Search found 276 matches

by FreemanB
Tue Apr 04, 2017 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Recommendation for a security system
Replies: 4
Views: 768

Re: Recommendation for a security system

We went with Simplisafe. I researched it and didn't think the vulnerabilities were serious enough to worry about.(I'm not likely to be targeted by technically sophisticated thieves despite what TV crime dramas would have us believe) We were primarily after the fire/CO2 monitoring anyway, with the se...
by FreemanB
Tue Apr 04, 2017 1:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?
Replies: 69
Views: 5785

Re: Some Credit Cards Make You Spend More?

For me at least, credit cards don't make me spend more or less. I can see how this would be a psychological issue for many people though. I think the key point is how you approach buying something. For many people, when they encounter something they want, the first question they ask themselves is "H...
by FreemanB
Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help With a Quote on Investment Advisors
Replies: 2
Views: 386

Re: Help With a Quote on Investment Advisors

Sounds like a quote from Simon Lack in "The Hedge Fund Mirage", which goes something like this "…never in the history of Finance was so much paid by so many for so little…". I can't find a direct source for it though, just a couple of references to it.
by FreemanB
Fri Mar 10, 2017 12:29 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Help with 401k and Roth contributions through employer
Replies: 10
Views: 980

Re: Help with 401k and Roth contributions through employer

Yes, that is correct. I edited the OP to clarify, thank you. The company will only match traditional contributions, so that is why I have it split between the two. I would verify this if I were you. The company match is always deposited into a traditional(Not Roth) account, but I've never seen a ca...
by FreemanB
Tue Mar 07, 2017 9:01 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How long does car lasts and for how long should I build a CD ladder
Replies: 25
Views: 2375

Re: How long does car lasts and for how long should I build a CD ladder

I think some of these numbers are wildly optimistic. While a car may last as long as others posted, I would personally plan to be able to replace any car after 5 years. My expectation would be for a car to last at least 8 years(I'm on year 7 on my current vehicle now), and my hope would be for it to...
by FreemanB
Fri Mar 03, 2017 12:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA account
Replies: 3
Views: 442

Re: Roth IRA account

Absolutely. The rules you are referring to only cover the contributions themselves. You can create accounts any time you want.
by FreemanB
Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Silly math question [Percentage gain]
Replies: 10
Views: 1483

Re: Silly math question

The original and final value don't matter, only the increases. If .5 = 100%, then 1.08 = 216%. The math is (.5/1) = (1.08/x) -> .5x=(1.08 * 1) -> .5x = 1.08 -> x = 1.08/.5 -> x = 2.16 or 216%.
by FreemanB
Wed Feb 15, 2017 4:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mailed Speeding Ticket via Auto System - Not Driver
Replies: 57
Views: 4523

Re: Mailed Speeding Ticket via Auto System - Not Driver

This is what is called guilty until proven innocent and is not how the law works in the US. We also have a right to not incriminate yourself or your spouse. If a city wants to ticket speeders, they should be able to accurately identify the speeder, instead of falsely accusing innocent citizens. Asi...
by FreemanB
Tue Jan 24, 2017 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k loan for downpayment
Replies: 15
Views: 2491

Re: 401k loan for downpayment

I think you're correct on the bold section, it won't affect your credit score, no one would otherwise be aware that you have the loan. However the lender will become fully aware of the 401k loan. They usually require two pay stubs and a 401k statement. They'll also require a bank statement showing ...
by FreemanB
Fri Sep 04, 2015 12:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tax withholding penalty
Replies: 11
Views: 1135

Re: Tax withholding penalty

Just as a side note - reducing your withholding won't do anything whatsoever to protect you from fraudulent returns. It will reduce the impact. If you are due a large refund, then a fraudulent return could delay the receipt for a year or more. If no refund is due, then you aren't out any money whil...
by FreemanB
Fri Aug 14, 2015 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgage experts: Need some advice
Replies: 21
Views: 2220

