Search found 45 matches

by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Nov 13, 2019 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Blankets/Bedding for Cold Winter Nights
Replies: 56
Views: 3453

Re: Blankets/Bedding for Cold Winter Nights

Thermostat set at 68 degrees - but the bedroom holds between 60 and 64 when the outside temp is in the 20's. When it's colder my bedroom is even colder. Old houses - gotta love 'em. I use a wool mattress pad under high end flannel sheets (The Company Store, LL Bean for example). For awhile there I f...
by LittleMaggieMae
Tue Oct 29, 2019 8:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have an issue with Corelle plates?
Replies: 38
Views: 3594

Re: Anyone have an issue with Corelle plates?

I've got Corelle pattern "Enhancement" - the plates look like white paper plates. The large dinner plates are probably 15 years old. I have "salad" plates and little desert bowls that are less than 10yo. I think I bought a 4 piece set (dinner plate, soup bowl, coffee cup) and then the rest are all p...
by LittleMaggieMae
Tue Oct 29, 2019 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gated Community--Balancing Security/Access
Replies: 20
Views: 1346

Re: Gated Community--Balancing Security/Access

I think unmanned gates are mostly for "show" and basically faux prestige. They might deter the "organized thefts of opportunity" kind of stuff by outsiders. So while the gate won't keep a contractor, delivery guy, or your neighbor's daughter's boyfriend's sleazy best friend from picking up something...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Oct 26, 2019 9:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HDHP and HSA vs. PPO
Replies: 7
Views: 869

Re: HDHP and HSA vs. PPO

My HSA account had a $2 monthly fee until the account had $5K in it. It might have just been the "money market" cash fund I was putting the money into (a "core account" if you will). It sucked for the first 2 years of having the account until I passed the 5K threshold. I haven't incurred any other f...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Oct 26, 2019 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 38y/o requesting feedback regarding debt reduction plan and taxable investing
Replies: 15
Views: 1544

Re: 38y/o requesting feedback regarding debt reduction plan and taxable investing

Just pay off the Student loan in one lump sum. It's one month's income. Use savings and be done with it. In your big picture it's "small stuff". As for the mortgage. Why not figure out what you need to pay monthly to have it done in 15 years (or some other milestone year - when your first kid goes t...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Oct 26, 2019 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retire at 50(ish) possible?
Replies: 38
Views: 5878

Re: Retire at 50(ish) possible?

Have you guesstimated the expense of keeping a townhouse (and car)for a year? You'll have Property Taxes, Insurance, HOA fees, and utilities. (you'll have to pay for utilites even when you aren't there...) Then there's your car - insurance, gas, repairs. And you haven't bought groceries or spent any...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Oct 24, 2019 10:44 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Maxing out tax advantaged accounts?
Replies: 7
Views: 820

Re: Maxing out tax advantaged accounts?

Im currently maxing out my Roth IRA and fully investing in my company Roth 401k to the point of receiving full match. Those summed up conclude to me saving about 25% of my income strictly toward retirement. It sounds like the OP possibly has gross income in the 40K to 50K range (based on 6K to a Ro...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Oct 23, 2019 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Know if an Old House is Reasonably Beyond Repair
Replies: 30
Views: 2408

Re: How to Know if an Old House is Reasonably Beyond Repair

An inspection will give you are starting point to determine the answer. Also find out how the cost of doing a teardown. (It can be just as expensive as fixing it up! depending on your County laws/taxes/fees and whatnot). Is there a reason the house was built on pilings? Is the ground unlevel? or doe...
by LittleMaggieMae
Fri Oct 18, 2019 11:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: selling house, should we put in sod to replace ugly lawn?
Replies: 45
Views: 3738

Re: selling house, should we put in sod to replace ugly lawn?

with a 12 month horizon...I'd go the Scotts 4 step plan (or whatever local brand 4 step plan) is available. Buy a spreader - OR ask to borrow a tried and true one. Total cost about $300.00. You'll spend 2 hours buying the necessary stuff (30 mins to the store, 30 minutes figuring out what you need t...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Oct 17, 2019 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take the job in OKC or Orlando?
Replies: 98
Views: 5564

Re: Should I take the job in OKC or Orlando?

This leads to the second job in OKC: Definitely less desirable location but better job, Have you ever been to Orlando? I wouldn't want to live there. I've never been to OKC and I would happily move there blindly if the second choice was Orlando. +1. I often tell people Orlando is the armpit of Amer...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Oct 13, 2019 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace water heater just because it's old?
Replies: 73
Views: 5936

Re: Replace water heater just because it's old?

