Search found 3841 matches

by carolinaman
Sat Nov 16, 2019 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best thing you have ever bought?
Replies: 151
Views: 12107

Re: Best thing you have ever bought?

It is hard to get too excited about material things, regardless of how much pleasure they bring. The best things for us were family and couple vacations that bought great times and great memories. My only regret is that we did not do more of these.
by carolinaman
Thu Nov 14, 2019 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: BRK.B
Replies: 22
Views: 2452

Re: BRK.B

Any individual stock must be regularly monitored, including BRK. Why? According to Buffett "the right holding period is forever." Close monitoring is contrary to what both Warren and Bogle recommend. Place your bet and stay the course for the next 10-20 years . . . I respectfully disagree. The busi...
by carolinaman
Wed Nov 13, 2019 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing Aid Question
Replies: 5
Views: 567

Re: Hearing Aid Question

I got my first HA from a doctor of audiology at a EENT office. It was a name brand with commensurate cost. 5 years later I needed a replacement and went to Costco. An audiologist tested and fitted me. Cost was $1700 and I was told these same HAs sold for $6000 under name brand. I have been satisfied...
by carolinaman
Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Looking at buying a foreclosure Dallas area cash
Replies: 21
Views: 1652

Re: Looking at buying a foreclosure Dallas area cash

When I was looking at foreclosed properties in 2011 I found some that were intentionally damaged by the former owners that were angry at the bank. Holes punched in walls, concrete poured down drains, wiring pulled from walls, etc. That sort of thing may in the past but watch out. Eviction takes tim...
by carolinaman
Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Are complicated credit card cash back strategies worth it?
Replies: 73
Views: 5001

Re: Are complicated credit card cash back strategies worth it?

I have two CCs: Citi Costco Visa and Wells Fargo Visa. The Costco card offers 4% on gas, restaurants and travel, 2% at Costco and 1% otherwise. WF offers 1.5% everywhere. 4% gets my attention, the rest no so much. The benefit I value most is the 2 year extended warranty with the Costco card. I bough...
by carolinaman
Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:12 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: BRK.B
Replies: 22
Views: 2452

Re: BRK.B

Buffett himself has acknowledged the difficulty for his fund to outperform the market given its huge size. I would sell BRK and put in VTI. You no longer have to monitor the fund daily. VTI is a set it and forget it investment. Any individual stock must be regularly monitored, including BRK. When I ...
by carolinaman
Wed Nov 13, 2019 7:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pension Lump Sum Offer - Monthly Big Mac in 2047?
Replies: 10
Views: 1497

Re: Pension Lump Sum Offer - Monthly Big Mac in 2047?

I had a similar offer from prior employer about 25 years from retirement. I rolled the money into an IRA. It was not enough money to affect me one way or another and I preferred simplifying things. Also, for good or bad, I had control of the money, and could invest it as I deemed appropriate. Also, ...
by carolinaman
Tue Nov 12, 2019 9:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hi Def Audio listening
Replies: 22
Views: 1252

Re: Hi Def Audio listening

We recently bought a high end TV and wanted to upgrade our circa 2004 home theater system. My son, who is pretty knowledgeable of audio, suggested I call Crutchfield, https://www.crutchfield.com/S-8Hh3PVYFEoQ/. They are a VA based company who sells audio/video products. He said to tell them what I w...
by carolinaman
Tue Nov 12, 2019 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Los Angeles to San Francisco Roadtrip
Replies: 29
Views: 1989

Re: Los Angeles to San Francisco Roadtrip

I have never been to Northern California but a must see for me as a golfer would be Pebble Beach as well as the other courses in area. Also, drive along PCH thru Big Sur and visit to Monterey. When we visited relatives in Oxnard many years ago, they took us to the village of Solvang that was inland ...
by carolinaman
Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

A pleasure. Unfortunately as i stated earlier i do not necessarily agree with your thesis that Outlook itself is the source of your problems as it may not be unless your local .pst store is huge and i do not believe this is true in your case. If you are still using the same hardware as when you ori...
by carolinaman
Tue Nov 12, 2019 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

I am considering Office 365 for my laptop but wondering if I will just be transferring the problem to my laptop since the data corruption problem seems to be a design flaw in Outlook. You will not have this issue. Or rather, if you ever do, you would just delete your outlook profile and then log in...
by carolinaman
Mon Nov 11, 2019 8:30 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Resource suggestions for recently retired father
Replies: 11
Views: 886

Re: Resource suggestions for recently retired father

He needs to buy his own dinner. All these "free" dinners he has gone to have confused him and will prove to be the most expensive dinners he has ever had. People conducting those dinners are very slick and can easily dupe smart people like your father. The KISS acronym fits Boglehead investing and i...
by carolinaman
Fri Nov 08, 2019 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: visiting Maine in November
Replies: 27
Views: 1890

