The 'Reflection' stage: 85 plus

As this third stage is a time when health and finances may limit choice, it's a time to accept help graciously, to make the most of all those memories and to keep up with old friends because you hold each other's history.

At this phase of retirement, chances are you’ve done what you have wanted and are now spending more time at home. There is often a transition to managing your own personal circumstances, which can be dominated by managing your health and well-being.  

Time and age play a role in slowing down activities and abilities. Sometimes this is mental, sometimes physical and sometimes it can be financial. There are often more pressures around managing the challenges of your physical health and potentially your cognitive decline.   

Cognitive decline is likely in some form, and careful planning of health care is needed, along with support to manage any assets and investments you may have to help meet these costs. It is common to be balancing your needs with considering what wealth you would like to pass on to the future family generations.

For many the cost of living drops dramatically in this phase, assuming you don’t need full-time health care. However, if your health dictates that you need to be in an environment with care at hand, then costs will go up during this phase, often rapidly depleting your resources. Commonly this late stage requires some level of support from family, government and community agencies. It can be a time when assets have to be sold to fund healthcare requirements.

Being aware that costs can increase in this late stage of life means holding some of your resources back for use during these years.