Baby Boomers, Divorce, and Retirement
It seems that many baby boomers are experiencing a large divorce rate, which may have a huge amount of implication for their lives during their eventual retirement. The amount of divorces among those aged 50 or older has doubled from the period of 1990 to 2010. During that time, one in four U.S. divorces were within that same age group. Although experts are saying that this is the result of longer life spans, among other things, unfortunately the divorce of most baby boomers is going to affect their retirement as well.
The larger amount of money that was going to be used to fund a retirement for two people is now going to be split – which means that the retirement must be funded for two people who are going to be living apart. Generally, there’s a huge cut and loss of the amount of money that would be used for a retirement when a divorce occurs, and both parties have to struggle to figure out ways to ensure that their retirement can still be a possibility after everything is finished. For some people, this means delaying their retirement and continuing with working for an unknown period of time; for other people, this might mean ensuring that retirement is a bit more modest than they had originally imagined it would be.
The greatest issue seems to be that it costs more to retire as a single person than it would if you were to retire as a couple. In most cases, it costs around 30 percent more. For baby boomers who are getting divorced, it costs around 50 percent more to retire. Either these individuals have to keep working for a longer period of time or they need to start saving extra money in case there’s any chance that they may become single again in the future.
Another issue that many people don’t think about is in terms of healthcare. When a divorce happens, there’s a good chance that it’s going to affect your healthcare and the costs that you would generally experience while you were sick or receiving treatment. In most cases, your former spouse is not going to be present to take care of you or to help pay for your medical bills, which means you’re going to deal with a much greater expense for some of the health issues that you were previously sharing the costs of between two people.
The worst factor seems to be the issue of age, among anything else. If the individuals were around 20 or 30, a divorce would be alright and they would be able to rebound for their retirement much easier because they would still have plenty of time to work on saving towards that period. During your 50s and 60s, this is more of a concern because there’s less time to work on saving money again since retirement is so close.