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Be Wise With Money

Retirement Savings: The Right Time is Now!

Don’t be an ostrich with your retirement

plan for today

At times it might seem easier to put your head in the sand than to try to figure out what your retirement could look like. But you don’t want to be in the dark like an ostrich when it comes to saving for retirement.

An ostrich can run fast to get to the goal. For us humans, getting to retirement is a slow and steady savings process. Taking advantage of the options available can help you reach your goals and create greater flexibility in retirement. And it's never too late to start!

Advantages of employer-sponsored 401(k) or 403(b) retirement plans

401(k) plans are offered by for-profit companies, while 403(b) plans are offered by tax exempt organizations like schools, hospitals or religious groups. Both have similar advantages:

  • Pretax dollars: Your contributions are made with pretax dollars. By the time you take the money out, you could be taxed at a lower rate.
  • FREE money: Don’t leave money on the table! Contribute at least enough to qualify for the full employer match.
  • Pay yourself first: When you get a pay increase, up your contribution percent.
  • Play catch up: If you're over 50, consider taking advantage of the additional catch-up contribution.

Advantages of Individual Retirement Accounts (IRAs)

  • Traditional IRAs: Funded with pretax contributions, so it can be taken as a tax deduction.
  • Roth IRAs: Funded with after-tax dollars. Taxes are paid on gains only.
  • Play catch up: If you're over age 50, consider taking advantage of the additional catch-up contribution.

401(k) and IRA: Get the right mix

  • Find out which type of retirement account meets your needs. Even if you have an employer-sponsored retirement plan, you can still contribute to an IRA. Visit for more information on the various contribution limitations.

Other savings options

  • Emergency savings account. Put money here first. This will help you handle the unexpected expenses that happen to all of us and derail our other savings plans. Three to six months of income is ideal.
  • Mutual funds.
  • Certificates of deposit (CDs).
  • Annuities can play an important role in your retirement savings strategy.

How much do I need?

Having an idea of how much you’ll need to live in retirement can help you determine what you need to save. Dust off the sand, check out this calculator and get started. Your retirement will thank you.

Take the first step

Not sure where to start? Talk to a financial professional or locate a Thrivent Financial representative near you to understand your options.

Tools to use

  • Risk Tolerance quiz: Determine how much risk you're willing to accept and still be able to sleep at night.
  • Life expectancy: Use this worksheet to determine your potential life expectancy to help you be prepared financially in retirement.


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