Middle-Income Retirement Preparedness Study

More than half (54%) of middle-income Americans age 55 to 75 do not receive professional retirement guidance of any kind. This study explores the use, access and attitudes of middle-income retirees and pre-retirees toward planning for and managing their lives in retirement.

Analysis of the Middle-Income Retirement Preparedness Study finds that three misconceptions about professional advisors may be keeping middle-income retirees and pre-retirees from seeking this guidance.

Key Findings

Almost two in three (63%) middle-income Americans age 55 to 75 are unsure if they have saved enough to live comfortably in retirement.

More than half (54%) of middle-income retirees and pre-retirees do not receive professional retirement guidance of any kind.

Fifty-one percent (51%) of respondents had not been contacted by any kind of retirement professional in the past 12 months.

Eighty-four percent (84%) of those surveyed who do work with a professional indicated that they reached out to their advisor first, not the other way around.

Of middle-income retirees and pre-retirees not working with a professional advisor, 84% do not think they need one. The three reasons most often given for this are:

  • I can do it myself (47%)
  • I don't have enough assets (37%)
  • It's too expensive (23%)

Of all middle-income retirees and pre-retirees surveyed, 30% spend no time at all researching or investigating retirement planning opportunities; two out of three (61%) spend less than one hour per month.

Although those without an advisor enjoy planning, 63% spend less than one hour per month on retirement planning compared to 58% of those with an advisor. Over one-third (36%) of those without an advisor spend no time at all doing this research.

Many of those not working with a professional advisor feel it is too expensive; however, one-third (32%) do not know how much this service costs.

Many of those not working with a professional advisor feel they do not have enough assets for a retirement professional to want to meet with them; however, one-fifth (20%) do not know the asset minimum needed.

Two in three (68%) middle-income retirees and pre-retirees who work with a professional advisor feel better prepared for retirement than their peers do.

Only 14% of respondents working with an advisor do not think they have saved enough money to live comfortably in retirement, whereas one-third (34%) of those surveyed without a professional advisor have this concern.

Featured Charts & Data