Search found 3693 matches

by mikep
Fri Mar 27, 2020 4:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stimulus check from pandemic 2020
Replies: 21
Views: 2268

Re: Stimulus check from pandemic 2020

If my 2019 income is lower than 2018, should I file taxes as soon as possible or is it already too late? Or will it all get trued up the same way once I have my 2020 income?
by mikep
Fri Mar 27, 2020 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Opening a new HELOC during the Coronavirus
Replies: 23
Views: 1413

Re: Opening a new HELOC during the Coronavirus

It appears that Consumers Credit Union (IL) has the new lowest long term rate for a HELOC at Prime - 0.5% up to 80% CLTV. Downside for now is they charge for an appraisal and have a 4% floor, but have no early termination fees. I'm checking with them if they will require an appraisal for 35% CLTV an...
by mikep
Wed Mar 25, 2020 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: COVID-19 and auto insurance
Replies: 4
Views: 741

Re: COVID-19 and auto insurance

I called mine and they told me the premium is based on the previous years annual mileage. They offered to take my odometer reading now and again in 6 months, and will adjust at that time. Of course I'll probably be hopefully back to driving as usual in 6 months, but I'll tell them "it should be base...
by mikep
Tue Mar 24, 2020 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What credit card are you using that is not Citi 2% cashback?
Replies: 57
Views: 2787

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

Chase Freedom Unlimited for most purchases, since the 1.5% cash back comes in the form of Ultimate Rewards points that are worth a minimum of 1.5 cents each when I transfer to my Sapphire Reserve. Only downside is that is the value when redeemed for travel.
by mikep
Mon Mar 23, 2020 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Opening a new HELOC during the Coronavirus
Replies: 23
Views: 1413

Re: Opening a new HELOC during the Coronavirus

If you have your house titled in a revocable living trust, 3rd federal will not work with you at all. Most banks like this include a deed update as part of the closing paperwork and you're on your own to fix it after, but not them. That and the rate hike makes me look elsewhere. Right now I'll proba...
by mikep
Fri Mar 20, 2020 1:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?
Replies: 23
Views: 877

Re: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?

Looks like third federal increased their rates today from 2.24 to 3.19%, yet they still advertise "prime - 1.01%"... I guess prime -1.01% is no longer and they changed it to prime - 0.06%. I was just preparing the deed to take my house out of the trust now also..online application center not availa...
by mikep
Fri Mar 20, 2020 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?
Replies: 23
Views: 877

Re: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?

Looks like third federal increased their rates today from 2.24 to 3.19%, yet they still advertise "prime - 1.01%"... I guess prime -1.01% is no longer and they changed it to prime - 0.06%. I was just preparing the deed to take my house out of the trust now also..online application center not availab...
by mikep
Thu Mar 19, 2020 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?
Replies: 23
Views: 877

Re: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?

... Does third federal have a problem if your house is titled in your trust? I don’t know. I would just give them a call and ask. Cheers I called. Third Federal will NOT close a HELOC with the property in the name of the trust. Not even as part of the process will they update the deed for you, they...
by mikep
Wed Mar 18, 2020 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?
Replies: 23
Views: 877

Re: HELOC - at primary bank or elsewhere?

2) Your bank's HELOC would be inferior for my purposes but could be superior for yours. You referenced months but meant years on the draw and repay. Third Federal also does 10 year draw followed by 20 year repay. 3) My suggestion on paying off the mortgage was just shooting from the hip. You had no...
by mikep
Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Target gift cards 10% off tomorrow (Sunday Dec. 8)
Replies: 62
Views: 5792

Re: Target Gift Cards 10% Off ($300 Max)

This is great for us. We get prescriptions from CVS pharmacy in store where the red card discount doesn’t apply but we can use target gift cards. We are on an HDHP so the costs are high. In for $900. $300 each online in my account, wife’s account and another $300 in store. Also when you use gift car...
by mikep
Sun Dec 08, 2019 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dad gave me E savings bond from 1978
Replies: 30
Views: 5716

Re: Dad gave me E savings bond from 1978

I got a 1099 for the year I cashed it and I reported it. That was the end of it.
by mikep
Wed Dec 05, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Fidelity Health Savings Account Mega-Thread]
Replies: 1060
Views: 116899

Re: Rumor mill - Fidelity starting individual HSA's Nov. 15th

For those who may be considering transferring from HSA Bank to Fidelity, it looks like you'd need to liquidate all holdings to cash in order to complete the transfer. It doesn't appear that HSA Bank is set up to transfer assets in kind... I don't think transfer-in-kind is even a thing in HSAs. It r...
by mikep
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Very First Smartphone [Samsung Galaxy S9+] — Please Critique This Plan
Replies: 123
Views: 8196

Re: My Very First Smartphone — Please Critique This Plan

If you go with cricket, don't forget to get a $25 referral from someone who already has the service.

reddit.com/r/nocontract is another excellent site to do some research.
by mikep
Mon Aug 27, 2018 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?
Replies: 102
Views: 8810

Re: I still use cash not credit cards should I reconsider?

