Search found 1385 matches

by surfstar
Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2nd row buckets seats for 7 year old (vehicle)?
Replies: 8
Views: 722

Re: 2nd row buckets seats for 7 year old (vehicle)?

CPO for half price!

$80k for a Ford SUV? Ugh. Imagine the depreciation curve on that thing. (which is why you should buy used)
by surfstar
Mon Aug 28, 2017 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is Geico a bait and switcher?
Replies: 32
Views: 4350

Re: Is Geico a bait and switcher?

Geico has been the lowest cost auto and now supplemental condo insurance, we've ever had.
I've been with them for nearly 20 years, I think. Every now and then I'd compare prices - no one came close.

Only "claims" I've had, though, are for windshield chip repair.
by surfstar
Fri Aug 25, 2017 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2nd row buckets seats for 7 year old (vehicle)?
Replies: 8
Views: 722

Re: 2nd row buckets seats for 7 year old (vehicle)?

Anything is possible. Now whether its worth the time/money/effort... https://www.google.com/search?biw=1117&bih=699&q=2011+Ford+explorer+retrofit+rear+bucket+seats&oq=2011+Ford+explorer+retrofit+rear+bucket+seats&gs_l=psy-ab.3..33i21k1.531.7216.0.7304.29.28.1.0.0.0.187.2827.13j13.26.0....0...1.1.64....
by surfstar
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Taxable vs Tax-advantaged - Fees/Turnover/Etc.
Replies: 11
Views: 652

Re: Taxable vs Tax-advantaged - Fees/Turnover/Etc.

Lower fees are always preferred. Spend some more time reading the wiki, etc. The relationship between a tax-advantaged account that only offers "high" ER funds, vs investing in a taxable account is dependent on everyone's situation. I believe a rough rule of thumb (that was applicable to us, when I ...
by surfstar
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 3% credit card fee vs wiring from B of A
Replies: 18
Views: 1028

Re: 3% credit card fee vs wiring from B of A

Ditto on avoiding a forex fee. Also see if there are any cards that offer trip cancellation insurance, free, as a bonus.

Much easier to fight any future issues when original payment was with a CC, than via a wire transfer.


Bingo: https://www.chase.com/card-benefits/sap ... red/travel
by surfstar
Wed Aug 23, 2017 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Experience finding gas pump card skimmer?
Replies: 46
Views: 4190

Re: Experience finding gas pump card skimmer?

0

another thing with "zero" - credit card fraud liability. Leaves me with much better things to worry about.

I would not use a debit/ATM card, only use a CC that gives you 3%+ cashback on gas, and never think twice of the issue.
by surfstar
Wed Aug 23, 2017 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you hire an obese nanny?
Replies: 81
Views: 2984

Re: Would you hire an obese nanny?

Substitute "obese" with a race, color, national original, sex, sexual preference, etc and see if you still feel the same way, OP.

Unless you know their medical history, you may be condemning them for something that is equivalent to their skin tone.
by surfstar
Fri Aug 18, 2017 5:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone planning on never retiring?
Replies: 138
Views: 10548

Re: Anyone planning on never retiring?

The Catch-22 in this thread is huge. Doing what I enjoy doing day in and day out, does not equate into making money. I can't be: a professional surfer, rock climber, backpacker, snowboarder, SCUBA diver, traveler, etc. I'm not one who could capitalize on writing or taking photos of the above, either...
by surfstar
Thu Aug 17, 2017 5:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyone planning on never retiring?
Replies: 138
Views: 10548

Re: Anyone planning on never retiring?

I get no self-worth or satisfaction out of my job or working. I would happily retire yesterday. I enjoy my holidays and weekends so much more. I have much better things to do with my free time than work. Unfortunately, gotta work long enough to retire, as I haven't found a way otherwise. (I'm open t...
by surfstar
Thu Aug 17, 2017 5:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: popcorn ceiling, removal or drywall over it?
Replies: 41
Views: 2937

Re: popcorn ceiling, removal or drywall over it?

Asbestos materials were banned in 1977. If this ceiling was done after that, you're safe. If you do test it and it has asbestos, you could be looking at thousands of dollars to properly remove it through an abatement company. 1978 and the ban was on spray applied surfacing materials. Think popcorn ...
by surfstar
Thu Aug 17, 2017 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: popcorn ceiling, removal or drywall over it?
Replies: 41
Views: 2937

Re: popcorn ceiling, removal or drywall over it?

