Search found 13364 matches

by Jack FFR1846
Sun Apr 11, 2021 11:23 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: USPS Delivery issues
Replies: 20
Views: 998

Re: USPS Delivery issues

I would tend to send mail first class. The post office knows how to deliver first class. If you're going to send certified, is the postman going to be looking for a signature? Is there anyone at the TSP office to give a signature? If you send 2 copies, one first class, one certified, there's a good ...
by Jack FFR1846
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Family car
Replies: 86
Views: 6563

Re: Family car

dukeblue219 wrote: Wed Mar 31, 2021 12:33 pm BHers allegedly haul more 4x8 plywood and drywall than any other car buyers I've ever met :D
I easily brought home half a dozen 16 foot 2x4's with my Crosstrek. I put my kayak rack on the factory crossbars and used a couple ratchet straps to tie the wood down. Worked great.
by Jack FFR1846
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:42 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Airline Miles - how to use?
Replies: 27
Views: 1756

Re: Arline Miles - how to use?

I gave up on freebie flights decades ago. Too many restrictions, especially when 4 of us want to go together. What we've done is bought the coach tickets and used miles to upgrade to first class.
by Jack FFR1846
Fri Apr 09, 2021 8:14 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: fan trips GFCI; can I plug into surge protector?
Replies: 22
Views: 1303

Re: fan trips GFCI; can I plug into surge protector?

How was it installed? DIY? Handy Man? If someone connected neutral and ground at the fan, the wires will share the return current, which is sensed as a difference between hot and ground and trip the breaker.
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 08, 2021 9:20 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Down Payment / We May Never Buy - About to Surrender "Toxic" VUL
Replies: 4
Views: 627

Re: Down Payment / We May Never Buy - About to Surrender "Toxic" VUL

The insurance portion of a VUL or UL is typically the worst of the worst deals. It is re-evaluated annually as if you're Joe Smith off the street. Because of this, as the policy gets older, the cash value starts going down with an eventual zero'ing out of both death benefit and cash value.
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Best way to determine value and sell old coins, currency
Replies: 11
Views: 1030

Re: Best way to determine value and sell old coins, currency

All Canadian pennies are 95% copper, like pre 82 US pennies. My scrap/coin dealer buys them for copper content. If these are poor condition, circulated coins, the dimes, quarters, dollars are likely all "junk silver" and the value is really easy to find. I've sold my silver coins over the ...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:53 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Shoe Choice for a Walker
Replies: 33
Views: 2623

Re: Shoe Choice for a Walker

Find your local podiatrist's office. Ask them who they use for shoes. Go there. Spend more than you can find online, but get a correct fit for what you're doing. I did this after having an issue with one foot. They took 45 minutes to fit me correctly and have me try on and walk (observed) in each on...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:31 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I replace 2 or 4 tires?
Replies: 55
Views: 3068

Re: Should I replace 2 or 4 tires?

Only thing I would add is that if you buy four - consider selling your four used tires on craigslist. I’ve done that twice before and gotten an easy $160 for four used tires. I took pics w the penny in tread so the buyer knew what they were buying. There seems to be a market for used tires. (I don’...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 10:24 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: How much cash do you really hold?
Replies: 91
Views: 6216

Re: How much cash do you really hold?

Putting the money in buckets, saying "this $50k is emergency fund, this $10k is vacation fund, this $5k is cash for everyday stuff" is not really separate stuff. In this example, you have $65k in cash. I also consider my $395k of paper savings bonds to be cash because I know first hand tha...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 7:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: The best $10,000 to $15,000 vehicle.
Replies: 42
Views: 3211

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

$15k would buy a brand new Honda FIT. Or a slightly used Civic LX. What's important to you besides reliability and fuel mileage? Heck...a Mazda Miata fits the mpg and reliability requirements. A newer NB with low mileage fits your budget easily.
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:47 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Insane to buy a sports car?
Replies: 234
Views: 15666

Re: Insane to buy a sports car?

