Search found 2944 matches

by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 26, 2019 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HOA, Builder Screw-up and Greed – How Bad Could It Get?
Replies: 13
Views: 2385

Re: HOA, Builder Screw-up and Greed – How Bad Could It Get?

Must sign...or what happens? Good question. I don’t know. I was hoping someone from this forum could advise. I don't know of many (any?) situations in which a signature is "compelled." I think it would be the obligation of the requestor to clearly explain the issues, and if I were concerned I would...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 26, 2019 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Auto Loan
Replies: 19
Views: 958

Re: Auto Loan

I have always paid cash. However next time (which will be soon) I will look into taking the loan and paying it off shortly after. I will do this if I can get a better deal AND there is no early payment penalty. My understanding is that loans are generally profitable and may get you a better price. I...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 26, 2019 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fine Art Investments
Replies: 67
Views: 3113

Re: Fine Art Investments

If we are talking about these alternative luxury investments, I'd suggest fine liquors like whiskeys instead of art. It's hard to quantify art by any measure, but whiskeys are dated, and I'm confident that a 40 year old bottle will be more rare than it was at 10 years. I don't know about whisky, bu...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 3:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DFW to Tasmania - 15 hour time change
Replies: 51
Views: 2792

Re: DFW to Tasmania - 15 hour time change

> DW and I are travelling to New Zealand

Take very, very seriously the New Zealand rules about fruit, foods, forest products, etc. Read them carefully, then read them again. Follow them scrupulously.

Just sayin'.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Merrill Lynch Advisor wants to meet for coffee
Replies: 108
Views: 9089

Re: Merrill Lynch Advisor wants to meet for coffee

Frank Grimes wrote:
Wed Sep 25, 2019 1:03 pm
Depends on the coffee
Can you afford to buy your own coffee?

Would you enjoy the coffee more with other or no company?

Sometimes free costs too much.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Fine Art Investments
Replies: 67
Views: 3113

Re: Fine Art Investments

I was acquainted with an art historian who was able to make some real money buying art. If you can identify unappreciated or mis-identified works you may be able to do well.

Transactions costs do seem to be very high.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: land survey cost
Replies: 21
Views: 1219

Re: land survey cost

thanks for the replies! ~$500 would be a reasonable price for a survey to mark property lines in a residential neighborhood. This is much less work than what you are asking for. -then what is a fair price for what im asking for? im certainly okay with paying 5k for a survey if thats what it costs, ...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wall mount the TV, or use a TV stand?
Replies: 20
Views: 1642

Re: Wall mount the TV, or use a TV stand?

A TV on a stand can be knocked over. If you are in earthquake country, if you have kids, or if you have pets you may want a wall mount. For a slightly smaller (55") set, I used a stand that I happened upon at a garage sale for $10. I would have bought one from Ikea, or maybe the Best Buy, but didn't...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 12:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: land survey cost
Replies: 21
Views: 1219

Re: land survey cost

~$500 would be a reasonable price for a survey to mark property lines in a residential neighborhood. This is much less work than what you are asking for.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 25, 2019 9:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommend A Travel Site
Replies: 16
Views: 1371

Re: Recommend A Travel Site

> 350k MR should be plenty to get 4 or more folks to Europe and back OP want to fly in business. Usually around 100K miles, off peak. I'm not sure what AMEX points are worth. Does AMEX have a travel website? Last time I used points I used the Chase website. Same flights as elsewhere, easy to use the...
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 24, 2019 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DFW to Tasmania - 15 hour time change
Replies: 51
Views: 2792

Re: DFW to Tasmania - 15 hour time change

East to West is much easier than West to East, even with as many hours change as going to Asia/ Australia. Even going W to E, I have no trouble with speaking a day after arriving. The problem is paying attention when you are not speaking. So if you have meetings where you actually need to pay attent...
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 20, 2019 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who is responsible for taking RMDs after death of IRA owner?
Replies: 20
Views: 1325

Re: Who is responsible for taking RMDs after death of IRA owner?

