Search found 812 matches

by whomever
Tue Apr 23, 2019 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mechanic mishap - able to stop significant damage - how to avoid in future?
Replies: 47
Views: 2242

Re: Mechanic mishap - able to stop significant damage - how to avoid in future?

Believe it or not, NASA has studied this and verified is true! Experienced mechanics can achieve more consistent bolt tension by feel than clicker-type torque wrenches. How does that work in practice? You just hired a new mechanic - how do you calibrate him so his 100 ft lbs is the same as the next...
by whomever
Tue Apr 23, 2019 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mechanic mishap - able to stop significant damage - how to avoid in future?
Replies: 47
Views: 2242

Re: Mechanic mishap - able to stop significant damage - how to avoid in future?

Oh and I like to swap wheels sometimes myself so can you use the torque wrench and make sure I am able to get them off if I need to." One diplomatic way to do that might be 'BTW, to save you looking it up, the lug nut torque spec is XX ft-lbs'. That also avoids the problem of them using a torque wr...
by whomever
Sat Apr 20, 2019 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY home security system
Replies: 23
Views: 1591

Re: DIY home security system

"That's useful for the case when you're home, but doesn't get you the insurance discount, and doesn't help when you're away ..." (emphasis added) In this day when a burglar doesn't know whether an alarm uses a cable or cellular to contact the alarm company, I'd think it would take a brave burglar to...
by whomever
Sat Apr 20, 2019 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY home security system
Replies: 23
Views: 1591

Re: DIY home security system

My only issue is that I have sensors pre-installed in the doors and windows during the built of the house and I don't know if I can I can wire the connections to a home systems that I buy. You can have 'traditional' systems monitored for under $10 a month - alarmrelay.com is one such vendor. Tradit...
by whomever
Fri Apr 19, 2019 7:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?
Replies: 88
Views: 3041

Re: At what point would you hire someone vs. cut down a tree yourself?

Just a comment: saying '50 ft tall' or '6 inch dia' doesn't give all that much information about the risk. A tall skinny pine on level ground, vertical and symmetrical, will be a lot easier to steer where you want than a similar height oak that's much bigger in diameter and asymmetric. Some species ...
by whomever
Thu Apr 18, 2019 9:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Consensus on I Bonds for 2019?
Replies: 62
Views: 9198

Re: Consensus on I Bonds for 2019?

For an electronic bond registered as "Taylor WITH Dana," the two are not co-owners. If Taylor dies, Dana needs to submit a death certificate, get the "Taylor WITH Dana" bonds transferred into the "Dana" account, and immediately pay taxes on the accrued interest on all the bonds. At least, that's my...
by whomever
Thu Apr 18, 2019 6:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dealership vs independent mechanics
Replies: 23
Views: 1550

Re: Dealership vs independent mechanics

Dealerships Pros ... Expertise - they have all latest tools, trained by dealer to manufacturer expectations, better documentation, have all latest recalls, service bulletins A little outta my lane, because I do most of my own wrenching, but FWIW: I was replacing a front bearing. I had the $300 mult...
by whomever
Wed Apr 17, 2019 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Question on compromised credit cards
Replies: 20
Views: 1151

Re: Question on compromised credit cards

The fact that the cards that were compromised weren't used in the past few months really interested me... Seems like the risk of exposure would be less. And having two different cards hit within a week is the real puzzler. It depends on how they were compromised. If the compromise was a gas pump sk...
by whomever
Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need a new microwave
Replies: 29
Views: 1876

Re: Need a new microwave

Do they even make non-inverter microwaves anymore? Our 5 year old $99 special is inverter, I think, based on the weight. My sense is that microwaves and wall warts have all ditched the transformers, because electronics are cheaper than copper. Corrections welcomed!
by whomever
Thu Apr 11, 2019 8:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can you buy a new car with a cashiers check without unfreezing a credit freeze?
Replies: 68
Views: 4076

Re: Can you buy a new car with a cashiers check without unfreezing a credit freeze?

