Previous   Next

At what age do you think you will retire?

Asked at Massachusetts Street on March 5, 2007

Browse the archives

Photo of Larry Hare

“Probably about 60, because all of my retirement becomes available at 59. I started working early, so I’ll have 35 years built up by then.”

Photo of Julia Fletcher

“Hopefully at 43. I should be touring the country by then.”

Photo of Matt Hyde

“Never. A fear of boredom and lack of money will keep me going.”

Photo of Terrie Sikes

“I don’t know that I’ll ever completely retire. I’ll still work part-time doing consulting or something. As far as from full-time, probably around 70.”


ohjayhawk 10 years, 9 months ago

Probably the day I die.

Seriously though, I don't know that I could ever completely retire. I think I'd want to be staying active as long as possible, even if that means having a part-time job.

Crossfire 10 years, 9 months ago

...ain't got time to retire. ...too much to do. Where's my coffee?

jonas 10 years, 9 months ago

My species builds it's caccoon at 60 solar years and metamorphs, so I'll probably plan on retiring then.

For a bizarre monday morning. Ubermime found this and brought it to my attention, and now I'm sharing it with the rest of you. Strange stuff.

sgtwolverine 10 years, 9 months ago

I think I will retire at 25. But I may be off by about 40 years.

This is a funny question for me right now, since tomorrow is my last day here.

gccs14r 10 years, 9 months ago

Retirement calculators say I need $3.5 million to retire. I'll have to work until I'm 70 to have a prayer of getting there. 27 years to go.

paladin 10 years, 9 months ago

Why would I want to retire? I'm tired enough as it is. From working so much. I did get new tires for the automobile I had, so I guess I already retired then. Can you retire more than once? I'm really tired.

KSChick1 10 years, 9 months ago

I posted a sign in my office when I started this job 10 years ago, "Hang in there: Retirement is only 30 years away!" Unfortunately it is still true today, 10 years later.

People my age (37) have to be 67 in order to get full SS benefits, at least that's what my statement from the government says!

Or basically, after death, prop me up at my desk with a phone in one hand and mouse in the other! I'm sure I'll still have some project or other due!

beatrice 10 years, 9 months ago

gccs, why $3.5 million to retire? Using conservative investments, that should generate $175,000 a year while leaving the nest egg alone. That is certainly a nice sum to live on each year, but do you really need that much to retire?

I am shooting for $1.5 million nest egg. However, I'm with the "I hope to never fully retire" group and hope to continue working at least part time until late in life. One must stay active to make this whole trip worth while.

By the way, did anyone catch James Cameron's special last night? I recorded it and will watch later in the week, but am curious if the evidence of finding Jesus's body was at all convincing.

Kat Christian 10 years, 9 months ago

I'd like to retire right now and work part-time, unfortunately I have no way to pay my living expenses except to work full-time so I'll probably have to work until I drop. There is so much I'd like to have done in retirement, such as volunteer and/or work part-time and not have to deal with the amount of stress I have to now with a full-time job. Oh well I guess these days retirement is a luxury only few can have.

guppypunkhead 10 years, 9 months ago

Marion- How can you retire (or not) when you don't even have a job?


RonBurgandy 10 years, 9 months ago

I really don't see it happening. The retirement age will just continue to get older as I age. I would love to retire now and just travel the world, but my cubicle walls are just too impenetrable.

salad 10 years, 9 months ago

What is this "retirement" you speak of? Is it related to this "affordable college" I've heard myths about? I thought you just worked until you died or became obsolete. Maybe this "retirement" concept is brought to us by the same people who think it's possible to raise a family on one income.

sunflower_sue 10 years, 9 months ago

I retire every evening. When will I stop working? Whenever I feel comfortable doing so. I have never factored SS into my equations because I just don't think it will be there. I just max fund my IRA's and pray.

sgtwolverine 10 years, 9 months ago

I just decided on my retirement plan: I'm going to raid Sue's IRAs.

Wait, did I say that out loud?

OldEnuf2BYurDad 10 years, 9 months ago

When will I retire? After the market closes today, I'll have a better idea, but right now it's looking like i'll be working until I'm 87. Assuming I'm still slated to die at 88 (per my psychic), otherwise I'll have to move back my target date.

