Search found 304 matches

by FreemanB
Wed Nov 06, 2019 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do wool dryer balls work?
Replies: 14
Views: 1322

Re: Do wool dryer balls work?

My wife bought some a few months ago. I think they work fine, since I haven't really noticed any difference, either when doing laundry or in the clothes afterwards.
by FreemanB
Tue Nov 05, 2019 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric shavers - foil vs rotary
Replies: 24
Views: 1918

Re: Electric shavers - foil vs rotary

I've used both types in the past(With mixed results), but I've been using a Braun Series 7 for close to ten years now. I did the same research as you at the time, and it was the most highly recommended model at the time, and based on Amazon's ratings, appears to still be a popular choice. It works w...
by FreemanB
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Child Insurance Policies - Maintain or ?
Replies: 22
Views: 1237

Re: Child Insurance Policies - Maintain or ?

I have something like a $5k life insurance policy on my child, which costs something like $.50 a month. If it wasn't cheap and easily available through work, I wouldn't have even that. Children don't need large insurance policies, their parents do. Drop it and put towards college savings.
by FreemanB
Tue Oct 22, 2019 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Ok to go without health insurance?
Replies: 209
Views: 11621

Re: Ok to go without health insurance?

Worst case scenario: In case need arises, will have to purchase health insurance at a short notice. Can do it any time of the year and will not have to wait until open enrollment as will be purchasing through corporation. This isn't the worst case, because you assume you are still physically and me...
by FreemanB
Fri Oct 11, 2019 9:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Seller misrepresented fulfillment of defect fixes - next steps? sue?
Replies: 55
Views: 5065

Re: Seller misrepresented fulfillment of defect fixes - next steps? sue?

From my experience, the buyer would usually require an invoice or some other documented proof that the expected work was professionally done for any major repairs. In that case, there would be paperwork to back up any claims that the repair was not properly done if defects are discovered after closi...
by FreemanB
Tue Oct 08, 2019 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Student Loan Refinance-Extra Hard Pull Worth It?
Replies: 10
Views: 584

Re: Student Loan Refinance-Extra Hard Pull Worth It?

Would the multiple hard pulls even count against you? Normally, student loan refinancing is treated the same as mortgages or auto loans, with multiple checks being ignored within a short window of time.(Allowing you to shop for the best rates) In this case, you are refinancing multiple loans, but it...
by FreemanB
Mon Oct 07, 2019 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 savings?
Replies: 19
Views: 2649

Re: 529 savings?

I think your plan is fine, and almost exactly matches my own. Our daughter is 7, we've got around $50k saved currently, and we are saving approximately $6k/year as well. My goal is to have enough in savings to cover at least 75% of college. Having 100% saved would be a nice bonus, but we'll easily b...
by FreemanB
Wed Sep 11, 2019 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Minimizing hard credit pulls when getting mortgage preapproval
Replies: 14
Views: 939

Re: Minimizing hard credit pulls when getting mortgage preapproval

However, my understanding was that this was only a perk for for mortgage shopping. Someone can correct me if I’m wrong but i believe if you apply for a bunch of credit cards or car loans in a 30 day period they will all ding your credit you. From what I've read, it also applies to car loans and stu...
by FreemanB
Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Backup Image Encryption and Cloud Storage
Replies: 12
Views: 1012

Re: Backup Image Encryption and Cloud Storage

How much data are you backing up? I assume incrementals can upload to the cloud pretty quickly, but my back-of-the-napkin calculation says that a full backup of 500 Gbytes would take a week or so (at 100 mbits/sec Fios connection). I'm not sure how many incrementals I'd want to take before doing an...
by FreemanB
Thu Sep 05, 2019 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?
Replies: 180
Views: 7759

Re: First-hand experiences with United Basic Economy for families?

I have a United Basic Economy ticket booked for next week. I'm traveling alone, and I don't care where I sit on the plane. I don't plan on having a carry-on bag either. For me, it was the best price for a ticket that met my needs. However, when I'm traveling with my 6-year old daughter, Basic Econom...
by FreemanB
Wed Jul 31, 2019 8:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I finance new car purchase?
Replies: 16
Views: 1446

Re: Should I finance new car purchase?

