Search found 341 matches

by snackdog
Sun Nov 11, 2018 8:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cars similar to Toyota Corolla LE that I should consider for purchase?
Replies: 36
Views: 3775

Re: Cars similar to Toyota Corolla LE that I should consider for purchase?

If you drive the typical 12,000 miles a year then in five years your car will have 160,000 miles on it and it could very well still be going strong then but that is at least somewhat optimistic. In five years my Corolla will be hitting 60,000 miles and the powertrain warranty will just be ending. W...
by snackdog
Sat Nov 10, 2018 8:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cars similar to Toyota Corolla LE that I should consider for purchase?
Replies: 36
Views: 3775

Re: Cars similar to Toyota Corolla LE that I should consider for purchase?

I recently purchased a nine year old Lexus GS350 with about 100,000 miles. It is superb in every way from RWD power to comfort to features. I had it in for service Friday and they gave me a 2018 Corolla loaner. Appalling. Minimal power from a reedy 4 cylinder, plastic everywhere, ghastly audio, rott...
by snackdog
Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home security system for vacation home
Replies: 9
Views: 790

Re: Home security system for vacation home

If there is no close neighbor then I assume there is no close policeman so I am not sure what the purpose of the alarm would be. By the time it summoned anyone I presume any burglar would long gone.
by snackdog
Mon Nov 05, 2018 8:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Car rentals, what is the catch?
Replies: 46
Views: 5327

Re: Car rentals, what is the catch?

These days it is more cost effective to use Uber or Lyft in most cities, unless you are renting the car specifically for a driving trip.
by snackdog
Mon Nov 05, 2018 7:52 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Time to splurge. MB E class, BMW 5 or Audi 6?
Replies: 70
Views: 5945

Re: Time to splurge. MB E class, BMW 5 or Audi 6?

Be prepared for poor reliability and plenty of aggravation at the service center with any of them. Not guaranteed to happen, but you need to be mentally ready for this tradeoff (otherwise get a Lexus GS350). Bearing that in mind and in order of reliability - The MB is the best all-arounder: most sol...
by snackdog
Tue Oct 30, 2018 7:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Who has gotten the most value out of a car?
Replies: 48
Views: 3212

Re: Who has gotten the most value out of a car?

In 1988 my college roommate bought a 1976 Dodge Dart from a neighbor for $50. He drove it from Wisconsin to Texas and drove it daily for four years around Austin. We used to joke that if the car was ever towed for a parking infraction he might not pay to bail it out. It was pretty much bullet proof....
by snackdog
Tue Oct 23, 2018 9:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018
Replies: 100
Views: 15768

Re: Six stocks make up 98% of S&P 500 gains in 2018

These are all familiar and famous stocks. Why not just buy these for 2019? Surely they will all do better than average yet again.
by snackdog
Mon Oct 22, 2018 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: PSA: Don't buy a big house
Replies: 248
Views: 25544

Re: PSA: Don't buy a big house

Big houses with high ceilings from the 80s are probably the worst of all worlds in terms of quality and aesthetics. Mid century at least look nice. Newer homes may have fewer issues. But the 80s sucked all around. We have a 3300 sq foot 2017 home with 12+ foot ceilings on every floor in Texas. Moder...
by snackdog
Mon Oct 15, 2018 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you buy a mattress ?
Replies: 31
Views: 2448

Re: How do you buy a mattress ?

Go to several stores and try lots of mattresses. The differences are vast. Pick one you love and crush them on price. Go for half off,especially at Mattress Firm. We bought a fabulous mattress and love it. I hate to get out of bed!
by snackdog
Thu Oct 11, 2018 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mold on inspection, need advice
Replies: 30
Views: 2306

Re: Mold on inspection, need advice

Mold may be benign and only affect you if you are sensitive, or it may be toxic and induce neurological impairment or even death. You can have it tested for about $40 at a lab.
by snackdog
Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dehumidifier and humidity meter recommendations
Replies: 25
Views: 1885

Re: Dehumidifier and humidity meter recommendations

I just installed a Sensor Push and Wifi gateway. Fabulous product. It measures relative humidity and temperature every minute and provides graphs and data via your smart phone or tablet. Includes alerts. Maybe a bit of overkill for what you need. I'm testing it in a piano room for now but will move ...
by snackdog
Wed Oct 03, 2018 4:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Sold Home - 2 days after buyer claims they found an issue with A/C
Replies: 119
Views: 11952

