Common Retirement Issues – Retirement spending

A recurring discussion i have with people in retirement revolves around spending money on themselves be that for holidays, new cars and other comfortable items around the home.

This is not with every person or couple however with a good number of people there is an issue they have even though they may have looked after their own families, possibly financially looked after their parents as they too got older and some have been in business and employed people to assist them in raising their families. Now at retirement they have a good level of assets which have the capacity to produce reasonable retirement income.

This is the golden years of life and these people have the assets and the time free of past obligations however there is a strong restriction on their lifestyle. The restriction is their own thought process and value system.

Remarkably there is approximately 10-20% of people that find it very difficult in retirement to spend money on holidays, new cars air conditioners and lots of other life comforts etc and this is because they feel that spending money on themselves is “selfish”. This comes from couples or even worse singles. How can a single be selfish with their own money ? What else can you do with your money if you cannot spend it on yourself.

These people are happy to give their money to their children or take the children on holidays to where ever the children want to go however will not go to places that they have always dreamed of because they feel selfish.

The other condition that rears its head at retirement after 40 or 50 years of work is the people that “Feel Guilty” spending money as they are not earning any money. This is  difficult  at retirement allowing that you could be retired for over 30 years so that is a long time to feel guilty.

How will you prepare for retirement and how will you feel when you finally stop work. You will be surprised at how difficult it is to stop work and rely on these things called assets to look after you in retirement. You will also get very sensitive to how much things cost and whether you are spending the income that your assets are producing or you are now eating into the capital that you have accumulated.

We work with people pre retirement to try and get them accustomed to the casflow from investments and to see that the income coming through well ahead of retirement irrespective of the headlines or what you see in the media.

Plan for your retirement before you get there. Plan how much money that you need to sustain your lifestyle and then work out what assets you have and how long will they last during your retirement. If you dont have enough money it is better to know that 5 years before retirement than 2 weeks after. When you have time you can take action to improve things and that includes spending money on yourself for things that you enjoy doing.

You have one life and if you are lucky enough to get close to retirement you need to relax and enjoy yourself and enjoy the assets that you have accumulated as that is the reason you saved your money in the first place.  Dont feel guilty you are not selfish you are human and you will not go from a careful or frugal person to a spendthrift so your children will inherit good money and you can have a good time as well.

Remember: it is never too early to start planning.