“Don’t spend your old age pinching pennies!” That’s The Wall Street Journal’s plea to aging Americans for whom retirement is coming into view on the horizon.
But for many people, pinching pennies will be their only option. Why? Two reasons: Lack of planning and lack of savings.
Retirement, like old age itself, sneaks up on us faster than we could ever imagine. And it isn’t something we can plan for at the last minute. Old age requires money, and money can’t magically appear overnight.
“Half of us need to make serious financial changes,” the Journal says, “or we won’t be able to maintain our standard of living once retired.”
The stats support that claim. According to research out of Boston College, 52% of American households will suffer a decline in their standard of living if they choose to retire at age 65.
Aging Americans have five real choices then:
- Work longer
- Buy a lifetime-income annuity
- Leverage home equity by selling and moving to a smaller house
- Cut spending (considerably)
- Put a better plan in place, starting now.
Actually, a combination of the above can prove very effective. But there’s no denying that the bottom of the list is most attractive. It offers preparation, peace of mind, and a more reasonable adjustment in your standard of living.
However close to retirement you may be, it’s never too late to start planning for the rest of your life. If you’d like to talk more about your options, give us a call. We’d be happy to help you figure it all out.