How to Save for and Fund Your Retirement

Your retirement is going to get here sooner than you think and, chances are, if you’re reading this post, you aren’t a fresh out of the dorms millennial looking for the simplest way to retire early. You’re more likely in your 30s or 40s (or maybe even 50s) and realizing that you are now entering the game of “catch up” when it comes to saving for and funding your retirement. Don’t worry, even though the situation feels dire, it is not too late.

Budget

According to Laura Judkins, the key to accumulating savings for retirement is to begin with a budget. Creating a budget isn’t nearly as complicated as you might think. In fact, it may very well be one of the best things you do for your financial situation. There are plenty of guides out there that will teach you how to set up that budget and even more guides on how to stick to that budget, so we won’t get into the details here.

We’ll just tell you that putting together a budget is the first and perhaps one of the most important of many steps you can take to help you save for retirement. Why? Because you can create a “save for retirement” line item!

401(k)s

By now almost all of us have heard of the 401(k). You might even have one through your employer. If so, congratulations! You’re more ahead of the game than you might have thought you were. The key to growing your 401(k) is to transfer the maximum amount allowed each year and to get your employer to match it. This way you save as much as possible and all of that yummy compound interest will just pile up and up and up.

Of course, the other key to a successful 401(k) account is to not touch it. Do not borrow against your 401(k). The fees are high and the consequences can be severe.

IRAs

The Individual Retirement Account is the self-funded version of a 401(k). These are accounts you build on your own to either supplement an existing 401(k) or to stand in the place of one. To put it more plainly: IRAs are a high-interest yielding savings account into which you tuck money away for your future needs. IRAs are great because they can reduce your tax burden and they also have higher compound interest rates than the average savings account.

Investing: Stocks and Bonds

If nobody has yet told you that the key to a financially solvent future is to invest in the stock market, you’re lucky…even if it does happen to be true. The idea here is to create a variety of sources of income as possible. Don’t just jump into an eTrade account and hope for the best, though! Start small with a few stocks here and there, or create an account with a micro-investing company that will create a small portfolio for you. As you learn about how to read and understand the market you can move into bigger investments.

A word about bonds: Bonds are a great “baby step” into investing because you are almost always guaranteed to get, at a minimum, your initial investment back. They can also, depending on which bonds you choose, be quite lucrative if you allow them to mature completely.

Investing: Business

There are a few ways to go about this. You can invest in your own new business, which will give you the benefit of working for yourself and being your own boss. If the business becomes successful, eventually you can sell it for a profit and use that sale to help fund your retirement along with what you’ve saved and invested already.

Another option is to invest in someone else’s company in exchange for a percentage of the profits or company’s shares. If you like the idea of passive income, this is a fantastic option but it is not for the risk-averse. If the company tanks, you won’t even get your initial investment back.

Investing: Real Estate

One particularly great option is to invest in a rental property or two. If you have good renters, owning a rental property can be a fantastic source of income for decades to come. The goal is to have the renter’s rent payments offset any mortgage payments you might be making and also give you some extra funds to tuck away in the bank.

Whichever method(s) you choose, don’t wait to get started. Start saving right now. Even transferring five dollars from your checking into your savings account is a good first step! The sooner you begin saving, even small amounts, the more you’ll have on hand when it is time to retire.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

Preparing for Retirement in Your Early 20s

Having a stress-free retirement with more than enough money to retire with should be what we all strive for. When it comes to investing and saving, millennials have some advantage over other age groups, as they have more time to save up. However, a study revealed that millennials have unrealistic retirement plans, where 15% thought winning the lottery was a viable retirement strategy while 11% expect to be gifted retirement money. You need a strategy to plan for retirement in your early 20s.

mb-2016-06-retire

This is a proof that people in their 20s are not adequately prepared for their retirement, even though they are the ones known to struggle with retirement savings. In this post, we will highlight tips on how you can get started in saving up for your retirement as early as now.

Start saving today

The first step is to start saving now by opening a savings account. Most employers offer a savings vehicle, like the 401(k) or 403(b), that you can take advantage of and put some money in for your retirement as early as now. Depending on the company match rules, it can yield an immediate 50%+ return on investment. There is also an option to open a traditional IRA or Roth IRA that automatically deducts money from your paycheck to be transferred into your retirement account. Start by saving at least 10% of your gross income and work up from there as your paycheck increases over time.

Freedom from debt

The fastest way you will be able to save enough for your retirement is by getting out of debt. Most millennials are still managing their student loans while incurring other liabilities by getting a high-interest credit card. You will not be able to start saving enough if you are still worrying about paying some of your debts off. It’s time to look at your list of liabilities and find the most effective way to repay them. Be smart in getting loans or credit cards. If there’s no need to get one, avoid it as much as you can.

Invest in long-term opportunities

Millennials must start placing their money on viable long-term opportunities with high returns, such as forex mb-2016-06-graphtrading. There are various reasons why forex trading is alluring for young investors. First, it has a low risk aversion compared with other opportunities. Second, it works perfectly with conservative trading systems where you can cap losses effectively. Lastly, it requires technology to implement strategies, which millennials have high affinity for. The most important variable in investment is creating a diversified portfolio.  Do this by looking at other opportunities where you can place your money.  Target investments include dividend growth, stocks and real estate.

Hire a reliable financial advisor

Do not do it on your own. There are reliable services you can get to benefit from your savings and investments, such as seeking a financial advisor. This professional will help you manage, track, and provide advice to you.  This will help you achieve financial freedom as well as your future goals.  Make sure that they understand your goals.  Another tip is to make sure that they work with other millennials.  Having this experience under their belt will help ensure that they serve your best interests.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

Just How Many More Years of Jim Cramer Must We Put Up With?

