3 Solutions For The Financial Worries Of U.S. Baby Boomers To Help Keep Your Retirement Secure

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As Baby Boomers face impending cuts associated with the new healthcare legislation HB 3200, many feel concerned about this legislation’s impact and how it will affect their pocketbook. Not surprisingly, the #1 concern of Baby Boomers is Medicare/health care related. Many were concerned about inflation and their ability to pay their everyday living expenses like their mortgage, utility payments, insurance and food.

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In “The State of The Retiree” a quarterly survey conducted in March 2010, by Princess Clark Consulting, 100 retirees age 65 – 80 were asked questions about their financial concerns.

Participants were from Arlington Heights, IL, a suburb outside of Chicago, with a population of roughly 70,000 and an average income of $80,000.

“Arlington Heights looks almost like any suburb across America. People buy a house there, raise their kids and hope to retire comfortably there,” said Princess Clark-Wendel, CEO of Princess Clark Consulting. “We wanted to check the pulse of the retiree nation by surveying what we see as a typical Baby Boomer geographical area. We asked this group of retirees to answer questions about their retirement concerns so we can continue to provide useful, stress-free retirement solutions. We choose Arlington Heights for the survey because when visiting here, you’re reminded of the American dream.” Princess said.

Amid all of the changes that affect Baby Boomers, none have created more concern today than the proposed changes to Medicare benefits, and how the proposed changes will affect income and benefits for this audience.

The number two concern was their retirement income. One woman, age 73 and the sole caregiver of her husband who is currently suffering through Alzheimer’s disease shared, “the one thing that keeps me up at night is not so much concerning the care for my husband, but wondering whether or not I will have enough income to support myself when he passes away.” Some seniors were upset that they did not get their regular Social Security income raises as they have received in all the previous years. They asked, “How can we live on the same amount of money and prices keep going up?” Inflation worries also topped survey results in this report.

Another top retiree concern is their overall health and wellness and how an illness or accident might impact the retiree and their loved ones. According to male respondents, “my biggest concerns are my children and how my health may affect their livelihood. I want to make sure that I’m around to help them. As I get older, helping my family becomes more difficult for me.”

Additional quotes from some survey participants include:

Female, 74 years old, “I live on a teacher’s pension; I’m concerned about the overall economy and security of the financial system.”

Male, 73 years old, “When are they going to address the rising taxes that affect the middle class?”

Male, 73 years old, “Will my Medicare continue as it is?”

Female, 66 years, “The country is going to the dogs. We are a bankrupt nation.”

Female, 70, “I’m on Medicaid so I most concerned about my Social Security Check going away or being cut to pay for all of this.”

In order to address these valid and consistent concerns, Princess Clark recommends three simple, yet effective things Baby Boomers can do right now to prepare for the inevitable financial impact on their golden years.

#1 Use your knowledge base to understand the true cost of retirement. The first step in ensuring that you have enough cash and savings during retirement to meet your obligations is to understand the true cost of your retirement. Remember the costs of food, travel, entertainment, and medical treatment don’t go down upon retirement, but may, in fact, go up.    CNN money provides a good retirement calculator to help you determine how much money you’ll need in retirement.

#2 Seize opportunities and take advantage of tax favored savings in retirement accounts in an IRA, 401(k), 403(b) or annuity. If you are over 50 and feel you haven’t saved enough after completing step one, then make additional “catch up” contributions to your 401(k) and 403 (b) plans.

#3 Remain independent by staying healthy and active. The greatest threat to a worry-free retirement is an unforeseen health event or illness. Participate in activities that keep you healthy like daily walks in the park, joining a gym for seniors or community group. Have an annual physical and take your medicines as prescribed.

For more worry free retirement solutions and the complete results of the revealing “State of the Retiree” quarterly survey, visit LiveLifeWorryFree.com. Ms. Clark-Wendel offers public speaking engagements to retirement-aged groups. Contact Ms. Clark-Wendel at Princess Clark Consulting, 1101 N Burlington, Lisle, IL 60532, (773) 991-9885, or visit her website at http://www.livelifeworryfree.com.

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Anissa Wardell
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