Search found 703 matches

by johnubc
Tue Nov 06, 2018 9:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Encrypt a Text file?
Replies: 53
Views: 3922

Re: How to Encrypt a Text file?

There are plenty of ways to encrypt a file - WinZip has an encrypt option. Word can be used, but make sure the encrypt option is chosen vs just a password protected word file. Just a password on a file does not mean that the file is encrypted.
by johnubc
Mon Aug 20, 2018 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reckless driving ticket in VA-Help!
Replies: 124
Views: 7768

Re: Reckless driving ticket in VA-Help!

25 sounds like it was a school zone - that is a serious issue. Fairfax will require (yes, require) a lawyer. I would really consider hiring a lawyer - it will be worth the hassle to have him/her navigate the process and will be far more effective at getting it knocked down. will it prevent you from ...
by johnubc
Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental Property with Sibling Questions
Replies: 22
Views: 1702

Re: Rental Property with Sibling Questions

I would suggest that you do not do it. Sell the home and split the proceeds. You will be far better off and have a better relationship with your sister.
by johnubc
Fri Aug 03, 2018 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best place to hide a key
Replies: 63
Views: 5074

Re: best place to hide a key

Locking a key fob in a safe spot on a car - is really no better than leaving it unlocked. The fob will work - and allow the doors to be opened and car started. But, no fear, eventually the battery will run out on the fob and secure the car.
by johnubc
Tue Jul 24, 2018 5:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dealing with HOA Notice
Replies: 118
Views: 10101

Re: Dealing with HOA Notice

I have had very good luck simply ignoring "notices" given to me by my HOA. I am 3 for 3 in doing nothing and having no negative results for things like this. This is not good advice. You will very likely be surprised when you try to sell your home and discover these outstanding violations - and fee...
by johnubc
Sun Jun 10, 2018 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paint shutters or remove
Replies: 10
Views: 1206

Re: Paint shutters or remove

As for painting them white - you will really want to remove them to paint them - as they should be sprayed and the work to tape them off in place will be more than the work to remove/replace them. It can be done - results vary with the skills of the painter. If you want to stay with the current colo...
by johnubc
Thu Apr 26, 2018 6:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Building/House Plans
Replies: 26
Views: 1980

Re: Building/House Plans

Check out Building a new Home on Garden Web - lots of information and helpful blog.
by johnubc
Fri Mar 23, 2018 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the sentence for laminating a Medicare Card?
Replies: 38
Views: 9021

Re: What is the sentence for laminating a Medicare Card?

One day, hopefully, Medicare will replace the cardboard card and solve the issue.

I would not be too worried about laminating it.
by johnubc
Thu Mar 01, 2018 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard & Safari Not Play Nice
Replies: 19
Views: 958

Re: Vanguard & Safari Not Play Nice

I do not have any issue - what specifically are you seeing?
by johnubc
Tue Feb 27, 2018 7:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on an ESPP with 2 year contribution period?
Replies: 29
Views: 1691

Re: Thoughts on an ESPP with 2 year contribution period?

I can say that I have never heard of a 2 year contribution period - and it makes no sense to me either. I would not participate, as holding onto the funds for two years is too risky - and ties up your money for too long. What is the part that makes this too risky? OP's not required to hold the stoc...
by johnubc
Fri Feb 23, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Thoughts on an ESPP with 2 year contribution period?
Replies: 29
Views: 1691

Re: Thoughts on an ESPP with 2 year contribution period?

I can say that I have never heard of a 2 year contribution period - and it makes no sense to me either. I would not participate, as holding onto the funds for two years is too risky - and ties up your money for too long.
by johnubc
Thu Feb 22, 2018 5:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is This Action by Megacorp Legal?
Replies: 65
Views: 4916

Re: Is This Action by Megacorp Legal?

The real issue - is why let the funds stay in the 401k - the person should have rolled them over to an IRA and truly self manage, rather than let the MegaCorp select the investment mix. That is not a blanket comment that can be made. The choice of funds in my MegaCorp 401(K) is better than I can ev...
by johnubc
Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is This Action by Megacorp Legal?
Replies: 65
Views: 4916

Re: Is This Action by Megacorp Legal?

