Borzi’s retirement checklist News added by Benefits Pro on February 6, 2014

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By Paula Aven Gladych

Assistant Secretary of Labor Phyllis Borzi wants Americans to make a resolution this year to save more for retirement. In her (Work in Progress) blog, she recommends individuals do the following:

1. Make your job pay. The best way to save for retirement is through an employer-sponsored retirement plan, she said. Take the time to review how much you are contributing and see if you can increase it. A small increase now will mean bigger savings down the road.

2. Make a match. If your employer provides a matching contribution, make sure you take advantage of it by contributing enough of your own money to get the match. If your employer matches 50 cents for each dollar you contribute up to a certain amount, that is a 50 percent return on your money and would be foolish to pass up.
3. Make a list. Borzi recommends writing down your financial goals because it can be easier to cut spending today if you have specific goals in mind for the future. There are many ways to reduce spending, including giving up cable television. By reducing the number of channels you get you can potentially cut your cable bill in half, she said. Bring your lunch or coffee to work instead of eating out. You also can increase income by taking a second job or working longer hours.

4. Make a budget. If you are having trouble saving, take a look at what you earn and how much you spend. Put together a budget plan to help track where your money is going and what you can do to reduce that and save.

“Remember: A few small changes can make a big difference for your retirement security,” Borzi said. “Make saving a habit. It’s not difficult once you start.”

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