Senior couple driving a golf cart

Are You Planning on Working Into Your Retirement Years?

by Rick Halberg

Two things have become more apparent to me as I approach retirement age:

1. There’s really no official retirement age.

2. Being retired doesn’t necessarily mean you stop working.

It seems like I have friends or family members retiring every week. They range in age from 55 to 68. Many have pursued a new career in a different field, some are working part-time, and some have the resources to not work at all. There are so many options, and so many ways you can prepare for it.

But maybe you’re like me, and you’re not planning for retirement. Congratulations, we’re part of the 51% of Americans who don’t include retirement in their long term financial goals, according to a recent COUNTRY Financial Security Index.  What are we waiting for?

The kind of retirement you have in mind may not be difficult to achieve. The important thing is to get out of first gear and move forward. 

But we’re still unsure, right? So continuing to work may not be such a bad idea.

Here are a few things to keep in mind:

Your health. Do you have the physical and mental capacity to keep working? You don’t want to work yourself to death, right? Try to find something that’s not very physically challenging and maybe less stressful than the career you’re leaving.

Your benefits. If you don't qualify for Medicare yet, be sure to check with a new employer to see what kind of insurance plan they have. This can be crucial as the older we get, the more money we may spend on medical care.

Your current financial needs. Do you still have a mortgage? Still paying off your kids’ college loans? If not, you may be able to get by with something part-time, or nothing at all.

You can still work and enjoy retirement. In fact, you may finally be able to pursue a job you’ve always wanted but avoided because it wasn’t a good career move financially. If there is a store that you frequent, see if they need help (and maybe get a discount). Or if you play an instrument, find a local music store that needs a new employee. The possibilities are endless!

Retirement time is “me” time. Get started today. 

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