Search found 1032 matches

by killjoy2012
Sat Oct 13, 2018 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: FYI for anyone leasing a Ford
Replies: 6
Views: 784

Re: FYI for anyone leasing a Ford

Well, just remember that you're talking to what's effectively 3 different companies. Ford: the product manufacturer who has almost no say over what the dealer does, or the lease terms. The Dealer: who is independently owned -- not owned by Ford. FMC: the bank. And while owned by Ford, is the money s...
by killjoy2012
Sat Oct 13, 2018 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gas Fireplaces
Replies: 22
Views: 1637

Re: Gas Fireplaces

OP - For a new install, a NG direct vent is the way to go if you don't want the mess, maintenance and other headaches associated with a natural fireplace. I purchased and installed a Mendota direct vent fireplace about 15 years ago. I did a lot of window shopping, and the fire visuals produced by t...
by killjoy2012
Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Income (US vs Europe)
Replies: 55
Views: 3681

Re: Income (US vs Europe)

s8r - I'm in the USA and work in IT. I'd say your general assessment is correct - it sounds like people in the USA (such as a programmer) would make more here than in Finland. But I think you also need to factor in cost of living, etc. e.g. A 1 bedroom apartment in Silicon Valley will cost you over ...
by killjoy2012
Fri Oct 05, 2018 7:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Variable Annuities - Already Commited, Now What?!?!
Replies: 5
Views: 724

Variable Annuities - Already Commited, Now What?!?!

Hi Everyone. I'm a long time member and generally know better than to invest in complex things I don't understand, especially expensive things, and things that generally have a bad reputation. However, the financial planner my father used for a couple decades recently passed away and he was a 1-man ...
by killjoy2012
Sun Sep 23, 2018 6:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 1751

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

OP: The price in the quote sounds about right. If you purchase an upgrade, I'd go for the modulating furnace -- Lennox markets that as "variable capacity". I live further north than you, and our heating season is much longer than cooling... so the modulating aspect pays off, especially in terms of n...
by killjoy2012
Sat Sep 22, 2018 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another job interview ‘skip the tie’ question
Replies: 29
Views: 2088

Re: Another job interview ‘skip the tie’ question

The problem with some of these replies are that regardless of what the day-to-day dress code is in the office, that doesn't always apply to people being interviewed there. I work in IT at a major company, and most guys wear jeans, a sports polo or t-shirt, etc. -- all perfectly acceptable. But for p...
by killjoy2012
Fri Sep 21, 2018 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Very First Smartphone [Samsung Galaxy S9+] — Please Critique This Plan
Replies: 123
Views: 6508

Re: My Very First Smartphone — Please Critique This Plan

I agree - go do some window shopping and make sure you know what you want. If you're just getting your first smartphone now, you may actually like the iPhone better than a Droid - JMO.
by killjoy2012
Sat Sep 15, 2018 12:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: How real is cyber risk?
Replies: 176
Views: 9998

Re: How real is cyber risk?

One of the underlying issues people in this thread are hinting at, but not saying, is that using your cell phone w/ SMS codes really doesn't meet the "something you have" factor in 2FA. For multi-factor authentication, it's a combo of something you know (e.g. password), something you have (e.g. a ha...
by killjoy2012
Sat Sep 15, 2018 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt
Replies: 71
Views: 5510

Re: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt

I spent 2+ weeks in Egypt touring from Cairo down to Abu Simbel in 2009. I'd strongly recommend you spend the money before the trip at REI and buy a couple pairs of adventure/mountaineering pants... lightweight, quick drying, fairly rugged pants. Many also have zip-off legs to convert to shorts. Des...
by killjoy2012
Sun Sep 09, 2018 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Hourly cost of air conditioning?
Replies: 23
Views: 2199

Re: Hourly cost of air conditioning?

