December 2020 Proactive newsletter

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In this issue:

Winter 2020 - Messages from your retirement system

Anthony Estell

From Anthony's desk

Notes from ORS Director Anthony Estell

Welcome to the winter edition of the Proactive newsletter.

This past year has had its share of challenges. Worrying about the future of your retirement shouldn’t be one of them.

At the Michigan Office of Retirement Services, we understand your concerns about your financial well-being, and our goal is to help you plan for the future. Education and preparation lead to success, and we want to provide you with the information you need to feel confident about succeeding in retirement.

In this edition, we explore the risks women face in preparing for retirement that men often do not, and we offer guidance on how women can reduce some of those risks to ensure they are better prepared for life in retirement.

We take a look at how the work-from-home environment has caused many of us to share space with our loved ones — and how the situation can serve as a preview to what retirement life (the good and the bad) may look like for you. Consider it a retirement rehearsal — are you as ready as you need to be?

As we close the door on this unprecedented year, I hope these resources help guide you through your retirement journey and give you the tools you need to handle what lies ahead.

Stay safe and stay healthy this holiday season.

Anthony Estell, director
Michigan Office of Retirement Services

Couple Proactive

Will your relationship survive retirement?

Recent events have provided stories of people sharing the successes, challenges, and strains of spending so much time at home and with significant others. Some of these experiences could be a foreshadowing of what may happen during retirement.

Some of your current experiences with significant others may exist once you retire. Are you handling it successfully or do you need to refine things a bit? Has this time provided insight regarding retirement planning needs for the “happiness” aspect of retirement?

Maybe now is a good time to include the aspects of the happiness sphere in your retirement planning. Happiness, in part, refers to engaging in activities that provide a sense of purpose, such as volunteering, traveling, involvement with a church or civic group, or other meaningful or purposeful activities.

This can be an opportunity to practice or rehearse for retirement, to be sure you are as ready as possible when the time to live that life comes. And, if you must retire sooner than originally planned, you will already have happiness goals established to help you make a successful transition. Retirement is a journey; the Michigan Office of Retirement Services is here to help you along yours.

Women in retirement ProActive

Women and retirement planning

Women have gained many opportunities and achieved great success in the workplace. However, they continue to be at greater risk than men of not achieving a financially secure retirement. In a Transamerica Center for Retirement Studies survey, several factors were noted as to why women are at greater risk: women have longer life expectancies and consequently, greater savings needs; women are more likely to take time away from work to care for children and/or aging parents, thus affecting their retirement savings; a high percentage of women work part time and don’t have access to workplace retirement benefits; and women are more likely than men to be single parents raising their children without added financial support.

There are certain steps women can take to improve their retirement readiness:

  • Practice good savings habits.
  • Beware of self-sabotaging behavior, such as procrastination and overspending.
  • Visualize your future retirement.
  • Develop a retirement strategy and write it down.
  • Have a backup plan.
  • Get educated about retirement investing.
  • Talk about retirement with family.

Secure retirement benefits are important for your future. The Michigan Office of Retirement Services provides information, tools, and services to help you along your retirement journey.

ORS working from home

While working away from the office, our staff have remained committed to helping our members and retirees in their retirement journey. Here is some of the work that was done remotely since mid-March.

WFH success 12-2020
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