Search found 51 matches

by EthelT
Sun Mar 26, 2017 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2692
Views: 520724

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Question for something I'm currently wondering is, say I was approved and opened up a card on month/day/2015. On month/day/2017, will that card *immediately* open me up another slot with Chase, or does it take time to "fall off"? Wait a couple weeks? Is it based on when the card was received and ac...
by EthelT
Fri Feb 24, 2017 10:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: BH thoughts on Time shares
Replies: 123
Views: 11262

Re: BH thoughts on Time shares

Quelle horreur!! You went to a presentation to get something for free and it was unpleasant? Really. Aren't Bogleheads supposed to know there is no such thing as a free lunch (or tickets or whatever)?
by EthelT
Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2692
Views: 520724

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

What about AwardWallet for tracking miles/points? Looks like someone brought it up back in 2014 - has it evolved for the better or the worse?
by EthelT
Sat Feb 18, 2017 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long Day Trip: Drive Old Car or Rent Car?
Replies: 59
Views: 5276

Re: Long Day Trip: Drive Old Car or Rent Car?

I am nursemaiding along my 18 year old Lexus. I rent for road trips for many of the reasons above plus newer cars are much safer.
by EthelT
Tue Feb 14, 2017 4:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please help! Father is addicted to Timeshares
Replies: 19
Views: 3122

Re: PLEASE HELP! Father is addicted to TIMESHARES

Take a look at the Tug (Timeshare Users Group) website, http://tug2.net/. It costs something like $15 to join and there's lots of good info about selling timeshares, renting them etc as well as dealing with the timeshare management companies. There is also the option to list timeshares for sale or r...
by EthelT
Tue Feb 14, 2017 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2692
Views: 520724

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

IMO CSR > CSP as a product (disregarding the bonus). Assuming you value $300 credit at $300, your annual fee with CSR is $150 over $95 for CSP. For extra $55/yr you get Priority Pass, Global Entry fee reimbursement every 4-5 yrs, 3x on travel and restaurants and some other benefits. Well worth it. ...
by EthelT
Thu Jan 12, 2017 8:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Miami -Florida Keys visit - Late January- Suggestions
Replies: 29
Views: 2615

Re: Miami -Florida Keys visit - Late January- Suggestions

The food in Miami is excellent. Just look up tripadvisor or Yelpfor where to go. But one place I highly recommend going is the Everglades. The amount of wild life you see there is amazing. It is the only place in America that you can see both alligator and crocodiles. There are also manatees. There...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 08, 2016 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare as secondary to employer plan
Replies: 11
Views: 1444

Re: Medicare as secondary to employer plan

While being covered by large Employer Group Health Insurance (EGHI), Your Medicare Part A serves as Secondary coverage. In general, enrollment in Medicare Part B is not required while being covered by EGHI. Compare your coverage from EGHI Summary Plan Description (SPD) with that of Medicare benefit...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 08, 2016 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare as secondary to employer plan
Replies: 11
Views: 1444

Medicare as secondary to employer plan

Has anyone ever received payment under Medicare Part A as secondary to an employer paid plan? Is there ever a situation where it makes sense to pay for Medicare Part B/D when there is an employer paid plan that is primary? I'm thinking in terms of a major illness maybe? If so, what are the issues to...
by EthelT
Tue Jul 12, 2016 5:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Would you rather have 401k, more Vacation or a Raise
Replies: 15
Views: 2208

Re: Would you rather have 401k, more Vacation or a Raise

Vacation for me - but that's because I made a conscious, transition to retirement, decision to continue working several years past when I "could" retire. The tradeoff (between working and retiring) is that during these last couple of working years I'm using the income I was putting away for retireme...
by EthelT
Sat May 14, 2016 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Factoring potential inheritance in financial planning
Replies: 17
Views: 1997

Factoring potential inheritance in financial planning

This article by Phil Dunn in USA Today outlines the reasons not to depend on a possible inheritance for financing one's retirement. http://www.usatoday.com/story/money/personalfinance/2016/05/07/retirement-plan-based-inheritance-grave-mistake/83500702/ I agree. Here's the question though. If you hav...
by EthelT
Fri Jan 22, 2016 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changes to Social Security
Replies: 477
Views: 59601

Re: Changes to Social Security

If I understand correctly, the file and suspend changes prevent anyone from collecting while an account is suspended. Does this ruling include divorced spouses since restricted applications by ex spouses didn't require file and suspend? You are correct that in order for a person to receive benefits...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 31, 2015 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changes to Social Security
Replies: 477
Views: 59601

