Search found 2575 matches

by jharkin
Fri Feb 21, 2020 8:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Perform own oil change pros & cons?
Replies: 224
Views: 11461

Re: Perform own oil change pros & cons?

It takes me 15-30 minute to drive to and from the auto shop, and the typical wait is 30-60 minutes for them to get to my car. Plus those 15 minute oil changes aren't fully draining all the used oil. Total time from start to finish can be comparable, but sometimes I let it drain till it stops (haven...
by jharkin
Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:49 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Perform own oil change pros & cons?
Replies: 224
Views: 11461

Re: Perform own oil change pros & cons?

So does anyone still change their own oil changes or do most just bite the bullet and have others do it for them? Thanks all :sharebeer I still do it myself AND I can afford max contributions... as you discovered, the markup on these services is large, even at Jiffy. A shop with a lift and power to...
by jharkin
Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth contribution of $6k only got me $200 saver's credit?
Replies: 10
Views: 1035

Re: Roth contribution of $6k only got me $200 saver's credit?

Yes, I'm in the 10% tier. I thought it would've been 10% of my $6k though. Government's a bunch of cheapskates! Big deal $200! Cheapskates? I dont get any credit.. in fact I'm on the bleeding edge of not being allowed ot contribute to a Roth at all. The system is overcomplicated, but Id say its a s...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 19, 2020 4:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can we trust wirecutter reviews?
Replies: 41
Views: 5244

Re: Can we trust wirecutter reviews?

Ive bought based on their reviews a number of times and generally had good luck.... Their approach cuts out a lot of the comparison and endless review readings and weighing factors you have to do going by sources like CR... But it has a downside as well. the "best for most people" is great as long a...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 19, 2020 3:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 4% SWR: It is not a rule and it is not safe (anymore).
Replies: 273
Views: 18990

Re: 4% SWR: It is not a rule and it is not safe (anymore).

Maybe so, but I was genuinely surprised by the unhappy people taking time to defend their unhappiness in the unhappy thread. That gave me new information, but I haven't been on this forum very long at all. Now I have to go find the unhappiness thread!... That's news to me that anyone could want to ...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 19, 2020 3:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: IRS 2020 W4 withholding: new calculation method, new form
Replies: 82
Views: 7290

Re: IRS 2020 W4 withholding: new calculation method, new form

I'm confused about the intersection between my W-4 and my spouse's W-4. I make about 4x what she makes. The box in Step 2 says it is accurate for jobs with similar pay, but is silent on what to do if pay is dissimilar. I'm in a similar situation. I make about 3x my spouse plus have bonuses (taxed a...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 19, 2020 8:49 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: New high income earner
Replies: 36
Views: 4883

Re: New high income earner

KyleAAA wrote: Mon Feb 17, 2020 10:27 pm No need for an expert. In the grand scheme of things, that’s not a particularly high income.
Agreed he can DIY... but on what planet is 800k (over 10x the USA median), not a high income?
by jharkin
Wed Feb 19, 2020 8:44 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: 4% SWR: It is not a rule and it is not safe (anymore).
Replies: 273
Views: 18990

Re: 4% SWR: It is not a rule and it is not safe (anymore).

Did we really need another thread on this tired and beaten to death topic? :oops: Everyone of these ‘4%’ rule topics devolves into a partisan bickering with all the usual suspects arguing past each other on why the other side is mistaken. Let’s move on to better topics. This forum is getting too re...
by jharkin
Fri Feb 14, 2020 12:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $2-2.5M House?
Replies: 77
Views: 7897

Re: $2-2.5M House?

Without knowing your expenses it's hard to make a recommendation, but I always spend money to save time when I can. Just curious, what "up and coming neighborhood" costs $2 million to get in? Most likely silicon valley. tech millionares. When you are inside the bubble it may seem like the party wil...
by jharkin
Fri Feb 14, 2020 9:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Refinancing
Replies: 9
Views: 672

Re: Refinancing

I bet you can get a no-cost refi for a lot lower rate than what you're paying now if you're willing to do the legwork and shop it hard. +1000 Shouldn't even take much legwork. I just did a superconforming refi from 4.125 to 3.75. break even was only 10 months. On a low DTI conventional you should b...
by jharkin
Thu Feb 13, 2020 2:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amica Homeowners Insurance Increase
Replies: 20
Views: 2086

Re: Amica Homeowners Insurance Increase

Amica here in MASS. renewal has never gone up more than 5%. ~$1200/yr for full coverage on a 700k home.


