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Getting a late start on retirement savings

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Jerri W., age 56
San Diego, California
Not Retired
Single, two children
"I invested in my kids, then when they were grown, I started investing in myself."

Jerri's Tips

  • Delaying retirement when you are at your highest earning point can make a big difference.
  • Try not to refinance your home; being mortgage-free means more for retirement.
  • Invest in what's important to you and have no regrets when you do.

Highlights

  • As a single mom, Jerri put her kids first, delaying saving for her retirement.
  • The money she used to spend on her kids is now the money she puts into retirement funds.

Jerri invested in her kids, then her retirement.

"I spent my younger years as a single mom raising my two daughters. I paid for cheerleading, college and a wedding. I invested in them, but told them that when they were grown, I would be investing in myself. I have no doubt that for me, I did it the right way."


"It's my time to shine."

"I didn't start saving for retirement until I was 50. I received a small inheritance, which allowed me to pay off my mortgage; I am now debt-free. All that money I was spending on my daughters and my mortgage I am now stashing away. I'm a marketing manager and plan to work five or 10 more years. If I can work 10 more years, I can put away a lot more money, and put off taking Social Security.

I have some stocks and mutual funds that are tax-deferred. My portfolio is fairly diversified; I have a portion in some high-risk investments since I started late. Even in this economy, I feel confident having some of my money in high-risk funds."



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