14th Jun 2016
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Does the popular definition of ‘retirement’ still apply?
Does the popular definition of ‘retirement’ still apply?

Once upon a time, the popular notion of retirement was to work into your mid 60s, then retire, relax and live off your retirement savings or Age Pension for the few years remaining.

Nowadays, many people are working well into their 60s, often to their mid-70s, then retiring and living healthily into their late 80s and early 90s. Traditionally retirement was never meant to last that long and with many having to live off whatever savings they have for 20 or more years, it may be time to redefine retirement.

New research by BritainThinks has found that most people’s idea of retirement is not met by the reality. In fact, most of the survey participants were disappointed by retirement, especially at having to scale back their dreams and aspirations to meet the cost of their later years.

Some people found they are having to work much later in life than they had originally planned. Whilst many have had to spend their retirement savings to cover the cost of providing unexpected, unpaid care for a loved one. All of these retirement roadblocks underline the importance of planning and preparation, but finding this practical support is quite often difficult.

Still, with all this in mind, 62 per cent of UK retirees consider themselves happy, compared with 42 per cent of those not yet retired. The study also found that many people enjoyed working later in life, as it kept them active both physically and socially. In fact, many had proactively planned to work later in life in order to boost their retirement savings or to maintain their lifestyle.

The four clear needs that arose from the research were:

  • keep people engaged with a retirement savings plan, including providing a retirement roadmap
  • support for retirement savings plans, including warnings of falling behind, a 50+ wake-up call, financial advice and intervention (when necessary)
  • to guide older people as they wind down their working life
  • providing support if they have to care for someone.

In Australia, much of the support for life in retirement is focused on financial matters, which is obviously quite important. But money isn’t everything, and for many people who have worked their entire lives, retirement often sees them at an emotional loss. A number of retirees will become less physically and mentally active and lose the social connections they enjoyed whilst they were working. They may then quickly spiral into a perceived lack of purpose, which can lead to a mental decline bringing about depression and other illnesses.

A lot of older Australians will not like the idea that retirement, in the traditional sense of the word, may actually be, or about to be, a thing of the past. However, working in later life can be just as fulfilling as retirement. Work provides a sense of structure, purpose and opportunities to learn and engage socially and, so long as older workers are supported, may even add to quality of life in later years. It could even add years to your life.

All this sounds great, but what of the limited employment opportunities open to older Australians? Well, according to Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) research, as of 2010, people aged 55 years and over made up 16 per cent of the total labour force. The Government offers incentives for employers to hire older workers, but the opportunities for full-time work for over-55s just aren’t there.

But that doesn’t mean you can’t do things that simulate the benefits of working. There are plenty of volunteer groups and opportunities for social engagement, such as community groups and organisations. Or you could start a small business or look to offer your particular skills to specific associations that require them, such as using your book-keeping skills for a charitable cause. And there’s always someone looking for a handyman, so why not market yourself as such?

If retirement is indeed becoming a thing of the past, then we all need to adjust accordingly, so we can ensure that we are happy, healthy and enjoy a better quality of life in our later years, whether retired or not.

Do you think the classic model of retirement is redundant?

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    COMMENTS

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    15th Jun 2016
    10:31am
    No, it is not redundant, but certainly not practiced by everyone and it is continuously getting harder to truly be "retired" in the best interpretation of the word and with all its trappings, and the government is making it EVEN HARDER every day.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    2:20pm
    The only thing that is redundant is the myth that retirement is some sort of Utopia.

    If you plan properly then you will know that things will change and you need to be adaptable to those changes.

    I disagree the government is making it even harder every day. I have been retired for a couple of decades now and seen many changes but nothing that I had any worries about.
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    2:42pm
    I am quite satisfied with my retirement, which started at age 56. I have planned ahead to help manage, I think, every possible medical and economic scenario. I have had foresight enough to foresee the month of the GFC and moved finances before the bubble burst. A lot of reading and research, as well as a bit of luck as usual, was involved, but all well worth the effort for the reward. If you want something badly enough you have to work for it and at it. Expect the worst scenario and plan for it. If it doesn't happen your smile is that much wider. Life is a game, play it to win - so far, I have.
    HarrysOpinion
    15th Jun 2016
    2:58pm
    This is what Bonny stated yesterday- "My employer has as much influence on Australia politics as you do Mick. Zilch or very close to it. I haven't worked for anyone but myself now for about 30 years.

    If you haven't realised it my employer is simply me no one else. Yes I am retired but I still dabble in lots of things."

    This is what Bonny stated today- " I have been retired for a couple of decades now and seen many changes but nothing that I had any worries about".

