We Can’t Get No Satisfaction
That refrain seems to be playing for retirees in America today. According to our friends at Squared Away blog* more retirees are less satisfied than previously, when comparing surveys from the late 1990’s to recent surveys. A few of the reasons for this ‘unhappiness scale’ proposed in the article** are Health, Age, and Money.
Age is a surprising factor since, according to the article, older retirees are happier than the youngest retirees. One reason proposed is that younger retirees had been forced out of the workplace due to ill health (but there are other reasons noted in the full article).
It is no surprise that healthier retirees are happier retirees. I propose that one reason that retirees feel that health might be an issue is the rising costs of maintaining that health and the concern that savings might not keep pace with future healthcare costs. (This opinion is my own and not part of the article). Health is linked with happiness and good health means that one can play golf, travel, volunteer, etc. All that activity leads to a more satisfying retirement. But of course enjoying these activities takes MONEY.
No surprise is that Money is a contributing factor to a happier retirement. Those who have planned early for their retirement years and were able to solidify their retirement income are happier than those who did not. Compare that with those retirees who retired prematurely due to loss of employment and job stress.
Those retirees who had to retire ‘prematurely’ ( before they planned to) may not be in a good economic position to deal with their extended years of retirement. There is a big difference between leaving a job that you love when you are 68 and being forced out of work at 63. Those five years can be critical in the development of a financial plan for one’s retirement.
But, as the article suggests – the news is not all bad – since those retirees expressing that they are “moderately satisfied” in their retirement years have increased. And being ‘moderately satisfied’ is better than being totally unhappy!
Whatever life throws at you before or during retirement, a well-constructed Estate Plan can respond to your constantly changing world.
* Squared Away is the blog of the Center for Retirement Research. Surveys based in part on the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI)
** To read more about Retirement and Satisfaction read the entire Squared Away article of June 14, 2016 article titled: More Retirees Get Less Satisfaction
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