If the funds involved in the 401k are still in the 401k - then the investment mix is determined by the legal entity (MegaCorp) that maintains the 401k. 401k's often change the investment mix every year - and will send a notice to the users that particular funds will go away and that other funds will...
by johnubc
Fri Feb 09, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A bill from the doctor - how/should I contest?
Replies: 44
Views: 4498

Re: A bill from the doctor - how/should I contest?

I would not pay any bill for such a reason. They should be able to tell you exactly what the charges are for - I would also want to know the reason why there was such a delay in sending the bill. I would then decide if the charges are reasonable for the services stated.
by johnubc
Fri Feb 02, 2018 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Substitute for taking a shower?
Replies: 64
Views: 7852

Re: Substitute for taking a shower?

Any Gym Memberships available?
by johnubc
Mon Jan 29, 2018 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which of these mechanic-recommended services would you pay for?
Replies: 55
Views: 4503

Re: Which of these mechanic-recommended services would you pay for?

who gave the recommendation - an actual mechanic/technician - or the commission based sales person that called to discuss the findings. The front end folks get a pretty good commission on anything they upsell - needed or not.
by johnubc
Thu Jan 18, 2018 6:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Premium gas at BJ's for Mercedes
Replies: 42
Views: 4397

Re: Premium gas at BJ's for Mercedes

Gernerally, there is nothing wrong with gas from BJ's or any other station. However, certain stations could have an issue if there are leaks in their tanks allowing water to contaminate the fuel. A general 'don't buy BJ's gas' from a technician - advice I would ignore. all of the gas is processed th...
by johnubc
Thu Jan 18, 2018 7:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To the doctors on the forum
Replies: 88
Views: 6512

Re: To the doctors on the forum

Price Transparency. Sadly, that is something that the industry is still fighting to protect a broken system. The person with no insurance pays the full freight, whereas the person with insurance pays a negotiated rate that bears little resemblance to the actual costs. I do not blame the individual d...
by johnubc
Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Failure to Defer 401k Contributions
Replies: 6
Views: 607

Re: Failure to Defer 401k Contributions

Move on. It is too late to fix that.
by johnubc
Sun Dec 17, 2017 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Megacorp wants to change my bonus!
Replies: 25
Views: 5059

Re: Megacorp wants to change my bonus!

RSU are forfeited once you leave employment. They do not continue to vest.
by johnubc
Sun Nov 26, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Too much house, right?
Replies: 88
Views: 9704

Re: Too much house, right?

so - to build, you will be spending 2 years of aggravation and 900k.

What can you buy in the area for 900k - is it worth the 2 years of aggravation?
by johnubc
Fri Nov 24, 2017 8:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Job Downsizing Question, HELP!
Replies: 18
Views: 1901

Re: Job Downsizing Question, HELP!

First, you need to speak to your HR representative - reducing you to a pre-hire salary is a red flag. Are there additional responsibilities you can take on that will allow you to maintain the Director level position (and a higher salary)? Ask HR about the possibility of receiving the separation pack...
by johnubc
Tue Nov 21, 2017 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Newly built home. sell or rent?
Replies: 29
Views: 2321

Re: Newly built home. sell or rent?

I would recommend to sell - unless you KNOW you will return to the area. Capital Gains - highly unlikely - you will be lucky if you do not sell for a loss - as the cost of the home will be set by the other new houses in the neighborhood and with closing/realtor fees - you will be lucky to break even...
by johnubc
Wed Oct 18, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 1st Time Cruise - Princess and wifi
Replies: 23
Views: 2614

Re: 1st Time Cruise - Princess and wifi

If you are going on a Cruise - I would assume a vacation - make a vacation out of it - and ditch the WiFi - you will be much happier without it.
by johnubc
Wed Aug 09, 2017 9:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance on Empty Lot
Replies: 10
Views: 1240

Re: Insurance on Empty Lot

I have owned several empty lots - I inform my insurance company and my liability insurance extends over to it. There must be no structure - i.e., no shed, garage, etc.
by johnubc
Sun Jul 23, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Healthiest Beer for the Buck
Replies: 35
Views: 4683

Re: Healthiest Beer for the Buck

Beer - Healthy

Oxymoron.
by johnubc
Wed Jul 12, 2017 1:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why Buffet likes S&P 500 Index over a TSM Index Fund?
Replies: 51
Views: 8127

Re: Why Buffet likes S&P 500 Index over a TSM Index Fund?

