Search found 1368 matches

by illumination
Mon Apr 19, 2021 2:25 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cox Retention Department
Replies: 38
Views: 21649

Re: Cox Retention Department

Cox is the worst. I'd echo that if you go in looking to cancel and mean it, that's when they seem to actually lower the price. I'd love to see some consumer protection laws that everybody has to pay the same price for the same service. This system of calling in every once in a while and threatening ...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 7:07 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?
Replies: 120
Views: 8706

Re: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?

I guess the people that use the phrase to describe themselves need to give us what that allocation actually is. Is 20/80 "no longer playing the game"? No; not knowing or caring about my percentage based asset allocation is “no longer playing the game.” Goodbye rebalancing. Goodbye sharpen...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:55 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits
Replies: 65
Views: 5468

Re: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits

The way our legal system is "supposed" to work, the burden of proof should be on the state and not the other way around. The taxpayer has the burden of proof in tax cases. The taxpayer has or can get the information. You'll have to show me in the Constitution this "asterisk" whe...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:51 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Selling old car - CarMax etc.
Replies: 65
Views: 4952

Re: Selling old car - CarMax etc.

Sell it yourself on Craigslist, accurately describe the condition. I bet you get over $3,000 for it.
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?
Replies: 120
Views: 8706

Re: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?

To me it's a crazy concept, but maybe it's supposed to be hyperbole to make a point? I guess it's different for everyone, but I don't know how you can say you've "stopped playing" but still be in equities at any level. "Stop playing" means all investments that are nearly impossi...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 4:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits
Replies: 65
Views: 5468

Re: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits

The way our legal system is "supposed" to work, the burden of proof should be on the state and not the other way around. The taxpayer has the burden of proof in tax cases. The taxpayer has or can get the information. You'll have to show me in the Constitution this "asterisk" whe...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 12:50 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits
Replies: 65
Views: 5468

Re: Snowbirds establishing FL residency from Northeast- Residency audits

The way our legal system is "supposed" to work, the burden of proof should be on the state and not the other way around.
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Protective Coating on New Subaru?
Replies: 18
Views: 1461

Re: Protective Coating on New Subaru?

It's a complete rip off. I had a car that this came "free" with every purchase from the dealership and they would annually put the protective coating to be covered. It was just a basic wax job. A funny story though, I have an in-law that falls for nearly every type of insurance or warranty...
by illumination
Sun Apr 18, 2021 11:35 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?
Replies: 120
Views: 8706

Re: What does "won the game stop playing" mean in practice?

To me it's a crazy concept, but maybe it's supposed to be hyperbole to make a point? I guess it's different for everyone, but I don't know how you can say you've "stopped playing" but still be in equities at any level. "Stop playing" means all investments that are nearly impossib...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 5:28 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Roth Help for Adult Children or Inheritances?
Replies: 19
Views: 1674

Re: Roth Help for Adult Children or Inheritances?

It's probably not going to be a huge amount of money in the scheme of things if we're just talking about you subsidizing their Roth contributions and what would happen in a divorce. There's usually some protections on premarital assets, and where things get murky would be contributions during the ma...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:18 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oceanfront property and climate change
Replies: 17
Views: 1102

Re: Oceanfront property and climate change

You'll notice almost nobody is actually doing anything about their beachfront property , even from the people that seemed to be the most concerned. Actions speak louder than words. Al Gore has a beach house in Montecito despite giving warnings that Manhattan would be underwater around this time. If ...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 4:01 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Anyone have experience with Suntrust?
Replies: 21
Views: 1862

Re: Anyone have experience with Suntrust?

My experience is it's a terrible bank. I also think it's usually a bad idea to get a bank that's not really a major brokerage handle your investments. It just seems they are always behind on technology and just out of their league at every level. I'd also read the fine print on account closure fees....
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:52 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Cockroach Coming Out of Hole in Sink?
Replies: 32
Views: 3138

Re: Cockroach Coming Out of Hole in Sink?

Another vote for Advion, it works really well. It comes in a syringe and is almost like a really thin peanut butter. You put a few drops around the house, it's a bait they take it back to the nest and it wipes them out. I had an outbreak once and tried it, I really never had a problem ever again for...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 3:09 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Better air conditioning for upstairs: minisplit or just upgrade main hvac to variable speed?
Replies: 14
Views: 1348

Re: Better air conditioning for upstairs: minisplit or just upgrade main hvac to variable speed?

