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Max out your Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) Account

Similar to a 401(k) plan, the TSP permits you to make pre-tax contributions every time you get paid. You decide how much to allocate to your TSP, up to a certain limit. The TSP allocation is taken out of your gross pay, and your paycheck is reduced by that amount. The allocated amount goes directly into your TSP account, which you can invest in various funds. In 2015, FERS and CSRS employees can contribute up to $18,000 of their basic pay to the TSP. Be aware that President Bush signed legislation (P.L. 107-304) on November...

How Federal Employee Annuities Are Computed

Your basic annuity is computed based on your length of service (which includes unused sick leave if you retire on an immediate annuity) and “high-3” average pay. To determine your length of service for computation, add all your periods of creditable service, and the period represented by your unused sick leave, then eliminate from the total any fractional part of a month. Your “high-3” average pay is the highest average basic pay you earned during any 3 consecutive years of service. Generally, your basic...

What do you do if you come up short for retirement?

You’ve done your homework and discovered that your retirement expenses are going to exceed your retirement income. What can you do now? Quite simply, you are going to have to figure out a way to increase your income and/or reduce your expenses. Here are some ideas to get you started: 1. Postpone your retirement. While you might like to retire at a particular age, this may not be realistic given the high cost of retirement. You may need to postpone retirement and continue working a few additional years to allow...

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