1/4/13 3:45 PM – Put Your 401k Contributions Into a Roth 401k

If you are not putting your 401k contributions into a Roth 401k, you ought to be. If your employer doesn’t offer a Roth option in your 401k, have them call me. I can get it added.

The main reason you ought to contribute to the Roth 401k is twofold – 1. taxes are going to keep rising and 2. withdrawals at retirement from a Roth 401k are usually TAX-FREE! Withdrawals from a regular 401k are TAXABLE.

Taxes will keep going up. When dealing with budget deficits, Washington sees raising taxes as much easier than cutting spending, especially entitlements. You just saw this with the Fiscal Cliff deal. Democrats are apparently also talking about more tax increases as part of the debt ceiling negotiations starting shortly.

You say you make too much income to be eligible to contribute to a Roth 401k? Well, income limits that apply to being able to contribute to a Roth IRA DO NOT apply to a Roth 401k. You can contribute, no matter how much you make.

Note that if you are moving existing 401k funds that have been put in pre-tax, which is the norm, it is a taxable event. If you are young or if if the balance is not too large, this is probably worth the tax. There are also advantages to your heirs and on estate taxes with a Roth. I can talk you through the decision-making.

So, whether you convert your present 401k assets is a complex decision I can help you with, but whether to put new contributions into the Roth 401k is a no-brainer.