Get Free Financial Advice – Today Only

Kiplinger’s personal finance magazine is teaming up with the National Association of Personal Financial Advisors to offer free financial advice to people across the country today. Known as Kiplinger’s Jump-Start Your Retirement Plan Day, NAFPA members across the U.S. will be standing by to answer your call-in questions about your finances for free.

Phone lines are open from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. EST today.

These professional finance experts typically charge between $100 to $250 an hour. Their knowledge of investments, taxes, insurance, estate planning and saving for college and retirement can help you out today, though, for free.

To get in contact with a NAFPA financial planner, call (888) 919-2345 today between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. EST.

Kiplinger’s is smart to point out that it is helpful if you have relevant document on hand when you call in, like your 401(k) statement with your menu of investment options.

“These are frightening times for investors, but it’s important to take a long-term view and to make decisions based on facts, not emotions,” said Kiplinger’s editor Janet Bodnar.

“Volunteer advisers from across the country are prepared to help as many people as possible during these unsettled times,” said NAPFA chief executive officer Ellen Turf. “Our members can share their insight and expertise with individuals whose financial futures are at stake.”

Free personal finance advice today from Kiplinger's
Free personal finance advice today from Kiplinger’s

You Can Still Grow Your 2008 Nest Egg

Patrick from Cash Money Life makes a good observation in his blog today: Even though 2008 is over, you can still contribute to your 2008 IRA until tax day – April 15, 2009.

An IRA, or Individual Retirement Account, is a common retirement plan account that provides certain tax advantages for retirement savings in the United States. Contributions are often tax deductible, but withdrawals may or may not be, depending on the type of IRA.

It's Not Too Late To Grow Your 2008 Nest Egg
It's Not Too Late To Grow Your 2008 Nest Egg

Between January 1 and April 15, 2009, you can contribute to both your 2008 and 2009 IRAs. During this time, you will need to specify which tax year your are contributing to, but many people don’t know the overlap exists at all. So for those who thought they had missed their deadline, they may be in luck.

The maximum you can invest in a Traditional or Roth IRA for 2008 and 2009 is $5,000 if you are under age 50. Those who are age 50 and older are eligible for catch-up contributions and can contribute up to $6,000 in 2008 and 2009.

It is important to note that you can only contribute up to the maximum limit across all individual IRA accounts (self-employed retirement plans may have different rules). I am under 50 years old, so I would be able to contribute any combination of $5,000 between any IRAs I decide to open. For example – $2,500 in a Traditional and a $2,500 Roth IRA, or $3,000 in a Roth IRA + $2,000 in a Traditional IRA, etc. so long as it does not exceed $5,000.

If you are married, you can also open an IRA in his or her name and contribute to that as well to increase (double) your overall IRA.

Tax Tip: New Tax Credit for Retirement Savings

Internal Revenue Service Tax Tips on Shoeboxed Blog

WASHINGTON — Low- and moderate-income workers can take steps now to save for retirement and earn a special tax credit in 2008 and the years ahead, according to the Internal Revenue Service.

The saver’s credit helps offset part of the first $2,000 workers voluntarily contribute to Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs) and to 401(k) plans and similar workplace retirement programs. Also known as the retirement savings contributions credit, the saver’s credit is available Continue reading “Tax Tip: New Tax Credit for Retirement Savings”