Search found 92 matches

by Mike83
Mon Sep 30, 2019 2:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying CDs at Vanguard vs Online Banks
Replies: 25
Views: 4467

Re: Buying CDs at Vanguard vs Online Banks

I am a buyer of 12-24 mo CDs from both Synchrony and VG going on a few years. Synchrony has good telephone support and rates that are as good as any non-credit union bank. VG generally has one bank that closely matches the Synchrony rate. So I am happy with both companies but at this point I am grad...
by Mike83
Mon Sep 30, 2019 2:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Revocable Living Trust - naming as beneficary
Replies: 8
Views: 886

Re: Revocable Living Trust - naming as beneficary

Having funded my trust I'm perhaps two years down the timeline from you, so this what I've learned so far that is relevant to your question... Certain classes of investments are called 'self settling', meaning they do not need to go though the probate process. This includes life insurance policies a...
by Mike83
Fri Sep 20, 2019 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are some good life insurance policies?
Replies: 15
Views: 945

Re: What are some good life insurance policies?

You asked the forum for a recommended vendor for non-term life insurance. I would recommend TIAA-CREF. No sales commission and no surrender fees. Lower cost. Ability to decrement the policy annually if your needs change. Decent investment options if you keep it simple. Nothing else comes close afaik...
by Mike83
Wed May 29, 2019 4:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Advising young adult on pharma career-Phd?
Replies: 19
Views: 1779

Re: Advising young adult on pharma career-Phd?

Given the totality of her experience, education, and apparent interests, there is no need to take a left turn into a 'wet' laboratory. She appears numerically focused and analytical. Fortunately, computational science, drug analytics, modeling health economic outcomes, biostatistics... these are are...
by Mike83
Fri May 17, 2019 10:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My solar investment experience
Replies: 100
Views: 9833

Re: My solar investment experience

Trying to understand the return, because this is also an interest of mine. How much was your annual electric bill BEFORE it was reduced to $80? I am in a deep southern state, and a new style hot water heater using a heat pump is much less expensive (more cost effective) than rooftop solar hot water ...
by Mike83
Mon Dec 10, 2018 1:59 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Bond Bucket in Tax Free?
Replies: 2
Views: 328

Bond Bucket in Tax Free?

In two years I will be required to take RMDs from tax free. Right now, I AA these accounts using a blend of Wellsley and Wellington within VG. Pretty simple. I'm considering the benefit of adding a pure bond fund bucket to cover withdrawals that would always cover 3-5 years of RMDs. This way I would...
by Mike83
Mon Dec 10, 2018 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric bill with LED
Replies: 114
Views: 9350

Re: Electric bill with LED

Residential lighting is estimated to represent 17% of a typical residential bill (gubbermint data). If you switch from all convention bulbs to all LED, that 17% number would drop to 4%. Of course 'typical residential bill' will have wide variance and YMMV, but this should give you a good sense of th...
by Mike83
Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 1.5 liter wine
Replies: 52
Views: 11939

Re: 1.5 liter wine

A few posters have chimed-in equating quality with higher price, and sometimes this is true. Since this is a boglehead forum, let me propose for your frugal consideration the contrarian view as represented by the Reverse Wine Snob site (link follows) https://www.reversewinesnob.com/breaking-into-box...
by Mike83
Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Simplisafe Home Security System
Replies: 55
Views: 9298

Re: Simplisafe Home Security System

I am a SS user in my business setting and am pleased with it (5 years). We can cover a 6000SF office with a few space detectors and door switches. We use two keypads and a few panic alarm buttons. I like that it can be web accessed inexpensively if I choose to let someone in after hours, or reset re...
by Mike83
Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Program/App to Display Family Tree (Branching Diagram)
Replies: 11
Views: 749

Re: Program/App to Display Family Tree (Branching Diagram)

For your situation I would recommend ancestry.com. --There are settings to keep your information non-public, yet still share with invited guests AND collaborate, and platform agnostic --Access to tons of low hanging fruit is available to graft onto your tree --If your interest level builds, you can ...
by Mike83
Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Moving to NYC, self-employed, with a kid. How big will my tax hit be?
Replies: 22
Views: 2704

Re: Moving to NYC, self-employed, with a kid. How big will my tax hit be?

