Search found 103 matches

by chald
Sat Jul 02, 2016 12:58 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

Thank you for all of the great suggestions, everyone. I will book with my trip to central Europe and just use the common sense to stay out of trouble. If you have not used it try searching for flights with Google flights. Clark Howard gives instructions for how to use it here. Note, you can just ent...
by chald
Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

I am also interested in traveling to northern Europe including Copenhagen, Stockholm, and Oslo on another trip. I am getting surprisingly cheap airfares to this part of Europe for this summer. Cheaper fares than to eastern Europe, actually. Haven't checked lodging yet. How is this part of Europe for...
by chald
Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

You might consider Dublin and the rest of Ireland. Yep, I won't be able to hit Dublin for this trip, but having Guinness in an Irish bar in Dublin is on my list. :) It is important to note that, with the current migrant issues, "safe" city is a relative term. Crime is often a result of de...
by chald
Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

Perspective is an interesting thing. Where I go in southern Germany, pre-teens walk, bike and scooter themselves to elementary school by themselves or with their siblings. I don't make a point of telling people I'm American, lest they start edging away from me fearfully. Ok, maybe that's an exagger...
by chald
Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

I just looked up the receipts from our AirBnB locations. They averaged about $100-$120 USD per night. But we also didn't look for the cheapest for sure! We prioritized a large number of 5-Star reviews, proximity to city or train station, and generally nice looking places. A quick search for Munich ...
by chald
Fri Jul 01, 2016 1:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Re: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

Just did a road trip starting in Munich, then Garmisch-Partenkirchen, Salzburg, and Vienna. Holy cow was every last bit of it amazing. Even the driving was beautiful and fun. Highly recommend it, as we had some very cheap fun driving through the country. The grass has a magical green color. We used...
by chald
Thu Jun 30, 2016 11:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Safe, affordable European cities to travel?
Replies: 38
Views: 5474

Safe, affordable European cities to travel?

Hello, I'd like to take a last-minute solo trip to Europe this summer but I am a bit of a wimp and the news coming out of Europe in recent months has made me nervous. I still want to go but would like to limit my travel to relatively safe destinations. I'd also like to stay in the cities that are af...
by chald
Sun Apr 17, 2016 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?
Replies: 5
Views: 1052

Re: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?

These worksheets are for your information. The IRS doesn't see them. If you want you can go in and edit this yourself. You need to be in Forms mode and looking at the IRA Info Wks. If you can't find it look for the IRA Contrib Wks. It has a section on page 2 titled Roth IRA Basis SmartWorksheet. Fr...
by chald
Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Meeting with a Fidelity Financial planner, is it useful?
Replies: 39
Views: 9245

Re: Meeting with a Fidelity Financial planner, is it useful?

I met with one many years ago after going through the online retirement planning exercise via the Fidelity web site. The advisor went through the same information I already went through on their web site asking the same questions the web site program asked me. I felt it was a total waste of time. It...
by chald
Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?
Replies: 5
Views: 1052

Re: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?

TurboTax is likely keeping track of your Roth IRA contribution balance. This would be the basis in the account and would not reflect the gains in the account. Is this balance equal to the sum of your contributions? This is necessary if you have non-qualified Roth IRA distributions to properly compl...
by chald
Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?
Replies: 5
Views: 1052

Just found from the IRA web site: "You do not report Roth IRA contributions on your return". Turbo Tax confuses me sometimes.
by chald
Sun Apr 17, 2016 1:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?
Replies: 5
Views: 1052

My Roth IRA information is wrong on Turbo Tax worksheet - what to do?

Hello, I have no Traditional IRA, just a regular Roth IRA, and noticed that my cumulative Roth IRA balance on the "IRA Information Worksheet" section of my Turbo Tax return is much smaller than my actual Roth balance. My guess is that I did not report my Roth IRA contributions in some of t...
by chald
Sun Apr 10, 2016 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

As for continuing education, I suspect both metro areas have more options than you could possibly ever take advantage of. Here's for Dallas County: https://www.dcccd.edu/Sch/Pages/CE.aspx If you are up in the northern suburbs then it would be Collin County: https://www.collin.edu/ce/ Not focusing o...
by chald
Sun Apr 10, 2016 9:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

VA state income tax top bracket is 5.75%. MD's typical brackets for 3k to 500k income are 4.75% to 5.25. It appears to be lower. However, PG County and Montgomery County (the two adjacent DC) both assess 3.2% county income tax. So you're actually seeing an additive income tax of 7.95% to 8.45%. Ouc...
by chald
Sun Apr 10, 2016 9:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Hello, OP here. In case anyone is interested, I have decided to focus my search on NoVA/MD . The main draw for me is that the area has a significantly larger software developer community for networking and abundant education options I can take advantage of to advance my career. If things don't work ...
by chald
Sat Apr 09, 2016 3:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Thank you again for all your help, everyone! In NoVA, I was considering beginning my search from Loudoun county due to itx proximity to the airport without realizing the area being one of the most expensive places to live. I am open to venturing out to other areas including MD. Are there any signifi...
by chald
Fri Apr 08, 2016 9:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Headhunters don't help with government jobs. Usajobs.gov is where you go. But it is just like any job in a sense: sometimes it is who you know. Government jobs aren't bad but they have ceilings compared to the private sector. There is a strict pay scale, GS-1 to GS-15, with 10 steps within each gra...
by chald
Fri Apr 08, 2016 7:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

