Search found 843 matches

by leeks
Tue May 26, 2020 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First Time Car Buyer Needs Help. HELP ME PLEASE! Thank you!
Replies: 79
Views: 3279

Re: First Time Car Buyer Needs Help. HELP ME PLEASE! Thank you!

Anyone else see the irony of this poster wanting a new $40K+ first car and OP in https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=11&t=315865 who makes $350,000 a year can't decide on a $20,000 used car? I am laughing because this is similar to my recent post about buying a $30K car as a pandemic o...
by leeks
Tue May 26, 2020 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First Time Car Buyer Needs Help. HELP ME PLEASE! Thank you!
Replies: 79
Views: 3279

Re: First Time Car Buyer Needs Help. HELP ME PLEASE! Thank you!

What is wrong with a 2002 Toyota Sequoia that still runs well? Your parents don't seem to want a new car. Reminds me of this fun headline "Toyota Recalls 1993 Camry Due To Fact That Owners Really Should Have Bought Something New By Now" https://www.theonion.com/toyota-recalls-1993-camry-due-to-fact-...
by leeks
Tue May 26, 2020 9:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding keeping-up-with-the-joneses w.r.t. private schools
Replies: 227
Views: 10561

Re: Avoiding keeping-up-with-the-joneses w.r.t. private schools

Move to a neighborhood with good public schools? You can obviously afford that. I don't understand why so many incredibly high-income boglehead parents seem to own houses in places where the public schools are poor. Are they not researching school districts when buying their home? Or is their standa...
by leeks
Mon May 25, 2020 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Yet another "can I afford this house"?
Replies: 12
Views: 1428

Re: Yet another "can I afford this house"?

If the median house in your area is $600K, it sounds like you can afford one. Are you saying you want something more expensive? What is the cost of the houses you are considering with your desired square footage?
by leeks
Mon May 18, 2020 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to convince amazon.com - Spending is difficult and confusing to track
Replies: 17
Views: 2148

Re: How to convince amazon.com - Spending is difficult and confusing to track

I don't think they want to make it easy to track how much you spend on Amazon...
by leeks
Thu May 07, 2020 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pillow updates?
Replies: 8
Views: 652

Re: Pillow updates?

Pillow preferences are so personal it is hard to know what you might like.
But we have been really happy with these:
https://www.westelm.com/products/basic- ... lows-w3497
by leeks
Tue Apr 28, 2020 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to do temporary USPS Mail forwarding without address getting updated to credit bureaus.
Replies: 19
Views: 1567

Re: How to do temporary USPS Mail forwarding without address getting updated to credit bureaus.

I have never had credit bureaus learn an address due to temporary mail forwarding. Are you sure you didn't list the temporary address as a mailing address on any kind of credit or lease or job application during that time that might have run a credit report? I never do permanent mail forwarding beca...
by leeks
Mon Apr 27, 2020 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: purchasing a minivan - price on a new Kia Sedona
Replies: 10
Views: 666

purchasing a minivan - price on a new Kia Sedona

Has anyone recently purchased a Kia Sedona? Dealer price discussions (with multiple dealerships) are coming in right around $30K for an EX model given current specials. Should I expect to get one for less? Are there any extras anyone has gotten in negotiation besides a lower price (such as maybe a s...
by leeks
Mon Apr 27, 2020 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Go or no go on Carnival cruise
Replies: 114
Views: 6971

Re: Go or no go on Carnival cruise

No go.
No need to read past the headline of this post.
Even if you had paid nonrefundable thousands of dollars, DO NOT GO.
by leeks
Sun Apr 12, 2020 5:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA
Replies: 84
Views: 5872

Re: Unemployment vs. work at Amazon warehouse/CA

If those are the only two choices, I absolutely say stay on unemployment. But of course she can keep looking for work-from-home opportunities (online tutoring?). There is personal risk involved right now in such a job, and no evidence that adequate cleaning and personal protection are provided to Am...
by leeks
Sat Mar 28, 2020 8:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Share what worked in your plan during the crisis
Replies: 103
Views: 6964

Re: Share what worked in your plan during the crisis

Target date funds, with automatic contributions, have worked just fine in our retirement and college savings funds. I haven't paid close attention to recent changes in value and don't really care. We have substantial home purchase savings (NYC) and are very glad those funds were sitting in a boring ...
by leeks
Thu Mar 19, 2020 6:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pay cleaning lady during coronavirus pause?
Replies: 66
Views: 5107

Re: Pay cleaning lady during coronavirus pause?

If the cost is not relevant to your own financial stability and you expect to have this person return to work for you after the pandemic, yes I would continue to pay.
by leeks
Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How can bogleheads help during this crisis?
Replies: 20
Views: 1273

How can bogleheads help during this crisis?

