Search found 4139 matches

by mhc
Thu Sep 24, 2020 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Annual oil changes a must? Car maintenance during these times
Replies: 80
Views: 5558

Re: Annual oil changes a must? Car maintenance during these times

An oil change once a year is so cheap. Get it done.
by mhc
Tue Sep 22, 2020 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: stand up freezer for garage
Replies: 26
Views: 1507

Re: stand up freezer for garage

I also have a battery operated thermometer that sits on top of the freezer with a wired remote sensor that is inside the freezer. The freezer is right next to the door for the house. Every time I walk out to the garage I can easily see the temperature in the freezer. Got a link to the sensor you us...
by mhc
Tue Sep 22, 2020 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: stand up freezer for garage
Replies: 26
Views: 1507

Re: stand up freezer for garage

I have had an upright non-frost-free freezer in my garage for 15+ years. An upright is much easier to use. It also has a smaller footprint. The freezer is right next to the electrical panel, so I installed a dedicated non-gfi circuit for the freezer. I also have a battery operated thermometer that s...
by mhc
Fri Sep 11, 2020 3:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Garden Variety Non-stick Frying Pan: Can I use This on an Outdoor Grill?
Replies: 11
Views: 564

Re: Garden Variety Non-stick Frying Pan: Can I use This on an Outdoor Grill?

Just don't get the pan too hot, and you will be fine. As mentioned above, a grill can get way too hot for a non-stick pan. If you don't have cast iron pans, you could use a stainless steel cooking sheet. You can also lay down aluminum foil on the grill and cook on it. Or better yet, just grill your ...
by mhc
Tue Sep 01, 2020 9:36 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What is your age and asset allocation ?
Replies: 246
Views: 15031

Re: What is your age and asset allocation ?

early 50's, DW 7 years younger (DW stopped working 17 years ago) retire in 0-5 years, planning for 45 years of retirement 75/25 AA I will probably keep a farely high equity allocation because it seems less risky for a long retirement. Once the children have finished college and on their own, I'll re...
by mhc
Mon Aug 31, 2020 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Early September Hiking/Camping Vacation. Risk smoky conditions of CO or heat and humidity of Appalachian Mountains?
Replies: 44
Views: 3223

Re: Early September Hiking/Camping Vacation. Risk smoky conditions of CO or heat and humidity of Appalachian Mountains?

I live between Denver and Cheyenne (northern colorado along front range). The smoke here has been bad every day for a couple of weeks. If you come to Colorado, look for a place with no smoke. Unless the hot dry weather changes, there may be new fires at any time. One popped up yesterday not too far...
by mhc
Tue Aug 25, 2020 3:11 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why does Vanguard hide its phone number?
Replies: 52
Views: 4609

Re: Why does Vanguard hide its phone number?

google: vanguard phone number
1 (877) 662-7447

google knows everything and is fast
by mhc
Tue Aug 25, 2020 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dreaming of an over-water (or near water) bungalow vacation
Replies: 6
Views: 688

Re: Dreaming of an over-water (or near water) bungalow vacation

We honeymooned in French Polynesia and had an over-water bungalow. It was truly amazing. It was on a smaller island. The only access to the hotel was by boat. We had a great time there. Sometime in the future we plan on returning and going to Bora Bora. I remember one of the locals saying that Hawai...
by mhc
Sun Aug 23, 2020 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Early September Hiking/Camping Vacation. Risk smoky conditions of CO or heat and humidity of Appalachian Mountains?
Replies: 44
Views: 3223

Re: Early September Hiking/Camping Vacation. Risk smoky conditions of CO or heat and humidity of Appalachian Mountains?

I live between Denver and Cheyenne (northern colorado along front range). The smoke here has been bad every day for a couple of weeks. If you come to Colorado, look for a place with no smoke. Unless the hot dry weather changes, there may be new fires at any time. One popped up yesterday not too far ...
by mhc
Thu Aug 20, 2020 9:38 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How often are you adding to taxable accounts?
Replies: 78
Views: 4923

Re: How often are you adding to taxable accounts?

