From Fraser Allport, The Total Advisor™ 386.882.6256

Learn why some people are happily retired, while others are stressed about their finances.

The Differences Between Happy and Unhappy Retirees – 8 Easy Tips :

# 1 : Some Retirees are Happy, While Others are Unhappy

According to financial planners, what separates the happy retirees from the unhappy ones comes down to getting a few things right in pre-retirement planning. Financial advisors say happily retired clients are financially stable and have properly thought out and planned their retirement. Here’s what differentiates the happiest retirees.

# 2 : The Freedom of Being Debt-Free

Retirees without any debt have more flexibility to spend money on their current lifestyle and less stress about making ends meet. ” One of the biggest things that differentiates the people who are happy or unhappy is : ‘ Did they pay off their mortgage? ‘ ” says Paul T. Murray, principal at Wealth & Advisory Associates in Chalfont, Pennsylvania. “Paying off your mortgage is critical.” The weight of the home mortgage and other debt weighs on people mentally, and forces some into part-time jobs they may not want.

# 3 : Monitor Spending

Uncertainty about how you will pay your bills can cause problems in retirement. Developing
a simple budgeting system can make it easier to track your finances and adapt to changes. “People who are doing well have a practical spending and budget system,” says Dan Prebish, director of life event services at Wells Fargo Advisors. “They are not necessarily people who do elaborate accounting and are always on the computer trying to keep track of every penny. Some people have a simple methodology, but they know what they’re spending.” Bottom Line : Without a monthly Budget as your “ Financial GPS ” … You cannot navigate your Retirement.

# 4 : Communication with a Spouse

Both members of retired couples should pay attention to the household budget. “For a couple, I think people are most happy who talk about financial issues regularly, even if one spouse handles most of the finances and the other is not interested,” Prebish says. “The fact that we sat down and had a little report seems to be a hallmark of successful, happy and thriving retirees.” Financial communication also helps couples to be better prepared if the spouse who handles the finances dies or is incapacitated.

# 5 : Diverse Income Sources

The retirees who are most content have not only saved well, but they have saved the right way. That means they have income from multiple sources in retirement. For example, you probably don’t want all of your retirement income to come from a tax-deferred 401(k) plan or IRA. “A lot of retires do a good job of saving, but they are facing taxes on income, and now they realize they are not in a lower tax bracket as they had expected,” Murray says. “Some of the most successful (retirees) have converted their IRAs into Roth IRAs. The benefit is when they pull income out, it is free of taxes.”

# 6 : An Active Social Life

Retirees need to take action in order to maintain a social life. “People are happy who move to a community where they have friends or can make friends or have activities that reinforce what they like to do – arts, or being by the water or having an active network,” says Janet Taylor, a psychiatrist and certified life coach. “When people, especially couples, have a sense of purpose and have activities that support their values (they are happy). That includes volunteering, giving back to the community and living in a way that reinforces their sense of purpose and value.”

# 7 : A Lifestyle Plan

The happiest retirees have a plan for how they will spend their time and carry it through. “I would say the one underlying theme with happy retirees, aside from the financial, is that they are engaged, they have hobbies and things they want to do. Now, this extra time is letting them do it,” says Bill Van Sant, senior vice president and managing director at Univest Wealth Management in Souderton, Pennsylvania. “If I see retirees keeping busy, supporting causes or grandkids, I find overwhelmingly that those folks are happier versus those who may be well off, but don’t have a hobby or have physical limitations. Those retirees are not that happy. They are getting bored and are not getting enjoyment.”

There are some people who don’t enjoy being retired. “Some folks don’t retire. They go back to work,” Van Sant says. “I find folks today delay retirement, not because they need money. They don’t have the desire to do anything but work. They will never be happy being retired.”

# 8 : Seek Out Professional Help. You Don’t Have to Go It Alone

Financial Planning is not a DIY weekend project. Markets change, and managing your money never ends. You Retire, but your Money doesn’t. For the rest of your Life, it is wise to have a financial shepherd who is there for your ongoing financial needs and questions.

Like any other Profession, Financial Planning is a Discipline grounded in education and experience. The Financial arena is a global and complex myriad of choices. Seek out a seasoned Professional, because your Money issues will make more sense to you if you have a financial teacher, tutor, mentor, and Life Coach at your side, like a co-pilot.

Retirement Planning will involve some of the biggest financial decisions in your Life. There is no room for error, and sometimes, mistakes cannot be un-done. Your Financial Life will be easier if you have someone next to you, explaining and guiding.


  • Fraser Allport, your Florida DROP Specialist, can help you with DROP, Social Security, Medicare, Retirement, Tax and Estate questions. Fraser can help you with all your Financial needs.
  • Fraser’s 36 Years of experience, and his expertise in DROP, are the guidance and leadership you need.
  • If you want to be ” Retirement Ready “, call Fraser with your DROP, Retirement, Medicare and Estate Planning questions.
  • Everyone’s situation is different, so Fraser will customize your Retirement Plan based on your situation.
  • You cannot make financial mistakes at this stage in your Life. Losing Money is not an option.
  • So call a Financial Professional. With Fraser’s experience, you don’t have to go it alone.
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  • Starting any project is the hardest part, but Fraser can help shepherd you with a Plan of Action, Timelines, and specific Goals. Fraser has a 10-Point System to guide you.


Contact Fraser today for your DROP Retirement Consultation

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The Total Advisor, LLC is an Independent Retirement, Health Insurance, Tax and Estate Planning Firm owned by Fraser Allport. Fraser Allport is not associated with The State of Florida. Investment Advisory Services are offered through Coppell Advisory Solutions, LLC, dba Fusion Capital Management, an SEC Registered Investment Advisor. Florida License # A 004461. Please see full Disclosure at

Thanks and attribution for the article to :

Rodney Brooks has written about retirement for USA Today, the Washington Post and