    So yesterday Bonny was retired for 30 years and today it's 20 years. Me thinks Bonny speaks with fork-tongue.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    3:06pm
    You forget I owned a couple of businesses before I retired.
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    3:19pm
    Bonny, you are full of hot air, and that is saying it nicely. You appear not to know which way is up, let alone what day it is. As HS pointed out above, you are not able to remember how you have lied about yourself before - not that any of us really care about your past or your delusionary life, escapades, or hallucinations. So write these prevarications in a ledger so you can keep up with yourself in future delusions of grandeur, as it seems you are getting further and further out of touch. Looking forward to your further fictional fixations. I like fairy tales.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    3:47pm
    I dear I wish some people could put it all together properly. But then again it I must forgive them and remember that old age has that effect on some people. No hallucinations on my part and no need for any type of ledger.
    Greg
    15th Jun 2016
    5:53pm
    Hi Fast Eddie
    Can I ask what financial position you were in when you retired at 56? Obviously if you don't want to say that's fine - but no one knows who you are on here. I'm just trying to relate to my own position.
    Greg
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    7:25pm
    Greg, what do you mean "no one knows who you are on here"? What's to know? I don't know who you are either. A very strange question on a site like this, don't you think?
    Cheezil61
    15th Jun 2016
    8:09pm
    Spot on Fast Eddie!
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:18pm
    Well... I'm planning to retire into a couple of casual jobs, build an aircraft in the shed (after renovating the house so the semi-disabled ex can live in comfort), and restore a sailing cruiser and set off to cruise the world... no grass grows under this rolling stone...

    My concern is that as a mere Pensioner with little to no super etc, I might be bound to some absurd idea of 'government' that I might have my pension cut if I sail the Seven Seas.... etc...

    Well - buggar them! MY pension is earned..... bought and paid for with a hell of a lot of work and often deep and lasting pain from the way this country has been allowed to run down to suit a few dick-head ideologies.

    I've also studied war.... but I would prefer not to have to go to that with my own country.... better that they get their shot together NOW.....
    Normslast
    15th Jun 2016
    11:24am
    I'd like to know where these older Australians are getting work. My husband, a corporate accountant and 66, has just been made redundant for the second time in 5 years. We need 2 years more income to clear our mortgage but who will employ him? I was made redundant at 55 and I haven't been able to find work for 3 years. Both of us would be happy to work to 70 but who will employ us? I think this is a huge issue for older Australians and our governing bodies. The rhetoric isn't fitting the reality - at least not in our world.
    mcd
    15th Jun 2016
    12:15pm
    Temp agencies are happy to accept older workers and often the temp position can turn into long term or permanent. Your husband has the perfect skill set to try this option.... it worked for me.... I took a 6 month contract that turned into almost 3 years.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    1:52pm
    What about company board appointments? I get asked regularly if I am interested.
    KSS
    15th Jun 2016
    2:02pm
    Have a look at this website too: http://olderworkers.com.au/ and there are others that are similar too that might be of some help.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:28pm
    Company board appointments are generally offered to ex LNP hacks or people who have worked for the party in some way. Hmmmmm.
    Normslast
    15th Jun 2016
    8:55pm
    Thanks everyone for your leads. I didn't expect that! So very grateful.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    10:09pm
    Company board appointments are available to many people in all areas of life.
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:20pm
    We downgrade from $100k a year in 1992 (say $300k now) to a casual job to supplement our meagre pension...... we take it on the chin and, as usual, come up trumps against all odds.

    THAT, my daughter, is the kind of generation WE older citoyennes come from!
    Needy not Greedy
    15th Jun 2016
    11:27am
    Planning for retirement is a great concept Leon, but planning for anything becomes extremely difficult when governments and policies have been changing from birthday to birthday over the last decade and we have got to know the personnel down at the polling booth on a first name basis, there is little doubt that the whole retirement issue needs a good revamp to make it fairer to all, but also little chance this will happen regardless of who wins the current election, as both major parties simply see both pensioners and self funded retirees as easy targets that they can hit with a couple of strokes of the computer mouse to compensate for the governments own inability to tackle serious targets like the corporations and banks that constantly flaunt the taxation system with some form of dodgy practice, of course that would take politicians with guts, balls and resolve, something sadly in short supply in either of the major parties.
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:23pm
    'take politicians with guts, balls and resolve"...?????

    What country are you living in? The Emasculation of Australia in nowhere more apparent than in the hallowed halls of politics.... a place where someone of my acquaintance would say the 'beta males' hold sway and use that position to abuse the 'alphas'.
    fastbucks
    15th Jun 2016
    11:28am
    A good retirement is only now there for politicians.
    Pass the Ductape
    15th Jun 2016
    5:24pm
    Only decent comment on here so far!
    in2sunset
    15th Jun 2016
    8:00pm
    Fastbucks - totally agree!! The question was asked - Does the popular definition of ‘retirement’ still apply? Answer - only if you are a politician or wealthy (or are they both the same?)
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    11:33am
    Even a lot of the young uni graduates are unable to get work and for decades it has been very hard to get work over the age of 45 -- sure if a person wants to work till they die they should be able to but those that want to have a few years to themselves should also be able to do so.
    So many manufacturing pace in Aussie have closed and gone off shore where the hell do they expect everyone!? to find work
    Charlie
    15th Jun 2016
    11:44am
    Working or not working is defined by the 40 hour week and what we know as working full time.

    There may be many people who are burnt out or disease affected at 55 and are not able to work full time, but still need the safety net of disability and aged pension regardless of what other work they can do.

    Compulsory super is supposed to off set the need for pensions but there will still be many people who do not have enough super. Also there may be some people who want to spend all of their super in one hit and then go on the pension.

