TODAY

TODAY   |  November 23, 2014

How much should you save for retirement?

CNBC personal finance expert Sharon Epperson answers money questions from visitors on the plaza, explaining why a 529 account is a great option to save for your child’s education and advising that you save 10 to 15 percent of each paycheck for retirement.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> to manage your finances.

>> we're challenging sharon to take questions from the crowd and answer them in 60 seconds of less. good to see you.

>> why is it important to think about your finances.

>> you need to do it every day? take a minute for your money whether it's paying a bill or contacting your lender. that financial check up is the way to build financial strength.

>> are you ready for the challenge.

>> i'm ready.

>> two ahead, mel b. is working the crowd.

>> hey.

>> my question is pay into a special education account.

>> there you go.

>> well looks like you're trying to decide between a 401(k) or a 529 cle 529 college savings plan and if you're saving for education make sure it's earmarked for education. the great thing about a college savings plan is you put that money in after tax dollars but take it out tax free to pay for college and many states offer you a state tax deduction as well for the money you put in. it's a great way to save for college. you don't want to raid your 401(k) or retirement in order to pay for your child's education. there will be no scholarship money for you for your retirement. if you don't reach your goal in terms of college savings your child can get scholarships and borrow and work and they need to be engaged in the process along with you. it's a family affair in terms of paying for your child's education.

>> you did it in 60 seconds .

>> there you go.

>> perfect.

>> mel b. , who is next.

>> what's your name.

>> leslie and i'm from connecticut. my question is that i'm in my early 30s and that i want to make sure i'm putting enough away for a retirement. how much should i put away for a month.

>> a lot of people wait until a lot later and they have to save a lot more. what you can do is think about how much you want to have in retirement. there's a lot of calculators out there. you can go to cnbc.com as well for information on retirement. think about how much you can put away every month and from every pay check and the best rule of thumb is to put away at least 10 to 15% of your income, of your monthly income into that savings. at the least, if you have a work place plan and i offers a matching contribution, put in enough money to get that free matching contribution and you want to think about not only putting money into the work place retirement plan but also putting it into an ira. you maybe able to get limits on some of these plans. for a 401(k) you can put up to $17,500 and ira up to $5,100.

>> that's what you want to think about.

>> mel b. , who is next.

>> my name is nick and i'm from lexington, kentucky and all indications are the housing market is improving. what does that mean for our economy going forward.

>> well, the housing market and in lexington maybe doing well but they said the strong housing recovery is the key to economic growth . they also want to see the job market start to recover as well. we still have a ways to go there. we want to see the unemployment rate down to about 6.5%. that's what the feds say. that's when they will say the economy is starting to pick up and where they want it to be. we're away from that right now. last month it was 7.4%. so i want to see the job market pick up before i'm going to say we're really in the middle of an economic recovery but a strong housing market is a positive sign. multiple bids on a home you'll love that.

>> mortgage rates going up, what do you think?

>> if you want to buy now, they're still historically very low.

>> lock in now.

>> lock in now.

>> yeah.

>> sharon epperson as always, great