Search found 1050 matches

by ClevrChico
Mon Jan 15, 2018 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Consulting side gig while at mega corp
Replies: 25
Views: 2079

Re: Consulting side gig while at mega corp

Income from your consulting gig will be taxed at your highest marginal rate and be subject to self employment tax. If you're in a high tax state, it would be easy to pay around 50% effective tax on moonlighting income. Do you have assets that need to be protected from a liability claim? Are you goin...
by ClevrChico
Sun Jan 14, 2018 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you correct cashier mistakes?
Replies: 41
Views: 2039

Re: Do you correct cashier mistakes?

Depends. There was a great dive restaurant that I would visit several times a week. Even though I would order the same thing, the prices would vary day to day. Sometimes overcharged, sometimes undercharged, and I accepted it evened out and didn't correct things. Sometimes it's not a mistake, it's in...
by ClevrChico
Sat Jan 13, 2018 4:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Best 401k Employer Match Structure
Replies: 114
Views: 8869

Re: Best 401k Employer Match Structure

Current employer is 100% match up to 9% of salary, immediate vesting. Highly rated 401k, index funds with institutional rates. Other benefits are also excellent. Employees tend to be very loyal and org has excellent reputation. I have no problem reciprocating and going above and beyond for company, ...
by ClevrChico
Fri Jan 12, 2018 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 0W-20 Synthetic Motor Oil
Replies: 44
Views: 5271

Re: 0W-20 Synthetic Motor Oil

Wal-Mart's SuperTech brand has excellent ratings. It would be hard to beat it on price, and free two day shipping to your door is convenient. But I don't think it's available in 0W-20 synthetic You are correct, I stand corrected. It looks like only name brands are available in synthetic 0w 20. The ...
by ClevrChico
Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 0W-20 Synthetic Motor Oil
Replies: 44
Views: 5271

Re: 0W-20 Synthetic Motor Oil

Wal-Mart's SuperTech brand has excellent ratings. It would be hard to beat it on price, and free two day shipping to your door is convenient.
by ClevrChico
Fri Jan 12, 2018 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Insurance: Who do you use? (Auto/Home)
Replies: 32
Views: 1679

Re: Insurance: Who do you use? (Auto/Home)

We use Amica for everything, and I'm happy with them. I love their direct model, vs agent, as I can configure the insurance exactly like I want. (vs. my agent trying to sell me products I don't need.)
by ClevrChico
Sun Jan 07, 2018 5:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: for those without an emergency fund, what's your plan for an emergency?
Replies: 25
Views: 2847

Re: for those without an emergency fund, what's your plan for an emergency?

A GoFundMe campaign posted to my Facebook page. j/k :-) I keep a small cushion in my checking for typical household "emergencies". Anything serious most likely would be covered by insurance. (Health, umbrella, property, disability, life, social security survivors.) Anything else would come out of ta...
by ClevrChico
Sun Jan 07, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car people: 2014 E63 AMG or 2018 E400 wagon??
Replies: 63
Views: 2991

Re: Car people: 2014 E63 AMG or 2018 E400 wagon??

I always wanted a Mercedes wagon. I'd go with an E400, because I like a new car that is factory fresh perfect. I wouldn't replace a ten year old car with a high strung four year old car.
by ClevrChico
Sat Jan 06, 2018 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much are you putting in a 529?
Replies: 111
Views: 7347

Re: How much are you putting in a 529?

My goal has changed over the years, and I'm now trying to fully fund the cost of of a public undergrad degree for each of the two kids with 529 plans.
by ClevrChico
Thu Jan 04, 2018 11:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Effects of extreme cold weather
Replies: 107
Views: 9593

Re: Effects of extreme cold weather

I placed a bottle of wine on the patio on New Year's Eve to quick chill. The glass bottle froze to the concrete.
by ClevrChico
Wed Jan 03, 2018 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Two vastly different career considerations...Stability vs. Income
Replies: 64
Views: 4006

Re: Two vastly different career considerations...Stability vs. Income

Sales is very tough. I'd only pick option B if you're good at sales. Otherwise, option A sounds fantastic.
by ClevrChico
Tue Jan 02, 2018 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College scholarships: How much should I pencil in for my future students?
Replies: 54
Views: 2507

Re: College scholarships: How much should I pencil in for my future students?