" To government regulators, a documented credit check is a well accepted part of identity verification, along with some kind of government issued photo ID." DM200, can you explain the rationale a little more? I present you with an apparently valid driver's license saying that I'm Warren Buffet. You ...
by whomever
Tue Apr 09, 2019 7:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can you buy a new car with a cashiers check without unfreezing a credit freeze?
Replies: 68
Views: 4076

Re: Can you buy a new car with a cashiers check without unfreezing a credit freeze?

"If you've always paid by personal check, you've probably always had to fill out a credit app and submit to a credit check?" I've always paid for cars with a normal personal check, and have never filled out any credit applications, as recently as last year. I dunno if the dealers were running credit...
by whomever
Mon Apr 08, 2019 6:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New homeowner wants to DIY, but disappointed today
Replies: 50
Views: 4933

Re: New homeowner wants to DIY, but disappointed today

"You only failed if you give up. After you figure out what you did wrong and correct it, you'll be an expert. Don't give up. "

+2

Suggestion: when the plumber comes, watch closely and learn all you can.
by whomever
Fri Apr 05, 2019 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Selling Series I Bonds
Replies: 31
Views: 2572

Re: Selling Series I Bonds

Friar - thank you VERY much for the legwork!
by whomever
Sun Mar 31, 2019 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Selling Series I Bonds
Replies: 31
Views: 2572

Re: Selling Series I Bonds

"However, there is not a co-owner for electronic ones and upon death of the primary owner, the secondary owner will have to pay taxes to either retitle or redeem all the bonds." Is that right, if you have registered the bond as having a secondary owner? https://www.treasurydirect.gov/indiv/research/...
by whomever
Sun Mar 10, 2019 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home alarm system / Internet camera recommendations
Replies: 16
Views: 1454

Re: Home alarm system / Internet camera recommendations

"Curious if an internet type camera system could be as good as a home alarm system." I don't think so. My 2 cents is that a monitored alarm has one advantage: once it trips, burglars know the clock is ticking. Depending on your jurisdiction's priorities and what other calls for service the police ha...
by whomever
Sat Mar 09, 2019 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My lamp exploded - can I re-wire it so that it will work with different voltages?
Replies: 49
Views: 2554

Re: My lamp exploded - can I re-wire it so that it will work with different voltages?

" I’m not familiar enough with LED light bulbs to say whether the same is true with them. " Most that I see are labeled 120V, but some have wider ranges, e.g.: https://www.amazon.com/CMC-LED-Light-Lamp-AC100-240V/dp/B01FPOBI3I One of those is likely the simplest solution to the OP's problem. You can...
by whomever
Sat Mar 09, 2019 9:33 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: USAA
Replies: 14
Views: 1694

Re: USAA

"I know the fees are higher than Vanguard BND, but I am getting more per dollar in dividends from the USAIX than I am from BND." FWIW, USAIX and BND aren't comparable funds - USAIX has lower quality (and thus higher yielding) bonds. For example, USAIX is 21% AAA rated bonds, vice 71% AAA for BND. Th...
by whomever
Thu Mar 07, 2019 7:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Clearcoat Problem
Replies: 7
Views: 1444

Re: Clearcoat Problem

1)It's hard to tell from the pics, but it looks to me like more than the clearcoat is gone, and the primer is peeking through. 2)FWIW: we once had a old, high mileage van we'd customized as a camper. Book value was negligible but we wanted to keep it because of the customization. The clearcoat and t...
by whomever
Tue Mar 05, 2019 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snowblowers
Replies: 44
Views: 2055

Re: Snowblowers

" Ethanol is ... the active ingredient in ... DryGas/IsoHeet ..." That conflicted with my memory of what's in gas driers, so I picked Isoheet at random and looked up the MSDS: https://www.servicechamp.com/images/28202msds.pdf which says it's 99% isopropanol, AKA isopropyl alcohol. The maker of the t...
by whomever
Mon Mar 04, 2019 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Satellite Phone rental for foreign travel
Replies: 23
Views: 1517

Re: Satellite Phone rental for foreign travel

"...Garmin inReach Explorer+..." That's a great option if you don't need voice (they do texts and email). Being satellite driven they work almost everywhere (I think the Iridium cloud might not cover the poles?). They are pretty cheap, from memory $150 to buy. There are various plans; IIRC mine is $...
by whomever
Mon Feb 25, 2019 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY Auto repairs
Replies: 46
Views: 2594

Re: DIY Auto repairs

1)You can save a lot of money with DIY repairs (in addition to making sure it's done right). It's not just the direct cost of the repairs; it's also that it makes it economical to keep cars much longer. 2)How difficult any particular job depends on how much experience you have, both in general and o...
by whomever
Mon Feb 25, 2019 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fun thought expt wrt carbon footprint.
Replies: 32
Views: 1583

Re: Fun thought expt wrt carbon footprint.

