Find a Retirement App

Developing a retirement strategy can be burdensome. Fortunately, however, in today's hyper-connected world, there are many tools that make planning for retirement easier. Generally, these come with advice, goals, and progress reports at your fingertips.

Key Takeaways

  • The are many online tools and apps that can make planning for retirement easier.
  • Although all of these apps are designed with retirement planning in mind, each provides different services and methods for reaching that goal.
  • It is worth it to keep searching until you find the tool that meets your needs and makes retirement planning an easy and almost painless experience.

Here, we present an overview of some of the best retirement-planning apps that are available now.

1. Retirement Planner App

This free Android app is a useful tool when you are in the midst of making choices about how to structure your retirement savings. This app allows you to compare projections for investing in a 401(k), Roth 401(k), Roth IRA, or traditional IRA.

The Retirement Planner App also shows how saving today will impact your retirement income in the future. Finally, it allows you to see if you are reaching your retirement goals or if you should reevaluate your long-term plan.

2. Mint

This free popular financial tracking tool can be used online—or on iOS or Android devices—to help you set and track your retirement goals. Mint is commonly used to track spending and budgets, but it also shows your net worth and long-term trends and tracks your investments in one location.

Mint also makes it easy to set financial goals (including retirement savings goals) by giving you regular alerts about your savings each month and helping you visually track your progress with graphic images and other pictorial aides.

A retirement app can be useful but if you have questions about your retirement portfolio, it may be wise to consult an expert financial planner.

3. Financial Engines Social Security Planner

This app is available for free online from Financial Engines. It requires you to enter a fairly simple set of information, then gives you recommendations for ways to maximize your Social Security benefits. The app uses mathematical algorithms to take some of the guesswork out of when to start claiming benefits.

Deciding when to begin claiming benefits is often a balancing act between waiting to claim a higher benefit versus taking advantage of more years to receive Social Security income, and this app will help you make decisions to maximize your benefits. It's especially useful if you or your spouse are flexible about when you can start drawing on Social Security benefits.

4. Vanguard Retirement Nest Egg Calculator

This free online app is for people who are nearing or who have entered retirement, to help determine if their portfolio will cover expenditures for the number of years they expect to be retired. It is statistically rigorous and uses a Monte Carlo analysis to determine if the user's retirement savings and portfolio will or will not be sufficient to last for the length of their retirement.

5. Retirement Goal Planning System

This free iPad app draws on behavioral economics to help you understand your own preferences when dealing with the complex problem of planning for retirement. It breaks down the problem into "thinking steps." When you have gone through the program you will emerge with a personalized set of retirement goals, which you may use to craft your own retirement plan or share with a financial planner.

6. Retirement Outlook Estimator

This simple online or free iOS app adds a bit of charm to the retirement-planning process. Once basic information is entered, the app provides you with a "weather report" analysis of your savings plan—your outlook may be rainy, cloudy, partly cloudy, or sunny—along with expected dollar amounts for retirement income.

This app also provides you with suggestions about how your outlook will change if you invest more or less per year.

7. ING STRUCT® App (for U.K. Residents)

This app is unique because it is structured as a game rather than a tool. The goal of the STRUCT game is to learn the concepts of risk, diversification, goal setting, and long-term progress. The elements of the game represent investments in cash, bonds, and stocks, and the player can choose to play as a conservative, moderate, or risk-loving investor.

Although this app may not be useful for those looking to track their own retirement investments, it is helpful for understanding the concepts behind retirement planning and helps people to determine the types of investments and risks they are interested in making for their financial futures. This app is available for free for iOS systems but only in the U.K. app store.

The Bottom Line

There are many available apps to help you plan for retirement. From fun educational games to apps that help you determine your priorities, from rigorous statistics to simple graphs—there's an app for everyone's planning style. It is worth it to keep searching until you find the tool that meets your needs and makes retirement planning an easy and almost painless experience.