Search found 309 matches

by ensign_lee
Fri Oct 23, 2020 2:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Abandoning Ship, Developing ‘New Brand Image’ has removed its ship logo from corporate docum
Replies: 107
Views: 8554

Re: Vanguard Abandoning Ship, Developing ‘New Brand Image’ has removed its ship logo from corporate docum

Not trying to get this thread locked, but are they doing this for politically correct reasons? I’m not aware of any group who would find the Vanguard line of vessels offensive. I'm pretty liberal. I can't imagine why anyone would find the ship offensive. It's probably more of people at Vanguard wan...
by ensign_lee
Fri Oct 23, 2020 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Contractor with non-payment to supplier
Replies: 16
Views: 880

Re: Contractor with non-payment to supplier

> I was hoping tomorrow I could convince the contractor to sign something that releases me of liability to pay any of his subcontractors

I don't think this would actually protect you?

Probably better to convince him to pay the freaking nursery.
by ensign_lee
Fri Oct 16, 2020 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco Appliances
Replies: 21
Views: 2513

Re: Costco Appliances

Bought all the appliances for a new build through Costco. I was VERY happy with the experience - installation was seamless, and the one thing I needed to return was easy to set up (wanted to switch to something else after).

Would highly recommend it.
by ensign_lee
Fri Oct 16, 2020 7:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do YOU handle home security [alarm systems]
Replies: 57
Views: 3798

Re: How do YOU handle home security [alarm systems]

The DIY solutions are VERY easy to install. You don't really even need screws - the sensors are there with double sided tape. I went with the Google Nest alarm system myself because I'm already in this ecosystem with my google homes controlling everything and locking doors and stuff, but I've heard ...
by ensign_lee
Thu Oct 15, 2020 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appliance purchase - Brand & Store Strategy
Replies: 20
Views: 1566

Re: Appliance purchase - Brand & Store Strategy

I've been VERY happy with the service from Costco - the ability to return and swap out, no questions asked is amazing, as is the hassle free installation.

I got myself upper end LG appliances (not hte signature line, but the one below that), and I'm very happy with my fridge, washer/dryer so far.
by ensign_lee
Tue Oct 13, 2020 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Election calls
Replies: 30
Views: 2189

Re: Election calls

Most of your voter information is public record. We were getting as lot of calls like these that mostly automatically went to voicemail. We had requested our absentee ballot very early and once we dropped it off at a drop off box location and it was recorded as returned the political calls dropped ...
by ensign_lee
Mon Oct 12, 2020 1:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Election calls
Replies: 30
Views: 2189

Re: Election calls

I'm volunteering for campaigns so I'm on the other side of these.

If you just reply STOP to a text, or ask someone to kindly unsubscribe, then they will do it. Unfortunately, that will only apply to that specific campaign / outreach group.
by ensign_lee
Thu Oct 08, 2020 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Flying during the pandemic
Replies: 94
Views: 5721

Re: Flying during the pandemic

Went from Houston to Las Vegas and back just a couple of weeks ago (closest airport to Zion National Park). I felt very safe. No middle seats on Southwest (I've heard American and United may no longer have this policy) - and the staff did a great job reminding (and re-reminding...and re-re-reminding...
by ensign_lee
Wed Oct 07, 2020 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Campground res. via recreation.gov
Replies: 19
Views: 1009

Re: Campground res. via recreation.gov

You'll need to go to your specific spot. Honestly, there aren't that many "better" spots than others, so just enjoy the wild outdoors.

Recreation.gov is pretty great - my only gripe is I wish there were MORE campsites, but that would require more federal funding...
by ensign_lee
Wed Oct 07, 2020 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Job Offer: Take it, leave it, or leverage it?
Replies: 37
Views: 3445

Re: Job Offer: Take it, leave it, or leverage it?

The recruiter really wants that sale. I suppose think of a $$$ amount that you'd be happy with to switch. Even if it's astronomically high - and then tell him that. They'll probably say no, but on the offfff chance they say yes, you'll have it. Win win? Or just stop making excuses and tell him flat ...
by ensign_lee
Mon Oct 05, 2020 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Mega Thread
Replies: 7600
Views: 522657

Re: Refinance Mega Thread

Does refinancing to a 30 year mortgage "reset" my mortage back to day 1 of a 30 year mortgage or does it carry on from where I'm at with my current mortgage? e.g. 25 years left on original mortgage taken out in 2015. If the first statement is true, does this negate the cost savings from the reduced...
by ensign_lee
Thu Oct 01, 2020 7:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I need a Ladder—What type to get?
Replies: 64
Views: 3814

Re: I need a Ladder—What type to get?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=92aAyjor5eA

I bought mine because I thought this commercial was amazing. And...it did not disappoint. I've been very happy with my Murphy Ladder so far for the house.
by ensign_lee
Tue Sep 29, 2020 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacement for a good pocket point-and-shoot camera?
Replies: 81
Views: 3964

Re: What Android smartphone to replace a good pocket point-and-shoot camera?

You can get a Sumsung Galaxy S10 plus for under $500 and have comparable pictures imo
by ensign_lee
Tue Sep 29, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Music for a camping trip
Replies: 66
Views: 4083

Re: Music for a camping trip

Get a bluetooth speaker. Costco ahas ones that double as a battery for your phone.

That all being said, I would be so mad if I was camping near you and heard your music...
by ensign_lee
Wed Sep 16, 2020 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is this guy trying to scam me on a car I'm selling?
Replies: 172
Views: 14012

Re: Is this guy trying to scam me on a car I'm selling?

100% a scam. He's going to send you a check for above the selling amount and then ask you to send back the difference.

Weeks later, his original check is going to bounce and you'll be out the difference you sent him.
by ensign_lee
Wed Sep 09, 2020 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Difficulty obtaining bitcoins
Replies: 17
Views: 2381

Re: Difficulty obtaining bitcoins

Where was your wallet? Bitinstant? If so...they're probably gone. Don't know what coinapult is. Just googled it. They say they are a wallet company, so yeah, you should be trying them. Though I'll point out that if you don't own your keys, they're technically coinapult's coins. #NotYourKeysNotYourCo...
by ensign_lee
Tue Sep 01, 2020 2:37 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your age and asset allocation ?
Replies: 246
Views: 15537

Re: What is your age and asset allocation ?

34 years old

25% high yielding bonds
25% equities
25% crypto
25% cash

...that cash should be in equities, but I can't bring myself to buy into this market...
by ensign_lee
Tue Aug 25, 2020 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wifi speaker for streaming music.
Replies: 58
Views: 3795

Re: Wifi speaker for streaming music.

Google Home Max is your best bet imo. Plus, it can act as a smart speaker. Though if you really want a smaller form factor and a good deal - find the first generation google homes for sale and set them up in stereo. Think I saw them for as low as $50 apiece the other day, so it would only cost you $...
by ensign_lee
Tue Aug 25, 2020 10:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thoughts on Tennessee
Replies: 116
Views: 13721

Re: Thoughts on Tennessee

I wouldn't live anywhere in TEN except for Nashville and Chattanooga. Maybe Memphis, but I haven't been there yet.

There just isn't that much stuff to do - [Political comment removed by Moderator Misenplace.]
by ensign_lee
Tue Aug 25, 2020 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Job Offer - $100,000 Raise - Would I Be a Fool to Not Accept?
Replies: 94
Views: 8004

Re: New Job Offer - $100,000 Raise - Would I Be a Fool to Not Accept?

Slam dunk to take the new job. Just be graceful when you inform your current job and worst case scenario, you should be able to hop back. Nobody is going to begrudge you for taking a job that paid $100k more. Hell, I would take it based on the commute time savings alone lol. But everything else is s...
by ensign_lee
Tue Aug 25, 2020 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your base charge for electric? I have an $42 electric access fee.
Replies: 52
Views: 2699

Re: What is your base charge for electric? I have an $42 electric access fee.