REplace a 13 year old water heater.. I think it depends: 1.) how is your water supply? How gunked up do you think your heater is from the water source? 2.) How hard has it been working (lots of people in your home using hot water)? 3.) is the heater in a "controlled" environment or it is subject to ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First house - planning and sanity check - need feedback
Replies: 6
Views: 849

Re: First house - planning and sanity check - need feedback

Here are some things to consider when looking for a house that you will stay in for decades: 1.) where are the jobs for you and your spouse? You want to be centrally located (or close to the places you COULD work). 2.) is there transportation to the employers who may someday be your employer? 3.) Wh...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Oct 10, 2019 10:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First house - planning and sanity check - need feedback
Replies: 6
Views: 849

Re: First house - planning and sanity check - need feedback

1100 sq feet is "small" by American standards. I personally like the old style Mid Century "starter homes". :) Lots of people in my generation were brought up in 3 bed/1 bath houses around that size. They had a basement (sometimes full sometimes 1/2 area) that was usually "finished" at some point an...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Oct 09, 2019 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Job Change and 401K
Replies: 14
Views: 1137

Re: Job Change and 401K

I think part of the decision rests on your income and how likely you are to want to do a Back Door Roth at some time (when your income is too great to contribute directly). I had a substantial previous employer 401K that I finally rolled over to an IRA about 8 years ago. Now my income is too high to...
by LittleMaggieMae
Mon Oct 07, 2019 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: using HELOC to buy second home
Replies: 8
Views: 1010

Re: using HELOC to buy second home

I've heard of this being done. It lets them buy the new house with a "cash" offer (no contingency for getting financing). I'd be VERY realistic about what your house will sell for AND how much you will actually receive when the dust settles from the sale (Realtor expenses, fix ups, whatever else you...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Oct 06, 2019 11:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tactics to pay off Mortgage Early??
Replies: 60
Views: 6308

Re: Tactics to pay off Mortgage Early??

I paid off my house early (had a 15 year mortgage that I paid in 12 - cause every one said how wonderful it was to have a paid off house...) and it was just kind of "meh" - my property tax and insurance are so high the PI part of the equation is pretty inconsequential. IT wasn't all that freeing -- ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Oct 06, 2019 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Teacher received an inheritance, seeking advice
Replies: 28
Views: 3347

Re: Teacher received an inheritance, seeking advice

The OP apparently has atleast 20% equity (no pmi) in the current house... and is hopefully adding more with each mortgage payment. They think they may move/buy another house in 3 to 4 years. I'd vote for letting the current house equity translate into the down payment on the next house possible havi...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Oct 05, 2019 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What would you do? New to this stuff
Replies: 33
Views: 4025

Re: What would you do? New to this stuff

Here are just some ideas/suggestions/"let's pretend" kind of things. It's time to start reviewing your and your spouses health insurance benefits - with an eye towards having and "maintaining" children. One of your employers plans might be better than the others. (also look at What kind of maternity...
by LittleMaggieMae
Mon Sep 30, 2019 11:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ants immune to Terro or just lots of ants?
Replies: 38
Views: 3037

Re: Ants immune to Terro or just lots of ants?

Go with Boric ACID not Borax (or the 20 mule team stuff). There's a difference. I use Terro - the early spring and fall ants love the stuff. I haven't had an issue with it not working - although last fall I was putting it out every week for atleast 6 weeks. I will add that if the ants keep coming ba...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Sep 29, 2019 3:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How much cash do you keep in your HSA?
Replies: 63
Views: 4808

Re: How much cash do you keep in your HSA?

I keep mine at 1,000 plus the minimum required. The last time I looked (I need to review as changes have occurred) a monthly fee would kick in if the cash portion falls below the minimum. I don't want to have to be annoyed by the fee(s) if I need to use the money for reimbursement. The couple of tim...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Sep 28, 2019 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Personal Finance Breakdown... Good Start?
Replies: 11
Views: 1682

Re: My Personal Finance Breakdown... Good Start?

D. Further pay down principle on loans (I also will use my tax return money to do this as well) Here's a thought -- if you are consistently getting a Tax Refund every year... why not look into changing your withholding and then upping the amount you pay towards your SL each month? If you are gettin...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Sep 28, 2019 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Personal Finance Breakdown... Good Start?
Replies: 11
Views: 1682

Re: My Personal Finance Breakdown... Good Start?

