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About Smaug

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  • Location Frankfurt am Main
  • Nationality Spain
  • Hometown Madrid
  • Gender Not Telling
  1. Brexit: The fallout

    @LukeSkywalker No idea, sorry. I usually buy Spanish cheese in Spain because it tends to be so expensive in Germany.   Lidl sells Cinco Lanzas during their regular "spanische Woche". Sadly, you can't buy a plain whole cheese; instead, they sell tapas-sized slices of it in tiny packages. The kind they sell is red-wine flavoured, which is fine, but I prefer the plain one.    
  2. Brexit: The fallout

      And Spain! If you like strongly flavoured cheeses look for: Cabrales (like Stilton on steroids) Cinco Lanzas García Baquero (one of my favorite cheeses ever) Flor de Esgueva (like Cinca Lanzas, it's a Manchego-style hard cheese, but better than Manchego in my opinion). Torta del Casar: so strong it'll make your mouth hurt. It's a soft cheese and you can spread it on toast. It's like Marmite (you only need a little bit because it's so flavourful).  
  3. The TransferWise Borderless Account includes a German IBAN (among others). Maybe that's enough for your needs.   Last time I checked DKB only accepted non-residents who are German citizens.
  4. Pyur telling me I need to switch

    They are lying.  Any action required by subscribing customer for continued service of any utility is ALWAYS communicated in writing.    Sales people tell porkies like this ever day. 
  5. Coronavirus

        I find that extreme. People die from the flu, car accidents, eating peanuts, being stung by bees, etc. every day. There's a number of deaths (I don't dare prescribe a precise number) which is acceptable because preventing them would cause unreasonable cost, inconvenience, and so on. We could make cars nearly 100% safe if they were made not to exceed a speed of 30 km/h but that would have a disproportionate cost on society.   Corona is here to stay. My prediction is that it will change over time, like the cold and flu viruses do, and it will just become part of the annoying respiratory infections we are accustomed to live with. We'll keep getting sick every year and we won't know if it was a cold, corona, or the flu that made us feel miserable for a few days. My main worry is the antivaxx movement. If it keeps gaining traction, more and more people will refuse the flu and the future corona vaccines and that will have a negative impact on not just deaths, but also loss of hours worked and general well-being. We'll see.
  6. President Donald J. Trump

        Has there been one during the last four years that wasn't? 
  7.   I trust a third party can step in and fill in the blanks (pun intended).
  8. Alternative titles of threads

      Or "My neighbor is trying to get me eviscerated" 
  9.   You are right, but I doubt traditional banks grant overdraft facilities to non-UK residents anyway. 
  10. I declared less income to KSK

    I am not sure but I don’t think there’s a problem. As far as I know you only have to be close to the actual income.  I am in the KSK and I am not very precise with my “expected income”. I never had a problem. 
  11.   | think it means "unter Vorbehalt", meaning you are paying it but you are explicitly stating that you disagree it is the right amount. Many people pay the TV license and the Solidaritätszuschlag "unter Vorbehalt" to reserve themselves the right to claim some or part of the payment if a court ever rules that the fee and the tax were illegal all along. I am not sure how that works technically though.
  12. UK rental income on German tax returns (post-Brexit)

    The DTA is independent of Brexit but my understanding is that after the end of the transition period Germany becomes entitled to discriminate against UK rental income (treat it disfavorably as compared to German rental income), which they can't do right now. I seem to recall from previous research that Germany taxes residents on their worldwide rental income (subject to DTAs rules) but allows German rental losses to be offset against other kinds of income, while only considering profits (but not losses) on foreign income. Thus:   If you earn 50,000 euros from employment in Germany and 20,000 from rental income also in Germany you get taxed on 70,000. If you earn 50,000 euros from employment in Germany and have losses of 10,000 from rental income also in Germany you get taxed on 40,000 If you earn 50,000 euros from employment in Germany and 20,000 from rental income in Canada (as an example) Germany taxes the 50,000 as if you were earning 70,000 and Canada taxes 20,000. If you earn 50,000 euros from employment in Germany and have losses of 10,000 from rental income in Canada you get taxed on 50,000 (your losses in Canada don't count; only profits do).   In the case of EU rental income, Germany has decided to ignore it. I am guessing that's because allowing offsetting losses from German rental income but not from EU rental income is incompatible with EU law: they must treat it the same or ignore it altogether.   Why do they do this? I am guessing it's because they want to stop well-heeled Germans from buying holiday homes in Spain, France and Italy, letting them at a loss for short holiday stays—while using them themselves and making them available to friends and family in the off-season—and using the rental losses to reduce their taxable income in Germany. I am just speculating but this seems plausible to me.  
  13. Only in America...

      This doesn't surprise me. I received a cochlear implant in 2017 that cost around €30,000 euros in Germany. That included a four-day in-patient stay and rehab.   I've talked to cochlear implant recipients in the US that paid more than $100,000 for the procedure, only without rehab and as an out-patient.   I know that medical personnel salaries in the US are much higher than in Germany but there must be something else at work here. I don't know what.
  14. Coronavirus

      I think Germany has a conflict of interest when it comes to public transport, On the one hand, there's genuine support for public transport and generally pretty decent train and bus services around major urban centers, but on the other hand, developing collective transport too much would hurt the car industry, and Germany, for the obvious reasons, doesn't want to do anything that would hurt the car industry. You can't do anything to stop people being selfish. You can improve collective transport, but radical widespread improvement of public transport outside of metropolitan areas isn't going to happen as it would disincentivize car ownership,   
  15. Cheddar cheese from Lidl and elsewhere

      I can confirm that I am still alive if somewhat washed up.