[Expletive deleted by moderator oldcomputerguy] $5 here in Texas - We're in the ERCOT power grid.

Then again, our prices can spike from the normal of around $20 to $9000, so I suppose that balances out.
by ensign_lee
Tue Aug 18, 2020 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I left my old cell phone in my trunk this summer. The phone works great but will not charge. I even tried a new
Replies: 21
Views: 1428

Re: I left my old cell phone in my trunk this summer. The phone works great but will not charge. I even tried a new

consumer electronics is typically rated for 0C to 70C = 158F Since you replaced the battery, the other possiblity is that one of the other components inside the phone failed. Move on. You won't be able to fix it unless you are good with working with surface mount components. . Will it get 158F in a...
by ensign_lee
Sat Jul 25, 2020 7:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Mega Thread
Replies: 7600
Views: 522657

Re: Refinance Mega Thread

I just wanted to say thanks for this thread and report my experience. For whatever reason, those of us in Texas aren't seeing the really low rates. Earlier in the thread, a few recommendations were given for Texans, primarily Northepoint and Keystone. Northepoint was ok, but not the best. Probably ...
by ensign_lee
Fri Jul 24, 2020 4:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: struggling to get a mortgage
Replies: 85
Views: 7727

Re: struggling to get a mortgage

So what is your actual source of income at the moment?

That seems to be the crux that the banks are stuck on in loaning you money.
by ensign_lee
Thu Jul 23, 2020 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Mega Thread
Replies: 7600
Views: 522657

Re: Refinance Mega Thread

Is this worth it? Better - 15 year $150k loan at 2.875% (Current mortgage 10 years left $121k at 4.25% combines with Heloc $28k at 3.25% (adj) with 5 years left). Closing Costs $5,500 and AMEX credit. Eww, not even a little bit. You can get a no cost refinance for 30 years at that interest rate.
by ensign_lee
Wed Jul 22, 2020 11:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pursue a Job Offer I am not ready for? Apply more pressure for my Raise? Wait?
Replies: 56
Views: 4607

Re: Pursue a Job Offer I am not ready for? Apply more pressure for my Raise? Wait?

Had a similar situation and I chose to interview with the new company. They offered me the job, but only at roughly 12% more than I was earning at the time - even though I had been upfront that I was happy where I was, and that it would require a worthwhile raise to move. I did leverage it for a rai...
by ensign_lee
Mon Jul 20, 2020 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Mega Thread
Replies: 7600
Views: 522657

Re: Refinance Mega Thread

As someone who used to trade MBS, this article http://www.mortgagenewsdaily.com/mortgage_rates/blog/949814.aspx is amazingly good at breaking down the trade on your loans. Most of you already understand that the companies you're working with (Better, LenderFi, etc.) are simply selling your loans. E...
by ensign_lee
Wed Jul 15, 2020 11:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it unreasonable to expect custom blinds in new construction?
Replies: 26
Views: 1412

Re: Is it unreasonable to expect custom blinds in new construction?

My new construction home *did* come with blinds, but it was an inventory home, so they were trying to pretty it up. I ended up replacing them anyway, because they chose pretty cheap quality blinds that were hard to open and close - plus I wanted motorized ones I could control with my voice. If you'r...
by ensign_lee
Wed Jul 15, 2020 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much should we offer? | First time home buyers
Replies: 32
Views: 2207

Re: How much should we offer? | First time home buyers

Just bought a new David Weekley home last year - similar situation, similar price range. The main benefit to buying a home before its complete is that you get to choose how it's finished. If the builder is already not budging on that, you've lost the main advantage of doing so. Already completed inv...
by ensign_lee
Tue Jul 14, 2020 7:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Vanguard partners with Infosys for Defined Contribution recordkeeping]
Replies: 265
Views: 16928

Re: Vanguard laying off 1300 employees as part of outsourcing deal with Infosys

Oh, damn. Was trying to figure out which one stop shop I wanted to leave my investments at, as I have accounts at both Vanguard and Fidelity.