*As far as an HSA goes, I know that it seems to be advised one max out their HSA each year, however I do not think my company offers an HSA with my Insurance since I do not have a high deductible plan. I also live in New Jersey, where they do not recognize an HSA as tax-exempt. I read that there is...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Sep 28, 2019 1:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Addressing similar first names in an email
Replies: 16
Views: 1206

Re: Addressing similar first names in an email

Oh man, At work we have the Jens, the Heathers, and the Joes. (and yes, those of us on projects with one of these groups will refer to them in speech like that. Sometimes in very informal emails ) So, I have seen lots of emails dealing with the OPs question. :) For example (made up last names) Jens ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Sep 28, 2019 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: advise re small freezer
Replies: 7
Views: 320

Re: advise re small freezer

I would look for a small chest freezer 3.5 sq feet (or less if you can find a smaller one). WalMart, Farm and Fleet, probably even the big box hardware stores sell them. I suspect they are available now - as it's fall so people are canning, and freezing for winter. I have a 3.5sq foot energy star ch...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Sep 25, 2019 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: first house- 1 bedroom vs. 2 bedroom
Replies: 60
Views: 5121

Re: first house- 1 bedroom vs. 2 bedroom

If you go with the 1b/1b - pay attention to it's floor plan, the size of the rooms, and it's location -- does it have some intangible good stuff - like does it have a view? or good light? is it in a quieter area of the building or complex? Sometimes a 1b/1b with good sized rooms, good floor plan, wi...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Sep 25, 2019 8:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Success without 401k or Stocks?
Replies: 51
Views: 3931

Re: Success without 401k or Stocks?

I'm a bit baffled by the OP's 16K uninvested (CDs? A 'core cash' fund??) in a Roth... That's like having a Good Pair of shoes you never wear... in a few years you have a perfectly preserved, never worn, pair of shoes that no longer fit or are so out of style it's obvious so you don't wear them. Isn'...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Sep 18, 2019 10:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with employer HSA and dependent FSA
Replies: 6
Views: 414

Re: Help with employer HSA and dependent FSA

I'd consider your current health and what you forsee for the near future before going with the HDHP/HSA. You'll need info about your perscriptions/ailments to determine what Insurance plan is best for you. Generally, if you have existing conditions the HDHP/HSA plan might not work so well... dependi...
by LittleMaggieMae
Fri Sep 06, 2019 11:03 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Keep new house unoccupied or let sibling mind it rent free? [ex-pat in UAE]
Replies: 31
Views: 2803

Re: Keep new house unoccupied or let sibling mind it rent free? [ex-pat in UAE]

I'd be leaning towards having your sibling live in the house (as has been mentioned many times empty houses decay very quickly). AND having them pay you something as well as having them cover the monthly fixed bills (utilities, cable, etc). A renters agreement might be in order to protect you, your ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Wed Sep 04, 2019 11:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How often do you receive out-of-sequence pay bumps?
Replies: 56
Views: 3368

Re: How often do you receive out-of-sequence pay bumps?

The only time I've gotten big changes in pay was when I changed jobs OR when I had a promotion (ie changed pay grades/levels) with a current employer. A promotion always involved different responsibilities and often more challenging work. The only exception to this was with my current employer (I've...
by LittleMaggieMae
Mon Sep 02, 2019 10:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I have 8 checking accounts?????
Replies: 32
Views: 4459

Re: I have 8 checking accounts?????

I have 3 checking accounts. It helps me keep stuff that needs to be separate separate. Couple of rhetorical questions. Does your #3 financial place provide services in the 8 hour away place you use to live? Does Chase bank provide services in the 8 hour away place you use to live? If either of those...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Aug 31, 2019 4:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogleheads was right, I was wrong
Replies: 163
Views: 18164

Re: Bogleheads was right, I was wrong

I would work on upping your 'savings' I'll leave it you where you save it (pre/post tax retirement account or taxable account) and other people's advice. You buy yourself a whole lot of flexibility and choices by NOT having all your money not tied up in a house. You can't sell some of your houses br...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Aug 31, 2019 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: paying off 15 year vs 30 year fixed rate mortgage
Replies: 53
Views: 3612

Re: paying off 15 year vs 30 year fixed rate mortgage

I'm alittle put off by the "it's hard to prepay" a mortgage because you might be tempted to spend the extra amount you are putting towards the mortgage... Do you people all still fill out a mortgage coupon, write a check and then mail both to the bank (or stop at the bank and hand it all to a telle...
by LittleMaggieMae
Tue Aug 27, 2019 11:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: paying off 15 year vs 30 year fixed rate mortgage
Replies: 53
Views: 3612

Re: paying off 15 year vs 30 year fixed rate mortgage

I'm alittle put off by the "it's hard to prepay" a mortgage because you might be tempted to spend the extra amount you are putting towards the mortgage... Do you people all still fill out a mortgage coupon, write a check and then mail both to the bank (or stop at the bank and hand it all to a teller...
by LittleMaggieMae
Tue Aug 27, 2019 10:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off house before retirement or have available cash?
Replies: 84
Views: 7107

Re: Pay off house before retirement or have available cash?

