Search found 63 matches

by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 28, 2021 7:53 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?
Replies: 323
Views: 38200

Re: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?

My company is now 4 days a week in the office. I am sure at some point they will have us coming in 5 days a week. Ideally would have liked at least 2 days remote. Next phase --> moving to alternate hybrid schedule with 2 days remote: MON-FRI in the office every week day with Saturday and Sunday bei...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Jun 26, 2021 8:34 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Another Emergency Fund Question: Do I Need One Anymore?
Replies: 84
Views: 6712

Re: Another Emergency Fund Question: Do I Need One Anymore?

In my opinion, most investors do not need a separate low-yielding emergency fund they may never need. Instead, in case of an emergency (which I never had), most investors have another source of money such as these: * Bank account * Credit Card * Investment Portfolio * Life Insurance Loan Value * Ba...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Jun 15, 2021 7:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Replies: 77
Views: 6322

Re: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)

Useful survey:

Which VPN Providers Really Take Privacy Seriously in 2021?
https://torrentfreak.com/best-vpn-anonymous-no-logging/
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 14, 2021 7:21 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: I'll never regret not having international funds in my portfolio
Replies: 281
Views: 19951

Re: I'll never regret not having international funds in my portfolio

These Int'l vs. US threads are a great opportunity for members to share posts that justify their reasons for the choices they made and by doing so, feel better about themselves. Along that vein, I would just add to the current discussion that I expect that most people who hold Int'l aren't doing so ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Fri Jun 11, 2021 4:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Replies: 77
Views: 6322

Re: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)

A VPN provides no additional security over HTTPS, which your browser and the majority of websites out there already use. According to the technophiles on the Reddit community, there seems to be a prevailing consensus that https is super awesome but definitely not a cure-all, replacement for all of ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Fri Jun 11, 2021 1:52 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Worth spending extra money for Turo car rental?
Replies: 10
Views: 1072

Re: Worth spending extra money for Turo car rental?

Auto insurance policies usually have a proportional coverage clause. The two primary auto policies will split the liability based on the coverage limits. The umbrella will then stack on top of the same attachment point. In your example, a $1.5 million claim will be paid as follows: The Turo owner's...
by cheerfulcharlie
Fri Jun 11, 2021 12:41 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Worth spending extra money for Turo car rental?
Replies: 10
Views: 1072

Re: Worth spending extra money for Turo car rental?

One aspect of Turo particularly concerns me. The insurance coverage that Turo requires of the car owners is only the minimum required by law, which in some states is absurdly low for third party liability. For anyone with a substantial nest egg built up, this seems like an unwarranted risk in case o...
by cheerfulcharlie
Thu Jun 10, 2021 9:32 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Replies: 77
Views: 6322

Re: Securing a VPN (Virtual Private Network)

This guy does VPN reviews and maintains a list of all the major VPN providers: https://www.vpntierlist.com/vpn-tier-list/ You will be fine with any of the major VPN providers in his list. Over the years, I've used a number of the major VPN services he has listed. I've jumped around based on whoever ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Digital Privacy Recommendations - Email and Cloud Storage
Replies: 22
Views: 1642

Re: Digital Privacy Recommendations - Email and Cloud Storage

Home NAS for digital storage. No need to pay subscription to anyone else. I was thinking about that, but I'd still like a backup somewhere in the cloud. Plus I need to be able to securely share files (for example, with CPA). Purchasing a NAS is to build your own cloud. Backing up and working with f...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 07, 2021 6:02 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Digital Privacy Recommendations - Email and Cloud Storage
Replies: 22
Views: 1642

Re: Digital Privacy Recommendations - Email and Cloud Storage

For cloud storage, I suggest encrypting your data on your local computer with a program like Veracrypt with a long password. And then upload to one of the free services like Google Drive. Veracrypt is not a good solution for uploading files to the cloud unless the total file size of the Veracrypt c...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 07, 2021 5:44 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?
Replies: 323
Views: 38200

Re: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?

If the only thing keeping your job from being outsourced is the fact you sit in a chair in an office, you're done for no matter what. Some exceptions might be working for a state government office that for political and other funding reasons has a strong preference for hiring from within the state ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jun 07, 2021 4:39 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?
Replies: 323
Views: 38200

Re: Return to Work - How is your company dealing with it?

Taxation isn't too bad, they just need to know which state you are in and since when. They might have to send you updated insurance cards, that's about it. For a large company with operations in many states, it may be administratively easy as they already have processes in place to handle all this ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Jun 02, 2021 8:26 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Anyone out there not (yet) own any real estate?
Replies: 121
Views: 15902

Re: Anyone out there not (yet) own any real estate?

