Putting your money into an Individual Retirement Arrangement (IRA) is an excellent way to save for retirement. However, you need to make sure you have your money in an IRA that offers a good interest rate or you could be missing out on a lot of money. Most financial institutions that offer IRAs will allow you to lock in an interest rate for up to five years. This means that even if interest rates drop during that time, you will still be making as much money as you were when you opened the account at that rate.
When you start looking for a place to stash your money for retirement, you will want to look around for the best IRA interest rates. This is a wise step because many institutions will offer you a promotional rate just to get you to pick them for your IRA account. Keep in mind, though, that promotional rate will only be good for a set term. Once that term is over, your rate may not be as high as some of the other institutions’ normal rates. If that’s the case, then you will have to hassle with changing companies or potentially lose money by keeping it where it is.
How to Get the Best IRA Interest Rates:
As a discerning IRA shopper, you need to know how to find the best IRA interest rates to maximize your retirement investments. Luckily, you can implement one of several calculation methods to predict what you will earn in the future. You do need to know that several factors go into setting interest rates, so they will fluctuate over a period of time. Your rate will be significantly influenced by the current market conditions.
Here are the steps to follow when calculating your IRA interest rates:
- Look at the top 100 IRA rates in the country using a comparison tool offered by most large banks. You can also use this tool to search for the best local rates as well.
- Contact at least two credit unions in your area. Credit unions are non-profit organizations that usually have better IRA rates than banks because they return their profits back to their members in the form of higher interest rates. All credit unions will be able to provide you with current IRA rates in printed form.
- You should also investigate the rates that are being offered by online financial entities. They are often able to offer higher interest rates because they have lower overhead costs. You don’t even have to contact anyone at the online company, since they usually post their rates on their website. This also makes it easy to compare rates with other financial institutions.
- The longer term you choose for your IRA, the better rates you are going to get. This is because the financial institution knows it will have your money for a longer period of time. This is also beneficial to you because you lock in that rate for the entire period.
- It is almost always a good idea to accept a promotional rate from a financial institution looking to boost its customer base. Even if you have to deal with changing banks after your term is up, it’s still worth the money you earn because of the higher interest rates. Even a one percent difference can translate to thousands of dollars depending on the value of your IRA. As long as you actively manage your IRA, you should be able to move your account around to maximize your rates every few years when your terms are up.
- Watch out for fees. Some banks offer great interest rates, but offset them with high fees. Your goal is to save as much money as possible and if your interest is getting eaten up by fees, you’re not meeting that goal.
Ultimately, you cannot control the IRA interest rates. They are going to be determined by the current market conditions at the time you are investing. However, rates can and do fluctuate between companies, which is why it is always a good idea to research rates before moving your money. Be sure to start early, especially if you are considering moving your funds from one account to another. You do not want to wait too long because if your account automatically rolls over, you will end up paying a penalty for withdrawing it early or you will have to leave it in an account that is not making as much money as it should be.
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