3 IRA Strategies to Boost Your Retirement Savings

May 01, 2024 by First Federal Bank

IRA-2When it comes to retirement planning, employer 401(k) programs tend to be the option people think of. But there are other ways you can save money for your golden years. An Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is another way to set aside and invest funds today to have available in the future. According to MSN, there are three ways you can make the most of an IRA:

 Put your contributions on autopilot

The nice thing about 401(k) plans is that they're funded automatically via payroll deductions. That helps 401(k) savers stay on track.

The good news, though, is that you can set up a similar system for your IRA. Many IRAs allow you to link to a checking account and make automatic contributions on a monthly basis. It pays to put your IRA contributions on autopilot so you don't, for example, get tempted to spend money on extras, leaving yourself without funds for your IRA in a given month.

Load up on stocks

One great feature of IRAs is that they allow you to invest your retirement savings in individual stocks. With a 401(k) plan, you're generally limited to different funds but can't choose stocks individually.

Being able to handpick stocks for your IRA could lead to a portfolio that's poised for growth. So, don't shy away from stocks just because they can be volatile. The stock market has a long history of rewarding savers who have kept their money invested for long periods.

If you contribute $300 monthly to an IRA over a 45-year period and maintain a stock-heavy portfolio, your account might deliver an average annual 8% return, which is just below the stock market's average. Your ending balance in that scenario? A pretty impressive $1.39 million.

Save in a Roth account

When you contribute to a traditional IRA, you'll get an immediate tax break on the funds you put in. To put it another way, a $5,000 traditional IRA contribution will shield $5,000 of your income from taxes.

You won't get that same tax break with a Roth IRA. What you will get, though, is the benefit of tax-free gains in your account, as well as tax-free withdrawals during retirement.

Another nice thing about Roth IRAs? They don't force you to take required minimum distributions. That gives you complete control over the savings you've worked hard to build. With a traditional IRA, you'll eventually be forced to start tapping your nest egg or face costly penalties for failing to remove funds from your account.

Read the full article here.

 There are many factors to consider when making decisions concerning a retirement account. If you are unsure which retirement savings approach is best for you, talk to a financial planner. A professional can help you navigate your options and determine a plan that will offer you the best results for your situation.

Categories: Retirement, Financial Education

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