Search found 4448 matches

by midareff
Wed Mar 29, 2017 7:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $50 AMEX Gift Card - What does a Boglehead/minimalist do?
Replies: 27
Views: 1471

Re: $50 AMEX Gift Card - What does a Boglehead/minimalist do?

Hello Friends, Just turned 35 and can't thank this forum enough for all the advice. My sister gave me a $50 AMEX gift card and I literally can not think of anything to do with it. I live a very minimal lifestyle and hate "stuff". Was wondering if anyone has any suggestions as to a book or...
by midareff
Wed Mar 29, 2017 7:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: An Edward Jones Financial Advisor stopped by my house and spoke with my wife
Replies: 85
Views: 6782

Re: An Edward Jones Financial Advisor stopped by my house and spoke with my wife

Yeah... open your email program, type in the email address... Then hit the blacklist/block button. Done 8-) LOL, and do the same with every other wealth transfer salesman that stops without an appointment and does that. I would (also) not bother with a letter as they have canned responses to anythi...
by midareff
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:59 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sound Strategy?
Replies: 15
Views: 941

Re: Sound Strategy?

Believe me, you are more risk averse than you realize. We have had a gangbusters bull market in US Stocks since 2009 and we are all feeling pretty confident and smart. I remember the 50% bear markets of 2000-2002 and 2008-2009 and remembering how shaken I felt. As a 28 year old investor back in Oct...
by midareff
Tue Mar 28, 2017 7:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best take it everywhere camera
Replies: 37
Views: 2089

Re: Best take it everywhere camera

Having shot a wide variety of cameras from Canon's 5DMKII and a bag of L glass to various compacts over the years I've gotten away from the heavy DSLR style for weight concerns. A 5D whatever and a bag of L glass is too much for me to haul around all day. Most compacts I've tried including the Canon...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal pension beats high salary and savings rate? (fed vs contractor for employment)
Replies: 47
Views: 3737

Re: Federal pension beats high salary and savings rate? (fed vs contractor for employment)

I would take fed job in a heart beat. A solid state or Federal cola'd pension is gold. Besides the pension I whacked away at max deferred comp for about the last 25 working years, did many years of Roth and lived frugally also building taxable. This Friday I will celebrate the start of my 6th year ...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer for Digital Darkroom.
Replies: 13
Views: 692

Re: Computer for Digital Darkroom.

I used a Samsung all in one to my specs. Quad core i7 @ 3.8, 16 gig of ram, 256 gig SSD on a HD 27" monitor. External 500 gb SSD for all images, music, etc. USB 3 for card reader. USB 3 500 gb Toshiba hard for monthly backups, Lacie Raid for quarterly. Shoot raw, run Lightroom 6.9, full NIK pac...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: China Trip - Visa Expediter?
Replies: 10
Views: 424

Re: China Trip - Visa Expediter?

I took two trips to China. In both cases the visa was handled by the tour organizer. I have used an expediter for our visas to visit Russia. The company was recommended by the tour company (Viking) and was handled expeditiously.
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling Car - Private Sale vs CarMax vs Dealer
Replies: 55
Views: 5991

Re: Selling Car - Private Sale vs CarMax vs Dealer

I have used Carmax with satisfactory results.
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally vs Discover
Replies: 17
Views: 1727

Re: Ally vs Discover

I do not use two factor. I rely on a password manager and use a distinct different extra long alpha numeric upper and lower case password for each financial site. Access is also device and country restricted. Not to be paranoid, but the time and effort it would take to hack is better spent on the B...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice about massive changes in daughter's college program by dean
Replies: 52
Views: 3575

Re: Need advice about massive changes in daughter's college program by dean

russellh wrote:Option #2. Vote with her feet. ASAP.


Another vote for #2. The new dean certainly has his ideas about how the program should be structured and I doubt you spending time to express concerns would be either well received or welcome.
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does living at the beach reduce it's appeal?
Replies: 33
Views: 4196

Re: Does living at the beach reduce it's appeal?

I lived on the beach for about 7 years and used to exercise walk the beach a few times weekly. The last 13 years I live on a small island about 30 feet from the Bay and maybe a twenty minute walk to the beach. Don't miss the sand at all.
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need title insurance?
Replies: 37
Views: 2180

Re: Do I need title insurance?

MP123 wrote:You're being too cheap :happy

Get title insurance. What if the builder didn't pay all his tradesmen? Or the prior owners ex-wife really owns it? Or.... You get the point.