Cayman GTS? The H6 is certainly nice. I drove a base Cayman last week and crossed it off my list of "want to buy" cars. I'm sure the GTS is much better. Too big for me.
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Apr 07, 2021 6:38 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?
Replies: 54
Views: 3601

Re: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?

Those tires are certainly not the rubber band tires on quite a few cars. The Cayman I test drove last week had 20" wheels. Even my son's Subaru STi has shorter sidewall tires than you've got, by a lot. The dealer *may* have suggestions. Certainly won't hurt to bring it in and ask. I doubt you'r...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:41 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?
Replies: 54
Views: 3601

Re: 2019 Porsche Macan Excessive Tire Noise: Options?

If nothing else, I'd go to the Tire Rack reviews section for tires that will fit your Macan. Find the quietest tires of the lot and buy them. You can either sell the tires that come off or save them for later if you need tires when you're going to get rid of it.
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Apr 06, 2021 5:33 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Should I replace 2 or 4 tires?
Replies: 55
Views: 3068

Re: Should I replace 2 or 4 tires?

Put the 2 5's in the front. When the 3 gets to 2, replace it. When the 4 gets to 2, replace it. At that point, rotate the 2 newer back ones to the front. When the now-rears (both started at 5) get to 2, replace them.

This will maximize how many miles you get out of the tires.
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:40 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Too early to retire?
Replies: 53
Views: 6754

Re: Too early to retire?

I think you're in reasonably good shape. Let me break down the good and bad I see: good About 25X spending saved not counting SS SS of some sort will come 529 pretty well funded for in state public college (maybe a little light) Your state has GREAT state public colleges. Virginia Tech and that Boar...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Apr 06, 2021 3:20 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: What is the expected percentage (raise) for a manager position?
Replies: 24
Views: 2264

Re: What is the expected percentage (raise) for a manager position?

This is completely company specific. I've worked for tech companies all my career and was offered management positions twice (which I declined to stay a tech guy). In both cases, they made it clear that moving from Principal Engineer to Manager was a lateral move and no raise would accompany it. Ano...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Apr 06, 2021 9:22 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Anyways to improve financial aid?
Replies: 70
Views: 3622

Re: Anyways to improve financial aid?

This depends what college we're talking about. If the college has a crew team (rowing) and the high school has a crew team, get him on that team. It's the easiest way to get a money scholarship. I am not saying crew is an easy sport. I had 2 room mates in college on crew and they were up at 4 to get...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 1:42 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Stretched for Retirement, wondering about some current “needs”
Replies: 9
Views: 1394

Re: Stretched for Retirement, wondering about some current “needs”

Have you considered a less expensive option? A portable 5500 VA generator will cost something like $700 (what I paid). It will power everything you've talked about and quite a bit more. Downside is that it's loud and you do have to gas it up. For 3 days a year, it should be more than adequate. An el...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 11:46 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Northwestern Mutual Refugee
Replies: 19
Views: 1314

Re: Northwestern Mutual Refugee

The fees on your front loaded garbage funds are still high compared with anything within a reasonable 3 fund portfolio. The fact that you already dumped a wheelbarrow full of cash into NWM's coffers doesn't justify continuing to dump un-necessary fees there. Get out. All the way out.
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 8:05 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Gold and Silver Questions?
Replies: 44
Views: 3186

Re: Gold and Silver Questions?

Recent silver prices are way down. About a dollar and a half an ounce since last month. The thing to have done with silver is seen the big runup and sold. I did exactly this, selling everything I had remaining from my disasters of buys over the last 8 years. The thing with silver compared to gold is...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 7:55 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Financial advisor advice
Replies: 9
Views: 1283

Re: Financial advisor advice

I'm sorry, but unless you have an incredibly complex group of LLCs, trusts and obligations, you are getting absolutely hosed. The initial charge seems fine but going through an AUM company to invest at Fidelity? Why? Just invest yourself at Fidelity. A 3 fund there is as simple as can be with zero f...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:48 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: My Next Car: Tesla S vs BMW 540iX
Replies: 25
Views: 2884

