‘Are there advantages to the Roth 401(k) for high-earners?’ Ezekiel asks

USFWS-Southeast on Flickr under a CC license

USFWS-Southeast on Flickr under a CC license

I received a reader question over the weekend from Ezekiel. Ezekiel gets an employer match for the first 6% he sends to a 401(k) and he asks whether it made sense for him, as someone making six figures who plans to work until 65, to contribute to a Roth 401(k) instead of a traditional 401(k).

First a definition.

What is a Roth 401(k)?

A Roth 401(k) is a separate account in the 401(k) your company holds for you that holds designated Roth contributions — that is, contributions that you’ve paid taxes on now and that won’t be treated as taxable income in retirement.

For the 2014 tax year, the sum of your total contributions to a traditional 401(k) and a Roth 401(k) may not exceed $17,500, or $23,000 if you’re over 50.

Difference from a traditional 401(k)

The primary difference is that contributions made to a Roth 401(k) are made with after-tax dollars, and that distributions are not taxed if taken after you reach 59 1/2.

Difference from a Roth IRA

The most obvious difference is that Roth 401(k) contributions are made into an account set up by your employer and Roth IRA contributions are made into an individual account. As such, the two are subject to different limits. In other words, if eligible, you may contribute $17,500 to a Roth 401(k) and $5,500 to a Roth IRA for the 2014 tax year.

You do have to take required minimum distributions from a Roth 401(k) account by age 70 1/2. This isn’t the case with a Roth IRA

However, the main difference for Ezekiel is that there is no income limit to participate in the Roth 401(k). A single person with a modified AGI over $129,000 or a married couple filing jointly with a modified AGI over $191,000 may not contribute to a Roth IRA.

Ezekiel isn’t quite at the Roth IRA’s limits yet, but he’s likely to get there pretty soon.

Sources:Retirement Plans FAQs on Designated Roth Accounts” and “Roth Comparison Chart,” both from the IRS.

Advantages of the Roth 401(k) for high earners

Because the main difference between the Roth and traditional 401(k) boils down to whether you’d rather pay taxes on the money now or in retirement, the starting point for the decision depends on where you expect your tax rate — and to some extent ALL tax rates — to be when you retire.

If you plan to take less out of your accounts each year after you retire than you’re currently making in income, you’ll generally see a lower marginal tax rate while in retirement and should thus tend toward the traditional 401(k)

That said, there are a few compelling reasons to have some money in Roth accounts:

Taking a distribution before retirement

He definitely should plan to not have to take distributions from his retirement savings before he retires, but if some emergency pops up, he’ll be able to withdraw money from the basis he put in — but not the earnings — from a Roth 401(k) account without penalty. He would have to pay a penalty on any money taken from a traditional 401(k).

Taking a lump sum distribution in retirement.

While the average amount Ezekiel takes out each year in retirement may be lower than his current income, there may be some years where he takes out a much higher amount — perhaps when he decides to pay cash for a sailboat that he uses to invite me on trips. Taking a big distribution like this from a traditional 401(k) might bump his Adjusted Gross Income up into a higher marginal tax bracket — not so with money pulled from a Roth 401(k).

Taxable income management

I just mentioned that distributions from a Roth 401(k) don’t add to your AGI for tax purposes, but the IRS isn’t the only federal office that cares about your adjusted gross income in retirement. Your medicare premium and the amount of your Social Security payments that are subject to taxes also depend on your AGI. I suspect that by that point, Ezekiel will have plenty of tax shelters to manage his AGI, but it’s still something to consider.

So how much?

Alright, so if the conclusion is that:

  • he should shoot to have most of his money in traditional 401(k) accounts to take advantage of deferring taxes until he’s in a lower marginal bracket, but
  • there are real reasons why he’d benefit from having some of his money in a Roth 401(k)

then how should he decide how much to put into each?

To figure that out, he would have to create projections based on his expectations for income growth, inflation, future tax rates, growth of his invested portfolio, and idiosyncrasies of the sailboat market.

Good luck!



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September 2014 goals to smack debt in its stupid face

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Don McCullough

August was a very productive month for me. I paid off loads of debt, saw my retirement savings make a big jump, and more importantly, started to feel much more confident and in control of my debt.

In order to build off that momentum, I’m looking to have a strong September.

