12 May 2017

We're talking Retirement Savings Accounts on The Marriage Talk Show!

Posted in Savings

Let's tak a deep dive into 401k, 403b, 457b plans!

Join me on The Marriage Talk Show - Retirement Saving

Join me on Saturday 5/13/2017 at 9 AM CDT. I'll be in the studio with Ralph & Shelia Green, the dynamic hosts of The Marriage Talk Show on the Fishbowl Radio Network (in the RED STREAM). Our goal is to deliver financial empowerment to every marriage and every listener while embracing Christian biblical principles.

We will be discussing the important topic of retirement savings accounts - 401k, 403b, 457b and IRAs.

While these accounts give us the best chance at securing our financial future when we walk away from the workforce, they introduce many new terms and concepts that can be somewhat confusing. Let's talk about it! You will be more empowered in your retirement savings knowledge at the end of the 2-hour show - guaranteed!

Get a free resource guide of 10 Must-Know Retirement Savings Terms. Have it handy when you tune in. We will do a deep-dive of all 10 of these 10 concepts!

Join the show live -->

Listen to the replay -->

12 May 2017

10 Must-Know Retirement Savings Terms!

Posted in Savings

10 must-know retirement savings terms

Do you have a retirement savings account? Got a 401k or a 403b plan? What about a 457b plan, a Roth or traditional IRA?

All of these plans are created specifically to enable us to set aside money for our retirement while enjoying beneficial tax strategies. If you don't have a retirement savings plan I'd like to invite you to get in the game. You can't beat the results that are possible when you purposely set aside tax deferred funds for a time in the future while investing those funds to increase your returns. More about this to come!

To invest your retirement funds effectively, you will need to understand a few things about the options available to you in your savings plan. To get you started, I've created the Money reVerse Resource Guide - 10 Must-Know Retirement Savings Terms.

The Money reVerse 10 Must-Know Retirement Savings Terms Resource Guide is free when you subscribe to the Money reVerse mailing list. Click here to subscribe and get the Resource Guide now!

02 April 2017

What's Your Savings Ratio?

Posted in Savings

Whats your savings ratio?

Your savings ratio or savings rate shows how much of your household income is redirected to savings. According the the US Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA), April 2017 indicators report our US personal savings ratio at 5.60%. While this is slightly higher than in January 2017, we are still in a 5 year downward savings trend as also reported by the BEA.

How much of your income are you saving today? It's a simple calculation. Here's the formula:

Your Annual Savings / Your Annual Income

Example: Annual savings = $3,000 / Annual Income = $40,000 = 7.5% Savings Ratio

Here's a few tips to get the most accuracy:

  • Use your gross income as a base. This gives you a true picture of your savings rate taking your true household income as a base.

  • Include all income. Have a part-time job? Realized portfolio income? Income from sales of property or pension distributions. Include it all as income!

  • Include all of your savings. Retirement savings from your paycheck, automated bank transfers to savings accounts, what you're dropping in your change jar. Everything counts!

I recommend that we strive to save at least 10% of our household income. During different seasons of life this savings amount should appropriately change to fit the situation. When going through a season of serious famiy illnesses, I reduced my savings amount and spent the income on travel and family support expenses instead of creating debt. When that season lifted, I resumed my savings routine. I also recomend that you increase your savings rate as you age. My rationale here is that as you mature your earning power increases and you're eliminating debt. This makes for a smoother transition as you prepare for retirement.

Know your savings ratio and make sure that you're saving as needed. It's a crucial factor to a healthy financial life and future!

02 April 2017

Need a financial promotion? Get there faster by doing this one thing!

Posted in Savings

Need a financial promotion? It starts with savings!

Savings types: emergency, appointed and retirement

Financial Elevation... Everything starts with savings.

It is difficult to progress to the next level in your finances without savings.

Need to get out of debt?
You should start with savings!

Have a goal of buying a house?
You should start with savings!

Ready to invest?
You should start with savings!

Lend an E. A. R. to your savings. Emergency, Appointed and Retirement savings.
I talk about this a lot.

Read more about this here. There's audio so read with your eyes or read with your ears!

Are you saving money on a regular basis?

11 September 2016

Happy Labor Day and 401k Day!

Posted in Savings

Happy Labor Day and 401k Day US Flag

For one week every fall, we begin the week with Labor Day and end the week with Retirement!

Labor Day is a familiar day to us. What may be unfamiliar is that the Friday after Labor Day is deemed 401(k) day according to the Plan Sponsor Council of America (PSCA). This organization is committed to promoting the use of profit sharing, 401(k) and other savings and incentive programs by increasing awareness of their benefits to business, employee, government, media, and the academia communities. This organization is driven by the belief that corporate savings and incentive programs strengthen the free-enterprise system, empower and motivate the workforce and improve domestic and international competitiveness.

Participating in company sponsored savings plans like a 401(k) or 403(b) (for non-profits) is a great way to get retirement savings automated and consistent. Participating in these plans involve making an election to have a percentage of your wages automatically deferred and redirected to your retirement savings account. Many organizations provide a matching contribution for funds that are saved by the employee which is a great partnership to help you to grow this fund more quickly! 401(k) day is organized to remind everyone to begin or increase their commitment to saving for this latter season of life.