Re: visiting Maine in November

We have visited central coast of Maine twice in past 5 years. Both times in September. I was once in Old Town Maine in November and have been there in January. It does get cold but you can get some decent days in November. Acadia National Park is a beautiful place to visit. I love the quaint coastal...
by carolinaman
Fri Nov 08, 2019 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

I use Win 8.1 and Outlook 2010 for my desktop. I have a Win 10 laptop (use mainly for travel) but do not have Office on it. I am considering Office 365 for my laptop but wondering if I will just be transferring the problem to my laptop since the data corruption problem seems to be a design flaw in ...
by carolinaman
Thu Nov 07, 2019 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cutting the Cord & Live Television
Replies: 45
Views: 2966

Re: Cutting the Cord & Live Television

We still use #$%*&* cable for TV. We did buy an over the air antenna when our power and cable was out last December due to ice storm. I used our generator and we were able to get dozens of TV stations. I think that and something like Roku would satisfy me, but DW has her favorite shows so we are not...
by carolinaman
Mon Nov 04, 2019 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

I am wondering if the rather old version of software I run may be part of the problem. Thanks for your help. What version of Outlook are you running? What is your OS version? 24MB is not very large and no reason for the PST file to corrupt. Additional questions: 1) Does Outlook open at all? No 2) H...
by carolinaman
Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Re: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

It is not very large, only 24M.
by carolinaman
Mon Nov 04, 2019 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice
Replies: 17
Views: 1262

Outlook email PST file is corrupt, need advice

I am a long time user of Outlook email and use it on my home computer. Over the past year, Outlook has failed to run at least 6 times due to corruption of the PST file. I have managed to get around this by various means in the past: Scanpst.exe (MS repair utility), backups, and use of a third party ...
by carolinaman
Sun Nov 03, 2019 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Municipal Retirement Plan, Good?
Replies: 10
Views: 811

Re: Municipal Retirement Plan, Good?

NC local govt pension retiree here. It looks good as far as I can tell. What is the multiplier used to calculate the pension benefit? For example, mine is 1.85 X years of service X avg of highest 4 years of salary. Multipliers can vary a lot in public pension. I have seen some over 2.00 and others w...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 31, 2019 6:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do I Have a Crummy Local Government Pension?
Replies: 51
Views: 4125

Re: Do I Have a Crummy Local Government Pension?

The real benefit to this and other pensions is if you work until retirement age and begin collecting a pension. Your pension sounds similar to my govt pension except we use a multiplier of 1.85 times highest average salary from 4 year average. I would not let the tail (pension) wag the dog (job/care...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 31, 2019 6:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cousin inherited older house - how to get solid overview of all repairs needed?
Replies: 21
Views: 1747

Re: cousin inherited older house - how to get solid overview of all repairs needed?

A good home inspector should be able to point out issues. Plumbing, electrical, poor lot drainage, sagging floors, wood rot are signs of problems that need to be determined and fixed. Of course, most home inspectors are hyper critical about issues so she will need to determine what needs to be done ...
by carolinaman
Tue Oct 29, 2019 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it normal for a contractor to require 50% payment up front?
Replies: 52
Views: 3719

Re: Is it normal for a contractor to require 50% payment up front?

50% seems high but keep in mind that a roofing job would only have one other payment when the job is finished, unlike other projects where there are progress payments. The contractor has to worry about getting paid. Some customers do not pay or pay very slowly. Do not trust online reviews. It is ver...
by carolinaman
Tue Oct 29, 2019 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: bipolar/alcoholic/broke/jail time - how to move forward financially?
Replies: 37
Views: 4504

Re: bipolar/alcoholic/broke/jail time - how to move forward financially?

I would start by connecting him with the social services available in his area. Until the mental health situation is under control (probably with meds) and the alcohol is under control (maybe more meds/counseling) it will be impossible to accomplish much. I'd work on these first. It is quite likely...
by carolinaman
Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:37 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do prices on umbrella policies adjust annually or remain fixed?
Replies: 14
Views: 1208

Re: Do prices on umbrella policies adjust annually or remain fixed?

Mine adjusts annually but has not increased that much since I increased my coverage. I just got my renewal invoice and premium did not increase this year.
by carolinaman
Mon Oct 28, 2019 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Folks age between 65-70. What’s your exercise routine
Replies: 44
Views: 4492

Re: Folks age between 65-70. What’s your exercise routine

age 75, retired 9 years. I have always been active in sports but only sport I still play is golf and I try to walk the course whenever allowed. I jogged about 5 times a week until age 63 and knees and back could no longer tolerate it. Now I either walk 2 to 3 miles a day or go to gym and do elliptic...
by carolinaman
Sun Oct 27, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Minimize Your Emergency Care Expenses
Replies: 358
Views: 129247

Re: How to Minimize Your Emergency Care Expenses

Excellent article. I intend to give this to my 50 year old who does not have health care insurance. Hopefully, it will convince him to get HC insurance. Thanks for sharing.
by carolinaman
Sun Oct 27, 2019 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do You Pay For Financial Advice?
Replies: 76
Views: 4335

Re: Do You Pay For Financial Advice?

