[The following is a guest post by Anne Davis. Since my smartphone of choice is still the Palm/HP/LG webOS and no one creates apps for it any more, I'll take her word on these. All bets are off when the Nexus 5 gets released (likely this month).]
While planning for your retirement can be a daunting and time-consuming task, there's no reason you have to tackle your financial planning on your own. With all the affordable programs and mobile applications on the market, there's a nearly endless number of ways you can start crunching your financial numbers today. Here's a list of the five most helpful apps to guide your retirement savings.
One of the best apps for retirement planning is Retire Logix, available for free on Apple, Android, and Windows devices. It was named in Money Magazine's "100 Best Money Moves," and is only $1.99 for the app's Pro Version.
Basically, Retire Logix is a financial calculator that shows how different types of income might cover your retirement expenses. By approximating your income, it creates easy-to-read charts that explain how ready you are for your future financial independence. Additionally, the app's calculators automatically adjust for factors such as inflation, and the Pro Version comes with a built-in Education Planner for determining college expenses. This feature makes it an app perfectly suited to younger users, but older adults can benefit from its many features as well.
RetirePlan is a retirement app for Apple devices, which can be downloaded for free in the iTunes store. It's an application that's truly geared for financial planning novices, and it can answer almost any question you have about your retirement. Want to know when you can finally retire? Need to decide how much money to save every year? If you want an app with everything short of a personal accountant, RetirePlan is for you.
The setup for RetirePlan is simple, requiring basic data such as your age, expected retirement age, and life expectancy. The app's calculators then create spreadsheets showing your retirement figures, which you can have sent directly to your email inbox. Additionally, RetirePlan is customizable: you can adjust for having a spouse, for Social Security, and even for inflation and interest rates. Its slider bars also allow you to instantly tweak your plan, and you can even add in factors such as pensions, children's college funds, and large upcoming expenses.
Stan is an app for those seeking help with Annuities. As one of the few pros and cons of annuities resources available for a smartphone, this app shines. With this app, you’ll be able to have important information at your fingertips whenever you need it. You can download Stan’s book within the app. The book describes the types of annuity products, how the products work, and how you can properly utilize annuities to achieve financial goals.
Retirement Planner (Adonis Apps LLC)
Better than many other apps of the same name, Adonis Apps' Retirement Planner is one of the best apps available for planning your financial future. It works on almost all Android devices, and is completely free and ad-supported.
Retirement Planner can help you answer many of the same questions as RetirePlan, as well as many more. Are you trying to decide between a Traditional and Roth 401(k)? What about an IRA? Do you want to know how much you're getting from your 401(k) employer contribution? Retirement Planner not only answers all the usual retirement questions, but can help you solve these more nuanced questions as well. It's truly a must-have app for any Android user's financial planning needs.
SmartMoney Retirement Planner
The SmartMoney Retirement Planner is another free app for Android, which was once voted App of the Month by the American Association of Individual Investors. It's perhaps the most customizable retirement app on the market, allowing for inputs such as 401(k) employer contributions, pensions, one-time gains, and Social Security benefits.
Similar to some other apps, SmartMoney Retirement Planner projects your retirement based on your age, income, and retirement age. It also allows you to adjust for assets, tax rates, annual savings, and a host of other factors that will affect your retirement funds. After SmartMoney adjusts for your retirement spending (housing, transportation, medical, etc.), it creates graphs to show you whether you'll have enough to retire at a certain age. If your money falls short, it also offers solutions to help you meet your retirement goals.
In today's technological landscape, it makes little sense not to take advantage of the many programs and mobile apps available. If you're thinking of planning for your retirement, these five apps are sure to get you started on the right foot.
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