Search found 253 matches

by MDfive21
Tue Feb 13, 2018 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?
Replies: 77
Views: 6333

Re: Do you think it is worth the money to travel to warm weather destinations during the winter?

find a card (or two) that offers a substantial signup bonus. (https://thepointsguy.com/cards/ is one place to look, see also flyertalk)
use that card to pay for everything on this trip up to the amount required to get the bonus.
for your next vacation, use the bonus points for flights/hotels.
by MDfive21
Wed Feb 07, 2018 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Financial Hole
Replies: 163
Views: 13305

Re: Financial Hole

this is very un-boglehead, BUT in your shoes i would default on everything except housing, power, internet/phone, vehicle and food. i don't see how you can dig out of this one so stop paying on your unsecured debt and chop up the cards, stop racking up more debt. save every penny you can for 6 month...
by MDfive21
Tue Feb 06, 2018 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation options for wide age-range of children?
Replies: 26
Views: 1505

Re: Vacation options for wide age-range of children?

I might be biased since I live close enough to Galveston to avoid it. For Texas beaches, Mustang Island or South Padre Island would be my choices. For something like this, you have to decide if you are going to cook every evening or go out. Generally, it is not a problem to eat breakfast and lunch ...
by MDfive21
Mon Feb 05, 2018 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love your family car? Under $16,000 Used? Please share!
Replies: 57
Views: 7129

Re: Love your family car? Under $16,000 Used? Please share!

find a 10 yr old lexus with around 80K miles on it. look for single owner vehicles. these cars are expensive when new so sales skew toward older, easier on the car owners who buy, hold and take care of their stuff. buy from a dealer like autonation, who offers a free 30 day/3k mile warranty so you c...
by MDfive21
Tue Jan 30, 2018 12:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?
Replies: 111
Views: 8173

Re: How much have kids added to your personal finance/expenses?

Kid 1 (3rd grade) $$/yr Symphony $250 After School $498 Summer Care $2,142 Soccer $1,365 Girl Scouts $150 Kid 1 Bday $500 Bday Gifts for others $400 rodeo $150 museum membership $115 Xmas $400 total current $5,970 before public school we paid $10k/yr for montessori full day 5day care. that's what my...
by MDfive21
Wed Jan 03, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Economics of a new Puppy
Replies: 113
Views: 7297

Re: The Economics of a new Puppy

if the pup is an aggressive chewer/eater of normal toys, buy an elk antler for it to chew on. we fostered a couple of 50lb mutt puppies last year and they could eat a tennis ball in less than an hour. literally eat the whole thing! same with most rubber toys. rawhide was a non-starter just the same....
by MDfive21
Wed Dec 20, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Different ways to order coffee
Replies: 41
Views: 4191

Re: Different ways to order coffee

time since roast and time since grind have way more effect on coffee flavor than anything else. you can buy the best beans in the world, but if they sit in your cabinet for 6 weeks after roasting, a cheaper bean that's been freshly roasted will taste better. same with the time between grind and brew...
by MDfive21
Tue Dec 19, 2017 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New job offer - background check
Replies: 140
Views: 7652

Re: New job offer - background check

haven't read all the posts so forgive me if this was covered. i am in a similar position as OP. long ago i did stupid things and learned my lesson. even now, every time i have a background check done, these records are shown in detail. the good news is that all 3rd party background check providers a...
by MDfive21
Wed Dec 13, 2017 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Concert Decision and Advice
Replies: 41
Views: 2525

Re: Concert Decision and Advice

you must go. if you don't you'll always regret that one time you didn't go when you had a chance to see them in a small venue, or before they broke up, or before they sold out, or that one member quit and they sucked after that.. you get the idea. i've been to a ton of shows and the best ones were b...
by MDfive21
Fri Dec 08, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quit jobs to gain lower EFC [Expected Family Contribution]
Replies: 110
Views: 8608

Re: Quit jobs to gain lower EFC

the better financial option is for your kids to marry someone before they start college..


marry?
by MDfive21
Fri Dec 08, 2017 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Please suggest a dry hands product
Replies: 82
Views: 3946

Re: Please suggest a dry hands product

Burt's Bees | Lemon Butter Cuticle Cream
Neutrogena Norwegian Formula Hand Cream
Burt's Bees | Shea Butter Hand Repair Cream

i've used all of these and seen major improvement with each.
by MDfive21
Fri Nov 03, 2017 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me understand the Used Car Dealership perspective
Replies: 29
Views: 3640