No, I do it myself with low cost index funds
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 26, 2019 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we downshift and move to Europe?
Replies: 40
Views: 5084

Re: Should we downshift and move to Europe?

We are thinking on moving to European country like Germany, Belgium or Netherlands to live more simple life, downshift to regular specialists, buy a house and live stress free life. Europe seems more affordable and safe environment for kids. But cons are: - We would probably never get the salary le...
by carolinaman
Fri Oct 25, 2019 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to learn to communicate better as a leader?
Replies: 13
Views: 1299

Re: How to learn to communicate better as a leader?

Learn to listen. <<- What is the right frequency, mode of communication?>> 1) There isn't one. You have to tailor your mode of communication-based on the audience. If you know that there isn't ONE right mode of communication, you are half-way there. 2) Ask for feedback. Do not assume that you had c...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 24, 2019 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Carpeting-Costco or Home Depot?
Replies: 34
Views: 26538

Re: Carpeting-Costco or Home Depot?

hoops777 wrote:
Sun Jun 05, 2016 7:00 pm
Your best price will come from a small local independent dealer with low overhead.
+1. They beat big box stores every time
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 24, 2019 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Possible Structural Issues in a House
Replies: 21
Views: 1646

Re: Possible Structural Issues in a House

We have a brick ranch that is 45 years old. My son, who is a remodeler, remodeled our living area about 10 years ago. A couple of our doors would not shut due to settling and unlevel floors. I am guessing this was an inch or less. My son leveled the subfloor and now everything fits tightly. Some set...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 24, 2019 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to Know if an Old House is Reasonably Beyond Repair
Replies: 30
Views: 2421

Re: How to Know if an Old House is Reasonably Beyond Repair

It sounds like it should be torn down. However, I would not have a lot of confidence in a building inspector's determination of that. A good remodeler would be a better person to inspect it or possibly a structural engineer. If the framing and foundation are sound, it is likely cheaper to repair rat...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 24, 2019 6:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Early pension option advice
Replies: 11
Views: 1154

Re: Early pension option advice

At first glance, option C retire at age 60 looks like the best option. The pension annuity at age 65 is only a few dollars more so it does not make sense to wait. You can check market annuities to see what they pay but I doubt they will match the age 60 annuity. Do not take option B under any circum...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 24, 2019 6:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Depot and Lowe's product reviews
Replies: 16
Views: 1888

Re: Home Depot and Lowe's product reviews

I do not buy a lot of stuff online so I do not worry about reviews for small dollar items. Whenever buying cars, appliances, major electronics, etc. I do research of online sources. I put more weight in objective ratings from sources like edmunds.com, rtings.com, CR and others. But I also like to ch...
by carolinaman
Wed Oct 23, 2019 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ok to go without health insurance?
Replies: 209
Views: 11640

Re: Ok to go without health insurance?

This is a bad idea as others have cited. The ability to get health insurance through your company on short notice is a nice benefit. However, I am assuming that it will not cover pre existing conditions. If you are diagnosed with a serious illness and then get health insurance, treatment for that il...
by carolinaman
Wed Oct 23, 2019 8:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What happens if Nursing Home Medicaid recipient inherits money?
Replies: 6
Views: 1092

Re: What happens if Nursing Home Medicaid recipient inherits money?

When my mother went into a nursing home, she was on private pay. When she exhausted her own funds, Medicaid paid her nursing home bill. DSS (in VA) required me to put her home up for sale since no one was living in it. Proceeds from the sale would be used to pay her Medicaid expenses. She died befor...
by carolinaman
Wed Oct 23, 2019 8:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How do you get over an investing mistake?
Replies: 42
Views: 2061

Re: How do you get over an investing mistake?

