Nearly seven in 10 Americans want to live to be 100, according to a study

Despite fears of surviving on savings, most Americans still want to live longer, a study on longevity and retirement shows.

Nearly 70% of Americans want to live to age 100, with 29 being the “ideal length” for retirement, according to a report by Edward Jones and Age Wave that surveyed 11,000 adults in the United States and Canada in January. and February.

“We have been aware of the increase in longevity for some time,” said Ken Dychtwald, founder and CEO of Age Wave. “But in the last year there has been a lot more talk about it”.

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while the Life expectancy in the United States has dropped by 1.5 years, to around 77 years, In 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic, scientists expect it will increase over the next few decades, Dychtwald said.

“This could very well add another five or 10 or more years to the average life expectancy,” he said. “But the problem is that we don’t live those years with abundant health.”

On average, Americans spend the past 12 or more years struggling with disease, injury, or cognitive impairment, with 88 percent of those aged 65 and over managing at least one chronic condition, the study shows.

Additionally, the average couple may need an estimated $ 445,000 to cover annual medical bills and long-term care, which most retirees aren’t prepared for, Dychtwald said.

Three-legged stool

In a shift from the experiences of previous generations, the so-called three-legged stool of retirement income – Social security, pensions and savings – has become less common among retirees today.

Despite continuing social security threats and fewer pensions, many Americans are still not saving enough, the study shows. Most don’t maximize retirement savings, many accept penalized distributions from pension plans and 22% of those entitled to it do not contribute.

On average, retirees started saving for their golden years at the age of 38, but wish they had started at 28, according to the survey.

When asked about the purpose of pension funds, “people talk about security for the unexpected and about freedom,” Dychtwald said.

A new chapter in life

While many older Americans see their parents’ golden years as a time of “rest and relaxation,” they see their own retirement as a “new chapter in life,” the report revealed.

Retirees today see their next phase as a time to explore the possibilities, with many reinventing themselves, explained Mona Mahajan, Edward Jones senior investment strategist.

“There is really an interesting dichotomy between the old generation and the new generation,” he said.

Early and holistic preparation through the four pillars can be very rewarding.

Ken Dychtwald

founder and CEO of Age Wave

Additionally, there may not be a clear line between their career and retirement years, with many older Americans continuing to work.

Nearly 60% of older Americans expect to work in some way, be it full-time, part-time, or alternating between work and leisure, the results show.

However, the most successful retirees took steps decades in advance to prepare for what the report describes as the “four pillars” of retirement: finances, purpose, family, and health.

“Holistic and early preparation through the four pillars can have a big advantage,” Dychtwald said.