I may be selling real estate... get Foolish?

What advice would you give to someone that may come into 1.8m and is considering following the Foolish path?


  • Should one consider buying the last 30 stocks recommended by Motley fool (1.8 million divided by 30 stocks is 60K per investment), and then just sit and wait for sell recommendations? Holding for the recommended 5+ years?

  • This looks like the worst time to get in- does Motley Fool watch for a bottom to the current market and recommend when to get in?

I’m as green as it gets but watch and follow who I think are headed in the right direction.


Many good quality stocks are down significantly from their previous highs. That makes it a good time to invest new money. Most think the good quality stocks will recover but it may take patience.

With interest rates rising we could be in for more market lows. Most would wait until the market bottoms.

No comment on stocks recommended by TMF.

The nativity of the question raises a serious red flag about “all of a sudden” heading into the abyss with a large ‘windfall’.

(I assume it’s likely an inheritance.)

I would strongly recommend retaining a CLOSE financial advisor type, and then proceed with caution. One you can talk to face to face. Whenever you want to talk to them.

Talk to them as if you’re hiring someone to go to work for you, because that’s what you’ll be doing.

If it will be your first (or most significant) foray into “the market”, you need someone you can sit down and talk with.

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  • This looks like the worst time to get in- does Motley Fool watch for a bottom to the current market and recommend when to get in?

Joe I will give you no advice on what to do with your money. BUT I strongly disagree that this is the WORST time to buy stocks. Warren Buffet has bought more stocks this past quarter than he has in any quarter since 2008! IF I were not 100% invested already I would be buying with both fists right now.

Be very aware that investment for most people is much more about managing your own emotions and mind than managing the money. “Buy and Hold” sounds simple, reasonable, and easily implemented…until three in the morning when the market is plummenting oh my god still plummenting.

Study your own self at least as much as you study markets and strategies.

david fb


I won’t tell you what to do, but I’ll tell you what I would do.

I would put 5-8 years worth of cash aside so I’m not forced to sell stocks when I need cash.

I’d invest in a LOW cost S&P 500 ETF, and by low I mean no more that 7 basis points.

I’d spread out my buys evenly over 12-24 months.

And I’d send my best friend (who happens to be named AlphaWolf) $500k for being a nice guy. Let me know if you need my address.

But honestly, keep reading this thread. There are some smart people here who will give you even better advice.


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CarterofMars, welcome to METAR. Congratulations on your $1.8 million windfall.

Although religious discussions are prohibited on METAR, I want to point out that the problem of a person coming suddenly into money has been known for thousands of years.

Proverbs 13:11
Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished; but he that gathereth little by little shall increase.

The Hebrew word for “vanity” is sometimes translated as “dishonesty” or “fraud” in this verse, but I understand it to mean money that is obtained suddenly from outside, without the person gradually earning and saving it little by little. People who earn money little by little know how to save and protect it. Not so for sudden wealth! Whether ancient or modern, many a windfall has been frittered away, leaving the recipient with nothing in the end.

The first thing to do in case of a windfall is: Wait! Don’t do anything for a while. Don’t change your lifestyle. Put the money in a safe place. Going to TreasuryDirect and buy 3 month Treasury bills with automatic rollover. This will give you plenty of time to think and plan while getting a little interest.

If you decide to hire a financial advisor, make sure that the person does NOT work for any brokerage house. Make sure that they accept FIDUCIARY RESPONSIBILITY for you, which means that they will be working in your best interest and not accepting commissions for selling you financial products that have high fees and loads, such as annuities.

Do NOT buy 30 stocks as you suggested! That is far too concentrated a portfolio. Many studies have shown that broad market funds, such as an S&P500 fund or Total Market Fund, perform better over years than any smaller selection of stocks. Books have been written about this.

In your place, this is what I would do.

  1. Pay off high-interest debt immediately.

  2. Open an account at Fidelity Investments. https://www.fidelity.com/

  3. Open an account at Treasury Direct and link it to your Fidelity cash account. Put your windfall into 3 month Treasury bills. You can transfer the money to Fidelity for investment later.

