Preparing for retirement

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I read more and more about how the changing population dynamic is affecting people’s retirement plans. We all know the start date for OAS (Old Age Security) has been bumped back from 65 to 67 (on a graduated basis) due to the void in the working population caused by the baby-boom generation. Currently, there is one retiree for every four people working.

I read more and more about how the changing population dynamic is affecting people’s retirement plans. We all know the start date for OAS (Old Age Security) has been bumped back from 65 to 67 (on a graduated basis) due to the void in the working population caused by the baby-boom generation. Currently, there is one retiree for every four people working. When all the “boomers” are retired, that statistic will be reduced to one for every two. 
Question: How can CPP (Canada Pension Plan) and OAS be maintained to give a living allowance when there will be so few contributing to these plans? Answer: No one can depend on the government to adequately provide for one’s retirement. The operative word here is ‘adequately’.
This is not an immediate concern for Generation Z (born 2001 to present day), but it is an issue for Generations Y (born 1980 to 2000) and X (born 1965 to 1979). It would seem that young people today are not establishing themselves in the same way as the “boomers” did. A lack of jobs, a desire to travel, a reduction in businesses that offer pension plans, etc, have resulted in many young people (18 to 40-ish) not preparing themselves for their retirement saying, “Oh, there’s plenty of time before I have to think of that!” 
But time goes by quickly and before they know it, they have missed the opportunity to start saving enough to make a difference in the quality of their lives during retirement. If they are relying on OAS and CPP to live, then they are dooming themselves to a life of near-poverty. If they are relying on getting inheritances to not just survive but thrive in their retirements, chances are that, due to advanced medicine, the “boomers” will outlive their money and leave little behind.
My advice is to start saving early. Start small and increase savings as income increases. “Pay yourself first!” is the motto of investment companies. There are all kinds of saving/investment vehicles like TFSAs and RRSPs to name two. My two Generation Y children took heed of my advice years ago. How about your children?
Steve d’Eça
AYLMER