The easiest way to start saving for retirement when you’re saving zero right now

The easiest way to start saving for retirement when you’re saving zero right now
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Unless you want to keep working forever, you’ve got to learn how to save more today for your retirement tomorrow. According to a Fidelity study, 55% of Americans  are at risk of not being able to afford essential living expenses in retirement, such as housing, health care and food.

Maybe that number includes you. Maybe you’re reading this and not saving for retirement at all because you can’t seem to afford it. But the thing about saving is, you’ve got to start small. Almost nobody can go from zero savings to the recommend 10% overnight. So here’s how to get started!

Why you need to get started saving — now!

Do you believe that Social Security will be enough for you to live on in retirement? No way, not any day. So the only rational alternative is this: If you don’t save for retirement, you just keep working until you can’t anymore. A lot of people will make that choice.

When you think about it, retirement is a very modern concept that has only existed in the world for really the last 140 years. It used to be all through human history that people just worked until they gave out. Boy, that doesn’t sound fun to me! I’d like to be able to just hang out when I don’t want to work anymore.

Read more: Over 40 with no retirement savings? Take these 6 steps

My favorite way for you to get started saving

Maybe people feel there’s no money to save with. If you feel you couldn’t possibly do a 401(k) because there’s no room for any savings, I want you to start by saving just 1%.

Then, six months from now, bump your contribution up by just another 1%, and do it again in another six months. After five years of that, you’ll be saving 10% of your pay before any employer match!

But by doing it just 1% at time, you won’t notice the difference in your paycheck because it’s all little baby steps.

You can open a Roth IRA at Charles Schwab or Vanguard for as little as $1,000. See my investment guide for more details.

Read more: Investing FAQs: How to start saving for retirement right now

Clark Howard About the author:
Clark Howard is a consumer expert whose goal is to help you keep more of the money you make. His national radio show and website show you ways to put more money in your pocket, with advice you can trust. More about Clark
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