    These pensions allow some casual work to be performed to boost income to above the average pension amount and there is nothing wrong with this, because the average pension is wanting in many ways.

    There is nothing wrong with a person being able to get the pension and do casual work to the end of their days if it is their desire to do so and they are not suffering from chronic pain, nausea, cognitive impairment and other diseases that can affect different people at different ages.

    Working as long as as a person can, may be one of the ways of dying with dignity.
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    11:55am
    Charlie the trouble is IF a person is on the pension -- they are only allowed to earn about $75 a week or they have the pension cut it would probably cost one more to get to work than they are allowed to earn
    Charlie
    15th Jun 2016
    2:28pm
    If a person is on disability support pension they have their pension REDUCED if they earn about IN EXCESS of about $75 per week. The amount the pension is reduced is 50% of the difference between ( $75 per week and the amount they earn per week.

    If we are talking about age pension the $75 becomes about $150. I went on to disability pension at about age 56 and got casual work.

    But could not get casual work after 65 despite many applications

    15th Jun 2016
    11:45am
    I was always aware of retirement as my parents were on the pension and i saw that as a poor way to survive so l worked a bit harder and can survive on my own. As for plan b manufacturing went overseas as a result of unions putting up wages that employers could not afford its that simple.
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    11:52am
    Robbo if it wasn't for Unions we would have been working for bugga all --- like the poor souls are doing NOW off shore -- when we had all the manufacturing Here was able to get work AND we had Aussie stuff to buy NOT rubbish that we have now, it is just GREED that has sent all off shore and nothing else.
    The Manufacturers get their stuff made for bugga all but they still charge US a small fortune for it
    KSS
    15th Jun 2016
    1:28pm
    Chicken and egg PlanB. If the consumer had wanted/bought Australian made goods instead of those from overseas, manufacturers would not have tried to save their businesses by taking the fabrication offshore to compete with lower prices. Take Holden cars as an example. Australians may have a nostalgic fondness for the brand (which was a foreign brand BTW) but they were not actually buying the cars. Now they are no longer made here and people are upset! Well they just need to look in the mirror to see who to blame. Everyone who bought a Ford, VW, Toyota, Mazda, Kia etc etc etc instead of a Holden!

    And it is the same with food. If people didn't demand say: oranges in summer, there would be no need to import them. People would wait for winter and buy Australian fruit in season. As it is people i.e. the consumer, want what they want, they want it cheap and they want it now!
    Rosret
    15th Jun 2016
    2:27pm
    If it wasn't for the unions our children would still be in the coal mines. Those people who have taken our jobs earn as little as a dollar a day. We have outsourced slave labour. It is something this era will be ashamed of when the history books refer to us in future years. The time we sold out Australia.
    Retired Knowall
    15th Jun 2016
    5:26pm
    The Union movement began with very noble and long needed industrial changes...However it is now a corrupt organisation that only supports the Bludgers.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    5:34pm
    Yes Retired Knowall, just like politics.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    6:05pm
    We certainly don't want the unions running our government then if they support the bludgers.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:04pm
    Retired Knowall, Bonny, I spent a good part of my working life as a Union Representative at the cliff face not at the higher levels, although I did serve on the Union Council for a time.
    I can tell you honestly that support for bludgers was more likely from lazy managers who would not follow HR procedures in order to bring bludgers under control. On the whole the Union would not support the protection of bludgers as this leads to other workers having to work harder to make up the work flow. If you think about it, why would an organisation support one person at the risk of alienating the rest of the workforce? Where a bludger was saved by the Union it would be because a lazy or incompetent Manager did not follow due process and the Union had no choice but to defend them.
    This is not saving a bludger it is delivering natural justice if you can't see the difference I guess I have just wasted my time.
    When actually put to the test these broad statements generally don't stand up to scrutiny.
    If you want to make the claim that the Unions run the Labor Party you have to give oxygen to the statement that the LNP is run by the Bankers and Big Business. I do not believe either is true, political parties are influenced by Unions and Big Business but they are not controlled.
    mcd
    15th Jun 2016
    12:12pm
    No, I don't think it's redundant and I resent the government trying to pressure us into working longer.
    We will change what we do, we will join clubs and assist as volunteers, and we will have time to enjoy walks and travel.
    We may not retire "well off" but we will enjoy our new lifestyle. We worked long and hard, but some of us didn't get high pay to "save for retirement"... surviving each week was often a stretch.
    Those who want can work longer, but if we redefine retirement then they will use it as an excuse to further erode our choice and push us closer to working till we die!
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    12:20pm
    Darn right mcd, there is more to life than working till you drop and we all deserve to be able to relax a bit after working long and hard, especially if you had a manual type job.
    Sundays
    15th Jun 2016
    1:58pm
    After working 60 hour weeks running other people's agenda I was very happy to retire. Had a plan, and we were fortunate, but so many things to do in retirement to ensure not bored. I agree Mcd there should be a choice and also Plan B, working past 67 is often too long for manual and trade workers
    KSS
    15th Jun 2016
    1:19pm
    Perhaps the issue is not so much as defining retirement as defining who we are. Someone who has always defined themselves by what they do (e.g. a welder, a GP, a chef etc), rather than who they are (husband, Mother, member of the local RSL, volunteer, reader of ancient history etc), is bound to suffer in retirement both mentally and physically because they no longer know who/what they are. Maybe transition to retirement should include counselling on this as well as the planning of finances, and what they will do all day if not working.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    2:26pm
    I have never seen myself as anything other than me. Sure I worked in certain jobs but I never saw myself as anything in particular.
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:28pm
    I thought you never worked other than to organise an amazing array of tax dodges that place you in a totally unenviable position, and make of you a person many would demand to run their business for them....

