You may be wondering where to begin thinking about your tax strategy so you are not excessively taxed in retirement. Avoiding these three common mistakes can help you begin thinking about what a comprehensive tax strategy might look like for you.
Having Too Much Taxable Income
When you approach retirement, you’ll have to start thinking about transitioning from the wealth accumulation phase to the income phase of your life. You save for retirement so you can live off your savings in retirement. But you’ll want those savings to last.
Asking your money to grow is a different question from asking it to generate income. You could run out of money if you simply live off a stockpile of cash but using that cash to provide you income is a different game. Make sure you know as best you can about your future expenses and don’t try to turn your hard-earned savings into taxable dollars.
Think of it this way: suppose you have already saved up money. If it will just be taxed and returned to your account, providing yourself extra taxable income is pointless.
Not Knowing the Rules and Regulations on Your Retirement Accounts
Each type of retirement account is unique, and you need to be aware of the various structures and advantages to avoid paying penalties or missing out on any tax-advantaged benefits. Retirement accounts are a critical piece of the retirement puzzle, but each one is slightly different.
Firstly, learn about the distinctions between a Roth IRA and a Traditional IRA. In general, the Roth IRA provides greater tax advantages but comes with more stringent restrictions, such as contribution limits based on income.
Your 401(k) may also be worth considering. Your employer provides 401(k)s, and although they often come with contribution matching benefits and other tax advantages, they sometimes offer less flexibility with what they contain and how you can utilize them.
Forgetting About Social Security
Your Social Security taxes are based on the amounts of other income you receive when you retire. Your Social Security tax rates, on the other hand, are not all equal. Up to 85% of your Social Security payments are subject to regular income tax rates based on your other income amounts. You should ensure that your Social Security and retirement account income plans are aligned so that you can receive your maximum benefit with minimal taxation.
Don’t just wait until tax season to figure out your tax plan. Taxes affect your whole retirement so factor them into your wealth preservation and income plan too. We can help you build a comprehensive retirement that considers your unique financial situation. Sign up for one of our complimentary meetings to get one step closer to meeting your retirement goals and ‘Living a Richer Life.”