Re: Help me understand the Used Car Dealership perspective

this will get their attention.. walk in with a bank issued cashier's check for the amount you're willing to pay all-in. tell your salesperson to take the check to his manager. you say 'this is what i'm willing to pay right now including all fees and taxes. i don't care how your finance guy gets to t...
by MDfive21
Fri Oct 27, 2017 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get over the fear of traveling without spouse and children?
Replies: 52
Views: 4613

Re: How to get over the fear of traveling without spouse and children?

take a class in statistics and find out your actual probability of death?
by MDfive21
Tue Oct 17, 2017 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Roofer stopped showing up - what are my options?
Replies: 22
Views: 3916

Re: Roofer stopped showing up - what are my options?

in your case, i would immediately hire a licensed bonded insured contractor who specializes in roofing to finish the job. i might go so far as to have the new contractor remove any work previously done because i don't know how the handyman did. if the handyman contacts you, tell him you found someon...
by MDfive21
Thu Oct 12, 2017 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is there boglehead consensus on buying a car?
Replies: 73
Views: 6033

Re: Is there boglehead consensus on buying a car?

10 yr old lexus with less than 80k miles.
by MDfive21
Thu Oct 05, 2017 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.
Replies: 147
Views: 18099

Re: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.

isn't the end-game for a lot of these services acquisition? get it going then sell themselves to amc, cinemark etc. or they end up running the back end tech for a major brand's all-you-can-watch service. plus maybe they keep the rights to sell user data to keep their own pockets full.
by MDfive21
Thu Sep 21, 2017 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I even bother with buying a school picture?
Replies: 39
Views: 3330

Re: Should I even bother with buying a school picture?

we just buy the cheapest 5x7 package they have and scan/archive it. if this is your first kid and you don't have the kinder pics 10, 20, 30 years from now you will regret it. just get it, knowing that school pics are not olan-mills and have a laugh. one of our favorites is the one where my then pre-...
by MDfive21
Thu Sep 14, 2017 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Mobile Phone number - Now hounded by Collection Agencies
Replies: 38
Views: 3709

Re: New Mobile Phone number - Now hounded by Collection Agencies

Isn't there some way to collect money from collection agencies who call you insistently? yes, if you want a hobby that will pay you back, check out debtorboards.com. yes that's a real site (the bogleheads of suing CAs) and they focus on extracting cash from lazy or malignant collectors. you may hav...
by MDfive21
Wed Aug 23, 2017 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with trust / spendthrift in-law
Replies: 24
Views: 3835

Re: Help with trust / spendthrift in-law

structure it as a one time lump sum (say 15%) that grantor would not mind seeing spent down on 'frivolous' items or vacations, then a restrictive trust (remaining 85%) that allows for disbursement in specific cases for a cooling off period of 5 years or thereabout, then full access after 10 years. t...
by MDfive21
Mon Aug 21, 2017 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Structured" Flip Flops, Slides
Replies: 30
Views: 3670

Re: "Structured" Flip Flops, Slides

anything by merrell is made to fit your foot shape. i have some with a leather band over the top of the foot. they're $90 but i've been giving them use for 2-3 years now. so long i can't remember what year i bought them. similar to these.. http://m.zappos.com/p/merrell-terrant-slide-brindle/product/...
by MDfive21
Mon Aug 14, 2017 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What percent credit utilization is best?
Replies: 18
Views: 2266

Re: What percent credit utilization is best?

from what i've read at creditboards where some of the members have field tested this, it's to have only one card reporting a small balance of 1% to 8% and all other cards $0.00.
by MDfive21
Mon Aug 07, 2017 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Love your family car? Under $16,000 Used? Please share!
Replies: 57
Views: 7129

Re: Love your family car? Under $16,000? Please share!

find a 10 year old lexus with less than 80k miles on it and no more than 1 owner. the people who buy and hold lexus vehicles for 10 years are the type of people who can spend a lot of money on a car, and they generally treat their cars with great care. ie older, gentler drivers; wealthier, able to p...
by MDfive21
Mon Jul 31, 2017 9:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Toyota Marketing Fund
Replies: 10
Views: 1214

Re: Toyota Marketing Fund

the way to get around these silly named fees is to give the dealer your final sale price and give them a line like this.. 'i don't care how your finance guy gets to this number, but $xx,xxx.xx is what i will pay for this car, not a penny more. if it's not enough then i'll be on my way.' and let them...
by MDfive21
Tue Jul 25, 2017 11:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0 Percent CC - how to take advantage
Replies: 24
Views: 2085

