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URL:  http://boards.fool.com/advice-always-first-be-happy-that-youre-doing-15662953.aspx

Subject:  Re: Salaried & no-deductions = SOL? Date:  8/30/2001  2:23 PM
Author:  pmarti Number:  53708 of 121061

advice?

Always. First, be happy that you're doing so well. Your post shows a lot of the signs of what I call a "taxophobe," and such people are usually vulnerable to scams. Fix firmly in your mind the fact that, even with a 51% combined state/Federal marginal rate, if you spend a dollar to reduce taxable income your pocket has 49 cents less than it did before you reduced your taxes. People have been known to go broke spending money to reduce their taxes.

Second, be sure that you're appropriately expressing your gratitude for your good fortune through charitable contributions. They do good work and save on your taxes to boot.

You seem to be asking whether you should buy a home. I tend to go against the grain on this, suggesting that taxes be a minor, if any, consideration. Lifestyle preferences should guide you here, since you have the luxury of not having to worry about the financial end.

Do you want to be responsible for repairs, mowing the lawn, shoveling the snow, etc., or would you rather let someone else worry about it? Can you rent a place in which you want to live, or do you need to buy in order to be happy in your home? There are probably a lot of similar questions that, answered honestly, will help you make a decision that fits you.

Phil Marti
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