I invest in taxable account when I exceed a certain level in my checking account. It usually works out to 3-4 times a year. My pay is not constant throughout the year. ESPP comes in 4 times a year. RSUs once a year. Bonus once a year. I max my 401k normal contributions early in the year. I max my 40...
by mhc
Wed Aug 19, 2020 2:26 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Max the HSA?
Replies: 28
Views: 1656

Re: Max the HSA?

When you leave your current job, move your HSA to Fidelity. Fidelity has no fees. Fidelity has great fund choices. I'm a big fan of HSAs. I have maxed mine every year since I have been eligible to contribute. The tax benefits are great. Mine has grown to +$100k. I have no fear of it getting too larg...
by mhc
Tue Aug 18, 2020 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much did you save?
Replies: 102
Views: 13808

Re: How much did you save?

The amount I have saved each year has varied quite a bit. I believe when I started work out of college I put 10-15% of my pay into my 401k. There was also profit sharing and matching going into the 401k. I have always tried to have my standard of living grow more slowly than my pay. This has allowed...
by mhc
Fri Aug 14, 2020 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Products that last forever
Replies: 238
Views: 15596

Re: Products that last forever

My early 80’s Hewlett-Packard model 11c calculator. I still use it and it’s built like a tank. The keys are still responsive and firm with no repeating. I think it’s going to outlast me. My HP 28S has a 1986 date on it. I used it for undergrad and grad school and 28 years of working as an engineer....
by mhc
Thu Aug 13, 2020 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Products that last forever
Replies: 238
Views: 15596

Re: Products that last forever

p38 can opener (carried on my key chain for 35 years)
pocket knives (if you don't lose them)
desk I'm sitting at right now (got used in 1994)
most hand tools
most garden tools
most kitchen containers, utensils, dishes, silverware, ...
wrought iron patio furniture
garage shelves
by mhc
Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:44 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Amazon Prime Card--4% back
Replies: 74
Views: 6972

Re: Chase Amazon Prime Card--4% back

I got the same 4% offer. I have only used my Chase card for Amazon purchases. I guess they are trying to get me in the habit of using the Chase card for everything. I have not decided yet if it is worth it because the 4% ends in Feb 2021. I have been spending very little since Covid hit.
by mhc
Tue Aug 11, 2020 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Google Play Music sunsetting to YouTube Music
Replies: 40
Views: 2856

Re: Google Play Music sunsetting to YouTube Music

I have been using Youtube Music for about 1.5 years. I can only compare it to Amazon Prime Music. I prefer Youtube Music (YM). My personal library is on Amazon, but I rarely listen to it. I feel like YM gets stale after a while. I tend to listen to iHeart Radio stations. YM is nice when I want to li...
by mhc
Tue Aug 11, 2020 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: 3 fund portfolio - Bond indexes bad in this environment?
Replies: 30
Views: 2315

Re: 3 fund portfolio - Bond indexes bad in this environment?

intermediate term bond risk is not on the same level as stock risk. plot your funds together and look at the bond swings vs the stock swings. I use bond funds to decrease the risk of the portfolio. I do not believe that anything has changed to make that strategy not work. It is quite reasonable to p...
by mhc
Mon Aug 10, 2020 2:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchasing MIL's home as she moves to 55+ community: best practices
Replies: 18
Views: 1830

Re: Purchasing MIL's home as she moves to 55+ community: best practices

I think paying FMV minus any savings for not having to pay a realtor 6% would be reasonable. If it would cause any problems with the 2 brothers, I would just skip it and find a different house.
by mhc
Thu Jul 30, 2020 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Chest Freezers
Replies: 14
Views: 1344

