Are Your Married Clients in Agreement on When They Want to Retire?
An interesting article published recently in the Wall Street
Journal discusses married couples who disagree about
when each should retire from full-time work. The article
(http://tinyurl.com/878brvu) showcased several couples
who were at different stages of the discussion.
Chances are high that many of your clients might fall into
this scenario. And chances are even higher that some may
never have had a serious discussion with their spouses
about when to retire, and whether they will retire together
They Just Don’t Agree
In some of the couples highlighted by the article, the
husband wanted to retire but the wife wasn’t ready to join
him. In others, it was the wife who was ready to retire but
the husband wanted to keep working.
In still others, a wife who retired years earlier and had
established a routine of being on her own, or had been a
stay-at-home mom with full reign over the home, is
strongly opposed to her husband sitting around the house,
interfering with her “alone time.”
Those who wanted to keep working full-time had financial
concerns about affording retirement. They also worried
about losing a sense of purpose in life if they didn’t work,
or that reduced activity would lead to wasting away in
their old age.
Retirement Requires Discussion
To afford retirement, some clients might need to consider
selling their family home – especially if it has become
larger than they need without children to care for. As an
advisor, what can you do when one spouse is ready to live
out of an RV and road trip it, but the other spouse feels
sheer panic at the idea of uprooting from a familiar
Get them to do one thing: talk.
If you have married clients who keep putting off the
retirement discussion, now is the time to bring it up. You’ll
be doing them a favor. In my experience, just opening up
the discussion is enlightening for both spouses.
Coming to an Understanding
If you can get them to really listen to each other, they often
learn something about the person they married that they
didn’t fully realize:
“He loves teaching and would feel lost without it.”
“She enjoys her independence and would feel
claustrophobic if we did EVERYTHING together.”
“He is afraid to retire because he’s worried we won’t be
able to afford medical care.”
As advisors, it’s our job to put these questions to our
clients to help them look at all their retirement options and
choose the best ones that will benefit their families.
To get more information regarding this or any related topic, please visit our website www.TEPLG.com or call us at 630-871-8778.