Save now to avoid becoming an eBaby Boomer?

by Alexander Beard, on Jul 1, 2014 9:30:35 AM

Britain’s baby boomers are turning into eBaby boomers as the rising cost of living is forcing them to sell off their possessions to maintain their lifestyle. Concerned about making ends meet, one in five of the post-war generation are selling their clothes, jewellery and electronics online to boost their incomes, according to a recent study by MGM Advantage. It found that staying afloat financially is now the biggest concern baby boomers have about retirement, ahead of staying fit and healthy, and losing a spouse or partner.

In spite of growing evidence that the majority of people aren’t saving enough for retirement, more baby boomers think the rising cost of living will have a bigger impact on their retirement rather than the amount they’ve saved. One in five don’t expect to retire until at least 70, as savings shortfall makes Britons twice as likely as the rest of the world to work past state pension age.

Expecting to have to work longer and turning to selling on Ebay are just two of the ways of supplementing income and savings that now feature in the lives of many people aged over 55. A common request in community computer workshop sessions and local libraries, alongside help with emailing and how to Skype friends and relations, is how to sell on Ebay.

Although inflation has dropped to below the Government’s 2% target and average annual earnings increases in the private sector appear to be now rising around 2% p.a., some of those approaching retirement are finding themselves in a more serious situation than others, with 30% in the MGM Advantage study saying they plan on downsizing their home to fund their living costs in retirement. There is also evidence of a rise in the number of people taking out lifetime mortgages on their homes, paid back with interest on their death, to fund their retirement. The equity release market saw over £1 billion in property value unlocked last year, with supplementing pension income the most popular reason for people taking out a product.

A spokesperson for MGM Advantage commented: ‘We’re used to people in the UK moving to the coast when they retire, but what we’re seeing now is less about aspiration and more about necessity. Baby boomers and others in retirement have been hit hard by the rise in the cost of living and they’re resorting to selling property and possessions in order to make ends meet.’