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Old 05-19-2015, 08:43 AM   #41
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Originally Posted by growerVon View Post
G8tr, I keep going back to this issue, too. I dug into the company's literature and there is a clause that family can qualify to avoid the front-end load. So it is possible the load isn't being applied and Mom didn't answer correctly because she either didn't know or remember... would be great, for me, if the load weren't being applied.
I'm bringing up American Funds again because I'm familiar with them, but you can get a lower fee if you have lot of money invested with them (total of all the funds in the American Funds family). The 5.75% front-end fee applies if you have less than $25K invested. It reduces gradually; for example if you have between $100K and $250K invested, you pay 3.5%. That's true whether you reach that bracket by investing new money or appreciation on what you have in there already. At $1 million and over there's no front-end load.

My parents asked me about this because my nephew and his wife wanted to open an account for their twin girls and the FA told them they could get that break based on what family members had in American Funds. They asked me about it. It turned out the 529 would have to have been in my name. I don't think they liked that idea (I would have been free to decide that my granddaughter was cuter and smarter than both of their kids put together and spend it on her college instead) because I never heard about it again.

Is it possible our mother has $1 million of her own in American Funds? If so, maybe you were able to invest with zero front-end fees. I'd still focus on the overall return, though. Who cares if you're paying zero front-end load but annual returns are bad?
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Old 05-19-2015, 12:40 PM   #42
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You can go back and look at the record of the investment to see if a load was taken out... if $10K was put in and your opening balance was $9500... then a fee was removed (not exact math)... or you might see the $10K with a $500 deduction...

I would move the money... I would also tell mom that the performance of the funds you were in were not up to your standards and you now know enough to invest it yourself.... you do not have to bring up the past.... that will only make things go bad...

I would also not get involved with cousins, sisters etc..... you might say something along the lines that you have decided to move your money to better options and leave it at that... but dissing your mom to your whole family only will lead to you being the bad guy.... they might be perfectly happy with the situation as it is.... there are plenty of people who invest in Ameriprise that think they are doing just fine... trying to tell them they are not is a waste of both of your times....
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Old 11-05-2015, 12:49 AM   #43
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Update! Since last we left our merry band...

Mom got us the paperwork to switch into a class of the age based funds that don't have the front-end load, so we took that. However the ER's are still %1+ so since May I've been saving aside the 529 contributions. DW and I just got done with megacorp's bonus season so between the squirreled nuts and a chunk from bonus we have new 529s for both kids at Vanguard under my ownership. We will keep the previous 529 money at Mom's company until she retires and no longer worries about annual assets under management amounts - then move them to VanG also, though into DW's ownership.

Mom still has some moxie over this matter; several weeks back Sis and I were over at Mom's and she jestfully suggested I could resume investing in the 529s with her, "now that we have you in the funds without the load." Ha-ha. She isn't the only one with both a sense of humor and nose for confrontation. "Sorry, Mom, we're going with Vanguard. I can't justify those high expense ratios! It's my kids' funding we're talking about... Your only grandkids!"

Fortunately Mom and I remain on great terms and understand each other clearly.
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Old 11-05-2015, 09:26 AM   #44
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Old 11-05-2015, 11:02 PM   #45
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Wow. I invest in Ohio's state run 529. It has no load and I chose Vanguard Wellington fund. I get a tax break, had a nice 5 year average rate of return and pay less than half a percent expenses. No FA. I just go online and setup monthly auto deposits. Simple.

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