Search found 59 matches

by capitalG
Sat Nov 30, 2019 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car rental insurance when visiting US
Replies: 6
Views: 323

Car rental insurance when visiting US

We currently live overseas and will be renting a car when visiting the US for a few weeks. Since I don’t drive abroad, we no longer maintain any sort of driving insurance. What’s the best option for coverage for a 3 week rental? Was planning on paying for the insurance the rental company offers but ...
by capitalG
Wed Oct 23, 2019 10:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments
Replies: 14
Views: 934

Re: Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments

What state are you in? Guessing it is not California which has a state earthquake insurance program. Then you have to look at the specifics risks of your house. What year was the house built? Do you have unreinforced masonry construction? Is the house built on land subject to liquefaction? Gather t...
by capitalG
Wed Oct 23, 2019 10:22 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments
Replies: 14
Views: 934

Re: Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments

If California, I believe it is a non-recourse state. I know many that were able to walk from their underwater mortgages there during the financial crisis in spite of having other financial resources. This is primarily what I was wondering about. Assuming one was OK with the personal impact of givin...
by capitalG
Wed Oct 23, 2019 7:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments
Replies: 14
Views: 934

Earthquake country & accelerated mortgage payments

A question for homeowners living in areas at high risk for earthquakes / natural disasters. We currently own two properties in earthquake country (rental + primary residence) and have been debating how to invest a lump sum. I would love to either pay off the rental (was previously our primary reside...
by capitalG
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:42 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard in Thailand - possible?
Replies: 9
Views: 1189

Re: Vanguard in Thailand - possible?

Also good advice - even if you access with a VPN, a lot of financial/commercial websites require 2-factor authentication to login. If you're relocating out of country, agree with the below and add this number as your primary phone number for important accounts. capG Also, consider a virtual mailbox ...
by capitalG
Sun Jul 28, 2019 6:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Vanguard in Thailand - possible?
Replies: 9
Views: 1189

Re: Vanguard in Thailand - possible?

If you plan on living in Thailand and accessing US-based accounts (banks, brokerage, credit cards), you’ll need to get a VPN - living in the region now and a lot of US financial sites/apps (even Costco!) block IP addresses from here. Try ExpressVPN or NordVPN, they offer apps that are very easy to s...
by capitalG
Tue Apr 16, 2019 3:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buy a house or wait in bay area
Replies: 48
Views: 10377

Re: Buy a house or wait in bay area

Fair point - given our purchase price, the rent we are collecting is just shy of our mortgage (excluding property tax + insurance). On the flip side, the limitations on deducting mortgage interest and property tax went away once it was flipped to a rental (now a business expense), so that helps the ...
by capitalG
Sun Apr 14, 2019 4:11 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Buy a house or wait in bay area
Replies: 48
Views: 10377

Re: Buy a house or wait in bay area

We were in your position about 1.5 years ago with a similar family situation, income/house price ratio, and commute/neighborhood benefits as you - we pulled the trigger and are happy with that decision. Our house price has dropped a bit since we purchased but we don’t care much - we were happy with ...
by capitalG
Sun Mar 24, 2019 5:52 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Surprised on tax benefit after first year as landlord!
Replies: 20
Views: 3692

Re: Surprised on tax benefit after first year as landlord!

Interesting that depreciation seems to be the driver for tax deductions. We live in a HCOL area and the Trump tax cut changes made to property tax/mortgage interest would have limited our deductions while we lived in the condo - as a rental, those now become expenses and, in a sense, we can now full...
by capitalG
Sat Mar 23, 2019 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Surprised on tax benefit after first year as landlord!
Replies: 20
Views: 3692

Surprised on tax benefit after first year as landlord!

