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9 Smart Ways to Spend $10,000

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Jeanette Brown knows how tough it can be for twenty- and thirtysomethings to afford a first home. Brown is a real estate agent in Denver, where home prices have steadily increased over the past several years and the pickings are slim—especially at the entry level. So when each of Brown’s adult children wanted to buy a home, she tapped her savings to help. In May, she gave $8,750 to her daughter, Shanon BrownMiller, for a down payment on the $250,000 home that she bought with her wife, Amy BrownMiller. Then in November, she gave $8,900 to her son, Scott, and his wife, Marilyn, for the closing costs on a $318,000 home. “It’s really difficult for young buyers to own their own home without assistance from somebody, and as a parent, I was in the best position to help,” says Brown. She offered the money without being asked because, she says, her children were ready to make a long-term financial commitment.

Helping first-time home buyers is among the 9 ideas you’ll find on the following pages for what to do with a stash of cash. Our suggestions run the gamut from timely investments to tempting splurges, as well as ways to give to a good cause.

SEE ALSO: 12 Smart Ways to Spend $1,000

SEE ALSO: 7 Smart Ways to Spend $100,000

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