Search found 216 matches

by Elric
Sun Nov 10, 2019 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RSS Reader Question
Replies: 12
Views: 768

Re: RSS Reader Question

QuiteRSS. I've been using it for years, both at work, and now that I'm retired, at home.
by Elric
Sun Nov 10, 2019 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is reasonable HOA reserve?
Replies: 13
Views: 1296

Re: What is reasonable HOA reserve?

As multiple others have posted, reserves are for needed capital reinvestment. As such, you really need a reserve study (how formal and whether in-house or contracted for depends on the size and nature of your HOA and its assets). You really can't use a rule of thumb percentage of annual expenses. I'...
by Elric
Fri Nov 08, 2019 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Talk Me Off the Active Investing Ledge!
Replies: 53
Views: 3066

Re: Talk Me Off the Active Investing Ledge!

I'm confused. I thought you said the portfolio had underperformed the index until last year, but then you showed figures showing it beat the index year after year. How long has this portfolio been around, and which is it? Is this for the entire stock portion of your investments or just a portion?
by Elric
Wed Nov 06, 2019 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Going small on a Windows PC
Replies: 17
Views: 1333

Re: Going small on a Windows PC

I have an HP EliteDesk and I'm very happy with it.
by Elric
Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 4128
Views: 1176911

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Lloydo wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:52 pm
“Permanent Record”, Edward Snowden. Highly recommended!
I agree. It's what I read before How Democracies Die. I had already read and watched a lot on Snowden, so I found it a good, but not great, book. If I had known less going in I'd likely have rated it even higher.
by Elric
Sun Nov 03, 2019 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 4128
Views: 1176911

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

Lloydo wrote:
Sun Nov 03, 2019 12:52 pm
“Permanent Record”, Edward Snowden. Highly recommended!
I agree. It's what I read before How Democracies Die. I had already read and watched a lot on Snowden, so I found it a good, but not great, book. If I had known less going in I'd likely have rated it even higher.
by Elric
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 4128
Views: 1176911

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"How Democracies Die" by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt. Excellent book that I cannot recommend highly enough. Goes into what has happened in other countries outside of the U.S., the "soft guardrails" that help protect against authoritarian leaders and how these have been eroded over several de...
by Elric
Sun Nov 03, 2019 9:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What to do if HOA hasn't file taxes
Replies: 14
Views: 1165

Re: What to do if HOA hasn't file taxes

This is much more common than you might think, both for HOA"s and small non-profits. I had a similar issue when I took over as an HOA treasurer a couple of years ago, but with the benefit of decent records. For Federal taxes, you must file every year, but likely don't owe taxes. Using form 1120H, yo...
by Elric
Fri Nov 01, 2019 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Halloween Candy - Favorites; Throw it in the Bag
Replies: 61
Views: 3259

Re: Halloween Candy - Favorites; Throw it in the Bag

The real danger that your kids face is traffic. Dressing up your kids in dark costumes and having them walk around in masks with impeded visibility does result in fatalities. Watching out for traffic and teaching your kids caution is the best way to keep them safe. Kids are 300% more likely to be s...
by Elric
Fri Nov 01, 2019 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Halloween Candy - Favorites; Throw it in the Bag
Replies: 61
Views: 3259

Re: Halloween Candy - Favorites; Throw it in the Bag

Snickers is #1, closely followed by Reese's Peanut Butter Cups and Hershey's Chocolate bars.
by Elric
Thu Oct 31, 2019 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Best way to sell off invididual stock investment portfolio?
Replies: 14
Views: 1299

Re: Best way to sell off invididual stock investment portfolio?

7. Random final question, is there anyway in any of the online brokerages like Schwab, to see how my portfolio has compared to the S&P 500 or VTI over the same time span, considering gains + dividends? While there was a $45K increase, I'd like to know that I was hopefully somewhere in line with hol...
by Elric
Thu Oct 31, 2019 11:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI
Replies: 4128
Views: 1176911

Re: What Book Are You Currently Reading? Part VI

"How Democracies Die" by Steven Levitsky and Daniel Ziblatt. Excellent book that I cannot recommend highly enough. Goes into what has happened in other countries outside of the U.S., the "soft guardrails" that help protect against authoritarian leaders and how these have been eroded over several dec...
by Elric
Wed Oct 30, 2019 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Computer with or without SSD?
Replies: 78
Views: 4326

Re: New Computer with or without SSD?

Of all the billions of computers out there, how would anybody know mine was missing said patches, let alone that there is anything worthwhile to steal? There's no human selecting potential targets one by one. There are instead thousands of automated attackers quickly scanning for vulnerabilitoes an...
by Elric
Tue Oct 29, 2019 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Computer with or without SSD?
Replies: 78
Views: 4326

Re: New Computer with or without SSD?

