It’s becoming less common for people to be eligible for retirement and actually be prepared for retirement at the same time, which has served to push back the retirement age for many—but not forever, according to a study by the Boston College Center for Retirement Research.
While 65 used to be the traditional retirement age, most boomers will need to keep working longer than their parents did. On the bright side, however, says the CRR, more than 85% of households will be prepared for retirement by age 70.
Being prepared means being able to maintain pre-retirement standards of living in retirement, and the National Retirement Risk Index (NRRI) measures the share of American households that may not be able to do so. This is determined by comparing households’ projected replacement rates, or the income they’ll have in retirement as a percentage of their pre-retirement income, with “target” rates that would allow them to maintain their living standards.
Following the financial crisis-inspired Great Recession, more than half (51%) of today’s working households are at risk, says the CRR. But if people work longer, their risk declines.
Despite the delay, most households will “still be able to enjoy a reasonable period of retirement, especially as health and longevity continue to improve,” the researchers note. “Working longer is feasible for most households, and it does not mean working forever.”
Written by Alyssa Gerace