What Would You Trade for Retirement Security?

A new survey outlines what parents – and grandparents – would give up in favor of long-term financial goals – and what they wouldn’t.

According to the 2,000 parents who took part in the TD Ameritrade Parents and Grandparents Retirement Survey:

  • Just 20% of grandparents and 12% of Millennial parents would be willing to spend less money on their children.
  • Only 15% of Millennials would be willing to have fewer children.
  • Fewer than 1 in 20 Millennial parents and a mere 2% of grandparents would cut back on financial support to aging parents.

On the other hand, they do seem to be willing to undertake personal sacrifices:

  • Half of Millennial parents (49%) and Boomer grandparents (54%) would be willing to live a simpler lifestyle to help retirement savings last longer.
  • Nearly half would cut back on eating out and entertainment (46% of Millennial parents and 49% of grandparents).
  • About one-in-four – 39% of Millennial parents and 45% of grandparents – would buy a used car.
  • About a third would retire at a later age (36% of Millennial parents and 32% of grandparents).
  • About a quarter (29%) of both generations would cut back on vacations.
  • About a quarter would live in a smaller home (27% of Millennial parents and 25% of grandparents).

Sure enough, the survey found that most parents and grandparents have never had to withdraw money from their retirement accounts to support their families (60% of Millennial parents and 52% of grandparents), though that means that 40% of Millennial parents and 48% have, specifically for:

  • emergencies (20% of Millennial parents and 24% of grandparents);
  • household bills (16% of Millennial parents and 17% of grandparents);
  • medical expenses (13% and 11%); and
  • vacations (10% and 4%).

The report finds that Millennial parents who are saving for retirement have saved an average of $79,000, while grandparents have saved an average of $338,000.

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