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Three Investments for a Happy Retirement

When planning for retirement, there are three important investments I believe you can make to have happy retirement—and they may not be on your list yet.

  1. Money. This investment probably is on your list. Of course you’ll need enough money to last as long as you do, but interestingly enough, that’s not the amount that typically makes people happy. According to a Pennsylvania State University sociological study, making more money than your peers brings happiness. It makes sense to me: If your all of your friends can afford a fancy restaurant that’s out of your budget, I suspect you’d be unhappy.
  2. Health. You can have all the money in the world, but if you’re suffering physically, I suspect you won’t enjoy your retirement. And being fit can not only give you a more comfortable retirement, it can also actually give you a longer one. A Harvard Alumni Study found that “previously sedentary men who began exercising after the age of 45 enjoyed a 24 percent lower death rate than their classmates who remained inactive.” Exercise provides benefits no matter your age. In Another Harvard study, nursing home patients aged 87-90 saw “important improvements” after participating in a weight-lifting program. Imagine how good you could feel if you started a healthy living regimen now. Invest in your health today.
  3. Social well-being. The Office of the American College of Financial Services reported that one of the most important indicators of happiness in retirement is the quality of relationships—not only with your spouse, but also with your friends. Chief Academic Officer Dr. Michael Fink found that quality time with friends is a strong predictor of well-being in retirement–even more than time spent with your kids! “Only time spent with a spouse among those with a solid marriage provided greater satisfaction” Fink said. You’ll notice his comments were about “quality time.” It’s not just the number of friends that contributes to happiness, but the depth of those friendships as well.

I believe those three investments can provide the foundation for a very happy retirement. And though we can’t help you with your health or social relationships, we can help with the financial aspects of retirement planning. Contact us today, and begin investing in a happy retirement.

Ken Moraif, CFP®, MBA
Senior Advisor at Retirement
Planners of America

Author of Buy, Hold, and SELL! Author Page