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Couples Disagree On Retirement, Including Annuities

There are many things to consider when you are preparing for retirement, but most couples disagree during the decision making process.  According to the Minuteman News Center’s Joe Mont, a “Study finds couples (are) at odds over retirement.”  Fidelity Investments performed a study of 648 married couples between the ages of 46-75 regarding retirement issues and products like annuities.  Among couples, 33% did not agree on the type of lifestyle they would lead in retirement, so this is the first issue couples must overcome.  They cannot make a plan for retirement without knowing how they will spend their time, hence how much money they will need.

Well over half of the couples surveyed, 62%, did not agree on the age at which they would retire.  How long you plan you plan to work is a big determining factor in your lifestyle and finances in retirement, so couples need to get on the same page with that decision.  58% of couples said their advice to newlyweds would be to make all of their decisions together regarding finances.  This includes everything from variable annuity reviews to how much to spend on a mortgage.  Figuring out whether you’ll need or want to work in retirement is something that 47% of recipients didn’t agree upon.  Only 58% said that they are working with a financial professional to reach their retirement goals.  Ideally, everyone should look for help to make sure they will not outlive their savings.

Out of those surveyed, 63% have a detailed retirement plan to ensure that they will not be subject to that longevity risk.  While you should review your retirement portfolio yearly, 57% of the couples did not agree on how often these reviews should take place.  Inflation was a concern for 42% of respondents; maybe the others have already planned for that with inflation adjusted annuities.  19% worried that their social security payments would be reduced during retirement.  The best immediate annuities can help guarantee a lifetime of income should social security be reduced or not enough to cover your expenses.  Unexpected health care costs were only a concern for 31% of couples.  Out of pocket costs could exceed $230,000 without employer sponsored health insurance, so make sure that you have an insurance plan in place long before retirement.

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