Could You Handle Retiring Sooner Than Anticipated?

While you may have plans to retire at a particular age, life and your career may dictate otherwise. Certain scenarios may arise that may force you to think long and hard about retiring sooner than anticipated. A major company restructuring or other organizational changes may make retirement seem more appetizing than continuing working. Furthermore, general discontent with your career can be another driver of the decision to retire earlier than intended. If you’ve been consistent with your retirement saving and focused on saving as much as possible, you may be okay, especially if you are within a year or two Continue reading Could You Handle Retiring Sooner Than Anticipated?

Remind Your Kids: Save Early, Save Often!

The best way to set yourself up for a comfortable retirement is to start saving as early as possible. This means as soon as you have income, you start putting some of it towards retirement. If your first job is with an employer that offers retirement savings benefits, then take advantage of them. It’s even sweeter if your employer offers matching contributions (extra $$$!). If you are well into your career and have children or grandchildren entering the working world, take some time to remind them of the importance of saving for retirement. They might roll their eyes or talk Continue reading Remind Your Kids: Save Early, Save Often!

Don’t Even Think About Stopping Retirement Plan Contributions

Could you weather a financial emergency given your current savings? Where would the money come from to cover something such as unexpected medical bills or a necessary home improvement expense? In such situations it can be tempting to divert money ear-marked for your retirement savings towards those unexpected bills. Yes, such a move will provide short-term relief and provide you with the needed funds, but in the long-term impact can be quite substantial. First off, don’t forget that the money you don’t put into your retirement account won’t have an opportunity to grow (i.e. through investments) and won’t be there later, Continue reading Don’t Even Think About Stopping Retirement Plan Contributions

Could Congress Soon Expand Your Retirement Options?

Regardless of the outcomes of yesterday’s elections, it appears that Congress could be poised to expand retirement options in the near future. The Retirement Enhancement and Savings Act (RESA), which appears to have bipartisan support, could expand retirement plan access for many workers as well as allow more employers to offer such plans. The biggest selling point of the legislation is that it will allow small businesses to band together–pooling resources and increasing buying power–and offer multi-employer retirement plans (MEPs) to employees similar to those offered by larger businesses and corporations. This can be an enticing offer for small businesses Continue reading Could Congress Soon Expand Your Retirement Options?

Falling Behind on Retirement Saving? Take Advantage of Catch-Ups

It can be easy to fall behind on saving for retirement. There are many expenses and costs that you will have to deal with during the early decades of your career which may require you to either save less than you would like to for retirement. While that isn’t anything to scoff at, it isn’t something you should lose sleep over. Why? Because once you reach a certain age, you will be able to take advantage of catch-up contributions. For example, if you are over the age of 50, you can put an additional $1,000 into an IRA each year, Continue reading Falling Behind on Retirement Saving? Take Advantage of Catch-Ups

How Good of a Retirement Saver Are You?

As with anything thing in life, there are people who are good at retirement saving and people who are not so good at it. Where do you fall? While there is no one, certain way to measure how successful you are as a retirement saver, there are a few habits and practices that can provide a good sense of how good you are at retirement saving. For one, you can see if you are maxing out your retirement contribution limits as well as taking advantage of any employer matching. Smart retirement savers know to put in as much as possible Continue reading How Good of a Retirement Saver Are You?

The Basics of Roth IRA Contributions

Today’s blog post is a bit of a refresher course about Roth IRAs. Yes, you probably know what a Roth IRA is, but do you know what is required to make contributions and what the limitations on contributions are? Furthermore, do you know if you are beyond those limitations? First off, in order to make a Roth IRA contribution, you need to have earned income. That means income earned from some type of job. This is different than passive income (i.e. retirement plan payments, renting property, disability benefits, etc.), which rarely, if ever, counts towards earned income. Also, after-tax income Continue reading The Basics of Roth IRA Contributions

Do You Know When Your 401(k) Contribution Deposits Arrive?

We live in a highly technological world where much of what we do–from ordering food to running a business–can be done online. It’s therefore highly likely that if you have a retirement plan with your employer that you can access your plan through a website. Those websites often provide a wealth of information and ways to make changes to your plan. You can change beneficiaries or investments with a few mouse clicks and by filling out a few text boxes. While you may not spend much time on such websites, you should at least explore them when you visit and Continue reading Do You Know When Your 401(k) Contribution Deposits Arrive?