I don't really see how just replacing an already working unit is going to change the dynamic, unless the current one is undersized. It sounds like you need to possibly reengineer the ductwork. A mini split could be an easy way around that and allow you to control the zoning upstairs, but if it were ...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 1:48 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.
Replies: 46
Views: 3976

Re: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.

The longer you re in it, the more you ll lose. My experience was quite the opposite. I was happy to take the contracted 7% for several years, until they bought me out (at cost). If they didn't by me out they were contracted to start to paying me 11%. This is not to say all non-traded (aka un-priced...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Savings too much for Roth. Keep it in a savings account or invest it?
Replies: 10
Views: 1354

Re: Savings too much for Roth. Keep it in a savings account or invest it?

I wouldn't have a single penny of bonds in a Roth IRA. You most likely have 40+ years ahead of you before this account gets drawn down. In my opinion, your entire portfolio is too conservative for someone that's 26 years old, but I understand not everyone sees it that way. But if I were you, I'd hav...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:28 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: New car same price as 1 year old
Replies: 24
Views: 2163

Re: New car same price as 1 year old

I "want" to buy 1-2 year old cars, but the math just never seems to work out. I'd rather just pay a little more and get a new car, and when you look at the extra warranty coverage and depreciation curve, new can definitely make more financial sense. It seems even more lopsided when you are...
by illumination
Sat Apr 17, 2021 9:16 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.
Replies: 46
Views: 3976

Re: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.

The longer you re in it, the more you ll lose. My experience was quite the opposite. I was happy to take the contracted 7% for several years, until they bought me out (at cost). If they didn't by me out they were contracted to start to paying me 11%. This is not to say all non-traded (aka un-priced...
by illumination
Fri Apr 16, 2021 12:45 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.
Replies: 46
Views: 3976

Re: Seeking advice on an investment that cannot be liquidated.

I think most people here made that one bad investment decision and it was a blessing in disguise. FWIW, my wife a really long time ago was a client at Morgan Stanley, the advisor had put her in something he shouldn't have, it was something like short term commercial paper that had become frozen. Ult...
by illumination
Thu Apr 15, 2021 5:03 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: DIY Pest Control
Replies: 22
Views: 1510

Re: DIY Pest Control

Cy-Kick is great stuff, try it yourself and see how it goes.

I'm not being facetious when I say I think the exterminators purposely use really diluted stuff so they keep having to come back.

First time I used Cy-Kick, it was better results than YEARS of my exterminator coming monthly.
by illumination
Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Selling a Time Share
Replies: 40
Views: 3526

Re: Selling a Time Share

I don't know if it's urban legend, but I've heard of outfits that do things like put it in the name of a homeless person. One would think at this point, all 50 states would have basic consumer protections on something like this where a consumer could at some point quit. It gets close to being an ind...
by illumination
Wed Apr 14, 2021 4:03 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Nobody's ever regretted paying off the mortgage."
Replies: 350
Views: 24179

Re: "Nobody's ever regretted paying off the mortgage."

I actually think it's a smarter play to have a mortgage, I would argue it's essentially subsidized by the government to carry one. For most people this is no longer true with the significant increase in standard deductions. You also have things Fannie and Freddie Mac, VA loans, USDA loans, FHA etc....
by illumination
Wed Apr 14, 2021 2:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: "Nobody's ever regretted paying off the mortgage."
Replies: 350
Views: 24179

Re: "Nobody's ever regretted paying off the mortgage."

Owning a home outright with no more payments "feels" more tangible and secure than having your life savings bouncing around in the stock market. I'm not making a case for paying off a mortgage, I actually think it's a smarter play to have a mortgage, I would argue it's essentially subsidiz...
by illumination
Wed Apr 14, 2021 1:20 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Most secure Two factor authentication out of Fidelity, Vanguard, Charles Schwab?
Replies: 20
Views: 2321

Re: Most secure Two factor authentication out of Fidelity, Vanguard, Charles Schwab?

