fine for two people, Weber makes a smaller chimney starter too as it doesn't need an enormous amount of coals. Spare grates are cheap on Amazon, too. Do yourself a favor though, don't get the gold model like us....
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 23, 2020 11:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mosquitos! Mosquitos! Mosquitos!
Replies: 112
Views: 7141

Re: Mosquitos! Mosquitos! Mosquitos!

Where did you move from, this place without mosquitos? Marylander1 I grew up in MD so I get your surprise :sharebeer I lived a while in Oakland, CA - and our 2nd floor apartment had no screens. I was worried... turns out, for no reason. Mild summers and seemingly no flying bugs. Didn't need AC eith...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 23, 2020 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting homeowner's insurance for new house - they want a copy of inspection report
Replies: 21
Views: 1676

Re: Getting homeowner's insurance for new house - they want a copy of inspection report

We've had Amica HO insurance at our current and last house, they requested the inspection report both times but AFAIK never sent anyone for an in-person; maybe this is their SOP when insurance is issued on a house at purchase? For the current house they asked for some receipts to verify some electri...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who's tested for Radon? Who's mitigated?
Replies: 29
Views: 1911

Re: Who's tested for Radon? Who's mitigated?

Tested two houses ourselves when we sold (required by county in MD). 1942 house's unfinished basement was so leaky it was negligible, the other house was about 2.x pCi/L, mitigation is required at 4 or greater. Current house in VA was tested by our home inspector, also in 2.x range. If we update the...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 23, 2020 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mosquitos! Mosquitos! Mosquitos!
Replies: 112
Views: 7141

Re: Mosquitos! Mosquitos! Mosquitos!

It's an indirect method, but I put out a birdbath with a BTI dunk in it. It's a bacteria that's toxic to mosquito larva, killing any that spawn in the water, but they're not toxic to birds or mammals. The thinking is to interrupt the life cycle. But as others said, make sure there's no other, untrea...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Jul 20, 2020 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Duct Cleaning- Your Thoughts
Replies: 37
Views: 2246

Re: Duct Cleaning- Your Thoughts

Had it done when we moved in (+ dryer vent). House has floor vents and a few floor returns (wtf), and previous owners were not only bad at cleaning, had pets, they also had an inappropriate filter in the furnace (it was too big, didn't seal, so wasn't filtering at all). Had HVAC guy clean the coil a...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 16, 2020 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advise required on Dehumidifier for unfinished basement
Replies: 32
Views: 1313

Re: Advise required on Dehumidifier for unfinished basement

Back many years ago, I had an unfinished basement that was consistently damp. The dehumidifier ran almost full time, especially in the summer. I ended up coating the cinder block walls with some type of sealer that was advertised as a vapor barrier. After applying 2 coats, the basement was much les...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jul 09, 2020 8:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bradford White vs Rheem Gas Water Heater
Replies: 41
Views: 2469

Re: Bradford White vs Rheem Gas Water Heater

jaxxmjd wrote:
Thu Jul 09, 2020 8:07 am
There are segmented rods with integrated hot water discharge ports for BWs.
Well knock me down with a kipper! Thank you:
https://www.supplyhouse.com/Water-Heate ... 4-sections
by Quercus Palustris
Wed Jul 08, 2020 3:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google voice is dropping calls. Anyone else?
Replies: 11
Views: 841

Re: Google voice is dropping calls. Anyone else?

I used my GV on two outgoing calls today without issue - spent about 10min listening to hold music on one of them, the other was shorter. Maybe it's just incoming calls? I don't have any ideas for troubleshooting unfortunately.
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Jul 07, 2020 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Truck Rental Alternative Vendors?
Replies: 7
Views: 570

Re: Truck Rental Alternative Vendors?

I used Budget truck rental, but it was quite some time ago.
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Jul 07, 2020 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bradford White vs Rheem Gas Water Heater
Replies: 41
Views: 2469

Re: Bradford White vs Rheem Gas Water Heater

I’m concerned also about the possibility that I won’t be able to loosen the anode rod even in a recently replaced Rheem. I’ve asked my handyman to bring over his impact wrench and we’ll see what happens. I changed the anode in my dad's ~15yo A. O. Smith water heater with a long breaker bar, 6-point...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Jun 29, 2020 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the best financial decision you ever made?
Replies: 213
Views: 16616

Re: What is the best financial decision you ever made?

