A crucial part of retirement is making sure you keep enough money for your future so that you can retire and actually enjoy it. It's never too early to begin saving for retirement, considering the last thing you want is to be stressed when you simply shouldn't be.
Here are 5 ways to prepare for retirement while you are in your 20s and 30s.
1. Stick to your goals
Saving is a rewarding habit. As stated earlier, the earlier you save, the better off you are during your actual retirement. A great way to stay on track is to set a goal early in your career and to work towards that goal every day. In the beginning of your career, start smaller (depending on your income). Later on as you move up in your industry, start putting more money into your savings for retirement. Make saving money your top priority early in your life so that it becomes a good habit later on.
2. Know what you need in retirement
Not every retirement is the same, but one common factor is that retirement is expensive. Dol.gov states that "Experts estimate that you will need 70 to 90 percent of your pre-retirement income to maintain your standard of living when you stop working." In order to know what you need, all it takes is a google search and a couple hours of your time. Know what you need early on so that in the later stages of your career, you don't have to panic about your money and future plans.
3. Try to contribute to your employers retirement savings plan
The more you put into your employers savings plan, the more likely it is that you will get rewarded in your own retirement. You can lower your taxable income by making pre-tax contributions, and automatic deductions from your paycheck can make funding your future much easier. Compound interest and tax deferrals are two big factors in your contributions as well. Find out about your plan and start contributing.
4. Consider basic investment principles Put your savings in different types of investing, as diversifying what you invest in gives you an increased chance of reward and can reduce your risk of investment. Your investments may change over time depending on your financial goals and age, but it is key to keep them diverse. Inflation and the types of investments being made can really help down the line.
Remember that all investing involves risk, and no strategy can guarantee a profit.
5. Don't touch your retirement savings
Touching your retirement savings, depending on the situation, can flip your retirement plans upside down and cause chaos. If you withdraw at any time before retirement, it is possible that you can lose principle and interest and may even have to pay withdrawal penalties. Even if you change jobs, you should ensure you keep your qualified assets in a qualified account.
The overall theme here is to save your money early and often. As you progress through different stages of your life, you will see opportunities to invest more into your retirement. The earlier you start the better - even if you are in your 20s.
For Educational Purposes Only – Not to be relied upon as financial, tax, or legal advice. Please consult a qualified professional regarding your individual circumstances. The views expressed are those of the author/presenter and all data is derived from sources believed to be reliable.