If you are seeing it form multiple companies, its not Amica... its something about the loss profile in your state. Any big natural disasters recently?
by jharkin
Tue Feb 11, 2020 11:42 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Worried About AI Taking Your Job?
Replies: 54
Views: 3750

Re: Worried About AI Taking Your Job?

or learning how to be the person programming on the back end, you should pivot as soon as possible. And that's only a stopgap. there is a lot of work going on in software that writes code. I work in this space. Its been predicted that the current golden age of software development as a high power c...
by jharkin
Mon Feb 10, 2020 2:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Motley Fool,,,am I right about this?
Replies: 35
Views: 6799

Re: Motley Fool,,,am I right about this?

Don't forget the "$16,286.34 Social Security trick that you are not using". :twisted:
by jharkin
Mon Feb 10, 2020 9:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Retirement: Filling the time?
Replies: 96
Views: 10647

Re: Retirement: Filling the time?

. Age 42. One of your biggest challenges will be the fact that very few (talking single digit %) of people this age are retired. Most adults you will run into on weekdays that are similar age and not at work will be busy stay at home parents. If you join social clubs that are retiree-focused you ar...
by jharkin
Mon Feb 10, 2020 8:34 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is your most luxury/expensive hobby.
Replies: 264
Views: 20767

Re: What is your most luxury/expensive hobby.

As a family - travel. In a typical year we spend probably 5-7k for one big summer trip an a couple weekend tipcs, including at least one weekend away just for the two of us. Some years we will go bigger, especially if we are flying somewhere. For '21 we are considering taking hte kids to Disney, I e...
by jharkin
Sun Feb 09, 2020 5:54 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Finished taxes. First time ever owing on Federal Tax
Replies: 38
Views: 3806

Re: Finished taxes. First time ever owing on Federal Tax

Congratulations!! This is the first time you haven't given an interest-free loan to Uncle Sam! Keep it going next year... :sharebeer +1000. I usually owe at least a couple hundred. When I get a refund I did something wrong. In the end, refund or owe doesn’t change anything.. you still pay the same ...
by jharkin
Sat Feb 08, 2020 7:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Verizon Fios AutoPay Bad Idea?
Replies: 51
Views: 3750

Re: Verizon Fios AutoPay Bad Idea?

Is the gigabit Fios even worth it? Do people use it? How much is the actual speed? https://i.postimg.cc/LXzmSVmV/903839-FC-D0-EE-4858-8-E98-61-F3-F1242293.jpg Retry that on a wired connection... something is being throttled. I get over 900 up AND down. OP: yes Verizon’s CS sucks, but I’ve had them ...
by jharkin
Thu Feb 06, 2020 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?
Replies: 145
Views: 12282

Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

Yes, I could have said you're not going to be in jazz or marching band or speech or Boy Scouts unless you pay for it all yourself and saved a ton of money. He probably would have been perfectly happy to just sit in his room and play video games all day at no cost to me. But, it was important to me ...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?
Replies: 145
Views: 12282

Re: Couples w/ kids: What is/was the most expensive time period of your life?

This thread makes me soooooo glad that my wonderful spouse chose a career whose hours line up with school.

We will never make anywhere near the quarter million+ salaries many of you do, but the expense numbers thrown out have me thinking we are actually better off...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 3:16 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Well, I am market timing due to coronavirus... Wish me luck.
Replies: 1229
Views: 111316

Re: Well, I am market timing... Wish me luck.

