It seems to be a growing trend in America. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of men and women over 65 who work has been rising since 1985 — reaching upwards of 20.5% in 2007. Why are so many older adults choosing to work instead of enjoying retirement?
Economics could be the most popular reason at the moment. Due to the recession and the market downturn, some have decided to earn extra money rather to replace their lost savings or pile up more before taking the leap to retirement. Many simply don’t have enough savings for their long-term care.
Changes to Social Security benefits have also kept more people working. You can start collecting benefits at age 62; however, maximum benefits cannot be collected until the age of 70. Therefore, by staying in the workforce you can add into your retirement and delay Social Security allotment making it possible for you to receive more money.
Vitality is another reason many are working past the age of retirement. Many are feeling valued and productive and as a result simply don’t want to retire yet. All the discretionary time that comes with retirement can create negative feelings if you don’t have a plan for what you’ll do with all that time. It is common for many to lose their sense of purpose for living.
Finances are obviously the most important consideration when determining the age you’ll retire. It’s imperative to start planning years in advance to make sure you meet your retirement goals. Health insurance coverage and health issues are common retirement concerns. Medicare has improved and all older adults are covered, but it’s important to try to stay healthy as long as possible because Medicare might be a little different from what you’ve come to expect from your previous work insurance.
The decision to retire is totally up to you. When you do, remember you can be a valuable and essential contributor to society even without a full-time job. You don’t have to sit on the couch all day! Volunteer, enjoy your hobbies and friends, work part-time to ease financial strains, or find a new, more rewarding career!
Research & Community Education