Search found 46 matches

by petiejoe
Fri Nov 08, 2019 3:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How bad business travel is?
Replies: 62
Views: 5243

Re: How bad is business travel?

Travel is a very personal thing. Do you like traveling? Do you like visiting the place(s) they expect you to go to? Is your spouse ok with the travel and/or interested in traveling with you? Do they consider time traveling part of your work time, or do they expect you'll be doing early mornings and ...
by petiejoe
Thu Oct 31, 2019 2:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cousin inherited older house - how to get solid overview of all repairs needed?
Replies: 21
Views: 1782

Re: cousin inherited older house - how to get solid overview of all repairs needed?

Has your cousin considered selling the house and moving into something smaller/newer like a condo? She would be better able to control her housing costs. An older house that has been minimally maintained probably has a lot of expensive repairs/replacements coming up. Even if she does one project a ...
by petiejoe
Mon Aug 05, 2019 5:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Insane to buy a sports car?
Replies: 215
Views: 12211

Re: Insane to buy a sports car?

So as someone with thousands of track laps under his belt, I wanted to find something to show that the model 3 would indeed get through a single 20 minute track session. I found no such thing. I did find many, many 3 lap romps by various drivers with good things to say about the handling, accelerat...
by petiejoe
Mon Aug 05, 2019 12:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fixed vs Variable Mortgage
Replies: 23
Views: 1229

Re: Fixed vs Variable Mortgage

I can't speak to whether the rates you're quoting are competitive (since I'm not currently in the market), but if you think you can afford the 15-year and are just nervous about locking into the higher payment, the 15/1 ARM might be a good compromise. You would have incentive to pay on the 15 year p...
by petiejoe
Thu Jul 25, 2019 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electrician required to replace rocker light switches with PIR motion detecting light switches?
Replies: 36
Views: 3190

Re: Electrician required to replace rocker light switches with PIR motion detecting light switches?

Replacing a switch is much easier than replacing a fan (same basic electrical skill, much less to juggle). Try it yourself if you have a screwdriver and know where the fuse box is, or pick your favorite handyman.
by petiejoe
Wed Oct 18, 2017 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone planning on getting the new Pixel phone?
Replies: 141
Views: 14085

Re: Anyone planning on getting the new Pixel phone?

I have the Pixel XL. It's the best phone I have ever had. Oh that's good to hear. Anything in particular you like about it? I like that it uses "pure" Android, meaning that it gets the latest Android version and the latest updates directly from Google as they are available without waiting for the c...
by petiejoe
Mon Oct 02, 2017 6:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What will happen if I refuse to pay a medical bill?
Replies: 125
Views: 12040

Re: What will happen if I refuse to pay a medical bill?

Multiple people have tried to help you understand the difference between accepting a particular insurance and being in-network. This is a very important distinction. It is not the fault of the doctor's office that you don't understand the distinction and asked the wrong question. So if I understand...
by petiejoe
Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What will happen if I refuse to pay a medical bill?
Replies: 125
Views: 12040

Re: What will happen if I refuse to pay a medical bill?

Multiple people have tried to help you understand the difference between accepting a particular insurance and being in-network. This is a very important distinction. It is not the fault of the doctor's office that you don't understand the distinction and asked the wrong question. Your comparison wit...
by petiejoe
Wed Aug 23, 2017 4:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Account balances over $250,000
Replies: 11
Views: 3334

Re: Account balances over $250,000

The FDIC doesn't do anything for investment products. I don't think most people here would recommend keeping $250,000 in cash. If you have a CD ladder that exceeds the FDIC limit, you should consider diversifying across banks to stay under the insurance limit. If you have enough money in CDs that th...
by petiejoe
Sat Jul 22, 2017 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Amazon Prime worth it?
Replies: 146
Views: 16359

Re: Is Amazon Prime worth it?

It really depends on how much you use the Amazon eco-system. There are a number of programs which may be worth the annual fee on their own if you actually use them: * Instant Video - almost comparable to Netflix's streaming selection (Netflix has an edge on production quality of self-made content). ...
by petiejoe
Thu Jul 13, 2017 6:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hiding the TV
Replies: 13
Views: 2385

Re: Hiding the TV

Not necessarily practical for everybody, but in my last house, I had a projector with a pull-down screen. The projector is on the ceiling in a corner so it doesn't stand out. I happen to like watching movies on the big screen so I _wanted_ the screen to be the focal point of the living room, but I r...
by petiejoe
Wed Jun 14, 2017 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Curious to odd estate question
Replies: 88
Views: 9654

