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1
Maximizing a Stretch IRA
2
Why You May Be Better off Leaving Your 401k With Your Old Employer
3
Getting the Most Out of Your IRA
4
Six Factors to Consider Before Converting to a Roth IRA
5
Which is Right For You; a Traditional or Roth IRA?

Maximizing a Stretch IRA

Conventional wisdom says that when you leave a job, whether you’ve been “downsized” or you’ve just decided to take the leap, you should always move your retirement plan to a self-directed IRA. (Note: when referring to “retirement plans” in this article, this could be a 401(k) plan, a 403(b), a 457, or any other qualified savings deferral-type plan).

But there are a few instances when it makes sense to leave the money in the former employer’s plan.

You have several options of what to do with the money in your former employer’s plan, such as leaving it, rolling it over …

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Why You May Be Better off Leaving Your 401k With Your Old Employer

Conventional wisdom says that when you leave a job, whether you’ve been “downsized” or you’ve just decided to take the leap, you should always move your retirement plan to a self-directed IRA. (Note: when referring to “retirement plans” in this article, this could be a 401(k) plan, a 403(b), a 457, or any other qualified savings deferral-type plan).

But there are a few instances when it makes sense to leave the money in the former employer’s plan.

You have several options of what to do with the money in your former employer’s plan, such as leaving it, rolling it over …

Read More

Getting the Most Out of Your IRA

With all of the new changes that have recently gone into effect for IRAs, I thought it would make good sense to go over some of the most important aspects of these accounts. Most all of us have at least one IRA account, and often we have a couple of accounts, including a Roth IRA and the traditional IRA (or “trad” IRA).

The rules for these accounts can become quite complex, especially as we begin drawing funds out of the accounts or considering what will happen with the account at our demise, but we shouldn’t let the complexities keep us …

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Six Factors to Consider Before Converting to a Roth IRA

If you have considered converting funds to a Roth  from a traditional IRA or a qualified (tax-deferred) plan like a 401(k), undoubtedly you have run across this tax code item: in 2010, the income limit for Roth conversions is lifted.  On top of that, the IRS will give you two years to pay the tax on your conversion, with the tax for a conversion in 2010 evenly split, coming due in 2011 and 2012.  You don’t have to split the tax, you could pay it all in 2010 if you like, which might be useful if it would be more …

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Which is Right For You; a Traditional or Roth IRA?

The question comes up pretty often, and I’ve dealt with it in general with my recommended “Order of Contributions”, that we discussed briefly during last month’s newsletter. The order is as follows:

1. Contribute enough to your employer-provided retirement plan to get the company matching funds.
2. Maximize your contribution to a Roth IRA.
3. Continue increasing your contribution to your employer-provided plan up to the annual maximum.

Beyond those three items, you may want to consider college savings accounts, tax-efficient mutual funds in a taxable account, or a low-cost annuity, among other choices.

But the question I was referring …

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