Search found 2273 matches

by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 19, 2018 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sheraton Kauai timeshare
Replies: 25
Views: 2181

Re: Sheraton Kauai timeshare

ponyboy wrote:
Sun Aug 19, 2018 10:03 am
How does one get the "targeted" offer? This place is nice...5 nights and a rental car for $650 is a steal. Id do this offer every year.
Kauai has no real off season, do getting a nice property for $650 is pretty sweet.
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 18, 2018 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Real estate dropping like a rock in U.K. - can the U.S. be far behind?
Replies: 36
Views: 4428

Re: Real estate dropping like a rock in U.K. - can the U.S. be far behind?

Mortgage application in California are sharply down in past few weeks. A couple of people whose opinion I value think the peak in this cycle was beginning of August.
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 18, 2018 12:04 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Remind me (again) how real estate isn't a GREAT investment?
Replies: 138
Views: 9971

Re: Remind me (again) how real estate isn't a GREAT investment?

During the last cycle I bought 18 investment homes all over the country. I sold when the going was good. I saw many other investors who were over leveraged, and instead of being on the verge of early retirement, hit middle age with zero networths. A lot of investors are really bad at math. While the...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?
Replies: 75
Views: 3257

Re: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?

We recently hired a math/stats major in our IT dept. The new hire was great at Excel/Pivot tables etc, and is learning Power BI, SQL, and some SSIS, SSAS. IMO big data is where it's at. You need excellent Excel skills, (it's use as a front end), Python is great, some R is all good. Also Power BI/Ta...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 10:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off personal loan at house closing?
Replies: 12
Views: 831

Re: Pay off personal loan at house closing?

drealbmw wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 8:11 pm
Why would I do it?

We've been friends for more than 30 years.

And it's a paid-off million-dollar house in Texas. You can't go wrong. I hope!
Don't worry about it. I've borrowed and lent $50k-$100k a couple of times for a home purchase. Never once did any of these not get paid off as agreed.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off personal loan at house closing?
Replies: 12
Views: 831

Re: Pay off personal loan at house closing?

I would do it. Who knows, maybe this is a request from the buyer who doesn't want a potential lien on the house. There is no current lien on the house regarding the OPs loan. If there was it would get paid off at closing, and OP wouldn't be seeing this question since he would already be familiar wi...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 1:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is President Jimmy Carter a Boglehead?
Replies: 22
Views: 1711

Re: Is President Jimmy Carter a Boglehead?

We need to increase the minimum age to be president to 65 immediately. :mrgreen:
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay off personal loan at house closing?
Replies: 12
Views: 831

Re: Pay off personal loan at house closing?

I would have no problems accepting money directly from escrow.

There is no reason why this would constitute income to you.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?
Replies: 75
Views: 3257

Re: physics/math major looking for programmer/analyst job?

DesertDiva wrote:
Fri Aug 17, 2018 12:33 pm
Has he considered becoming a Data Scientist? Python and R are usable skills in this field.
+1

Also SQL.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental home and paying off debt by refinancing primary home cash out
Replies: 9
Views: 695

Re: Rental home and paying off debt by refinancing primary home cash out

I don't know if you can loan yourself money? You could if you had the rental set up as an LLC or other business type I would think. But with what you've got now then being able to get better deals on your own mortgage is offset by what expenses you can't deduct now from the rental. You may find tha...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 17, 2018 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do we really need to save 20 % ?
Replies: 28
Views: 2724

Re: Do we really need to save 20 % ?

Personally, I would put the least amount down for two reasons. 1. Dual income physicians have rock solid job stability. So long as your insurance needs are covered, as long as you can work, you will find work. 2. Mortgage deduction is the only tax shelter available. At a 4% rate, unless your mortgag...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments
Replies: 15
Views: 667

Re: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments

The difference is minor @ 0.25% that's at most $250 per year on the $100k student loans (difference from the mortgage). So it really doesn't matter that much. I would crank down on the budget and get both paid off asap. Yes, but 2nd mortgage is an ARM. That's the deciding factor to me - I'd pay off...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Quote from Electrician
Replies: 46
Views: 2651

Re: Quote from Electrician

In my town, any job involving a tradesman spending more than 2 hours morphs into a $1000 job.
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments
Replies: 15
Views: 667

