Search found 47 matches

by Fractalleaf
Wed Dec 30, 2020 5:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on iPhone 12? (replacing iPhone 6)
Replies: 62
Views: 4680

Re: Thoughts on iPhone 12? (replacing iPhone 6)

I upgraded my 6s to the 12 pro. Much better battery life and the cameras are amazing. The 12 pro is only slightly larger than the 6s. After a few weeks I still miss the home button. I followed directions online to add a ‘virtual’ home button that’s a pretty good substitute. I also have difficulty to...
by Fractalleaf
Fri Oct 09, 2020 12:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should Dad sell highly appreciated home?
Replies: 50
Views: 5168

Re: Should Dad sell highly appreciated home?

Was in very similar situation (also CA) except parent was in better situation financially. We hired a good local property manager and rented condo for the 5 years parent was in assisted living. The $3,600 rent plus pension covered assisted living expenses. Expenses for rental property were offset by...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Sep 27, 2020 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I Quit Hated Job And Take 80% Pay Cut?
Replies: 62
Views: 8332

Re: Should I Quit Hated Job And Take 80% Pay Cut?

You mention that you considered consulting someone about your depression and I think that is a great idea. The one silver lining to the pandemic is that therapists are available online globally, so you don't need to find someone locally. I am in my 60's, so perhaps have learned the value of security...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Sep 20, 2020 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Re: Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?

The property is in California so we are guided by state law for many aspects of the HOA. We do have a reserve fund and all minor repairs are paid out of the fund. Large improvements, such as the replacement of garage doors we did recently, are a combination of reserve funds and special assessments. ...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Sep 19, 2020 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Re: Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?

"In my market, $0.65/sqft/mo for condo fees is fair and $0.65/sqft/yr for insurance is fair" Wow, we're paying less than half that but we have no high value amenities to maintain. "The insurer may have some suggestions about how this is or should be handled" Yes, I plan to contac...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Sep 19, 2020 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?
Replies: 10
Views: 1138

Condo fees & insurance costs; what is fair?

I own a rental condo in a 10 unit complex. The properties are comprised of 4 stand-alone units of 1600 to 2000 square feet and 6 duplexes between 1300 and 1500 square feet. The builder had designated variable HOA fees depending on square footage. Recently, the largest unit paid about $130 more per m...
by Fractalleaf
Tue Aug 25, 2020 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pursue Inheritance Asset or Let it Go?
Replies: 14
Views: 2162

Re: Pursue Inheritance Asset or Let it Go?

First off, I want to thank you for reinforcing my confidence in the decision to designate a corporate trustee. The fact that your aunt did not file taxes for the last years of her life should raise alarm bells about the oversight trustee #1 provided. You seem to have some guilt about the level of at...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Aug 23, 2020 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee
Replies: 30
Views: 1828

Re: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee

It is important that beneficiaries be able to move the trust Can anyone suggest how this is phrased in the trust? Does the clause have contingencies, such as only allowed under certain circumstances? If an asset protection trust is created due to a beneficiary’s vulnerability, doesn’t allowing them...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Aug 22, 2020 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee
Replies: 30
Views: 1828

Re: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee

Can I ask how high the fees are? In this low return environment, many people are concerned that the bank or trust company may collect all the return on investment, or more, leaving no growth for the beneficiary. The annual trust administration fees at the bank and trust are stepped, so the first 1 ...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Aug 22, 2020 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

There's a minimum set of requirements - "don't apply unless you have ___, ___ and ___" - then the PM is screening qualified applicants and going by instinct to present their case to the owner. Yes, this was the case. The PM was only presenting people who qualified and giving her impressio...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Aug 22, 2020 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee
Replies: 30
Views: 1828

Re: Vanguard vs Fido vs Schwab as corporate trustee

You don't say anything about your beneficiaries, so it's difficult to gauge how much assistance they will need from the trustee. We selected a large regional bank and trust to have the most personalized service for our only beneficiary. The fees are high, but so is the service. They will manage real...
by Fractalleaf
Fri Aug 21, 2020 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lease Renewal - Landlord Refuses Buy-out Clause Terms
Replies: 23
Views: 2391

