Younger Albertans ahead in retirement planning

By Andrew Rickard | January 13 2017 09:45AM

While younger workers in Alberta have started to save for retirement earlier than previous generations, 44% of people in the province still don't have an RRSP.

ATB Financial's most recent Investor Beat poll has found that Albertans currently in the workforce began saving for retirement at the age of 28, while those who are already retired waited on average until they were 37.

"This research suggests that, over time, people have become more educated and more aware of the importance of saving for the future," says Chris Turchansky, President of ATB Investor Services. "One thing investors really need to be aware of, however, is how much money they'll need to retire comfortably at the age they're aiming for."

In fact, the ATB study reveals that 37% of people don't know how much they'll need to retire, and 44% do not even have a registered retirement savings plan (RRSP). Of those who do have an RRSP, 47% admit that they never make the maximum contribution. Overall, just under half (49%) of those surveyed said they were on track with or ahead on their retirement savings.

Asked about their top financial goals (respondents could give more than one answer), most said it was saving for retirement (52%), followed by paying down debt (43%) , managing day-to-day (40%) finances (40%), building an emergency fund (40%), and saving for a vacation (40%).

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