Search found 3587 matches

by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 1:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund
Replies: 79
Views: 3812

Re: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund

I like this quote and definitely agree with the first paragraph. For us, we like having around 20-25K around. The reason is that we like not having to think about money at all should we wish to book a big vacation or have to pay a major unexpected expense like a new furnace, for example. We can jus...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $12,000 Refrigerator? [Looking in $7k price range]
Replies: 31
Views: 2927

Re: $12,000 Refrigerator?

It's all proportionate. If a three bedroom apartment is $2 million, a $12k refrigerator might not be standard but it doesn't seem quite so crazy in the context, either.
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stock donation to alma mater
Replies: 6
Views: 531

Re: Stock donation to alma mater

I have exactly zero personal experience with company stock, but whichever would have the highest percentage of capital gains as a percentage of current value would give you the most benefit. Here's a link that might be helpful: https://www.mystockoptions.com/faq/index.cfm/catID/5A5E2B2B-07F0-4E14-9C...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Speculating on natural disaster players/sectors
Replies: 6
Views: 348

Re: Speculating on natural disaster players/sectors

No, too much timing involved even for the casual holder of individual equities.
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stock donation to alma mater
Replies: 6
Views: 531

Re: Stock donation to alma mater

Also, I have multiple long term shares under both categories that have long term gains but different basis? How do I select which ones are most beneficial to donate? Thanks! I would donate the ones with the highest capital gain as a percentage of current value to maximize the benefit. It would have...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What frugal thing did you do today?
Replies: 397
Views: 31007

Re: What frugal thing did you do today?

I usually freeze half of a loaf of bread when I buy it to use for toast as it would get moldy before I finished it otherwise. I keep it in a bread bag inside a heavy-duty gallon-size freezer bag to prevent it from absorbing odors. The zipper freezer bags tend to fail at the ends of the zipper long b...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best plants to grow to save money for food costs
Replies: 77
Views: 3838

Re: Best plants to grow to save money for food costs

Depends on what you can best grow in your region and specific gardening area and how much those items cost when in season. No point in growing something available cheap. Something else to consider is what will be better quality than what you can buy. Nothing beats a perfectly-ripe, freshly-picked to...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:50 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Target Retirement Fund Question
Replies: 20
Views: 1363

Re: Target Retirement Fund Question

BlackHat wrote:
Sat Feb 17, 2018 8:05 pm
Hello All,

Can an investor rest assured that Vanguard in 2060 will be the same Vanguard we know today?
Hopefully but not necessarily. Look at what has happened with TIAA-CREF, which once enjoyed a similar reputation.
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund
Replies: 79
Views: 3812

Re: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund

Hope you don't live in Puerto Rico! :? I keep several weeks' worth of food (at least) and other supplies on hand for situations like hurricanes and earthquakes and have had to use at least some of it on more than one occasion, although there would have been alternatives had I been unprepared. Diffe...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:40 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund
Replies: 79
Views: 3812

Re: Sell me on the benefits of an emergency fund

Emergency funds are a great idea for people living on the edge. More than a third or a half of Americans would have to go into debt to cover a $500 or $1,000 unexpected expense, depending on which survey you look at. For people with sufficient financial assets it is just necessary to be able to acce...
by Pajamas
Sun Feb 18, 2018 9:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Not receiving reports and proxies on stocks
Replies: 2
Views: 163

Re: Not receiving reports and proxies on stocks

Just download the pdf version. Saves the companies the expense of printing and mailing the hard copies, is much kinder to the planet, and you can save them all to read whenever you want without devoting space to file cabinets. The pdfs are also easy to search and navigate and you can enlarge them to...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: EverBank officially becoming TIAA Bank
Replies: 2
Views: 334

Re: EverBank officially becoming TIAA Bank

I have similar feelings about it. I don't really like the new name as much but then again, I don't really care about the name of my bank. As you note, TIAA certainly has not maintained the reputation it had years ago. So far there have been no changes that have affected me but I do worry that some w...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 6:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Deducting Prepaid Property Taxes
Replies: 7
Views: 671

