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Are clients happier in retirement?

21 December 2017

New research from Prudential points to those who retired in the past 10 years generally being fitter, healthier and more active after work.

Retirement has meant a new lease of life for millions of people who have given up work in the last 10 years, with more than one in four (26%) saying they are fitter and healthier since they stopped working, according to new research from Prudential.

The provider found that far from winding down, nearly half of those who have retired since the height of the financial crisis (48%) say they are busier and more active than they anticipated.

Through embracing the benefits of retirement and making the most of the new-found time, more than one in three (35%) say they have more time to make their life more adventurous than they could have hoped while they were still at work.

When asked how else their experience of retirement was exceeding their expectations, many of those who have become pensioners in the last 10 years pointed to improvements in their relationships. More than a quarter (26%) believe they now get on better with their partner while 25% think that their relationship with their family is happier since stopping work. Meanwhile, just under one in four (23%) say their social life has improved more than they expected.

Many of those interviewed are from the last group of retirees where the majority will benefit from generous final salary pensions, reflected in the nearly two- thirds (63%) who – described their financial situation as comfortable or well off.

Reflecting on their retirement in general, the vast majority who gave up work in the last 10 years (86%) said that it had met their expectations or they were happy with how it had panned out so far, while only one in eight (13%) said that it has been a disappointment.

Nearly two in five (37%) thought they would have missed work more than they have since retiring, and in fact one in four (26 per cent) wish they had retired earlier.

Meanwhile, on reflection, 11% wish they had been more active or found a job in the early years of their retirement.

Kirsty Anderson, a retirement expert at Prudential, said: “Over the last 10 years we’ve studied the finances, plans and aspirations of people as they reach retirement, so it’s really good to now find out that for many people retirement has provided them with a new lease of life.

“And as people who plan to finish work in the next ten years begin to look forward to their retirement there’s plenty they can still do to make sure they are as comfortable as the people who have become pensioners over the last decade. Most importantly, in the face of changing pension rules, many people will benefit from a consultation with a professional financial adviser in the run up to retirement.

“Retirement will continue to change over the coming years but for many people the desire to make the most of their new-found free time will remain. Even for those planning [to retire in 2027] the best approach remains the same as it was for our pensioners who gave up work back in 2008 – save as much as possible for as long as possible during your working life.”