Search found 792 matches

by Austintatious
Sun May 13, 2018 7:27 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Crosstrek vs Outback
Replies: 32
Views: 2888

Re: Subaru Crosstrek vs Outback

OP, I've been looking at the Subarus myself and I'm wondering if you've considered the Forester. It looks to have a smaller turning radius than either of the vehicles you're considering. It has a more powerful engine than the Crosstrek and it's almost as powerful as the smaller of the Outback engin...
by Austintatious
Sun May 13, 2018 6:57 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Subaru Crosstrek vs Outback
Replies: 32
Views: 2888

Re: Subaru Crosstrek vs Outback

OP, I've been looking at the Subarus myself and I'm wondering if you've considered the Forester. It looks to have a smaller turning radius than either of the vehicles you're considering. It has a more powerful engine than the Crosstrek and it's almost as powerful as the smaller of the Outback engine...
by Austintatious
Sat May 12, 2018 6:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Applying for Social Security Online
Replies: 44
Views: 5189

Re: Applying for Social Security Online

I'm following this thread with heightened interest, given that DW will be making her restricted application for spousal in late October, to be effective starting in January. It appears to me that the path of least resistance may be the online filing method, since personal interaction with a misinfor...
by Austintatious
Tue May 08, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please confirm Social Security strategy
Replies: 14
Views: 2358

Re: Please confirm Social Security strategy

DW's birthdate? 1953 AAA, take a look at the SS page regarding spousal benefits via the link posted just above. Look at the section entitled "How much will I receive?", more specifically, the second passage of text in that section highlighted in blue. It looks to me that she beat the cutoff date an...
by Austintatious
Tue May 08, 2018 3:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please confirm Social Security strategy
Replies: 14
Views: 2358

Re: Please confirm Social Security strategy

I'm not an expert but I do believe one can make a restricted application for spousal benefit only, having attained full retirement age, if born on or before January 1, 1954. See the linked explanation on Social Security web site.

https://www.ssa.gov/planners/retire/applying6.html
by Austintatious
Tue May 08, 2018 2:22 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vehicle Tires and Dry Rot
Replies: 20
Views: 2488

Re: Vehicle Tires and Dry Rot

When purchasing new tires, always ask the vendor about the manufacture date on the side of the tire, in an effort to prevent being stuck with tires that have been sitting around too long and are already on the way out. You can even check it for yourself. New tire stock has a shelf life and will begi...
by Austintatious
Tue May 01, 2018 1:35 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Recommendation on bond vehicle
Replies: 8
Views: 926

Re: Recommendation on bond vehicle

OP. look at inflation-adjusted Series I savings bonds. They may be just right for your time period. Know that they cannot be redeemed during the first year, so this ought to be money you shouldn't need during that year. After that, they're subject to a relatively low 3 months interest penalty if red...
by Austintatious
Mon Apr 30, 2018 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit
Replies: 27
Views: 2742

Re: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit

Well, this situation only reaffirms just how important it is to fully understand the complicated "in and outs" of taking Social Security. Many thanks to Mary Beth Franklin and our other Social Security expert for taking the trouble to help us understand. Your assistance offered the members of this f...
by Austintatious
Mon Apr 30, 2018 11:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit
Replies: 27
Views: 2742

Re: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit

Wow! If what SSA said was correct, you have lost out three years of spousal benefits. I'm sorry. My wife filed for her own benefits this year when she turned 62 and I'm filing for spousal as I'll turn 66 in May. TravelforFun As I understand it, you won't earn Delayed Retirement Credits if you are c...
by Austintatious
Mon Apr 30, 2018 9:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit
Replies: 27
Views: 2742

Re: Social Security Restricted Application for Spousal Benefit

I Filed and Suspended prior to 4/2016 when I was 66. I am the high earner. My wife just turned 62 and filed for her own benefit. I thought that I could file now for a spousal benefit (while waiting until age 70 for my own benefit), but SSA tells me that I cannot do this as I suspended more than 1 y...
by Austintatious
Sun Apr 29, 2018 5:31 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: TIAA Guaranteed Annuity
Replies: 83
Views: 4595

Re: TIAA Guaranteed Annuity

OP, since you're educating yourself (Wisely, I'd add.) about ways to establish reliable future income streams and just in case you haven't at least thought about this before, you might give consideration to the so called "do it yourself annuity" discussed in forum member Mel Lindauer's thread, linke...
by Austintatious
Thu Apr 26, 2018 5:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Considering a CD ladder
Replies: 45
Views: 9215

Re: Considering a CD ladder

May I ask, is there a simple "CD Ladder for Dummies" approach that you recommend? :?: I understand Fidelity has options, but it would also seem there would be additional costs associated with that. Frankly the above conversations are above my level of understanding/expertise. (thanks in advance) I ...
by Austintatious
Sun Apr 22, 2018 2:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is a good flat rate cash back credit card?
Replies: 80
Views: 12294

Re: What is a good flat rate cash back credit card?

