Friday, August 29, 2008

Non-Financial Events that Could Negatively Impact my Retirement

In financial areas, I think I am well covered for a wide range of situations during retirement. However, I realize that there are non-financial events that can also affect retirement. Here are some of the one's I've considered:
  • Early demise. Yes dying shortly after retiring would be a bummer. I've seen it happen with people who retired in their sixties and passed away within two years. However, it is not uncommon for people in their forties and fifties to die unexpectedly.

    Of course, this is an area in which I don't any control. So I don't worry about it...too much. Currently, since I retired in my forties, good health and retirement age statistics are in my favor.

    An approach I am trying is break retirement into five year chunks and live those with gusto :-)

  • Loss of spouse. For me, retirement is to be enjoyed with the person who also worked so hard to make it happen. This is our time to do all the things we want to do, without the restrictions of jobs, careers and other commitments. It wouldn't be fun without my spouse.

    I've already told my spouse she can't die before me :-), but other than that, I don't have a clever solution.

  • Loss of lifelong friends. When my dad passed away at 79, only one of his close friends was still alive. Many had passed away in their fifties and sixties. Although he did have some new younger friends, it wasn't the same as being around those with whom he went to school or started a career.

    My college class is now in the middle of the alumni newsletters and we occasionally have a memorial. Luckily, there have been no losses in this area yet. At this point, I keep in touch mostly through Christmas letters and occasional mini-reunions with a few classmates.

  • Living past 100. While dying early is bad, living a long time has its issues also, among them finances and quality of life. Financially, we plan to be solvent up to our mid-nineties, but it difficult to predict with accuracy past that age. Also, it may be difficult to do many of the daily activities without assistance.

    At this point, 100 still feels a long time away. I don't think I'll worry much about this one for another 25 years. Hopefully, it will be an issue I get to consider.

  • While I don't worry about these possibilities too much, I do want to make sure I enjoy the fruits of early retirement. I'm used to planning for the future, and working hard in the present. Now that I'm retired, I will continue plan for the future, while completely enjoying the present.

    For more on Reaping the Rewards, check back every Friday for a new segment.

    This is not financial or retirement advice. Please consult a professional advisor.

    Copyright © 2008 Achievement Catalyst, LLC


    traineeinvestor said...

    I would add long term disability to the list. Being physically or mentally disabled for a long period of time would be pretty devastating.

    Super Saver said...

    Trainee Investor,

    Great point. I agree significant disability should be on the list. Thanks.