The Five Year Rule With Roth IRA Withdrawals

As most investors are well aware of there are several rules that you must abide by when you contribute to a Roth IRA as well as when you conduct a Roth IRA withdrawal. One rule that investors often do not realize is that there is a requirement to own your Roth IRA for five years in order to withdrawal earnings tax free during retirement. But, like always, there are several things to consider avoiding being penalized by the five year rule with Roth IRA withdrawals.

Cut Holiday Spending to Avoid Balance Transfers

Americans love the holiday season, but their good cheer often gets the best of them. We have a poor habit of overspending during the last months of the year, only to find ourselves in over our heads in credit card debt come January. For many people, this means transferring their credit card balances to take advantage of promotional offers.

Investing in Rental Real Estate

When it comes to retirement planning, there’s keen interest in stocks, bonds and cash, but there’s another asset that has the potential to outperform them all in the long run, and that’s rental real estate.

No, rental real estate isn’t for everyone, but if you understand what it is you’re getting into, the payoff can be generous.

Understanding Non-Qualified Roth IRA Distributions

There are two types of distributions when it comes to a Roth IRA. You can either have a qualified distribution or non-qualified Roth IRA distributions. Qualified distributions from your Roth IRA are the typical withdrawals that we consider with the popular retirement accounts. When you withdrawal money after reaching the age of 59 ½ years-old, that is a qualified distribution.

Asset Allocation Rules of Thumb

Asset allocation is the most important component of investing, more so even than individual investment selection. This is even more true since most individual investments are “market sensitive”, which is to say their performance is largely determined by the direction of the overall markets.

Big Bank Layoffs and Personal Finance Links

Just in time for the holidays (and year end bonuses), big banks are announcing large layoffs. The banks have already announced 75,000 layoffs that have either already occurred or will be occurring. Not all of the layoffs will happen immediately, but will be phased in over several years. Either way you have to wonder if the banks are hurting that much for profits that they need to cut overhead (staff), if they are simply overstaffed, or, if you're really cynical, they're setting themselves up for another bailout in the future.

Don't let your company determine your financial future.

6 Ways To Save On Holiday Travel

The holidays are a great time to get together with family. Unfortunately, the size of our great country makes holiday travel a challenge. When you consider the increased demand for travel at peak times, it is no wonder that the holidays can be the most expensive time of year to take a trip.

3 Benefits of a Direct 401k Rollover Into a Roth IRA

There are many benefits of a direct 401k rollover into a Roth IRA. A 401k retirement plan is severely limited in the different amount of options that investors can choose to invest in, but that is not true for a Roth IRA. Roth IRAs provide investors with an incredibly large array of investing choices. This has made direct 401k rollovers to a Roth IRA incredibly popular for investors who want more options, control, and tax benefits.

Investing in U.S. Treasury Securities

With the equity markets swinging from day to day investors might be looking for a place to invest at least some of their money that will offer both safety of principal and stable income. Look no further than U.S. Treasury securities. They’re the securities issued by the U.S. Government to fund the national debt.

Many investors are shying away from fixed income investments because of the historically low rates of return they provide, but there’s no better place to be than Treasury securities when the stock market is misbehaving.

Higher Borrowing Costs Ahead for Penn State Amidst Scandal

The child abuse scandal rocking Penn State won't just have an impact on the athletic department and reputation of the school, but also on the school's bond rating. Penn State currently has over $1 billion in rated debt, and if they receive a ratings downgrade the cost of borrowing will increase.

Increased borrowing costs are bad for everyone. Here's some personal finance articles to help you keep your finances in order.

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7 Reasons to Avoid Buying a Timeshare

It seems like virtually no vacation is complete with out the obligatory timeshare pitch. Offers of free food, lodging, and activities are always presented, simply for attending a short presentation about the incredible "vacation ownership" opportunities that are available.

Why Roth IRA Catch Up Contributions Matter

Have you been diligently investing in your Roth IRA? Have you been maximizing your Roth IRA contributions every year even through the recent recession? If you haven’t been as meticulous as you would have liked lately, then you are not alone. Many people have reduced or stopped their Roth IRA contributions recently. Even if you have backed off on your contributions for the time being, you have a chance to catch up in the future.

Investing in Mortgages

With many fixed income investments paying near record low interest rates and the volatility that has become common in the equity markets, where can you go to get a decent rate of return without taking on substantial risk?

Have you considered investing in mortgages?

We all know what mortgages look like on the front end—they’re loans secured by real estate that enable homebuyers to pay what is generally the largest share of the purchase price on a new home.

Bank Transfer Day and Personal Finance Links

The government has stepped up regulation on the financial industry. This regulation has been good for consumers in making fees and interest charges more transparent. However, this regulation has cut into banking revenues and profits of big banks. Their reaction is natural: to find other avenues of revenue such as adding fees for not maintaining a minimum balance or a fee for simply using your debit card.

How To Manage Your Bill Pay Payments Like A Pro

Smart loans and wise investments comprise the strategy of a sound personal financial manager, yet it is the day to day execution of these strategies that gets too many people in trouble. What they need are the right tactics to manage and schedule each payment. Ideally, a payment system will allow you to specify exactly who gets paid and when, leaving your money in your bank account until the last possible moment. For years, such a system was either impossible or cost prohibitive.

Get Started Investing In A Roth IRA With Little Disposable Income

Many people feel that they cannot start saving for retirement with a Roth IRA or any other investment for that matter because their family’s monthly budget is just too tight. I can remember asking my own mother one time when I was a little kid if she had been investing for retirement, and she just laughed. But, the truth is that not only should we all be saving for retirement, but that we all can save for retirement and find money to invest in a Roth IRA.

Individual Stocks VS. Mutual Funds – Where Should You Invest?

Owning individual stocks or mutual funds—which is the better way to invest? It’s really an open question and perhaps it will always be. Which one you choose may have more to do with your own investment experience (or the lack of it), confidence level or even the amount of time you have to work on you investment portfolio. What are some of the reasons an investor would want to hold either?

Comparing Individual Stocks with Mutual Funds

What are some of the reasons an investor would want to hold either?

European Debt Crisis Solved? and Personal Finance Links

There was big news from Europe this week with a deal announced to slash Greek's debt in hopes of avoiding a second financial crisis. But experts are unsure that even this deal -- which hyped up the United States' stock markets this week -- will actually solve Europe's debt problem.

While we wait for further news from Europe, check out these great articles:

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The Simple Dollar: Help!

TradeKing Roth IRA Brokerage Review

TradeKing is an online discount broker that has really taken the market by storm. They offer extremely competitive fees and a slew of investments for you to consider. This is one of the most competitive brokers we have looked at during our brokerage reviews.

Should I Open a Roth IRA at TradeKing?

This discount broker makes a strong play for your Roth IRA.

How to Refinance Your Mortgage

As interest rates hover at record low rates more Americans are realizing significant savings by refinancing their home mortgages.

Important Roth Information