People are living longer. Make sure you're financially prepared


Thanks to modern medicine, active lifestyles and better nutrition, people are now living longer and healthier lives. However, this means having to review and adjust your retirement plans to ensure financial security for longer.

People all around the world are living longer, and this means rethinking how you plan for life in retirement. According to the World Health Organization, life expectancy globally increased by five years between 2000 and 2015.

Your retirement funds may need to last seven years longer

People are spending an average of 26 years in retirement now, compared to 19 years previously. This means that retirement funds, on average, have to last seven years longer. For many people, however, the funds they have just aren't enough to cover their normal expenses, or last long enough.

Aside from financial security and making adequate provision for retirement funding, your quality of life as you age is also affected by non-financial factors, especially your health.

Healthcare needs will inevitably rise, so counter what you can through lifestyle

Data shows that people over 65 years use about three times more medicine and healthcare services than younger people. The costs of this increased healthcare can quickly eat into your retirement savings.

Health doesn't only impact your retirement funds; to a large extent, it determines your lifestyle. So if you plan on going on a long-awaited overseas trip or finally joining a sports club, your health could either permit or prohibit your dreams.

Being able to stay physically active in old age doesn't just keep you fit and flexible, it also improves your cognitive functioning. (Find inspiration from 85-year-old Deirdre Larkin, whose passion for running has given her a new lease of life).

Review your retirement funds and adjust them accordingly

With a larger portion of the population needing more healthcare services as they age, it's important to be smart about how you use the funds you have left. In general, South Africans don't save enough. But the earlier you start saving, the easier it is and the more your investment will benefit from compound interest.

There are insurance and investment products available that offer excellent returns and incentives for taking good care of your health. To help ensure you have financial support for longer in retirement, have a look at products that convert life cover into retirement money if you don't use the life cover by a certain age.

And if you haven't looked at your retirement plan in a while, speak to your financial adviser to review it and consider additional or alternative investment and savings plans if necessary.

This article is meant for information purposes only and should not be taken as financial advice. For tailored financial advice, please contact your financial adviser. Discovery Life Limited. Registration number 1966/003901/06, is a registered long-term insurer, and an authorised financial services and registered credit provider, NCR Reg No. NCRCP3555.


You could now qualify for the Buy-up Cash Conversion benefit

While Discovery Life clients are living longer as a result of improved health and wellness management, this could also leave them financially vulnerable in retirement if they do not plan appropriately.

To ensure that you're protected against the ever-increasing risk of longevity, we have expanded access to the higher levels of the Cover and Financial Integrator Buy-up
Cash Conversion Benefits.

For more information on the Buy-up Cash Conversion benefit, speak to your financial adviser.

Protect your assets with Discovery's new Estate Planning benefit

When you pass away, any money, property and belongings that you leave behind to our family will form part of your estate. Your estate is taxable through an estate duty of up to 20%, which becomes payable on the last to die between you and your spouse, if your spouse inherited your estate.

Discovery Life's new Estate Planning Benefit provides a lump-sum payout after both you and your spouse have passed away to protect your estate against this tax, while allowing you to access a portion of the payment after the first death.

Find out more about this innovative offering here.

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