Solar Power Purchase Agreement


As I’ve mentioned here before, I’ve had a Solar Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) since July of 2013.

So far the system has produced almost 2000 kW-h, which is in line with the contract proposal from the Solar PPA provider (approximately 4000 kW-h produced per year).

The overall utility bill for the GubMints family has dropped by 20-35 dollars per month (on a total bill of 120 – 200 dollars per month). Not too bad for not having any skin in the game!

Sadly, for those still sitting on the sidelines waiting to sign a rooftop solar PPA, the salad days may be over. Continue reading

TSP Hardship Withdrawal Costs

(Gubmints Note:  This is part of a multi-part post, which will also extoll the virtues of Structued CDs and Structured Notes, and provide strategies on how to use them.  At the time of this writing I hold an S&P Index-linked Structured CD in a Retirement Account).

With bond and bank CD rates near zero, investors have been scrounging everywhere they can to find respectable yields (Note, if you’re a Govvie the best place to park cash is the TSP’s G Fund– It gives you returns of long-term bonds with the liquidity of a Money Market Fund.  You can’t find a product like this anywhere).  Folks without a G Fund generating their current income may resort to chasing yields in complex products like Structured CDs.
A Structured CD allows you to purchase participation in an index (like S&P 500 or DJIA, but it could be any index) up to a participation ‘cap’.  Your initial investment value is guaranteed by FDIC insurance (which, per Dodd-Frank, is up to $250,000 per bank/instutution).  No downside with huge potential upside?  Sounds too good to be true!
Here’s Ten Reasons Structured CDs and Structured Notes Suck:


In a recent post, I touted the virtues of bunching together potential Amazon purchases using Amazon’s “Wish List” function.  This is a technique to get you free shipping on Amazon.

Turns out this Technique was a ‘Gateway Drug’ for the GubMints family.  We did the 30-day free trial of Amazon Prime, and we’re hooked!
60-days in, here are some Amazon Prime War Stories: