What to Know Before You Choose Your Retirement Age

 Average Retirement Age in the United States

The U.S. Census Bureau tells us the average retirement age in the United States is 62, and the average length of retirement is 18 years. Interestingly enough, Social Security defines 62 as your early retirement age; begin benefits at this age and you will receive a reduced Social Security benefit. Those who have pensions, a large amount of savings and the ability to maintain a budget, will likely be in good shape if they choose to retire at age 62 or earlier. Those who don’t have those things need to consider working past the average retirement age.

 Early Retirement

Many Americans think of age 55 or earlier as an early retirement age. If you can save enough early on in life, early retirement is achievable. Early retirement is most common for those who are either extreme savers or who started work early in the military or in some form of civil service (which means they are eligible for a pension at a young age). My definition of early retirement age is any age before 65. For those without pensions, rather than retiring early, consider finding work you love to do. Many people use early retirement from one job as an opportunity to find a second career that they truly enjoy.

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