Is Retirement A Thing Of The Past?

We recently commented on how many more pensioners there were in Japan (percentage of population) than here. And on how that figure would increase by 2050.

In April we came across an article in The Japan Times, which confirmed that last year was a record high in the number of pensioners or over 60s that were still in employment.

Just Me...

The figures had increased by about 170,000 from the previous year taking the figure to almost 12 million. The trend in the UK was following suit too. There were 1.4 million pensioners working in the UK in 2011. An increase of 85% over the previous 20 years.

A retired husband is often a wife’s full-time job.

~Ella Harris

Apparently 12% of those past retirement age continue in employment according to the Office for National Statistics. Reasons why pensioners continue to work beyond their retirement date range from financial pressures, improved health and wellbeing, longer life expectancy and ‘wanting to remain active in society’ are suggested. Another reason is because employers no longer force employees to retire at the prescribed age.  Here’s a video about it.

These figures represent a split of 39:61 percent of the 1.4 million to men and women respectively. Two thirds of the men are working in high-powered and skilled jobs such as property, marketing or sales directors, chief executives etc. Meanwhile two thirds of the working women were in lower skilled jobs including cleaning.

Other interesting facts are that a third of the working pensioners are likely to be self-employed; that’s more than half as many again of those below retirement age. And many seniors – about 66% – work part time

Carry on working
It’s okay if it’s our choice to carry on working. Maybe we don’t want to isolate ourselves or we need the extra money. And of course we feel fit enough to do so.

Longer life expectancy has certainly affected the state pension. Governments are discovering that they are paying out retirement pensions for much longer than originally budgeted for, due to us living for much longer. Now new arrangements are coming into force, which means by 2018 both men and women will need to be 65 to retire – an increase of 5 years for women. By 2020 the age will be 66 and it will continue to rise. At this rate those currently in their 30s may not be able to retire until they are well into their 70s.

The Prudential confirmed that last year (2012) about 10% of people at retirement age put off drawing their pensions and were continuing to work. A spokesman confirmed “Those retiring at 65 will face an average of 19 years in retirement, which makes the financial and social benefits of working longer an even bigger draw. However only a small proportion of those working past retirement age choose to continue in full-time employment, so we are seeing a real shift towards gradual retirement.”

Disability free
The ONS regularly carries out a number of surveys to estimate statistics. Gathering information to estimate life expectancy and life expectancy without disability throw up some interesting facts and some warnings.

Life expectancy is increasing as we said. Their studies have found that at birth the average age a man or a women can expect to live to, is just beyond 78 and 83 respectively.

However, managing to live with no disabilities as we age is averaged until we are between 61–67 years old. For some that means that the whole of their retirement will be a period of suffering from some disability or perhaps a mobility restriction, which is miserable.

But in the same way that science and technology has helped to improve our health and made it possible for us to live much longer, so it has worked to aid us with disabilities. For example technological equipment like stair lifts can help people stay in their own home for longer.  As people are ageing they have a right to age in place, that is to stay living in their choice of accomodation, and for many that still means their existing home – rather than a residential home or warden assisted apartment complex.  If you want a stairlift quotethen arrange a callback from one of our friendly team today.