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Thinking about & putting tax-wise money away for retirement

A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that I was ready to take a break from tax season

I'm now at that point where I'm beyond wanting a vacation. I'm thinking retirement.

Happy older people
When will the hubby and I be able to join this group of happy retirees? Soon we hope!

This cycle is not unusual, for me or other folks in jobs where the intensity ramps up to a certain deadline. Things get crazy and you get crazier and some days you just want to chuck it all.

This too will pass. 

Or not.

Retirement ruminations: No, it's not that I hate writing and talking and blogging and thinking about taxes. But I am, shall we say, a woman of a certain age.

Specifically, I'm nearing the point where I can start taking out tax-deferred retirement account money without having to pay an early distribution penalty. You do the math.

And that's got me and the similarly mature hubby thinking more and more about when we will actually retire.

We read, longingly, about folks younger than we who left the 9-to-5 drill long ago. Can we do it, "it" being retire the way we've dreamed?

More importantly, when can we join them in leisurely golden year pursuits? 

Hopefully soon. Probably soon. Maybe soon. 

Tax-favored retirement planning: Our caution means that despite our joint desire to become a couple of old married retirees ASAP, we'll stick with our jobs for a while longer. That will give us more time to add to our retirement plans.

The hubby has a 401(k), an IRA and a SEP-IRA from his freelance days, which he still adds to from occasional side job earnings.

I rolled my former employer's 401(k) into an IRA. I still have my original IRA. And, of course, since I've been self-employed for the last decade, I've been stoking my own healthy SEP-IRA.

There are lots of tax-favored retirement plan options. When it comes to IRAs, both traditional and Roth, all of us owners have until the April 15 filing deadline to contribute for the prior tax year.

Self-employment retirement plans offer a bit more leeway.

With a SEP-IRA, for example, you can set up an account and put money into it for the prior tax year as late as Oct. 15 if you get an extension to file. Those extra six months also give you time to come up with the contribution cash.

Tips for retirement planning, retirees: Self-employment plan contributions have another tax benefit. You can deduct them.

That piece of tax advice was one of the dozen small business tax deductions featured as Monday's Daily Tax Tip. It also was one of two retirement-related tips that ran the week of March 23-27.

Here's the latest full five-day lineup:

  1. A dozen small business tax deductions (Monday, March 23, 2015)
  2. Don't you dare deduct these expenses! (Tuesday, March 24, 2015)
  3. Unemployment and taxes (Wednesday, March 25, 2015)
  4. Rich? Watch out for these 5 taxes (Thursday, March 26, 2015)
  5. Retirement plan distribution deadline nears (Friday, March 27, 2015)

Regular readers know that this year I'm posting a Daily Tax Tip each week day in the upper right corner of the ol' blog's home page.

I'm also putting together the week's five tips in one post (like this) on Fridays.

And every day you can check out the monthly tax tips collections at their special pages: JanuaryFebruary and about-to-be-over March.

Check them out if you're like me and haven't yet filed your return. You also can peruse them if you have filed your 2014 Form 1040 and are looking for ways to save on your 2015 taxes.

Now it's back to work for me. At least for a little while longer!


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