Determining your retirement income needs and monitoring your progress toward your goal can mean the difference between having a comfortable, financially secure retirement and struggling to afford the bare necessities.
For participants in Wespath-administered retirement plans, projecting retirement income requires about 10 minutes with Benefits Access. This participant account management website provides two projection tools: The Retirement Readiness Tool and the Retirement Benefits Projection. Both tools provide information to help you plan. However, the Retirement Benefits Projection gives an in-depth look at only your Wespath-administered retirement accounts projected to your retirement date and allows you to select distribution options, while the Retirement Readiness Tool incorporates estimated Social Security benefits and allows you to enter balances for accounts held outside of Wespath.
Benefits Access Resources
Use the online Retirement Readiness Tool to customize your projection—visit benefitsaccess.org and select "Learn > Retirement Readiness."
The Retirement Readiness Tool helps estimate:
- Your projected retirement income
- Your projected retirement income needs
- Your projected retirement income gap or surplus
A video about the Retirement Readiness Tool is below in the See Your Future section of this page.
As you use the Retirement Readiness Tool, consider the following factors that could impact your projection:
- Compensation—If your compensation is not listed, you will be prompted to enter it. If your compensation is inaccurate, be sure to change it before customizing your projection.
- Other sources of retirement income—Retirement accounts (e.g., IRAs, brokerage accounts, savings accounts) and defined benefits (pensions) that are not administered by Wespath are not included in this projection. You can enter the value of those accounts in the box at the top of the second page.
- Social Security—The projected Social Security benefit reflected in the tool is only a rough estimate. If you were unemployed for some time, had large increases or decreases in compensation over short periods of time or waived Social Security, the assumed Social Security benefit reflected in the tool could be significantly overstated.
- Your family situation—The tool doesn’t account for spousal income or benefits.
The Retirement Readiness Tool allows you to personalize your retirement income projections. You can move interactive sliders within the tool to adjust:
- Housing and health care costs
- Discretionary expenses
- Retirement age
- Personal contributions toward retirement (e.g., UMPIP or Horizon)
- Investment risk tolerance
EY Financial Planning Services is available at no additional cost to you1 to address any financial or retirement planning questions you may have. EY financial planners have special training in topics important to participants, including Wespath-administered plans and programs and the clergy housing allowance. To speak with a financial planner, call EY directly at 1-800-360-2539 business days between 8:00 a.m. and 7:00 p.m., Central time or visit https://wespath.eynavigate.com.
1 Costs for these services are included in Wespath’s operating expenses that are paid for by the funds. Services are available to active participants and surviving spouses with account balances, and to retired and terminated participants with account balances of at least $10,000.
See Your Future
Your Annual Retirement Readiness Statement is designed to help identify gaps in your retirement planning and suggest ways to potentially improve your projected income in retirement. Your projections are based on several standardized assumptions. However, you can visit the Retirement Readiness Tool in Benefits Access to customize your projections. You can also call EY Financial Planning Services to receive personalized, one-on-one guidance at no charge.1
Even if you don't take action to customize your projection, take this opportunity to make a difference in your retirement by saving more. Experts recommend that you save 10% to 15% of your annual income if you start in your 20s, or 15% to 25% of your income if you start in your 30s (remember, employer contributions count).
Assumptions and Methodology
To view the assumptions and methodology used to project your benefits, visit www.wespath.org/assets/1/7/4258.pdf
1 Costs for these services are included in Wespath’s administrative expenses that are paid for by the funds. Services are available to active participants and surviving spouses with account balances, and to retired and terminated participants with account balances of at least $10,000.