Search found 1121 matches

by obgraham
Wed Oct 10, 2018 8:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 1.5 liter wine
Replies: 52
Views: 11264

Re: 1.5 liter wine

Easy answer. Pay no attention to finding a 1.5l bottle. Just open 2 regular bottles.
by obgraham
Sat Oct 06, 2018 3:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What purchase saved you the most money?
Replies: 136
Views: 12549

Re: What purchase saved you the most money?

Without a doubt: New England Journal of Medicine Lifetime Subscription. When I was in training NEJM was very cheap (somewhere around $20 yearly). Then, sometime about 1976 they offered a "lifetime subscription" for a one time charge of $300. I thought it rather pricey at the time, and the offer was ...
by obgraham
Mon Sep 24, 2018 6:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8683

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

I'm a millennial and I write two checks each year, for property and state income tax. How do you work around this (without paying fees)? My county charges $1.50 to pay taxes via ACH. Deduct the price of a stamp required for mailing, and the net cost is $1.01. It's worth that to me to do it easily o...
by obgraham
Mon Sep 24, 2018 11:12 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Digitalizing Old Photos Help
Replies: 22
Views: 1560

Re: Digitalizing Old Photos Help

I did exactly the same as the post below, some 11000 scans, prints, negs, and slides. The V500 produced great scans. Batch scanning was not appropriate for me, as my boxes of stuff were of all sorts of sizes, and most of them required that I bring up the image for repair or adjustment before making ...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8683

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

watchnerd wrote:
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:45 pm

What do you put in your safe deposit box?

We have a fire safe for important docs and such.
I use mine for backup hard drives off site. I know, "why don't I just use cloud?" No thanks. All my life and records are digital now, and I prefer to keep it nearby, though not all in the same building.
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 1727

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

Something is funny with this quote. They are giving you a heat pump ac/heater condenser and related stuff. Why? Then they are quoting a fulll gas heater. Not the way I read it: he's looking at a gas furnace and electric a/c. Having had both this layout and heat pumps, I'd go this way in a heartbeat.
by obgraham
Sat Sep 22, 2018 3:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Options -- Any advice?
Replies: 29
Views: 1727

Re: HVAC Options -- Any advice?

Price seems good to me. I'd upgrade to variable stage and improved efficiency if I planned to stay for 5+ years. Wouldn't bother with the humidifier. This is the right answer. You're looking at a reputable brand. Get whatever upgrades there are that are reasonably priced. More important to me is th...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 21, 2018 5:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers
Replies: 25
Views: 1272

Re: Thoughts on Using Medicare Consultant that is Paid by the Insurers

When we first went on Medicare we used a Medicare Broker, same idea as your consultant. It worked out well, as he went through every company and plan offered in my state/county. He had no bias toward one or the other, and once we decided he completed the applications for us. No charges, and we have ...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8683

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

Iowa David wrote:
Thu Sep 20, 2018 3:23 pm
...
Coin Counter (Local grocery store keeps $.09/$1)
Not if you buy an Amazon gift card, then use that for Kindle purchases!
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8683

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

Ally handles 99% of my banking now, just fine. I still have a small account at a local 3-branch bank. Recently I was in there and commented that the place was very quiet. Manager pointed out that although their teller services are very light, they are very busy with business services, mostly small t...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?
Replies: 43
Views: 2779

Re: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?

It does depend where you are going. I found Italy less agreeable to cards than cash, this past spring. Some places there tack on a credit card fee. And I've been to plenty of less developed countries where lots of places are not set up to deal with cards. So always have more than one way to pay. And...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 20, 2018 1:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I bother meeting with a Chase Private Client Rep
Replies: 56
Views: 4786

Re: Should I bother meeting with a Chase Private Client Rep

I think most of the big financial institutions go through some variation of this "CPC" business. Bank of America was very happy to make me a "preferred customer" when I was running a bunch of business cash through their place. They were always calling me with this or that, and I had a particular "ba...
by obgraham
Tue Sep 18, 2018 10:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fixing diamond ring
Replies: 19
Views: 1397

Re: Fixing diamond ring

I would just take it to a reputable "non-chain" local jeweler and have them fix it. It's what they do for a living. If they are stealing the stones they wouldn't be in business long. I think it is much less likely to be a problem at a local jeweler.
by obgraham
Tue Sep 18, 2018 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Potential Water Leak Issue/Irregular Water Usage
Replies: 9
Views: 613