I may have overlooked it but I've not seen mention of the USAA 2.5% cash back card in this thread. The rate drops to 1.5% if one fails to have a qualifying direct deposit (from an employer, a governmental entity or an external financial institution) of at least $1000 into one's USAA checking every 3...
by Austintatious
Wed Apr 18, 2018 4:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: car at 80
Replies: 59
Views: 5579

Re: car at 80

@ssquared87 "The BRZ is one of the best cars I've ever driven and I drive many amazing cars. It's let down by its terrible engine, but the chasis is spectacular. It also performs extremely well in the snow with winter tires because it has a mechanical limited slip differential along with stability c...
by Austintatious
Tue Apr 17, 2018 4:46 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 3779

Re: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund

@ Kevin Yes, the Popular Direct rate at 2% is the best I've seen recently, as well, but I was turned off by their fee structure. I see a fee structure like that at Live Oak as notably more customer friendly. Plus there's no minimum deposit at Live Oak while Popular requires a 5k minimum. As for high...
by Austintatious
Tue Apr 17, 2018 3:30 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 3779

Re: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund

Here, for example, are the current CD rates for Live Oak Bank. I think their rates for short term CDs are very good, especially that 6 month rate of 1.95%. The linked page also discusses the early withdrawal penalties and it's 90 days simple interest for CDs with terms less than 24 months. Their cur...
by Austintatious
Tue Apr 17, 2018 1:22 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 3779

Re: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund

OP, first off, I'll say that 31k, even just the 10k you're thinking of investing in CDs, really is a "lot of money to most people" and is worthy of serious consideration. I see nothing at all wrong with placing that 10k into CDs, if that's what you want to do. You'd be required to keep up with the m...
by Austintatious
Mon Apr 16, 2018 1:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund
Replies: 36
Views: 3779

Re: Help with CD ladder strategy for emergency fund

Considering that this money is for unforeseen emergencies and presumably intended to be relatively liquid, I agree with the suggestions to stay with the shorter term certificates, especially since the rates offered for the longer terms are really not so great. DW opted for some of those 5 year certi...
by Austintatious
Wed Apr 11, 2018 8:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Ally online savings now at 1.80%]
Replies: 246
Views: 42707

Re: Ally online savings now at 1.45%

In seeking more info re Live Oak bank, I came across the assessment of its fiscal health provided, apparently, by LendingTree at the link posted below. For what it's worth , the bank gets high marks here. As for that "great and seamless experience" WanderingDoc speaks of and that we'd all like to en...
by Austintatious
Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:15 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: [Ally online savings now at 1.80%]
Replies: 246
Views: 42707

Re: Ally online savings now at 1.45%

The high yield savings and cd rates at Live Oak Bank look pretty good. The current high yield savings is advertised at 1.7%. I also think their cd rates, especially those on the shorter term certificates, are attractive. That 6 month certificate at 1.95% is pretty sweet. Of course, one ought to cons...
by Austintatious
Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:02 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 66215

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Equifax now says that it's credit monitoring service will not automatically be billed to the customer after the free year of service, and that they'll not be requiring credit card info when the customer signs up for that free year. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/equifax-hack-credit-monitoring-s...
by Austintatious
Sun Sep 10, 2017 2:26 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 66215

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Turns out this data security breach is better for business than one might have thought, the money-making opportunities limited only by the imagination. Just this morning, I received an email from Experian (purportedly) reminding me that there are hackers out there coveting my email address and hard ...
by Austintatious
Sat Sep 09, 2017 5:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 66215

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Having been told that my account may have been impacted, I also sought to avail myself of their free year of monitoring and was told I'd be able to sign up on 9/12. This morning, I received an email from Equifax starting off with an exuberant "You're in!", How did they get your email? I'm due on th...
by Austintatious
Sat Sep 09, 2017 11:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Equifax customer information leak
Replies: 711
Views: 66215

Re: Equifax customer information leak

Equifax says that both my wife's and my account may be impacted. I have to wait until 9/13 to sign up, but my wife can sign on on 9/10. Interesting side comment: On Tuesday, my wife attempted to get her free annual credit report for Equifax. She could not receive it on line and was instructed to fi...
by Austintatious
Tue Jun 16, 2015 9:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Aren't bogleheads predicting the long term?
Replies: 84
Views: 11768

Re: Aren't bogleheads predicting the long term?

