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Subject:  Re: My Mom's Retirement Date:  5/31/2004  1:51 PM
Author:  2old4bs Number:  41114 of 88826

I am considering ING and a sharebuilder brokerage account. In addition, for her long term investment a traditional IRA. That's all I have so far. If the group has any other suggestions please let me know

If she qualifies for a Roth, and doesn't have high current income then a Roth MIGHT be better than a TIRA over the long-term. In either one the profits will grow tax-free, but in the Roth, she won't pay any taxes when she starts drawing from it in retirement, while in a TIRA she would pay ordinary income tax. It really depends on what her tax rate is now vs: what it might be after she retires. IOW, does she really need that deduction now, or would it be better to get all the money tax free during retirement? Just a thought... mother should invest about $4000 into the house (carpeting & siding) and increase the value of the her home prior to the sale, with an estimated time of approximately 6 months to the date of sale.

If the carpeting is shot, new carpeting (buy CHEAP) can make the house look much better. The siding I'm not so sure about--she might never get the cost of that improvement out of the sales price--unless the current siding is ABSOLUTELY AWFUL. If it really needs new siding, the buyers might want to pick it themselves, rather than buying someone else's taste.

One of the best things to do to a house that makes a big difference in price/time to sell is to clean up the clutter (if there is any). Try to clear the house of almost all the the 'personal' clutter items that are hanging around (i.e. framed photos, 'collections', knick-knacks, etc.). They can all be put in boxes in the attic or garage until the move. If the interior needs paint, paint it (that's cheap enough). Try to make the rooms look as light and spacious as possible via paint, higher wattage light bulbs and rearranging furniture, if necessary. If the furniture is torn or in bad shape, inexpensive 'throw' slip covers in a light color might do wonders. I think that these ideas are cheaper and might yield a faster sale and possibly higher price than new siding. The idea is for buyers to be able in their minds eye to see enough SPACE that they can imagine their furniture and personal items in the home. If there's a lot of the seller's personal stuff, it usually looks too cluttered, or buyers will get distracted by it and start talking about personal stuff (i.e. Do you have any grandkids? Oh, I collect such-and-such also, etc.), instead of focusing on the house itself.

If the garage is messy, that needs to be cleaned up also--have a yard sale! If your mom's going to relocate, it costs to move all that stuff across country.

And the front entry should look inviting, including the yard. If it needs weeding, weed it and keep the grass mown. Get rid of any empty pots/containers that might be around. Paint the front door if it's dirty.


(Can you guess my favorite show is BBCAmerica's "House Doctor"? ;-)

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