Search found 597 matches

by batpot
Tue Jul 10, 2018 1:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Travel credit cards
Replies: 18
Views: 1460

Re: Travel credit cards

The real advantage of the CSR is redemption at the Chase Portal.
We were able to net about 6-7% cash back by redeeming the points for rental cars and Hyatt Hotels.
I never bothered to keep records, but estimate saving roughly $5k with that card over 1.5 years.
by batpot
Mon Jul 09, 2018 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prepaid cell phone plan vs Regular Contract Plan
Replies: 26
Views: 2096

Re: Prepaid cell phone plan vs Regular Contract Plan

How many minutes and data do you use in a month?

I've been very underwhelmed by T-Mobile's coverage area.

ConsumerCellular is an AT&T MVNO that works great, and will save you a ton, provided you don't have large voice requirements.
And you won't have to change phones.
by batpot
Thu Jul 05, 2018 7:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Owning 3 vehicles
Replies: 30
Views: 3028

Re: Owning 3 vehicles

The one thing I don't like about owning 3 cars with 2 drivers is the insurance premium for the 3rd car is priced as though all 3 cars are being driven at the same time. The discount for the 3rd car is small. With 3 cars/2 drivers, only 2 can physically be driven at a time. Seems like the insurance ...
by batpot
Thu Jul 05, 2018 7:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone Tried Youtube TV Yet?
Replies: 42
Views: 3964

Re: Anyone Tried Youtube TV Yet?

DirecTV Now is really good , especially when HBO only costs $5/mo, but it doesn't have some reliability issues sometimes. Did a week trial of Hulu TV, and it was awful, but worst of all we watched a March Madness game which went to overtime, and Hulu cut it off as soon as it exceeded its original ti...
by batpot
Wed May 16, 2018 4:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I will be laid off but can not get unemployment benefits?
Replies: 26
Views: 4026

Re: I will be laid off but can not get unemployment benefits?

Do you have a business license for the stuff you sell on Amazon?
by batpot
Wed May 16, 2018 4:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Brake work estimate
Replies: 45
Views: 3089

Re: Brake work estimate

Seems high. If they didn't even mention "turning the rotors" you probably don't need new ones. Take it to a place that will at least evaluate that first. Just a few weeks ago I got new pads and rotors done on a 2010 Rav4 in a HCOL area for $320 with tax. Pretty sure you can do better than that estim...
by batpot
Wed May 16, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Unique Phone Apps that you find yourself using most often?
Replies: 30
Views: 3841

Re: Unique Phone Apps that you find yourself using most often?

I recently installed the Slick Deals app after years of using their website and found it to be a great time saver

Feedly is great for news feeds, but I mostly just use it for reddit

others I use daily:
ColorNote
Clipper
by batpot
Wed May 02, 2018 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 1st Time Home Purchase Experience
Replies: 12
Views: 1899

Re: 1st Time Home Purchase Experience

One day about 30 days out from settlement date, I saw a regional bank offering 3.95% online. I called them immediately, and my wife and I had signed and uploaded all their forms and requested documents by the end of the day. The following day we got a written loan estimate approving us for 3.95%. W...
by batpot
Wed May 02, 2018 2:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Android browser do you use?
Replies: 44
Views: 2892

Re: What Android browser do you use?

Dolphin Zero ~80% of the time; is my default browser.
Chrome the rest.

Firefox was way too buggy for a bunch of sites, and would often crash or be slow.
Chrome doesn't have a way to force always incognito.

Might have to check out Brave.
by batpot
Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax on Gifted Land
Replies: 3
Views: 296

Re: Tax on Gifted Land

You could use the tax appraisal from 2 years ago as the tax basis.

Also very recent thread on almost exactly the same subject:
viewtopic.php?f=2&t=248064
by batpot
Fri Apr 27, 2018 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: pay extra principal to remove mortgage insurance or contribute to 403b?
Replies: 5
Views: 488

Re: pay extra principal to remove mortgage insurance or contribute to 403b?

PMI deduction was barely maintained for 2017.
There is also a AGI limit of $109k.
by batpot
Thu Apr 26, 2018 2:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Quick question: inherited real estate - how to get a tax basis?
Replies: 17
Views: 1547

Re: Quick question: inherited real estate - how to get a tax basis?

I didn't think of it right away, and was able to get a back-dated appraisal, but it was only about a year after the fact.