Good luck... but I will remind you that in hindsight, everyone who cashed out in 2008 ended up LOOSING money vs. those who held on. Myself included. But only if you cashed out in 2008 and stayed out. Right or am I missing something. The summer of 2008 was ugly but lots of us hung on... it was only ...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:48 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Well, I am market timing due to coronavirus... Wish me luck.
Replies: 1229
Views: 111316

Re: Well, I am market timing... Wish me luck.

Good luck... but I will remind you that in hindsight, everyone who cashed out in 2008 ended up LOOSING money vs. those who held on.

Myself included.
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 10:09 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grade my Refi
Replies: 8
Views: 577

Re: Grade my Refi

Question: Why are you increasing the outstanding loan balance by 9k ? Are you rolling all the closing costs AND the prepaid interest/tax/insurance into the balance? I would pay those out of pocket if at all possible...... This was done as a "zero cost refi" as mentioned by a previous post. Paying o...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Grade my Refi
Replies: 8
Views: 577

Re: Grade my Refi

3.5% rate looks competitive. Closing costs - cant say unless you break them out, and as the response above indicates everyone situation is unique. But it does seem a little on the high side. (I just reified a loan almost 3x as big and my total lender/title costs where ~$1500) Question: Why are you i...
by jharkin
Wed Feb 05, 2020 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Can we afford to build this house?
Replies: 38
Views: 4545

Re: Can we afford to build this house?

You honestly won’t be super impressed. We are HCOL. Roughly 4500 ft2 with 2000ft2 finished basement and 3 car heated garage On 0.5 acre. Very family/entertaining friendly floor plan with high end finishes. Lots of budget accounted for by outdoor space including in ground pool, hot tub, outdoor fire...
by jharkin
Tue Feb 04, 2020 9:08 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: who do you bank with and why?
Replies: 137
Views: 12013

Re: who do you bank with and why?

I use BoA for checking and bill pay but that's only inertia as they bought Fleet who in turn had bought BankBoston who in turn had merged from Bank of Boston... Useful to have a B&M I can walk into and their branches/ATMs are everywhere. For intermediate term savings, emergency fund I use CapOne360....
by jharkin
Tue Feb 04, 2020 9:02 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Markets that are hot / hiring for entry level web developers?
Replies: 2
Views: 328

Re: Markets that are hot / hiring for entry level web developers?

Let me ask you a different question - Is a coding bootcamp all the training you have? If yes, I would apply to a 4 year CS degree program. Wont be cheap but will open far more career avenues. The bootcamp will get you in the door fast, but I suspect your career will stall out over time as you wont b...
by jharkin
Mon Feb 03, 2020 2:32 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Health equity investment fee. High or low?
Replies: 60
Views: 5581

Re: Health equity investment fee. High or low?

+1000 to all the comments on HE. My new employer uses them and I was just waiting to get to the point where I had 1 year of the OOP max in cash and then start rolling over new contributions to fidelity periodically....
by jharkin
Mon Feb 03, 2020 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Who would you refinance your mortgage with?
Replies: 45
Views: 5233

Re: Who would you refinance your mortgage with?

Another option is the Costco mortgage program. I use one of their banks - NBKC - and the rates have always been pretty much exacly the same as Aimloan and TF and with the Costco membership the lender fee is capped at $275. Closing one this week, but in retrospect I wish I had waited a little longer ...
by jharkin
Sun Feb 02, 2020 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is high efficiency home heating equipment worth it? Worried I made a bad mistake.
Replies: 19
Views: 2962

Re: Is high efficiency home heating equipment worth it? Worried I made a bad mistake.

1 tank a year ????


WOW

Over here in New England most oil/propane homes use a tank a month, or more. If we used a tank a year I wouldnt care what old beast was in the basement. :mrgreen:
by jharkin
Sun Feb 02, 2020 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Disturbing Question on 2019 IRS Tax Form [Bitcoin]
Replies: 59
Views: 3959

Re: Disturbing Question on 2019 IRS Tax Form

Frankly, I find these are disturbing ANSWERS. Tax compliance is a largely voluntary deal, and it depends on the trust citizens have in their government and in fairness of the system. The IRS certainly can't track down everyone. The question is not disturbing to me. But the lack of transparency (or ...
by jharkin
Sat Feb 01, 2020 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is high efficiency home heating equipment worth it? Worried I made a bad mistake.
Replies: 19
Views: 2962

Re: Is high efficiency home heating equipment worth it? Worried I made a bad mistake.

