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buylower,

You wrote, When you retire aren't you likely have less deductions? Mortgage interest being a large contributor is greatest when you first purchase the house and gradually decreases. If are in the beginning stages of a mortgage and can afford the Roth contributions, would it make more sense to fund a Roth over other pretax vehicles (with the exception of any matches given)? You will also likely not have any dependants once you retire. Seems to me deductions should also factor into your calculations as well.

The home mortgage interest deduction is worth a lot less than you might think. If you were paying 6.25% (my own rate), the interest on the first $125,600 of your mortgage is not tax deductible. Of course that doesn't consider that you might have property taxes to pay as well.

I still owe $82K on my home. I won't be filing a schedule A this year. Last year, it saved me only about $100 in taxes. Of course, I live in a relatively inexpensive part of the country too.

That said, I think you should contribute to a Roth while your tax bill is relatively low. So yes, that might be when you have more deductions; but personally, I think the level of income is the primary factor and deductions are secondary. Still, consider your own situation carefully.

- Joel
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