Contributing to Your 401(k) Plan

So your company is offering a 401(k) plan. You know the length of the vesting period and you’ve discovered that the company will match everything you contribute on a generous 50 percent basis. You’re ready to start putting money aside for your future.

How much do you save?

That feels like a difficult question. On the one hand, the more money you can put away the better your retirement will be. You’ll also be able to lower your taxes and the matching contributions will increase your income.

On the other hand, you won’t be able to touch those funds before you turn 59.5, and that might feel a long way away. In the meantime, you’ve got a mortgage to pay, student loans to pay off, and it might be nice to have a vacation one day. Money in your 401(k) is money that you can’t use now.

As you weigh up the amount you want to contribute to your 401(k), there are a few things you need to consider.

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