Money Over 55: Most Popular Articles
Social security office locations can be found by inputting your zip code into the social security office location web page at the link below.
A Social Security benefit for a spouse is called a “spousal benefit”. It applies to current, widowed, and ex-spouses. Here is how it works.
There is not a mandatory 401k retirement age. However the rules on taking money out of your 401k change depending on how old you are. The three ages to take note of are 55, 59 1/2, and 70 1/2. Below are the rules that apply at each of those retirement ages.
The forumula used to calculate how much Social Security you will get is complex. Here is a step-by-step guide, with examples, so you can see exactly what is used to calculate your Social Security benefits.
This is a comprehensive list of retirement investments with additional information on each choice.
People do a lot of smart things... and a lot of stupid things with their retirement money. Of them all, these are the five stupidest things I've seen people near retirement do with their money.
Don't claim Social Security without calculating first. The right Social Security calculator can help you get more out of your benefits, particularly for married couples.
Collecting Social Security benefits before full retirement age while still working may trigger the earnings limit. Here's how it works.
Knowing your Full Retirement Age for Social Security benefits is important for two reasons. Get it wrong, and you may get less in benefits.
Should you take social security at age 62... or not? Here are guidelines you can use to determine if it makes sense for you.
Want to retire at 55? Here are three things to consider before you retire at 55.
There are two types of Social Security death benefits paid out. One is a lump sum. The other is an ongoing monthly benefit called a survivor benefit.
Get a head start on retirement with these online retirement calculators.
Here are ten facts about Social Security benefits for an ex spouse. Some of them may surprise you.
The amount of taxes you pay on Social Security benefits depends on something called your combined income. Here's how it works.
Need to know when your Social Security check will be deposited? Find the Social Security check schedule and answers to additional questions.
Will you pay taxes in retirement? Probably so. Here is a guide to what types of retirement income are taxed.
Upon the death of a spouse, you are eligible for a social security survivor benefit as long as you have been married for at least 9 months. Here are additional details on how much, what age, and documents needed to claim a social security survivor benefit.
Should you take your pension as a lump sum or annuity? Here's how to do the analysis.
Is cashing out your 401k plan a good idea? Is it even possible? Don't make a decision to cash out your 401k plan without knowing what you might be giving up.
Taking money out of your 401k plan the wrong way can be costly. Here's how you can take money out the right way - depending on your age and situation.
Your Social Security retirement age depends on your year and month of birth. Here's how it works.
Here are 5 key things you need to know before you claim your Social Security benefits.
Here are the 6 common ways financial advisors charge fees and how each pricing structure works.
Will I pay tax when I sell my home? What kind of taxes do you pay on home sales?
Rental property can provide a stable source of income, but like any investment, you need to understand what you are getting into before you buy. Here are the three things to consider.
How does divorce affect your or your ex-spouse's Social Security? Here's what you need to know.
Married couples should not look at when to take Social Security the same way a single person would. H
Should you retire at 62 or 65? Here are several things you'll want to consider before you decide.
You inherited money that is in a 401k plan. Here are the rules the apply to when and how you can take the money out.
Short term retirement planning: 5 steps you must take within 5 years of retirement.
Here are 4 things you must know about early retirement and Social Security.
You may be able to avoid the IRA early withdrawal penalty tax - if you qualify for one of these 8 exceptions.
Not all 401k plans allow hardship withdrawals. If they do, here are the rules that apply.
Here are 5 safe investments designed first and foremost to protect what you have.
Millions of dollars are waiting to be claimed in old bank accounts, pension plans, forgotten 401(k) plans, and at the IRS due to undeliverable tax refunds. Some of it might be yours. Here are seven ways to find unclaimed money that might be waiting for you.
Is a condo a good investment? Here are the questions and calculations you'll need to make to determine the answer.
Is retirement income taxable? It depends on where your retirement income will come from, and how much of it you will have. Below is a list of common sources of retirement income broken down into taxable retirement income, partially taxable retirement income, and tax free retirement income.
Social Security rules for widows and widowers are complicated. The amount you'll get depends on whether your spouse had or had not started their benefits, how old they were, and how old you are.
Can you stop Social Security benefits once you start? Sometimes. Here are the conditions that apply.
