Ontario boomers not ready for retirement

- TD Waterhouse Boomer Happiness Index shows majority feel behind in savings, worry they won't have enough money to last through retirement years -

TORONTO, Jan. 5 /CNW/ - Most Ontario boomers are happy (86%), but when asked to think about their retirement their attitudes change. According to the TD Waterhouse Boomer Happiness Index, which polled boomers (ages 45-64) to determine their emotional and financial state heading into retirement, two-thirds (65%) of Ontarian survey respondents worry that they won't have enough money to last through retirement.  More than one-third (39%) feel financially ill-equipped to navigate retirement and half (52%) feel like they are behind in their savings.  In fact, 24% of Ontario boomers say they are 'scared' of their looming retirement and almost half (49%) worry they will lose their family home as a result of their inadequate savings.

Money doesn't buy happiness, but it appears that having a financial plan does.
Boomers' concerns about money may be warranted - only 33% in Ontario have a financial plan in place for retirement. The Index also found a correlation between having a financial plan and happiness levels: when thinking about the fact that they are retired or approaching retirement, Canadian boomers who have a financial plan are more likely to feel happy (55% versus 31%) or relieved (37% versus 22%), than those without.

"Most Ontarians recognize the importance of planning ahead to ensure that they are financially ready when they stop working. Yet, it's concerning that only a third of Ontario boomers have established a comprehensive plan for achieving a financially-secure retirement," says Patricia Lovett-Reid, Senior Vice President, TD Waterhouse. "Planning, saving and investing is critical to becoming financially prepared, so you can enjoy your retirement."

Are boomers counting on a winning lottery ticket?
The top three ways Ontario boomers are planning on funding their retirement are through Old Age Security and Canada Pension Plan (73%), RRSPs (62%) and company pensions (45%). 

Many Ontario boomers are playing 'catch-up', with the majority (52%) feeling behind in their retirement savings compared to their peers.  Forty-one percent say they will keep working to fund their retirement and alarmingly, one-third hope to win the lottery to help supplement their savings!  While this statement may be tongue-in-cheek, this group is less likely to have a financial plan, be more anxious about retirement and feel behind in their savings.

What's keeping boomers up at night?
When asked to think about retirement, the top concerns for Ontario boomers were: keeping healthy and active (70%), being able to maintain their current standard of living (69%) and not having enough money to last through retirement (65%).

And it's not just about achieving a target amount of savings before retirement.  "As your retirement draws closer, speaking with a financial advisor about creating a clearly-defined retirement income plan will help you compare your current and future sources of income against your expenses," says John Tracy, Vice-President, Managed Investments & Wealth Planning, TD Waterhouse.  "An advisor can help you build sound financial strategies to reduce taxes as well as work to minimize the effects of market and financial risks throughout your retirement years, so your money is there when you need it."

Passing on wisdom: helpful tips from those with experience.
The top three pieces of advice that Ontario boomers and pre-boomers (ages 65-74) recommend for the next generation are: start saving earlier (86%), pay off your mortgage faster (66%) and save more money or invest more in an RSP (65%).

"I agree that the most important tip is to start saving earlier: don't procrastinate," says Lovett-Reid.  "Given that those with a retirement plan in place are happier than those without, it makes sense both financially and emotionally to seek the help of a qualified advisor who can coach you through the process. Even do-it-yourself investors can gain valuable insights from a second opinion."

About The TD Waterhouse Boomer Happiness Index
The TD Waterhouse Boomer Happiness Index polled boomers (age 45-64) and pre-boomers (age 65-74) through a custom, online survey. The survey was conducted by Environics Research from December 2 -7, 2010, and surveyed 1,000 Canadians including 380 Ontarians.

About TD Bank Group
The Toronto-Dominion Bank and its subsidiaries are collectively known as TD Bank Group (TD or the Bank). TD is the sixth largest bank in North America by branches and serves approximately 19 million customers in four key businesses operating in a number of locations in key financial centres around the globe: Canadian Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Canada Trust and TD Insurance; Wealth Management, including TD Waterhouse and an investment in TD Ameritrade; U.S. Personal and Commercial Banking, including TD Bank, America's Most Convenient Bank; and Wholesale Banking, including TD Securities. TD also ranks among the world's leading online financial services firms, with more than 6 million online customers. TD had C$620 billion in assets on October 31, 2010. The Toronto-Dominion Bank trades under the symbol "TD" on the Toronto and New York Stock Exchanges.

SOURCE TD Bank Group

For further information:

Liz Christiansen / Steve Presant
Paradigm Public Relations
416-203-2223
lchristiansen@paradigmpr.ca / spresant@paradigmpr.ca

Ali Duncan Martin
TD Bank Group
416-983-4412
Ali.DuncanMartin@td.com


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