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401k and Roth IRA Split

Q: I have considered putting money into a Roth IRA recently. I was looking at Vanguard’s VTSMX Total Stock Market Index. I want to invest the $3,000 opening and then about $500 a month. But now our company 401(k) provider, Fidelity, is giving us a Roth option. I am 48 and contribute about $10,000 per year currently to my 401(k). I have changed my 401(k) so that I am now paying 60% Roth and 40% traditional 401(k). Currently, I have the funds listed below and contribute equally to them.
Do you think I should boost up my current 401(k) contributions to Fidelity or go with the Vanguard? If I go with Vanguard is VTSMX a good choice or would you suggest another fund? How does the 401k Roth work? Does your company offer retirement reviews?

A: We often recommend that our clients consider taking advantage of maximizing their contribution to a Roth IRA when they are eligible. The way you are currently splitting your contributions between the Roth and Traditional 401(k) makes sense in your situation. It’s a great idea to continue to hedge the “tax bet” since you are 48 and are likely at or nearing the highest tax bracket that you will be in during your lifetime. To get it close to a 50/50 split between your Roth and Traditional contributions you could contribute 70% of your 401(k) contribution to the Traditional and the other 30% to the Roth. Then you could max out your Roth IRA ($5,500) with your remaining savings.

Regarding the Vanguard fund, unfortunately, we are not able to give specific investment advice. However, Vanguard funds are typically a good option for investors due to their broad exposure and low costs.

Our fee is based on a percentage of the assets that we manage. However, we do offer complimentary consultations where we break down your entire financial picture. We’re also happy to point you in the right direction if our service isn’t necessarily what you’re looking for.


 

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