This is one of those cases that if it's not broke, don't fix it (or replace it). Sure, if you buy a new central AC, it'll operate at a higher efficiency and lower electrical cost than what you have today. But even if it was 50% more efficient, at 120 HOURS of use per year.... vs. $3-6k for new equip...
by killjoy2012
Fri Sep 07, 2018 6:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Effectiveness of McAfee Anti-Virus Protection
Replies: 10
Views: 858

Re: Effectiveness of McAfee Anti-Virus Protection

There's nothing wrong with McAfee - many businesses and residential customer use it everyday. Better question is why do you use it, when you could just use the Windows Defender AV that comes with W7/W10. Even if that is all you do, keep in mind that ads placed within those websites you listed are co...
by killjoy2012
Sun Sep 02, 2018 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do-It-Yourself Wiring the Home With Ethernet: What to Buy
Replies: 54
Views: 3357

Re: Do-It-Yourself Wiring the Home With Ethernet: What to Buy

I've done a ton of residential and small business network and security work, mostly as hobby or volunteer. Also have several friends that are electricians, so have picked up some tips and tricks from them. My suggestions: I always favor wired Ethernet over wireless when the stationary aspect of such...
by killjoy2012
Fri Aug 31, 2018 6:04 pm
Forum: Local Chapters and Bogleheads Community
Topic: Detroit Area Bogleheads - Master Thread
Replies: 46
Views: 15499

Re: Detroit Area Bogleheads - Master Thread

Question to my fellow SE MI residents: The financial advisor my father and a couple siblings used recently passed away. The advisor owned & ran a small firm (him and a partner) and my family doesn't want to stick with that partner - need to move the accounts. Knowing that I'm fairly literate in this...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 25, 2018 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: VRBO (or equiv) or RV to see America?
Replies: 12
Views: 1491

Re: VRBO (or equiv) or RV to see America?

Yea, I think it depends on what your itinerary is. Renting an RV and touring the countryside or national parks sounds great, but won't help you in a major city. So I guess it really depends on where/what you plan to do.
by killjoy2012
Mon Aug 20, 2018 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: As an American, where are some great places in the world to retire?
Replies: 151
Views: 14947

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

It's hard to argue against Spain based on climate, cost of living, culture, etc. There's a reason why many Brits retire in Spain.
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 18, 2018 8:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: oil pan threads stripped - pan saver okay?
Replies: 33
Views: 2196

Re: oil pan threads stripped - pan saver okay?

How would one weld a brass valve to a steel oil pan and why would it be necessary? Technically, it'd be called brazing. But it is possible. It would be useful / necessary to prevent leakage. A leaky oil pan plug can range from being a nuisance to catastrophic. The problem with helicoils are that th...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 18, 2018 7:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of Living between NYC and U.K.?
Replies: 16
Views: 1703

Re: Cost of Living between NYC and U.K.?

$125k/year is £98k/year at today's rate. The 45% tax bracket starts at £150k, so $125k is nowhere near that rate. Deductions on £98k might be around £27.5k tax and around £5.5k NI for 2018/19, leaving a shade under £65k (approx $83k) of disposable income. As a US citizen living in the UK, you would...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 18, 2018 7:28 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cost of Living between NYC and U.K.?
Replies: 16
Views: 1703

Re: Cost of Living between NYC and U.K.?

As an American who's visited NYC and the UK several times, I think what you're overlooking is the tax differences. Both cities are expensive. And yes, the cost of living items may be a bit different between the two places, as well as exchange rate fluctuations. The bigger issue in my mind is taxes. ...
by killjoy2012
Fri Aug 17, 2018 7:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: oil pan threads stripped - pan saver okay?
Replies: 33
Views: 2196

Re: oil pan threads stripped - pan saver okay?

I'd look for a small, local shop to replace the pan. I'd be amazed if you couldn't find a shop to do it for $300. It's not a hard job at all, DIY.