Just finished my taxes after our first year as a landlord and even though we ran a lot of numbers before taking the dive, I’m still surprised by how much it impacted our taxes. Yes, being a landlord comes with its share of headaches - we already have had to deal with a couple issues - but the tax be...
by capitalG
Fri Feb 08, 2019 12:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best US credit card for expat in Asia
Replies: 4
Views: 580

Re: Best US credit card for expat in Asia

That is very helpful - did not know the Amazon Prime CC had no international fee, will go with that as the backup to Costco Citi. Thank you!

capG
by capitalG
Thu Jan 31, 2019 7:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best US credit card for expat in Asia
Replies: 4
Views: 580

Best US credit card for expat in Asia

Moving to Asia in about a month for a few years, will return to the US after. We will have a local bank account and credit card but since I have the option to take my compensation in USD and local currency, I’m generally trying to minimize how much local currency I keep. I plan on trying to achieve ...
by capitalG
Sat Dec 15, 2018 1:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: smart locks - schlage vs. august vs. something else
Replies: 13
Views: 1351

Re: smart locks - schlage vs. august vs. something else

Have had the Schlage for a year and love it - extra codes are great for extended family members, friends, and contractors/workers as needed. Lock is very well built, we had the local police come by for a home security check up and they approved of the deadbolt and strike plate. Apple HomeKit integra...
by capitalG
Fri Dec 07, 2018 6:29 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Advice on an expat assignment in Vietnam
Replies: 6
Views: 1212

Re: Advice on an expat assignment in Vietnam

Thank you all for your very helpful advice - we've decided to take the plunge and will be moving early next year! Air Quality - Thanks for the advice on [non-cotton] masks and air purifiers - we will make sure to invest in (or have our company invest in) air filtration and water filtration units for...
by capitalG
Tue Dec 04, 2018 12:30 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Advice on an expat assignment in Vietnam
Replies: 6
Views: 1212

Advice on an expat assignment in Vietnam

On the verge of making a major professional and personal decision and wanted to get advice from any of you that have gone / are going down this path. I have been offered an expat assignment in Vietnam (HCMC) by the megacorp I work at. It is a strong career move with good compensation (includes all t...
by capitalG
Sat Nov 24, 2018 6:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most secure bank
Replies: 23
Views: 1928

Re: Most secure bank

Out of the large banks: BOA, CITI, Chase, Wells Fargo which one is the most secure for holding your funds without getting hacked. Also which do you fee most comfortable holding money greater than FDIC amount. 1. Chase. 2. None. Why do you say Chase is more secure from hackers? You may not like the ...
by capitalG
Sat Nov 24, 2018 5:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Most secure bank
Replies: 23
Views: 1928

Re: Most secure bank

UpperNwGuy wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 2:47 pm
masonstone wrote:
Sat Nov 24, 2018 12:29 pm
Out of the large banks: BOA, CITI, Chase, Wells Fargo which one is the most secure for holding your funds without getting hacked. Also which do you fee most comfortable holding money greater than FDIC amount.
1. Chase.
2. None.
Agree!
by capitalG
Fri Nov 23, 2018 12:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe $18.00 - Black Friday sale
Replies: 314
Views: 29278

Re: H&R Block 2018 Tax Software Deluxe-$18

Nice - decent deal on Premium as well ($32.50) for those interested.

capG
by capitalG
Sun Oct 21, 2018 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Headlamp for dog walking
Replies: 32
Views: 2750

Re: Headlamp for dog walking

Have the same issue and use the Craftsman light below <insert Sears joke here> - it is incredibly bright, the batteries seem to last forever, and I clip it to my belt or the dog collar. I ended up picking a few more for the glove box and the home because who knows how long Sears will be around... ht...
by capitalG
Fri Oct 19, 2018 11:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any one have a Rotimatic?
Replies: 6
Views: 1367

Re: Any one have a Rotimatic?

@Dottie57 and @onourway, the rotis the machine makes are like a tortilla that puffs up, definitely not oily. @frugaltigris, I did look up roti making on Youtube and it looks like a very long process! I don't think I would have the time to make them, thus the interest in the rotimatic. I guess I will...
by capitalG
Thu Oct 18, 2018 10:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any one have a Rotimatic?
Replies: 6
Views: 1367

Any one have a Rotimatic?

