Hi Spider.I'm ready to start saving money for retirement I'm just not sure where. I've been reading the boards for a while and have looked at TIAA-CREF, is everyone eligible to open an account or do you have to be a teacher?No, you don't have to be a teacher...anyone can open a retirement account there. I have a Roth there and am very happy with it.*********************** Vanguard, I want to invest in the 500 index fund but right now I only have $500 to start, they need $1000 to start. Just save another $500 and go there?Initial investment is not your only concern. Vanguard has charges fees to low-balance investors.The following links might help:Prior post re: Vanguard Fees: http://boards.fool.com/Message.asp?mid=14988801Article comparing TIAA to Vanguard for Small Investors: http://www.indexfunds.com/articles/20001115_VG-TIAA_com_tax_JK.htm***********************I have also looked at some of the discount brokers, Scottrade and Sharebuilder. You can open an IRA with them and with Scottrade you can buy Vanguard funds. I don't plan on trading stocks and not sure of the fees with these places as compared to those mentioned above. If you don't want to trade, I don't see the need in it. If you every want to leave, they will charge you. Why not just open up your Roth (I'm assuming a Roth) directly with the fund company itself? It's very convenient and both companies (Vanguard and TIAA) are nice to deal with...at least as far as my experience has been. (knock on wood :) )If it were me...(and it was)...I would go with TIAA-CREF for the meantime. Look into TCEIX, their Equity Index Fund. It has low expenses, and covers the broad market (Russell 3000). Then, if you want to diversify a little, they have an international fund (TIINX) and a bond fund (TIPBX) that you can contribute to without all of the fees.www.tiaacref.comwww.vanguard.comHope this helps.Good Luck,Caat
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