Retirees’ living costs outpace inflation

Ethan James
(Australian Associated Press)


The cost of living has gone up for retirees, with the amount of money needed to fund a comfortable lifestyle increasing faster than the CPI, according to new research.

Retired couples aged around 65 now need $59, 619 a year to live comfortably, while single people need to spend $43,372, according to the Assocation of Superannuation Funds Australia (ASFA) retirement standard.

Those figures are 0.8 per cent higher than the previous quarter, with higher fruit, vegetable, electricity prices and property rates to blame.

The most significant price rises were fruit (19.5 per cent), vegetables (5.9 per cent), electricity (5.4 per cent) and property rates and charges (four per cent).

However, they were offset somewhat by cheaper petrol prices (2.9 per cent) and a 2.5 per cent drop in telecommunication equipment and services charges.

ASFA chief executive Martin Fahy said single people need to save $545,000 to live comfortably through their retirement, with couples requiring $640,000.

“A low interest rate and investment return environment provides challenges, although a low inflation rate by historical standards is of some assistance to current and future retirees,” he said in a statement.

The Consumer Price Index rose 0.7 per cent in the September quarter, according to the Australian Bureau of Statistics.


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