Search found 144 matches

by np81
Thu Nov 16, 2017 9:09 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]
Replies: 287
Views: 49641

Re: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]

If you don't want to deal with macros, and are just looking for a basic ticker lookup (in my case, the current price), you only need two things: An API key from AlphaVantage This Excel query: =VALUE(MID(WEBSERVICE("https://www.alphavantage.co/query?function=TIME_SERIES_DAILY&symbol="&A1&"&interval=...
by np81
Fri Nov 10, 2017 3:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]
Replies: 287
Views: 49641

Re: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]

Yes, you're putting your key in there 4 times, on a single symbol. It's basically counting the commas to get to the ticker price. I could not get the API to work using TIME_SERIES_INTRADAY, as it repeatedly threw errors, so I resorted to TIME_SERIES_DAILY, which returns the previous days' quote. For...
by np81
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:33 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]
Replies: 287
Views: 49641

Re: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]

Leesbro63 wrote: ↑
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:29 pm
What's an API key and how does one get one?
It's a free access key that allows you to query AlphaVantage's web service. You can sign up here: https://www.alphavantage.co/support/#api-key
by np81
Fri Nov 10, 2017 1:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]
Replies: 287
Views: 49641

Re: [Yahoo Finance no longer works - Alternatives to download securities quotes]

If you don't want to deal with macros, and are just looking for a basic ticker lookup (in my case, the current price), you only need two things: An API key from AlphaVantage This Excel query: =VALUE(MID(WEBSERVICE("https://www.alphavantage.co/query?function=TIME_SERIES_DAILY&symbol="&A1&"&interval=1...
by np81
Thu Jul 27, 2017 9:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Routine maintenance recommendations to prevent future costly repairs
Replies: 21
Views: 2759

Re: Routine maintenance recommendations to prevent future costly repairs

chabil wrote:Thank you, np81. Do I look for concrete sealant? Like Valspar?
You'll definitely want to contact a masonry supply store for the better quality products, as you won't find them in any of the big box stores. My contractor uses CSS Emulsion, which is one of the more reputable brands worldwide.
by np81
Thu Jul 27, 2017 8:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Routine maintenance recommendations to prevent future costly repairs
Replies: 21
Views: 2759

Re: Routine maintenance recommendations to prevent future costly repairs

Here's one that most people I know don't follow: re-seal your concrete (patio, especially) every 2-4 years. That'll go a long way towards keeping the concrete free of stains, mold, etc. It'll also help reduce flaking and minor cracks. How do you re-seal? Product, method, cost, time and labor please...
by np81
Tue Apr 25, 2017 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Alternate Energy Supply Companies?
Replies: 4
Views: 635

Re: Alternate Energy Supply Companies?

This is a great way to save a few bucks with next to no effort at all, as well. I switch suppliers every 6 months or so when my contract is up, and save anywhere from $80-100/year. Some of the suppliers will let you renew for the lower, 'new customer' price if you ask, and some will not (which makes...
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 1:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?
Replies: 51
Views: 6299

Re: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?

You don't necessarily need to have a new appraisal in order to drop PMI, but the lender can certainly request one. As for paperwork, most places let you fax the request, and if you're really worried about it, you can always send the request via registered mail. It's certainly easier nowadays to have...
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard shed, wood or plastic?
Replies: 31
Views: 5452

Re: Backyard shed, wood or plastic?

You can't fix a plastic shed. When it cracks (and it eventually will), you have to throw it in a landfill. Point of clarification - this is 100% incorrect. You can easily fix cracks and holes in plastic sheds with epoxies and plastic welds. I've done it before, and the repairs hold up well. What ab...
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cordless Vacuum Cleaners
Replies: 28
Views: 3079

Re: Cordless Vacuum Cleaners

Dyson's advertised run times appear to be accurate for ours (20 minutes in normal mode, 8 minutes in max power mode). That said, we use the V6 as a supplement to our corded Dyson Animal. My wife wanted something lightweight for the stairs and bathrooms, and this was the perfect solution for us.
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 9:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard shed, wood or plastic?
Replies: 31
Views: 5452

Re: Backyard shed, wood or plastic?

Rupert wrote:You can't fix a plastic shed. When it cracks (and it eventually will), you have to throw it in a landfill.
Point of clarification - this is 100% incorrect. You can easily fix cracks and holes in plastic sheds with epoxies and plastic welds. I've done it before, and the repairs hold up well.
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?
Replies: 51
Views: 6299

Re: Choosing to put less than 20% down...why is this wrong?

Less than 20% means you're paying PMI. When you're paying PMI, that is money going out the door in lieu of being used to a financial advantage. Think of the many things a monthly PMI payment could be used for if there was no PMI payment (regular contribution to taxable account, retirement account, ...
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cordless Vacuum Cleaners
Replies: 28
Views: 3079

Re: Cordless Vacuum Cleaners

Here's another vote for the Dyson V6 Motorhead. Cleans remarkably well on any surface, won't scratch wood floors, and the wall-mounted charger means you can hang it up out of sight and save space. That said, I would not purchase one new. You can routinely find refurbished units on Groupon for $200 o...
by np81
Mon Apr 10, 2017 7:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backyard shed, wood or plastic?
Replies: 31
Views: 5452

Re: Backyard shed, wood or "plastic"?

