Retirement Not a Choice for Many as
Four in Ten (41%) Retired Canadians Say Timing of
Their Retirement Wasn’t Their Choice
Of the Retirees (5%) Who Have Gone Back to Work,
Four in Ten (41%) Say They Needed the Money
Wednesday, April 20, 2011
Toronto, ON – The best laid plans are not going as expected for many Canadians approaching retirement, according to a new Ipsos Reid poll of Canadians aged 50 and older (with household assets of over $100,000) conducted on behalf of RBC. While most (83%) pre-retirees believe they will be retiring at a time of their choosing – either because they are ready to retire (72%) or because they will have saved enough money to retire (25%), nearly half (41%) of Canadians who are currently retired say that the choice was made for them, with the primary reasons including leaving at their employer’s request (18%), health reasons (14%), reaching mandatory retirement age (6%), leaving to care for a loved one (3%) or some other reason (9%).
Furthermore, 15% of retired Canadians say that they had absolutely no advance notice before they actually retired, and another 9% only had a month or less notice. Others knew the timing of their retirement up to six months ahead of time (20%), six months to a year ahead of time (22%), more than a year (23%) or more than five years (13%) before the actual date of their retirement.
Moreover, of the small proportion of retired Canadians heading back to work (5%), more retirees are doing so for financial reasons, as four in ten (41%, up 9 points) say they went back to work because they needed the income. Fewer retirees who have returned to the workforce say they did so because they were bored (39%), needed a hobby (17%), are fulfilling a lifelong dream (9%), want to start their own business (7%), had an opportunity to promote a worthy cause (5%), need to pay for children’s education (4%) or some other reason (20%).
The data also reveal that fewer Canadians are retiring debt free, as only 56% say they had no debt, down 5 points from last year, compared to 44% of retirees who do say they had debt when they retired (up 6 points). The increase is driven by a higher proportion of retirees having a mortgage on their primary residence (23%, up 8 points) and more having a line of credit (22%, up 6 points).
Even with the best of planning, sometimes retirement doesn’t always go as planned. If at some point during their retirement they determine that their income isn’t enough to sustain their lifestyle, nine in ten (89%) retirees say that remaining in their home and living more frugally is among their top-three approaches, while a similar proportion (87%) of retirees would move and downsize or rent. Fewer (65%) would rank staying in their home and selling assets as one of their top-three options, while fewer still (37%) say that returning to paid work would be among one of their top-three solutions. Just 15% would include taking out a loan, and fewer (8%) would include asking a family member for financial help as one of their top-three approaches.
These are some of the findings of an Ipsos Reid poll conducted between February 25 to March 7, 2011, on behalf of RBC. For this survey, a sample of 2,245 adults aged 50 and over with household assets of at least $100,000 from Ipsos' Canadian online panel was interviewed online. A survey with an unweighted probability sample of this size and a 100% response rate would have an estimated margin of error of +/-2 percentage points, 19 times out of 20, of what the results would have been had the entire population of adults aged 50+ with assets in excess of $100,000 in Canada been polled. All sample surveys and polls may be subject to other sources of error, including, but not limited to coverage error, and measurement error.
For more information on this news release, please contact:
Associate Vice President
About Ipsos Reid
Ipsos Reid is Canada's market intelligence leader, the country's leading provider of public opinion research, and research partner for loyalty and forecasting and modelling insights. With operations in eight cities, Ipsos Reid employs more than 600 research professionals and support staff in Canada. The company has the biggest network of telephone call centres in the country, as well as the largest pre-recruited household and online panels. Ipsos Reid's marketing research and public affairs practices offer the premier suite of research vehicles in Canada, all of which provide clients with actionable and relevant information. Staffed with seasoned research consultants with extensive industry-specific backgrounds, Ipsos Reid offers syndicated information or custom solutions across key sectors of the Canadian economy, including consumer packaged goods, financial services, automotive, retail, and technology & telecommunications. Ipsos Reid is an Ipsos company, a leading global survey-based market research group.
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