Wouldn't the IRA be split up into separate accounts, one for each of the beneficiaries?
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 20, 2019 12:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Dental Insurance for Retirees
Replies: 62
Views: 4651

Re: Dental Insurance for Retirees

I've never seen dental insurance worth a plugged nickle. Useful dental insurance is rare, but it does exist. I get insurance through my wife's employer and it is useful. Even so it has limits that are not hard to get to. The reality is that most retirees can expect significant dental expenses. Sinc...
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 20, 2019 10:01 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How hard is it to get into college?
Replies: 167
Views: 9938

Re: How hard is it to get into college?

Having been at the other end of this...even at "highly selective" colleges you will find plenty of mediocre students. Look at the big picture. MOST HS graduates end up going to college these days. MOST of them don't have all As. A student with a good- not great- record can be admitted to most of the...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 19, 2019 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mailing Laptop internationally rejected by US customs
Replies: 15
Views: 1640

Re: Mailing Laptop internationally rejected by US customs

Tech export limitations? I know some things (not sure which...) are not permitted abroad due to fraud/theft/pirating/export restrictions. What on earth is on that physical device that you can't just chuck it to a nearby toxic e-waste recycler (you said it was your old laptop..) and email the files,...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:33 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Management Fees [for an over-]55 Community Reserve Fund
Replies: 32
Views: 1683

Re: Management Fees 55 Community

If, as many seem to have guessed, this question refers to the reserve fund of a community association, then, the primary investment goal would be the preservation of capital, that is, most or all would be invested in bonds, and, that being the case, the amount of "management" would be minimal, indee...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 19, 2019 10:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to build hardware for a product protoype ?
Replies: 21
Views: 1279

Re: How to build hardware for a product protoype ?

1. to save money, I believe you should still go with bread board to prove that your concept works. Making a PCB is going to be expensive (in thousands). Actually designing and ordering a PC board can be quite inexpensive. Around $100 for several. Design software is free from one of the many prototy...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 19, 2019 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mailing Laptop internationally rejected by US customs
Replies: 15
Views: 1640

Re: Mailing Laptop internationally rejected by US customs

I don't follow this very closely, but it seems to me that there are export controls on both hardware (microprocessors) and software (usually encryption-related).

Is this going to one of "those places"?
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Condo HOA in disclosure $35 more than MLS
Replies: 12
Views: 948

Re: Condo HOA in disclosure $35 more than MLS

MLS does not GUARANTEE that listings are accurate. I think if you look you will see that everything is subject to verification by the buyer. That's what you are doing now. If permitted by your contract you can attempt to negotiate a reduction. Personally I think <5% is in the noise. If you do want t...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can an 18 x 18 tile be cut to a smaller size?
Replies: 11
Views: 907

Re: Can an 18 x 18 tile be cut to a smaller size?

The edges will look different, how significant the difference is will depend on the tile variety.

You probably have some fractional tiles now on the corners or at the soap dish.

This may be the least bad solution.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need to buy new over the range microwave; which brand/model is reliable?
Replies: 16
Views: 878

Re: Need to buy new over the range microwave; which brand/model is reliable?

I had a GE that was fine for 20 years if you didn't try to use the convection mode. I did have a broken handle, but that was an easy fix.

Having said that, I don't think there is anything special about GE.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 18, 2019 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Major home renovations and Recessions... Good or bad?
Replies: 11
Views: 1164

Re: Major home renovations and Recessions... Good or bad?

Another effect- if jobs dry up some immigrant workers may go home. The supply of immigrant workers can also be influenced by some other obvious factors that aren't correlated with the economy.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 18, 2019 9:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: View email in browser
Replies: 5
Views: 591

Re: View email in browser

What's going on is we fear automatic loading of anything that comes in by email.
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 10:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grand Canyon and More In October
Replies: 35
Views: 2544

Re: Grand Canyon and More In October

look int Wire Pass to Buckskin Gulch. The Wave is great, but that is by lottery and everyone won't make it. Lots of slot canyons in the area, pay close attention to weather as a heavy rainstorm can quickly cause dangerous situations. Wire Pass/ Buckskin Gulch is great but most will not want to take...
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 5:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $2k repairs on $12K car
Replies: 81
Views: 4954

