Baby boomers aren’t waiting to retire, according to a new study of baby boomers turning 65 last year. But for some of them it was poor health not choice that lead them into retirement, according to the research report by MetLife Mature Market Institute.
Almost one half (45%) of 65-year-old baby boomers are now fully retired, with another 14% reporting they are retired but working part-time or seasonally. Of those who are already retired, half (51%) report they retired earlier than expected.
Almost four in ten (37%) retired earlier than planned due to health reasons, with another 16% saying they lost their job or find a lack of job opportunities.
So while we read lots of articles about baby boomers working until they drop, it appears that they aren’t all that different than previous generations. It is also a good reminder that poor health can disrupt the best laid plans and the importance of planning for the unexpected.
Working past normal retirement age? Boomers who say they will keep working site concerns about having enough money, staying active and productive and future long term care costs.
With normal retirement age for these baby boomers at 66 (the time you can receive full Social Security benefits), it appears that 65 is still a magic retirement number. That’s likely because turning 65 and Medicare eligible resolves the question of how to get health insurance if you are no longer employed.
Another trend that emerged in the study is around caregiving. While these baby boomers may no longer have a living parent, their caregiving duties have shifted to their grandchildren. More baby boomers are finding that the empty nest has filled back up with almost 10% of grandparents reporting that they have two grandchildren living with them.
Yet one more reason to plan for the unexpected, even in retirement.