There is a well-known nursery story about an ant who works hard all his life so that after the rains come he can be secure and guarded with all the provisions he needs. The same lesson is to be exercised while retirement making plans is considered. Effective and efficient retirement planning can be equated to early planning. Planning is the key in order to determine how you will spend the rest of the days. Given below are certain guidelines and strategies that are recognized to be useful to many; it might even help you too.
1. NEVER Withdraw from Your Retirement Plan
Withdrawing money from your retirement plan is never advisable except in the most extreme situations. Withdrawing from your retirement plan will mean losing the valuable interest that has accrued. This will reduce future interest you earn on that account and keep it from building into a larger nest egg. You could face penalties or early withdrawal fees. Some plans allow you to have withdrawals or loans but you must be extra careful in taking advantage of these withdrawals.
2. Invest in YOUR Future
Invest as much money into your company retirement plan for as long as you can afford it. You should invest enough to get your company matching funds if they are offered. Even small amounts can grow into very large amounts over time. A small sacrifice now, can set you up for success in retirement.
3. Monitor the Investments
Always monitor your investments on a regular basis. Only then will you be aware of any discrepancies or unexpected downturns in your plan. You will also be aware of how your investments are doing. Alternative assets may require more attention than traditional investment choices.
4. Social Security
Do not rely too much on social security. You should always have other means of income as a backup. It is wise to have a retirement plan, an IRA, and personal savings. The more streams of income the better, especially in retirement. Have you ever wondered whether the social security system will survive the coming retirement of the baby boom generation? You should think about this and plan accordingly.
5. Separate the Plans
Each family member should plan for their retirement. Often, only one spouse will have a retirement plan, however you can partner your retirement accounts for better retirement investing opportunities. If something were to happen to either spouse and remaining spouse is a primary beneficiary, they can then merge the IRAs to continue cash flow. You will be setting your family up for long-term success if you plan early.
6. Review the Plan
Alternative assets in self-directed IRAs are more geared towards the hands on investor. If you happen to have a low-maintenance investment, always remember to review your portfolio goals. You may not achieve your ultimate success, if you are not reviewing your portfolio outcome. The bottom line is to take your retirement planning efforts seriously, widen your mind for your investments, save regularly, and always keep your goals in mind. That will insure that you enjoy your golden years comfortably!
7. Get Organized
Gather your financial papers, receipts of charitable contributions and proof of the deductions you intend to claim. Sit down, plan your future and work towards it. You cannot aim for a fruitful retirement without a plan to get there.
8. Find Out What is New
Nearly every year there’s something new about the tax codes. Credits, exemptions and deductions can change so ask your tax professional or do some research to find out about what may affect your circumstances. Always be open to second opinions, as this is your future and your money – take control.
9. Know What You Are Doing
Tax forms can be complicated and confusing, but incorrect information can delay your refund or generate IRS penalties. Tax preparation software programs can take out some of the guesswork. If you don’t trust yourself to do your own taxes, consider going to a reputable tax service or a CPA. Always have a meeting to review your documents this way you can guarantee nothing was missed.
10. Safeguard Your Long-Term Financial Records
You will want to save income tax returns and supporting documentation – such as cancelled checks – not less than six years. And it’s important to save your retirement portfolio account papers indefinitely. Year end is a great time to review your financial situation, revisit your asset allocation and retirement portfolio diversification strategies, and do as much as you can to boost your retirement savings.