New Rules Could Save Your Retirement

Retired Couple

Is your retirement plan costing you too much?

Upcoming federal regulations about 401k fee transparency could change that—and you can help.

Keeping expense ratios low is critical for women, who tend to live longer than men and thus need to be vigilant about the costs that can eat away at their savings.

Over 25 years, a fee difference of just 1% can swallow tens of thousands of dollars. (Check out Vanguard’s fee comparison tool.)

The new rules, set to take effect in July, will require greater fee transparency—and already some large 401k providers (Vanguard, Schwab, and Lincoln Trust, to name a few) are offering cheaper plans to small businesses, which translates to lower fees for employees.

“In an ideal plan, the expense ratio for every fund option is less than 1%, and there are index fund options carrying an expense ratio of less than 0.5%,” says David McPherson, a financial planner in Falmouth, MA.

If your fees are higher than that, lobby your employer to switch 401k providers—it will save them money and help you keep more of your nest egg.

Live long and prosper. What are you being charged in your 401k plan?

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