Ask Terry Questions Federal Thrift Savings Plan

Federal Thrift Savings Plan

By Terry Savage on March 03, 2019 | Financial Planning / Retirement

I have a little over $100,000. in a TSP account with the Post Office. I put in about 15yrs before I took an early retirement. I left at age 60. Two years before I was able to pull any sort of pension. My TSP has taken a hit on the last quarter. I can start pulling on it this August, because I will turn 62. I left my job with the option of pulling my pension at that time. I guess my question is this, should I pull my pension in August or should I leave it for a later date? I have not invested any more money since I left my postion with the Post Office. I am so oblivious to what I should be doing. I just don’t want to continue to lose money. HELP

Terry Says

OK, the general rule is to let your tax-deferred account continue to grow — but in conservative investments.   And inside the TSP plan, you do have the “G” fund, which is short-term government securities — guaranteed not to lose money for you.  Of course, they won’t grow your money either!  You can roll over your TSP directly to an individual retirement account (IRA) at Fidelity or Vanguard.  But since the TSP has such a safe alternative (for at least a good part of your money) —  and since they charge the lowest management fees, I think you might be better off staying where you are — and waiting as long as possible to withdraw from the TSP.   I’m not quite sure of your “pension” options, so I can’t comment on those.

By the way, here’s a link to a private website run by a guy who was part of the TSP and claims expertise on managing it.  You might enjoy reading his blog.  And go to — the website of fee-only financial planners.   They don’t have a specific search filter for planners with expertise in the FERS system, but you can contact individual planners and ask.  Or do a google search of FERS financial planners, and you’re likely to find one in your area with this specialized knowledge.




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