Re: My Next Car: Tesla S vs BMW 540iX

2) Since you are a driving enthusiast, you might want to consider the Porche Taycan. A rear-wheel drive base model is now available for around the same price point as the Model S. An all wheel drive version is available but comes at a much higher price. It is a truly amazing car. It is an EV and a ...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:31 am
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: AA for someone 2 years from retirement
Replies: 47
Views: 4648

Re: AA for someone 2 years from retirement

I'll be retiring this year...once Covid is at bay. I'm at 50/50 and have just about $100k in cash in anticipation of buying a stupid car when I call it quits. I have over 50 times spending already. The reason for 50/50 is that I've realized that I have won the game, so I don't need anything overly r...
by Jack FFR1846
Mon Apr 05, 2021 6:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Too many Costco returns?
Replies: 7
Views: 2437

Re: Too many Costco returns?

Costco will change the rules for blatant abuse. A co-worker of mine is a projection TV nut and must have the latest projector. He would buy one at Costco and as soon as the next, updated version came out, he'd pack up the one he had, return it and buy the latest version. Because these things were up...
by Jack FFR1846
Sun Apr 04, 2021 7:28 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Oil change interval for low-mileage vehicles
Replies: 172
Views: 22518

Re: Oil change interval for low-mileage vehicles

I first starting using synthetic oil around 1975. There were articles about synthetic (Mobil 1) being tested in Taxi's and Police vehicles. They ran the vehicles for a 100K miles. The oil was tested and was still good, so they put the used oil Back In the cars and continued to drive them and re-tes...
by Jack FFR1846
Sun Apr 04, 2021 10:25 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair or Replace 2003 Toyota Corolla
Replies: 67
Views: 5533

Re: Repair or Replace 2003 Toyota Corolla

Something to consider: Just replace the serpentine belt. If it's really old and slipping on the alternator pulley, the alternator could be perfectly fine, but not charge as well. I don't know if this is the case with your car....just something that can be considered.
by Jack FFR1846
Sun Apr 04, 2021 10:11 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: "V" Rated Tired vs "H" Rated Tire
Replies: 12
Views: 936

Re: "V" Rated Tired vs "H" Rated Tire

In general, V rated tires will have a stiffer sidewall and softer compound. These help make crisper turns and higher lateral grip in corners. Why they put tires like this on your truck is beyond me. H rated tires will feel different for handling. I would imagine that they also will last longer. I've...
by Jack FFR1846
Sun Apr 04, 2021 6:44 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Repair or Replace 2003 Toyota Corolla
Replies: 67
Views: 5533

Re: Repair or Replace 2003 Toyota Corolla

For a car like this, I'd recommend not comparing the cost to repair to what the car will be worth, but instead, compare the cost to repair with the cost of a new car. This is way cheaper than even a 50k mile used Corolla. Things that make sense: Alternator and serpentine belt. If the alternator need...
by Jack FFR1846
Sat Apr 03, 2021 2:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Uber ride — how to be sure windows will open?
Replies: 17
Views: 1911

Re: Uber ride — how to be sure windows will open?

I recently ordered an Uber only to learn that the backseat windows did not open. I think they were not designed to open, it wasn’t that they were not working. I cannot think of a normal 4-door car with no window controls but possible I guess. Just contact the driver from the app once they accept th...
by Jack FFR1846
Sat Apr 03, 2021 6:09 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Would you give money to close friends to live in same neighborhood?
Replies: 45
Views: 2942

Re: Would you give money to close friends to live in same neighborhood?

