401k vs Roth IRA – Can They Work Together?

Retirement planning is becoming increasingly complex. However, one thing remains the same: the importance of starting to save early. By starting to plan for retirement now, you can ensure that you’ll have the resources you need to enjoy your golden years.

401k vs Roth IRA – two of the most common retirement savings vehicles. They both have their own unique benefits and drawbacks, but can they work together? In this blog post, we’ll take a look at 401 k and Roth IRA individually and then compare them to see how they stack up against each other. We’ll also discuss whether or not it’s possible to use them in tandem in order to get the best of both worlds!

You will learn all about:

  • 401 k retirement plan
  • The pros and cons of 401k
  • What is a Roth IRA retirement plan?
  • Advantages and disadvantages of Roth IRAs
  • Side by side comparison
  • Who is the account for?
  • Can they work together?
  • An alternative way of saving up for your retirement – the Infinite Banking Concept

Image source

What Is a 401(k) Retirement Plan?

A 401(k) is a retirement savings plan sponsored by an employer. It lets workers save and invest a portion of their paycheck before taxes are taken out. 401(k) contributions are invested and grow tax-deferred until withdrawal, at which point they may be subject to income taxes. Employers may offer 401(k) matching contributions, which provide free money for employees who elect to participate in the 401(k) plan.

401(k) plans have a few key benefits:

  • The ability to save pre-tax income, which reduces your current taxable income and can lower your tax bill
  • Employer matching contributions, which are essentially free money
  • Tax-deferred growth on 401(k) investments, which means your money can grow faster than it would in a taxable account

401(k) plans also have some drawbacks:

  • You may be subject to income taxes on 401(k) withdrawals
  • You may be charged fees by your 401(k) provider
  • Your employer may limit your investment choices
  • You may be subject to 401(k) loan restrictions

What Is a Roth IRA Retirement Plan?

A Roth IRA is an individual retirement account that offers tax-free growth and tax-free withdrawals in retirement. Unlike a traditional IRA, contributions to a Roth IRA are made with after-tax dollars. This means that you will not get a tax deduction for your Roth IRA contributions, but your money will grow tax-free and you will not pay taxes on withdrawals in retirement.

Roth IRAs have a few key benefits:

  • Tax-free growth on investments
  • Tax-free withdrawals in retirement
  • No required minimum distributions (RMDs)

Side by Side Comparison – 401k vs Roth IRA

Image source

When it comes to saving for retirement, there are a couple of investment options available to workers. Two of the most popular are 401 k plans and Roth IRAs.

Both have their own advantages and disadvantages, so it’s important to understand the difference between them before making a decision. Employer match contributions and much higher contribution limits are two major advantages of a 401 k plan.

However, the money that is invested in a 401 k is subject to taxes when it is withdrawn in retirement. In contrast, Roth IRA contributions are made with after-tax, but the money grows tax-free and can be withdrawn tax-free in retirement.

Pay period is another key difference between the two types of accounts. With a 401 k, contributions are deducted from each paycheck, whereas with a Roth IRA, the entire contribution must be made at once.

As a result, 401ks are more flexible for people who are paid on a regular basis. At the same time, Roth IRAs may be better suited for those who receive irregular income and expect to be in a higher tax bracket during their retirement. Understanding the difference between these two important financial decisions for retirement savers tools can help workers make the best investment decision for their needs.

The Contribution Limit for 2022

Both have their own contribution limit for 2022: $19,500 for 401ks and $6,000 for Roth IRAs. 401ks also have catch-up contributions of $6,500 for those aged 50 and over.

Tax Advantages

While 401ks are offered in a tax-advantaged way now, Roth IRAs are tax-advantaged later. With a 401 k, you contribute pre-tax dollars, which reduces your taxable income for the year. With a Roth IRA, you contribute after-tax dollars, but you can withdraw money without worrying about taxes.

Income Limits

When it comes to saving for retirement, there are a few different options to choose from. Two of the most popular choices are 401k plans and Roth IRA accounts. Both of these options have their own ordinary income limits, which can impact how much you’re able to contribute.

401k plans are offered through employers and usually have lower income limitations than Roth IRA accounts. This means that if your income is too high, you may not be able to contribute as much money to a 401k plan. However, for 401k plans, your employer offers matching contributions (a company match), which can make them a more attractive option for some people.

Roth IRA accounts are individual accounts that are not offered through an employer match. These accounts have a higher income limit than 401k plans, which means that more people are eligible to contribute. However, Roth contributions are not eligible for employer matching contributions.

Who Is the Account For?

So, which option is right for you? It depends on your income level and your retirement savings goals. If you have a lower income, a 401k plan may be a good option. If you have a higher income, a Roth IRA account may be a better choice. Ultimately, it’s essential to do your research and choose the option that best suits you.

Required Minimum Distribution

Required Minimum Distributions (RMDs) also differ between the two accounts. With a 401k, you must start taking RMDs at age 72. With a Roth IRA, there is no RMD requirement.

