Retirement is supposed to be the Golden Years.
Do you have enough gold to make it happen?
It takes more than twice the typical Social Security check to meet just basic living expenses for a single elder in Santa Cruz County.
Yup, the median Social Security check is $12,500 and the cost of basic living for one renter is over $29,000.
And the problem is pervasive: 42% of Santa Cruz County elders don’t bring in enough income to meet their basic needs.
Why I care
I’m a bankruptcy lawyer. I deal in debts and fresh starts. What does that have to do with retirement?
It’s simple. I begrudge every dollar that debt laden families pay on old debt rather than make provision for a viable retirement.
If you have enough income to pay off your debts while setting aside money for your old age, bravo. You are truly blessed.
And as long as you are actually setting aside that money, now and regularly into the future, you can hope to be economically stable as you age.
But far too many of us these days don’t have the income to both pay off debt and save for retirement.
And a large percentage of those whose income is out of kilter with the demands on that income have drunk the Kool Aid that says repaying debts is a moral issue.
Those peddling the Kool Aid never ask if it’s really possible to pay off the debts, nor do they address the morality of relying on someone else to support you in old age.
In my book, the fact that you will need or want to retire some day is one of the most compelling reasons to file bankruptcy, start fresh, and get serious about retirement savings.
Image courtesy of wikimedia and Brocken Inaglory