With IRA contributions due by April 15th, this is a good time to talk about retirement planning and to determine whether you are on track to meet your long term goals.
Here are three ways to maximize your retirement savings:
- Contribute to the appropriate type of retirement account:
If you’re a working: Take advantage of the 401(k) or other employer-sponsored retirement plan — such as a 403(b) or 457 plan. You want to maximize your contributions if you can.
If you’re married, but don’t work outside the home: Make contributions to a spousal IRA.
If you’re self-employed: Are you saving for retirement? If so, do you have the right type of plan?Don’t overlook the retirement plan options available to you i.e. SEP IRA, Owner 401(k), etc. This is one of the best strategies for building value outside of your business.
- Consolidate your retirement accounts: You should consider consolidating multiple IRAs and rolling over 401(k) s from previous employers. If you are no longer with the company, your money shouldn’t be there either. By consolidating into an IRA, it gives you more flexibility in terms of investment options and gives you a better picture of your portfolio.
- Determine whether you are on track to meet your goals: It is important to know how much money you need to fund your retirement and to track your progress at least annually. You can use this Ballpark Estimate tool from the American Savings Education Council to determine whether you are currently on track.
Retirement planning is not just about the numbers. It starts with your goals. What does retirement look like for you?
You are in control…
You are in control of your financial future. Careful planning and a long term strategy can go a long way towards achiving your long term retirement goals and living the retirement lifestyle you desire.
Pamela Plick is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ practitioner and Registered Investment Advisor located in Palm Desert, California specializing in planning for women. Her goal is to empower, educate and engage women around their money. You can find out more about Pamela and connect with her on twitter, Facebook or linked in by going to www.pamelaplick.com.
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