If you help them buy a house out of their price range, are you then going to pay the increased insurance cost? Increased property tax cost? HOA extortion money?
by Jack FFR1846
Sat Apr 03, 2021 6:07 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: AWD vs 2WD in up state new york
Replies: 53
Views: 3244

Re: AWD vs 2WD in up state new york

I'm a bit east of you in Massachusetts. For several years, I drove a Ford Fusion on 4 snows. It was garbage and during heavy snow, I did get stuck or nearly go off the side street mainly because of the low ground clearance. I came away realizing that I could have a million wheel drive, but if snow i...
by Jack FFR1846
Fri Apr 02, 2021 4:19 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Asking for more Merit aid? College decision day 5/1
Replies: 33
Views: 1696

Re: Asking for more Merit aid? College decision day 5/1

Be very careful with the strategy to go 2 years to El Cheapo college, then transfer to Wicked Good College. Several things can bite you: 1: Kiss all merit aid goodbye. If Wicked Good College offered only $1k vs El Cheapo giving you $20k, expect Wicked Good to offer zip on transfer. 2: Courses are ab...
by Jack FFR1846
Fri Apr 02, 2021 6:55 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Strategy for Reducing Taxes for High Overtime Employees?
Replies: 4
Views: 326

Re: Strategy for Reducing Taxes for High Overtime Employees?

Keep in mind that it's not your taxes that are skyrocketing with 120 hour time and a half weeks. It's your with holding. Maybe in a week, your income pushes you into the 32% bracket. This happens because your with holding is based on your week times 52, not what your average pay is. So one week you ...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 2:27 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Is auto purchase through Costco a good deal?
Replies: 12
Views: 1688

Re: Is auto purchase through Costco a good deal?

Subaru is giving dealers money to sell some models right now. Looking at Planet Subaru, they're showing $2000 off MSRP and 0.9% financing for a 21 Crosstrek Premium. 21 Outback Limiteds are going for 0% financing and $3500 off MSRP. They are straight shooters and will likely tell you over the phone ...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 2:05 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Storage Unit Rent Increase
Replies: 32
Views: 2793

Re: Storage Unit Rent Increase

I'm finding so many ways to sell junk these days. I recently went looking for an app that would scan old CDs and DVDs and pay for them. Plenty out there. I've managed to send them 3 wine bottle boxes of these things so far. They also take video games and books. I can see going to Staples to drop off...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 12:55 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Do you trust the current value of your portfolio?
Replies: 130
Views: 9118

Re: Do you trust the current value of your portfolio?

I am a huge safety net guy. My conservatism is like this: My AA is 50/50. Of the bonds, 12% is in US Savings bonds, so that value is never going down. My spending, increased for expected retirement increases (health insurance and travel) comes to $62k per year. 25 times that would be $1.55MM. But I ...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 12:36 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Previous Salary req before offer
Replies: 24
Views: 2072

Re: Previous Salary req before offer

Tell them what you currently make. You then await their offer. If their offer is too low, tell them so. If you are interviewing at other places, tell them that too. I've negotiated a number of times, sometimes because the offer was too low, sometimes because although it was way above my expectations...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 10:17 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nd help deciphering my mother's intentions in re: Series EE Savings Bonds in my mother's Safety Deposit Box
Replies: 19
Views: 1675

Re: Nd help deciphering my mother's intentions in re: Series EE Savings Bonds in my mother's Safety Deposit Box

If nothing else, make a definite plan to dispose of these bonds. DW's aunt passed recently. In the estate are about $15k worth of savings bonds. Here's the rub: None are in the aunt's name. They're all in the aunt's parents' names. These were never reported during probate of either parent (because o...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 7:21 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Nd help deciphering my mother's intentions in re: Series EE Savings Bonds in my mother's Safety Deposit Box
Replies: 19
Views: 1675

Re: Nd help deciphering my mother's intentions in re: Series EE Savings Bonds in my mother's Safety Deposit Box

To summarize a couple great explanatory posts above: No, she won't get tax benefit from a 529 rollover because it is not being made to a qualified dependent. The POD is fine to define transfer. But at that "paid" time, tax will be due. So if the goal is to evade or minimize tax, you should...
by Jack FFR1846
Thu Apr 01, 2021 7:11 am
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: $1M / $5M Geico Umbrella Policy in Florida: Are These Numbers Insane?
Replies: 40
Views: 3492

Re: $1M / $5M Geico Umbrella Policy in Florida: Are These Numbers Insane?

