Search found 1468 matches

by tbradnc
Sun Oct 22, 2017 8:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best smartphone
Replies: 37
Views: 2578

Re: Best smartphone

I wonder how long it is going to take to name about every phone available on the market as the recommended phone. I'll name iPhone 6 because I have one and have not yet been moved to buy something else. I clicked on this thread just to see how many people recommended cans connected with string. :) ...
by tbradnc
Sat Oct 14, 2017 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Voiceprint technology (for authentication)
Replies: 24
Views: 1297

Re: Voiceprint technology (for authentication)

One of the best and least talked about online security options is the ability to "Restrict account access from unrecognized devices". Upside: Only the devices you've logged into Vanguard with can get in. Downside: If your recognized device becomes unrecognized (deleting cookies, device dies...) you ...
by tbradnc
Wed Oct 11, 2017 8:54 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wifi Thermostat
Replies: 55
Views: 3704

Re: Wifi Thermostat

3.5 years ago but here's my experience with a Nest and Ecobee SmartSI.

viewtopic.php?t=129619
by tbradnc
Sun Oct 08, 2017 8:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do you want your receipt?
Replies: 99
Views: 7504

Re: Do you want your receipt?

I curious if those of you who save receipts also print them at the gas pump. As for me, I save receipts for things that are "receipt worthy" - items I may need to return, gifts the recipient might want to return, service work on home/car/etc, and items I deem expensive but if I buy a coke and a Snic...
by tbradnc
Thu Oct 05, 2017 5:26 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.
Replies: 50
Views: 6308

Re: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.

You have to be within 100 yards of your theater to book a ticket.
by tbradnc
Wed Oct 04, 2017 6:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.
Replies: 50
Views: 6308

Re: MoviePass-Too good to be true, but it's legit.

It works as advertised - so far, so good.
by tbradnc
Tue Oct 03, 2017 8:51 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Vanguard's new security key option
Replies: 88
Views: 20224

Re: Vanguard's new security key option

The driver behind the Yubikey option seems to be fear of SMS spoofing.

But others have said that you are still presented with the option of receiving a text in case you don't have your Yubikey (or its lost/damaged/whatever).

So what's the point?
by tbradnc
Tue Oct 03, 2017 6:08 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it a waste of money having your furnace checked every year?
Replies: 58
Views: 6023

Re: Is it a waste of money having your furnace checked every year?

We get a big 3 color brochure warning us about the need for an annual checkup every year... It takes them about 30 minutes and is an easy $80 for the HVAC company.
by tbradnc
Fri Jun 16, 2017 6:41 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?
Replies: 127
Views: 14933

Re: Anyone else gotten totally bored with investing?

It's a bit like building a house. During construction it occupies your time and thoughts and you're always learning. After the house is complete you move in and slowly but gradually work out the little kinks until that's eventually finished and you're just living in the house. As far as reading inve...
by tbradnc
Sat Jun 10, 2017 5:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with Car buying math
Replies: 11
Views: 1395

Re: Help with Car buying math

I'd go with the 2017 as well.
by tbradnc
Fri Jun 09, 2017 4:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Fidelity Cash Management Account--any real life experience you can share?
Replies: 31
Views: 5631

Re: Fidelity Cash Management Account--any real life experience you can share?

I've had a CMA for 8 years as my daily checking account and never once have I paid a cent or had a problem. Based on my experience I'd recommend it without reservation.
by tbradnc
Fri Jun 09, 2017 5:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How to deal with a personal finance cynic
Replies: 109
Views: 7106

Re: How to deal with a personal finance cynic

He probably saw several variations of the "I've got $20,000,000 and am 60 years old, can I retire?" or "I'm 12 years old and have $2,000,000, how am I doing?" posts. :)
by tbradnc
Thu Jun 01, 2017 8:36 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: What do you hold while waiting for a good CD?
Replies: 20
Views: 2062

Re: What do you hold while waiting for a good CD?

