My company has a 401k plan and every year an advisor comes and talks to us about it. On average, 10-15 people come out of a company of 350, which is very disappointing, but I guess people assume they know what they’re doing.
It’s about the same spiel every time. Contribute at least your company match, tax benefits, vesting, blah blah blah. The third go around of this I was contemplating going. However, I had been taught by my mentor to attend everything and with the added bonus of free pizza I went.
As it happens I learned some very valuable advice. An attendee asked a question about beneficiaries. The advisor gave two great tips-
1. Typically you add your significant other and closest family. That’s great, but you are also with them the most. Where would your money go if your beneficiary died with you? If your beneficiary died and you forgot to update your account? Probably not where you want. Consider adding a second beneficiary to your accounts (1/2 of my accounts enables this, the other I do a 50/50 split).
2. The beneficiaries on your accounts trump your will. This means if you left your ex wife as your beneficiary according to the bank but left all your money to someone else in your will, your ex wife would get the money. Check out this article from the Wall Street Journal about this issue.