Learning how and why to save for retirement (which lead to finding bogleheads!). My dad was financially prudent but never talked about IRA/401k with me. When I got my first "real" corporate job with 401k, I didn't even understand the target date funds so I just picked some random funds until the pro...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jun 25, 2020 10:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Too Much Retirement/Not Enough for House?
Replies: 127
Views: 13306

Re: Too Much Retirement/Not Enough for House?

nbj, No. I am on the VA side. My neighborhood is at around $200 per square feet area. KlangFool Aren't you further out like Loudon County? DW and I were house shopping last winter (settled on Merrifield/Vienna), and we viewed some townhomes in the $6-700K range with $300+/mo HOA in parts of Fairfax...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Jun 19, 2020 4:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Wirecard scandal / Germany's Enron
Replies: 21
Views: 2597

Re: Wirecard scandal / Germany's Enron

2nd largest mutual fund holder of WDI.DE is Vanguard Total International (VGTSX), at 1.51% :(
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jun 18, 2020 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Local CU quit offering cd's
Replies: 9
Views: 1097

Re: Local CU quit offering cd's

Look up your credit union on https://www.depositaccounts.com/ - they have bank and CU ratings for health based on their quarterly reports on assets, deposits, loans and delinquent loans. There's also good info on their news pages about what happens when a bank fails, and news on what banks / CUs app...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jun 11, 2020 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend a mattress?
Replies: 37
Views: 3106

Re: Recommend a mattress?

geerhardusvos wrote:
Thu Jun 11, 2020 9:01 pm
100% recommend saatva. Changed our life 2 years ago and sleep well since. Message me for a referral link
Which model / firmness did you get? We're using my 13yo latex foam mattress, which DW hates - she prefers a pillow top, I prefer firm, I wonder if the Saatva Classic would be a good compromise.
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Jun 11, 2020 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: authoritative source for USA/Ex-USA market size info?
Replies: 5
Views: 306

Re: authoritative source for USA/Ex-USA market size info?

I've been using Yardeni Research's market cap report which goes by total $s for various elements (total world, ex-foreign, Wilshire 5000, and S&Ps 1500/500/400+600). Useful for me as employer offers S&P 500 and S&P Completion funds in 401k and I'm OCD. I think it's updated monthly? Link: https://www...
by Quercus Palustris
Wed Jun 10, 2020 7:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What happens to all my digitized photos when I die?
Replies: 68
Views: 5400

Re: What happens to all my digitized photos when I die?

It's all well and good that M-disc media lasts 100s of years... Maybe if a future historian unearths your data hoard in the far future? But more and more computers don't come with optical drives. Who knows how much longer external add on drives will be available (and affordable). I'm sure BD/DVD pla...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Jun 08, 2020 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Redeeming Citi Costco rewards without visiting Costco?
Replies: 11
Views: 1848

Re: Redeeming Citi Costco rewards without visiting Costco?

Here is your answer: https://customerservice.costco.com/app/answers/detail/a_id/1143/related/1 While your Executive Membership 2% Reward certificates aren't accepted as a form of payment when making your purchases online, there's a workaround. You may use your Reward Certificate to purchase a Costc...
by Quercus Palustris
Tue May 05, 2020 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Glide Path" for asset allocation
Replies: 26
Views: 1844

Re: "Glide Path" for asset allocation

If doing a glide path as above, does it make sense to at some point only allocate 401k/IRA contributions to fixed income until the target allocation is reached? I guess this might be impossible for large enough balances when contributions are already maxed - or if stocks wildly outperform bonds, etc.
by Quercus Palustris
Fri May 01, 2020 12:49 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SCV fund which screens for quality
Replies: 21
Views: 1030

Re: SCV fund which screens for quality

Maybe SMLF (iShares Edge MSCI Multifactor USA Small-Cap ETF)?
a portfolio of U.S. small-cap stocks based on an index that focuses on four well-known investment factors: value, quality, momentum, and low size.
ER is 0.30% though. 638 holdings, $343m assets.
by Quercus Palustris
Sat Apr 25, 2020 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DD's apartment complex requires renters insurance
Replies: 50
Views: 2109

Re: DD's apartment complex requires renters insurance

It's extremely cheap. Every large managed apt complex I've lived in has required it, seems standard. Ive never needed it, but a coworker did - neighbor had a water leak that flooded his place. Insurance paid for them to live in another apartment while their unit was repaired and replace their damage...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Apr 20, 2020 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order
Replies: 44
Views: 3719

Re: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order

When I can't get good local coffee from Costco, I order from Mountain City coffee in Asheville, NC. Visited the roaster last year when I was down there too, it's a one man operation and Randall is a great guy. https://mountaincity.com/ Colombia light roast is $8.16/lb if you buy the 2.5kg bags (whic...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Apr 06, 2020 12:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What percentage of your paycheck do you invest?
Replies: 268
Views: 16684

Re: What percentage of your paycheck do you invest?

