Growing up, saving money was always very important to me. I worked before I was sixteen doing odd jobs like going grocery shopping for my elderly neighbors, babysitting and having a paper route. I loved the independence having my own money gave me and as soon as I turned sixteen I got a regular, part time job working at a restaurant. Since then, I’ve always had some sort of job and source of income.
I fell into a bit of money when I was in college because of a car accident. I wanted to be smart with it so I tucked some away into CD which later went towards a down payment on a house. I also opened up my first Roth IRA and started saving for retirement. I remember being fascinated by growth calculators in my economics class that explained the earlier we get started saving, the greater the nest egg when we retire. I loved the concept of compounding and wanted to get started right away! I continued to work during school and paid my own way through college.
After college I landed a job in Finance at the corporate headquarters of a major retailer. There it was easy to save for retirement by adding to my 401(k) and enjoying the company match on top of that. I was also still contributing regularly to my Roth IRA.
And then something happened.
And after a few years I left my job and found myself staying at home with them. Even though I was still bringing in an income through part time work at home, I stopped contributing to my Roth IRA. Three years later and I still haven’t touched my Roth IRA again.
While both my 401(k) and my IRA are still growing, why have I let saving for retirement go to the back burner?
My time is more limited.
I’m responsible for it myself.
I haven’t made it a priority.
But I need to make it priority again.
If you want to save for retirement but you aren’t sure where to start, check out these 10 Tips for Saving for Your Retirement. It offers some great general advice including starting early (my favorite) and to look for other ways to get more mileage out of your retirement assets. If you aren’t sure how much you’ll need at retirement, you can use this handy budget calculator from Genworth Financial to get a ballpark figure.
If you haven’t yet started saving for retirement you don’t have to wait another day. If you haven’t made it a priority, please do. I don’t want to suffer through retirement. I want to actual enjoy it.
You should too!