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I have a 401k, a traditional IRA, and a Roth IRA. My wife has a couple of small IRAs and a Roth IRA.

Would the simplest thing to do it just contribute the maximum amount to the traditional IRA's even if they're not tax deductible?

Definitiely simple.

I was thinking if I put $6k into a tradition IRA and converted it the same day to a Roth IRA, that would be a worthy goal, but I'm not sure the effort is worthwhile.

You mention that you have a traditional IRA, but you don't say anything about its pre/post tax composition. Remember that you cannot designate a particular contribution in a conversion. If there's any after-tax money in any traditional IRA account your conversion will consist of a mix of pre/post tax funds, with the former creating a tax liability in the year of conversion.

And since I probably won't do my taxes for a few more months, but there's no reason to wait to contribute. I can do that today, do my taxes in April showing the non-deductible contribution.

Definitely no need to wait. If it turns out that you can make a Roth contribution you can recharacterize that part of the traditional contribution and the earnings on it to Roth any time before 10/15/2012.

Rule Your Retirement Home Fool
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