If you think you might need a Roth, you probably do

Roth IRAs are a little like breath mints – if you think you might need one, you probably do. And, like mints, they offer refreshing relief from common irritants, like taxes, which can leave a sour taste in your mouth and a big hole in your retirement portfolio. Here’s how the Roth IRA works and why nearly everyone who qualifies, especially younger investors, should open one now. The money you invest in a Roth IRA grows tax free. Consider the implications of this short statement. The money you put in a Roth IRA is yours alone. The government has no claim on it and, after the account has been opened for five years, you can withdraw those contributions at any time with no taxes and no penalties. None, which means… You won’t have to worry about pesky RMDs. Maybe you’re too young now to even wonder about Required Minimum Distributions, but you’ll worry about them plenty once you turn 70 ½ and have to make these yearly withdrawals and pay the requisite taxes on them from your traditional IRA. Do your older self a favor and start putting money in a Roth today. Then, you can sit back and watch it grow. The Roth allows you more freedom than an employer sponsored retirement plan like a 401(k), 403(b), SEP or Simple retirement account. You can contribute up to $5,500 annually to a Roth IRA if you earn less than the threshold set by the IRS. Unlike a 401(k), in which you’re limited to investments selected by your employer, a Roth allows you to choose from a wide range of investment options including stocks, bonds, certificates of deposit, mutual funds, exchange-traded funds and more. You can open a Roth no matter how young you are, as long as you have compensation income to contribute to it. You just can’t contribute more than you earn. Also, even though you can withdraw from… | Read More »