Search found 440 matches

by Auream
Sun Jan 29, 2017 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Pay extra to lower-interest mortgage, or higher-interest student loan?
Replies: 4
Views: 461

Re: Pay extra to lower-interest mortgage, or higher-interest student loan?

Yes, your analysis is completely wrong. You're looking at the savings on the mortgage over a 334 month period, but the savings on the student loan over only a 49 month period. Re-do the analysis putting the extra money on the student loan, then once it is paid off early, put the entire payment you w...
by Auream
Tue Nov 08, 2016 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to do secure communications to my web server?
Replies: 15
Views: 1518

Re: How to do secure communications to my web server?

I know you said you don't want the expense or hassle of https, which tells me you're living in the past. Let's Encrypt is an open Certificate Authority run by the Internet Security Research Group. They issue Domain Validation certs to anyone free of charge, and provide the tools to automatically re...
by Auream
Wed Aug 31, 2016 12:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

How would they know if they are qualified since it isn't their customer? They can tell the same way that the buyer's agent did, by looking at their pre-qualification letter. It takes all of 2 seconds. The stealing items from the home bit is a stretch, as open houses never require prospective buyers...
by Auream
Wed Aug 31, 2016 7:39 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

What? I'm saying when an agent is on vacation, they have a back up agent who can show the property. And what I'm saying is, if a listing agent says "NO, I will not show you the house I listed." they are not doing their job. Whether the potential buyer has their own agent or not, I conside...
by Auream
Tue Aug 30, 2016 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

Your buyer's agent was the problem, professional agents always set up a back up to handle any business when they leave town for a percentage of any deal that does through. Sounds like an excuse for laziness. If I was paying 5-6% to a listing agent to sell my house, they better be showing any and al...
by Auream
Mon Aug 29, 2016 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

Just because you choose not to bring a buyer's agent and request a credit in lieu does not mean you're wasting anyone's time. I'd say chances are they're a more serious buyer because they've done their homework, found the house themselves and know enough about how this game works to request a commi...
by Auream
Mon Aug 29, 2016 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

Actually I disagree on the commentators who say that the listing agent is useless. All the listing agents have showed me the home on the same day that I requested the home to be shown. I should have tempered my comments a bit. Some listing agents are great and are happy to show the house to anyone....
by Auream
Mon Aug 29, 2016 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?
Replies: 58
Views: 4518

Re: Do I need a real estate agent as a buyer?

Pretty good comments here so far and I agree with most. Its unfortunate, but in my experience it seems that listing agents are next to useless. So as an unrepresented buyer, if you try to engage with them, they will not want to waste their time with you, and will think that you are not serious since...
by Auream
Thu Jun 23, 2016 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dental costs and insurance
Replies: 7
Views: 1261

Re: Dental costs and insurance

It might be worth checking whether the ACA plans you are looking at cover pediatric dental services in full with no deductible. My Blue Cross of NC "catastrophic" level (below Bronze) plan for my daughter covers pediatric dental checkups/cleaning twice a year at no out of pocket cost. Just...
by Auream
Thu Jun 02, 2016 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to North Carolina from NYC
Replies: 66
Views: 7376

Re: Moving to North Carolina from NYC

Having said that, if you still need to work, this is not the place for you. That statement makes absolutely no sense. What do you think all the non-retired people in NC are doing all day? Particularly in the area we are talking about, the Triangle, the unemployment rate is below the national averag...
by Auream
Tue May 31, 2016 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to North Carolina from NYC
Replies: 66
Views: 7376

Re: Moving to North Caolina from NYC

I'd love to move NYC to NC, but cannot due to limited job prospects there for myself and significant other. (We work in software / tech. FYI, the tech industry is huge in NC, especially in the Research Triangle area. Job prospects won't be a problem and 6 figures goes a lot further than in NYC. I t...
by Auream
Tue May 31, 2016 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Moving to North Carolina from NYC
Replies: 66
Views: 7376

Re: Moving to North Caolina from NYC

FYI, the tech industry is huge in NC, especially in the Research Triangle area. Job prospects won't be a problem and 6 figures goes a lot further than in NYC. Took the words out of my mouth. Someone saying they wouldn't be able to find a software/tech job in the Raleigh area just doesn't compute. G...
by Auream
Tue May 31, 2016 11:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New Boiler Sizing
Replies: 40
Views: 2850

Re: New Boiler Sizing

Something doesn't make sense. You currently have a 96% efficient dual-stage natural gas hot air furnace, and you're looking to replace it already? 96% efficient and dual-stage is extremely good, I'm not sure if that was even available more than 15 years ago or so, so it can't be that old. If its bro...
by Auream
Tue Jan 19, 2016 9:05 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Filled up brand new minivan with DIESEL?? We don't think so. Next steps, need input ASAP
Replies: 113
Views: 13097

