Feature-rich 401k at Affordable Cost

I run a small carpentry workshop at home. I want a 401k plan that is pocket friendly but gives me more than a bare bones version. In particular, I want good security and sufficient investment options. Am I asking for the impossible?-Alfred J. Ryals, 3912 Pleasant Hill Road, West Palm Beach, FL 33401

Alfred, you are definitely not asking for the impossible! In fact, you are just trying to make sure that you have a perfectly adaptable 401k that safeguards your savings in the best possible way. What you should look for is a plan that offers you a good choice of no- load mutual funds so that you effectively diversify your investment. In addition, you should also be ensuring that the plan you choose is not pricey when compared to similar plans in the market.

Today, there are many such plans available for small business owners like you. At http://www.401keasy.com/, you will find that ‘ultra low cost’ means no surprises in the form of hidden fees, commissions and asset-based charges. Since 401k Easy also gives you an unlimited choice of  no- load mutual funds to pick your favorites from, this could be the best option for you. Its 401k is feature packed and you are sure to find right here all the functionalities that big company plans usually have, with the bonus that you can get them all within your budget. Don’t hesitate to compare prices with other plans before you make your choice.

Another aspect to check when you are doing your comparison shopping is whether all the 401k suites on your ‘list of possibles’ give you great security features. The 401k Easy plan comes with secure online administration. This makes the plan doubly attractive because you don’t want sensitive personal information about your retirement savings strategy leaking out into cyberspace or among your competitors.

While you are at it, do check out if a demo version is available so that you can actually get a hands- on feel for the 401k suite. You can check for yourself if it is easy to use, intuitive and clutter free. Remember that you will need to update information on a monthly basis. A complicated 401k package will need a lot of time and effort-investment month after month simply to plug in the latest figures. That can get really tedious after a while and the extra complications only increase the risk of human errors cropping up. Go for simplicity, security and a good range of investment options.

Nondiscrimination Testing with 401k Plans

I want to set up a 401k plan for my auto parts shop. Do I need to ensure that it complies with the nondiscrimination regulations year after year? Michael P. Ladd, Oklahoma City, OK 

A 401k plan is a retirement benefit plan that was created with the intent of allowing employees to save in an effective manner for their future. The many benefits and tax advantages offered with these plans are all established in line with this objective. This is also the reason why the government insists that these plans are offered to all employees irrespective of their position within your business or the total compensation they earn.

To get all the tax benefits that a 401k plan offers to participants, it should give benefits to all employees, including the rank and file staff. A plan that only benefits the business owner or top level management fails to pass theIRS’s non discrimination test. This test compares the plan’s participation as well as contributions made by rank and file employees with those of top level employees and the owner/ management.

Annual testing is mandatory for all regular/ traditional 401k plans to verify that they are non discriminatory. Through this testing it is verified whether the contributions made on behalf of rank and file employees is in proportion with that made for the top brass of your business.

If you want to avoid getting into the testing and verification loop then aSafeHarbor401k is the right 401k plan for your business.SafeHarborplans are exempt from the annual non discrimination testing that is required for the other 401k types. This plan has some inbuilt features that ensures that all employees are given equitable treatment when it comes to contributions.

Talk to an investment advisor to know more about Safe Harbor 401ks and the advantages they offer for your business. If you will be using a DIY 401k package like http://401keasyonline.com/, you can browse through their website or ask their support staff for help on setting up and managing aSafeHarbor plan.