Retirement will be fun: Ten days in a cardboard box under a bridge, followed by a brief stay in the hospital for pneumonia, then death.

sunflower_sue 10 years, 9 months ago

You never know Sarge, at any given point they could be worthless. However, it is something that I do w/out yourself first and all I hope someday I'll be rewarded for being a good girlscout. I don't want to work forever. I want the fairytale ending. You know, buying and RV, eating off paper plates, and living on the TX/Mexico border. ;)

oldvet 10 years, 9 months ago

I tried it once... it lasted 11 days and I had to go get a job to keep my business-oriented mind busy... then I started my own business and now I'm so busy I have to hire people to help... I used to live in a big GM factory town and keep seeing obits where guys were dropping dead between 52-56... they always mentioned retiring from one of the factories after 30 years of service... all the great retirement and benefits and they were dead a few years later... I think I'll keep working... having too much fun...

sunflower_sue 10 years, 9 months ago

does "data entry" really pay that well? If so, I need to have a talk with my boss.

samsnewplace 10 years, 9 months ago

Retirement is not an option. They predict health insurance will double in rates in the next ten years, if so, we will all be working until we die for the health insurance...or 65 and Medicare.

Janet Lowther 10 years, 9 months ago

Retire? Well. . . I recon I'll start collecting retirement payments from the state shortly after I turn 57. However, I'm undecided as to whether I'll go get a job in the real economy or concentrate on the farm after that.

dajudge 10 years, 9 months ago

I'm only into my 5th career so far. Most people now, will have 7 to 10 different careers in a lifetime, so I'm on the downhill, but I haven't a clue as what my next one will be or what I will retire from. Hopefully, though, I'll live into my 80's and that gives me some 30 more years of productivity. When I'm done, I'll retire. Maybe this afternoon.

Ceallach 10 years, 9 months ago

Well, I thought I had retired at 42 and was feeling quite fine about it all. But life has a way of changing our plans, so here I am hoping I can retire at 66 :\

irnmadn88 10 years, 9 months ago

I think the question should be "How long will you live past retirement."

Sure, plan to retire at 65. What happens when you live until 90? 25 years on a fixed income...think about the cost of living increase over the last 25 years. In 1982, $100 worth of groceries could feed a family of four for a week or $100 barely feeds two people for a week.

Not too many people anymore can sell an acre or two off the ol' homestead to fund living that long...

Bone777 10 years, 9 months ago

I will hopefully need the time-off to spend my lottery or gambling winnings.
I can't wait!!!

dacs23 10 years, 9 months ago

"I retire every evening. When will I stop working? "

You have it all wrong Sue.

I plan to retire at 65, but I stopped working years ago.

Just don't say anything to my boss.

dacs23 10 years, 9 months ago

I take that back.

I'm at work now and I'm working to get the paper read.

Just don't say anything to my boss.

budwhysir 10 years, 9 months ago

I am currently tired and have been re tired many times, I hope not to re tire prior to my next birthday but who knows.

If one plans not to re tire that means they are already tired and have no plans to initiate any activity to re tire thier already tired feeling. Creating a want for not re tireing. anyhow once re tired I will keep from being tired simply by not re tireing

Flap Doodle 10 years, 9 months ago

In this day in 1953, Joseph Stalin retired.

gccs14r 10 years, 9 months ago


By my estimates, $3.5 mil will generate about $150k in annual income, but it will be the equivalent of only $40k in today's dollars.

Crispian Paul 10 years, 9 months ago

As a social worker, I will have my student loans paid off around the time I am 60, so I'll probably be a 70 year old retiree at that rate....

budwhysir 10 years, 9 months ago

I usualy re-tire at about 35 thousand miles but if the roads stay bad, I may elect to go to 30 thousand

Linda Endicott 10 years, 9 months ago

Retire? What's that?

I'll have to work until I the day I die.

canyon_wren 9 years, 11 months ago

I don't see any comments from those who HAVE retired--so guess I will add something. I actually haven't fully retired, but am managing on a 2-day a week job. I would love to be home full-time but can't quite afford it. Fortunately, living in a tourist town, there are always plenty of part-time jobs if you are not proud and have relatively good health--though they ARE seasonal. Even at my age, I have managed to do many different things--washed dishes at a gourmet restaurant for several years, worked as a gardener at a Four-Star B &B, worked in a bookstore, and at a motel, etc. I can get by on pretty little, now that I have SS and part of my former husband's university pension, but I strongly recommend that people going on Medicare get a supplemental policy (Plan F is pretty much the same regardless of the company), as it takes care of everything that Medicare doesn't and that is the only real "unknown" in my life. So far, so good. Retirement is wonderful, even if you have limited resources, if you know how to manage.

coolmarv 9 years, 11 months ago

This question is 10 months old. Hello!

canyon_wren 9 years, 11 months ago

hey,coolmarv--you are right! I didn't even notice. They switch the questions off and on through the day, and the one there right now (I think) is an old one. What a crazy system! I just assumed because this was over in the "Most Discussed" column, that it was a recent one. What a waste of my time--and a joke on me! I will be more observant from now on.