    Yet you have little to no real life experience....

    One merely wonders... (emoticon implied)....
    KB
    15th Jun 2016
    1:24pm
    Older people could mentor younger people in the positions they once held. Just because technology changes sage advice from older folk never does.If people choose to work later in life and retire early then it should be the choice of the person not the government. There is more lo life than work.
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    1:38pm
    KB, IF only we could be old heads on young shoulders
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    1:50pm
    If what I do is retirement that I love it. Nothing better than to get out of bed early of a morning and think that it's up to me what I do today. I threw away the watch many years ago and quite frankly I hate appointments as I hate having to be somewhere at a certain time to suit someone else not me.

    I can't understand why anyone would be bored in retirement and even worse still actually miss working for a boss. I for one haven't had the time to go to work for decades. As for charity work and clubs I find them an absolute bore. People talk about things that I have no interest in at all. I'm over pretending to like photos of their grandkids and listening to the lastest saga in their latest ailment.

    I do however help people out with their finances and paperwork and many other things. I have agreed to help out Labor and the Greens at the prepoll centre. No the LNP didn't ask me.

    Remember it's your time in life just enjoy it.
    HarrysOpinion
    15th Jun 2016
    3:01pm
    What you enjoy Bonny is telling people here how to suck eggs, except, your eggs are rotten.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    3:07pm
    All the better for egg fights.
    PlanB
    15th Jun 2016
    3:30pm
    I don't remember ever being bored in my life, there is so much to see -- so much to learn and you never stop learning no matter how old you are and you can learn off everyone you meet
    Rosret
    15th Jun 2016
    2:22pm
    So they want you off the roads - but they want you to drive the peak hour til death. So they want 40 year old dynamic bosses - but they want you to slave in the dredge jobs until you die. So they tell the elderly not to climb ladders after 60 but they want your arthritic joints up in the roof as an electrician or a builder on roof scaffolding. Sixty year olds are not any healthier than they were 20 years ago, the medical profession has just found a way to keep everyone alive longer. There is another article on today's webpage about abuse and the elderly. I call it abuse making them work til they die.
    Needy not Greedy
    15th Jun 2016
    2:54pm
    Yep mate, I think Turnbull and some of his grubby mates are related to Simon Legree, he was the bastard that flogged Uncle Tom to death.
    ex PS
    18th Jun 2016
    9:30am
    The problem is that the government tells so many lies and changes their opinion so often in an attempt to garner votes, they forget what they have already said and become their own opposition. We all need to forget what they are saying and concentrate on what they mean.
    Hasbeen
    15th Jun 2016
    3:03pm
    You're all mad. There is no point working until you're so infirm that you can't enjoy your retirement.

    I retired at 31, sold up everything, bought a 40 Ft yacht, & spent my retirement first sailing the barrier reef, then the pacific islands. I found people with things that needed repairing everywhere I went, & no one they could find to do it. I didn't know that much about a lot of stuff, but more than no one.

    I earned a good living repairing things from washing machines to radios to tractors, learning as I went, & had a ball with the people I did it for. I came back as rich/poor as I left money wise, but I'd had a brilliant retirement, & am rich in memories. I will now work till I die, but so what.
    Scrivener
    15th Jun 2016
    3:05pm
    This is one of the most sensible ideas I have seen for many bleak day. The problem is one Government Department or other will kill it. Centrelink will for sure. I could be earning an income from writing and teaching but it would all be a picnic for Centrelink. They would take what I earn from my Centrelink income - that is after they torture me. Why Work?
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    3:14pm
    Is it possible for you to be paid in gift cards? I do the occasional job and get paid in gift cards.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:32pm
    Amazing how someone who wants to bring down the lightening bolts of Asgard upon a retiree who puts a bit of money into their home is quite willing to defraud the government out of its' lawful tax entitlement. Double standards or what?
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    10:08pm
    You need to brush up on the rules as their is no double standards in playing the game by the rules.
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:31pm
    Dang - they don't even know of my royalties from books - it's all in $US and in the US.....
    fastbucks
    15th Jun 2016
    3:07pm
    I don't understand some people. these days retirement is not something you do at a certain age, retirement is your choice when you finish work. Some think ok I have retired today what do I do now. YOU are the one who retired. I retired just short of 60 because I had a gutful of mismanagement and working for fools. So now I do what I want when I want. If I do nothing some days so be it. If I walk around in circles some days so be it - I did that at work anyway.
    Remember - retirement is your choice so sort it out yourselves.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    3:09pm
    Agree there is only one person that is responsible for your retirement and that is you.
    Bes
    15th Jun 2016
    3:29pm
    Not to worry as long as Australia can afford to
    send foreign aid to other countries.
    However when Australia can't afford it's aged pensioners......to which country do the pensioners approach.......for aid?
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    5:59pm
    Bes why should any government help pensioners or freeloaders they get too much alreadythats why they are shunned by normal people
    Bes
    17th Jun 2016
    2:53pm
    Hope your dream comes true and you really do become Peter Pan Robbo!
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    19th Jun 2016
    8:17am
    What a disgustingly vile remark, Robbo. Some of our aged pensioners contributed more to society than any wealthy person ever did. And they are still labouring away working for charity and the community and helping younger Australians who need family support. I don't know an aged pensioner who is even moderately fit and healthy and isn't contributing significantly to society - having worked for decades and paid taxes and raised children who pay taxes. Their contribution is massive - far more than the tax-cheating scumbags who boast and shun and label people.

