I like this retirement planning survey from insurance company The Hartford.
It surveyed people living in retirement and found that people who had made the leap were glad they did.
- Some 77 percent said, "I am happier now that I am retired."
- About 42 percent wish they had retired sooner.
- Twenty-two percent say they are retired and feel "peaceful."
I'm not sure about that last one. It sounds like something you'd say at the funeral parlor. But other than that, this survey is reassuring. Other findings were equally positive.
Overall, most of the retirees surveyed don't seem to have had to sacrifice much when they gave up earning a salary. About 14 percent said they moved to a more modest home, 17 percent are shopping less, and 15 percent say they are driving a smaller car. But almost none of them say they've had to give up dining out, entertainment and other recreation. But they are taking it easy, with 38 percent reading and watching more TV.
Contrary to all the reports you read about people planning to work in retirement, only 9 percent of retirees the Hartford surveyed have gone back to work.
Most retirees hope to live a long time with 35 percent expecting to see their 90th birthday.
I read this survey with great interest because my husband and I are experimenting with retirement this winter. We've rented a condo, and we're going to Florida for four months. He's working from a home office part of the time and flying back home to Detroit other weeks. I've been working from a home office for the last 16 years, so this won't be much of a change for me. We're looking forward to sunshine, fishing, spring training and the races at Daytona.
It's exciting -- and the beginning, I hope -- of the retirement adventure.