I held out with getting both some years back, but last time around, when SSD only and have never looked back. Quite happy with it and it's been running just fine. Unless you need a lot of slots or have some other reason, I'd also look into a mini rather than full sized desktop. HP has some nice ones...
by Elric
Thu Oct 24, 2019 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Christine Benz article on door to door financial people
Replies: 59
Views: 6262

Re: Christine Benz article on door to door financial people

On the actionable side of this, one small thing that can be done is add a prominent NO SOLICITORS sign by your door, or by the door of vulnerable relatives. I find it doesn't stop all solicitors from ringing the bell. But when they do, I just shake my head (no), point at the sign, and close the doo...
by Elric
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: If we visit Shenandoah and Blue Ridge Parkway, do we "need" to see Great Smoky Mtns. NP, too?
Replies: 52
Views: 5200

Re: If we visit Shenandoah and Blue Ridge Parkway, do we "need" to see Great Smoky Mtns. NP, too?

With the caveat that I don't know where dogs are and aren't allowed, I'd skip a lot of the Blue Ridge Parkway in favor of exploring the Smokies.
by Elric
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: lastpass noob question
Replies: 40
Views: 3211

Re: lastpass noob question

Nothing is 100% secure. But Lastpass is about a million times more secure than writing down passwords. So..... I think it's a myth that writing down passwords is insecure. Here's why... 1. Sure, if you mean writing down your domain password on a sticky note and putting it under the desk or keyboard...
by Elric
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: lastpass noob question
Replies: 40
Views: 3211

Re: lastpass noob question

And if lastpass gets hacked? What then? That's a "website". And what do I use to manage my master password? And on and on it goes... -TheDDC Unlike far too many businesses, LastPass and other good password managers only store your passwords in encrypted form AND they don't store your master passwor...
by Elric
Fri Oct 11, 2019 8:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: duckduckgo
Replies: 31
Views: 4123

Re: duckduckgo

I use DuckDuckGo as my default browser on Chrome with no problems. For those times when Google has better results, I just add !g and a space before the search terms and DuckDuckGo then searches using Google.
by Elric
Mon Sep 23, 2019 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4806
Views: 1252199

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Juliajones54 wrote:
Sun Sep 22, 2019 9:31 pm
Downton Abbey yesterday and Linda Ronstadt this afternoon. Both 10/10 for us. We really enjoyed Laurel Canyon too.
Is Laurel Canyon on a streaming service? If so, which one? Thanks!
by Elric
Sun Sep 22, 2019 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4806
Views: 1252199

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

DW and I saw the documentary "Linda Ronstadt: The Sound of My Voice" in the theater earlier tonight. :thumbsup :thumbsup
by Elric
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Need help grading my "Fee Only" provider
Replies: 59
Views: 4924

Re: Need help grading my "Fee Only" provider

I can't offer any detailed thoughts on your portfolio other than to agree that your adviser has put you in many more funds than makes sense. A couple of higher level thoughts: 1) Vanguard, Fidelity, and Schwab are all fine places for your brokerage account. There are several threads on this. Nothing...
by Elric
Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Low Cost Burner Phone?
Replies: 16
Views: 2318

Re: Low Cost Burner Phone?

Are you looking for just a backup prepaid phone, or a true burner phone that you will dispose of once you use it?
by Elric
Sat Sep 07, 2019 10:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Starting A New Busines
Replies: 23
Views: 1936

Re: Starting A New Busines

Lots of good advice from folks who know more than I do, so I'll just throw another suggestion at you: for accounting, Wave Accounting (a free, in the cloud software as a service) works for me. It has limitations, but it works for my simple single-owner LLC and also for our Homeowner's Association. I...
by Elric
Fri Sep 06, 2019 9:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4806
Views: 1252199

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

Thanks for the recommendation. I watched the other night. It is sobering when you hear the wage level they had previous with GM, and their new wages, and the no nonsense approach from the new owners. I do think it's positive you have 2200 American employees that I expect have medical and other bene...
by Elric
Fri Sep 06, 2019 1:42 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "The Callan Periodic Table of Investment Returns"
Replies: 33
Views: 3695

Re: "The Callan Periodic Table of Investment Returns"

So you chose one box? TSMI will give you the returns of the large cap equity box, nothing more or less.... 26 years of data.... you own large cap equity. Regardless what name is put on it. https://www.portfoliovisualizer.com/backtest-portfolio?s=y&timePeriod=4&startYear=1985&firstMonth=1&endYear=20...
by Elric
Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:39 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Debunking the Silly “Passive is a Bubble” Myth
Replies: 7
Views: 1597

