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(80 Posts)
amymorris01 Fri 04-Sep-20 20:02:10

Im due to retire in Jan after working all my life and Im starting to feel very apprehensive about it.
My DH is 8years younger than me so I will be at home alone for a few years.
I worry that im giving up quite a good wage and will have to watch the pennys is this usual.
I have RA and have both knees replaced and have screws in my ankle so I think it is time for me to retire Im just worrying if im doing the right thing as you can stay at work for ever if you want now.
Is this normal to worry?

BlueSky Fri 04-Sep-20 20:11:57

Amy most people go through a shall I/shan't I period wondering when it's the right time to retire. And most people at the begging will regret retiring especially if they enjoyed their job and their colleagues'company. But you do get used to it, there's plenty to do and as they say you'll wonder how you ever had time to work! Good luck!

midgey Fri 04-Sep-20 20:17:41

Could you go part time to get yourself used to the idea?

Jane10 Fri 04-Sep-20 20:19:24

I love being retired. The first time I really took it in was one day stuck at the traffic lights I was agitating for them to change then I suddenly realised that I wasn't against the clock any more. There was no rush. I could take my time. It was a wonderful feeling.
I'm bored right now due to my two voluntary jobs and Aquafit and yoga classes being off but before lock down I was as busy as I wanted to be not as busy as I had to be.
Relax into retirement. I'll bet your knees will thank you for it!

welbeck Fri 04-Sep-20 20:20:42

did you not consider the option to continue before now.
what about negotiate to do fewer hours.
although so many people are being laid off every day, i think most employers will want to shrink the workforce, and if you have already agreed to finish in jan they are unlikely to re-consider.
what about looking for other roles, but again in this climate, realistically unlikely to be successful.
at least you are getting a works pension presumably.
many people over 50 made redundant have to struggle on relying on savings until pension at 66.

Alegrias Fri 04-Sep-20 20:23:06

Amy I retired in May after working for 35 years and had been looking forward to it for ages. I had so many things that I wanted to do, places to go, people to see. COVID has clipped my wings for now.
I have found it quite difficult going from a busy 10-hour-a-day working life to being at home, but I think that's been the pandemic rather than the retiring!
I had a good plan for my finances, and I do believe you spend less than you think you will after you retire. For instance, I hardly ever fill the car with petrol any more.
I am still looking forward to doing all the things I'd planned, and there are lots of things to be done if you feel you will be at home on your own. I'm not going to presume to tell you what you could do, but I've been doing family history, crafting, I've done some online courses...and I joined Gransnet!
Hope it all works out for you.

Teacheranne Fri 04-Sep-20 20:35:55

I retired two years ago as soon as I was 60 and my two occupational pensions kicked in. I had not regretted it until lockdown when my social life abruptly stopped and I spent all day in the house on my own. But I don't really miss it, just miss some interactions at the moment.

I was lucky in that my overall income did not reduce some do not have to watch the pennies - not that I am extravagant, but I do have enough for my fairly modest life style. I was divorced many years ago so for the last 15 years of my career, once my children had flown the nest, I was an Head of Department at a large school and I was able to save a lot of my salary and invest in extra pension benefits. The flexibility of new pensions helps me as I chose not to take an annuity but to drawdown from the fund as and when I need it. I also worked part time for the last three years which eased me into leisure time.

If your health is such that you would benefit from retiring, then go and see a pensions advisor to see what your options are, you might be able to move funds around to maximise your income. I appreciate that by no means everyone has an occupational pension nor has been able to save in private pensions so many people do have a lower income but there are savings to be made when not having to go to work and there are many things you can do that do not cost a lot - walking, volunteering, having friends round for coffee etc. Go for it!

Doodledog Fri 04-Sep-20 20:36:45

I was the same before I took the plunge. I don't regret it, though.

