Search found 552 matches

by mkc
Thu May 13, 2021 8:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Costco Ghostbed vs. Casper vs. Novaform
Replies: 18
Views: 1898

Re: Costco Ghostbed vs. Casper vs. Novaform

jeffyscott and carolinaman, would you mind sharing which latex mattress you got? I want my next mattress to be latex but all the different brands confuse me and I don't know where to go to try one out. I purchased a Ghostbed for a guest room and have had nothing but compliments on it. I haven't sle...
by mkc
Wed May 12, 2021 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Forced Liquidation of Invested HSA
Replies: 14
Views: 1014

Re: Forced Liquidation of Invested HSA

Is transferring the existing HSA to Fidelity an option? Not for future contributions, but for the current balance/funds? Even if the investments couldn't transfer "in kind", it would not be a taxable event to liquidate and move cash as long as it's going from HSA to HSA. We were not all th...
by mkc
Wed May 12, 2021 12:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I tear down my house?
Replies: 57
Views: 5774

Re: Should I tear down my house?

I understand the suspicion about build time and cost - but I will say to my builder's credit, he delivered the first project (new deck) on time and to the penny on budget. Granted, a whole house is more complicated, but he does this all the time. Sounds unusual. Most deck builders are not home buil...
by mkc
Tue May 11, 2021 8:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving companies
Replies: 19
Views: 1406

Re: Moving companies

There were a couple of discussions in the last year regarding long-distance interstate moves and in particular mentioning furniture. You don't say if you are thinking of moving yours, but TBH, what works in one region often doesn't "fit in" with the homes of another. Upstate NY I'm thinkin...
by mkc
Mon May 10, 2021 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stand Mixer
Replies: 71
Views: 3931

Re: Stand Mixer

Yeah my Artisan burned out from twice-weekly 10 minute sessions of dough kneading on speed 2. Pretty disappointing that it couldn't perform that task, which is pretty light duty, all things considered. I've read on other forums where people are trying to spin the KitchenAid Artisan's weak plastic g...
by mkc
Mon May 10, 2021 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I tear down my house?
Replies: 57
Views: 5774

Re: Should I tear down my house?

Wouldn't it be simpler to just sell your present home and buy something that you want? If you go the teardown and rebuild route you're going to have to live somewhere else for a likely minimum of at least a year while that work is done. From the time the permits are issued to move-in is 4 months pe...
by mkc
Mon May 10, 2021 8:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Stand Mixer
Replies: 71
Views: 3931

Re: Stand Mixer

My beautiful but fragile Kitchenaid mixer is now producing quite a racket (and a small amount of smoke) during its sourdough kneading duties. So I realize I need a more heavy duty stand mixer and have settled on three finalists: 1) the Ankarsrum Assistent https://www.ankarsrum.com/us/product/assist...
by mkc
Sun May 09, 2021 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Thoughts About Blue Cross Blue Shield Settlement - Class Action Antitrust Lawsuit
Replies: 53
Views: 16436

Re: Thoughts About Blue Cross Blue Shield Settlement - Class Action Antitrust Lawsuit

Today I received an email providing my claim number for the settlement. I assume this means that I will receive the $0.05 check when it is issued. Haha. That sounds about right. Hmmm... the e-mail my spouse received with a claim number was addressed to a different name (not even close). I wonder wh...
by mkc
Sat May 08, 2021 2:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car transport
Replies: 10
Views: 690

Re: Car transport

Hi there, we will be relocating to Florida from New York and looking to transport one of our cars. Any suggestions? Thanks We have a pickup and a car - we are renting a U- haul carrier that the car will ride on / filling the car and truck with personal items we do not want to send with movers / the...
by mkc
Sat May 08, 2021 8:43 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Fidelity Full View?
Replies: 65
Views: 19159

Re: Fidelity Full View?