I purchased last month and financed at 0.9% plus something like $1k in incentives above what I would have gotten paying cash. To me, that made the most sense, and at that rate, I have no incentive to pay it off earlier. Even my regular savings account is earning more interest than that these days. T...
by FreemanB
Mon Jul 29, 2019 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RESOLVED: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?
Replies: 42
Views: 4213

Re: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?

I'm hesitant to ask, as discussions about routers and modems very quickly go over my head, but...I set up the Airport years ago and am sure I did very basic connections without any advanced options. Is there an easy way to tell if it's acting as a WiFi gateway or if it's creating its own network? T...
by FreemanB
Mon Jul 29, 2019 7:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: RESOLVED: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?
Replies: 42
Views: 4213

Re: Smart Home = Dumb Idea due to potential security breaches and exploits?

While we're on the topic, I would like to ask a question - I have a FIOS modem but usually it's "radio" (WiFi) is turned off as I use an Apple Airport basestation that is connected to one of its ethernet ports. I have some WiFi cameras that were set up to be on the Fios WiFi. Before I go out I enab...
by FreemanB
Fri Jul 26, 2019 7:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4800
Views: 1251283

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

After the movie was over and the song credits were rolling, we both marveled at the "body of work" of the Fab Four and particularly Lennon & McCartney, knowing full well that the portion included in the film was only a small portion of the message they were trying to send to us younger fools way ba...
by FreemanB
Fri Jul 26, 2019 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electrician required to replace rocker light switches with PIR motion detecting light switches?
Replies: 36
Views: 3161

Re: Electrician required to replace rocker light switches with PIR motion detecting light switches?

If the existing switch was installed by pushing the wires into the "push in" terminals in the back, rather than using the screw terminals, it is easiest to cut the wires, strip the ends and connect to the new switch. Trying to remove the wires from push terminals while connected to the switch is tr...
by FreemanB
Thu Jul 25, 2019 12:07 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First Home Purchase - Disagreement on Appraisal Contingency
Replies: 81
Views: 3796

Re: First Home Purchase - Disagreement on Appraisal Contingency

I am in an unexpected situation in going through my first home purchase. We made an offer on a house at list price very soon after it went on market and it was accepted quickly. We are in attorney review now. We went through inspection and settled on some terms for repairing defects etc. Unexpected...
by FreemanB
Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Getting more out of Google Home Mini
Replies: 10
Views: 786

Re: Getting more out of Google Home Mini

I was hoping to be able to do it with a voice command, instead of needing a separate device to play the music. I haven't tried it on a Mini, but on the Home Hub, I just say "Play playlist [Name]", and it plays whatever playlist I asked for, including ones I've created myself. Our most common uses f...
by FreemanB
Tue Jul 23, 2019 7:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PSA: Audible subscription 66% discount for Prime Day
Replies: 5
Views: 1056

Re: PSA: Audible subscription 66% discount for Prime Day

I subscribed to Audible for quite some time and enjoyed it. My commute to work is roughly a 30 minute drive each way, so I used that time to listen to books. However, I was sometimes frustrated on the weekends when I wanted to continue the current book, but I didn't want to have to put on headphones...
by FreemanB
Thu Jul 18, 2019 8:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Post Daycare Finances
Replies: 25
Views: 2599

Re: Post Daycare Finances

If you live in an area with expensive daycare, then yes, you'll free up a significant amount of money nine months out of the year once your kids are in school. We were paying approximately $3k/month for full-time daycare. Once my kid started kindergarten, the before and after care was only around $7...
by FreemanB
Tue Jul 16, 2019 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can an HOA ARB legally deny a request to install motion sensing SPOT lights
Replies: 19
Views: 2480

Re: Can an HOA ARB legally deny a request to install motion sensing SPOT lights

Apparently an HOA cannot prevent the installation of satellite TV dishes and in some states they can't prevent the growing of environmentally friendly native plants. A general local, state, or federal law against an HOA preventing the installation of motion sensing lights I am not so sure about. Al...
by FreemanB
Mon Jul 08, 2019 7:17 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Parent giving us money to pay off mortgage
Replies: 17
Views: 3037

