In general, retirement rates have increased during the pandemic. Before COVID-19, the retired population grew by about 1 million retirees per year. But during 2020 and 2021, 3.5 million more people retired.1
As it turns out, part of the “Great Resignation” that we’ve all been hearing about has been driven by the “Great Retirement” of women age 65-plus. Furthermore, older Americans who are married or widowed are more likely to be retired than their single peers, according to an analysis by the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis.2
Regardless of your status — single, married, man, woman, older or younger — there are plenty of retirement income strategies for every demographic. One of the key goals is to identify what you want your retirement to look like — bigger and better than when you were working, about the same or a downsizing of your expenses. We can help you figure out a strategy.
Thinking about what you want to do in retirement is an important step, and that can differ between men and women, even husbands and wives. A recent study that surveyed retirees in both the U.S. and Europe found consistencies in how men and women approach retirement. Men may suddenly develop more significant relationships with family members and friends. Women, who typically have already developed these relationships and sustain them during retirement, tend to spend more time involved in the lives of their grandchildren. Interestingly, wealthier men tend to gift more money to their children after they are retired than beforehand.3
Notably, a lot of the recent female retirees worked in retail, trade, leisure and hospitality, which put them at a higher risk for COVID exposure. That may have led to a decision to quit to avoid exposure and also to help with child care for their grandchildren. It is also likely that many of these women are married and have income and retirement resources through their spouse.4
When planning for retirement, it’s a good idea for couples to consider common activities they can do together. Not only does this help strengthen their bond, but it’s cheaper than funding numerous individual activities by each partner. Consider volunteering together, traveling, finding new hobbies — and have fun!