Sunday, March 9, 2014

Last chance to set up a 2013 Roth IRA & a reason to do so

Have you filed your 2013 taxes?  If not, you can still make a Roth IRA contribution for 2013. My post on saving for retirement outlines some of the benefits of a Roth IRA. However, I missed out on a compelling reason, especially for those who may be hesitant to commit the money. You can withdraw your contributions for any reason with no penalty at any time.  How amazing is that?? You could incur penalties for withdrawing your earnings on that money, but you can withdraw up to the amount you contributed at any point in time, penalty free.  (For full withdrawal rules on earnings, check out this post by the Oblivious Investor.)

Because you can always take out the money you contributed, it makes sense to put as much savings as you can here. Obviously, if possible, it's ideal to leave the money there for retirement and truly maximize the benefit of starting early, but even if you need the money later down the road, you can withdraw some of your contributions and still leave the interest you have earned in the account.  Most importantly, I think this helps alleviate the fear of putting this money away that prevents people from putting money away for retirement.

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