Search found 144 matches

by lotusflower
Sun Jun 10, 2018 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The effect of a difficult last name on employment prospects...
Replies: 43
Views: 3457

Re: The effect of a difficult last name on employment prospects...

AlphaLess wrote:
Sun Jun 10, 2018 6:40 pm
Some last names have a really cool sound to them:

- oil: Chevron, Exxon,
Wat?
by lotusflower
Sat Jun 09, 2018 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ignorant question about fixed rate home equity loans
Replies: 18
Views: 1199

Re: ignorant question about fixed rate home equity loans

I do use Schedule A and last year it totaled about $26,000 with a bit over $10K in taxes as part of it, so if I can put this additional interest on it, that would be good. I am going to write the IRS a letter and see if the project qualifies. That gives them lots of months to answer. I'm not a tax ...
by lotusflower
Sun Jun 03, 2018 6:35 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: “Financing” 2nd home purchase
Replies: 13
Views: 1105

Re: “Financing” 2nd home purchase

What about a HELOC on your paid off primary home? Should be able to get a similar interest rate as the conventional mortgage, with much more flexibility in paying it off.
by lotusflower
Thu May 31, 2018 12:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Investing an Emergency Fund
Replies: 30
Views: 2553

Re: Investing an Emergency Fund

I started thinking.. just what kind of emergency am I being prepared for? A major car repair goes on a card. I have 45-60 days to figure it out. An unexpected root canal? Care Credit, 0 percent interest. Lose my job? well in my case I'd get nice severance. Hail storm ruins my roof? I have insurance...
by lotusflower
Wed May 30, 2018 6:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Company going public - exercise ISOs?
Replies: 5
Views: 680

Re: Company going public - exercise ISOs?

My company just recently announced an IPO merger that will have us going public near the end of the year w/ a 1-yr lockout afterwards (no acceleration right now). I have vested ISOs (#s below) that I always figured I’d just exercise on an exit event ... I don't understand. If your company is not pu...
by lotusflower
Wed May 30, 2018 3:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Router hack, have you acted?
Replies: 101
Views: 8623

Re: Router hack, have you acted?

We turn ours off every night before going to bed. Hopefully, that provides us with some protection... Why would folks leave it on if you are sleeping? Because it's just to much trouble to remmeber to turn a router on and off several times a day, life's too short for that. Plus, what's different dur...
by lotusflower
Wed May 30, 2018 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Router hack, have you acted?
Replies: 101
Views: 8623

Re: Router hack, have you acted?

It is good to run this check to see if your equipment is exposed to hackers: https://www.grc.com/x/ne.dll?bh0bkyd2 That's a reasonable test, but it only shows whether you are visible to inbound connections. If the malware can be received during an outbound connection, like if you were shown a web p...
by lotusflower
Wed May 30, 2018 1:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Router hack, have you acted?
Replies: 101
Views: 8623

Re: Router hack, have you acted?

Does just turning it off and then back on "do the trick"? It seems like that will help. An article I read stated that the feds had taken over a known rogue server, and by rebooting infected router they will receive a connection from it which will help them https://www.cnet.com/news/the-fbi-wants-yo...
by lotusflower
Wed May 23, 2018 2:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Chase Savings Account emptied out!
Replies: 77
Views: 12289

Re: Chase Savings Account emptied out!

I was about to start a thread on this as I added a new payment account to my credit card. The payment account just needed a routing number and acct number, which I know are printed on paper checks. So I was wondering how they prevent fraud. Sure they could verify account names, in my case they would...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 3:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: done with Gmail
Replies: 114
Views: 12042

Re: done with Gmail

I create a pass phrase for my Gmail account that I remember in my head, like "I like to post on Bogleheads" becomes "iltpob" and then I usually add some combination of numbers or special characters that has some significance to me and only I know, and that is my password. The result is a password t...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: done with Gmail
Replies: 114
Views: 12042

Re: done with Gmail

Doesn't that create potential portability problem if you move or want to change ISPs? Yes, the OP would be smart to get a custom domain (is rob5tcp.net still available?) when setting up the new service. Then the address will be portable between service providers forever. I wish I had done that befo...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: done with Gmail
Replies: 114
Views: 12042

Re: done with Gmail

Don't know if this could be the OP's issue or not, but when I first started using Keepass several years ago, I would sometimes forget to click "Save" when I made password or other changes. On the bright side it didn't take long for me to remember to save changes after a few aggravating incidents. T...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: done with Gmail
Replies: 114
Views: 12042

Re: done with Gmail

This is a KeePass issue. Not sure why you're blaming Gmail. No, it sounds like a Windows issue. The way I read it, OP generated a new password, used it for Gmail, and then Windows crashed before he saved Keepass so the new password is no longer known. This is not Gmail's fault at all, but OP doesn'...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 12:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Re: done with Gmail
Replies: 114
Views: 12042

Re: done with Gmail

If you want to be ultra-safe with Keepass, you can always cut and paste the old password into the Notes area before generating a new password, and then save Keepass with both passwords before changing the password on whatever site you are using (e.g. Gmail). I don't do that for every site but I have...
by lotusflower
Mon May 21, 2018 12:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finance a $28,000 house for Brother?
Replies: 73
Views: 5393

Re: Finance a $28,000 house for Brother?

