5 Biggest Financial Mistakes that 50-Year-Olds Regret The Most

Posted by under Life Lessons, Personal Finance . Published: May 19, 2017

I had the chance to talk to future retirees during a recent speaking engagement. Among the topics that we discussed were the biggest financial mistakes that they regret, now that they’re in their 50’s.

Today, I’m sharing with you a few of their stories, which I hope you’ll find valuable.

Read beyond their sentiments and learn from it. There’s still time for you to avoid their mistakes.

1. I regret buying all these stuff that are now useless.

“Whenever we get a significant amount of money, my husband and I would spend it on something unnecessary.

We bought cars often, renovated and redecorated our home with new furniture, and splurged on gadgets and appliances.

Our children now have their own families and leading their own lives. So now, we’re left with an empty house with all the material stuff we bought through the years.

Looking back, we should have made smarter spending decisions. If we instead bought rental apartments or started a business, then we won’t be worried now about our retirement.”

2. I regret waiting for my income to increase before investing.

“When I was still single, I was able to save regularly. But I put all of it in a savings account because I thought that one needs a lot of money before they can start investing.

When I earned higher from my job, that’s the only time that I began putting money in mutual funds. But it was already difficult to invest because I also got married and had children during that time, and cashflow was tight.

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I calculated it and discovered that if I invested all those savings that I had during my 20s, then it would have been around P20 million today. I could have quit my job and retired yesterday.”

3. I regret not planning for retirement.

“Next year, I will be forced to retire. And despite having a good amount of savings and an adequate retirement package, I’m still so worried about my finances.

What if that amount is not enough? Where will my wife and I get money if our savings run out? I’ve been working in the corporate world my whole life and I don’t know how to do anything else but my work.

If only I had planned for my retirement, then I wouldn’t be so lost today. I could have explored business opportunities that would ensure continuous cashflow during my retirement years.”

4. I regret trying all those get-rich-quick scams.

“I’ve always been attracted towards get-rich-quick schemes. And as the story usually goes, all of them just ended up to be scams.

I’ve lost a lot of money from those “guaranteed profit” investments. In fact, I’ve lost money again and again from different scams because I was too greedy to admit to myself that they don’t really work.

Sometimes, I imagine what would have happened if I just invested all those money on legitimate investments like the stock market or mutual funds. It makes me sad when I realize how much I could have earned today instead.”

5. I should not have relied on SSS alone.

“I’m retiring soon, so I asked our HR Department about SSS and it’s pension benefits. I was shocked to find out how little I would receive, just around P10,000 per month. The monthly cost of my maintenance medicines is almost half of that already!

Now, I’m trying to delay my retirement and asking the company to give me a few more years. I’m also cramming to start a business or find a freelance consultancy job if ever the company doesn’t grant my request.

All these years, I thought SSS was enough — but it’s not. The monthly pension you’ll receive will never be enough for your cost of living when you retire. I learned this the hard way.”

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5 Responses to “5 Biggest Financial Mistakes that 50-Year-Olds Regret The Most”


  1. Carmen Poblete says:

    So true, i regret also for not having any savings all i thought my SSS pension is enough am now in my late 50’s. It’s been years that i had been reading your blogs it inspires me a lot.

  2. Thanks for sharing this. I will show this to my wife since we always talk about my father (now on his 80’s) depends on his sss pension alone. It’s fortunate for us that we have invested our money on rental properties (we are both in our early 40’s).

  3. Old noobie says:

    a lot of my friends invest their money, some on business, some on stocks, some on mutual funds, some said I should have continued my SSS, some says I should have saved money in the bank. they all have regrets. you will never know if you will get lucky or you’ll lose your money. How many entered business and succeed. how many invested and got lucky? You may do everything to save and invest and still get nothing. Do not deprive yourself today just to prepare for your future. the future will take care of itself. buy what you need, don’t overspend, any excess then invest it. if it succeed or not atleast you have lived well. good luck. 🙂

  4. Joel su says:

    Thanks for sharing, just to share my life now I’m 31 blessed to engage in investing in small amount from my little salary. Very thankful for the financial literacy I’ve read, i remember Bo Sanchez book of how he teach his maid how to invest in stock market. I hope before turning 35 I put up my own Electrical Engineering service firm.

  5. joela. martin sr says:

    I just turned 60 y.o. and proud to share my younger years was never wasted. My 4 yrs stint in the M.E. provided me the seed money that saw me buying cheap but potential properties instead of developing my residential house or buying a car. Until now my house is the same undevelop house . The properties i bought at hundred pesos were sold at millions each, …Now my problem, i cannot get my 18 months SSS Lump sum pension because im a Businessman. The 250000 investment i made in 1997 now turned into a 24 room hotel in the city i lived. My message …..put your money in real estate. thank you

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