Search found 575 matches

by shelanman
Thu Jul 30, 2020 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 62.5% Alcohol Hand Sanitizer
Replies: 25
Views: 1560

Re: 62.5% Alcohol Hand Sanitizer

I'm moderately interested in the question of how products containing methanol got mislabeled as based on ethanol. Where was the FDA? Hand sanitizer that doesn't make any health claims is not subject to very much regulation -- just like soaps are not very regulated. The FDA's oversight there is gene...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 24, 2020 12:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Adjusting investment prior to an election
Replies: 9
Views: 1299

Re: Adjusting investment prior to an election

It is notoriously difficult to predict the effect an election will have on the market. Look at the market press in the run up to 2016, and compare it to what happened. There were predictions of huge market implications being made up to the day before election day about what would happen "the morning...
by shelanman
Sun Jul 19, 2020 6:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ally Bank Alternative?
Replies: 63
Views: 7081

Re: Ally Bank Alternative?

I'll spare you the details of why I want to switch but I've been on Deposit Accounts and Doctor of credit to find options. If you don't mind, can you share why you want to switch? Perhaps, the issue you had is not ally specific. You may experience the same issue with another online bank. I had a pa...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 17, 2020 11:40 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Of course, this is not a "Timing" advice, but we should be aware of "Billionaires look to reduce equities..."
Replies: 34
Views: 3447

Re: Of course, this is not a "Timing" advice, but we should be aware of "Billionaires look to reduce equities..."

The billionaires are skating to where the puck will be. The returns are quite lucrative in private equity today, the investments are illiquid and the payoffs will be high. Why wouldn't you want to move your money around - they are simply practicing asset allocation. You call it timing, we call it r...
by shelanman
Thu Jul 16, 2020 9:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home A/C dripping water
Replies: 20
Views: 1455

Re: Home A/C dripping water

Unless something very strange is going on, the water should be coming from the drip pan at the bottom of the evaporator. The evaporator is a big A-shaped metal frame that will be after the furnace/air handler. It'll be enclosed in a box, but it'll be after the furnace, and it is where all the water ...
by shelanman
Thu Jul 16, 2020 7:27 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Firecalc says 100% success with 0% stocks
Replies: 37
Views: 4406

Re: Firecalc says 100% success with 0% stocks

With 1.6M and only expecting $40k per year in spending power upfront, and with a big decline in real expenditures after only 12 years, in a low inflation environment, you can just spend your principle and not run out of money for a long time. The risk in your portfolio with 100% Treasuries is purely...
by shelanman
Mon Jul 13, 2020 10:28 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: New Orange County, CA Local Chapter established
Replies: 84
Views: 13663

Re: New Orange County, CA Local Chapter established

Daniel,

Thanks for continuing to organize these. I'll see everybody bright and early on Saturday! I was really hoping that by this meeting, we'd be able to be in person again, but I'm looking forward to catching up with everyone.
by shelanman
Mon Jul 13, 2020 4:04 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paver installation cost
Replies: 27
Views: 2478

Re: Paver installation cost

I am currently in the process of having a 450 sq ft patio built out of pavers (teardown of a raised planter and concrete were required) I paid about $13000 in total for the project, and I did not choose a super premium paving stone. (Angelus Courtyard) The project is almost complete, and will end u...
by shelanman
Sat Jul 11, 2020 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reliable and simple 30" range (with oven)
Replies: 17
Views: 620

Re: Reliable and simple 30" gas/electric range

Gas ranges are generally higher heat output. But, the biggest thing in favor of gas ranges is that when you turn off the heat, the pan will cool much faster -- on an electric range, if you hear your burner up too high, you often can't cool it down fast enough and have to take the pan off. For ovens...
by shelanman
Sat Jul 11, 2020 9:55 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Were You Around During Dotcom Bubble?
Replies: 182
Views: 11263

Re: Were You Around During Dotcom Bubble?

I was in college, studying computer science when it all blew up. When I started school, "everybody" knew that what you did was you started at school and then you got recruited by a startup and given all kinds of money to go make websites. Then, all of a sudden, one quarter, I'm sitting in my lecture...
by shelanman
Sat Jul 11, 2020 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who is your favorite fiction author and what is your favorite book of theirs?
Replies: 121
Views: 5551

Re: Who is your favorite fiction author and what is your favorite book of theirs?

