Search found 79 matches

by searhapsody
Sat Sep 08, 2018 7:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru: Crosstrek or Outback?
Replies: 81
Views: 5917

Re: Subaru: Crosstrek or Outback?

We looked at both in 2016 with a dog and kiddo on the way and went with the crosstrek. The outback felt too large for our daily needs and the crosstrek is cheaper and gets better gas mileage. I will say that with the infant and rear facing car seat the front passenger seat was pushed up farther than...
by searhapsody
Sat Jun 03, 2017 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Name Change
Replies: 9
Views: 1137

Re: Name Change

Well it seems you've already made the choice to change it with Social security that means that you should go ahead and do it on all your official documents--passport, driver license, etc. It's often your legal obligation to do so in a certain amount of time, even thoguh I've never heard of anyone ge...
by searhapsody
Wed Apr 12, 2017 6:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford private school tuition
Replies: 42
Views: 5040

Re: Can we afford private school tuition

Thank you all for taking the time to think and respond to my post. Some things I would like to clarify is - We currently do not own a home and are renting. Based upon our decision on what school to send kid no. 1, we will decide on the town to buy. We have a very good magnet school in our county an...
by searhapsody
Fri Apr 07, 2017 5:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: STEM & "coding" toys for little ones ?
Replies: 41
Views: 3958

Re: STEM & "coding" toys for little ones ?

I try to get gifts that encourage science for the kids in my family. Like you I only see them a few times a year so usually look for something that will inspire them to play on their own. My nephew who is 3 really likes trucks so I went with Best Choice Products Multifunctional Take Apart Toy Tool T...
by searhapsody
Fri Mar 10, 2017 10:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Payoff Student Loans Early? Requesting help.
Replies: 14
Views: 1303

Re: Payoff Student Loans Early? Requesting help.

The fact that you have a TSP implies that you are a federal government worker. If it were me, I would wait for the federal budget to be passed before emptying my emergency fund. There are no guarantees that the budget will be done in a timely manner. That could mean a government shutdown. (I used to...
by searhapsody
Fri Mar 03, 2017 8:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Has anyone experience issues putting tile floors in older home?
Replies: 8
Views: 1250

Has anyone experience issues putting tile floors in older home?

So we prefer tile for a lot of reasons (Florida, pets, kids, pool) but in getting estimates to replace our living area flooring, we've found two contractors who discouraged us. One said the cost would be high. (We don't care about the cost.) The other said that older houses like ours (wood floors on...
by searhapsody
Mon Feb 13, 2017 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen cabinets
Replies: 73
Views: 7982

Re: Kitchen cabinets

Did my kitchen with white cabinets. It's been 2 years with a 9 year old, 1.5 year old and 2 dogs. Look great! They get dirty, mostly from the dogs and I actually like the a bright kitchen so I can see the dirt and clean. http://i61.photobucket.com/albums/h44/durrettsyndrome/IMG_0081.jpg Love your f...
by searhapsody
Mon Feb 06, 2017 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annual Vacation Budget
Replies: 320
Views: 33643

Re: Annual Vacation Budget

I disagree with the idea of valuing business/first class awards the same as the cheapest cash economy fare, or 5 star hotels awards the same as a budget 3 star hotel cash rate. The experience is not comparable. I wouldn't do nearly as much travel as I do today if it weren't for all of the rewards I...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Assuage my fears? (Buying a house)
Replies: 12
Views: 1175

Re: Assuage my fears? (Buying a house)

So, for a variety of reasons (including advice from the last thread) we pulled the trigger and just went under contract on our first home. I think I've made peace with the issues I raised last time RE: the push for the down payment. .. I still have nagging doubts that this is the right decision. I ...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Annual Vacation Budget
Replies: 320
Views: 33643

Re: Annual Vacation Budget

I just looked and last year we spent $10K on travel for our household of 2. That is probably lower than normal as life circumstances meant we only got in one real vacation together and the rest of our trips were domestic visits to our families. The previous year was $21,000 including our honeymoon. ...
by searhapsody
Thu Jan 05, 2017 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy
Replies: 99
Views: 8052

Re: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy

Off topic, but is 23% a crazy high number for gross pay? I just calculated ours, and our total house payment+utilities is ~28% of our gross. It doesn't feel like a lot...is it? To me, yes that is high, but i also don't think most ppl include utilities in that calculation. It's usually principal, in...
by searhapsody
Thu Jan 05, 2017 3:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy
Replies: 99
Views: 8052

Re: spousal disagreement over how much house to buy

This was a fascinating discussion for me. My husband and I have a similar income to you and your wife and just went through the same process. We are also in a MCOL area. We valued a lot of the same things that you do, but maybe the balance between us was different. He: New house + commute + layout M...
by searhapsody
Wed Dec 21, 2016 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: housing options-- stretch for schools?
Replies: 37
Views: 2832

Re: housing options-- stretch for schools?