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

Legal issues related to a home sale can sink your finances really fast. Talk to an experienced local real estate attorney.
by snackdog
Wed Oct 03, 2018 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Water Leak During New Home Construction
Replies: 40
Views: 2475

Re: Water Leak During New Home Construction

I agree it seems like a minor issue in the grand scheme of things. Wood can't be much damaged by water in such a short time period. If they air things out for a day or two and replace the damaged dry wall it should be fine. Water leaks are about the most common issue affecting new houses and probabl...
by snackdog
Wed Oct 03, 2018 3:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Remember traveler's checks? How to cash a forgotten stash
Replies: 29
Views: 3506

Re: Remember traveler's checks? How to cash a forgotten stash

Call Visa and they will give you a list of local places that cash them. Some hotels will do this of course.
by snackdog
Tue Oct 02, 2018 1:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best neighborhoods in Atlanta
Replies: 45
Views: 3512

Re: Best neighborhoods in Atlanta

Scroll down to neighborhoods ranked by Walkability score. The area around Georgia State ranks the highest, not surprisingly.


https://www.walkscore.com/GA/Atlanta
by snackdog
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:03 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a new Toyota Camry. What extra options if any?
Replies: 70
Views: 4834

Re: Buying a new Toyota Camry. What extra options if any?

new2bogle wrote:
Tue Oct 02, 2018 10:00 am

Even though your Lexus is 8 years old, are you really comparing a $20k car vs an ~$60k car?
No, I am comparing a new $20K car to a used $10K car because that is what I paid for it.
by snackdog
Tue Oct 02, 2018 9:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying a new Toyota Camry. What extra options if any?
Replies: 70
Views: 4834

Re: Buying a new Toyota Camry. What extra options if any?

We had a 2018 as a rental last weekend and it was thoroughly underwhelming. It had all sorts of ground effects - lip spoiler and trunk spoiler, but apparently a 4 cylinder motor. It was completely anemic, even on level ground. Interior was really grim with hard plastic everywhere and stiff, flat foa...
by snackdog
Mon Oct 01, 2018 12:16 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airline shortened layover
Replies: 17
Views: 1380

Re: Airline shortened layover

If you haven't been to Iceland before, why not have a longer layover, like a few days?
by snackdog
Mon Oct 01, 2018 9:54 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Flood Insurance when not in flood plain?
Replies: 41
Views: 4765

Re: Flood Insurance when not in flood plain?

Certainly if you are 1) not on the highest hill in the region with obvious good drainage and 2) in a region prone to major rain (e.g. storms), then flood insurance is prudent. What we have seen in Houston, for example, is that 1) the area is generally flat with clay-rich non-absorbent soils and 2) h...
by snackdog
Mon Oct 01, 2018 7:28 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SEC charges Musk with Fraud!
Replies: 117
Views: 10797

Re: SEC charges Musk with Fraud!!!

As expected, a slap on the wrist fine and some reminders about SEC rules.
by snackdog
Fri Sep 28, 2018 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good flip flops
Replies: 46
Views: 3496

Re: Good flip flops

Brazilians purchase and wear more flip-flops than the rest of the world combined and they mostly buy Havianas. I wore out a couple pair myself. They are fabulous.
by snackdog
Fri Sep 28, 2018 6:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cleaning lady stealing
Replies: 49
Views: 7479

Re: cleaning lady stealing

They consider it sharing, just like food or drink. I even had one friend who would convince another that she needed to see her doctor for some particular pills that he wanted for himself. And she would give in an do it!
by snackdog
Fri Sep 28, 2018 6:56 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: SEC charges Musk with Fraud!
Replies: 117
Views: 10797

Re: SEC charges Musk with Fraud!!!

Seems like a strong buying opportunity for a great company. Musk can work out a deal about a few sloppy tweets. He'll get a slap on the wrist and have to take some SEC schooling.
by snackdog
Thu Sep 27, 2018 12:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: cleaning lady stealing
Replies: 49
Views: 7479

Re: cleaning lady stealing

I have friends who will go through the medicine cabinet of any house they happen to be in for any reason. Seems it's just second nature for them. If you have good stuff, you have to hide it or keep it locked up, otherwise it's considered up for grabs just like the cheese plate on the kitchen counter.
by snackdog
Thu Sep 27, 2018 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Testing validity of Monte Carlo Simulators
Replies: 34
Views: 2162