This "personal consumer issues" forum is for "questions about how we spend our money and time" and right now I would like to spend some money and time to help others. For those of us who have the financial means to weather this and sustain our own families, how can we be useful to others? The obviou...
by leeks
Wed Mar 18, 2020 2:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Market keeps going down - and I'm giddy as a school girl! Anyone else?
Replies: 25
Views: 1579

Re: Market keeps going down - and I'm giddy as a school girl! Anyone else?

This sentiment is not appropriate. There will be mass suffering.
by leeks
Sun Mar 01, 2020 11:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gardeners: Easiest treats to grow at home? [Pacific Northwest]
Replies: 17
Views: 1598

Re: Gardeners: Easiest treats to grow at home? [Pacific Northwest]

check out http://ediblelandscaping.com/
it's my favorite catalog, but sadly I don't own any land yet
they are on the east coast, but full of information and inspiration, including stuff you can do in a greenhouse
by leeks
Sun Mar 01, 2020 11:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much would you pay babysitter/nanny?
Replies: 18
Views: 1538

Re: How much would you pay babysitter/nanny?

Another thought is whether it would be possible for you to shift your own work hours (earlier or later) on the day your wife works so you only need the sitter for 6-8 hours instead of 10.
by leeks
Sun Mar 01, 2020 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much would you pay babysitter/nanny?
Replies: 18
Views: 1538

Re: How much would you pay babysitter/nanny?

3 kids (two young ones plus a baby) should be more than the starting babysitting rate. Something in the ballpark of 50% more than the typical rate in your neighborhood for watching one kid. Given what you described and where, I would pay $20/hour. Maybe $18/hour if the cost difference mattered to my...
by leeks
Fri Feb 28, 2020 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing market in context of recent volatility
Replies: 9
Views: 646

Re: Housing market in context of recent volatility

Will you still be able to save money if you purchase this home? Do you have an adequate emergency fund (not tied up in your investment properties)? If you lose your job, are you fairly confident you can find another one before running out of your emergency funds? If so, then it doesn't matter what h...
by leeks
Tue Feb 25, 2020 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Relocating back east / Fair Lawn, NJ / Are we crazy?
Replies: 104
Views: 6476

Re: Relocating back east / Fair Lawn, NJ / Are we crazy?

No, you are not crazy. Your reasons are sound. Take this opportunity to move to NJ. You won't be stuck there, you can always leave if you want to try something else later.
by leeks
Wed Feb 19, 2020 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving due to house/location regret?
Replies: 18
Views: 2299

Re: Moving due to house/location regret?

Sounds like you should move.

Bonus if the preferred location allows you to walk/bike to work and/or kids will be able to transport themselves to/from school and activities as they get older.
by leeks
Wed Feb 19, 2020 1:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why doesn't everyone own a home as a business and rent elsewhere?
Replies: 57
Views: 7294

Re: Why doesn't everyone own a home as a business and rent elsewhere?

What you propose makes no sense given the market prices where I live. A tiny single-family townhouse that would sell for $1.2 million would rent for about $3,500/month. The mortgage + property taxes (20% down) would be about $5,500/month. It's not worth buying one unless you really want to live in it.
by leeks
Mon Feb 17, 2020 7:18 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: NY Times - "How Millennials Could Make the Fed’s Job Harder" FIRE mentioned 2/17/20
Replies: 64
Views: 6631

Re: NY Times - "How Millennials Could Make the Fed’s Job Harder" FIRE mentioned 2/17/20

Just read this ridiculous article and came here to see what bogleheads are saying. So much of it seems like complete BS to me. Does the NYTimes even have editors who review and check sources on this stuff? Obviously written by a millenial.... A few anecdotes about FIRE bloggers are not representativ...
by leeks
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hotel Room Search: 1-Bedroom / Door Separating Living Area
Replies: 9
Views: 869

Re: Hotel Room Search: 1-Bedroom / Door Separating Living Area

You could use Suiteness which makes it easier to search hotels with suites. Suiteness is clear when you're scrolling down the results page whether the suite is a studio or a 1 (or more) bedroom suite. You don't have to click through only to find out it's a studio suite. I'm going to check this out,...
by leeks
Fri Feb 14, 2020 11:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hotel Room Search: 1-Bedroom / Door Separating Living Area
Replies: 9
Views: 869

Re: Hotel Room Search: 1-Bedroom / Door Separating Living Area

As others noted, choosing a known brand is often the best bet. We also prefer Marriott Residence Inn for this reason. I totally understand your frustration. With little children, we also always look for what your are describing anytime we stay at a hotel for more than 1 night. Our kids are asleep by...
by leeks
Thu Feb 13, 2020 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Yet another 2 -> 1 income thread
Replies: 50
Views: 3892

Re: Yet another 2 -> 1 income thread

With your financial situation, there is no reason for her to stay at a job she hates. If it were me, I would quit. She may stay home with the child for 6 months or 6+ years. She may return to work full time or part time or never work again. There is no need to decide or worry about that too much now...
by leeks
Tue Feb 11, 2020 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I am a landlord in Virginia: can I withdraw lease renewal offer before I sign it (but tenant has)?
Replies: 14
Views: 1578

Re: I am a landlord in Virginia: can I withdraw lease renewal offer before I sign it (but tenant has)?

