A 401k, pension account, or IRA are all built to help people save for retirement. However, what about saving for emergencies or other needs that crop up earlier in life. Often, those retirement savings can’t help you, because if you withdraw from them early, you are left to pay expensive penalties.

That leads to a common question – when is it okay to withdraw those funds and take the penalty?

The answer is, rarely, but not never. It is okay to withdraw those funds if you need them for tuition and other education-related expenses, or to buy your first home. Those are two cases in which the penalty is waived under current laws.

For more cases in which it is okay to raid your retirement accounts, read this full article.

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