+1 .. or an old Indian tribe comes along and claims rights to the land it is built on.
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Massive Student Loan Debt - Girlfriend
Replies: 86
Views: 6196

Re: Massive Student Loan Debt - Girlfriend

As a wise man once explained to me .... if she becomes your wife and the mother of your children and you spend the rest of your life together it matters not at all. If you get married and help her pay off the debt .. which you may have to do before qualifying to buy a residence, and then she dumps y...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gift Card Security
Replies: 6
Views: 360

Re: Gift Card Security

I have about $30 left on an American Airlines Gift Card which can only be used on line. The trouble being American Airlines can't tell you how to use it when buying tickets at their site online and won't connect you to a supervisor. Pretty useless airline and generally my last choice for travel. Th...
by midareff
Mon Mar 27, 2017 7:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally vs Discover
Replies: 17
Views: 1727

Re: Ally vs Discover

Seven full years of Ally with ZERO issues. Do you make use of the two factor authentication and does it work smoothly? I have read about problems, but it seemed to largely be early on in its being rolled out. I do not use two factor. I rely on a password manager and use a distinct different extra l...
by midareff
Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally vs Discover
Replies: 17
Views: 1727

Re: Ally vs Discover

Seven full years of Ally with ZERO issues.
by midareff
Sun Mar 26, 2017 2:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gift Card Security
Replies: 6
Views: 360

Re: Gift Card Security

I have about $30 left on an American Airlines Gift Card which can only be used on line. The trouble being American Airlines can't tell you how to use it when buying tickets at their site online and won't connect you to a supervisor. Pretty useless airline and generally my last choice for travel.
by midareff
Sat Mar 25, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Too much Large Cap?
Replies: 15
Views: 928

Re: Too much Large Cap?

I have VFINIX (S&P 500 Inst.) & VITSX (Total Stock Inst.) in my 401k. Pretty much equal $ amounts. Same ER .04. I got them when my company added Vanguard Funds (Happy day!). I know Total Stock is my keeper but the S&P Fund has done well too I can't pull the trigger to sell. My other fun...
by midareff
Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:37 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Out of the norm all-equity portfolio to compliment pensions
Replies: 13
Views: 486

Re: Out of the norm all-equity portfolio to compliment pensions

My wife and I both contribute to government pensions (mine is state, her's is local). In addition to that we have begun contributing to a 403B. At first our choices were mostly overpriced actively managed funds. I was in a T Rowe Price target date fund. They have now added some index funds and I am...
by midareff
Sun Mar 19, 2017 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio advice
Replies: 10
Views: 730

Re: Portfolio advice

First welcome to the forum and congratulations on being well established at 33. You said you had $200K of which I see $160K detailed in your summary of accounts so I assume you are including your emergency fund ($40K?) in the total. If you are paying an advisor who assisted in, or promoted the estab...
by midareff
Sat Mar 18, 2017 11:44 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The "investment return" method of withdrawal
Replies: 37
Views: 1596

Re: The "investment return" method of withdrawal

OTOH, my goal is not to be among the richest guys in the graveyard. My pension and SS can pay all the bills so the portfolio is for funding travel and toys. It is currently doing so nicely with 5 trips planned for the balance of this year, at a 4% WR. I started very conservatively and have averaged...
by midareff
Sat Mar 18, 2017 9:04 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: The "investment return" method of withdrawal
Replies: 37
Views: 1596

Re: The "investment return" method of withdrawal

OTOH, my goal is not to be among the richest guys in the graveyard. My pension and SS can pay all the bills so the portfolio is for funding travel and toys. It is currently doing so nicely with 5 trips planned for the balance of this year, at a 4% WR. I started very conservatively and have averaged ...
by midareff
Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Would like comments on this Roth Conversion quote.
Replies: 30
Views: 2284

Re: Would like comments on this Roth Conversion quote.

I'm 69 and did a conversion this year and the previous three years. Since my RMD, which will start next year will firmly drive me into 25% incremental space I used every bit of available 15% space to fill the Roth.
by midareff
Sat Mar 18, 2017 8:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Citi card Nightmare
Replies: 75
Views: 8012

Re: Citi card Nightmare

FelixTheCat wrote:I vote with my wallet. Cancel Citi if they are causing you problems.

+1 on Fidelity Visa.