 

My mother-in-law is very close to retirement.  She actually gave her notice and then very nicely agreed to work a bit longer when they didn’t find anyone to replace her by the time she was set to leave.  But, her clock now is ‘any day’ and I know she’s looking forward to it.

This past Christmas, my father-in-law gave her a present, a little countdown clock that counted down the number of days, hours, minutes, and seconds to her official date.

It reads zero now, and I’m wondering if we might possibly send it to Jim Cramer and have him program it.

Because, seriously, if there’s one person whose retirement I cannot wait for, it is Jim Cramer.

An Expert At Being A Loudmouth

I’m not sure who gave this guy a microphone and who dictated him some financial wizard, but by now anybody that has ever invested money into the market in the last 15 years probably knows who he is.

I seem to remember him first coming out during the 1990’s tech boom and at the time, he was kind of entertaining.

Now, he’s just annoying.

Let me count down the ways in which I dislike Jim Cramer and hopefully will see his retirement announcement soon!

He’s loud and obnoxious

You want to be on TV, you have to stand out.  I get that.  But Cramer is just annoyingly loud.  He never does or says anything calmly!  People are likely nervous enough about their money being in the market, I just can’t see why people want to follow someone that just adds anxiety where no more is needed.

He’s a know-it-all

When you’re good at something, you have a right to boast or act like an expert, but to cross the line to think that your past success means that you know more than every other person on the planet is outright ridiculous, yet that’s what Cramer does.  And, he has been wrong quite a bit, but simply changes his story after the fact to make it seem like his words were twisted.  Stand up guy, I’ll tell you!

mb-2015-08-retireHe instigates herd mentality

Reading message boards on the market, I can’t tell you the number of times someone started their post with “Cramer said…”  It’s scary.  Nobody should have the control over peoples minds that he does.  The average dope (my shortened word for people who are willing disciples of Cramer) may not be an expert in the stock market (and I know I’m not), but Cramer gives way too many people the option to not even try to learn anything about what they’re doing with.

He probably scares small children

Well, I have to believe that this is true, anyway.  He scares me and I’m pretty hard to scare.

He exponentially oversimplifies things

Years ago, I did a lot of the computer work for a small financial adviser firm.  The one owner was OK about talking investments, and one time I brought up a stock, said that I’d heard that it was a can’t miss stock, and what did I think?  He pulled up the news, looked at it, and then pulled up a bunch of charts.  Everything went over my head but that was my first learning of technical analysis and chart reading, two things that real experts do.  He then brought up charts and such on the market and explained how that all fit in.

I stood there for 30 minutes, had most of it go over my head, and only then did he give the recommendation that…..it wasn’t a good stock.  And it turned out he was right.  When I later pointed that out, he said “Well, yeah, even after that I got lucky.  I stay in business because I get more right than wrong, but I do get some wrong.”  Cramer makes it sound like it’s easy and that what he says is a sure thing, and sadly too many people believe that.

As you can tell, I really don’t like him and have no appreciation for him, but I also know that he’s one of the most recognized names in the investing community, so he has to be doing something right.  Whatever that is, I want no part of it.

Want to join me in setting up a Cramer Retirement Countdown Clock?  Who knows, maybe that’ll be the next can’t miss opportunity in the market?  Now, wouldn’t that just be ironic?

Readers, what do you think about Jim Cramer?  Love him?  Hate him?  Rich or poor because of him?  Please leave your thoughts in the comments.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.

Preparing For Retirement

Before you know it, your retirement will be here. Whether you are nearing it, or it is still a few decades off, it’ll get here sooner than you think. When that time comes, you will want to be as prepared for it as possible. There is a lot that goes into preparing for a retirement, as there are a lot of things that you will need to take care of once you retire. Below is a quick list of the things you should start thinking about as soon as possible, as they will impact you once you retire.

Money

First and foremost you need to think about your finances. While you have a job you have an income, but once you retire, that income is going to be gone. You are going to have to live off of your savings and any other incomes you may have – such as social security. To make sure that you have enough money to live off of, you should start examining what your lifestyle costs, and think about how long you are going to need to live off of savings.

One great way to prepare financially for retirement is through investment. By investing a small amount of money now, it can grow into a larger sum by the time you retire. Investing is not just for the corporate types up on Wall Street, especially these days. With the rise of online brokers you can easily invest at any time, with any amount of money. Many online brokerages allow you to invest in a variety of ways, including the New York Stock Exchance, Forex and International Currency. With a wide range of options, it is up to you how you want to invest, and you can do it from the comfort of your own home. Investing is a great way to secure your financial future, so consider looking into it as soon as you can and then start building up your portfolio.

Where To Live

Where you live now may not be where you want to live when you are retired. Some people choose to move to warmer climates, some to more affordable areas, while others choose to move closer to family. If you plan on moving when you are retired, you should begin researching the new area, and the costs that are associated with it. That way you can make sure it is the right place for you, and that you can afford it when the time comes.

mb-2015-06-chairsActivities 

When you retire, you will have a lot more time on your hands. Think about how you want to spend it. Things like gardening, traveling, and aerobics classes are all common among retirees, but you can choose whatever you like. It is a good idea to think about it now to not only give yourself something to look forward to, but so that you can begin preparing for those activities now. For example  if you want to travel, you can start thinking about locations and making sure you have enough money saved up.

Health 

Lastly, but certain not the least important, is your health. When your retirement comes you want to enjoy it, and you can’t do that if you are not healthy. Take care of yourself now so that when the time arrives, you can enjoy your retirement to its fullest. You’ve worked hard all of these years, and you want your retirement years to be as long and enjoyable as possible.

Copyright 2017 Original content authorized only to appear on Money Beagle. Please subscribe via RSS, follow me on Twitter, Facebook, or receive e-mail updates. Thank you for reading.