What will happen when Baby Boomers start retiring?

USA Today had a series of articles about the retirement plans, health care and mortgage. (I found it on the SOA homepage).

Take notes on several things:

  1. The Older Baby Boomers seem to accumulate more wealth for retirement thanks to cheaper housings, better retirement benefits and higher investment returns than the younger baby boomers.
  2. To file the Social Security Benefit at age 62, instead of waiting til age 66, may not be the smartest idea due to the factor of longevity and taxes.

The Social Security Administration projects that the average retiree's "break-even" age for Social Security benefits is 77. A retiree who dies before then would have fared better by taking benefits at 62. Those who live past 77 would earn more by delaying benefits.

Retirees who take reduced benefits at 62 and live to 90 would lose $39,000 in benefits; those who live to 95 would give up $54,000, the SSA says.

3. There are $1.75 trillion of baby boomer's estimated assets in the 401(k) plans. And most of the retirement assets will come in lump sum. And generally, most people may be confused about what to invest with the money.

For some, receiving retirement money in one big pile can lull them into thinking they'll never run out.

"It's this whole money illusion game," says Jack VanDerhei, a business professor at Temple University. "Having $500,000 looks much bigger than somebody promising to pay you $50,000 (a year) for the rest of your life. You feel rich going into retirement."