    No NORMAL person would ever shun an aged or disabled pensioner. But NORMAL people certainly shun the ignorant scumbags who make comments like yours.
    Young Simmo
    15th Jun 2016
    5:10pm
    For me the hardest part about being retired is there are not enough hours in each day. I find being retired takes all day, and there is no time left to do anything else. Retired at 62 because my stupid boss Rio Tinto thought I would be a wreck after my Triple Bypass, now at 76 life is a breeze, YEEEHAAAAAA.
    Pass the Ductape
    15th Jun 2016
    5:29pm
    Go Young Simmo! Now - if I could only work out how to avoid getting
    my weekly fix at Bunnings!!!!!!!!!!!
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    5:31pm
    Define retirement, I left the workforce a few years back, but I would not classify myself as being retired in the sense most people imagine. I don't get up at the same time every day or go to bed at a set time because my time is my own, I do what I want when I want and have never felt that i was bored.
    I planned for retirement and have many plans for the new property that my wife and I bought for the purpose. I have built a shed and filled it with most of the machinery and tools that I think I will need and have an income stream that will allow me to buy anything extra I may need.
    My only fear is that successive governments have and continue to try to fix their mistakes by stealing off retirees, I have planned and worked to achieve my lifestyle over 50 years, not realizing that the government seems to only be able to plan for a maximum of 4 years or by coincidence the span covered by an election. This has led to me constantly having to change my long term plans in order to work in with the incompetent planning of the government. I have gone from being confident in being able to look after myself and my family without government help or interference to looking at reorganizing my assets and financial plans in order to make sure I can access a part pension if required.
    By interfering with the Super Funds and making changes that have a retrospective negative effect on retirees, this government has destroyed confidence in the Super industry and will have to fork out billions in pension payments because of its' ineptitude.
    fastbucks
    15th Jun 2016
    5:40pm
    well said! pity a politician wouldn't acknowledge this.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:21pm
    Unfortunately politicians from the so called two major parties only acknowledge statistics, think tanks and polls.
    vinradio
    15th Jun 2016
    5:59pm
    Well, I was a university lecturer, made redundant at 61, had to live off my small payout till I could go on Newstart, tried for 4 years to get a job, only a few short term contracts, didn't own my own home, so only survived by sharing bills and rent with my son. I was happy to get the age pension, as it was a whole $300 or so more than Newstart, but it's not much to live on, if you have to rent privately, which I will when my son moves out in October! In my opinion, there is a lot of ageism amongst employers, and it is hard for anyone over 50 to find employment. On the other hand, I enjoy being able to do what I want to do, when I want to do it, and I am only limited by my meagre funds! I'm happy to never work again, but would love a better pension rate! I have paid my dues, having worked and paid tax since I was 17!
    Sundays
    15th Jun 2016
    6:40pm
    I would have thought that as a university lecturer you would have some super. Isn't unisuper one of the best schemes?
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    19th Jun 2016
    8:23am
    University lecturer? You must have really lived the high life to be broke and not own a home after working to age 61! I'm left wondering what on earth you spent on. I worked for less than the dole for most of my working life, had a disabled child who cost me the equivalent of 4 houses in medical and special care (over and above any benefit or support received), was forced into self-funded ''retirement'' at 55 (though I returned to work a decade later out of necessity!) and still managed to pay off a nice home and save enough to not qualify for a pension.
    Happy Jack
    15th Jun 2016
    7:59pm
    Sounds to me like fast eddie, by his own admission, has been having a bit of a bludge since turning 56 years of age, Thank god, for the rest of us, that the average Ozzie is prepared to put in a little more effort than fast eddie.
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:18pm
    As a share holder in a diversified portfolio that includes Industrial and banking shares I too am glad that we can find workers who are willing to work themselves into the grave. As long as they are happy to do it I am happy to use the value they add to my shares to enjoy my retirement which commenced at 55.
    Thank god for those who live to work, this comes sincerely from one who worked in order to live and am now enjoying what I think is a well earned retirement.
    But seriously, who knows why another person is retired it could be part of a long term plan, it could be because of personal health problems or it could be a case of leaving work in order to care for a family member. I wouldn't judge because that would then give everyone the right to pass judgement on me.
    Retirement is an individual thing, it's no ones business but the one retiring as long as they aren't costing you anything maybe you should just look after yourself and forget the envy?
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    8:19pm
    I'll have you know Happy Jack that I am a COMPLETELY SELF-FUNDED RETIREE, and have been for almost the last 15 years. You know nothing of me, but I can well and truly assure you that I have never "bludged", as you say, in all my life, and this comment of yours just shows what an envious cretin you are. I have had the foresight, knowledge, and intelligence to successfully plan and execute an early retirement all by myself. My life has been work and carefree since and I have NO ONE to thank but myself. I am an economic success without any monetary worry whatsoever and I hope this makes you EVEN HAPPIER, Jack. You sound more like a jack*** than a happy Jack to me.
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    8:47pm
