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Here's a statement of the obvious: The opinions expressed here are those of the participants, not those of the Mutual Fund Observer. We cannot vouch for the accuracy or appropriateness of any of it, though we do encourage civility and good humor.

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Neighbor chat. Inheritance. Minimize tax burden, investing via a taxable account

Neighbor chat being, brief overview.......Married couple assured of having a net inheritance this year of about $500,000. Both age 70, one still employed, both have Medicare, one receiving SS, likely forthcoming sale of a business (that may or may not provide a sale profit), clear ownership of a 8 unit apartment with positive cash flow (don't know how much annually), both have T-IRA's (total less than $50,00) and clear ownership of their house.

A side note to them regarding taxation: The fact that many actively managed equity funds have been seeing redemptions has exacerbated capital gains tax bills for many investors, jacking up tax-cost ratios.

The obvious to me, is for them to invest in etf's, index funds or tax managed mutual funds,and perhaps some muni bond exposure. Their account will likely be with Fidelity, which would offer them many path choices. I will also suggest to them a 30% exposure to U.S. equity. I don't know at this time whether they may choose to place the balance in CD's or other similar. The wife has some knowledge about the investing markets; while the husband does not. My suggestion thoughts for equity would be: SP-500 (12 U.S. sectors), perhaps QQQ etf (more growth equity, although some overlap with SP-500) and perhaps a large cap blend for international exposure. I don't expect any "exotic" type of holdings for them.

The below link will be provided for them, to help have a better understanding for tax reduction, while still having exposure to equity investing.

M* write outlining keeping taxes to a minimum, in a taxable account; and possible choices.

Thank you for your thoughts, regarding this subject; as I've likely omitted something.
Remain curious,


  • edited April 2022
    Check out 50-50 tax-managed balanced VTMFX (obviously no-fees at Vanguard, but with transaction fees at Schwab), higher ER TAIFX (F-1 class, no-fee/NTF at Fido and Schwab).

    Fido doesn't have any tax-managed mutual funds of its own but does offer tax-managed advisory accounts. But I don't recommend those.

    Combo of ETFs (stocks, bonds) and CDs is fine too.

    It depends on what their past investing experience is.
  • Not for nothing @catch22, but his couple needs encompassing financial advice and a long term financial plan from a good (fee only) financial advisor, not random opinions from a posting board.
  • MikeM +1
  • @yogibearbull Thank you for the follow-up.

    Their investing experience is zero, as far personal knowledge of investing choices available. This is why I mentioned a 30% piece of the monies to be in a U.S. equity etf to allow for a type of conservative allocation mix. A starting point, more or less.


    I didn't mention an advisor in the initial write. I know that several years ago they had a "retail" advisor affiliated with a large firm to manage a less than $50K T-IRA. I don't know the status of this relationship at this time.
    As to a fee only advisor opinion, yes. At least 3 opinions should be adequate. Not unlike a quote/bid/opinion as to a major expenditure for a home remodel or similar expense, one needs more than just one review.

    However, you noted:
    "not random opinions from a posting board."
    I'm fully disappointed with this, from you; regarding valid investing information one is able to obtain at MFO. At the very least, opinions here about this subject provides more input for their future decisions.
    There are a number individuals here, who I would place against any chosen "advisor", as to quality investing knowledge and opinion.

    Otherwise, there is not much of value for one to be involved with this board, be that a reader or a poster; and one would be as well suited to use an "electronic robo-advisor", yes?

    Remain curious,
  • @catch22 : " There are a number individuals here, who I would place against any chosen "advisor", as to quality investing knowledge and opinion. "
    You would be included in this group as far as I'm concerned.
    The question is as I see it, do you want to help them out , or turn them over to someone that can ? At the least, you've got them started in the right direction.

    Have a good day, Derf

  • "At the least, you've got them started in the right direction."
  • The couple's goals, risk tolerance, and risk capacity must be taken into account.
    A consultation with a fee-only planner may be beneficial.
    VTCLX is a good tax-managed equity fund.
    I also like Yogi's tax-managed balanced fund suggestion - VTMFX.
  • I will tell you for sure @catch22, if I was handed a 1/2 million dollars at 70 years old to supplement my retirement days, I personally would not seek financial opinions from a posting board. I would go straight to a financial advisor.

    Obviously there are a few, if not more than a few posters here that are more than capable of giving good fund-investment advice (yes-also known as opinions). That group very much includes yourself. But none can set up an individualized plan for this couple for the rest of their lives. None can tell them how to set up their investments which seems to include both taxable and non-taxable savings, real estate, a business, SS and maybe more. None of us understands their goals and time horizon, how to safely spend down, where to pull income and in what investment order to divest, how to reduce their tax exposure, ect, ect, ect...
    "not random opinions from a posting board."
    Random opinions can be good advice or bad advice. Time will tell which is which.
  • @MikeM- Good points... very good points.
  • Apparently, my writing and cognitive skills have become much diminished. I didn't realize what was written would be interpreted as establishing an overall plan for the remainder of their lives; only to offer "what to think about" regarding the markets investing aspect.
    I'm sure they'll do fine with whatever advisement they discover.
    Thanks to all for the input.
  • edited April 2022
    @catch22- As Derf pointed out, your advice to them was (and is) valuable, as you've given them a platform to start in the right direction. Introducing "what to think about" regarding investing is surely important and helpful.

    Mike's observation is also valid- a conglomeration of specific suggestions from posters is not likely to be especially helpful. Seems to me that there's just a little bit of folks talking past each other here, while all are attempting to be helpful. Sometimes no good deed seems to be appreciated.

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