Financial services company ING is heavily promoting a new interactive web site designed to help you figure out “your number” – that is, how much money you’ll need to have saved by the time you retire. I took it for a test ride, and while it gets high marks for user friendliness, it doesn’t help you figure out how much to save each month to get to your number, nor does it explain the assumptions behind its calculations.
My favorite retirement (or as I prefer, “later years”) calculator is still myPlan Snapshot from Fidelity (scroll down the page to “myPlan Snapshot”). By answering just five questions you can come up your number and how much you’ll need to save each month to get there. Plus, you can easily adjust your inputs and then move on to a more detailed estimate if interested.
Research shows that those who take the time to calculate their long-term savings needs save more than those who don’t. So, take a few minutes to run your numbers with Fidelity’s calculator.