Search found 1720 matches

by SimonJester
Mon Sep 09, 2013 8:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best medium for long-term digital storage?
Replies: 65
Views: 6747

Re: Best medium for long-term digital storage?

I remember reading an article a while back about CDs / CDR materials and how long they would last. Of note in the article was research that had uncovered a company archiving data on CDRs storing them a vault that happened to have a high humidity level. They discovered after several years a fungus ha...
by SimonJester
Sun Sep 08, 2013 1:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Car Payment Issues
Replies: 38
Views: 4050

Re: Car Payment Issues

Sell the car, get a small loan for the difference, then pay off the credit cards and the new loan. Then work on getting his income level up.

If he lets it become repossessed it will be sold at wholesale value and he will own much more. Eventually he will be sued for the difference.
by SimonJester
Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:35 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Those silly lotion containers
Replies: 44
Views: 8393

Re: Those silly lotion containers

My wife cuts them in half then scoops out unused lotion by hand. Along the same lines a year ago I purchased some bug / ant killer in a 1 gallon jug, it came with an electronic battery powered sprayer. Great I though this wont last long. Sure enough the next summer when I went to use the bug spray i...
by SimonJester
Sun Sep 08, 2013 12:21 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Best medium for long-term digital storage?
Replies: 65
Views: 6747

Re: Best medium for long-term digital storage?

As others have said the biggest problem you will face is that the technology needed to read back the data, the operating system and file system, and personnel with knowledge of those systems will all be obsolete. We still have boxes of IBM 9 track real to real tapes, no tape drive, nor mainframe sys...
by SimonJester
Fri Sep 06, 2013 1:29 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Two Loans for Home Purchase?
Replies: 10
Views: 1477

Re: Two Loans for Home Purchase?

From what I have heard the 80/20 loans disappeared after the housing bubble popped but are starting to make a comeback. However I would not do one. First what sort of emergency fund do you have. Do you have 3 to 6 months of expenses set aside apart from your home down payment? Second how fact can yo...
by SimonJester
Thu Sep 05, 2013 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: How much auto/umbrella insurance do I need?
Replies: 16
Views: 3715

Re: How much auto/umbrella insurance do I need?

Wow those were low numbers 30K/60K, a week in the hospital will eat that up in no time. Keep in mind once you exhausted your insurance limits you become liable for the rest. 250K to 1M is the minimum I would have in today's world. This is of course the game the home & auto insurance companies are pl...
by SimonJester
Fri Aug 30, 2013 4:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Grocery shopping price comparison (Costco vs BJs vs Sams...)
Replies: 35
Views: 7410

Re: Grocery shopping price comparison (Costco vs BJs vs Sams

Grt2bOutdoors wrote:
If you have to spend $450+ for a blender, I would say it is the Vitamix people who have the good business. :oops:[/quote]


I wonder if I can just use a normal blender.
by SimonJester
Fri Aug 23, 2013 1:14 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Upgrade fence on the property line adjoining HOA common area
Replies: 12
Views: 3017

Re: Upgrade fence on the property line adjoining HOA common

Get a copy of the HOA covenants and go over it with a fine tooth comb before doing anything . +1 You need to see what allowed by your HOA. If the HOA board votes that all houses must now have vinyl fence they could require you to replace your fence and your cost. It all depends on what is and is no...
by SimonJester
Fri Aug 23, 2013 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I file a claim or not? [auto damage]
Replies: 15
Views: 1974

Re: Should I file a claim or not?

Any chance of helping convince her to go with the repair instead of replace? Something along the lines of "I'll pay for the replacement, or I can just give you $500 cash which would be my deductible." From that she can pay $250 for the repair, and pocket the $250, or just live with the dent and poc...
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 22, 2013 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Drying clothes in the sun - worth the hassle?
Replies: 86
Views: 9010

Re: Drying clothes in the sun - worth the hassle?

Another factor to consider is the clothes line setup. Most T poles and other clothes lines poles are made out of cheap aluminum, these are not going to hold up with a heavy set of towels. You can find steel poles but again these are not real sturdy. I remember as a kid the best T poles were made fro...
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 22, 2013 9:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Door to door annoyances--easy way to stop?
Replies: 60
Views: 5645

Re: Door to door annoyances--easy way to stop?

