Continuing on from last week’s post (see below), there are good reasons to delay retirement and some not-so-good reasons. There are many people in the world who simply can’t afford to retire. So here are the more common Not-So-Good reasons to delay your retirement.

1. Not Enough Retirement Savings.

Today, almost 60% of Americans have little or no retirement savings. There are many causes such as underfunded pensions, not putting enough into their retirement accounts, or they take money out early. The reality is, according to the Federal Reserve, of people over the age of 55, the median retirement savings is only $120,000. That’s not going to work, and Social Security is not going to be the solution.

2. Divorce.

20 years ago, 10% of people over 55 got a divorce. Today that number is 25% and now qualifies for its own category: Grey Divorce. If you are divorced you probably had to split all of your assets including retirement savings and the value of pensions ect. What remains may not be enough to fund the retirement of two households.

3. Little or no equity in your house.

Only 30% of baby boomers feel like they have fully recovered from the great recession. Starting in 2008, property values plunged and many people had less equity in their homes than they owed on their mortgages. While they have recovered for the most part, if you refinanced 10-15 years ago and sunk the money into home improvements, you may now be breaking even. The big contribution to your retirement nest egg you thought was coming from your house is not happening soon.

4. Medical issues.

You or your spouse may have had a debilitating illness or event that made it no longer possible to work. One of you has to still work to make ends meet and maintain health insurance coverage. Your two paychecks, two contributions to retirement savings and Social Security are now down to one.

5. Taking care of a parent.

The cost of assisted living or retirement homes can break the bank. If a parent didn’t have sufficient savings or it was depleted due to medical reasons, you may have no choice but to take them in. You or your spouse may have had to leave their job to provide the necessary care. According to a recent Forbes magazine article, as a result of the costs of being a caregiver, they are on average saving 30% less for retirement than those who are not caregivers.

6. Healthcare Costs.

Cost of healthcare is a big retirement risk. I’ve seen estimates that put medical expenses a couple will see after turning 65 at over $200,000. Thanks to the brain trust in Washington, it hard to be confident that there will be any help soon.

7. Family Support Issues.

Remember those kids you thought left the nest? Welcome to the world of Boomerang Kids. The nest has filled back up with your kids, a significant other and possibly a grandkid or two. We are always parents and when the kids need help, we’ll be there. But at what cost to your retirement?

These are just the most common reasons for having to delay your retirement. This is a reality for many people. Understand that if you are one of these, you are not alone. What’s important is to accept your situation. If you are expecting to delay your retirement for any reason, be proactive and take control of Your Extra Innings. Be creative and design your retirement years on your terms.

In my next post I will get into some of the ways people are doing just that. If you have anything to add or have a question, please leave a comment. Also, if you want to have future articles emailed directly to you, leave me you email address below. Your email address will not be shared with anyone.


When I tell people about Your Extra Innings, I often hear “Why the heck would I want to delay my retirement?” But, in a recent survey, 2/3 of Baby Boomers are planning to work or are working past 65. There are many reasons to consider working beyond the “normal” retirement age. Some are good and positive reasons and some aren’t so good and positive. Here are a few of the good ones:

1. Our health is good.

We are taking better care of ourselves, for the most part. Resources are everywhere on how to maintain your health, get fit, lose weight. Far fewer people smoke these days. And medical advances are making once fatal diseases curable and debilitating conditions manageable.

2. Therefore, we’re living longer.

In the past century, life expectancies have risen by almost 30 years. No longer does retirement mean at 65 you get a new recliner and a funeral at 70. The years after 65 can now amount to a third of your life span and you need to finance this “Longevity Bonus”. It makes sense to keep padding the retirement funds while you still able and willing to work. Furthermore, what are you going to do with all those added years?

3. Delaying Social Security.

As it works right now, if you delay taking Social Security benefits past your full retirement age, the amount you qualify for increases every year by around 8%. There are still many factors to consider when deciding when to file for Social Security and you should make that decision with a financial advisor, which I’m not. But 8% a year is a pretty good investment.

4. You like what you do.

You’re good at what you do and you like having a purpose. Almost 50% of pre-retirees who plan on some type of work in retirement say it’s for stimulation and satisfaction. I remember a news story a few years ago about a toll collector on one of our highways. He loved his job. He saw his mission was to bring a bit of sunshine to the drivers during their brief interaction. He greeted each one with a smile and a big hello and worked until his 70’s. There are nurses that love to nurse, teachers that love to teach, and me I love to be part of big construction projects.