As mentioned earlier, it might depend on where your electricity comes from (or where the grid's electricity in general comes from, to the extent that electricity is fungible): "ClearView’s Kevin Book said if coal plants are old and inefficient, the emissions they release in charging equivalent elect...
by whomever
Sun Feb 24, 2019 12:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are Ibonds (Treasury Direct) considered taxable or tax advantaged?
Replies: 19
Views: 1253

Re: Are Ibonds (Treasury Direct) considered taxable or tax advantaged?

A couple of minor points:

1)Tax deferral of Ibonds is optional. I suspect most people do defer because they think their marginal rate on redemption will be lower than at present, but if that doesn't apply you can pay the taxes as you go.

2)Ibonds are state/local income tax exempt,.
by whomever
Sun Feb 10, 2019 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: replacing tires on AWD cars do you have to do all 4
Replies: 83
Views: 3945

Re: replacing tires on AWD cars do you have to do all 4

I'm trying to guesstimate how often we've had to replace a single tire over the years, because of a sidewall puncture or whatever. I'd guess every 7 years or so. If that means an extra $450 to replace three otherwise good tires each time, that's a nontrivial increase in the overall ownership cost ov...
by whomever
Mon Feb 04, 2019 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Questions about Buying a Home with Cash
Replies: 12
Views: 1425

Re: Questions about Buying a Home with Cash

1)Our realtor advised us to get a preapproval letter from our credit union that she could use to prove our bona fides to sellers. We got the letter but AFAIK it wasn't used. 2)We have never been asked to prove the provenance of funds for a cash sale. Years ago we went to settlement and wrote a norma...
by whomever
Mon Feb 04, 2019 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?
Replies: 47
Views: 2880

Re: How to give notice to unresponsive landlord without his address?

"The county tax assessment site lists the rental property address as the owner's mailing address." I'm trying to figure out how that works. We get an annual property tax bill - we wouldn't know how much to pay otherwise. And they have you mail in a payment voucher with the check. So how is this land...
by whomever
Tue Jan 29, 2019 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you do backpacking in your 50s or 60s?
Replies: 51
Views: 3670

Re: Do you do backpacking in your 50s or 60s?

I am just curious that if you did this kind of travels alone or with other people? I would worry about the safety if alone. There is a Seattle club called 'The Mountaineers'. It's been ongoing since the ??1920's??. Club activities range from day hikes to rope/pitons(in the day)/ice axe mountaineeri...
by whomever
Mon Jan 14, 2019 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dropping collision insurance on auto policy for older car?
Replies: 25
Views: 2163

Re: Dropping collision insurance on auto policy for older car?

In addition to rental coverage, if we borrow someone else's car our insurance covers that only if we have collision coverage on all our vehicles. Hopefully anyone who we borrowed an expensive vehicle from would have their own collision insurance, but it's something to keep in mind. n.b. - that's our...
by whomever
Mon Jan 14, 2019 9:13 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I put VTIAX or VTSAX into taxable account?
Replies: 20
Views: 1546

Re: Should I put VTIAX or VTSAX into taxable account?

If you sell a fund for a capital loss, and purchase the same fund within 30 days before or after (even by reinvesting dividends), you have a wash sale. It's possible to do this by accident if you reinvest dividends in your IRA. Thanks! I was aware of that, if selling/buying in the same account. But...
by whomever
Sun Jan 13, 2019 5:19 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should I put VTIAX or VTSAX into taxable account?
Replies: 20
Views: 1546

Re: Should I put VTIAX or VTSAX into taxable account?

