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4 Retirement Realities: What Surprises Retirees Most
Financing Retirement, Retirement Tips

4 Retirement Realities: What Surprises Retirees Most

Will retirement be everything you envision it to be? From the cost of maintaining your lifestyle to having more time than you’d like to spend with your spouse, you may be hard-pressed to learn that the transition to a life of “leisure” isn’t always so easy. In fact, some of biggest changes come from the unexpected.

Here are four realities that catch many retirees off guard once they clock out of the workforce for good:

1) The cost of healthcare. Did you know that a married couple will spend an estimated $245,000 on healthcare during retirement? When it comes to retirement expenses, healthcare costs are leading the charge.

Many retirees say their healthcare costs have been higher than expected. What’s more, many don’t consider the cost of long-term care, which is not generally covered by Medicare. Someone turning 65 today has a 70% chance of requiring some type of long-term care services during their lifetime.

Situations like these are often under-anticipated, leading to a rude awakening at the worst possible time. The younger you are and the better your health, the cheaper your premiums for long-term care coverage should be.

2) The overall cost of living. You’ve built an impressive nest egg — or so you thought. According to the Employee Benefit Research Institute, two out of five retirees find their overall expenses are beyond what they budgeted:

  • 27% spend more on daily living expenses
  • 28% pay more in taxes
  • 20% report inflation is higher than they expected

Be sure to leave some wiggle room in your retirement budget if costs don’t add up as planned.

3) Missing the workplace environment. We’ve all fantasized about the prospect of never having to work again. But that may not be the case in retirement. Aside from the obvious income, work provides a sense of purpose and much-needed social connections. According to a Federal Reserve study, one third of retirees eventually return to work on either a full- or part-time basis.

And while income is certainly an attractive draw, the Federal Reserve believes that people don’t like not working, and would rather wake up and go to work. Before you retire, it’s important to figure out how you can meet the mental, physical and psychological fulfillment that working provides.

4) Too much “we” time. Among U.S. adults ages 50 and older, the divorce rate has roughly doubled since the 1990s. Coincidence? Perhaps. But with all the free time that retirement allows, you may discover your partner gets on your nerves more than you’d like to admit.

Think about it: You’ve likely spent the last few decades following your respective careers paths and raising a family. It’s easy for long-time partners to fall out of sync and neglect nurturing their relationship. Plus, each partner may experience the transition to retirement differently, so look for activities you can do apart as well as together.

Because every day is full of surprises…

Your retirement should be an enjoyable and fulfilling stage of life. Planning ahead for what’s to come can help make your transition a good one, especially when it comes to your finances. A reverse mortgage may be a sensible option to help alleviate the financial worries and unexpected expenses that can spring up during retirement.

Available to homeowners and homebuyers age 62 and older, this type of loan allows you to borrow against the equity in your home, while you still own and live in it. As with any mortgage, you must meet your loan obligations, keeping current with property taxes, insurance and maintenance.  Reverse mortgages aren’t right for everyone, so it’s wise to explore all your options.

[Read Reverse Mortgage Facts: Top 10 Things to Know]

Learn how Reverse Mortgage Funding can help reduce the financial stress from some of life’s surprises. Give us a call at (888) 277-1567 to find out if you are eligible, and to set up a convenient in-person appointment with one of our experienced loan specialists. 

This content is sponsored by RMF, one of the nation’s leading reverse mortgage lenders. We are dedicated to helping older Americans retire more freely, in the comfort of their own homes. As a result of our commitment to providing an extraordinary and positive customer experience, we have earned a 98% customer satisfaction rating;* a 5-star / Excellent score on Trustpilot; 4.8 out of 5 stars on LendingTree; and an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau. Call (888) 277-1567 to speak with a licensed reverse mortgage specialist to learn about our retirement financing products and solutions.


If you have equity in your home and believe you meet the eligibility requirements, a HECM may be the option that could help you retire smart.

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