It is not a big surprise why many people think full retirement is the only viable option.
After all, even the Social Security Administration discourages earning income; else, get your retirement benefits deducted.
There is an alternative you can consider, especially now that there are efforts in policies allowing retirees to enjoy their full benefits even while earning any amount of income.
Since not many know what is semi retirement, we’ll talk about it in detail below.
- What Is Semi Retirement?
- What Are the Different Forms of Semi-Retirement?
- Where Can Semi-Retirees Find Work?
- Tips to Semi-Retire Successfully
- Living the Semi-Retired Life
What Is Semi Retirement?
The traditional concept of retirement works like this: you reach the normal retirement age, and you go from full-time employment to being unemployed.
However, because of various reasons, it seems that more and more people are considering an alternative—semi-retirement.
In a nutshell, semi-retirement is the period when a person transitions from full-time employment to part-time work.
Semi-retirement comes in many forms, which we’ll discuss later on.
Why Do People Opt for Semi – Retirement?
There are various reasons why people choose semi – retirement. Here are just some of the most common:
One of the most common reasons people choose to semi-retire is to help with inflation.
The reality is that the high value of retirement plans funded a few decades ago may not be able to provide the comfortable life many were originally banking on.
Hence, some decide to pursue part-time employment after retiring to help with the rising cost of living.
Those who are worried that their retirement funds won’t be enough when they actually stop working due to inflation also consider semi – retirement.
Another reason that drives people to semi – retirement instead of full retirement is health coverage.
After all, semi – retirement provides the option to enjoy both Medicare and employer-provided health care plans.
Just remember that there are insurance providers that change their eligibility and coverage when their policyholders become eligible for Medicare.
It’s best to contact your insurance company for specific details.
Some people have been really fortunate to enjoy a career they are passionate about. As such, many still consider working in their field for as long as they can.
This is true even if it means working shorter days or deferring to an hourly wage by taking on a part-time schedule.
Meanwhile, some have only taken their employment in their previous career in pursuit of money.
These people tend to consider part-time employment options or volunteering opportunities that will fuel their passion and give them the sense of purpose they have longed for.
Finally, some simply wish to go through this period of transition to soften a life-changing adjustment.
Semi – retirement is a great option during this transition stage if you’re feeling anxious about an abrupt retirement.
What Are the Different Forms of Semi-Retirement?
If there are various reasons people choose semi-retirement, then it also comes in many forms. Here are some of them:
Transitioning to a Part-Time Position
For many, semi-retirement simply means transitioning from a 9-to-5 life to a shorter and more flexible work schedule.
If you feel that you’re going to have a hard time adjusting to full retirement, this is an ideal option for you.
You may ask your current employer what options you have available.
Will it be possible to keep your current role but with reduced hours? Are there other part-time positions available?
Becoming a Consultant
Another form of semi-retirement that many view as a seemingly natural transition is becoming a consultant for one’s respective industry.
It’s only understandable for anyone who spent the previous decades of their life building invaluable experience and achieving mastery to still want to continue their practice.
Moreover, it would be a shame for such expertise to go to waste.
If you feel that the worst part about retiring is walking away from your passion, you’ll probably find this option appealing.
Becoming a Business Owner
For those who have been toiling for years in a career they don’t really enjoy, maybe this is the best time to finally pursue your dream.
Many believe that this is the most satisfying way to semi-retire. It can be as simple as turning a hobby into a startup, but there’s a catch.
You have to be extra careful not to invest too much of your existing retirement fund into this venture so as not to put your ideal vision of retirement in jeopardy.
Many people find that a more comfortable transition is to continue doing what they previously did but on more agreeable terms.
For instance, there might be an option to offer your services online. This way, you’ll be able to do the work you enjoy within the comforts of your own home.
The type of freelancing gigs available for you will depend on your career specialty and interests.
However, we are confident you’ll be able to find a suitable niche, especially now as the world further digitalizes.
Taking on Simpler Responsibilities
Finally, some just wish to have things to do. It doesn’t need to be in a leadership position.
There are plenty of opportunities for senior citizens who wish to step back from a demanding full-time role into a more peaceful routine.
It can range from working as a store clerk to volunteering in your local church.
There are endless possibilities for anyone who wishes to leave the 9-to-5 life. You just need to look for them.
Where Can Semi-Retirees Find Work?
We understand that one of the most daunting things for many budding semi-retirees is finding their next job.
After all, most of them haven’t really applied for a new job in years.
Fortunately, there are plenty of places to look for semi-retirement opportunities. Here are just some of them:
Within the Community
The best way to look for worthwhile ventures to spend your time after retirement is within your own local community.