From using credit cards I have not paid for a flight or hotel in years. There is always a signup bonus out there to get the next one free and I focus on earning Chase transferable UR points. I even redeemed points for Disney world tickets saving $1800 from a recent sign up bonus. When I'm done with ...
by mikep
Thu Jun 21, 2018 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Surprise - Costco sells - but does not install vehicle batteries
Replies: 85
Views: 10365

Re: Surprise - Costco sells - but does not install vehicle batteries

My costco battery died after 2 years 11 months.. 1 month before the 3 year warranty expired. They gave me a full refund and the new battery was $1 cheaper. No where else in America can you return an old battery without it being tested, get a new battery, $1 and a fresh 42 month warranty.
by mikep
Thu Apr 12, 2018 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Disneay Aulani (Hawaii) vacation planning
Replies: 14
Views: 1683

Re: Disneay Aulani (Hawaii) vacation planning

I booked the Aulani renting DVC points with www.dvcrequest.com. This gets you a larger timeshare unit from a DVC owner and free parking. We are going in June, booked this last July so I can't say how it went for us yet but there were good reviews. You need to book 11 months in advance for the best a...
by mikep
Fri Apr 06, 2018 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car was totaled, next steps?
Replies: 18
Views: 1443

Re: Car was totaled, next steps?

You're entitled to the value of your car before the accident, which was a 2012 Ford Edge with 232,000 miles. The check from the insurance company should be enough to go out and purchase a 2012 Edge with 232,000 miles. This. Also since you'll have to pay sales tax on another vehicle, your check from...
by mikep
Tue Apr 03, 2018 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TaxAct and alternatives
Replies: 119
Views: 15738

Re: TaxAct and alternatives

For the people that used FreeTaxUSA: there was a comment made a few months ago about last year's version (for 2016 taxes) not having the sufficient forms/inputs to adjust ESPP prices. Has anyone encountered this for tax year 2017? That's good to know I also saw that issue. Now the other issue I fou...
by mikep
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chase Freedom Card 5% - any paypal tricks?
Replies: 12
Views: 5134

Re: Chase Freedom Card 5% - any paypal tricks?

Jack FFR1846 wrote:
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:21 pm
Gift cards won't work. They figure them out and if I remember right, I got 1% on them. I tried it out specifically to get 5% on a $500 gift card purchase. Denied.
where?
by mikep
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chase Freedom Card 5% - any paypal tricks?
Replies: 12
Views: 5134

Re: Chase Freedom Card 5% - any paypal tricks?

You can send to your wife but you will pay paypal fees of 2.9% + $0.30 which is not optimal. A few options I found are: Pay taxes at payusatax.com .. 1.97% fee Gift cards through Paypal digital gifts.. seems like this would count for the freedom category (this used to count for ink cash). Sometimes ...
by mikep
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block Deluxe: How to report HSA interest/capital gains in CA
Replies: 4
Views: 691

Re: H&R Block Deluxe: How to report HSA interest/capital gains in CA

can you use the 'view forms' feature and enter it in the right spot? No, it is greyed out not letting me enter in anything :annoyed My HSA is in Fidelity's TIPS index fund which threw some capital gains so I need to report those somewhere. With their annoying $19.95 state efile fee I may just print...
by mikep
Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block Deluxe: How to report HSA interest/capital gains in CA
Replies: 4
Views: 691

H&R Block Deluxe: How to report HSA interest/capital gains in CA

First time user of H&R Block deluxe.. appears there is no way to add in CA additions for interest and capital gains in an HSA on line 8 / line 13 of schedule CA as I have previously done with taxact. The only thing I can do is put it under "Other" and it also forces the description to "other" on lin...
by mikep
Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is it time to dump high yield savings for prime money market?
Replies: 141
Views: 34195

Re: Is it time to dump high yield savings for prime money market?

Staying put with my CCU reward checking. Prime MM still doesn't even come close to 3.09% with minimal requirements.
by mikep
Mon Mar 12, 2018 11:54 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Global ex-US Real Estate Fund - Fees
Replies: 5
Views: 1200

Re: Vanguard Global ex-US Real Estate Fund - Fees

Any reason to not use the ETF version instead?