Re: 0 Percent CC - how to take advantage

OP, two terms you should know and google. 1. interest rate arbitrage 2. manufactured spend unfortunately with interest rates as low as they are, the arbitrage is not profitable enough to be worth the risk, time and effort involved in making it work. most current manufactured spend opportunities are ...
by MDfive21
Fri Jun 23, 2017 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?
Replies: 64
Views: 6068

Re: What do you say when you cancel an account that you only opened for bonus?

i just tell them 'it turns out i'm not using it as much as i expected to' and that is almost always good enough.

the rep that handles these things just needs a short reason to put in their cancellation form, and to make sure the bank didn't do anything egregious to make you want to leave them.
by MDfive21
Wed Jun 21, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Liability with dogs, hypothetical
Replies: 67
Views: 4510

Re: Liability with dogs, hypothetical

OP if you're wondering what breed mix you have, i recommend the wisdom panel. it put a lot of speculation to rest when we adopted a pair of little mutts. i was certain they were swiss mountain dogs mixed with something smaller, but it turns out they were a chow/husky/lab and shetland sheepdog mix. ...
by MDfive21
Tue Jun 20, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Liability with dogs, hypothetical
Replies: 67
Views: 4510

Re: Liability with dogs, hypothetical

OP if you're wondering what breed mix you have, i recommend the wisdom panel. it put a lot of speculation to rest when we adopted a pair of little mutts. i was certain they were swiss mountain dogs mixed with something smaller, but it turns out they were a chow/husky/lab and shetland sheepdog mix. y...
by MDfive21
Mon Jun 19, 2017 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: So sick of it! [Paying off student loans]
Replies: 42
Views: 7580

Re: So sick of it! [Paying off student loans]

pay half of it off and refi the remaining $50k to a $1k/month payment?

this leaves you with $85k liquid, and further option to accelerate payment.
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 15, 2017 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suit for [medical] residency interviews
Replies: 57
Views: 5396

Re: Suit for [medical] residency interviews

i've found this page invaluable in choosing a suit recently.
http://www.businessinsider.com/the-gold ... man-2016-2

also check out the bh thread here on where/how to buy a suit.
viewtopic.php?f=11&t=219646
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 15, 2017 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2004 LEXUS RX 330
Replies: 46
Views: 3700

Re: 2004 LEXUS RX 330

what is the interest rate on the loan? if it's less than ~2% don't pay it off early. that's cheap money.
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 15, 2017 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2004 LEXUS RX 330
Replies: 46
Views: 3700

Re: 2004 LEXUS RX 330

a 2004 lexus is too new ;)

i have a 1997 es300 and love it.
by MDfive21
Mon Jun 12, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it safe to prepay a Navient loan payment?
Replies: 10
Views: 1573

Re: Is it safe to prepay a Navient loan payment?

I have found sallie mae/navient easy to deal with once i found out who to talk to. the first line customer service is pretty bad, but if you find yourself needing advanced service, send a paper letter to the office of the customer advocate. be sure to give them a good, current phone number because a...
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 08, 2017 8:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HDHP/HSA or HMO/FSA
Replies: 10
Views: 964

Re: HDHP/HSA or HMO/FSA

be sure to factor in the FSA's pre payroll tax status. HSA only avoids income tax, but FSA gives you the added bonus of not paying payroll taxes.
by MDfive21
Wed Jun 07, 2017 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing is too expensive.
Replies: 49
Views: 7734

Re: Housing is too expensive.

regarding the timing of your move: whatever you decide, be sure to find out when your first kid must register and enroll in the good elementary school to be guaranteed a spot. in my area the elementary school fills up with kids zoned to it and it's first come, first enrolled. if they don't get in ea...
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suits: best bang for your buck?
Replies: 64
Views: 16066

Re: Suits: best bang for your buck?

For the Suit Supply fans out there, would this hold true even if there is not a retail location near me? My thought is that I might wander into a Jos. Bank store this weekend, make sure my fit is still the same, check out their suit quality, see if I should get a "slim" or "tailored" fit (I still d...
by MDfive21
Thu Jun 01, 2017 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Play Money for Spouse....
Replies: 138
Views: 12512

Re: Play Money for Spouse....

