You know when you have the nagging feeling you should be doing something but you just never seem to get around to it? It might be because it feels too overwhelming to start, you fear it’s a lost cause because you’ve put it off for so long, or you’re just too darn busy to deal.
If that thing you’ve been procrastinating doing is saving and investing for your retirement, it really is better just to start somewhere, with a baby step, than to never start at all. Think of it like a toothache, the longer you wait, the worse off you’ll be. And it’s not going to resolve itself on its own.
Time is of the Essence
The big problem with waiting is time. If you wait to save and invest for retirement, you lose precious time when your money could be earning money through compound interest without having to lift a single finger. The earlier you start, the more you can save in the long run, even if you have to take breaks from investing occasionally to cover other expenses. And don’t forget to teach this to your kids (and grandkids if you have them) so they get in the habit of investing with their first jobs.
Another challenge in taking responsibility for your retirement readiness is know-how. While it’s easy to know you need to do something. Knowing HOW can be another story. Two-thirds of Americans can’t pass a simple test on financial literacy. Most people don’t receive any financial education on how to save and invest while in school, and many parents don’t know how to teach it because they never learned either. Invest in yourself by learning about personal finance through blogs and books, and seek the services of a financial professional who can strategize with you and teach you about smart money moves.
Save and Invest
While you can’t educate yourself overnight, you can start doing something effective right away: put aside money for your retirement. Commit to transferring a percentage of every paycheck to a savings or investment account. You can do this through your employer’s 401(k) plan or take the DIY approach and put it into your own individual retirement account (IRA) or Roth IRA. You can start small with 1-5% and increase it a little every few months or annually. Automate the deduction so you can set it and forget it.
See How Others are Doing and Take Action
Download our recent infographic to see if you relate to where other Americans are in retirement readiness, and then download our checklist of action items. See if you can check off one item a month and get started on your path to saving. And the best part? You’ll no longer have that nagging feeling hanging over you!
Do you feel retirement ready? What steps have you taken to reach your goals?
Neither Transamerica nor its agents or representatives may provide tax or legal advice. Anyone to whom this material is promoted, marketed, or recommended should consult with and rely on their own independent tax and legal advisors regarding their particular situation and the concepts presented herein.
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