The Monitor :: I Feel Young! Why do I Have to Worry About Retirement?
Last Updated
Friday 19 January 2018, 18:00 pm.
I Feel Young! Why do I Have to Worry About Retirement?

Tshepo* visited his Grandma this weekend. Grandpa passed away nearly five years ago, and Tshepo can see that his Grandmother is struggling to make ends meet.
By Correspondent Mon 11 Sep 2017, 15:48 pm (GMT +2)
The Monitor :: I Feel Young! Why do I Have to Worry About Retirement?

He remembers years ago when she would buy treats – she’d buy his Mum nice dresses and spoil him with the latest toys. She’d even given his uncle a top-of-the-range cellphone. “It’s so sad now –she can’t keep up with her bills.”

Tshepo can’t understand how she went from having enough money, to relying on the family to give her money to live. “Was she frivolous with her money, did she make some bad investments? There’s no-one who will employ her at her age, but she needs to stop being a burden to the family.” Tshepo thinks


“Why should I pay for her wasting her money?”

We all know someone who’s in a similar situation in old age. Do your grandparents have enough money? What about your parents? Who helps the older members of your family afford the cost of living?


Retirement Planning starts Now

It is important to start saving for your own retirement today, no matter how young you are.

 Experts estimate that to retire in comfort we should be saving a proportion of our salary equal to half our age – so a twenty year old should save 10% but a 40-year-old needs to save 20% of their salary each month!

Saving for a retirement that’s far in the future can be a daunting challenge. However, if you’ve ever met someone who can’t earn money and has spent all their savings in their retirement, you know how scary this situation can be.


Picture yourself in old age.

When researchers showed people photographs of themselves made to look older, it made them more likely to want to save for retirement. “By picturing yourself as an old person, you’ll be able to visualise your future-self.”

People who feel more connected to their future-self may be more likely to save for retirement, according to recent research.

“Write a letter to your future-self: write what your life will be like when you retire. What you want from your retirement. This will help you start thinking about your future-self as a realistic person who is going to be the recipient of the decisions that you make today.”


What will your retirement look like?

l Will you own your own home?

l Will you have Grandchildren, where will they live?

l How much will your lights, water, phone bill cost you?

l Will you need to maintain a car?

l Might you have any health problems?

l Would you want to travel for holidays?

l Will you pursue any hobbies?

l Will you be able afford to live your life as you wish?

l Will you be worried by lack of money?

l Will you have to ask your family for money?


Spend time with your grandparents

Have a chat with a retired relative or a neighbour – if you spend time with older role models they will give you knowledge about what


retirement is really like.

That will encourage you to plan for your own future.

Spend time with your grandparents and think about the problems you might face in your own old age. Picture what you’ll look like when you are old – and then start motivating yourself to save for your retirement.


What will my Employer pay me when I Retire?

Check with your company’s Human Resources department – you need to know the answer to this.

However, also consider whether you’ll stay working for the same company until you retire.

In today’s world this might be unlikely as often we change jobs several times.

Really it’s up to you as an individual to save for your own retirement. If you receive bonuses, severance or gratuity payments, you should use these to pay into your retirement plan.


What will the Government pay for me when I retire?

Government has many responsibilities to all the citizens of Botswana. Citizens receive a monthly amount in old age, but it is unlikely that it is enough for you to live on (currently only P350 per month!). Find out today what retired people are receiving each month and ask yourself, “Can I afford to live on this amount without any savings of my own?”


Set Up Automatic Savings

The easiest way to save for retirement is to set up a regular contribution from your card or bank account – pay into your retirement fund every month on the day that your salary is paid.

Provided you have budgeted for the savings, you can then forget about it - if you don’t see money in your account, you won’t be tempted to spend it.


How much should I be saving?

Instead of worrying about the total amount of money you will need to have saved when you retire, start by working out how much you can afford to save each month.

“It gives you something to focus on today, rather than something in the distant future that you might not be able to relate to. After all, you can always increase your savings as you get older and your children have grown up”.

This is the rule of thumb: “take your age, divide it by two. The answer is the percentage of your salary that you should save toward your retirement”.


Get Expert Help

People often don’t know how to calculate the amounts they need in old age.

However, there are companies that can help you calculate these amounts – S.C.I. is one, but a list of financial advisers is provided by the Association of Botswana Financial Advisers at

©S.C.I.Group. Author: James Fern – Financial Adviser with the S.C.I. Group. S.C.I. Financial (Pty) Ltd. is a registered Investment Adviser, giving financial planning advice, financial education and debt counselling distress. For help and information contact 3180111 or


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