Re: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments

The difference is minor @ 0.25% that's at most $250 per year on the $100k student loans (difference from the mortgage). So it really doesn't matter that much. I would crank down on the budget and get both paid off asap. Yes, but 2nd mortgage is an ARM. That's the deciding factor to me - I'd pay off...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 16, 2018 10:19 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments
Replies: 15
Views: 667

Re: Student Loans or "special" Mortgage payments

The difference is minor @ 0.25% that's at most $250 per year on the $100k student loans (difference from the mortgage). So it really doesn't matter that much. I would crank down on the budget and get both paid off asap. Yes, but 2nd mortgage is an ARM. That's the deciding factor to me - I'd pay off...
by unclescrooge
Wed Aug 15, 2018 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Value & Mortgage as a Percentage of Net Worth
Replies: 83
Views: 5763

Re: House Value & Mortgage as a Percentage of Net Worth

KlangFool wrote:
Sun Aug 12, 2018 8:45 pm

I live in the Northern VA/DC Metro area.

KlangFool
For some reason, I always assumed you lived in Phoenix. :mrgreen:
by unclescrooge
Wed Aug 15, 2018 5:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing affordability - what is your take?
Replies: 73
Views: 6692

Re: Housing affordability - what is your take?

We purchased a home recently in SoCal at 2x our annual gross income. We have mixed income, one high earner, one low earner. We both intend to continue working for the long haul. In the past three months the prices here have gone up 5%. Fortunately for us, we had one unexpected job transition and on...
by unclescrooge
Wed Aug 15, 2018 4:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing affordability - what is your take?
Replies: 73
Views: 6692

Re: Housing affordability - what is your take?

Couple things. Seems like you are buying a family house as a single person. You are buying in a ritzy area. $500/sqft is ritzy. ;-). The poorest, cheapest area of London (London Borough of Barking and Dagenham) is c. £500 psf (say USD 650-700). I could show you what USD 500 would buy you here, thin...
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 14, 2018 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: As an American, where are some great places in the world to retire?
Replies: 112
Views: 9784

Re: As an American, where are some great places in the world to retire?

I've always thought I could retire in southern Thailand if I had to.

Gorgeous weather, cheap food and housing, excellent health care.
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 14, 2018 3:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: It's not enough to mumble "Stay the Course"... INT'L Investing has been a disaster!
Replies: 570
Views: 33735

Re: It's not enough to mumble "Stay the Course"... INT'L Investing has been a disaster!

Let's talk VGTSX. Straight from Vanguard's own website, growth rate, 4.84% compounded since inception, 4/29/1996. The year is 2018. 22 years. I've said it before and I'll say it again. That is too long a period for such a low growth rate. If you made the same case at 5 or even 10 years, I would not...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 12, 2018 9:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Refinishing Exterior Stucco
Replies: 8
Views: 731

Re: Refinishing Exterior Stucco

My father a master craftsman plasterer of 40+ years says you cannot stucco over painted stucco unless you remove the paint first. Once you paint it, you must now always maintain it via additional paint coats. There are bonders and such that claim you can stucco over paint but he says nothing will l...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 12, 2018 5:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Get out of syndications?
Replies: 15
Views: 1557

Re: Get out of syndications?

I never thought that residential apartments are "recession proof". I did however, know that self storage and mobile home parks are. This is demonstrably true. During the Great Recession, while stocks plummeted 50%, single family homes plummeted 20-30%, these two asset classes still returned 6-8% in...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 12, 2018 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Refinishing Exterior Stucco
Replies: 8
Views: 731

Re: Refinishing Exterior Stucco

Looking for advice here. Our home is 50 years old and the exterior stucco on the sides and back of the house had numerous hairline cracks when we moved in 24 years ago. I made matters worse when I tried to patch the cracks, which since I'm no artist, left much to be desired. I painted the house abo...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Housing affordability - what is your take?
Replies: 73
Views: 6692

Re: Housing affordability - what is your take?

