Log in to access resources reserved for MDRT members.
  • Learn
  • >
  • Getting to the golden years
Getting to the golden years
Getting to the golden years

May 01 2023 / Round the Table Magazine

Getting to the golden years

Norliza helps clients understand that a pension is not enough.

Topics Covered

Retirement planning is not top of mind for many people, particularly if they’re struggling just to cover living expenses or the end of their working career seems so far away. They’d rather put money aside, if at all, for something they want now. In countries where compulsory savings and pension plans guarantee some sort of retirement income, people might think that is all the planning they’ll need.

However, some clients may have early retirement in mind. That means they will have to ensure that their retirement planning policies, along with other protection policies, such as life insurance and critical illness plans, are set in place while they are still young. Norliza Binte Abdul Karim, a two-year MDRT member from Singapore, works to assure clients that early planning from a realistic and practical perspective is key to having a comfortable retirement life. 

Protecting dreams

Before Norliza talks retirement planning, she first ensures that they are well protected with life insurance and critical illness policies. Only then will she broach the topic of retirement. To start, she asks them to paint a picture of their dream retirement. These aspirations usually include being debt-free, achieving some, if not all, of their life goals and aging gracefully. Once her clients have expressed their desires, she then asks, “How can those dreams come true if we do not have money for what we want?”

Solid financial resources and sufficient savings in their golden years will ensure that her clients can cope with inflation without compromising on their lifestyle in the long run. She explains that a big benefit of retirement planning is having sufficient funds to take care of themselves holistically during their golden years instead of having just enough to make ends meet, which is what they might be doing if they solely rely on savings and their pension. Should they choose to work beyond the typical retirement age, they’re doing so to stay mentally and physically healthy, not because of insufficient finances. 

She explains to clients: “While wealth protection planning takes care of your loved ones in unforeseen circumstances, retirement planning takes care of yourself should you be blessed with good health and long life.”

How can those dreams come true if we do not have money for what we want?

Start them young

For younger clients, Norliza uses a different approach to help them better imagine their life after retirement. Due to the influence of social media, she believes some younger clients equate success to what they see online in the lives of social media influencers, and that’s the quality of life they want to achieve as they get older. 

So, Norliza appeals to their need to live different — if not better — lives than their parents, who may still be working well into their retirement years. For younger clients who do not come from an affluent background, she encourages them to visualize the life they aspire to. 

“As for young people who live a comfortable lifestyle, I will tell them that retirement planning is also applicable to them because if their parents are comfortable, I am sure they want to be more comfortable when they reach that age,” she said. 

Painting a holistic picture

Above all, Norliza strongly believes that working during retirement should be a choice, not a need, and having the right retirement plan will make that choice more attainable.

To ensure her clients fully understand the advantages of planning for retirement, she educates them about the importance of achieving financial freedom and reducing the financial burden on their children before retirement. For clients who are single, she reminds them, “There is no Plan B to fall back on,” so they understand they can only count on themselves. 

By educating her clients to understand that retirement planning is essential and integral to their lifestyle during their sunset years, Norliza helps to ensure they have the best options to secure a comfortable retirement in Singapore. 

Melinda Woo writes for Team Lewis, a communications agency assisting MDRT with content development for Asia-Pacific markets. Contact mdrteditorial@teamlewis.com.