A recent survey revealed one in three Canadians over the age of 45 believe they will need to sell their real estate investments to support themselves through retirement.
While funding retirement can mean selling off real estate, downsizing or putting the family home on the market, Valley First Credit Union’s Jay Christensen says a better option is to get an early start on your savings.
“Saving is a habit,” explained Christensen.
“Like any habit we’ve got to work at it so it becomes second nature. The earlier we can train ourselves to put some money aside, the better off we will be in the long run.”
Another factor leading to the need for greater retirement income is the climbing life expectancy—nearly 90 per cent of survey respondents anticipate they will live past 80.
With the current retirement age set at 65, that means having the funds available for more than 15 years of retirement.
“It’s no secret, people are living longer,” said Christensen. “Many are also working longer as a means to fund their retirement. The days when you could hang up your work clothes for good sometime in your 50s are quickly passing us by, so it’s important to have a sound financial plan.”
For many, retirement seems like a long way off, but Christensen says those who have successfully built up a healthy nest egg, often pass on a common piece of advice—discipline. “There seems to have been a generational shift in attitudes toward money,” noted Christensen. “Our parents took a lot less for granted, which for many meant a more cash-conscious lifestyle. I think a lot of us would be better off if we could learn a few spending and savings lessons from the past.”