By : Joe Uhll
For a lot of people, retirement is the pot of gold at the end of the rainbow. It represents relaxation, spending a lot more time with the grandkids, and possibly even moving to a much warmer climate in places like Florida or Arizona. But just as things have changed over time with regards to the workplace and job market, they have also changed with regards to retirement.
Retirees today face many obstacles. Some of them have always existed, and some of them have come about as a result of changes in the world. That’s why it’s always best for people to educate themselves on the topic as they are nearing retirement. Then they will be able to plan for and avoid some of these major obstacles that retirees are facing today.
Obstacle #1: A Longer Lifespan
At first glance, this may seem like an odd thing to label as an “obstacle.” Because of advances in medicine and research into what is and isn’t healthy, the average person lives a lot longer than they used to. This is a great thing, but it’s also a challenge that retirees must face. A longer lifespan means that retirees need to save more money; otherwise they might run out and not be able to support themselves. This might mean cutting more expenses in order to save up more money, but in many cases this issue results in people having to work until an older age than they once thought they would.
Obstacle #2: The Increase in Health Care Costs
As people begin to age, they often find themselves suffering from more health problems than they did in the past. Their body begins to break down at a faster pace, and they may need more healthcare treatment to combat issues that spring up. The biggest problem with this is the cost, as the price of healthcare has skyrocketed and will likely continue to do so. This is something that future retirees need to acknowledge and seriously plan for, because healthcare costs are always going to be there.
Obstacle #3: The Death of a Spouse
The death of a spouse is a challenge that retirees have always faced, and will continue to face forever. There is nothing sadder than seeing someone widowed after countless years of marriage. In a lot of cases, the widowed spouse falls into depression and may never recover. But death is a fact of life, and retirees would be doing themselves a service if they would admit that this is something that they will face in the future, plan for it as best they can, and really try to grieve and get past it. That’s not to say that the long life lived together is to be forgotten. On the contrary, it is sometimes best for a widow to be able to remember the great things about their deceased loved one and know that they would want them to move on with their life and be happy.
Obstacle #4: Lack of a Pension
It used to be that a large amount of people had a pension waiting for them when they retired from private sector work. But today’s economic instability has drastically reduced the amount of retirees who can depend on this for financial support. This has caused people to put off retirement or just retire with less savings than they really need to live out their years, which will cause significant problems down the line.
About the author: Juliana Weiss-Roessler runs Weiss-Roessler Writing with her husband Josh. She often covers senior issues, specifically CCRC’s. Her writing has been featured on high-traffic websites, such as Yahoo.com, and in major publications, such as PARADE and People. Along with her husband, Juliana lives in Austin, TX, with their two tiny-but-rambunctious dogs and one tiny-but-rambunctious baby boy.