I am sorry you are in such a difficult situation. And I know you are dying for marital advice from strangers on the Internet. But are you sure you want there to be a long term with your wife? I know they are sometimes important reasons to stay in the shorter term -- children being the most obvious....
by MDfive21
Wed May 31, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Play Money for Spouse....
Replies: 138
Views: 12512

Re: Play Money for Spouse....

1. OP's wife not 'asking for an allowance'. she's asking 'how much can i reasonably spend without torpedoing our financial plans?' there's a big difference between the two. 2. not everyone lives in lake boglebegone where all the earners make 400% of the national median, and all the stay-at-homes are...
by MDfive21
Fri May 26, 2017 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cheap gym shirts w/ certain materials
Replies: 23
Views: 3398

Re: Cheap gym shirts w/ certain materials

adidas ultimate tee is mostly cotton with some synthetic.
$20 at academy.
by MDfive21
Fri May 26, 2017 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suits: best bang for your buck?
Replies: 64
Views: 16066

Re: Suits: best bang for your buck?

after a long look at jos a bank, i bought a great suit at suitsupply recently and the experience start to finish was great for someone who doesn't like to shop. even on the high end suits, the material at jos a bank was an order of magnitude lower in quality than suitsupply. off the rack the ss suit...
by MDfive21
Tue May 23, 2017 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trying to pay off student loans
Replies: 26
Views: 3512

Re: Trying to pay off student loans

OP, have your girlfriend send a paper letter to the office of the customer advocate. make sure she gives them a good, current phone number because as soon as she is assigned an advocate, that advocate will call her to work through the problem. if she does not pick up, it will be another couple to fe...
by MDfive21
Tue Apr 04, 2017 2:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving/bending a King Size Mattress
Replies: 15
Views: 2090

Re: Moving/bending a King Size Mattress

we bent a king mattress to get it into our last townhome. it was never the same after that so we went with two queens pushed together. i would not consider bending another mattress.
by MDfive21
Wed Mar 22, 2017 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?
Replies: 80
Views: 8035

Re: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?

we paid 800-850/mo for montessori.. that's 9600-10,200/yr. after school and summer camps are running around 3500/yr but we don't need after care every day. that was for 3 days of after care. plus we could shave off some cost by doing ymca only in the summer for 200/wk but we send her to other camps ...
by MDfive21
Wed Mar 22, 2017 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?
Replies: 80
Views: 8035

Re: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?

He's always been a renter so I explain that most of it is paid by property owners and not him. We pay substantial property taxes as well for our son's free public school. renters pay school tax just as owners do, albeit indirectly. we pay rent to the owner who i'm sure bakes the property taxes into...
by MDfive21
Mon Mar 20, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Collection Agency - Are you kidding?
Replies: 33
Views: 5412

Re: Collection Agency - Are you kidding?

for collections info see creditboards.com

if you want to go on the offensive and sue them, see debtorboards.com
by MDfive21
Wed Mar 08, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where to buy rare steaks?
Replies: 67
Views: 5966

Re: Where to buy rare steaks?

whole foods has never disappointed me.

don't buy anything that's been frozen or individually vacuum packed. both processes kill the texture.
by MDfive21
Sat Mar 04, 2017 4:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3826

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

i really want the piece of mind being debt free. at that point i would only have a year left on my car payment and i'd be 100% debt-free. . do it. you're about to have a major reset to your life. you need to be financially ready to pay child support and have your own living situation ready for visi...
by MDfive21
Sat Mar 04, 2017 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3826

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

and if i took her off as an authorized user, wouldn't that look bad to a judge if i were to try and get her to assume some of that debt come divorce time? ask your atty, but i doubt it would matter. the accounts are in your name only, to do with as you please. you are protecting yourself. don't rel...
by MDfive21
Thu Mar 02, 2017 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3826

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

...even in common law states, the debt may be split depending on what it was for and whether both spouses benefited from it. This is a common misconception... a court cannot "split" a debt that one person owes among other people. For example, if the husband is the primary cardholder on a credit car...
by MDfive21
Wed Mar 01, 2017 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)
Replies: 36
Views: 3826

Re: Credit Card Debt Question (Separation)

I know credit cards are assumed debt for each of us... This is not necessarily true. It depends on whether the cards are joint or individual. You can have an individual card with your spouse as an authorized user, in which case your spouse is not legallly responsible for the debt. Or you can have a...
by MDfive21
Fri Feb 24, 2017 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit card: Cash versus Flight Miles
Replies: 62
Views: 6504

Re: Credit card: Cash versus Flight Miles

why pick cash or miles/points? do both!

see also flyertalk