Re: Potential Water Leak Issue/Irregular Water Usage

The flapper valve or the gasket is the usual cause of a toilet leak -- as stated, the mechanism won't seat right and leaks past it. Flapper changes are very simple, and the flapper replacement is at all the stores for a couple of bucks. My toilets are cheap junk with no flapper, just a plastic thing...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt
Replies: 71
Views: 5484

Re: [Wearing] Shorts in Egypt

I know there of plenty here who follow the "I'll just wear whatever is practical wherever I go" school, but I think that can be very disrespectful. Of course lots of folks don't care about that either. It amazed me how many tourists in Rome, even in winter, wandered around St Pete's in their cargo s...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 15, 2018 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rain Jacket recommendations and care
Replies: 32
Views: 2477

Re: Rain Jacket recommendations and care

For me, this was a place where spending a few bucks paid off. I bought a GoreTex rain jacket in 1982 from REI. Paid the astronomical (then) sum of $150. Now 35 years later it looks like new, works very well, packs light, and surprisingly, still fits me!
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 7:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Forester - ready to buy
Replies: 43
Views: 4269

Re: Subaru Forester - ready to buy

Contrary to most here, we prefer the low end models. No fancy cruise, automatic warnings, or nav systems. A lot harder to find those on dealer lots. Before writing my response above, I did a quick check of local inventory. Curiously, I saw a surge of low-end Foresters, especially with manual transm...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home
Replies: 45
Views: 3038

Re: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home

researcher wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 11:05 am
krappei wrote:
Thu Sep 13, 2018 10:45 am
How likely is it that they make all of the apparent stuff high quality but average or lower quality on construction like insulation, materials, foundation, roofing, etc.?
The likelihood is 100%.
Agreed.
by obgraham
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Forester - ready to buy
Replies: 43
Views: 4269

Re: Subaru Forester - ready to buy

We bought a 2017 Forester, and like it a lot. As snowbirds, we needed another vehicle for the winter place, so decided to trade our high miles Pilot out for a second Forester, this one a neatly identical 2018. As with others, we found the price of a slightly used model too high compared to just buyi...
by obgraham
Wed Sep 12, 2018 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Medicare and related statements
Replies: 7
Views: 465

Re: Medicare and related statements

I think, OP, that you will find you have little or no need to ever look at all that paperwork again once the billing is settled.
But like you, I'm a paper pack rat. I just get mine electronically where possible, and scan whatever I cannot get that way. I keep no actual paper.
by obgraham
Sun Sep 09, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2576

Re: time for new pair of glasses

I've recently switched to using Costco for my eyeglasses. Prior to that I was going to Pearle. Wow what a price difference. So after reading these posts, does anyone think I can save more by using online services (Zenni etc) rather than costco? I have progressives. I also get single vision glasses ...
by obgraham
Sat Sep 08, 2018 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2576

Re: time for new pair of glasses

Is this an Optometrist or Ophthalmologist? Years ago, only Ophthalmologists could /would dilate eyes - but now (in most states) Optometrists do it. I have a condition that needs annual "watching" - alternate years between Optometrist and Ophthalmologist. Being an MD, I am biased. I go to MDs. I wil...
by obgraham
Fri Sep 07, 2018 7:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: time for new pair of glasses
Replies: 36
Views: 2576

Re: time for new pair of glasses

I would much rather have a competent eye doc check my eyes, rather than a technician point some new gadget at me and call it done. There's some thought going on behind what he/she is looking at. My eye doc still dilates me once a year, and does direct ophthalmoscopy. Yeah, it's a bit annoying, but h...
by obgraham
Thu Sep 06, 2018 3:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Go to Istanbul next week. Any suggestions
Replies: 50
Views: 3838

Re: Go to Istanbul next week. Any suggestions

Eat.

Everywhere.

The Kumkapi district has some superb seafood places, though you have to beware of the ripoffs there. But that is part of the whole experience!
by obgraham
Sat Sep 01, 2018 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contemplating trading in a 2-year old car with <25k miles...
Replies: 23
Views: 1773

Re: Contemplating trading in a 2-year old car with <25k miles...

