Search found 1647 matches

by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When to change tires; and what brand
Replies: 78
Views: 3319

Re: When to change tires; and what brand

Curious 1. When do you guys change tires ? I know that tire tread depth is 8/32 mm for a brand new tire and 2/32 mm for a completely bald tire. The tire shops try to scare you into buying new tires even at 5/32 mm. I myself have been buying as soon as they dip below 3/32 mm. I bought a electronic t...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 18, 2018 3:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Jury duty - already booked vacation
Replies: 45
Views: 4612

Re: Jury duty - already booked vacation

Company doesn't pay for jury duty, hence I claim a financial hardship
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 18, 2018 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Down payment into Ally 1% offer, how will it affect mortgage applications?
Replies: 11
Views: 854

Re: Down payment into Ally 1% offer, how will it affect mortgage applications?

You'll need to show a paper trail, that's all. If you can show where the money went, you're GTG.
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 2:13 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Kids not interested in money / allowance
Replies: 50
Views: 4748

Re: Kids not interested in money / allowance

Hi BHs, I have two sons (11 & 8 years). None of them has any interest in money. Each of them has a weekly allowance of $5. 99% of the time they do not ask for it, and even if my wife/I encourage them to take it they don’t. I tried to educate them since they were little (Money doesn’t grow on trees ...
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 11:20 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Girlfriend lost job, getting a lump sum severance... What should we do next
Replies: 36
Views: 3030

Re: Girlfriend lost job, getting a lump sum severance... What should we do next

Let us concentrate on the OP's job loss related questions. OP already had a separate topic on wedding costs and it went long and hard on him. Give him a break on that topic. Then why even post the thread? GF's severance of 30k is "not bad" but is completely eclipsed by the 45k wedding! Of course th...
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When to stop putting money into an older vehicle
Replies: 88
Views: 5790

Re: When to stop putting money into an older vehicle

First, I would not drive a 15 year old vehicle. There have been too many safety improvements in the intervening years. When I have had to make a similar decision, I always check the value of the vehicle as a trade-in. If the vehicle is worth $8,000, I’d probably do a $1,000 repair. If the vehicle i...
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Girlfriend lost job, getting a lump sum severance... What should we do next
Replies: 36
Views: 3030

Re: Girlfriend lost job, getting a lump sum severance... What should we do next

40-45k on a wedding? Are you flying all your friends to a tropical island? :shock: Low budget wedding idea: 10k total - Rent a space for cheap for the ceremony (if you have one), a local church might be free - Find a cheap place for the reception (eg. went to one at a local yacht club, it was great!...
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How do you buy a mattress ?
Replies: 31
Views: 2316

Re: How do you buy a mattress ?

For a camper, definitely just go to Ikea. They have a good selection and their prices are reasonable.
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 15, 2018 10:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should we move to San Diego from east coast?
Replies: 104
Views: 7601

Re: Should we move to San Diego from east coast?

I just moved from San Diego to Austin TX. I'd give my left arm to move back and so would my kids! (Wife likes the weather/rain out here though.) We lived in Escondido and it's much more affordable in the inland cities compared to the coast. Quite a bit warmer during the summer however. House = 600k ...
by sunny_socal
Sat Oct 13, 2018 7:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drop in MPG (09 Civic)
Replies: 24
Views: 1326

Re: Drop in MPG (09 Civic)

- All the previously posted items
- Stuck brake (eg hand brake)
- Ignition coils
- Bad gas (avoid ethanol, it yields poor mpg)
- Dirty injectors (run a bottle of techron through the car)
- Needs valve adjustment?
by sunny_socal
Fri Oct 12, 2018 7:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we rent a car or take our low mileage 2006 Volvo on a family trip?
Replies: 49
Views: 3129

Re: Should we rent a car or take our low mileage 2006 Volvo on a family trip?

I vote fix up your existing car and drive it. Your Volvo is close to fully depreciated in terms of age, a couple thousand miles won't make a difference. Highway miles are also the easiest on your vehicle, it's almost as if they don't contribute to wear & tear at all. It's the constant engine starts,...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 4:29 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Budget Coffee
Replies: 51
Views: 3112

Re: Budget Coffee

I don't know how much it costs ($8?), but I get the big bag of 'red' Jose's Coffee @ Costco and grind it myself.

If buying brewed coffee I usually try to go with McDonald's. I try to avoid Starbucks.
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keep a backup hot water heater?
Replies: 97
Views: 4677

Re: Keep a backup hot water heater?