You have to realize investing, especially volatile individual stocks, is very inexact. There is no reason to get upset because the results are unpredictable. I used to invest in individual stocks and active mutual funds. Despite my best research, things often did not go as planned. I won some and lo...
by carolinaman
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Impact of filing a claim under home owners policy
Replies: 10
Views: 872

Re: Impact of filing a claim under home owners policy

I am long time State Farm policy holder. I have had a few homeowner claims over the years. Nothing really more than $2k or so. Not aware that it has affected policy. My guess is if you have really large claim or multiple smaller claims within a short period of time, then you are more at risk. State ...
by carolinaman
Mon Oct 21, 2019 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Second Opinion for Dental Procedure/Cost (Crown)
Replies: 13
Views: 1371

Re: Second Opinion for Dental Procedure/Cost (Crown)

I got a crown last month in Charlotte area (MCOL) for $1250
by carolinaman
Fri Oct 18, 2019 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Considering Foregoing Medicare Part B to Make Roth Conversions
Replies: 8
Views: 1054

Re: Considering Foregoing Medicare Part B to Make Roth Conversions

Medicare B covers doctor visits, all sorts of tests and other things. Will your FEHB cover that? If so, you are ok, but if not, you would be responsible to pay for all the things B covers which could get expensive quickly. Also, there is a 10% penalty per year for delaying B beyond the date eligible...
by carolinaman
Mon Oct 14, 2019 6:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling used car experience (dealer vs online vs in person)
Replies: 28
Views: 2836

Re: Selling used car experience (dealer vs online vs in person)

I always get an estimate from Carmax whenever I plan to trade cars so I know what I can get for it. It is a wholesale price and it is well respected by car dealers. I have actually had dealers give me the Carmax price which was higher than what they offered. However, you can do much better in a priv...
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Washer/Dryer shopping: Best Buy cheaper than Costco
Replies: 20
Views: 1580

Re: Washer/Dryer shopping: Best Buy cheaper than Costco

Costco had early release of their Black Friday ad last year on 10/27, and it is speculated it will be released this year in same time frame. See other stores in this link:
https://blackfriday.com/news/black-frid ... redictions
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: If we visit Shenandoah and Blue Ridge Parkway, do we "need" to see Great Smoky Mtns. NP, too?
Replies: 52
Views: 5198

Re: If we visit Shenandoah and Blue Ridge Parkway, do we "need" to see Great Smoky Mtns. NP, too?

The Smoky Mountains are pretty and nice to see, but for me, it seems like an extension of the BRP, which is not far away. If you do decide to go to visit the Smokies, avoid Pigeon Forge like the plaque. They have terrible traffic seemingly year round. Gatlinburg is touristy, but still a nice town. C...
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying expensive TVs online
Replies: 54
Views: 4026

Re: Buying expensive TVs online

*** Update 10/12/19 *** Visa approved my claim for the failure of my TV this week and reimbursed me $1,945 . It took 12 business days for them to approve it but it was handled in a straight forward manner. I was apprehensive of how Visa would handle such a large claim, but they handled it very well....
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 2:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Prominent financial adviser fined $1M
Replies: 24
Views: 4223

Re: Prominent financial adviser fined $1M

What makes you conclude he was “unscrupulous.“ Negligent —- appears quite likely. In violation of industry rules —so ordered. Unscrupulous? You may be right that it was more negligence. However, he touted his investing approach was conservative and geared more to safer investments which attracted a...
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Prominent financial adviser fined $1M
Replies: 24
Views: 4223

Prominent financial adviser fined $1M

A prominent and well known Charlotte financial adviser was just fined $1M for selling unregistered and fraudulent securities to clients. This guy was on the radio for a long time and presented himself as a conservative and safe investor. He came across as very credible on the radio. I was shocked wh...
by carolinaman
Sat Oct 12, 2019 6:31 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Retirees, when did you start really planning your retirement?
Replies: 53
Views: 5038

Re: Retirees, when did you start really planning your retirement?

I have a pension and SS and got real serious about retirement planning in my mid 50s. I did research and read a lot of books, articles and Internet stuff about retirement. I retired at 66 but had Fidelity do a retirement plan for me at age 60. I did my own spreadsheets and included various scenarios...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 10, 2019 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Consumer Reports
Replies: 36
Views: 3460

Re: Consumer Reports

I am a longtime subscriber and use both paper and digital. Both have value for me. There is now more competition in many consumer areas. For example, I am in the market for a high end TV right now and use rtings.com a lot. Consumer Report does a good job on TVs as well but there is more mystery as t...
by carolinaman
Thu Oct 10, 2019 6:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are your personal experiences with downside of early retirement?
Replies: 95
Views: 17764

Re: What are your personal experiences with downside of early retirement?

To a large extent I defined “who I was” through my job. It was very high profile with hundreds of “reports”. I had support staff to do most of the mundane, everyday tasks. Once retired (at 56) I had to re-envision who I was. Took about three years, I think, to go from “big shot Corp exec” to early ...
by carolinaman
Wed Oct 09, 2019 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finance or Accounting Degree?
Replies: 81
Views: 5738

Re: Finance or Accounting Degree?

Math has always come very easily for DS and he has no interest whatsoever in anything STEM. Anyone have any input on which degree (Finance or Accounting) would offer better future opportunities? Megamill, With an accounting degree, you can move into the finance field in the future. But, you cannot ...