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Plan Ahead

A typical person retiring at age 55 today should plan to live at least 30 more years. To retain the same purchasing power through 30 or more years of retirement, your income in retirement must increase each year to keep pace with inflation and probable higher medical expenses. Odds are, you'll be depending on savings to supplement any gaps. That's why it's important to:

1. Understand your pension plan.

Know when you'll be eligible for your pension, how it will be calculated, and the insurance benefits in retirement. After exploring this website, you'll find ways to boost your pension amount.

2. Participate in the deferred compensation plan.

The State of Michigan sponsors a deferred compensation plan for enlisted officers. You can use payroll deductions to contribute to a 401(k) or 457 plan, or both. The plans are administered by Voya Financial.

In both 401(k) and 457 plans, your contributions are pretax contributions. This means that you do not pay taxes on the contributions and earnings until the money is paid out of the plan. In addition, you will be saving on a regular basis directly from your salary to help build a more comfortable retirement.

To enroll or learn more, contact Voya at 800-748-6128 or visit its website.

3. Develop a retirement plan.

Talk to a financial planner or take advantage of Voya's advisor service. This online retirement calculator performs income projections, helps you set goals, and tells you how much you should save in order to meet your retirement goals. Or you can talk to a Voya representative for advice. Start saving early and regularly.

4. Follow your plan.

Review your plan at least once a year to see if you're on target. Review your Member Statement and update your pension calculation. Add up your retirement savings and deferred compensation funds, and adjust your savings as needed to meet your goals.