Category - IRAs

1
Showdown in Retirement Planning: “The Wild West” vs. a Uniform Standard of Fiduciary Care
2
IRA Basics
3
Can I Contribute to Both a SEP and a 401(k)?
4
Traditional or Roth IRA?
5
Spousal IRAs for Stay at Home Parents

Showdown in Retirement Planning: “The Wild West” vs. a Uniform Standard of Fiduciary Care

by Eve Kaplan, Certified Financial Advisor(TM) Practitioner

Without realizing it, your retirement plan (including IRA accounts) might have you firmly planted in “The Wild West.  That’s because you likely are missing a Fiduciary Standard of Care (meaning your interests, as a client, are secondary to the plan provider interests involving making a lot of money). While there are significant improvements to retirement plans in recent years, there still is long way to go. On the plus, 401k and 403b investors now enjoy fee disclosures on quarterly statements, lower costs and the addition of low-cost index funds to defined contribution plans.  …

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IRA Basics

This article is intended only to provide you with the basics of IRAs, to get you started with your education.  These days nearly everyone has an IRA – so it’s important to understand IRA basics.  The following information holds true for both kinds of IRAs:  traditional IRA and Roth IRA plans.

IRA accounts can be held at a variety of institutions: banks and credit unions, brokerages, mutual fund companies and insurance companies.  Essentially, if it is a financial institution, quite likely there is an IRA offering.

Establishing an IRA

Typically, an IRA account is established by filling out an application. …

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Can I Contribute to Both a SEP and a 401(k)?

SEP (Simplified Employee Pension) plans are a type of retirement plan, similar to a 401(k), for small businesses and self-employed individuals.

SEP IRAs are cheaper and simpler to set up and manage than 401(k)s. As a result, they are an attractive option for single-employee owner-run businesses. Their main downside is that they provide fewer features than 401(k) plans. Most notably, SEP IRAs don’t allow a Roth option.

SEP IRAs are a tax-deferred savings vehicle, meaning that contributions to the plan are deducted on your taxes now and only taxed when you withdraw the assets. Like other tax-deferred savings, SEP IRAs …

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Traditional or Roth IRA?

If you’re thinking on starting and contributing to an IRA, you may be wondering which IRA is right for you. Generally, an individual has two IRAs to choose from – the traditional IRA and Roth IRA. This post provides some guidelines and information to help you make your decision. In some cases, based on your income, the decision is already made. In all cases, to contribute to an IRA an individual must have earned income. This is generally W2 wages, Schedule C income, and even alimony received.

Let’s start with the traditional IRA. For 2016, the maximum annual contribution amounts …

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Spousal IRAs for Stay at Home Parents

Many parents make the decision that after their child is born one parent will stay at home to be with the child. Some of the reasons include saving on daycare expenses, and wanting at least one parent to bond and be with the child during those precious first few years of development.

Whatever the reason, the stay at home parent may leave a job and lose access to certain benefits – mainly their employer sponsored retirement savings plan. Although the stay at home parent has lost this benefit, it doesn’t mean that they have to stop saving for retirement.

One …

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