We just faced a similar choice and went with option A. We are actually closing in Jan. We were swayed by the fact that even though option A had worse schools now, it was some time before we would be utilizing them and the indications in the area are that the neighborhood is rising and hopefully the ...
by searhapsody
Wed Oct 12, 2016 7:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kitchen Remodel question
Replies: 44
Views: 4291

Re: Kitchen Remodel question

How important is to have a built-in microwave on a kitchen remodel vis-a-vis selling the house? We plan to sell our house soon and are doing a remodel, but haven't planned for a built in microwave as we are already over budget, and a built-in microwave would also require electric work, and we could...
by searhapsody
Thu Aug 25, 2016 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help us set our max home shopping budget....
Replies: 30
Views: 2987

Re: Help us set our max home shopping budget....

At least around here, the difference between a $250k home and a $500k is often just location. My land is worth about 2/3 of the total value of my house (it is one of the smaller houses on the block). A similarly valued house in neighborhood further away from the city center would be 75%+ improvemen...
by searhapsody
Tue Aug 16, 2016 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: vacation ideas - October
Replies: 42
Views: 4733

Re: vacation ideas - October

Take the Train to New Orleans. It should have cooled off by then.
by searhapsody
Thu Aug 11, 2016 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insight wanted on $$$ house purchase
Replies: 22
Views: 3005

Re: Insight wanted on $$$ house purchase

Your numbers would make me nervous...Here's why: You want kids but they cost a lot even when you have an easy time getting pregnant and the child is perfectly healthy. Sometimes though that's not the case. Your budget seems to depend on both of you working fulltime making the same or more than you d...
by searhapsody
Sat Jul 30, 2016 12:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Search "anywhere" for flexible travel destination?
Replies: 6
Views: 1400

Re: Search "anywhere" for flexible travel destination?

Google Flights provides this type of search.
by searhapsody
Tue Jul 26, 2016 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First house purchase advice
Replies: 14
Views: 1570

Re: First house purchase advice

My wife and I have decided we would like to buy a house in the next six months. We are both 26 years old have a very stable jobs. We are hoping to start a family in the next 2-3 years. What is the best way to go about purchasing your first home. Is it better to buy smaller now and upgrade down the ...
by searhapsody
Tue Jul 26, 2016 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 112
Views: 25531

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

qwertyjazz wrote:How about age minus 30 as a percentage?
Thoughts?
Wouldn't that mean that it would go up as a percentage of your net worth over time? I think in most instances its the opposite. If you kept the same house, over time it would be a smaller and smaller percentage of your overall net worth.
by searhapsody
Tue Jul 26, 2016 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?
Replies: 112
Views: 25531

Re: Rules of Thumb: Max House Value as % of Net Worth?

I think that banks due factor networth into what they will loan you not just income. We recently sought a loan based on my husbands credit/income alone because mine is frozen. The loan they offered would clearly not be supported by his income, but the assets in his name would have to spent down to c...
by searhapsody
Tue Jul 19, 2016 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Message removed.
Replies: 72
Views: 8898

Re: Another Too-Much-House Thread....

We've yet to comes across anyone that has anything positive to say about the house size. We must have rose colored goggles on. Probably should have noted this previously but the community requires a minimum 4,000 sqr ft house. Where is this? I've never heard of such a large minimum, but I do hear t...
by searhapsody
Tue Jul 19, 2016 5:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Message removed.
Replies: 72
Views: 8898

Re: Another Too-Much-House Thread....

So we're probably going to cancel the project at this point. I know we can sell the land for more than we paid. If you love the land and want to capitalize on the views, I wouldn't cancel it perhaps you just need to work with a different architect. A good architect would be well worth the cost. The...
by searhapsody
Fri Jul 15, 2016 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Contractor tipping: owner vs onsite supervisor
Replies: 24
Views: 2024

Re: Contractor tipping: owner vs onsite supervisor

I've never heard of tipping owners of such businesses. For the owner the best tip you could possibly give is spreading the word about their great work.
by searhapsody
Sat Jun 18, 2016 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Credit Card Debt- Need Help
Replies: 107
Views: 10770