ASBESTOS HAZARD!!! Please take a sample and have it analyzed (2-3 samples from various places/rooms is much better) for asbestos, prior to deciding on how to handle it. Popcorn ceilings are friable and a hazardous material, if asbestos containing. I do not recommend dry-walling over/against it, unl...
by surfstar
Wed Aug 16, 2017 1:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buy + hold to avoid being priced out in the Bay Area?
Replies: 20
Views: 1905

Re: Buy + hold to avoid being priced out in the Bay Area?

I would wait and see what the market is like when the time comes.

Well, actually, I would save up and retire at 35 and travel. Make a ton of money just to spend a ton of money?
by surfstar
Wed Aug 16, 2017 1:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: California - clarification on taxes
Replies: 36
Views: 2626

Re: California - clarification on taxes

Looks like I was right :shock:. For every dollar you make in that bracket, you get to keep 54 cents. That's crazy. Enjoy the weather! :D WE DO! Also our utilities are quite low, as its never too hot or too cold :sharebeer I wouldn't advise against making more $ because of CA taxes, but I sure would...
by surfstar
Wed Aug 16, 2017 1:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: please help...am I overextended - first home
Replies: 78
Views: 6762

Re: please help...am I overextended - first home

If you like it and think you'd be much happier in a home than a dark, tiny 1br apt... Rent out a room for the first year or two, that will help with monthly cashflow and hopefully allow you to build up some reserves / emergency funds. Run the NYT rent vs buy calculator. Many times. https://www.nytim...
by surfstar
Wed Aug 16, 2017 11:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does personal wealth affect job hunting?
Replies: 57
Views: 7115

Re: How does personal wealth affect job hunting?

If I was personally wealthy, I would not be job hunting. :oops: surfstar, Let's say that your number is 2 million, your job hunting will not change if your net worth is $1 less than 2 million? How about 100K less? Most of us work in a gray scale. KlangFool While we are a long ways off, time- and mo...
by surfstar
Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is $9000 too much for a sectional sofa ?
Replies: 130
Views: 8572

Re: Is $9000 too much for a sectional sofa ?

You're using a "designer." That's to be expected.

We use IKEA ;)
by surfstar
Tue Aug 15, 2017 1:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does personal wealth affect job hunting?
Replies: 57
Views: 7115

Re: How does personal wealth affect job hunting?

If I was personally wealthy, I would not be job hunting. :oops:
by surfstar
Mon Aug 14, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Public vs Private Elementary
Replies: 57
Views: 3468

Re: Public vs Private Elementary

I attended a Catholic school for grades 3-8.

Luckily I still learned science and evolution in High School and College.
by surfstar
Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?
Replies: 25
Views: 3200

Re: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?

So as a somewhat reformed "car guy", I've decided to buy a used prius in Oct. when my current lease is up. You've got me thinking though. Really... $15k for a new 2017 mazda 3 hatch? Maybe I should look at these. If you need Prius like mpg, but want fun to drive, another option is a VW... Deals to ...
by surfstar
Mon Aug 14, 2017 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When does renting make sense
Replies: 112
Views: 9566

Re: When does renting make sense

Wanna know what the "rent vs buy" calculators won't tell you? They're only good for the 1st year of renting/buying. Check out the gold standard: https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2014/upshot/buy-rent-calculator.html It is as accurate as you can get, based on your accuracy for predicting future in...
by surfstar
Fri Aug 11, 2017 1:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?
Replies: 25
Views: 3200

Re: Buying a 2017 Mazda 3 new for $15k?

Sounds like a good deal and I'd definitely take 0% loans when I can make more than that easily.
by surfstar
Fri Aug 11, 2017 12:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Redfin
Replies: 17
Views: 1951

Re: Redfin

Redfin was the best RE website for browsing listings, that we found. Much better than their competition, and when I read some articles about their model, it was apparent that they were different and better. That was our experience, just using the site to browse. We stayed more informed than our Agen...
by surfstar
Thu Aug 10, 2017 12:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Struggling with Justifying an Expensive Car Purchase
Replies: 120
Views: 6403