OP: outstanding input from " researchmed " and other posters. IMHO: you already sent the lease renewal to the tenant, they signed it and returned it. Stay on good relations. Tell the tenant that you are considering selling the unit and they have an option to sign a lease addendum to switch it to mo...
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?
Replies: 28
Views: 2447

Re: NYC: Stay in rent stabilized apt. or buy a place?

How much longer would your commute be?
Do you enjoy your current neighborhood?
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice about a Sabbatical
Replies: 3
Views: 543

Re: Advice about a Sabbatical

I'd go for taking the kids to Europe for a year. They will be able to catch up in the US schools when they get back, whatever they get out of the experience will be much more valuable. Do it while you can, the older they get the harder it will get to do it with them. I want to do this too but don't ...
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Purchase
Replies: 7
Views: 861

Re: Home Purchase

Wait until you have enough cash for
(1) emergency fund that could cover 6 months of expenses or unexpected home repairs
(2) closing costs
(3) 20% down payment
It does not seem that $75K can do it.
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replace old working furnace in attic or wait
Replies: 26
Views: 1616

Re: Replace old working furnace in attic or wait

Would you expect lower heating costs if you replaced it? If not, what is the incentive to do it now?
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wife's oncologist has stopped treatment, is recommending hospice
Replies: 93
Views: 14797

Re: Wife's oncologist has stopped treatment, is recommending hospice

We also hired at home health aides/assistants. It can be overwhelming the number of people coming and going. This allows for some normalcy in the care givers/families life. +1 Assuming you can afford it, I would privately hire whatever additional help you and your wife could use beyond what Medicar...
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?
Replies: 145
Views: 11986

Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

OP here.... The most confusing thing to me so far is.... Median (or mean) household income + numbers being discussed = ....Doesn't compute, breaks calculator, blue screen of death, NaN, etc... I simply can't wrap my head around it. I'm not exactly sure what you are getting at here. But I think it i...
by leeks
Sun Feb 09, 2020 1:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The annual "Boglehead considering a country club" thread
Replies: 115
Views: 6889

Re: The annual "Boglehead considering a country club" thread

You can afford it if you want to prioritize this over earlier retirement, fancier vacations, private schools, or whatever else you could buy with the funds. I agree with the posters that say do it IF your wife thinks she will also benefit from it, she wants to make friends with the kind of people wh...
by leeks
Fri Feb 07, 2020 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anywhere to go for advice on furnishing/decorating apartment?
Replies: 24
Views: 1497

Re: Anywhere to go for advice on furnishing/decorating apartment?

https://www.westelm.com/pages/style-and ... _type=gnav
I just noticed West Elm is one of the stores that offers free design services (and reasonably-priced installation services).
They are more expensive than Ikea, but still a reasonably affordable brand.
by leeks
Fri Feb 07, 2020 1:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: High Interest Savings vs. Money Markets
Replies: 17
Views: 2207

Re: High Interest Savings vs. Money Markets

Agree with beehivehave plus MOST money markets are actually lower yield than savings. Many people on this forum use VG Money Market to hold cash for some reason even though after expenses it is lower yield than a simple bank account like Discover or Ally and as mentioned it's not FDIC insured. VMMX...
by leeks
Thu Feb 06, 2020 8:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anywhere to go for advice on furnishing/decorating apartment?
Replies: 24
Views: 1497

Re: Anywhere to go for advice on furnishing/decorating apartment?

Ask a friend or relative whose home you like to help you shop for furnishings. Many people want to provide support toward friends going through divorce but aren't sure how to help. This is something specific you can ask for and that probably someone in your network would enjoy doing. Shopping togeth...
by leeks
Thu Feb 06, 2020 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much do I need in my 529 per child?
Replies: 78
Views: 6230

Re: How much do I need in my 529 per child?

Since one cannot know the amount needed and many factors can change, we decided our 529 strategy based on the tax incentive. $10K/year contributed is the max eligible for city/state tax break (about 10% marginal rate for us) in NYC. We have two kids so we contribute $5K each per year. The ability to...
by leeks
Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:43 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: High Interest Savings vs. Money Markets
Replies: 17
Views: 2207

Re: High Interest Savings vs. Money Markets

People do invest in money market accounts.
The bulk of our liquid savings are in Vanguard prime money market. We do not have a high interest savings account.
One difference is that a savings account comes with an FDIC (banks) or NCUA (credit unions) guarantee.
by leeks
Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much does a nanny cost?
Replies: 25
Views: 2527

Re: How much does a nanny cost?

