Search found 376 matches

by bnes
Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Check Received: What to do?
Replies: 22
Views: 2287

Re: Check Received: What to do?

In a similar situation I endorsed with "My Name on behalf of Name on Check".
I told no lies.
The check cleared.
Nobody ever complained.
by bnes
Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Handling a family loan left unpaid at death
Replies: 5
Views: 1530

Handling a family loan left unpaid at death

An elderly relative of mine made a loan to younger relative for some hundreds of thousands of dollars, secured by a lien on real property. There was a promissory note and a 5% interest rate. There was no penalty for late payment, and in fact no payments were ever made, and all attempts at collection...
by bnes
Thu Aug 03, 2017 1:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

Has the family talked about getting some kind of guardianship for this person? It might be possible if the family member's doctors were willing to cooperate. The individual distrusts doctors, and won't see one. A separate friend had similar problems. The parents were able to get help only after the...
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Non Stick frying pan
Replies: 66
Views: 5382

Re: Non Stick frying pan

Cast Iron works great here, and we're not afraid to use soap to clean them either. After a few years the seasoning gets seriously baked on, I have found no reason to worry about it. The only way to permanently kill a cast iron pan is to leave it wet after use.
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:23 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Do I Have Enough In My Emergency Fund?
Replies: 22
Views: 3071

Re: Do I Have Enough In My Emergency Fund?

Here's my situation: I am 41, no wife and no kids, in good health with a stable career, am not a home owner just yet, and live in a major metropolis area with an abundance of jobs. Do you maintain health insurance? That would reduce risk more. Given the low risk consider Series EE Savings Bonds. Yo...
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 11:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

Whoa ... I just noticed the lack of a "K" on the second mortgage. Is there really a second mortgage in default with only $275 (two-hundred-seventy-five dollars) that the young person has not been willing to pay ? I missed that because I never imagined that anybody would default and risk losing a $6...
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

I am still confused. Does the horrifically irresponsible family member not care if they loose the house and is therefore unwilling to sign anything to keep that from happening? Do they have a loan for 100k as first and then a family loan for 275k? for second? The family member may be unable to face...
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

The family elected to pay the back amount to pull the 1st out of foreclosure, and stop the fee accumulation. That just happened. There was no indication the 1st holder was willing to negotiate. Let me be clear: the family wants to keep the individual in the house even if it is expensively stupid to ...
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best credit card options??
Replies: 18
Views: 2279

Re: Best credit card options??

Consider also having a card for use during foreign travel. Both the quality of the exchange rate and the fee are important, some cards charge 3% or more in fee. The DoubleCash from Citi is a good card, with an above average set of web services.
by bnes
Mon Jul 31, 2017 1:03 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which funds would you pick, given this constrained list?
Replies: 7
Views: 862

Re: Which funds would you pick, given this constrained list?

What kind of leverage does gnma fund use? Is it really leveraged or j just a futures transaction? Not clear to me. But bonds are 150% of the portfolio: http://portfolios.morningstar.com/fund/summary?t=PAGNX®ion=usa&culture=en-US http://ibd.morningstar.com/article/article.asp?id=639215&CN=brf295,...
by bnes
Sat Jul 22, 2017 11:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is Amazon Prime worth it?
Replies: 135
Views: 10975

Re: Is Amazon Prime worth it?

Is it a deal? Well, follow the money. Prime is a prime driver of Amazon's profits (See https://www.fool.com/investing/general/2016/03/25/how-prime-makes-amazon-profitable.aspx ). So somebody's making money, and overall it's not the consumer. Prime is a huge tease, as there are a few high quality sho...
by bnes
Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:38 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Which funds would you pick, given this constrained list?
Replies: 7
Views: 862

Which funds would you pick, given this constrained list?

Yep, these are my only choices for a given employer HSA plan, currently sitting at $20k. The Vanguard 500 fund at 0.04% seems good for the "domestic" stock component. But what would you suggest for a fixed income/bonds portion? Note I'm in California, so HSA earnings are taxable. Investment Name Tic...
by bnes
Thu Jul 20, 2017 6:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you let your teenager spend all his savings on a gaming computer?
Replies: 123
Views: 7648

Re: Would you let your teenager spend all his savings on a gaming computer?