Re: Parent giving us money to pay off mortgage

I am not Big Dog, but I think the idea is she can forgive $15k of the loan annually, which becomes a gift, but below the reporting threshold. But that's just a more complicated variation on gifting them $15k(Or $30k combined) each year until they pay off the loan. In this scenario, you have to deal...
by FreemanB
Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: how do couples work together on home finance
Replies: 60
Views: 4958

Re: how do couples work together on home finance

Just figure out whatever system will work best for both of you. You don't each have to be involved in every detail. My wife has a monthly budget spreadsheet that breaks out our income, expenses, major events, etc. She usually projects it out around 18 months or so. We both have access to it, and it ...
by FreemanB
Tue Jul 02, 2019 11:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best way to continually get SiriusXM Radio discount
Replies: 18
Views: 1536

Re: Best way to continually get SiriusXM Radio discount

I'm not willing to pay full price for the service, so I call up every 5 or 6 months, say I'd like to cancel and after some time they usually offer the introductory rate. Is there a better/faster way to do this? My wife has been doing the same thing regularly for years. She even schedules the calls ...
by FreemanB
Thu Jun 27, 2019 7:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tire Pressure Monitoring System failed: Replace or Ignore?
Replies: 88
Views: 5560

Re: Tire Pressure Monitoring System failed: Replace or Ignore?

I would go ahead and replace them all. The batteries on the others will likely die soon anyway, and it is probably cheaper and much more convenient to do them all at once. I would also get other estimates. I had all of mine replaced at Costco a couple of years ago, and while I don't remember the exa...
by FreemanB
Tue Jun 11, 2019 7:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I buy a house in Nova/DC area?
Replies: 23
Views: 2325

Re: Should I buy a house in Nova/DC area?

I live in NOVA, and I have friends that have been in similar situations. While I know several who have purchased houses, then rented them out during overseas assignments, I don't think you are in the same situation. They had been living in their homes, usually with children, for several years, and a...
by FreemanB
Fri Jun 07, 2019 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Highly appreciated whiskies
Replies: 34
Views: 3688

Re: Highly appreciated whiskies

I love whiskey also, although I tend to stick mostly to my old friends Jim and Jack. If you can't see yourself opening a bottle just to drink due to the current value, I'd probably keep 1-2 bottles of each for a special occasion and sell the rest. Otherwise, what's going to happen to them 10, 20, or...
by FreemanB
Tue May 28, 2019 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New babies, NICU stay, post-partum complications & Insurance
Replies: 24
Views: 2330

Re: New babies, NICU stay, post-partum complications & Insurance

appreciate all the replies guys! im going to leave it alone until they are home. they are automatically on her policy for at least 30 days, correct? i can call her insurance company and confirm but that is generally how it works, right? As stated above, check your policies, as this may vary by plan...
by FreemanB
Wed Apr 24, 2019 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Router with VPN
Replies: 20
Views: 2329

Re: Router with VPN

A VPN can be useful when you don't trust the network you are connected to, such as when using hotel or public WIFI networks, but honestly, I'd just avoid doing anything sensitive while on those networks anyway. There's no security reason to use one on your own private network.(It can still be used t...
by FreemanB
Fri Apr 12, 2019 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Soon to be dad, how to prepare
Replies: 127
Views: 7372

Re: Soon to be dad, how to prepare

halfnine wrote:
Fri Apr 12, 2019 2:55 pm
Start figuring out how to do all the things you already do in half the time. You'll need the extra time that is saved.
Also, make sure you practice doing them one-handed, since you'll likely have something(Baby, diaper bag, stroller) in the other hand.
by FreemanB
Fri Apr 12, 2019 2:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Soon to be dad, how to prepare
Replies: 127
Views: 7372

Re: Soon to be dad, how to prepare

Make lots of plans for what you are going to do. Remember that with kids, things almost never go as planned. Enjoy the ride. I wouldn't buy a stroller initially. Buy a baby carrier and a snap-n-go stroller for it(I think we had Chico ones, but it has been a few years). They are much more convenient ...
by FreemanB
Thu Apr 11, 2019 2:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Buying a house next year. Wife wants a big house. Thoughts?
Replies: 104
Views: 9752

Re: Buying a house next year. Wife wants a big house. Thoughts?