Brandon Sanderson is my favorite these days, and my favorite work is the Mistborn series of novels -- a fantastic that begins life as an elaborate heist plot to steal the greatest treasure in a fantasy setting that's new and lovely (ok, it's a dirty, terrible, almost post-apocalyptic setting, so no...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 10, 2020 9:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who is your favorite fiction author and what is your favorite book of theirs?
Replies: 121
Views: 5551

Re: Who is your favorite fiction author and what is your favorite book of theirs?

Brandon Sanderson is my favorite these days, and my favorite work is the Mistborn series of novels -- a fantastic that begins life as an elaborate heist plot to steal the greatest treasure in a fantasy setting that's new and lovely (ok, it's a dirty, terrible, almost post-apocalyptic setting, so not...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reliable and simple 30" range (with oven)
Replies: 17
Views: 620

Re: Reliable and simple 30" gas/electric range

Gas ranges are generally higher heat output. But, the biggest thing in favor of gas ranges is that when you turn off the heat, the pan will cool much faster -- on an electric range, if you hear your burner up too high, you often can't cool it down fast enough and have to take the pan off. For ovens,...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 10, 2020 7:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Paver installation cost
Replies: 27
Views: 2478

Re: Paver installation cost

I am currently in the process of having a 450 sq ft patio built out of pavers (teardown of a raised planter and concrete were required) I paid about $13000 in total for the project, and I did not choose a super premium paving stone. (Angelus Courtyard) The project is almost complete, and will end up...
by shelanman
Thu Jul 09, 2020 10:57 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the best financial decision you ever made?
Replies: 213
Views: 16614

Re: What is the best financial decision you ever made?

Back in 2005, it was deciding to ask my boss and his buddy who did "finance stuff" (at the time, I had no idea what), "you two seem to know something about money. How do I get started learning about investments and stuff?" That's a super naive question, but boy did I ask the right people. Neither of...
by shelanman
Tue Jul 07, 2020 12:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: College in fall
Replies: 549
Views: 45801

Re: College in fall

I think the bottom line for parents is they realize that if their kid is going to Harvard, what they are paying the $75K/year or whatever for is so that their kid gets a Harvard diploma, which would be the case regardless of the quality of their education. So they reluctantly pay it. If you ever wa...
by shelanman
Mon Jul 06, 2020 12:46 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Bloomberg: The Cost of Bad Market Timing Decisions in 2020 Was Annihilation
Replies: 39
Views: 6635

Re: Bloomberg: The Cost of Bad Market Timing Decisions in 2020 Was Annihilation

What if an investor missed the five worst days? By how much would they have beaten a buy and hold strategy? What are the odds that an investor just happened to miss the five best days while being invested on every other day? If you look at the chart, you can find these 5 days. They're all during th...
by shelanman
Sat Jul 04, 2020 3:48 pm
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Celebrating the Fourth of July
Replies: 17
Views: 1168

Re: Celebrating the Fourth of July

Happy Independence Day! It's nice to see that there are still people on the internet who love this wonderful country that we call America, and that I proudly call home. We've preserved and tended our democracy and our precious liberty for 244 years, and have prospered beyond the wildest dreams of ou...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 03, 2020 2:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: considering paying cash for house- What would you do?
Replies: 54
Views: 3710

Re: considering paying cash for house- What would you do?

I hate having debt. But, I just can't make myself work on eliminating the mortgage. Rates are just so stupid low, borrowing the money just costs nothing, especially once you figure the tax savings on the interest. If that 3.0% APR has no points and no lender fees, honestly, you should probably just ...
by shelanman
Fri Jul 03, 2020 1:41 am
Forum: US Chapters
Topic: Post your Financial Milestone Announcements Here
Replies: 1541
Views: 203811

Re: Two Comma Club

Nice work!

I was going to make a joke about Club Tres Commas, but seems gips beat me to it.

All the same, that's a significant accomplishment. Well done. Also, thanks for sharing, it's always nice to read about happy occasions well earned... the internet has way to few of them.
by shelanman
Tue Jun 30, 2020 10:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: At what point can you justify a $10k+ flight?
Replies: 75
Views: 4632

Re: At what point can you justify a $10k+ flight?