Re: $2k repairs on $12K car

Since a fair amount of the work is brakes, you could not ethically sell the car to an individual. Unless, of course, you told them that it had worn-out brakes. This might knock 1-2K off the selling price.
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 17, 2019 1:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grand Canyon and More In October
Replies: 35
Views: 2544

Re: Grand Canyon and More In October

All, I am not able to get Antlope Canyon tickets form Navojo(Sold Out) for $40 for October Mid. Other places like Tours4fun.com are offering for $69 per adult? are there any better options? Thank you! Antelope Canyon(s) is(are) apparently a total crowd scene. You may be better off not going. Waterh...
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 16, 2019 5:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Options for travel emergencies - AAA, Amex, travel agencies, etc.
Replies: 14
Views: 776

Re: Options for travel emergencies - AAA, Amex, travel agencies, etc.

If really old, some kind of travel insurance that provides for emergency evacuation might be worth considering. At my age (retired) I am not doing anything special for a trip to the UK. I do not fear crime, getting lost, or the very unlikely possibility of needing emergency health care. I do have cr...
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 16, 2019 5:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Buying the Dow as a super-low-cost index strategy?
Replies: 36
Views: 3131

Re: Buying the Dow as a super-low-cost index strategy?

When the expense ratio is small enough it is not worth worrying about.

And it is low enough for essentially all of the really big index funds. What remains is a worthwhile price for convenience and simplicity.
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: > 6 months medical leave
Replies: 23
Views: 2383

Re: > 6 months medical leave

The mere threat of a lawsuit is something that many university administrators will avoid at almost all costs. Umm, no. Any university regularly terminates tenure-track faculty, and from time to time gets threatened with lawsuits. In fact it is common to have several lawsuits in progress at any give...
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 16, 2019 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric Range - Failing on High Heat
Replies: 29
Views: 2116

Re: Electric Range - Failing on High Heat

Following OP's reasoning, he should investigate the design and construction of the range before buying it. Not easy to do, and he may find out that most ranges out there are built the same way with the same parts.
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 13, 2019 3:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Technical Help: How to shrink an existing pdf file without breaking the bank?
Replies: 23
Views: 997

Re: Technical Help: How to shrink an existing pdf file without breaking the bank?

WoodSpinner wrote:
Fri Sep 13, 2019 2:47 pm
You can also scan the docs at a lower resolution.
This is the thing.

Also, if the form is available as a fillable pdf, it will start out small and stay small.
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 13, 2019 1:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Finding discontinued tile or stain existing tile?
Replies: 10
Views: 521

Re: Finding discontinued tile or stain existing tile?

This is a tough one. I had a similar problem when I needed to repair a shower in a 1920s house. You can go to more tile stores and do the best you can. If the location is appropriate you might be able to install a soap dish or recess for shampoo.
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 13, 2019 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: University employment and Business
Replies: 6
Views: 495

Re: University employment and Business

Traditionally university faculty have retained the rights to textbooks that they publish. (Some have done very well financially; most earn little more than the cost of a nice dinner). Either you are not faculty or your university is unusual. Your options are to (1) become faculty (2) discuss this wi...
by adamthesmythe
Thu Sep 12, 2019 1:06 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Central banks drive income seeking investors to equities
Replies: 34
Views: 1848

Re: Central banks drive income seeking investors to equities

dual wrote:
Thu Sep 12, 2019 12:51 pm
DM = ??
Double Money? Divine Multiplication?
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Microwave keeps tripping circuit breaker
Replies: 26
Views: 1689

Re: Microwave keeps tripping circuit breaker

No reason to repair unless it is permanently installed and unusual in some way. If I HAD to fix it I might see if there is a power supply board I could replace. I would expect parts alone to be >$100 on one of the appliance parts websites. I cannot imagine that it would make sense economically to ge...
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: no idea - bourbon
Replies: 23
Views: 3088

Re: no idea - bourbon

Surely you can buy a bourbon flavor from one of the spice/ flavorings sites?