I am getting discouraged about moving to NoVA. The cost thing scares me and a big part of this move is for a better financial future. One thing I should find out more about is the availability of well-paying government jobs and how to go about finding one. I've only worked in private sectors and alw...
by chald
Fri Apr 08, 2016 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

slheinlein wrote:My experience with Dallas medicare was terrible.
Would you mind elaborating on this? Quality of medical care is very important to me.
by chald
Fri Apr 08, 2016 7:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Hi, this is OP. Denver has been making those "hot city" lists over and over, so it's a well known secret! :) I did consider Denver and it does sound like exactly my cup of tea based on its size, scenery, weather, vibe, active lifestyle, job market, etc. I can see myself happy and engaged i...
by chald
Thu Apr 07, 2016 11:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

TxAg wrote:If you come to TX, I'll buy you a beer
Thanks! I'll add it to the reasons to pick Dallas. :)
by chald
Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Hi, this is OP. I really appreciate everyone's taking your valuable time to share your thoughts and provide helpful comments. I find them immensely valuable and gained some new knowledge that will help with my decision making process. I'll try to answer some of the questions below. The main reason I...
by chald
Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Re: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Hi, OP here. Thank you all for your comments! I feel like an army of support is behind me! I will write more after work but just wanted to say a quick 'thank you' to all. More to follow later...
by chald
Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?
Replies: 87
Views: 11796

Dallas suburbs or Northern Virginia for me?

Hello, I am a single IT worker in my 40's considering relocating to another city for a better financial future and a happier life. After weighing several personal factors, I have narrowed down my choices to a northern suburb of Dallas (Plano/Carrollton/Grapevine, etc.) or Northern Virginia (probably...
by chald
Tue Jan 19, 2016 2:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Well Done Ally Bank - CD purchase
Replies: 61
Views: 13874

Re: Well Done Ally Bank - CD purchase

Phineas J. Whoopee wrote: What's the problem with one hard pull?
Right, no big deal in general, but I'll be applying for a mortgage in the next six months and would like to avoid a hard pull. It sounds like I should not open an account with Ally until after I buy a house just to be on the safe side.
by chald
Mon Jan 18, 2016 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Well Done Ally Bank - CD purchase
Replies: 61
Views: 13874

Re: Well Done Ally Bank - CD purchase

Does Ally check your credit if you open a new account? I am hearing conflicting answers. Can you share your experience if you opened a new account recently? I am trying to avoid a hard pull on my credit.

Thanks.
by chald
Fri Feb 20, 2015 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?
Replies: 34
Views: 5155

Re: Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?

I am tempted to leave the graduation dates off my resume as youth seems to be a big asset in my industry (tech), but I also feel that if a company doesn't want me just because of my age, I probably don't want to work for that company, either.
by chald
Fri Feb 20, 2015 3:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?
Replies: 34
Views: 5155

Re: Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?

Wouldn't omitting the years actually draw more attention, though, just like how I immediately noticed and thought, "he doesn't want to show his age"?
by chald
Fri Feb 20, 2015 2:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?
Replies: 34
Views: 5155

Should older workers omit graduation dates on resume?

I came across a resume of someone I know and it didn't include the graduation years. I was surprised because he is one of the smartest and most qualified people I know but I also understood that he was trying to avoid age discrimination at work. This issue seems especially relevant in tech industry,...
by chald
Mon Oct 06, 2014 12:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?
Replies: 50
Views: 24965

Re: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?

I visited the condo today after finding out that there is no rental cap. It was a small, but nicely renovated condo except that it didn't have a separate entrance. You have to enter the unit through the patio through the living room door. It feels very odd not having an actual door to the unit. Does...
by chald
Sun Oct 05, 2014 3:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?
Replies: 50
Views: 24965

Re: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?

If I buy this condo, my plan is to live there for a couple of years and then rent it out while I move up to a bigger place. Perhaps I should ask instead, "should I buy a condo I am planning to convert to a rental property?".
by chald
Sun Oct 05, 2014 3:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?
Replies: 50
Views: 24965

Re: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?

Does this unit have direct outside access, such as a patio-type area? If so, that could give you some additional flexibility of more usable space. Do you (or could you) speak with other owners/residents of the building that live on the ground floor? What is the elevation of the "ground floor&q...
by chald
Sun Oct 05, 2014 3:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?
Replies: 50
Views: 24965

Re: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?

