Executives of Bank of America’s Merrill Edge program have taken a page from The Christmas Carol to prompt investors to change their financial behavior: They’re offering them a glimpse of their future selves. Through a new online tool that ages a consumer’s photo, investors can see what they’ll look like many years down the road.
It can be hard for us to really believe we are facing retirement. Sometimes, we just don’t want to admit that the time is fast approaching. We’ve all been told that we need to save for retirement long before the time arrives, but it’s hard to think ahead of how things will change for us. If only we could ‘picture” it …
As reported in a recent Financial Planning article, executives of Bank of America’s Merrill Edge program have altered the face of retirement planning, literally. A new online tool, Face Retirement, ages a consumer’s photo so investors can see what they’ll look like several years down the road.
The new tool is supposed to motivate Americans to save more for their retirement and to engage in conversations about their financial future. The tool was prompted, in part, by a Stanford University experiment finding that those who exposed “themselves” to their “older selves” were more likely to begin thinking about retirement and planning for it than those who were not exposed to the images.
The tool performs other functions as well. It can show a potential investor what prices will look like with inflation in the future. And most importantly, the tool can predict the amount of savings a person will need at the age of retirement.
If you need some extra motivation to start saving more for retirement, check out the new tool mentioned above – hopefully, you’ll have a better “picture” of your future.
References: Financial Planning (December 6, 2012) “New Tool Helps Investors Face Retirement, Literally”
Stanford University (2011) “Increasing Saving Behavior Through Age-Progressed Renderings of the Future Self”
Merrill Edge (2012) “Face Retirement”