I started using it and like it. It also links to the retirement planner, which seems useful. Only issue - I can't get it to link to my spouse's Fidelity account. Has your spouse added authorization for you to do so? I can see my spouse's, but needed to be granted authorization from that account's e...
by mkc
Fri May 07, 2021 5:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendation for Leaf Blower
Replies: 58
Views: 2775

Re: Recommendation for Leaf Blower

TnGuy wrote: Fri May 07, 2021 4:44 pm You didn't state whether you needed a hand-held or backpack type.
^ This ^

We have his and hers Stihl backpack blowers (BR700 and BR200) for most things, plus a small Echo hand-held gas powered for gutter cleaning.
by mkc
Fri May 07, 2021 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Exterior Sliding Glass Walls/ Bifold exterior Doors
Replies: 14
Views: 979

Re: Exterior Sliding Glass Walls/ Bifold exterior Doors

My sliding patio doors need replacement. I was thinking about glass bifold doors that when open allow for a more open feel and a larger exit/entry space than a sliding glass door. Does anyone have experience with these types of doors? Brand recommendation(s)? Cost? Installation issues? We have West...
by mkc
Fri May 07, 2021 1:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Portfolio Watch has a new look [Calculations may be incorrect]
Replies: 182
Views: 14076

Re: Vanguard Portfolio Watch has a new look [Calculations may be incorrect]

I just sent a secure message via the Vanguard website to complain. If you are unhappy with this tool as is, please take the time to do the same. Secure message sent to Vanguard as well. It's bad enough the interface for Portfolio Tester changed (significantly) for the worse, but to have the analysi...
by mkc
Thu May 06, 2021 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: claim roof on insurance?
Replies: 17
Views: 894

Re: claim roof on insurance?

One of the first questions your insurance company will ask you is "What was the date of the loss?" They will want to correlate damage with a specific incident/hail storm/tree falling. And they will check the weather data if it's a hail or wind damage claim.
by mkc
Sun May 02, 2021 4:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pricing our house?
Replies: 25
Views: 2622

Re: pricing our house?

Ignore Zillow and do your own comp research on recent sales. Zillow numbers are completely fabricated. The three or so realtors you interview should present you with a marketing plan that shows comps (recent closed, possibly some pendings, and some actives - your competition - and how the realtor ar...
by mkc
Sat May 01, 2021 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Property Tax Protest: DYI vs. Company
Replies: 11
Views: 1027

Re: Property Tax Protest: DYI vs. Company

At our previous home in TX, it was an annual event to protest the property tax assessment. The county assessor's office always did a "mass assessment", where they bumped our entire community's values up based on some number, and there was typically a waiting room full of people and 5-8 app...
by mkc
Sat May 01, 2021 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying land in subdivision, but build house from scratch
Replies: 27
Views: 2387

Re: Buying land in subdivision, but build house from scratch

Yesterday we visited one of the other communities sold by the same developer, that place is already "sold out." It was indeed beautiful but we only saw about six houses built in an area of ~500 acres. Several neighboring properties just outside that new community had signs out front sayin...
by mkc
Fri Apr 30, 2021 8:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying land in subdivision, but build house from scratch
Replies: 27
Views: 2387

Re: Buying land in subdivision, but build house from scratch

- Water well required, not provided - Septic required, not provided What happens if the water or septic is more difficult that planned for? If you were going to build right away you might be able to make the contract contingent on the water and septic not having problems but if you will not be buil...
by mkc
Thu Apr 29, 2021 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Early Retirement and ACA insurance costs? 60-65 yo.
Replies: 26
Views: 2959

Re: Early Retirement and ACA insurance costs? 60-65 yo.

The best way to research this is, as others have said, to go to healthcare.gov or your state's exchange. Insurance costs (and available plans and insurers) are 100% county/zip code dependent. These also change every year during open enrollment. Also understand there are premium credits available wit...
by mkc
Thu Apr 29, 2021 10:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendations for a tailgate type gas grill?
Replies: 7
Views: 566

Re: Recommendations for a tailgate type gas grill?

