Francis Financial CEO Stacy Francis says that millennials need to start saving now for that retirement forty or so years down the road. Her Wall Street Journal article explains the advantages of contributing to an employer’s 401(k). Since employers are backing away from pensions, 401(k) plans are becoming more important.

Employers often offer matching 401(k) contributions when employees put in 3% to 5% of their salaries. That’s like finding free money on the sidewalk! No one would pass it up. Millennials need to understand that and make the necessary 401(k) contributions.

Job hopping is an issue with millennials. It is important when you change jobs to roll the funds in your old 401(k) into your new one.

Now that retirement years are lasting longer than ever, it’s important to start saving now for a thirty-year retirement. Stacy points out that investing $5,000 annually in an employer’s plan starting at age 22 will probably produce about $55,000 in eight years. Even if you stop contributing then, your money will grow to about $108,000 by the time you turn 40.