If you intend to do any TLH on these in the taxable account, beware of reinvested dividends in the tax deferred accounts.
Can you elaborate? I don't get the interaction between taxable and tax deferred accounts.
by whomever
Sat Jan 12, 2019 10:38 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rollover - why checks instead of wiring funds?
Replies: 42
Views: 2545

Re: Rollover - why checks instead of wiring funds?

FWIW, my 403b is Vanguard funds, administered by Fidelity. To rollover to a Roth at Vanguard I have to call Fidelity, who has Vanguard mail me a check made out to Vanguard, which I mail back to Vanguard. Fidelity says that's the way my employer wrote the 403b rules.

It does seem a little archaic :-(.
by whomever
Sat Jan 05, 2019 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paying (paper) cash for daily transactions
Replies: 83
Views: 3832

Re: Paying (paper) cash for daily transactions

If we get $300 from the ATM, we sometimes get two fiftys in the mix. We just spend them when the purchase is $30 or more, and haven't had any issues doing that. Mostly, though, it's all twenties. I'm one of the 'generally prefer cash' crowd. I'm not religious about it, e.g. pay at the pump is way mo...
by whomever
Fri Jan 04, 2019 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard Deposit Slips Incorrectly Fitting into Their Postage Paid Envelopes
Replies: 17
Views: 1344

Re: Vanguard Deposit Slips Incorrectly Fitting into Their Postage Paid Envelopes

Another option would be to print the address on a plain envelope and use that.
by whomever
Fri Dec 28, 2018 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bathroom Dripping-Potential Leak Question
Replies: 20
Views: 1230

Re: Bathroom Dripping-Potential Leak Question

On a day that it's dripping every 20 sec, turn off your whole-house water valve (and maybe drain or at least depressurize the plumbing to below the affected bathroom). If the dripping noise stops, and restarts when you repressurize, then you have a supply side plumbing leak of some kind. If the nois...
by whomever
Fri Dec 28, 2018 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tips on preventative home maintenance?
Replies: 43
Views: 4857

Re: Tips on preventative home maintenance?

Off the top: 1)Periodic flushing of the water heater is good. How often depends on how much sediment is in your water. You might look at replacing the anodes every ?? years. 2)Smoke/monoxide/etc batteries (and periodic replacement of the sensors themselves). 3)Furnace filters. 4)If you have outdoor ...
by whomever
Mon Dec 24, 2018 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Heating Advice
Replies: 72
Views: 5793

Re: Home Heating Advice

First priority is air sealing, followed by insulation. +1, and I'd add passive solar; windows in the right place etc can make a difference. I'm not up on the latest, but hear good things about the efficiency of the newer 'Ductless mini-splits'. In addition to, I think, good overall efficiency they ...
by whomever
Tue Dec 18, 2018 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Small Claims - Auto Dealer Claims No $$ To Pay Judgement
Replies: 40
Views: 3070

Re: Small Claims - Auto Dealer Claims No $$ To Pay Judgement

Googling "how to collect small claims judgment" will get a lot of local info. It probably varies by location, but here's one example: https://www.sanmateocourt.org/court_divisions/small_claims/how_to_collect_judgement.php In general, you can seize bank accounts, or get a deputy to go along to the bu...
by whomever
Sun Nov 25, 2018 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing TPMS stem/kit when replacing tires?
Replies: 16
Views: 1321

Re: Replacing TPMS stem/kit when replacing tires?

My 2 cents: 1)The TPMS units themselves, for the ones that are battery powered, will need to be replaced, or the batteries changed periodically. I usually hear 7-10 years as the likely lifetime, but don't have any personal experience; our oldest TPMS vehicle was a 2010 and they were working thru 201...
by whomever
Fri Nov 23, 2018 9:10 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Tax Gain Harvesting
Replies: 31
Views: 3029

Re: Tax Gain Harvesting

If you want to harvest gains out of VTSAX (Total Stock), do a Morningstar 'Growth of $10k' graph for VTSAX and VFIAX (SP500). The lines are essentially superimposed: https://quotes.morningstar.com/chart/fund/chart.action?t=VTSAX®ion=usa&culture=en-US&dataParams=%7B%22zoomKey%22%3A10%2C%22version%...
by whomever
Mon Sep 24, 2018 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ripped off by a locksmith
Replies: 75
Views: 5865

Re: Ripped off by a locksmith

"uses a piece or plastic ... and within 10 second opens the door, " Your lock isn't installed correctly :-(. I'd add a deadbolt and for the existing lock adjust the strike plate so the little half round bar doesn't go down in the hole. A burglar can get in just as easily. (We buried a key in a baby ...
by whomever
Fri Sep 14, 2018 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Any issue with overpaying taxes?
Replies: 23
Views: 1746

Re: Any issue with overpaying taxes?