Buffet would like to be a simple man at time. Saying an S&P 500 Fund - implies something that does not need to be defined to most people, i.e., they (think) they know what it is.

Saying - invest in TSM - would require him to define and explain what the TSM is.
by johnubc
Sun Jul 09, 2017 6:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to wear for job interview - skip the tie?
Replies: 83
Views: 9233

Re: What to wear for job interview - skip the tie?

First Impressions have a way of disqualifying your before you can even speak. Wear a suit - with the tie - unless told differently. It is a sign of respect for the company - but also a reflection of yourself showing that you care about this interview. This is something I take into consideration, as ...
by johnubc
Fri Jun 23, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is someone trying to steal my identity?
Replies: 32
Views: 5300

Re: Is someone trying to steal my identity?

"The company also asked me to confirm some security questions [that the scammer had set up!]. Fortunately, the scammer had given bogus answers to those questions."

This bothers me - I would not have confirmed any security questions with the target company -
by johnubc
Thu Jun 22, 2017 8:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Christine Benz: "How to Make the Most of Your 401(k)"
Replies: 24
Views: 4438

Re: Christine Benz: "How to Make the Most of Your 401(k)"

Employers need to set the entrance barrier very low - and participation will increase. Even requiring a person to pick from the investment choices can seem overwhelming to most.
by johnubc
Fri Jun 02, 2017 5:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer going union, what happens with 401k
Replies: 19
Views: 2789

Re: Employer going union, what happens with 401k

I am thinking your friend needs to investigate the situation more. It would be very odd - in 2017 - that the person would not have access to a 401k/403b or 457 plan. Very many people in education have access to both a 403b and 457 plan - making it a very nice place to work if you want tax deferred a...
by johnubc
Mon May 15, 2017 8:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs
Replies: 44
Views: 5762

Re: Homeowner's Insurance & New Roofs

You may or may not have damage. Are your shingles of a different type or quality as your neighbors? Having a better shingle may have helped prevent damage. Is the slope of you roof different? The angle of the hail vs the roof can prevent or cause more damage. Look at other items around your house - ...
by johnubc
Fri May 12, 2017 7:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Motley Fool - Million Dollar Portfolio
Replies: 8
Views: 3687

Re: Motley Fool - Million Dollar Portfolio

MDP was one of the best investments I ever made. Seriously. I joined at the very beginning. The recommendations tanked. I became educated. I was never fully invested in their plan, but have gotten out of most (if not all) of their single stock recommendations. To be honest, I have made some good ret...
by johnubc
Tue May 02, 2017 7:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Global Entry or Nexus
Replies: 15
Views: 1637

Re: Global Entry or Nexus

some misinformation here. NEXUS - is used for expedited customs between the US and Canada. It will also qualify you for US TSA Pre - and the Canadian version. NEXUS members can also choose to be enrolled in Global Entry - to be used when entering the US from other countries. To get NEXUS, you will n...
by johnubc
Thu Apr 27, 2017 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car portable refrigerator
Replies: 12
Views: 1360

Re: car portable refrigerator

Save your money. Buy a good cooler and use dry ice for the longer trips. Although dry ice can carbonate some foods (fruits and vegetables) - I do not think it has an effect on beef.
by johnubc
Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bill received after Estate is closed
Replies: 57
Views: 8207

Re: Bill received after Estate is closed

I would have a meeting with the lawyer and discuss - 1 - If a bill came in from another source, what would the lawyer recommend - pay or no pay. 2 - How the lawyer would recommend you go after the other beneficiaries to recover the fee 3 - How his collection process will proceed trying to collect fr...
by johnubc
Mon Apr 10, 2017 6:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell Plan based on an atypical use pattern
Replies: 32
Views: 2573

Re: Cell Plan based on an atypical use pattern

Look into Ting. Ting.com

Sprint and TMobile network. You pay for what you use - and a low $6 per device per month fee.
by johnubc
Wed Apr 05, 2017 1:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to remove DELINQUENCY from credit report?
Replies: 27
Views: 3198

Re: How to remove DELINQUENCY from credit report?