Get one with a lifetime warranty. Like the 'lifetime' fluid in my transmission? :mrgreen: I read somewhere that the only difference between water heaters and their warranty is the price . They're basically all the same. I buy the cheapest heater I can find in the size I want and replace it before i...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Considering new Honda Pilot, other suggestions?
Replies: 35
Views: 1873

Re: Considering new Honda Pilot, other suggestions?

Just get another pilot, we still have our 2007 model. Honda is a (fairly) safe bet. Your budget dictates that you must stay away from the Luxo brands but that's ok - you're not really missing out on very much these days.
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Keep a backup hot water heater?
Replies: 97
Views: 4677

Re: Keep a backup hot water heater?

Replace it today if you're worried it will fail soon. An ounce of maintenance... This. On the next heater: - Drain annually to get the white sand/sludge out - Replace the anode if possible (you can keep the heater running for a very long time this way, anode = $50) If you can't replace the anode, b...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 1:43 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: tablet or small laptop for general and travel computer?
Replies: 41
Views: 2183

Re: tablet or small laptop for general and travel computer?

My vote: Tablet. A good tablet. 100%! Take all advice here (including mine) with a dash of salt. Bogleheads love chrome books and great deals on laptops. I use an iPad for almost all my personal computing and only use a “real computer” when absolutely necessary. I type on the iPad’s screen directly...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 11, 2018 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: tablet or small laptop for general and travel computer?
Replies: 41
Views: 2183

Re: tablet or small laptop for general and travel computer?

Wow, $800 budget for a windows machine? You can get something very capable.

Look for:
- 8 to 16GB of RAM
- SSD (eg 256G)
- Beautiful screen

Tons of reviews here:
http://www.notebookreview.com/notebookreview/

I always recommend Lenovo
by sunny_socal
Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half
Replies: 36
Views: 3608

Re: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half

I ended up passing and got a 2013 Honda Fit with 83K for $7500. Seems like a pretty good deal and although more $ than the Vibe, was only 1 owner, newer, less miles, and no sitting. My wife only drives around 5K miles per year, so hoping it lasts us 20 years! Fantastic vehicle! I had 160k on my Fit...
by sunny_socal
Wed Oct 10, 2018 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Overpaid CA taxes for 2015. Can I get it back?
Replies: 3
Views: 494

Re: Overpaid CA taxes for 2015. Can I get it back?

A few hundred dollars? I think I'd rather chew broken glass than open up my tax forms again! :|
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your single most expensive mistake?
Replies: 293
Views: 25195

Re: What is your single most expensive mistake?

I may be in the middle of a Big Mistake right now: - Moved from CA to TX, kept our CA home as a rental - Pulled 120k equity from the CA home as a HELOC, used to buy our TX home and do improvements on it (fence, yard, patio) If things go well: - Renters will be paying off the CA home at the rate of ...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: No-Fee HELOC in California
Replies: 7
Views: 611

Re: No-Fee HELOC in California

San Diego County Credit Union: no fees at all
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 3:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your single most expensive mistake?
Replies: 293
Views: 25195

Re: What is your single most expensive mistake?

I may be in the middle of a Big Mistake right now: - Moved from CA to TX, kept our CA home as a rental - Pulled 120k equity from the CA home as a HELOC, used to buy our TX home and do improvements on it (fence, yard, patio) If things go well: - Renters will be paying off the CA home at the rate of 2...
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tesla Class Action Lawsuit..... Should I Join ?
Replies: 18
Views: 2364

Re: Tesla Class Action Lawsuit..... Should I Join ?

You lost money. Chalk it up as a life lesson and move on.
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 10:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Apple - macOS Mojave
Replies: 33
Views: 2301

Re: Apple - macOS Mojave

I wait until a 1.x release, maybe 6 months down the road. I'm sure the OS is good enough for me but I _always_ have a handful of apps that don't work. Waiting gives the publishers enough time to catch up to the OS.
by sunny_socal
Thu Oct 04, 2018 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina
Replies: 209
Views: 14280

Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

Austin - the not as good - There's no real Mexican food here, 99% of it is "tex-mex" (think cheese from a can.) Locals will get offended if you knock it, but the tex-mex is terrible. (Brisket in a taco?) You can find the good MX but it's an effort I thought Tacodeli was great and even Torchy's was ...
by sunny_socal
Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina
Replies: 209
Views: 14280

Re: Thinking of moving to Texas, Iowa, Idaho, or North Carolina

I can speak to this, moved from San Diego to Austin. (I may need my head examined for doing this move, I greatly prefer SD! :beer ) Anyway. Austin - the good - Jobs, jobs, jobs. Clearly this place is growing, construction is everywhere. - The food is great! Especially BBQ, Oh my. (Exception is Mexic...
by sunny_socal
Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit card... statement credit or cash back +10%
Replies: 5
Views: 549

