Thirty-five years of loyal service, a gold watch and a champagne send-off, followed by a steady pension. That was once the path to the American dream. Nowadays, it’s more like a fantasy. In its place is the so-called gig economy – the technology-enabled trend of individuals using their cars, homes, skills and spare time to earn income as freelancers.
Nearly all retirement savers worry whether their savings will be enough to support their retirement lifestyle. While a number of factors determine how much one can save for retirement, it is more difficult to accurately predict – and plan for – the total amount of your actual retirement expenses.
While there is extensive media coverage regarding Americans’ lack of retirement savings, a much less discussed topic is the growing amount of debt that Americans carry into retirement. Larger mortgages, higher student loans and a greater overall comfort with debt than displayed by earlier generations has increased the average debt for households approaching retirement by nearly 160% from 1989 to 2010, according to AARP.