  4. At Fidelity, open a Roth IRA. If you are working, contribute the maximum amount to your Roth IRA. Do this every year. This will grow for many years – think long term.


  1. There are very good reasons to think that the stock market is a dangerous place right now. Please read a few of my Control Panel posts which I post every Sunday in METAR. Be sure to look carefully at the links and take the time to understand them. If you have questions, don’t hesitate to ask on METAR.

The safest thing to do is to dollar-cost-average into the stock market. You should NOT be in a hurry to invest this money! Remember that it can and should last the rest of your life, providing growth which you can harvest while leaving the principal in place.

Divide the money into 100 portions. That would be $12,000 each. Every week, invest one portion in Fidelity® 500 Index Fund (FXAIX). This is a no-load fund with an ultra-low expense ratio of 0.015%. Turnover is only 2% so capital gains taxes will be minimized. You would only be taxed when you choose to sell shares.

Notice that it will take over 2 years to invest the money if you choose to invest all of it in the stock market. Be patient! Don’t rush! There will probably be a recession soon so this slow dollar-cost-average technique will buy you shares at lower prices.

This is a safe, plain-vanilla approach that will maximize your return.

  1. Personally, I am risk-averse so I would not put all the money into the stock market. I would buy an I-Series Savings bond every year on Treasury Direct. ($10,000). I would keep enough in cash to be able to live on it for at least a year (or more). I would buy bonds…but this is a different subject than stocks.

  2. If you are knowledgeable about real estate you might consider buying rental properties. This is a subject I don’t know much about but TMF has a board dedicated to it.

You have not mentioned your age or your risk tolerance. You have not mentioned whether you are working and financially comfortable so the $1.2 million is gravy. Assuming you are already comfortable, the strategy above will keep you comfortable for the foreseeable future.

But –
DON’T quit your job if you are working!
DON’T give a bunch of money away impulsively!
DON’T buy a fancy car or house!
DON’T go to Vegas!

Wait. Think. Be patient. Act slowly and carefully.



This looks like the worst time to get in

If you going to be invested for a long time, then I strongly advise against trying to time your entry point. Dollar cost average in if you like but trying to time your entry point is a foolish path for a new investor.

Consider, would you rather buy stocks when they are on SALE (10% cheaper than they were a few months ago) or would you rather buy them after when they are trading at a premium (20% higher than historical P/E ratios)?

It’s a trick question. The best time to buy for a long term buy and hold investor is almost always right now (today).

Buffett: “Be Fearful When Others Are Greedy and Greedy When Others Are Fearful”

Warren Buffett Is Buying Stock Again. That Doesn’t Mean He’s Optimistic.

Warren Buffett sat out much of the post-Covid-19 selloff to the detriment of Berkshire Hathaway BRK.B +0.33% shareholders. But in the first quarter of 2022—with stocks once again falling—the Oracle of Omaha took action, purchasing some $51 billion of equities and selling less than $10 billion. Those record quarterly purchases came as the S&P 500 slid 5% in the first three months of the year.



Wendy is METAR’s “Empress” for a number of reasons, and her post to you is one of them. Solid solid sound advice spanning both managing your emotions and solid investment. It reflects that hers is a family that has developed and passed along how to succeed and invest right along with how to sit at a dinner table and eat sensibly. Her brother Jeff has very different investment behaviors but just as solid a foundation.

I am NOT you, but I have discovered over time that I am good at finding things like bare land (the last 20 years) and oil and gas working interests (from 1978 - 1985) when they were undervalued (and I had a run of excellent luck early in my career and too much cash), and then waiting patiently for the right moment to sell or develop it. My best use of stocks and bonds is mostly to “smooth out” my cash flow as bare land is a very lumpy market. You might ask yourself what non securities forms of investment might be of use to you.

And METAR is an excellent place explore and exchange ideas and puzzlements.

david fb


Wendy’s advice is right on target, with many points. I’d like to comment on a couple.

