If you are past the age of 50 and stressed about your retirement savings, you don’t have to worry. The following tools will help you maximize your retirement even at your current age.
If you are 50 or over, you are eligible to take advantage of catch-up provisions in the tax code. For example, if you have a 401(k), you are typically allowed to contribute up to $19,500 in 2020. If you are 50 or older, you can contribute an extra $6500. If you have an IRA, you can add an extra $1000 to your yearly contribution.
For self-employed individuals who do not have any employees and can make large contributions as a 50+ year old, a solo 401(k) might look like a good idea. Not only can you contribute $19,500 as an employee, plus the $6500 in catch-up contributions, but you can also contribute $37,500 as an employer. This gives you a max contribution of $63,500 when you combine all three categories.
If you cannot sock away that much money, be sure to at least maximize as much as you can into your employer-matched 401(k). While some employers don’t match your 401(k), others are very generous. If you are lucky enough to have a match, don’t forget that employer-matched money is free guaranteed money.
Saving money is one strategy to boost your retirement, but another method is increasing your earning. Consider becoming a landlord. While property management can be risky, it has a significant upside as well. One thing to remember is that you owe capital gains tax on the sale of a property when you own it as an investment property. However, if you live in the house for any two of the first five years you own it, you can exclude some or all of the capital gains.
The gig economy has also created many opportunities to pad your income as you approach retirement. There are countless ways to find opportunities to earn all different levels of income, depending on your needs and desires.
In summary, you don’t have to accept where you currently are in your retirement path. You can boost both your savings and/or your income to accelerate your progress and arrive at retirement on time.