Property trumps savings for retiree security

Three quarters of older Australians satisfied with their financial situation: survey

Money
Survey examined retiree views on financial security.

Survey examined retiree views on financial security.

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Owning your own home, having super and private savings are the major items for retirement planning.

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Older Australians value home ownership over high savings for their financial security, according to a new survey.

The 2022 National Seniors Australia and Challenger annual survey questioned almost 3000 retirees about their financial situation in retirement, revealing that 75 per cent are satisfied with their level of financial security.

The research found satisfaction with financial security also increases with age, as does the proportion of each age group owning their home with 71 per cent of retirees aged 60-69 reporting satisfaction with their financial security, compared to 80 per cent of those aged over 80.

This correlated with outright home ownership which increased from 81 per cent for the 60-69 age group, to over 91 per cent for retirees over 80.

"The relative importance of home ownership, super and savings was put into the spotlight in the last days of the election campaign," said National Seniors chief excecutive Professor John McCallum.

Professor John McCallum

Professor John McCallum

"Owning your own home, having super and private savings are the major items for retirement planning for people of all ages."

However, having more savings and investments did not necessarily translate to financial security. Older age groups reported higher satisfaction with financial security yet had lower levels of financial wealth.

"These findings highlight the challenges for retirees in the current economic environment," said Challenger's head of Retirement Income Research, Aaron Minney.

"With rising inflation and uncertainty from ongoing share market volatility, retirees who don't own their own home are feeling nervous about their financial security, regardless of how much they hold in other savings and investments.

Owning your own home, having super and private savings are the major items for retirement planning for people of all ages. - Professor John McCallum

"For many retirees, owning their home outright represents stability alleviating them from the stress of rising interest rates and rental market uncertainty. But the one in seven either renting or paying off a mortgage might be feeling less confident about spending their savings.

"For many, this will mean working beyond retirement age or closely managing their investments to ensure they have the income they need in retirement."

Home ownership remain important to retiree financial security.

Home ownership remain important to retiree financial security.

The research showed superannuation was the top source of retirement income for 70 per cent of retirees, with 10 per cent relying on super alone.

Only 11 per cent named property as a source of retirement income, while 35 per cent generate income from shares.

The research showed 10 per cent of retirees rely on the age pension alone.

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