What is a backdoor Roth IRA?

Season 2 Episode 17

What is a backdoor Roth IRA?

Along with retirement plans at your workplace like a 401(k) or 403(b), IRAs have become the cornerstone of modern retirement. There are two types of IRAs - traditional and Roth - and the goals of these two accounts are similar - save for and fund your retirement - but they differ in some important ways. In this episode of Edelman Financial Engines’ Everyday Wealth™, Jean breaks down what those differences are and how a backdoor Roth may be a valuable tool to help with estate planning and wealth transfer. Later in the episode, Jean is joined by wealth planner Andy Smith to answer a listener’s question about when to do a backdoor Roth conversion and how it could help reduce her tax bite.


Ms. Chatzky receives cash compensation for acting as host of the Everyday Wealth podcast and for related activities and therefore has an incentive to endorse Edelman Financial Engines and its planners. That compensation is a fixed sum paid on an annual basis; and reimbursement for certain expenses. The amount paid each year does not vary, is not based on show content or any results-dependent factors (e.g., popularity of the show).

This show is pre-recorded, and any callers are prescreened.

The information regarding IRAs and backdoor Roth IRAs is provided for informational and educational purposes only and should not be construed as tax or investment advice. You should consult with a financial advisor and tax professional to help determine the best options for your particular circumstances. Neither Edelman Financial Engines nor its affiliates offer tax advice.

Jean Chatzky

Meet the host: Jean Chatzky

Jean Chatzky came to personal finance not as an economist or a financial planner but as a journalist who dug into the topic of money to get her own money in order as well as to earn a paycheck. She has the innate ability to take the complicated world of money and explain it in ways we can all understand. And this has never been more important than now because we all have more responsibility for our financial lives than any generation that came before us. Aside from hosting Everyday Wealth™, Jean is the CEO of HerMoney.com and host of the podcast HerMoney with Jean Chatzky. The financial editor of NBC's TODAY show for 25 years and the financial ambassador for AARP, she appears frequently on CNN and MSNBC and was a recurring guest on The Oprah Winfrey Show. She is a New York Times and Wall Street Journal bestselling author.

What is a backdoor Roth IRA?