>Is Real Estate a House of Cards?

>Is Real Estate a House of Cards?: The Future for Investors – Yahoo! Finance

As you know I highly respect the author of this article, Jeremy Siegel. I think this article on real estate is a must read for all homeowners and those looking to buy rental real estate. About the only thing I disagree with Mr. Siegel on is that REIT’s still offer a good opportunity. He compares them to government bonds in terms of yield and I think that is a mistake as REIT’s are in a wholly different risk class, I don’t think REIT’s are a good deal.

Read this article.

Scott Dauenhauer, CFP, MSFP

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>Personal Finance Myths

>Personal Finance Myths

Don’t know who this guy is, but I like what he has too say. These 8 myths are worth taking a few minutes to read.

1. Paying tons of Mortgage Interest is WONDERFUL because it is tax deductible

2. If you refinance to a lower rate you will save interest long term

3. You pay no interest on a 0% car loan

4. All Variable Annuities are a ripoff

5. People who earn more money/live in expensive homes/drive fancy cars are “richer”

6. Always hold stocks long term to reduce taxes

7. Taxes should be fair

8. Good investments should always beat the market

You can read the justifications for each of these at the above link.

Scott Dauenhauer, CFP, MSFP

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>Fed boosts interest rates

>Fed boosts interest rates, signals end game – Martin Wolk: Eye on the Economy – MSNBC.com

Are we at the end?

Does it even matter? The Feds been raising rates since June 2004 and the rate on the 10 year treasury is virtually unchanged.

Yes, it does matter and the Fed has been very affective at getting short term rates to rise. The 3 month treasury was under 1% in June 04′, in 2005 it crossed the 4% mark before dropping sharply to where it is today, 3.61%.

Rates matter and have an effect on everything, the question is really what will happen when the new Fed chief takes over next year.

Scott Dauenhauer, CFP, MSFP

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>Wirehouse sweeps raising concerns

>Wirehouse sweeps raising concerns – December 12, 2005 – Dan Jamieson – InvestmentNews

Big brokerage firms are once again skirting their fiduciary obligations to their clients so that they can skim additional profits from client accounts. I don’t have a problem with profit, but the brokerage firms are knowningly replacing higher yielding money market accounts with lower yielding bank deposit funds that allow the firm to them use those funds to lend out money, thereby generating additional profits – at the expense of the customer.

Now you know why the brokerage firms fought tooth and nail to not be called fiduciaries and be held to the same standards of accountability as independent fiduciary based advisors.

I hope the pending merger of TD Waterhouse and Ameritrade will not bring “bank deposits” to Ameritrade. If they do we will find another place for money market funds.

Scott Dauenhauer, CFP, MSFP

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An Independent Fiduciary

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