    ex PS, thank you for your words. There are some very envious people on this site, like the toser Unhappy Jack above, who are so dim-witted they can't comprehend how hard work, intelligence, research, and prudent investments can achieve early retirement. It is people like him who do very little for themselves, have their hands out for "freebies" all the time, complain, and jealously covet those people who have done well and made a success of their lives. May you attain all your future pursuits in life. Good luck to you.
    Bonny
    15th Jun 2016
    10:12pm
    I would have thought bank shares were a bit risky for a retiree after having broken through an index support level.
    ex PS
    16th Jun 2016
    7:36am
    You are right Bonny, they are, but I do not believe in divesting myself of shares whilst the market is panicking. I currently only have about 15% of our money in international shares and only a small part in the financial market. I have parked the rest in Super and different types of hybrid bonds, although these are not as volatile as shares a few of them are with banks.
    As those International Shares are managed through my Super fund they are low to medium risk, as I have one of the best Super Funds in the country.
    Cheezil61
    15th Jun 2016
    8:06pm
    Agree with Fast Eddie govt is making it harder for battlers all the time/every day with so many changes to super & tax/charges, etc -it will be a miracle if I & many others ever get to see any of the money put away for super anyway unless we are a greedy politician!! ..
    Those who dont think retiring is an impossible myth must have been fortunate enough to earn enough to put substantial amounts of money away to cover it as well as the usual living expenses needed to just exist in this money driven world & quite likely have not had broken realtionships requiring paying out a partner to keep the roof over their head (ie; pay the mortgage & ongoing household expenses & vehicle running costs & cost to raise kids alone, etc, etc!).. I'm 55 this year & have to work 12hr rotating shifts (inc nightshifts) to earn enough to live (which is very taxing on my mental well-being & physical health trying to buy my very modest $200,000 home (mortgaged) after broken relationship YET AGAIN (3rd time) so there is really very little left to contribute to super while trying to pay out this mortgage in the hope that i dont have to work forever, so it's a catch 22 - can't afford to quit work any time soon but becoming less capable of continuing this way, but no solution is there!..
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    9:43pm
    Cheezil61, I wish you all the very best with your endeavours. You have a hard row to hoe by the sounds of it. I was divorced from my first wife at the age of 48, was dragged over the coals in the settlement, had child support to pay, and lost my house. I vowed to myself that I would make back my financial losses. I worked six days a week, sometimes seven, went out very little socially, tightened the belt in every way to save, studied, researched, and cautiously invested in shares and property. Eight years after divorce I had enough to not worry financially for the rest of my life, so I retired into a work-free, care-free life and have found a wonderful second wife.
    Whatever you do, don't despair. As strange as it may seem, you can turn your life's circumstances into a challenge and make the pursuit and attainment of happiness and success a game. It probably sounds silly to you, but it can be fun and can definitely work, as I have done it myself. Be positive, never lose sight of your goals, and the rewards are there for you - in every respect. Good luck.
    Cheezil61
    15th Jun 2016
    9:56pm
    Thanks Fast Eddie; great positive spin & great outlook, I will try to take this on board when things are rough (that 4am bad run at work on nightshift when all is going wrong lol).. must be light at end of tunnel somewhere :)
    ex PS
    16th Jun 2016
    8:47am
    Cheezil61, I was divorced at 40, was left with a mortgage a twenty year old car and a continuing child support payment after going into more debt to make my ex wife and my son a cash settlement. I had enough income left to pay my bills get to work and buy the odd luxury once a month.
    My wife used the cash settlement to buy her boyfriend of a couple of years a new Ute, which didn't sit particularly well.
    Point is when all this happened I had a minimum wage job, no money in the bank and was feeling very sorry for myself. Little by little I did manage to get on top of things, I progressed slowly up the pay scale by applying for higher positions and gradually got to a position where I was nearly comfortable.
    The real turning point was meet my current wife, by working together and following a plan that we both agreed to we have managed to retire at 55. I can remember the three years after the divorce, I didn't feel that I would ever be able to make up my losses, but once I noticed I was making that little bit of headway it encouraged me to keep going one step at a time.
    At least you have your kids, they will give you more incentive than anything anyone here can say. Good Luck
    Cheezil61
    16th Jun 2016
    9:06am
    Thanks ex PS glad you have found light at the end of the tunnel; there is hope & there are many worse off than us. At least I have work & can pay those bills & still manage to put some super away while paying as much as possible to the mortgage; there are many who cannot do all this! Hopefully things will be different in a few years if I can keep working that long :)
    Blondie
    15th Jun 2016
    8:28pm
    Retirement is what you make it! Your needs change as you age, and if you're lucky enough to have grandchildren, minding them is a joy! I'm a retired university lecturer, and only had 16
    years of saved super, but I do lots of mentoring, and keep in touch with my graduates, who often live and work abroad. Rereading the classics, concert, opera attendances, plus some charity work is a good, balanced mix of activities. Life is what you make it!
    ex PS
    15th Jun 2016
    8:35pm
    What a wonderful use of your retirement. I hope you have many decades to pursue these admirable activities.
    Anonymous
    15th Jun 2016
    8:48pm
    Me, too!
    TREBOR
    15th Jun 2016
    10:13pm
    Many a retiree, I feel would be most put out if they were told that they could not continue in their chosen profession. I've set out to study law and medicine (but waylaid and side-tracked - medicine due to a heart attack), and let me tell you, as an active participant in either of those two professions, I would be still working right into my eighties.... and often without accepting payment in appropriate cases.