Re: Debunking the Silly “Passive is a Bubble” Myth

Unfortunately, there is an equally phony bit of "truthiness" about indexing. It goes like this: a) Most money in the stock market is in large-caps. Therefore, S&P 500 funds and total market index funds are large-cap funds (Morningstar says so). In fact, they put almost 20% of investors' money into ...
by Elric
Mon Sep 02, 2019 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4806
Views: 1252199

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

"American Factory" documentary on Netflix. A bit depressing, but an enlightening documentary for Labor Day. https://www.theguardian.com/film/2019/a ... the-obamas
by Elric
Sun Sep 01, 2019 11:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4806
Views: 1252199

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

General Magic (documentary). They correctly saw the future and set out to build it (basically the smart phone, but that involved better small touch screens, an early form of USB, online shopping, cloud-based services, etc.). Unfortunately, they were ahead of the technology and couldn't pull it off. ...
by Elric
Fri Aug 30, 2019 8:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bond Auctions - Are they Kind of Like an IPO?
Replies: 11
Views: 687

Re: Bond Auctions - Are they Kind of Like an IPO?

Good point on the downgrading. You could sell at that point to LIMIT losses, but locking in a loss. Still, though, with a default rate for all grades of 1 in 1,000, seems pretty safe if split across issuers. I don't follow Chicago or Illinois, bit certainly Detroit and Puerto Rico's problems were kn...
by Elric
Fri Aug 30, 2019 11:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bond Auctions - Are they Kind of Like an IPO?
Replies: 11
Views: 687

Re: Bond Auctions - Are they Kind of Like an IPO?

Personal investors should not buy individual corporate bonds or individual municipal bonds. These individual bond issues lack diversification. I'm curious what risks are acceptable to you? Muni bonds have been awfully safe (overall, about 1 in 1,000 default rate, I believe, and I've read that betwe...
by Elric
Wed Aug 28, 2019 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Individual municipal bonds vs municipal bond funds
Replies: 17
Views: 1090

Re: Individual municipal bonds vs municipal bond funds

I guess I’m the contrarian of the group in that I have moved from VTEB muni bond fund to individual muni bonds. I've got a ladder of individual Virginia muni bonds after leaving T Rowe Price's Virginia tax free bond fund (PRVAX). Wasn't particularly unhappy with PRVAX, but since I plan to hold to m...
by Elric
Sat Aug 24, 2019 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Schwab user. Where should I put my Emergency Fund?
Replies: 35
Views: 4691

Re: Schwab user. Where should I put my Emergency Fund?

We use Schwab as our brokerage account, Ally Savings for emergency cash and cash "holding area" (xfer money monthly, as needed, to our BoA checking account, which we mainly keep for local Safe Deposit Box and other minor in-person conveniences).
by Elric
Fri Aug 23, 2019 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RE-OPENED for Good LightRoom Equivs: Best FOSS for Video Production, Audio Production, Photo Editing, and Office Suites?
Replies: 19
Views: 1266

Re: Best FOSS for Video Production, Audio Production, Photo Editing, and Office Suites?

I second Audacity for being an excellent audio editor. Free. I second GIMP for being an excellent photo editor. Free. Paint.net is another excellent photo editor. It is more lightweight/ less capable than GIMP, but still very capable. Free. VLC Player is an excellent video player, with some (very l...
by Elric
Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Federal job benefits
Replies: 36
Views: 2271

Re: Federal job benefits

I would encourage you to review healthcare.gov and check your area for yourself. The net benefit is approximately $100/month in my area for what I view as a comparable plan net of ACA subsidies and FEHB payments. Even if it were $200 per month, I would still view it is just a tiny bit of icing on t...
by Elric
Thu Aug 22, 2019 3:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I go 100% index funds
Replies: 22
Views: 2880

Re: Should I go 100% index funds

Though it is statistically likely that a switch to index funds would help optimize future net returns, it's not the end all be all. I'm not convinced the statistics over all active funds v.. index funds is a good indicator for a particular fund with a very long track record. If I flip a coin 1,000 ...
by Elric
Sun Aug 18, 2019 8:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Occam's Razor and Indexing
Replies: 23
Views: 2992

Re: Occam's Razor and Indexing

The premise in the article is that passive index investing and active investing will yield the same result. Starting with that premise, Occam's Razor, it is argued, says go passive. I have two issues with this (but not with the actual actionable advice): 1) Wouldn't most investors on EITHER side of ...
by Elric
Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5563

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

Ok my twist is getting the reward of the program doing something. Get an Arduino kit. search amazon Your programming will turn lights on, make motors turn, sense movement and so on. There are tons of examples, lots of youtube videos. Instead of your first program being "hello world" your first prog...
by Elric
Thu Aug 15, 2019 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Woodstock
Replies: 93
Views: 9312

