Even though retirement may seem like a lifetime away it’s so important to start saving for it now. There are few financial decisions that you can make now that are as significant as planning for your retirement. It takes more than stashing away a few dollars here and there to build a retirement fund that you can live off of in your golden years.
The key is to start early. I previously told you how my husband and I are beginning to plan for retirement by looking into investing. For some people saving a small amount of money every month is the way to go, but for others it’s not enough. If you want to get a jumpstart on your retirement account than you should start now.
The problem arises when people don’t know how to make the jump from saving some money each month to saving a lot more to get ahead. With a mortgage, bills, kids, and all of the other daily expenses that come along with life it can be hard finding ways to save more money towards your retirement. But, it is not impossible.
Today, I wanted to share with you some ways that you can start saving to jumpstart your retirement account now. A lot of the tips you find below may sound extremely simple, but you may be surprised to find that you are actually not doing them. You may think that you are putting away money, but are you putting away enough? Are you consistent? Are you investing?
Ways to Jumptstart your Retirement Savings
1. Have a plan. You do not want to just say that you are going to start saving. Even though you have good intentions, it’s a lot easier to say something then it is to do it, especially when it comes to saving money. Figure out how you are going to save and create a detailed plan. Even if it is something as simple as putting away $100 a month. This may be extremely tough to do, so sit down and see how you can save this money. Where can you cutback? Where will you put this money when it is saved? Do you have a separate savings account?
Even if your plan is to speak to your employer about opening a retirement fund set a specific date to accomplish this. Make detailed goals and then write out the necessary steps to execute your plan. I recommend using budget binder and having monthly and yearly financial goals. A budget will help you to manage your finances to get a better hold on your income and expenses. If you do not know how you are spending your money then you will not know how you can save it.
2. Employer Contribution. One of the top ways that people save for retirement is through a workplace retirement account. Most of the time it is setup with an employer and you automatically add money into it every single time you get paid. Is your employer contributing your contribution to a certain percentage? Be sure to figure out how much money your employer will contribute and do not lose out on that money.
When I was working, my employer would match up to 3%. So, I made sure I at least had them take out the 3% from my paychecks so that they would have to match the full amount. Make sure you are meeting the requirements to get as much as you can from the company you are working for. Personally, I took out a larger percentage even though they would only match up to 3%.
3. Start Saving. One of the best ways to do this is automatic withdrawal. This way the money is gone before you even know you have it. You can set this up with your bank or with your employer. Have a particular amount taken out of each paycheck into a separate bank account. This will remove the temptation of spending that money. This will also help to prevent the stress of having to save so much every month.
Once this is setup you do not have to worry about it. The money will continue to increase and you can even consider investing it.
Start to think of all of the ways that you can save money each month. Do you use a budget? Do you know where you are spending your money? Consider how you can cutback. If you spend a large amount not entertainment or dining out try to find ways to re-create restaurant meals in your home or have date nights that do not require you to leave your house. If you could cutback and save an extra $100 a month that would be $1200 a year and then on top of that you would be investing that money into a retirement account.
4. Extra money. You are probably thinking, “Who has extra money?” When I say this I mean unexpected bonuses, gifts, winnings, inheritances, or anything else that is considered extra from your normal income should get put into an account to help jumpstart your retirement.
I feel like this is one of the hardest ways to save. When you come across extra money you start to think about all of the fun things you can do with it. I am definitely guilty of doing this. I begin to think of vacations or other fun items we could purchase. You will be much happier in the long-run when you have saved that money for retirement. It will go a much longer way once it is invested. I would like to mention that if you are paying off debt then in most cases it is more beneficial to pay off that debt rather than stashing the money away into your retirement account, which brings me to the last way to that you can jumpstart your retirement savings.
5. Get out of debt. This one is extremely difficult to do. When you do not have any extra money how are you supposed to get out of debt or even think about having a retirement account. There are always ways that you can either make more money or learn how to save money to help pay off credit card bills and get out of debt. Once you start paying off debt you can focus on saving the extra money you have left over from no longer paying that monthly bill.
You may not be thinking about retirement at this time in your life, but it is essential that you start planning and putting away money for your future. Before you know it that time will be here and you will be happy that you have taken the time to put away the money that you did.
What are some of your ways to jumpstart your retirement savings, please leave a comment below!
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