Good plan!
by batpot
Mon Apr 16, 2018 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multiple HELOCs?
Replies: 7
Views: 755

Re: Multiple HELOCs?

So what did you end up doing? I am considering doing a HELOC churn. That is: assuming I can find a lender who will grant us a HELOC in the 3rd position w/ the promise of it becoming the 2nd position after we use it to pay down the first one...we'd be coming out way ahead, even paying the early term...
by batpot
Mon Apr 16, 2018 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Multiple HELOCs?
Replies: 7
Views: 755

Re: Multiple HELOCs?

So what did you end up doing? I am considering doing a HELOC churn. That is: assuming I can find a lender who will grant us a HELOC in the 3rd position w/ the promise of it becoming the 2nd position after we use it to pay down the first one...we'd be coming out way ahead, even paying the early termi...
by batpot
Thu Apr 12, 2018 4:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mini Air Compressor
Replies: 22
Views: 1716

Re: Mini Air Compressor

Spend a little extra for California Air Tools.
They're very quiet, and very reliable.
by batpot
Thu Apr 12, 2018 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?
Replies: 92
Views: 7307

Re: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?

For something that you only have to do once a decade, and costs less than 15 bucks tops, I'm amazed there's this much discussion on the subject.
by batpot
Thu Apr 12, 2018 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?
Replies: 92
Views: 7307

Re: Passport photo DIY - anyone done it easily?

spent $12 and about 5 minutes at the local drug store.
by batpot
Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV
Replies: 40
Views: 6734

Re: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV

Really, we don't need devices (with mechanical hard drives) or cloud storage that can record content. We just need that content to be made available when we watch it. that's just the thing though: w/out a DVR, it might not be available when you want to watch it. Just like how DishNetwork/DirecTV ha...
by batpot
Mon Mar 12, 2018 3:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV
Replies: 40
Views: 6734

Re: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV

I was referring to Hulu Live TV, which is just like Direct TV Now/Youtube TV:
https://www.hulu.com/live-tv
by batpot
Mon Mar 12, 2018 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV
Replies: 40
Views: 6734

Re: Finally Cutting the Cord - YouTube TV

Just got a month of Direct TV Now and a 4k Fire for ~$3.50 in tax (after a $35 promo credit from Bank of America credit card). Haven't hooked up the Fire TV yet, but Direct TV Now has been fine so far. Moving the family to my own AT&T account will also get us free HBO, and I think save us a bit on A...
by batpot
Tue Feb 27, 2018 4:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Open a HELOC? With whom?
Replies: 29
Views: 3103

Re: Open a HELOC? With whom?

Did this a little over a year ago. Credit Union would not loan us more conforming loan limit, which was odd. (so primary mortgage principal + HELOC amount <= conforming loan limit). Ended up going w/ US Bank, which charges $90/year, but not until the end of the first year. Paid nothing else out of p...
by batpot
Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: major remodel: do we need architect to oversee project?
Replies: 10
Views: 852

Re: major remodel: do we need architect to oversee project?

Depending on how complicated the remodelling is, and how many contractors/subcontractors are involved, just your lack of knowledge about construction matters is enough to warrant a "consultant" of some kind to oversee the project. I have built 10+ sites as my side hobby (single family houses to apa...
by batpot
Sun Feb 25, 2018 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: major remodel: do we need architect to oversee project?
Replies: 10
Views: 852

major remodel: do we need architect to oversee project?

Have already worked with the architect through the permit and design phase, and are beginning the process of signing contract with the contractor. Do we need the architect to oversee the project? I can't imagine there is much intervention/oversight needed at this point, but don't have time to manage...
by batpot
Thu Dec 14, 2017 6:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do people still use AAA?
Replies: 293
Views: 24216

Re: Do people still use AAA?

costs me ~$50/year, and saves me ~$100/year on my auto insurance.

Used it once when I had 2 flat tires, and my air compressor power connector was broken.
by batpot
Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moto G5 Plus: Software updates?
Replies: 84
Views: 5964

Re: Moto G5 Plus: Software updates?

Chip wrote:
Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:51 pm
I don't believe that I have OK Google turned on (where do you do that, exactly?)
with the phone unlocked, long press the "home" soft button (the circle).
by batpot
Tue Dec 12, 2017 4:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moto G5 Plus: Software updates?
Replies: 84
Views: 5964

Re: Moto G5 Plus: Software updates?