Check your local credit unions - I bought 72 month add-on CDs this week with APYs of 3.34 ad 3.44% here: http://www.myacfcu.org/Rates

Posted details here: viewtopic.php?f=10&t=220011
by tbradnc
Tue May 30, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)
Replies: 5
Views: 884

Re: Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)

I live in the catchment area. Imagine that! Got lucky for once.
by tbradnc
Tue May 30, 2017 11:15 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)
Replies: 5
Views: 884

Re: Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)

Note that nowhere is the add-on component listed but I was repeatedly assured by the branch manager that this was standard policy with all of their certificates.
by tbradnc
Tue May 30, 2017 11:00 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)
Replies: 5
Views: 884

Small CU with 3.04%+ 72 month CD (Tennessee)

Of interest to very few due to limited scope but wanted to announce anyway. Appalachian Community FCU http://www.myacfcu.org/Rates has a 72 month add-on certificate with a 3.04% APY. You can get 0.10% bumps like so: Bump 1: Add a free checking account with estatements Bump 2: Direct Deposit Bump 3. ...
by tbradnc
Sat May 20, 2017 5:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: iPhone GPS apps
Replies: 15
Views: 1403

Re: iPhone GPS apps

Also recommend the app iExit - tells you what services are available at exits along the way. Very helpful.
by tbradnc
Sat Apr 29, 2017 5:25 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Importance of “Cash on Hand” to Life Satisfaction
Replies: 29
Views: 3917

Re: The Importance of “Cash on Hand” to Life Satisfaction

I don't go around quoting Cher but once I heard her say in an interview, "I've been rich and I've been poor. Rich is better."
by tbradnc
Wed Mar 29, 2017 12:05 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Prime MMF is 25% Yankee/Foreign. What is that?
Replies: 14
Views: 2612

Re: Prime MMF is 25% Yankee/Foreign. What is that?

Resurrecting an old thread - I noticed Prime is up to 0.87% now which means it's starting to get competitive with high yield savings accounts again. But to the point, Prime is now 62% Yankee/Foreign. I can't imagine Vanguard reaching for yield - why do you think the percentage is so high compared to...
by tbradnc
Sun Mar 26, 2017 5:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone use Verizon wireless prepaid for cell phones???
Replies: 41
Views: 4114

Re: Anyone use Verizon wireless prepaid for cell phones???

Recommending a cellphone provider without knowing what's available in that area doesn't make sense. Where I live I wouldn't use Sprint if they paid *me* $200 a month because they're no service outside the interstate corridor. AT&T is marginally better but still fairly unworkable throughout the ...
by tbradnc
Sat Mar 25, 2017 7:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Anyone use Verizon wireless prepaid for cell phones???
Replies: 41
Views: 4114

Re: Anyone use Verizon wireless prepaid for cell phones???

Recommending a cellphone provider without knowing what's available in that area doesn't make sense. Where I live I wouldn't use Sprint if they paid *me* $200 a month because they're no service outside the interstate corridor. AT&T is marginally better but still fairly unworkable throughout the c...
by tbradnc
Fri Mar 24, 2017 1:03 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?
Replies: 39
Views: 4575

Re: AA after reaching your "freedom number"?

40/60, retired at 53, no debt, good health, live simply. Firecalc says 100% chance of success with a 3% WD rate over 40 years.
by tbradnc
Thu Mar 23, 2017 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best HSA (2017)
Replies: 163
Views: 27469

Re: Best HSA (2017)

It's not very sexy but I moved our HSAs from HSA Administrators to Lake Michigan Credit union.

Cost exactly $0.00 and the money earns a predictable, flat 1%. Easy peasy and I don't feel nickeled and dimed to death.
by tbradnc
Mon Mar 20, 2017 3:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 2.25% High Yield Checking - FSCU
Replies: 11
Views: 2061

Re: 2.25% High Yield Checking - FSCU

Was going to bite despite the $500 monthly direct deposit requirement and received this:

Membership requirements show that you have to live or work in the Harris County or Waller County area of Texas.
by tbradnc
Mon Mar 06, 2017 6:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: The Ultimate Guide to Safe Withdrawal Rates: A 2000-2016 case study
Replies: 31
Views: 4908

Re: The Ultimate Guide to Safe Withdrawal Rates: A 2000-2016 case study

The bigger question is 4% of what?

I couldn't live off 4% of $250,000... 4% of $3,000,000... I could make that work.
by tbradnc
Wed Feb 22, 2017 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which puppy to buy: golden retriever or labrador retriever?
Replies: 120
Views: 8559

Re: Which puppy to buy: golden retriever or labrador retriever?

After volunteering at the local shelter for a few years it really gets me when I hear someone bought a dog. So many good dogs get put down because there just isn't room.
by tbradnc
Thu Feb 09, 2017 5:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cost of tax preparation
Replies: 43
Views: 3930

Re: Cost of tax preparation

I keep good records and pay $285 total for federal and state returns. Our return isn't particularly complicated but it's more than I want to deal with.

