3rd Quarter 2019

5 Smart Financial Moves to Make this Fall

With a few more months left in the year, now is a good time to make some key financial moves that can help enhance savings, save on taxes, and improve your finances for the future.

Take advantage of catch-up contributions. If you’re age 50 or over in 2019, you can boost your 457 contributions from $19,000 to $25,000. Pre-tax contributions can lower your taxable income and grow tax-deferred for retirement. Use our Savings Boost calculator (www.icmarc.org/savingsboost) to see how much the extra money can grow by the time you retire.

Make the most of year-end tax breaks and deadlines. If you’re saving for college in a 529 account, you usually have to make your contributions before Dec. 31 to qualify for state income-tax breaks (depending on the state; see www.collegesavings.org). If you’re age 70½ or over, don’t forget to take any required minimum distributions from your traditional IRAs, 401, and 457 plan accounts before the deadline (see www.icmarc.org/rmd).

Make a tax-wise charitable-giving plan. Rather than racing to write checks to charity at the end of the year, consider smart strategies that can help you get more benefits for your generosity under the new tax law. See 4 Tax Strategies to Maximize Charitable Giving for details.

Give your paycheck a checkup. Use the IRS’s tax withholding calculator to figure out whether you should adjust the amount of money withheld from your paychecks for taxes. Filing a new W-4 form with your employer could increase your take-home pay now or help you avoid a big bill when you file your taxes. See www.irs.gov/payments/tax-withholding.

Assess your progress toward financial goals. Run your numbers with our Retirement Savings Calculator (go to www.icmarc.org/rec and click on “Retirement Security Builder”).

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