20% counting matches in 401k/TSP between DW and I. That's it for investing. No kids, HCOL.

11% going into rebuilding savings after a 1-2 punch of house down payment and crazy medical expenses to start the year. Plus I guess whatever is left after variable expenses associated with both.
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Mar 31, 2020 7:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Macy’s dropped from s&p 500
Replies: 71
Views: 6997

Re: Macy’s dropped from s&p 500

Interesting - I didn't think carrier stock exists until Friday when it spins off of UTC along with Otis (as UTC merges with Raytheon - does that merger open another spot in the top 500?)
by Quercus Palustris
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?
Replies: 557
Views: 20611

Re: Bird watchers – what birds are you seeing?

Saw a few Eastern Towhees, a bird I'd never noticed before until my wife asked what they were. Flitting about in the bramble on the side of the walking path near us. All the usual suspects (cardinals setting shop in neighbor's shrubs, blue jays, robins, mourning doves, and crows) seem to be back. A ...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Mar 26, 2020 11:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What "happens" on the stock exchange trading floors?
Replies: 12
Views: 1685

Re: What "happens" on the stock exchange trading floors?

Reuters: 'Most photographed' NYSE trader contracts coronavirus I was wondering what market news outlets were going to do without access to Worried Trader / Joyful Trader photos. How will I know if the S&P is up or down :confused . Hope he makes a quick recovery -- and same for everyone else who's g...
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Mar 24, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What credit card are you using that is not Citi 2% cashback?
Replies: 57
Views: 5829

Re: What credit card are you using that is not Citi 2% cashback?

Penfed power cash rewards - 2% cash back, no fee, 1yr warranty extension (up to 3yrs), rental damage coverage, no foreign transaction fee, $100 sign up bonus. Have to keep $500 in a checking account though.

Amazon card for 5% back on Amazon / Whole Foods.
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Mar 24, 2020 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Thread: It’s your First recession (or not) and you’re staying the course
Replies: 65
Views: 3786

Re: Thread: It’s your First recession (or not) and you’re staying the course

I just remind myself my life has been and is an advantageous mix of privilege and luck. Life in the US is looking a lot better than even some other developed countries. My job isn't heavily affected by this particular crisis. We live in an area with many grocery stores, and we have enough food in th...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 20, 2020 9:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?
Replies: 167
Views: 12129

Re: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?

I'm starting to feel like I should pay the 0.09% to simplify my portfolio back to 4 (ACWI, SCV, REIT, LTT) funds. 6 wouldn't be so bad but rebalancing by transferring to/from brokerage window for 3 of them complicates and add delays. Thanks for the perspective :beer
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Mar 19, 2020 3:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?
Replies: 167
Views: 12129

Re: How many funds do you have in your portfolio?

I had 4 - Rick Ferri Core-4 Total economy portfolio. But new 401k doesn't have an ACWI/VT equivalent instead having very, very low cost S&P 500, US market completion, and ACWI-ex-US index funds. So in practice... 6 :|
by Quercus Palustris
Wed Mar 18, 2020 10:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: First 20% of bonds in long-term Treasuries
Replies: 881
Views: 60376

Re: First 20% of bonds in long-term Treasuries

Many thanks, vineviz, for this thread (and I think there was another similar one too) that convinced me to make the jump from AGG to SPTL (now FNBGX w/ 401k at Fido) last year. Seems rational for an 80/20 portfolio with 28 years to go. Will revisit ITT vs TBM for the next 20% when I shift down to 60...
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Mar 17, 2020 10:18 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: How Is Your Job Being Impacted By The Current Crisis?
Replies: 505
Views: 53179

Re: How Is Your Job Being Impacted By The Current Crisis?

Software developer with a Megacorp, working on a contract for a Federal agency that's typically underfunded/targeted - and it's not CDC/NIH so not likely to suddenly change soon. The feds on my project have runway through May, if they don't get anything more I guess I'm at the mercy of management fi...
by Quercus Palustris
Tue Mar 17, 2020 12:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Prediction: Subprime auto loan bubble is about to burst
Replies: 16
Views: 1142

Re: Prediction: Subprime auto loan bubble is about to burst

Jalopnik had two good articles about some real consequences of this, way back in 2018 The car loans that never die How a Subprime Auto Lender Consumed Detroit With Debt and Turned Its Courthouse Into a Collections Agency Both good reads, if you're at home and have the time. The lender from the secon...
by Quercus Palustris
Mon Mar 16, 2020 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Who is continuing to buy as planned?
Replies: 119
Views: 8378

Re: Who is continuing to buy as planned?