I owned a big house for a decade. No more. Not for me. And, I had a decent experience as one could have. As a single guy, a small apartment is more my style. The previous posts have already beaten to deaths the many pros and cons of renting vs. owning. I just want to point out a few key advantages t...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Jun 02, 2021 8:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USPS mail forwarding....cost?
Replies: 14
Views: 1329

Re: USPS mail forwarding....cost?

Moved a few years back, forwarded mail to my new home. After a year, I paid $1 (online) and filled out the form again just to catch any straggler items I may have missed or any old friend who wasn't updated (at USPS office I think you can fill out the little card for free). Goodness. A year is a lo...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Jun 02, 2021 1:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?
Replies: 41
Views: 3953

Re: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?

When I have paper with critical information to dispose of, I soak it in water, tear it up with my fingers, and dump it in the kitchen garbage. Tearing it manually releases aggressive energy. If it's wet and mixed with perishable garbage, it's MUCH less likely to be found (or even readable). How lon...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Jun 02, 2021 10:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?
Replies: 41
Views: 3953

Re: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?

Plus, there is just something satisfying about destroying paper by feeding it through a paper shredder. Is it the satisfaction of destroying something? Or, is it because the sense of accomplishment of completing a task? Is it the finality of whirring motors? Is it because I feel like I am cleaning a...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Jun 01, 2021 9:44 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?
Replies: 41
Views: 3953

Re: Do Thieves Still Go Thru Trash To Steal ID?

I have been using this Amazon basics shredder for the past 2.5 years after another brand of shredder failed on me: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B00YFTHJ9C/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1 I went paperless on everything I could, so I don't have that much to shred, but this l...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon May 31, 2021 3:15 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?
Replies: 39
Views: 5330

Re: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?

On the subject of paper, I used to keep every scrap of paper in my younger years, but as others have observed, this became overwhelming. I eventually got a ScanSnap ix1500 scanner and that worked great over the years for scanning all my stuff in. But, recently, Google just came out with Google Stack...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon May 31, 2021 2:53 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?
Replies: 39
Views: 5330

Re: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?

Also, unless you use a real backup software that does versioning, all you have is a mirror. Better than nothing but just. It is easy to accomplish real versioning with Google Drive. To accomplish, you have to realize that Google provides two separate apps for accessing your Google Drive: (1) Google...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon May 31, 2021 2:34 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?
Replies: 39
Views: 5330

Re: Computer Files - the cloud, paper, or external drive?

For my laptop, I was thinking of creating a separate encrypted folder on my Mac using VeraCrypt so that it gets uploaded to the cloud already encrypted. That way I can access the documents on the laptop when I need them, and its protected if my laptop is lost or stolen. Veracrypt is great but it wo...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon May 10, 2021 10:23 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Please Weigh In, Can't Ask Anyone Else - Burial Planning
Replies: 52
Views: 4665

Re: Please Weigh In, Can't Ask Anyone Else - Burial Planning

There is another option (which I have chosen): Donate the body to science. ... There should be little or no cost. This is exactly the option I will choose. I would rather have my money/resources go directly to my heirs in a way that is most useful to them, rather than being "wasted" on wa...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sun May 09, 2021 12:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Living abroad?
Replies: 13
Views: 1254

Re: Living abroad?

This is highly dependent on the country chosen (assuming that one will change residency to that country) and the annual amount spend as that will determine how much you get screwed on taxes. Many countries in Europe (though not all) have a steep tax structure that will really stick it to you unless ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed May 05, 2021 7:46 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mail and time gap between selling house and entering new home
Replies: 10
Views: 1141

Re: Mail and time gap between selling house and entering new home

This service is pretty slick: https://travelingmailbox.com/ They will scan all your mail for viewing online (and upload copies to your preferred cloud provider as well), and in addition, they will even hold all your mail until you instruct them to destroy or forward your mail to another address. I w...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Apr 27, 2021 6:44 am
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?
Replies: 11
Views: 1874

Re: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?

Here is an article that links to the Vanguard white paper: https://advisors.vanguard.com/insights/ ... akewarning

I would be interested to hear your thoughts after you've studied both.
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Apr 26, 2021 9:07 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?
Replies: 11
Views: 1874

Re: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?

Not having read the Vanguard white paper, I would second that. It is the most volatile time of the day. I would phrase it differently than Cheerful Charlie. People are still working out what the overnight news means and where they want to be. Liquidity for the ETFs shouldn't be a issue. The way I u...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Apr 26, 2021 6:53 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?
Replies: 11
Views: 1874

Re: Does time of day matter when buying to hold?

The spreads on the typical funds ETF offerings in the 3 fund portfolio are so tight and narrow that any time you buy, you are buying at the market valuation of price. So I click market buy and happily get my shares at whatever price. Vanguard did a white paper suggesting avoiding placing orders for...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Apr 17, 2021 7:13 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Electric Shaver Replacement Head Replacements?
Replies: 16
Views: 1304

Re: Electric Shaver Replacement Head Replacements?