"SOLICITORS WILL BE SHOT" might be a more effective sign to use. Can I borrow this idea? My "No solicitors/no handbills" sign is often ignored. I'm constantly receiving ads and coupons for roofing, lawn care, painting etc. It's a huge waste of paper. I would not post something like this, it will be...
by SimonJester
Tue Aug 20, 2013 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Bankruptcy and Medical Billing Advocates
Replies: 9
Views: 1015

Re: Bankruptcy and Medical Billing Advocates

Bankruptcy protects your assets from a creditor, what assets do they have to protect, it doesn't seem like much of any. Are they being sued for non payment? Are wages about to be garnished? Car loans (2 cars, unknown amounts, and rates. refinanced, have little or no equity). Mortgage (unknown amount...
by SimonJester
Tue Aug 20, 2013 2:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Kindergarten Struggles
Replies: 39
Views: 5994

Re: Kindergarten Struggles

More information on what the teacher said is needed. I would call up the teacher and have a talk, one week into school seems a little early to be labeling the child. He may just be adjusting to the new setting. One thing that amazes me in school ( I have two in middle school) is how much sitting chi...
by SimonJester
Fri Aug 09, 2013 10:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best Way to Buy House with Parent - Gift and Down Payment
Replies: 5
Views: 1256

Re: Best Way to Buy House with Parent - Gift and Down Paymen

I am married, in my early 30s, absolutely no debt and have been wasting money on rentals for several years now (I previously had a job that required a lot of moving, but now have something permanent in a suburb of DC). I am looking to buy now, I will not have enough saved up for a down payment for ...
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 08, 2013 11:23 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Coverdell Education Savings Accounts
Replies: 7
Views: 908

Re: Coverdell Education Savings Accounts

P&C actuary wrote:I have coverdells at Vanguard for my kids. Maybe they stopped taking new accounts?
I believe that is correct, Vanguard will no longer open any new Coverdell Education Savings Accounts but existing ones are still being serviced.
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 08, 2013 11:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My refrigerator is doing weird things
Replies: 12
Views: 1426

Re: My refrigerator is doing weird things

Also I found out the hard way, you do not want to leave a refrigerator unplugged with the door shut for very long as they will mold up! I caught the one firdge in time to clean it up with bleach water but Ive read some accounts of having to dispose of the fridge when the mold get too bad. If you are...
by SimonJester
Wed Aug 07, 2013 10:19 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Trex (The Good, the Bad and the Ugly)
Replies: 50
Views: 18770

Re: Trex (The Good, the Bad and the Ugly)

I installed a small section of trex like decking over a concrete porch, here is what I found. The material will fade over time ever so slightly. The material will scratch if something sharp gets run over it, for me the edge blade of my snow shovel did scratch it a bit. In some climates there have be...
by SimonJester
Tue Aug 06, 2013 3:48 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Gramps wants to use I-bonds to buy a 529 plan
Replies: 16
Views: 1734

Re: Gramps wants to use I-bonds to buy a 529 plan

I did just that sort of a transaction a few years back only I transferred to my own child's 529. However you to exclude the Ibond interest you must meet this qualification: "You pay qualified educational expenses for yourself, your spouse, or a dependent for whom you claim an exemption on your retur...
by SimonJester
Tue Aug 06, 2013 9:41 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Emergency Fund/Cash Reserves Question
Replies: 5
Views: 1108

Re: Emergency Fund/Cash Reserves Question

I would do a mix between I-Bonds and a CD ladder. I would also keep 12 months in cash. For the CDs I probably would not go beyond 12 months waiting to see if interest rates rise. (who knows they could stay low for years).
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:50 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Getting out of permanent life insurance. Ideas.
Replies: 19
Views: 1690

Re: Getting out of permanent life insurance. Ideas.

Face amount of policy: 750,000 Insurance Company: Minn Life Policy date 12/2012, age 36 when written Current annual premium 24,0000 Cash Value 14,500 Surrender charge ~12K for first five years, then slowly decreasing to zero by 10 years Rating Class: preferred plus non smoker Wow, I knew whole life...
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't match
Replies: 62
Views: 55949

Re: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't ma

wow, that's quite a story! i'm sorry you have to deal with all that! how recently did the fraudster work for the u.s. army? maybe you can get the military to step in. this is clearly dishonorable action on her part and someone in the military might take up your case and punish her if she's still wo...
by SimonJester
Thu Aug 01, 2013 10:33 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Freezing credit Reports
Replies: 8
Views: 973

Re: Freezing credit Reports

I have frozen all my reports and you have to understand and be willing to deal with what the means. First when frozen, no one but existing creditors can put new information into the report. (for the most part) If a creditor actually bothers to try and run a credit check before offering credit they w...
by SimonJester
Wed Jul 31, 2013 9:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't match
Replies: 62
Views: 55949

Re: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't ma

I think my wife's story will beat all of these, its a long one for excuse the length of this post. A few years back we went to pull DW's credit file from the three credit bureaus. Two were normal reports however with one bureau we could not get past the security questions. So we filled out the form ...
by SimonJester
Wed Jul 31, 2013 10:51 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't match
Replies: 62
Views: 55949