Re: Credit card... statement credit or cash back +10%

wabbajack wrote:
Wed Oct 03, 2018 9:21 am
Cashback is not considered income (interest or otherwise). That's why it's a playground of spending. Have you seen the bonuses for Chase Sapphire or Amex Platinum?
I wonder when the .gov will figure this out and start taxing it :(
by sunny_socal
Wed Oct 03, 2018 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My bank and absurd policy for "no fee"
Replies: 51
Views: 4200

Re: My bank and absurd policy for "no fee"

I posted a while back about BofA for a similar issue. They used to have a 'free' checking account and then changed the policy and now require something like $1500 balance. So I keep $1500 in there. The benefit to me is a "free" lock box. I'm sure they'll eventually get rid of that as well, but for t...
by sunny_socal
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Got my new Iphone Xs
Replies: 67
Views: 6796

Re: Got my new Iphone Xs

Does the new model still have the big "notch" in the screen?
by sunny_socal
Tue Oct 02, 2018 11:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tipping
Replies: 55
Views: 3889

Re: Tipping

- Nail salons: not an issue (I bite my nails :oops: ) - Hair: a couple bucks - Sit-down restaurants: I double the tax - Stand-up ordering at restaurant: No tip - Hotel staff: a few dollars, $5 if I don't have smaller change - Valet: never ever use it! - Construction crews: $20 per worker - Movers: $...
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 01, 2018 10:13 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half
Replies: 36
Views: 3608

Re: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half

Ok I've learned something about the Vibe, that it's actually a Toyota. Then sure, buy it.

Otherwise I'd run from anything Pontiac.
by sunny_socal
Mon Oct 01, 2018 3:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half
Replies: 36
Views: 3608

Re: Used Car on Lot for Year and a Half

"Been struggling to find a decent used car for 6-8k in the Sacramento area." That's because there's no such thing as "a decent used car" for that kind of money. Either in Sacramento or elsewhere. Sure there is, I have one sitting in my driveway. 2007 Honda Pilot with 130k miles and it's good for an...
by sunny_socal
Sat Sep 29, 2018 7:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dark stain wood floors
Replies: 27
Views: 2418

Re: Dark stain wood floors

We just bought a new house, has dark wood floors. It looked beautiful when we previewed the home. Every time we take the dog out for a walk he gets excited and does a "shake" in the hallway. *Poof*, hundreds of hairs fly off. Our house is a mess! Weill be buying lots of carpets to cover up the wood ...
by sunny_socal
Sat Sep 29, 2018 7:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Protection buying a used car private party that has a loan
Replies: 17
Views: 1013

Re: Protection buying a used car private party that has a loan

Here's how to proceed without paying the seller's lender directly and waiting for title (slow and risky), without an escrow (slow, complicated), and without paying the seller directly (very risky.) 1. Find a local credit union, you may already have an account 2. Go to your CU with the seller and his...
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 28, 2018 2:14 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Am I using facebook correctly?
Replies: 43
Views: 3333

Re: Am I using facebook correctly?

Just quit. Do a full delete and do not merely suspend it. 50 Million accounts hacked: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/28/technology/facebook-hack-data-breach.html SAN FRANCISCO — Facebook said on Friday that an attack on its computer network had exposed the personal information of nearly 50 million ...
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 28, 2018 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Good flip flops
Replies: 46
Views: 3453

Re: Good flip flops

Olukai, you get what you pay for
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 28, 2018 9:40 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Public Student Loan Forgiveness Program Rejects 99% of Applicants
Replies: 27
Views: 2398

Re: Public Student Loan Forgiveness Program Rejects 99% of Applicants

The program should not have been created in the first place. If you take out a student loan, expect to pay it back. People should not expect to get a free college education. I agree. You can get a PhD in French Literature and get a job as a park ranger and the taxpayers are on the hook for your loa...
by sunny_socal
Thu Sep 27, 2018 3:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Reminder on Keeping an Emergency Fund
Replies: 27
Views: 2903

Re: Reminder on Keeping an Emergency Fund

In our house there is no such thing as a $4,000 cat emergency. If the cat needs more than three figures worth of help, it's time for a new cat. My wife usually goes for the whole blood panel, pain killers, drip, and finally cremation. It's definitely 3-4k. I'd choose the $0.02 solution plus a grave...
by sunny_socal
Thu Sep 27, 2018 11:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to buy a mattress
Replies: 46
Views: 3359

Re: How to buy a mattress

Several people have mentioned Costco. Can I get Costco to deliver the mattress, bring it in the house and set it up. If I have to return it, can I get them to come pick it up at my house? No, they don't deliver. My parents bought one for my Grandma at Costco and had to return it. It was around 3 or...
by sunny_socal
Thu Sep 27, 2018 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: HELOC to Pay off Mortgage
Replies: 36
Views: 3266

Re: HELOC to Pay off Mortgage

If the mortgage bothers you, spend the extra $2k/month to pay it off. Don't get a HELOC since the rate floats.

