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Hi, 38 year old mom in charge of finances...
Old 04-26-2013, 03:30 PM   #1
Confused about dryer sheets
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Hi, 38 year old mom in charge of finances...

Hi from Washington state!

I am a 38 year old mom (married), with 2 children (ages 1 and 3). Our plan is to retire at age 60. I am a stay at home mom and am 'in charge' of paying bills, and pretty much run our finances. We have managed to get out of large debt and I am committed to investing as much as we can, for our future and our children's and future grandchildren.

Here are some stats:

We have 18 years left on our mortgage. And am happy to say the house will be paid off when kids are in college, hopefully in college

We are with Ameriprise (starting to thing about leaving their services)
and have the following:

-Husband has a $500 k Riversource VUL insurance policy, valued at $34 k
-I have a $300 k Riversource VUL insurance policy, valued at $23 k
-Husband has a Roth IRA, valued at $29 k
-I have a Traditional IRA, valued at $22 k
-I also have a Roth IRA, valued at $2 k
All the above accounts are with Ameriprise, totaling $112k
Plus, my husband also has a 401k with T Rowe Price, valued at $145 k

My husband currently invests 7% of his salary, and his company matches that, plus 2% additional percent (so a grand total of 16% of his salary is going to his 401k each year).

So our investments currently total= $257k

He also receives quarterly bonuses from work that we use to pay down consumer debts and we will start to fully fund our IRAs each year.

I am becoming passionate and obsessed with learning about investing. And I am wondering what advice you all may have.

We pay 500 a year to Ameriprise for what seems to be an annual hour-long phone conversation where we are given an overview of our financial situation. It feels like a huge waste of money to me as I know exactly where we are.

What I want to know is how and where to put our money to make it increase and last. I had a half hour phone conversation with someone from T Rowe yesterday and learned way more from him than I have in the last few years with Ameriprise.

Thanks for your insight and recommendations of where to look in here for guidance! I appreciate it!


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Old 04-26-2013, 03:59 PM   #2
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Hi. I'm a relatively newbie here also, but you have come to the correct place. I've really filled in many holes in my financial knowledge reading here and and at bogleheads Bogleheads Investing Advice and Info

I think you are off to a good start. Most people here are do it yourself (DIY) types, and may prefer you not pay the ameriprise fee. Actually, last time I paid $500 for a one-shot call like that, my DW was really unhappy, enough so that if I even mention a financial planner, stuff hits the fan
It really is better to do it yourself, if you can.

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Old 04-26-2013, 04:45 PM   #3
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You're doing really well and your husband has a fantastic 401k match. T.Rowe Price have some ok lowish cost funds so I hope you have them in the 401k account.

Continue to educate yourself about investing and as soon as you are comfortable roll over your Ameriprise accounts to Vanguard and just keep doing what you are doing. Think about getting at least 6 months cash in your bank account and setting up an automatic after tax investment account with Vanguard as well.
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Old 04-26-2013, 04:48 PM   #4
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Originally Posted by nun View Post
......... roll over your Ameriprise accounts to Vanguard...........
Yes, I have achieved work / life balance.
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Old 04-26-2013, 04:52 PM   #5
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Check out Fidelity. Customer service (24/7/365) is very good, lots of good on-line tools. Welcome to the board, you are on your way - just remember to smell the roses.
"A man is a success if he gets up in the morning and goes to bed at night and in between does what he wants to do" --Bob Dylan.
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Old 04-26-2013, 05:22 PM   #6
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Hey, AdventureChic98005, you came to the right forum. Good choice. Welcome!
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Old 04-26-2013, 05:28 PM   #7
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Welcome to the forum.
Very conservative with investments. Not ER'd yet, 48 years old. Please do not take anything I write or imply as legal, financial or medical advice directed to you. Contact your own financial advisor, healthcare provider, or attorney for financial, medical and legal advice.
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Old 04-26-2013, 05:31 PM   #8
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Waving hello from another local.

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Old 04-26-2013, 07:16 PM   #9
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Keep in mind that many of us here think that the 500 a year you are paying to Ameriprise is worst than wasted. If they were giving you good advice it would only be wasted money. Because they are probably advising you to buy their stuff they are giving you bad advice. These are all just opinions. I imagine that there may be one or two people out of the thousands who post here who have something good to say about Ameriprise.
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Old 04-26-2013, 07:49 PM   #10
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You have 2 little kids. Why are you messing with expensive VUL policies instead of much more cost effective term life? Read up here. Read up on and get away from Ameriprise as soon as possible. You'll do much better at a provider like Vanguard, Fidelity or Schwab and can get better advice by reading a book or two.
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Old 04-27-2013, 03:07 PM   #11
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You have some experience talking with one good resource, TRPrice. There is also Vanguard and Fidelity. These in my experience are 3 of the best investment companies with which to deal. You can successfully do it yourself. Ask questions at all three companies, here, and at Bogelheads. Make sure you understand and if not keep asking for clarification.

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Old 04-28-2013, 10:33 AM   #12
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It would be very difficult for me to find anything good to say about Ameriprise, so I would definitely recommend moving your investments to Fidelity, Vanguard, or even TRP to save $s. At your age, its good you are interested in increasing your investment knowledge. Good luck!
Doing things today that others won't, to do things tomorrow that others can't. Of course I'm referring to workouts, not robbing banks.
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Old 05-27-2014, 05:20 PM   #13
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My 2 cents:
To start with Get rid of expensive VUL--get low cost term life policies instead. YOu can invest the difference in premium and see it grow much faster.
Move your funds from Ameriprise to either Vanguard, Fidelity or Schwab.
Get rid of all debt (if any) starting with the one that is charging you the highest interest rate. T Rowe Price is good for 401K.
Stick around, read & learn--You have come to the right web site.
Good Luck!

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