Re: Curious to odd estate question

I'm still thinking that a SPIA is the best bet. If they own a home, take out a reverse mortgage. The insurance company doesn't really "benefit" when the person dies, the death was built into the price and payout of the SPIA. I suppose that logic may not hold if the person is terminally ill or suicid...
by petiejoe
Wed May 03, 2017 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying first home with old hvac
Replies: 92
Views: 17251

Re: Buying first home with old hvac

We are in process of buying our first condo and after the inspection found out that all hvac equipment is original and 20 years old. Everything is working fine but I'm worried that this will be a big expense at some point soon. We already agreed on the purchase price. Any recommendations on what we...
by petiejoe
Mon Apr 24, 2017 6:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Will cars be autonomous in three years?
Replies: 225
Views: 19098

Re: Will cars be autonomous in three years?

Two things terrify me about autonomous vehicles and I am a control system engineer. First, there is nothing that prevents a wild, out-of-control driver from hitting the autonomous vehicle. There are too many places when there is no "out" for it, regardless of how smart it is. And what will you do w...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 14, 2017 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DELETE
Replies: 30
Views: 5424

Re: New Home - Design Center Options - making smart choices

Lots of hate for the prewiring. I probably wouldn't pay for prewiring sound to miscellaneous rooms, but if you have a room you're already designating as the media room, absolutely prewire that. Wiring is super easy (and should be cheap) if you do it before the drywall goes in and becomes a pain in t...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?
Replies: 77
Views: 8332

Re: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?

I only contributed once to any IRAs and the reason it was not allowed was because my magi was too high. All of it has been earned income That's great. You're eligible for Traditional IRA contribution. Recharacterization would work well to avoid your Roth IRA excess contribution. If you were covered...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?
Replies: 77
Views: 8332

Re: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?

What are the steps to recharacterize a Roth IRA? And should I take action before the tax deadline or wait until it has passed? If you file by April 18, you can still recharacterize by October 15. Vanguard now does this by phone. Call them up, the same as if you were removing the Excess Contribution...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 14, 2017 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?
Replies: 77
Views: 8332

Re: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?

What are the steps to recharacterize a Roth IRA? And should I take action before the tax deadline or wait until it has passed? If you file by April 18, you can still recharacterize by October 15. Vanguard now does this by phone. Call them up, the same as if you were removing the Excess Contribution...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 14, 2017 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?
Replies: 77
Views: 8332

Re: Should I take 6% penalty for excess Roth IRA contribution since I had significant earnings?

You're probably better off recharacterizing the 2016 contributions (at least the amount that's over your income limit) to a traditional IRA. This is not a taxable event. As far as the IRS is concerned, it's as though you originally made the contributions to the traditional IRA. Your bank should be a...
by petiejoe
Thu Mar 30, 2017 4:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Budgeting vs Tracking Expenses?
Replies: 42
Views: 5176

Re: Budgeting vs Tracking Expenses?

We have budgets set up in Mint. They serve three general purposes: 1) They tell me it's okay to spend more money. 2) They tell my wife when she probably shouldn't spend any more money. 3) They encourage us to level out monthly spending by opportunistically buying certain supplies instead of waiting ...
by petiejoe
Fri Mar 17, 2017 4:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Purchase and Sale of home: pearls of advice
Replies: 29
Views: 3843

Re: Purchase and Sale of home: pearls of advice

Nothing truly unique to add, but wanted to echo a couple of the other comments: * Don't worry about the color of the walls/carpet/etc. That's easy to replace if you want to. * Be very pragmatic about move-in costs. Assume that you'll spend more money than you expect during the first 3-6 months as yo...
by petiejoe
Wed Mar 15, 2017 6:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me pick a computer
Replies: 71
Views: 5898

Re: Help me pick a computer

My $.02: * Definitely go with the SSD. I think that one is pretty unanimous in this thread. It will lead to an incredible improvement in how fast your computer starts up and how responsive it is for the first few minutes after it boots (it's amazing how many programs are waiting for disk even after ...
by petiejoe
Fri Feb 17, 2017 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I want to ditch the cable company's modem
Replies: 51
Views: 5872

Re: I want to ditch the cable company's modem

I see your point, but there is a critical part missing here. If you have a service level agreement (SLA) which sometimes exist for business ISPs but almost never for consumer/residential ISPs, then that is what contractually requires them to "fix it," fast, no matter what. In my case there is a 4 h...
by petiejoe
Fri Sep 16, 2016 4:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do I set up a consumer friendly and functional website?
Replies: 15
Views: 1471

Re: How do I set up a consumer friendly and functional website?