Re: Changes to Social Security

Thanks Mike - Unlikely though the file and suspend by an ex spouse may be, I fear it may apply to me!! And not the spiteful part. My ex lost his job. Now he has another one. If he started taking SS while out of work, he could decide to suspend at some later date to let his benefit grow. Right? And I...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 31, 2015 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changes to Social Security
Replies: 477
Views: 59601

Re: Changes to Social Security

I have read thru the posts and if there is any discussion of how these changes affect the divorced I'm not seeing it. If I understand correctly, the file and suspend changes prevent anyone from collecting while an account is suspended. Does this ruling include divorced spouses since restricted appli...
by EthelT
Sun May 31, 2015 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Decisions - still working
Replies: 13
Views: 1688

Re: Medicare Decisions - still working

Thanks all! There are so many facets to consider! I did finally find a couple of brochures on the Social Security website that provide a concise overview that might be helpful to others making medicare decisions http://www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN-05-10043.pdf http://www.socialsecurity.gov/pubs/EN...
by EthelT
Sun May 31, 2015 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Perpetual Travelling
Replies: 73
Views: 14490

Re: Perpetual Travelling

I have this list bookmarked but haven't looked at them yet. Maybe one of them has what you need? If so, let us know!

https://www.flipkey.com/blog/2014/11/03 ... w-in-2015/
by EthelT
Wed May 06, 2015 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Decisions - still working
Replies: 13
Views: 1688

Medicare Decisions - still working

I'm starting to look at Medicare options. I am finding the information both on the Medicare website and elsewhere (including my HR dept!) confusing and disjointed. Here's what I've gleaned, although I'm not confident of the accuracy. PLEASE ADVISE IF INCORRECT!! - If one continues working, there are...
by EthelT
Mon Dec 29, 2014 1:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Morley Stable Value
Replies: 4
Views: 1172

Morley Stable Value

My 401k recently replaced the company stable value option with Morley Stable Value Fed. YTd - 1.01, Expense ratio .46%. (does that seem like an egregious expense ratio for a stable value fund?) The previous option was not great but better than that. I need help determining how to proceed. As it happ...
by EthelT
Fri Dec 05, 2014 11:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Joint emergency fund for a single person ?
Replies: 16
Views: 2332

Re: Joint emergency fund for a single person ?

A joint emergency fund isn't just for deaths - in fact it may be more important in a medical crisis to pay ongoing bills. I wouldn't want to rely on sympathy from creditors.
by EthelT
Fri Mar 14, 2014 6:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security claiming strategies at risk?
Replies: 6
Views: 853

Re: Social Security claiming strategies at risk?

I agree - if the change requires Congress to act there's probably not much to worry about. But if the rules can be changed administratively, that's a whole different question. In fact, if they can be changed administratively, the passing of the budget won't even be required. What I'm seeing here is ...
by EthelT
Fri Mar 14, 2014 5:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security claiming strategies at risk?
Replies: 6
Views: 853

Social Security claiming strategies at risk?

Harry Sit, The Finance Buff posted a link to this blog post - Budget raises questions about fate of claiming strategies. http://www.investmentnews.com/article/20140307/BLOG05/140309932 In short, the proposed Obama budget includes a call for elimination of "aggressive claiming strategies" The poster ...
by EthelT
Sat Nov 02, 2013 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a Verizon smartphone and taking it to Page Plus
Replies: 5
Views: 1302

Re: Buying a Verizon smartphone and taking it to Page Plus

I bought a reconditioned Samsung S3 on Ebay that was already set up with Page Plus about 6 weeks ago. So far all is good - my first smart phone. While I probably could have paid less and done the flashing and the porting myself, I felt that as a newbie the extra cost was worth not having to worry wi...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 26, 2013 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?
Replies: 9
Views: 930

Re: IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?

Given: I want to have my 3.25% 15 year mortgage paid off by the time I retire. Why is that a given? Is there some deep psychological need that overwhelms any financial considerations? Mainly I made it a given because there have already been lots of posts about paying off or not - I wasn't trying to...
by EthelT
Sat Oct 26, 2013 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?
Replies: 9
Views: 930

Re: IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?

One more thing I forgot to mention -

I am directing all of my current retirement savings to pay off my mortgage as well except for 401k contribution enough to get my employer match
by EthelT
Sat Oct 26, 2013 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?
Replies: 9
Views: 930

IRA Withdrawal to pay mortgage?

