There’s good news for anyone worried about saving for retirement—you already have what it takes to be a smart saver!
A recent survey by AARP and the Ad Council revealed that Americans are getting the most out of every dollar in many areas in their lives, with 92 percent using money-saving hacks like comparison shopping, using coupons, and signing up for customer reward programs.
Yet, fewer Americans have applied this savviness to their retirement savings. Two in five households headed by Americans age 55 to 64 have no assets saved for retirement, according to the National Institute on Retirement Security. Furthermore, while many companies will match their employees’ retirement plan contributions up to a certain amount, only three out of 10 Americans are contributing enough to maximize the company match—which means they’re essentially leaving free money on the table.
To address this savings shortfall, AARP and the Ad Council have launched a new campaign to help people save for retirement with a new free interactive online resource, AceYourRetirement.org, to empower people to take control of their financial futures.
“Retirement planning can sometimes leave people anxious, confused or even paralyzed,” said Debra Whitman, executive vice president and chief public policy officer, AARP. “This campaign breaks down retirement savings into easy, actionable steps for all Americans.”
AceYourRetirement.org features a friendly digital retirement coach named AvoSM, who guides you through a series of questions about your life, savings goals and retirement plans. In just a few minutes, Avo provides a personalized action plan that highlights your top three action items—the simple, practical things you can do right now to save for retirement. The tips cover a wide range of topics, including how to turn a hobby into a source of income during retirement and how to have a conversation with family members about getting on the same page financially.
Tips To Help You Get On Track With Your Retirement Savings:
- Try to increase your contributions to your retirement savings plan every year, even if by only 1 percent.
- If your employer offers matching funds for your retirement savings plan, contribute at least enough to get the full employer match. Don’t turn down free money!
- Brainstorm ideas for earning money in retirement, such as turning a hobby into a source of income, or taking on seasonal part-time work.
- Wait as long as you can—up to age 70 if possible—to begin collecting Social Security. This increases your annual benefit.
- Evaluate your budget to see if you can reduce some of your expenses. This can help you put away more money now, and also have a lower cost of living in retirement.
Though saving for retirement can be intimidating, it’s never too late to get on track for a more financially secure future. For your personalized retirement savings action plan, visit www.AceYourRetirement.org.