Jason Bowers-Chaika 9 years, 11 months ago

I will retire the day that I collapse leaning out of the drive through window.

I will retire the day that I have a heart attack with my foot "stuck" on the gas pedal and the car aimed at the Phelps' cult.

I wil retire the day my handsome night in shining jewelry takes me away from all this.

KSChick1 9 years, 11 months ago

The_Original_Bob (Anonymous) says:

"People my age (37) have to be 67 in order to get full SS benefits, at least that's what my statement from the government says!" KS Chick

I doubt 67 will be getting SS benefits in 30 years.

I agree! There probably won't be social security by the time I retire. Good thing I have retirement at my job. Course they'll probably go broke by then too! Why the OLD question today? I was reading it and the responses and was surprised to see I had already weighed in on this! 2007!?!

KSChick1 9 years, 11 months ago

How about Never, does Never work for you????


Richard Heckler 9 years, 11 months ago

Retire from what and for what reason. Sounds boring.


The contributions to Social Security will become less than the benefits paid out in 2018, based on the trustees' overly pessimistic assumptions. (See "Social Security Isn't Broken" and "The SSA's Cracked Crystal Ball," D&S November/December 2004, at>.) But that doesn't mean that the Social Security Administration will need to start selling bonds at that point. The interest income from the existing bonds will be sufficient to make up the difference until 2028. If the trustees' pessimistic assumptions are true, they will need to start selling bonds in 2028 and the trust fund will be reduced to zero in 2042. At that point, as I mentioned above, the Social Security system would simply revert back to pure pay-as-you-go, operating just as it did successfully from 1936 to 1983.

The best way to explain Social Security is to say what it is. It's an insurance system that protects your income when you retire or face disability, and provides income to your children if you die. President Bush wants you to look at Social Security as an investment--but it is a form of insurance that guarantees you a constant stream of income in retirement or in case of disability, adjusted to protect against inflation, for as long as you live.

Social Security can be compared to other types of insurance such as home insurance. You insure your home because if it should burn down, you would not be able to afford to rebuild it with your personal income alone. If your house never burns down, you will pay into the insurance fund and never get a penny back. But fire insurance isn't a "bad investment" because it isn't an investment at all. You are purchasing security.

Unlike fire insurance, Social Security inevitably gives most of us our money back. But the fact that we get money back does not change the fact that Social Security is a form of insurance, not an investment. Only the richest of the rich can afford not to have insurance and to rely solely on their own savings and investments to fund their retirement or risk of disability.

Young people must also understand that financial investments are inherently risky. Many investments fail, and when they do, you lose all of the money you invested. Today's 25 year olds have only seen the stock market go up, except for one (very large) drop. But you don't have to go back to the 1930s to see a different picture: If you put money into the stock market in 1970 and waited until 1980 to take it out, you would have lost money. There is absolutely no guarantee that stock investors will see the high returns Bush has been falsely promising.

Doug Orr is a professor of economics at Eastern Washington University. He speaks and writes regularly about Social Security. His e-mail is

Richard Heckler 9 years, 11 months ago

Has the president actually lied to the public about Social Security?

Yes. President Bush has repeatedly said that those who put their money in private accounts are "guaranteed" a better return than they'll receive from the current Social Security system. But every sale of stock on the stock market includes the disclaimer: "the return on this investment is not guaranteed and may be negative"--for good reason. During the 20th century, there were several periods lasting more than 10 years where the return on stocks was negative. After the Dow Jones stock index went down by over 75% between 1929 and 1933, the Dow did not return to its 1929 level until 1953. In claiming that the rate of return on a stock investment is guaranteed to be greater than the return on any other asset, Bush is lying. If an investment-firm broker made this claim to his clients, he would be arrested and charged with stock fraud. Michael Milken went to jail for several years for making just this type of promise about financial investments.

canyon_wren 9 years, 11 months ago

Interesting information, Merrill--thanks for sharing it!

Frederic Gutknecht IV 9 years, 11 months ago

I will retire as soon as it is financially feasible...which is NEVER!

jonas 9 years, 11 months ago

Wow, that video up top is just as bizarre as it must have been when I first posted it originally.

Tom McCune 9 years, 11 months ago

I was thinking 2/15/08 until the stock market headed South....

toefungus 9 years, 11 months ago

Why call it retirement? It is simply another job change.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.