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Retirement accounts—which is right for you?

Don't stress! It's easy to find the type of retirement account that meets your needs.

For most people, an IRA is the way to go

If you're already saving in an employer plan up to the match—or if your employer doesn't offer a plan—your best course of action is to open an IRA, which is an account with tax benefits specifically created for retirement.

There are two types of IRAs. Most people choose a Roth IRA in order to benefit from tax-free earnings* and other perks.

No matter which kind of IRA you choose, the tax breaks you get can mean more money for your retirement.

Maxed out your IRA? Consider a taxable account

Because the annual contribution limit for IRAs is relatively low, consider continuing to save in a general investment account.

These accounts are also called taxable accounts because you won't receive any tax breaks on these investments. But because they're not specifically created for retirement, they're also more flexible.

With taxable accounts, there's:

  • No maximum contribution.
  • No minimum age to use the money.

What's next?

Once you've selected a retirement account, you'll choose investments to hold in it—a step that can be as simple as you want it to be.

Open a retirement account

We're here to help

Talk with one of our investment specialists.

Call 800-231-2364

Monday through Friday
8 a.m. to 8 p.m., Eastern time

Use our handy tools

You're putting money away for your future, but how do you know if it will be enough?

Roll over your retirement money

Did you leave retirement savings behind at an old job? Get more flexibility and easier money management.

Open a Vanguard IRA®

Find out how an IRA can help you start saving—and get tax benefits—today!


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IRA (individual retirement account)

A type of account created by the IRS that offers tax benefits when you use it to save for retirement.

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Roth IRA

A type of IRA that allows you to make after-tax contributions (so you don't get an immediate tax deduction) and then withdraw money in retirement tax-free as long as you meet the requirements.

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Tax-free withdrawals

Money you can take out of your account without owing any federal income tax, even if some of it has never been taxed.

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The investment returns you accumulate on the savings in your account.

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Taxable accounts

Accounts that don't receive special tax treatment, so all interest, dividends, and capital gains are subject to taxation in the year they're received.