I'd require that he budget for games cost also. Use this as a teaching moment to start with budgeting or even a personal loan (in case the computer is more expensive than expected)
by bnes
Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

Foreclosure is not worth it to the family: the family knows that if the house is lost, the "owner" will end up in some other relative's basement. Family situations suck. The family has just decided to pay it all off, with or without cooperation, effectively folding it into a new note which probably ...
by bnes
Wed Jul 12, 2017 10:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Personal loan to a family member
Replies: 114
Views: 7919

Re: Personal loan to a family member

Yeah, I'm dealing with the version where the family member turned out to be a deadbeat, despite having a recorded official note and lien. And because the family wants the person to stay in the house (and not bum housing off yet other relatives), there's no leverage to resolve the situation. Consider...
by bnes
Mon Jul 10, 2017 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how to destroy hard disk with personal info
Replies: 99
Views: 8417

Re: how to destroy hard disk with personal info

Screws: they're there, just under labels.
Take it apart, run a magnet over each platter, and toss the mess into a metal recycling bin (with the electronics in e-Waste).
Done. Really done.
by bnes
Mon Jul 10, 2017 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Re: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

OP here: the situation is that the family wishes to keep the homeowner in place, in the house. But there's not enough committed money available to deal with all the debts: this is an attempt to negotiate some sort of discount. I can see that with an above water house, and the opportunity to tack on ...
by bnes
Wed Jul 05, 2017 2:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water
Replies: 27
Views: 3016

Structuring payoff offer for house in foreclosure, above water

I am tasked with making a payoff offer on a home in foreclosure. The 1st is $100k, the 2nd $275k, with $78k in IRS lien. The house is worth maybe $600k, but has been trashed, and would present some difficulties in sale. But basically the lender can recoup their costs in foreclosure. I have cash avai...
by bnes
Mon May 15, 2017 12:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Setting a periodic transfer / Dealing with a fiscal beggar
Replies: 26
Views: 2961

Re: Setting a periodic transfer / Dealing with a fiscal beggar

If they refuse to open an account, then I refuse to help. Sorry, but conceding to the demands of someone who is begging makes no sense to me. Worse, someone who is dodging unpaid taxes. The situation sucks, but family situations often suck. Note Bluebird looked attractive, but so many places don't ...
by bnes
Mon May 15, 2017 12:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees
Replies: 49
Views: 5534

Re: Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees

Debit card transactions often carry the same fees as credit card transactions, so by using " bank debit card with local merchants" you're actually doing the very thing you're attempting to avoid. Some processors have a flat rate, but any merchant with some volume or smarts gets access to lower rate...
by bnes
Mon May 15, 2017 12:12 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: American Funds beat out Vanguard Index over lifetime?
Replies: 63
Views: 8535

Re: American Funds beat out Vanguard Index over lifetime?

Let's be clear that 5.75% is "worst case" for American Funds. First, in a company plan you may pay 0%. Second, retail customers pay a sliding scale: Investment Amount and Account Value Less than $25,000 - 5.75% $25,000 to $49,999 - 5.00% $50,000 to $99,999 - 4.5% $100,000 to $249,999 - 3.5% .... $1 ...
by bnes
Sat May 13, 2017 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Setting a periodic transfer / Dealing with a fiscal beggar
Replies: 26
Views: 2961

Setting a periodic transfer / Dealing with a fiscal beggar

What options are there to provide, say, $2000/month in support to an relative who refuses to maintain a bank account? I've looked into various visa/mc debit cards, but the fees are high and the procedures not well tailored to the need (for example many cards can't be refilled without the card presen...
by bnes
Thu Apr 06, 2017 11:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees
Replies: 49
Views: 5534

Re: Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees

OP here. To steer this back on track: ⋅  We're going to get and use a credit card. ⋅  I'd like to know in advance what "fee level" the issuing bank gets. Is there a reliable way to shop for cards, that shows the Interchange Fee category? -- In answer to above: I know ma...
by bnes
Thu Apr 06, 2017 6:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees
Replies: 49
Views: 5534

Avoiding shafting my local merchants with card fees

I'm shopping for new credit cards for my parents. I'm aware that the "interchange fee" varies based on card benefit level (here's a guide): https://www.helcim.com/us/pricing/visa-mastercard-interchange-rates/ For example the interchange rate set by Visa for a Visa Debit is as low as .8% + ...
by bnes
Thu Oct 27, 2016 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card
Replies: 12
Views: 1508

