# Calculators

Got a question that involves number crunching? Use the calculators on this page to find the mathematical answer to the most commonly asked number-crunching questions, and see your inputs displayed next to the graph, chart, and/or table output in a side-by-side display.

Roth IRA Conversion Calculator
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When you convert a traditional IRA to a Roth IRA, the taxable portion of your traditional IRA (deductible contributions and earnings) is subject to federal income tax in the year of conversion.

This calculator compares two scenarios: Scenario 1--you convert a traditional IRA in 2018; and Scenario 2--you don't convert your traditional IRA at all. The calculator lets you choose whether to pay the conversion taxes from the IRA assets themselves, or from other assets. If you choose to pay income taxes from other assets, the calculator also determines the amount you could have earned on those funds had you not converted (this calculation is accomplished by modeling a separate "side fund").

1The age 70 limit is solely for calculator purposes and does not reflect any legal limits or requirements (extending the age range beyond age 70 would require modeling required minimum distributions (RMDs)).

2If you have multiple IRAs, you must pro-rate your nontaxable balance among them. The IRS provides a worksheet in Publication 590-B.

3Applies only if you elect to pay conversion taxes from other (non-IRA) assets. This is the tax rate that you estimate will apply to the side fund that you would have if you don't convert your traditional IRA to a Roth IRA (and therefore don't have to use these funds to pay conversion taxes). This tax rate may differ from the tax rate that applies to your IRAs because, depending on the investments you choose, earnings on the side fund may be eligible for capital gains or other special tax treatment (for example, income from certain municipal bonds may be tax free), while IRA earnings are generally taxed upon distribution only at ordinary income tax rates.

4 Applies only if you elect to pay conversion taxes from IRA assets.

Roth IRA Conversion Chart

 This chart compares your Roth IRA balance each year with the hypothetical after-tax balance you would have had in your traditional IRA (plus side fund) if you didn't convert.
 This chart compares the after-tax balance at retirement, and total taxes paid, under each scenario. (The side fund reflects the additional amount you can save if you don't need to pay income taxes due to a Roth conversion.)

Assumptions

• This is a hypothetical example of mathematical principles intended for illustration purposes only, and does not represent the performance of any specific investment or portfolio, nor is it an estimate or guarantee of future value. The calculations above assume that earnings are compounded annually, and that distributions from the Roth IRA will be tax free. Investment fees and expenses have not been deducted. If they had been, the results would have been lower. When making an investment decision, investors should consider their personal investment horizons and income tax brackets, both current and anticipated, as these may further impact the results of this comparison.
• The side fund tax rate is assumed to apply to the side fund that you would have if you don't convert your traditional IRA to a Roth IRA (and therefore don't have to use these funds to pay conversion taxes). This tax rate may differ from the tax rate that applies to your IRAs because, depending on the investments you choose, earnings on the side fund may be eligible for capital gains or other special tax treatment (for example, income from certain municipal bonds may be tax free), while IRA earnings are generally taxed only at ordinary income tax rates upon distribution. Taxes are assumed to be paid at the end of the year (as a result, initial deposit to side fund occurs at the end of the year).
• This illustration assumes a fixed annual rate of return; the rate of return on your actual investment portfolio will be different, and will vary over time, according to actual market performance. This is particularly true for long-term investments. It is important to note that investments offering the potential for higher rates of return also involve a higher degree of risk to principal.
• The information provided is not specific investment or retirement advice, a guarantee of performance, or a recommendation. All investments are subject to market fluctuation, risk, and loss of principal. When sold, investments may be worth more or less than their original cost.
• To qualify for tax-free and penalty-free withdrawal of earnings, a Roth IRA must meet a five-year holding requirement and the distribution must take place after age 59½ or due to the owner’s death, disability, or a first-time home purchase (up to \$10,000 lifetime maximum).
• Contributions to a traditional IRA may be tax deductible (subject to certain income limits) and any earnings in the account are not subject to income tax until withdrawn. Withdrawals are subject to ordinary income tax. Distributions taken prior to age 59½ may be subject to an additional 10% federal income tax penalty, subject to certain exceptions such as the owner’s death, disability, or a first-time home purchase (up to \$10,000 lifetime maximum). Any nondeductible contributions made to a traditional IRA are not taxable upon distribution, although any earnings are.
• Mandatory distributions from traditional IRAs must begin after reaching age 70½. There are no lifetime mandatory distribution requirements for Roth IRA owners. Beneficiaries of either IRA type are required to take mandatory distributions.