Retirement planning

How to bounce back after using your retirement funds prematurely

People may use their long-term savings to get through a temporary difficulty when times are tough. Many Americans who are currently enduring the coronavirus pandemic may attest to that.

According to a recent Bankrate study, more than a quarter (27%) of working or recently jobless persons with retirement savings have utilized or intend to use their funds as an immediate income source due of the COVID-19 situation.

While the change may fill a financial shortfall today, it also makes it more difficult for you to ensure a decent retirement in the future. However, scientists noted there are strategies to lessen the long-term consequences of early withdrawal. It necessitates some self-control, discipline, and labor of love.

ASAP replace what you removed.

If you have taken money out, you should make every effort to pay it back as quickly as you can.

You have additional time to complete your retirement savings without incurring tax penalties as a result of the coronavirus relief package known as the CARES Act. You can avoid paying taxes if you refund the same amount you withdrew within the following three years.

Even if you have to withdraw due to a financial emergency related to the coronavirus, you will still lose out on investment returns.

The biggest risk, according to Greg McBride, chief financial analyst at, is that the money leaves and never returns. “By the time you retire, the $5,000 you withdraw now could be $30,000, $40,000, or $50,000.”

Find additional funds to contribute.

If you are unable to locate a second employment during the coronavirus outbreak, consider making budget cuts to raise some extra cash.

Ande Frazier, CEO of myWorth, an online network for women’s financial education, said: “You can’t earn your way out of this, but you can focus on being a responsible spender.”

One expert advises spending less money if you are unable to locate a second employment during the coronavirus outbreak. (Reference: Getty Images)

Continue to be frugal and only spend when absolutely essential even after your financial difficulties have subsided. You can add any extra funds to your retirement savings.

I believe this is a great chance to reconsider your spending choices, said Frazier. “It would make more sense to keep saving if you had to cut things out, so don’t be so ready to add them back in.”

Boost upcoming contributions

Increasing future contributions while you’re employed and in a stable financial situation is another option for making up the money you’ve withdrawn.

According to Dan and Natalie Slagle, the owners of Fyooz Financial Planning, “taking a withdrawal in your early years has a negative compounding effect on your future retirement asset pool.” When cash flow starts to return to normal, you might need to boost future retirement plan payments to get around this.

Some savers already act in this manner. In response to the crisis, about 1 in 7 millennials are increasing their retirement account contributions.

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To get your retirement back on track, the two creators also advise putting the brakes on important life decisions like making improvements to your home or car and preparing for your children’s education.

All of those expenses, they claimed, could be leveraged if necessary, but not your retirement account.

Launch a different retirement account

Making a separate retirement account for your side business may be beneficial if you’ve taken the time to develop one.

The Slagles suggested that starting a side business might enable you to set up a solo 401(k), SEP IRA, or SIMPLE IRA if your present company doesn’t offer such a choice. This will enable you to make up for any early withdrawals and help you save even more money for retirement.

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