Got lured into a "Rotimatic" pop up store at the mall recently and am now obsessed with the machine - basically bread maker that makes piping hot flatbread out of flour, water, and oil (a la Chevy's "La Maquina"). I was ready to pull the trigger thinking it was ~$300 or so but I was shocked to learn...
by capitalG
Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Ascent owners out there?
Replies: 33
Views: 5689

Re: Subaru Ascent owners out there?

Test drove the Ascent, the engine is peppy and handles similar to the Forester, a more engaging drive than the Highlander or Pilot. Unfortunately they've stuck with the typical hard plastic / spartan Subaru interior, the cabin is fairly noisy on the expressway, and the 3rd row is unusable for most ...
by capitalG
Sat Jul 07, 2018 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Ascent owners out there?
Replies: 33
Views: 5689

Re: Subaru Ascent owners out there?

Test drove the Ascent, the engine is peppy and handles similar to the Forester, a more engaging drive than the Highlander or Pilot. Unfortunately they've stuck with the typical hard plastic / spartan Subaru interior, the cabin is fairly noisy on the expressway, and the 3rd row is unusable for most a...
by capitalG
Fri Jul 06, 2018 9:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Ascent owners out there?
Replies: 33
Views: 5689

Subaru Ascent owners out there?

Searching for a mid sized SUV and the Highlander and Pilot seem to be favorites here and the former on CR as well. I am really curious about the new Ascent but there’s few reviews available given the newness of the model - want to hear what you like and dislike about it hear from those of you that h...
by capitalG
Fri Jun 22, 2018 9:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fixing drip irrigation line
Replies: 13
Views: 1181

Re: Fixing drip irrigation line

Thanks for everyone's advice - a pair of "I-couplers" and some hot water (208 degF for me, I checked on my boiler :wink:) did the trick. Bad news is now that I know how easy it is to redirect drip lines, I picture myself tinkering with them all summer...
by capitalG
Fri Jun 22, 2018 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Fixing drip irrigation line
Replies: 13
Views: 1181

Fixing drip irrigation line

We inherited a fairly nice backyard with our house complete with drip irrigation. The irrigation seems to work quite well, keeping our native plants lush with minimal impact on the water bill. I recently discovered a break in one of the lines (tube severed on two sides, likely either the dog or some...
by capitalG
Fri Jun 22, 2018 11:06 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives
Replies: 25
Views: 1716

Re: How do find a good doctor for chronic hives

Sounds terrible but is unfortunately more common than you think. Go visit your local allergist, they can discuss a few options that can help including the one antiqueman refers to. If you have insurance, it should cover most of the cost of the medication. Hope she finds relief soon,

capG
by capitalG
Fri Jun 15, 2018 9:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why is the cost of renting private rooms in San Francisco Bay Area so cheap?
Replies: 26
Views: 4486

Re: Why is the cost of renting private rooms in San Francisco Bay Area so cheap?

I can't tell if this is a serious thread or not. These may be desirable suburbs but deciding whether living in a RV or tiny dingy room to afford living thereis a personal choice - I could save a lot of money if I eat ramen every meal but I choose not to, some people may choose otherwise based on cir...
by capitalG
Thu Jun 14, 2018 11:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why is the cost of renting private rooms in San Francisco Bay Area so cheap?
Replies: 26
Views: 4486

Re: Why is the cost of renting private rooms in San Francisco Bay Area so cheap?

Note that LA/Houston are cities and SF Bay Area is a region (city + outlying suburbs) - I am positive you can find some nice <$700 rooms for rent in the various suburbs outside of Houston/LA, likely much nicer than the links you included! capH I am looking at moving to new cities for jobs and lookin...
by capitalG
Fri Jun 01, 2018 6:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is having insurance from 5 different companies normal?
Replies: 15
Views: 1902

Re: Is having insurance from 5 different companies normal?

