Search found 71 matches

by zagyzebra
Wed Mar 14, 2018 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does health insurance/Medicaid work for self-employed?
Replies: 5
Views: 679

Re: How does health insurance/Medicaid work for self-employed?

Nalor, this is very valuable info for California residents. Thank you for posting it! I personally have had a difficult time as a Medi-Cal recipient (am grateful to be earning too much money now to qualify again). For me, the one year I was on it, they dumped me into LA Care, which had the lowest ra...
by zagyzebra
Sun Mar 11, 2018 2:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does health insurance/Medicaid work for self-employed?
Replies: 5
Views: 679

Re: How does health insurance/Medicaid work for self-employed?

Yes, I think so, but you have to earn less than $13,500/year to qualify. Also, they ask about savings. I went from earning money to a long period of unemployment. It was at the end of this period that I needed Medi-Cal. That said, I would never want to tap Medi-Cal for anything other than emergency ...
by zagyzebra
Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: wisdom of buying a car about to be discontinued
Replies: 17
Views: 2775

Re: wisdom of buying a car about to be discontinued

In the end, I decided against the C-Max because, after three test drives, I found the turning radius to be overly constrictive. Living in the heart of the LA, I need to get in and out of tight spots quickly and easily. Wanting a hatchback, I opted for the new Honda Civic Hatchback. I got an excellen...
by zagyzebra
Thu Dec 28, 2017 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need to shop insurance: curious what you have?
Replies: 22
Views: 1777

Re: Need to shop insurance: curious what you have?

State Farm. State Farm awarded me the full amount I was insured for when my house suffered a fire (not a wildfire, but a house fire caused by my tenant's negligence with candles). As for wildfires, State Farm is still honoring fire insurance in my high-risk area in California. We also have Farmers f...
by zagyzebra
Wed Dec 27, 2017 6:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: wisdom of buying a car about to be discontinued
Replies: 17
Views: 2775

wisdom of buying a car about to be discontinued

Got my old reliable Honda CRV stolen last week and need to buy a car. From Bogleheads, I learned about the Ford C-Max Energy. We found a 2013 with 35,000 miles for $11,500. However, we have just learned that, as Ford's worst selling car, they were recently discontinued. My partner insists the resale...
by zagyzebra
Tue Dec 26, 2017 8:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Liability Car Insurance Only?
Replies: 10
Views: 1103

Re: Liability Car Insurance Only?

I was driving a 2001 Honda CRV with 145,000. Up until last week. It was the car that wouldn't die and that all my friends made fun of. But I loved it, and couldn't seem to be bothered by buying a new car. And then last week it was stolen from the street in front of my sister's house. Coincidentally,...
by zagyzebra
Mon May 02, 2016 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get best deals on hotels
Replies: 10
Views: 1577

Re: How to get best deals on hotels

Get superior and more interesting accommodations for 25% cheaper than hotels on Airbnb.
by zagyzebra
Wed Apr 27, 2016 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pea gravel as paver patio alternative
Replies: 28
Views: 4128

Re: Pea gravel as paver patio alternative

Here's another thought. How about large flat slabs of stone infilled with pea gravel? That's what we did for a hugely wide walkway that traverses the side of our house, and it works perfectly. The slabs more or less keep the pea gravel in place, and the contrast between the yellowish stones and dark...
by zagyzebra
Sat Apr 02, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar City Sales-pitch
Replies: 50
Views: 10785

Re: Solar City Sales-pitch

In my area there are very few homes with AC because it's simply not needed. On the few days a year where the temperature nears triple digits a fan is all that's required. The average temperature is in the low 60's all year long. One or two days of frost, if that. No snow, no damaging hail, very lit...
by zagyzebra
Sat Apr 02, 2016 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar City Sales-pitch
Replies: 50
Views: 10785

Re: Solar City Sales-pitch

If you live in an area where you need heat most of the winter and AC most of the summer, then yes, I think solar would provide a considerable savings. I suppose it all boils down to how temperate your climate is and how well insulated your house is.
by zagyzebra
Fri Apr 01, 2016 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solar City Sales-pitch
Replies: 50
Views: 10785

Re: Solar City Sales-pitch

Honestly, until they can improve technology to the point where these solar panels are not so large and intrusive, I don't see a lot of homeowners with 2,000-ish sf homes wanting to cover their roofs in them. I mean, if you paid a lot for an attractive stone, slate or tile roof, how appealing is it t...
by zagyzebra
Thu Mar 10, 2016 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge
Replies: 67
Views: 6578