In some circumstances you can take withdrawals from a 401k plan as early as age 55. Here's when you can - and when you can't.
Traditional thinking on how much you can withdraw in retirement may be wrong. You must look at the after-tax impact of your retirement account withdrawals, which may mean taking more in some years than others.
7 easy steps show you how to find the best financial advisor for you and your family.
One of the most important retirement decisions you will make is deciding when to take Social Security. Here are the factors to consider.
Are Roth IRA withdrawals tax free? Most of the time, but not always. Here's the scoop.
What is a required minimum distribution? It starts when you reach 70 1/2. Find out when you have to take it, how much you have to take and what happens if you don't.
Here are 8 frequently asked questions about IRA rollovers. They'll explain what qualifies as a rollover, what does not, and what to watch out for.
What type of advice should you expect from a financial advisor? Here is what a good one will do for you.
When can you retire? Here's a guide to retiring at 50, 55, 62, 65, or 70.
Five questions to ask a potential financial advisor that will help you determine if they are the right financial advisor for you. These questions help you determine their level of integrity and their ability to communicate to you in language and terms you can understand.
When interest rates go up, bond prices go down. Why? Find out here - and see just how a change in interest rates can affect a bond's price.
Take these steps to increase the amount of Social Security you will receive.
Five questions to ask before you buy an annuity.
Looking for yield? Here's a list of high yield investments that offer above average income payouts.
Want to keep your nest egg safe? These six guidelines show you how.
Index funds provide one of the most effective ways to invest to meet your long term investing goals. Below is a list of some of the very best index funds to choose from.
In many cases you must use a restricted application to collect one type of Social Security benefit while preserving your option to later switch to another type. Here is an overview of the restricted application rules.
6 steps to take before you start a consulting business.
You need to know exactly how your credit score is calculated. There are 5 components to your credit score and some carry more weight than others.
Can a capital loss carryover to the next tax year? Maybe. Here's how it works.
In football terms, here are the offensive and defensive plays you need to have a winning retirement.
S&P 500 stock market returns from 1973 through year end 2013.
How much to retire? Great question. It takes some soul searching and some calculating to come up with the answer. These four steps will help you determine how much you will need to retire.
The dividend yield on a stock can change rapidly. Before you buy, make sure understand yield and what it is that you are buying.
Are you saving enough to retire? Will you have enough to retire? Walk through these five steps and in five minutes you can come up with a simple yes or no answer.
Rising dividends can provide a hedge against inflation. One way to get exposure to dividend paying stocks with a solid dividend history is to use a dividend index mutual fund, or dividend index exchange traded fund. In moderation, one or all of the five dividend income stock funds below can be an appropriate addition to a retirement income portfolio.
Pick one of these finance magazines, read them regularly, and you'll be amazed at what you learn in a relatively short amount of time.
If you take Social Security benefits before you reach full retirement age, and you earn income in excess of the annual earnings limit, your Social Security benefits will be reduced. Here are the current and past years' earnings limits for reference.
Managed payout funds, monthly income funds, income replacement funds, or retirement income funds; they each have a different name, but a common goal, which is to provide you a way to invest your money, and receive regular retirement income. They offer a great, all in one investment management solution, and are a more flexible alternative to annuities.
What is a fee only advisor, and should you hire one?
There are a few key differences between a social security survivor benefit and a social security spouse benefit (spousal benefits taken while your spouse is alive.)Understanding them can help clear up much of the information you find about social security benefits.
See why ESPlanner Basic is the best free retirement calculator we could find.
Use these factors to help determine how much to contribute to your 401k plan.
The file and suspend social security strategy allows your spouse to collect a spousal benefit based on your earnings record while you continue to work, maximizing your own benefit by accumulating delayed retirement credits.
Many Americans think of age 55 or earlier as an early retirement age. My definition of early retirement is any age before age 65. Here's why.
No need to reinvent the wheel. Most 401k plan now offer foolproof ways to invest your 401k money. Learn how to identify these great choices.
Smart investing takes planning. Here are five questions you must ask to develop a good investment plan.
Almost 65? Over 65? Covered by a group health plan still? Not yet enrolled in social security? Here are the guidelines as to when and how you should apply for medicare.
