Rev Up Your Retirement Goals

Use these three calculators to help plan your way to a bigger nest egg.

Couple using a laptop and looking at financial statements

by NEA Member Benefits


As the year winds to a close and we start to think about New Year’s resolutions and plans for the upcoming year, this can also be a good time to assess and recharge your retirement planning strategy. Take the opportunity to make adjustments to your retirement withholdings, rebalance your 403(b) allocations, review your pension information and more, to ensure that you’re on the right track for the retirement you want.

Get started now by running your retirement numbers. Below are three calculators to get the ball rolling. By the new year, you’ll be ready, with numbers in hand, to make any necessary changes to keep your retirement planning on track.

1. 5-Minute Retirement Checkup. Answer four questions and in less than five minutes you can take the pulse of your retirement plan. Where are you now and where do you need to be? Get your retirement savings snapshot.

2. NEA Retirement Income Calculator. Use this calculator for an in-depth look at how much money you may need in retirement and if you're on track toward meeting your future income goals. Designed just for educators, this calculator will run your state’s pension data along with your own personal financial information—you’ll need numbers for your account balances and contribution rates, anticipated retirement age, employer match and other income sources—to give you a solid snapshot of where you stand. If you are not already registered on, you will be asked to register to use this calculator. Your information is kept confidential.

3. How will payroll adjustments affect my take-home pay? You’ve decided you need to put more money away for retirement, but it’s hard to know how that will affect your paycheck. Contributions to a qualified plan, participation in a company-sponsored cafeteria plan, a change in filing status, or a number of allowances claimed will have a direct impact on your take-home pay. For example, due to federal tax savings, contributions to a qualified plan do not translate into a direct dollar-for-dollar trade-off on take-home pay. Use this calculator to help compare your current situation to what-if scenarios. This calculator from Security Benefit, providers of the NEA Retirement Program, can help you run the numbers to help you make sure you can save for retirement and still pay all the bills.

Approach your retirement planning the same way you encourage your students to approach their own learning. By tackling it in methodical, manageable chunks, you’ll feel more in control, gain confidence in your ability to plan for your future and be more likely to ward off any unpleasant financial surprises as you near retirement.

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