With cars it is not always about the dollars. Sometimes we just don’t have the correct vehicle for whatever stage of life. I am opposite to OP. I traded a 6 year olf Nissan Altima with only 14k miles on it for a 2018 Forester, mostly because I LIKE the seats in the Forester much better and found the...
by obgraham
Wed Aug 29, 2018 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury
Replies: 19
Views: 2641

Re: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury

I am pretty sure that my SF umbrella is on a “claims made” basis, not “occurrence”. However, this is the critical issue to determine. It will be in the policy papers. My SF Umbrella booklet (California) reads: Policy Period. This policy applies to a loss which first occurs during the policy period ...
by obgraham
Tue Aug 28, 2018 10:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury
Replies: 19
Views: 2641

Re: Protecting myself against suit for Personal Injury

I am pretty sure that my SF umbrella is on a “claims made” basis, not “occurrence”. However, this is the critical issue to determine. It will be in the policy papers. If it is like mine, the policy is in effect if both the event and the claim took place during a time when the premium was paid for. O...
by obgraham
Tue Aug 28, 2018 7:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How do you 7 figure guys organize multiple accounts?
Replies: 164
Views: 11984

Re: How do you 7 figure guys organize multiple accounts?

In my working years I had several brokerage and fund accounts. Once retired I either spent the balances or moved them all. Now everything is in Vanguard. If I log in there I can see everything I need, and their tools will track any performance questions I have. I see no need to make my life difficul...
by obgraham
Sat Aug 18, 2018 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Soap for hand washing dishes
Replies: 40
Views: 2257

Re: Soap for hand washing dishes

Joy..
by obgraham
Thu Aug 16, 2018 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data
Replies: 33
Views: 2973

Re: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data

I think some of you have been watching too much CSI etc.

After clobbering the phone to bits with a sledge, please explain who and how any data can be retrieved, using what readily available technology?
by obgraham
Wed Aug 15, 2018 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data
Replies: 33
Views: 2973

Re: Discarding dead cell phone without purging my data

Another vote for the hammer. Why complicate matters?
by obgraham
Mon Aug 13, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: most compelling TV character ever
Replies: 260
Views: 25211

Re: most compelling TV character ever

Indeed, as someone listed a few posts down: Carrie, in Homeland. In the last couple of seasons the character has gotten overplayed and predictable, and is much less interesting. However, in the earlier seasons I think Claire Danes portrayal of this very conflicted character was an acting "tour-de-fo...
by obgraham
Mon Aug 13, 2018 9:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Phone Plan for US-Child doing a Semester Abroad (VerizonWirelss)
Replies: 50
Views: 2496

Re: Phone Plan for US-Child doing a Semester Abroad (VerizonWirelss)

I think you are overthinking this stuff. God made youngsters to figure this stuff out. I went to Italy in March. We have Verizon phones here, and we have the Travelpass, but did not like the $10 a day rate for Euro service. I took my phone in to a little convenience store where they sell just about ...
by obgraham
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get 2nd number on smartphone?
Replies: 22
Views: 2312

Re: How to get 2nd number on smartphone?

I’m using an app called “Burner” to do some selling on Craigslist. You get a second number, which will ring through to your primary number. It does exactly what OP says he needs. Hi, How much does it cost you and does it do texting also ? The app is free. You get a free number for a week or two, th...
by obgraham
Sun Aug 12, 2018 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get 2nd number on smartphone?
Replies: 22
Views: 2312

Re: How to get 2nd number on smartphone?

I’m using an app called “Burner” to do some selling on Craigslist. You get a second number, which will ring through to your primary number.

It does exactly what OP says he needs.
by obgraham
Tue Aug 07, 2018 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I apply for United Explorer MileagePlus Card? Is it worth it in my situation?
Replies: 45
Views: 2164

Re: Should I apply for United Explorer MileagePlus Card? Is it worth it in my situation?

For me this card is worthwhile because I do have to use United a lot where I need to fly. The baggage fee rebate alone pays for the card. The lounge pass, though, is really annoying. You get there, figure "I'll hang with the rich dudes", and they take one look at your pass and kick you out. Sort of ...
by obgraham
Mon Aug 06, 2018 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Other options for CDN to be wired to US account
Replies: 5
Views: 582

Re: Other options for CDN to be wired to US account

Why is it so complicated? Couple of months ago my sister in Canada wired some cash to me. She uses RBC, initiated a wire transfer to my local small town bank after I provided her the routing and acct number. It went without incident. My bank made the exchange at that day's rate, and charged me $15. ...
by obgraham
Mon Aug 06, 2018 10:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: input on trip to Spokane, Coeur D'Alene
Replies: 25
Views: 1739

