We often hear stories about how little many folks have saved for their retirement. Sometimes the numbers are just amazing, especially when we consider just how much things cost and that despite protestations to the contrary prices continue to rise overall and retirement won’t stop that trend. One adviser describes most of his clients as needing to save more than they are currently saving. He says this not because he is aiming to receive more income based on his assets under management advisory fee but because he wants his clients to be able to attain their baseline budget and have some discretionary spending money for those other goals.
One would think that with all the effort the government has put into encouraging retirement savings – ranging from the deferral of income taxes on amounts contributed to qualified retirement plans to the automatic enrollment of workers in employer plans to the savers tax credit, among other things – there would not be an additional need to push the idea of saving. But the numbers say there most certainly is such a need, knowing that money is an essential part of retirement and it is much easier to put a bit away now and let it grow untouched than having to figure out how to make ends meet later in life.
However, the desire to live for today and not to defer spending is a very strong force for many of us and waiting for money to grow in an investment or saving vehicle just does not appeal that much when we could be enjoying what that money can buy today. So perhaps it is important to educate ourselves on what we may be needing and wanting later and how we may not be able to count on other resources as much as we’d like. Self denial is not the commonly accepted approach in these days of omnipresent social competition media and it takes stern stuff to hold back some money for later. If you can do it, save a bit for the future, then it will likely pay off. Try not to listen to the siren song of the advertisers and merchants and instead take some control of your financial life. It is worth it.