Or go buy a Fumoto oil pan valve and have a welder weld the valve in permanently.
by killjoy2012
Wed Aug 15, 2018 9:00 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bullish/bearish on GE? Make your case here - new lows today
Replies: 63
Views: 5617

Re: Bullish/bearish on GE? Make your case here - new lows today

All of the comments in this thread are interesting, but the reality is that hindsight is 20/20, the stock market isn't rationale (e.g. look at Tesla's evaluation / market cap), and no one knows what the future holds for GE. I personally don't see them going bankrupt. I do think they have a long road...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Foscam Security Camera ( wire-free/IP )
Replies: 5
Views: 548

Re: Foscam Security Camera ( wire-free/IP )

I think most people that have worked with residential security cameras would tell you to avoid Foscam as well. In the world of cheap Chinese security cameras, the two companies you should probably be looking at are Dahua and Hikvision. That said, also beware that most of these Chinese cameras have f...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: SPG rewards....sucks?
Replies: 24
Views: 2888

Re: SPG rewards....sucks?

SPG was great for gaining access to airlines you couldn't otherwise easily earn miles in and which have sweet spots for redemptions. The Marriott travel packages were also a great way to gain extra value. That said if you are going to travel in economy I don't see anything other than churning signu...
by killjoy2012
Tue Aug 07, 2018 9:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: whole house generator different questions
Replies: 21
Views: 1681

Re: whole house generator different questions

+1 for bigger generator, and +1 for Kohler over Generac.
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 04, 2018 2:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: UK vacation help
Replies: 15
Views: 788

Re: UK vacation help

I don't think you can fly direct into Inverness - at least not from the states. It is tough enough to get to Edinburgh. :happy Flights to Inverness from JFK are routed through Manchester and from Atlanta they go through Amsterdam. You can get direct flights to Edinburgh from both Atlanta and JFK. I...
by killjoy2012
Sat Aug 04, 2018 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: UK vacation help
Replies: 15
Views: 788

Re: UK vacation help

With only 7 days, I'd certainly recommend picking one or the other - not both. I've visited Scotland 4-5 times now, and Ireland once. I think which to pick is completely dependent on where your personal interests lie. If Scotland, my strong recommendation would be to fly into Inverness, which is up ...
by killjoy2012
Wed Aug 01, 2018 11:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Addition Finance
Replies: 48
Views: 2821

Re: Home Addition Finance

You can certainly afford to do the addition/remodel. As a matter of principal, I'd pay back the family member for the student loan before kicking off a $200k renovation though. Also, I wouldn't kid yourself into thinking that a $200k reno is going to add $200k to your home's value. Financially, and ...
by killjoy2012
Sat Jul 28, 2018 6:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investment strategy for a couple in their 30's, no kids
Replies: 4
Views: 501

Re: Investment strategy for a couple in their 30's, no kids

1) Yes, seems reasonable. You could question the dollar amount of some of your line items - like what exactly is $1,300/month shopping for - but overall, it seems reasonable. 2) There are many online banking high yield savings accounts available that would get you a slightly better rate. e.g. Allian...
by killjoy2012
Sat Jul 28, 2018 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home Theater vs. Soundbar
Replies: 67
Views: 5912

Re: Home Theater vs. Soundbar

A soundbar is fine for secondary TVs - bedroom, kitchen, etc. - but I would never use one on the primary TV in the household. Subwoofers make a huge difference. Rear surround speakers make a huge difference. Do they add cost and complexity - sure, but well worth it on the primary system.
by killjoy2012
Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DisneyWorld-Needing specific advice
Replies: 33
Views: 1996

Re: DisneyWorld-Needing specific advice

I've been to WDW many times. Thoughts: - Not sure hotel price point really dictates the amount of walking involved. All Disney hotels have Disney transport to the parks (bus, water shuttle, monorail), so while the Grand Floridian or Contemporary are physically closer to the MK park, not sure it woul...
by killjoy2012
Thu Jul 19, 2018 9:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Europe travel Qs [Questions]
Replies: 63
Views: 3790

Re: Europe travel Qs

1) Cash - Will probably take at least 2 different Visa credit cards. I figure we'll want some paper Euros too. 1b) Or should I even bother with many Euros at all? Take no cash with you, Euros or USD. Take at least 2 NFT CCs, and your ATM card - notify all of travel the week before departure. Odds a...
by killjoy2012
Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?
Replies: 63
Views: 4054

Re: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?