Are only very high income dual income people buying real estate in the large metros? Yes. How are single income individuals affording homes with traditional affordability metrics? Or are they using different metrics? They get married or shack up or rent out part of the house or get help from others...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 12, 2018 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When is leaving your job that pays well a good idea?
Replies: 74
Views: 6889

Re: When is leaving your job that pays well a good idea?

:idea: Studies show that happiness is a U curve throughout ones life. It starts high in the early 20's then declines gradually where it reaches a nadir at 45-50. It peaks again in the 60's. What does this mean? Is it our careers that cause our unhappiness from 25-60? Or is it because our daily stru...
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:49 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard to offer non-Vanguard ETFs commission-free
Replies: 204
Views: 18878

Re: Vanguard to offer non-Vanguard ETFs commission-free

I’ve been hesitant to use Vanguard for taxable brokerage accounts because I feel they have issues with record keeping along with other general issues. I’ve had money go “missing” for a period of time. Anyone else have concerns? Of course, I am concerned. Nothing is free in life. Will their customer...
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:36 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: RDFN and housing market slow down...
Replies: 11
Views: 1362

Re: RDFN and housing market slow down...

Your question is confusing.

What are you asking? Do you want to buy the stock, or use the company's services? I couldn't make out from your post.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 6100

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

Historically since 1930, a portfolio like this would have theoretically had returns about 24% higher than a 100/0 portfolio with 8% less annual volatility. So I think it is interesting in principle. Out of curiosity: link? Here's a link to a backtest in PortfolioVisualizer (with the caveat the quic...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 10, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Invest in Tesla?
Replies: 330
Views: 23529

Re: TSLA privatization

triceratop wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 5:46 pm
Here is the most informed analysis of the recent TSLA drama: Elon Musk Has Some Fun With Tesla by Matt Levine in Bloomberg
The truth is Elon made $100B from ICOs and he just wants to buy Tesla before the bubble bursts :mrgreen:
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:27 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund
Replies: 114
Views: 6100

Re: (NEW) WisdomTree 90/60 U.S. Balanced Fund

Historically since 1930, a portfolio like this would have theoretically had returns about 24% higher than a 100/0 portfolio with 8% less annual volatility. So I think it is interesting in principle. Out of curiosity: link? Here's a link to a backtest in PortfolioVisualizer (with the caveat the quic...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted
Replies: 26
Views: 2030

Re: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted

If you are looking to rent a 2 BR for around $3,000, I would look at West Los Angeles, west of the 405 Freeway, and south of Santa Monica Boulevard. It's about 30-45 minutes to downtown (depending on when you leave). You will be near the best areas of the City and the beach. I am not sure about the...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted
Replies: 26
Views: 2030

Re: Moving to LA - Tips Wanted

How carefully have you looked at the housing market? I think you might have a challenge finding an acceptable place with 2 children for 3k. I guess I'm projecting what I consider acceptable. And also think ahead--do you want to rent forever, or what will you be able to afford to buy? When I lived t...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Junk Mail
Replies: 28
Views: 2537

Re: Junk Mail

nova1968 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am
Whats so hard about throwing the junk mail in the trash.?
It wastes time. Some people value their time more than others.
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 07, 2018 6:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Learning to Draw-Online course?
Replies: 8
Views: 620

Re: Learning to Draw-Online course?

Buy a few learn-to-draw books on Amazon and learn by practising your drawing. Commit to 30 min a day and you'll be much better in a year.

No need to do anything else.
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 07, 2018 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?
Replies: 55
Views: 4659

Re: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?

What about the benefit of having power in the event of a power failure? That requires a pricier system I believe? Only if the sun is out or if you pay significantly more for batteries to store the power. Well, of course you need batteries if the sun isn’t out and you want to be self-sufficient. Was...
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ten days in Australia
Replies: 17
Views: 1348

Re: Ten days in Australia

Being in Sydney is a great base, as public transport is excellent. Get a Opal Card for ferry and bus transport. Uber is also available. Some suggestions here but I'm sure your family can provide some more info and other areas to explore. Enjoy! 1. Opera House- for photos and tour, if interested. Gr...
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ten days in Australia
Replies: 17
Views: 1348

Re: Ten days in Australia

MJS wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:11 pm
Perhaps 1.5 & 3.5 are a bit young, but the Taronga Zoo Ferry+Zoo should be memorable. Would they like to learn to walk on a boat & feed a kangaroo?
That sounds like fun!

