Are you in your 20s? Time to start thinking about retirement

Do people in their 20s need to think about retirement? The short answer is YES.

Getting set-up financially earlier in life means that you are working towards your retirement. When starting off your working life, retirement can seam miles away, but your student loan is right in front of you. So is the opportunity to get into the property ladder. Making good calls along the way could mean that you are ready to stop working even before age 65.

We want to share with you an interview from 2016. Diane Maxwell was Retirement Commissioner back then and in this video, she talks about how should millennials be planning for retirement when they can’t see beyond their hefty student loans and increasing property prices.

Here are a few key points shared by Maxwell:

  • Maxwell notes you can do a lot of damage to your finances between the ages of 16 and 24. Whether it’s borrowing for a car, moving out of home or forking out for university, she says people can easily reach their early 20s with a lot of debt stacked up. Student loans also must be considered.
  • Maxwell doesn’t stay up at night worrying about young people with credit card debt, but is very concerned about those with high interest, second, third and fourth tier loans.
  • “KiwiSaver is a phenomenal thing and I think it’s what’s going to save us in the long term". She “fully supports” young people taking money out of their KiwiSaver savings for their first home, as paying down a mortgage encourages them to put money toward a valuable asset, rather than blowing it on things they don’t need. “Reaching retirement mortgage free is probably the best thing you can do.”
  • Maxwell is concerned that like many Europeans, Americans, Brits and Aussies, New Zealanders in their 20s can’t afford to leave home, so they’re only having children later in life. “What we don’t need is a reduction in people having babies, because it’s going to exacerbate the aging population.
  • Maxwell concludes: “Spread whatever it is you’ve got; KiwiSaver is a great thing; try to get into the property market too; try to have some savings on the side; the best thing you can do is spread that risk.”


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