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  • Writer's pictureCrescent Communications

What is the overall health of your financial future?

Saving for retirement is a vital part of a healthy financial plan. For most people, Social Security will not provide enough for a financially secure retirement, so it’s essential to set aside funds for your future.

However, you’re not entirely on your own. Even if you’re saving for retirement already, there may be other ways to boost your savings. Consider these three savings strategies that can help you meet your retirement goals faster.

Know the Tax Benefits of Retirement savings; for example, tax-deferred investments, such as traditional IRAs and 401(k) plans, allow you to deduct your contributions from your taxable income in the year you made the contributions. With tax-exempt retirement accounts, such as Roth IRAs and Roth 401(k) plans, you pay taxes on participation in the year that you make the contributions. But when you withdraw from the accounts in retirement, you pay no taxes on the funds. If you expect to be in a higher tax bracket later in life, a tax-exempt account can save you money, as you’ll pay taxes at your lower rate now and owe no taxes on your withdrawals.

Take advantage of your employer match! Crescent offers a matching contribution to our

employer-sponsored- retirement plans. Don’t work for Crescent? Ask your employer about their 401k and retirement benefits. If your employer offers a match, all you have to do is contribute the necessary amount to earn the full match. For instance, if your employer will match your contributions up to 6 percent, you need to contribute 6 percent of your income to the plan—and with the employer match, you’ll get 12 percent of your income saved to the retirement plan! Now that is easy money!

Use a Health Savings Account. A health savings account (HSA) paired with a high-deductible health plan allows you to sock away tax-free money to use toward healthcare expenses—but it can also be a valuable tool for retirement planning. If you have a high-deductible health plan with an option for an HSA, be sure to open an HSA.

Contributions are entirely tax-deductible and, if you don’t use the funds for medical expenses during the year, they can be invested and continue growing. You don’t lose the funds when they are unused, as is the case with a flexible spending account (FSA), which is sometimes confused with an HSA. If you choose not to use the funds in your HSA for medical expenses or don’t need them for medical expenses, they can keep growing and become a valuable part of your retirement savings. After you reach age 65, the funds in your HSA can be withdrawn tax-free for any use, not just medical expenses.

Retirement saving isn’t easy, but strategies like these can make it easier. Take advantage of employer programs or tax savings for retirement rewards now—as well as later.

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