Continue to defer taxes. Retirees are generally required to take withdrawals from their retirement accounts after age 70 and to pay the resulting income tax on the amount withdrawn. However, if you continue to work in your 70s or later, and don't own 5 percent or more of the company maintaining the plan, some 401(k) plans – but not IRAs – will allow you to defer withdrawals from that 401(k) account until you actually retire.
Workplace benefits. The group health and retirement benefits you get through a job are often better than what you could buy on your own as a retiree, which is particularly important for people not yet old enough to qualify for Medicare. Many workplaces also provide other perks including company-paid travel, discounts on company merchandise and the occasional company party.
Helping others. Whether by mentoring younger employees or providing a service to the community, many workers help people through their jobs. The rewards you get from providing a valuable service often go beyond any paycheck you receive. "By the time people are well into their 50s, they generally are less driven by the next promotion or opportunity on the job," Collamer says. "They tend to be more motivated by wanting to make a difference in the world."