Over 60s face being ill, lonely and skint

old couple with zimmer framesGetting old means being ill, lonely and skint if latest research is to be believed.

Research from LV= found that within the first five years of retirement, almost a third of retirees (31%) said their health had worsened, and 10% had been diagnosed with a serious illness. The Office of National Statistics said the divorce rate for over 60s was on the rise.

Old, free and single

LV's finding outside of health issues, included that more a quarter of retirees (26%) gave financial help to family members, one in five (19%) moved house and a quarter (24%) carried out significant work to their existing property. This was all within the first five years.

Meanwhile Prudential analysed the ONS data and said that between 1991 and 2011, the number of divorces amongst men aged 60 plus increased by 73% and the corresponding figure for women is 82%. In that period the overall divorce rate fell by 26%.

Vanessa Owen, LV= head of annuities said: "People often associate retirement with relaxing and taking things easy, however, it is also a time when some major step changes can happen in life. It is important that people build in some flexibility to their finances, so they have the option to adapt to their changing needs as they settle into retirement.

"The majority of people still currently fix themselves into an annuity for life at the point of retirement, which may limit their options in the face of life changes."

Divorced and broke

According to Prudential's Class of 2013 study, the average expected income for those retiring this year is already at a six-year low, however divorce reduces this by a further 16 per cent.

As a result, people retiring this year who have been through a divorce expect an average annual income of £13,800, compared with £16,400 for those who have not been through a marriage breakdown.

Those who have been divorced are also more likely to enter retirement with outstanding debts and less likely to have private pension savings.

Clare Moffat, pensions specialist at Prudential, said: "Divorce can be emotionally draining but also financially draining as the retirement income gap for divorcees demonstrates. Whether it is due to the financial implications of splitting existing pensions, the cost of setting up a new home or legal fees, divorce clearly has a major impact on the retirement plans of many people.

Seven retirement nightmares

Seven retirement nightmares