The 401K is quite an important part of work, but often ignored until close to retirement. However, it is vital to be fully informed about your 401K plan from the beginning. Here are some of the vital questions you must ask about your 401K throughout your career!
How Much Should I Contribute to My 401K?
One of the most important questions you need an answer to is how much you should contribute to your 401K. Of course, the answer to this question is different for everyone, because it all depends on your income and expenditures. So, for most people, they must work out what they can comfortably afford. If your company has a matching program, its wise to invest the minimum amount to get the full amount. You don’t want to miss out on free money.
How Much Does My Employer Contribute to My 401K?
It is important to know what your employer contributes, because it is rare for an employer to match the full 100% of your contributions. If you have such contributions, you are certainly lucky and set for a good retirement. Naturally, if your employer does not match your contributions for the full 100%, it may be wise to check alternative investments aside from your 401k.
We must mention that not all employers will provide matching contributions for an employee’s 401K. Larger companies are more likely to contribute than smaller companies, but this does not mean that working for a smaller company automatically means your employer is not providing you with matching 401k contributions; this is why it is vital to check your employer’s contributions.
What Investments Are Available on My 401K?
Not every 401K is the same, because they can vary based on your employer. Some employers may give their employees free reign where investments are concerned, while other employers limit investments to stock in their own company.
Some companies offer employees the opportunity to have their investments managed by a financial expert. While this may seem beneficial at the time, it is always recommended to monitor your 401K and have the last word on your investments too.
Can I Change Investments on My 401K Throughout My Career?
Since 401K retirement plans can be quite different from each other, it is also essential to check if you can change your investments over the course of time. For example, could you start investing in stock and then switch to bonds before your retirement?
For 401K retirement plans with restrictions, you might not be able to change your investment. If this is the case, it is vital to choose the right investment immediately; this is usually the investment with the least risk.
How Do I Do Obtain Information About My 401K?
401k information can be provided in many ways; this includes paper 401k account information, but also online information. If you currently have a 401K with your company, but no idea where to obtain that information, then it is vital to speak with your employer on how to access your 401k information.
The questions above are common examples of vital questions you must ask about your 401K. Still, there are other questions that may prove useful to you. So, when in doubt about your 401k, always ask the questions you need answers to!