Firstly, you have probably already established your credibility and reputation within your neighborhood.
This can make your efforts to launch a career in consultancy significantly easier.
Secondly, you can always ask around for any openings, volunteer work, and other events you can participate in.
You won’t need to worry about getting interviewed and working with total strangers.
These are the largest benefits of looking for semi-retirement gigs near your home.
Within Your Personal Network
You don’t have to limit yourself to a certain geographic area. Feel free to explore your personal network as well.
For instance, given how long you’ve worked in your industry, chances are you already know of people who will benefit the most from your extensive knowledge and experience.
You might have other semi-retirement buddies who are looking for similar business opportunities as you.
You can decide to share the capital and work as partners. This way, both of you can minimize the risks of starting a business with your retirement funds.
The only possible hindrance is if you have signed a non-compete agreement with your previous employer. The good news is that these terms aren’t for life.
There’s usually a predetermined number of months stated in the agreement that you’ll just have to wait out to tap into your network of former clients.
Online Job Marketplaces
There are plenty of online job marketplaces you can explore. Upwork and Fiverr are the most common platforms and what we use ourselves from time to time.
You will be pleased to learn that there are comprehensive tutorials on how to navigate them online.
That said, what we love best about these employment portals is how they are constantly updated.
There’s always a new job posted every minute, so you will never run out of opportunities to choose from.
Tips to Semi-Retire Successfully
If you believe this move is the most suitable for your needs and preferences, there are plenty of things you can do to set yourself up for semi-retirement success.
Here are just some of our tried-and-tested tips:
1. Determine Your Goal
The best starting point for your semi-retirement journey is to determine why you want to pursue it in the first place.
Make sure you write it down. It will remind you of your priorities just in case you have to make difficult financial decisions in the future.
2. Create a Semi-Retirement Plan
The earlier you start your retirement planning, the better. Take a look at your current financial state right now and make a realistic assessment.
Like with traditional retirement, the biggest obstacle that can hinder your semi-retirement plans is whether you can afford your living expenses.
This is especially true with the significant change in your income.
Compute your everyday expenses. How much will you need to save so that you can live comfortably during that period of transition?
Are there ways to grow your actual retirement fund during your semi-retirement? What are your best options?
We highly recommend talking with a financial advisor for more specific insight and advice.
3. Pay off All Your Debt
Do you have any significant debts affecting your efforts to grow your retirement savings?
Mortgages and other similar loans can burden your monthly bills, so it would be wise to take care of them as early as possible.
Not only will it save you from the pain of paying out of your retirement fund, but it will also give you more financial stability.
4. Simplify Your Life
Retirement, in any form, will always entail a huge adjustment. Therefore, it would be wise to start making small changes as early as possible.
You’ll find it easier to transition this way.
In addition, simplifying your life and making a concerted effort to make more frugal decisions will help you save up for your semi-retirement fund.
5. Save and Invest
Finally, don’t forget to consider other ways to grow your semi-retirement fund.
Don’t just rely on social security and employer-provided plans. Instead, you can save, invest, and take more control over your financial life.
Diversifying your retirement portfolio will protect you from an economic downturn.
More importantly, these can provide the additional income you need to fund your semi-retirement ventures.
Here’s an extra tip: Don’t just dip into your retirement fund. You can set aside certain savings and investments towards your semi-retirement.
So, even if your venture doesn’t pan out as you intended, you’d still have other retirement assets to depend on.
6. Consider Getting an IRA
To help build your retirement fund as early as now, we highly recommend getting an individual retirement account (or IRA).
It is a type of long-term savings account specifically intended for people who wish to build funds for their retirement.
As such, IRA accounts receive certain tax privileges depending on their type.
There are different types of IRAs, but our personal favorite is the self-directed IRA.
As the name suggests, it gives account holders more control over where their money is invested.
There are also more specific types of self-directed IRAs.
Gold IRA is a good example. It is an individual retirement account that was specifically intended for gold investment.
You can buy gold items, invest in mining companies, and purchase gold-related stocks with a gold IRA.
As a beginner in investing, you will really appreciate that it has a simple and streamlined process.
Plus, it has over a decade of experience in the industry, so you can be sure you are putting your money in good hands.
Living the Semi-Retired Life
Indeed, the trajectory of our economy can be very concerning at times.
For many all over the world, it is almost as if you can feel that an economic collapse is just looming around the corner.
Fortunately, there are still things we can control, such as how we can financially prepare for our retirement amidst the ridiculous inflation.
In the end, we hope we were able to help clarify what is semi retirement and give you some ideas on how to better transition from being a full-timer.