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We've found Etrade and Ameritrade to be very tolerant of my procrastination, and will make sure everything get converted in time. I wasn't so late that we ended up toasting in the New Year at their offices...but it was close.

But Vanguard?? Not so much. (I don't think they have any offices scattered around the country). If needed, you might want to get in touch with them before Christmas.

Vanguard allows you to do the conversion online, without having to call, if both accounts are at Vanguard. And no, they don't have any offices scattered around the country, so if you want to be able to go in and talk to someone face to face, you should probably choose another firm.

That said, especially if you are converting 'in-kind' (that is - moving shares of securities, rather than cash), you should be mindful of distribution dates for things like dividends and distributions. Especially in December, where there tend to be a lot of ETFs, mutual funds and companies that do distributions toward the end of the month - it's probably better to get your conversion done before the distribution occurs, so the distribution will land in the Roth account without any hassles.

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