I think I would be able to justify a $10k flight only when I reached the point where either: 1) The $10k was less than 20% of the budget that I had for the trip, or 2) The entire budget for the trip, including the $10k flight, was not a significant fraction of my discretionary budget for the year, o...
by shelanman
Tue Jun 30, 2020 8:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Device for men's haircuts
Replies: 50
Views: 4575

Re: Device for men's haircuts

I only really use it as an absurdly-overpowered beard trimmer, but my Oster Classic 76 is the best clipper I've ever had. I bought it because I was tired of lousy underpowered clippers and plastic combs, and decided that if every barber I've ever been to in my whole life all used the same one, it'd ...
by shelanman
Fri Jun 12, 2020 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order
Replies: 44
Views: 3716

Re: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order

I am currently subscribed to Trade Coffee subscription (drinktrade.com) They do have a variety of dark roasts. Personally, I really enjoyed the medium-dark roast "West Pole" blend from Cuvee Coffee (located in Austin, TX) which they sent me last month. If you go to their site, they ask a few questio...
by shelanman
Sat Jun 06, 2020 8:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I got a defective product on ebay. The seller gave me a refund. Do I need to ship the product back to him?
Replies: 24
Views: 1609

Re: I got a defective product on ebay. The seller gave me a refund. Do I need to ship the product back to him?

Given that you have already been refunded, by eBay rules, no. Nothing bad can happen to you if you keep it, except that the seller could block you from buying from them, which they can do for any reason anyway. You can offer to return it, or offer to return it if the seller supplies a label, but you...
by shelanman
Mon May 25, 2020 12:11 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Will the US become like Japan?
Replies: 68
Views: 5367

Re: Will the US become like Japan?

We won't be Japan, because it's always different. We don't yet have Japan's debt. We currently have a more dynamic economy, and both a culture and a legal system that encourages that dynamism Inna way that Japan did not, with it's much more rigid social and economic structure. We currently have a gr...
by shelanman
Wed May 20, 2020 3:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dr. Malkiel: “I believe that investors need to put more China into their portfolios“
Replies: 138
Views: 9316

Re: Dr. Malkiel: “I believe that investors need to put more China into their portfolios“

Years back I bought a company called China Agritech... read a lot about it, seemed a reasonable valuation and a great growth story.... fertilizer maker for a giant, growing economy. It traded on the US market (NASDAQ I believe) via ADR. Reported a couple years of good numbers, the stock went up a l...
by shelanman
Wed May 20, 2020 2:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling home - low ball negotiation
Replies: 145
Views: 12441

Re: Selling home - low ball negotiation

My main point is that I often read of this "meeting halfway" thing. People only want to buy and sell at what they think is a fair price for them. It may have nothing to do with what you think is a fair price for you. There's a whole book on that topic, by an ex-hostage-negotiator, called "Never Spl...
by shelanman
Wed May 20, 2020 2:12 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Dr. Malkiel: “I believe that investors need to put more China into their portfolios“
Replies: 138
Views: 9316

Re: Dr. Malkiel: “I believe that investors need to put more China into their portfolios“

Years back I bought a company called China Agritech... read a lot about it, seemed a reasonable valuation and a great growth story.... fertilizer maker for a giant, growing economy. It traded on the US market (NASDAQ I believe) via ADR. Reported a couple years of good numbers, the stock went up a l...
by shelanman
Wed May 20, 2020 1:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to get Toilet Paper ? seriously.
Replies: 684
Views: 56986

Re: How to get Toilet Paper ? seriously.

These days, my local Costco seems to have Charmin about 10-20% of the time, and their own brand of TP almost always. The more amazing thing though was that I found a package of Bounty paper towels in stock today! That was very exciting, because I'm using the "emergency pack" of store brand stuff I b...
by shelanman
Tue May 19, 2020 10:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is anyone holding off buying a home? Possible COVID-19 changes in the way we work...
Replies: 8
Views: 1254

Re: Is anyone holding off buying a home? Possible COVID-19 changes in the way we work...