Re: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge

$7500-$8000/month, am I reading that correctly? According to Zillow there is exactly one home for rent in my entire state more than that, and it 7k sq. ft and located at a world famous ski resort. Similar houses are for sale for over $3m. Someone bought at the right time. Two words: Los Angeles And...
by zagyzebra
Thu Mar 10, 2016 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge
Replies: 67
Views: 6578

Re: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge

Keeping a big house does make sense if you either 1) want to live in it or 2) can rent it for a sizable profit. In my case, my mortgage on my big house is $1300/mo. Include prop taxes, homeowners and maintenance, let's round it off to $2500/month (and that's pretty generous). The minimum rent I can ...
by zagyzebra
Wed Mar 09, 2016 4:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge
Replies: 67
Views: 6578

Re: Keeping a Big House as an Inflation Hedge

I road out the recession with a high-end home that I no longer lived in. Sat on it for months as I kept ratcheting down the rent until I finally reached the sweet spot: 25% less than the previous tenant. That was a bitter pill to swallow at the time. But lo and behold, the housing market rebounded i...
by zagyzebra
Sun Jan 24, 2016 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Netflix increasing prices. Will you keep it?
Replies: 73
Views: 11635

Re: Netflix increasing prices. Will you keep it?

Cancel over a $2 increase? Nah. Just last night I watched a 90-minute Part 1 of a 4-part entertaining Chelsea Handler documentary series. To me, original specials like these help justify the price increase.
by zagyzebra
Thu Dec 17, 2015 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coffee maker
Replies: 38
Views: 5025

Re: Coffee maker

Stainless steel French press.
by zagyzebra
Mon Dec 14, 2015 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bose SoundTouch 10 vs Sonos Play:1
Replies: 26
Views: 5311

Re: Bose SoundTouch 10 vs Sonos Play:1

As DSInvestor pointed out, Sonos cannot play Youtube, which in my opinion, is a huge drawback. There may be some sort of work around for this, but I don't know what it is.
by zagyzebra
Tue Nov 24, 2015 8:43 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Financial and investment education for 11yr old
Replies: 8
Views: 1044

Re: Financial and investment education for 11yr old

You can choose whatever approach to attempt to teach them about financial responsibility. In all honesty, however, until they are forced to live on a fixed income budget, and begin earning their own money, the lessons won't make much sense to them.
by zagyzebra
Wed Nov 11, 2015 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much car can we afford?
Replies: 29
Views: 3077

Re: How much car can we afford?

Ninnie: I assume the $10,000 monthly expenses includes the rent and investments? Because otherwise it's crazy high.

Really? For two people?
by zagyzebra
Tue Oct 27, 2015 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?
Replies: 20
Views: 3986

Re: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?

Retirement is in the eyes of the beholder. To me, raising a child without having to work was retired. It was a walk in the park compared to the 10-year stint of building and running my own agency, and the previous 10-year commitment of working for other people. When you come to the point where you ...
by zagyzebra
Tue Oct 27, 2015 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?
Replies: 20
Views: 3986

Re: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?

Retirement is in the eyes of the beholder. To me, raising a child without having to work was retired. It was a walk in the park compared to the 10-year stint of building and running my own agency, and the previous 10-year commitment of working for other people. When you come to the point where you d...
by zagyzebra
Tue Oct 27, 2015 10:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?
Replies: 20
Views: 3986

Re: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years latter?

zagyzebra wrote: I retired at the age of 41 in order to get out of the rat race and concentrate on raising my toddler child. We downscaled. Bought a farm in Oregon, far from the big city. Did farm things, relaxed easy life. Acquired pets and animals. Relished being a full-time mom, chief chef and c...
by zagyzebra
Tue Oct 27, 2015 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years later?
Replies: 20
Views: 3986

Re: Typical Retirement Day, 5 years latter?

I retired at the age of 41 in order to get out of the rat race and concentrate on raising my toddler child. We downscaled. Bought a farm in Oregon, far from the big city. Did farm things, relaxed easy life. Acquired pets and animals. Relished being a full-time mom, chief chef and caretaker of animal...
by zagyzebra
Tue Oct 13, 2015 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microwave Recommendations?
Replies: 17
Views: 1907

Re: Microwave Recommendations?

