The changes in the retirement landscape mean that many people today are having to adjust their outlook towards retirement. With more people living longer, expectations of retirement are being reshaped and there is no longer a one-size-fits-all approach to retirement planning.
To different people, retirement means different things. Retirement offers the gift of time to do the things that matter most, whether that’s looking to continue to work in one capacity or another, embark on a new project or business venture, or stop work entirely.
What questions should you be asking about your retirement?
Retirement is a very personal stage in all of our lives, and it may also affect others, so it is important to consider loved ones. Over the course of someone’s retirement, there may be a change to their family situation, including changes due to death or divorce, or perhaps welcoming new partners and possibly grandchildren.
It is important to know your pension is going to finance your plans. But what questions should you be asking about your retirement? Will I be able to retire when I want to? Will I run out of money? How can I guarantee the kind of retirement I want? Should I invest my retirement savings?
Is it time to review my retirement plans?
People who associate confidence with retirement are most likely to have specific retirement goals and know what steps they need to take to reach them. But unfortunately, some people do not feel confident that they will have enough savings to live comfortably after they retire.
10 tips to enjoy the retirement you want
- Review your spending habits and consider if you have the scope to save a little more each month.
- Look up your annual benefit statements – you may have saved with more than one employer’s pension scheme.
- Think about what financial milestones you’d need to reach in order to increase your pension contributions and review your investment choices.
- Find out more about your current pension plan. If you pay in more, does your employer match your contributions?
- Track down old pension schemes using the government’s finder service https://www.gov.uk/find-pension-contact-details. Or request contact details from the government’s Pension Tracing Service on 0800 731 0193 or by post.
- Check that your ‘expression of wish’ form is up to date. This is a request setting out whom you would like to receive any death benefits payable on your death.
- Check your state pension – to receive the full state pension when you reach state pension age you must have paid or been credited with 35 qualifying years of National Insurance contributions. Visit the Government Pension Service https://www.gov.uk/contact-pension-service for information about your State Pension.
- Add up the savings and investments that you could use for your retirement. A pension is a very tax-efficient way to save for your retirement, but you might also have other savings or investments that you could use to increase your income when you retire.
- If you are getting close to retirement and the amount you are likely to retire on is less than you had hoped, consider ways to boost your pension.
- Decide when to start taking your pension. You need to set a target date when you want to start drawing an income from your pension – and remember, you don’t have to stop working to take your pension, but you must be aged at least 55 (you might be able to do this earlier if you’re in very poor health).
These are just some of the questions you will want to know the answers to. But there are many other things to consider as you approach retirement.
- Children’s pensions
- Defined benefit (or final salary) pensions
- Defined contribution pensions
- Personal pensions
- Self-Invested Personal Pensions (SIPPs)
- The state pension
- Annual allowance and lifetime allowance limits
- Busting myths about pensions
- Increases to pension age and new normal minimum pension age
- Pension freedoms
- Pension withdrawal methods
- The lifetime allowance
- Delaying retirement
- Generating income from investments throughout your retirement years
- Importance of a retirement wealth check
- Retirement goal setting
- Retirement planning
- Reviewing your retirement plan
- Staggered retirement
- Taking control of your retirement plans
- What can I do with my pension?
- What happens to my pension on death?
- Discretionary Fund Managers
- Market timing
- Minimising risk
- Multiple asset classes
- Portfolio insulation
- Pound cost averaging
- Principles of investing
Growing your wealth
Goals based investing
- Cash flow modelling
- Creating a financial roadmap
- Investment objectives
- Timescales and market activity and the impact of losses
- ‘What if’ scenarios
- Discussing legacy planning with your loved ones
- Inheritance Tax (IHT)
- Inheritance Tax Residence Nil Rate Band (RNRB)
- Lasting power of attorney
- Lifetime transfers
- Making a Will
- Preserving wealth for future generations
- Protecting your assets for the next generation
- Slicing up your wealth pie