From my own high school experience, I remember that it seemed about 5% of the students brought home 90% of the scholarships that were given out senior year of high school. This was for a large number of small dollar ($1000 or $2000) scholarships. The big dollar scholarships ($10,000) were more akin...
by ClevrChico
Mon Jan 01, 2018 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Want adequate filter to discharge clothes drier indoors
Replies: 24
Views: 2295

Re: Want adequate filter to discharge clothes drier indoors

It may seem counter-intuitive, but the colder it is, the less you want the humidity to be in your house.

http://www.rmsab.com/articles/proper-indoor-humidity/

Dumping moist dryer air into the house can cause damage. I don't think you want to breathe in fabric softener fumes either.
by ClevrChico
Mon Jan 01, 2018 11:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?
Replies: 44
Views: 3276

Re: Did you get an Unexpected Year End Bonus because of the Tax Cut?

I'd expect any increase to be for 2018 and paid out in 2019. I'll need to wait before we celebrate with a fancy dinner. One actionable thing you can do is track total compensation year to year in a spreadsheet. If can be quite interesting if you have variable compensation and several years of data.
by ClevrChico
Mon Jan 01, 2018 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: flood damaged cars?
Replies: 15
Views: 1462

Re: flood damaged cars?

I've seen salvage cars make it to mainstream dealers that tried not to disclose it. I also bought a used car once that had a laundered title to cover up a prior salvage. At the time it was possible to title cars in certain states to clean the title. The only way I'd buy a used car these days would b...
by ClevrChico
Sun Dec 31, 2017 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: help me optimize new snow tires
Replies: 30
Views: 1561

Re: help me optimize new snow tires

I found that China-made alloys aren't much more than steel rims, and they don't rust. If you plan on using the wheels for a while, alloys may be worth it.
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Long-term cost of ownership: 1996 Honda Civic
Replies: 16
Views: 1376

Re: Long-term cost of ownership: 1996 Honda Civic

I love this post! I nearly bought the same car in 1996 to commute to college, which I regret not doing. I thought I could still be driving the car if I had, and you proved it was possible! As your record keeping shows, the purchase price is the lowest part of tco. Consumables/maintenance are the big...
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 29, 2017 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I Want to Buy a Horrible, Expensive Car
Replies: 155
Views: 9198

Re: I Want to Buy a Horrible, Expensive Car

I'd sleep on it. For days and days. :-)
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 29, 2017 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Plow Guy Raised Rates
Replies: 112
Views: 9254

Re: Plow Guy Raised Rates

I clear a driveway or two pro bono for older neighbors. The wear and tear on winter equipment is surprisingly expensive. I'd pay the increase as it seems fair since you were still paying the 2013 rate.
by ClevrChico
Thu Dec 28, 2017 5:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Keeping a checkbook register
Replies: 95
Views: 5703

Re: Keeping a checkbook register

I'm know I'm in the minority, but I reconcile my checking account with a Google Docs spreadsheet weekly. Every dollar inbound and outbound flows through my checking account, so it's important to me to track it. Plus I can do precision sorting, subtotals, and graphs to track expenses. Whether a physi...
by ClevrChico
Wed Dec 27, 2017 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The car dealership model needs to die
Replies: 85
Views: 4455

Re: The car dealership model needs to die

Your strategy worked. The likelihood of getting the advertised price was probably zero, and by using email you saved yourself time and stress. I do agree that it's a terrible model for the typical consumer. The last car purchase I made for a family member required contacting every Chevy dealer in th...
by ClevrChico
Mon Dec 25, 2017 11:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How can I obtain compensation data?
Replies: 38
Views: 3567

Re: How can I obtain compensation data?

desafinado wrote:
Mon Dec 25, 2017 9:57 pm
Try the Blind app and the salary sharing threads on the cscareerquestions subreddit.
Reddit is a great suggestion.

I've found Glassdoor to be very accurate and cover many career stages if there's a large sample. H1B Salary databases (google it) are actual reported salaries too.
by ClevrChico
Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do any of you follow Bob Brinker?
Replies: 64
Views: 6192

Re: Do any of you follow Bob Brinker?

I listened to his Money Talk radio program around twenty years ago. I always thought the personal finance questions from callers were entertaining. (Not unlike bogleheads. :-) ) Vanguard was a big sponsor of the program, which is how I found Vanguard. The "market timer newsletter" seemed a bit of a ...
by ClevrChico
Sun Dec 24, 2017 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Will you donate less to Charity?
Replies: 107
Views: 6865

Re: Will you donate less to Charity?

I can still itemize state, even while taking the standard federal deduction. For us, there continues to be a tax benefit. YMMV
by ClevrChico
Sun Dec 24, 2017 9:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Not investing through your 30's
Replies: 60
Views: 5619

Re: Not investing through your 30's

What happens if your career stagnates at 40 and you can never catch up? I've seen it happen multiple times due to bad luck. And, there's always injury, illness, or something as simple as throwing out one's back.

