Is a Phased Retirement Right for You?

Is a Phased Retirement Right for You?

Many of us can’t wait to retire, and have planned vacations, hobbies, or even a move to a sunnier location. Others want to retire soon, but know that they need to continue working a bit longer in order to save enough money for the future. Then there are those people who love their jobs, and perhaps need to reduce their hours or commuting time at some point, but want to keep working at least part-time.

Some federal employees have the option of a Phased Retirement. It began as an option back in November of 2014 so many employees don’t know about it. Your agency has to approve of it and therefore it isn’t always available to everyone, but here’s how it works…

Under Phased Retirement, you can begin drawing your retirement benefits at a certain date, but continue part-time employment with your agency.

Some of the benefits include:

  • Retaining more experienced workers, even on a part-time basis, is good for the agency
  • Mentoring opportunities for younger employees
  • A more efficient and effective government
  • Would-be retirees can continue an active lifestyle
  • Financial flexibility for those who might otherwise retire completely

It’s always exciting to see federal employees happily take the leap into retirement. But before you do, it’s a good idea to consider whether you’re completely ready to live on a fixed income for the rest of your life. Yes, the federal retirement system is a fantastic one, but it’s still a fixed income when all is said and done. With inflation and rising healthcare costs impacting the budgets of all retirees, not to mention a longer lifespan in general, we should all be careful to ensure that our retirement incomes are really where they need to be.

And of course, many people honestly do find retirement to be boring! Staying engaged and social through part-time employment is often the key for many retirees, and as a federal employee you have the added advantage of sticking with your current (or a very similar) position at an acceptable pay rate.

If a Phased Retirement sounds interesting, check with your agency to see if it is an option for you. If it is, we can help you to evaluate your retirement plan and decide if continuing your position on a part-time basis might be a good option for you.