These Little Fees Can Make or Break Your 401k

Avoid these costly retirement savings fees if you can.

When it comes to choosing the best retirement account, the devil is in the details. Tom Zgainer, CEO and founder of the financial service company America’s Best 401k, says that hidden retirement fees can potentially end up shaving 10 years off your retirement savings.

So what exactly are these fees?

“Total investment-related fees of 1.5 percent or 2 percent or 2.5 percent are only because other parties are getting paid,” Zgainer said.

In other words, the majority of these fees are operational expenses — for example, paying the powers that be for handling your account. Here are two hidden fees you should be on the lookout for.

12b-1 Fees

This fee is annual marketing or distribution expenses on a mutual fund — aka commissions.

See: How to Master Your 401k in Your 50s

Sub-Transfer Agent Fees

This is a fee that record-keepers or third-party administrators charge for holding an omnibus account at a mutual fund company.

Also, beware of administrative service and asset charges as well as maintenance fees. When all is said and done, you could potentially miss out on hundreds of thousands of dollars due to such fees, according to Zgainer. If you want to avoid these fees, talk with your provider to get started.

“We’re all susceptible to these fees,” Zgainer said. “It’s a matter of bringing it up to those who can effect some change.”

Click through to read about certain bank fees you should never pay.

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