Thanks, all, for sharing your experiences or offering some advice. I normally prefer a top-floor corner unit for privacy and security reasons, but this ground-floor unit is in a very good area I otherwise can't afford, so I am considering it, but all these negative points give me a pause.
by chald
Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?
Replies: 50
Views: 24965

Should I buy a condo on the GROUND FLOOR?

Hi, I am in the market to buy a condo and have come across a well-priced property in a good area. The only problem is that it is on the ground floor, which I normally don't consider due to security reasons, but this property is in a gated community in a pretty nice area. Are there other disadvantage...
by chald
Mon Sep 01, 2014 11:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

So, your original post was a concern that you were "doing too much" that you needed to "draw the line" because you don't want to "compromise your own retirement". Note the quotes. These are all your own words. Yet, you don't seem to be willing to actually take action. ...
by chald
Sun Aug 31, 2014 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Thanks again for posting your advice and thoughts, everyone. Someone pointed out that cultural values may be in play here, and that’s correct. In the culture where I come from, adult children are expected to take care of elderly parents as well as siblings in need to some extent. Also in my culture ...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

If you reward bad behavior, people will continue with the bad behavior. I believe one of the Bogleheads wrote a management book that includes rewarding the behavior you want to see. There was a thread recently about it. (I only read the free chapter on Amazon so far), ROBERT B. CIALDIN's Influence ...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

The greatest gift you can give these people is independence. If your sister has a disability that keeps her from working, find her a good disability lawyer. SSA disability lawyers get paid from the back pay of the recipient, and that is limited by law to 25% of the total, not to exceed 6000.00. The...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:11 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Mudpuppy wrote: I put one rule in place that pretty much stopped them asking for money unless it was dire. My rule is the same as Gleops2 wrote, I never send a check to family directly, but I will pay vendors.
I know a couple of people suggested this. I will try this approach.
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 11:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Be sure to research what it would take to be able to deduct your parents or your siblings as a dependent on your taxes. If you structure your support the right way then you may be able to do this so you would at least get a tax break. I looked into this years ago when my father had a large medical ...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 8:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Without more information regarding why, exactly, each of these 4 people (father, mother, brother, sister) aren't at work right now it is difficult to advise you. How old are each of your parents and do they each have enough work history in this country to qualify for social security? If so, how muc...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 7:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

As you have experienced and are experiencing - it is often very easy to get into (or be dragged into) what can be very burdensome "obligations". And, as you have expressed - the needs or demands are increasing - with a long (probably very long) future of the same. It seems to me that you ...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 4:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

There are a lot of social programs to help out such as Food Banks, Welfare, Social Security. Your parents and siblings should check them out. You can find them online and give the information to the family members. My parents are over 65 and receive some support. The sibling are either ineligible d...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Thanks everyone for posting replies and expressing support. I don't discuss these issues with other people, so just letting it out here helps. As some suggested, I think I will send a check just enough to help with groceries (I have moved to another town and can't actually bring food to them physica...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

I'll reiterate what I've seen on Suze Orman multiple times. Tell your family that you love them and do not send another check. Hold your ground. Be strong. They sometimes send me on a guilt trip. My brother said I would regret when my parents pass away for not having done more. It's very hard on me...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Why is the situation getting worse - is it something unavoidable, like medical expenses, or are people who could work not working? What about Social Security for your parents? Public assistance for the siblings? It seems odd that everyone but you is a financial wreck. If the siblings are "alon...
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 3:04 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Re: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

dolphinsaremammals wrote:Are both your parents and siblings living in your condo, or do your parents live elsewhere? If they live elsewhere, they could double up in the condo.
Both my parents and siblings live in my condo. They have already doubled up.
by chald
Fri Aug 29, 2014 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help out family without compromising my own retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 8982

Help out family without compromising my own retirement?

Hi, I am single with a steady job, save diligently for my own retirement, and live below my means. Unfortunately, my parents and siblings are in poor financial shape. My parents did not prepare for the retirement and my siblings have no steady jobs. They are currently living rent free in my condo wh...
by chald
Thu Aug 21, 2014 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kimchi
Replies: 40
Views: 3391

Re: Kimchi

One of my favorite types of kimchi is "gut-jeo-ri". This is the only type of kimchi I know that is meant to be eaten UNfermented and it's very fresh, crunchy, and doesn't have the pungent smell some people dislike about kimchi. Not all Korean strores sell it, though, so you'll probably hav...
by chald
Sat Aug 16, 2014 7:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The (un)freshness of Starbucks bakery products
Replies: 49
Views: 27655

Re: The (un)freshness of Starbucks bakery products

Primarily, onsite, fresh baked items are offered by independent businesses, not chains. I completely agree and am a huge fan of locally owned independent bakery shops. I miss Paris. Cute, local bakery shops featuring scrumptious, mouth-watering pastries baked fresh daily are practically in every co...