I can confirm the accuracy of the Amazon reviews about the non-OEM (counterfeit) replacement rotary heads. The knock-offs are like buying OEM rotary heads after 6 months of use. You definitely want to always stick to the OEM heads. Unfortunately, the OEM rotary heads are super expensive, especially ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Mar 30, 2021 8:37 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Spending money and living now VS saving and living better later?
Replies: 82
Views: 17796

Re: Spending money and living now VS saving and living better later?

The goal should be to achieve an overall average standard of living over one's life. In other words, one should not live a life of deprivation most of one's life so one can live like a rock start in the last 3 years of one's life. Conversely, one should not live like such a rock star early in life s...
by cheerfulcharlie
Thu Mar 18, 2021 4:47 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: What is the BEST thing you spent money on?
Replies: 315
Views: 36097

Re: What is the BEST thing you spent money on?

This thread reminds me of the following quotable quote:

“I spent half my money on gambling, alcohol and wild women.
The other half I wasted.”
-W.C.Fields
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Feb 24, 2021 8:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?
Replies: 211
Views: 16661

Re: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?

On the subject of ascertaining financial information about a person, keep in mind that the salary/compensation of every government employee is public information. This includes professors at public state universities, doctors and nurses at state hospitals, all federal government employees, even publ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Feb 23, 2021 7:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?
Replies: 211
Views: 16661

Re: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?

I don't own a car and I have umbrella insurance. (Geico) However, I was required to buy a non-owners insurance policy, which is cheap. Now when I rent a car, both my auto and umbrella cover me for liability so I can decline any car-rental provided liability insurance. Good to know -- thanks for sha...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Feb 23, 2021 5:24 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?
Replies: 211
Views: 16661

Re: Umbrella Policy; Anyone actually made a claim?

I pay $212/yr for 1 mil in coverage through Amica in Texas (late 40s, no risk factors). I'm not sure why my rate seems higher than most other posted here, but when I shopped it around last year, Amica's rate was competitive. I also get my car and renter's insurance through Amica. The interesting thi...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Feb 02, 2021 9:08 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Does anyone still file fed taxes by mail? Why?
Replies: 103
Views: 6921

Re: Does anyone still file fed taxes by mail? Why?

I am required to paper file this year. The reason? Due to someone previously fraudulently filing a return under my name some years ago, I get a PIN number for e-filing every year. So, normally I e-file with this PIN number every year. This year I moved to a new address, but I neglected to update my ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jan 18, 2021 9:27 am
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now
Replies: 21
Views: 2834

Re: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now

Due to COVID, I haven't been travelling internationally this year . . . Was the entire account fully empty or did you have some investments in it? At the time, I had 2 checking accounts and 2 brokerage accounts. One of the checking accounts had no money in it. The other accounts had a little money ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sun Jan 17, 2021 9:21 pm
Forum: Non-US Investing
Topic: Banking ATM card with no international ATM fees and foreign exchange fees
Replies: 28
Views: 9872

Re: Banking ATM card with no international ATM fees and foreign exchange fees

I have both Fidelity and Schwab ATM cards. I've been using the Schwab ATM card for years. I've only had the Fidelity ATM card for maybe 2-3 years. I confirm that despite the confusing Fidelity documentation that their ATM card does not have a separate foreign transaction fee. To confirm this, I with...
by cheerfulcharlie
Wed Jan 13, 2021 6:48 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Vanguard security codes via Google Voice
Replies: 69
Views: 5138

Re: Vanguard security codes via Google Voice

Been spotty for me too yesterday with my Google voice number. In one case, I had to click on resend and the text came right away. In another instance, the text took 6 minutes to arrive. Today, I couldn't receive a text, even when clicking on resend, so I had to click on resend and select the option ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Jan 11, 2021 9:23 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can a car have problem if you drive very little?
Replies: 34
Views: 2840

Re: Can a car have problem if you drive very little?