Re: Testing validity of Monte Carlo Simulators

A more insightful question might be: for those who have been retired more than 20 years and had a plan, how far has actual deviated from plan? I think you will find most did not have a plan or the plan was simply to spend their monthly pension plus SS and that is what they did. If finances got tight...
by snackdog
Mon Sep 24, 2018 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dark stain wood floors
Replies: 27
Views: 2452

Re: Dark stain wood floors

Our current home has very dark "engineered" hardwood floors and they show every imperfection, particularly all the marks from the dog's claws. I would not do dark again but maybe a light/grayish walnut color.
by snackdog
Sun Sep 23, 2018 7:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Ventilated car seats?
Replies: 61
Views: 4343

Re: Ventilated car seats?

Both our current vehicles (one Japanese and one German) supposedly have this and we quit even turning it on after a couple months. I can't see it doing much of anything; the air is so light as to be non-detectible. Don't waste your money.
by snackdog
Sat Sep 22, 2018 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?
Replies: 35
Views: 3770

Re: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?

Most of the Bogleheads ignore the math and make these decisions emotionally and most seem to have a fear of debt. Fair enough. They won't get rich but they won't be bankrupt either.
by snackdog
Sat Sep 22, 2018 8:03 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?
Replies: 35
Views: 3770

Re: 0 - 0.99% APR on auto... would you finance?

Any time you negotiate the lowest possible price for something and then are offered financing with no fees at a good rate, you are crazy not to take it. This includes cars, credit cards, mortgages, etc.
by snackdog
Thu Sep 20, 2018 6:45 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Proposal for Structural Damage
Replies: 12
Views: 1017

Re: Proposal for Structural Damage

1. I would hire my own to avoid conflicts of interest.
2. Yes as it will narrow the scope of work and improve quotes.
3. Probably nothing other than getting that report to three contractors and having them come take a look.
by snackdog
Thu Sep 20, 2018 6:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?
Replies: 43
Views: 2823

Re: Traveling overseas .. credit cards? cash exchange?

It depends partly on where you are going. There are quite a few countries where $500 cash could be the difference between life and death, either in a medical emergency or criminal situation. I know this from experience. These also happen the be the places you are more likely to need to work extra ha...
by snackdog
Wed Sep 19, 2018 7:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Landscaping costs?
Replies: 15
Views: 2263

Re: Landscaping costs?

Fairly reasonable based on what I have seen.
by snackdog
Wed Sep 19, 2018 6:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Are unleveraged real estate returns more comparable to stock market returns or just a notch above inflation?
Replies: 70
Views: 3986

Re: Are unleveraged real estate returns more comparable to stock market returns or just a notch above inflation?

Real estate business is extremely local as is inflation so I’m not sure what good the generalization is. A generalization I know is real and have observed is that real estate can and does allow average people to retire sooner than stock market investing with more effort up front. The real estate mar...
by snackdog
Tue Sep 18, 2018 5:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your single most expensive mistake?
Replies: 293
Views: 25490

Re: What is your single most expensive mistake?

I sold quite a bit of Apple stock back in 2005 or so. Ouch.
by snackdog
Mon Sep 17, 2018 7:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone hire an interior designer?
Replies: 39
Views: 3591

Re: Anyone hire an interior designer?

The more you are spending the more it makes sense because of the potential to add value. Ideally, you would involve them in a new build and let them specify 90% of the finishes (cabinets, floors, wall colors), furniture, art and decor so that it would all be harmonious. When done right, this way has...
by snackdog
Sun Sep 16, 2018 2:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Humidity in basement
Replies: 65
Views: 4202

Re: Humidity in basement

I have similar problems but cooler temps so no AC. The dehumidifier is loud as hell. Do they make quiet ones?
by snackdog
Fri Sep 14, 2018 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home
Replies: 45
Views: 3087

Re: How to determine quality of a finished new construction home

I agree that the incentives to cut cost (and boost profit) in ways not obvious post-construction are too significant for most builders to ignore. There is risk in buying new which is commensurate to your ability to QC the construction after the fact. All new houses have issues and some have catastro...
by snackdog
Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is home alarm monitoring worth it?
Replies: 56
Views: 3997

Re: Is home alarm monitoring worth it?

