SMART MONEY: Eager job-seeker doesn't want to be a pest
August 04, 2013 1:39 AM

DEAR BRUCE: After looking for a job, I finally found an opening that suited me perfectly. The pay is much less and I would have to relocate, but that’s OK with me.

I sent my resume with a cover letter as requested and have been waiting patiently. I called the Human Resources department to ask if the job is still available and the lady said it was. I asked her if there are many applicants. She said that there are and the search committee has to evaluate all the resumes before they can ask for interviews. She would not or could not say when or if I’d be called for an interview.

Should I send a new letter explaining my situation and work ethics? How much or how often should a job-seeker keep inquiring about a job without becoming a pest?

I am 55 years old and have 30 years of experience. You mentioned once that age discrimination really does exist in the workplace. Do you think that might prevent me from getting work? I am getting desperate and nervous. — Reader, via email

DEAR READER: Addressing your last comment, about age discrimination and could it prevent you from getting work? Possibly. The fact that you are desperate and nervous does not sit well. You don’t want to convey that.

The more serious question you asked is should you send a new letter explaining your situation and work ethics? Absolutely! Explain that you are very interested in the position, even though the pay is lower than you currently receive, and that you are willing to relocate for this job. Forget about the resumes and cover letters. They have a habit of getting lost on someone’s desk. A personal letter, not too long, is a good idea. If you don’t hear anything after three or four weeks, I wouldn’t have a problem with sending another letter. Let them know you’re still here and would like an opportunity to explain why hiring you would be to their advantage as well as yours.

DEAR BRUCE: My husband and I inherited $100,000. We are both 54 years old, working full time and in good health. Our children are college graduates and on their own. Our house is paid for, and we have no other debts. What sound financial advice would you give us for investing some of this money? — L.M., via email

DEAR L.M.: Your question is one that is often asked. If this is money you want to invest and grow, you will have to take a certain degree of risk. That means the stock market. I am not suggesting you should go out and buy wildly speculative stocks at your age. You haven’t indicated any other monies, so I assume they are not substantial. I would talk to a good broker about investing with solid American companies that are paying decent dividends and are performing well in the market. You notice that I said “American companies,” which doesn’t mean you can’t invest in the foreign market, but with $100,000, I would keep it here.

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