(StatePoint) — Whether you’re a risk taker or a more conservative saver, retirement planning should be a top priority. Taking charge of your savings, regardless of your life stage or savings style, can help to ensure you get “to” and “through” retirement and live the lifestyle you think is right for you.
If you have an employer-sponsored retirement plan, experts say that you can benefit by taking a closer look at your account to explore ways to combat risk and protect savings for the future.
“No matter what kind of saver you are, connecting with a retirement consultant or financial professional can help restore confidence in your retirement plan,” says Chuck Cornelio, president of Retirement Plan Services at Lincoln Financial Group. “These individuals will review your risk preferences, as well as what’s available within your plan to help you map out a path to retirement that is right for you.”
Consider the following five tips that can help you manage risk and volatility within an employer-sponsored account, like a 401(k) or 403(b):
Know your plan: Many options within an employer-sponsored plan are designed to offer capital protection and volatility management. Some can accommodate changing market conditions, seeking to protect growth as the market fluctuates and defend against losses. Knowing what investment options are available to you is the first step to protecting your savings.
Consider lifestyle options: Your risk tolerance may change over time based on how many years away you are from retirement. For example, investments known as target date funds are designed to manage risk over time without moving assets out of a retirement portfolio, so participants always stay invested. The flexibility of these funds can cover a broad range of risk tolerance.
Explore in-plan guarantee options: Some features in today’s retirement plans include guaranteed income options that can provide savers with a steady income stream in retirement while also offering protection against downturns in the market.
Review your investments: Ask your employer about retirement planning education, online tools or one-on-one support to get a better handle on whether your investment strategy is in line with your overall retirement goals, as well as your risk tolerance. Take advantage of all the resources available to you.
Stay the course: A common mistake people make is letting their emotions lead to actions. Resist the temptation to move out of your investments into areas you think are more stable. The best way to prepare for retirement is to ride the market’s waves and remain invested for the long term.
If you’re enrolled in your company’s retirement plan, remember to stay on track to be better prepared for the years ahead.