You’re young, onto your first job and just kicking off your work life and life in general. Surprise surprise, it is also the most prudent time to kick off a retirement plan. Many of us will chuckle dismissively at the mention of retirement at the time when you’re just starting out. I would know. I’ve been there. At my first work place we received invites to a retirement benefits seminar every year and every year we would push them to the old accountant who was always poring over ledger books in the corner. We felt that that was where any and every advice on retirement belonged. He would pick whomever he wanted to go with among his fellow oldies. After all, some were hitting 60 and the oldest of us was under half their ages.
How wrong we all were. The time to gather all the information you can about retirement plans and to actually have a working plan in place is now. When you’re young, bouncy, and generally having a ball at life. It is unfortunate that other than the near mandatory saving plans like NSSF, many of us do not think of saving for old age when we’re young. And it is actually quite understandable. You’re more focused on building a great career and you’re not necessarily inclined to start peering at the end of said career in the distant future. Besides, 4 decades or so of work life look like an eternity and you could always catch up on your savings way before its late right?
Wrong. There is no shortage of excuses for not saving and you could very well have one every year. And they’re just that. Excuses. Statistics show that in the next 10 years, over 9.9 Million Kenyans will be retired, unemployed, and living on 40 cents a day. I must admit that that came as a shock to me and the reality of it felt a bit distant. But this is not altogether an impossible scenario and can befall anyone. Do not let it be you. Do not be the old grumpy man/woman who feels that the system failed them. The economy. The job market. Cost of living. Expenses.
To avoid all this, make the best of your working years right from the onset and start saving. Take a slightly harder stance on yourself and look at expenses as expenses and not as excuses for not saving. It is never too early to start saving for financial stability in old age.
Need more reasons to start saving now and not tomorrow? Here.
Age will catch up
Ok you’ll not completely shrivel up and wilt at 60. You may very well still continue being productive and making a living but an age related slowdown is inevitable. I know that with all the invincibility that comes with being young and bouncy, it is hard to fathom that. Save anyway. Even if you feel you’ll be energetic till you drop dead at 101, still what’s wrong with having some money at your disposal in later years?
Retire in peace
You do not want your retirement to be a fret fest. You’ve worked hard all your life and here is the time to finally wind down and enjoy the fruits of your labour. Retirement is not the time to get panicked about the loss of income. A financial stash may not be the end all but it certainly can make things way easier.
Your children may not be in a position to take care of you
As much as the age old tradition of relying on children to see you through your sunset years financially is still well and alive, things are changing. Cost of living is rising and as far as we can see, it will continue to rise. Your children will want to help you alright but with the rising cost of living, they may not be able to take care of their own families and still spare as much as is necessary to take care of their parents.
Life could throw you a nasty curve ball
As much we cannot predict or control misfortunes, it would always be good to have some financial assurance safely tucked away. Life may take an unexpected turn for the worse and rob you of your usual energy and ability to work. It would help if before anything unfortunate hits, you have a stash of some sort already.
Self-reliance is a thing and it is a good thing. Wealth creation is one sure path to be assured of self-reliance throughout life and more so in retirement. Saving is one sure path to good wealth creation. As much as there will be help coming your way from, say your children, your core survival will not be depending on help if you’ve saved good money.