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Saving for Retirement

Are you hoping to enjoy a long and productive retirement? Nationwide, Americans are living longer than ever-especially in Vermont. The average life expectancy for a Vermonter is now 79.6 years, one of the highest in the country. To help ensure your retirement years are all that you hope for, you need to begin planning now.

Compound Interest Works for You in Retirement Savings

When it comes to saving, the payoff from earning compound interest can help you grow your money into a valuable retirement nest egg. Compound interest is the idea of earning interest on interest. For example, if you put $100 into an investment that earns 10 percent a year, you'll earn $10 after 12 months. You'll then have $110 in your account. If you earn 10 percent again, you will have $121 after two years. It starts to look more promising when you invest more money. If you decide to save $4,000 a year and you earn 7 percent a year, within five years your investment will have grown to $23,003. In 15 years, your investment will grow to $100,516 and after 25 years you would have more than $250,000. 

The State Treasurer's Office administers three pension plans that include more than 50,000 active and retired state personnel, teachers and participating municipal employees. The Treasurer's Office wants to encourage all Vermonters to plan for their retirement needs. We have grouped resources on this page to help you set retirement goals and evaluate your financial future.

Top 10 Ways to Prepare for Retirement

This U.S. Department of Labor publication gives you some quick tips on steps you can take to start a plan for your retirement years.

What You Should Know About Your Retirement

If you are currently participating in a retirement plan at work, what kind of plan is it? Have you ever calculated what your benefit would be at retirement? If you are contributing funds to an individual retirement account, have you ever projected how this investment will grow in five, ten or 20 years? This booklet produced by the U.S. Department of Labor and EBRI walks you through questions you might have about your current retirement plan.

How to Start Saving for Retirement

The Office of the State Treasurer offers these suggestions for beginning to save for your retirement.

Choose to Save

At this web site you can use the "Ballpark Estimate" to quickly identify how much you need to save to fund a comfortable retirement and be challenged by a selection of online tools to determine your retirement personality profile and your retirement readiness rating. This site is sponsored by the non-profit Employee Benefit Research Institute.

SMART 401(k) Investing

The 401(k) plan is a retirement savings plan to which an employee or self-employed individual can make contributions from his or her paycheck before taxes are taken out. It is one of the most common types of retirement plans available today. At this link, the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) has provided resources for you to better understand 401(k) plans. FINRA is the largest non-governmental regulator for all securities firms doing business in the U.S.

Understanding Annuities

An annuity is a contract in which an insurance company makes a series of payments to the individual annuity purchaser at regular intervals in return for a single premium or premiums. Annuities are often bought for future retirement income. As with any insurance product, it is important to review the contract and understand all charges and fees. At this link, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission offer helpful consumer information on annuities.

Who Can You Work With to Select the Right Plan?

Vermonters should always "ask & check" to verify the registration (license) status of the individuals and companies offering them investment opportunities before actually investing. This can be done on the web site of the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA), a non-governmental regulatory body, using their BrokerCheck system.

Vermont's Department of Financial Regulation regulates the activities of the financial services industry in Vermont. The department's Securities Division is tasked with the regulation of those offering and selling securities to Vermonters. You may call the Securities Division to discuss any questions or concerns you may have. Dial toll-free in Vermont 1 (877) 550-3907 or (802) 828-3420. 

Retirement Plan Resources for Small Businesses

As an employer, you have an important role to play in helping Vermont's workforce save for retirement. Offering such plans to your employees doesn't have to be expensive, confusing or time-consuming. To help facilitate the increased availability of retirement savings plans for Vermonters on the job, the State Treasurer's Office has grouped a number of resources here to help you. More