I think you've described the pros and cons of monitoring. I use the ultimate deterrent at my house......nothing of any value inside. :D Unfortunately, that is not a very good deterrent. As criminals get more stupid and drug-adled, their ability to discern which vehicles and homes contain valuables ...
by snackdog
Thu Sep 13, 2018 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!
Replies: 93
Views: 4438

Re: I need a chainsaw to trim branches and limbs!!

Several Americans *per week* are hospitalized overnight for injuries related to use of chain saws. They tend to kick at the wrong time and cut those using them, sometimes resulting in an amputation.
by snackdog
Thu Sep 13, 2018 12:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you use social media to enhance your travel experience?
Replies: 66
Views: 3013

Re: Do you use social media to enhance your travel experience?

Judging from what I see on Instagram and how other travelers behave at famous sites, it would seem the main purpose for travel is show others that you are doing it. "Look where I am!!!" Have you tried doing it this way?
by snackdog
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:57 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard
Replies: 61
Views: 4287

Re: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard

Schwab charges $76 per trade on mutual funds, which is outrageous. E-trade is $19.95. I assume you refer to Vanguard funds. If you ask your assigned consultant, they will waive the fee (mine does). I believe the fee is simply passed on by Schwab from Vanguard. I have no doubt Vanguard funds are inc...
by snackdog
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on how to deal with barking dogs
Replies: 59
Views: 5265

Re: Advice on how to deal with barking dogs

Shallowpockets wrote:
Wed Sep 12, 2018 10:17 am
.. History is full of incidents where noisy dog owners have responded aggressively and there have been sufficient reports of assault by those owners or by the one who is complaining. There have been deaths on both sides. ...
Glad you are keeping it all in perspective.
by snackdog
Wed Sep 12, 2018 11:51 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard
Replies: 61
Views: 4287

Re: Fidelity, Schwab, or Vanguard

Schwab charges $76 per trade on mutual funds, which is outrageous. E-trade is $19.95.
by snackdog
Mon Sep 10, 2018 12:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Advice on how to deal with barking dogs
Replies: 59
Views: 5265

Re: Advice on how to deal with barking dogs

Shallowpockets wrote:
Mon Sep 10, 2018 8:35 am
...
I would expect very little when confronting the dog owners. Dog owners are some of the most oblivious, non caring, aggressive people in the world.
..
This seems a rather broad condemnation of a class of people. I sense an issue here.
by snackdog
Wed Sep 05, 2018 10:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC annual contracts vs yearly annual cleaning
Replies: 32
Views: 2305

Re: HVAC annual contracts vs yearly annual cleaning

There are two type of maintenance. Everyone should be changing their own filters and cleaning the AC condenser. However, most DIYers will not want to open the system and do the routine maintenance a pro can do periodically. Once per year is not overkill - - clean the coils - lubricate moving parts (...
by snackdog
Tue Sep 04, 2018 5:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Neighbor Fencing question
Replies: 50
Views: 4032

Re: Neighbor Fencing question

Check your state laws on the fence issue. In some states you may be required to pay half as long as the fence is "reasonable". Also check the state laws on fence positioning. In some states once a fence is in place for a while, it become the legal property line. In Texas, for example, many people wo...
by snackdog
Tue Sep 04, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Establishing residency after relocation
Replies: 14
Views: 773

Re: Establishing residency after relocation

Change all addresses, get new docs (DL, vehicle tags, voter rego, etc) ASAP. Keep documentation of move dates, job start date, etc. Be sure to stop any VA withholding from any employer, retirement plan, etc. Resign from an VA boards, jobs, etc. Keep meticulous records of days in both states in 2018 ...
by snackdog
Tue Sep 04, 2018 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling a car to CarMax
Replies: 74
Views: 6384

Re: Selling a car to CarMax

Their offer is good for like 30 days so no reason not to get it and have it as Plan B if you can't sell on your own. I've had mixed results both buying and selling and it really depends on 1) the vehicle and 2) the national market. CM advertises and ships nationally so they can not have local price ...
by snackdog
Tue Sep 04, 2018 9:23 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Does it make sense to invest in individual stocks (like Kanye West) if you stick to what you know?
Replies: 110
Views: 5813

Re: Does it make sense to invest in individual stocks (like Kanye West) if you stick to what you know?

I'm surprised no one suggested to just do a shadow portfolio, comparing the results with VTI or VOO, dividends reinvested. That way you know, before risking real money, whether you can actually beat the market or not. (HINT: Most investors cannot beat even that dumb, simple, large-growth index that...