Don’t rely on others for retirement

Published 4:02 pm Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Recent debates about Social Security and the increasing number of employers reducing or eliminating employee pensions have underscored the need for a sound retirement plan.

Gone are the days when employees were guaranteed a percentage of their salaries once they leave a company.

While Social Security may or may not change, it was never intended to be the sole source of retirement income.

Retirement planning is something everyone needs to focus on regardless of the existing situations. If the current financial debates tell us anything, it’s this: the only funding you can count on is that which you do yourself.

Some of the options you have are individual retirement accounts (IRAs) or an employer-sponsored plan such as a 401(k).

Contributions you make to a 401(k) can reduce your federal income tax burden and the contribution limits are higher than those of an IRA.

Plans are available for any size of business, be it a large corporation or a small mom and pop operation.

Contributions to traditional IRAs may be income-tax deductible.

While Roth IRA contributions are not deductible, qualified distributions are received free from federal income taxes.

An IRA is something you can set up with the help of a financial professional.

There are a number of options available when choosing how you want to fund your IRA.

No one can be sure what the future holds in store. Surprises, good and bad, are around every corner.

It’s important to be prepared for whatever those surprises might be.

Making preparations for a number of possibilities can begin with careful planning.

You can start by contacting a financial professional to discuss your goals and how to reach them.

For more information about Social Security, visit the official Web site at

For more information about IRAs, visit