Where to park my money for the next couple of years…

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As you may have noticed, my portfolio is defintely cash-heavy. There are two mains reasons for this:
1) I am currently renting and am saving up for a downpayment for a house in the next 2-3 years, and would like to keep the money somewhat liquid.
2) I don’t know that to do with it. I don’t want to be investing in the current trendy idea, and have it bomb right before I find the perfect house. Still…

…earning 2% interest is not going to help my downpayment money grow. I heard you can withdraw money from a Roth IRA to pay for your first home, but after doing some research, I found out that you must wait five years first. I’d like to think I’d be owning my own house by then… However, putting money into a Roth isn’t a bad idea anyways. So, I have decided to fund a Roth IRA. I can put in $3,000 for 2004 and $4,000 for 2005 for both my wife and myself each, as we satisfy the income restrictions this year and the next. Either it stays in there as a great retirement vehicle, or I can pull it out to pay for a house.

Next step: Which brokerage firm to use, and where to allocate my assets – stocks/bonds/REITs/pork futures?

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