How much income do you expect to have in retirement? You should be looking at/thinking about SS there's all sorts of info at ssa.gov site. You can access your info as well. How much can you pull from your 401(k) per year before it hits zero? Do you intend to leave any $$ to your heirs/estate? How mu...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Aug 25, 2019 11:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Please Review] Retirement Expenses in California and safe withdrawl rate of 3.5%
Replies: 25
Views: 2103

Re: [Please Review] Retirement Expenses in California and safe withdrawl rate of 3.5%

I don't think you are taking into account increasing prices and lower quality. I'd change your numbers to these: Refrigerator = $2000 (every 10 years) (I'd especially change the cost - if your kitchen was custom built around your current fridge fridge sizes change with time... I had a choice of 3 fa...
by LittleMaggieMae
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chicago - What to see, do & eat in two days
Replies: 71
Views: 4049

Re: Chicago - What to see, do & eat in two days

4 kids under 9? Then Navy Pier ain't so bad. It's an easy walk from where you're staying, plus a lot of boat tours/water taxis leave from there. The Children's Museum is nice there if the weather sucks. I'd recommend hoofing it over to Navy Pier, maybe taking your kids on the SeaDog one day. The Ar...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Aug 18, 2019 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving for better public schools?
Replies: 64
Views: 5468

Re: Moving for better public schools?

Public schools like Private schools have 'tracks' for their students. I'd try to dig deeper into what kinds/levels of courses your public HS offers. And compare that to the abilities/ambitions/how motivated/what your kids want to do in live and then decide what is the best fit. The Public HS I went ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sun Aug 18, 2019 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Review - 34 yr old
Replies: 18
Views: 3311

Re: Review - 34 yr old

I might lean more towards a ROTH... I'm 55 and looking at Financial Independence (retire) in 3 to 4 years. The bulk of my money is in a Traditional 401K. My pension kicks in at 65. I will have a lot of taxable retirement income - my IRA, my pension, SS. I will be in a high-ish tax bracket. This is ...
by LittleMaggieMae
Sat Aug 17, 2019 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your hobby and how did it come to be your hobby?
Replies: 146
Views: 16103

Re: What is your hobby and how did it come to be your hobby?

I have 3 hobbies: Dungeon and Dragons Chess Board/Card Games Of these the one that takes the most time/money and effort is by far Dungeon's and Dragons. It's a very fun game/hobby to get into. I, too, play D&D but it's not that expensive, since I'm still playing a homebrew version of 2.0. I've also...
by LittleMaggieMae
Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taking a break in your 50s: Is it the kiss of death?
Replies: 86
Views: 8850

Re: Taking a break in your 50s: Is it the kiss of death?

One more thing, I don't think a break will change the way you approach work. If you get another similiar job I suspect you'll repeat the "working long hours" and "not getting raises". I'm skeptical that it's your job (I'm assuming some sort of office type job) or your company or your boss or your co...
by LittleMaggieMae
Fri Aug 16, 2019 8:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taking a break in your 50s: Is it the kiss of death?
Replies: 86
Views: 8850

Re: Taking a break in your 50s: Is it the kiss of death?

Why not take a break WHILE keeping your job? It takes alittle work and soul searching. First, start looking at the things you do at work. Start focusing on the 20% (the important stuff) and try to ignore or stop doing so much of the 80% (busy work, stuff that has little or no effect on the 20%). It'...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Review - 34 yr old
Replies: 18
Views: 3311

Re: Review - 34 yr old

I might lean more towards a ROTH... I'm 55 and looking at Financial Independence (retire) in 3 to 4 years. The bulk of my money is in a Traditional 401K. My pension kicks in at 65. I will have a lot of taxable retirement income - my IRA, my pension, SS. I will be in a high-ish tax bracket. This is a...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Aug 15, 2019 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brown Bag Lunch Ideas
Replies: 70
Views: 4847

Re: Brown Bag Lunch Ideas

I meal prep on Sundays. I'm a flexitarian :) so some weeks I go "meatless". I take breakfast and lunch Monday thru Friday. A week of breakfast might be: hardboiled egg and a peice of fruit a cup of greek yogurt (spooned out of a big tub - I don't buy the individuals) with a spoon of homemade jam may...
by LittleMaggieMae
Thu Aug 15, 2019 12:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buy historic, walkable home or stay in blah subdivision with short commute?
Replies: 56
Views: 6104

Re: Buy historic, walkable home or stay in blah subdivision with short commute?

- There is no garage at the downtown house and the driveway starts with a steep upward pitch. There is space to build a garage if we wanted to - Visitors would need to park on the street and walk up ~28 steps to get to our front door I really appreciate any advice, comments, food for thought, etc I...
by LittleMaggieMae
Mon Aug 12, 2019 9:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much to allocate to different retirement “buckets”?
Replies: 4
Views: 781

Re: How much to allocate to different retirement “buckets”?

As of now I do not have a taxable account, and thought it was not recommended to start one unless you can maximize all retirement accounts? That is the general advice, and it needs some tweaking. Remember that the traditional retirement accounts usually have age requirements for withdrawals. If you...