Re: Mortgage experts: Need some advice

First, can you give the breakdown on your student loans, showing each loan balance, interest rate, and payment? Second, you don't list the value of your home, only the mortgage balance. Do you know if there's any possibility of refinancing without having to pay mortgage insurance?(I suspect not, or ...
by FreemanB
Thu Aug 06, 2015 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Home security system and land line
Replies: 15
Views: 1851

Re: Home security system and land line

We've had SimpliSafe at our house for about 6 months now, and we are happy with it. I researched several options before going with them. While I don't remember all of the exact reasons, I think the primary ones were the overall cost(Both equipment and monitoring) as well as the modular way things we...
by FreemanB
Fri Jul 24, 2015 8:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any IPad users, I am looking for a new IPad device
Replies: 7
Views: 1755

Re: Any IPad users, I am looking for a new IPad device

From your description, it sounds like this: http://gizmodo.com/this-tiny-iphone-charger-has-128gb-of-extra-storage-bui-1719233587 I only skimmed the review, but it sounds like it isn't really integrated into the OS though, so it is up to the individual apps as to whether or not they can access the s...
by FreemanB
Tue Jun 30, 2015 7:18 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: federal tax return rejected
Replies: 14
Views: 3629

Re: federal tax return rejected

If you are young and filing for yourself for the first time, you can check to see if your parents claimed you on their taxes. Otherwise, i would just go ahead and file the paper return and see if any further effort is needed. It could be as simple as a typo on someone else's return, and your paper r...
by FreemanB
Fri Jun 26, 2015 2:00 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Homemaker denied credit card despite high household income
Replies: 40
Views: 7638

Re: Homemaker denied credit card despite high household income

She has income. She is married and has marital income. That is true in all 50 states. Just like if someone has an annuity, they have income. She has no income. She only has access to income, at least in a non-community property state.(It is murkier in a community property state) If you marry someon...
by FreemanB
Thu Jun 25, 2015 7:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Just bought a new couch [0% interest on purchase]
Replies: 14
Views: 1901

Re: Just bought a new couch [0% interest on purchase]

If I were getting 5% interest on my money in the bank, I'd just make the 0% payments on the couch. But in reality I'm getting like .05% in my checking account due to today's rate environment, so I'd just pay it off now. Even at 5%, this purchase would still be less than $45/year difference, not nea...
by FreemanB
Fri Jun 12, 2015 2:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Dilemma Selling and Buying House
Replies: 19
Views: 2923

Re: Dilemma Selling and Buying House

To kick off the process of looking and she reminded us that we get 1% off of her fee. We didn't even have to ask for it because she volunteered the info (and I did then remember that she had mentioned that was her policy when we sold last year.) How do you get 1% off her fee when you are the buyer?...
by FreemanB
Thu Jun 11, 2015 7:15 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: best way to do extended dual monitors on computer
Replies: 4
Views: 932

Re: best way to do extended dual monitors on computer

As stated above, you can easily find an HDMI-DVI cable(No conversion needed) online. Plug that in to your primary monitor, then run a VGA cable to your second monitor. After that, you just have to modify your display settings to use both monitors and set it to extended mode instead of mirror.(No ide...
by FreemanB
Wed May 20, 2015 9:30 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should we upgrade our living situation (HCOL area)?
Replies: 8
Views: 939

Re: Should we upgrade our living situation (HCOL area)?

I was faced with a similar situation after my daughter was born. Our last house just felt too small, particularly after she became increasingly mobile. Unfortunately, we were also in a HCOL area(Northern VA, DC metro region), so buying a bigger house meant a larger mortgage and higher payment. We ev...
by FreemanB
Tue May 19, 2015 6:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401K Loan and Maximum Contribution
Replies: 4
Views: 816

Re: 401K Loan and Maximum Contribution

Only your company plan rules can state it for certain, but I've never seen one where a loan affected contributions. A hardship withdrawal will often require you to stop making contributions for a specified time, so that may have been where you got that idea, but loans follow a different set of rules.
by FreemanB
Wed May 13, 2015 7:38 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Backdoor Roth: Schooling my CPA and getting charged for it!
Replies: 134
Views: 15330

Re: Backdoor Roth: Schooling my CPA and getting charged for it!