Don’t sweat it. First, the house is not “very” old. I’ve lived in homes a century older. I also lived with old steam radiators, and with modern condensing boilers. Yes, condensing boilers are more fuel efficient, but to reach that max efficiency they need to flow low temperature (ideally under 130F)...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 31, 2020 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I install modern water savings toilet in old building? Plumber says absolutely NOT TO
Replies: 52
Views: 5660

Re: Should I install modern water savings toilet in old building? Plumber says absolutely NOT TO

So, I own a rental condo in a older building. The building was built in 1955 and houses 12 other units. I've had the unit vacant for a while for renovations. I thought an easy modernization would be to buy a modern, 1.6 gpf toilet (Glacier Bay) and install it myself. The current toilet is an older ...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 31, 2020 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When do you replace water heater?
Replies: 29
Views: 2447

Re: When do you replace water heater?

https://www.bogleheads.org/forum/viewtopic.php?t=251021 Topic has been asked multiple times Yep - and every time its asked I ask the OP if the heater is a direct fired/eletric tank type, an indirect, or an on demand(instant)? What its made of (plain steel, glass lines steel, or stainless)? and what...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 31, 2020 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: new toilet and old plumbing
Replies: 18
Views: 1407

Re: new toilet and old plumbing

From what Ive seen personally - the problem is with toilets from the first 10 years or so they really started to seriously reduce water use... ie. the 90s... Those early "low flow" models where horrible and prone to backing up. In recent years they have gotten much better at flushing completely and ...
by jharkin
Thu Jan 30, 2020 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Daughter's Boston Job Offer
Replies: 115
Views: 9769

Re: Daughter's Boston Job Offer

Where in the Boston area? Several companies have relocated from "the Boston area" in recent years to actual downtown Boston to capture recent grads of little local colleges. SimpliSafe and Sonos come to mind first, but there are several others. The reason is that many graduating students remain in ...
by jharkin
Wed Jan 29, 2020 7:52 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Investing My Tax Return
Replies: 30
Views: 2217

Re: Investing My Tax Return

Do you have a retirement plan at work? I’d invest more in that ( or open an IRA) before any of these options, to get the tax benefits.
by jharkin
Sun Jan 26, 2020 7:56 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: To do or not do to...Taxes, that's the question.
Replies: 6
Views: 839

Re: To do or not do to...Taxes, that's the question.

Roth conversion is just form 8606. No big deal at all and any decent software package can handle it. HR Block deluxe was on sale recently for $20 and that’s all I’ve used for 20 years... Roth conversions, 401k rollovers, RSUs, options, mortgage deductions, home sales, etc it handles it all just fine...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 24, 2020 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: When to Change Car Battery?
Replies: 120
Views: 8909

Re: When to Change Car Battery?

People mentioned testing. The proper method to test a battery is to fully charge it and then check voltage under load. Typical auto garage testers apply a 100amp load then look for how much the voltage drops under that load to determine what % of the CCA capacity the battery still has. This tells yo...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 24, 2020 9:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Affording The Lifestyle I Want
Replies: 17
Views: 2837

Re: Affording The Lifestyle I Want

This looks messy at best. 78k post tax tells me you are making 100-120 gross. On that kind of income you are going to be on the bleeding edge of what a bank will approve to finance in terms of DTI ratios if you dont also include your parents income for qualification and have them as co-owners/co-bor...
by jharkin
Fri Jan 24, 2020 8:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: I am not very good at my job
Replies: 48
Views: 8063

Re: I am not very good at my job

Lots of fabulous advice above. Imposter syndrome is VERY real... Ive been there myself, thought that the demand of the job was ridiculous and couldn't understand how others finished before me. Like you I feared the worse, until one day I... got promoted... and management revealed that they load us a...
by jharkin
Thu Jan 23, 2020 1:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much house can we afford?
Replies: 41
Views: 2993

Re: How much house can we afford?