Note to self - never, ever, ever co-sign a note for someone. And if you do, have the bill sent to your home.
by johnubc
Tue Apr 04, 2017 3:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Conflict of Interest at work - could I get fired?
Replies: 21
Views: 5298

Re: Conflict of Interest at work - could I get fired?

Depending on your level in the company, it will likely not make a difference. Look at the Kurian brothers (Oracle and Netapp). In many ways those two companies compete with each other.
by johnubc
Mon Apr 03, 2017 5:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Screwed over by the airlines...
Replies: 42
Views: 6242

Re: Screwed over by the airlines...

Hard to feel sorry for you. You created two business transactions with two vendors - with no relationship to each other. When you book the flights on the one ticket, the transaction is one transaction - and then the airlines have a responsibility to try and accommodate you. Missing the second flight...
by johnubc
Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I need title insurance?
Replies: 43
Views: 4650

Re: Do I need title insurance?

lived in three homes (still in #3) and I presumed that the need for title insurance - including new ones for re-fi - were mandatory, never questioned it It is mandatory if you get a mortgage. it is Mandatory for the buyer to purchase a policy that covers the Mortgager (the bank) - but optional to p...
by johnubc
Fri Mar 24, 2017 2:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pontoon boat owners!!
Replies: 15
Views: 2716

Re: Pontoon boat owners!!

If I had to trade in my pontoon (actually a tri-toon) - it would be for another one.

One cannot describe the benefits to having a pontoon - low maintenance, 12-15 people. Rec room on water. Tubing, wake board (ok, not olympic quality - but you can do it).
by johnubc
Fri Feb 03, 2017 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Heat Pump - Single Stage vs. Multi-Stage
Replies: 13
Views: 4792

Re: New Heat Pump - Single Stage vs. Multi-Stage

Definitely consider the two-stage. Not only for the energy savings but for the comfort. Longer running cycle times will provide more even heat/cool distribution.
by johnubc
Tue Jan 24, 2017 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone have experience with plumbing issues or any Plumbers here?
Replies: 30
Views: 2938

Re: Anyone have experience with plumbing issues or any Plumbers here?

Get a new plumber. That is the most civil thing I can say. I am not sure of all the detail of what is involved in the repair, but $500 seems very excessive.
by johnubc
Fri Jan 20, 2017 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When/If a degree is useful for software developers?
Replies: 45
Views: 4315

Re: When/If a degree is useful for software developers?

In IT work - it is not so much about a degree, it is about your own personal network of individuals.
by johnubc
Thu Jan 19, 2017 8:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: FAFSA for High Net Worth Parents?
Replies: 71
Views: 9184

Re: FAFSA for High Net Worth Parents?

maybe I am doing something wrong - but I do not find the FAFSA a burden to fill out at all. Some information - net worth, salary, etc. Not hard at all.
by johnubc
Sun Jan 15, 2017 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens to withholdings if I put 90% into 401k?
Replies: 19
Views: 4212

Re: What happens to withholdings if I put 90% into 401k?

You need to investigate the match policy of your employer - most employers will match each paycheck when there is a contribution. If you front load your contributions, there will not be contributions the later half of the year - and no match either. Some employers all true up the match - but not all.
by johnubc
Tue Jan 10, 2017 6:58 am
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Sad News About a Respected Forum Member
Replies: 118
Views: 24318

Re: Sad News About a Respected Forum Member

A fantastic contributor.

I wish I knew him personally. May God be with you.
by johnubc
Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is a joint account part of your taxable estate?
Replies: 10
Views: 1253

Re: Is a joint account part of your taxable estate?

It all depends on how the account it titled.

Jointly owned can mean different things. Is it Right of Survivorship? Who is the other owner - a Spouse?

Often, a joint account will bypass probate as the other owner becomes the sole owner at your death.
by johnubc
Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Safe Harbor Match Question
Replies: 5
Views: 885

Re: Safe Harbor Match Question

Check your plan documents. They may only match when you contribute - meaning if you front end the contributions, you lose out. They *may* true up at the end of the year - or they may not - they do not have to. For my employers plan, they only match if I contribute - so I cannot front end it. They do...