Thanks!
by unclescrooge
Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ten days in Australia
Replies: 17
Views: 1348

Re: Ten days in Australia

bob60014 wrote:
Mon Aug 06, 2018 4:02 pm
We were there for a month in January visiting family also and cant wait to go back.
First we need to know where is the family located? From there we can guide you better. As said, it's a big country!
They are in Sydney.
by unclescrooge
Mon Aug 06, 2018 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ten days in Australia
Replies: 17
Views: 1348

Re: Ten days in Australia

We have family in Australia. Largely depend on them and public transportation to get around. Unless you are traveling out of the city I would avoid renting a vehicle. On our most recent visit we all went in to the outback and rented a large SUV once we flew into Alice Springs. Renting the vehicle u...
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 05, 2018 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to lose $200 in taxable income?
Replies: 96
Views: 6839

Re: Best way to lose $200 in taxable income?

Can you start a company and deduct start up costs?
by unclescrooge
Sun Aug 05, 2018 1:50 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ten days in Australia
Replies: 17
Views: 1348

Ten days in Australia

Wife and I are planning to spend ten days in Australia in October. We'll be flying into Sydney to visit family. We'll be staying with them for a few days, but also want to see other places. Considering that we'll have our 3.5 and 1.5 year old kids, what are the best ways to optimize the trip? What a...
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 04, 2018 7:43 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How does one become a financial advisor?
Replies: 34
Views: 2272

Re: How does one become a financial advisor?

If you are a bogleheads disciple then it would be very hard to make a living as a financial advisor. They make their money from commission and actively managing a portfolio. There is no golden goose to make money from after you tell the client to buy 3 or 4 index funds and maybe rebalance once a ye...
by unclescrooge
Sat Aug 04, 2018 1:31 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?
Replies: 55
Views: 4659

Re: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?

BolderBoy wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 9:58 pm
unclescrooge wrote:
Fri Aug 03, 2018 5:32 pm
I pay 48 cents per kilo watt during the super peak hours in summer, and 39 cents in winter.
Gracious, where do you live?
California.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 03, 2018 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Home, quadplex???
Replies: 15
Views: 1439

Re: First Home, quadplex???

Do you want to operate a small business as a landlord? At least to get started do you mind having your customers (tenants) living next to you? They will knock on your door at 1 AM when the toilet clogs but you can also call the police yourself if they are partying loudly at 1 AM. Once you are past ...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 03, 2018 6:44 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: HELOC
Replies: 20
Views: 1343

Re: HELOC

5. Deters frivolous lawsuits

If you look like you're mortgaged to the hilt, attorneys are less likely to take contingency based cases without merit
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 03, 2018 5:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?
Replies: 55
Views: 4659

Re: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?

For those who want to benefit the planet, an equivalent gift to a rainforest charity will do far more good. Just slowing the spread of logging or palm oil plantations. The cost to save 1 tonne of pollutants can be less than 5 dollars. If you live in US northwest your electricity is likely already p...
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 03, 2018 5:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?
Replies: 55
Views: 4659

Re: Is solar power for your home a worthwhile investment?

I pay 48 cents per kilo watt during the super peak hours in summer, and 39 cents in winter.

There is also a 10% tax on top of this.

I just got solar last year. The pay back is 3.6 years after federal tax incentives.

No brainier.
by unclescrooge
Fri Aug 03, 2018 12:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Impact of higher property taxes on home price
Replies: 45
Views: 2301

Re: Impact of higher property taxes on home price

" most of us will have a smaller tax bill" Only true for everyone except homeowners in high tax states.. .. Their federal tax owned maybe less, total out of pocket costs will increase... Not sure I agree. I live in California, and won't get to deduct over $20k of state taxes under the new law. Also...
by unclescrooge
Thu Aug 02, 2018 6:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Impact of higher property taxes on home price
Replies: 45
Views: 2301

Re: Impact of higher property taxes on home price

It absolutely should have an impact to house prices. In an efficient market, that impact would happen somewhat immediately, but real estate is generally slower moving. It's my belief that the tax law changes (remember the change to mortgage interest as well) hasn't propagated through the market - a...