Why Retirement Needn’t Be a Scary Thought

For many people, retirement is something to look forward to. It is supposed to be a time when we can kick back, enjoy life, and not worry about the daily grind of work. Unfortunately, things are not always so simple.

Due to ill health, poor retirement planning, and bad luck, a federal government report found that around 9.5% of seniors were living in poverty in 2013 and 25% of seniors were deprived in at least one major category.

This is very worrying, so it is no surprise that a lot of seniors are dreading retirement. They worry about the financial repercussions of leaving their workforce. They worry about whether their pension will cover the cost of retirement. And they worry they might be lonely. Let’s address these issues.

Pension Planning

It’s sensible to look at your pension arrangements long before you reach retirement age. All adults are entitled to a state pension if they have paid tax during their working life. Check your entitlement to see what you are likely to receive. If you have a private or workplace pension, speak to a pension advisor to make sure your pension is on track to pay what you expect. And if it isn’t, start addressing this as soon as possible, perhaps with extra monthly contributions or a lump sum paid into the fund.

Dealing with Property Expenses

Many older adults struggle with housing costs. They may own their own home, but maintaining a property is expensive and with rapidly diminishing savings, running a large family home is well beyond their means.

One way out of this hole without having to sell your precious home is by taking out a reverse mortgage. Reputable products such as an AAG reverse mortgage lend you money based on the amount of equity in your home. You receive a monthly payment which can be used to supplement your retirement income. It’s a handy way of making use of all that money you have tied up in your home, but you should always take professional advice before signing up for any kind of mortgage or loan product.

Another option is to let out a room or part of your home, either short-term or long-term, depending on your immediate needs. If your home is in a nice area, you could potentially make a decent income from sub-letting part of it. The other advantage is that you then have company and people to chat to, which helps to address problem #3.

Coping with Loneliness

Retirement can be lonely. Families are often fragmented, living far and wide. You no longer have work colleagues to chat to and if you have health issues, your social life might disappear. Millions of older people don’t speak to anyone for days at a time, with the radio and TV their only company.

Don’t let loneliness drag you down. Join senior activity centers and try and get out at least once a day and talk to people. Be friendly to your neighbors and resolve to learn new skills and take up a new hobby. The more you do, the easier it will be to make new friends.

Retirement needn’t be scary if you plan wisely. Follow these tips and you can look forward to a new phase in your life.