Most here will say invest the money instead. Mortgage rates are rising and no doubt you have a relatively cheap loan.
by sunny_socal
Thu Sep 27, 2018 10:22 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to buy a mattress
Replies: 46
Views: 3359

Re: How to buy a mattress

Several people have mentioned Costco. Can I get Costco to deliver the mattress, bring it in the house and set it up. If I have to return it, can I get them to come pick it up at my house? No, they don't deliver. My parents bought one for my Grandma at Costco and had to return it. It was around 3 or...
by sunny_socal
Thu Sep 27, 2018 10:21 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: solar panels with payback of 8-10 years?
Replies: 24
Views: 2261

Re: solar panels with payback of 8-10 years?

I think it totally depends on where you live. In California we always had solar. There were state rebates, federal rebates. Cost of electricity without the system was very high and I imagine it was somehow due to taxes (eg. $250/month) Here in TX things seem to be different. Few people have solar an...
by sunny_socal
Wed Sep 26, 2018 6:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to buy a mattress
Replies: 46
Views: 3359

Re: How to buy a mattress

Far more important than the mattress is a good pillow. I get "back pain" if my head isn't aligned properly through the night but the mattress itself doesn't really matter. I sleep the same whether I'm in my bed, camping on a pad, camping in an RV, in a hotel, at someone's house. I recommend the bamb...
by sunny_socal
Tue Sep 25, 2018 1:58 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to buy a mattress
Replies: 46
Views: 3359

Re: How to buy a mattress

I also vote "keep the old one." We had ours for about 25 years and only got rid of it since we moved. We'd flip it around about once a year. As for the new one, I highly recommend Costco . Just find of the right size and take one from the top of the pile! We just bought a King size, $650. Feels grea...
by sunny_socal
Tue Sep 25, 2018 1:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Austin people - Home Insurance questions
Replies: 4
Views: 303

Re: Austin people - Home Insurance questions

We have Allstate, house 3700 sq ft, insurance $1430/year

With USAA it was a little higher, 1650/year

(In California we were paying $750/year for a house 2400 sq ft, TX seems to be much higher :| )
by sunny_socal
Mon Sep 24, 2018 4:07 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: $450 for 1.5 hour plumbing job normal?
Replies: 30
Views: 3381

Re: $450 for 1.5 hour plumbing job normal?

I think he smells blood in the water. It's a water leak so you'll want it done fast. The parts are very cheap, probably $10 as someone else posted. I've fixed things like this before on several occasions and it's not difficult for someone who knows what they are doing. I've done the whole thing - te...
by sunny_socal
Mon Sep 24, 2018 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is HELOC interest deductible in 2018?
Replies: 9
Views: 956

Re: Is HELOC interest deductible in 2018?

What about a HELOC taken out on Property #1, but spent on Property #2? (As a down payment and property improvements)
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 21, 2018 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Very First Smartphone [Samsung Galaxy S9+] — Please Critique This Plan
Replies: 123
Views: 6500

Re: My Very First Smartphone — Please Critique This Plan

I like your plan as stated OP. IMO Android >> iPhone and if you're paying $25/month that's pretty good.
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 21, 2018 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?
Replies: 139
Views: 8732

Re: Physical Banking - Any benefits anymore?

Recently moved to a new state and bought a house. Used the brick & mortar banks for the following: - Deposit large amount of cash when an online bank refused to perform a wire transfer - Pulled several cashiers checks - Wire transfer - Pull large amount of cash - Handle overdraft issues (deposited c...
by sunny_socal
Fri Sep 21, 2018 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is HELOC interest deductible in 2018?
Replies: 9
Views: 956

Is HELOC interest deductible in 2018?

Can we still deduct interest from a HELOC? Per this article it seems it is possible as long as it's used for a home purchase or improving the home: https://www.marketwatch.com/story/yes-you-can-still-deduct-interest-on-home-equity-loans-under-the-new-tax-law-2018-04-30 From article: Q: I took out a ...