MYTH NO. 7: You'll be able to make up a savings shortfall by retiring later or working part-time in retirement.

That's a hope or last resort, not a plan. It's unwise to rely on future circumstances for your 60s or beyond. Forty percent of retirees surveyed by consulting firm McKinsey & Co. said they were forced to stop working earlier than they had planned, citing health reasons, having to care for a spouse or family member, or a layoff.

Even a job loss well before retirement age can be tough to recover from. People age 55 and over currently spend an average of more than 13 months on unemployment, according to the AARP Public Policy Institute â¿¿ nearly five months longer than for younger job-seekers. So don't take it for granted you'll be able to make up for years of failing to save enough on the back end of your working life.

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