Thanks everyone for the feedback. I managed to consolidate auto, umbrella, and condo insurance with Geico for a decent discount and simplified billing/management. Interestingly, while they underwrite only two of those policies, they serve as the customer facing interface for all three - in the outsi...
by capitalG
Fri Jun 01, 2018 5:55 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Maturing Credit Union 3% CD's this year
Replies: 52
Views: 6553

Re: Maturing Credit Union 3% CD's this year

If you're confident you don't need the money for 5 years, go for a Treasury Note via your brokerage, rates are ~2.75% and risk free if held to maturity. Of course, if you sell sooner you are exposed to yield risk but likewise you will pay a penalty to break your CD early. Personally, given the risin...
by capitalG
Sat May 26, 2018 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is having insurance from 5 different companies normal?
Replies: 15
Views: 1902

Is having insurance from 5 different companies normal?

After the dust settled (both literally and figuratively) from moving into our new home, I realize I now have insurance policies from 5 different companies (auto, house, condo, umbrella, term life). I've been working with the same insurance agent (broker?) for the last 8 years or so and he says this ...
by capitalG
Sun May 20, 2018 10:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Door Dash: Has anyone used?
Replies: 14
Views: 2868

Re: Door Dash: Has anyone used?

It generally works as promised but note that in many cases the restaurant is not involved in the process (i.e. Doordash just orders/picks up the food like any other patron) and sometimes restaurants do not like working with them (they actively chose not to deliver and don’t want someone else to then...
by capitalG
Wed Apr 11, 2018 2:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Redesigned 2019 Forester - details now available
Replies: 21
Views: 4897

Re: Redesigned 2019 Forester - details now available

I bought the 2014 Forester XT (1st year of model) when it was new to replace my 2004 WRX (3rd year), also purchased new. The WRX had no unexpected repairs beyond routine maintenance in the 9 years / ~100k miles I owned it, whereas I’ve had to take the Forester into the dealer for 3 unrelated OEM iss...
by capitalG
Wed Mar 21, 2018 11:10 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Carryover losses for newly converted rental condo
Replies: 3
Views: 439

Re: Carryover losses for newly converted rental condo

Thanks for the response. My question is about whether I can carryover losses if despite putting the unit in service, I end up renting the property 0 days the year it is converted. In the example below, the landlord placed the rental unit in service for 3 months (Oct-Dec) and rented it for 1 month (D...
by capitalG
Wed Mar 21, 2018 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Carryover losses for newly converted rental condo
Replies: 3
Views: 439

Carryover losses for newly converted rental condo

Doing my taxes for the first year with a rental property and had a question on the conversion year. We vacated our primary residence (condo) in October 2017 and moved to a recently purchased house - we started advertising the condo as a rental in mid-November but did not get a tenant in 2017. I've t...
by capitalG
Sat Mar 17, 2018 5:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Custom shades from Home Depot
Replies: 13
Views: 2383

Re: Custom shades from Home Depot

Just to close this out, we received and installed our shades from select blinds.com earlier this week and are very happy with the result! We had ordered a total of 7 shades of varying dimensions across 3 rooms - each shade was separately packaged, labeled properly, had all the necessary parts, and f...
by capitalG
Thu Mar 08, 2018 12:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Custom shades from Home Depot
Replies: 13
Views: 2383

Re: Custom shades from Home Depot

Thanks everyone for your feedback - it sounds like a lot of votes for selectblinds.com / blinds.com and a some for Levelor. I've gotten some samples of a few different grade cellular shades from Select Blinds and the highest grade house brand ("Signature") quality seems better than the Home Depot br...
by capitalG
Mon Feb 26, 2018 11:37 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Custom shades from Home Depot
Replies: 13
Views: 2383

Custom shades from Home Depot

I know there are a couple threads on this topic but I didn't see a couple of these points covered. Does anyone have experience getting cellular shades from Home Decorators, and if so, can you share your thoughts? I believe this is the house brand for Home Depot. We are comparing this brand to Bali (...
by capitalG
Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using home warranty to re-key your house
Replies: 12
Views: 2821