Weber Q or our current favorite, Napoleon TravelQ 285
by mkc
Wed Apr 28, 2021 9:19 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Should we keep most of our $ at Vanguard or split across brokerages?
Replies: 18
Views: 2250

Re: Should we keep most of our $ at Vanguard or split across brokerages?

We split, and our brokerage is at Fidelity. We only use VG for our legacy MF account (have not and refuse to convert to brokerage), plus we have an old T.Rowe Price MF account.

I much prefer Fidelity for the brokerage end of things. Have heard good things about Schwab for that as well.
by mkc
Tue Apr 27, 2021 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cities/towns to live in with low cost of living and no car?
Replies: 39
Views: 3971

Re: Cities/towns to live in with low cost of living and no car?

Any recommendations? I can't drive due to medical issues (disabled) Looking to reduce my cost of living (currently in NYC) - would rent or maybe buy a small home under $300k ideally (just me living on my own) Some possibilities I came across are St. Louis, Tucson, New Orleans, Minneapolis, and Port...
by mkc
Tue Apr 27, 2021 11:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appealing new county property appraisal (sq ft discrepancy)
Replies: 5
Views: 521

Re: Appealing new county property appraisal (sq ft discrepancy)

It's a bit of a catch-22. The tax assessor is likely going off the original building permit. From a selling perspecting, most listings state "buyer to verify all data", or something like that. Where it might come into play is if you do list - your agent could put "2500 sf per tax roll...
by mkc
Sat Apr 24, 2021 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Received a "surprise" $13,000 IRS refund check on 2018 taxes. Please advise.
Replies: 59
Views: 6613

Re: Received a "surprise" $13,000 IRS refund check on 2018 taxes. Please advise.

earlier. AND ?? Atwood isn't the original poster (who we haven't heard from in a while), and was someone who'd checked their IRS transcript thanks to this thread. Sounds like he/she received an explanation letter as well. Hoping the OP comes back with similar news of a letter (or results of transcr...
by mkc
Sat Apr 24, 2021 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy cliff now going away! Yay!
Replies: 166
Views: 19815

Re: ACA subsidy cliff now going away! Yay!

Just wanted to confirm my understanding of how it works. If our modified agi is 100k in 2021, our cost for silver plan is limited to $8,500 a year. However if we choose the bronze plan that costs $10,000 less in annual premium, our net cost for the bronze plan would be 0. Thanks That is how it work...
by mkc
Sat Apr 24, 2021 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: John Deere D105 mower
Replies: 14
Views: 1038

Re: John Deere D105 mower

Neighbor has one and hires out to have the sloping side yard mowed...

Would only consider it if your yard is flat and the price was low.

Watch for a used X-series.
by mkc
Wed Apr 21, 2021 9:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA subsidy cliff now going away! Yay!
Replies: 166
Views: 19815

Re: ACA subsidy cliff now going away! Yay!

Since the ACA cliff is more like a hill this year, what strategies are folks using to take advantage of this change? We are considering a Roth conversion up to a certain income limit. We upgraded (yes, it actually had higher initial premiums) to a HDHP HSA bronze plan from a seriously crappy bronze...
by mkc
Tue Apr 20, 2021 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Air filter @ Furnace/AC or only @ Intake Air Vent?
Replies: 13
Views: 1044

Re: Air filter @ Furnace/AC or only @ Intake Air Vent?

In this and 2 homes ago, we have/had filters at each of the returns in the finished areas of the house. 2 homes ago they were in the ceiling with the furnaces in the attic; this house they are in the wall with the furnace in a mechanical room in the encapsulated, insulated crawlspace. In between, we...
by mkc
Tue Apr 20, 2021 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Sale of Expensive Home--Limit Showing
Replies: 34
Views: 3423

Re: Sale of Expensive Home--Limit Showing

An expensive home (for our area) was recently listed and sold quickly. The listing indicated "no sign", "no lockbox", "by appointment only". The showings we saw always had 2 cars show up, one was always the same so I would interpret that as the listing agent. We sold a ...
by mkc
Mon Apr 19, 2021 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How long does it typically take to get used to a new mattress?
Replies: 54
Views: 3329

Re: How long does it typically take to get used to a new mattress?

