Health savings accounts (HSAs) are perhaps the most powerful savings vehicles, especially for retirement savings, because of their significant tax advantages. Yet, too many HSA owners don’t reap all the advantages of their accounts.
Americans are living longer these days. That's a positive thing in theory, but from a retirement-planning standpoint, it can be challenging. After all, there's a difference between needing your retirement savings to last 20 years versus 30 years or more.
If saving money were a total breeze, perhaps people would do a better job of it. Unfortunately, a large percentage of Americans are glaringly behind on both near-term savings and retirement savings. If you've been slacking on the savings front, or have been making an earnest effort to save but find that you're still falling short, you're not alone.
If you are contributing to a 401(k) plan, you probably enjoy seeing those savings increase each year. When you change jobs, you may think of that money as a way to pay moving expenses and other costs connected to starting a new position. Or, you may think of the account as a way to save for a house or another large purchase, or to borrow money for your child's education.
During the Great Depression, panicky Americans converted deposits into currency and thousands of banks that could not meet withdrawal demands were forced to close. When the banks closed, depositors ended up losing all of their savings. Consequently, President Franklin Roosevelt signed the Banking Act of 1933, which created the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation (FDIC).