Let’s start with what FIRE stands for—Financial Independence, Retire Early. Isn’t this what everyone wants? I have a theory about how this movement started. There has been a lot of research in the financial planning space and trying to figure out how much you need in investment assets and how much you can take out over the course of your retirement (safe withdrawal rate) without running out of money.
Tax planning is considering your whole situation and making any necessary changes or decisions before the tax year is complete. Think of it as forward looking. When you prepare your tax return, you are looking backwards at things that have already happened and figuring out any credits or deductions that you can take based on things you cannot change.
Health Savings Accounts (HSA’s) are not a new thing, but many people still are not that familiar with how they work. Flex Spending Accounts (FSA’s) are still around and there is still confusion between the two because they do have similarities. One of the biggest differences between the two types of accounts is that the HSA does not have to be used by a specific time. (With FSA’s you have specific time to use the money for medical expenses or you lose it).
Typically, all retirement accounts have named beneficiaries and do not go through your will. That being said, you do have to name the beneficiaries. If you do not have named beneficiaries, then most likely, the account will pass by your will. If you do not have a will—then the state you live in dictates what happens.
There has been a lot of talk in the media recently about ROTH IRA’s, Backdoor ROTH IRA’s, and Mega Backdoor ROTH IRA’s? The biggest reason for this is because we are in such a low tax environment. Do we know what the tax landscape will look like when we need the money? No, but we do know that now we are dealing with low rates, and we can choose to pay these low rates and deal with what we do know.
Whether you are preparing your income taxes yourself or you have hired someone to do them for you, you will most likely be seeing the question asking if you contributed to an IRA or ROTH IRA for the previous tax year. By the way, you have until April 15th to make that contribution for the …