Re: Deducting Prepaid Property Taxes

I am contacting others on this forum to see whether there is a substantive argument against following this statute when filing my tax return. Thanks in advance for any analysis you can provide! Seems like that second link you gave in your first post contains a substantive argument against following...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Transition from house to apartment
Replies: 18
Views: 1633

Re: Transition from house to apartment

Apartment complexes generally use software to optimize occupancy and revenue these days. What that means to you is that many complexes would be able and willing to reserve a spot for you several months in advance. They might not be able to guarantee the exact apartment but could guarantee a certain ...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:29 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing vs paying off debt
Replies: 28
Views: 1599

Re: Investing vs paying off debt

With those rates, invest. You are behind in your investing. The mortgage will be paid off about the time you can afford to retire. You didn't mention what you are investing for. Presumably retirement, but perhaps also for the kids' education? If so, then consider 529 plans. If you are both already m...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repairing Stucco: A Case of Contractor Gouging
Replies: 19
Views: 1718

Re: Repairing Stucco: A Case of Contractor Gouging

So my question posed here is whether you people have ever suspected that the location of your home is a primary determinant of contractor pricing? If so, do you also suspect that there is collusion on some level to fix prices? Would this be actionable, either privately through some class action, or...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: cybertheft from brokerage and retirement accounts after Equifax identity theft
Replies: 23
Views: 2767

Re: cybertheft from brokerage and retirement accounts after Equifax identity theft

Yes, many times. Google search will likely miss these court cases. Here is one example: http://caselaw.findlaw.com/us-10th-circuit/1611329.html http://hrdailyadvisor.blr.com/2012/11/28/fraudulent-disbursement-to-ex-spouse-not-a-forfeiture-court-rules/ United States Court of Appeals,Tenth Circuit. W...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get child's skin in the game for college?
Replies: 135
Views: 6244

Re: How to get child's skin in the game for college?

Yes we debated that route a lot in past two years and decided against it due to following reasons 1. Teachers at the college aren't very good and she is very sensitive to the teachers. For e.g. In Junior year, she took AP English Lang course. She struggled in the course but tried really hard and pu...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Connecticut is charging sales tax on out of state purchases
Replies: 13
Views: 798

Re: Connecticut is charging sales tax on out of state purchases

It seems Connecticut is like New York in that this tax (technically use tax rather than sales tax) was always supposed to be paid but they are now being more aggressive about collecting it. New York now includes a line on the state tax return and requires taxpayers to report the actual amount or an ...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting healthcare retroactively covered under COBRA?
Replies: 8
Views: 739

Re: Getting healthcare retroactively covered under COBRA?

So I guess we could have paid the uninsured rate, but the receptionist couldn't explain how or even if we could ever be reimbursed for that. I wouldn't expect the receptionist to know unless it were a very small private office and the receptionist also did the billing, if that even still exists. Yo...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Sell - DC Version
Replies: 15
Views: 1079

Re: Rent or Sell - DC Version

Then if you want to do the work of being a landlord and can accept the illiquidity and concentration of risk of owning the condo as a rental property and the 6% cap rate is attractive compared to your alternative uses of the money, it would seem to be appropriate to keep it as a rental.
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Sell - DC Version
Replies: 15
Views: 1079

Re: Rent or Sell - DC Version

What does your current mortgage agreement say about the condo being owner-occupied vs. a rental?
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get child's skin in the game for college?
Replies: 135
Views: 6244

Re: How to get child's skin in the game for college?

They didn't tell me what the GPA level requirement was, so I got the best grades I could, which ended up putting me on a solid foundation for the rest of college. That's a good reason to delay college if she isn't ready. The initial grades she earns are important because the longer she is in school...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to get child's skin in the game for college?
Replies: 135
Views: 6244

Re: How to get child's skin in the game for college?