Re: Struggling with Justifying an Expensive Car Purchase

If the car is what makes you "happy", go for it.
By the extreme savings you've pulled off to get to this point, I doubt that you guys are much for travel? I would have suggested a cheaper car, more trips, and an early retirement, but that doesn't seem to be your motivation.
by surfstar
Tue Aug 08, 2017 4:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a Vehicle the Old Fashioned Way
Replies: 57
Views: 5409

Re: Buying a Vehicle the Old Fashioned Way

Its only a fair price when neither side is happy ;)

We drove 4.5 hrs to get my car and I never bothered comparing to TrueCar/etc as my price would have been another 10% less, most likely.
I did spend quite a bit more time and effort than you did, though.
by surfstar
Tue Aug 08, 2017 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When does renting make sense
Replies: 112
Views: 9566

Re: When does renting make sense

Use the New York Times rent vs own calculator, pretty good estimate if you use reasonable investment gain projections and housing appreciation projections. This. The rent vs buy calculator is all one needs to determine the financial side of the financial + emotional aspects of buying a house. What ...
by surfstar
Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Beach condo investing
Replies: 32
Views: 4460

Re: Beach condo investing

llessac15 wrote: For now, I'm just interested in having some real estate that pays for itself with very little day to day involvement from myself.
If it were that easy, everyone would be doing it.
by surfstar
Tue Aug 08, 2017 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I Buy a New Car?
Replies: 42
Views: 3094

Re: Should I Buy a New Car?

I have a 2010 Toyota Camry V6 with 95K miles. It needs new brakes, the 100k tune up (timing belt, etc.) and new tires. My estimate for costs for these things where I reside is about $1700-2000. After nixing the Tbelt (as its a v6, as others have noted and a chain) I see: $300-500 for brakes $50 "tu...
by surfstar
Wed May 17, 2017 6:54 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Convince me to get back into stocks!
Replies: 83
Views: 6955

Re: Convince me to get back into stocks!

Somebody please convince me to get back into the market! I won't try. It's your money. It's your life. It's your decision. I ... have about $50k to invest (in my 401k) – it’s currently all cash (because I switched from employer fund options to brokeragelink in my fidelity 401k in 2014, which forced...
by surfstar
Tue May 16, 2017 10:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Solar Roof
Replies: 81
Views: 9386

Re: Tesla Solar Roof

What about the fact that electricity prices could DROP over the next 30 years? Better and more affordable solar generation and storage. Are these 30 year savings predicated on electricity prices today and increasing with inflation? Are you entering into a 30 year price contract with the local utilit...
by surfstar
Fri May 12, 2017 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does a new car purchase make sense?
Replies: 40
Views: 3587

Re: Does a new car purchase make sense?

2 hr commute?

Buy a used Prius. Safe enough. Cost of car will be partially offset by savings. They not only save on gas, but are very reliable and require very little maintenance.
by surfstar
Fri May 12, 2017 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla Solar Roof
Replies: 81
Views: 9386

Re: Tesla Solar Roof

Our electric bill is so low, our payoff would be about... never.
And I like the thought of saving energy and money and generating your own electricity, and all that. But alas, ROI dominates.
by surfstar
Mon May 08, 2017 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do Bogleheads buy cars?
Replies: 71
Views: 8600

Re: How do Bogleheads buy cars?

Assuming the subject was riddle, my answer was "infrequently."
by surfstar
Fri May 05, 2017 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategy for Mortgage Downpayment < 20%
Replies: 28
Views: 1862

Re: Strategy for Mortgage Downpayment < 20%

Yes, remember that just because your LTV ratio is at the point that PMI CAN be eliminated, doesn't mean it WILL be.
I've read too many stories on here of posters trying to get rid of PMI and the many hoops that have to be jumped through.

Much better to never have PMI in the first place.
by surfstar
Thu May 04, 2017 12:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategy for Mortgage Downpayment < 20%
Replies: 28
Views: 1862

Re: Strategy for Mortgage Downpayment < 20%

Avoid PMI. You easily can. Put down 20% and go for it.
by surfstar
Fri Apr 28, 2017 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A Game of "Who is responsible"
Replies: 45
Views: 3399

Re: A Game of "Who is responsible"

Split the difference - give him $50 and move on with life.

Ideally they should pick up the tab, as they probably made out quite well on 3 toilet installs.
by surfstar
Thu Apr 27, 2017 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best strategy for retaining tenants?
Replies: 30
Views: 2288

Re: Best strategy for retaining tenants?