Whatever you do, please do *not* co-sign for anyone's loans - you will be left holding the bag. I don't care if it's your brother or your buddy who saved you over Macho Grande. Give a gift of money (not a loan, as you're not expecting to be paid back), but don't co-sign a loan. Just curious, is the...
by lotusflower
Sat May 19, 2018 3:17 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finance a $28,000 house for Brother?
Replies: 73
Views: 5393

Re: Finance a $28,000 house for Brother?

Do you have enough money to buy the house and rent/mortgage it back to him? I agree it's overall risky, I would do that for my brother if I could. There are other threads here about holding mortgages, but basically you want to record the deed and do it at near market rates so you can get all the nor...
by lotusflower
Thu May 17, 2018 12:07 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Urgent: escrow situation in bay area
Replies: 50
Views: 2956

Re: Urgent: escrow situation in bay area

I think you would be crazy to get out of the purchase contract and risk your $36k earnest money plus time spent on the hassle of fighting it out. The risk of a 20% loss does not seem like a large risk, and as long as you can make the payments (realizing that can be a big if) it doesn't matter if the...
by lotusflower
Wed May 16, 2018 8:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why can't you rollover a retirement account into another one that you no longer work at?
Replies: 33
Views: 1857

Re: Why can't you rollover a retirement account into another one that you no longer work at?

I guess I just don't know the difference between an IRA and a regular retirement account (like a 401K or 403B). And what it means to transfer one into a IRA account and if you can later transfer that IRA account into a 401k or 403b if you want to down the road. 401k and 403b are sponsored/managed b...
by lotusflower
Wed May 16, 2018 7:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New motorcycle rider
Replies: 106
Views: 4707

Re: New motorcycle rider

I've had a bike for the last 29 years in NorCal, though I don't ride as much now, due to busy family life. I personally think the risk is tolerable if you take it seriously and are hyper-vigilant while riding. Freeway riding doesn't worry me much, and I've always assumed all caged drivers are distra...
by lotusflower
Wed Apr 18, 2018 12:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Unable to e file extension and direct pay today
Replies: 5
Views: 334

Re: Unable to e file extension and direct pay today

You could just pay at https://www.irs.gov/payments/direct-pay which gives you an automatic 4868 filing and enter that into your tax software separately.
by lotusflower
Mon Apr 16, 2018 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 2710

Re: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund

I'm interested in the same kind of thing. But I've never understood why people want to put EF money in multi-year CDs. I want the money to be able to flow out over a 6-month period to meet living expenses, so from that perspective the ideal would be a ladder of 6 6-month CDs. Unfortunately the rates...
by lotusflower
Fri Apr 13, 2018 4:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Aren't we betting a bit too heavily on US stocks and bonds?
Replies: 34
Views: 2755

Re: "How Much International Stock? A Suggestion"

Here are the top 10 holdings of the Vanguard European Stock Index Fund. ... 3 HSBC Holdings plc ... 3 are Swiss. From a GNP perspective does that sound right? 3 are quasi-American, with over 40% revenue and shareholders coming from the US. There is 1 Hong Kong company. The UK is hitting above its w...
by lotusflower
Fri Apr 13, 2018 3:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Aren't we betting a bit too heavily on US stocks and bonds?
Replies: 34
Views: 2755

Re: "How Much International Stock? A Suggestion"

Here are the top 10 holdings of the Vanguard European Stock Index Fund. ... 3 HSBC Holdings plc ... 3 are Swiss. From a GNP perspective does that sound right? 3 are quasi-American, with over 40% revenue and shareholders coming from the US. There is 1 Hong Kong company. The UK is hitting above its w...
by lotusflower
Fri Apr 13, 2018 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young
Replies: 111
Views: 10646

Re: Mid-40s in tech - how to pass off as acceptably young

A lot of good stuff in this thread but also a lot of people who don't understand how age bias works. Most of the time it's not a matter of "Gee John Q. Eighties really knows his stuff but no one over 50 is worth hiring. And frankly, graying temples just give me the creeps". That's just not what we'r...
by lotusflower
Thu Apr 12, 2018 10:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage Broker fee - I think I'm being taken advantage of
Replies: 8
Views: 692

Re: Mortgage Broker fee - I think I'm being taken advantage of

I have used a mortgage broker on several mortgages. The way I think of it, they have access to wholesale pricing and they give you retail pricing. The process is not transparent at all, but I have never been able to find wholesale pricing on my own, and I think the brokers have done well for me and ...
by lotusflower
Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?
Replies: 134
Views: 8408

Re: Cash flow problems - best way to handle?

