The Sloan Center on Aging & Work at Boston College does a lot of work that is of interest to people who are in the field of retirement planning. One trend that is emerging is the propensity for seniors to remain on the job longer than they once did.
40% of people who are 55 years of age and older are still in the workforce; in 1993 this figure was 30%. 17% of people who have reached the age of 65 are still on the job compared to 12% in 1990.
The average age at which people retire has gone up as well, and in fact according to surveys that have been conducted over the last few years a significant percentage of the baby boomers say that they are never going to be able to retire.
If you don’t really need the money but decide to continue working as a senior citizen that’s great, and many people make this choice.
However, most people are going to want to make these decisions on their own terms. You don’t want to be forced to work as an elder just to make ends meet when you would prefer to enjoy some spare time during your golden years.
And, there are health issues to consider. Even if you would like to work in a perfect world because you like what you do you may not be able to work because of health issues. And of course we have a tight labor market, and there are no guarantees with regard to ongoing employment as you reach your late 60s, 70s, and beyond.
The wise course of action is to position yourself financially to be able to retire at a sensible age by sticking to an intelligently conceived retirement plan. If you decide to work longer than you have to so be it, but you will have the freedom to make your own choices.