During the pandemic, I wasn't driving my car enough and so my car battery went dead. Luckily, I carry this little sucker in my car just in case I need a jump: https://smile.amazon.com/gp/product/B07S5968FF/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1 Works like a charm. Through some experimen...
by cheerfulcharlie
Thu Dec 24, 2020 11:20 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now
Replies: 21
Views: 2834

Re: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now

All you had to do was open a new account with different numbers for ACH? So convenient! And this is the definition of great customer service? Even the horrible Vanguard sends an E-Mail notifying you of pending suspension of check-writing and allowing you to click a button to keep it active if you c...
by cheerfulcharlie
Thu Dec 24, 2020 11:13 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now
Replies: 21
Views: 2834

Re: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now

Did they send you a check for the balance that was in there, or ... was your account already at $0.00? That particular account was zeroed out. So no check. Maybe they would not have closed it if I had a dollar in there? But I'm not taking any chances anymore. From now on, I'm going to deposit or wi...
by cheerfulcharlie
Thu Dec 24, 2020 10:56 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: (PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now
Replies: 21
Views: 2834

(PSA) Schwab automatically closing checking accounts now

Due to COVID, I haven't been travelling internationally this year so I haven't been using my Schwab checking account since February -- I like the free ATM withdrawals abroad with no foreign transaction fee. Unbeknownst to me, Schwab has a 6 month inactivity policy where they can automatically close ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Dec 21, 2020 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: spreadsheet macro to track/chart daily porfolio value
Replies: 14
Views: 1821

Re: spreadsheet macro to track/chart daily porfolio value

OMG! You're a genius!!! This is beautiful work. I stole your scripts and adapted to my own personal finance tracking spreadsheet and now my spreadsheet is supercharged! My next goal will be to somehow learn how to automate logging into two of my financial institutions to scrape some key data to avoi...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sun Dec 13, 2020 4:06 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Engagement Ring Insurance
Replies: 39
Views: 2723

Re: Engagement Ring Insurance

I declined the coverage since I could afford to replace the ring if needed. I also decline the $8 addon to our auto insurance since I can afford to pay for a tow truck if we ever need one. I would not be so quick to dismiss the $8 add-on for towing if the towing coverage is bundled with rental car ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sun Dec 06, 2020 5:25 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Commuting after COVID
Replies: 133
Views: 8589

Re: Commuting after COVID

Here's an interesting article, arguing that things will never "go back to the way things were:" https://notboring.substack.com/p/were-never-going-back Some quotable quotes: "Missing from the debate is the fact that it’s not really up to the companies to choose. Employees will ultimate...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Dec 05, 2020 9:33 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Commuting after COVID
Replies: 133
Views: 8589

Re: Commuting after COVID

On the subject of employers outsourcing work to employees in cheaper states, replacing expensive New York Sara with more affordable Kansas Jane is a lot more complicated than many might think from a legal and administrative standpoint, especially for those businesses who have traditionally confined ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Dec 05, 2020 8:52 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: Can anyone reach Vanguard on the phone?
Replies: 173
Views: 15336

Re: Can anyone reach Vanguard on the phone?

If you use one of the latest Google Pixel phones, you can use Google's AI technology to stay on hold for you. After you have entered the phone tree and are listening to the hold message or music, you just press the "hold-for-me" button and Google's AI is somehow smart enough to know when a...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: How to remove/clean iron stains from an acrylic tub
Replies: 12
Views: 712

Re: How to remove/clean iron stains from an acrylic tub

Check out a product called Iron Out. This stuff works like magic on rust. The overflow condensate from my air conditioning unit flows into my tub at my apartment, but the line is rusting, so unsightly rust stains show up on my tub. Every so often, I pour this "Iron Out" white powder on th...
by cheerfulcharlie
Sat Nov 21, 2020 7:23 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do not use Personal Capital
Replies: 172
Views: 51631

Re: Do not use Personal Capital

I've previously been a satisfied user of their free tools, but the platform has had many more glitches since Empower acquired them. In the last 2 months, Personal Capital has "lost" a ton of my charges on two of my primary spending accounts (a credit card and a checking account). So, now,...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Nov 16, 2020 9:02 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: If you close an account at vanguard will you lose all your past statements on the account?
Replies: 12
Views: 1642

Re: If you close an account at vanguard will you lose all your past statements on the account?

I use the service Filethis.com. It logs into my accounts for me and downloads pdf statements of all my accounts and stores them in my Google Drive account. I'm really happy with this service. It's made the decision to go paperless even more effortless for me. No more scanning in monthly statements. ...
by cheerfulcharlie
Mon Nov 16, 2020 8:59 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Schwab Bank Cancels Overdraft Credit Line
Replies: 35
Views: 3129

Re: Schwab Bank Cancels Overdraft Credit Line

Many years ago, I called up Schwab and had them turn off the overdraft protection as it was an extremely undesirable feature for me. As you may know, with Schwab, you can open multiple checking accounts and multiple brokerage accounts - I have two of each. When I travel, I use Schwab's ATM debit car...
by cheerfulcharlie
Tue Sep 08, 2020 7:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do not use Personal Capital
Replies: 172
Views: 51631

Re: Do not use Personal Capital

You could go to settings at PC and change the phone number on your profile to a number other than yours. That's what I did. No more phone calls. I would not recommend this for this for anyone who travels. If you travel out of the country, then Personal Capital requires a phone validation (can't rem...