I got my Moto G5 Plus 64gb for $154 after a Wal Mart price protection claim through discover. By far the best phone I've ever owned. Very snappy, and great battery life. By the way: you can download offline maps through Google Maps as well; just bring up the menu and select "offline maps". works ver...
by batpot
Tue Dec 12, 2017 12:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank 11 month [No-Penalty CD]
Replies: 382
Views: 35348

Re: Ally no penalty 11 month CD rate increased to 1.50% this morning

Rate has increased to 1.6%.

Given that it's No Penalty...might as well cash them out, and reinvest, right?
by batpot
Fri Sep 15, 2017 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Iphone X is $1000
Replies: 385
Views: 31738

Re: Iphone X is $1000

Just bought a brand new Moto G5 Plus 64gb for $240.
It's plenty fast and there's no bloatware.
flagship phone prices are such a joke, only more laughable are the people who get sucked in.
by batpot
Fri Sep 15, 2017 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Average American Net Worth is $534,600?
Replies: 15
Views: 3192

Re: Average American Net Worth is $534,600?

If we counted negative net worth, wouldn't the average be zero? No; you would need an equal number of Americans who are billions in the red to offset the likes of Gates and Bezos. It would bring the average number down significantly, though, especially if you include "good debt" like housing and sc...
by batpot
Tue Aug 15, 2017 2:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: [Prevent mail theft; sign for USPS Informed Delivery]
Replies: 219
Views: 20868

Re: Postal Service -- "informed delivery"

I pay for a mailbox that can accept packages from every carrier (i.e. USPS, as well as UPS, Fedex and others), and they send me an email for each package they receive.
by batpot
Mon Jul 24, 2017 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prime MM vs Credit Union acct at .06%
Replies: 5
Views: 522

Re: Prime MM vs Credit Union acct at .06%

Ally's no early withdrawal penalty CD is 1.5% for amounts at least $25k.
You could open 3 of them, and put the remainder in a 1.15% savings account (either Barclay or Ally).
by batpot
Tue Jul 18, 2017 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car braking on downward slopes
Replies: 22
Views: 1797

Re: Car braking on downward slopes

yup, totally normal.
(And annoying if you're not used to it).
by batpot
Tue Jul 18, 2017 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Essential Bike (bicycle) Accessories
Replies: 71
Views: 5366

Re: Essential Bike (bicycle) Accessories

I'm pretty stoked with recent frame bag addition.
Fits a 3L camelbak bladder and a u-lock, and still has extra pockets for snacks, etc.
No more sweaty back.

Have an under saddle bag for the "essentials".
by batpot
Tue Jun 13, 2017 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Suits: best bang for your buck?
Replies: 64
Views: 23609

Re: Suits: best bang for your buck?

got a wool/polyester blended Calvin Klein from Macys for ~$100.
Spent another ~$40 to get it tailored by local dry cleaner (waste had to be taken in, as well as pant cuff sewed)
Jacket was pretty close out of the bag.

Pretty hard to beat that.
by batpot
Thu Jun 01, 2017 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Flagship membership status worth a $50 [transaction] fee?
Replies: 40
Views: 6532

Re: Is Flagship membership status worth a $50 one time fee?

ah bummer; I thought this was a new donation feature for the board.
by batpot
Thu May 25, 2017 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Debit card use
Replies: 5
Views: 966

Re: Debit card use

Debit card should be fine, but Clark Howard calls them fake credit cards. Apparently they don't enjoy the same consumer protections as a credit card. With that being said I've never had any issues using a debit card. "fake" creadit card is understatement...more like "not" a credit card. And besides...
by batpot
Mon May 22, 2017 9:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mega Backdoor Roth and Roth IRA?
Replies: 5
Views: 949

Re: Mega Backdoor Roth and Roth IRA?

Just read about it and found that my employer offers this option for about 15k. If both are allowed then roth ira + mega shouldn't exceed 53k? Are you sure the max is 15k? So they stop allowing post-tax contributions after you reach $15k? That's odd, but I suppose not out of the realm of possibilit...
by batpot
Wed May 10, 2017 11:30 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?
Replies: 213
Views: 35843

Re: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?