Moving to Fidelity then. Their interface is better, and their service is about to be better too.
by ensign_lee
Mon Jul 13, 2020 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New home purchase, how to keep the costs low ?
Replies: 11
Views: 882

Re: New home purchase, how to keep the costs low ?

LiveSimple wrote: Mon Jul 13, 2020 11:38 am With the new purchase approaching the builder without an agent will have advantages ? Or it does not matter if we have an agent or not to the purchase price from the builder.
When I was negotiating with the builder, it saved nothing on my end. So I went and got a rebating realtor.
by ensign_lee
Mon Jul 13, 2020 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New home purchase, how to keep the costs low ?
Replies: 11
Views: 882

Re: New home purchase, how to keep the costs low ?

Just bought a new David Weekley home last year and omg, the price difference between a menu built home where you choose all your options and an inventory home is huge. A couple of my neighbors menu built their home (I don't say custom built because well...your options are always limited to what is o...
by ensign_lee
Mon Jul 06, 2020 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I look at mortgage refinance? (I suspect no)
Replies: 42
Views: 2905

Re: Should I look at mortgage refinance? (I suspect no)

With your interest rate that high vs prevailing levels, I'd say you should very much refinance. You can choose to go the "no-cost" route, where you will sell points (accept a slightly higher interest rate vs the prevailing 2.5% for 15 year mortgage). Maybe you end up getting 2.75% or something, but ...
by ensign_lee
Mon Jun 22, 2020 5:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance Mega Thread
Replies: 7600
Views: 522657

Re: Refinance Mega Thread

One more datapoint: Closed today on a 2.75% 30 year, no points. $700 in lender's credits and waiving the origination charges led to final closing costs of roughly $1300. Saving $150/month so I break even in roughly 9 months. Just went with a lender that was on bankrate: Residential Home Funding Corp...
by ensign_lee
Mon Jun 22, 2020 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying blinds
Replies: 16
Views: 927

Re: Buying blinds

Just got mine from member.baliblinds.com , through Costco.

Pretty happy with them overall. Got the fancy motorized ones, but I'm sure they were a bigger headache than normal blinds would be. I'd recommend them.
by ensign_lee
Fri Jun 19, 2020 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New construction house - what to consider?
Replies: 161
Views: 10665

Re: New construction house - what to consider?

I recommend a combination of Lutron Caseta switches that can be managed via Pico remotes (either wall or table mounted) and Hue color managed bulbs/fixtures. Most of our Hue devices are Circadian aware, and cycle through nightlight (red), wake up (orange), energize (blueish), reading (incandescent ...
by ensign_lee
Mon Jun 15, 2020 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Offer in hand, shall I renegotiate with current employer?
Replies: 36
Views: 2963

Re: Offer in hand, shall I renegotiate with current employer?

I was in a similar spot recently, for a raise from $100k to $115k . I was really unsure whether to go to my boss and mention the offer, because all things considered, I would rather stay at the current job for $100k than the new job at $115k. I talked to a couple of my old bosses at previous compani...
by ensign_lee
Fri Jun 12, 2020 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying blinds
Replies: 16
Views: 927

Re: Buying blinds

I was very happy with the ones via costco at https://member.baliblinds.com/

And if you don't like them, you can return them, no questions asked, which helped a lot.
by ensign_lee
Fri Jun 05, 2020 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: To what Broadband Speeds do you Subscribe and Why?
Replies: 123
Views: 6114

Re: To what Broadband Speeds do you Subscribe and Why?

1000/1000from ATT Fiber. Realistically, I get about 800/800 Why? It was the same price as the 300 down plan ($60/month) and now I no longer have a data cap. As a nice bonus, I got HBO Max included for free recently. Realistically, as one person living in a house, I could never dream of saturating 10...
by ensign_lee
Wed May 20, 2020 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off Tesla as Planned or Keep Cash for Covid Uncertainty?
Replies: 62
Views: 4008

Re: Pay off Tesla as Planned or Keep Cash for Covid Uncertainty?