Re: input on trip to Spokane, Coeur D'Alene

I too have lived in Eastern Washington for 40 years. Two little suggestions: 1. The Hanford B-Reactor Tour, as linked previously, is spectacular. If you like technology, science stuff, and seeing Enrico Fermi's desk, it is well worth while. Advanced bookings required, though sometimes walkups are al...
by obgraham
Sun Aug 05, 2018 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pricing a used car to sell
Replies: 27
Views: 1389

Re: Pricing a used car to sell

Sold my 2004 Pilot this past week on Craigslist at 3pm. I'm in a small market community. I priced it exactly in the middle of the KBB "private sale" range. With 3 hours of listing I'd had over 20 texts. A lady came to see it that evening, sale was done and closed by 0915 the next day. Meanwhile I ha...
by obgraham
Sun Aug 05, 2018 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to send flowers out of town
Replies: 21
Views: 1288

Re: Best way to send flowers out of town

michaeljc70 wrote:
Sun Aug 05, 2018 9:29 am
I wouldn't just randomly pick a local florist.
Isnt that what you get when you order through FTD, etc?
by obgraham
Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to keep emergency info
Replies: 3
Views: 304

Re: Where to keep emergency info

Because of this, I print out my password list and accounts lists, into a notebook residing near my desk.
Family knows where it is.
Sure, if burgled it will be a disaster. But the family issue is much more likely.
by obgraham
Fri Aug 03, 2018 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which diet soda pop do you enjoy?
Replies: 110
Views: 4904

Re: Which diet soda pop do you enjoy?

Another Diet Pepsi addict here. For 40 years. I hate to think how many thousands of cans of the stuff.
For 15 years before that it was regular Pepsi. Interesting how once I made the unpleasant switch to the diet stuff, regular Pepsi and Coke is now completely unpalatable to me.
by obgraham
Thu Aug 02, 2018 4:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Storing Cord Blood For New Baby
Replies: 13
Views: 1613

Re: Storing Cord Blood For New Baby

Think about the odds here: It's true that more and more uses are being found for cord blood and the "stem cells" found there. No doubt there will be conditions amenable to using this blood in the future which we don't have now. But the odds of one specific person (i.e. that baby as he/she grows) dev...
by obgraham
Fri Jul 27, 2018 1:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC buying new home before selling current home
Replies: 11
Views: 1090

Re: HELOC buying new home before selling current home

I've also used a HELOC sort of in OP's way. However, in my experience the amount of the HELOC they will approve is not near the 100% value of the home. Mine have been in the 50% range. I bought our snowbird place this way. So yes, you can use that toward the new place but you need cash to make up th...
by obgraham
Wed Jul 25, 2018 11:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Wire transfers from internet banks (CapOne 360)
Replies: 12
Views: 1370

Re: Wire transfers from internet banks (CapOne 360)

This is why I keep a small amount in a local brick/mortar bank. Linked to my Ally or CapOne.
Much easier to arrange such occasional transactions.t
by obgraham
Wed Jul 25, 2018 1:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coast to Coast 2-3 Week Road Trip
Replies: 16
Views: 2000

Re: Coast to Coast 2-3 Week Road Trip

You say you have 3 weeks?

Ditch the route plans. Just go. Pick a spot where you'll be tomorrow, or maybe stay put for a day or two. The rest of life is all scheduled -- it is very liberating to go unscheduled for a while!
by obgraham
Tue Jul 24, 2018 11:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are laminate floors better-wearing than real hardwood?
Replies: 36
Views: 2864

Re: Are laminate floors better-wearing than real hardwood?

There is no question in my mind that hardwood is a better and more flexible product. Better able to repair or refinish. But it depends on the specifics. In my “retirement house” we are very easy on the flooring, and for us the easier maintenance and good appearance made it a very good choice. 12 yea...
by obgraham
Fri Jul 20, 2018 9:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?
Replies: 62
Views: 3693

Re: Fake IRS calls - anybody care?

Ignore the RS calls.

Unless you are in the mood to play with them. I have at times found that to be an enjoyable and entertaining half hour.
by obgraham
Fri Jul 20, 2018 10:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: unripe fruit on a branch that has fallen off the tree
Replies: 7
Views: 936

Re: unripe fruit on a branch that has fallen off the tree

My experience with peach trees some years back was that when a branch breaks, unripe fruit will not ripen, but just dry out.
by obgraham
Thu Jul 19, 2018 12:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vacation Ideas like Alaskan Cruises
Replies: 11
Views: 1035

Re: Vacation Ideas like Alaskan Cruises

OP: what did you like about your cruise: the scenery, or the ship experience?

We like the sea days best. A Trans-Atlantic is fantastic!