FWIW: I once had a missing 1099 for a small amount. It was small enough it wouldn't bump me to the next line of the tax tables. I had a long call with the IRS that went something like: Me: Can I just report an amount just before the next line of the tax table? IRS: You must report your income accura...
by whomever
Fri Sep 14, 2018 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is home alarm monitoring worth it?
Replies: 56
Views: 4226

Re: Is home alarm monitoring worth it?

I had a 5 foot fence. The police were out front. They couldn't get in the gate, didn't see a broken door or window so they won't do anything else (I lived in an urban environment where you couldn't walk around the fence on the side due to neighbors and garage was in the back). If a burglar came in ...
by whomever
Thu Sep 13, 2018 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!
Replies: 93
Views: 4599

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

"You'll have maintenance with a chainsaw besides sharpening the chain. Rubber parts get dried/cracked and need replacement q 6-8 years, fuel filter and spark plug, carb tuning/replacement, bars don't last forever and need occasional filing from chain friction." That's all true enough for a pro using...
by whomever
Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!
Replies: 93
Views: 4599

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

1)We have had 1/4 acre and 1 acre lots. I have a medium sized gas chainsaw I rarely use, and a corded electric that I use all the time. 2)I think the plan to get a cordless sounds smart. I rarely use the gas one, because I rarely cut stuff bigger than six inches diameter, and it's usually easier to ...
by whomever
Mon Sep 10, 2018 6:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to choose a real estate agent?
Replies: 24
Views: 2230

Re: How to choose a real estate agent?

+1 to the idea of visiting open houses if you have the time. It's a chance to 'interview' prospective realtors. Look up listings by any realtors you are considering. Would those listings attract you? For example, having quality photos is important for people who are web-shopping, but I still see lis...
by whomever
Mon Sep 03, 2018 8:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: bench vise recommendation
Replies: 20
Views: 1395

Re: bench vise recommendation

I concur on the solid mounting. I'd be looking for something that weighs more - maybe 70 pounds or more. Note that this depends on what you use it for. For example, let's say you are hacksawing or filing on a piece of 1 inch pipe or rod or whatever. The saw or file teeth can excite the workpiece/vis...
by whomever
Thu Aug 30, 2018 4:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric Fuse Question
Replies: 11
Views: 581

Re: Electric Fuse Question

This link: https://www.fusesunlimited.com/Glossary.aspx says: Brand Name Fustat Bussmann brand name for a dual element, time delay plug style fuse. Brand Name Tron Bussmann brand name for a specific type of plug fuse. I dunno if that helps. Googling 'buss fustat 15 amp type s' seems to say they are ...
by whomever
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Security System Monitoring
Replies: 11
Views: 1179

Re: Home Security System Monitoring

+1 for alarmrelay. We've had them for several years; no complaints.
by whomever
Tue Aug 28, 2018 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Pass on Money Against My Sister's Wishes (Ethics and Finance)
Replies: 74
Views: 7683

Re: How to Pass on Money Against My Sister's Wishes (Ethics and Finance)

Tough issue. Is there any necessity to disclose to one what the others did or did not get?
I dunno, but you can't stop them comparing notes.
by whomever
Tue Aug 28, 2018 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to Pass on Money Against My Sister's Wishes (Ethics and Finance)
Replies: 74
Views: 7683

Re: How to Pass on Money Against My Sister's Wishes (Ethics and Finance)

IANAL, so I'd pay a lawyer for an hour's consultation. If it's divided 3 ways, #4 can potentially object. If it's divided 4 ways, #1, 2, or 3 could potentially object. I'd want to be on firm enough ground that any of the siblings who considers suing will be talked out of it by their lawyer.