Re: Filled up brand new minivan with DIESEL?? We don't think so. Next steps, need input ASAP

Different people have different habits. Waiting for the light to come on is how many people do it. Why blame OP for doing this? It serves no purpose. Indeed, seems like an odd thing to comment on. I almost never fill up my tank without the gas light on, which comes on typically when there are an en...
by Auream
Sat Jun 06, 2015 1:49 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: suggestions for sydney, cairns, and auckland
Replies: 21
Views: 2355

Re: suggestions for sydney, cairns, and auckland

My wife and I did almost this exact trip for our honeymoon in 2011 (went to Port Douglas like the above poster rather than Cairns itself). The trip was great, although I'd definitely say that 12 days is not enough for three cities this far apart. By the time we hit Auckland, wife as already "tr...
by Auream
Sat Apr 18, 2015 2:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone built a [LEED] rated green house?
Replies: 13
Views: 1189

Re: Anyone built a Leer rated green house?

Most of those things you posted are more akin to "green bling" than the actual best energy efficiency technologies. Especially consumer wind power, which is probably an order of magnitude less efficient in terms of watts/dollar as compared to solar. Geothermal is also usually a big waste o...
by Auream
Fri Apr 10, 2015 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Why pay more than face value for a gift card
Replies: 19
Views: 7900

Re: Why pay more than face value for a gift card

I'm pretty sure this topic came up on Bogleheads more than once in the past. Yes, in 99% of the cases the reason is fraud, either credit card fraud, stolen PayPal accounts, or buyer fraud as has already been noted. There is no big secret or "action fever" going on here (in most cases). The...
by Auream
Sat Mar 21, 2015 8:45 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: refinance or pay down mortgage?
Replies: 14
Views: 2012

Re: refinance or pay down mortgage?

For a smallish loan with a relatively short time to pay off, closing costs on a normal mortgage are usually going to kill the deal. But you can get a much better rate than you have now with a home equity loan or line. For example, PenFed has a 5-year HEL at 3.24% fixed, with no closing costs. Usual...
by Auream
Sat Mar 21, 2015 6:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: refinance or pay down mortgage?
Replies: 14
Views: 2012

Re: refinance or pay down mortgage?

For a smallish loan with a relatively short time to pay off, closing costs on a normal mortgage are usually going to kill the deal. But you can get a much better rate than you have now with a home equity loan or line. For example, PenFed has a 5-year HEL at 3.24% fixed, with no closing costs. Usuall...
by Auream
Sat Feb 07, 2015 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file
Replies: 13
Views: 4127

Re: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file

I needed the info to determine if you could not e file when reporting a recharacterization, whether you could safely omit the recharacterization reporting in order to still e file using this program. SInce you recharacterized in 2015, neither you or the IRS gets a 1099R or 5498 for it until NEXT Ja...
by Auream
Sat Feb 07, 2015 2:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file
Replies: 13
Views: 4127

Re: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file

Are you in the same situation as the OP? Made TIRA contribution for 2014 in 2014 and recharacterized the entire contribution as a Roth contribution in 2014? If so, is your income too high for the savers credit? Yes, income is too high for saver's credit. Why would that make a difference? Also, one ...
by Auream
Sat Feb 07, 2015 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file
Replies: 13
Views: 4127

Re: Roth IRA recharacterization and e-file

Figured I'd bump this old thread rather than starting a new one, since I'm having the exact same problem. H&R Block 2014 is telling me "you cannot e-file if you recharacterized an IRA contribution and are not filing form 8606." Since this is clearly not an IRS requirement, what am I do...
by Auream
Sun Dec 28, 2014 6:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying Mazda CX-5 - to wait or not to wait?
Replies: 22
Views: 7329

Re: Buying Mazda CX-5 - to wait or not to wait?

Assuming the same model - that you're quoting for the same options, etc. - you're unwilling to pay $4k more for a 2 year newer car with 40k fewer miles, just because $26k is over a self-imposed budget? The bottom line in terms of purchase price shouldn't matter. The total cost of ownership over the...
by Auream
Fri Dec 26, 2014 7:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Buying Mazda CX-5 - to wait or not to wait?
Replies: 22
Views: 7329

Re: Buying Mazda CX-5 - to wait or not to wait?