    So - yes - maybe we could re-define retirement - but it really, at the end of the day, depends totally upon the user, and should not in any way become something that can be dictated by any 'government'.

    Choice-mobile, Son - that's what it's all about.....
    PeteK
    16th Jun 2016
    8:12am
    I just want to go fishing. I've got the goal, I've got the boat, all the rest I'm setting in place with my long term plans. Simple.
    Happy Jack
    16th Jun 2016
    10:59am
    Sounds to me that fast eddie had a bit of a wind fall. I find it hard to believe that in the space of 7 years he's gone from near broke to retiring very comfortably at 55. Anyway, best of luck to him- a very large proportion of the aged Australians, having worked to 65 and in some cases beyond, are living below the poverty line.
    Bonny
    16th Jun 2016
    12:17pm
    From my own experience I can believe Fast Eddie could experience what he did without a wind fall. It becomes easy if you have targets and the will to achieve something.
    ex PS
    16th Jun 2016
    5:05pm
    Correct Bonny, I went from divorced and broke at 40 to self funded retiree at 55. No windfall, no high paying job for a great deal of it and no marriage to a wealthy woman, just a good life partner with like values, hard work, an appreciation of the value of every dollar and a plan. If I can do it most people can.
    Our son roles the same way and will not have to depend on the inheritance we leave him.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    20th Jun 2016
    7:38am
    Anyone can't, ex PS. ''Most'' is a questionable generalisation. On what do you base that claim? Anecdotal evidence and personal experience don't justify generalisations.

    It's great that you have achieved, but this ''holier than though'' judgmental attitude of Bonny's, based on arrogant and baseless assumptions, is harmful to society. Many lack the basic intellect or understanding to be able to do it. Some, like my daughter, are held back by life circumstances - in her case having to devote herself full time to a special needs child. Paid work is out of the question unless she chooses to neglect her baby's needs. I struggled financially for decades for the same reason. When my child finally achieved independence and near-normal capacity, I was deeply in debt. It took two decades just to pay the accumulated medical and special education bills.

    Despite all my challenges, I made it to moderate comfort, though I'll struggle in retirement if I can't keep working for a lot more years. But anyone CANNOT do it and I serious doubt that ''most'' can. We should never presume knowledge of the circumstances of others. Society is suffering because of arrogance, assumptions, and lack of empathy and compassion - and because of politicians' gross lies to encourage a focus on self-interest and view the nation as a business rather than a community.

    What Australia needs now, more than anything else, is a massive change of attitude. We need to get back to CARING about others. We need to end the extreme greed and selfishness. We need to exterminate the narcissists who are destroying society and acknowledge that those who win in the birth lottery (whether through being born to well-to-do parents or just being born with intelligence, capacity to learn, connections who can guide and open doors, personal strength and resilience) owe a debt to those who didn't fare so well.

    Lots of us have what it takes to prosper, but that's luck. It takes hard work and persistence and self-discipline to capitalize on that luck, but luck positions us to be ABLE to succeed, and those of us who are lucky in that way owe it to society to be caring and empathetic to those who aren't.
    ex PS
    20th Jun 2016
    11:47am
    Rainey, I stand by my statement, more people can be successful than can not. In some cases it is beyond the control of people to fend for themselves no matter how hard they work, and in these cases I do not begrudge them all the help they need. But alternatively I see people all the time who have good well paid jobs and live for the moment, That is their choice but I find it odious to see people who squander life's opportunities and then whine about how unfair it is that others have more than them. And worse expect the government to take from the workers and give it to them.
    My wife and I are self funded retirees by choice, we live on far less than the average wage and go without nothing. I did not have a new car until I was in my late thirty's and when I got one it was the cheapest car on the market, I made it last 14 years.
    I base my statement that most people have the opportunity to do well on the fact that I have seen and known thousands of people in my lifetime who wasted most of their income on useless items that someone else convinced them they had to have. I have seen people spend money on eating out and getting drunk every Saturday night and then come to work and claim poverty.
    Ever heard the saying, the harder you work the luckier you get? I firmly believe this.
    Just as you label me uncaring and of making assumptions I can point the finger back at you.
    You say that all successful people are selfish, greedy and uncaring and only think of themselves.
    Throughout most of my working life I have been a Union Activist, not the high flying type who goes to fancy conferences and the like but an on the ground worker who had to represent those who could not stand up for themselves, I did not receive one cent for this although I did get a packet of green tea from a lady who's job I saved. My Union activities have cost me chances of promotion and at one stage even cost me my job. My wife left work and immediately volunteered to work in an Aged Care facility, she paid for her own TAFE course so that she could be of more help.
    I not only say that I believe that those who prosper have a duty to help those who are not doing so well, I do what I preach and not only for my own family but to anyone in need.
    Interesting to note that your criticism has gone from criticizing the statement Most people can to that of Anyone can, two completely different views.
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    20th Jun 2016
    10:55pm
    Ex PS, I'm sorry if you thought my comments were intended as criticism of you. They were NOT. I know very little about you, but what I see here suggests you are precisely the kind of person Australia needs more of - hard working, reasonably successful and willing to stand on your own two feet, yet still able to demonstrate empathy and caring; respectful and considerate of those who can't achieve what you have.