You said it is your husband that only wants to pay for three years and have her come up the means to pay for the fourth year. What are your thoughts on this? I am not sure that is a good way to ensure that she devotes herself to her studies in the first three years or even in the fourth year. I am a...
by Pajamas
Fri Feb 16, 2018 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking
Replies: 103
Views: 6373

Re: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking

the reserve ratio in the united states is 12% based on a cursory search. that means that they can lend $2200 on that $300 deposit based on mental math. if they put it in a savings account, thats $33/yr in interest at 1.5% as a base benchmark. of course, they demand a far higher rate of return. so t...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Direct Primary Care-Anyone use it?
Replies: 11
Views: 932

Re: Direct Primary Care-Anyone use it?

Anyone have experience with this? Sort of. I lost my long-time primary care doctor a little over ten years ago when he switched his practice over to a concierge model and it was simply too expensive to make any sense for me. It would have cost me more than my share of the cost of my employer-provid...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Sell - DC Version
Replies: 15
Views: 1079

Re: Rent or Sell - DC Version

Thanks for the replies. In my haste I forgot to include cash flow and mortgage cost: Monthly mortgage, including P,I, insurance, and condo fee is $1800. Not counting for maintenance or vacancies, the rent would yield an excess of $1000 above the monthly costs. What's your cap rate? https://www.inve...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Mac Antivirus?
Replies: 5
Views: 498

Re: Best Mac Antivirus?

ClamXAV is not new, it's been around for at least ten years. It used to be freeware but the developer eventually started charging for it.

Kaspersky has been banned for use in the U.S. government. It's not clear to me at this point whether it is a problem for routine use by ordinary people or not.
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Going Paperless Issues
Replies: 68
Views: 3846

Re: Going Paperless Issues

This ought to work, but it doesn't. I have added an email address to my Contacts folder, plus moved emails in my Spam folder to the Inbox for well over a year now, yet the new emails keep getting routed to my spam folder. I am beyond annoyed by this. * when an email shows up in my Spam box incorrec...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do docs treat "white coat hypertension"?
Replies: 35
Views: 2026

Re: How do docs treat "white coat hypertension"?

I have the same problem with the dentist or any time I am going to get stuck with a needle. I have learned to walk slowly to get to the appointment, show up early, and listen to music to mindfully relax while waiting. I have had a dentist tell me that it wasn't possible for me to lower my own blood ...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 5:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I be paying $1300/yr. for under/uninsured motorist protection?
Replies: 71
Views: 3644

Re: Should I be paying $1300/yr. for under/uninsured motorist protection?

Auto accident coverage varies by state. In at least some states there is a fund for people involved in an accident with an uninsured motorist. Agreed that if your agent can't explain this, find a new agent, even if it is with the same company. It is possible that the person you were speaking to isn'...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

neurosphere wrote:
Thu Feb 15, 2018 3:40 pm
I've learned a lot today. :beer
Same here. Interesting situation and you handled it well.
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 4:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: cybertheft from brokerage and retirement accounts after Equifax identity theft
Replies: 23
Views: 2767

Re: cybertheft from brokerage and retirement accounts after Equifax identity theft

Or should I just spread the assets among 3-4 different brokerages for maximum diversification? That might increase the likelihood of problems by providing multiple targets. I think you would be better off choosing a firm with excellent security precautions and making sure that you do whatever you c...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keep crows off of chimney caps
Replies: 29
Views: 1383

Re: Keep crows off of chimney caps

I might stand in my front yard and pretend-shoot them with a broom just for the effect on my neighborhood reputation. I suspect spikes are actually the most practical solution; the height of the chimney puts it out of my conceptual and literal reach, so I'll see who I can get to clamber up there an...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking
Replies: 103
Views: 6373

Re: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking

I'm lucky that I am a platinum member (or whatever it's called) so I get free accounts. If they charged me $12/month I would immediately move my checking/savings to a credit union, cancel my credit cards, and move my IRAs to Vanguard. You have to keep something like $50,000 on deposit for Platinum....
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 1:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking
Replies: 103
Views: 6373

Re: PSA: Bank of America now charges $12/month for checking

Seems like you expect a lot for next to nothing. As a BoA shareholder, I am glad to see that they are instituting fees to cover the cost of providing services to you. So, I'm supposed to pay BOA for accessing and leveraging my money? How is that a service? The OP is getting a free safe deposit box,...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Net Worth - How am I doing?
Replies: 14
Views: 2183

Re: Net Worth - How am I doing?