It's quite possibly the best $285 I spend all year.
by tbradnc
Sun Feb 05, 2017 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Does anybody else out there still pay for an email address?
Replies: 73
Views: 8129

Re: Does anybody else out there still pay for an email address?

Gmail is more than adequate for me. Now... if I had the *need* for some type of encryption, was a public figure/politician or someone who really needed to worry about it - then maybe I'd look into a service that offered whatever I needed. But as a regular Joe who gets 99% crap and 1% useful email......
by tbradnc
Wed Jan 25, 2017 10:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Experience with Payoneer?
Replies: 2
Views: 416

Re: Experience with Payoneer?

I can tell you that it's a legitimate company. In my former business we used Payoneer's prepaid Mastercard product to pay developers all over the world.
by tbradnc
Sun Jan 08, 2017 7:30 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best Ways to Buy Time
Replies: 68
Views: 8176

Re: Best Ways to Buy Time

If you get up an hour earlier every 24 days you get a day free.
by tbradnc
Fri Jan 06, 2017 9:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best/ safest way to access Vanguard account online?
Replies: 16
Views: 2606

Re: Best/ safest way to access Vanguard account online?

One habit I've had to get into is logging out of gmail when I close my notebook. Most all of the accounts that I login into use that address as the "Lost your password? address. All someone would have to do is get my email address from an email and put it in the reset password field and they co...
by tbradnc
Thu Jan 05, 2017 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Luck with DirectTV Now?
Replies: 37
Views: 5376

Re: Luck with DirectTV Now?

I'm pretty sure AT&T has the resources to work out the buffering issues.

Basically, they gave us the opportunity to be grandfathered into a lot of channels at a discounted price and an Apple TV to be beta testers for the first 3 months. :)
by tbradnc
Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Luck with DirectTV Now?
Replies: 37
Views: 5376

Re: Luck with DirectTV Now?

I subscribed to DirecTV Now the same day my Vue subscription renewed so I could run them in tandem for a month - plus I got a free Apple TV and locked in the $35 rate that's soon going up to $60. We haven't experienced a single problem with DTVN but I follow a DTVN subreddit and it is clear that the...
by tbradnc
Sat Dec 31, 2016 9:12 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Delayed Gratification In Life & its fallacies
Replies: 56
Views: 6651

Re: Delayed Gratification In Life & its fallacies

I'm 55, retired (mostly) for 3 years. During my late 20's I started a business and during my 30s/40s I worked a *lot* of 100 hour weeks. Almost every friend I had who worked a traditional job thought I wasn't "smelling the flowers" and more than a few told me I was crazy to work so hard. I...
by tbradnc
Thu Dec 29, 2016 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes
Replies: 24
Views: 3866

Re: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes

We live in Tennessee with no state income tax. His company is based out of Washington (also no tax) and they do most of their work in Texas (also no tax - how lucky is that?). He paid the state of North Carolina thousands of dollars in tax for a few years for no reason. I also live in TN and can at...
by tbradnc
Thu Dec 29, 2016 7:58 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Picking Individual Stocks Is Dangerous
Replies: 58
Views: 6354

Re: Picking Individual Stocks Is Dangerous

A few years ago MF had an article titled "6 stocks to buy now!!" or something like that. I decided to create a contest with these stocks competing against Total Stock Market and post the results to my Facebook feed. At the end of 6 months I was feeling pretty smug due to the fact that liqu...
by tbradnc
Wed Dec 28, 2016 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes
Replies: 24
Views: 3866

Re: Changing State of Residency to Avoid State Income Taxes

My son did exactly this. He travels year round and doesn't have a permanent address. His permanent address was North Carolina -basically that's where he was living when he got the job he has now. This summer he "moved back in with us" here in Tennessee meaning that he opened a local bank a...
by tbradnc
Tue Dec 27, 2016 10:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Maximizing credit card rewards, am I overthinking?
Replies: 15
Views: 1962

Re: Maximizing credit card rewards, am I overthinking?

