Six Roadblocks To A Successful Retirement. So you would like to retire… but you don’t feel able to do so at the moment. For most people, a successful retirement requires advance planning, good lifestyle choices, and careful thought about the retirement lifestyle. Unfortunately, the following six obstacles can and do cause many people to postpone retirement, even when they are otherwise ready.
1. Lack of planning: Roadblocks
Over the years, careful planning can strategically improve your chances of a successful retirement. Unfortunately, many families wait until their children are out of the house to start focusing on their retirement goals. Worst-case scenario, they didn’t even participate in their company-sponsored retirement plan or even an individual IRA. If you wait until you are in your 50s to start the process, it will certainly have a detrimental effect on your plan.
2. Young children: Roadblocks
Another obstacle for many pre-retirees today is that they waited until later in life to start having children. Now that they are in their late 50s or early 60s they still have kids in high school or college and feel the need to keep working until those kids graduate and start their own careers. It is also a growing concern for many couples who are in their second or third marriage with each other’s children.
3. Boomerang children: Roadblocks
One of the most publicized obstacles today is the phenomenon known as boomerang children. With rising unemployment and mounting college debt, many children return to their parents after graduating. In many cases, even after starting a successful career, their finances are in disarray, and they need time to recover and get back on their feet.
As parents, we all want to help our children succeed. Unfortunately, this means we bear the burden of additional living expenses while our children return home. This can further delay and harm even the best retirement planning.
4. Poor Stock Markets: Roadblocks
Today’s heightened volatility in the US and global stock markets have caused many people to see their retirement savings and 401(k)s lose value or move sideways. This negative uncertainty about future growth has caused many who would like to retire to question their decision.
To further complicate the situation, many companies are cutting pension matching programs as well as other employee benefit programs. Those cuts, along with company layoffs due to the bad economy and a poor stock market, have caused would-be retirees to put their plans on hold. This uncertainty has led them to take a closer look at inflation and other retirement lifestyle choices before leaving.
5. The Three Ds: Roadblocks
Death, Disability, or Divorce: These three elements cause many people to avoid even thinking about retirement. Unless the surviving spouse receives a large life insurance settlement after the death of a loved one, they often think they will have to work indefinitely before they can retire.
When disabled, many families are forced to make budget cuts to make ends meet. In addition to financial strains on the family, most disabilities also include medical issues. These factors add stress to the situation and lead many families to a state of avoidance.
Divorce offers a whole new set of complications. There could be multiple families with multiple children and a wide variety of other financial implications. With divorce rates in the United States around 50%, the financial impact on retirement planning can be devastating. In most cases, pension assets are halved and many inactive spouses are forced back into the labor market. Not to mention the legal costs both parties incur when negotiating what they believe to be a fair settlement.
6. Health insurance costs: Roadblocks
As many companies look for ways to save money, health insurance benefits in retirement are significantly affected. Years ago, many companies paid the full cost for their retirees.