A nanny is a dedicated employee with a full salary divided by 1 customer. A daycare or preschool will have higher salaries but divided by 3-8 kids a piece (depending on the type of facility and local laws). You do the math.... A few folks in our neighborhood have nanny shares to divide the cost (an...
by leeks
Thu Feb 06, 2020 12:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NYC w/ 10 month old and no stroller or car seat. Doable?
Replies: 39
Views: 2387

Re: NYC w/ 10 month old and no stroller or car seat. Doable?

The OP's baby is way too young for the forward-facing Immigo that Uber supposedly has. It is not appropriate for an infant. While Uber claims to offer a carseat option, plenty of my neighbors have found that in practice an Uber with a carseat is not available at the time they actually want to go som...
by leeks
Wed Feb 05, 2020 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I am unable to complete my tax return without professional assistance
Replies: 27
Views: 2301

Re: I am unable to complete my tax return without professional assistance

In my ongoing mission to reduce spending I had hoped to complete my 2019 tax return using Intuit software. Unfortunately, after much struggle I have realized I am not up to the task. I emailed H&R Block this morning requesting an appointment. You may say "Well you work in a gravel pit. Of course yo...
by leeks
Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: who do you bank with and why?
Replies: 97
Views: 6953

Re: who do you bank with and why?

We like that our money is in member-owned entities. It doesn't mean all services are better, or that the boards that govern them will always make perfect decisions, but I trust them more than for-profit banks. USAA and a regional credit union from home state for checking, small short-term savings (v...
by leeks
Tue Feb 04, 2020 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?
Replies: 145
Views: 11986

Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=302711&p=4997632#p4997632 Maybe it doesn't feel luxurious but you must be spending more than you used to. Do you spend a high proportion of income on housing? Even with high taxes, maxing retirement, and two daycare bills, a $275K family income ca...
by leeks
Tue Feb 04, 2020 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: NYC w/ 10 month old and no stroller or car seat. Doable?
Replies: 39
Views: 2387

Re: NYC w/ 10 month old and no stroller or car seat. Doable?

NO to hiking framed child backpack around city (you will stick out glaringly as a tourist, not good form factor for subway). Yes to an ERGO style carrier! You would not take Ergo off on subway, the whole point is to keep kid confined and your hands free. Ergo is what you need and start using it now ...
by leeks
Tue Feb 04, 2020 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much does a nanny cost?
Replies: 25
Views: 2527

Re: How much does a nanny cost?

While we've never had a nanny, I know many of them and many families who have them. While the going rate will vary by location, this is a great reference from the Park Slope Parents group in Brooklyn: https://www.parkslopeparents.com/Nanny-101/nanny101intro.html In my area (NYC, not Manhattan, not P...
by leeks
Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prepay rent for discount --> disadvantages?
Replies: 29
Views: 1984

Re: Prepay rent for discount --> disadvantages?

If there is an account number on the statement you sent, it is a serious concern. A bank account number + your contact info (along with the bank routing number they could look up online) is enough for them to withdraw money. For example, that's all you need to pay a bill via "e-check". Perhaps the b...
by leeks
Mon Feb 03, 2020 10:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books that changed your life
Replies: 146
Views: 10855

Re: Books that changed your life

TheTimeLord wrote:
Mon Feb 03, 2020 9:56 pm
This thread has confirmed my uniqueness.
Was it in doubt?
by leeks
Mon Feb 03, 2020 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Books that changed your life
Replies: 146
Views: 10855

Re: Books that changed your life

Atlas Shrugged I'm always curious why her books have an outsized representation on "books that changed my life" lists. It's because people read them when they're teenagers. There's a snarky quote out there about how Atlas Shrugged and The Lord of the Rings are the two fantasy novels that are belove...
by leeks
Mon Feb 03, 2020 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prepay rent for discount --> disadvantages?
Replies: 29
Views: 1984

Re: Prepay rent for discount --> disadvantages?

Be especially careful the landlord IS the landlord for the property. If so, just make sure it’s all in writing so you have a recourse, and I’d want some kind if assurance the property is either owned free and clear, or lender payments are current. +1 Ask if a partial refund could be available if sp...
by leeks
Mon Feb 03, 2020 8:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: New year's resolution... Protect my family. In need of peer review.
Replies: 9
Views: 1330

Re: New year's resolution... Protect my family. In need of peer review.

It used to be that a 15 year policy was the sweet spot on term insurance. Not sure if that's still true. We did that but should have laddered or reapplied after 5 years. When the 15 year wore down we were old and not in as good of health even though we still needed as kid was only 15. This does not...