Re: Lease Renewal - Landlord Refuses Buy-out Clause Terms

Find the contact information for the owner of the management company and make a request for month to month rental contract upon expiration of your current lease, highlighting your exemplary payment history. You don’t want to deal with people who have no authority to make exceptions. I am a landlord ...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Aug 20, 2020 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

There is also an instinct developed to select excellent long term tenants that takes into account things that can't be found on paper or numbers. This seems to be very true! Somehow my property manager has sieved through the 100+ calls she has received to produce 3 viable applications within a few ...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 2:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

Is that a normal charge in your area? We had a similarly-priced rental in SoCal and the management fee was 8% of rent collected. She will charge 6% of monthly rent once a lease is signed. Another property manager offered me the option to pay her one month rent to find a tenant, after which I would ...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

Wow, this was a great read! https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=191039 I especially enjoyed how the living nightmare of the landlord was juxtaposed with the social media posts of the sociopathic tenant. My problem solved itself, the questionable applicant withdrew her applicatio...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

I don’t see how evaluating net worth tells you anything about a tenant that you need to know. The questions you need to ask are 1. Has this tenant paid his or her bills on time historically 2. Does this person make enough on average to pay my rent and have enough left for reasonable living (3x rent...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

Re: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

If I lived closer to the property I would definitely do without the property manager. As it is, she has been invaluable for meeting contractors for scheduled improvements and suggesting repair people. She is fielding 30 phone calls per day, doing all of the meet-and-greets and credit scores. I will ...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Aug 19, 2020 4:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?
Replies: 38
Views: 2401

How to evaluate risk of prospective tenants?

I’ve hired a property manager and just listed a 3 bedroom condo for rent. Within one day the property manager emailed to say she has a great prospective tenant and I requested to see the application. The property manager told me about a high credit score and good average monthly income, but the info...
by Fractalleaf
Mon Aug 03, 2020 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Becoming a Landlord: My Experiences
Replies: 179
Views: 42904

Re: Becoming a Landlord: My Experiences

Great post, and glad to see the discussion continuing 3 years later. I've scanned most of the comments but don't see this addressed: How do you select tenants without running afoul of anti-discrimination laws? For example, I own a rental condo (California) in a complex of 10 that are all occupied b...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Aug 02, 2020 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Becoming a Landlord: My Experiences
Replies: 179
Views: 42904

Re: Becoming a Landlord: My Experiences

Great post, and glad to see the discussion continuing 3 years later. I've scanned most of the comments but don't see this addressed: How do you select tenants without running afoul of anti-discrimination laws? For example, I own a rental condo (California) in a complex of 10 that are all occupied by...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 12, 2020 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 6181

Re: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

She was teaching middle school kids for 4 hours/day in an after school program run by our county. Her career goal is to become a clinical therapist, and she’s halfway through a Master’s program that is online now. She knows people who work or have worked at Amazon, and steps have been taken to enhan...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 12, 2020 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 6181

Re: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

Great thoughts here, I haven’t viewed the PBS video yet but I will.

Ultimately it will be her decision, but I’m glad to have some talking points if she wants to discuss it.
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 12, 2020 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 6181

Re: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

Warehouse attrition + fire rate is about 50% in one month, 75% in 2 months. Job is mind numbing yet requires attention and usually physically demanding and you learn very little. Wow! I didn’t realize the stats were that bad. It’s amazing they seem to operate as efficiently as they do. I tend to ag...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 12, 2020 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 6181

Re: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

Does Amazon offer any benefits? She is still on our health insurance, and probably won't be there long enough to take advantage of retirement plans. I agree she would be better off staying on unemployment but wonder if she has lost that option now that Amazon has hired her. Need to explore the poss...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 12, 2020 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 6181

Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

My daughter was laid off from a part-time teaching job when schools closed in CA. She successfully applied for unemployment and if she remained unemployed she would collect $600/week in federal supplements in addition to a small amount from the state. She immediately applied for every job available ...
by Fractalleaf
Sun Apr 05, 2020 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology
Replies: 9
Views: 1110

Re: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology

Why not consider something like a Tesla Model Y? Its range more than meets your requirements, and it’s not too far from a Highlander hybrid in cost. We’d like to do some extended long distance back country (desert/mountain) travel where charging stations are scarce. As a second car though, Tesla wo...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology
Replies: 9
Views: 1110

