Friday, April 12, 2013

Beliefs about Retirement

I thought this article found at SeniorsZenblog was an interesting perspective on what we Canadians believe will happen when we retire and what we actually do when we retire.

Canadians' Beliefs About Retirement written by Alice Lucette, on Tue, 12/27/2011 

What Canadians believe vs. what they are actually doing in their retirement years.
Canadians expectations of how they’ll be spending their retirement years and what they’re actually doing are not exactly lining up to be the same scenarios. According to a poll taken in the first quarter of 2011 of 2,245 Canadians age fifty and up, with assets of at least $100 thousand, three quarters of Canadians over age 50 believe they will be spending their retirement years traveling but in truth only 58 percent of retired Canadians spend time away from home. (Poll by Ipsos Reid for RBC)

Fourteen percent of Canadians are living the “snowbird” lifestyle of escaping to warmer climates during the winter months in contrast to the thirty percent of Canadians nearing retirement age that believe they will be spending chilly Canadians winters down south and staying home during the summer months.

Another popular belief that pre retirement Canadians have about their retirement years is that volunteering will occupy much of their time; according to the poll, sixty percent of women and fifty three percent of men expect that they will be doing volunteer work once retired. In actuality, among retired Canadians, forty one percent of women and thirty five percent of men are actively involved in volunteer work.

Why the discrepancy?
Senior Manager of Financial Planning Support with RBC Jason Round speculates that uncertainty and lack of financial planning account for the discrepancy in what Canadians visualize they’ll be doing compared with how they’re actually spending their retirement years.

The road to achieving ones financial goals and dreams for retirement depend upon having a financial plan, reviewing that plan regularly and updating it to accommodate the changing economic times. (From Vancouver Sun article by Tracy Sherlock December 13, 2011)

Thirty five percent of Canadians nearing retirement age see themselves as striving toward healthy lives and living an overall healthy lifestyle but in actuality forty six percent of retired Canadians are actively working toward improving their own personal health. In addition to this, starting new careers, taking more personal time and spending quality time with family and friends are higher priorities to retired Canadians than expected.

What are retired Canadians focusing on?
Canadians are spending lots of time educating themselves about finances. Among individuals polled, twelve percent of pre-retirement folks expect to spend time learning about retirement finances where twenty three percent of retired persons are focused on it. RBC’s Jason Round speculates that a belated start regarding retirement planning can still reduce uncertainty about what retirement will be like and enable seniors to be more able to realize their goals.

There are many financial institutions that offer help with retirement planning and a financial strategy is a benefit to all individuals no matter how near or how distant retirement may seem. 

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