Single and living on one income?

Smart singles are planning for retirement today.


For the first time since the government began compiling statistics in 1976, the majority of adults in the U.S. are single. If you are part of this new single majority, you understand the challenges (and the joys) of living on a single income. And for better or worse, you realize that when it comes to saving for retirement, it’s all on you.

So whether your retirement goal is to create a startup, hike the Appalachian Trail, hit the links, or spend time with family and friends, a solid retirement strategy can help ensure that your future goals come true. And we're confident you can do it.

Here are some ways to get off to a smart start toward building the nest egg you’ll need to enjoy retirement:

  • Create a budget. Working within a budget helps you to see what you’re working with and pinpoint ways to cut expenses—leaving more to put toward your retirement. If you could use some help, our planning tools and resources can help you get started.
  • Put away the credit cards. Take control of your spending; don’t pay unnecessary interest. That’s money you can set aside for your future.
  • Start saving earlier. Rent or mortgage, groceries and utility bills, student loans: Maintaining your household budget and saving at the same time can be a challenge when you're living on one income. With this in mind, the earlier you start saving, the better.
  • Be creative with cutting expenses. From cell phones to the Internet, be sure your service providers offer competitive pricing, and if they don’t, make a switch. Consider cooking meals at home more often and having leftovers for lunch for the next day. Look for low-cost entertainment options. Whatever you choose, remember that saving just a little extra now can add up to a lot 20 or 30 years down the road.
  • Don’t leave money on the table. Make maximum contributions and make the most of your employer-sponsored 401(k), IRAs, and other tax-qualified plans. You can save after-tax dollars in annuities and other financial vehicles.
  • Educate yourself. Never stop doing your research. Read, talk with others, take a course, and stay on top of products and services that might help you achieve your future goals.
  • Plan for the long term. The average cost of a yearlong stay in a nursing home was more than $82,000 for a semi-private room and more than $92,000 for a private room in 2016.1 But what will it cost tomorrow? Ignoring the need for long-term care is one of the biggest risks facing singles. Luckily, long-term care insurance can help you face the future with confidence—and the best time to look into it may be now.
  • Establish a solid partnership with a life insurance agent. Our agents are professional problem solvers. They can help you identify your individual objectives and needs, and then help you find solutions to fit your lifestyle. If you're not already working with an agent, simply use the “Talk it through with an expert” form on the page, and we'll have one in your area contact you.

If you’re living on a single income, remember that your dedication and determination today can help you achieve your dreams tomorrow.

Talk it through with an expert.

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Further Reading
  • 1Emily Mullin and Lisa Esposito, “How to Pay for Nursing Home Costs,” U.S. News & World Report, November 16, 2016.