I'm 27~ish years from retirement and have an 80/20 Core-4 portfolio, and still contributing above ratio to max 401k/backdoor Roth IRA. I've passed my 5/25 rebalance band but per IPS I'm only rebalancing quarterly so I'll see where things stand next month. It's tempting to move up to 90/10 but going ...
by Quercus Palustris
Sun Mar 15, 2020 1:11 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: SPAB issues?
Replies: 5
Views: 260

Re: SPAB issues?

SWAGX (Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond INDEX) also closed down 0.6%, so maybe AGG is the outlier?...but SCHZ (Schwab U.S. Aggregate Bond ETF) closed up 1.23%, so... I don't know?
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 06, 2020 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand why I need uninsured, underinsured motorist liability and medical payments.
Replies: 50
Views: 4046

Re: Help me understand why I need uninsured, underinsured motorist liability and medical payments.

Geico paid for the repairs to DW's car after it was damaged, maybe in a parking lot (we didn't notice the damage for months) and it was covered by her uninsured motorists coverage. Seems like it kicked in before the collision coverage. I think VA mandated the coverage and dictated when it was used.
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 06, 2020 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bradford White water heaters — good?
Replies: 22
Views: 1805

Re: Bradford White water heaters — good?

This is not correct. The first water heater to ever carry the GE logo was introduced in 1999, and manufactured by Rheem. Here's the industry article introducing that arrangement: https://www.supplyht.com/articles/84401-rheem-to-make-g-e-water-heaters I literally pulled a 2012 model GE water heater ...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 06, 2020 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: If I’m Fios Internet only, do I need G3100 router?
Replies: 10
Views: 781

Re: If I’m Fios Internet only, do I need G3100 router?

I think if you have Gigabit FIOS currently it will be using Ethernet at the ONT already unless I'm mis-remembering, but you are correct that some people will need to do this if they have lower speed FIOS or an older setup. Good point, I think you're right too -- the MoCCA bridge or whatever happens...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 06, 2020 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: If I’m Fios Internet only, do I need G3100 router?
Replies: 10
Views: 781

Re: If I’m Fios Internet only, do I need G3100 router?

Correct, if you're not using TV, you can use your own router right off the ONT -- I'm doing it with our Google OnHub, previously did it with a generic (Buffalo?) DD-WRT router. There's only two catches: You probably need to call Verizon and ask them to switch on the Ethernet at the ONT -- it may be ...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Mar 06, 2020 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bradford White water heaters — good?
Replies: 22
Views: 1805

Re: Bradford White water heaters — good?

There's really only three water heater companies left, Rheem (part of a Japanese company), Bradford-White, and A. O. Smith (who makes State, Lochinvar, American Water and other brands). GE Appliances (2nd largest appliance maker in the U.S. and owned by Haier, largest appliance maker in the world) ...
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Feb 28, 2020 11:20 am
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Forum is very slow?? is this just today?
Replies: 151
Views: 10107

Re: Forum is very slow?? is this just today?

Turns out the server was powered by hopes and dreams of continued S&P500 outperformance :shock:
by Quercus Palustris
Fri Feb 28, 2020 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fine Art: Appraisal and insurance concerns
Replies: 24
Views: 1016

Re: Fine Art: Appraisal and insurance concerns

We have Amica homeowners insurance (and had their renters coverage while in an apt). If their artwork insurance works like it does for jewelry, they asked for receipt, appraisal, and sometimes a picture of the items and added specific coverage for those amounts. It didn't seem like you could get the...
by Quercus Palustris
Thu Feb 27, 2020 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bradford White water heaters — good?
Replies: 22
Views: 1805

Re: Bradford White water heaters — good?

Our current house has a 50gal atmospheric vent Bradford White. Previously had State Corp and AO Smith. The good: brass drain valve for flushing it seems to work fine The bad: the anode rod is attached to the hot water tube, and can't be replaced without un/re-soldering the hot water side There's rea...
by Quercus Palustris
Sat Feb 22, 2020 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Perform own oil change pros & cons?
Replies: 224
Views: 11368

Re: Perform own oil change pros & cons?

Thanks, I did not know about the 100% versus full synthetic issue. I've now been specifying Valvoline SynPower SAE 5W-30 which is recommended by the manufacturer...searched to see if it was 100% synthetic, but came up without an answer. According to the MSDS, it's a hycrocracked Group III base oil....