Reaching retirement can be a difficult event to plan for, though preparing for a solid financial future now may help. There are a number of Americans who are looking to get to retirement as quickly as possible, though the date could be pushed even further into the future.
The average retirement age in the United States was 62 in April, according to the Economy and Personal Finance Survey from Gallup. This was higher than the rate average during the last decade, when it was 60 years old, as well as sizably higher than during the period of 1991 to 1993, when it was 57 years of age.
There are some reasons for the increase in retirement age. The report showed that many Americans are trying to catch up with their retirement savings, and are working longer. Americans who haven’t retired yet have an average retirement expectation of 66 years of age, sizably higher than in 1995, when 60 years old was the average expectation.
However, even with many people not ready to retire once they reach the traditional age to stop working, some people are still optimistic about stopping work at an early age, though the figure is shrinking. The report explained that in 1995, 15 percent of those who haven’t retired want to take care of this before they hit 55 years of age. Today, just 4 percent think they will be able to do this.
Baby boomers worry about retirement ability
There are many Americans who are getting closer to their necessary retirement date, but they may not yet have the money to take that last step. According to a report from the Insured Retirement Institute, just 35 percent of American baby boomers thought that they were financially prepared for retirement. In 2011, 44 percent of that group felt they had the right financial standing.
“One of the most striking developments since we began this research series is the decline in Boomers who did not know when they would retire,” said Cathy Weatherford, president and CEO of IRI. “That number has been cut in half. While the research shows that they are deciding to retire later in life, the important thing is that they are grappling with important aspects of retirement planning and beginning to develop a clearer picture of where they are and where they intend to be.”
Approximately 25 percent of baby boomers already noted that they will not be retiring when they wanted, as they put this off in the past 12 months, the report showed. Nearly 30 percent felt that they would be retiring when they turned 70 years of age or later.
Some Americans confused about retirement needs
One issue that some Americans have about getting ready for retirement is having the right information on how to reach their goal. A report from Franklin Templeton Investments noted that more than 90 percent of Americans felt that their costs in retirement will be either less than or equal to how much they spent before they retired. Close to 40 percent of those polled also have not begun actually saving money for their retirement.
“Americans have long struggled with preparing for the realities of retirement,” said Michael Doshier, vice president of retirement marketing for Franklin Templeton Investments. “The survey uncovered several contradictions related to the degree of understanding and often divergent approaches to retirement.”
Just one-quarter of those polled thought that their retirement will improve beyond what past generations had, the report added. More than 40 percent felt that their situation would actually be worse off.