5. Social Interaction.

You like the people you work with and the socialization you get from working with them. Whether it’s swapping the latest Game of Thrones theory or working through the terrible call during last night’s game, it can be hard to replace that interaction when you’re retired. Being part of a team makes you feel good. This is the number one thing retirees miss about working.

6. Mental Stimulation.

You want the mental simulation you get from working. Staying active and engaged helps keep your brain healthy. People who retire and are not engaged have been found to lose mental capacity faster than those who are working. So why not keep thing active and healthy between the ears.

Do any of these hit home? Please share your thoughts and comments. In my next post I’ll go over some of the common not-as-good reasons people may have to delay their retirements. If you sign up to be on my email list you’ll receive the next post in your in box.


I created this blog to share what I’ve learned over the last few years as I approached the end of my career. I stepped away from normal employment and reinvented work on my terms.

My Story

My career in the construction industry included roles as estimator, project manager, operations manager and president of a couple turnaround adventures. During this time I also served on the boards of industry groups and non-profit organizations. After years of traveling to assignments in Washington DC, Boston, Albany, and many other stops in between I decided it was time to reflect on how I wanted to spend the later stage of my career.

As I went through my career, I drifted further away from what I really liked doing. I climbed the ladder gaining power, influence and money, but in roles that I wasn’t truly happy in. Looking back, I realized what made me really happy was working on projects, getting mud on my boots and working with the trades helping to build buildings. With the help of friends in the industry I am now a freelance project manager working on a project by project basis. Over the last 5 years I’ve averaged 7 months of full or part-time work a year. The best part, I was doing what I loved.

Our Story

Somewhere between 18 and 22, most people pick a career path they are supposed to travel along for the next 40 plus years. Maybe it’s the right path, or maybe it’s not. But after car loans, marriage, a house, and kids, there is seldom any opportunity to make a change. People feel trapped and endure a career that provides a pay check but not the satisfaction they felt early on. There is a desire to make a change, to rekindle the fire they felt before. They may know what they want but don’t see a path to get there.

Why Your Extra Innings? Look at your life as if it’s a baseball game.


Your First Three Innings

In the first three innings, you are born, learn to walk and talk and hopefully graduate from diapers. Next comes school, sports, dance and so on. Through this stage you grow and develop towards adulthood. This includes education for the development of a trade, an employable skill or college. The 3rd inning ends with walking through the door into adult life and work.

Innings Four, Five and Six

Inning four starts with you getting your first new full-time paycheck which leads you to your first new car and its payments, your first place away from the nest and its payments, your first serious love and its payments, and then probably kids and their payments. You are beginning the process of buying a house, then a bigger one and then nicer cars, and all the “keeping up with the Jones” stuff. Inning six ends with you being a full fledged member of the Rat Race.

Innings Seven, Eight and Nine

During the final three innings life starts to change. Around the seventh inning the kids will be going through their own first three innings and will soon be moving out of the house. You and your spouses career’s have taken the routine steps up with more responsibility,  pressure and hopefully income.  In the eighth inning your still have the mortgage, car loans and college loans but you are starting to think about your later years. You probably will go through your mid-life crisis or menopause, which gets you thinking about what you are going to do now? You enter the ninth inning with the glimmering light in the distance called your retirement years. You’ve heard tales about this mystical world. As you get closer and it starts to come into focus you start to wonder “Is it real?” “Do I want it to be real?” “Will I really be able to enter it?”

Your Extra Innings

The game is almost over and you and your life are all tied up. You thought about that new recliner, remote control, fishing rod and that book club you wanted to join. But you are realizing that you may not be ready for that. The prospect of delaying your retirement is a real possibility. You may have to work to live the life you want. You may want to work to continue the life you enjoy. It’s the bottom of the ninth inning and it’s time to plan Your Extra Innings.

Where Do I Come In?

This is where I can help. Through my first-hand experience in successfully making the shift to an alternative retirement, interviewing others on this path and studying the experts in the field, I can provide insights and tools on how you can take control of Your Extra Innings. 

Some of the topics I’ll be covering are: Reasons you may want to delay your retirement, Reasons you may have to delay your retirement, How to delay your retirement at your current employer, Staying sharp and up to date, Networking, Proper care and maintenance of you as we age, Un-retirement, Ageism, and Being Proactive and in control of Your Extra Innings.

I look forward to being a guide, mentor, and coach to help people navigate this potentially stressful  part of their lives.

Become a subscriber to the blog and you will receive my weekly articles, tips, links to other resources and whatever I can find to help you be in control of these years. In my next post I will dive into the positive reasons people may want to delay their retirement.