Fewer Workers Over 60 Postponing Retirement

happy worker As the economy gradually recovers, the pressure is off to keep working to age 60 and beyond. More mature workers are feeling comfortable about retiring now, compared to this time last year, according to a new survey from CareerBuilder.com.

The majority is still inclined to put off retirement, however. Sixty five percent of workers age 60 and over said they are delaying retirement because they can't afford to retire financially. But that's down from 72 percent who said the same thing last year.

More than one in four (28 percent) mature workers age 60 and over plan to retire within the next two years, while 27 percent are planning to retire in three to four years, and 18 percent in the next five to six years. Sixteen percent estimate it will be seven years or more before they can stop working, while one in 10 workers don't think they'll ever be able to retire.

The primary drivers for postponing retirement are financial restraints, as indicated by 65 percent of respondents, and the need for health insurance and other benefits, as indicated by 58 percent of respondents. However, mature workers are staying on board at their companies for a variety of other reasons too, including:

  • Enjoy their job (39 percent)
  • Enjoy where they work (36 percent)
  • Fear retirement may just be boring (26 percent)
  • Enjoy feeling needed (14 percent)

"It's encouraging to see that more workers have the option to retire if they want to, but there are still some who want to keep working at their companies for a variety of reasons," said Rosemary Haefner, vice president of human resources at CareerBuilder. "Twenty-two percent of surveyed workers age 60 and up said they have asked their employer to stay longer with the company, while 29 percent of companies said they are open to keeping workers on board a little longer."

PrimeCB.com, CareerBuilder's job site for mature workers, offers tips for workers who are facing retirement decisions:

Get the facts

Make sure to have open communication with your HR department as you start planning for your retirement. They'll be able to help guide you regarding what makes sense for your budgetary and benefits needs.

Consider part-time work

If you're worried about keeping busy or making enough money after you retire, consider freelance or part-time work. Nearly half (47 percent) of workers age 60 and up surveyed said they planned to find a part-time job after retiring to stay active and help support their bank accounts.

Leverage your knowledge

If you'd like to postpone your retirement, see how you can use your vast experience and intellectual capital to contribute to the organization. Propose a mentorship program or lead training sessions on various topics so you can make yourself an even more valuable resource.

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