Three New Years Resolutions You Will Want To Implement

New Year’s resolutions rarely stick but if your resolutions were for proper retirement planning (and they should be) then you simply can’t allow them to lapse. Consider it a New Year’s follow-up and take your  cues from Robert Powell of MarketWatch and his recent list of eight retirement-planning resolutions for 2011. There is a good deal of specific information to be gleaned from this article and his eight resolutions but I've taken the time to condense them into 3 resolutions which you should place on a yearly check list:

Resolution #1: Take stock of where you are, and maintain that awareness. It is all-too-easy to simply lose track of your accounts. Get organized, and keep records in a journal or software program. For that matter, keep in touch with the custodian or trustee of your accounts, and for simplicity’s sake consider consolidating under a single custodian. Moreover, learn and understand all the features of your accounts and how to best utilize them.

Resolution #2: Act on that knowledge and maximize all your strategies so they work best for you. If you have a 401(k) try to contribute up to the $16,500 maximum, and the additional $5,500 “catch-up” deferral if you are over age 50. To do this, make a contribution plan and stick to a schedule of putting money in over installments, rather than a rushed contribution at the end of the year. In another vein, are you in a position to take advantage of a Roth IRA conversion? Finally, consider rebalancing your portfolio.

Resolution #3: Keep a sharp eye on the future, both for planning opportunities and for your target retirement date.

 For more information on Estate Tax Planning please visit our website.


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