I wonder if this will be the end of the megatrend of the last 15-20 years of young people abandoning suburbs for urban centers. The cycle already felt like it was nearing it's end before this. Will people want to return to life on crowded buses and transit when they could afford the space not to if ...
by shelanman
Tue May 19, 2020 12:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage - 15 year versus 30 year if both at same interest rate
Replies: 26
Views: 3596

Re: Mortgage - 15 year versus 30 year if both at same interest rate

manatee2005 wrote:
Tue May 19, 2020 12:14 am
jb1 wrote:
Mon May 18, 2020 10:10 pm
Jeez and with a 800 credit score, for a loan of 165k I cant find anything below 3.5 on a refi..
Loan is too small. Not worth their trouble.
Tell me about it. I can get a better rate with a cash-out than a straight refi for the same reason -- best rates are only on bigger loans
by shelanman
Tue May 19, 2020 12:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Opinion on Relocating from IL to FL Central Gulf Coast Condo
Replies: 46
Views: 3531

Re: Opinion on Relocating from IL to FL Condo

I would recommend an extended visit in the summer -- more than 2 weeks -- to make sure you would be able to cope (I can't cope with the humidity there, myself) You're going to spend a lot of money getting set up there, and you should make sure you won't have instant regret. It seems like you have a ...
by shelanman
Mon May 18, 2020 2:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tea supplier comparison
Replies: 74
Views: 5812

Re: Tea supplier comparison

At one time, I thought of myself as a tea snob. Anyway, I was really in to all sorts of fancy loose-leaf teas. I still enjoy them, but I have also found that some of the commercial brands make stuff that I enjoy, and I now enjoy them guilt-free. From Bigelow, I like "Constant Comment", which has a l...
by shelanman
Fri May 15, 2020 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?
Replies: 11
Views: 802

Re: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?

How far are we talking about? You mention week to week management - I can tell you from experience that it is not week to week. There will be times during which you will be busier and times when you do absolutely noting. Also, pricier rentals will give you fewer headaches. Low income might be rough...
by shelanman
Fri May 15, 2020 2:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?
Replies: 11
Views: 802

Re: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?

I've had two property managers. I had a less than mediocre experience with a one-person real estate person that part-timed as a property manager. I've had excellent experience with a property management firm. They interview tenants, video tape the property before the tenants occupy, handle all main...
by shelanman
Fri May 15, 2020 1:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Rental property: experiences with property management companies?
Replies: 11
Views: 802

Rental property: experiences with property management companies?

I've been seriously considering purchasing a residential property with the intent to rent it out. For this particular transaction, I'm looking at buying something in a market far enough away from my regular home that I can't be the one doing the week-to-week management. As a result, for the first ti...
by shelanman
Wed May 13, 2020 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "Fancy" drip/pour-over coffee makers
Replies: 54
Views: 3338

Re: "Fancy" drip/pour-over coffee makers

I've been looking at all of these for some time, but haven't been able to figure out...

...what do they do that's different from what a (good) traditional drip machine does?
by shelanman
Sun May 10, 2020 6:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: United Airlines miles and bankruptcy
Replies: 46
Views: 4107

Re: United Airlines miles and bankruptcy

No, United frequent flier mileage was not zeroed out after the last bankruptcy. They continued operations. Going back many years now we also know that TWA miles transferred to American and Pan Am miles transferred to Delta. I'd be more concerned about mileage devaluation which happens with and with...
by shelanman
Mon May 04, 2020 1:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Window AC for bedrooms and living room, any recommendations?
Replies: 28
Views: 1424

Re: Window AC for bedrooms and living room, any recommendations?

I know you said window unit, but also consider the free-standing unit that sits in the room and just vents to the outside. We use those, and they work great. They are on sale now at Costco for $400. https://www.costco.com/de'longhi-pinguino-500-sq-ft-4-in-1-all-season-use%3a-air-conditioner%2c-heat...
by shelanman
Wed Apr 29, 2020 3:14 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What explains the continued rise in equities?
Replies: 167
Views: 12979

Re: What explains the continued rise in equities?

The short version is what it always is: the market moves based on changes in the aggregate opinion of the future. In this instance, there are a few things. For one, look at a graph of VIX. VIX is a goofy thing to speculate in, but it's a really useful stat after-the-fact. During Feb/Mar, VIX shot up...
by shelanman
Thu Apr 23, 2020 1:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What have you baked recently?
Replies: 287
Views: 33978

Re: What have you baked recently?

