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Planning for Retirement

You may have a busy career, but make sure that you take the time to educate yourself on ways to save for retirement. Everyone wants to be financially comfortable later in life. Make wise choices in your youth to ensure stability later.

By the time that you are in your 30s, make sure that you are well established in your employer's 401(k) or other retirement plan. Many financial experts recommend that you put around 10 percent of your income into your retirement. The exact percentage depends on your income and expenses.

When you take advantage of your employer's 401(k) plan or other tax-deferred retirement plan, know that your contributions will be made with pre-tax dollars. Further, taxes on earnings will not apply until you withdraw the funds during retirement. Many employers match all or part of your contribution, which means good news for you.

If you change jobs, make sure that you refrain from taking your 401(k) plan investments. Keep the funds in your employer's plan or roll them into a new employer's plan. Otherwise, set up a bridge IRA to avoid taxes and penalties.

Your 40s will give you a good idea on the income you will need once you retire from your career. Do your calculations wisely, as more and more people today are retiring earlier and living longer. Determine if your mortgage would be paid off by then. Think about your retirement plans and possible travel expenses. Further, after retiring, you may need to cover your own health insurance. If you plan to retire early, remember that you will need to bridge the gap between the time that your employer's health insurance coverage ends and when Medicare begins.

Throughout your life, take control of your banking and budgeting practices. This can help you achieve financial security even after your career days end.