Fitness easier than finance for Americans

A survey conducted in the United States has shed light on the extent to which American consumers prioritise financial planning, with a greater number indicating their intention to exercise regularly or see a dentist than to seek financial advice.

According to the PNC Perspectives on Retirement survey, 84 per cent of Americans intend to visit the dentist or exercise regularly this year, while 43 per cent plan to spend time on managing their investments.

The survey, which focused on Americans aged between 35 and 70 with at least $100,000 in total investable assets, also found that 62 per cent had not taken steps to prepare a retirement income plan.

PNC head of wealth planning Stephen Pappaterra said people were finding it easier to develop habits for fitness than finance.

“As with physical fitness, reaching a retirement goal doesn’t happen by chance,” he said.

“Advisors and clients must have better conversations to create a realistic plan built around their goals and dreams while taking into account their current financial situation.

“In retirement, your financial focus will shift to protecting your assets and developing an income stream to meet your retirement expenses.

“It’s vital to keep in mind that assets will likely need to stretch 20 to 30 years or more.”

To maintain financial fitness and ensure finances were in order for retirement, Pappaterra advised paying down a mortgage, paying off debt and saving for emergencies.

Other important factors included knowing how much money needed to be saved to maintain a current lifestyle, reducing spending to maximise savings, considering future health care expenses and thinking about timing of social security payments.

 

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