We aren't predicting anything. No risk, no return. Who knows what is going to happen, but by investing in the total world stock market and total bond market you should reduce the risk quite a bit. Predict is probably the wrong word. I get the sense that quite a few people here, not all of course, a...
by Austintatious
Wed Jun 10, 2015 2:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: I just don't understand bonds...
Replies: 27
Views: 5538

Re: I just don't understand bonds...

Earlier today, I came across this Market Watch article written by Paul Merriman, in which he characterizes bonds as the "most important asset class". Whether or not bonds are the most important asset class, the article might be some help to a better understanding of the role of bonds in one's invest...
by Austintatious
Fri May 15, 2015 12:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Blues (music)
Replies: 57
Views: 6422

Re: Blues (music)

how apropos, this duet with BB and Buddy Guy

https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=27&v=emyt-agLE_s
by Austintatious
Mon May 11, 2015 9:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Any ideas for the future of my measly little portfolio?
Replies: 18
Views: 3420

Re: Any ideas for the future of my measly little portfolio?

In coming up with $25,000, I had added my annual taxes, car insurance, phone costs, internet expenses, home insurance, prescriptions, doctor visits, water bill, gas and electric bill and snow plowing costs. Don't forget health insurance, which will no longer being employer-subsidized. This one will...
by Austintatious
Fri May 08, 2015 2:51 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 11514

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

Ron, the reason that Sheridan and Lee, and those other officers who ended up opposing each other in the Civil war left Texas with resentment in their hearts is that they were stationed in what were, quite literally, the most God-forsaken places in the state. They experienced some of the worst condit...
by Austintatious
Fri May 08, 2015 12:58 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 11514

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

The problem with Dallas and Houston is that they are in Dallas and Houston, respectively. Houston in particular sounds like it would be one of the last places I'd ever want to live unless I change my appetite for heat, humidity, and traffic. In addition, I just think Houston and Dallas lack the "pe...
by Austintatious
Fri May 08, 2015 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 11514

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

Indeed, it has been fun. I'm curious as to how and why the OP came up with Amarillo as a possible place to land in retirement. Just doesn't seem "likely". I've only recently been reminded of just how barren and bleak the countryside is up that way, driving back from a trip to the mountains in Colora...
by Austintatious
Fri May 08, 2015 10:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Less than 2 years from retirement, finalizing plan and hoping for input
Replies: 16
Views: 3456

Re: Less than 2 years from retirement, finalizing plan and hoping for input

Simply having them both delaying Social Security until, and taking at, full retirement age may not be the best alternative for them. Perhaps the single most important item for you and them to well understand is the ins and outs of SS. It can be complicated and the payouts for the various options can...
by Austintatious
Wed May 06, 2015 4:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 11514

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

Thanks everyone. I am laughing a little bit it sounds like one of the most dreaded town in the US. You can expect blazing hot summers, frigid winters, wind nearly always and blowing dust often, a flat landscape in any and all directions and farther than you can imagine, and a long trek to cities of...
by Austintatious
Wed May 06, 2015 2:43 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX
Replies: 89
Views: 11514

Re: What are the Pro's and Con's of Retiring in Amarillo, TX

Make NO commitment of consequence until you actually spend some time in and around Amarillo. Very important.
by Austintatious
Thu Apr 23, 2015 2:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Inherited farmland: Should we sell or keep?
Replies: 51
Views: 16703

Re: Inherited farmland: Should we sell or keep?

Make sure you know the status of the property taxes. Are they paid and up to date? Also, being farmland, it likely enjoys some kind of a tax exemption for agricultural use, which you sure don't want to lose and suddenly see the taxes triple. If you're not sure, it might be worth your while to contac...
by Austintatious
Sat Apr 11, 2015 12:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Do you think Ric Edelman is correct, never pay down mortgage
Replies: 407
Views: 76442

Re: Do you think Ric Edelman is correct, never pay down mort

Leerar, in another thread, posted this article by Jane Bryant Quinn a bit earlier, wherein she discusses the hardship that dealing with a mortgage can be for retirees. I think it's a very important matter to consider before retiring. http://www.aarp.org/money/credit-loans-debt/info-2015/prepay-mortg...
by Austintatious
Thu Mar 26, 2015 1:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need a tablet maybe
Replies: 26
Views: 3112