Do you have raccoons in your area? I ask, because they tend to chew on plastic sheds. I have a small plastic shed in my backyard that has a number of small holes in the roof from where they chew, though it's not too bad. I did wind up drilling drainage holes into the bottom of the roof to allow wate...
by np81
Fri Apr 07, 2017 3:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?
Replies: 69
Views: 5585

Re: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?

Much like the previous thread on this topic, some people have problems distinguishing "most" from "everyone". Saying that everyone spends more using credit cards is unequivocally false. Period.
by np81
Thu Apr 06, 2017 12:30 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way of transferring wealth to kids?
Replies: 27
Views: 3420

Re: Best way of transferring wealth to kids?

wolf359 wrote:
np81 wrote:TIL that wanting to assist your children financially will backfire, turning them into lazy drunks on a path to an early grave.
The word "will" should probably be "could."
That's certainly not the tone I took from the posts.
by np81
Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way of transferring wealth to kids?
Replies: 27
Views: 3420

Re: Best way of transferring wealth to kids?

TIL that wanting to assist your children financially will backfire, turning them into lazy drunks on a path to an early grave.
by np81
Fri Mar 31, 2017 4:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you use lifestrategy/ asset allocation funds?
Replies: 77
Views: 15634

Re: Do you use lifestrategy/ asset allocation funds?

My wife and I used to use a single VG Target fund for our entire portfolio, but over the last few years I have moved away from that, and have started taking more control over the investments. Part of that was driven by Vanguard's change in International Stocks in the TR funds (higher than my prefere...
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

mccannr wrote:[Look forward to all the techies coming out of the woodwork to make fun of my plan! :happy ]
Certainly not the route I'd take (NAS), though I do use local drives on my box as a secondary point of backup, using ViceVersa Pro to handle the backups. :)
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

And I would strongly argue that despite your good explanation above, for archival, you should avoid Crashplan. It's good for restoring active computers in a pinch, but it's just not setup for easy long-term file restoration This makes no sense at all. CrashPlan is an archival solution, and it is se...
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

You're confusing online backup with online storage.
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

It's more than just your bandwidth. Your backups are not only encrypted, but also compressed. This all eats up time as everything decrypts and uncompresses during a restore request. You could be on a gigabit backbone and still have to patiently wait for the entire process to complete. That said, the...
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 9:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

Have you folks with Crashplan actually tested whether or not a recovery of your files actually works? I've seen complaints about some of these backup services not working very well during a large recovery. I have restored an entire computer using CrashPlan, along with files (dating back years), usi...
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 8:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Picture / video / file backup
Replies: 44
Views: 2519

Re: Picture / video / file backup

Here's another vote for CrashPlan. You're not going to find another online backup solution with as many features as CrashPlan (data sets, bandwidth throttling, etc.), and certainly not at its price point. I've been using it for years, have set it up for many friends, and will recommend nothing else.
by np81
Tue Mar 28, 2017 6:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard Target Date Funds
Replies: 27
Views: 6367

Re: Vanguard Target Date Funds

On other websites a lot of people ask about their fund choices - but rarely about re-balancing. It makes me wonder if people who do their own allocations ever adjust their bond percentage. Besides the other advantages of a target date fund, maybe one of them is that most people won't learn to re-ba...
by np81
Wed Mar 22, 2017 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?
Replies: 80
Views: 8556

Re: How did graduating out of daycare impact your finances?

If you're paying anywhere near the same for before/after-school care as you are traditional daycare, then you're being ripped off. My daughter will be leaving daycare next year, and there are multiple solutions for us for before/after school care - including our local YMCA - that cost a fraction ($5...
by np81
Thu Mar 16, 2017 5:08 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

Another use case would be as an 'emergency' fund, which is what I use my CDs for.
by np81
Thu Mar 16, 2017 8:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

That's good news, though it makes me wonder why they lowered the rate in the first place if it was [clearly] so popular.
by np81
Tue Mar 14, 2017 1:34 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

You can join the American Consumer Council online and use promo code "consumer" to have the $5 fee waived. They'll e-mail you your membership number after processing (mine was sent within an hour, I believe).
by np81
Tue Mar 14, 2017 10:57 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

Tycoon wrote:3% interest rates just don't do it for me...
If you know of other investments that are as liquid as these earning higher returns, feel free to share.
by np81
Tue Mar 14, 2017 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

If you don't already, it's worth following DepositAccounts.com (Facebook or Twitter). Ken is quick to post deals.
by np81
Tue Mar 14, 2017 7:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%
Replies: 60
Views: 8356

Re: The Party is Over: Andrews FCU drops rate on 7-year CD to 2.2%

Considering that it was only initially supposed to be a Black Friday deal, I'm still shocked that it lasted until mid-March. Glad I jumped on it and opened a few myself.
by np81
Fri Mar 10, 2017 1:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with all these passwords ?
Replies: 125
Views: 16392

Re: What to do with all these passwords ?

