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Baby boomers revealed as nation's master money managers


Baby boomers have been revealed as Australia's most savvy group when it comes to managing money.

The national research, released by Apia Insurance, found three in four people over 55 have taken steps to ensure they are financially prepared for retirement, and 71 per cent are on track to reach their goals.  

More than half (61 per cent) surveyed prioritised being debt free as a key retirement goal, 48 per cent focused on establishing a travel fund and one in three focused on bolstering their savings accounts.

Apia's Head of Customer Value, Geoff Keogh, said the research revealed some pleasing insights about the proactive attitudes and behaviours of over 55s.

"A proactive attitude to managing your finances is one of the best ways to achieving and maintaining the lifestyle you want in retirement and feeling financially confident," Mr Keogh said.  

"It's great to see so many over 55s realised the value in forward planning and thinking about their retirement lifestyle before they reached retirement age."

The research also revealed that in hindsight, nearly 40 per cent would have started saving earlier and one in three would have made additional superannuation contributions.

"Interestingly, one in 10 said they would have postponed their retirement until they were older or transitioned gradually through part-time work, reinforcing the value they place on ensuring they're in a positive retirement position.

"This trend could also be linked to the health and social benefits of work, with good mental and physical health being the top priority for retirement."

Despite the generally positive sentiment for today's over 55s, the news isn't as good for future generations.

The research also found that despite 45 per cent of Australians acknowledging the importance of financially preparing for retirement, irrespective of their age, a large percentage are failing to take any action.

"Early preparation and planning is essential for any financial decision, and it's a call out for all of us that two thirds of Australians admit to procrastinating about their finances," Mr Keogh said.

"In many cases, procrastination can be due to not knowing where to start. A lot can be learned from the decisions of others, so it's important for people of all ages to share their knowledge and experiences, both good and bad."

Retiree, 71-year-old Lucy Freeman said it's important not to become blaze when it comes to getting your finances ready for retirement.

"Planning to have sufficient finances in retirement is very important and needs to be looked at many years before you wish to retire - so that you can retire and enjoy the quality of life you have looked forward to," Lucy said.

"Ask for help if you're unsure where to start - whether it's through your own research, information from a financial planner or speaking to friends."