+2 on Fidelity Visa.
by midareff
Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:39 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund
Replies: 16
Views: 1377

Re: Emergency Fund

Ally Bank has been excellent for me. Free checking, waive first $7 a month in ATM fees, and pay .10% on checking and 1.0% on savings. Additionally, you can establish automated transfers between Ally accounts AND outside accounts. I use that feature for an account I escrow insurance and property taxe...
by midareff
Fri Mar 17, 2017 8:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using Turbo Tax for quarterly tax estimates for 2017
Replies: 21
Views: 1110

Re: Using Turbo Tax for quarterly tax estimates for 2017

I believe (not certain) you are not required to submit a quarterly but probably should if nothing other than a display of good faith to big brother. I use both Turbo and HR Block's tax-casters. My income is derived from dividends from taxable, sale of some bonds, a distribution from Roth, pension an...
by midareff
Thu Mar 16, 2017 7:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Why did VBILX (Intermediate Bond Fund) drop so much in late 2016?
Replies: 25
Views: 1214

Re: Why did VBILX (Intermediate Bond Fund) drop so much in late 2016?

fundseeker wrote:Okay, I'll play. I'll say the $88.89 at 2.25% is the better deal.



only if you are buying.
by midareff
Thu Mar 16, 2017 7:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How do you cope with regret over selling too soon?
Replies: 57
Views: 3107

Re: How do you cope with regret over selling too soon?

woulda, coulda, shoulda ... and if a frog had wings he wouldn't have to hop.
by midareff
Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost of Dental Implant
Replies: 63
Views: 4605

Re: Cost of Dental Implant

Between the wife and myself we did three extractions with bone grafts, three implants and three crowns. Roughly $20K. Miami Beach.
by midareff
Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do you avoid international investing like Jack Bogle?
Replies: 151
Views: 7449

Re: Do you avoid international investing like Jack Bogle?

Between 25% and 30% of equities are international.
by midareff
Wed Mar 15, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with $100???
Replies: 78
Views: 4928

Re: What to do with $100???

Every time I had extra cash and didn't have a need it went into VTSAX in taxable. You fill the bucket up by drops at anytime you can.
by midareff
Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: can you recommend good tires
Replies: 50
Views: 2266

Re: can you recommend good tires

The highest ranked all-season tires in no particular order are: Michelin Premier A/S (I have these) Pirelli Cinturato P7 All Season Plus Continental ContiProContact https://www.tirerack.com/tires/surveyresults/surveydisplay.jsp?type=GTAS Do note however, that these tires are expensive. The life you...
by midareff
Fri Mar 10, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: can you recommend good tires
Replies: 50
Views: 2266

Re: can you recommend good tires

Go to the Tire Rack online site. They will have recommendations for your car and reviews by those who bought those tires.
by midareff
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?
Replies: 127
Views: 9486

Re: GEICO auto rates vs. USAA: too good to be true?

No kidding...I was just reading Buffett's recent letter where he tells those coming to his annual meeting to stop by the GEICO booth for an insurance check up. This prompted me to do a quick comparison of what I pay USAA, who has insured my cars for years, with GEICO's rates. With the 8% discount t...
by midareff
Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Climate and happiness revisited
Replies: 111
Views: 6601

Re: Climate and happiness revisited

74 degrees in Miami this noon. July, August and September are less pleasant and that's why the Carolina's and Cruise ships are so busy that time of year.
by midareff
Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Tracking Tools
Replies: 18
Views: 1008

Re: Portfolio Tracking Tools

+1 as "midareff" uses. Morningstar Portfolio Tracker (try the "trial" subscription first then sign up if you like it) http://www.morningstar.com/ I have it, works well. Vanguard Portofolio Maintenance is adequate. IMHO the less I look at it the better. . . "set n forget. . ...
by midareff
Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do you spend on food in a year?
Replies: 155
Views: 6942

Re: How much do you spend on food in a year?

Just two of us and retired. I'd say wife spends about $80 a month at the Chinese grocery store for her Asian needs (she's Thai) and we spend another $450 or so at the grocery store inclusive of steaks, scallops, fish and an occasional bottle of wine. About $6K annually or pennies more maybe. Eating ...
by midareff
Mon Mar 06, 2017 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Tracking Tools
Replies: 18
Views: 1008

Re: Portfolio Tracking Tools

Hey everyone! I just started to invest and was wondering if someone can share some helpful tips. I totally agree that a low cost index approach works well, but would like to add some of my own stock ideas to the mix. I was curious how everyone manages to keep track of their portfolio holdings. Do y...
by midareff
Sun Mar 05, 2017 8:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: For Travel package...Expedia, Orbitz, or Travelocity?
Replies: 14
Views: 1302

Re: For Travel package...Expedia, Orbitz, or Travelocity?

