SAVING FOR RETIREMENT doesn’t have to be a chore. A few small changes can result in a much bigger retirement account balance, given enough time to compound. Here are some ways to save more for retirement without reducing your quality of life.

Save 1% More

A small increase in saving can result in a big increase in your retirement nest egg over time. If you earn $50,000 per year, save 1% more ($42 per month) and earn 6% annual returns, you will have an extra $57,517 after 35 years.

“Every year, set aside a little bit more than the year before,” says Michelle Smalenberger, a certified financial planner and CEO of Financial Design Studio in Deer Park, Illinois. “If you set aside $5,000 last year, increase that to $5,100, for example.”

Redirect Your Raise

Raises offer an opportunity to boost the amount you are saving for retirement without reducing your take-home pay. The next time you get a pay increase, consider tucking a portion of it into a retirement account.

“There’s no better way to compound your retirement savings than by increasing your contributions whenever you get a pay raise,” says Bill Nelson, a certified financial planner and founder of Pacesetter Planning in Natick, Massachusetts. “Your paycheck will still be bigger as a result from the raise, so you won’t even notice the money is ‘missing.'”

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