Good Morning! I am a 30-year-old from Dallas, Texas and I just completed my first year of teaching (2nd Grade Bilingual, Math & Science). I recently found out about this forum and I was hoping to attain some advice regarding 403 b and 457 b retirement options provided through my district (I apologize in advance for all of the detail, but I wanted to provide as much information in advance, in case it was necessary for you to provide the best advice possible).
First: A friend of mine immediately signed up with AXA upon starting teaching last year (we are both first year teachers). After reading the various posts on this forum, I think it would be best to transfer her investment to another provider. Based off the list of providers, which option would you recommend? I am looking for a do-it-yourself option with the lowest recordkeeping expenses and with diverse fund options (i.e. fund options with the lowest possible expense ratios). Here is our provider list: https://www.trs.texas.gov/TRS Documents/certified_companies_list.pdf. ASPire Financial Services and Commonwealth Annuity are also eligible providers, but they are not listed. Based off the feedback on this forum, I am currently considering the Security Benefit – NEA Direct Investment, ASPire, and The Vanguard Group, but I am not sure if any of the other 47 or so providers would also be a qualified option.
Second: I actually did not enroll in a 403 b retirement plan because I was wary of the options and the pitches by the salesmen (I also have a Roth IRA, so I was content contributing to that). Upon reading the posts on the forum, I also confirmed with my employer my eligibility for a 457 b plan. Although, I feel that I only have enough at the moment to max out my Roth IRA contributions, I wanted to find out whether it would be best to contribute to a 403 b or a 457 b (in case I was able to save above the $5,500 I already set aside to the Roth account). Would you recommend the 403 b or the 457 b plan and what aspects of each plan would I need to consider the most in making my decision?
*I have attached the 457 b plan options and fees.
My current retirement plans are the following:
· Teacher Retirement System (TRS) – Defined benefit retirement plan (pension trust) (member contribution is 7.7% of creditable compensation)
· Vanguard S&P 500 Index ETF (VOO) – Expense ratio: 0.04%
· Vanguard Target Retirement 2055 Fund Investor Shares (VFFVX) – Expense Ratio: 0.15%
If you need additional information, please feel free to let me know. Thank you in advance!
Texas 457 Investment Options.pdf
Texas 457 Investment Fees.pdf