Retirement in Ireland 2014: A Survey Report” from the Retirement Planning Council has revealed that more than half of those approaching retirement or recently retired did not feel ready for retirement prior to undertaking a retirement planning course. The new Report from the Retirement Planning Council is based on an extensive national survey of over 648 people who are either approaching retirement or had recently retired in the last 12 months.

Established in 1974, the Retirement Planning Council is an independent body with a voluntary Board of Directors that works with over 400 companies throughout Ireland.

Fiona Thornton, Chairman of the Retirement Planning Council, said that “Retirement can be a time of great upheaval and change – not just financially but emotionally, psychologically and physically. It is vital that people take time to prepare themselves. Equipping themselves with the knowledge and skills to deal with the changes ahead makes for a smoother transition into retirement. Over half of the participants in our survey did not feel properly prepared for their retirement. Taking the time to consider all the changes that retirement brings and making a personal plan to address them, goes a long way to helping retirees feel prepared. Nearly half of people surveyed did not have any kind of plan in place for their retirement other than a financial one.”

“The Report highlights the crucial role played by the Retirement Planning Council in preparing individuals and their families for life after work.  Our research shows that prior to undertaking a retirement planning course, 44% of participants felt worried, indifferent, or apprehensive about retirement.  Having completed a retirement planning course with the Retirement Planning Council over two-thirds of those surveyed felt differently about retirement.  A staggering 90% plus felt excited or optimistic about retirement once they had started to plan with us” continued Fiona Thornton.

Tánaiste Launch the Report at Council’s 40th Anniversary event

The Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton T.D. officially launched the Report at a special event on 26th November where she was the guest of honour to mark the Retirement Planning Council’s 40th anniversary in the offices of the Retirement Planning Council at Pinebrook House, 72-74 Harcourt Street, Dublin 2.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton T.D. said  “The results of the survey are very positive for the Retirement Planning Council, with 95% of respondents feeling optimistic about their retirement on completion of a retirement planning course.  This is a tribute to the excellent work of the Council over the past forty years and strongly confirms the benefit of good retirement preparation.”

Fiona Thornton, Chairman Retirement Planning Council added “2014 is a significant year for the Retirement Planning Council, as we are celebrating 40 years of preparing individuals and their families for an active and full life post-retirement and the Report will be officially launched by the Tánaiste at a special event to mark our 40th anniversary.”

Changing Retirement Landscape in Ireland

The survey highlighted the changing nature of retirement in Ireland and people’s attitude towards it. “Retirement in Ireland is changing along with the pensions landscape.  As a result people’s attitudes towards retirement are also shifting. The concept of gradual retirement is becoming more prevalent as people slowly reduce the amount of time they spend working.  This trend is reflected by 37% of respondents who indicated they plan to continue working during retirement.  This, in turn, mirrors the widespread move away from Defined Benefit to Defined Contribution pension plans in Ireland.” said Fiona Thornton, Chairman of the Retirement Planning Council.

Comprehensive Approach to Retirement Planning

The Report provides an insight into retirees’ attitudes regarding issues other than financial retirement planning. This includes attitudes to health; their involvement in clubs or volunteer groups and their intentions to continue that involvement after they retire.  It also looked at internet usage and engagement with digital media among the sample.

Fiona Thornton, Chairman of the Retirement Planning Council explained “Retirement planning is more than financial preparation.  Research shows that retirement planning should also include retirees’ psychological and emotional needs. This broader focus is emphasised in the courses run by the Retirement Planning Council.  We take a holistic view of the changes experienced in retirement.  We consider changes to personal identity, lifestyle, health, as well as financial circumstances. The survey conducted by the Retirement Planning Council mirrors this approach and looks at issues such as whether retirees have a healthy living plan in place and how they will maintain their social network. These aspects are just as important as the financial side of retirement.”

Only 34% of those surveyed had a healthy living plan in place.  Almost two-thirds of those surveyed held membership of clubs and organisations that they intended to continue into retirement.

About the Retirement Planning Council

The Retirement Planning Council offers practical retirement planning courses to employees from over 400 businesses and organisations in both the public and private sector.  Over 3,000 individuals attended retirement planning courses all over the country in 2013 with the Retirement Planning Council. Courses run by the Retirement Planning Council take a holistic view of the changes experienced on retirement, including changes to lifestyle, health, as well as financial.

ENDS

 

For further information contact:

Cathal Lee

Lee Communications

One Lower Leeson Street

Dublin 2
+353 86 7771415
+353 1 5249585

cathal@leecommunications.ie

 

Notes to Editor

  1. In total, 648 people were surveyed, with all those surveyed either having retired in the last 12 months or due to retire within 12 months. Retirees from Connaught, Leinster, Munster and Ulster answered questions regarding their attitude toward different elements of retirement.

 

  1. The results of the survey are from a wide range of men and women, between the ages of 55 and 69 years, from a variety of backgrounds and employment status, to offer their perspectives on retirement including the financial aspects of retirement and the non-financial side of retirement.

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