Search found 1168 matches

by centrifuge41
Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:26 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: GPS map update
Replies: 9
Views: 1527

New map for $50? Which GPS model do you have? I'd say probably not, if you have an inexpensive GPS. For example, say I have a Garmin Nuvi 255w from 2008. It'd probably make more sense for me to sell it for, say $80 on ebay (pocket about $65 after shipping/fees), the buy a refurb 255w for about $90. ...
by centrifuge41
Tue Aug 31, 2010 8:04 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought my computer
Replies: 40
Views: 4278

Definitely backup your personal files (docs, pics, movies, etc.) onto a separate hard drive (either commercially available desktop or portable drive or online backup system). other than that, you are pretty much good to go! While not a replacement for backup onto another drive, I recommend setting ...
by centrifuge41
Tue Aug 31, 2010 7:33 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: I bought my computer
Replies: 40
Views: 4278

Congrats on your new purchase! I would install two free programs for spyware prevention: Spybot Search and Destroy (teatimer is optional - I don't use it), and Spywareblaster. The former has an "immunize" function, setting up your browser to block off a lot of known bad domains and sites. The latter...
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 30, 2010 2:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How much to spend on a vacation?
Replies: 30
Views: 5350

Well, you only live once. But then again, there is balance to all things. We went to Paris (and London) a few months ago. Granted, we found a <$400 round airfare from Newark to London, and from Luxembourg back to Newark. This part of the trip deal might not be replicable. But everything else wasn't ...
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 30, 2010 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is it time to buy a new car?
Replies: 47
Views: 6716

There's an old joke that I fear may become true, something along the lines of: when an idiot-proof device is developed, Mother Nature will come up with an improved class of idiots to deal with it... OP has a lot of liquid savings, so should not feel bad buying a new car. But, a few logical things I...
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 30, 2010 9:36 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: e-Bill Pay: how do you handle this?
Replies: 36
Views: 9773

If a bill takes a credit card (typically, cell phone, tv/internet) I will use a credit card to earn cashback. I'll pay manually because this allows me to burn up rebate Visa gift cards, as they come in. If a bill does not take a credit card, I will use e-bill to have my bank account push the account...
by centrifuge41
Fri Aug 27, 2010 1:01 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: How would you respond to market timers?
Replies: 31
Views: 3585

Ok, this is a rather "expressive" diagram, but it is terribly funny! Could be relatively accurate for some market timers too.

Image
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 23, 2010 8:59 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any coupon moms out there?
Replies: 32
Views: 3806

Hmmm ,I don't subscribe to any newspapers so I don't use coupons, May be worth it to get the Sunday edition. I find that printable coupons are often of a higher value than those in the Sunday paper, and easier to find too, as there are archives with links to them, and they are linked right off of d...
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 23, 2010 8:56 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Any coupon moms out there?
Replies: 32
Views: 3806

I'm coupon dude. I find that the bulk of my savings happens in a few transactions. Of particular note are mega sales from the Kroger family of stores. YMMV by geography. By reading Slickdeals and Hotcouponworld, I can see when the match-ups are insane: sale, coupon, e-coupon, and catalina (pieces of...
by centrifuge41
Thu Aug 19, 2010 2:46 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: New Vanguard Fund for 18-22 year olds.
Replies: 7
Views: 1477

Interestingly, the underlying composition looks the same as VFIFX (TR 2050) for now, but the expense ratio is 1 basis point lower. I guess I'll switch to this in my 401k, from TR 2050, as soon as it's available :)
by centrifuge41
Wed Aug 18, 2010 8:20 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Are Used Appliances a Good Idea?
Replies: 31
Views: 6566

When we moved, we found a nice W/D "set" on Craigslist for $225. The washer was 7 years old, but it was a Kenmore with dual cycle wash. The dryer was a digital dryer. Also, the seller was only 3 or 4 miles from our place, so it was easy to haul the two pieces back, one at a time. There's a lot of W/...
by centrifuge41
Mon Aug 16, 2010 9:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: anyone play the lottery?
Replies: 90
Views: 9542

Haha, nope, I've never bought any lotto tickets. I generally don't like doing things that have a negative expected value (health insurance, auto liability, etc aside - I'll just say that those have a positive expected utility). :)
by centrifuge41
Wed Jul 28, 2010 8:55 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best SAT preparation/practice books?
Replies: 39
Views: 7634

Indeed, College Board has a first party "10 Real SATs" book. Unfortunately, only 2 or 3 of the practice exams are in the new 2400 point format. The remaining tests are all older 1600 point tests. I found a Kaplan book that has 10 practice SAT's in the new 2400 point format. However, I can't say how ...
by centrifuge41
Thu Jun 17, 2010 1:15 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Mail in rebates
Replies: 14
Views: 2038

Last I read, mail in rebate redemption rates hovered around 54%. If you are diligent, you will come out ahead with MIR's, probably because lazier/less meticulous people are subsidizing your good deal item purchase. Sample scenario: store Big Box B has a product for $100 - $50 MIR. You are diligent, ...
by centrifuge41
Thu Jun 03, 2010 1:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Washington, DC vs Charlotte, NC
Replies: 42
Views: 9014

One other thing that worries me is that I work in finance and I see a 11.9% unemployment rate in the Charlotte metro, which has been hard hit due to the heavy banking concentration, versus a 6.7% unemployment rate in the DC metro. It seems like if either of us were out of the job it would be relati...
by centrifuge41
Wed Jun 02, 2010 1:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Washington, DC vs Charlotte, NC
Replies: 42
Views: 9014

Re: Washington, DC vs Charlotte, NC

Where in DC do you live? How is the commute? What about the rent situation? Charlotte is indeed much cheaper, as are most cities in the SE outside of Florida. Your commute should also be a lot easier. While Charlotte isn't devoid of traffic, it's a lot more compact than DC. Even if live near I-485, ...
by centrifuge41
Mon May 17, 2010 11:38 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Separating value/growth to minimize taxable dividends?
Replies: 9
Views: 1306

I'm looking up the small cap growth index (VISGX) on Google finance. For the past 10 year period, the alpha is 7.1 and the beta is 1.17. I've heard in the past that it is good to focus on the four corners of the 3x3 for asset allocation (large growth and value; small growth and value). Any data or e...
by centrifuge41
Mon May 17, 2010 9:42 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Separating value/growth to minimize taxable dividends?
Replies: 9
Views: 1306

Separating value/growth to minimize taxable dividends?

Hi all! Sorry if this is a repost - I'm not sure if the forum provides a way to search solely by subject/title instead of post body content. Vanguard has small and mid cap indices broken up: Small cap value (VISVX) Small cap growth (VISGX) Small cap index (NAESX) Ditto for mid cap value, growth, and...