Given: I am 3-5 years from retirement I want to have my 3.25% 15 year mortgage paid off by the time I retire. I'm on track to meet my retirement savings goals My assets except for my emergency fund and I bonds are in 401ks and IRAs My allocation to VBIRX (short-term bond index - yield 1.27%) is grea...
by EthelT
Mon Aug 19, 2013 8:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorce and spousal benefits
Replies: 5
Views: 835

Re: Divorce and spousal benefits

Thanks! I felt that the option was available, but wanted to confirm - sure didn't want to be surprised when I file . . .
by EthelT
Mon Aug 19, 2013 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorce and spousal benefits
Replies: 5
Views: 835

Divorce and spousal benefits

In the past there have been posts on this site that suggest that a divorced spouse who otherwise meets the requirements (unmarried, married longer than 10 years, etc) can at full retirement age claim 50% of her ex spouse's benefits and allow her personal benefit to continue to increase until age 70....
by EthelT
Sat Jul 13, 2013 3:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: 3 years from retirement - rebalancing help needed
Replies: 1
Views: 457

3 years from retirement - rebalancing help needed

I'm about three years out from retirement. I need to get my equity allocation down to 40% or less but I'm flummoxed about where to put it. There's no new money going into my retirement funds to speak of (just enough to get my company's match) because I've decided I want to pay off my mortgage by the...
by EthelT
Sat Jul 13, 2013 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Memphis trip
Replies: 18
Views: 1488

Re: Memphis trip

Sun Studios - it's a small place but the guided it tour is actually really interesting. The Cooper Young area is a good bet for restaurants - and fun to just walk around. There's a lot more, depending on what you like to do - I going to suggest you check the website Ilovememphis.com Very good resour...
by EthelT
Thu Mar 07, 2013 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Treasurydirect redemption process question
Replies: 4
Views: 550

Treasurydirect redemption process question

I haven't yet had to redeem any Ibonds that I have in TreasuryDirect. Do they put the money directly back in your bank account? How long does it take?
by EthelT
Mon Feb 18, 2013 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Looking for some advice on setting up a trust
Replies: 12
Views: 1637

Looking for some advice on setting up a trust

I am a single woman with grown, married children and preschool grandchildren. I want to establish a trust at my death for their benefit. I don't have anyone that I think would be capable to be the trustee who would be close enough to them to want to do it. Have any of you had experience working with...
by EthelT
Wed Jan 16, 2013 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying art from the artist
Replies: 6
Views: 768

Re: Buying art from the artist

I thought the info in this article was helpful:

http://www.apartmenttherapy.com/get-sma ... get-172538
by EthelT
Thu Dec 20, 2012 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grinch [delivered package theft]
Replies: 40
Views: 4201

Re: Damm Grinch around my neighborhood

"The OP had a UPS package stolen. Under normal circumstances, a UPS package cannot be delivered to a USPS PO Box" Right but stolen is stolen whether USPS home delivery or UPS. While that doesn't help the OP for this lost package, a PO box might be consideration in future. Most senders will offer shi...
by EthelT
Thu Dec 20, 2012 8:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grinch [delivered package theft]
Replies: 40
Views: 4201

Re: Damm Grinch around my neighborhood

I got a PO Box. It's a good solution for me since the Post office is nearby - no worrying about stolen mail or stopping service when I travel, etc. All I get at my house is flyers and such. As an aside - I only pick up mail 2 or 3 times a week. I'm not quite sure why folks think they need to receive...
by EthelT
Sat Jul 07, 2012 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Audio Options - Looking for Advice
Replies: 16
Views: 2371

Re: Home Audio Options - Looking for Advice

sonos appears to be a great solution for music but what about movies - either streaming or dvd? Do you have to have another set of speakers? What's the best solution if any to incorporate both?
by EthelT
Sat May 19, 2012 5:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A bicycle to learn to bike?
Replies: 67
Views: 7211

Re: A bicycle to learn to bike?

Ok - so what bike did you get?
by EthelT
Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trip Cancellation Insurance
Replies: 18
Views: 2932

Re: Trip Cancellation Insurance

I buy travel insurance for most foreign travel and the trip cancellation is probably one of the least of my reasons. - I have known people who had to be hospitalized in foreign countries. Even in western countries like France, the language can be an issue and I have traveled to places like rural Rus...
by EthelT
Wed Jan 25, 2012 7:21 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: CD alternatives in 401k
Replies: 3
Views: 448

CD alternatives in 401k

In the current interest rate environment, seems like a number of Bogleheads are advocating CDs. Ally's comes up over and over. That's great, but not an option in my 401k. Don't think it's an option in my Vanguard Roth IRA either, is it? So what's the next best option?
by EthelT
Sat Sep 17, 2011 5:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Eurozone crisis and travel to europe
Replies: 12
Views: 1760

How about Hungary?

