Feb. 1, 2013 at 11:17 AM ET
Let’s face it: Even if you love going to work every day, there’s probably a little part of you that’s thinking ahead to that time when you can say “I quit” for good.
A post this week about how more Americans are working past age 65 prompted many readers to share their own hopes, and fears, about retirement.
Of the nearly 40,000 people who took our poll, a little more than half said they expected to retire between ages 65 and 75.
Some planned to work longer for financial necessity, while others just said they enjoyed staying in the workforce. Many were motivated to keep working until Medicare kicks in.
“With the need for medical insurance it is too costly to retire early,” one reader wrote.
About one-third were aiming for retirement a little earlier, between ages 55 and 64.
“I absolutely am not working till I fall over dead,” one reader said.
Experts say the trend toward working longer predates the weak economy of the last five years, and has more to do with other factors such as the gradual switch among many employers from pension-type plans to 401(k)-type plans.
Still, some experts have speculated that the tight job market of the past five years could lead to people delaying retirement in the coming decades, because they will have to make up for stints of unemployment. That seems to hold true for many readers.
“Completely depends on the economy and the labor market. I'm thinking I won't be able to retire until age 70!” one wrote.
Still, many readers said they were trying not to get down about their changed plans.
“I'm shooting for 65, but, with all of the downsizings I've suffered, I may be lucky if I retire at 85. Just have to smile and keep going!” one reader wrote.
Very few readers said they planned to work past age 75, but for some the decision was by choice, not necessity.
“I will work until I die because I enjoy it. Lazy people retire early and their brain's rot from lack of use. Not for me,” one reader wrote.