The average retirement age for people in the US and Canada is about age 63, but there is a large group of people who continue to work past 65.¹² Two motivations that could be contributing to this situation are:
- They choose to work, but don’t have to.
- They have no choice but to keep working.
Here’s why: having the choice is better than having no choice at all. Imagine that as you approach the time when you want to retire that you love your job and gain a lot of satisfaction in what you do. But there is no option for you to stop even if you wanted to, because of bills or obligations to yourself or your family.
As you approach retirement age – whatever that may be – there could be other things in your life that matter to you, that come into conflict with the job you love. Some of these “other things” may include (but aren’t limited to) spending time with family, volunteering at an organization you’re passionate about, traveling the world, etc. Except for a lucky few, we can’t be both traveling around the world AND doing the job we love. That’s when having the resources to choose comes in handy.
It’s important to have a strategy to reach your retirement goals, whether it’s retiring at age 65 (or earlier). Having a strategy in place doesn’t mean you absolutely have to retire when you plan to, but you’ll at least have the option to do so.
¹ Anspach, Dana. "Average Retirement Age In The United States." The Balance, 1.3.2018, http://bit.ly/2nW9AWJ.
² McNaughton, Laura. "Goodbye Freedom 55: More Canadians spend their retirement years working." CBC News, 6.19.2016, http://bit.ly/1sN1EI9.