When I did my taxes last year, it was the first time I did the mega-backdoor Roth (after learning about it here). My accountant looked like a deer in the headlights. He had never heard of it and had no idea what I was trying to explain. He didn't charge extra for it. I would think a CPA would know ...
by FreemanB
Fri Apr 24, 2015 11:45 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How does bank pay car dealer?
Replies: 4
Views: 1602

Re: How does bank pay car dealer?

Sorry, I've corrected it - it should read "how does the dealership end up with the full $20k". I'm curious how the dealership obtains the full amount owed - do I process the funds or does the bank, or a mixture of the two? Again, it's a basic question, I just don't have experience with this. The ex...
by FreemanB
Wed Apr 22, 2015 7:06 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: T922 "Review of Unreported Income" on 2010 Transcript
Replies: 1
Views: 2154

Re: T922 "Review of Unreported Income" on 2010 Transcript

I think it is exactly as you said, they reviewed it and didn't find anything. If they had found something(This usually involves either 1099s, tips, or other unreported wages), they would have sent you a notice with the details. There may have been some information associated with you that triggered ...
by FreemanB
Wed Apr 22, 2015 6:53 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Mortgages - Broker vs Credit Unions
Replies: 15
Views: 3240

Re: Mortgages - Broker vs Credit Unions

My wife and I obtained a mortgage from NFCU about 6 months ago, closing in Dec, 2014. Throughout the process, we didn't have any problems and everything went smoothly, with closing happening as scheduled. The mortgage on our house prior to that purchase was obtained through a broker initially, then ...
by FreemanB
Tue Apr 21, 2015 1:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Need advice for buying a blu ray player
Replies: 15
Views: 1790

Re: Need advice for buying a blu ray player

Personally, I'd stick with a cheaper, non-streaming BD player if you don't have any specific need for streaming. Later on, if you feel the need to stream something, there are plenty of options(Chromecast, Amazon TV, Roku, etc.) that in my experience are much better at streaming than the built-in app...
by FreemanB
Fri Apr 17, 2015 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: My job says I can't work for anyone else...
Replies: 61
Views: 9950

Re: My job says I can't work for anyone else...

Yes, an employment contract is enforceable(Since the employer would be the one doing the enforcing in most cases), and yes, you can be fired for violating your employment contract. That being said, it is impossible to answer with any certainty about your specific situation since we don't know the de...
by FreemanB
Thu Apr 16, 2015 8:07 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Can I open solo 401K on 2500$ self employed income
Replies: 18
Views: 2019

Re: Can I open solo 401K on 2500$ self employed income

Yes this is plan B . But the problem I will not be 100% vested in the company retirement plan . Thanks Vesting is only an issue for your employer's contributions. Your contributions and rollover amounts wouldn't be part of the vesting schedule. If your company plan has decent investment options and...
by FreemanB
Tue Apr 14, 2015 7:22 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: ESPP Worth It?
Replies: 17
Views: 3644

Re: ESPP Worth It?

Thanks for the replies. After reading through them, I'm probably going to talk it over with my wife and decide after that how to proceed. There's no rush, since the next quarterly enrollment period still has over two months to go before I could start making contributions. As she's the one that deals...
by FreemanB
Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:27 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LiveWatch Alarm System -anyone?
Replies: 17
Views: 4397

Re: LiveWatch Alarm System -anyone?

We have a security system connected to a central station, but I have a question for owners of Simplisafe and other systems mentioned above: Do they contact the police or only your smartphone or home phone? What is the protocol with these systems? With Simplisafe, just like any other alarm system, t...
by FreemanB
Mon Apr 13, 2015 8:21 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: ESPP Worth It?
Replies: 17
Views: 3644

Re: ESPP Worth It?

