I guess the first and foremost reason that I have a strong passion and desire to serve senior citizens is because I am one! A number of years back I started to see the future and it scared me to say the least! What scares me most however is that I am by far not alone in the issues we face as a bunch of “Baby Boomers” My dad instilled in me a strong work ethic and with most of us being of the post World War II era, my guess is that many of you, my peers also have those strong work ethics. The odds are that with 76.4 million of us boomers, there is a great likelihood that a huge part of us face similar futures despite how hard we worked.
Well as I thought about my future I wondered how it was that I found myself in the position I was in. That was an interesting process of discovery. Perhaps many of you have had similar experiences. First of all the days of when you could work for one company all of your life, like our grandfathers could had become a thing of the past. Even my dad ended up working for a couple of companies, and had a business of his own for six years, in between those two companies. Well by the time I hit the workforce, those days were long gone. But that is not all i realized either. It wasn’t just that I ended up having several jobs that set me on a track of a bleak retirement. There were a LOT of other forces at work that would ultimately make having any kind of a nice comfortable lifestyle in retirement virtually impossible based upon retirement that I had earned through my jobs over the past 40 plus years!
I realized that while I managed to survive four separate company “Buy outs” not a one of those companies survived for more than a couple of years and in the process I watched all of my retirement 401K’s vanish! Add to that the fact that I had my own computer consulting business for several years and barely got by during those years and it is not at all hard to see how I was going to find myself in tough shape in my latter years! I knew that I was going to be facing some serious questions. Questions like…
- Can I survive on Social Security?
- Will we have enough for food?
- Will my pension / IRA’s / 401K’s be enough to last me through retirement?
- How can I afford a new car if I need one?
- How can I help my grand children?
- Will I ever be able to travel?
- Will I be able to afford to golf, and how often?
- What if i get hit with big medical bills?
- Can I afford to keep my current home? If not what am I to do?
- Will I have to take our a revers mortgage
(And these are only the tip of the iceberg) – you may have many more!
So what was I going to do? I knew I had to do something! Something had to change if I did not want to spend my retirement trying to simply “Squeak by!” Like I said earlier the worst part of this is that I am not alone in this plight! There are thousands and more likely than not, millions of others that face the same challenges and questions! I have been reading a book entitled MONEY Master The Game by Tony Robbins. In that book Tony describes the plight of the “Baby Boomers” extremely well! He points out that according to the Center for Retirement Research, 53% of American housholds are “at risk” for not having enough money in retirement to maintain their living standards. Yes you read that right, more than half are not prepared to maintain their lifestyle in retirement! Robbins also point out that more than a third of the workers have less than $1,000 saved up for retirement (not including pensions and the price of their home) and 60% have less than $25,000 saved up! In case you are not good in mathematics, that means of the 76.4 million baby boomers more than 45 million 8 hundred 40 thousand of us are ill prepared to survive retire with the lifestyle we currently have!
So what are we to do?
Over the next few blog posting that I will be creating for senior citizens, (although it applies to everyone that ever plans to retire) i will be discussing the following topics:
- Why Seniors are screwed for retirement
- Why it’s not totally our fault
- The lack of advice and/or training we received
- The bad advice we received
- Is there hope for us?
- What we do have going for us!
- How do we change our futures?
- What is our goal?
- How to we help others
- Our Children
- Our Grand Children
- Our friends?
I hope that you will continue to follow me along on this journey as I help YOU to see a way forward that will not only allow you to live the lifestyle that you currently enjoy, but to even move beyond that lifestyle into what YOU had only dream about in the past. If you follow along I will show You the steps that I have taken to change my retirement into one that my wife and I are more than ready to take full advantage of!
Finally, if i had struck a chord with YOU and you too are truly facing the same issues or if your struggles are a bit different I would love to get your feedback so be sure to add a comment to this blog! I do look forward to hearing from you!
Larry A. Coates