When is the real time to start thinking about retirement plan?


JF-Expert Member
Jul 18, 2007
Wana JF long time huko nilikuwa na katabia ka kutoa article moja inayohusu investment kila baada ya mwezi, katabia kale kakafa.. Leo nakarudisha tena na kuunza na hii " Jee ni lini unatakiwa uanze kufikiri kuhusu retirement?"

The notion that I am too young to think for retirement plan has no chance in the world we're living today. Historical Tanzania doesn't have a long history of a variety of financial vehicles mainly because the state was in charge of the economy and the private sector was largely absent. The post 1985 period witnessed a lot of economic reforms and liberalization which saw the private sector gain strength and become the main vehicle of development.

Unlike before, youths in Tanzania have access to a lot of financial vehicles that they can use or utilize retirement plan

Tanzania treats its labour force bracket as that belonging to the 15-64 ages category. However, for the sake of this article, I will focus on 24-50 years (because most individuals are maturedor leave a morestable life at this age and beyond]. Why 50? Because beyond 60, your chances of making use of a variety of financial vehicles that I will address in this article are very slim or you won't be able to guarantee efficiency, or minimize risks etc.

Investment planning for retirement should be an important element for every adult regardless his or her present financial situation. Planning for retirement is a comprehensive process for determining how much money you will need at the time of retirement.
Planning also helps you to identify the best ways of saving for retirement given your financial situation. A lot of people feel that retirement planning is important when you cross 40 years of age or you have to be employed in order to think about it. But nowadays you can't afford to wait until forties; people should start thinking of retirement planning in their twenties and thirties. In this generation the increase of different retirement vehicles such as Umoja Trust Funds (UTF) have made these schemes more lucrative for investors.

A proper financial planning for retirement requires a long period of time, that is, from the day you start working until well beyond your actual retirement date. Money saved in the early part of the life has more time to grow than money saved during the late stage of life. Also young investors can look for investing in more risky instruments such as put all his/her money in common stock offered by companies such as NMB, TOL and many others. They have time on their side which provides an extra cushion to absorb the risks and hence lower the risk.

Planning is an important part when talking about savings for retirement. You need to project your future expenses based on the current expenses (for example living expenses, travel and leisure, medical and other routine annual expenses). Since it is a very long term plan, it may not be very accurate in the beginning; however as the time elapse you will be within the margin of error. Individuals should treat it as a flexible and dynamic plan which can be revised based on changes in projected goals and current earnings.

Individuals need to review their investment plan every now and then and if necessary, make changes to accommodate any additional needs. A good retirement plan requires your active monitoring and long-term commitment.
Once you have thought about an investment plan, your investment allocation would depend on the amount of money that you wish to save, the return you are looking at, your age, current income and your degree of uncertainty that you can handle in regards to a negative change in the value of your portfolio.
There are many different models used for selecting asset for your investment portfolio; however, the actual allocation could be different on a case by case basis depends on many factors.

Investors below thirty years: These investors have long way to go for retirement. They can afford to invest in higher risk assets such as common stock in order to get better returns (historical common stocks have high risk and high returns). This group can invest up seventy percent (70%) of their savings in the stock market and put the rest in safe instruments like fixed deposits offered by majority of the banks here in Tanzania or precious metals such as gold, diamond and etc. If it happens an individual in this group has enough money to invest on real estate then it's wise to do so. Historical real estate produces a good return over the period of time.

Investors between 30 and 40 years: Investors in this age bracket can look for balancing their retirement portfolio by investing in real estate such as (frame za maduka au ofisi, houses etc) for rent. Also they can invest some of their retirement into stock market; however it shouldn't be more than 50 percent. This is due to the fact that as the investor age elapse he/she need to reduce his/her exposure toward high risk assets such as common stocks. Other financial vehicles which can benefit this group is including fixed deposit account.
Investors in the 40 to 50 years age bracket: These investors should go for a more balanced approach towards risky and safe investment. They should reduce exposure in stock market to 30 percent or 40 percent of the total investment portfolio. They should look for investments in safer investments like property for rental, and other fixed income securities such as fixed deposit account.

Investors in above 50 years age bracket: These investors are very close to their retirement. They should gradually reduce their exposure in common stock instruments to less than 20 percent. Based on their needs they can look for investments that secure a regular monthly income. Investment such as real estate, fixed deposit securities can be another option for this group.

The real secret here is to start investing early and investing regularly in life, whatever small the amount may be. Investing early gives time to your investment to grow by way of compounding and investing at regular time intervals make you ride multiple opportunities in the market.

Many people value stocks of former state owned enterprises based on their perception on how these SOEs performed in the past. It should be noted many of these, besides banks or insurance were not efficient in operations and were heavily subsidized.
There are few things that you should consider before purchasing any common stock :( a) Performance of the company, how does the company performed over the period of time. (b) Perception of demand for that product. For instance TCC and TBL many don't consider competition in the future, regulations etc. (c) Management structure of the company. REMEMBER HISTORICAL PERFORMANCE OF THE COMPANY DOESN'T PREDICT THE FUTURE.


JF-Expert Member
May 15, 2010
Good writing ndugu. At least there is something different in jf.
Keep them comming, usiache tena!

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