Despite the TV ads touting 15% savings.....and my holding of BRK/b, Geico is often not only higher than the average rate, they are sometimes way higher. My son was pricing insurance for his new car. He got a quote from Mapfre from our independent insurance agent, then, because that lizard said he co...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Mar 31, 2021 8:12 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Pedestal Sink - Disposal?
Replies: 15
Views: 892

Re: Pedestal Sink - Disposal?

Our area has gone to supplied trash and recycling bins that the truck can come and automatically grab, lift and empty the bins. Nothing is collected if it's not in the bin. I've got a toilet I pulled out. The metal got recycled, the plastic thrown in the trash and a sledge hammer used to smash what ...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Mar 31, 2021 8:06 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Mulch from Costco or Lowes
Replies: 41
Views: 4153

Re: Mulch from Costco or Lowes

Kicked the annual mulch habit a decade ago. Landscape fabric, then stones. Never have to replace it. And it never looks old or worn out.
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Mar 31, 2021 5:53 pm
Forum: Investing - Theory, News & General
Topic: CFP historic returns
Replies: 29
Views: 1564

Re: CFP historic returns

Clearly, the important word here is "During". Why else would they randomly capitalize it? I wonder if they have an actual "flagship" portfolio or if they run simulations all year on various strategies and at the end of the year, declare the best performing one "Our Flagship ...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Mar 31, 2021 12:05 pm
Forum: Personal Finance (Not Investing)
Topic: Home Sellers Dilemma re Agent
Replies: 24
Views: 2159

Re: Home Sellers Dilemma re Agent

If you have a potential buyer, why would you even consider bringing in an agent. Chances are very good that the agent is tied to a broker (real estate agency) and is bound by the agreement that if they list a house, the sale brings in 6%. You certainly could negotiate this up front, but even if you ...
by Jack FFR1846
Wed Mar 31, 2021 10:36 am
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: High spenders what do you spend on?
Replies: 228
Views: 22178

Re: High spenders what do you spend on?

Both first class and coach arrive at the same exact time. Might I recommend the 2021 Corvette Stingray? The drive is an incredible experience. I sometimes wonder why I hear the first with some frequency and rarely if ever hear that a Stingray and a Chevy Spark ($50,000 or more less expensive) arriv...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Mar 30, 2021 6:08 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Can I stop working? [New car discussion]
Replies: 63
Views: 3293

Re: Can I stop working? [New car discussion]

Again, it is all relative. Consider two money market funds; one pays 0.01% per annum, the second 0.05% per annum. The second fund pays FIVE TIMES as much interest as the first. Greatly superior, right? Or, on a $100,000 balance, the difference is $40 per year. That’s forty bucks. Significantly bett...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Mar 30, 2021 4:16 pm
Forum: Personal Investments
Topic: Trust in pensions ?
Replies: 43
Views: 2947

Re: Trust in pensions ?

I've got a private pension that's moved from company to company as each one was bought out. Currently an HP pension administered by Fidelity. I have trust that Fidelity has their ducks in a row. But I only trust a pension as far as I can throw a wild boar (which ain't far). When I turn 65, I can tak...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Mar 30, 2021 1:36 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Which Subaru would you recommend for my mom (mid 70s)?
Replies: 31
Views: 1977

Re: Which Subaru would you recommend for my mom (mid 70s)?

I would HIGHLY recommend that you bring your mom to a Subaru dealer. Recommendations are worthless. Looking through pictures on the internet is worthless. Coming up on 3 years ago, my mom wanted to replace her aging first generation Ford Fusion. She had settled on a Subaru but was only going by onli...
by Jack FFR1846
Tue Mar 30, 2021 12:38 pm
Forum: Personal Consumer Issues
Topic: Tesla for people that keep cars a long time
Replies: 147
Views: 11205

Re: Tesla for people that keep cars a long time

Self driving works well, except when it needs to avoid crashing into police cars.

Steve Lehto speaks on this, following a North Carolina Tesla crash.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nFhc_SqM-wM