Planning for Retirement … Later

Jessica Lyonford |

Has the idea of retirement become “artificial”? Think about it – at what age will you stop working? Will you stop working for real? For some people, retirement really does mean that they’re quitting the career they built up their whole lives and living solely off of what they’ve saved over the previous decades. For many others, its really become more about planning for retirement … later.

The reason retirement has become artificial is that it doesn’t always mean you stop working, at least not for a large number of people, and there are many reasons for this. As Dan Danford, Founder/CEO of Family Investment Center, said in his recent Money is Freedom podcast, some people find a new passion later in life that takes them on an entirely different journey.

Take, for instance, the 60-year-old woman, a financial advisor, who lost her husband quite suddenly to cancer. While working through her grief she met many women in the same position, only they needed financial guidance to get them through their remaining years without their long-time spouse. Rather than entering into retirement, she found a way to help women all around the country, and it became her new passion that she continues today into her 70s.

“You may be 65, or nearing it,” Danford said. “If so, know this: Your next few years of working past age 65 could open the doors to a new purpose and new success you never saw coming.”

Planning for retirement … later, is also catching on as people realize that when they reach 65, they’re also hitting the peak of their earning potential. So, they have to ask themselves a question: Am I going to be happier in retirement than I am right now in my job? If the job is fulfilling, working an extra few years beyond 65 can offer huge potential for retirement savings. Not only are you not dipping into your retirement accounts when you quit at 65, you’re adding to them, and that can reset the stage for how you spend your years in actual retirement.

“What we see is that people who love their work,” Danford said, “are fulfilled by their work - they want to keep working … simply because you reach an age on the calendar doesn’t mean you’re no longer important or relevant.”

Danford also talks about our passions outside of our career, and for many people, this involves the artistic/creative side of their brains. They take up a craft and make it a big part of their lives. They learn to play a musical instrument and want to spend more of their waking days pursuing that. They take up painting and want to make that their main focus.

“You have to fund that some way,” Danford said. “The chances of you making enough money in retirement by selling your art or playing guitar is slim.”

This is another reason people are planning for retirement … later – they’re working part -time so they can fund their passion project.

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