I turned up https://www.olivenation.com/bourbon-whi ... tract.html, surely there are others.

No point in paying the alcohol tax if you're not going to get the enjoyment.
by adamthesmythe
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help me out - What am I doing wrong - Job Hunt related
Replies: 70
Views: 5024

Re: Help me out - What am I doing wrong - Job Hunt related

HEDGEFUNDIE wrote:
Mon Sep 09, 2019 10:00 am
Maybe the interviewers could tell you weren’t enthused about the jobs. I know a big factor in my offers is “does this candidate actually want to work here?”
NOT conveying a substantial degree of enthusiasm about the job is deadly.
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 06, 2019 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What equipments should I have for TV installer?
Replies: 43
Views: 1799

Re: What equipments should I have for TV installer?

Holy cow, it's like nobody actually reads these threads. He has stated multiple times he is using the MantleMount, which allows the tv to drop down over the fireplace to an appropriate viewing height. I've seen these in action and they work really well. It's above the fireplace and out of the way w...
by adamthesmythe
Fri Sep 06, 2019 5:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I join an elite social club for adults?
Replies: 27
Views: 3317

Re: Should I join an elite social club for adults?

I regard such things as silly. And whenever I think of the non-elite clubs- you know, like Rotary etc.- I can't help thinking about Ralph Kramden. I have even declined to pursue higher grades of membership in professional societies. I suppose if you were a banker or something you would have to join ...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 04, 2019 5:56 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Just getting started, help with individual equities?
Replies: 12
Views: 658

Re: Just getting started, help with individual equities?

If you continue to invest systematically, your individual stocks will form a negligible part of your assets.

You could keep them for entertainment value. That's what I did with a few individual stocks. Eventually I did sell them.
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 04, 2019 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home warranty - is it worth the money?
Replies: 37
Views: 2958

Re: Home warranty - is it worth the money?

> is it worth the money? Sometimes (rarely?) yes; usually not. How could it be otherwise? Buy it (1) for the next owner, to sell your house more easily (2) if you really have no emergency fund or (3) if you know something about your systems. Not that they are old (and 15 years isn't old), but that t...
by adamthesmythe
Wed Sep 04, 2019 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What equipments should I have for TV installer?
Replies: 43
Views: 1799

Re: What equipments should I have for TV installer?

> He will install an electrical outlet above the fireplace for my TV placement.

Stop right there. Installation over a fireplace is not recommended for the best visual experience. The TV should be roughtly at eye level.

All HDMI cables are created equal.

Beyond that I have no opinions.
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 03, 2019 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Extended Car Warranty
Replies: 24
Views: 1580

Re: Extended Car Warranty

I wouldn't buy a car that I thought would need an extended warranty.
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 03, 2019 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Rust on Top of Gas Water Heater
Replies: 5
Views: 477

Re: Rust on Top of Gas Water Heater

Yeah, check the draft and see if it's OK.

If you are in a colder climate, maybe water vapor from combustion condenses in the flue and drips down onto the water heater top.
by adamthesmythe
Tue Sep 03, 2019 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Need to get a car in a hurry.
Replies: 48
Views: 4901

Re: Need to get a car in a hurry.

The fastest and safest way to buy a car in that budget is to (1) rent for a week and (2) buy a new commodity sedan from a reliable make (Toyonda, etc.).
by adamthesmythe
Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Cheaper healthcare in Italy?
Replies: 27
Views: 2313

Re: Cheaper healthcare in Italy?

> I've always considered laser eye surgery, but I always imagine that being pretty expensive in the US. Not according to ads, there are laser eye surgery mills. As a long-standing myopic, I prefer glasses over unnecessary medical procedures. About medical care- I would have no hesitation about getti...
by adamthesmythe
Fri Aug 30, 2019 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Trust beneficiary is “unbanked”
Replies: 28
Views: 2006

Re: Trust beneficiary is “unbanked”

Work "within" trust provisions to the benefit of the beneficiary as much as possible. Beyond that, you are doing your job and the consequences of the funds or the beneficiary are out of your hands. *****If you have not already, see quality legal counsel to find out exactly what you can do while "st...