Re: Need a tablet maybe

So many great tablets in the marketplace Apple,Android. The Samsung S- 8.4 inch screen is my current one and performance is dazzling . Two quad core processors make a huge difference in performance 1.9 GHz Exynos 5 Octa Processor. :happy https://encrypted-tbn1.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcRTFeblY...
by Austintatious
Thu Mar 19, 2015 9:38 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: WiseBanyan
Replies: 19
Views: 5099

Re: WiseBanyan

Tomahawk1, are you able to offer any further info or perspective re the ongoing viability of WB, like how they've done in bringing in capital investments in the business, itself, as well as customers/clients? I've followed the startup with interest since its birth and encouraged my younger daughter ...
by Austintatious
Thu Feb 05, 2015 10:24 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Should I wait to invest in Bonds Funds?
Replies: 14
Views: 2221

Re: Should I wait to invest in Bonds Funds?

Francine, you and DH may already have this one well analyzed but just in case you haven't thought much about it, assuming that one or both of you will be eligible for Social Security benefits, make sure that you and DH learn about the various elections to be available to you as time passes and the r...
by Austintatious
Mon Feb 02, 2015 7:31 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Approaching 50...What to expect?
Replies: 113
Views: 18876

Re: Approaching 50...What to expect?

If you are not already engaged in a serious physical fitness program, get one and stick with it. I'm not suggesting that you need to achieve Iron Man levels of fitness, but adopt a program of regular and meaningful physical activity, adjusted as desired and required for your own capacities and whate...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 28, 2015 10:10 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Amazon Prime - good deal or calculated conditioning
Replies: 50
Views: 4866

Amazon Prime - good deal or calculated conditioning

Hmmm. I just came across this article re Amazon prime stating that Prime subscribers (wow! 40 million in U.S., alone) are spending more than twice as much per year at Amazon than the non-primers. That's an incredible boost in revenue presumably attributed to the Prime campaign. http://www.huffington...
by Austintatious
Wed Jan 14, 2015 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: When your spouse isn't quite as frugal as you
Replies: 94
Views: 11747

Re: When your spouse isn't quite as frugal as you

Mojave, you are NOT being unreasonable. As has been discussed before and in detail on this forum, regular "eating out" on the job is much more expensive that "brown bagging it". Furthermore, it's a near totally unnecessary expense for most people that could be dedicated to savings. And unless you're...
by Austintatious
Sun Dec 28, 2014 7:37 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?
Replies: 72
Views: 11290

Re: Appalachian Trail thru-hike in retirement?

If you haven't read about Grandma Gatewood's walk, you really should check it out. Emma Gatewood walked the entire trail at 67 years of age, the first woman to do so. What a gal! Google it. And good luck on your adventure!
by Austintatious
Sat Dec 20, 2014 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cooking Lessons
Replies: 22
Views: 2931

Re: Cooking Lessons

Check out the offerings at Central Market. I've not looked at what they're doing of late but, in the past, they've offered a remarkably wide array of cooking classes including, I believe, adventures in French and Italian cuisine. Check with Whole Foods to see if they have such offerings. Look to see...
by Austintatious
Wed Dec 17, 2014 7:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any pilots here? [advice for prospective pilot]
Replies: 60
Views: 8428

Re: Any pilots here?

1. Don't even consider spending money on getting your private if you can't afford to also get your instrument rating. IMO, that's the ticket that will make you a real pilot, and will save your bacon when the weather goes south on you. I disagree with that. I did quite a bit of flying, but not when ...
by Austintatious
Wed Dec 17, 2014 12:12 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: SS Delay Question
Replies: 14
Views: 2121

Re: SS Delay Question

Because of the the COLA pension, I'd check if the Government Pension Offset or Windfall Elimination Provision applies. Does the pension come from a job that was not covered by SS? Which way to go is likely to depend on their respective PIAs (primary insurance amounts). What are they? These two piec...
by Austintatious
Fri Dec 12, 2014 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Gift to Yourself
Replies: 37
Views: 6428

Re: Gift to Yourself

deleted
by Austintatious
Wed Dec 03, 2014 8:24 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Close to retirement with this much money need thoughts!
Replies: 14
Views: 3191

Re: Close to retirement with this much money need thoughts!

You've probably already been through this but I'm wondering if you meet the criteria for receiving benefits as a divorced spouse. If you haven't already looked at it, take a look at the Social Security web site re divorced spouse benefits and see if you might get some help here. Anyway you can affor...