This probably isn't what you are looking for, but having accounts at both Fidelity and Schwab, Schwab seems to be more stringent across the board. If I ever am not on my "normal" computer and check my portfolio, Schwab almost 100% of the time requires a 2nd form of authentication. Even if ...
by illumination
Tue Apr 13, 2021 6:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

It's a sliding scale. On one end someone holds a gun to your head, on the other they just say they won't do the deed unless you sign, and in the middle they drop it on the unsuspecting spouse right before the ceremony. Right, I've heard of cases where it was hours before the ceremony and someone tr...
by illumination
Tue Apr 13, 2021 5:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

Where are you getting that prenups are "thrown out all the time"? Do you have any statistics? Prenups are far more likely to be held up than not. Most of the "headlines" for prenups not holding up are unusual cases, like when Steven Spielberg had one signed on a napkin. Usually ...
by illumination
Tue Apr 13, 2021 4:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

In cases where one spouse wants to retain the separateness of an asset post marriage, you'd typically, or wisely, make a post nuptial agreement. When prenups get thrown out all the time, I don't see postnups realistic. Separate assets must be separate from the get go and remain separate. With that ...
by illumination
Tue Apr 13, 2021 10:39 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

A clear paper trail from inheritance account to down payment is vastly different from paying monthly payments from a separate account. For two divorce attorneys and an arbitrator that was a former family law judge, it was decided it was community property and split evenly, despite having a clear li...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:01 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

This article might help shed some light on how to disentangle separate property that was used to purchase a marital asset. https://divorcedigest.com/recovering-separate-property-funds/ I'm not a lawyer (and definitely not a divorce attorney) but possession being 9/10ths of the law is a practical re...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 9:49 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Do brokers close accounts of angry customers?
Replies: 32
Views: 2722

Re: Do brokers close accounts of angry customers?

Maybe not a great data point, but eons ago when I worked at a bank, it was essentially impossible to close someone's account against their will. Just too much a liability for a lawsuit and just not company policy. But we could certainly make it easy for them if they wanted to close it out and not fi...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 9:10 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can this be true? [CNBC: Investors put more money into stocks]
Replies: 24
Views: 3744

Re: Can this be true? [CNBC: Investors put more money into stocks]

I saw that tweet yesterday, it's really troubling. I'm just assuming I'm interpreting it correctly. Everything right now "feels" like that .com era with different types of bubbles this time. I know a few people that have made insane amounts of money on things like penny stocks that are tra...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 8:49 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

Your friend that was able to "get it back", I don't know the details, it could have been a situation where the other party went along in exchange for something else in the divorce or a unique state law or sympathetic judge. But I wouldn't draw a lesson from it that "tracing" it ...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 6:50 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Taking over in-law's retirement accounts, advice on strategy
Replies: 12
Views: 1662

Re: Taking over in-law's retirement accounts, advice on strategy

I'd push them into a PAS service with Vanguard just as a form of insurance, even though I think they provide very little value. You sort of take ownership when you manage money. And this is looking like a potentially lean retirement and you are already feeling pressure to outperform. Maybe down the ...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 6:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

Your friend that was able to "get it back", I don't know the details, it could have been a situation where the other party went along in exchange for something else in the divorce or a unique state law or sympathetic judge. But I wouldn't draw a lesson from it that "tracing" it ...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 11:14 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VT and home country bias
Replies: 15
Views: 1585

Re: VT and home country bias

And then you have to account for the fact that something like 40% of revenue from S&P500 "American" stocks derive their revenue overseas. Companies like Apple and Microsoft don't just sell to Americans. While this is true, it does not shield an investor from pricing valuation consider...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 10:56 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

State laws treat things differently, and also it can just come down to the judge. FWIW, the person's situation I just referenced, it was basically an open and shut "textbook" case that it was community property and had to be split evenly because both their names were on the home and both ...
by illumination
Mon Apr 12, 2021 9:41 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

You just need to get your own lawyers (it will need to happen anyway for most prenups to be upheld that you both had your own separate legal counsel) and craft the agreement in a way where in the event of a divorce, it would be no different legally than if a boyfriend/girlfriend broke up and moved ...
by illumination
Sun Apr 11, 2021 5:09 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: In-Laws' HOA demanding $8000 lumpsum payment
Replies: 91
Views: 10539

Re: In-Laws' HOA demanding $8000 lumpsum payment

I would really go out of my way to avoid HOA properties, just in general I had an especially heavy handed one that both liked to enforce all sorts of trivial rules but was incompetent on things that really mattered. I had a similar experience where a small clubhouse that nobody used burned down, and...
by illumination
Sun Apr 11, 2021 4:34 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Prenuptial arrangements
Replies: 123
Views: 8926

Re: Prenuptial arrangements

You just need to get your own lawyers (it will need to happen anyway for most prenups to be upheld that you both had your own separate legal counsel) and craft the agreement in a way where in the event of a divorce, it would be no different legally than if a boyfriend/girlfriend broke up and moved o...
by illumination
Sun Apr 11, 2021 10:02 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Replacing 20yrs old wooden fence and situation with neighbors
Replies: 38
Views: 5082