Re: Chest Freezers

I just looked at home depot, and they had them, at least in my area. I prefer an upright freezer. The chest freezer is more efficient, but the upright is easier to use and has a smaller footprint. If you keep the freezer full, then you don't have that much heat transfer when you open the door of an ...
by mhc
Thu Jul 30, 2020 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a new car using Costco
Replies: 42
Views: 4470

Re: Buying a new car using Costco

I bought a new Honda Civic last year. I tried Costco and an on line car shopping site. I also negotiated my own price with dealers to compare the 3. Costco did not have the best price. At one dealer, the salesman told be that he could beat the Costco price. Costco was a waste of time for me. I have ...
by mhc
Wed Jul 29, 2020 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone with a relatively recent minivan and a video entertainment system? That or ipad holders?
Replies: 8
Views: 448

Re: Anyone with a relatively recent minivan and a video entertainment system? That or ipad holders?

2018 Odyssey with entertainment system. Multiple kids. Long road trips. We bought the top trim level, so it came with the entertainment system. It is not worth it. Tablets or phones are way better. They have better video. They are more versatile (can be used any where, varied content: music, video, ...
by mhc
Wed Jul 29, 2020 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Three Fund Portfolio
Replies: 5
Views: 558

Re: Three Fund Portfolio

VOO and VTI are practically identical. You can plot them on the same graph, and you will see very little difference. What are the tax implications if you sell VOO? If the tax bill is small enough, then go ahead and sell VOO if that helps you, but there is nothing wrong with holding VOO as part of yo...
by mhc
Tue Jul 28, 2020 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Middle of Nowhere Retirement
Replies: 108
Views: 12556

Re: Middle of Nowhere Retirement

I live along the front range in Colorado. From my house, I can drive for 10 minutes in 3 directions and be away from civilization. 10 minutes in the other direction, I can be at the hospital. Within 20 minutes I can be at the trailhead and see very few people. In an hour, I definitely can be away fr...
by mhc
Wed Jul 22, 2020 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Need advice on what to do with extra $25k
Replies: 8
Views: 811

Re: Need advice on what to do with extra $25k

Invest now according to your AA. A good habit is to invest immediately.

Many around here have learned that market timing is really no more than gambling.
by mhc
Wed Jul 15, 2020 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which household items have made your life easier/more convenient/happier?
Replies: 82
Views: 6612

Re: Which household items have made your life easier/more convenient/happier?

quiet dishwasher quiet toliets (especially when DW was pregnant) blackout window coverings for bedrooms ceiling fans smart thermostat nest hub as bedside alarm clock (I can also change the thermostat from bed) smart plugs for living room lamps motion & light detecting night lights (when I walk aroun...
by mhc
Mon Jul 13, 2020 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cashing out stock grant to pay off vehicle
Replies: 5
Views: 240

Re: Cashing out stock grant to pay off vehicle

The plan to sell the stock and pay off some of the high interest rate debt makes sense. If you do this, make sure the extra money goes toward principal. I screwed this up on my first car loan.
by mhc
Fri Jul 10, 2020 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to find the right neighborhood (home)?
Replies: 44
Views: 2935

Re: How to find the right neighborhood (home)?

realtor.com has crime and noise map overlays. It will also show school ratings, taxes, and hoa fees for a house. I don't know how accurate any of the info is, but it has a lot of info available if you look around. If possible, walk the neighborhood when people are out and speak with them. If you hav...
by mhc
Wed Jul 01, 2020 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any ideas how to celebrate long weekend during this environment?
Replies: 7
Views: 757

Re: Any ideas how to celebrate long weekend during this environment?

Enjoy the great outdoors. If you would mention what part of the country you are in, you may get better suggestions.

For me, there are many options for going out and being away from all civilization, but I live on the edge of civilization.
by mhc
Tue Jun 30, 2020 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your best Charity suggestion Please!
Replies: 22
Views: 754

Re: Your best Charity suggestion Please!