What is your net worth? Seems people are asking how they are doing with their net worth without doing the math recently! And how are you doing in relation to what? Your salary and years of working? Age and education level? Race? Region?
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

Sounds like this couple are playing kissy face with their student loans. I am curious myself as to the impetus for this, whether it was taxes or loans or both. Neurosphere, if this has an effect on their student loans, and you are acting in any official capacity (which you apparently are not), trea...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it worth it to put your emergency fund in a short term CD?
Replies: 5
Views: 345

Re: Is it worth it to put your emergency fund in a short term CD?

Depends on the difference in interest. Possibly so and if not, that could change. You might want to break it up into multiple CDs in case there is a penalty for early withdrawal. There are other alternatives such as a money market account that may or may not be competitive now but have been in the p...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

Here is the text from pub 501: You and your qualifying person are considered to live together even if one or both of you are temporarily absent from your home due to special circumstances such as illness, education, business, vacation, military service, or detention in a juvenile facility. It must ...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

If there is an intention to return, then the absence is temporary, so both would have to file as MFJ or MFS. There's no "return" involved, which is the loophole they tried to maneuver through. They lived together, the wife moved away, the husband joined her to live together again. They both moved i...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 11:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

I am not aware of any circumstances where someone who is legally married can file as Single. As far as I know there are only two options - Married Filing Separately or Head of Household. Agreed. Pub. 501 specifically states that you have to be considered un married to file as single and also gives ...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Friend with extremely high interest credit card debt
Replies: 20
Views: 1465

Re: Friend with extremely high interest credit card debt

The credit card balance is a symptom, not the underlying problem, which is spending more money than she has. The high interest rate on the credit card(s) would seem to indicate that she has a poor credit rating. Sounds like she may be in completely over her head at this point with the debt increasin...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]
Replies: 28
Views: 1001

Re: When can a married person file Single or Head of Household? [temporary absence question]

I'm no expert in this at all, but I don't understand how the husband could justify filing as single if he was not considered unmarried, per Pub. 501. Same for the wife filing as head of household. Single Your filing status is single if you are considered unmarried and you don't qualify for another f...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How Inflation Works (NYT)
Replies: 21
Views: 2115

Re: How Inflation Works (NYT)

Official statistics are fairly far removed in their effect on my own expenses, but a direct and easy measure for me is the rate of increase in the monthly fees for my apartment, which go up annually to reflect increases in expenses. It's a fairly diverse basket of expenses that includes everything f...
by Pajamas
Thu Feb 15, 2018 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rent or Sell - DC Version
Replies: 15
Views: 1079

Re: Rent or Sell - DC Version

Would you buy any property and this property in particular to use as a rental or are you only considering becoming a landlord primarily because you just happen to own the condo and have bought a new house? If the latter is true, then sell. You don't give any information about the expenses or cash fl...
by Pajamas
Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Daughter’s College & Grad School Expenses -Nurse Practitioner
Replies: 51
Views: 3215

Re: Daughter’s College & Grad School Expenses -Nurse Practitioner

I have already referenced in relation to clinical medicine. I don't see too many folks calling a phd in economics at MIT to make an appointment for their medical care do you? Again there is no confusion in that situation. And YES that is why the nursing association has been pushing for nurses to ge...
by Pajamas
Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Diamonds [Earrings and ring]
Replies: 13
Views: 863

Re: Diamonds

Blue Nile generally has good values and is fairly transparent about the merchandise and pricing compared to most jewelers. They will accept exchanges within thirty days on stock merchandise so you can get something to surprise her with and still let her choose her own if you don't know already with ...
by Pajamas
Wed Feb 14, 2018 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Diamonds [Earrings and ring]
Replies: 13
Views: 863

Re: Diamonds

What's her preference?