Last week, we talked about easy ways to boost your retirement savings. If you missed last week’s blog or need a quick refresher, click here! The tips that were mentioned were really easy to implement, but could produce fantastic results. Today, we continue the journey of exploring more ways to save for retirement with more creative (yet super simple) ways to boost savings.

Vow to Save 1% More1

1% doesn’t sound like a lot and that’s the beauty of it! It’s such a small amount, that you probably won’t even miss it from your monthly budget. That makes it a perfect way to save some extra money! Even though you may think to yourself, “what can 1% really do for me?”, think about this.  If you make $50,000 each year, that means that you’ll be saving an extra $500 per year in addition to what you’re already saving. $500 per year may not seem like a lot, but with the power of compounding and time, that small amount per year can grow in ways you never imagined!

Save that Raise

You’ve been a stellar employee and your boss deemed it necessary to reward you. Whether he’s decided to give you a bonus or a raise, you didn’t have the money in your pocket before, so you won’t miss it if you opt to save it instead. Just like we talked about saving extra “windfalls” of cash last week, bonuses and raises fall into that same category. By re-allocating the money towards your retirement savings, you’ll beef up that account and give it more time to grow and compound.

Avoid Early Withdrawal Penalties

This sounds so simple, but yet so many people fall into this trap! If you choose to withdraw your money early from retirement accounts, you’ll not only be hit with a penalty in the form of a fine, but most times, you’ll also have to “pay back” any tax deductions you received as well. Instead of tapping into that retirement account and incurring those extra penalties, exhaust any and all other resources to get the cash you need first. Vow to make hitting your retirement account for the needed cash your absolute last resort.

Cut Unnecessary Expenses

Let’s be honest – we ALL have at least one unnecessary expense that we could live without. Whether it’s a Cut ExpensesTV service that isn’t really used, a magazine subscription that you rarely read, or some other expense that you could live without, consider cutting it and saving that money instead. Because that expense was already factored into your monthly budget, your wallet won’t be hurting for the extra money. You don’t have to spend any “extra” and your retirement account is still growing. It’s a win-win!

Save Automatically and “Pay Yourself First”

If you’ve been following our blog for any length of time, you’ve heard the terminology “pay yourself first”. This means that you ensure that you’re saving the amount you decided on each and every month when all of your bills are being paid. By treating your retirement as one of your monthly “bills”, you won’t be tempted to spend that money instead of saving it. This is a great practice to start now to ensure that saving is made a priority and that you are preparing for your retirement sooner rather than later. One easy way to “pay yourself first” is through an employer-sponsored retirement plan (like the 401K we mentioned last week). The money is taken out of your paycheck and transferred directly to your retirement account. You never see the money so you never miss it. If you don’t have an employer-sponsored retirement plan or want to save more in addition to your current plan, there are many apps available that can help you to automate your savings each and every month. Check them out and choose the one that is best for you!

The ways to save that we have talked about the last couple of weeks are just some ideas to help you to jump start your retirement savings. There are SO MANY ways that you could choose to save for retirement – I just tried to discuss ways that would be easy to implement and that wouldn’t hurt your wallet too badly. If you want to get started saving today but need some guidance to reach your financial goals, give our office a call today! Our financial planning staff would be happy to help you to develop a plan to meet your goals and get your saving kicked into high gear today! The consultation is free – so what do you have to lose?! Call today!

Don’t miss a thing! Follow Wealth Builders on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook for all things financial! If you haven’t already, sign up for our free quarterly newsletter and weekly “Tax Tips” email. Both are full of helpful tips and advice to help you reduce your tax liability and increase your cash flows. That means more money in YOUR pocket. Who wouldn’t want that?! Sign up today !

“10 Ways to Help You Boost Your Retirement Savings (Whatever Your Age.” Merrill Edge, www.merrilledge.com/article/10-tips-to-help-you-boost-your-retirement-savings-whatever-your-age-ose.

“401 (k) Catch-up Contribution Limits for 2018.” Fox Business, 8 Dec. 2017, www.foxbusiness.com/features/401-k-catch-up-contribution-limits-for-2018.

Brandon, Emily. “10 Painless Ways to Save More for Retirement.” U.S News & World Report, U.S. News & World Report, www.money.usnews.com/money/retirement/slideshows/10-painless-ways-to-save-more-for-retirement?.

Huddleston, Cameron. “17 Clever Ways to Save More for Retirement.” GOBankingRates, 28 Dec. 2017, www.gobankingrates.com/investing/17-clever-ways-save-retirement/.