I am living on savings and a very small pension, so it's a big drop from what I was used to, but I don't notice very often, as everything changes at once. I don't have commuting charges, and things like cups of coffee, lunches and work clothes really add up. One thing that I both miss and save money on is going out after work. I used to do that a lot, and in some ways I do miss it, as I live in a small town and worked in a city. I could make the effort to go into the city for nights out, but there rarely seems much point. On the other hand, it saves a lot of money, so it's swings and roundabouts.

What is interesting is that I am not in touch with many ex-colleagues. I thought I would have stayed close to a few of them, but we have drifted apart (largely because I don't go for nights out these days), which shows that without the common bond of the workplace there wasn't as much substance to the friendships as I'd thought. The other side of that, though, is that I am closer to friends from home.

I have never got bored easily, and have built on old interests and picked up a couple of new ones. My husband retired before I did, and we do some things together, but still keep our own separate interests, so we always have plenty to talk about.

The only nagging feeling I have is that if things took a turn for the worse financially, I wouldn't be able to earn money, and not having the security of a decent salary is a bit unsettling sometimes. I don't think about it often, but the Covid situation and talk of cuts in pensions and hikes in taxes makes me worry a bit, as for the first time in my life I am at the mercy of fate and politicians, which is not a reassuring thought, and low interest rates mean that my savings are diminishing faster than I'd hoped. If you have a better pension than me (which is likely!) though, that may not be an issue for you.

I'm pleased I left work when I was young enough to enjoy it (I was 58), as I have had a few health issues since then, and those, plus the Covid situation have made me realise that we never know what's round the corner.

If you want to do it, my advice is to do it now. It will never be the perfect time.

amymorris01 Sat 05-Sep-20 05:33:10

Thanks for all your replies.
I cant work reduced hours as I would still have to pay the same fares which was quite a bit and Im out 12hrs a day at the moment and my weekends are taken up with housework etc. I would have not thought of retiring but my job changed a lot in the last 5 years which has gone from one boss to three. I know my job inside out but im getting fed up with being told what to do if you know what I mean?. My pensions are ok but money does burn a hole in my pocket so I will have to curb that and start being sensable.
Am glad in the whole that you all enjoy being retired and Im sure I will. It is that it is such a big step and also at this time Im lucky to have the choice as many people havent.

Humbertbear Sat 05-Sep-20 09:11:04

I attended a retirement seminar at which we were told’ OST people find they have more money than they expected’. Don’t forget you won’t need work clothes, travel, lunches and you will have more time to prepare food at home if you wish. It’s not a good time employment wise but maybe you could get a part time job? In the end you will enjoy retirement so much you will wonder why you ever worried about it.

SusieFlo Sat 05-Sep-20 09:12:19

It’s great! Have fun!

wildswan16 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:21:34

It is absolutely normal to be a little anxious about any big changes in our lives. Retirement is one of these. I think you may find, like many others, that the prospect of it is much worse than reality. You may well find that you relish the quieter lifestyle. Not working can actually mean you save a lot of money from travel expenses, meals, clothing etc.

Look forward to it as a new and welcome experience. But be careful - many "retired" folk end up being busier than ever!

Chris3 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:26:48

So pleased you have posted that. Exactly my dilemma. So good to know I'm not alone and enjoyed reading all the helpful replies... Made me feel much better.

SiobhanSharpe Sat 05-Sep-20 09:26:48

I took early retirement from my very demanding (and well paid) job. The commute into London itself was awful and I had burnt out, really.
I was lucky to get an immediate pension at 55 and was of course worried about the drop in income. Luckily I had a redundancy payment too but found i was spending much, much less than I was at work. No more fares, taxis, coffees and lunches for a start! (Or bored/unnecessary spending at lunchtime either)
I haven't missed work at all , (apart from the company of colleagues from time to time) and we're doing fine for money.
I love the leisurely and relaxed starts to the day, breakfast with good coffee, talking over plans with DH and discussing events in general.
Yes, lockdown was difficult of course but we are more or less back to normal in my area.
If you find time hangs heavy on your hands you could find a part time job, perhaps, or sign up for volunteering or extra mural classes. I'd say go for it!