There are so many ways to get 5% back from Amazon it's not even funny. Who can keep up with them all? You can get 6% back on Amazon for up to $6000 by buying Amazon gift cards at the grocery store with an American Express Blue Cash Preferred card ($95 annual fee, 6% limited to $6000, then 1%.) Most ...
by tbradnc
Mon Dec 19, 2016 10:05 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA (ObamaCare) - MAGI prediction
Replies: 15
Views: 1611

Re: ACA (ObamaCare) - MAGI prediction

...then 2 months ago I realized enough capital gains to fill up the 0% capital gains space. I'm choosing to fill the remainder of my 0% tax space with a Roth conversion. I think thats a better bang for the buck unless you actually need those capital gains to meet spending needs. My reason was to se...
by tbradnc
Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:59 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: ACA (ObamaCare) - MAGI prediction
Replies: 15
Views: 1611

Re: ACA (ObamaCare) - MAGI prediction

I'm in the same situation and am in a bit of a bind around all this... Last year during open enrollment I estimated our annual income to be $30k this year for ACA purposes, then 2 months ago I realized enough capital gains to fill up the 0% capital gains space. I might have to pay back all or most o...
by tbradnc
Mon Dec 19, 2016 7:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: AMEX Blue Cash Everyday vs Preferred offers
Replies: 13
Views: 2730

Re: AMEX Blue Cash Everyday vs Preferred offers

I've had a Blue Cash Preferred card for several years and watched as the benefits erode over time. Originally there was no limit on purchases or benefits. The grocery limit was then introduced at $6000 per year to receive 6% cash back. Now the annual fee has been bumped up to $95. As a result I am ...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 18, 2016 8:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Card plans and thoughts?
Replies: 10
Views: 1334

Re: Credit Card plans and thoughts?

I use several cash back cards: Elan Visa (aka Fidelity), Citi Double Cash, Capital One Spark, and Capital One Quicksilver. The Capital One Spark is my favorite. It has a $500 bonus for spending $4,000 over 3 months. There is also a $95 annual fee, waived the first year and the bonus covers the next ...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 18, 2016 11:48 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?
Replies: 47
Views: 4842

Re: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?

Talking about bonds and rates and assuming most use them for safety or ballast this thread reminds me of a saying in golf describing a mistake golfers often make by trying to do things a little too close to perfect. The saying goes "If you are going to lay up, lay up" translated into the ...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:29 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?
Replies: 47
Views: 4842

Re: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?

I have to say.... there seems to be a lot of confusion around these CDs. Between our accounts, my wife and I have four 3% six month certificates and three 3 month 3% certificates. Only the first 3 month certificate was subject to the $15k max because it was a "Black Friday" special. The $1...
by tbradnc
Sun Dec 18, 2016 10:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Retirees: How much cash do you keep?
Replies: 103
Views: 10839

Re: Retirees: How much cash do you keep?

Timely topic - I received the last payment from the sale of my business this month and beginning January 1 will begin living off my nest egg. I've got the (projected) cash we need to get through 2017 in Ally and on the 15th of each month will make an xfer from Ally to our Fidelity Cash Management ac...
by tbradnc
Sat Dec 17, 2016 7:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?
Replies: 47
Views: 4842

Re: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?

Yes, anybody can join. Click on this link and follow the instructions carefully. m Here's a tip from Uncle Ben on a previous thread: To qualify, you can join the American Consumer Council and use promo code "consumer" to have the $5 $8 (went up $3 in the last week, apparently) fee waived....
by tbradnc
Sat Dec 17, 2016 11:22 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?
Replies: 47
Views: 4842

Re: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?

I moved a 6 figure amount out of Vanguard's short term bond index into 6 month, 3% CDs at Andrews. Seemed reasonable - harvested a small loss and will likely get a better return for 6 months. Who knows... in 6 months maybe there will be better CD rates available.. maybe not. Regardless I don't feel...
by tbradnc
Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cell phone carriers (looking to switch)
Replies: 34
Views: 2601

Re: Cell phone carriers (looking to switch)

With Verizon our 3 lines with 4 GB data, total with tax is $114.43. We own our phones outright so it's $20 per line and $44 for the plan. Do the math and the rest is tax/fees. Generally we use 3 GB of data - maybe a wee bit more - so we start each month with close to 5 GB data now that unused data r...
by tbradnc
Fri Dec 16, 2016 8:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?
Replies: 47
Views: 4842

Re: Anyone hiding out in short term CDs while rates rise?

I moved a 6 figure amount out of Vanguard's short term bond index into 6 month, 3% CDs at Andrews. Seemed reasonable - harvested a small loss and will likely get a better return for 6 months. Who knows... in 6 months maybe there will be better CD rates available.. maybe not. Regardless I don't feel ...