Thanks...it's in the letter, but the letter isn't on me at the moment. So... ** The Insight Savings Account ('Savings Account') is made available to Cardholders through Republic Bank of Chicago®, Members FDIC. As of January 1, 2017, the Annual Percentage Yield ('APY') is 5.00%. This rate is subject ...
by batpot
Wed May 10, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?
Replies: 213
Views: 35843

Re: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?

And another one bites the dust... Insight is getting out of the game completely; just received a letter in the mail today that they're going w/ another bank, and the savings rates goes to 0.0%...not even just a reduction in the amount. Oh well. The new bank is providing the same service as before -...
by batpot
Tue May 09, 2017 9:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 18" vs 20" Tires
Replies: 39
Views: 7499

Re: 18" vs 20" Tires

How often do you parallel park?
bigger rims = shallower tire = rim scrapes on curb.
by batpot
Tue May 09, 2017 9:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?
Replies: 213
Views: 35843

Re: guaranteed 5% vs stocks?

And another one bites the dust...

Insight is getting out of the game completely; just received a letter in the mail today that they're going w/ another bank, and the savings rates goes to 0.0%...not even just a reduction in the amount.
Oh well.
by batpot
Tue May 09, 2017 9:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to find deals?
Replies: 9
Views: 1808

Re: How to find deals?

slickdeals.net lets you set deal alerts.
by batpot
Wed Apr 26, 2017 3:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Negative points" on mortgage
Replies: 50
Views: 4841

Re: "Negative points" on mortgage

jimb_fromATL wrote:[qu
IF
... there is no prepayment penalty;
then take the money and refi with someone else.
:greedy
by batpot
Thu Apr 06, 2017 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One 360 $200 bonus (and now $300 checking bonus)
Replies: 221
Views: 35417

Re: Capital One 360 $200 bonus

Guess I got lucky...

Signed up March 30, not thinking about test deposit turn around time...
Test deposits didn't post until April 3 in Barlcays; I verified same day, and transfer to CapOne360 happened April 3 as well.
$200 posted today. :greedy
by batpot
Fri Mar 31, 2017 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank - access issues, normal?
Replies: 13
Views: 1469

Re: Ally Bank - access issues, normal?

they can now transfer funds to/from external accounts in a single day without a fee. oh really? I thought when Ally transferred to popmoney this got shut down? With my credit union, popmoney charges a $2-3 fee to do a 1 day transfer. I don't use popmoney. I just use Ally's "Transfers" function to s...
by batpot
Thu Mar 30, 2017 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Handling future healthcare expenses AFTER legal settlement?
Replies: 5
Views: 993

Re: Handling future healthcare expenses AFTER legal settlement?

One simple solution might be to get different health insurance. Drop your company offering and go ACA? Go with a different company offering?
You would owe the new insurance company nothing, and they currently aren't allowed to take into account per-existing conditions...
by batpot
Thu Mar 30, 2017 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Capital One 360 $200 bonus (and now $300 checking bonus)
Replies: 221
Views: 35417

Re: Capital One 360 $200 bonus

Just a thought...is it worth keeping multiple accounts at different institutions for protections from hackers?
Of course putting all of your money in the one that isn't hacked is the best option, but how can you know?
by batpot
Thu Mar 30, 2017 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank - access issues, normal?
Replies: 13
Views: 1469

Re: Ally Bank - access issues, normal?

they can now transfer funds to/from external accounts in a single day without a fee. oh really? I thought when Ally transferred to popmoney this got shut down? With my credit union, popmoney charges a $2-3 fee to do a 1 day transfer. One thing I really like about Barclays is their 1 day external AC...
by batpot
Mon Mar 27, 2017 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice about massive changes in daughter's college program by dean
Replies: 52
Views: 5301

Re: Need advice about massive changes in daughter's college program by dean

Is the degree currently ABET accredited?
The changes may make it lose such accreditation; would approach discussion with the Dean over that subject first...assuming it applies.
by batpot
Mon Mar 27, 2017 11:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Geico insurance rate increase: 26.24% APY?
Replies: 75
Views: 12926

Re: Geico insurance rate increase: 26.24% APY?

Yes, rates are generally going up across the board; State Farm reported $7 Billion loss in 2016. http://www.insurancejournal.com/news/national/2017/03/01/443224.htm Time to shop around, but you may be disappointed to find that Geico is still the cheapest. When your rate approaches that of Amica, swi...