Posted by: drdata921 | September 15, 2013

The Importance of Work in Retirement

The Value of Working in Your Post-Retirement Years

In the “New Retirement,” work is a part of the equation. As lifespans increase, there is a need to fund a longer period of time. Besides, do you really want to “move out to pasture” at age 65 or 66 when you are likely to live well into your 80’s? Beyond the obvious financial benefits of this income stream, there are psychological benefits as well. Retirement is not a time to go off to die or become irrelevant. It is a time to go on to the next and potentially freer stage in life. Most people still want to contribute, to have a purpose. So, look at this as a multifaceted benefit. You can work on your own terms and this will help you stay engaged.

My own preference is to not have to put in a grueling work-week where the job takes up a significant part of my waking hours. However, to become a person of leisure is not particularly appealing either. I want some balance where I still have the mental challenges, but with much more freedom than is possible before retirement.

Post-retirement income could be an important factor in your financial security. Don’t underestimate the importance. Any income needs that are not covered by Social Security and pension must be funded through withdrawals from savings. If you and/or your spouse continue to bring in income after the retirement of one, savings withdrawals can be minimized or even delayed. This could have a huge impact on the how long your savings will last. Each year savings withdrawals are reduced or delayed means not only preservation of the balance, but potential growth due to investment returns and interest during that period of time. So, what are the options?

Exploring Some Income Options

Blogging for Dollars: How do you make money from a blog? The standard model for both blogs and websites is to include advertising on your site that advertisers pay for. Content on a blog or website is generally free, although you may find a way to monetize the content. For example, you can offer some for free, but for “premium access” some monthly subscription is required. Notwithstanding this, advertising is the most common business model for creating an income stream.

One common way to make money from a blog is through Google Adsense. You can search Adsense on-line and sign up on the Google website. With Adsense, you allow Google to put advertising on your blog. This advertising is targeted to people who have an interest in your specific content. For example, on my retirement blog Adsense may place ads for reverse mortgages or single seniors looking for partners. For you to get paid, a person visiting your site must click on an ad. If they simply go to your site and don’t click on the ad, you don’t get paid. I have not done this for the Journey into Retirement blog at this point because my weekly traffic is usually around 40 – 60 hits per week. I understand that the rate you are paid is somewhere around $0.07 – $0.20 per ad click and somewhere around 1% – 10% of visitors to your blog may click on an ad. So, this will only be viable if you have a high traffic blog. But, there is a lot of information available on-line about how to increase you blog traffic. So, this may work depending on the content you are posting.

Having said that, there are websites like ezine.com that use this brilliantly. What ezine does is to get people to write articles for their website and to post these articles for others to read. These articles run the gamut of content. This is a free service to readers. The authors of these articles don’t get paid for writing them, but are allowed to put a blurb at the bottom of their article driving people to their website, blog, or business. Each article that goes up has several Adsense ads attached. So ezine gets paid by using other people’s content. By their own report they have slightly less than half a million authors posting on their site. So, even at a 1% hit rate on the ads, they get paid handsomely. Could you develop something like this?

Standard Part-time Employment: You can take the standard employment route such as working at retail or for a company part-time. Being a Walmart greeter could be fun – at least for a time, although expect minimum wages. This is the easy, although not particularly lucrative route. Still, this may be the easiest option.

Consulting: If you have built up skills and expertise over your working years, perhaps you can consult with other companies or retail business. You can propose project work and make some income this way. You would be surprised at how many companies have the need for your expertise, but don’t want to incur the cost of a full-time employee. You might be someone’s perfect answer!

Freelancing: Related to consulting you can go onto websites such as elance.com or odesk.com. These sites pair up companies who are looking for services to people offering those services. These include a wide variety of things. For example, you could get paid as a freelance author or ghost writer. You provide your areas of expertise and they pair you up with people or companies looking for articles on those topics. You could offer personal assistant services that help business people get organized (although you generally are competing with people from India and the Philippines and you may not make much money since you will need to keep your rates down). There are a number of services offered. So, go onto these sites and explore.

Home-Based Businesses: If you have some product or service that you can offer from your home, this may be for you. You may or may not make much money from this, but if you can turn a hobby into an income source, there is the psychological benefit of a labor of love. By the way, if you are interested in something like this, I would refer you to a very interesting book by Timothy Ferriss entitled “The 4-Hour Work-Week” which may give you some useful ideas for starting a business.

These ideas only scratch the surface. The possibilities are nearly endless in a wired and highly interconnected world. There are a multitude of income generating possibilities for a retiree. This will help you can stay intellectually engaged and make some money to boot. And, let’s be honest: you will probably have the time. So, explore!!

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