I like local charities. Since, you probably don't live where I live I won't name them. Here are 2 of the ones I support outside my area:

Convoy of Hope
Companssion International

Both are focused on helping people.
by mhc
Fri Jun 26, 2020 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Exterior Storm Windows for Noise Reduction
Replies: 30
Views: 1210

Re: Exterior Storm Windows for Noise Reduction

OP,

I have the same problem you have. On the nights that the neighbors are out, I put in foam earplugs. They are cheap and easy to use. I always wear earplugs in hotels. Some people can't sleep with earplugs in, but fortunately I can as long as it isn't too many nights in a row.
by mhc
Tue Jun 23, 2020 3:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: A bond duration glide path for retirement investing
Replies: 61
Views: 4492

Re: A bond duration glide path for retirement investing

If a person only knew when he would die, planning would be so easy.
by mhc
Tue Jun 23, 2020 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you use TRIZ? [Problem solving tool for engineers]
Replies: 9
Views: 859

Re: Do you use TRIZ?

I am a design engineer with many patents and develop best in the world products. I have never heard of TRIZ before your post. TRIZ might be useful for some, but in my brief scanning of the links you posted, I do not see the utility of TRIZ.
by mhc
Tue Jun 23, 2020 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to buy parents as a token of appreciation/retirement
Replies: 57
Views: 3827

Re: What to buy parents as a token of appreciation/retirement

You could rent a large house for a week and have a great family vacation where everyone hangs out together. I have done this twice with my in-laws, and it has always been fun. A beach or mountain house could be a lot of fun during the summer.
by mhc
Tue Jun 23, 2020 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How can I get from VFIAX + VTSAX to VFIAX only in a taxable account?
Replies: 4
Views: 434

Re: How can I get from VFIAX + VTSAX to VFIAX only in a taxable account?

I'm not sure the move is necessary, but here is one strategy I have not seen yet.

If you normally make charitable contributions, then start donating shares of VTSAX. Donate that shares that have the largest long term cap gains first to get the most benefit.
by mhc
Tue Jun 23, 2020 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comcast - direct phone number for billing?
Replies: 3
Views: 254

Re: Comcast - direct phone number for billing?

1-800-XFINITY has been the number in the past.

Websites do not always make it easy to find the phone number. If I can't find the number on the company's website, I use a Google search to find the number. For example, "comcast customer service phone number."
by mhc
Fri Jun 19, 2020 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How often to contribute to Roth?
Replies: 38
Views: 1870

Re: How often to contribute to Roth?

Put the money in when you get it. Don't sit on cash. Invest it immediately. Putting money in when you get it prevents market timing. Some people can lump sum in January, some people can't. If you have budgetted a certain amount from each paycheck, then put it in with each paycheck, or once a month. ...
by mhc
Fri Jun 19, 2020 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fire Pits: Solo Stove vs. Breeo
Replies: 20
Views: 4472

Re: Fire Pits: Solo Stove vs. Breeo

You can also turn a washing machine drum into a fire pit. Really nice way to repurpose something that might be scrapped otherwise.
by mhc
Fri Jun 12, 2020 9:52 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why have our employers only offered mutual funds (and not stocks / bonds / ETFs)?
Replies: 34
Views: 1788

Re: Why have our employers only offered mutual funds (and not stocks / bonds / ETFs)?

My company only offers CITs and self-directed. The CITs are extremely low cost index funds. They are great. In my opinion, they beat MFs and ETFs. I have never used the self-directed because the CITs are so great.

CIT = Collective Investment Trust
by mhc
Wed Jun 10, 2020 9:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Investment selections for DAF
Replies: 10
Views: 464

Re: Investment selections for DAF

I use Vanguard Charitable. I use the all in one fund that has 80% equities. I have a balance that will support several decades of my charitable giving.

Your current strategy seems reasonable.
by mhc
Mon Jun 08, 2020 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Have recent events affected boglehead investment philosophy?
Replies: 41
Views: 2654

Re: Have recent events affected boglehead investment philosophy?

