RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - If your New Year's resolution is to save more money for retirement, there are some changes to 401(k)s that take effect January 1.
What matters most for retirement saving, better investments, more time, or saving more money?
"For retirement I like to say, 'save more, save more, save more," answered Craig Forbes, co-founder of Alpha Omega Wealth Management,
Forbes said the maximum you can save in your 401(k), 403(b) or 457 plan is going up $500.
"You could theoretically, if you're an individual under the age of 50, put away $18,000 next year in your retirement plan, your 401(k). And if you're over 60, you can add an extra $6,000 to that for a total of $24,000," explained Forbes.
So how much money should you save?
"We try to encourage people to put away north of 10 percent," said Forbes. "It's hard to do for some people, but the people who can put away north of 10 percent are way more prepared 25-30 years down the road for retirement."
If your employer matches your contributions, he says be sure to save at least the highest percentage they match, such as 6 percent. If your company doesn't offer a 401(k), the Treasury now lets you save money in myRA, and guarantees it won't lose value.
So, how do you catch up on retirement saving if you're running behind? Forbes says don't put off saving to pay off debt first.
"They think I've got medical bills, I've got college bills, I've got debt to pay. But most of it is, if people will think about, and companies are working on this a lot, pulling larger percentages out of their paycheck, they'd be much better off," Forbes said.
You can also find more money to save for retirement by cutting expenses, such as cable or cell phone plans, eating out, and big purchases, by downsizing your home, or by considering getting a second job.