On My Own: Retirement

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Liz Bermudez graduated from Florida State University in April and is spending the next year in graduate school. She says the thought of the real world and finances after graduating keeps her up at night.

Bermudez says, "I feel like I'm going to get thrown into it, and sometimes I feel like I'm not prepared enough."

For Liz, the thought of saving for retirement isn't even an issue, when she thinks about paying back her student loans. She says, "I'm thinking about first taking care of my debts, and then maybe I'll start saving."

Roy Long is an accountant and has customers of all ages. He says one of the biggest mistakes he sees younger people make is not saving for retirement.

Long says, "It's very important, 'cause the sooner you start saving, the faster your money's going to grow, so by the time you reach retirement age, you don't have to work."

Zach Wheeler, the vice president of Archbold Hospital's human resources department, says, "Retirement, again, right out of school, most people think I don't need to worry about retirement, but it's a huge issue."

Financial advisers at AG Edwards say if you start saving at the age of 25, and you're putting away more than three hundred dollars each month you could be a millionaire by the time you retire.

If you start saving when your 35, you'll have more than $900,000 by the time you retire. Ten years of waiting to save gives you a difference of almost $800,000 in savings. If this makes you want to run to the bank, make sure you know all your options ahead of time.

Long says, "You ask about IRA, you ask about 401 K, there's also a Roth IRA. Let's say you put in two, three thousand dollars a year into a Roth, and you do that for 20, 30 years, and it's compounded, and grown, when you get ready to retire and start pulling that money out, it comes out tax free."

Other tips to remember when it comes to your retirement plan. Your human resources department will have all the information you need to know about your company's 401K plan.

IRA's and Roth IRA's can be found at your local bank or with an investment banker. And experts say when you're switching jobs, don't cash in your retirement. Instead, roll it over to another retirement plan, or you'll pay a penalty fee and taxes. As far as choosing which plan is right for you, experts say make sure to research all the information given to you by your company and banker, and ask questions.

Students will no longer have scholarships, financial aid, or parents to help them financially, so tomorrow we'll take a look at managing your new budget.