Re: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology

I would wait a few months and purchase a new 2021 RAV4 Prime (plug-in hybrid) which has an electric range of about 40 miles, and then wait for the 100 mile electric range SUV that you really want. Likely they will be available in the next 2-3 years with even higher range than 100 miles. Two to thre...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Apr 04, 2020 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology
Replies: 9
Views: 1110

Re: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology

Helpful comments, thank you. Interestingly, the BMW X5 PHEV is also under consideration. It’s now set to appear as 2021 model, along with the new X3 PHEV. The X3 has shorter all electric range than X5. Drove a BMW previously and it’s not a car you want to drive for 10-15 years, repair and upkeep wer...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology
Replies: 9
Views: 1110

Lease or buy Highlander hybrid, waiting for new technology

My ideal car would be a plug in hybrid SUV/crossover or wagon with a range of 100 miles on single charge. Such a vehicle will probably be available within 5-10 years but I need a new car now. Option 1 is to purchase a new Highlander Hybrid with plans to sell and upgrade when dream car is available, ...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Mar 25, 2020 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?
Replies: 14
Views: 1540

Re: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?

...my bond fun has definite maturity dates. In contrast, bond funds don't have maturity dates, which means that losses in value due to increases in interest rates, lack of liquidity, or increase in credit spreads may be be permanent. This is exactly my point. At maturity, individual bonds pay the p...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Mar 25, 2020 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?
Replies: 14
Views: 1540

Re: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?

So I went with the general wisdom and purchased a CA muni fund from Vanguard, VCAIX intermediate term. That fund is now down almost 8% from my purchase price! I knew that funds had this risk, but nothing like seeing thousands of dollars evaporate quickly to drive the point home. Aside from the risk ...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Mar 12, 2020 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchasing a new model car, sight unseen?
Replies: 5
Views: 375

Re: Purchasing a new model car, sight unseen?

Agree with the importance of intangibles in choosing a car. Call me old fashioned, but I love wagons. Unfortunately, the American public does not support wagon ownership like the Europeans do. Years ago I was convinced a Subaru or Volvo wagon would be the best choices. I test drove both and hated th...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Mar 12, 2020 12:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchasing a new model car, sight unseen?
Replies: 5
Views: 375

Purchasing a new model car, sight unseen?

I am shopping for a new hybrid or plug-in hybrid vehicle. I wanted to test drive both the Volvo V60 Polestar and the 2020 Toyota Highlander hybrid. The Volvo dealership told me that they "might" have a car I can look at next month, but I can't drive it because it was pre-ordered by someone...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Feb 27, 2020 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Coronavirus--Non-refundable Flight, Hotel, Etc.--US Travel
Replies: 12
Views: 2096

Re: Coronavirus--Non-refundable Flight, Hotel, Etc.--US Travel

Purchased Lufthansa tickets last month for a conference in Nice, France. I was advised recently that if an official travel warning is issued by a government agency I can make a case for a refund. However it's possible the conference organizers will cancel the event if advance registration is lagging...
by Fractalleaf
Mon Feb 24, 2020 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Dow Futures down 426 for Monday 2/24/20. Buying anything today?
Replies: 155
Views: 15255

Re: Dow Futures down 426 for Monday 2/24/20. Buying anything today?

I thought I would load up on Clorox at a discount today, one of the few cheap compounds able to kill viruses, but everyone beat me to it. Up about 3%!
by Fractalleaf
Thu Feb 20, 2020 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?
Replies: 14
Views: 1540

Re: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?

Thank you all for the universal endorsement of funds over individual bonds. When I was younger I had more enthusiasm for researching fundamentals, but at this stage of the game I prefer simplicity as long as I am not sacrificing yield. Schwab offers Vanguard funds for a nominal fee, but perhaps the ...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Feb 20, 2020 3:06 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?
Replies: 14
Views: 1540

Choosing CA municpal bonds, go it alone or Schwab fixed income specialist?

