Australians 45 and over plan to work well into old age

A chunk of Australians 45 years or older are not comfortable retiring at the average age and plan to work until 70 instead, one government survey has found.

"The majority of Australians intend to retire between 65-69 years, but the results show that now over a quarter of males 45 years and over plan to work past 70 years," ABS reported in a statement.

The timing of the snapshot captured respondents’ opinions just a few months after the government announced changes to the qualification of the Age Pension.

Currently the compulsory contribution to superannuation is at 9.5%, but for minimum wage workers this could make for a measly retirement rather than a comfortable one.

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One childcare worker told Fairfax that although she has worked for 33 years, retiring before 70 is “out of the question” due to having accumulated less than $100,000 in superannuation.

"When I look into the possibility of retirement, it's a financial train wreck of massive proportions," Kerrie Devir said.

If Devir lived to the average Australian life expectancy of 82.4 years and was retiring this year at the usual age women retire at 65, she may only have $5,747 per year to live on before the pension.

ABS also found that 13% of future female retirees will be counting on their partner’s retirement savings rather than their own, compared to only 3% of the men surveyed yet to retire.

For those who intend to retire, the government body found the two most influential factors for doing it were “financial security” and “personal health or physical abilities”.

Are you nearing the age of retirement and want to plump up the savings you have separate to your superannuation? Perhaps you might like to try locking some funds into a term deposit. 

For example, say you are planning on retiring in five years and have $8,000 in savings to lock in a term deposit account until then. If you used the Rabobank term deposit with an interest rate of 3.50% (the current best rate term deposit at the time of writing, according to Mozo’s table comparison of all products), you would have an extra $1,400 in the bank.

Try doing some term deposit calculations of your own using Mozo’s free hypothetical tool here.