In our very limited experience, our very pricey Stearns and Foster traditional innerspring king pillowtop set lasted about 18 months before looking like a couple of hammocks and being very uncomfortable. It was on a traditional box spring/frame. The Electropedic all-Talalay latex split king we repla...
by mkc
Mon Apr 19, 2021 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bad Work Situation - Can I Retire Leave/Retire
Replies: 27
Views: 5037

Re: Bad Work Situation - Can I Retire Leave/Retire

So we are on COBRA from my old employer for now and then will investigate some short term policies that exclude pre-existing conditions but have good networks. I thought some law passed around the time Obamacare came into existence prohibited health insurance companies from taking preexisting condi...
by mkc
Mon Apr 19, 2021 7:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House in Life Estate Tax Implications (Massachusetts)
Replies: 7
Views: 626

Re: House in Life Estate Tax Implications (Massachusetts)

- deleted response as it did not apply in this situation -
by mkc
Sun Apr 18, 2021 9:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House in Life Estate Tax Implications (Massachusetts)
Replies: 7
Views: 626

Re: House in Life Estate Tax Implications (Massachusetts)

I have a question regarding the tax implications of the sale of a home in a life estate in Massachusetts, if anyone is familiar with this issue. My elderly in-laws placed their house in a life estate with their two children on the deed six years ago. They did this in order to preserve the asset val...
by mkc
Sun Apr 18, 2021 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bad Work Situation - Can I Retire Leave/Retire
Replies: 27
Views: 5037

Re: Bad Work Situation - Can I Retire Leave/Retire

Be sure to investigate the ACA network to understand what is really available. Especially for the next two years when the ACA cliff has been eliminated. For many, pre-Medicare health insurance is much more affordable in 2021 and 2022 (albeit anything past that is unknown). We went from nearly $20K ...
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 7:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non-Pilling Bed Sheets
Replies: 5
Views: 551

Re: Non-Pilling Bed Sheets

High (>280) thread count, long staple Egyptian cotton. Sateen will be smoother than percale. No wrinkle-free (which tend to have polyester and can pill).
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 2:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Medicare Advantage - What's the Deal?
Replies: 140
Views: 10085

Re: Medicare Advantage - What's the Deal?

1. With high-deductible G I know the maximum per year and have nationwide acceptance. 2. With MA PPO I have zero monthly cost, so healthy out-of-pocket is the same as A + B but there will be no Part D penalty if I want to go to an A+B+D in the future due to a need for costly drugs. I am leaning tow...
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 12:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Portfolio Watch has a new look [Calculations may be incorrect]
Replies: 182
Views: 14076

Re: Vanguard Portfolio Watch has a new look

There's definitely some erroneous data in the new Portfolio Watch. Asset Mix on the main Portfolio (not Watch) tab is very different than what we see going into Portfolio Watch (and it doesn't match with VG-held assets, so it's not that) Rebalancing a non-VG (but tracked - T.Rowe Price) IRA holding ...
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Another Tire Question
Replies: 13
Views: 869

Re: Another Tire Question

Big Dog wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 12:27 pm suggest that you compare specs on Tire Rack.
^ This ^

Plus you can read feedback from individuals with the same vehicle to see their ratings and preferences.
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 10:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling a new house with a defective roof - how to proceed?
Replies: 16
Views: 1203

Re: Selling a new house with a defective roof - how to proceed?

On one hand, I have a professional home inspector who has told me the roof has hail damage. On the other, I have a roofer who says he thinks it's a defective product. Neither explanation makes full sense to me. It sounds like blistering, which can look like hail damage but is actually manufacturer'...
by mkc
Sat Apr 17, 2021 8:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric Toothbrush Replacement Recommendations?
Replies: 51
Views: 3631

Re: Electric Toothbrush Replacement Recommendations?

waltman300 wrote: Sat Apr 17, 2021 1:37 am
Does anyone know why so many people recommend and like this one? Its so cheap and there are tons of good reviews on it.


