Can You Have a Roth IRA and a 401(k)?

Yes, you can — but double check the rules to make sure you’re optimizing your retirement savings.
Andrea Coombes
By Andrea Coombes 
Edited by Arielle O'Shea

Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This influences which products we write about and where and how the product appears on a page. However, this does not influence our evaluations. Our opinions are our own. Here is a list of our partners and here's how we make money.

The investing information provided on this page is for educational purposes only. NerdWallet, Inc. does not offer advisory or brokerage services, nor does it recommend or advise investors to buy or sell particular stocks, securities or other investments.

You can have both a Roth IRA and a 401(k) — or another type of employer-sponsored plan such as a Simplified Employee Pension (SEP) or Savings Incentive Match Plan for Employees (SIMPLE) IRA, depending on what your employer offers — but each account has its own annual contribution limit.

In 2024, you can contribute $7,000 total across all of your Roth IRA and traditional IRA accounts (yes, you can have more than one IRA), with an extra $1,000 if you’re 50 or older. However, there are income limits for the Roth IRA.

» Ready to get started? See our picks for the best Roth IRA accounts

Find and move all your old 401(k)s — for free.
401(k)s left behind often get lost, forgotten, or depleted by high fees. Capitalize will move them into one IRA you control.
start consolidating

on Capitalize's website

When it comes to your 401(k) plan, you can contribute $23,000 in 2024. If you’re 50 or older, the annual contribution maximum jumps to $30,500 in 2024.

If you can max out both plans, congratulations: You’re well on your way to retirement success.

How to choose between a Roth IRA and a 401(k)

If you can’t contribute the maximum to both types of accounts, don’t worry. Most of us fall into that group. The ideal amount to save for retirement will vary by your financial situation and your overall goals. Check out our retirement calculator to measure your progress.

If you’re trying to figure out which type of account is the best place for your hard-earned dollars, start here:

  • If your employer offers a matching contribution in your 401(k) plan, consider contributing enough to get as much of that free money as you can.

  • Once you’re getting the full match, consider the pros and cons of a Roth IRA versus a 401(k). A lot will depend on the 401(k) you have. Some plans offer a good selection of low-cost investments; others, not so much. Some employers cover the plan’s administrative costs; others pass on those costs to employees. The beauty of an IRA (whether Roth or traditional) is that you can open one at just about any discount broker, with no account fees and access to a wide variety of low-cost investments.


Get a custom financial plan and unlimited access to a Certified Financial Planner™

Custom financial plan tailored to your situation and goals
Access to a Certified Financial Planner™ via calls or messaging
Unbiased, expert financial advice for a low price.

NerdWallet Advisory LLC

Video preview image

Still not sure which account is best for you?

» Find out how to invest your IRA

Track your finances all in one place
Find ways to invest more by tracking your income and net worth on NerdWallet.
NerdWallet rating 

on Robinhood's website

Get more smart money moves – straight to your inbox
Sign up and we’ll send you Nerdy articles about the money topics that matter most to you along with other ways to help you get more from your money.
Nerdwallet advisors logo

Get a custom financial plan and unlimited access to a Certified Financial Planner™ for just $49/month.

    NerdWallet Advisory LLC