Take advantage of your company offerings!

According to a March 2015 National Compensation Survey conducted by the US Department of Labor only 64% of individuals that have access to a company sponsored retirement plan are making the choice to participate. Of this 64% of participants there is a higher adoption rate for state and local government workers than those in private industry. If you are currently not participating in a retirement savings plan available to you, the key takeaway here is to get started today!

Retirement in the Bible

Retirement as we customarily envision it is not a concept that is directly promoted in the bible with one exception. The exception is the instruction given to Levites to withdraw from the tent of meeting services when they reach age 50 (Numbers 8:23-25). The concept here and in other biblical passages is that the Lord has called each of us to a work and he will give us the strength to do the work to which we are called. While this is true, it is expected that as the body grows weary, the work should become easier to better match your physical capabilities.

In our practical lives, retirement is a time in which the work that we do becomes easier and not as demanding. For most of us, this will be accomplished as we withdraw from or reduce the amount of time we spend in corporate career and entrepreneurial activities. In preparation for this time, we should save money during the working years for this season of life. With this in place, the demand for the income that comes from corporate or self-employment should be reduced. This is the goal!

How much of your earnings should you save for retirement?

How much of your earnings should you save for your retirement? The specific answer is one that will be determined as a part of an individual retirement needs assessment exercise. No problem if you haven’t completed such an assessment! When participating in your company sponsored plan, all that is needed is for you to determine a percentage of your gross income that is to be deferred and redirected to retirement savings. Personally, I use and recommend an age-based savings percentage that increases later in life.

Retirement Savings by Age

Wondering how you could possibly save this amount of your income? As you pay down your debt obligations and strive toward living a no-debt lifestyle this becomes possible. In the tax year 2016 there is an $18k limit on the total dollars that you can defer. Those over age 50 can defer an additional $6k annually. Depending on your level of compensation and number of total participants in the plan, company sponsored retirement plans may further restrict the amount of your income that you can save tax-deferred. Max out the amount that you can save tax-deferred in your company plan and make up the difference by redirecting your post-tax monies to an individual savings or investment account.

If you are self-employed or your employer does not have a sponsored retirement saving plan you will have to take the initiative to save for your later years. Work to save a portion of your income monthly and work up to the percentages listed above. After your nest egg begins to grow you will be ready to explore investment options to help to generate a return on these funds. It’s not difficult and I feel that everyone will be able to develop a strategy that works for them. Money reVerse is here to help with encouragement, information and one-on-one consulting engagements. Contact me to get more info!

Prepare for the day in which your work will be lighter and less demanding. Aggressively save for your retirement by taking advantage of your company sponsored retirement savings plan! Do it today!

15 July 2016

The Saved Are Saving - Series Introduction

Posted in Savings

Savings - Scripture Proverbs 21:20

In a January 2016 poll of Money reVerse readers, 6 out of 10 of you that responded cited that a lack of savings was the area of personal finance that concerned you the most.

Another area that was of concern for those of you that responded was funding college education which also falls in the lack of savings area.

Two other personal finance areas that concerned Money reVerse readers most are as follows:
  • Not managing your personal finances
  • lacking a good understanding of financial matters

Again, thank you for your candid responses. See the chart here for more info on the survey responses.

Savings - Poll Result

Your responses are not uncommon. I stay on the pulse of what’s happening in global, national and local finances and I try to keep up and notice developing trends. One trend that is notable is that we as Americans are not saving as much as we have in past years.

According to the June 2016 release from the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the personal savings rate within the US is 5.4%. It has been holding at this rate since February 2016. This tells us that US households are saving $54 for every $1,000 of disposable income that is available to the household. What this means is that if a family brings home $40,000/yr (take home money after taxes are deducted from the wages) they are saving $2,160 a year. Families that are bringing home $80,000 after taxes are saving $4,320 a year. Honestly, not too bad in my opinion.

My real concern is that I think this national personal savings rate number is higher than the actual savings activity for too many of us. In response to my poll of Money reVerse readers and from multiple coaching sessions with clients that are working to elevate their financial position, I’m hearing from many that there is nothing in savings. Not 5.4% of disposable income – nothing. I'm committed to devoting time and energy to this subject. You're in the right place if a lack of savings is one of your financial concerns!

In these next publications I’m going to focus on savings and provide biblical based teaching and practical application assignments to help you to improve your savings practices no matter where you are today! I'll also share a few of my personal stories on this subject.

As you read and follow, I’m going to ask that you engage and commit to take the challenges that are presented so that you can be elevated beyond your current savings practices. There’s always room to improve and I’m praying for this for all Money reVerse readers! Let’s do this!


03 May 2012

First Call: Savings Checkup - Lend an EAR!

Posted in Savings

Click here to listen to this podcast

Are you Saving? 

Excuse me please, I apologize for interrupting you today but I must ask:  Are you saving money on a regular basis?  In reading a recent issue of Smart Money magazine, I found that a poll by showed that just 24% of Americans have the classic 3 to 6 months of income set aside in savings and almost 25% poll respondents have no savings at all.  That same article references a recent survey from ING that reported that most of the respondents of that survey (54%) put reducing debt as their top priority and only 24% of those respondents cited setting up an emergency fund as a top priority.