Giving up twenty years of investment growth seems foolish.
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 22, 2017 12:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?
Replies: 260
Views: 19931

Re: Do you see a meaningful change in your income with new Tax Bill?

Yes. The online calculator reported we'd pay $7k less in federal taxes. (Higher standard deduction + lower bracket + child tax credit changes.) I have to say, that is unexpected. I guess we're more in the sweet spot than others for being able to take advantage. There is speculation about big stock m...
by ClevrChico
Thu Dec 21, 2017 11:09 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How I got to $1.5MM
Replies: 42
Views: 7325

Re: How I got to $1.5MM

That's a great story and adventure! Thanks for posting. I think I'll stick with being a W2 tech worker with some index funds. :-)
by ClevrChico
Thu Dec 21, 2017 8:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please Post Tax Bill Questions Here [was Tax Bill Omnibus Thread]
Replies: 878
Views: 48504

Re: Tax Bill Omnibus Thread

For those curious about prepaying your property tax, it wax extremely easy for my county. My advice, check your assessor's website. I went to my county assessor's website, and I was able to pay online half of my 2018 property tax. It took all of three minutes. (The second half of 2018 hasn't been as...
by ClevrChico
Tue Dec 19, 2017 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can I afford it: Dodge Challenger
Replies: 122
Views: 6384

Re: Can I afford it: Dodge Challenger

Unfortunately, if you cannot comfortably pay cash, you can probably not afford it.

That is a cool car, and I've almost pulled the trigger with a similar situation. Looking back, I'm glad I did not.
by ClevrChico
Mon Dec 18, 2017 10:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lunch Ideas
Replies: 44
Views: 4338

Re: Lunch Ideas

Frozen fruit can add a lot of variety. It's always in season and ready to eat.
by ClevrChico
Sun Dec 10, 2017 9:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?
Replies: 181
Views: 14645

Re: Save all this money, what do you splurge on?

I take an extra week of unpaid time off every year. I occasionally splurge on pricey take out food on Friday's. And, the biggest splurge is spoiling the kids.
by ClevrChico
Sat Dec 09, 2017 8:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 2000-09 worst decade for large cap stocks in 109 years
Replies: 44
Views: 3255

Re: 2000-09 worst decade for large cap stocks in 109 years

Makes sense. I worked with someone fairly young that went to 100% stable value in their 401k after seeing negative returns year after year during this time period. Their AA will always likely be stable value. :shock:
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 08, 2017 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 33 years old, 13 years IT experience, currently make 63k a year. I need advice to start making more money
Replies: 76
Views: 6697

Re: 33 years old, 13 years IT experience, currently make 63k a year. I need advice to start making more money

It sounds like you're most likely doing legacy work (general IT) for a sector that doesn't pay their people highly (MSP). You're working for a middleman that competes in price, so it's never going to be lucrative. $63k is not bad at all, though. Great money in tech ($100k+) requires specialization a...
by ClevrChico
Thu Dec 07, 2017 10:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I file taxes w/o her?
Replies: 54
Views: 3820

Re: Should I file taxes w/o her?

Does your spouse need to increase their withholding possibly? Is that the problem?
by ClevrChico
Thu Dec 07, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: At what age your investments start making more money than you?
Replies: 107
Views: 7665

Re: At what age your investments start making more money than you?

At age 40, comparing net W2 income to net investment income. (If that's fair.)

Another fun exercise is to compute fractions of a McDonald's franchise that investments make.
by ClevrChico
Wed Dec 06, 2017 11:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I received a speeding ticket via mail from IA - should I pay it?
Replies: 72
Views: 5062

Re: I received a speeding ticket via mail from IA - should I pay it?

If you're an Iowa resident, they can withhold your state income tax refund. Beyond that, possibly nothing since it's a civil infraction?
by ClevrChico
Tue Dec 05, 2017 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Lowering My Grocery Bill
Replies: 110
Views: 7351

Re: Lowering My Grocery Bill

Going on a diet seriously cut down on my food consumption. (Seriously) Taking advantage of employer provided meals is another option. Otherwise, $500/month sounds pretty good.
by ClevrChico
Sat Dec 02, 2017 5:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any reason not to exit muni bonds now?
Replies: 8
Views: 1100

Re: Any reason not to exit muni bonds now?