I wish I could help. When faced with the same decision, I left NY for Florida and never looked back better schools no state taxes better housing choices (you have a family) better commute more diversity in the population, both ethnic and social philosophy better college prepay options easier living ...
by Mike83
Sun Oct 07, 2018 6:18 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone here use Vanguard CD's?
Replies: 36
Views: 6581

Re: Anyone here use Vanguard CD's?

I have shifted most of my Synchrony online CDs to VG over the last 18 months. VG accounts do not automatically 'roll over'. To me this is an advantage, others may disagree. The rate and guarantee are the same. For me the CDs aggregate for a higher tip of VG services, and I like consolidation for est...
by Mike83
Thu Sep 06, 2018 12:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help make me more employable
Replies: 18
Views: 2759

Re: Help make me more employable

I second all the comments related to developing interpersonal skills. For engineers, those of us who can talk rise to leadership roles. I'll add that it is important to visualize the enterprise you work in beyond your own role. Practice your (new) interpersonal skills at every opportunity to better ...
by Mike83
Wed Sep 05, 2018 11:54 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Moving nwm whole life to vanguard or fidelity variable annuity
Replies: 4
Views: 619

Re: Moving nwm whole life to vanguard or fidelity variable annuity

One reason to make such a move is if you are underwater in your current whole life policy. I had such policy (NWM) to insure cross purchase in a business partnership, a common use of whole life. The policy was expensive and my rating was not the best, but I had passed the withdrawal penalty period a...
by Mike83
Tue May 29, 2018 8:32 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best retirement places for shy senior singles
Replies: 32
Views: 4401

Re: Best retirement places for shy senior singles

If you can still dependably drive a car, you might find Century Village in Deerfield Beach Florida an excellent choice. The ladies there are Blue (even have blue hair) and at a certain age will swarm a diminishing pool of surviving men who can still drive. In addition, Albert Gore and most other Blu...
by Mike83
Wed Apr 11, 2018 11:36 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Eligibility for individual 401k
Replies: 4
Views: 540

Eligibility for individual 401k

I am at a point where I am selling my business to my employees and retiring. My ownership will shift from 100% to 0% over a period of 5-6 years. Our company 401k will not allow me to make contributions to my own account after I turn 70.5yo in 2 yrs, due to my ownership share. The plan allows non-own...
by Mike83
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I prewire my home network myself?
Replies: 40
Views: 3114

Re: Should I prewire my home network myself?

If I were in your position (having good access to interior walls) I would run cat6 cable to a few select rooms. I would include a room on each floor, plus a few rooms where conventional video tv is likely to be used. In future years, you are likely to use a wireless MESH network. These wires can the...
by Mike83
Wed Apr 11, 2018 9:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: A way to get phone calls only from "whitelisted" numbers?
Replies: 14
Views: 1385

Re: A way to get phone calls only from "whitelisted" numbers?

My landline is ATT Uverse VOIP. They have a blocking service to screen calls that is very effective. It blocks known offenders completely. It tags marketing and solicitation calls (even the allowed political polls and fraternal order of police type calls) so that they only ring once, so you can see ...
by Mike83
Fri Mar 30, 2018 9:24 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oak Tree Roots Heaving Up Driveway
Replies: 5
Views: 1229

Oak Tree Roots Heaving Up Driveway

I live in a southern climate with a mid size 40yo Live Oak that has heaved up a slab of concrete about 4 inches as a root encroached on my driveway. It needs fixing because it is a driveway trip hazard and a bit of a sharp edge for car tires. So... Has anyone had experience shaving or grinding down ...
by Mike83
Thu Nov 23, 2017 10:40 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Post-71.5 y/o 401k contributions for a 5% owner?
Replies: 2
Views: 612

Re: Post-71.5 y/o 401k contributions for a 5% owner?