Others have discussed *IF* a house that expensive is really a good idea so I wont rehash - only to commiserate that we ended up moving to a similarly expensive house (partly wife's desires and partly market peculiarities where everything was tiny or huge and not much midsize :( ) What I will add to ...
by jharkin
Thu Jan 23, 2020 12:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a reasonable estimate for annual expenses in early retirement in a HCOL area for one person?
Replies: 50
Views: 3588

Re: What is a reasonable estimate for annual expenses in early retirement in a HCOL area for one person?

I have other comments about your "proposed budget": #1 - your health estimate includes only insurance premiums. What about deductibles and copays? And yes the premiums go up exponentially with age. #2 - Entertainment/travel spending of only 500/mo. If that is based on what you spend in your weekend...
by jharkin
Thu Jan 23, 2020 10:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 400lbs, delivery or pick up?
Replies: 71
Views: 8799

Re: 400lbs, delivery or pick up?

With that much wight its probably shipping on a pallet. Are you sure they are going to use UPS and not a truck freight service?

If it is truck freight, beware their may be a surcharge for residential liftgate service and ALL they will do is drop the pallet at the end of your driveway.
by jharkin
Thu Jan 23, 2020 9:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Engineers - What are you making? ($$$)
Replies: 357
Views: 44406

Re: Engineers - What are you making? ($$$)

This thread is making me wonder if I should jump ship and switch jobs for increased pay. I’m a software engineering manager in Boston at $160k salary and 20% target bonus. Any chance you would mind sharing a few companies in/near Boston who employ software engineers? Doesn't have to be your own, ju...
by jharkin
Wed Jan 22, 2020 7:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?
Replies: 32
Views: 2550

Re: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?

Ok I’ll stand corrected. Being so arid/desert I assumed insects in general would be less of an issue in AZ than in the wet/humid south.
by jharkin
Wed Jan 22, 2020 9:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My LenderFi refinance is going well
Replies: 1374
Views: 124279

Re: My LenderFi refinance is going well

If this thread is open to other recommendations - Im currently working though a refi with NBKC. My previous loan was also 4.125 from last summer with NBKC and the lock in no points rate was 3.5% for conforming/3.75% for superconforming (over 510k) as of last week. Lender fee is $275 for Costco membe...
by jharkin
Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:52 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?
Replies: 32
Views: 2550

Re: Should I get annual termite inspections of my home?

I think this is regional and it depends on how rampant termites are in your area. In the US southeast this is a big deal from everything Ive read. But I assume its a complete non-issue in Arizona for example. Where I live in New England people will have it done sometimes at time of buying a house bu...
by jharkin
Wed Jan 22, 2020 8:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Engineers - What are you making? ($$$)
Replies: 357
Views: 44406

Re: Engineers - What are you making? ($$$)

Computer engineering at any big mega-corp. in medium cost of living geo . recent college grad: ~100k senior engineer: ~150-250k staff/senior staff: ~200-300k PEs: ~300-400k SPEs: ~400-500k Fellow: ~500-650k Good to know that I'm not overpaid. I heard the term "Megacorp" many times. Can someone prov...
by jharkin
Tue Jan 21, 2020 8:06 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Isn’t Inflation Much Larger Than 2%?
Replies: 289
Views: 19431

Re: Isn’t Inflation Much Larger Than 2%?

most of them have been going up at 5-10% per year for several years now. These include: House prices Rents Health care (premiums, increasing deductibles and costs) College tuition Food Water / Sewer As with all such discussions we have to beware of being trapped in our local bubble. Your housing ma...
by jharkin
Mon Jan 20, 2020 7:11 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing Bathroom Exhaust Fan - Need advice before blowing a bunch of $
Replies: 33
Views: 3456

Re: Replacing Bathroom Exhaust Fan - Need advice before blowing a bunch of $

Do NOT vent into the attic. Ever. Anyone who told you to do that has no business giving home renovation advice.

Bite the bullet and do it right and have a separate vent to outside installed.