Retirement is part of the American dream and yet many Americans are not saving enough to have a secure financial future. Here are some key points to consider in order to gain more financial security:
Know where you are financially and where you need to be at retirement. Having a plan and following it is the number one way to creating financial independence. You need to know how you spend your money now, where you can create savings, and you need to begin that saving, even if it is initially a very small amount per month. Just remember, it is never too late to start.
You must take full advantage of any employee-sponsored retirement plans. Contribute the maximum amount; in this way you will be paying yourself first as well as getting tax breaks and, over time, your investments will grow. If your employer does not have a plan then suggest they start one. You can also supplement such plans by opening an IRA (Individual Retirement Account). Remember that you will not reach your goals if you do not participate. Educate yourself and get involved in making decisions about your financial security.
As you start your savings, be sure to understand where you can invest your money. Financial knowledge will enable to make the best decisions for your current and future needs. Be sure to understand what your retirement income needs are likely to be and develop your investments around that goal. Diversifying your investments will both help you reduce risk and improve your returns.
Creating wealth does not happen overnight. It takes time and being patient is one of the keys to your eventual retirement. Do not draw on your retirement savings before you need them and be sure to understand the rules for withdrawals. Early withdrawal of money from some retirement accounts will bring with it a steep penalty price. Additionally, understand the Social Security system and consider postponing your reliance on that income in order to reap later larger payouts.
Building a robust financial future takes hard work, but it is within your grasp. Planning, education, and perseverance are the keys.
Source: U.S. Department of Labor