Ways to save for your retirement

CINCINNATI, OH (FOX19) - Saving for retirement can be a difficult task. With a little help, saving for retirement can be easier than most people think.

Karri Bruskotter is a veterinarian with a job at P&G. She is also someone with expensive hobbies.

"We have a hobby farm," said Bruskotter, "Where we raise a lot of different animals: horses, cows, chickens, bees. And I have a hobby of scuba diving."

Now in her thirties, Bruskotter wants help with her retirement. Fox19 Financial Analyst Nathan Bachrach was willing to help.

"Karri's done a lot of things right,"  said Bachrach, "She graduated veterinary school with a lot of student loans. But she and her husband strategized, and came up with a plan to put one paycheck a month toward that debt

Bachrach said that Bruskotter had disciple. He said she could have paid off her loans slower but she decided to get rid of them quickly.

After Bruskotter and her husband got out of dept, they had the same shock everyone had when the market tumbled.

I had changed jobs two years ago, and I had my 401-k that I rolled over into a traditional IRA, but it was the time that the stock market started to crash," said Bruskotter, "And things weren't going really well, and I don't feel like I had the knowledge at all to put that money where it needed to be.

Bruskotter decided to move her money into a money market account within her IRA and missed much of the stock market's rebound, like many Americans. But Bachrach says she is still ahead of most Americans.

A recent survey from Wells Fargo finds that the average savings of people around 50-years-old for retirement is just $29,000. This comes to about $190 a month over 20 years, figuring a 5 percent rate of return.

The best thing to do is to start saving early. Put away 10 percent to 15 percent of your salary in your twenties and thirties to help built your portfolio.

If you were not able to mange that and you are in your forties or early fifties, try to save at least 15 percent of your annual earnings. If you are in your fifties, try and save 30 percent of your salary.

If you are in your fifties, you can contribute up to $22,000 to your 401 (K) and up to $6,000 in a traditional or Roth IRA. This is especially important if you sat out the market rebound.

There is a investing theory called "Dollar Cost Averaging," that is a good strategy for most people. Invest a certain amount of money every month, for a specific period of time. Sometimes stock prices will be up, sometimes they will be down, but over time your average price per share should be lower.

Also plan on working longer and save as much money as possible in your late fifties and sixties. Working longer helps offset some of the inflation.

Either way, take a long look at your spending and come up with money to invest.