One hurdle this month will come in the form of a great blessing — I’m headed off to Europe for a friend’s wedding and extended my time there for a brief vacation.

Here are the goals I’ll try to accomplish.

Goal #1: I’ll pay off $2,700 of my student loans

Let’s get straight to the point. I’m looking to have another monstrous month of paying off student loan debt. Last month I paid off over $3,000 and the month prior I paid off just a couple hundred. This month, I’m aiming to end up on the higher end of that range, but tempered a bit to take into account spending on the trip.

Goal #2: I’ll limit total vacation spending to $100 per day

In order to not throw off that debt repayment number too much, I’ll have to make sure that I don’t drop money everywhere.

I’m aiming for that number to be all-inclusive too: Flight, lodging, and sights. But not food, of course; food will still go in the food budget.

Sub-goal #2a: Have fun

Because then what’s the point?

Goal #3: Make good vegetarian food

Here’s something fun that I’ve noticed:

  1. The amount I spend on food each month is most closely related to how much I eat out
  2. How much I eat out depends on how bored I am of what I cook

So my answer is to find a few really exciting vegetarian recipes, make them, and maybe share them on the blog.

Goal #4: Not get fat on vacation

I normally put a running goal in here, but have a much bigger fitness goal this month — not getting fat. I have no idea how to not get fat on vacation in between the butter-laden foreign food, relaxing, and always forgetting to pack running shoes.

But this time, I’ll do some research and it’ll be different.

Goal #5: Write a post about not spending too much on attending weddings

I’m gonna write a post about not spending too much attending weddings as I attempt to not spend too much attending a wedding.

And that’s everything I’m going to try to do! What have you got planned for September?



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I’m off to complain to a company; here’s how I’ll do it effectively

If you’re like me, you interact with dozens of businesses every month. And for the most part, these interactions — whether buying, selling, or just staying in touch — go off without a hitch.

Every now and then, however, things don’t go as expected and it becomes necessary to complain about it.

Without naming any names, here’s what I got in the mail late Friday afternoon:

Oh my. Looks like it’s time for me to review the steps I take to complain effectively.

A note before continuing: When I talk about complaining effectively, I’m taking about getting some tangible benefit from it, like a full or partial refund. I understand that there may be a purely psychological benefit to venting independent of results, but that’s a post for a different day.

Let’s continue.

1. Make sure you have a real reason to complain

If you’re thinking about complaining because you believe that you deserve special treatment or because you’re trying to get over on the system, then stop reading right here. You’re totally ruining things for the rest of us.

All companies are more likely to take your complaint seriously if your complaint is a legitimate one.

Of course, not every issue is perfectly black and white, and determining whether yours is truly legitimate could take a good bit of introspection — and perhaps a sanity check by talking it over with trusted friends.

In my case, I got both the wrong model and the wrong color. This feels like a very compelling reason to complain!

2. Make sure you appear legitimate by not complaining all the time

This point ties into the first. You lay the groundwork for a compelling case well before you’re wronged by the company.

Like the proverbial boy who cried wolf, if you complain about a whole lot of nothing all the time to this company, or complain generally and leave an easy-to-find paper trail, then there’s a good chance they’ll think it’s just more frivolity — even if your newest complaint is totally legitimate.

I’ve never said a word to this company before today and as far as I can tell, my only past complaints that are easy-to-find on the internet are these two:

3. Know the best way to reach out to them

Different companies treat different media differently!

I’ve dealt with plenty of companies that take monitoring their email address very seriously and get your written request resolved in no time. Some will use every other medium as a way to funnel you to their phone lines, which is really. And for a select few brave companies, the very public space of Twitter is the quickest way to make them move.

You can generally find out which medium is best by searching for the company’s reviews on the Better Business Bureau website or on Reseller Ratings, or by checking out their Twitter feed.

The company in question only wants to talk by telephone.

4. Be polite, but firm

Of course you should work aggressively to state your case accurately. However, there’s no need to be a jerk about it.

For one, you should always assume that anything you say to customer service is being recorded. If you ever have to take your complaint public, you can be sure the company won’t hesitate to widely broadcast you berating a well-meaning customer service rep.

Furthermore, that poor customer service rep likely had nothing to do with the initial screw-up, and unloading on her just to vent might feel good, but is totally misdirected.

Finally, don’t make threats you’re not willing to back up. If you suggest that you’ll cancel your service with a company unless they address your issue, ensure that you’re prepared to do so if they call your bluff.