2014 IRA income limits, contribution limits, IRA rules, and more.
Inheriting money can be great! Make it even greater by avoiding these family inheritance mistakes.
10 ways to save 10 dollars a day - practical tips on how to use small substitutions and micro changes that can add up to big savings.
Social security uses your highest thirty-five years of work history to calculate your social security retirement benefit. To increase your social security benefits make sure you have a full 35 years of work history. Think of this calculation like an average; if you have a zero as one of the numbers, it will pull the average down.
You can use an internal rate of return calculation to compare investment alternatives, but be careful, published returns often use a time weighted calculation - which is different.
Believe it or not, a retirement budget can lead to more fun in retirement. In addition, it can help you avoid one of the biggest mistakes people make in retirement: overspending.
Once retired, do you still need life insurance? To answer this, you must understand that life insurance isn't really about insuring your life.
Find the best retirement calculator for your situation, see pros and cons of popular retirement calculators, learn what they do well, and what their limitations are. Page 2.
Is buying real estate in an IRA a good idea? For most people, the answer is no. Here's why.
This Social Security may be a winning move for many married couples. Here's how to collect now - and later.
Estimating life expectancy can help you make better financial decisions about social security, life insurance, annuities, pensions and more. Better decisions can potentially add thousands upon thousands of dollars to your lifetime income. From simple to advanced methods, here are six ways to estimate your life expectancy.
Do not use immediate annuity rates when comparing annuities to other investment options. Here's why.
Learn the six withdrawal rate rules you must follow when creating a portfolio to generate lasting retirement income. These rules help you make appropriate adjustments to your withdrawal rate, reducing the probability that you will run out of money.
These 10 retirement blogs are ranked form highly academic and technical, to those geared toward beginners.
Unfortunately there is no such thing as a “typical” financial planner fee. Instead there are six ways financial planners may charge fees, which can vary from commissions to an hourly rate. Here are the six types of financial planning fees you may encounter.
IRA age limits apply to Traditional IRAs but not to ROTH IRAs. Here are the IRA age related rules you need to know about for either type of IRA.
How can you quickly find the best local savings rates? This link allows you search for the best savings rates on CDs and money market accounts by city and state.
401k vesting, or what you may call your “vested balance”, refers to how much of your 401k balance goes with you if you leave the company. Vesting is also used to determine how much you can borrow if you take a 401k loan, as you can only borrow from your vested balance.
Non deductible IRA contributions can be a great way for high income earners to get money into a ROTH IRA. Here's how.
Financial planning, investment advice and retirement planning are not the same thing. Make sure you understand the difference before you search for the service you need.
Active investing costs more, but does it deliver? Not for most. Here's why.
Accurately estimating retirement expenses is one of the most important things you can do. Here's how to get started.
When discussing retirement plans and taxes we often use the terms “pre-tax” or “after-tax” dollars. How do you know what is pre-tax and what is after-tax?
Find the best retirement calculator for your situation, see pros and cons of popular retirement calculators, learn what they do well, and what their limitations are. Page 4.
Is long term care insurance a wise purchase? You'll need to evaluate the pros and cons of long term care insurance to come up with your own answer. Here are five questions to ask to help you determine the pros and cons of long term care insurance.
Here's how to employ smart planning strategies to use 2014 tax rates to your advantage.
The official Social Security website provides three free calculators you can use to estimate your future Social Security retirement benefits.
New to retirement planning? You'll often hear the term salary deferral. Here's what it means, how to get started with it, and why it's a good idea.
Your pension plan will offer payout choices like life-only, joint and survivor, or life with ten years certain. This article explains what these choices mean and how you can pick one that is best for you and your spouse.
Consider funding an HSA instead of an IRA, or even instead of excess 401k contributions. Why? An HSA can be like an IRA on steroids when used correctly.
2014 ROTH IRA contribution limits, income phaseout limits and ROTH rules.
How do you find the best IRA rates? The answer will surprise you.
These 3 RMD calculators cover projecting future distributions, current year distributions, and required distributions if you inherited an IRA account.
Normal distributions (meaning you are over age 59 ½) from a Traditional IRA plan are included in your taxable income in the calendar year in which you take the distribution. The total amount of tax you pay on this IRA distribution will depend on the total amount of income and deductions that you have that year.