Just to clarify, it is 5% on the day of purchase, with no look-back provision. I could comfortably contribute around $1200 ever 3 months right now. I could increase that(As said, it would only be a 3-month hit to cash flow), but I'd probably also have to sell my wife on the plan first.(She keeps the...
by FreemanB
Mon Apr 13, 2015 7:45 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: ESPP Worth It?
Replies: 17
Views: 3644

ESPP Worth It?

I hadn't been participating in my employer's lackluster ESPP, but a recent change in it has prompted me to take a second look. It still isn't great, and I'm leaning towards continuing to invest elsewhere, but I wanted to get some other opinions. The details of the ESPP are: Contributions are withhel...
by FreemanB
Fri Apr 10, 2015 3:10 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: LiveWatch Alarm System -anyone?
Replies: 17
Views: 4397

Re: LiveWatch Alarm System -anyone?

After doing some research, I went with SimpliSafe a few weeks ago. We started with one of the basic packages and added a few more components to it. I don't know what the total cost was(My wife ordered them), but the setup was a breeze both for the initial package and the extra components added a wee...
by FreemanB
Tue Apr 07, 2015 7:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?
Replies: 4379
Views: 1144230

Re: What Movie Have You Recently Watched?

My 6 year old became interested in Star Wars so we watched all six this past week. We did it in proper order for the story line so we watched the newest ones first. I was a kid when they first came out and it was certainly nostalgic seeing them again. That's not really the proper order for the stor...
by FreemanB
Thu Mar 26, 2015 8:00 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401K rollover or not?
Replies: 6
Views: 681

Re: 401K rollover or not?

You should check with HR and/or your 401k administrator to determine what the rules are for rolling over your current 401k, since they can vary by company. I don't know if there's a standard set of rules, but from what I've seen personally, you usually can leave the money in the plan as long as it i...
by FreemanB
Mon Mar 16, 2015 9:19 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Having 1x salary by age 30-35, is this after-tax?
Replies: 11
Views: 3311

Re: Having 1x salary by age 30-35, is this after-tax?

What do most people do to ensure they are on track? Like I can compute the anticipated sizes of my 401k and Roth IRA by a particular age, but how do I know whether each is enough? It varies by age. In the 30-35 range, retirement is generally too far away with too many variables to come up with an e...
by FreemanB
Fri Mar 06, 2015 4:17 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Availability of X-Files Episodes on Netflix
Replies: 7
Views: 1095

Re: Availability of X-Files Episodes on Netflix

I recommend an attitude of "Netflix will cancel anything THEY want on THEIR schedule." They will probably pull a Disney at some point - Disney released Classic DVD/BluRays for X number of months, then let that batch sell out and no longer produce more copies. This will be for a few years - sometime...
by FreemanB
Mon Mar 02, 2015 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Claiming theft on tax return
Replies: 4
Views: 724

Re: Claiming theft on tax return

I am wondering if wise Bogleheads have had experience with this situation. We were visiting my mother-in-law last week. Unfortunately, her home was burglarized when we were there. Her laptop and iPad were stolen. I had a computer and iPad stolen along with hers. All told, she lost maybe $2000 worth...
by FreemanB
Mon Mar 02, 2015 12:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Roth IRA "loan"
Replies: 7
Views: 1026

Re: Roth IRA "loan"

I'm not an expert, but I don't think this would work the way you think. First, withdrawals and contributions are handled separately. If you withdraw $1k in March, that $1k will be subject to the usual rules of withdrawals.(Which may or may not include a penalty) Any contributions you make for the re...
by FreemanB
Wed Feb 25, 2015 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is the first 100k really the hardest?
Replies: 156
Views: 46702

Re: Is the first 100k really the hardest?

To me, the statement that the first $XXX amount was the hardest referred more to the idea that getting into the habit of budgeting, saving, and investing for the future are really the hardest steps.(Many people don't even get past the budgeting part) Once you've completed that and stuck with it long...
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:15 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Keep buying regardless of price movement?
Replies: 17
Views: 2651

Re: Keep buying regardless of price movement?

