Small contributions are a great start
Let’s say you’ve gone through the above budgeting exercise and have freed up $50 per month that you can now save for retirement. That may not sound like much money, but it can make an amazing difference to your retirement savings over the long term. For example, let’s say you’re 30 years from retirement and you invest your $50 monthly contribution in a stock index fund within your IRA or 401(k). Assuming you get an average annual return of 8 percent on that investment, you’ll end up with $73,408 by retirement.