Only a third of people will be able to retire when they expect

We have accepted that we have to work longer than we expected - but we’re still in for a shock

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senior man shredding pension plan

We may have woken up to the fact that we won't be able to retire at the kind of age that many people had been looking forward to, but the experts warn that most of us are still hopelessly optimistic about our planned retirement age - and the vast majority will fall short of even our lowered expectations.

The research, for Aegon, found that we're starting to realise that we may not be able to retire at the kind of age we always expected to hang up our boots - because 93% of us have fallen behind on our retirement savings. Most of us are resigned to the fact that we are going to have to work later in life.

However, the study showed that despite the fact we're increasingly willing to work beyond the age of 60, most people want to retire earlier than the state pension age. By 2018 the state pension age will be 65 for both men and women, but at that point people expect to retire much earlier, at around 63 years of age.

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There's every chance we're going to miss this target. Just one in three people are confident that they will be able to afford to retire when they want to, and a quarter are concerned that a lack of money is going to leave them stuck at work, longing for freedom.

Some 61% of UK workers are planning to carry on working if they haven't saved enough by the time they hit their target retirement age, with one in three expecting to continue in their current job, a quarter hoping their employer will come up with some sort of part-time or flexible role, and almost one in ten assuming they'll have to work for themselves.

This reflects the results of a study from Prudential, which found that more than one in five pensioners have gone back to work since reaching the State Pension age - or are planning to do so in the future. While 61% say they want to in order to keep themselves busy, 56% say they have to because they cannot afford to retire.

Stan Russell, retirement income expert at Prudential, said: "Although it's striking to see how many retirees are choosing to return to work, it's not optional for some people. While many say that working in older age is a good way of staying active, there are others who are forced to go back to work to make ends meet."

But what do you think? Do you plan to retire in your 60s or your 70s? Let us know in the comments.

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