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Starting Out

Regardless of where you are in life, now is the best time to start putting money away for the future. And if you’re like most people, you have lots of competing priorities—paying off debt, saving for a home and starting a family, to name just a few.

When it comes to planning for retirement, it’s never too late to get started.

Take Control

There never seems to be enough money to cover regular expenses, such as food, clothing, housing, transportation and entertainment.

Here are four easy ways to start taking control of your finances:

  1. Pay off your credit cards.
    Make this your first priority. The faster you’re able to get out from under high-interest debt, the sooner you can start making your money work for you.

    What will it take to pay off my balance?

  2. Create a budget.
    Once you have a handle on your income and expenses, suddenly you’re the one in control—and you can start planning ways to improve your situation.

    Taking Action in Other Areas of Your Finances

  3. Take advantage of free money.
    If your employer offers an employer-sponsored retirement plan such as a 401(k) or 403(b), find out if they offer matching contributions and make sure to take full advantage of them.

  4. Contribute to an IRA.
    Employer-sponsored retirement plans and Social Security might not be enough to fund your retirement. An IRA lets you choose from a wide range of investments, and your money can potentially grow tax-free. And a contribution of as little as $50 per month can make a big difference in the long run.

    How advantageous is increasing my savings?

    How to Retire Rich: 4 Smart Steps at Ages 21-35

    Learn about the different types of IRAs, and get side-by side comparisons.

Learn About Investing

A BB&T Investment Services, Inc. Investment Counselor can help decode the world of investing and walk you through some simple strategies for choosing the right investments.

An Investment Counselor can talk with you about:

  • The strategy of using mutual funds and other vehicles as an easy way to invest
  • The importance of limiting your risk in any one area by spreading out your money among several types of investments, such as stocks, bonds and mutual funds
  • Reevaluating and making any needed adjustments to your investments on an annual basis

Learn more about BB&T Investment Services, Inc.

Learn more about how to invest.

Get Started

Even if you are able to invest only a small amount, the sooner you begin, the more you’ll benefit  from the power of compounding interest in the long run.


No Time Like the Present (2:26)

Peace of Mind (2:20)


This chart shows how much more you can save if you start early. A delay of even a few years could cost you thousands of dollars. Regular investing through a workplace savings plan such as a 401(k) or 403(b) is an easy way to get started.

The Power of Compounding Don Maria
Starts Investing at Age: 45 25
Stops Investing at Age: 65 65
Monthly Amount Invested: $300 $100
Total Amount Invested: $72,000 $48,000
Balance at Retirement: $171,798 $324,180

Performance is not indicative of future results. This example is based on a hypothetical annual return and is for illustrative purposes only. It is not representative of the performance of any mutual fund and is not intended to be a projection of future values. Mutual funds are subject to risks, such as the possible loss of principal, and rates of return will vary from year to year. This example assumes an annual rate of return of 8%, with all dividends and capital gains distributions reinvested. Taxes are not considered in this example and are due when distributions are taken from the plan. This illustration assumes contributions are made at the beginning of each month.

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