Do you ever think about life after the force? Retirement savings are probably the last thing on your mind and it is understandable. Between being hired, training, and trying to build up your career, there is so much to accomplish. However, like any other occupation, police officers also have to plan for life after the force.

Irrespective of whether you are a rookie or a veteran, you need to start building up your nest egg. Don’t wait until it’s too late to start thinking about your retirement savings.

After all, the CalPATH program can save you money but you can also help yourself if you follow these simple steps.

4 Ways Police Officers Can Save Money

Contribute to your 401(k) retirement saving

It’s so much easier to sign up for the 401(k) plan and leave the rest to your agency. However, this isn’t always the best decision as far as retirement savings are concerned. 

The IRS currently allows you to contribute up to $19,5001 (limit is subject to changes) which means you can add on to your contribution.  If your agency offers to match your contribution, take advantage of that as well.

Don’t max out your contribution when starting out but instead start small and keep increasing it as your career in the force advances.

Start now and automate your retirement saving

It is never too early to start saving. In fact, you can start setting aside money as soon as you join the force. If you are a veteran, it’s not too late to start either; you only have to jumpstart the process.

One of the best ways to cultivate saving discipline is by automating your savings. This way you’ll never touch the money you intend to save, eliminating all urges to spend it. 

Use financial advisors

Does your police academy have financial advisors? If it does, take advantage of them and get as much financial education as you can. Some police officers join the academy immediately after school which gives them more years of planning for their future.

Whatever stage you are in your career, make sure that you have a solid pension plan and seek financial expertise where needed.

Start investing or monetize a hobby

For police officers that are just beginning their career, investments would be a great idea. Remember that your golden years are just beginning and you wouldn’t want to waste them. Every dollar you channel towards an investment only goes to securing a better future.

Investment options are endless! You could invest in real estate, the money market, start a business, etc.

Veterans, on the other hand, could try to monetize a hobby. That way, when you do retire, you’ll not be starting over as you’ll already have a business. Best part? You’ll be doing something that you are passionate about! 

Position Yourself for an Easy Post-retirement Life With These Retirement Saving Tips

Retirement can either be exciting or overwhelming and the determining factor is the savings you’ll have set aside. While retiring from a job is difficult, it’s more challenging to start looking for a job at a time when you should be enjoying life. Follow these tips and start securing your future. 

Links to sources used

  1. 401(k) contribution limit increases to $19,500 for 2020; catch-up limit rises to $6,500 – https://www.irs.gov/newsroom/401k-contribution-limit-increases-to-19500-for-2020-catch-up-limit-rises-to-6500