Now, in Australia, you get a lump sum pay-out (hardly any Aussies annuitize their lump sum). Once again, you have to manage your retirement on your own. Now, even if you knew exactly when you were going to die, this would be difficult, but when you have no idea of your personal life expectancy, this is a problem beyond the capabilities of the average Canadian.
In today's world of fast paced communication, it is helpful to go back to basics and try to remember how our elders communicated back in the day. Communication is the critical factor in any good relationship and communicating effectively with the elderly can smooth many a rocky and frustrating relationship.
Canada ranks as the fifth most expensive country of the OECD in terms of per capita health care expenditures, dedicating resources equal to a whopping 11.4 per cent of GDP to health care. In spite of these tremendous costs, Canadians remain immensely proud of their health care, and often grow exceedingly reluctant at the idea of rethinking the system. But our current system cannot sustain itself.
Some banks have decided to eliminate their cost-free seniors' accounts. Of the different marketing messages they could have used, TD went with casting boomer-seniors as a well-off group no longer needing the low-cost services. But that misses the point. People who don't need the low-cost account for themselves still want to make sure that they are available to those who need them.
The solutions are to either improve government transfers or to improve access to viable retirement savings vehicles. So what has Canada done? The opposite. In the name of more sustainable government budgets, the eligibility age for OAS has been raised from 65 to 67 leaving those who cannot hang on for the extra two years without a safety net.
I think that computers help seniors feel proud. They help seniors tackle difficult tasks and helps them become more useful in society. Besides, with PCs as aids (not only in studying but in living more comfortable lives), older people feel more connected with rest of the world because they have a great deal of available information.
Vicky asks: I've been taking care of my mom who is 74, in poor health and lives on her own. We've never had a very close relationship, and she criticizes everything I do. It doesn't matter if it's house cleaning, taking her to appointments, or getting her groceries -- it's like I can never do anything to her satisfaction.
I am writing an open letter to urge you to show leadership and honour your commitment to meet and work with the provinces to provide Canadians with the opportunity to increase their retirement investments in the Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and the Quebec Pension Plan (QPP). You have the opportunity to do the right thing and improve the pension savings of all working Canadians in this country.
Todd asks: My parents are getting older and recently, mom has become afraid of falling. She often talks about friends who have taken a spill, and whenever they come over she tells me we should have a railing for our front steps. She's even avoiding rooms where our kids' toys are on the floor. Neither one of them have had a fall -- how worried should we be about this?
Santa is a senior. My guess is he never had a defined benefit pension and needs the extra cash. He knows that although Canada has made great strides in eliminating seniors' poverty, too many of our older adults still live a low-income lifestyle, especially in major urban centres where costs of living are high. This Christmas season, I urge you to remember and reach out to the elders in your life.
When is it time for you parents to move to a retirement home? The decision to move from the home you've lived in for years to a new community where you may not know anyone is certainly difficult. The important thing is to feel that you are making progress and that helping your parents transition to a retirement community is a positive thing. It is.
Bill C-25, an Act Relating to Pooled Registered Pension Plans received Royal Assent on June 28 this year, making it officially part of Canadian Law. Unless the cost of administration is low, and unless the pooled amount of investment is high -- the banks will profit and workers will continue to struggle to make ends meet before and after retirement.
You must live life in the present -- the key to aging successfully -- but you can't do so if one foot is chained to the past and both hands are shielding your eyes from the fuzzy future. Your vision will be blocked, your hands will be full and you'll be teetering on one leg! Try to integrate the following eight habits into your day as often as possible.