IRA Contribution Limits for 2021

The annual IRA contribution limit in 2021 is $6,000 for people under 50. But there are additional restrictions for some.

Arielle O'SheaJun 10, 2021
Many or all of the products featured here are from our partners who compensate us. This may influence 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 does not offer advisory or brokerage services, nor does it recommend or advise investors to buy or sell particular stocks or securities.

The annual IRA contribution limit is $6,000 in 2021 ($7,000 if age 50 or older). The IRA contribution limits apply to your combined traditional and Roth IRA contributions. Roth IRA contributions may be limited if your modified adjusted gross income (MAGI) is over a certain threshold.

But the annual contribution limit is just one part of the IRA contribution rules. Below, the details about how much you can contribute to a Roth IRA based on your income, and how to determine whether your contribution to a traditional IRA will be deductible.

IRA income and deduction limits

Both traditional and Roth IRAs also impose restrictions in certain circumstances:

  • Roth IRA contribution limits: The amount you can contribute is reduced — and eventually eliminated — at higher incomes.

  • Traditional IRA deduction limits: You can always contribute the full amount, but your ability to deduct contributions may be reduced or eliminated if you or your spouse has a 401(k) or other retirement plan at work and contributions were made for the plan year (this includes employer contributions). No matter what your income, your deduction is allowed in full if neither you or your spouse are covered by a retirement plan at work.

Here’s the full breakdown of those income limits in 2020 and 2021 for traditional IRAs and Roth IRAs, which are based on your modified adjusted gross income. MAGI is adjusted gross income with some deductions and exclusions added back in. (For instructions on figuring your MAGI, see IRS Publication 590-A, Worksheet 1-1 for traditional IRAs and Worksheet 2-1 for Roth IRAs.)

Advertisement
Betterment IRA
SoFi Automated Investing
Ellevest
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
NerdWallet rating 
Fees

0.25%

management fee

Fees

0%

management fee

Fees

$1 - $9

per month

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Account Minimum

$0

Promotion

Up to 1 year

of free management with a qualifying deposit

Promotion

Free

career counseling plus loan discounts with qualifying deposit

Promotion

2 months free

with promo code "nerdwallet"

Traditional IRA income limits in 2020 and 2021

Note: Traditional IRA income limits apply only if you (or your spouse) have a retirement account at work.

Filing status

2020 MAGI

2021 MAGI

Deduction

Single or head of household (and covered by retirement plan at work)

$65,000 or less

$66,000 or less

Full deduction

More than $65,000 but less than $75,000

More than $66,000 but less than $76,000

Partial deduction

$75,000 or more

$76,000 or more

No deduction

Married filing jointly (and covered by retirement plan at work)

$104,000 or less

$105,000 or less

Full deduction

More than $104,000 but less than $124,000

More than $105,000 but less than $125,000

Partial deduction

$124,000 or more

$125,000 or more

No deduction

Married filing jointly (spouse covered by retirement plan at work)

$196,000 or less

$198,000 or less

Full deduction

More than $196,000 but less than $206,000

More than $198,000 but less than $208,000

Partial deduction

$206,000 or more

$208,000 or more

No deduction

Married filing separately (you or spouse covered by retirement plan at work)

Less than $10,000

Less than $10,000

Partial deduction

$10,000 or more

$10,000 or more

No deduction

Roth IRA income limits in 2020 and 2021

Filing status

2020 MAGI

2021 MAGI

Maximum annual contribution

Single, head of household or married filing separately (if you didn't live with spouse during year)

Less than $124,000

Less than $125,000

$6,000 ($7,000 if 50 or older)

$124,000 up to $139,000

$125,000 up to $140,000

Contribution is reduced

$139,000 or more

$140,000 or more

No contribution allowed

Married filing jointly or qualifying widow(er)

Less than $196,000

Less than $198,000

$6,000 ($7,000 if 50 or older)

$196,000 up to $206,000

$198,000 up to $208,000

Contribution is reduced

$206,000 or more

$208,000 or more

No contribution allowed

Married filing separately (if you lived with spouse at any time during year)

Less than $10,000

Less than $10,000

Contribution is reduced

$10,000 or more

$10,000 or more

No contribution allowed

Exceptions to IRA contribution limits

This is the IRS, so you’re probably not surprised to hear there are a couple caveats you should know about.

  • You generally can’t contribute more than you earn. If your taxable compensation for the year is $4,000, that’s also your IRA contribution limit.

  • If you’re a nonworking spouse, you can have what’s called a spousal IRA as long as your spouse earns enough to cover the contribution. That means if you both want to contribute the maximum to an IRA, and you’re both under 50, your spouse will need to earn at least $12,000 (to cover the $6,000 annual maximum for each of you).

The limit also doesn’t apply to transfers from other retirement accounts, such as those used to create a rollover IRA. You should also note the deadline for IRA contributions for any given tax year is tax day — typically around April 15 — of the following calendar year.

» Check out all of our top picks for best IRA accounts