Word, Acrobat, etc. password-protected documents are incredibly easy to crack, even with freeware tools available all over the Internet. I would highly recommend doing away with that practice and using an actual password manager. If you didn't want to recreate every entry, you can easily add a docum...
by np81
Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What to do with all these passwords ?
Replies: 125
Views: 16392

Re: What to do with all these passwords ?

To expand on KeePass, you can install the MiniKeePass app (free) on your mobile devices and sync your KeePass DB file with them.
by np81
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?
Replies: 197
Views: 27064

Re: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?

A 3% CD (Andrews FCU) that allows partial withdrawals and only 180 days of interest as the EWP isn't exactly time-locking.
by np81
Wed Mar 08, 2017 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?
Replies: 197
Views: 27064

Re: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?

There's no way I'd keep a significant amount of money in an account only earning 1% interest, as there are plenty of good CD options available that'll do much better and are nearly as accessible as a savings account.
by np81
Tue Mar 07, 2017 12:35 pm
Forum: Forum Issues and Administration
Topic: Forum software upgrade bug reports and change requests
Replies: 452
Views: 94178

Re: Forum software upgrade bug reports and change requests

...I'll take that as a 'no' (thanks for the reply, though?).
by np81
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?
Replies: 197
Views: 27064

Re: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?

unclescrooge wrote:Several months ago, I had to come up with $1.3 million in cash after my wife insisted we buy a specific house.
Apparently, we have very different opinions on the term 'emergency'. ;)
by np81
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?
Replies: 197
Views: 27064

Re: How Much in Your Emergency Fund And Is It Used?

Our EF is roughly $100k, which is considerably more than what I'd prefer, but at the very least I have convinced my wife to put most of it into 2.5-3% CDs so they generate better earnings than our GS Bank savings accounts.
by np81
Mon Mar 06, 2017 1:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Portfolio Tracking Tools
Replies: 41
Views: 6145

Re: Portfolio Tracking Tools

First and foremost for me is Quicken Premier. It covers all the functionality I need via automatic downloads (so no data entry) - portfolio value, asset allocation, IRR, cost basis, tax-related info, and custom reports. Quicken also now gives me the Morningstar X-ray tool, which I find useful. +1 I...
by np81
Sun Feb 26, 2017 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: BH thoughts on Time shares
Replies: 123
Views: 11606

Re: BH thoughts on Time shares

Of course, the purpose of buying a timeshare is to use and enjoy; why persist in focusing on residual value from not using it? Timeshares are luxury consumption items, not investments. It's only an asset in a strict accounting sense. The question then is the timeshare a good way of consuming those ...
by np81
Sun Feb 26, 2017 12:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: BH thoughts on Time shares
Replies: 123
Views: 11606

Re: BH thoughts on Time shares

nedsaid wrote:
np81 wrote:
nedsaid wrote:We all think we have more sales resistance than we really do.
Speak for yourself.
I hope you enjoy your new timeshare!
I own two of them, both purchased on the resale market, and have zero regrets.
by np81
Sat Feb 25, 2017 11:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: BH thoughts on Time shares
Replies: 123
Views: 11606

Re: BH thoughts on Time shares

Some people are sharks, and some are minnows. I'm certainly not the latter.
by np81
Sat Feb 25, 2017 10:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: BH thoughts on Time shares
Replies: 123
Views: 11606

Re: BH thoughts on Time shares

nedsaid wrote:We all think we have more sales resistance than we really do.
Speak for yourself.
by np81
Fri Feb 24, 2017 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2815
Views: 561297

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Interesting about the different EINs. In my case, I have not legally formed my business venture(s), so according to the IRS website I need to wait to obtain an EIN. I'm not sure if this is the case with Amex, but Citi (confirmed personally) and a few others allow you to use your SSN in lieu of an E...
by np81
Fri Feb 24, 2017 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2815
Views: 561297

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

sharpjm wrote:I get my entire dose of information from reddit and doctor of credit - whom is the only blogger on the list above that does not take payments to advertise and is among the best at providing simple, straight forward explanations for the details of each card/offer/promo posted.
Same.
by np81
Fri Feb 24, 2017 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2815
Views: 561297

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

EthelT wrote:What about AwardWallet for tracking miles/points? Looks like someone brought it up back in 2014 - has it evolved for the better or the worse?
The free version is okay, but I wouldn't pay the new rate for the Pro version. Some still like it, though.
by np81
Fri Feb 24, 2017 6:49 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2815
Views: 561297

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

Drew777 wrote:You can be approved with $0 business income.
The same also applies to the CitiBusiness AAdvantage Platinum card.
by np81
Thu Feb 23, 2017 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?
Replies: 2815
Views: 561297

Re: What's Your Credit Card Rewards Strategy?

I guess it depends how you value bonuses and what is useful to you. I don't really use/need hotel rewards so I don't do those. I'm curious what these 40 cards were with such big bonuses. I can find a use for just about any points/miles. I'm extremely flexible and want to go pretty much everywhere. ...