Various experts have emphasized the need for retirement planning time and time again. It is regarded as a "High Priority Item" for those who intend to continue their existing lifestyle after they retire. Despite the importance and criticality, most people let this important planning slide down their priority list, and in some cases, it even drifts off the list. The main reason for this is that the relevance of retirement planning is yet to be comprehended and
understood in a society like ours. Life goals, culture, savings behavior, family dynamics and lifestyle are some of the variables that often lead to procrastination. The end result - you are left with little at the time of retirement and are at the mercy of your family.
Wed Apr 19, 2023
The need for retirement planning arises simply because of four reasons (a) loss of income / earning ability post (b) increased life expectancy (c) lack of adequate social infrastructure & support(d) need to have a financially independent & dignified lifeAn increase in average life expectancy increases the need for retirement planning. So if your retirement age is say 60, you are looking at easily 20+ years of post-retirement life for a life expectancy of 80+ years. This is too long to ignore and even scary for many. For employees, the accumulated pension & gratuity is most often spent on things like buying a house, settling children with higher education or marriage or business, and so on. Often, little is left to continue with the same pre-retirement lifestyle even after retirement. Plus with age, health care costs also skyrocket. It is also often seen that children stay away from parents for better career opportunities and due to the nuclear family trend. All these factors make retirement planning perhaps the most important and critical element of your life. Retirement planning is a must.
While there are no formal numbers, there have been many studies/surveys that highlight the sad reality of retirement planning in India. One of the surveys pointed out that nine out of ten ‘urban’ Indians worried about savings not lasting through retirement and that 80% of Indians were not ready for retirement. Another survey pointed out that half of the Indians do not have any retirement plans. The survey found that people are worried about the cost of living, healthcare issues and the lack of family support in future. It was also found that children’s needs and the security of the family take precedence over all else and that one in four of the respondents dreads the idea of being dependent on children or families in old age.
In spite of people knowing the need for retirement planning, very few adequately save for retirement planning if at all they do save. We have compiled a list of the reasons or excuses why people do not plan for retirement and our take on the matter.
A California-based travel writer, lover of food, oceans, and nature.