JanCl Sat 05-Sep-20 09:26:58

And if you feel you need more structure to your week, you could do voluntary work. I have been a volunteer adviser for Citizens Advice for five years. I am constantly learning, feel I am still contributing something and am part of a community of people who care about the same things I do. Enjoy your new adventure.

pce612 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:31:50

When I decided that I would retire, I worked out how much money I would be getting every month and reduced my hours over a period of time so my earnings were the same as what my pension would be. I deferred my state pension and worked on until I was 67, which boosted my retirement income.

hicaz46 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:34:19

Yes it is natural, but usually it’s fine. Your expenses will change and I’m sure you’ll manage. Enjoy a well earned retirement and find enjoyable things to do.

jocork Sat 05-Sep-20 09:34:46

I work in a school and was due to retire in July but would have been paid over the summer holidays. Because I'd been at home most of the time because of Covid I didn't want to retire from doing so little, so I went back to work this week!

I'd been desperate to retire as I was hating some aspects of my job, but I missed some of my colleagues. Also many of the things I was planning to do are still not happening, though some will start up in October if we don't get a second wave. My plans now are to retire after the October half term, but when the students come back next week I may end up giving my notice sooner if I don't feel safe!

This extra few weeks at work will help financially as I'll get my state pension as well, so can add a bit to my savings. I'm still in two minds like you but I'm also looking forward to the new freedoms I'll have. There are places I want to go and when travel is easier again it will be great to take holidays outside school holiday times, something I've not been able to do for many years ever since my children started school in the 90s until now!

Good luck with your retirement. I hope the benefits outweigh the disadvantages for you as I'm sure they will for me.

wetflannel Sat 05-Sep-20 09:34:59

I retired 4 years ago and do not miss work at all. I have plenty of hobbies to keep me occupied.

Juicylucy Sat 05-Sep-20 09:35:39

I can’t wait, I’ve got 2 more years then that’s me done. Looking forward to doing so many things.

Sarahmob Sat 05-Sep-20 09:37:03

If you’re worried about being bored in your retirement you could always check out U3A in your area. They have lots of interesting classes and are a great way of making new friendships that will compensate for the lack of contact with former colleagues. Happy retirement amy

Dibbydod Sat 05-Sep-20 09:40:32

Personally I think it’s lovely to be retired, no more getting up early and then the mad rush to get to work , what with all the traffic ect ect . It’s nice now to finally have ‘ me’ time , to take up all the interests and hobbies that didn’t have time for before , it’s also nice to relax and meet friends for lunch or to do some window shopping . Ok, the money isn’t the same , but life is not all about earning money , money doesn’t bring you happiness. I think as we get older and our health problems start to show it’s nice to chill out , take the back seat and let others do the “ driving “ .

polnan Sat 05-Sep-20 09:45:22

I have been retired 20 years now.. and only since my dh died just before Christmas and , of course, this Lockup! have I not really enjoyed it.. yet, I loved my job/work..

reduced income, downsized... unless you go for the "exotic" lifestyle,, no problem in my experience

I think we can worry about almost anything if we want to..
so normal? certainly not abnormal

Charleygirl5 Sat 05-Sep-20 09:53:44

I worked out if I could afford to retire at 60, decided I could and after paying off my mortgage I had little in the way of savings. I found 3 part-time casual jobs. Two were related to my professional job so they were well paid. I saved money until a few years later I broke my ankle, had it pinned and plated and my working days were over.

I love being retired doing what I want when I want. I also have had both knees replaced but I do not have RA. Try saving some money- to me that is essential.

NanaPlenty Sat 05-Sep-20 09:55:37

I retired really early (58) as my oh is older than me. It took a period of adjustment but the money worries were soon forgotten - you will find you just adjust to what you have. Make some plans to do some things you’ve always fancied trying, join a class etc. I bet you will love it.