The website would be for public use.....almost like an Angie's List. The wordpress idea above is probably going to be the easiest way to move forward with some basic functionality. How are you going to be different from Angie's List? Are you looking for help setting something up for your neighbors,...
by petiejoe
Wed Aug 24, 2016 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Internet security: which is the lesser of 2 evils?
Replies: 39
Views: 4856

Re: Internet security: which is the lesser of 2 evils?

... At that point, you're really relying on the security of the https connection between you and your financial institution. I wouldn't consider that the best security posture, but that at least requires an active hacker _and_ a weak point in your bank security. What about Man in the Middle (https ...
by petiejoe
Wed Aug 24, 2016 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Internet security: which is the lesser of 2 evils?
Replies: 39
Views: 4856

Re: Internet security: which is the lesser of 2 evils?

Never (ever) enter your passwords on a computer you don't have full control over. If the "Hospital network computer" is share with other employees or patients, assume that everything you do on that computer is in plain text for the bad guys. Keyloggers are trivial to add to a computer with public ac...
by petiejoe
Sat Aug 13, 2016 3:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Finding middle ground with spouse on investing
Replies: 30
Views: 4437

Re: Finding middle ground with spouse on investing

BTY, How many spouses do you have? :D English really needs a gender-neutral singular pronoun :P . I'll try to keep things in terms of "we" or "I," which helps grammatically and keeps things more positive (albeit a tad more selfish). I/we? have been keeping a list of all our assets (and liabilities)...
by petiejoe
Fri Aug 12, 2016 11:17 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Finding middle ground with spouse on investing
Replies: 30
Views: 4437

Re: Finding middle ground with spouse on investing

OP, you may get a better response if you follow the boards format. I filled out the top of that template, but didn't think the rest of it made much difference for the discussion at hand. I can sit down and fill that out later if people think it actually makes a difference. I'm with your spouse in s...
by petiejoe
Fri Aug 12, 2016 6:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Finding middle ground with spouse on investing
Replies: 30
Views: 4437

Finding middle ground with spouse on investing

Emergency funds: 3 months expenses with no changes, 6+ months expenses if we tightened our belt and stopped saving (e.g. if we had an emergency) Debt: No debt (paid off house, paid off car, pay off credit cards in full every month) Tax Filing Status: Married Filing Jointly Tax Rate: no state income ...
by petiejoe
Fri Jul 22, 2016 5:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Seattle from DC
Replies: 30
Views: 4347

Re: Moving to Seattle from DC

if you're thinking 15 minutes, you're going to be extremely limited. If you're thinking 30-45 minutes, you have a lot more options opening up. The reality of traffic and commuting is when the least thing goes wrong, the commute can double. And, I mean the least thing: Mariners/Seahawks Game, excess...
by petiejoe
Fri Jul 22, 2016 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I spend 5k annually on travel?
Replies: 74
Views: 9271

Re: Should I spend 5k annually on travel?

my $.02 is decide for yourself how much money you should spend on travel, build that into your budget, and allow yourself to spend it. I'm pretty formal with my budgeting using mint.com, but you don't even have to be that strict. I struggle with the last step (allowing myself to spend the travel mon...
by petiejoe
Fri Jul 22, 2016 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to Seattle from DC
Replies: 30
Views: 4347

Re: Moving to Seattle from DC

I think I may have misused the word "Downtown". The job will be more in the north of seattle - close to 500 9th Ave N. If that makes a difference. That's virtually downtown - downtown/first hill-ish. If you draw the 15 minute commute line - then further narrow for prices you can afford (unless you ...
by petiejoe
Tue Jul 19, 2016 7:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Growing up and becoming an adult, lots of questions!
Replies: 19
Views: 3047

Re: Growing up and becoming an adult, lots of questions!

You can spend as little as ~$100 to get married (in most jurisdictions there are various fees to submit the legal paperwork) or as much as you want. Any number you pick will have some people say you spent too much and other people amazed you spent so little. Set a budget that makes sense for you and...
by petiejoe
Mon Jun 06, 2016 8:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to live on $110,000 less income each year?
Replies: 104
Views: 15382

Re: How to live on $110,000 less income each year?

2) Start from scratch. Assume you have a budget of $80,000. How do you live? Your biggest expenses are housing, transportation, and food. My 6th grader is doing this for a class project -- she got assigned a budget and she has to find actual expenses and figure out how to live within that budget. D...
by petiejoe
Mon May 23, 2016 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: starting a very small business - extension of a hobby?
Replies: 19
Views: 2035

Re: starting a very small business - extension of a hobby?