Re: Tried to get credit report - security questions don't ma

I had a similar situation with one of the three agencies a few months back, ordered the report by mail. When I received the report there was nothing out of the usual on the report. So I don't know what was up with their system that day. As a tip I spread out my reports and order one report from one ...
by SimonJester
Tue Jul 30, 2013 9:48 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorce debt help
Replies: 15
Views: 2041

Re: Divorce debt help

The problem depends on how "messy" the divorce gets or is. Both parties verbally agree to the consolidation outside of attorneys, the wife goes and gets the consolidation loan, applies the funds against her 1/2, meanwhile the husband procrastinates, the divorce proceedings are started and then the h...
by SimonJester
Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Divorce debt help
Replies: 15
Views: 2041

Re: Divorce debt help

How would consolidating the car loan and credit card loan make it easier to separate the debt? It seems to me like that would make it harder to separate. Leave it upto the attorneys to sort this out, a judge will order who gets what debt, then it will be upto both parties to refinance the debt out o...
by SimonJester
Sun Jul 28, 2013 10:16 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Your take on layaway
Replies: 40
Views: 3321

Re: Your take on layaway

When school starts and the kids need clothes and you got no money, no checking account, no credit cards, then it might not be a bad idea. Also, the thrift stores in poorer neighborhoods don't have the same selection as thrift stores in 90210 and the like. Ummm no, if you have no money then you shou...
by SimonJester
Sun Jul 14, 2013 11:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: 529 gifts to grandchildren
Replies: 20
Views: 1622

Re: 529 gifts to grandchildren

I would give equally across all grandchildren, otherwise it will been seen an favoritism towards one grandchild and the others will harbor resentment for it.
by SimonJester
Fri Jul 12, 2013 3:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wasp nests
Replies: 8
Views: 1553

Re: Wasp nests

Ive gotten lucky the past few times. A year or two ago i started mowing my lawn and as I passed a tree stump I noticed there we many wasps or yellow jackets flying around me. I look down at the base of the tree stump and found a wasp nest the size of a basket ball! I shutoff the mower and ran, I man...
by SimonJester
Fri Jul 12, 2013 9:25 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Citibank slow + close-of-escrow soon -> liquidate taxable?
Replies: 9
Views: 1659

Re: Citibank slow + close-of-escrow soon -> liquidate taxabl

No way would I do this, it sounds like this would wipe out any emergency fund, plus dip into your retirement account via 401k loan. You would have way too much asset allocation tied up in that house. Its a house be prepared to walk away and tell Citibank you will be doing so along with any other bus...
by SimonJester
Fri Jul 12, 2013 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Help with purchasing Travel Insurance
Replies: 16
Views: 2518

Re: Help with purchasing Travel Insurance

I had travel guard on a domestic trip and did have to file a claim. My oldest son had a medical emergency (1st time seizure) on board the aircraft of our return flight. We ended up with an ambulance ride, hospital copays, copays for various tests and other dr bills. The process was easy, their repre...
by SimonJester
Wed Jul 10, 2013 10:40 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Toyota - Supply Vs. Demand
Replies: 35
Views: 4245

Re: Toyota - Supply Vs. Demand

I purchased a Corolla about 2 years ago and am very happy with it. I received a call from the dealer a couple of days ago asking if I was interested in selling it. I was advised that there was a group of clients that were interested in purchasing such a vehicle (mine is low mileage) and I would be ...
by SimonJester
Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Different credit scores for couples
Replies: 12
Views: 1103

Re: Different credit scores for couples

I'm not sure what your credit score has to do with investing. However until you are married I would beep everything separate. What is your age, what sorts of debt vs income do you have.
by SimonJester
Wed Jul 10, 2013 9:08 am
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Disgusting mailer from Fidelity
Replies: 44
Views: 6361

Re: Disgusting mailer from Fidelity

At my work's 401K a few years ago they moved most all of their funds to an passive index approach with low ERs. However starting least year they have teamed up with Financial Engines to offer personalized help with your investments. So for a .5 / .4 or .25% fee plus a number of other fees, you sign ...
by SimonJester
Tue Jul 09, 2013 11:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Group term life through employer
Replies: 43
Views: 4297

Re: Group term life through employer

Another downside to having a large group policy through your employer is that will will get hit with imputed income. Anything beyond 50k triggers a fringe benefit imputed income calculation.

http://www.irs.gov/publications/p15b/ar ... 1000193677
by SimonJester
Sat Jul 06, 2013 11:21 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Group term life through employer
Replies: 43
Views: 4297

Re: Group term life through employer

Get term life insurance outside of your employer. If you become ill enough and have to leave you employer you could end up uninsurable.

You can then supplement the term with the group insurance if you want to.
by SimonJester
Sun Jun 30, 2013 8:29 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would a new router help?
Replies: 23
Views: 2351

Re: Would a new router help?