Buy a house you can afford that makes her happy. It doesn't sound like she's asking for anything extreme in terms of house prices. Saving more for retirement is always nice, but I don't think it will be worth the trade off in this case.
by FreemanB
Wed Apr 10, 2019 1:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security survivor benefit
Replies: 9
Views: 1307

Re: Social Security survivor benefit

thanks, Thats an interesting angle on the kids getting the full amount and but wife gets nothing. Does a 529plan count as the kids? they are too young to take out their own i guess. they have social security numbers so i guess it is possible. curious they leave it to the kids and not to the parent ...
by FreemanB
Tue Apr 02, 2019 8:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Turbotax from Costco = Neverending phone queue
Replies: 6
Views: 1102

Re: Turbotax from Costco = Neverending phone queue

Just an FYI, if you have access to a different computer with a CD or DVD drive, you can usually just copy all of the installation files from the disk onto a USB thumb drive and use that to install the program onto the target computer. I've done this for my wife's computer for the past couple of year...
by FreemanB
Wed Mar 27, 2019 7:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need some help with slow folders in Windows
Replies: 33
Views: 1983

Re: Need some help with slow folders in Windows

It was mentioned earlier, but how many actual files and folders are in the folder that is slow? Too many can have a big impact on performance.
by FreemanB
Thu Mar 21, 2019 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4800
Views: 1251283

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

peterinjapan wrote:
Sun Mar 17, 2019 6:10 am
One of my favorite movies which I rewatch a lot is The Man from Earth, a movie written by the writer of the Star Trek TOS episode Mirror Mirror.
I remember watching this back when it first came out on video, and I really enjoyed it. Now I need to see if I can find it again.
by FreemanB
Wed Mar 20, 2019 9:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Security camera with local storage and remote access?
Replies: 45
Views: 3010

Re: Security camera with local storage and remote access?

The hackers would see every time I leave and return to the house. In a single instance, they could know when I was gone to break in. Or they could discern patterns (always leaves on x day at y time). So can anyone else in your neighborhood, and they are already conveniently close by already, so it ...
by FreemanB
Tue Mar 19, 2019 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Security camera with local storage and remote access?
Replies: 45
Views: 3010

Re: Security camera with local storage and remote access?

I have Netgear Arlo cameras, set to record motion, both inside and outside my home. You can set up different modes that have different cameras armed, including a Geofencing mode changes the settings based on the locations of smart devices. We have it configured so that whenever my or my wife's cell ...
by FreemanB
Wed Feb 06, 2019 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: loan payoff question - take 25% discount or keep paying 0%
Replies: 25
Views: 1969

Re: loan payoff question - take 25% discount or keep paying 0%

Well, they are up to 33% now. Very tempted !!!!! I'd be much more curious as to why they are offering such a good deal. If they truly are desperate for cash, then I'd be hesitant to give them more. If the company was to go under, how would that potentially impact you? It may be as simple as they ha...
by FreemanB
Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card to Pay Mortgage Payment
Replies: 32
Views: 4700

Re: Credit Card to Pay Mortgage Payment

SRenaeP wrote:
Mon Feb 04, 2019 9:00 am
Bonuses are not *taxed* at a higher rate. They may be *withheld* at a higher rate but it will all balance out when the OP files their 2019 tax return.
You mean 2017 tax return. Someone resurrected a thread from over 1.5 years ago. I think it has likely been resolved by now.
by FreemanB
Tue Jan 22, 2019 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.
Replies: 177
Views: 17011

Re: Has anyone see an inheritance not go as planned? I would like to hear stories from others of what can go wrong.