My mother really enjoyed participating in craft fairs when I was young, so I spent a lot of time at various craft fairs and bazaars. One thing she learned after experimenting was that lowering prices did _not_ necessarily increase sales. In fact, she sold significantly more when she raised the price...
by petiejoe
Mon May 16, 2016 5:13 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Stock Quesiton: AAPL or FB?
Replies: 21
Views: 4012

Re: Stock Quesiton: AAPL or FB?

I would take Apple over FB since we all know what happened to MySpace. With that said, I'm happy I don't own 1 individual stock since there are so many great companies. I watched MySpace also...but FB has gotten deep into personal lives and content and I find it difficult to "unwind" and move to an...
by petiejoe
Mon May 16, 2016 3:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it OK to leave home wifi on?
Replies: 55
Views: 6504

Re: Is it OK to leave home wifi on?

You're okay leaving it on but I would set the SSID to hidden. -Steph Hiding your SSID will make it more difficult for you and your guests to connect and/or troubleshoot connection problems. However, it will not add to the security of your wifi. The people with time, tools, and ability to crack into...
by petiejoe
Thu Apr 07, 2016 3:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does online banking work? Fraud on credit card
Replies: 20
Views: 2143

Re: How does online banking work?

Thanks for the explanation. I'm familiar with entering my credit card information into the vendor's website. I had to change the credit card number number it was compromised. I logged onto At&t Autopay section and replaced the credit card with my bank information. I stored it on their website. They...
by petiejoe
Wed Apr 06, 2016 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does online banking work? Fraud on credit card
Replies: 20
Views: 2143

Re: How does online banking work?

There's a lot of confusion on this thread about what the banks are capable of, so perhaps this depends on the bank and the specific company involved. My experience is that major companies (like utilities) are registered with major banks to negotiate the billing. I don't know if there's some kind of ...
by petiejoe
Tue Apr 05, 2016 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Model 3 anyone?
Replies: 279
Views: 28265

Re: Tesla Model 3 anyone?

Still confused, EVERYBODY is losing money on EVs right now, Tesla included (no matter how you play with the numbers). Whether that will result in profit down the road, nobody knows and it isn't really relevant to what I was saying: I simply had no idea what "profit' was supposed to mean because the...
by petiejoe
Fri Apr 01, 2016 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Model 3 anyone?
Replies: 279
Views: 28265

Re: Tesla Model 3 anyone?

At the very least it will be extremely inconvenient for the near future. Our last two family trips were to Southern California and Houston, from just south of SLC, Utah. There are long stretches (over 200 miles) of driving through the "middle of nowhere". It may be possible, but highly inconvenient...
by petiejoe
Tue Mar 22, 2016 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Model 3 anyone?
Replies: 279
Views: 28265

Re: Tesla Model 3 anyone?

On 3/31, my wife will drive me to work and then head to the Tesla store down the street from work to pay the deposit. There are a few things that might make me change my mind later, but I'm optimistic that they'll deliver a solid offering. It's a bit more than I would probably pay for a car otherwis...
by petiejoe
Tue Mar 08, 2016 5:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pacific Northwest Vacation
Replies: 26
Views: 2800

Re: Pacific Northwest Vacation

Since you like camping, you may really like renting cabins in one of the state parks: http://parks.state.wa.us/403/Cabins-Rustic-Shelters-Yurts . Depending on which one you go to, the calendar may fill up fast so definitely get a reservation in quickly. Several people have discouraged from visiting ...
by petiejoe
Thu Mar 03, 2016 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mac laptop vs. Windows 7 (or 10) laptop
Replies: 63
Views: 6861

Re: Mac laptop vs. Windows 7 (or 10) laptop

Apple builds both the hardware and software so they work together better. This right here is the biggest difference between Mac and PC. Apple owns the full experience end to end and they do a good job of polishing the rough corners to make it all "just work." This makes them great for people that d...
by petiejoe
Tue Feb 23, 2016 1:03 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: personal savings rate vs the general population
Replies: 69
Views: 11562

Re: personal savings rate vs the general population

Throughout the rest of the article, he argues generally that the ratio of workers to retirees will remain the same and that the means of exchange will devalue to naturally enforce that ratio. I'm not sure I agree that the ratio needs to remain the same. He already admits that when social security fi...
by petiejoe
Mon Feb 15, 2016 9:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is it crazy for me to anticipate living on a budget like this when I graduate? Is it even possible?
Replies: 60
Views: 5601

Re: Is it crazy for me to anticipate living on a budget like this when I graduate? Is it even possible?

$100k for a first-year software development engineer in Seattle is totally reasonable, assuming you get a job with one of the big companies (check out glassdoor) as an SDE (not web dev, systems engineer, support engineer, QA engineer, etc). I'm going to make a few very broad statements that don't ne...