• For a fifth consecutive year at least one in five retirees say they don’t feel ready to give up work yet
  • More than half of those due to retire in 2015 would consider working past State Pension age
  • The ‘Class of 2015’ is planning a busy retirement – getting fit and returning to education 

Going part-time, changing jobs or delaying your retirement plans – these are some of the accepted norms of the modern ‘pre-retirement’1 landscape, revealed by Prudential’s latest annual study2 into the finances and aspirations of those planning to retire in the next 12 months.

Now in its eighth year, the insurer’s ‘Class of 2015’ study illustrates that the phased or delayed retirements that became necessary for many during the financial crisis are now becoming accepted as the norm.

Over a fifth (21 per cent) of people who are planning to retire this year say they don’t feel ready to stop working altogether, a figure that has remained stable since 2011 among those approaching the milestone. In fact, almost a quarter (24 per cent) of people who are scheduled to retire this year have already chosen to delay their plans.

Working to improve finances
More than half (51 per cent) of the ‘Class of 2015’ would consider working past State Pension age to help improve their financial position. This is the sixth year in a row  that the majority of retirees have said that they would actively consider working on to improve their finances in later life.

Reducing the hours they work with their current employer is the preferred option for 31 per cent of this year’s retirees who would consider continuing to work. Nearly one in eight (12 per cent) would like to look for a part-time job with a new employer while 11 per cent say they’re happy to carry on full-time in their current job.

Working to keep alert and active
The decision to continue working past what previous generations would have considered the ‘traditional’ retirement age isn’t always a financial one. For this year’s retirees the most popular reason for considering staying in work, cited by 57 per cent, is to keep mentally and physically fit.

For 39 per cent it’s because they simply enjoy working, while 35 per cent say they would miss interacting with work colleagues. A third (33 per cent) don’t like the idea of being at home all the time and 23 per cent say they would miss having a daily routine.

Stan Russell, a retirement income expert at Prudential, said: “People’s attitudes towards retirement are increasingly optimistic, especially with the new freedom on accessing pension savings that will come into effect this April. The ‘Class of 2015’ are approaching their later years determined to improve their health, acquire new skills and enjoy themselves.

“Planning ahead to help achieve a retirement income that will support these ambitions is vital and consulting a financial adviser or retirement specialist well in advance of any planned retirement date can help enormously.

“The old image of everyone giving up work aged 60 or 65 and becoming a pensioner is a thing of the past. People are seeing the opportunity to stay at work full-time or in a period of ‘pre-retirement’ as an attractive one – whether it’s to boost their pension pots or just to stay fit, healthy and stimulated.”

Training, voluntary work and living healthily
The ‘Class of 2015’ are already planning a busy and healthier retirement for when they do give up work. Three in 10 (30 per cent) of those planning to retire say they will enrol in a course or take up some form of formal education, while 29 per cent plan to undertake voluntary work. Over a quarter (26 per cent) say they will join a club or activity group.

Staying fit and healthy is also high on the agenda with 43 per cent committed to undertaking more physical activity. Three in 10 (30 per cent) say they will eat more healthily, one in 10 (10 per cent) plan to reduce their alcohol consumption and five per cent intend to quit smoking.


2 Research Plus conducted an independent online survey for Prudential between 21 November and 4 December 2014, among 7,687 UK non-retired adults aged 45+, including 1,012 intending to retire in 2015.

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