In case you haven’t noticed, FiveCentNickel has a new advertiser — Nationwide — featured at the top of the right sidebar. Beyond placing an ad, they also asked me to take a look at their new RetirAbility calculator and post my thoughts. So here goes…
The whole point of the calculator is to tell you how you’re doing when it comes to retirement savings. It’s actually a pretty nifty tool, resulting in what they term an “R-Score, ” where 100 means that you’re on track for a comfortable retirement at 100% of your current living standard. Lower numbers mean that you’re lagging behind, whereas higher numbers mean that you’re an over-achiever, and on track to have more than enough money for a comfortable retirement.
After plugging in my year of birth, income, balances of our current accounts, etc. I learned that we’re more than on track… We scored a 163. We were certainly helped along by a complete lack of debt (except for the mortgage on our house).
According to their stats, the average for “people like me” (hmmmm, how did they know that I’m stunningly handsome, and well above average in the IQ department?) is 139, whereas the national average is 116. This latter number makes me wonder a bit… Given all the news about a negative savings rate in this country, I find it hard to believe that the average American is well ahead in terms of retirement savings. Be that as it may, it’s still a fun little calculation.
I’m actually really happy about the results for a couple of reasons. First, I changed jobs earlier this year and landed a 45% raise. Thus, I was expecting our retirement savings to be running a bit behind relative to our new, higher standard of living. Second, I told the calculator that neither my wife or I will be receiving Social Security. Call me a pessimist, but I’m not holding my breath about there being any money left in 30 years. If there is, great. But if not, I don’t want to end up eating in a soup kitchen.
My only real complaint about the calculator has to do with presentation… The calculator is accompanied by a video narrator, and I couldn’t figure out how to skip the chit-chat and get on with it. Even still, it only took a few minutes, so it’s probably worth doing, if for no other reason than to see how you stack up against others.
So… Hop on over to the calculator, plug in your numbers, and then be sure to come back and tell us all how you did.