It's easy to tell someone to save more when you aren't the one paying his bills.
A survey from Schwab Retirement Plan Services found that workers who have access to a 401(k) plan, but aren't contributing to it, are buried under day-to-day financial stress. Schwab surveyed 1,000 people, half who save their 401(k) and half who don't and found that 60% of savers and 53% of non-savers who have at one time contributed to a 401(k) say their 401(k) is their largest or only source of retirement savings. However, a quarter of non-savers say they are not saving or investing for retirement at all right now.
"In comparing individuals now saving in their 401(k) plans and those who aren't, we uncovered some common challenges but also a number of striking differences in the way each group thinks about their overall financial picture," says Steve Anderson, president of Schwab Retirement Plan Services. "What's important for everyone to remember is that - no matter how far away retirement may seem - the more you can prepare for it in the present, the better off you'll be at the end of your career."
Again, that's easy to say when you aren't the one paying the bills. More than twice as many non-savers as savers say keeping up with monthly expenses is a significant source of stress (42% compared to 20%). A full 45% of non-savers say they either have no money left over or are actually behind on bills at the end of each month, compared to 23% of 401(k) --savers who say the same.