@Alan -- many thanks for your on-spot comments. I have a safe-harbor plan so at 70.5 I need to stop pretax contributions and start RMDs. My go-forward plan at that time (per this research) would be to start contributing to a Roth option in the same plan. Of course i would be required to start RMDs f...
by Mike83
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Post-71.5 y/o 401k contributions for a 5% owner?
Replies: 2
Views: 612

Post-71.5 y/o 401k contributions for a 5% owner?

Doing some pre-retirement planning here and would appreciate comments on this. I own a company and will continue to earn income from it for a few years after I turn age 70.5. I will also own more than 5% of the company during that time. I have substantial assets in the company 401k plan (pre-tax). I...
by Mike83
Mon Nov 20, 2017 3:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity - keep it or cash out?
Replies: 4
Views: 815

Re: Annuity - keep it or cash out?

Thanks for the replies and confirming my thoughts on cashing it out. (There was no GLWB or death benefit rider on the policy)
by Mike83
Sat Nov 18, 2017 10:37 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Annuity - keep it or cash out?
Replies: 4
Views: 815

Annuity - keep it or cash out?

I have a $200k Vanguard annuity. I acquired it when I cashed out a life policy that was no longer needed in a business partnership. The (lousy) Life policy at that time had a $60,000 investment loss, so conversion to a low cost annuity was my mechanism to earn that $60,000 back in a tax free manner,...
by Mike83
Wed Nov 15, 2017 9:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Office Chair Recommendations (Aeron?)
Replies: 38
Views: 4394

Re: Office Chair Recommendations (Aeron?)

Still using an Aeron chair I got ten years ago. Be aware you can get their models in sizes: small medium large. A nice option for different height users. If you consider other chairs, make sure they are BIFMA certified (Business Ind Furniture Mfg Assn?) to assure it stands up to long term, everyday ...
by Mike83
Thu Sep 21, 2017 9:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Memory Foam Mattress Recomendations
Replies: 63
Views: 8843

Re: Memory Foam Mattress Recomendations

I always used trad mattress and always saw them develop valleys (regardless of price) after a year. Was scared away by "hot" foam, but finally got a tempurpedic foam from costco for master bedroom. They have them on offer perhaps once a year for $800 less than mattress stores. Very happy after 2 yea...
by Mike83
Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: School Redistricting - What should we do?
Replies: 96
Views: 10581

Re: School Redistricting - What should we do?

The story of America is that new neighborhoods change. They eventually get poorer, then when they reach bottom MAY redevelop and become attractive again, someday. My city was very viable when I moved in and raised my kids. Everything went well and they are now on their own. Now, the area is going do...
by Mike83
Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: All areas will have Obamacare plan in 2018
Replies: 14
Views: 2367

Re: All areas will have Obamacare plan in 2018

I offer (and pay for most of) my employees medial insurance. Over many years and tragic personal anecdotes, I have become aware of the need for access to a wide pool of doctors and a wide selection of expert hospitals. These limited doctor plans (Obama Care) may very well work for routine and preven...
by Mike83
Sat Aug 26, 2017 10:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Bosch dishwasher?
Replies: 92
Views: 10408

Re: Bosch dishwasher?

In order to become ultra-quiet, many modern dw use a filter to screen bits of debris, rather than a grinder to flush them away. Quiet, yes, but a bit disgusting as the filter fills up with bits of stuff and wash water passes through it (clean every month). With my old kitchenaid that lasted 15 years...
by Mike83
Mon May 15, 2017 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping for restaurants where you order at the counter
Replies: 126
Views: 27463

Re: Tipping for restaurants where you order at the counter

If a counter pickup restaurant of any type presents me with a charge ticket that contains a blank space for tip, I generally do not return to that restaurant.
by Mike83
Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Looking For Advice - Move NY -> Tampa?
Replies: 53
Views: 6550

Re: Looking For Advice - Move NY -> Tampa?

If you can get essential equivalence in compensation in Tampa, you will really come out on top. If you are a talented sales rep that earns his keep, there are plenty of opportunities in the area. Sometimes it doesn't work out for people in very specific niches where the opportunities are thinner tha...
by Mike83
Sun Apr 30, 2017 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car maintenance for older cars - where do you go ?
Replies: 52
Views: 5415

Re: Car maintenance for older cars - where do you go ?

