Think You’ll Be Happier in Retirement? Think Again.

Also: Why Retirement Savings in Roth IRAs Tend to Outlast Traditional 401(k)s
͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ 
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March 26, 2024
Retire with Money

When workers dream of their eventual retirement, they may be picturing a more happy-go-lucky version of themselves. Who wouldn’t assume that trading in workplace stress for daily freedom would improve their sense of wellbeing?

As it turns out, a good chunk of Americans who have retired within the last 15 years don’t feel that way. In a survey published by MassMutual this month, a third of U.S. retirees reported that while retiring didn’t make them less happy, it also didn’t make them happier.

Why? Almost half of the retirees who said they aren’t happier in retirement pointed to feeling lonely at times, and 33% said they didn’t have as much romance in their lives.

A look at survey data from retirees who are “much happier” also offers some insight into the factors that increase people’s wellbeing after they exit the workforce. Financially speaking, more than 60% of the much-happier crowd said they paid off all their debt at least five years prior to retiring, compared to only 48% of those who said they aren’t happier in retirement.

The much-happier retirees also took steps to improve their physical health before saying farewell to work. The majority reported that they spend time with loved ones, exercise, pursue hobbies and travel.

On the whole, the people who are really enjoying their retirement seem to keep themselves busy, but the survey also suggests that they have less financial stress.

That’s concerning, given the grim financial realities many Americans face when it comes to paying for retirement. As we’ve covered in recent Retire with Money issues: Nearly half of Americans 55 and older don’t have any money saved for their next life stage, so paying off debt, planning trips or evening prioritizing their health may not be an option.

You can read my story for more on MassMutual’s findings. Want to share a story with me about how your retirement is going, or where it’s headed? Have any burning retirement questions? Drop me a line at mcags@money.com.

— Mary Ellen Cagnassola, Money reporter

Mary Ellen Cagnassola

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Stat of the Week: 16.6%
Relax

In China, the mandatory retirement age for women in blue-collar jobs is 50, but for their white-collar counterparts, it’s 55. A recent study by researchers from the Yale School of Public Health found that rates of emergency room visits for mental health issues like anxiety and depression increased by 16.6% after women in blue-collar occupations retired. Among the white-collar female retirees, there wasn’t a similar growth in emergency care.

Money Move of the Week
Protect your family’s future without breaking the bank.
Life

While whole life insurance may seem like the obvious choice, term life insurance can often offer a better solution. For starters, it’s typically six to 10 times more affordable, allowing you to redirect savings toward your dreams. With fixed premiums and death benefits, it’s simpler than whole life insurance. Plus, you can enjoy flexibility as your family grows, with the option to convert to permanent insurance.

See Money’s Best Life Insurance list for affordable options, starting at just $7/month.

Life

 

Retirement 1, 2, 3
Social Security
Money; Getty Images
  • 🫏🇺🇸🐘 Democrats have condemned a recent proposal by House Republicans that would raise the retirement age for claiming Social Security, the Washington Post reports.
  • 🔍 Politifact looked into Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump’s recent assertion that Social Security would be “destroyed” by the influx of immigration to the U.S., finding that the statement is false.
  • 💰 In 2021, Congress approved $86 billion in taxpayer funding to restore retirement benefits for people under multiemployer pension plans, which are funded by a group of companies. The New York Times reports on how the aid has benefitted those retirees, and why partisan disagreement is complicating further retirement reforms.

More Insights and Advice from Money
RETIREMENT
Having enough money to last through retirement is a goal for most people, but what's the best strategy for saving?
Money; Getty Images

retirement
As millions of Americans struggle to put away enough money for retirement, economists, lawmakers and workers alike are advocating for the revival of a retirement-planning relic.
Money; Getty Images

retirement
The final batch of March Social Security payments are scheduled to go out this week.
Olive Burd / Money; Getty Images

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Older messages

Here’s the secret to worry-free travel

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Protect your trips from the unexpected ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌

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Start investing in gold and diversify your financial future. ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌

Time’s running out to resolve your tax debt

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The IRS is resuming debt collections. ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌

Issue #230: File your taxes for f-r-e-e

Wednesday, March 20, 2024

plus ancient lipstick + a pig cafe ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌

Veterinary bills are rising – what can pet owners do?

Tuesday, March 19, 2024

Don't risk a budget-busting accident. ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌

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