In a new report, demographer Bernard Salt said there has been a shift in the nation’s workforce, with more people aged over 55 opting to work “longer but lighter”.

More Australian pre-retirees are choosing to stay in the workplace for longer to stay active and ease their financial burdens in increasingly costly times during what Bernard has dubbed “The Lifestyle Years”.

The report, conducted by Amazon Australia in partnership with The Demographics Group, drew upon a range of demographic, social and cultural indicators sourced from the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS).

The Retirement Living Council has not reported any change in the age of people entering retirement living with the average age remaining at 75 years for at least five years.   

Bernard said the findings, which showed more older Australians were blending work with lifestyle because of longer life expectancy, marked “new territory”.

“It’s almost like we’re discovering there’s a whole new continent that exists just beyond the age of 55 to 69,” he said.

“And what we do with those years, I think, is dramatically changing. And now we’re blurring and blending work with lifestyle, with retirement in those years.”

Older Australians who were not ready to pull the pin on working life felt a sense of empowerment when they took on roles of their choosing that aligned with their lifestyles, such as casual work, the report found.

“We’ve seen it make such a difference to many individuals around their quality of life, how they feel about themselves, feeling valued,” he said.

Financial planner Jenny Brown, CEO, and founder of JBS Financial Strategists, said there are numerous financial benefits for pre-retirees who decided to work for longer.

“By continuing to work longer, it will save drawing down on your super, for another 5 to 10 years, allowing for compound interest to take effect,” she said.

Good to know.