I have had good experiences at Hyundai dealers and very good experiences at Acura dealers (multiple cars over many years). Just the opposite experience at Toyota. So I guess it depends. Now I tend to but cars with 4 or 10 year warranties, and trade them at that point. When a customer surveyor called...
by Mike83
Thu Apr 20, 2017 10:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: About lawn sprinkler sytem
Replies: 16
Views: 2279

Re: About lawn sprinkler sytem

I suggest checking out the Rachio controller. It is, alas, internet connected. It coordinates watering with actual and predicted rain from the nearest hyper-local weather station. It also makes seasonal adjustments on its own based on weather patterns in your locale. Takes into account shade, sun, h...
by Mike83
Sat Apr 15, 2017 7:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help! Dad's Retirement Account with Lincoln Financial Group
Replies: 15
Views: 4127

Re: Help! Dad's Retirement Account with Lincoln Financial Group

Just FYI the allocation is easy to read in your post, but the stuff below is really not readable, even when zoomed in. Usually these plans, even if opaque, send a sheet once quarter that lists all the available investments along with their individual expense ratios. The prospectus will usually refer...
by Mike83
Sat Apr 15, 2017 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Washer/dryer suggestions?
Replies: 46
Views: 7462

Re: Washer/dryer suggestions?

Never had a mold problem with my Bosch front loader. I do a load of whites per week and always use bleach. I leave the door ajar, not open. For shaking, there are excellent engineered disk shaped polymer cushions sold on Amazon that will mellow out the rock and roll. They are very expensive, like $5...
by Mike83
Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone else decided not to finish med school?
Replies: 76
Views: 25477

Re: Anyone else decided not to finish med school?

Some people wind up in professional school for the the wrong reasons. Social or family expectations, or a mistaken interpretation of what is desired or required. Some people even forge ahead and complete the program, knowing this, and can then redirect the learned skills into other areas very succes...
by Mike83
Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: radio alarm clock that projects the time on the wall or ceiling
Replies: 18
Views: 2679

Re: radio alarm clock that projects the time on the wall or ceiling

I have a four year old Emerson clock radio with a laser turret that can aim at a ceiling or a wall. My ceiling is wood, so I direct it at the wall, about 20 feet away and 16 feet high. The size of the projected clock is adjustable (zoom?). I think you can select three colors. I use green. This is us...
by Mike83
Sat Apr 15, 2017 1:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Hearing aids: has anyone used a CROS hearing aid?
Replies: 18
Views: 3142

Re: Hearing aids: has anyone used a CROS hearing aid?

I am two months into a bi-cross system due to similar situation. Sudden loss in one ear (unknown cause) and normal, age related high frequency loss in the 'good' ear'. The 'bad' ear has about 10% ability to hear noise, but words are chopped with static and not understood. The good ear is just under ...
by Mike83
Sun Mar 05, 2017 12:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Programable thermostat for gas water heater?
Replies: 19
Views: 2082

Re: Programable thermostat for gas water heater?

Aside from the excellent suggestion regarding low flow showers, consider: * moving uo to a larger tank when it comes time to replace, for example from 50 gal to 80 gal, well insulated • a front loading washing machine can use much less water • washing machine detergents work fine these days at warm ...
by Mike83
Sun Mar 05, 2017 12:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investment Advice from David Stockman?
Replies: 9
Views: 2556

Re: Investment Advice from David Stockman?

I have re-visited Stockman's blog a few times and am somewhat inclined to align myself emotionally with his message of an ultimate bad outcome. I have to balance this against the historic resiliency of our country. As Americans, we are an optimistic group and gravitate towards expecting good outcome...
by Mike83
Thu Nov 03, 2016 12:02 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: I suffer from analysis paralysis
Replies: 9
Views: 3170

Re: I suffer from analysis paralysis

It's difficult to make such a broad change over so many positions. If this is holding you back, you could start in phases to simplify the holdings and move towards your planned allocation. Perhaps start by selling off the common stock holdings, consistent with capital gain status, perhaps over two y...
by Mike83
Mon Oct 17, 2016 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How should I buy my first house?
Replies: 17
Views: 2016

Re: How should I buy my first house?

