Give your retirement savings a checkup during annual enrollment
November 04, 2019
During annual enrollment, most people focus on health benefits — but what about the rest of your benefits package? Now is also a good time for a financial checkup.
Annual enrollment, now through November 15, is your opportunity to review the benefits available to you for coverage effective January 1, 2020. If you participate in the Retirement Savings Plan, why not take a look at your financial health as well?
Fidelity Investments, the Retirement Savings Plan administrator, suggests asking the following questions as part of your annual financial checkup:
Am I saving enough to meet my income needs in retirement?
Financial experts suggest comparing your retirement savings account balance to the recommended milestones: one times current salary at age 30; six times current salary at age 50; and 10 times current salary at age 67. If eligible, catch-up and long-service contributions can help move you closer to your goal.
Can I afford to increase my contributions by 1 percent in 2020?
Financial advisors recommend contributing 15 percent of your annual salary to retirement savings. If you’re not quite on track, take a step forward each year with a 1 percent increase. Cutting back on a few extras now, and putting those savings to work with the power of compound interest, can lead to a brighter financial future. And remember, you can change the percentage you’re contributing at any time during the year.
Am I taking advantage of all possibilities for saving money?
You’ll find a number of useful articles, videos, and webinars on paying down debt, budgeting, and saving for the future, in Fidelity’s Learn the Basics online resource library (log in required). Visit Call to Health* throughout the year for challenges that can help boost your financial well-being, and be sure to Answer the Call for lower medical deductibles.
Am I saving enough to get the full match from my employer (if offered)?
If your employer offers to match your contributions to the Retirement Savings Plan, it’s a good strategy to save at least as much as the percentage being matched. For example, if your employer matches up to 3 percent of your contributions, and you contribute only 1 or 2 percent of your pay, you’re leaving money on the table. Increasing your contribution lets you take full advantage of the employer matching contribution.
Are my beneficiary designations up to date?
At least once a year, and whenever there’s a change in your life circumstances, it’s important to review and update your beneficiaries — in NetBenefits and Benefits Connect.
*Call to Health are available to employees with medical coverage through the Board of Pensions; they are not available to members enrolled in Triple-S, GeoBlue, or the Medicare Supplement Plan.
Did you know that healthy finances can play a significant role in your physical well-being? Watch Fidelity’s Health & Money: a Powerful Link webcast to learn ways to create good savings habits, manage stress, and achieve the monetary and emotional balance that can provide you with peace of mind.
About the Retirement Savings Plan
The Retirement Savings Plan is a defined-contribution 403(b)(9) plan that allows for tax-advantaged savings. There are no hourly work requirements to be eligible, and you do not need to enroll in any other benefits from the Board of Pensions to contribute to the Retirement Savings Plan. Your account may be funded through pretax and/or after-tax payroll contributions, and your employer may also make matching or non-matching contributions on your behalf.
If you don’t participate in the Retirement Savings Plan, you may enroll at any time if your employer offers the plan to you. If your employer does not offer the Retirement Savings Plan, encourage them to contact the Board of Pensions at (800) 773-7752 (800-PRESPLAN) for more information.