I'm nearing retirement and would like to put cash into non taxable investments. I have some in SWKXX, the Schwab CA muni money market, but am wondering about choosing some individual bonds as well. I've visited the Schwab municipal bond page several times but find it daunting with all of the variabl...
by Fractalleaf
Tue Jan 21, 2020 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Some observations when trying to buy [a new Prius Prime or Honda Clarity]
Replies: 37
Views: 5247

Re: Some observation when trying to buy a new car

Recent article in LA Times about slow sales of hybrid and electric vehicles: https://www.latimes.com/business/story/2020-01-17/ev-sales-fizzle “Not all dealers are loath to sell EVs, but for many it is a more arduous process,” said Jessica Caldwell, market analyst at Edmunds. “Consumers are likely t...
by Fractalleaf
Tue Jan 14, 2020 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Financial Adviser
Replies: 7
Views: 1116

Re: Financial Adviser

[I would expect most good advisor's to have a finance degree and several years of experience. A CFP is a licensed advisor plus has 10 years of experience and has passed an additional examination. Every few years I make an effort to find a professional financial advisor. I’m near retirement and have...
by Fractalleaf
Sat Jan 11, 2020 8:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Opportunity cost of helping out relatives
Replies: 54
Views: 5068

Re: Opportunity cost of helping out relatives

In your situation I would give the same amount of money to each cousin and the parents. Showing favoritism may cause problems since everyone is living under one roof. Certainly the second floor cousin with family probably feels his needs are much greater than the single guy living with the parents. ...
by Fractalleaf
Fri Jan 10, 2020 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping someone who’s broke, charitable or enabling?
Replies: 17
Views: 1384

Re: Helping someone who’s broke, charitable or enabling?

Great thoughts to consider, thank you for the input. Meeting and hearing the life story of this young man has made me realize what a sheltered and privileged life I’ve led, so perhaps there’s some guilt nagging at me. This is the crux of it I guess: I would like to invest on people instead of throwi...
by Fractalleaf
Fri Jan 10, 2020 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Helping someone who’s broke, charitable or enabling?
Replies: 17
Views: 1384

Helping someone who’s broke, charitable or enabling?

My daughter’s boyfriend, 24, lives paycheck to paycheck and barely gets by. He’s slowly overcoming some legal trouble from his teen years and has a full time minimum wage job. Graduated high school but no college. He has zero buffer against unexpected expenses that could render him homeless or force...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Jan 09, 2020 8:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donating $1M
Replies: 81
Views: 13140

Re: Donating $1M

I just attended an event at which a scholarship was awarded to a graduate student. The scholarship was founded by the family of a graduate student who died in a plane crash in 1990. Prior to the award the student is memorialized and it is a very moving experience. Though the annual amount does not s...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you mentally process stupid ways of losing money?
Replies: 84
Views: 7703

Re: How do you mentally process stupid ways of losing money?

You’ve probably had some windfalls in life too, gifts of cash or stocks that went up. Think of the losses as standard deviations on your generally upward mobility (hopefully). You’re on this site learning to be financially savvy, and that puts you at an advantage over the 90% of people who just don’...
by Fractalleaf
Thu Jan 09, 2020 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance Shopping - Progressive / Esurance?
Replies: 17
Views: 1233

Re: Insurance Shopping - Progressive / Esurance?

My daughter just filed an auto claim with Esurance and the service was outstanding. Phone reps were very sharp and easy to reach. The car was in their recommended shop and under repair within 2 days. Remains to be seen how much her premium will increase, she was at fault. We’re in California.
by Fractalleaf
Thu Jan 02, 2020 2:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do pretax deductions affect average indexed monthly earnings?
Replies: 5
Views: 434

Re: Do pretax deductions affect average indexed monthly earnings?

Thank you for the explanations, I clearly need to devote more time to understanding SS. I was unfamiliar with the wage base maximum tables and thought the reduced amount in Box 3 was due to my pretax retirement fund contributions. Interesting that medical insurance premiums paid pretax can potential...
by Fractalleaf
Wed Jan 01, 2020 7:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do pretax deductions affect average indexed monthly earnings?
Replies: 5
Views: 434

Do pretax deductions affect average indexed monthly earnings?

My friend who is a benefits specialist just told me that pretax deductions from pay, such as 401K/403B contributions, will lower the average salary that is used in calculating social security benefits. I’m having trouble confirming this as the majority of sources discuss only the effect of income fr...