There are many challenges created by increased longevity – from increased medical bills to insufficient retirement savings, and whether ageing is treatable as a disease.
With 50% of babies born in the developed world expected to live past 100 (providing the planet survives) and the first person to live to 150 years already born, according to a British biomedical gerontologist, it’s clear that a fundamental reset of the notion of lifespan is desperately required.
The three-stage: youth/learning, career/earning and retirement/yearning model was redundant before the gig economy (temporary and self-employment rather than at corporate) and Covid economic effects struck home. Nearly every institution (government, insurance and finance, medicine, religion, financial advice/planning) is orientated around an expected international lifespan of 81.2 years for females and 76.4 for males.
So what to do? Sure the billionaires can afford to invest in cryogenics, Mars travel and extending youth through a deceleration of the ageing process with hopes of lower health care costs, higher productivity and greater well-being, but for those already retired with lesser means, the options are more limited.
But those levers exist and that’s what we want to talk more about:
- scrutinising and reducing costs – it may surprise you that most companies don’t reward loyalty and you can often get significant savings by moving your custom to other companies or more appropriate products e.g. short-term insurance – many people are just over-insured.
- the possibility of earning more – take a look at 50 Plus Skills, a platform to find opportunities to be engaged, use your undeniable skills and possibly earn some additional income or others like them.
- downsizing is a consideration for some as a last resort but often the costs/inconvenience are intolerable, or alternatively approaching family to assist.
What else would you suggest as a way to make ends meet?
With any of these changes, the aim should be to ensure that the gift of increased longevity is not felt as a burden – the United Nations describes it as a “human success story” which gives us a reason to celebrate public health, medical advancements, and economic and social development. We should not as a society want to wish it away. Let’s celebrate that we may live longer than we planned for, but also collectively figure out how to finance it – that’s our raison d’être as a company.
Whilst we are on matters mortality related, 12-16th September was National Wills week but if you didn’t manage to update your affairs of estate, remember that all Water Financial clients can do so for free and anyone else for R 300 here. Please be careful of free offers that require you to make someone the executor and remember: “There ain’t no such thing as a free lunch.”
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE: Where there’s a will there’s a way!
Take care of yourself and your loved ones – life may be longer but it’s no less fragile.
The Water Financial team
“There is a fountain of youth: it is your mind, your talents, the creativity you bring to your life and the lives of people you love. When you learn to tap this source, you will truly have defeated age.”
― Sophia Loren
CLICK HERE TO READ MORE: The Case for Home Equity Finance
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