When it comes to figuring out your financial future, there are some investing tools that are invaluable. How much should you save for retirement? When should you start saving? Should you rent or buy your home? What kind of mortgage can you afford? Should you choose a Roth IRA or a Traditional IRA? How much will my children need for college? These are all questions that can be better answered using some of the many online calculators and financial planners.
Retirement savings is a great place to start and CNN Money has a retirement calculator http://www.bank-software.com/online-investing-tools.htm that helps determine if you are on track for retirement. It is quite detailed and takes into account Social Security payments, portfolio, current savings, and increases in your salary from year to year. If you already know how much you will need for retirement and want a quick way to find out if you are saving enough annually, try the Bloomberg Retirement Calculator http://www.bloomberg.com/analysis/calculators/retire.html . It is more basic than the CNN Money calculator and allows you to choose your rate of return.
Along with retirement, estate planning is something that everyone needs to address, not just those with large fortunes. Fidelity Investments has several estate planning tools and calculators to help prepare for you or your spouses death. The Estate Planner https://web.fidelity.com/EstatePlanning/tools/planner/estatePlanner.jhtml
allows you to see what your next steps would be to prepare your estate to be
passed on to beneficiaries. It looks at all of your assets and outlines what
items need to be considered to avoid as many taxes as possible when you pass
away. Additionally, it offers estate planning resources that discuss topics such
as wills, trusts, estate planning strategies, etc.
Do you wonder if you are loosing money paying rent? Are you unsure what size mortgage you can afford? There are several different mortgage calculators online that answer these types of questions. One of the best places for mortgage calculators is at interest.com http://mortgages.interest.com/content/calculators/index.asp? . This website contains easy to use calculators that allow you to find out everything you need to when it comes to mortgages.
Once you already have a mortgage and are wondering about ways to pay it off quicker, a prepayment calculator http://www.vlender.com/cgi-bin/calc/prepay.cgi is your best resource. This calculator can tell you what an additional monthly payment can do to whittle down your mortgage. It also gives you a monthly amortization schedule that maps out your payments for the life of the loan.