Obviously never heard of this brand before but everyone seem to say its great.
Fails Reviewmeta and Fakespot for suspicious (likely fake) reviews
by mkc
Fri Apr 16, 2021 5:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Federal E-File rejected due to Duplicate 1099-R
Replies: 59
Views: 4401

Re: Federal E-File rejected due to Duplicate 1099-R

Then - while scrutinizing the tax forms I found TurboTax had been mishandling another issue for several years now that caused a combined Tax overcharge of $2340 (Federal only). I have to send in amended taxes for 2017-2020 to fix it. I haven’t looked yet to see if the state taxes need to be redone,...
by mkc
Wed Apr 14, 2021 9:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard poor service vs actual errors
Replies: 20
Views: 1964

Re: Vanguard poor service vs actual errors

I spent the month of Feb setting up new accounts at another brokerage and moving all VG accounts there. Lost all confidence in VG. What new brokerage did you use? How much trouble was it to move all your VG accounts there? I would imagine it's not much trouble to move *if* the funds can easily be t...
by mkc
Wed Apr 14, 2021 5:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer covers 90% of Medical Insurance How Does It Work And Worth Getting to 100%?
Replies: 11
Views: 1028

Re: Employee covers 90% of Medical Insurance How Does It Work And Worth Getting to 100%?

I would ask your employee benefits department for clarification these, particularly the post-Medicare. Some employers require the retiree to pay the full Part B, then provide assistance towards the MediGap and Part D plans. Thank you! My employer is very generous if I live in-state they pay for Par...
by mkc
Wed Apr 14, 2021 2:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Vanguard poor service vs actual errors
Replies: 20
Views: 1964

Re: Vanguard poor service vs actual errors

We all know about the poor service at Vanguard. Long wait times and uneducated reps. I can live with that for now because I so rarely have to contact them. How about actual errors, where they give you more or less money than they should in a transfer, exchange, dividend or anything else? I can not ...
by mkc
Tue Apr 13, 2021 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY recessed lighting installation?
Replies: 51
Views: 2958

Re: DIY recessed lighting installation?

Strongly recommend thin surface mount (use standard J-box) LED lights over recessed can lights. Can lights basically perf your most important insulation layer.

Don't forget to air-seal.
by mkc
Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Good HSA accounts?
Replies: 43
Views: 2466

Re: Good HSA accounts?

Fidelity, 100%. We transferred DH's HSA from HealthEquity to Fidelity a few months ago as well (mine was opened at Fidelity a few years ago)
by mkc
Mon Apr 12, 2021 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer covers 90% of Medical Insurance How Does It Work And Worth Getting to 100%?
Replies: 11
Views: 1028

Re: Employee covers 90% of Medical Insurance How Does It Work And Worth Getting to 100%?

So If found out that 90% of my medical insurance cost after retirement is covered by my employer . I'm retiring at 55 so will need 10 years of coverage until medicare kicks in. Pre-medicare: My premium is $350 per month now and my employer pays a further $2000 a month. Therefore when I retire I'll ...
by mkc
Mon Apr 12, 2021 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: So what are you cooking
Replies: 461
Views: 36738

Re: So what are you cooking

Smoking some beer brats on the Recteq and have potato salad chilling in the fridge. Our reward for yard work day.
by mkc
Mon Apr 12, 2021 9:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: House Building vs. Buying in this Market?
Replies: 21
Views: 2122

Re: House Building vs. Buying in this Market?

We live in east-ish TN and are very familiar with the current market. We also built 3 years ago. And we stay on top of our builder's spec homes. Building will cost significantly more per s.f. right now than buying existing. Plus good builders are running 18-24 months out to start builds. Lot prices ...