What do you want from your retirement plan?
Aside from the obvious — enough wealth to see you through long, happy golden years — Americans say there are several other features they need in a 401(k) or other type of retirement account.
Recently, Smart — which bills itself as a “world-leading retirement technology provider” — surveyed 2,000 U.S. adults about their knowledge of and attitudes and concerns about retirement saving.
As part of that survey, savers said the following features are an essential part of any good retirement plan provider’s services.
6. Access to guidance on how much to withdraw
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 39%
In some ways, saving for retirement is the easy part. Withdrawing money intelligently — in a way that minimizes taxes and maximizes your odds of not spending all your cash — can be especially challenging.
So savers appreciate guidance from their retirement plan about how to withdraw cash. If you are unsure of the right approach, stop by the Money Talks News Solutions Center and find a financial adviser who can offer guidance.
5. The option to withdraw lump sums
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 50%
Retirement plans generally let you withdraw a lump sum when you request it. In addition, a growing number of companies are allowing employees to take some or all of their pension money in a lump-sum payment.
The wisdom of such a move depends on your personal situation and often comes with financial risks. This is another time when a good financial adviser can offer important guidance.
4. The option to change their income amount
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 55%
Life often throws curveballs, and flexibility is a huge part of navigating such changes. So it’s no surprise that savers want the option to change their income amount as circumstances dictate.
3. A wide range of investment options
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 56%
For many years, personal finance pros and retirement plan participants alike have complained about a lack of good investment choices in retirement plans.
This lack of choice remains a problem, so plans that offer a more robust lineup of investment options stand out.
2. Clear and simple communication
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 57%
Retirement savings can be confusing, so the ability of plan representatives to communicate the nuances clearly is important.
More women (61%) than men (52%) consider clear and simple communication important, Smart says. A much higher percentage of older savers (64%) say good communication is important compared with younger savers (51%).
1. Access to online account
U.S. respondents who consider this retirement plan provider feature important: 66%
Smart says access to an online account that allows them to check balances is more important to retirement plan participants today than in the past, thanks in part to “the legacy of lockdown measures shifting more and more of life online.”
For more on shoring up your retirement savings, check out:
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