You better believe I’m gonna be polite!

5. Know what you want and be satisfied when you get it

If you’re reading this blog, you’re probably the sort who fights for every scrap available. Especially in times where you feel like you’ve been wronged, you may feel compelled to try to materially injure the guilty company as much as possible.

All well and good, but the problem with this is that you’re likely to come away disappointed with this mindset.

I plan to fight this tendency by knowing exactly what I want going in — to get the lens and color I paid for — to do what it takes to get it, and to walk away when I’ve got it in hand.

What other tips have you got for effective complaining?

September 2014 net worth update: Paid off $3,500 in debt!

Welcome to September everyone!

As summer approaches its tail end, it’s time to reflect upon what I did this past month to pay off debt and reach my financial goals.

August was a very low-spend month for me, as I spent a lot of time outdoors hiking or on the water, and with people I care about — rather than spending more on entertainment. Speaking of entertainment, I stopped spending money on books and e-books after finding the OverDrive app. And I cut my grocery bill significantly by not buying any meat.

All of that saving contributed to one of my strongest months for paying off student loan debt.

The numbers

Here’s what happened in August:

Picture1

The good: So, in case you can’t tell, I am into paying off debt — like, really into paying off debt. That’s why what I’m most excited about this month was taking a big bite out of my student loan debt. I knocked off $3500 of student loan debt — or 3% off the total. What makes this even more special is that I had only averaged $800 per month in debt payoff the five months prior.

Picture2The OK: Adding $4400 to my retirement savings was OK. Wait, a $4400 gain was just OK? Yes, because much of it was largely expected due to a work anniversary and my conservative accounting. Another big chunk of it came from market gains, which I have no control over. Yes, it’s nice for company contributions to vest and it’s definitely nice to see the market go up, but I know that neither are things I can hope to repeat consistently. To the right, you’ll see a pie chart of where this month’s jump came from.

The lesson: Reaching personal finance goals is all about ATTITUDE!

August 2014 goal results

Here’s how I did at trying to achieve all the goals  I set last month:

Goal #1: Pay off $3500 in debt in August. Pass! See above. This feels like a pretty solid accomplishment and I’ll be working hard to keep going this strong.

Goal #2: Add $4500 to my net worth. Pass. Actually, it looks like my net worth increased by nearly $8,000 this past month. What a month, that August!

Goal #3: No buying meat. Pass. Since I do a lot of my own cooking, this wasn’t very tough at all. In the few instances I had to eat out, it got a bit tougher. Still, not buying meat saved a lot of money and was a very big help in paying off debt!

Picture3

Goal #4: Run 80 miles. Fail. I got to 65 miles this month, which feels like a lot — especially when the Nike+ Running app broadcasts the results out to everyone I know. Still, a bit of a disappointment as late nights meant that I often had to decide between getting a reasonable amount of sleep and getting a morning runs in. That’s definitely something I have to work on for both my running and sleep goals.

Goal #5: Tend to career. Neutral. I think I did a decent job of this. One of the best ways to tend to a career is by doing well at my current job and I think I did a particularly good job this past month. I also gave out a couple informational interviews this past month, which doesn’t necessarily help me, except in a karmic sense — which sometimes feels just as important. I’m also up to date on LinkedIn and my résumé, so that’s good. Where I failed was that I missed out on more than a couple networking happy hours that I had wanted to go to because of double-booking and because of general malaise. Yet another reason I need to be better at sleeping. Uf…

 And that was my month! How did everyone else do on your August goals?

Sep 2014

The free app that lets you download FREE, unlimited ebooks and audiobooks — OverDrive

A couple weeks back, I weighed whether it would save money to pay $10 a month to subscribe to Amazon Kindle unlimited to borrow unlimited ebooks and audiobooks. With most Kindle ebooks costing between $8 and $11, the math seemed to favor subscribing to the unlimited service.

What could be better than unlimited ebooks and audiobooks for $10 a month?

With just a little digging, I discovered something that had the potential to be even better — the free OverDrive Media Console app for iPhone:

Picture2

There are also apps available for Android, Windows Phone, Kindle, Nook, Mac or Windows.

The app gives you access to free, unlimited ebook and audiobook downloads through your local public library or school, if they’ve partnered with OverDrive.

