Getting Involved With the Match Game

No, this is not a blog post about dating games, but it is about matches–employer contribution matching, that is. In case you are unfamiliar, employer contribution matching is a retirement benefit in which a company will match contributions you make to your employer-sponsored retirement account (usually a 401(k)). Such benefits usually have certain limitations or rules for eligibility. For example, you may have to work at the company for a certain length of time before being eligible or you have to contribute a certain amount of your annual income to take advantage of it. While matching contributions are offered by many large companies, it is not as widespread as other retirement benefits–such as employer-sponsored retirement plans–and it also tends to be among the first benefits cut or rolled back when companies hit hard financial times. However, if you find yourself with such an opportunity, you should take advantage of it as it can be an efficient and easy way to build up your nest egg.¬†After all, who wouldn’t want free money added to their retirement savings? Before diving in, take some time to read up on such retirement benefits to ensure that you are taking full advantage of it if you do decide to pursue it. Keep in mind that many of these benefits require that you contribute a certain amount to your retirement plan to be eligible for the match. Also, be sure to remind your children or grandchildren of such benefits when they go out into the working world and encourage them to contribute enough to their employer-sponsored plans to effectively use it.¬† If you want to learn more about whether your employer offers retirement contribution matching, you should speak with the benefits manager or director at your employer.