Re: High Credit Card Debt- Need Help

Thank you all so much for taking the time to comment and make suggestions. You've given me a lot to think about and there were some options I'll investigate. Honestly, I wouldn't feel right not paying off what I owe by doing bankruptcy/charge-offs and the like. I know it may be the easy way out, bu...
by searhapsody
Fri Jun 17, 2016 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: High Credit Card Debt- Need Help
Replies: 107
Views: 10770

Re: High Credit Card Debt- Need Help

I live in California. I can no longer work-- I care full-time for my mother who resides with us. I owe about $5000 more (one of the cash advances) than I did the first of the year. You should definitely consult a lawyer in your state before taking any drastic moves like ignoring the debt or filing ...
by searhapsody
Fri May 06, 2016 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First time home buying, need advice!
Replies: 35
Views: 4074

Re: First time home buying, need advice!

So, my calculation about the monthly income was a bit off. The pay is around $2400 every 14 days, not by-weekly, so it's about $5200 per month. We checked our TSP contribution, and it's 3%.(should we increase?) Yes! You should increase it ASAP. At 3% you aren't even getting the full match which is ...
by searhapsody
Sun Apr 17, 2016 8:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Postnuptial agreement for Physician
Replies: 94
Views: 10101

Re: Postnuptial agreement for Physician

I guess I have a more favorable view of pre/post nuptials than most. I think of it as sorting out how things will be in case things do go dissolve. The way I pitch it to my own spouse was that we are deciding how we would choose to take care of each other now while we are still in love rather than a...
by searhapsody
Tue Apr 12, 2016 6:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Adding a large bedroom to existing house
Replies: 12
Views: 1637

Re: Adding a large bedroom to existing house

Upload the plans/layout to imgur and then post a link.
by searhapsody
Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving my life into a storage unit
Replies: 42
Views: 5114

Re: Moving my life into a storage unit

I am debating the pros and cons of moving almost everything I own into a storage unit and moving to a studio apartment. ... Everything fits into a tiny 4 x 6 x 8 storage unit... A slightly bigger studio, or one that includes a storage area, might cost about the same and also hold your stuff. -- Tet...
by searhapsody
Mon Mar 28, 2016 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving my life into a storage unit
Replies: 42
Views: 5114

Re: Moving my life into a storage unit

As I understand it, you are really only storing sentimental things (not just more clothes/tools/etc), so I would go ahead and get the space. Here's how I see the pros: Easy clean up of your new studio space, visual simplicity in your actual living space, the financial bonus of only needing a smaller...
by searhapsody
Sat Mar 12, 2016 8:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Outdoor furniture recommendations
Replies: 12
Views: 2140

Re: Outdoor furniture recommendations

I saw relatively inexpensive but nice looking outdoor furniture at Tuesday Morning. I can't vouch for the quality though as I have tried it.
by searhapsody
Wed Mar 09, 2016 9:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cities good for living abroad?
Replies: 113
Views: 16732

Re: Cities good for living abroad?

OP here. I am from South Africa. There is not any city in that country which meets my criteria. Some years ago I did a study on relative crime rates. It turns out that city (Detroit) crime (murder) rates in the USA are ten times the baseline for the country. The same is true for South Africa, excep...
by searhapsody
Mon Mar 07, 2016 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cities good for living abroad?
Replies: 113
Views: 16732

Re: Cities good for living abroad?

My personal picks would be Melbourne, Kyoto, and Copenhagen.
by searhapsody
Wed Mar 02, 2016 12:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking about buying a car ?
Replies: 20
Views: 2961

Re: Thinking about buying a car ?

We've been thinking about buying a car. What's the best way to get in for a test drive and out of the dealership in a reasonable amount if time. My husband wanted to drive the Prius and somehow the salesman, then manager managed to waste our entire Saturday. The next weekend we did a little better a...
by searhapsody
Thu Feb 04, 2016 7:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 45% of Income On Rent
Replies: 39
Views: 4027

Re: 45% of Income On Rent

How much less is the one bedroom apartment? What percentage of your income would you be spending on your rent then?
by searhapsody
Mon Jan 25, 2016 6:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Roth to Traditional (and Back)?
Replies: 1
Views: 281

Roth to Traditional (and Back)?

So I got married this past year, both of us earn about the same amount of money and have been diligently maxing our 401Ks and Roth IRAs for years. However our marriage pushed us over the income limits for the Roth and we've already contributed the full $5500 each to our Roth IRA accounts. A FA has s...
by searhapsody
Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?
Replies: 98
Views: 13294

Re: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?

