Author Topic: 401k vs 403b  (Read 1264 times)

Falloficarus

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401k vs 403b
« on: October 28, 2017, 12:15:46 AM »
I was trying to get my SO on board with starting toward a FIRE life. I suggested a 401k and he said that he'd never get one because of the housing/market crash of 2008, that he'd get a 403b instead. I've always read to get a 401k but I have no arguments for him against it. Can anyone point me in the right direction or is his thought process sound?

surfhb

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Re: 401k vs 403b
« Reply #1 on: October 28, 2017, 12:23:48 AM »
No offense but your SO doesn't know what they are talking about and it has put both of you behind financially.   2008 was a long time ago.

401k vs 403b are virtually same.   One is offered by a private employer (401K) and one a offered by non profit, state or religious organization for example. 

Does his employer offer a 401K and he does not contribute?   
« Last Edit: October 28, 2017, 12:27:14 AM by surfhb »

Falloficarus

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Re: 401k vs 403b
« Reply #2 on: October 28, 2017, 08:26:26 AM »
He just got hired at a new job so I'm unsure, actually. It was a comment he made after we watched a TED talk on saving. His view was simply because people he knew lost all of their savings.
So he seemed adamant about not contributing. Would it be any different then, if he contributed to a 403b, instead? I can't imagine there would be any matching of money like an employer could do but this is merely speculation on my part.

sokoloff

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Re: 401k vs 403b
« Reply #3 on: October 28, 2017, 09:17:05 AM »
surfhb nailed it. Your SO would not have both a 401K and a 403B available to him, but rather one or the other at any given employer, and they're so close to the same thing that, for someone of your SO's current financial literacy level, treat one as a typo for the other.

If he continues to insist on not investing for retirement, you really have only a few choices:
1. Encourage him to become more financially literate and invest for your future.
2. Choose employment at a company that still offers defined benefit plans (a traditional pension).
3. Agree to give up control over the savings/investments to you (or to someone qualified).
4. Be willing to accept that you are not likely to join the path to FIRE.
5. Change horses.

surfhb

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Re: 401k vs 403b
« Reply #4 on: October 28, 2017, 11:58:51 AM »
He just got hired at a new job so I'm unsure, actually. It was a comment he made after we watched a TED talk on saving. His view was simply because people he knew lost all of their savings.
So he seemed adamant about not contributing. Would it be any different then, if he contributed to a 403b, instead? I can't imagine there would be any matching of money like an employer could do but this is merely speculation on my part.

The only reason why anyone lost money in the last 10 years in because of poor choices...Period.    The market just topped historical highs on Friday.   

You either need to do the heavy lifting yourself or/and get him on board.   Hers's a good place to start:

http://jlcollinsnh.com/stock-series/

https://www.bogleheads.org/wiki/Main_Page

Smart investing is one of the simplest things to learn.   

MDM

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Re: 401k vs 403b
« Reply #5 on: October 28, 2017, 02:25:49 PM »
His view was simply because people he knew lost all of their savings.
Pretty much the only way that could have happened with an investment is if everything was invested in a single company's stock, and that company went bankrupt.

This would not have happened if investing in index funds that cover hundreds or even thousands of companies.