With Vanguard, the fees are paid back into the fund, so you benefit from everyone else paying those fees if you are a long term shareholder. This is probably a good thing in the long run, as the fund is not hurt from short term churning.
by mikep
Fri Mar 02, 2018 3:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase sapphire reserve versus BOF premium rewards
Replies: 48
Views: 8350

Re: Chase sapphire reserve versus BOF premium rewards

I am all for maximizing credit card benefits (and I have lots and lots of credit cards for this reason), but moving six figures of assets to Merrill (or anyone else) just to get a few extra basis points in cash back (or points) is a bridge too far for me. YMMV. If you spend a lot, it might be worth...
by mikep
Thu Mar 01, 2018 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase sapphire reserve versus BOF premium rewards
Replies: 48
Views: 8350

Re: Chase sapphire reserve versus BOF premium rewards

I am all for maximizing credit card benefits (and I have lots and lots of credit cards for this reason), but moving six figures of assets to Merrill (or anyone else) just to get a few extra basis points in cash back (or points) is a bridge too far for me. YMMV. If you spend a lot, it might be worth...
by mikep
Mon Feb 26, 2018 5:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 4592
Views: 883439

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Discover 5% is also possible by purchasing at Costco via Google Express. Google express also has a promotion for 20% off right now. -> so you can actually get 25% off. Not quite 25% off.... Let's say you start with $100 of purchases. First, the 20% off promotion from Google Express would drop that ...
by mikep
Mon Feb 19, 2018 11:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Combining Chase Credit Cards
Replies: 3
Views: 524

Re: Combining Chase Credit Cards

Keep the freedoms separate in order to get 2 quarterly limits. That's basically 5x points on up to $3000 on mobile pay this quarter alone. I don't see what advantage combining the cards has. Rather than a hard pull to combine, I'd suggest to apply for another chase card. Such as the freedom unlimite...
by mikep
Mon Feb 12, 2018 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why paying off loans would be better than fully funding 401k?
Replies: 97
Views: 9255

Re: Help with what to do, pay debt, fund 401k, EF? TLH of taxable to fund one of these

No, very open to criticism. We need any advice we can get. And I do agree we went overboard on the spending. Delayed gratification from school and not getting real jobs until in 30s. Pretty much what the White Coat Investor preaches. We are a prime example of the kinds of mistakes that can be made....
by mikep
Mon Feb 05, 2018 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rebalance after today's drop?
Replies: 32
Views: 5558

Re: Rebalance after today's drop?

I'm confused.. that is not rebalancing. Rebalancing would be buying more stocks after they dropped? Adding more bonds now is not sticking to the plan.

I rebalanced in January after stocks got too high and bought bonds that went low.
by mikep
Fri Feb 02, 2018 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: CA 529 - free $225 if AGI < 75K
Replies: 0
Views: 357

CA 529 - free $225 if AGI < 75K

http://mgp.scholarshare.com/

Up to $200 match on contributions before 12/31
$25 match for setting up automatic contributions

Qualify if you are CA state resident with AGI < 75K.

Looks like a good deal. Trying to open for nieces and nephews but the parents have to do it. :annoyed
by mikep
Mon Jan 29, 2018 2:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard's advice on bond portion of portfolio
Replies: 42
Views: 8632

Re: Vanguard's advice on bond portion of portfolio

I think getting more international exposure on the equity side is more efficient since you save the costs of hedging the international bond fund. I think those are around 0.2%. I hold 50% of equities international stocks, so I feel I can leave out international bonds. Also factoring into that is I d...
by mikep
Mon Jan 29, 2018 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Invest in another rental property, pay debt, or index funds?
Replies: 5
Views: 1060

Re: Invest in another rental property, pay debt, or index funds?

At least refinance the car if you don't pay it off. Many credit unions offer 2.5% or less.
by mikep
Mon Jan 29, 2018 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue
Replies: 15
Views: 2455

Re: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue

The only reason I'm switching is because taxact wanted to charge me $64. I got H&R block deluxe from amazon for $19.95. Annoyed to pay $19.95 to e-file the state so I will print and mail it instead.
by mikep
Sun Jan 28, 2018 11:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue
Replies: 15
Views: 2455

Re: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue

It doesn't.. as soon as I enter it it goes to this screen that says "State or Local Refund is Tax-Free" since I took standard deduction in 2016. I even expanded to "Whole Form" and checked the box that says I itemized.... I have Deluxe.. is that what you have? I'm using premium, but I can't imagine...
by mikep
Sun Jan 28, 2018 8:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue
Replies: 15
Views: 2455

Re: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue

It doesn't.. as soon as I enter it it goes to this screen that says "State or Local Refund is Tax-Free" since I took standard deduction in 2016. I even expanded to "Whole Form" and checked the box that says I itemized....