I checked and the PenFed car buying service lists a brand new 2015 CX-5 Grand Touring at $25700. For me I would want more than a $3000 discount for buying a 2 or more year old one. Mazda upped the engine size (from 2.0 to 2.5 liters) in 2014 on the touring and grand touring models as well making the...
by Auream
Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a dis
Replies: 30
Views: 6180

Re: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a

The doctor is putting the same amount of work into the same procedure whether or not its paid by insurance, Medicare, or etc. Leaving the list price high maximizes the writeoff. Seriously, do you even know what a write-off is? The list price of a procedure has no bearing on how much a provider can ...
by Auream
Tue Nov 25, 2014 1:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a dis
Replies: 30
Views: 6180

Re: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a

One huge problem in our current system that nobody seems to be interested in fixing is the issue of those crazy "chargemaster" prices that do not bear any resemblance to the payments medical providers accept from Medicare or insurance companies. The non-negotiated price for Mr. Uninsured ...
by Auream
Tue Nov 25, 2014 10:07 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a dis
Replies: 30
Views: 6180

Re: Strategically not paying medical bills for 90 days for a

As others have said, I doubt a 50% discount would be from the already reduced insurance negotiated price, but from some fake, inflated "list" price that nobody really pays. When my daughter was born, the hospital did agree to a 10% discount on the already insurance-reduced price if we paid...
by Auream
Mon Nov 24, 2014 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D
Replies: 223
Views: 42001

Re: TurboTax '14 Deluxe (Desktop) Excludes Schedule D

I've been using TurboTax Deluxe for literally YEARS (probably since 2001 or so) but I think this is finally the impetus to change that I needed. I tried the online version of TaxACT (its actually free to try, you only pay once you go to file or print). Works decently, but I'm not a big fan of the in...
by Auream
Thu Nov 20, 2014 6:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEHA - Standard vs. HDHP Options with Baby on the Way
Replies: 36
Views: 6407

Re: GEHA - Standard vs. HDHP Options with Baby on the Way

Unless you count the hsa pass through, there really isn't much of a difference in premiums. Actually, the hdhp has a higher premium cost. It is when you factor in the passthrough and tax savings from the hsa contribution that makes the biggest difference. Why wouldn't you factor in the "pass-t...
by Auream
Wed Nov 19, 2014 1:48 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Child's Education Savings (529) and life insurance plan
Replies: 23
Views: 2974

Re: Child's Education Savings (529) and life insurance plan

The $7200 you spent is a sunk cost . It only mattters if going forward, that insurance policy is a good deal. For 99% of people, whole life/universal life policies are not a good deal. You're better off buying term insurance and investing the difference. There are lots of places that sell inexpensiv...
by Auream
Wed Nov 19, 2014 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: GEHA - Standard vs. HDHP Options with Baby on the Way
Replies: 36
Views: 6407

Re: GEHA - Standard vs. HDHP Options with Baby on the Way

If you have a "broad network" plan (not familiar with GEHA but most employer and government plans are broad networks) then I really wouldn't worry too much about out-of-network costs. Just make sure that the hospital and any doctors who do C-sections and/or anasthesia are in-network (again...
by Auream
Wed Nov 12, 2014 10:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Questions about flying with a toddler
Replies: 36
Views: 5052

Re: Questions about flying with a toddler

Good points SpiritRider and Auream. I just read that EarlyBird check-in doesn't let you board before A Group - m. So even if I do ealry-bird, I'll still have to deal with getting in line early to get a good position in A Group. It doesn't seem worth it to me since family boarding is right after A G...
by Auream
Wed Nov 12, 2014 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Questions about flying with a toddler
Replies: 36
Views: 5052

Re: Questions about flying with a toddler

If I was travelling with an infant/toddler, I would pay the Early Bird fee to get closer to the head of the line. With the distraction of kids, you could easily miss checking in precisely on time. Even a one hour delay can push you into the back of the B group or even the C group. This doesn't appl...
by Auream
Tue Nov 11, 2014 8:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Questions about flying with a toddler
Replies: 36
Views: 5052

Re: Questions about flying with a toddler

Unbelievable. Can you elaborate on that? FWIW, I tortured myself about that same decision. Read lots of articles and saw interviews with FAs who recommended a separate seat and told horror stories. At the end of the day, isn't that risk similar to the risk when carrying an infant or worse getting t...
by Auream
Wed Oct 15, 2014 1:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: need moral support (kinda)
Replies: 33
Views: 3656

Re: need moral support (kinda)

Why on earth are you selling stocks now if you don't need the money for a year? Or rather, you don't even NEED the money at all, you just want to buy in a house in a year or so. Logically, the right move is to just leave the money in your account, and sell it when you need it. If the market has gone...
by Auream
Fri Sep 19, 2014 6:42 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Password Manager [Last Pass]--stolen
Replies: 15
Views: 3228

Re: Password Manager [Last Pass]--stolen

Wow, it boggles the mind that LastPass would even LET you run it in a mode that doesn't require regular re-authentication!
by Auream
Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:50 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help Me Pick an HSA Investment
Replies: 6
Views: 1496

Re: Help Me Pick an HSA Investment

I'd probably do it more frequently than once the balance reaches $10K. Like once a year. Which if you're maxing it out, would only be $6000 and change if you have an HSA associated with a family insurance plan. The reason you don't want to stop payroll deductions into your crappy HSA is by going thr...
by Auream
Sun Sep 14, 2014 12:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Change to HARP refi after starting non HARP refi?
Replies: 8
Views: 937

Re: Change to HARP refi after starting non HARP refi?

