Way back in another life, years ago, I thought that I would never reach retirement age. I never though that I would be this old. I never thought that I would have to worry about pensions, social security, 401k’s. I never even asked what life insurance is, nor did I think I needed it.
So here I am, having reached the top of the hill last birthday, and going down the other side, and almost old enough to be able to get my first check from Social Security. If I had been asked thirty or even twenty years ago what I thought my retirement would look like, I don’t think I would have answered with what it actually looks like for me.
I used to dream about retiring, and think that when I got to this point, I would be able to travel. I wanted to go places like Australia, Germany, Greece, England, or Fuji. I thought it would be fun to take off on a whim, and go to South America to spend the winter. I even thought about moving to Costa Rica. But that was before I was old enough to retire and have the time to do all that.
Now that I am here, the reality of it is, is that I am not able to go much further than the grocery store. Going to an event that requires a lot of walking wears me out. Hiking, climbing stairs to see a different view is out of the question. My health is not what it was twenty years ago.
But, I am not alone in my thinking about what I wanted to do in retirement. I asked a few of my friends what they thought their retirement would look like. These people have from 12-20 years or more before they will be of retirment age, and for the most part, they want to travel, spend time with their grandchildren, and do fun things.
Cat, who blogs at Family Food Finds says this is what retirement looks like for her:
Since I’m a SAHM I guess retirement for me starts in 14 years. I’d like to use that time after that to travel alone with my husband but my husband can’t retire for at least 21 more years. I don’t expect life will change much during that waiting period.
Rachel, from Small Steps On Our Journey says this is what retirement looks like for her:
Retirement for me means when my husband retires, really. Unless somehow I end up with an amazing career once my kiddos are in school full time! But I would like to be able to travel a little, but really just be able to shower my kids and (hopefully) grandkids with love and presents 😉
Rachel from YellowTennessee says this is what retirement looks like for her:
Retirement for me is also when my husband retires. I don’t see it being much different from the normal day to day here now but instead of chasing kids, we will be chasing grand kids.
Dee, from Dee Says:
My view of retirement has changed over the years. It use to be a time of relaxation and comfort. Being able to do what I wanted without having to schedule it months ahead of time. About 15 years ago that vision changed and it was going to be a time to scrimp pennies and not have enough money to do what I want but more to be tied to that fixed income. Since I went to SSDI 5 years ago it’s scary. I was raised by parents that didn’t really plan for their future and I learned their habits. With the government constantly threatening Social Security and Medicare (things I didn’t pay attention to 20 years ago) I’m always afraid there won’t be anything left next year much less in 10 years when I hit 65.
Robyn who writes at The Mommy Nest, told me this:
Retirement looks scary to me right now. My husband and I just starting saving for it a few years ago and are both 45. I am currently unemployed and looking for a new job. I will not be retiring at 65 that is for certain. My hopes for retirement are to relax, travel and spoil grandbabies.
and finally, Pepper from Peppers Scraps says this is what retirement looks like for her:
It’s hard for us to see retirement right now as my husband just started school for new career path (computer science). Life is going to look very different for us in just a few years.
We do have an HSA and IRA. HSA accounts can have the money roll over if you don’t use it for health needs and if you never use it you can roll it over into a retirement accounts, so it works double duty for us.
Honestly I will probably still work some even in retirement because I love my work. The difference will be that I will not have to stress about the money making part and just enjoy what I do.
If you are looking for a type of home loan that will help you during your retirement then a traditional loan should be avoided because it will increase the bills you have to pay. A reverse mortgage is a better option designed specifically to assist people of retirement age by providing a lump sum or monthly installment payments to the loan applicant. You will receive funds regularly if you choose a reverse-mortgage, rather than having to pay funds back to a lender on a consistent basis. The terms of such an agreement will require you to use the home as your primary residence until whenever the loan is paid off or allow the home to be sold if you choose to move out. However, as long as you plan to live in your home for a long time such an agreement can provide you with much needed spending money and no traditional repayment concerns.
I think that the bottom line is, that most people do have an idea about what they want to do when they reach retirment age, but until you get there, you don’t really know what it will be like for you. I am so glad that my husband, Fabgrandpa, and I had our good times traveling before we got to be retired. What we really want to do now is just rest and relax, and find the time to see our friends and family from time to time. Your idea of retirement may change too, when you get there.
What do you want your retirement to look like?