    I agree with you entirely on people who have wasted their income. It irks me no end that a retired journalist friend earned a high income, was married to a high income earner, toured the world on a $500,000 inheritance, and now claims a full pension and public housing. It infuriates and disgusts me that neighbours gifted $2 million to their kids and bought a $1.5 million house so they could claim a full pension, and now they are ''separating'' (but ''co-habitating'') to get a higher pension.

    I don't, for an instant, suggest that ALL successful people are selfish, greedy or uncaring. But sadly too many are. And we see a lot of very nasty comments on here denigrating those who have suffered misfortune and branding ''pensioners'', with no knowledge of why they are pensioners. Sure, some are like those mentioned above. But many have struggled against severe disadvantage.

    If I condemned all ''successful'' people, I'd likely be condemning myself, because I claim ''success'', despite having only modest savings. For someone who grew up in an orphanage and had only a few years of schooling, battled ill-health and injury for decades, and copped the massive costs of raising a special needs child to have put kids through university and now be expecting to retire self-funded (though barely - and likely to struggle) and owning a nice home... I think that's ''success''.

    My point though, ex PS, is that we live in a world inhabited with far too many selfish, greedy, arrogant people who show no empathy or care for others. And sadly there seems to be a culture of encouraging greed and selfishness and discouraging empathy and respect. When a federal treasurer calls people ''leaners'', the nation is in serious social trouble.

    All I was trying to say (and I apologize if I said it clumsily) is that I don't think it's fair to imply that anyone who didn't do as you did is at fault in some way or is deserving of contempt. Many COULD do as you did but didn't. That's a given. But many COULDN'T, and without detailed knowledge of all the relevant factors, we are not qualified to judge. People deserve respect. It appears you give it. Sadly, too many here do not.
    Happy Jack
    16th Jun 2016
    4:57pm
    Like marrying into money!??
    Happy Jack
    17th Jun 2016
    6:10pm
    Met a bloke in the pub the other day who is careful with his money.
    They call him whispers cause he never shouts.
    I'd rather be poor than lousy.
    ayers
    18th Jun 2016
    10:43pm
    Work as much as you can if you can find the right job or the right job finds you if you are over 55, or older.

    This is true expression but idealistic or not realistic or does not fit Australia’s realms where, 100 thousands of young people enter to the job market every year and also large scale automation has started in many applicable job places, where not many human workers are needed any more.

    Also the job interviews selection and filtration tactics, favoritism do not let passage to aged people to reseek the right job under the implications forcing to go back to your idle state and wait for your termination this world, isn’t it?

    Only few job categories occupants, MDs, accountants, lawyers, public employees… etc such age free specific job occupants can keep their jobs no matter what age they are at. These job categorizes cannot be generalized to everybody!

    However in scientific, technological, IT and telecommunications especially for high-tech skills, they start scrapping the aging employees from 50s. This true and fact.

    Therefore, as an example, this country pays for 50 billion $ for new military submarines to overseas manufacturers, where Australia domestic high skilled engineers and scientists could build such submarines which may not go beyond 5 billion the most. So Australia pays 45 billion $ to French company extra. Good deal!

    There is one smarter suggestion: Go to China and ask for 20 full modern military submarines, key delivery to Australia with all included in 2 years time. China could deliver such submarines for only 10 billions $ (500 millions$ for ach submarine) with full free 10 years maintenance and training. And for such good and generous customer, China would never think of any undermining effort anymore. So who won monetarily and international politically ?
    OnlyGenuineRainey
    20th Jun 2016
    7:24am
    Seems we are being lied to big time about the relative wealth of older and younger Australians.
    Check out the graph at http://i.crackedcdn.com/phpimages/photoshop/7/0/6/546706_v1.jpg

    Younger Australians are getting richer at a very fast rate compared to older Aussies. This is NOT the case in other wealthy nations. Elsewhere, younger folk are suffering while older folk are thriving.
    Jurassicgeek
    20th Jun 2016
    9:57am
    yea might as well give up on the idea of retirement ! ..The lousy govt will always be trying to increase the retiring age...and eventually you will have to work till you drop...simple fact is successive governments have squandered so much money we are now almost broke and pensions will not be an option in the future...naa retirement is a farce!...


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