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.