Re: Replacing 20yrs old wooden fence and situation with neighbors

Setting aside the neighbor situation and assuming that doesn't change, I probably would put it off and see if the building material craziness dies down. Lumber prices have supposedly gone up almost 200% in the last few months. Not sure though if this is a long term trend with inflation across the bo...
by illumination
Sun Apr 11, 2021 9:43 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: VT and home country bias
Replies: 15
Views: 1585

Re: VT and home country bias

And then you have to account for the fact that something like 40% of revenue from S&P500 "American" stocks derive their revenue overseas. Companies like Apple and Microsoft don't just sell to Americans. You would drive yourself crazy trying to actually implement some sort of perfect gl...
by illumination
Thu Apr 08, 2021 7:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What are the longest lasting double pane windows?
Replies: 8
Views: 1990

Re: What are the longest lasting double pane windows?

I've had a few people with Milgard windows and they really do honor that lifetime warranty. I'm in the process of updating my windows and it really makes me want to use them.

I would also stay away from anything made of natural wood, I'd stick with fiberglass, vinyl or aluminum.
by illumination
Thu Apr 08, 2021 6:59 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: HVAC Thermostat: Fan-only every X minutes
Replies: 6
Views: 578

Re: HVAC Thermostat: Fan-only every X minutes

It's a small issue with that schedule, but conventional blower motors do use a lot of electricity, way more than something like a ceiling fan. I one time had a situation where a fan setting was left in the "on" position and the house was left unoccupied, had a hefty utility bill compared t...
by illumination
Thu Apr 08, 2021 11:29 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Why not use cash for RE rentals?
Replies: 29
Views: 2499

Re: Why not use cash for RE rentals?

You can own real estate in the form of REITs without actually taking title to a rental property. Something like VNQ. Most people I know that own like one rental...hate it. I had a residential rental and it was a pain. It was a profitable venture, but had I dumped that same money into a total market ...
by illumination
Wed Apr 07, 2021 11:51 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: ETFs vs Mutual Funds
Replies: 11
Views: 924

Re: ETFs vs Mutual Funds

I would recommend the ETF in a taxable account even at a slightly higher expense ratio purely for the portability. You can pick them up and take them to any brokerage. The difference between a .015% vs a .03% is $15 every $100k. It's worth that "insurance" for me to be able to easily take ...
by illumination
Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:35 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The best $10,000 to $15,000 vehicle.
Replies: 42
Views: 3312

Re: The best $10,000 to $15,000 vehicle.

I'd suggest buying a Lexus ES 330 or ES 350. I'd look for an original owner, for sale by owner, inspected, with documented oil changes. Keep the oil changed, they'll run forever. +1 Just a nice blend of luxury and economy in a really reliable package. Sedans have terrible resale value, so picking u...
by illumination
Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:32 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?
Replies: 54
Views: 3665

Re: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?

Tires can have issues like an internal belt separating, it could also be something like balance or alignment issue. A weight could have fallen off the wheel and sort of "slaps" the road from not being properly balanced at higher speeds. Usually you feel this in the steering wheel at highwa...
by illumination
Wed Apr 07, 2021 9:21 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Self-managed 3 Fund or Life Strategy vs Vanguard PAS for 80 year old
Replies: 12
Views: 1224

Re: Self-managed 3 Fund or Life Strategy vs Vanguard PAS for 80 year old

I would do PAS even though I think they provide very little value. It's just too abrupt a change in his situation to self-manage and it's something of an insurance policy if we enter a bear market.

I'd tread very carefully when it comes to money management and in-laws.
by illumination
Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Should I be concerned about over funding 529?
Replies: 17
Views: 1676

Re: Should I be concerned about over funding 529?

I would stop, and also continue to take some out for his private education to get that balance down a bit. I do think you can over fund a 529. It's not the end of the world if you say only have 90% of the tuition in a 529 and just save the remainder in an index fund and have to pay some capital gain...
by illumination
Tue Apr 06, 2021 4:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Wife Beating Me Up over cost of Landscaping Job
Replies: 20
Views: 2548

Re: Wife Beating Me Up over cost of Landscaping Job

The price doesn't sound out of line to me. I will say some landscaping outfits can charge outrageous fees, I came across that where I was getting six figure quotes to redesign my yard and ended up being my own "project manager" and doing it at like 90% less. It's just not a good road to go...