Cost of solo retirement an increasing concern for Canadians

Canadians planning to retire alone are anxious about outliving their retirement savings

Cost of solo retirement an increasing concern for Canadians
In its 2016 census, Statistics Canada found that the percentage of one-person households has hit an all-time high, making it the most common type of living arrangement in the country. For advisors, that means helping more single clients — especially with regard to their retirement savings.

A new survey by TD has found that 65% of Canadians who are at least 40 years old and currently single, separated, divorced, or widowed expected that they will be living solo upon retirement. Within this group, 47% were concerned about depleting their retirement savings before they pass away — a growing risk as life expectancies rise.

“Facing retirement alone is becoming increasingly prevalent,” said Rowena Chan, senior vice president at TD Wealth Financial Planning. “Canadians planning to retire solo are acutely concerned about whether they are saving enough to meet the wide spectrum of costs they will encounter in their older years.”

Among those anticipating a solo retirement, 39% felt they were at a disadvantage when it comes to saving for retirement compared to dual-income couples. And 46% said earning a single income made it difficult to build a nest egg while covering day-to-day bills on their own.

At the same time, 63% were anxious about rising daily expenses; 41% were afraid they won’t have enough money for necessities; and 39% were apprehensive about increasing healthcare costs.

“For those relying on a single income to fund their retirement, it's critical to think beyond day-to-day financial obligations and plan accordingly for the future,” Chan said.

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