I just returned from 10 days in Hungary. While in the EU, it is not on the Euro. It was quite affordable, but I think Hungary has consistently been more affordable than Austria, Germany, etc. Another consideration - I originally was planning my trip to be Austria and Hungary. When I looked at airfar...
by EthelT
Sat Jan 29, 2011 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Netflix vs. Cable
Replies: 84
Views: 13328

Anntenna specifics

I bought this antenna on Amazon about a year ago. I think it cost a bit more then http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B000GIT002/ref=oss_product I use it indoors - it's on the top of a tall bookshelf - and I get all but one (I think) of the network channels including PBS and several others that show ol...
by EthelT
Thu Aug 19, 2010 12:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annuity sales pitch from banks
Replies: 14
Views: 2594

Thanks for the input and the links/resources. I'm of the opinion that the folks who develop annuities start off writing packages for cable companies - a teasing lead and a lot of obfuscation I suspect my mom won't want to pursue, but the CD alternatives are discouraging (especially since she'll only...
by EthelT
Thu Aug 19, 2010 6:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annuity sales pitch from banks
Replies: 14
Views: 2594

Annuity sales pitch from banks

My elderly mother's friend alerted her to a great "cd" paying a high interest rate. When my mom checked, turns out it's an annuity. Now she wants me to go with her to hear the pitch. What the bank person told her is that it's 5 years with a diminishing rate schedule and she gets her principal back a...
by EthelT
Tue Jul 27, 2010 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roadside Service
Replies: 0
Views: 508

Roadside Service

I just got a new Fidelity American Express card. Apparently roadside service is a benefit. I'm wondering - how does that compare to AAA? Has anybody out there ever used the Amex service (through AXA). Would you recommend dropping AAA?
by EthelT
Tue Jun 29, 2010 8:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bonds for a new baby?
Replies: 10
Views: 2137

Bonds for a new baby?

My first grandchild was recently born and I am thinking about starting her in I bonds. I'm only looking at small amounts for special occasions etc. I'd be interested in what others of you are doing. Going to treasury direct it looks like there are several ways to hold - any advice? And of course if ...
by EthelT
Sat Jun 12, 2010 10:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security, single woman collect at 66 or wait til 70?
Replies: 28
Views: 4301

I am also a single woman looking at the question of delaying. I am inclined to wait til 70 because I look at my family and on average we exceed the expected life expectancy. The fact is my consideration is not so much leaving a legacy, or figuring out how to maximize my assets. I really, really don'...
by EthelT
Sat Jun 05, 2010 6:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: American Express Bank CDs
Replies: 10
Views: 2154

Thanks for the info - I'm taking a look at Ally as well although I didn't see anything too off putting about Amex (the difference between the rates they charge and the rates they pay maybe. .. ). We teased my mother for years because she has relationships with all the banks in town and moves her cd ...
by EthelT
Fri Jun 04, 2010 2:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: American Express Bank CDs
Replies: 10
Views: 2154

American Express Bank CDs

Like most everybody else I'm looking for at least a little return on my shorter term money. I have used HSBC which is now paying 1.1% for online savings. All their cds under 3years are less than 1%. I'm not keen on multiple banking relationships, but I was considering American Express Bank which is ...
by EthelT
Thu May 13, 2010 1:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIPS questions
Replies: 9
Views: 1946

TIPS questions

I currently have about 50% of my portfolio (6-10 years from retirement) in money market/stable value, Vanguard Tips fund and Bond index Funds. My plan is to ncrease my TIPS to 50% of this (25% of the total portfolio). All is in IRAs and 401k. I have Larry Swedroe's bond book and just completed Explo...
by EthelT
Tue Mar 30, 2010 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Wells Fargo Stable Value
Replies: 3
Views: 4257

Wells Fargo Stable Value

Can anyone enlighten me on or tell me how to research Wells Fargo Stable Value beyond the general info in the 401k material?
by EthelT
Sat Mar 27, 2010 8:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I bonds to avoid required minimum distribution?
Replies: 6
Views: 6733

Revised/corrected - I bonds v TIPS in IRA

I corrected my original post, but the gist of my question was this - do I add money to 401K or buy I bonds? Are there any advantages to holding TIPS fund in an IRA over I bonds, assuming that 401K match and ROTH IRA limits are maxed? The goal being to avoid required minimum distributions, maintainin...