I recommend you direct this question to the appropriate Houzz (previously GardenWeb) forum, where there is a suitable and knowledgeable audience that addresses these types of questions on a daily basis.
by zagyzebra
Wed Sep 16, 2015 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LED's for recessed ceiling lights
Replies: 15
Views: 1882

Re: LED's for recessed ceiling lights

Funny, my electrician is here today changing from recessed LEDs to recessed incandescents. Fingers crossed they will produce enough light to read under. It seems everyone hates the LEDs, and, on top of that, I have learned that they are bad to read under just before going to sleep at night…has somet...
by zagyzebra
Wed Sep 16, 2015 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sell or Rent House After Moving
Replies: 5
Views: 457

Re: Sell or Rent House After Moving

Don't forget to factor in an increase in insurance. The rates go up from homeowner's insurance to landlord insurance.
by zagyzebra
Tue Sep 15, 2015 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: food allowance $ for child in college
Replies: 44
Views: 6776

Re: food allowance $ for child in college

I pay for my son's apartment while he is in college and give him $100 a week allowance, which he can use for whatever he needs, including food. If he goes over $100, and needs more money, he has to earn it. He comes home every weekend to pick up his $100. I could pay him a lump sum in advance, but I...
by zagyzebra
Sun Aug 23, 2015 12:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 3651
Views: 1037661

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

"Wolves of Wall Street," strictly for the decadently exuberant fun ride. Great film.
by zagyzebra
Sun Aug 02, 2015 5:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Enough is enough
Replies: 51
Views: 17264

Re: Enough is enough

I decided enough was enough when I was 41 years old and came home to my baby every night exhausted. We hatched a plan to rent out the house and travel the world with child in tow. I guess at the time I thought I would return to my previous working life, except I never did. Instead, we decided to dow...
by zagyzebra
Sun Jun 07, 2015 5:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Is my math wrong? When to buy a house
Replies: 11
Views: 1884

Re: Is my math wrong? When to buy a house

I think you have to consider your location. Are you in an urban market where there is marked increase of annual rents? If so, you may find that in the long run (maybe 10 years more or less, depending on whether you are paying down your principal), for the same amount of monthly outlay you will get m...
by zagyzebra
Sat Apr 25, 2015 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [new position, facing an] hour commute (each way)
Replies: 52
Views: 10938

Re: does anyone have an hour commute (each way?)

The level of dissatisfaction/satisfaction experienced is relative to the quality of the drive. If it is constant stop and go in a place with little scenery, then I can understand why a commute drives people batty. But it it's a lovely, scenic commute, then 50 minutes whizzes by.
by zagyzebra
Tue Mar 17, 2015 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does an AirBnB guesthouse make sense?
Replies: 19
Views: 3072

Re: Does an AirBnB guesthouse make sense?

I lucked into a property that had two houses (one tax bill, two separate addresses). I will say that we didn't go looking for this property. We stumbled onto it. Had we been looking for it, I doubt we would have ever found it because it wasn't in the neighborhood we had wanted. But we were wowed by ...
by zagyzebra
Wed Mar 11, 2015 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone ever use a closet design company?
Replies: 22
Views: 6757

Re: Anyone ever use a closet design company?

My advice, since I just installed two wardrobe closets this year, would be to use a finish carpenter if you want customization. BUT, make sure to first hire someone experienced in drawing up plans for kitchen/closet/cabinets. Work out the rough details with that individual and then hand the plans wi...
by zagyzebra
Mon Jul 28, 2014 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: POLL: My home is worth less/more in 2014 than in 2007?
Replies: 97
Views: 10294

Re: POLL: My home is worth less/more in 2014 than in 2007?

Prices of both rent and home sales are sky high in Southern California in desirable locations. I can understand why. I am in the process of restoring a home, and the cost of construction is crazy high. To turn a profit on a piece of real estate, prices of housing need to be steep. The cost of living...
by zagyzebra
Fri Jul 25, 2014 12:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice wanted on first computer purchase since 1982!
Replies: 107
Views: 12102

Re: Advice wanted on first computer purchase since 1982!

I walk around with my 17" MacBook Pro all the time, and don't find it to be too heavy. But I mostly use my laptop at home, and my ipad mini at work. If I were planning on lugging my laptop back and forth to work, I'd definitely invest in a macbook air.
by zagyzebra
Sat Jun 21, 2014 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone regret paying off mortgage early?
Replies: 504
Views: 108810

Re: Anyone regret paying off mortgage early?

