The average amount of retirement savings in Individual Retirement Arrangements, or IRAs, that people accumulate by their late 50s in the United States is $122,957 as of 2015, states U.S. News & World Report. By their early 60s, the average is $165,139; by their late sixties, the average is $212,812; and by their 70s, the average is $219,790. Almost 45 percent of U.S. households have no savings in retirement accounts at all, reports the National Institute on Retirement Security.
The best time to initiate putting even small amounts of savings in retirement accounts is when people are in their 20s because whatever they save can compound for decades, advises U.S. News & World Report. People typically have larger incomes but more demand on their resources in their 30s, as they may be buying houses and raising children. By their 40s, people should focus more on specific retirement goals. In their 50s, people can set aside extra retirement funds due to laws that allow catch-up contributions to retirement plans. Those in their 60s need to assess their savings and decide the optimum time to retire and apply for Social Security.
Those approaching retirement without sufficient nest eggs can take action to increase their retirement savings, according to U.S. News & World Report. For instance, they can trim their budgets and downsize their homes early. They can plan to work longer, although circumstances do not always make this possible. They can delay initiating Social Security benefits as long as possible, as they increase their monthly benefit amount for every year they delay retirement until age 70. Additionally, they should not sap their retirement funds to pay for their children's educations, as their children have time to pay these debts themselves.