Retirement Savings Calculator

A retirement savings calculator is just one tool of many that can help you determine how much money you need to put aside to live comfortably once you retire. By combining an online calculator with the professional advice of a financial advisor, you will have a clear idea of what your target savings amount needs to be in different situations to reach your long-term dreams, as well as what steps you must take to fully reach those goals. For those who have an interest in planning for their retirement but aren't quite sure where to start or don't have a background in finance, a retirement savings calculator can offer an easy place to start. Seeking the advice of a professional financial advisor can take your good intentions a step further by helping you understand how to use the retirement investment savings numbers a calculator gives you.

Benefits of a Retirement Calculator

A retirement savings calculator offers many benefits that can help you plan for the future. An online calculator can help you visualize how much savings you need to put away each year before you retire, while also offering a way to look at a number of scenarios so you can see how changes in your career path or savings habits might affect your future. Consider Mark, a 28-year-old computer engineer who has an enjoyable job and earns a comfortable salary. Mark's current employer does not offer a 401k plan, so he has invested his savings in an Individual Retirement Account (IRA). To see what other opportunities might be available, Mark puts out his resume and is offered a similar job with a slightly lower salary but matching 401k benefits at 100 percent of his contributions. Using an online retirement savings calculator, Mark can see how taking a job with matching 401k contributions from a new employer might change his overall savings, even if he makes lower monthly contributions because of his lower salary.

A retirement savings calculator can give you a number of important indicators beyond how much you need to contribute each month to reach a target retirement number. A calculator can also tell you what your target amount will be worth after adjusted for inflation. It can tell you how much you need to contribute to retire early, how aggressive your investments need to be, or whether your goal is even realistic. A retirement savings calculator can also help you if you are looking to move to a new city by comparing the cost of living for you between two towns. No matter what you're trying to determine, using an online calculator can usually offer a basic answer.

Seeking Professional Retirement Advice

A retirement savings calculator can help you gain a basic understanding of your target figures to comfortably retire, but to understand how to use those results to reach your long-term goals, you probably need a little direction. A financial advisor can help you decipher the numbers you receive from a retirement savings calculator to determine the best way for you to get where you need to be. Your advisor will be able to tell you whether or not your goals are realistic and if not, what you can do to make them more reachable. You might need to make some adjustments like taking on a second job or cutting down on your regular monthly expenses so you can contribute more to your retirement fund.

A personal finance advisor can also tell you what kinds of investments will work best for you depending on your age, current income and how much you had saved so far. If you are in your 20s and can plan to keep your investments though the normal ups and downs of the financial market over time, you can afford to put your money in accounts that carry more risk with potentially higher than when you are older. You can also afford to keep less liquid assets, like real estate. Typically, the older you get the more of your money shifts from investments like common stocks or mutual funds. As you get older, your financial planner will likely advise you to move your money into more stable accounts like bonds or even a high-yield checking or savings account.

Using All Your Resources

Combining the use of a retirement savings calculator with the professional advice of a personal finance advisor can help you make the most of all your resources when it comes to creating a plan for retiring comfortably. Using online tools can help you examine your future given different scenarios and understand how your decisions now could affect what you have in your nest egg later. Consulting with a professional finance advisor ensures that you get the advice you need to make the most of your efforts.

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