Re: Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card

I use the Chase Liquid card for my son. I control how much money is put on the card, and I can instantly transfer money when needed. My son has been literally standing in a checkout line and I can transfer instant credit money to him via my phone, computer or iPad. It is the only card I know of tha...
by bnes
Thu Oct 27, 2016 11:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card
Replies: 12
Views: 1508

Re: Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card

A clarification from the op : This is not about credit vs. cash, but rather about offering a limited leash piece of plastic to the dependent. The balance will be paid every month. There's no employer involved. And there are an increasing number of card-only fiscal needs in life, most notably much o...
by bnes
Thu Oct 27, 2016 2:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card
Replies: 12
Views: 1508

Setting up a Credit Card for a Fiscally Irresponsible Dependent: Managed Limited Card

Is there a type of credit card that the holder can tightly manage, on behalf of an authorized user? In this case the authorized user would be a dependent unable to manage her own affairs fully. Access to a credit card is pretty much a requirement these days for work, life and even recreation. Gettin...
by bnes
Mon Oct 24, 2016 12:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Taxation of credit card rewards (cash back and signup bonuses)
Replies: 25
Views: 3803

Re: Taxation of credit card rewards (cash back and signup bonuses)

Here's a nice edge case for you: I purchase goods for clients, and airline tickets to fly for clients. I am required to submit exact invoices and am reimbursed to the penny. But my card accounts accrue statement credit, as do flier miles. Especially with the flier miles it's unclear what the value i...
by bnes
Thu Oct 20, 2016 12:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Loan Not Being Repaid
Replies: 41
Views: 4291

Re: Loan Not Being Repaid

toofache32 wrote:Send him a 1099-C so he will have to pay taxes on his gift. He can run from you but he cannot run from the IRS.

Awesome advice. But maybe start with the threat of filing 1099-C.
by bnes
Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who do you trust when there's no one to trust? (and it involves trusts)
Replies: 47
Views: 4334

Re: Who do you trust when there's no one to trust? (and it involves trusts)

You can contact a big anonymous bank, and set up a trust in your own name. Nobody specific has to know your details, and your account will be handled by the next most junior employee in line at the bank. You can write your own rules: and the bank is obligated to follow them, even in the case you are...
by bnes
Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Deductions On My Father's Estate?
Replies: 22
Views: 2580

Re: Tax Deductions On My Father's Estate?

Will there be a problem if the estate reimburses me? For properly documented expenses, there is no problem with the estate reimbursing. It just like a plumber who did work but did not get around to billing you for some months: the bill is due when presented. The estate files form 1041, you file you...
by bnes
Wed Oct 19, 2016 12:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Super low ETF expenses from Schwab now.
Replies: 4
Views: 693

Re: Super low ETF expenses from Schwab now.

Kind of amazing they are reducing ER for everyone, rather than creating new share classes for new purchasers. Good for the lazy.
by bnes
Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone ordered a tuff shed from Home Depot?
Replies: 4
Views: 946

Re: Anyone ordered a tuff shed from Home Depot?

batpot wrote:Can anyone confirm that this is the case?


Confirmed, it's the case. They build it on site, paint it on site. But why not order directly from Tufff Shed?
The one I ordered has been a champ: well built, no problems.
by bnes
Tue Oct 18, 2016 11:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New phone and Verizon Wireless contract pricing
Replies: 14
Views: 1650

Re: New phone and Verizon Wireless contract pricing

Or, a way that seems really bogglehead compatible: ⋅  Purchase a one generation back smartphone (the Nexus 5X for example dipped to $250 for a while). ⋅  Get pay as you go service from a reseller like Ting ( m ). $6 line fee, shareable buckets of voice/text/data. ⋅  Rep...
by bnes
Tue Oct 18, 2016 7:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax Deductions On My Father's Estate?
Replies: 22
Views: 2580

Re: Tax Deductions On My Father's Estate?

The right way to handle this was for the estate to directly pay those expenses.
The correction is to have the estate reimburse the individuals who made the expenses.
by bnes
Tue Oct 18, 2016 3:16 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Long Term Care Insurance Premium Increase
Replies: 29
Views: 3671

Re: Long Term Care Insurance Premium Increase

The CalPers LTC rate increases are the subject of a class action claim:

http://www.calpersclassactionlawsuit.co ... pdate.html
by bnes
Tue Oct 18, 2016 3:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Seeking others denied by CalPERS LTC to compare notes with
Replies: 0
Views: 1568

Seeking others denied by CalPERS LTC to compare notes with

My terminally ill cancer stricken parent was denied coverage under a CalPERS Long Term Care coverage plan. Based on others in a cancer support group, this is now common procedure: the stories came out of others denied at first regardless of circumstance. This is unfortunate, as it happens right when...
by bnes
Tue Sep 27, 2016 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Comcast incorrectly told us there was an internet line - now what? - solved
Replies: 47
Views: 3820

Re: Comcast incorrectly told us there was an internet line - now what?

