Yes, carriers – plural.
We had been with T-Mobile for about 12 years. Our monthly bill, for a family plan of two, had averaged out to around $75/month for the past couple of years. Not bad. We were grandfathered into an old plan and didn’t quite think much about it.
But starting this year, T-Mobile dropped the corporate discount we used to get. Monthly bill jumped to $84. Just a $9 increase, still it got me thinking if other comparable options were out there with a lower cost.
After a bit of research and a lot of procrastinating, we finally pulled the trigger to switch in August.
W went with Google FI. You pay $20 for unlimited calls and texts, and $10/GB of data used. One month cost was $32. This is post paid with users only paying for the amount of data they use. Coverage is quite possibly even superior to Verizon as Google FI uses combination of any available network and wi-fi spots. Can keep old number.
M went with Mint Mobile. This is a prepaid MVNO operating on the T-Mobile network. They have “free” unlimited talk and text on all of their plans. You “only” pay for data. Paid upfront $66 for 6 month, with 8 GB of 4G LTE data every month. That works out to $11 a month. This is a promotional offer that anyone can avail. Regular priced plans start at $15/month for 12 months, for 3 GB of data every month; and other combinations of number of months and data limits – all prepaid. Coverage is same as T-Mobile. Can keep old number.
By switching we have effectively cut our phone bill in half, with same or better coverage. Boom.
On Monday, November 19, Vanguard announced that they are lowering the minimum investment for Admiral shares on 38 index funds, VTSAX being one among them. The earlier minimum was $10k so this is a big deal for regular investors.
You read about the announcement here.
Even less reason for anyone to invest!
As to why you SHOULD be investing in VTSAX, because the “Godfather” says so!
Once in a while you come across something so delightful that you can’t help but share. Happened to me yesterday, when I stumbled upon this riot of a blog – Penny and Rich.
Rich and Penny are cousins, supposedly. According to their About Me page, they grew up in a small town in the Midwest, close to each other. Rich is, well, rich. With a family income of $250k, Rich lives with his wife and twin boys in an expensive city in the East Coast. Penny, with her husband and 4 kids, live in the Midwest. And by the way, Penny is poor. $40k income. That is their combined family income to provide for 6 people. Their names are conveniently appropriate for their current state of affairs 😀
The blog is an open-letter-discourse between them. I find it fascinating. Both of them are excellent writers. They approach issues with very different mindsets and set of values. Their plan of actions are often at loggerheads with each other. The humor in their writing is organic, fresh, and to me, hilarious.
I don’t know them. I don’t know if they are real. I don’t know if some really intelligent group or person is using this as a live thought experiment, presenting two arguments to the issues in personal finance space.