This whole concept of the national identity of a company is becoming more and more archaic. So many corporations are multi-national entities now. Even startups... Not sure what an "American" company means anymore. I worked for a couple of "US" tech companies where most of the R&D was done abroad (I...
by killjoy2012
Tue Jul 10, 2018 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?
Replies: 63
Views: 4054

Re: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?

So you probably think the Buick Envision is an American car, but its competitor, the Honda CR-V, is Japanese. That "American" car is assembled in China with 86% Chinese content and 11% U.S./Canadian content. The "Japanese" car is assembled in both the U.S. and Canada, with about two-thirds of its c...
by killjoy2012
Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WiFi router
Replies: 46
Views: 4250

Re: WiFi router

Heh, as much as I love Asus wireless routers (and am using one as we speak in access point mode), I couldn't imagine the aesthetics of mounting one on the ceiling, especially the big ones with 8 antennas. I'm personally waiting for the Ubiquiti UniFi nanoHD to come out. Maybe in that marble skin. I...
by killjoy2012
Tue Jul 10, 2018 7:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?
Replies: 63
Views: 4054

Re: Auto Tariffs: time to buy?

the highly recommended Toyotas and Hondas on this forum are all made domestically with a majority of parts also being made domestic. Fake news. Are you implying that Toyota and Honda are as American as GM, Ford, and Chrysler? What's your definition of "made" - simply where final assembly is done? G...
by killjoy2012
Mon Jul 09, 2018 10:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WiFi router
Replies: 46
Views: 4250

Re: WiFi router

Just curious, what are the drawbacks you see with Google WiFi other than the cost? I'd rather not have my router capable of collecting and uploading data on me thank you. Google Wifi, and most of the residential mesh products on the market, use "the cloud" for managing your wifi. Meaning, when you ...
by killjoy2012
Mon Jul 09, 2018 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I contact GMC about A/C issues?
Replies: 42
Views: 2200

Re: Should I contact GMC about A/C issues?

While the vehicle may be out of warranty, the replacement condenser purchased and installed at the dealer surely comes with some level of parts warranty. Go there and talk to the Service Mgr.
by killjoy2012
Sun Jul 08, 2018 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: WiFi router
Replies: 46
Views: 4250

Re: WiFi router

Speed-wise, just about any new wifi router will provide what you need. Getting 2400 sq ft, 3 floor coverage including some outside is asking a LOT of a single wireless AP regardless of brand or price point. I'm guessing your existing router just doesn't provide the coverage you're looking for, as it...
by killjoy2012
Sat Jul 07, 2018 4:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone Tried Costco Travel Packages?
Replies: 31
Views: 3831

Re: Anyone Tried Costco Travel Packages?

OP - We used Costco Travel for a one week Walt Disney World vacation last December. The package included hotel and tickets - no airfare. We stayed at the Swan, and their price for the package was cheaper than my MegaCorp Disney ticket discount + booking a lower tier Disney hotel individually. It wor...
by killjoy2012
Sun Jul 01, 2018 12:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Whole House Generator
Replies: 18
Views: 1838

Re: Whole House Generator

Cummins Onan is the Cadillac.
Kohler is the Chevy.
Generac is Hyundai.

I'd suggest the Kohler, it's worth the price differential over the Generac. And if you're going to spend the magnitude of $ for a whole house generator, get the automatic transfer switch. Please.
by killjoy2012
Fri Jun 22, 2018 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boglehead guilt with buying a car - Volvo vs Toyota Highlander
Replies: 69
Views: 5030

Re: Boglehead guilt with buying a car - Volvo vs Toyota Highlander

I believe their point is that Volvo is no longer the niche Swedish luxury car player it used to be, and that most people still commonly associate with the name/brand. Just as the American offerings are no longer the ugly, unreliable products of the early '80s that many here somehow still seem to as...
by killjoy2012
Fri Jun 22, 2018 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Boglehead guilt with buying a car - Volvo vs Toyota Highlander
Replies: 69
Views: 5030