I am very curious what your current marginal tax rate is now and what you expect it to be. Current: Fed (28%) State (8.9%) Future: Fed (25%) State (8.9%) I'm considering moving from Vanguard Inter-Term Tax-Exempt Adm (VWIUX) > Vanguard Inter-Term Bond Index Adm (VBILX). VBILX has 52.2% of bonds in ...
by ClevrChico
Sat Dec 02, 2017 3:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any reason not to exit muni bonds now?
Replies: 8
Views: 1100

Any reason not to exit muni bonds now?

Crunching the numbers in a spreadsheet, my personal tax situation will make muni bonds the non-optimal choice with the tax bill that just passed. Calculating state & federal income tax, non-muni bonds will net 3.5% more dividends annually for me at current yields after my tax bracket drops. (That is...
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?
Replies: 114
Views: 8026

Re: The College Bubble - investment opportunities after the collapse?

Possibly find a way to invest an online education company. I was very impressed with A Cloud Guru: https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/a-cloud-guru Online education seems to be great for continuing education. I like it because it saves a day of traveling to/from. You do miss out on the networkin...
by ClevrChico
Fri Dec 01, 2017 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Price of haircut?
Replies: 194
Views: 10805

Re: Price of haircut?

$10 @ Great Clips w/ megacorp discount + $5 tip

I love their online reservation system and queue management.

The good barbers here have a two hour wait and no queue management, so it's a disaster unless you have a lot of time to sit.
by ClevrChico
Wed Nov 29, 2017 6:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Which crash have you seen it before it is coming?
Replies: 134
Views: 9955

Re: Which crash have you seen it before it is coming?

I've predicted two failures on our German car to the day. (Dead battery and coolant leak.) I dreamed of one of them, then went to the garage to find a puddle on the floor.

Unfortunately I have no way of monetizing this.

(Off-topic, but you said entertainment. :-) )
by ClevrChico
Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:59 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Can I afford a $1,400,000 house
Replies: 93
Views: 8860

Re: Can I afford a $1,400,000 house

I wouldn't buy a house until kids arrived and the current residence couldn't accommodate everyone. (No matter how unique it is.)
by ClevrChico
Mon Nov 27, 2017 11:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: VW passat engine light is on
Replies: 8
Views: 607

Re: VW passat engine light is on

I had good luck getting a VW code scanned at Autozone, ignoring Autozone employee's advice (new radiator), and searching the ODB2 code on a VW forum which indicated correctly that the thermostat failed.
by ClevrChico
Mon Nov 27, 2017 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Growing Number of Electric Vehicles
Replies: 112
Views: 8619

Re: Growing Number of Electric Vehicles

I think the typical use case would be people driving short distances with a daily top up charge. Or, they could do a full charge from empty about as often as they would get gas. I don't think it would be as bad as thousands of air conditioners running constantly for hours/days.
by ClevrChico
Sun Nov 26, 2017 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Let Go by MegaCorp - Lots of options
Replies: 40
Views: 3618

Re: Let Go by MegaCorp - Lots of options

If the severance is conditional, you may still be able to claim unemployment. (It technically may not be severance at that point.) That's something you may want to check into.
by ClevrChico
Sun Nov 26, 2017 11:20 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600
Replies: 138
Views: 11132

Re: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600

I'm reading about low income folks buying in now to get rich. That's a big red flag for me. I don’t think many on here believe it’s not a bubble. You can still make money in a bubble but you gotta know when to sell. As we all know, that’s impossible. Yes, I agree. I follow bitcoin news closely, as ...
by ClevrChico
Sun Nov 26, 2017 11:12 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600
Replies: 138
Views: 11132

Re: Didn't buy Bitcoin at $4600

I'm reading about low income folks buying in now to get rich. That's a big red flag for me.

I'd much rather put $10k into an index fund.
by ClevrChico
Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought Vanguard Index Funds to get the black friday shopping out of my system
Replies: 17
Views: 1512

Re: I bought Vanguard Index Funds to get the black friday shopping out of my system

Same. Today was payday, so I did a quick calculation with the "Optimal lazy portfolio rebalancing calculator", and invested in a Vanguard index fund. It was also a holiday + Thanksgiving leftovers, so it was a pretty great day. 20+ degrees above normal for November was nice too. I didn't step foot i...
by ClevrChico
Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Solid Surface Shower Walls and Pan
Replies: 11
Views: 1854

Re: Solid Surface Shower Walls and Pan

Anyone have success with remodeling their shower with solid surface walls and pan? Any thoughts or suggestions would be appreciated. Also, can a frame-less glass door and or wall be used? I'm looking to have solid walls on 2 sides, and a half with glass on the 3rd. We have solid surface shower wall...