You Want To Retire By…30?

My first job upon graduation was under the department of ‘Strategic Research and
Special Projects’. 🤓As such, handling data and confirming statistics from
secondary data became a daily affair for me and my fellow colleagues. In stark
contrast, we also conducted primary research, and the process of interviewing
target industry leaders,sitting in Focus Group Discussions and trying to make
sense of compiled inputs slowly built in me a deep appreciation for the rigour
and satisfaction one gets from gleaning insights from primary research.

Primary research is defined as new research, carried out to answer specific issues or questions. It can involve questionnaires, surveys or interviews with individuals or small groups. Secondary research makes use of information previously researched for other purposes and publicly available.


As such, being an advocate of managing one’s finances for the future –
I took the liberty of conducting a simple survey to find out what working adults
thought about retirement, and how much they’d prepared for it.

Primary research is not easy.

Using stratified sampling, my sample size of 20 respondents were a good mix of 27 to 30 year olds who had lived or worked in Singapore, most of them friends
whom I had cajoled to be part of my research. (Infinite thanks, friends 😍 )

I cleaned the data and compiled the inputs into the following infographic, which
you see below:

Respondents had vastly different ideal ages in mind when it came to retirement:
the least being 30 and the most being 75 years. On average that led to 54 years.
As a 27 year old (2017), this meant EXACTLY 27 YEARS more to retirement! Woahs~

Screen Shot 2017-06-21 at 8.20.15 pm

On average, respondents estimated needing close to S$2 million
to retire.

However, many had only roughly $118,200 saved up,  about 10% of their target
nest egg! (could they saved up the remaining 90% in time?) Also, majority depended on their career for income, meaning a job loss would be devastating to
their financial plans.

Screen Shot 2017-06-21 at 8.20.33 pm

Also, one HUGE learning point for me was how much the respondents had similar dream lifestyles in mind when it came to

TRAVEL ✈️ topped the list! Meaningful pursuits like hobbies 💃🏻 came second,
before spending time with loved ones. Interestingly, financial freedom and
healthy lifestyles came last! Though honestly, these two factors are the reasons
why you can enjoy the top three lifestyle choices in the first place!😅

Screen Shot 2017-06-21 at 8.20.41 pm

In ending, I asked:

“How have you started preparing for retirement”

And – perhaps the most telling chart of the whole study – showed this:



Accumulating Wealth – even Healthy Eating!

But Investments?

That was the last thing on my respondents’ minds.

Dear reader,

While keeping a healthy lifestyle, having sufficient savings and accumulating
wealth is important -without investing? The very income and savings one accumulates would be slowly depleted by big and small expenses, inflation (rising prices of goods) and taxes (GST, personal income, etc).

(Did I miss anything out?)

Building a strong financial portfolio for the future hence depends heavily on
making the right investments – the earlier, the better.

While even savvy investors make mistakes, learning from their ‘tuition fees’ and
consistently tailoring a strong investment portfolio is what helps many
investors secure a strong monetary future for themselves.😎


How are you preparing for retirement?

Live long and prosper,


Disclaimer: This research study was done as a litmus test on the sentiments of working adults aged 27-30, who have lived or worked in Singapore, on retirement. It is not meant to represent the sentiment of a larger population.


  1. It is heartening to see a young soul below 30 thinking life in the long haul. Your respondents are also below 30 n have already amass savings above $100k. That is a feat👍.

    Good thinking😊

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Thank you! 😀 1 of Stephen Covey’s 7 Habits of Effective People include: ‘Starting with the end in mind’ so the earlier we start planning for our financial future, the better! It also seems like my survey respondents have been able to accumulate quite a sum by their late twenties too!


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