Better yet, you can download straight through the app or the website meaning no trips to the actual library are necessary!

Here’s the gist of how it would work:

  1. Download the app
  2. For now, you have to create an Adobe ID for copyright authorization, but the forthcoming version of the app will not require it
  3. Use the app to find your local library within the big list of libraries and bookmark it
  4. Browse for an ebook or audiobook
  5. Check it out using your library card (or student ID, if that applies)
  6. The book will automatically delete itself from your phone when it’s due — usually two to three weeks — so there’s never any late fees. Alternately, you can just return it when you’re done

And that’s that!

One thing I’d suggest is that if there’s a popular or new book you’re thinking of reading, you should put yourself on the waiting list as soon as possible because I hear that these can go long. Otherwise, this seems like a pretty solid option.

Good luck and enjoy your long weekend! :)

The most important thing about investing as a 25-year-old; on compound returns and a follow-up to Eithne

https://flic.kr/p/4Ab3qP

Marcin Wichary via Flickr under a Creative Commons license

Good afternoon to all of you and a very special good afternoon to Eithne (pronounced Enya). Last week, I answered some questions that a reader named Eithne had sent in about how best to roll over an old 401(k) to something that made sense in her new capacity as a freelancer. In that post, I talked through some details of the SEP IRA and the One-Participant 401(k) to help her decide between her options and got her started on thinking about what to consider when putting together an investment strategy. However, I unfortunately forgot one huge aspect. The most important thing about investing as a 25-year-old is to do whatever it takes to contribute as much as you can as early as you can. Sure, you can invest at any point between now and when you retire, but you’ll never see this long a horizon for your contributions to grow and recover from any downturns in the market. Let me see if I can explain better with an example.

An example (based on my life)

Part 1: The early investor

Suppose I had started contributing $4000 to a Roth IRA every year since I turned 25. Suppose further that I had put all of that into a broad-based index fund; in this example, I’ll use the Vanguard Total Stock Market Index ($VSTMX) mutual fund*.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

After plugging in the values for VSTMX taken from Yahoo! Finance, it looks like taking this approach would have left me with $64,167 as of the market close yesterday. Not bad for putting just a few-thousand dollars away every year, right? Now, look at the next line after that. What that says is that if I were to never make another contribution again, then the value of my Roth IRA would be a not insignificant $157,769 when I turn 65 and am ready to retire.

Part 2: The later investor

Now, imagine instead that I had done the opposite — that is, suppose I had put nothing away until this point and instead, planned to put $4000 into a Roth IRA for the coming 31 years until I turn 65.

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

If I had waited to put anything, then I would end up with $188,367. What you should notice is that yes, I do end up with more in the second scenario — 19% more, in fact — but it doesn’t seem to be substantially more, even though I made over three times as many payments. Let me say that again more clearly: Investing for 10 years now will give you almost the same result as investing for 31 years later. And one more time a different way: Investing $40,000 over the next 10 years will give you almost the same results as investing $124,000 later. Look at these two graphs: earlygraph latergraph

What these graphs say is that when you invest later, you have to keep working hard to keep putting new money in. But when you invest early, the money you put in does the work for you, thanks to compound returns. Before I conclude, there are a few assumptions I made here:

  • I assumed that VSTMX would grow at a constant 8% annual rate; the market will likely not do this
  • I did not adjust for inflation because I’m comparing final results at the same future date, however inflation may play an important role in how much you’re able to contribute
  • I did not adjust the retirement strategy as age 65 approached; in practice, investors near retirement may change their investment mix or contribute more to catch up

Of course, what wold be even more ideal would be to both invest now and invest later. Good luck, Eithne :)

brokeGIRLrich


 
*Important disclaimer: Do not take my use of this fund in my example as an endorsement of this fund, the fund family, or any implied investment strategy

Why blog? Reframing what a blog is in 2014

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James Wheeler via Flickr under a Creative Commons license

This morning, during my continued attempt to keep a finger on the pulse of all blogs everywhere, I stumbled upon a post titled “What does a blog do in 2014?” at Scripting News, which included this gem of a quote:

Today there are lots of ways to scatter all kinds of stuff to the wind. If you do a search on a person, you’ll get a lot of random stuff, but for most people there’s no single place that represents the person.

So for me, until further notice, my blog is where all my scatterings come together. Usually it’ll just be stuff that I’ve created, but occasionally I’ll point to something from someone else that’s connected to what I do.

