Sign up for our FREE Monthly Email Newsletter
In addition to keeping in the financial know, you may be interested in checking your credit score and report.
¹The credit scores provided under the offers described here use the Equifax Credit Score, which is a proprietary credit model developed by Equifax. The Equifax Credit Score and 3-Bureau scores are each based on the Equifax Credit Score model, but calculated using the information in your Equifax, Experian and TransUnion credit files. The Equifax Credit Score is intended for your own educational use. It is also commercially available to third parties along with numerous other credit scores and models in the marketplace. Please keep in mind third parties are likely to use a different score when evaluating your creditworthiness. Also, third parties will take into consideration items other than your credit score or information found in your credit file, such as your income.
²The Automatic Fraud Alert feature is made available to consumers by Equifax Information Services LLC and fulfilled on its behalf by Equifax Consumer Services LLC.
³Equifax Credit Report Control™ is only available while you have a current subscription to Equifax Complete Premier. Locking your credit file with Equifax Credit Report Control will prevent access to your Equifax credit file by certain third parties, such as credit grantors or other companies and agencies. Credit Report Control will not prevent access to your credit file at any other credit reporting agency, and will not prevent access to your Equifax credit file by companies like Equifax Personal Solutions which provide you with access to your credit report or credit score or monitor your credit file; Federal, state and local government agencies; companies reviewing your application for employment; companies that have a current account or relationship with you, and collection agencies acting on behalf of those whom you owe; for fraud detection and prevention purposes; and companies that wish to make pre-approved offers of credit or insurance to you. To opt out of such pre-approved offers, visit www.optoutprescreen.com/.
4We will require you to provide your payment information when you sign up and we will immediately charge your card $4.95. After that, we will charge the card $19.95 for each month you continue your subscription. You may cancel at any time; however, we do not provide partial month refunds.
Equifax® is a registered trademark and Equifax Complete™ Premier is a trademark of Equifax, Inc. © 2014, Equifax Inc., Atlanta, Georgia. All rights reserved.
If you’re working a regular 9-to-5 job with good benefits, you probably have access to an employer-sponsored investment account such as a 401(k). While it’s not always a guarantee these days, your employer may also match your contributions to such an account as an added boost. However, if you’re a business owner or a freelancer, you must come up with other ways to plan for retirement. Thankfully, there are some good options out there for freelancers or other self-employed people when it comes to retirement planning.
Get serious about saving
If you’re a freelance employee or a business owner, the buck stops with you when it comes to planning for retirement and finding other benefits for yourself. Retirement planning is your responsibility—so you’d better be serious about it. That means setting money aside strictly for retirement account contributions. Rather than being able to have the money automatically taken out of a regular paycheck, you must make sure to put that money aside on your own. You can send your money to a savings account or some other investment account, but you have to do it.
If you’ve decided you are serious about retirement planning, you have to get all of your finances in order. You need to have a clear idea of your average expenses, your sources of income, and how much money you can reasonably set aside for retirement. As a freelancer, you may have to adjust the timing of your payment contributions, but make sure your savings have a place in any budget for the month, the quarter, or the year. When you have a variable income, you need to be flexible enough to manage the ups and downs while still contributing to a retirement plan.
For more tips and advice, check out Teri Cettina’s recent post on how to budget on a freelancer’s variable paycheck.
Retirement account options
When you don’t have an employer-sponsored retirement plan, you might think you’re simply out of luck. However, there are actually a few good plans for freelancers, business owners, and even those whose employers aren’t able to offer ideal options. For example, an individual investment account such as an IRA might be just what you need. You can choose from a traditional or a Roth IRA—pick your plan based on when you want to pay taxes on that retirement money.
A third option is the SEP IRA, which allows you to contribute far greater amounts than you could with a traditional IRA. A SEP IRA can be used in conjunction with a traditional IRA so you can boost your savings until it is time to retire. It is tax-exempt at the start, but the tax bill is due when you remove that money from the account. Other account options include the SIMPLE IRA and the Solo 401(k). Make sure you do your research to get a clearer picture of your options.
Jeff Rose is a certified financial planner and author of the blogs Good Financial Cents and Soldier of Finance. Learn more about his Roth IRA Movement that has inspired over 140 personal finance to educate young adults on the importance of saving.
The information contained in this blog post is designed to generally educate and inform visitors to the Equifax Finance Blog. The blog posts do not give, and should not be assumed to provide, personalized tax, investment, real estate, legal, retirement, credit, personal financial, or other professional advice. Before making any financial decision, you should always consult with the appropriate professionals who can explain your options, rights, and legal responsibilities, and advise you on any tax, legal, credit, or business implications that may result from those decisions. The views and opinions expressed by the authors of blog posts are their own views and may not be the views or opinions of Equifax, Inc. and/or its affiliates.
Equifax maintains this interactive forum for education and information purposes in order to allow individuals to share their relevant knowledge and opinions with other members and visitors. We encourage you to participate in discussions about personal finance issues and other topics of interest to this community, but please read our commenting guidelines first. Equifax reserves the right to monitor postings to the forum and comments will be published at our discretion. Do you have questions or comments about your Equifax credit report or customer-service issues regarding an Equifax product? If so, please contact Equifax directly. All opinions and information expressed or shared in blog comments are solely those of the person submitting the comments, and don't necessarily represent the views of Equifax or its management.