By William Hernández
on January 25, 2024
Read in 2 min

There is a crisis brewing in America. There are millions of people who have little or close to nothing saved up for retirement. This means that the golden years for many Americans are likely to be anything but golden. If you're still working, there is still time to alleviate this problem and save for when you decide to retire.

Start Today

An ancient proverb says that the best time to plant a tree was ten years ago and the second-best time to plant a tree is today. If you haven't started planning for your retirement savings, the best step you can take is to walk down to your human resources office and sign up for your company's retirement plan if they have one available.

The longer you wait to sign up, the shorter the amount of time that your savings will be able to gain interest and compound. Even if you're in your 40s or 50s, it's possible to take advantage of some measure of compounding. If you're in your 20s or 30s, you literally have decades to allow your money to grow. Regardless of your age or your income level, the best time to start building your money tree is today. Take advantage of the opportunity as soon as you can. 

Save Automatically

The easiest way to build up a retirement fund is to make the savings automatic. You might have little available to save, as is the case for most Americans. If this is your case, you should still make an effort to save up something. It might just be a percent or two, but it's something you should make an effort to do. It's essential to start with something, regardless of the amount. If you make $50,000 a year and save 2%, that will be $1,000 that can go toward your ability to retire comfortably. If your employer matches some of your savings, your 2% in savings will likely wind up giving you $2,000 over a year given the same $50,000 salary.

Even with this small level of savings, you should be able to build up a six-figure nest egg throughout a couple of decades. That's an example of the power of compounding in action, so the earlier you take advantage of it, the better! 

Keep Saving For Your Retirement Savings

 It might be tempting to halt your savings when an emergency hits. As long as you still have a job that offers the chance to save, keep it up. Americans have myriad options for bringing in a side income. A couple of months of side work or overtime could bring in enough money to take care of many small or medium-sized emergencies that might arise. Get creative and keep on saving for the long haul. Every year that you save is another year that the money in your nest egg has to compound and grow. The more money you're able to put away, the more comfortable your life should be when you go to retire. 

 Putting money away in a retirement fund is critical for every American. There is a question of how long Social Security will be able to keep up its current payout level, and future retirees could be at risk. You'll want to take matters into your own hands and build a nest egg for your golden years, so you aren't left at the mercy of a government agency that might do little to help you. You can't afford to wait on someone else to do it for you, so make sure you get started as soon as you possibly can.

This is not legal or financial advice. Please consult a legal or financial advisor for your specific situation.