Both have their own unique benefits, but they also have different rules when it comes to RMDs. With a 401k, you are required to start taking RMDs at age 70½. With a Roth IRA, there is no RMD until after the account holder’s death.

This means that if you want to leave your Roth IRA to your heirs, they can continue to grow the account without tax. However, if you need the money from your retirement account sooner, a 401k may be a better option.

With a 401k, you can start taking withdrawals at age 59½ without incurring any penalties. So, if you’re trying to decide between a 401k and Roth IRA, think about when you’ll need the money from your account and whether or not you want to leave the account to your heirs.

Can They Work Together?

Finally, these two accounts can actually work together in your retirement strategy. If you have a 401 k through your employer, you can roll it over into a Roth IRA when you retire. This is called a 401 k to Roth IRA conversion and can be a great way to diversify your retirement income sources.


401 k: Employer match plans are the only ones that are available. There could be a waiting period before enrollment.

Roth IRA eligibility: Earned income is required, but restrictions apply after a certain income threshold based on your filing status. A spousal Roth IRA can be opened for a married couple filing jointly with only one income earner.


401 k: Contributions are made with pre-tax dollars, which reduces your taxable income. Any money you withdraw in retirement will not be subject to tax benefits.

Roth IRA: Contributions are made with after-tax money, allowing for a tax break growth of your retirement account. There are no taxes on retirement withdrawals.

Contribution Limits

401 k: $20,500 per year in 2022 ($27,000 per year for those 50 and older). Highly compensated employees may be subject to additional contribution limits.

Roth IRA: contribution limits are $6,000 per year in 2021 and 2022 ($7,000 per year for those 50 and older).

Employer Match

401 k: Your company may have a workplace retirement plan, so sometimes your employer offers to match a percentage of your modified adjusted gross income.

Roth IRA: There are no employer contributions.

Minimum Distributions Required (RMDs)

401 k: To avoid penalties, you must begin taking out a certain amount each year (RMD) at the age of 72.

Roth IRA: There are no RMDs. The funds can remain in your account for as long as you live.

Investment Options

401 k: A third-party administrator manages (and limits) investment options for the account. However, there are fewer investment options.

Roth IRA: A broader range of investment options and greater control over how you invest.


Both a Roth IRA and a 401(k) have penalties for withdrawals made before the age of 59 1/2.

Roth IRA vs 401 k – Summary:

  • 401ks offer favorable tax treatment now, Roth IRAs offer tax advantages later
  • 401ks have a contribution limit of $19,500 for 2022, with a catch-up contribution of $6500 for those aged 50 and over. Roth IRAs have a contribution limit of $6000 for 2022.
  • 401ks have required minimum distributions (RMDs) starting at age 72. Roth IRAs have no RMD requirement.
  • 401 k is an employer-sponsored retirement plan – a certain percentage is covered. Roth IRAs are individual retirement accounts.
  • You can rollover a 401 k into a Roth IRA upon retirement in what is called a 401k to Roth IRA conversion.

Start Saving Up for Your Retirement Now – the Infinite Banking Concept

You’re probably familiar with a variety of investment options, such as a custodial account with mutual funds, individual stocks, or a variety of retirement accounts. Consider managing your personal finances in a novel way that most financial advisors will not tell you about in order to save money faster. We’d like to suggest a financial planning option: The Concept of Infinite Banking.

This concept, also known as over-funded life insurance or cash value life insurance, enables you to operate and borrow money in the same manner as a traditional bank without the use of a third party. You will be both a creditor and a lender.

Instead of borrowing from a bank, you borrow the entire amount against yourself, allowing you to control your cash flow while still allowing your whole life insurance policy to earn dividends despite the fact that the money is being used elsewhere. To put it another way, you accumulate wealth by borrowing and repaying the cash value of your permanent life insurance policy.

One of the most significant benefits of whole life insurance is that you will never have to pay any banking or loan fees. You can borrow money as a policyholder by using the cash value of your policy. You would never have to borrow money from a bank again if you used this borrowing setup.

Instead, you would borrow money and repay it over time (via a whole life insurance policy purchased from the insurance company). As a result, you’ve turned into your own bank.

The goal is to replicate the process as much as possible in order to increase the value of your own bank. Money is typically lent and repaid from the cash value of a permanent life insurance policy during the duplication process. In other words, your capital gains are increasing all the time.

Over-funding your life insurance allows you to work more efficiently toward your individual and unique financial goals for yourself and your family, as well as maintain control over your finances without having to deal with banking fees or loan interest rates. This strategy entails the following:

  • Overfunding a high cash value whole life insurance policy issued by a life insurance company (with after-tax funds)
  • Accumulation of Cash Value (tax-free) over the course of several years with your whole life insurance policy.
  • Personal loans made against the cash value of your whole life insurance policy.

You can gain financial independence and control over your money simply by acting as your own bank and borrowing for yourself, repaying, and so on.

Final Thoughts

The first step toward financial security is to invest in retirement savings accounts. However, there are alternatives that will help you achieve financial independence much sooner – and we mean Over-funded Life Insurance.