Woodstock as it happened

[Thread merged into here, see below. --admin LadyGeek] This is of personal interest and given the age of many Bogleheads, I think of interest to others and certainly actionable. WXPN is playing all the Woodstock recordings, as they happened, starting about an hour ago and continuing through the wee...
by Elric
Thu Aug 15, 2019 2:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5563

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

As I said not sure of what I wanted to program more than just learn how to, but I got to thinking I would like to try to fool around with game making if that makes a difference to the recommendations. Sorry that I didn’t lead with that. Games can cover a lot of territory. Python is not good for maj...
by Elric
Thu Aug 15, 2019 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5563

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

If you do go the python route, and especially of you're on a Windows machine, I recommend installing the Anaconda distribution (https://www.anaconda.com/ ). It gives you many of the libraries you might use later and handles a lot of the installation "gotchas" that can trouble a beginner using Window...
by Elric
Wed Aug 14, 2019 1:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Confused, bummed, and concerned
Replies: 74
Views: 10917

Re: Confused, bummed, and concerned

For sake of example, f you invest just $10K per year, and earn 4.5% per year, flat, then in 40 years you'll have over $1M saved. I don't think that's too discouraging. Initially, your annual contributions will far exceed the annual earnings, but at that rate, around the 17th year, you'll be earning ...
by Elric
Wed Aug 14, 2019 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.
Replies: 64
Views: 5563

Re: I wanted to teach myself computer programming.

I think Automate the Boring Stuff with Python is a fun start that can help you solve some real practical problems. +1 for both that book in particular and python. As someone else mentioned, Python 2.x and 3.x have some fundamental differences. There is no reason to start any new project or start le...
by Elric
Wed Aug 14, 2019 8:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Negative rate mortgage now a reality - rationale and implications?
Replies: 6
Views: 1084

Negative rate mortgage now a reality - rationale and implications?

There is another thread on negative rate bonds. Today I saw an article (https://www.theguardian.com/money/2019/aug/13/danish-bank-launches-worlds-first-negative-interest-rate-mortgage) on the first negative rate mortgages. Why would Banks do this? Is it still a higher return for them than negative b...
by Elric
Wed Jul 24, 2019 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with cash in Schwab?
Replies: 42
Views: 2731

Re: What to do with cash in Schwab?

That is too bad on the MM drawdown. I use Fidelity as my core bank and can have my paycheck and all cash transfer (and holdings of course) automatically transfer to SPAXX (I will usually manually swap to the higher yielding SPRXX too) and then when I spend down from my CMA (which has $0 in it) it w...
by Elric
Wed Jul 24, 2019 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What to do with cash in Schwab?
Replies: 42
Views: 2731

Re: What to do with cash in Schwab?

There are treasury bond mutual funds and ETFs that would meet all four of your criteria, including ones offered by Schwab. A short-term treasuries fund doesn't yield as much as some of the other options, but would avoid the (small) hassle of directly buying treasuries and minimize interest rate risk...
by Elric
Wed Jul 24, 2019 12:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Who has the best (easiest) Donor Advised Fund
Replies: 57
Views: 3054

Re: Who has the best (easiest) Donor Advised Fund

I can only speak for Schwab. We opened one earlier this year. It was super easy to open on line and it's easy to do donations. My brokerage and IRA accounts are at Schwab, and I liked the low minimum donations (which I realize isn't an issue for the OP). Not thrilled with the blended conservative fu...
by Elric
Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2796

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

One last item: What operating system are you running? I'm on MacOS 10.14, so I think most 64-bit builds should install just fine? Yes, but I'd still recommend the Anaconda 64-bit build for Mac, as it handles packages and libraries so nicely, it's just less critical for a Mac. Also, starting now, yo...
by Elric
Tue Jul 23, 2019 4:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best intro to Python programming?
Replies: 21
Views: 2796

Re: Best intro to Python programming?

Welcome to the python community! I started self-teaching myself many years ago, so I don't have 1st hand knowledge of current material, but I have heard good things of the previously mentioned MIT online courses, How to Think Like a Computer Scientist , and Automate the Boring Stuff . Also a +1 for ...
by Elric
Mon Jul 22, 2019 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on 33% Large 33% Mid and 33% small?
Replies: 84
Views: 6740

Re: Thoughts on 33% Large 33% Mid and 33% small?

It backtests pretty well for the past 20 years. Comparing 1/3 each of Vanguard 500 Index Investor (VFINX), Vanguard Mid-Cap Index Investor (VIMSX) and Vanguard Small Cap Index Investor (NAESX) with 100% Vanguard Total Market Index (VTSMX), it yields higher returns, slightly higher standard deviation...