Our grandchildren and their children expect to retire at 65 – but is this realistic?

Blog posted

1st August 2013

A retirement report published by insurance company Aegon at the end of July makes for uneasy, albeit realistic reading.

The report says 30% of under 24s plan to give up work by age 65 while only 13% plan to retire at 70, even though experts say 70 is a more realistic possibility.

The basic state pension age is already due to rise to 66 by 2020, to 67 by 2036 and to 68 by 2046. And these ages could rise even faster, if recent Government discussions are any indicator. 

Even as the Government was first setting these plans there was a hint of regret at not making them more radical, suggesting an eventual state pension age of 70.

While I don’t want to enter a debate about older people fit for work (of course they are – we have evidence of many retirement village residents in employment) there is a concern that the younger generation may come to resent their older working counterparts.

Committed to the workplace to help fund retirement, the older generation could inevitably become work blockers, preventing their children, grandchildren and future generations from taking specific roles or career moves. Nobody, whatever age group, wants to see this happen I’m sure.

There is speculation that this issue could resolve itself naturally with the rapid rising life expectancy potentially likely to plateau as the healthy war years generations make way for a population who lead less healthy lifestyles. This prediction is based purely on conjecture at this stage so we can’t start building policies around it.

In the meantime, we have a social conundrum to contend with. And the answer seems to be to keep increasing the state pension age. Possibly forewarning and educating the younger generations of potentially what lies ahead might be advisable too, hence the value of such reports as Aegon’s

Is there an ideal retirement age? Our retirement village residents share a wide range of retirement dates, so is there really a ‘best’ age to stop work? And is there anything else the Government can do to address this situation, over and above what’s already proposed?

Sarah Burgess
Sales and Marketing Director