From the advice on this thread, I'm thinking I might approach them with a 2-3% increase if they go month-to-month, OR no increase in rent if they sign a 12-18 month lease. An 18-month lease would be ideal as it would bring the expiration back on cycle to the best selling season for condos in this t...
by surfstar
Tue Apr 25, 2017 12:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car sharing with neighbors and liability
Replies: 15
Views: 1723

Re: Car sharing with neighbors and liability

I see way too many negatives and not enough positives.
by surfstar
Tue Apr 25, 2017 11:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Breaks Down on Long Road Trip
Replies: 55
Views: 5068

Re: Car Breaks Down on Long Road Trip

It happened to us while we were still 100+ to the destination. It was almost mid night so I had the car towed to the hotel. Next morning, I bought a few tools and a new alternator. It took me the whole morning to finish the job but everything was fine after that. I think it depends on a lot of fact...
by surfstar
Wed Apr 12, 2017 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car Breaks Down on Long Road Trip
Replies: 55
Views: 5068

Re: Car Breaks Down on Long Road Trip

Don't worry about it.

Deal with it if and when it happens.
by surfstar
Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My New Car Buying Tips
Replies: 236
Views: 55770

Re: My New Car Buying Tips

I bought my VW Sportwagen last year for a song. We did just as well last month on a Prius for my sister. It is about the individual car and dealer. I quite believe that they were *almost* upset to be selling at the prices we paid. Not "needing" a new car helps tons. I don't buy into the &q...
by surfstar
Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you have enough? How I realized yeah I do.
Replies: 75
Views: 13354

Re: Do you have enough? How I realized yeah I do.

Congrats. So it is one more year? But this time its true? I am still one of those who has better things to do than work and will be out the door at FI. Still enjoy my work. I say sometime in 2018 and think I mean it, but in the back of my mind I think maybe 2019. I think a lot of it will depend on ...
by surfstar
Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you have enough? How I realized yeah I do.
Replies: 75
Views: 13354

Re: Do you have enough? How I realized yeah I do.

Congrats. So it is one more year? But this time its true?

I am still one of those who has better things to do than work and will be out the door at FI.

:moneybag :beer
by surfstar
Tue Mar 21, 2017 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Recommended emergency fund for middle class households: $13,800
Replies: 64
Views: 7645

Re: Recommended emergency fund for middle class households: $13,800

Pretty sure that by the time you have saved up years worth of expenses for an "emergency fund", you are well above "middle class"


Catch-22 for most here
by surfstar
Thu Mar 16, 2017 10:17 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Where do you save for large purchases?
Replies: 42
Views: 3449

Re: Where do you save for large purchases?

We had multiple Netspend, Mango Money and LMCU accounts. Had. Then we bought a house. "luckily" those same accounts no longer pay 5% on $5k each (LMCU 3% on $15k), but were neutered. Mango accounts were bad enough to cancel, but we still have Netspend and Brinks which pay 5% on $1k each (m...
by surfstar
Thu Feb 23, 2017 11:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Another can we afford home thread!
Replies: 50
Views: 3982

Re: Another can we afford home thread!

2400 sq ft is twice the size of our 2/2 How is that not enough room? Do you want a house with rooms that are never used and only house furniture? If your current house feels "cramped" - time to downsize your stuff. Keep what you actually NEED and use. Much better plan, IMO. I kept trying t...
by surfstar
Wed Feb 22, 2017 6:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Household budget trim: next up is cell phone plan
Replies: 30
Views: 3408

Re: Household budget trim: next up is cell phone plan

another Cricket family here :)

Are your phones "paid off"? If you no longer owe VZW money on them or have them under contract, ask them to provide the unlock codes.
by surfstar
Wed Feb 22, 2017 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you replace your electrical switches/outlets or use an electrician?
Replies: 93
Views: 6852

Re: Do you replace your electrical switches/outlets or use an electrician?

I do lots of handy work. I start by watching youtube videos. Doesn't everyone? Yep. Its how I learned to replace toilets. Did two at my Mom's place and two at ours. Saved hundreds of dollars (and now lots of water!). Electrical - same thing. Car maintenance and most repairs = same. Diagnosing is th...
by surfstar
Fri Feb 17, 2017 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The russians are hacking me
Replies: 36
Views: 6495

Re: The russians are hacking me

Also using LastPass free, with Google Authenticator for 2nd factor. Feel more secure after adding that recently.