Had same thing happen. Bait... and switch. In my case nothing ever was done about it.
by bnes
Tue Sep 27, 2016 2:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children
Replies: 14
Views: 2345

Re: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children

ResearchMed wrote:It was a support group for the relative(s) that I was suggesting.


Right. That's what's not close enough for the relatives to attend. There's a group an hour away I found because of your link.
by bnes
Tue Sep 27, 2016 1:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cancelling Credit Card After Switch?
Replies: 10
Views: 1212

Re: Cancelling Credit Card After Switch?

In general, for financially responsible people:
Keep your oldest card, for credit history reasons.
Always keep a backup card, from a different company. I keep two backups: one in the wallet, the other says at home.
by bnes
Tue Sep 27, 2016 1:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children
Replies: 14
Views: 2345

Re: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children

Jill07 wrote:Please check online at nami.org for a support group.Jill


Trying. None close enough for my parents to visit unfortunately.
by bnes
Tue Sep 27, 2016 1:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children
Replies: 14
Views: 2345

Re: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children

Anyone have ideas: where could I meet others, hear other stories, of families dealing with dependent adult children? If there is a named condition, perhaps there is a support group specific for that. RM The individual is not interested in seeking a diagnosis. Cash payments have kept her off the str...
by bnes
Mon Sep 26, 2016 4:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Transfer of primary residence to trust: but preserve California Prop 13 Tax Assessment
Replies: 0
Views: 280

Transfer of primary residence to trust: but preserve California Prop 13 Tax Assessment

My parents are over 80, and looking for various reasons to place and manage their primary residence in a trust. California has set of hereditary wealth transfer laws that give significant reductions in property tax if wealth is passed on to descendants. The laws in question are propositions 58 and 1...
by bnes
Fri Sep 23, 2016 12:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children
Replies: 14
Views: 2345

Re: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children

Anyone have ideas: where could I meet others, hear other stories, of families dealing with dependent adult children?
by bnes
Thu Sep 22, 2016 1:29 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: "Uncle Sam Pays Almost Twice The Yield On Treasurys--If You Know Where To Look
Replies: 85
Views: 13457

Re: "Uncle Sam Pays Almost Twice The Yield On Treasurys--If You Know Where To Look

I use the EE's for my "emergency fund". Now, that's a fund I have very low risk of ever needing, due to ample other resources. As such, it works for me.
by bnes
Thu Sep 22, 2016 1:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on Smoke Detectors
Replies: 14
Views: 1716

Re: Advice on Smoke Detectors

If it's a small condo, does the HOA take care of life safety? You really want to get this fixed. A simple voltmeter can tell you if the wires up there are hot. You want to test the detectors: press one, see if the others beep. Swap several units and see if the problem is the detector or the ceiling ...
by bnes
Thu Sep 22, 2016 1:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Threshold for pre-notifying credit card companies?
Replies: 40
Views: 3478

Re: Threshold for pre-notifying credit card companies?

It all seems pretty random these days. Usually though you can call directly from the register and get the thing unblocked with minimal delays. Also some banks text, and you can get it cleared up in a minute or two without speaking with anyone. Your 'profile' is a computer algorithm: no single thresh...
by bnes
Thu Sep 22, 2016 12:58 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Contribution to satisfy RMD
Replies: 43
Views: 3808

Re: Contribution to satisfy RMD

Hold on, what's the tax benefit of the QCD?

With it, the withdrawl of IRA funds goes on line 15a.
Without it, the withdrawal of IRA funds becomes part of gross income, but offset by the charitable deduction.

Is it all the same, for those itemizing anyway?
by bnes
Wed Sep 21, 2016 2:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children
Replies: 14
Views: 2345

Re: Resource for dealing with dependent adult children

OP here: The real question here is what trust conditions have worked for others/might work here? For example: a subsidy for work, perhaps providing a fiscal incentive to gain outside income. Or an incentive/penalty related to medications or other interventions for the metal health issues. I know how...