Re: Using home warranty to re-key your house

Thanks for everyone's responses on this. Sounds like, as expected, the home warranty is pretty useless and I won't bother using it to re-key my doors. Having already purchased one of those new keypad locks, I am also now inspired to try to replace the deadbolt on the house myself - worse comes to wo...
by capitalG
Wed Dec 27, 2017 1:20 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Implications of tax bill on residential real estate (house prices)
Replies: 62
Views: 7399

Re: Implications of tax bill on residential real estate (house prices)

Having recently purchased a house myself, I've given this a lot of thought. Between rising interest rates, raising the standard deduction, a hard cap on SALT, and the lower cap on mortgage deductibility (the last primarily for HCOL) I have to believe housing prices will be depressed in the foreseeab...
by capitalG
Fri Dec 22, 2017 11:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Using home warranty to re-key your house
Replies: 12
Views: 2821

Using home warranty to re-key your house

Recently purchased a home and was "gifted" a 1 year home warranty ("American Home Shield") by our real estate agent. Since the major appliances (kitchen, furnace) have all been recently replaced by the previous owner, the warranty does not seem very useful to me. The one benefit that popped out to m...
by capitalG
Tue Aug 01, 2017 11:34 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain
Replies: 17
Views: 2171

Re: Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain

So it sounds like most of you would take the guarantee of selling at today's property price and tax free capital gains vs chasing a potentially higher return by holding & renting the condo. Thanks for the feedback, that reaffirms our conclusion - it is tempting to keep the property given the relativ...
by capitalG
Sat Jul 29, 2017 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain
Replies: 17
Views: 2171

Re: Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain

Thanks for the responses thus far. To answer the question on mortgage terms, Grabiner is roughly correct, we are 4 years into the loan (refi once) and it is a 30 year fixed - will update my OP for this. Regarding future growth potential, given the steady climb over the last 5 years in local housing ...
by capitalG
Sat Jul 29, 2017 11:47 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain
Replies: 17
Views: 2171

Rent vs sell condo with big capital gain

Hello, My SO and I are expanding our family and are close to buying a SFH home. We are debating what to do with the condo we currently own/live in and I am interested in the Board's opinion on whether to rent or sell from purely financial standpoint - time/stress of being a landlord is understood an...
by capitalG
Fri Jan 20, 2017 12:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru + Mazda
Replies: 44
Views: 6070

Re: Subaru + Mazda

I suppose depends on your driving preferences, but I would consider the Outback the opposite of a "fun drive" - definitely safe & good on snow but the car rides like a boat and even the 3.6 is underpowered. We had considered the Outback for the praticality but ended up getting a Forester XT which I ...
by capitalG
Sun Dec 18, 2016 2:16 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What do you think is in more of a bubble right now?
Replies: 57
Views: 8098

Re: What do you think is in more of a bubble right now?

Advertising driven tech companies. There's only so many ad dollars to go around and the umpteenth iteration of a company centered on sharing photos/updates/content with others will slice the pie sufficiently to drag down all the others.

G
by capitalG
Sun Dec 04, 2016 12:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Help me replace my beloved shoes...
Replies: 8
Views: 1679

Help me replace my beloved shoes...

I'm sad to say that the shoes I've owned and loved for the last few years are nearing the end of usable life. Unfortunately, they have discontinued this particular shoe and I don't think the company makes similar. I've searched high and low for a shoe of this style/feel and have come up empty...here...
by capitalG
Sat Dec 03, 2016 6:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should individual disability insurance complement group coverage?
Replies: 4
Views: 911

Should individual disability insurance complement group coverage?

I am was recently approved for individual disability insurance and have been reading through the policy before signing it. I was surprised that the policy assumes that I will continue my current group disability insurance that I receive through my employer (PreTax LTD for 66 2/3%) and the benefit fr...
by capitalG
Tue Nov 08, 2016 11:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: India to Replace Largest Bank Notes
Replies: 20
Views: 3400

Re: India to Replace Largest Bank Notes

When I first read about this today morning I thought it was an Onion article, it seems like a surprising and radical move. Having previous worked and lived in India, I have a fair amount of rupees in cash with me in the US right now which is likely in Rs 500 and Rs 1000 notes - does anyone else livi...