News and Commentary

UPDATED 7 Year-End Strategies for Retirement Savers By Kathleen Marteney, CRPC®

With the end of the year around the corner, you have a limited amount of time to maximize your retirement savings opportunities in the most tax-efficient manner. Following are some steps to consider taking before December 31.

Max out your contribution to a workplace 401(k) retirement plan.

For 2023, the maximum amount you may defer from your salary is $22,500, or $30,000 if you are 50 or older.

Understand all your retirement savings options.

If you do not have access to an employer-sponsored retirement savings plan, consider setting up a traditional IRA or a Roth IRA before the end of the year. You have until April 15, 2024, to contribute up to $6,500 to your plan for 2023, or $7,500 if you are 50 or older.

Remember required minimum distributions (RMDs) from retirement plans.

Beginning in 2023, you may wait until age 73 to begin taking required minimum distribution (RMD) from your tax-deferred retirement accounts, including 401(k)s, traditional IRAs, SEP IRAs and Simple IRAs. Failure to take an RMD will result in a penalty equal to 50 percent of the undistributed amount unless you qualify for an exception. It is also important to remember that RMDs are treated as taxable income to you.

Be charitable.

You may satisfy your annual RMD without incurring income tax liabilities when you make a qualified charitable donation (QCD) of up to $100,000 directly from an IRA to a qualified charity. For married couples, the QCD is capped at $200,000. Moreover, under the Secure Act 2.0, you can make a one-time, split-interest election to make a QCD of up to $50,000 to fund a Charitable Remainder Unitrust (CRUT), Charitable Remainder Annuity Trust (CRAT) or Charitable Gift Annuity (CGA).

Understand and abide by the rules for inherited retirement savings accounts.

If you are the beneficiary of a tax-deferred retirement account or Roth IRA owned by a person who passed away, you may be required to take the decedent’s RMD by the last day of the year or risk a penalty. If you inherited IRAs from anyone other than your spouse who passed away after Jan. 1, 2020, you will have to begin taking RMDs from those accounts starting in 2024, and you will have no more than 10 years after the original owner’s death to deplete those accounts. Those RMDs will be treated as taxable income to you.

Keep track of employer benefits.

If you changed jobs during this year, make sure to account for all your retirement plans and health savings accounts that you may have had with your previous employer. You may roll over those savings plans directly to an account with your new employer or into a separate IRA to avoid losing track of them in the future and having to pay taxes on early distributions.

Meet with a financial advisor.

Before the end of the year, make a point to meet with your financial advisors to ensure you are using all the retirement savings options available to you based on your income and filing status, among other factors. A qualified advisor can help you assess your current financial circumstances, address any holes in your existing estate plan and help you map out a strategy for achieving your future personal and business financial goals.

About the Author: Kathleen Marteney, CRPC, is a financial planner with Provenance Wealth Advisors (PWA), an Independent Registered Investment Advisor affiliated with Berkowitz Pollack Brant Advisors + CPAs and a registered representative with PWA Securities, LLC. She can be reached at the firm’s Miami office at (305) 379-8888 or

Provenance Wealth Advisors (PWA), 200 E. Las Olas Blvd., 19th Floor, Ft. Lauderdale, FL 33301 (954) 712-8888.

Kathleen Marteney is a registered representative of and offers securities through PWA Securities, LLC, Member FINRA/SIPC.

This material is being provided for information purposes only and is not a complete description, nor is it a recommendation. The information has been obtained from sources considered to be reliable, but we do not guarantee that the foregoing material is accurate or complete. There is no guarantee that these statements, opinions or forecasts provided herein will prove to be correct.

Any opinions are those of the advisors of PWA and not necessarily those of PWA Securities, LLC. While we are familiar with the tax provisions of the issues presented herein, as Financial Advisors of PWAS, we are not qualified to render advice on tax or legal matters. You should discuss any tax or legal matters with the appropriate professional. Prior to making any investment decision, please consult with your financial advisor about your individual situation.

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Updated on October 16, 2023