Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Roth 401(k)

Mr. Sam and I both split our 401k monies between the traditional 401k plan (pretax dollars) and a Roth 401k plan (after tax dollars).  But, it sounds like we are among a minority.   This Wall Street Journal article  indicates that fund companies report that rate of participation in Roth 401k plans ranges from 6% - 15%.

We opted to put a chunk into the Roth 401k, I'm putting about a third into the Roth 401k plan, because taxes for us are a big unknown.  Will we pay more or less in retirement, we don't know.  Will taxes go up or down in the future. we don't know.  So we hedge and put some of our retirement monies in each plan.  We opt to put more money in our regular 401k because it helps to lower our current taxes and ups our take home pay.  Since we fund our IRAs with after tax monies we have, in the past few years, since we became eligible, have converted a big chunk of our IRA money to Roth IRA.  We've already paid taxes on this money so we'd rather convert and have the money grow tax free and be able to withdraw it tax free.

How about you, are you splitting money between a regular 401k and a Roth 401k plan?  If yes, why and how much.  

** I don't pretend to be an investment professional or expert nor am I a tax professional or expert (I've been audited), talk to someone who knows something about this topic before you make a decision.


Anonymous said...

A good place to gain knowledge from others and to ask questions is the morningstar forum in particular for this question the 401k and IRA forum... http://socialize.morningstar.com/NewSocialize/forums/100000972.aspx

Leigh said...

My plan was to keep maxing out the Traditional 401(k) to reduce my AGI enough to be able to max out the Roth IRA directly, but I will definitely re-consider how I am doing this next year since my AGI would be over the Roth IRA phase-out next year even with maxing out the 401(k). If I'm not going to do the Backdoor Roth IRA, I will definitely put some money into the Roth 401(k).