Are there other possibilities for the HELOC? I got one recently from BofA at a very competitive rate with no fees. The $1k in fees seems outrageous. If you really need to borrow for the short term and have a long term plan to get cash-flow positive (and hopefully cut expenses) then a HELOC would be ...
by lotusflower
Fri Apr 06, 2018 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: VHCOL Home Buying Advice (Bay Area, where else?)
Replies: 65
Views: 5293

Re: VHCOL Home Buying Advice (Bay Area, where else?)

San Francisco, New York, Los Angeles and Miami are seeing an exodus of residents of more modest means, replaced by higher-income earners, reports The Wall Street Journal. Issi Romem, chief economist at building-data website BuildZoom, analyzed Census data to identify the trend, which is most pronou...
by lotusflower
Mon Mar 26, 2018 12:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying a two family “investment” home
Replies: 33
Views: 2834

Re: Buying a two family “investment” home

Is it ever wise to put less than 20% on a property? Not sure I understand. Why wouldn't you put in as little as possible if you could do that. The 20% is demanded by the banks to protect them in case you stop paying the loan early on. They can use the 20% value to defray the costs of unloading the ...
by lotusflower
Fri Mar 23, 2018 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make
Replies: 64
Views: 4682

Re: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make

I really, really appreciate an actual mathematical response here. However aren't we missing the fact that with renting, I could invest an extra $2k into the stock market per month? That's $24k/year invested. I feel like there's a lot of missing math, but interesting that you think buying is the bet...
by lotusflower
Wed Mar 21, 2018 4:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make
Replies: 64
Views: 4682

Re: Buying vs renting - really tough decision to make

I don't see how that makes sense. If I'm going to get a $1m home, I may as well buy. I'm guessing that renting a $1m home is a giant waste of money compared to buying it where at least some of that income is equity. That's why I said if I rent I'll get a smaller property. It's less than I need but ...
by lotusflower
Sat Mar 17, 2018 3:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Am I handling this windfall correctly?
Replies: 39
Views: 4622

Re: Am I handling this windfall correctly?

That's an interesting idea about doing a more conservative investment now and then going wild on stocks when the market eventually crashes. Just to clarify, though, do you mean starting with something like 20/80 stocks/bonds immediately and rebalancing to 50/50 when the market goes down? The stocks...
by lotusflower
Mon Mar 12, 2018 10:28 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Paying off mortgage vs. additional tax-advantaged retirement savings
Replies: 93
Views: 5772

Re: Paying off mortgage vs. additional tax-advantaged retirement savings

Would it help to think about your mortgage as you having sold a bond on your house rather than owing someone money on it? Excepting when a mortgage is underwater, the house is an asset, and the mortgage is just a financial instrument that lets you buy it over time. You could liquidate it at any time...
by lotusflower
Thu Mar 08, 2018 11:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Bluetooth speaker Phone
Replies: 16
Views: 1437

Re: Best Bluetooth speaker Phone

Not bluetooth but at this size it doesn't need to be:

https://www.amazon.com/Pioneer-Rayz-Ral ... B072M88FGL
by lotusflower
Tue Mar 06, 2018 8:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to delete/diminish/replace Quicken and minimize time tracking finances?
Replies: 45
Views: 2697

Re: How to delete/diminish/replace Quicken and minimize time tracking finances?

That’s the thing. If you are going to download to excel, it shouldn’t take you any longer to download them into quicken. Possibly less time. Well I only download once a year or so, and I don't spend all the other useless time futzing around with Quicken that I used to do, and I don't have to pay fo...
by lotusflower
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to delete/diminish/replace Quicken and minimize time tracking finances?
Replies: 45
Views: 2697

Re: How to delete/diminish/replace Quicken and minimize time tracking finances?

