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Thanks to everybody for all of the great advice. The more I think about it i realize that the moving in with my sister thing is probably a bad idea, or at least she should just chip in rent to help pay the mortgage instead of putting up a bunch of money for the down payment (which wouldn't leave her with much). That way, if things don't work out my mom can leave and my sister can rent out the space. My sister lives in Florida (in the Boca Raton area) and my mother currently lives in Brooklyn, NYC.

The main upside of my mom living with or near my sister is that she won't be completely alone in her old age. I live in Chicago with my wife. Since my dad died, my mom has no family in NYC so I'm worried about that.

I think my mother could get a job in any salon in the united states that would hire her (she has 25 years of experience, so i think someone would hire her) and she says she can work for as long as she can walk (she loves working) so that is definitely one thing she has going for her.
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