That’s an interesting reframing of what a blog is!

My own reasons have varied and evolved over the years. It’s always included elements of accountability, for sure. And when I have a strong opinion opinion, I’ve used blogging to get it out there, accessible instantly and globally — even if in practice, only a couple people read it.

A blog as a story

Something I catch myself doing more and more these days is reading back into my archives. I may never have intended for this blog to be a story, but that’s what it reads like. For one, the story has the fun dramatic device because the reader knows exactly how the story will end before getting into it — and BEFORE the protagonist himself knows what’s going to happen to him.

And not only does the time change as you read along, but the TRUTH changes as well. Ideas I believed about the world as it relates personal finance and ideas I believed about myself were reinforced, figured out (sometimes, publicly on the blog itself), amended, or chucked out the window.

The one place on the web that really represents me

All of that is a great reminder that what I think to be the truth today will likely be something totally different months and years from now.

And so yes, even though I leave information about myself in different profiles across the web like Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, and so forth, this blog offers the clearest picture of all those facts coming together because it shows my evolution and growth — mistakes and all.

I hope future employers, friends, partners, and others I’ll share a relationship with will forgive the earlier misgivings and instead, step back and appreciate the arc of a personal journey.

Enjoy your weekend :)



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Reader question: As a new freelancer, how should I set up my retirement? Eithne’s story

https://flic.kr/p/nwV2UV

Roberto Taddeo via Flickr under a Creative Commons license

I’m answering another reader on Debt BLAG today. Let’s look at a question from Eithne (Pronounced enya, not her real name):

I’m in my mid-20s and recently started freelancing after having a 401(k) at a company I left around January. I want to set up something to roll that money over into a new account. (1)

A financial adviser referred by family says I should open an individual 401(k) because the limit (2) is higher than a Roth IRA which has a limit of $5000, right? He also said I can take a loan from the fund at any time.

Signing up for a 401(k) with him would cost $40 per year for his company plus 1% for him. Should I look somewhere else? (3)

How should I decide where to invest my money each year? Does it depend on risk? I don’t even know what questions to ask. (4) -Eithne [with emphasis and numbering added by me]

Thanks Eithne!

First off, congratulations on making the move. It’s certainly takes a certain kind of courage to jump into that world.

Let’s go through your questions individually.

1) Rolling over an old 401(K) into a One-Participant 401(k) Plan or a SEP IRA

You mention two, but you’ve actually got four options here:

  1. Cash out with big penalties. You’ll have to pay taxes and a 10% penalty for not being of retirement age . Don’t do this.
  2. Keep it with your old employer. If there’s something you like about your old employer’s plan — maybe it has low fees or good investment options — then this could make sense. Just be mindful of required minimums to keep it open, which is important because you won’t be able to make new contributions.
  3. Roll over into an IRA. By rolling over into an IRA, you’d be able to make new contributions, which it sounds like you’re looking to do. As you know, you won’t be able to take loans against your balance, but you can take distributions that could be subject to taxes and a penalty. You mention a Roth IRA in your note, but because you’re acting as both employee and employer, a SEP IRA is what you would go for.
  4. Roll over into a One-Participant 401(k). You may also see this called a Solo 401(k) or an Individual 401(k). You can also make new contributions to a One-Participant 401(k). Some, but not all, One-Participant 401(k) trustees allow loans; it sounds like the one you’re talking to does.

I’d recommend one of the last two.

2) Contribution limits

Both the SEP IRA and the One-Participant 401(k) have a hard upper limit of $52,000 for the 2014 tax year, and it’ll be adjusted in the future based on a measure of inflation. How each option gets to that $52,000 limit is a bit interesting — again because you’re both employee and employer:

  • The SEP IRA lets you contribute 25% of your income.
  • The One-Participant 401(k) lets you contribute up to the employee cap of $17,500 plus up to 25% of income (As long as you don’t try to contribute more than 100% of your income).

The One-Participant 401(k) has higher limits, so because of the increased flexibility, I agree with your adviser’s recommendation to follow that route.

3) Exploring other options

It’s tough for me to say whether you should be talking to other people. Maybe try to think of it this way:

Suppose you’re starting with $4,000 in your 401(k), each year, before even dealing with market risk and inflation, you’ll lose 1% to his company (the $40 fee / your $4,000 balance) and 1% to him.