Those of you that "cut the cable", how do you get internet? Where I live the ONLY option I have found for internet is through the cable company. And to JUST get high speed internet is almost as much as to throw in basic cable with high definition. It was over 100$ for "just" high speed internet, an...
by searhapsody
Sat Jan 23, 2016 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?
Replies: 98
Views: 13294

Re: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?

Our friends in DC was amazed that they could cut the cord by using a cheap antenna (flat w/o amplifier for $7 shipped) to pick up all the local HD stations, thus saving $40 plus per month. They only live about 10-15 miles from their TV stations. As in my case, wife still needs her Food TV and HGTV ...
by searhapsody
Sat Jan 23, 2016 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?
Replies: 98
Views: 13294

Re: Stats on Americans 'cutting the cable' ?

We are just joining the cable cutters. The past 4 years we have been renting in a place that includes direct tv in the price. We just got a new place and found out the price of cable. Needless to say, we were shocked. The only provider available to us is brighthouse and it was pretty much impossible...
by searhapsody
Thu Jan 21, 2016 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get customers for a cleaning service?
Replies: 15
Views: 1969

Re: How to get customers for a cleaning service?

I would never get a cleaning service from Craigslist. Basically you are giving total strangers access to all your worldly posessions. I only hire services that are licensed, bonded, and insured. And even theb only hire based on referrals. Get the necessary insurance, then do a few jobs at a discoun...
by searhapsody
Thu Jan 21, 2016 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get customers for a cleaning service?
Replies: 15
Views: 1969

Re: How to get customers for a cleaning service?

I would never get a cleaning service from Craigslist. Basically you are giving total strangers access to all your worldly posessions. I only hire services that are licebsee, bonded, and insured. And even theb only hire based on referrals. Get the necessary insurance, then do a few jobs at a discount...
by searhapsody
Sun Jan 17, 2016 4:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?
Replies: 29
Views: 3464

Re: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?

Original poster here, here's my response to all the posts in this thread. 1) To the people who say "wait until you're married" my SO right now is looking with me and would help me make a decision on a house now, as in, it would be a comfortable house that she could live in as well. She's not picky,...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 15, 2016 9:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Memory foam mattresses - any insight?
Replies: 87
Views: 19734

Re: Memory foam mattresses - any insight?

flyingbison wrote:We have a memory foam mattress from Brooklyn Bedding, and have been happy with it so far: http://www.brooklynbedding.com/
How's your bed from Brooklyn Bedding holding up?
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 15, 2016 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Paying off my bride's student loans
Replies: 72
Views: 6710

Re: Paying off my bride's student loans

How about you pay off the loans, then have her contribute the same amount into 529's, so her future kids never have to have student loan debts to pay off? You save the interest, she still has a goal and it benefits the next generation as well. Like this idea. I'll have to mention it to my new husba...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 15, 2016 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Serta iComfort / Tempurpedic - Buying a Mattress
Replies: 40
Views: 5579

Re: Serta iComfort / Tempurpedic - Buying a Mattress

Let me put in a third vote for latex. We liked the feel of it quite a bit better than memory foam (which we found to be warm and clingy). In our case we were able to find a reputable local manufacturer who made it custom for us. In particular, that meant we could each order our own side as we liked...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 15, 2016 9:05 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?
Replies: 29
Views: 3464

Re: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?

4) Live in a 3 bedroom ramblr now, I enjoy it, but need another garage/would like a bigger living room, etc. It's $1,800/mo.] Final thought, you actually sound like you have a decent amount of space for one person. If you really have filled up 3 bedrooms and a garage, you might want to consider red...
by searhapsody
Fri Jan 15, 2016 9:01 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?
Replies: 29
Views: 3464

Re: Please help me decide if buying my first house is smart financially?

Just my thoughts when reading this: -Yesterday I was discussing home/condo purchases with my coworkers, not one of the men who purchased before their significant relationship (marriage or cohab) retained their place--they always move into hers or shop for something together. Keep that in mind if you...
by searhapsody
Tue Jan 12, 2016 9:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on moving within same subdivision?
Replies: 30
Views: 2876

Re: Thoughts on moving within same subdivision?

We moved from a 1-bedroom/1 bath on the 13th floor to a 2 bedroom/2 bath on the 9th floor in the same building. It was one of the best decision we ever made. Not sharing a bathroom probably saved our relationship. It was also one of the easiest moves I ever made since I could do it over time without...
by searhapsody
Thu Jan 07, 2016 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: helping a creative child grow
Replies: 40
Views: 2827

Re: helping a creative child grow

Don't discount her learning to imitate first. Often true creative genius starts with mastery of the form through practice and rote repetition. Music and art definitely come to mind.