Saskatoon

Employees in Saskatchewan not saving money and expect to work longer

If you've been feeling the pinch, working pay cheque to pay cheque, you are not alone, according to a new survey released today by the Canadian Payroll Association.

Survey finds growing pessimism about the economy

A new survey suggests workers in this province are not feeling optimistic about retirement.

If you've been feeling the pinch, working paycheque to paycheque, you are not alone, according to a new survey released today by the Canadian Payroll Association.

It finds that three-quarters of Canadians have not saved enough to retire and expect to work longer.

"Canadians are saying they are still having a difficult time making ends meet, and they are not putting enough aside to reach their own retirement goals," said Canadian Payroll Association President and CEO, Patrick Culhane.

In this province, the grim conclusion is confirmed.

Here are some of the provincial results:

  • In Saskatchewan, 61 per cent of people surveyed believe they will need more than $1 million in savings to retire.
  • 43 per cent of people say they're living paycheque to paycheque.
  • Just 36 per cent of people in this province think the economy will improve over the next year. Optimism has dropped here by 24 per cent over the past three years.
  • 38 per cent of working people here report feeling overwhelmed by their debt.
  • In an emergency, 17 per cent of people in Saskatchewan say they could not come up with $2,000.

People are working longer

Janea Dieno is a certified financial planner in Saskatoon. She said she sees the results of low savings first-hand with some of her clients.

"You look at the borrowing rates right now for mortgages and even lines of credit, we're under three per cent, so people are putting more emphasis on purchasing goods and services to enhance their lifestyle rather than on saving for retirement," she said.

Dieno added that our consumer culture has changed from 20 or 30 years ago. 

"You would save up to buy a brand new couch, rather than taking out your credit card and putting it on debt."

She said the solution to saving for retirement is simple. 

"Pay yourself first."

People should be putting away ten per cent of their income. Another solution Dieno recommended is to opt in on employer-sponsored plans, something people often forego.  

"Some people don't see that as value. Maybe they think, 'Oh I'm only going to be working there for a couple months so I'm not going to get on my employer-sponsored group RSP or pension plan,' and five years later they're still with the company and they haven't contributed anything to their pension plan."

The result of not saving is also straightforward. 

"Mostly people are working longer because they can't afford to retire."

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