No change. The BH philosophy/strategy has worked beautifully this year. TLH: I only did it once and caught the bottom. This allowed me to clean up my portfolio and capture some serious losses. Rebalanced at the low. Rebalanced again this weekend. Probably netted something out of this. "Staying the c...
by mhc
Mon Jun 01, 2020 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Probationary period for new job
Replies: 29
Views: 2178

Re: Probationary period for new job

I wouldn't worry about it. You probably have your employer on permanent probation. They screw up and you are gone. Works both ways.
by mhc
Thu May 21, 2020 9:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: “Fuzzy” monitor - will moving from VGA to DVI help?
Replies: 12
Views: 627

Re: “Fuzzy” monitor - will moving from VGA to DVI help?

You can get a 43" 4k TV for about $350. Works great. Just a little tricky to get all the settings correct (mentioned above) to have crisp video. This is what several of us have done since we started working from home.

https://www.rtings.com/tv/reviews/best/ ... pc-monitor
by mhc
Tue May 12, 2020 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to visit all the US national parks
Replies: 19
Views: 2174

Re: How to visit all the US national parks

Look at a map of the National Parks. In the western part of the US, there are a lot that are clustered together. You can plan driving trips, or fly to a point then rent a car. From California, you should be able to hit multiple parks each year without much effort. After that, it takes more effort (H...
by mhc
Thu May 07, 2020 9:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pillow updates?
Replies: 8
Views: 730

Re: Pillow updates?

I bought a shredded bamboo pillow off of Amazon. It claimed to be the perfect pillow. It was too thin for me. I emailed them, and they sent me a second pillow for free. Since the pillow has a zipper, I was able to remove some of the filling from the second pillow and put it into the first pillow to ...
by mhc
Tue May 05, 2020 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plunger reccomendation for newer toilets
Replies: 23
Views: 1369

Re: Plunger reccomendation for newer toilets

You could use a toilet auger. Of course you may not be able to store one next to each toilet. This could be embarassing for a guest if they have to ask you where you keep the toilet auger.
by mhc
Mon Apr 27, 2020 9:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Where has the all good foil gone?
Replies: 20
Views: 2054

Re: Where has the all good foil gone?

OP, if you explain what you are trying to do, someone may be able to help. I smoke a lot of meat. I use a combination of disposable aluminum serving pans and Reynolds heavy duty foil. For example, I smoke a brisket for 6 hour, then I move it to a disposable pan and cover with foil. If you are trying...
by mhc
Mon Apr 27, 2020 9:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Payoff house and quit good-paying job?
Replies: 112
Views: 8328

Re: Payoff house and quit good-paying job?

OP, in general I say go for it. It is your life. You will most likely work it out. Before you decide, you should look at the statistics on when people have to stop working due to conditions outside their control (e.g., medical). There are a lot of people who have to stop working in their 50's. You m...
by mhc
Wed Apr 15, 2020 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Eating out after lock-down is lifted
Replies: 112
Views: 10458

Re: Eating out after lock-down is lifted

Going to any public and potentially close proximity place is going to be strange and awkward until a Covid-19 vaccine is widely available. Nothing else is going to change this very bad situation regardless of the blustering wishful thinking that is going on. Ordering take out is risky, and we would...
by mhc
Wed Apr 15, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Yard Leaves: Mulch or Blow?
Replies: 21
Views: 1121

Re: Yard Leaves: Mulch or Blow?

Mulch.

I would not want to remove organic material from the yard. It is also the less expensive option. Win win.
by mhc
Wed Apr 08, 2020 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outside of stocks, what else is a screaming good deal now?
Replies: 66
Views: 7958

Re: Outside of stocks, what else is a screaming good deal now?

pizza hut had 50% off pizzas. my teenagers think that is heaven.

I'm sure there are other good resturaunt deals. Lots of free delivery deals.