An IRA is an Individual Retirement Account designed to encourage a person to save for retirement. The earnings grow either tax-deferred or tax-free until withdrawn, which makes an IRA an attractive investment for many people. Please consult your tax professional regarding IRS regulations.
A Traditional IRA is a tax-deferred investment. It allows you to pay taxes on the contributions to and growth of the account at retirement, when your tax rate is likely to be lower. All annual IRA contributions are subject to IRS income guidelines and restrictions. Based upon IRS income guidelines, these funds may be tax-deductible in the contribution tax year. Withdrawals can be made at any time, but a 10% penalty is imposed by the IRS on withdrawals made prior to age 59 ½. Withdrawals must begin by age 70 ½.
A Roth IRA has non-deductible contributions which provide tax-free growth on earnings. IRS income guidelines apply to individuals eligible to open a Roth IRA. At retirement, the distributions are tax-free as long as the funds have been invested for a minimum of 5 years and you are at least 59 ½ years old. There are no withdrawal requirements on Roth IRAs. Since withdrawals are not reportable income, they won’t affect your Adjusted Gross Income.
Coverdell Educational Savings Account (ESA)
Formerly known as Educational IRAs, these accounts now have an annual maximum contribution amount of $2,000 per child. IRS income restrictions apply to those who can contribute to an ESA. The deadline for cotributions is April 15 of the following tax year. The child must be under the age of 18, unless a special needs child as defined by law. These funds must be used by age 30 or rolled-over to an eligible family member. There is no tax deduction for contributing to an ESA, but the funds grow tax-free to be used for specific educational expenses from elementary school to college including private schools.
IRAs or ESAs can be established as either a Savings Account or as a Certificate of Deposit
The Savings Account is opened with a minimum deposit of $50. Make any number of contributions up to the maximum amount prior to the deadline of April 15 of the following tax year.
Open a Certificate of Deposit with a minimum deposit of $500. Prior to April 15 of the following tax year, you can open additional CDs of at least $500 up to the maximum contribution amount. All of these CDs will be part of your IRA or ESA plan.
Current Special "Open an 18-month CD and receive the 24-month rate."