The “Baby Boom” generation, born between 1946-1964, is undoubtedly one of the largest age groups of our nation and consequently greatly influenced our economy and culture. As marketers research this consumer segment, they must take maturing investments and spending habit changes into account. These are the 3 trends that we will see over the next 5 years.
Working Retirement Previous generations have stopped working at retirement; this is not true of the baby boomers. Roughly 65% of Boomers plan on working past the age of 65. A study by Voya Financial noted that 60% of retirees were forced to end their careers earlier than planned, due to layoffs and health concerns, and then found that their savings were not as sustainable as expected and needed to find additional income. Taking this time to ensure ends meet results in less free time for leisurely activities and travel.
Changes in purchasing habits With continuing to work comes the need for professional attire and reliable transportation. Along with that, more and more time and money is being spent online. Medical care, security, entertainment options, obtaining and maintaining pets and community activities are all varying factors taken into consideration. Medical care in general is a huge budget item as Boomer’s rely heavily on both traditional and innovative medical technology and healthcare support.
Skew even more female With the life expectancy of women exceeding that of men, a greater and growing percentage of this generation will be women. Products mostly bought by men won’t have the same consumption rate as before, so items like golf gear and men’s grooming tools will not be in high demand. Respectively, women’s products will increase.
We see major changes ahead as our country’s infrastructure stains to supply housing, medical care and entertainment for the oldest members of our society.
The “baby boomer” generation will be the fastest-growing age group in the workforce next year. In 2018 almost 20% of Americans over the age of 65 were employed or actively looking for work according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This is considerably up from less than 12% twenty years ago. The youngest of this generation, born in 1964, turned or will turn 55 this year.
With science and medicine making longer lives possible, people are more eager to continue to learn and make productive use of their time. For most, contributing to society means continuing to work. Additionally, the aging population is finding that pensions may not be sufficient sources of income to sustain the rest of their life. With a longer and healthier life expectancy comes needing retirement funds to last that much longer.
The World Health Organization has flagged workplace ageism as an ongoing issue, saying “employers often have negative attitudes towards older workers… even though older workers are not necessarily less healthy, less educated, less skillful or productive than their younger counterparts.” A survey was conducted this past year by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research, finding that 1 in 3 Americans under the age of 50 felt the aging workforce had negative implications for their own careers.
Contrary to this however, a study from Stanford’s Institute for Economic Policy Research analyzed data from 1977-2011 to conclude that younger workers opportunities were in no way diminished by older workers presence in the workforce. The data researched actually suggested that the exact opposite was true!
As we enter the digital age, seniors are finding it easier to meet their security, safety, and comfort needs with smart home technology.
Home assistance devices such as Google Home or Amazon Alexa offer user friendly voice controls that are much simpler than navigating a complex app. With simple commands users can operate security, lighting, climate control, entertainment and privacy. This proves very helpful when dealing with limited mobility or poor vision.
Smart devices can also help older adults manage things like their medications and connect with community services, as well as stay in touch with family and friends. Family and caregivers are now able to save time and money with everyday tasks such as grocery delivery and transportation.
Safety is the number one concern in your home. Technology is available for automatic doors with security features, automatically adjusting counter-tops, motion or voice-activated faucets for water temperature control. Other accommodations and features include
Slip-fall detection and medical alert monitors
Adjustable sit-to-stand toilets
Controlled light systems & controlled blinds
Water filtration systems and leak sensors
Temperature sensors that can be precursors to house fires
If you’ve been named executor in a loved one’s will, you might be wondering if you, as executor, have final say in all matters related to the liquidation of the deceased’s property and personal belongings. There is no simple answer to this question. The executor does not “control” the estate. Rather, if you find yourself in this position, you should think of yourself as a fiduciary with an important responsibility to fulfill the deceased’s requests as faithfully as possible.
In fact, according to NYCourts.gov, executors, administrators, or voluntary administrators (depending on the type of estate proceeding), “have a legal duty to act faithfully towards the estate and not put their personal interests ahead of duty.”
What does the executor actually do? The website goes on to state:
“Executors must carry out the wishes of the person who died as stated in the will. Administrators and voluntary administrators must settle the estate according to New York State laws of intestacy.
“Fiduciaries are responsible for protecting the property until all debts and taxes are paid and to promptly and efficiently administer the estate. In general, fiduciaries have three responsibilities:
Collect, inventory and appraise all the assets of the estate.
Pay the bills, taxes, estate expenses and creditors of the person who died.
Transfer property according to the will or, if there is no will, then according to the law.”
In some cases, friends or family of the deceased may feel they have grounds to contest the will. The laws vary state-by-state, but in general, a properly drafted and signed will is very difficult to contest. When faced with these kinds of issues, it’s more important than ever for the executor to keep the deceased’s requests and wishes in mind.
We’ve said before that while being named an executor is an honor, it is also difficult and time-consuming. If you are in this position and find it all a bit overwhelming, please contact an estate attorney and/or an estate liquidator to help facilitate the process.
“The Four-Step Moving Plan,” a free real estate workshop led by licensed real estate broker Michael Olear, will take place at 11 a.m. Saturday, Oct. 19, at Sandra Lane Senior Apartments, 705 Sandra Lane, North Tonawanda.
For older adults, their loved ones and caregivers, the workshop will cover topics including “right-sizing” and simplifying a living situation, preparing for a move, related legal and regulatory issues, and available resources and tools. To register, call 880-4442 or email [email protected]
You’d love to find a place that’s the right size for you, but what do you do about all that “stuff”? Michael Olear from MJ Peterson has 30 years experience and he will offer a simple, step by step approach to preparing for a downsizing move. Ideas will include:
What are the components of a successful plan?
How can you reduce the stress and simplify the process?
What questions do you need to ask estate sale professionals?
Is the real estate market better for buyers or sellers right now?
What requirements are imposed by banks and municipalities when you sell?
This is a free seminar offered at noon on Thursday, August 8, at Eagle Crest Senior Village, 100 Weiss Ave., Orchard Park.
Michael Olear’s first career was social work. He has an MSW from UB. He’s combined those experiences with real estate brokerage and offers a unique blend of knowledge areas for consumers. He has provided seminars throughout Erie and Niagara Counties for over 10 years in area churches and community centers.
To reserve a seat, please call 880-4442. A light lunch will be served.