Last time I did a package it was to the Dominican Republic. .. actually, almost did a package since I found I could buy the components separately for less.
by midareff
Thu Mar 02, 2017 2:19 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What degree of stock market decline would tempt you to deviate from your AA?
Replies: 87
Views: 5756

Re: What degree of stock market decline would tempt you to deviate from your AA?

+1 agreed.. 69 here and don't see re-balancing from bonds to equities as much of an opportunity for a good thing anymore. OTOH, if the drop was 40% than VFINX (aka S&P 500) would be yielding north of 3% for dividends. I suppose the dividend aristocrats would be north of 4%. There might be some ...
by midareff
Thu Mar 02, 2017 10:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What degree of stock market decline would tempt you to deviate from your AA?
Replies: 87
Views: 5756

Re: What degree of stock market decline would tempt you to deviate from your AA?

The great gaping hole I see in the Boglehead Plan is what happened in Japan in 1992 and in the Great Depression. I don't want to rebalance into a black hole. As a result I would not over commit resources into a market that may not come back in my lifetime. If I was in my 20's I'd rebalance all the ...
by midareff
Wed Mar 01, 2017 7:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Car Should I Buy My Daughter as a Graduation Present
Replies: 81
Views: 4730

Re: What Car Should I Buy My Daughter as a Graduation Present

You should get her a used CRV or RAV4. Agree. They offer decent gas mileage, are reasonably safe and generally reliable, have good handling, enough (but not too much) power, and excellent storage capability. Even a 2WD model goes through snow just fine, when equipped with snow tires. Car insurance ...
by midareff
Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question for Retired Members--life mistakes
Replies: 64
Views: 8468

Re: Question

Hello All, I am not sure if I am posting this question in the correct forum, but here it goes. I would LOVE to hear from people who are just entering retirement, as well as those who are 5-10 years in. I would like to ask them two questions: 1) Off the top of your head, what was the biggest mistake...
by midareff
Wed Mar 01, 2017 9:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What Car Should I Buy My Daughter as a Graduation Present
Replies: 81
Views: 4730

Re: What Car Should I Buy My Daughter as a Graduation Present

Cars can be very personal. What about telling her you have xyz dollars to buy her a car, what would she like, and then go out shopping for it with her.
by midareff
Tue Feb 28, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Starter Check- Scam possibility?
Replies: 35
Views: 2032

Re: Starter Check- Scam possibility?

Didn't you do a background check? employment check? credit check?
by midareff
Mon Feb 27, 2017 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese
Replies: 89
Views: 7199

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

A used Lexus is in the same range. :) And no maintenance nor repair costs to worry about. Besides, styling doesn't matter. Beauty is, or is not, in the eye of the beholder. Benz driver here and have rented Camry's, Maximas and Accords for trips in the Carolina's. Best part was turning them in and n...
by midareff
Mon Feb 27, 2017 8:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese
Replies: 89
Views: 7199

Re: Used German Luxury vs New Japanese

A used Lexus is in the same range. :) And no maintenance nor repair costs to worry about. Besides, styling doesn't matter. Beauty is, or is not, in the eye of the beholder. Benz driver here and have rented Camry's, Maximas and Accords for trips in the Carolina's. Best part was turning them in and n...
by midareff
Sun Feb 26, 2017 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long to keep paper investment statements
Replies: 13
Views: 1150

Re: How long to keep paper investment statements

I keep the annual summary reports with tax returns. I have detail of all transactions in excel by year.
by midareff
Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Technical Analysis
Replies: 37
Views: 2112

Re: Technical Analysis

he problem with technical analysis is that people are very good at spotting patterns after they occur. Too bad they mean nothng going forward.
by midareff
Sun Feb 26, 2017 10:35 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Technical Analysis
Replies: 37
Views: 2112

Re: Technical Analysis

Tycoon wrote:I once had a coworker swear technical analysis was effective and foolproof. This was years ago. He's still working.



I had one who thought he could pick tech stocks. Got greedy, took bribes and is in jail after forfeiting everything.

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