I agree with Tom T. One size does not fit all. This is an interesting question and I recently faced paying off my mortgage. Ultimately I decided to stay the course in case I needed that money as a down payment for another property. I made this decision after discussing it with my contractor consulta...
by zagyzebra
Mon Jun 16, 2014 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car repair ordeal
Replies: 21
Views: 3314

Re: car repair ordeal

In addition to the other useful suggestions, please take time to write up your ordeal on Yelp. For the sake of others who might be considering taking their cars here in the future. Bad Yelp reviews impact businesses negatively.
by zagyzebra
Sat Jan 04, 2014 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water conservation
Replies: 44
Views: 4345

Re: Water conservation

This is a timely question. My house is under construction in Southern California and I have been pondering what is the lesser of two evils (from a water efficiency perspective): a pool or a lawn. After reading a few suggestions here for grasses that use less water, I think the answer may be grass. C...
by zagyzebra
Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bogleheads' "Rags to Riches" Stories
Replies: 107
Views: 20383

Re: Bogleheads' "Rags to Riches" Stories

In what I thought at the time was a tragic twist of fate, I was forced to drop out of college. An automobile accident in the summer between graduate and undergraduate school left my writing hand immobilized in a cast from the fingertips to above the elbow. It was all the energy I could muster just t...
by zagyzebra
Sat Oct 26, 2013 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited House w/ Mortgage. Rental Property?
Replies: 66
Views: 7695

Re: Inherited House w/ Mortgage. Rental Property?

I second thanking you for the link to that post!
by zagyzebra
Sat Oct 26, 2013 12:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited House w/ Mortgage. Rental Property?
Replies: 66
Views: 7695

Re: Inherited House w/ Mortgage. Rental Property?

Once you pay your annual property taxes and homeowners insurance, you will probably be left with around 5% annual return -- maybe. And if there are maintenance issues, unexpected large repairs, or vacancies -- even less. Good dividend producing stocks could perform almost, if not equally as well. Re...
by zagyzebra
Fri Oct 25, 2013 9:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Want to have kids, scared of the financial consequences
Replies: 95
Views: 8022

Re: Want to have kids, scared of the financial consequences

Since there have been posters sounding the alarm on the potentially dire consequences of waiting to have a child past the age of 31, I will offer my counter view. I did not start my business until I was 31, my success arced when I was 36, I got pregnant on my 40th birthday, and retired at the age of...
by zagyzebra
Thu Oct 24, 2013 6:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Want to have kids, scared of the financial consequences
Replies: 95
Views: 8022

Re: Want to have kids, scared of the financial consequences

I SO FEEL FOR YOU. It was this exact conundrum that made me jettison my 10-year-old agency, and downscale by leaving Los Angeles for Oregon. In my case, having a child and experiencing the overwhelming guilt I had coming home at 6:30 or 7 and having just 30 minutes with my baby before he fell asleep...
by zagyzebra
Thu Oct 17, 2013 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How many square feet is your home?
Replies: 162
Views: 15081

Re: How many square feet is your home?

I think the feel of an expansive home is a lot more important than sq ftg, such as ceiling height and and open flow. Currently I am renting while my own home (1500 sq ft, 3 br/2 ba) is being rehabbed. Next to my rental is a two-story monster. I'd say less than 15% of that house is occupied most of t...
by zagyzebra
Fri Sep 27, 2013 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do we still need to own a home?
Replies: 34
Views: 4820

Re: Do we still need to own a home?

I am a long-term homeowner and landlord who, due to circumstances, is now renting. In the next couple of years, I too shall be faced with the question: to buy or to rent? In addition to the financial questions involved, there is the issue of ageism. Do I want to be renting from someone as I get olde...
by zagyzebra
Thu Jul 11, 2013 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yahoo email account hacked today...
Replies: 30
Views: 5110

Re: Yahoo email account hacked today...

I have Outlook (formerly msn, aka hotmail). I was once hacked, but it was easy to fix. I just changed my password. On the other hand, my partner's Yahoo account was hacked and, despite changing his password, he continued to have problems. He decided to switch to Gmail.
by zagyzebra
Sun Dec 02, 2012 11:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boost Mobile/Straight Talk....opinions
Replies: 31
Views: 10274

Re: Boost Mobile/Straight Talk....opinions

Count me as another happy Page Plus customer. With the service's excellent monthly rates and call coverage through Verizon's towers, I wouldn't change it up for another plan at this point.
by zagyzebra
Tue Nov 20, 2012 1:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the academic literature against the bogleheads?
Replies: 90
Views: 7674

Re: What is the academic literature against the bogleheads?

"I don't think it surprising that there isn't literature showing how it's possible to beat the market. If someone discovered how to do it, why would they tell anyone?" This is the most logical answer to the topic question in this fascinating thread. Exchanges revolving around challenge are always th...
by zagyzebra
Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is the academic literature against the bogleheads?
Replies: 90
Views: 7674

Re: What is the academic literature against the bogleheads?

According to the Bogle method, presuming you're invested somewhere in the mid-risk range, approximately how many years are projected to double the size of the original investment?