For some, retirement is something to get excited about. They’ve put together careful plans for when they retire and are ready to embrace the changes that it will bring to their lives.
For others, the thought of impending retirement is an unwelcome prospect that causes worry and anxiety, a huge change to their lives that they aren’t yet ready for.
For family and friends, it can be difficult to know how our loved ones are feeling about the prospect of retirement, so it’s important to take the time to talk over their plans for the future to get a better insight into their thoughts and feelings.
If you’re looking for tips on how to help your parents plan for their retirement, we can help. Take a moment to read this short guide and learn how you could help your parents as they transition to retirement and look forward to the new opportunities that await them.
Getting ready to retire
The first step in preparing for the future is to understand your parents’ current situation, then talk about what might change when they retire.
It’s likely that this conversation will include topics such as lifestyle changes, their finances and possibly their current living situation.
Understanding your parents’ current situation
It may be hard to get your parents to open up to you about any health issues they might be experiencing, and many people are reluctant to talk about their financial situation, including any outstanding mortgage and debt. But sharing their concerns with you could help them to relax more, knowing that they have someone to talk with.
It’s not always easy to get your parents to open up about their worries and there are many subjects they may be reluctant to talk about, such as:
- Financial problems
- Health and illness
Any change to a person’s lifestyle, including retirement, can introduce new concerns that take a toll on mental health and being there to listen and provide your parents with emotional support can relieve some of that burden.
Talking about finances
It’s at this point that you could encourage your parents to look at their finances honestly and talk about how they are expecting to fund their retirement. Do they have savings available? Do they have a mortgage or debts to clear when they retire? If this is the case, what are their options for clearing these debts?
This isn’t a conversation to rush. Take your time and chat things through at home where everyone is comfortable. It may also be useful to seek expert financial advice during this time. MoneyHelper (previously the Money Advice Service) offers easy to understand guides on how and when seek to financial advice when planning for retirement.
Be open and honest, without judgement
It’s important for everyone to be honest when you have your conversation. If your parents have admitted that they are struggling and in need of help, there are options.
Independent organisations such as IndependentAge and AgeUK also offer excellent support services and online guides to help you and your parents prepare for retirement. IndependentAge also offers a range of guides that could help you start the more difficult conversations.
Maybe you’ve been thinking about asking them to move in with you or you want to help them move into a new home closer to you. If this is the case, then you’ll want to get impartial legal and financial advice to ensure that everyone’s interests are protected in case circumstances change.
If you’re not in a position to help, don’t worry, this is where Homewise can step in with the Home for Life Plan.
Goals for the future
Encourage your parents to talk with you about what they’d like to do and achieve in this new chapter of their lives. What are their goals after retirement?
Talking to your parents about the plans they have for their retirement will give them the chance to really think about what they want to do and how they are going to do it – whether that’s the order they want to do it in or how they are going to fund it. It will also give them a chance to get excited about this next phase in their lives as well as give them the reassurance they need that they have your support when it comes to their future endeavours.
Having someone to talk to about the changes they are planning in their lives can make them feel less alone at a time when many will feel isolated.
Retirement brings with it a change in lifestyle, it’s a brand-new phase in life. Your parents will have more time to do what they enjoy and relax after many years in the workforce. It’s an opportunity for them to try new things and spend more time with their loved ones.
Sit down with them and put together a list of all the things they’d like to do once they retire. The plans can be as big or small as they like, and can include things like:
- Revisiting old hobbies
- Trying new hobbies
- Learning new skills
- Travelling around the UK or abroad
- Moving home
Moving to a new home closer to you and any grandchildren offers you and your parents the perfect opportunity to make new memories and create even stronger bonds. And, of course, having your parents close by could mean a new enthusiastic babysitter for you!
If they speed through their retirement wish list, there’s always the option of volunteering or part-time work. Check out these 10 ideas for part-time jobs for inspiration.
Ultimately, with your support, they’ll be happier, healthier and enjoy their retirement even more, which is what we all want for our parents.
Are your parents looking to move home in their retirement?
Did you know the Home for Life Plan could offer them a significant saving on the price of their next home? Contact our friendly customer service team for more information and to talk about how we could help.
In the meantime, we also have an online Budget Booster! It's a simple and quick way to see what your parents’ budget could be boosted to through the Home for Life Plan, enabling them to enjoy a protected and secure retirement.