If you are getting 10/mbs then it sounds like you are not getting the 802.11G speeds. You might check your wireless connection to see what speed it reports you connecting as. I know on some system you have to force it to G speeds depending on drivers and OS and what not.
by SimonJester
Fri Jun 28, 2013 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Watch out for those discount gift cards
Replies: 9
Views: 1844

Re: Watch out for those discount gift cards

Just to add to the Cinemark gift card, I found out they would only allow you to use the gift card to purchase movie tickets, not concessions!

Ive ended up with a gift card that has $4.00 left on it and cannot use it for popcorn or a drink.

We've seen perhaps 1 movie in the last 12 months...
by SimonJester
Thu Jun 27, 2013 9:01 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is "buying organic" food worth it?
Replies: 89
Views: 7497

Re: Is "buying organic" food worth it?

These pesticides are very deadly This is a frequent misconception of the lay public. Insecticides seem scary because they kill animals. But all pesticides are tested and found not to be deadly to mammals like us. Yes, because something doesn't make you drop dead must mean it isn't bad for you.... Y...
by SimonJester
Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:12 pm
Forum: Investing - Help with Personal Investments
Topic: Buying physical gold
Replies: 46
Views: 6614

Re: Buying physical gold

I would hurry and buy today before it goes down any more in value! :mrgreen:
by SimonJester
Wed Jun 26, 2013 3:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is "buying organic" food worth it?
Replies: 89
Views: 7497

Re: Is "buying organic" food worth it?

I think people should be more concerned with how far their food traveled to get to them vs how it was grown. I would much rather grow,raise, and hunt my own food but given the climate I live in this is difficult. Given the size of the population this country has grown to is it even possible to feed ...
by SimonJester
Wed Jun 26, 2013 11:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Is "buying organic" food worth it?
Replies: 89
Views: 7497

Re: Is "buying organic" food worth it?

Its a marketing ploy now (or perhaps always).
by SimonJester
Wed Jun 26, 2013 10:57 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Prepaid Funeral Arrangements
Replies: 33
Views: 2868

Re: Prepaid Funeral Arrangements

For just a cremation with no service this is high. When my FIL passed the pickup and cremation were only a few hundred dollars I'm thinking $300 to $400 at most. I would shop around and see what these services costs today from various funeral homes. Even then I would not pre pay for this, pre purcha...
by SimonJester
Thu Jun 20, 2013 10:27 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: DayCare Flex Spending issues
Replies: 11
Views: 1423

Re: DayCare Flex Spending issues

Could you encourage your spouse to get a part time job, or see if schooling counts as well. This is one of many reasons I do not like the FSA / DC Flex accounts, they seem to be way too restrictive.
by SimonJester
Sun Jun 16, 2013 10:47 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Certified Vehicle Extended Warranty Questions
Replies: 1
Views: 432

Re: Certified Vehicle Extended Warranty Questions

Not sure about Subaru but years ago I purchased an extended Toyota warranty ( 7 year 100K miles ) which my selling dealer offered for $1400 at another dealership for $500. I was amazed there was that much markup. The other dealer was making $20 per warranty they wrote and multiple people of a Toyota...
by SimonJester
Mon Jun 10, 2013 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: why it pays to make purchases with a credit card
Replies: 15
Views: 4520

Re: why it pays to make purchases with a credit card

This works for a purchase that you made and disputed; you may not have the same legal protections, but most banks grant the same protections for both debit and credit cards. But if you have an unauthorized charge on your debit card, or a duplicate charge, the money is gone from your account until y...
by SimonJester
Sun Jun 09, 2013 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: why it pays to make purchases with a credit card
Replies: 15
Views: 4520

Re: why it pays to make purchases with a credit card

I've had the same results with a debit card, disputed a purchase I never received, money was credited before I was off the phone with the banker.

FYI when a debit card is run as a credit card it carries the same protections...
by SimonJester
Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:47 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Downpayment Money from In-Laws
Replies: 52
Views: 5859

Re: Downpayment Money from In-Laws

Wow Run away, run away fast! I hope you like the thought of your mother-in-law being involved in all your financial decisions. Want to take a nice vacation, better clear with MIL first. Purchase a new vehicle, take your wife out to a nice restaurant for dinner, make sure MIL is ok with that also. Th...
by SimonJester
Sat Jun 01, 2013 10:29 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Denied for bankruptcy that isn't on my credit report
Replies: 17
Views: 4561

Re: Denied for bankruptcy that isn't on my credit report

OK I didn't realize it would stick around for 10 years. Since I pulled my credit report from two agencies and didn't see it, it must be on the third agency's report. There is no way for anyone to know about it besides the credit report and a company's own records if they lost money in the bankruptc...