Keep the loan and the car for now.

IF you get laid off, THEN consider selling the car, knowing that you are in a stronger bargaining position because you have 7 months of expenses instead of only 2.5.
by ensign_lee
Thu May 14, 2020 9:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will "work from home" destroy the commercial real estate market?
Replies: 169
Views: 13861

Re: Will "work from home" destroy the commercial real estate market?

Family of 4 in a 1400 sq. ft. home, I am usually working at the kitchen table and my wife does hers sitting up in bed. My wife is in the room because she is on the phone/video chat with clients all day and kids making noise and jumping around in the background is a little less professional in her c...
by ensign_lee
Tue May 12, 2020 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Front load washing machine recommendations
Replies: 98
Views: 4983

Re: Front load washing machine recommendations

I highly recommend 99% of households on the market buy the LG WM3900HBA or WM3900HWA (only difference is color) 4.5 cu ft front loader and ride it out for the next 10 years problem-free. Why front loaders: -Laundry detergent technology has made significant advancements over the past few decades. Mo...
by ensign_lee
Tue May 12, 2020 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New convertible under 50k?
Replies: 39
Views: 2511

Re: New convertible under 50k?

I loved my Mustang GT convertible. Kept it for almost a dozen years before I got my ... Corvette convertible. It was amazing, kept me safe in two accidents, very little maintenance outside of expected things from the manual. Overall great car. Mustang was under $50k new. Corvette was $45k used. I'm ...
by ensign_lee
Thu May 07, 2020 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Netflix - New Way Of Throttling [DVDs]?
Replies: 66
Views: 11806

Re: Netflix - New Way Of Throttling [DVDs]?

I'm still so letdown that they turned their backs on 4K blu-rays, and never adopted them. For me, quality > convenience. And without adopting 4K blu-rays, eventually everyone will decide the quality of what's available via streaming is better since 4K streaming is out now. Now in my own personal si...
by ensign_lee
Wed May 06, 2020 12:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Dealers not really wanting to make a deal
Replies: 245
Views: 36410

Re: Car Dealers not really wanting to make a deal

https://www.washingtonpost.com/business ... ustry-aid/

"A massive drop in car sales sparks new push in Congress to aid the auto industry"

Saw this headline, instantly thought of this thread
by ensign_lee
Mon May 04, 2020 12:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Amazon Prime Membership Question [Considering to drop membership]
Replies: 136
Views: 9930

Re: Amazon Prime Membership Question

I subscribed to watch The Expanse, and have actually enjoyed a lot of the other Prime Video options (it's the only place I can watch Scrubs, or Stargate, or Suits for example - and Marvelous Mrs Maisel and The Boys were actually quite fun watches), so I'm still getting value from it. And all of my p...
by ensign_lee
Tue Apr 21, 2020 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinance while being laid off
Replies: 1
Views: 314

Re: Refinance while being laid off

If they'll let you get it, get it.

Biggest obstacle would be getting the refinance done - but it sounds like that's not an obstacle for you.
by ensign_lee
Tue Apr 14, 2020 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Security Cameras
Replies: 13
Views: 1367

Re: Home Security Cameras

I've been very happy with my Nest cams so far. Both the front doorbell one and the outdoor ones I've picked up.
by ensign_lee
Mon Apr 13, 2020 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why not buy mobile homes instead of overpriced traditional homes?
Replies: 82
Views: 9058

Re: Why not buy mobile homes instead of overpriced traditional homes?

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jCC8fPQOaxU

Jon Oliver did a really good segment on mobile homes. He did not come to the conclusion that they were a good idea.
by ensign_lee
Mon Apr 06, 2020 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rural Home: Getting Hardwired?
Replies: 39
Views: 2714

Re: Rural Home: Getting Hardwired?

I am not up to speed on it but I have been hearing a lot of hype about 5G being superfast. It would be good do some research on that since if you can get that in a few years you might not need a hardwired connection then. If he doesn't have 4G coverage, he definitely won't have 5G coverage. 5G is s...