ROTH 401k plan contributions differ from regular 401k contributions and from ROTH IRA contributions in several ways. Here are the similarities and differences.
Here are seven things you need to know about a 401k loan before you take one.
What happens when you don't have long term care insurance but need care? This article walks you through it step by step.
Social security claiming mistakes cost Americans billions. Avoid these costly mistakes and get more from your Social Security benefits.
Where do you find a good return on your investment? It is harder than you might think. Here's why, and here's how to begin to figure out what is realistic.
2014 401(k) contribution limits and rules.
With deferred annuities, you deposit your funds with the annuity company (by investing in either a fixed, variable, longevity, or equity indexed annuity) and the taxes on any investment gains are deferred until such time as you take a withdrawal.
Managed accounts come in many forms, some with excessively high fees. Bad ones reduce your wealth. The best managed accounts, however, are likely worth the price.
An inspiring story using 1000 marbles to reflect how many Saturdays we may have left, and how we choose to spend them.
Earned income is the money you earn from working. It includes wages, salaries, tips and net earnings from self employment income. Earned income does not include investment income like annuities, pension income, withdrawals from IRAs and other retirement accounts, capital gains distributions and passive income generated from rental real estate.
Social security strategies can help you get more money out of your benefits - but each strategy only works if you fit a specific set of criteria.
Can you rollover (or convert) after-tax 401k money to a Roth IRA? Maybe. Here's why it isn't black or white.
Investment fees will lower your returns, so find out whether you are responsible for these six investment fees before you buy.
Retirement is scary and figuring out where to put your retirement money isn't always easy. Here are five things you must know before you invest your retirement money.
What to do and how to plan as you near certain retirement ages. Key ages are 55, 59 1/2, 62, 65 and 70 1/2.
6 non-financial steps to take to research a small business start up. e.g. 2. Talk to small business owners in the industry.
Are annuities a good investment? In the right situation, they can be a good choice, but in many situations they aren't so great. Here's why.
The U.S. Census Bureau tells us the average retirement age in the United States is 62. Social Security however, defines 62 as your early retirement age. There are 5 steps you should take if you are within 5 years of the average retirement age.
Here are three steps you must take to plan for an early retirement.
How much of my money should be invested in stocks vs. bonds?
The new health exchanges improve options for early retirement. Here are 5 things you must know about health exchanges that start January 1, 2014.
There are 3 types of investment income. Which types are best for your retirement income?
This a review of AARP's retirement calculator. Additional retirement calculator reviews are provided in this series. Page 3.
Measure investment risk accurately and you'll know what to expect. Learn how to tell the difference between low, medium and high risk investments and you'll avoid costly mistakes.
Vanguard has three funds called Managed Payout Funds, each designed to provide monthly income while maintaining or growing your original investment. Here's an overview of how they work, expenses, and minimums.
You can have far more income to spend if you live in one of the best states for retirement income taxes verses one of the worst. Is it worth relocating? You never know until you start looking.
Understanding present value and how to calculate it can be quite useful when it comes to retirement planning. Here's what it is and how to use it.
Want to increase your social security retirement income by twenty-five percent or more? Once you reach full retirement age, your benefits do not cap out. As a matter of fact for each year after full retirement age that you delay taking benefits, you will accumulate delayed retirement credits, which result in a permanent increase in your benefits of five to eight percent a year.
An index fund is a type of investment that has low expenses and requires little management because it is making no attempt to pick investments based on expected performance.
Finding good retirement mutual funds, and more importantly, learning how to use them, is an important part of investing in retirement.
When closing the estate of a spouse or loved one it is easy to make costly mistakes. Here are 5 things you must and must not do after the loss of a loved one.
Get smart about your money before you retire. These free online investment courses are a great way to get started.
The are many ways to get guaranteed retirement income: annuities, pensions, reverse mortgages, longevity insurance, etc. Here's what you need to know.
In today's low interest rate environment what returns can you expect from safe investments? Not much. This table shows returns from 1973 to today.
With 2013 tax rates comes good news for lower earners and bad news for higher earners.
Is an immediate annuity an investment? No, it is a risk management tool. Here's how it works.
Should you invest in gold? Here's the scoop on gold as an investment choice.