The old adage that it is never too early to start planning for retirement might be a cliché, but it rings truer than ever today. With so many other financial issues to worry about, retirement planning often takes a backseat to everything else for many people. It as daunting a financial task as anything else, but it is something that needs to be considered as soon as possible.
Thankfully, there are a lot of excellent online tools that can help you with the process of planning for your retirement. Many, but not all of them, are offered by large financial corporations and serve to entice new customers, but most of these services have both free versions to check out and advanced paid versions for people who find them to be incredibly useful. Here are five excellent online tools that can help to start planning your retirement today.
This is a great tool for people who are very visual when planning things because it takes all of your financial information you input and then makes very easy-to-follow graphs depicting your retirement goals. It is very easy to use – just plug in all of your financial information that the website asks for and get your results. If you are looking for a fast and surprisingly accurate retirement planning tool, this is a good one.
Vanguard Retirement Calculator
Here is a calculator that is very popular because it provides you a variety of options. There are different calculators available on this site for people in different financial situations. There are separate calculators for people who are already retired and want to know how long their money will last, people who are less than five years away from retiring and those who are more years away. It is a great tool to use if you want to know whether what you are saving and putting away for retirement is really going to be enough.
ESPlanner is one of the best financial planning tools available online. Even the free basic tool is fantastic. It might take a little longer to enter in your financial details, but it is worth it, because you will get a very specific picture of your financial situation comparing your goals and your current situation. If you are looking for a tool that gives you a very detailed overview of everything from investment returns to retirement spending needs, this is the one to check out. It’s definitely not a tool for people who are looking to get quick estimates and it will take some time to figure out.
AARP Retirement Calculator
The AARP calculator is yet another calculator that is very simple to use and works according to the principle of asking you questions about your financial status before giving you an idea what your plans need to entail according to when and how you want to retire. One of the best things about this calculator is that it can be tailored for people according to whether or not they are single, have a spouse or significant other, children and various other personal situations.
Principal Goal Calculator
This tool obviously works better if your company offers its 401(k) through Principal, but it can give you a good estimate for planning your retirement even if you are not connected to Principal in any way. It also you to uncover the essential facts that you are looking for, namely, whether you are saving enough to retire on schedule, and if you are not, what you need to change in order to meet the goal. Once you get your retirement plan figured out, you can save it as a PDF for quick reference as well.
David Lazar is a blogger at CometDocs.com. With a background in journalism, he enjoys writing aboutand following a variety of topics, including careers, education, technology and new media.