Therefore, I ask about energy sector as I am clueless about it. 1) Awesome deal when it was at $50 a few weeks ago. Not sure what is consider a fair price. You are clueless about it. But you know it was an awesome deal a few weeks ago.(Why, because the price went up since then?) And you don't know ...
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 19, 2015 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Music / Song Help
Replies: 52
Views: 4132

Re: Music / Song Help

A few of my favorite ballads include Michael Martin Murphey's Wildfire and El Paso.
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 19, 2015 7:57 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Credit Score got hit hard
Replies: 41
Views: 5222

Re: Credit Score got hit hard

Quickfoot, Can Mint or some software like that be programed to your laptop or phone to give you a list each month that you can check or auto check to see if things have been paid or billed correctly? Mint, if linked to your credit card accounts, will show you a list of upcoming bills and the total ...
by FreemanB
Wed Feb 18, 2015 3:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question about fluorescent lighting fixture
Replies: 16
Views: 2157

Re: Question about fluorescent lighting fixture

I assume (but am no electrical expert), that this was a ground wire of some sort. The fixture is ~10 years old. The socket that it is wired into is ~10 years old and was done at the same time the fixture was put in. The socket presented 3 wires - 2 white wires that the previous install had twisted ...
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 12, 2015 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bogglehead Career Advice
Replies: 42
Views: 4644

Re: Bogglehead Career Advice

...and got a job as a legal assistant at one of NYCs elite Law firms. Seven months in, I absolutely cannot be an attorney. I do not want the work, the lifestyle any of it. Just out of curiosity, how much of the work and lifestyle that you are rejecting is directly attributable to being an attorney ...
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 12, 2015 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Question about fluorescent lighting fixture
Replies: 16
Views: 2157

Re: Question about fluorescent lighting fixture

I've had to replace ballasts for older fluorescent lights before, since they were in older fixtures that would have been difficult to replace. As said earlier, there really isn't much to the guts of the light fixtures, so you usually only have one part to replace. If you have any experience dealing ...
by FreemanB
Thu Feb 12, 2015 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 401k Loan for house
Replies: 22
Views: 3246

Re: 401k Loan for house

Are you buying a house for any reason other than that your employer will pay the closing costs? You didn't mention any other particular need. I'm curious what's actually driving your decision to make the purchase. It isn't "free money" in this case, just an incentive to encourage an employee to move...
by FreemanB
Tue Feb 10, 2015 3:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I'm not a bad Boglehead [buying Powerball ticket]
Replies: 101
Views: 10627

Re: I'm not a bad Boglehead

We spend about $10 a week on scratch offs and powerball tickets. We do not spend any money on beverages nor alcohol therefore this expense is well worth it. At least we get some good dreams out of this expense. My beer purchases are guaranteed to pay off, so I consider them a better investment :sha...
by FreemanB
Tue Feb 10, 2015 3:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Where to put money gifted to infant son?
Replies: 14
Views: 2476

Re: Where to put money gifted to infant son?

Since they said the money was for his education, is there some reason you don't want to add the money to one of the 529 accounts? Yes, it would mean that technically you have control of the money, but it doesn't sound like the grandparents were overly concerned about how it was handled. As for havin...
by FreemanB
Fri Feb 06, 2015 4:31 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Fraud? [TurboTax Turns Off All State E-Filing]
Replies: 67
Views: 6432

Re: TurboTax fraud?

I believe you that it would take an act of Congress for the IRS to be able to use 3rd party information to verify the information on your tax return before they issue a refund. But why doesn't the IRS make any attempt to verify the identity of the submitter via 1st party information? In the past, t...
by FreemanB
Fri Feb 06, 2015 3:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: TurboTax Fraud? [TurboTax Turns Off All State E-Filing]
Replies: 67
Views: 6432

Re: TurboTax fraud?

I guess it'd be "easy" enough for the IRS to match at least one additional data point on the returns (e.g., W2 info.) to cut down on fraud significantly. Employers make W2s available by 1/31 and could be forced to transmit the info. to the IRS at the same time (not much later). Hardly anyone files ...