Retirees are determined to maintain their independence in later life – by dressing how they please, going on as many holidays as possible, and learning new skills. A poll of 2,000 adults, in their seventh decade and beyond, found 72 percent are troubled by the idea of being a burden to others in the future.
But while 73 percent feel years younger than their actual age, 78 percent feel keeping their minds sharp now will help them stay self-sufficient long term.
As a result, many are turning to crossword puzzles, Sudoku, and taking up a new hobby.
Others keep an interest in what their grandchildren are doing, have regular conversations with younger relatives about what’s “cool”, and go to the pub at least once a week.
It also emerged 75 percent still have numerous parts of the world left on their wish list they intend on visiting, with eight in ten seeing travel as a way to maintain independence.
Spencer J McCarthy, chairman & CEO of Churchill Retirement Living, which commissioned the research, said: “Independence can mean different things to different people, as the results have shown.
“It’s incredibly important to people that they stay independent for as long as possible as they get older – and the research has shown many strive to achieve this by keeping their body and mind active, and enjoying a full and varied lifestyle.
“As a result, it’s reassuring to hear that many feel younger than they are, and that people are increasingly active and adventurous in their later years.”
It also emerged energised retirees feel an average of 14 years younger than their actual age – and 36 percent believe themselves to be more active than they were two decades ago.
Meanwhile, nearly half (49 percent) reckon they’re doing a good job of changing people’s perceptions of what “old” people are like, through their youthful behaviours.
However, a third believe their grandkids see them as “old” – although on average people reach the age of 63 before they feel “old” themselves.
And if they could pick any age to be again, they’d choose 30.
As retirees keep busy, naturally this leads to leaving properties empty – with one in six feeling uncomfortable about doing so when heading away on a holiday for a week or more.
Almost a fifth (19 percent) have experienced a break in, or an attempted one, at their property when left unattended.
And 21 percent of adults over 65, polled via OnePoll, admitted their current property is bigger than they need – with the same number unable to do as much as they’d like due to a lack of spare income.
Churchill’s Spencer J McCarthy added: “When you’re living life to the full you don’t want to be held back by worry, such as concerns over your property when you’re away on a long trip or visiting friends and family.
“A great thing about living in an apartment such as ours is the fact you can enjoy complete peace of mind when you’re off on your adventures.
“You can just “lock up and leave” and enjoy your time away, safe in the knowledge that your home will be secure when you get back.”