Show Me the Finish Line 401(k) Savers Say They Want Help Understanding How Much They’ll Need for Retirement
The area where 401(k) participants say they could most use help is understanding how much they’ll need to save for retirement, according to a nationwide survey of 1,000 401(k) plan participants from Schwab Retirement Plan Services.
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Catherine Golladay, Executive Vice President, Workplace Financial Services at Schwab (Photo: Business Wire)
Over two thirds (68%) of participants gave an estimate of how long their retirement savings will last, with the average being 24 years. The remaining 32% say they do not know how many years their retirement savings might last, and the level of uncertainty is higher among women (40%) than men (25%).
On average, participants in the study plan to retire at age 65 and estimated they need to save $1.9 million for retirement. The top five areas they would like help with are:
- Calculating how much they need to save for retirement
- Anticipating tax expenses
- Determining their retirement age
- Creating an income stream in retirement
- Receiving specific advice on how to invest their 401(k)
“Every step of the way, retirement planning is a constant balance between saving and spending. In the years before retirement, we have to meet our day-to-day financial commitments while still keeping an eye on our long-term savings goals. Once we get to retirement, we want to be able to enjoy our hard-earned savings, but also make them last, likely over a period of decades,” said Catherine Golladay, executive vice president and head of Workplace Financial Services at Charles Schwab & Co., Inc. “Talking to a financial professional can provide important clarity regardless of where you are on that journey. Even if you think your financial situation doesn’t warrant outside help, having that conversation with a professional is a valuable step to take.”
The study finds participants’ confidence in making investment decisions in their 401(k) increases significantly with the help of a financial professional. Almost half (49%) report they would be very confident in their investment decisions with help versus only a third (32%) feeling very confident on their own, yet only half (50%) of those surveyed said they felt their situation warrants financial advice.