Re: Boglehead guilt with buying a car - Volvo vs Toyota Highlander

One tangential piece of information, Volvo Car Group is majority owned by the Chinese company Geely. I heard Toyota is Japanese owned. I believe their point is that Volvo is no longer the niche Swedish luxury car player it used to be, and that most people still commonly associate with the name/bran...
by killjoy2012
Fri Jun 22, 2018 7:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get cheap flights?
Replies: 18
Views: 1216

Re: How to get cheap flights?

"cheap flights" are usually found by those that have flexibility in their schedule and are willing to travel during off-peak times of the year. A 2 week lead time where you need to be at place X between dates A & B is not a recipe for finding cheap flights - esp over the July 4 holiday. You can stil...
by killjoy2012
Thu Jun 21, 2018 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPad Pro 12.9": Replacement for Laptop?
Replies: 47
Views: 4415

Re: iPad Pro 12.9": Replacement for Laptop?

A Surface Pro would be a better laptop replacement than an iPad Pro. Also at a much steeper price. The iPad Pro 12.9 starts around $799 (retail) and goes over $1000. The Surface Pro (newest version) also starts at $799 but with double the iPad's storage. The key word there is "starts". A Surface Pr...
by killjoy2012
Thu Jun 21, 2018 10:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone use a WiFi enhancement product?
Replies: 14
Views: 1355

Re: Anyone use a WiFi enhancement product?

For people who are not that tech savvy or wanting to spend time on implementation, a mesh wifi solution will likely yield best results. That said, some of the mesh systems are built on a cloud-provisioned model, so you'd need to decide if you're OK with that - or not. Ubiquity Amplifi and Netgear Or...
by killjoy2012
Sun Jun 17, 2018 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPad Pro 12.9": Replacement for Laptop?
Replies: 47
Views: 4415

Re: iPad Pro 12.9": Replacement for Laptop?

A Surface Pro would be a better laptop replacement than an iPad Pro. Also at a much steeper price.
by killjoy2012
Sat Jun 16, 2018 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Living Abroad - Who's done it?
Replies: 52
Views: 5241

Re: Living Abroad - Who's done it?

If you can pull it off, I'd do it. Beware that even if you can work remote, Spain is +6 hours from EST, so I'd assume you'd need to be willing to work 2-11pm or something like that. South America would be easier from a time zone perspective. You also need to thoroughly check out the immigration rule...
by killjoy2012
Tue Jun 05, 2018 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New AC Unit broken or "feezing". HVAC company says it's my fault for "running it too hard". What can I do?
Replies: 55
Views: 5546

Re: New AC Unit broken or "feezing". HVAC company says it's my fault for "running it too hard". What can I do?

Call another HVAC pro that services your brand and see what they find. Odds are it's an air flow problem if it's freezing up. Are all of your air registers 100% open? Cold air returns not blocked by furniture? Have you hosed out the outside condenser to get rid of all of the gunk (spider webs, insec...
by killjoy2012
Sun Jun 03, 2018 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a physician work in tech while practicing as well?
Replies: 57
Views: 4250

Re: Can a physician work in tech while practicing as well?

What value do you place on the degree(s)? Because you don't need to go to school to learn any of the above. Not to be argumentative, but if I can put a Band-Aid on a cut, does that make me a doctor? Anyone can pickup a book, learn the basics of coding a particular language, and get some basic skill...
by killjoy2012
Sun Jun 03, 2018 1:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can a physician work in tech while practicing as well?
Replies: 57
Views: 4250

Re: Can a physician work in tech while practicing as well?

I have a BS and MS in CS. A sibling has a BS in CS, then went to Med School, and is now a doctor. His path is extremely rare. What you propose is technically possible, but will be challenging, at come at a cost. First, I hope you are single, no kids, and no plans for either in the next 5+ years... a...