Once the kids were born and I ran out of time, I stopped using Quicken. I just pay myself first (payroll direct deposit to savings and retirement) and spend what I spend. Knowing how much I spend on car repairs and lunch doesn't really help me that much. If the car needs to be repaired, it gets repa...
by lotusflower
Tue Mar 06, 2018 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Donations to your enrolled public school
Replies: 106
Views: 6103

Re: Donations to your enrolled public school

Here in California this is just a way of life for urban schools. The schools are terribly funded and taxes are nearly impossible to raise (Prop 13 of course) and you have very wealthy people living right next to very poor people and often going to the same schools. Many people would pay higher taxes...
by lotusflower
Fri Mar 02, 2018 12:18 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Perrenial question - pay off mortgage or not
Replies: 27
Views: 2352

Re: Perrenial question - pay off mortgage or not

p2potter wrote:
Thu Mar 01, 2018 2:16 pm
I believe that interest on 2nd home mortgages is no longer deductable with the new tax laws, so there would be no obvious benefit for keeping it.
Don't think that's true. It's deductible up to $750k for both first and second combined AFAIK.
by lotusflower
Wed Feb 28, 2018 4:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advice Needed After Rear Ended Collision
Replies: 31
Views: 3398

Re: Advice Needed After Rear Ended Collision

Last time I was rear-ended I was told I would get an aftermarket bumper since the car was 5 years old and they were only obligated to make it better than a 5-year-old bumper and not a new bumper. On that particular item I don't know that it's worth a huge fuss.
by lotusflower
Tue Feb 27, 2018 1:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Misc Income [how to report with no 1099]
Replies: 87
Views: 4226

Re: Misc Income [how to report with no 1099]

I am an engineer, not an accountant or other tax professional, but I have been on the giving and receiving ends of 1099s for the last 25 years. I can certainly verify that once a business turns in a 1099-MISC for a contractor, there is no response or verification from the IRS. I'm pretty sure the IR...
by lotusflower
Mon Feb 26, 2018 2:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me understand HCOL and valuations
Replies: 22
Views: 1466

Re: Help me understand HCOL and valuations

The Bay Area is certainly difficult for service workers. But one difference that makes the VHCOL area still function is that many are willing to live in shared housing, whereas in a different area more people are able to have their own apartment. At the end of the day, people want to live in an HCOL...
by lotusflower
Fri Feb 23, 2018 11:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I ask for a larger raise at yearly review?
Replies: 37
Views: 2655

Re: Should I ask for a larger raise at yearly review?

What's your BATNA? If you don't have any leverage there's not much point in asking.
by lotusflower
Mon Jan 22, 2018 10:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Long For Mortgage Term?
Replies: 36
Views: 3728

Re: How Long For Mortgage Term?

If you're reasonably likely to sell in 5 years, then get a 5/1 or 7/1 adjustable. There's a limit to how much they can adjust per year, so even if you overstay by a few years you are likely to come out ahead.
by lotusflower
Thu Dec 14, 2017 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snow Tires? Worth it?
Replies: 147
Views: 7821

Re: Snow Tires? Worth it?

Seriously, why do we always think if something is "near", it can NOT be "over"? Slightly "over" or "under" is by definition "near". You are correct for "near", but that's not the word they used. Near means close to. Near ly means almost, or slightly less than. The article uses the latter. The great...
by lotusflower
Tue Dec 12, 2017 2:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snow Tires? Worth it?
Replies: 147
Views: 7821

Re: Snow Tires? Worth it?

You also need either anti-seize or a six foot breaker bar. Any man who puts nuts on dry would letterspace blackletter. As a mechanical engineer I believe in the benefit of grease on threads. But my van's user manual is unequivocal that it should not be used. If you are going to use it anyway, I thi...
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 10:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

Is anyone who enjoys fine wine, as but one example of the above, a "wine snob"? If not, then what is a wine snob? A snob (at least in my book) is someone who uses their knowledge or some other advantage for the purpose of making others feel bad about their lack of that same advantage. But as I also...
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

ResearchMed wrote:
Mon Nov 27, 2017 8:44 pm
Is anyone who enjoys fine wine, as but one example of the above, a "wine snob"?
If not, then what is a wine snob?
A snob (at least in my book) is someone who uses their knowledge or some other advantage for the purpose of making others feel bad about their lack of that same advantage.
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 9:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

So now it's just what if, what if, what if.... What if the car budget was $100k, they spent $60k on a classic that only appreciates, and they have their own shop on their own land..... then what?? Well I was trying for various apples-to-apples comparisons, though I realize you are tired of playing ...
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

You suggested that possessing a highly depreciated asset was somehow beneficial. But spending $75k on a car that is now worth $40k is really no different than spending $30k on a car that is now worth $15k and then taking a $20k vacation, and saving the remaining $25k. No difference in net worth. I ...
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

So I'm still dying to hear which "hard assets" are objectively worth more than experiences. OP gave two examples, a luxury car, and a home theater. The justification was that when OP was done with them they would still have "tangible value". However the depreciation on those is totally huge. "Total...
by lotusflower
Mon Nov 27, 2017 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets
Replies: 336
Views: 20966

Re: The fallacy of spending money on "experiences" vs hard assets

So I'm still dying to hear which "hard assets" are objectively worth more than experiences. OP gave two examples, a luxury car, and a home theater. The justification was that when OP was done with them they would still have "tangible value". However the depreciation on those is totally huge. "Total...