Actively Saving Tracking Progress

Stay on top of your savings by monitoring and measuring the progress you've made toward your savings goals. That way, you can be sure you stay on track and can identify when and where to make adjustments.

Checking in on your progress should be an ongoing practice. Keep track with a simple spreadsheet to monitor balances and progress, especially if you have multiple accounts.


Know where you are and where you need to be. Determine the combined total savings you have in your various retirement savings accounts and compare what you've accumulated to your retirement savings goal. Don't have a goal? Set one now. Most people will need at least eight times their final salary by age 67 to fund retirement at 85 percent of pre-retirement income (for example, a final salary of $50,000 would require $400,000 in savings). Or, aim for saving the equivalent of one year of your salary by age 35, three times your salary by age 45 and five times your salary by age 55. Use the salary you're earning at each age to calculate the corresponding benchmark. To get a basic idea of what those numbers might be, use your current salary, average yearly increase and number of years you have to reach those ages.


Monitor your performance. Tracking your progress against milestones gives you insight into your savings progress and can help determine if you need to pursue savings opportunities or investments outside traditional retirement accounts. Adding assets like certificates, stocks, bonds and mutual funds can diversify your portfolio and amplify your savings. Work with a financial advisor to build a portfolio tailored to your personal goals.


Rebalance and reallocate. As you add different savings channels to your retirement plan, compare your current mix of certificates, stocks, bonds and cash to your target asset allocation. If your goals, timeline or risk tolerance have changed, you may need to rebalance your retirement allocation by changing the mix of your investments. Also consider tax liability, as changes in tax laws could affect your retirement income. Look at a mix of taxable, tax-deferred and tax-free investments to provide more tax flexibility when you start taking distributions.


Rev up, roll over and pay down. Meanwhile, aim to increase your contributions by one percent each year. Consider this: Assuming a four percent growth rate, a 30-year-old who saves nine percent of a $60,000 salary will have nearly $400,000 saved by age 65. If he boosted his yearly contribution by just one percent—$50/month—he'd have more than $441,000, a difference of over $41,000. If you have balances in 401(k)s or other retirement plans from previous employers, consider rolling them over to an Individual Retirement Account (IRA) to make managing and tracking easier. As always, continue to strive toward paying off any debt you may have.

Ready to reach the next level of retirement savings? Use Navy Federal's financial calculators to create a strategy to help you work toward your retirement goals.

Next: Saving as You Age

Want to increase your retirement savings?

Boost your IRA contributions or add a certificate to the mix.

Not sure where to start? Contact a financial advisor at 1-877-221-8108.

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If a municipal fund security describes one or more of their investment options as having the characteristics of a money market fund, it is important to know that an investment in the security is not insured or guaranteed by the FDIC or any other government agency (unless such guarantee is specifically provided by or on behalf of such issuer) and, if the security is held out as maintaining a stable net asset value, that although the issuer seeks to preserve the value of the investment at $1.00 per share or such other applicable fixed share price, it is possible to lose money by investing in the security.