It’s not often I can say that I win something. And certainly not a poetry contest. Yet the poetic stars aligned, and I found myself writing 500-words of rhyming prose about Roth IRAs… and winning a cool $500. I feel like a super nerd, but hey – $500 is pretty awesome.
Don’t know what a Roth IRA is or why it kicks ass? Here’s the link to the contest and my poem below. I think it explains everything 🙂
A big shout out to Nerd Wallet for hosting this and letting me flex my super geeky poetic muscles!
(And after professing my love so deeply for the magical Roth IRA, you can bet that at least some of my award money is going toward my retirement account!)
Ode to the Roth IRA
Check me out: college grad with a kick-ass degree
Trading in those exams for a nice salary.
I’ve got my first job, and it’s paying the rent.
When I get this month’s check, just as quickly it’s spent.
It’s a YOLO-type life, I just live for today
But there’s a voice in my head that just won’t go away.
“If I spend all my money while I earn a good wage,
What will happen to me at retirement age?”
So not wanting to grow old and in poverty
I decide to start saving for that “future me.”
I research an account, a retirement plan
And there’s more account types than I could possibly scan.
There’s 403(b)s and 401(k)s
And Individual Retirement Arrangements (IRAs).
But one catches my eye, and I hear myself say,
“Just what in the heck is a Roth IRA?”
It’s a retirement plan, but compared to the rest
It has special features that make it the best.
Yes, it’s made for retirement and still involves stocks
But it’s different in ways, and I see why it rocks:
You can withdraw your money whenever you choose
For a house or more college – you really can’t lose.
The withdrawals on your contributions all come tax-free;
You can take money out without penalty.
It’s easy to open at any ol’ age
(Just make sure that you’re earning some kind of wage).
As long as you bring home the bacon (or cash)
A Roth can serve as your retirement stash.
More than anything else, if you’re early career
The Roth IRA benefits seem quite clear.
Your money is taxed before it goes in
At rates that are low, where your tax bracket begins.
Your salary will grow when you’re older and gray
Which means that you pay less on taxes today.
Paying taxes right now is the best strategy
And later your money will come out tax-free.
In conclusion, if the choice wasn’t already clear,
You can contribute up to fifty-five hundred per year,
Which means if you start in your twenties today,
You’ll have over a million on retirement day!
For a youngin’ like me who’s just starting to work
A Roth IRA has the combo of perks
That make sense for me now and make sense for me later
And will make life as an old fart all the greater.
So if you’re thinking of how to put money away,
Don’t hesitate long: pick a Roth IRA!
Original Image: British Museum
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