  1. If you decide to hire a financial advisor, make sure that the person does NOT work for any brokerage house. Make sure that they accept FIDUCIARY RESPONSIBILITY for you


  1. Open an account at Treasury Direct and link it to your Fidelity cash account. Put your windfall into 3 month Treasury bills. You can transfer the money to Fidelity for investment later.

Then, on her four “don’ts” list? Vegas? I dunno! Personally, I’d be tempted to take ~~~ten grand and head to the crap tables at Bellagio. Great fun and pressure outlet. But that’s just me. (I have a SYSTEM; it works ALMOST every time.)

DO observe the think, patience, and act carefully bromide.

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I’m as green as it gets but watch and follow who I think are headed in the right direction.

It would be a good idea to know more facts that you may or may not want to provide, such as your age, family responsibilities, risk tolerance, net worth before this windfall, current emergency fund size, etc. Otherwise all the advice could be off the mark. So maybe you need an advisor that you can pay by the hour for consultation.
Don’t get one that will charge something like “only” 1% per year – that is $18K!

In any case now “might” be a good time to start dollar cost averaging into the market over a year or two.


In any case now “might” be a good time to start dollar cost averaging into the market over a year or two.

IMHO that tactic - as a way of investing an existing pool of money - NEVER makes sense.

(Investing what you can afford out of each paycheck as it comes in, is an entirely different matter - and is more similar to investing your entire pool of money NOW, than to dollar cost averaging.)

(Investing a limited amount while you learn what you are doing, so a major eff-up by you yourself won’t wipe you out, also is a different matter.)

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I will tell you a personal story, I hope you learn something from it, although I am not recommending you follow it perfectly because every journey is different.

I worked for Westinghouse for 17 years and was successful for most of those. As a department head I got a yearly bonus, out of which I bought myself one toy (big screen TV, lawn tractor, etc.) and deferred the rest. When I moved up to business unit manager I got two bonuses: one for the performance of my unit and one for the overall performance of the company (Westinghouse). I had great influence over the former and virtually none over the latter. I followed the same recipe with both, one toy and the rest in deferred debentures.

Then we got a new CEO who I instantly hated and him me, and after a year of agony I was fired. The company offered three choices to receive the deferred comp: take it all in one lump sum, take it annually at 20% over five years, or take it at 5% per year over 20 years. I discounted the last option (maybe good for someone about to retire, I guess) but couldn’t decide between the first two.

I called a fellow traveler who gave me great advice. He said “If you get it all now you won’t know what to do with it and you’ll screw it up. And the third option is absurd, so do the 2nd AND LEARN. The first year you’ll have a slug; pay yourself a little something and put the rest in the market. Get advice, but also do what you want. By the second year you will have learned a lot, and by the 3rd you’ll know most everything you need to know.”

He was right. That was in 1994, and I had just had a tour of some cubicles at the Chicago Tribune, where they were a part investor in a little outfit called AOL, which hardly anybody had yet heard of. Mrs. Goofy took a stock course and was seduced by the guy into opening an account with Dean Witter. He put a bunch of money into decent, stable stocks: Morton Salt, McDonald’s, Walgreen’s and others and that was fine with me. I took a little slice and bought some AOL (over his objections.)

And after the first year the stocks had done decently, and I learned. And the AOL had shot up and split, and shot up again. So out of the second year’s payout I bought some more, and also some Cisco, and some Lucent, and a few others. Most all of them did well, and the stable stocks were OK too. Third year: repeat. Fourth year: repeat.

In the fifth year I saw that many of the high fliers were too high (I would note a parallel with today) and I cashed out and paid a ton in taxes. On some I made a fortune: AOL and Cisco most notably. On some which had done well for a time I got killed as they cratered (Nortel, Lucent). On a few I got out even. But along the way I had learned a lot, I jettisoned some of the broker’s picks, kept some others, and learned why for each. I am now in a place in my life where my advice would not serve you at all; I am fortunate to be in the spot of “staying rich” rather than trying to “get rich.”

It appears you are about to “be rich”, and from your post I would also say you are perilously close to walking into the casino with your pockets jangling with cash, and unless you know more about the casino you are likely to exit with less, perhaps a lot less. You are an unsophisticated fish in a sea of sharks.

