Step 1 to Crush the Thrift Savings Plan – Prepare
The Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) is the military’s retirement account. Learning how to maximize its utility should be high on your financial priority list. At Military Millions we’re going to create a guide that will show you how to crush it with the TSP. Here’s Step 1 in that guide…
The 1st Step to Crush the TSP – Prepare
Before you can crush it with the TSP, you have to do a little learning. You don’t need to be Warren Buffet, but you need to understand the basics of investing and the TSP. Luckily, there are many ways to learn the basics. Here are a few:
- Read a book – Go to your library, search for a used book with AddALL (one of my favorite tools), or buy one new on Amazon. The easiest and quickest read to build your basic investing knowledge is The Elements of Investing: Easy Lessons for Every Investor. Read this book. THAT’S AN ORDER.
- Read an on-line introduction to investing – The one that I’d recommend is the Bogleheads Wiki. Here’s a link to their getting started page and their investing start-up kit. In addition, here is a pretty good introduction that is specific to the TSP. What’s the best part? All of this is free.
- Watch videos – The Bogleheads have a video series, which is also free.
- Read blog posts – My favorite TSP-specific blog posts are found at The White Coat Investor, the TSP Allocation Guide, and Steps 5 and on in our series on the steps to financial security.
- Read the PDF documents from the TSP – Go to this page on the TSP website and download the PDF documents under the heading “Fund Sheets at a Glance” at the bottom of the page. In addition, download the booklet entitled “Managing Your Account for Members of the Uniformed Services.”
Now you’ve got some homework. Once you’ve done as much of this as you can, move on to the 2nd step.