Retirement Planning Calculators and What They Mean For You

By Ben Mosebach

There are lots of different types of information out there regarding retirement and how you should save your money effectively. Some people prefer to just save their money by having it automatically taken from their paycheck every month and placed into their 401(k) or savings account without ever doing the math to see if it’s enough, and some people prefer to use certified financial advisors to determine what’s right for their scenario. Retirement planning calculators can help you realize what kind of help you need and give you a ballpark idea of what needs to be in your bank account when you finally stop working. There are a multitude of different types of retirement calculators online and here’s a few that can help you find that magic number.

The FinancialMentor Ultimate Retirement Calculator
This online retirement calculator from FinancialMentor is straight forward, simple, and compact. The interface is a single form located on one web page so you don’t need to go through several pages to input all of your information. It shows very simple results and gives you a more generalized idea as to what you need to have ready by retirement in order to stop working and maintain your lifestyle.

The SmartMoney Retirment Planner
The online calculator from Dow Jones and the Wall Street Journal is another great single-page calculator for a generalized overview of your financial needs, although it has someone of a detailed advantage as it has the option for more advanced inputs for your earnings and spending. The graphic interface is much more attractive than most online calculators, utilizing beautiful graphs and user experience design. The sliding scales and graphs make changing your values.

The T. Rowe Price Retirement Income Calculator
As one of the more popular options online, this retirement calculator makes great use of its interface to collect your information so you don’t need to search around for where to input your answers. The calculator takes your information and compiles it into a comprehensive big picture of what your retirement would be like. You can compare your situation against different scenarios and you’re able to change your parameters once you get to the last screen. It’s a nice and simple approach to getting a very round and generic view at retirement financials without getting too specific.

Just like most information you get regarding information about financials and retirement that’s not from a certified retirement or financial advisor, the figures presented by these calculators are very general and can’t give you specific information regarding your unique situation. What they offer is a great start to thinking about your nest egg and how you should approach long-term financial success, but be sure to talk to a certified professional about how your life goals and situation are being affected by your savings and retirement plans. No two situations are alike and finding the right balance is something you can only achieve by exploring your options with someone that can understand what’s important to you.

Retirement Research Group is dedicated to helping plan sponsors and businesses connect with the right financial and retirement advisors to achieve their goals.