Aside from the stories above, which should be warning enough, there's also the very real possibility that the person leaving you an inheritance could end up either out-living you or at least out-living any plans you made for the inheritance. My wife and I expect that we will likely inherit a sizable...
by FreemanB
Fri Nov 16, 2018 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How did I miss this? Roth 401K
Replies: 29
Views: 4938

Re: How did I miss this? Roth 401K

It estimates your marginal tax rate, or the highest rate you will pay on income, based on what it recommends your post-retirement income should be.(For me, that was almost twice the number I put for expenses, which is way more than I'll actually need) I wouldn't trust that number at all for making c...
by FreemanB
Fri Oct 19, 2018 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Depositing Cash if it was gifted?
Replies: 113
Views: 7451

Re: Depositing Cash if it was gifted?

Here's a scary story. https://www.nytimes.com/2014/10/26/us/law-lets-irs-seize-accounts-on-suspicion-no-crime-required.html If you look up the details, most of these events were triggered by the account owner deliberately depositing less than $10k specifically to avoid the reporting requirements. I...
by FreemanB
Fri Oct 12, 2018 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Employer Contributions 401k/roth 401k/ Vanguard IRA confused
Replies: 10
Views: 589

Re: Employer Contributions 401k/roth 401k/ Vanguard IRA confused

Correct. Employer will match up to 18500 but i can also contribute to all 3 options and get 3% on 100 and 5 on 50% match. My 401k doesnt have too many great options to choose from. Just to be clear, are you saying that your employer will match your contributions to each option separately, because t...
by FreemanB
Thu Oct 04, 2018 7:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Delete
Replies: 119
Views: 12411

Re: Sold Home - 2 days after buyer claims they found an issue with A/C

I had a similar situation, where a buyer contacted us through our realtor a few weeks after closing to claim we knew about a problem and should pay for fixing it. Per our realtor's advice, we didn't respond at all and let our realtor(I think through their realtor) tell them that there would be no ne...
by FreemanB
Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Adult kids getting help from parents
Replies: 36
Views: 2473

Re: Adult kids getting help from parents

Are you saying your parents kicked you out the door on your own as soon as you turned 18?(Or at least graduated high school, hopefully) If so, then yes, that is unusual, at least by today's standards. Most parents provide at least some support to their kids during college. It isn't required, of cour...
by FreemanB
Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why is Home Part of NW [Net Worth]
Replies: 98
Views: 7237

Re: Why is Home Part of NW [Net Worth]

I've never known what "net worth" is supposed to be good for, except for bragging. And quasi-bragging, letting financial institutions know some imprecise measure of how rich you are, and whether they can consider you "qualified" to buy into hedge funds and such. I actually view it as an overall fin...
by FreemanB
Wed Sep 26, 2018 9:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: First-time victim of credit card fraud
Replies: 48
Views: 4298

Re: First-time victim of credit card fraud

But what was bought at Sam's? It is often quite interesting what the perps end up buying. From my own experiences and what I've read, the most common purchases are gift cards, which they immediately either sell or use for other purchases, making it almost impossible to track down the money. You als...
by FreemanB
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Very First Smartphone [Samsung Galaxy S9+] — Please Critique This Plan
Replies: 123
Views: 8033

Re: My Very First Smartphone — Please Critique This Plan

(My old compact point-and-shoot was actually very good, except in low light. I expect the phone will be an upgrade in that regard. I found myself not missing the old film slr when I went digital, so I expect a quality phone camera will serve my needs well.) taking videos Just about any smart phone ...
by FreemanB
Fri Aug 31, 2018 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 1st time dad, OK to use willmaker software?
Replies: 37
Views: 3579

Re: 1st time dad, OK to use willmaker software?

My wife and I had simple wills done with software when we had no kids. While expecting our child, we went to a lawyer that specializes in wills and trusts, paid a few hundred dollars, and got a package that included everything discussed above.(Distribution of assets, guardianship, etc) Could we have...
by FreemanB
Thu Aug 30, 2018 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0% card to another 0%?
Replies: 21
Views: 1491

Re: 0% card to another 0%?

I don't see any problem with it, and I just did the same thing recently. Too many people(Here in particular) get too caught up with how you pay for something, conflating that with rather or not you should have spent the money in the first place. To me, there are always two questions for every large ...