I have Deluxe.. is that what you have?
by mikep
Sun Jan 28, 2018 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue
Replies: 15
Views: 2455

H&R Block 1099G state tax refund issue

This is my first year using H&R block deluxe after the taxact price increases. So far not impressed.. I imported a pdf return from taxact and it saved only the basic personal information. I'm starting with income and get to the page where it asks for my 1099G/ state tax refund. For my $28 refund, I ...
by mikep
Thu Jan 25, 2018 4:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!
Replies: 151
Views: 12837

Re: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!

I was all in favor of the OP's keep-using-the-old-phone attitude, until... I have an iPhone 6 that is running painfully slowly. I went to get the battery replaced and the Apple store guy ran a diagnostic and concluded that my battery was fine; he said I'd only see a tiny increase in performance by ...
by mikep
Thu Jan 25, 2018 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!
Replies: 151
Views: 12837

Re: Still using a 5 year old iphone 5. Who's with me? No new phones!!!

I just replaced the battery in my dying 5s DIY. Now it runs like a new one without a bulky battery case. cost for the battery: $20. Where did you buy the battery? what equipment did you use to perform the swap. I am in precisely this situation with my 5s. I bought a battery for my 5s at one of the ...
by mikep
Tue Jan 23, 2018 9:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity charging new fee on Vanguard funds held in 401Ks
Replies: 4
Views: 841

Re: Fidelity charging new fee on Vanguard funds held in 401Ks

Is there a link? I would like to send it to my employer to see if we are affected. However maybe not since they have been using Fidelity for many years.
by mikep
Wed Jan 17, 2018 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Tax Bill: State tax refunds
Replies: 4
Views: 722

Re: New Tax Bill: State tax refunds

Is there anything in the bill about how refunds from 2017 are treated for 2018 taxes? I deducted at 25%, would I add back as income in this year's 22% bracket? Seems like some arbitrage opportunity there.
by mikep
Tue Jan 16, 2018 5:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car accident - was directed to sign release
Replies: 71
Views: 6621

Re: Car accident - was directed to sign release

Why would you assume the car seat needs to be replaced? Was it damaged? Car seats typically sell for $50 to $100, so .... unclear on your basis for that claim. You can google car seat accident and see that it's common to replace them when a car has been in an accident. I'm not sure where you pick u...
by mikep
Fri Jan 12, 2018 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: [Deleted]
Replies: 98
Views: 19667

Re: REIT or No REIT

What a coincidence it is near a 52 week low and most want to get rid of them. Here's a different opinion when they were booming: https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=52866 Stay the course, folks. If they were good back then they are still good now. I am rebalancing in since that's what m...
by mikep
Thu Jan 11, 2018 6:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 4592
Views: 883439

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Chase Freedom includes internet/cable/phone services this quarter. Is there any reason not to prepay $1500 today on those? Good idea- I had switched my accounts to this card to pay for the three months of payments, but had not considered prepaying anything. I wonder if they will let me do this.... ...
by mikep
Thu Jan 11, 2018 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2018 Withholding Tables
Replies: 88
Views: 14386

Re: IRS announces new withholding tables for 2018

Does this take into account the increased child tax credit?
by mikep
Wed Jan 10, 2018 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Large Purchase / Chase Sapphire Question
Replies: 21
Views: 2350

Re: Large Purchase / Chase Sapphire Question

Chase changed the $300 travel credit for the CSR from calendar year to card-member year for new applications as of May 2017. No more double-dipping. I got mine just before then. You can still double dip as it renews on your card anniversary date instead of calendar year. http://pointsyak.com/benefi...
by mikep
Tue Jan 09, 2018 5:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Large Purchase / Chase Sapphire Question
Replies: 21
Views: 2350

Re: Large Purchase / Chase Sapphire Question

CSR all the way. You earn another 5500 UR on your $5500 travel purchase with CSP which covers the difference in fees at least for the first year. Also at the beginning of your 2nd year you can earn another $300 travel credit within 30 days then downgrade the card if you want. So you pay $450 annual ...
by mikep
Tue Jan 09, 2018 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Alliant 3/2.5% card - any experience?
Replies: 55
Views: 10709

Re: Alliant 3/2.5% card - any experience?

Here's another perspective on why I decided against it (for now). Spending $48k per year would get you another 1% or $480 the first year over the fidelity 2%. Then future years would only be $240- $59 fee = $181 per year. Certainly not insignificant, but there are only so many cards one can get if ...