With an inheritance coming you don’t need to “get rich”, but you do need to “get educated.” Newsletter tip sheets and stock market suggestions from shoe shine boys is not the best way to do it, although occasionally you can find a gem there. (I wandered into the AOL cubicles, for instance.) A few hundred dollars in “ideas” from a newsletter? OK. $1.8m in one swell foop in companies you don’t know anything about? Not OK. Slow down. You have a whole life ahead and you are about to pass though an inflection point. Don’t screw it up risking money you shouldn’t risk to achieve something you don’t need.

Lastly, I apologize for the length of this missive, but personal experience is a better teacher than anything, or as I read somewhere else today: “Good education is mostly about experience, and the best education comes from your bad experiences.” Make your first education and first mistakes in baby steps. You’ll thank me later.


Maybe a range of ideas could be of interest.

I agree with Wendy and especially Flyerboys … you need to understand yourself and how to control your own emotions. The simplest issue is this: you think a stock is good value so you buy some. It gets cheaper. Do you now hate it, hate yourself, hate the market, hate CNBC etc … or do you check your analysis and buy more. (Most people go the emotional route).

I’m more a market timer than most, use all info, macro eco, tech analysis, fundamental analysis … to have fun. I’ve just finished a good time with ARKK for example … shorting it. I’m in a minority of investors.

Anyway apart from Wendy’s analyses, I’d suggest EverettRuess has the next few months taped with his quote from ex Fed NY chief Bill Dudley: The Fed wants markets lower. Why? In my view they have always wanted Congress to hand out fiscal support evenly across the population. Their pumping up of asset prices was only a last resort as it mainly further enriches the already rich. Now they want to undo it.


The Fed has said they will raise rates another 50 bp in each of June and July, and their balance sheet will start to contract in June and accelerate that in September. I don’t agree with their going so slowly, but who am I. I just look at the consequences of what they are doing and it looks like they are setting the market up for a fall in October. Why October? Well something to do with tax losses, but also traders get back to the office on Labor day and need to make their year budgets so they start to put on positions … logical ones because they have clean books after their holiday break … and by and large they herd together, not through scurrilous chats so much as all following the same news feeds and same charting techniques.

So … of course many people think the market is cheap now - it is compared to Jan 3, but thinking longer term, it’s been pumped up with free money for years, decades … has a lot more room to fall … and remember the emotional guys who will try to be brave but capitulate later as the stress gets to them, not to mention margin accounts that will get liquidated. Bear markets are nasty - violent, which fuels emotions, and that’s our real enemy.

Indeed, you may have read articles about how social media gain clicks and eyeballs onto their ads. They feed their users content that stirs up emotions. Beware of investment sites which try to do the same, it’s terribly difficult to act rationally even with out this stuff targeting our brains to malfunction …


Another board that I follow has this wiki on managing a windfall.


One of the big points is that it is usually a good idea to park the money someplace ultra safe for six months or longer while you learn and come up with a plan. It is more important invest it well than to invest it quickly. Of course if the windfall is not all in cash you may want to decide which risky investments should be quickly sold.

It might be an oversimplification but the 30 Motley Fool stocks you mentioned are likely(at best)mainly high risk and hopefully high reward stocks. You to not need to take lots of risks with all that money so they would be inappropriate buy anywhere near that much stock in those companies.

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My thoughts–
Casual, drive-by posts can be useless.

I say this after seeing the OP’s comments in another similar thread (on the Stock Advisor boards)

In the OP, Joe says “I”, but the scenario involves a married couple with two daughters

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Boglehead’s board is far superior than TMF as in overall guidance on investment portfolio’s and money management.

Read, read, read as much as you can from books about investing for your future and day to day living.

Everyone has an opinion based on their background and experience. Educate yourself and consider ideas and solutions.

Lucky Dog


Warren Buffet recommends putting most of it in a low cost index fund. I would put 5% at a time over some chosen time period. You would cost average into the markets as the drop and rise over that time. It would guarantee that you do no better or worse than US markets.