Saving is difficult, no matter what it is for. It is even harder to save when you won’t get to see the money for another forty years. However, once you do hit retirement, you’ll be thankful for every penny that you saved over the years. Use these tips to get yourself started on the right foot.
Either start saving or keep on saving. If you aren’t saving already, then it’s due time that you started. You can never really begin saving too early for retirement. If you are already saving, then good job, but you can’t slack off as time goes on. Keep saving and don’t give up.
Decrease what you spend on random items during the week. Make a budget and figure out what you can remove. If you do this for at least a few decades, you will be amazed at just how much money you have saved as a result.
Know how much money you will need for retirement. Experts agree that you will require 70 percent of your income to maintain the standard of living you are used to. By beginning to save early in life, you can assure that you have enough income to live comfortably during your golden years.
If your employer offers a retirement plan, invest in it. Many employers offer a matching plan which increases your savings, so make sure you invest at least up to the matching amount. In addition to saving for retirement, a 401k plan will help lower your income taxes every year.
Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Unfortunately, the problem many people face today is simply not knowing enough about their retirement options to make a decision. Ask friends, family, and coworkers about their retirement plans and your available options. You’ll be surprised to learn that there is a world of possibilities waiting for you.
Research your particular Social Security benefits. When you retire, Social Security will offer benefits around 40 percent of your pre-retirement income. If you go online, you’ll find plenty of Social Security calculators that will help you estimate your expected income from Social Security during retirement. This can help you plan better for the future.
When planning for retirement, create savings goals and stick to them. If you’ve already started saving, keep at it! If you haven’t started, create small goals and make sure to meet them every month. Make saving a priority. Once you have met your goals, slowly increase them as you go along.
Try to keep your retirement savings plan in tact for as long as possible. If you drew on it to pay for an extravagant vacation for example, you risk losing a ton of money in interest and could even face penalties. While it would be nice to spoil yourself, you’ve got to think long-term financing when it comes to retirement!
Follow good living habits right now. This is the time when you should pay attention to your health so that you will stay in good health during your retirement. Eat the right foods and get exercise regularly. When you build up a strong and healthy foundation, you will be in good shape when you retire.
Never spend your retirement money. Pulling money from your retirement fund not only reduces the amount of money you have for retirement, but it also increases your tax burden. You will also be responsible for early withdrawal penalties, tax liabilities and lose interest from the amount withdrawn from your retirement fund.
Consider downsizing in retirement. When it’s just you and your spouse, you no longer need a large home and two car payments. When you downsize, you can reduce your monthly debt which makes it easier to enjoy retirement more. Consider an apartment, town home or even a small single family home that will adequately meet your needs without breaking the bank.
Make as many contributions to your 401K as possible. First, of course, you need to find out if your company offers a 401K plan. If they do, then this should be your primary saving concern. Not only will they offer smaller taxes, but they often match your investments if they meet the requirements.
Don’t think that Social Security benefits will cover the cost of living. While your Social Security benefits will pay for about 40 percent of what you make now when you retire, it’s not going to match your living costs. For most people, a much greater percentage is required to maintain a decent standard of living and cover normal expenses.
Be very certain that the funds that you’ve saved for retirement are vested by the time you are looking to retire. Sure all that money is earmarked for retirement, but there may be restrictions on when you can actually touch those funds. Removing them early could mean having to pay fees for touching the funds.
Learn as much as you can about Medicare, including how to use it. If you have existing medical insurance, you must find out how that plan will work in conjunction with Medicare. This will help you to be covered completely.
Begin contributing into an IRA. You can contribute up to $5,500 a year up until the age of 50. Once you reach 50 years old, you can contribute an additional $1,000 per year. Most IRA contributions are tax deductible which can help lessen your tax burden each year you contribute.
Avoid making assumptions about retirement, because things rarely turn out the way we plan. Seek the advice of a qualified professional, and put your financial house in order long before you actually stop working. Most people think they’ve got plenty saved up, but it all goes very quickly, and they usually find themselves unprepared!
Do you now know what you want from your retirement plan? Do you know how much it will cost you to live comfortably on a fixed income? These are questions should be able to answer after reading the tips provided above. Start saving today and save as much as possible.
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