IRA Basics

November 19, 2014

By Jess Bedsole

IRA Basics

Taxes are a huge part of planning for retirement. Knowing how much you spend on taxes today will help you plan for your retirement down the road, however far away it may seem.

An Individual Retirement Account (IRA) is a retirement account you can build over time and only pay taxes on once. Whether taxes are paid in the beginning when the money is initially invested (Roth IRA) or at the end when the money is withdrawn (Traditional IRA), different types of IRA accounts have different standards for taxation.

How does the money grow in an IRA account? Think of an IRA as a bucket. Inside that bucket are all different stocks, bonds, money markets and other types of investments that build on themselves and accrue interest over time.

If you have a 401(k) plan from a previous employer to which you are no longer contributing, rolling that money into a Roth or Traditional IRA may be a smart move, depending on your savings and retirement goals. Traditional IRA account owners should consider the tax ramifications, age and income restrictions in regards to executing a conversion from a Traditional IRA to a Roth IRA. The converted amount is generally subject to income taxation.1

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