I finally found some flour, butter, and baking powder, so I can actually do some baking! First up was the ultimate easy comfort food: Irish Soda Bread with raisins! It came out really nicely, and now I've got bread for the week. Next up is probably going to be a lemon-buttermilk pound cake (gotta us...
by shelanman
Tue Apr 21, 2020 12:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order
Replies: 44
Views: 3716

Re: Coffee Experts - Help with an online coffee order

I'm another who signed up for Trade Coffee's subscription program recently. So far, I'm enjoying it. Thus far, all of the coffee I have received was roasted after my order was placed (and arrived within 3-4 days of roasting) which is pretty cool. Buying 2 bags at a time (that is, 2x12oz) makes it no...
by shelanman
Fri Apr 10, 2020 6:00 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Estimate on a new hvac system. Is it reasonable?
Replies: 60
Views: 4162

Re: Estimate on a new hvac system. Is it reasonable?

About 3 years ago, I bought a new system. I'm in California, which means prices are higher and efficiency laws are tighter. It cost me about $6000 for a 3.5 ton replacement system, including a new gas furnace/air handler. I didn't buy anything super fancy like a variable-speed air handler or two sta...
by shelanman
Sat Apr 04, 2020 11:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: is a $1000+ herman miller office chair worth the investment?
Replies: 37
Views: 3007

Re: is a $1000+ herman miller office chair worth the investment?

I love my Steelcase Gesture. The Steelcase Leap v2 is also really good. I personally don't love the Aeron -- it doesn't fit me as well as the Steelcase chairs do -- but it's all personal preference. A good office chair really is worth the $700-1000 it costs, though, if you get one that you like. You...
by shelanman
Sat Apr 04, 2020 1:05 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Another way a crash manifests itself
Replies: 20
Views: 1842

Re: Another way a crash manifests itself

I always think of inflation as too much money chasing too few goods. Given the sales right now I think there are plenty of goods. Given unemployment, I don’t think there is too much money. The unemployment doesn't really reduce the number of dollars, just who has them. The turning off of the econom...
by shelanman
Thu Apr 02, 2020 1:34 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the coming pain really "priced in"?
Replies: 201
Views: 19342

Re: Is the coming pain really "priced in"?

The powers that be are already talking about 18 months and maybe doing it again for a few months every year *forever*, and that we can never return to what we used to call normal, *ever*. Do you have any citations or references for this? It seems reasonable to assume that humans will develop a herd...
by shelanman
Wed Apr 01, 2020 10:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: REITs are in free fall..
Replies: 21
Views: 4488

Re: REITs are in free fall..

I already have as much of my portfolio in leveraged real estate as I am comfortable with. The current drop in REITs is much less about the real estate value, and much more about the solvency of the companies, given the probability that rents won't get paid for an extended period. I would happily sna...
by shelanman
Wed Apr 01, 2020 1:59 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Is the coming pain really "priced in"?
Replies: 201
Views: 19342

Re: Is the coming pain really "priced in"?

Nobody knows nothin' But, speculating is fun, so I'll speculate for ya. (Don't trade on my speculations -- even I don't do that) Most people seem to expect the lockdowns to end in 2-3 weeks. People today seemed freaked out that California extended theirs through May 3rd. But, if the lockdowns work a...
by shelanman
Mon Mar 30, 2020 2:04 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why shouldn´t I buy oil futures now?
Replies: 92
Views: 7304

Re: Why shouldn´t I buy oil futures now?

Nope. Futures follow the "no-arbitrage" rule of pricing. Thus futures do not indicate where the price will be in the future. It means that storage costs are high. To the OP, before you start down this path do some serious reading on how futures work. I am sort of jesting with 305pelusa by going int...
by shelanman
Mon Mar 30, 2020 1:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Why shouldn´t I buy oil futures now?
Replies: 92
Views: 7304

Re: Why shouldn´t I buy oil futures now?

I admittedly don´t understand futures well. As I understand it, they track the oil price quite well but the market price of the futures can be distorted from the spot price of oil a little. It seems to somehow undulate around the spot price of oil (because the futures price is based on the expectat...