AltoIRA notes that December is a “hectic” time of year.
Between buying the right gifts, making holiday party appearances, and visiting with family, you’d be forgiven if your “top concern” isn’t maximizing your IRA contributions.
According to AltoIRA, end-of-year IRA contributions are “something you should be thinking about.” Especially considering recent reporting that Americans should “begin planning for substantially lower income in their later years.”
Notably, you can still make contributions to your IRA “for the 2022 tax year up until Tax Day (Tuesday, April 18, 2023),” the Alto IRA team notes in a blog post.
Though the way they’re funded differs—traditional IRA contributions are “made with pre-tax income whereas Roth IRA contributions are made using after-tax income—the contribution limits are the same for traditional and Roth IRAs.”
For the 2022 tax year, the IRS allows you “to contribute up to $6,000 a year to a traditional or Roth IRA—$7,000 if you’re 50 or older.” For the 2023 tax year, the IRS “increased the contribution limit to $6,500 a year—$7,500 for participants 50 and older.”
Though the calendar year ends December 31, “unlike with a 401(k), you may contribute to an IRA for the previous tax year up until Tax Day.”
Just be aware that “between New Years’ Day and Tax Day, many IRA providers require you to select which tax year you want your contributions put toward. Once you’ve made your selection, you may not be able to change it.”
Alto IRA also reminded clients that you should “keep in mind that the IRA contribution limit is the total amount you can contribute to all of your IRAs in a given tax year.” The contribution limit is “not per account.” If you exceed the limit, you’ll “pay a tax penalty until the excess contribution is removed.”
As clarified in the update, IRA and 401(k) contribution limits “are separate from each other, meaning you can contribute the maximum amount to a 401(k) or 403(b) while in the same year contributing the maximum to your IRA or IRAs.”
It’s also important to note “that 401(k) and IRA rollovers don’t count toward IRA contribution limits.”
Roth IRAs are popular “for a reason: Qualifying distributions are completely tax-free. (For a distribution to be qualified, you must have had your Roth IRA open for at least five years and be 59 and a half years old.)”
It’s because Roth IRAs are “not taxed at withdrawal that led Congress to impose contribution income limits to prevent people over a certain modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) from taking advantage of an investment vehicle designed to incentivize the middle class to set aside more for the future.”
As explained in a blog post, MAGI is “your gross income—which includes wages, as well as business income, capital gains, dividends, and retirement distributions—minus certain deductions.”
Some of those deductions “include alimony payments, contributions to retirement accounts, and student loan interest, as well as educator expenses (career specific).”
For more details on this update, check here.
In another update, Alto notes that “the future of retirement is in question for millions of Americans.” Social Security “faces the threat of insolvency.”
The 60/40 portfolio investors have “relied on for so many years is beginning to falter. And the cost of living continues to skyrocket.”
With so much uncertainty, it’s clear “that the old ways of planning for retirement may not cut it in the future.”
Achieving long-term financial sustainability “requires a bold, new approach and a fresh perspective.”
Seeking new ways to invest for the future is what first led Alto founder and CEO Eric Satz to ask, “Can I do that with my retirement funds?”
However, it wasn’t until he “made his first self-directed IRA investment that he discovered just how big the problem was.” Not only was the process “unnecessarily complicated.” Worse, it denied millions of Americans “the opportunity to better invest for their futures.”
So he set out “to fix it.”
Alto is on a mission “to make alternative assets accessible for all.” Because true portfolio diversification “shouldn’t be a tool available only to the wealthy.”
It was with this mission in mind that they “decided it was time for a powerful, new visual and brand identity.”
One that “embodies the optimism that a better future is within reach.”
For too long, saving for retirement “has been viewed as, well, boring and impersonal.” You set a desired retirement date and risk appetite, contributed funds, and “your plan did the rest.”
Generally, this meant “a portfolio consisting of the same stocks and bonds found in countless other retirement portfolios.”
But as Eric Satz is fond of saying:
“Another mutual fund doesn’t get you more diversification. It just gets you another mutual fund.”
Alto is for the investor “who wants more. More opportunities. More diversification. More control.”
With Alto, you get “to choose how you invest your money and in what—whether that’s in startups, crypto, real estate, fine art, or a menu of other alternative assets.”
Historically unavailable to Main Street Americans, these investments “vary significantly in how much or how little they’re correlated with public markets, giving them the potential to increase risk-adjusted returns.”
Making alternative investing accessible “doesn’t stop with enabling investments in a variety of opportunities.”
To this aim, Alto’s new website was “designed with Web Content Accessibility Guidelines (WCAG) 2 Level AA in mind.”
Developed by the World Wide Web Consortium Web Accessibility Initiative, the WCAG is an international standard “for developing websites to accommodate people with disabilities, and includes measures such as ensuring sufficient contrast levels and making text visible for screen readers.”
As noted in the update:
“We made these changes because we believe that everyone should have the opportunity and ability to take control of their financial futures. From the start, Alto’s mission has been to make investing for retirement more equitable by expanding access to opportunities once available only to the ultra-wealthy.”
Alto currently offers two options to invest for your future tax-advantaged:
- Alto IRA gives you the opportunity to invest in a wide variety of alternative assets like private equity, venture capital, and real estate.
- Alto CryptoIRA lets you buy and sell up to 200+ cryptocurrencies through integration with Coinbase, the largest publicly traded exchange in the US.