That’s not a insignificant hole starting out at all — especially in a world with plenty of discount brokerages and low-cost managers out there. Think long and hard when you’re balancing the value you’ll get from him against these costs.

4) Factors to consider when determining an investment approach

Unfortunately, I can’t get too specific here. I will say that your investment approach should depend on a lot of things including:

  • Your time horizon. The greater the gap between your age now and the age you plan to retire, the greater chance that your portfolio can overcome the occasional bump in the road.
  • Your tolerance for risk. In some cases, rewards increase relative to risks taken, but if the uncertainty of your portfolio makes you sick, then what’s the point?
  • Your anticipated income streams. I bring this up because you mentioned taking loans from your portfolio. Obviously, it would be better for the final value of your nest egg if you didn’t do this, but I can see how it might be inevitable given the feast-or-famine nature of finding freelance work. Make sure to mention this too.
  • The rest of your financial picture. If you’ve got a big emergency fund, no debt, other assets, and low expenses, then it decreases the chances that you’ll have to dip into your retirement savings early.

I could send you a ton more resources if you’re interested in portfolio theory.

That said, those last couple points might actually be the most important; you can’t control how the market affects the money in your retirement account, but you can control how much you put in by minimizing expenses and saving as much as possible.

I hope this all helps!

Did I leave anything out or get anything wrong? Who else has tips for Eithne?



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The backdoor Roth IRA is a tax-advantaged retirement alternative for high-earners — a follow-up for Peter*

https://flic.kr/p/iVtrtG

Craig Sunter (Thanx a Million !) via Flickr under a Creative Commons license

A couple months back, I worked with a reader named Peter (*Not his real name) who, as you might remember, had a lot of student loan debt and a high income. Among other things, I advised him to take a good hard look at some things he could cut from his budget and to aggressively pay down his debt.

Done and done.

The problem with Peter’s high income

We didn’t get too deep into retirement talk, but a commenter MoneyOCD pointed out that at Peter’s level of income, he would likely be ineligible to either contribute to a Roth IRA or to deduct contributions to a traditional IRA. A quick peek at the IRS charts of these income limits shows that he’s right:

  • Because he makes more than $129,000, he can’t contribute to a Roth IRA at all.
  • He can contribute to a traditional IRA, but because he makes more than $90,000, he can’t deduct those contributions.

You might think he should just keep his retirement funds in a taxable account because he’ll have to pay taxes on his gains anyway.

Lucky for Peter and other high earners, there’s another option.

The Backdoor Roth IRA

There’s a sole glimmer of light in the code for high earners like Peter looking to put away some tax-advantaged retirement savings in an IRA.

As of 2010, there has been no upper income limit to be eligible to convert funds in a traditional IRA into a Roth IRA, doing what most folks call a Roth conversion.

In practice, there’s a long complicated process to make this happen:

  1. Put money into a Traditional IRA
  2. Later, call up the financial institution that holds your Traditional IRA and Roth IRA accounts and tell them to move that money over
  3. Pay taxes on any earnings you move over

OK, maybe it’s not that complicated.

Concerns

For Peter’s specific case, I don’t see any. He should put “Back door Roth” on his to-do list and go eat a peanut butter sandwich.

However, those who’ve been growing a Traditional IRA for many years should tread carefully. The IRS treats the amount being converted to a Roth IRA as though it came proportionally from the never-been-taxed portion (composed of earnings and pre-tax contributions) and the already-been-taxed portion (the non-deductible contributions made while your income was too high), and taxes accordingly. See IRS Publication 590 for more details, or  I could go deeper into this in a future post if there’s interest.

Also, remember that all these instructions only apply if your income is too high to either deduct contributions to a traditional IRA or contribute to a Roth IRA the normal way (Check the charts again just to be sure). In Peter’s tax bracket, I’d obviously prefer a deductible pre-tax traditional IRA to a Roth — back door or otherwise — but since he’s not eligible to deduct contributions to a traditional IRA, we’re going with the next best option which is a Roth conversion rather than keeping it in non-deductible Traditional IRA money or holding it back in a taxable account.

Welp! This ended up pretty dense, but I hope it helped someone. Obviously, let me know if I can fill in more details and especially let me know if I made a mistake somewhere.

What’s been your experience with Roth conversions?



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