Every New Year we think about our resolutions, which typically includes some promise to better ourselves. Pledging to go the gym more, eat healthier, be more active, spend additional time with friends and family, and decrease our social media intake, are a few that usually make the list. However, one resolution we should all emphasize as we ring in 2019 is finding ways to become financially savvy.
In fact, this resolution is becoming increasingly important. Indexed Annuity Leadership Council (IALC) conducted data in March 2018, which showed almost one-fifth of all Americans approaching retirement are at the low end of the readiness spectrum (not ready at all). This means they have saved 20 percent or less of the money they will need for their golden years, which is a problem they need to find ways to address. So, this year, considering making a Retirement Resolution (and actually sticking with it):
Follow a few easy tips to help you stay on track throughout the New Year:
1. Set Short Term Goals.
Instead of thinking of a total amount you’ll need saved by the time you retire, start small. For example, set aside $30 a week rather than $30,000 in a year. While it might not seem like a lot initially, a little can add up fast. These customizable calculators will help you see how your small savings adjustments could make a real difference for your retirement future.
2. Change Your Date Night.
Instead of going out to eat every Friday night, try making dinner at home twice a month instead. The money you save on cutting costs from eating out can be directly deposited into your retirement account.
3. Set Up Automatic Payments.
It’s easy to say you’re going to diet, but following through with a diet is a lot easier said than done. It can be the same with savings. Here’s an easy tip: set up automatic transfers each month so you won’t be tempted to spend the money you allocated to put toward savings on something else.
4. Improve Financial Literacy.
No one expects you to be a financial expert. But, there are small steps you can take to learn more about ways to manage your money. Start the New Year by reading up on how to achieve your personal finance goals. A financial professional is also a great individual to answer any of your questions.
5. Add to Your Retirement Portfolio.
While investing in a 401(k) is a great start to a retirement portfolio, don’t put all your eggs into one basket. This New Year think about adding other vehicles that not only help you diversify, but also guarantee lifetime income, like a fixed indexed annuity (FIA).
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