With regard to your interest in tax deductions, keep in mind that you are a high income individual and that your family income and career advancement will drive it higher. I have not been able to deduct interest expenses for 10 years due to phase out rules. Of course, in the northeast you have the a...
by Mike83
Mon Oct 17, 2016 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I be nervous about ancestry.com?
Replies: 17
Views: 4811

Re: Should I be nervous about ancestry.com?

ancestry.com does not show (to other users) information that you enter about LIVING relatives. There are also other settings you can deploy so that you share no data with anyone at all, or just authorize some trusted relatives to see the data and add their own. Not a problem in my estimation. Choose...
by Mike83
Thu Oct 13, 2016 10:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Struggling with "Live like a Resident" versus "Keeping up with the Joneses"
Replies: 139
Views: 26134

Re: Struggling with "Live like a Resident" versus "Keeping up with the Joneses"

Throughout my career I had seen, close up, three individuals with net worth of $100MM, $1 Billion and $5 billion, at different companies Two had ten year old cars, two had VERY modest homes and the third had a modest home considering their wealth, none had fancy accessories nor expensive clothes, tw...
by Mike83
Sat Sep 17, 2016 11:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physician employment and fair salary and raises
Replies: 58
Views: 8768

Re: Physician employment and fair salary and raises

I'm viewing this as an outsider, and the discussion in quite depressing from a patient perspective, when one considers the way medicine has become production oriented and the administrative burden that has accelerated the process. I often think that all a consumer needs to know is that a typical lar...
by Mike83
Sat Sep 17, 2016 10:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Basic pool equipment - best brands/types
Replies: 40
Views: 5417

Re: Basic pool equipment - best brands/types

If you are in a year-round pool use climate, when you need a new filtration pump check out a high capacity variable flow model. These run at very low speed for about six hours a day, and at high volume for about 90 minutes a day (when they run a cleaning robot like White Shark). They can easily redu...
by Mike83
Wed Sep 14, 2016 7:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can One Keep Trial Deposits?
Replies: 30
Views: 5770

Re: Can One Keep Trial Deposits?

My best friend's mother makes $80,000 dollars a year this way TAX-FREE working from home!
by Mike83
Wed Sep 14, 2016 7:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2016 Murano or 2016 Acura MDX
Replies: 36
Views: 8174

Re: 2016 Murano or 2016 Acura MDX

I'm on my third MDX, and have a TLX as well. IMO the MDX is something to buy for its road handling. It really shows off on a hairpin turn or cloverleaf [WHEEEE!]. It is also very athletic on the highway and and on starts. However, I don't believe that this driving experience is provided by the 2WD v...
by Mike83
Thu Sep 01, 2016 12:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resigning from a job: best practices and advice?
Replies: 111
Views: 14812

Re: Resigning from a job: best practices and advice?

Almost all of the advice offered so far is relevant, and as noted some of it depends on the company culture, which you likely know. I will add this, which is in the keep-it-classy realm. • If you harbor any unhappiness about your current employer, management, or peers... stifle any urge to let these...
by Mike83
Tue Aug 09, 2016 10:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: mortgage for old folks?
Replies: 17
Views: 2032

Re: mortgage for old folks?

Something to consider would be Washington's Homestead Law protections that you may lose if you hoard cash by getting a mortgage. In Florida, if you 'cash-out' your house, the money is exposed to creditors (think big medical bills; plus you would still owe the mortgage company). If Floridians leave t...
by Mike83
Tue Feb 09, 2016 12:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)
Replies: 94
Views: 10816

Re: The Coming Boglehead Zombie Apocalypse (LED bulbs)

After much expensive experimentation over a period of years, I feel qualified to recommend Phillips or Cree bulbs without hesitation (or Cooper lighting brands if doing a new install of a ceiling can with integrated LED). Other brands sold at big box stores are not as reliable or trustworthy in colo...