If 65 is the “New 50”, just when are we supposed to retire?

You exercise, you eat healthy foods, you love your job, your home, your family- you basically love life! So why on earth would you want to retire and change everything that you love? If 65 is the new 50, just when are we supposed to retire?

The combination of Social Security reform up in the air and people living about 10 years longer than they were just 20 years ago is putting a curve in the way many folks are looking at the retirement part of their life.  Many are feeling as though only old people retire, and they are certainly not old, so they want to keep working.

According to the latest stats, if you currently earn $50,000 a year, you’ll need to have about $350,000 in a 401K to live your current lifestyle. That doesn’t include any extra traveling or vacation homes in Vail, it’s just to maintain your current style of life.  Of course, this amount of retirement income is in addition to the average monthly  Social Security check.

More and more average Americans are turning back to the workforce after they begin receiving Social Security benefits.  In fact, if you’re contemplating taking the first level of Social Security benefits (those that are available to you at age 62), you will actually receive 36 more checks than if you wait until age 65 to begin receiving the funds. Those 36 additional paychecks will not be made up for until age 77 if you try to make up for those lost three years. It’s hardly worth it, unless you plan on living until you’re 100..

Somewhat recent changes in Social Security have made it possible for you to bring in an additional income without taking away from the amount of your monthly government check. The cap has risen to $17,000 per beneficiary, so go ahead and get a part-time job to get you out of the house, help you to stay active and put a few extra groceries in the shopping cart, pay the fuel bills, or cruise around the world. After all, these are your golden years—you should find some time to enjoy them.

Of course, those who have made an extraordinary paycheck for themselves are retiring a an average of 50.  But remember, you can retire whenever you want, you just might have to live in a cardboard box.

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