Where are you getting 75% LTV required for no PMI? It should be 80%. My understanding is it's 75% loan to value needed to refinance an investment property per Fannie Mae or Freddie Mac requirements. Could be wrong but that's what I understood. Yes, that makes sense. I completely glossed over the fa...
by Auream
Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:47 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help Me Pick an HSA Investment
Replies: 6
Views: 1496

Re: Help Me Pick an HSA Investment

There is no reason you have to leave your money in a lousy HSA plan. HSA accounts are more like IRAs than 401(k) plans in that you can roll them over at any time. Find an account with a decent interest rate (one of mine pays 1.5% on risk free savings), or alternatively offers low cost funds or a bro...
by Auream
Sun Sep 14, 2014 7:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Change to HARP refi after starting non HARP refi?
Replies: 8
Views: 937

Re: Change to HARP refi after starting non HARP refi?

Where are you getting 75% LTV required for no PMI? It should be 80%.
by Auream
Mon Jul 21, 2014 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Exceptionally high marginal rates on MD, VA students
Replies: 30
Views: 3502

Re: Exceptionally high marginal rates on students

Thanks Auream. Is the filing threshold still $5,500 after the 2014 changes? I couldn't easily find that. Seems likely the threshold is higher now. It would make sense to increase the filing threshold to match the standard deduction but I couldn't find anything about that yet. It used to be there wa...
by Auream
Sun Jul 20, 2014 8:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Exceptionally high marginal rates on MD, VA students
Replies: 30
Views: 3502

Re: Exceptionally high marginal rates on students

No problem in North Carolina, as of 2014 the single taxpayer standard deduction is $7500, more than the $5500 filing threshold.
by Auream
Mon Jun 30, 2014 6:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.
Replies: 47
Views: 5004

Re: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.

LongerPrimer wrote:Flash news. You hear it here, first.
Unbelieveable.
ARM 7/1. 5/2/5, @2.625%, no points. Conforming. Verbal. Need to see it in writing.


Hard to believe. What's the bank or broker?
by Auream
Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.
Replies: 47
Views: 5004

Re: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.

rleonardh wrote:APY is interst you pay, if you pay more now, you pay less later. Period, no ifs and or buts.


Can you show me the math that indicates a higher than 3% annual yield from paying down a 3% loan?
by Auream
Mon Jun 30, 2014 10:04 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.
Replies: 47
Views: 5004

Re: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.

Thankyou and appreciate your efforts, LeeMKE. I happen to see your point and do understand it. My financial adviser has a saying about bankers, " I [banker] give you any rate and payment plan you want, I get to make the terms. " I think LeeMKE is trying to say is, front loading (additiona...
by Auream
Mon Jun 30, 2014 8:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.
Replies: 47
Views: 5004

Re: Mortgage: Variable 7 vs Fixed 30.

Well, there's also the third school of thought, led by people like LeeMKE, who just fundamentally don't understand the math and think that pre-paying a 3% loan gives you a 51% APY return.
by Auream
Sat Jun 07, 2014 6:32 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Avoiding the two house monster...
Replies: 21
Views: 2589

Re: Avoiding the two house monster...

So at first you were within the inspection contingency period, but outside of the attorney review period (which in my experience is pretty short, much shorter than the inspection contingency period), and yet for some reason your attorney advised you to ask for an "out" on the contract base...
by Auream
Sat May 31, 2014 8:15 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring into the poor house in 13 yrs?
Replies: 110
Views: 11933

Re: Retiring into the poor house in 13 yrs?

I'd like thank everyone for taking the time to respond to my retirement concerns. We'll most likely seek the help of a fee only CFP. Regarding the Stafford student loans; is this something that is needs based and has a limit of $5500/yr? Limits are 5500 the first year, 6500 the next, and 7500 for t...
by Auream
Fri May 30, 2014 9:31 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Retiring into the poor house in 13 yrs?
Replies: 110
Views: 11933

Re: Retiring into the poor house in 13 yrs?

I will probably have my daughter take some loans out, although I consider the current 6.8% interest rate quite high. And I may indeed bite the tax bullet converting the TIRA. God help me if Congress decides to ever eliminate Roth accounts in the future. Where are you getting 6.8% from? The current ...
by Auream
Thu May 15, 2014 8:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla S
Replies: 1002
Views: 171964

Re: Tesla S

Video specifically shows the stats, and lists "Price As Tested" as $127,270 for the Tesla and $123,995 for the Mercedes. Sounds like both are basically maxed out, and of course the Tesla price is listed before any tax credits.