Pensions - what are your options and what do you need to know?
Posted by siteadmin on Monday 2nd of November 2020.
Planning for your retirement is an important part of securing your financial future. Pensions are a crucial part of that planning, as they can provide you with the income you need in your later life to cover your expenses and enable you to continue to do the things you love.
It’s never too early to start thinking about and planning for your retirement. Once you have a plan in place, it’s essential to test it to ensure it’s the right plan for you and your needs.
You can use our pension shortfall calculator to help you to determine if there may be a shortfall in your pension fund when you come to retire. Identifying any potential shortfalls at an early age can give you the time you need to adjust your contributions and secure the financial future you deserve.
What are your options?
When you’re approaching retirement, there are multiple options available to you in terms of how you access your pension. Since 06 April 2015, new pensions rules have been in place which enable you to have more flexibility in how you choose to use your pension savings.
Depending on your individual financial circumstances, you may be able to choose to access your pension savings using an annuity (using your pension pot to purchase a guaranteed income for life), pension drawdown (flexible retirement income), take small cash sums from your pot, take a lump sum cash withdrawal, or mix any of the above. For more information on the options available to you, take a look at our retirement options page, or book an appointment with one of our trusted advisors.
What else do you need to know?
Changes to State Pension Age
The new State Pension was introduced in 2016, brought in to replace the basic State Pension. Depending on whether you reached your State Pension age before the changes came into play, determines which pension applies to you.
State Pension age is gradually increasing, and your State Pension age depends on when you were born. By 2028, the State Pension age for both men and women will reach 67. This is continually reviewed, and it may change again in the future in line with various factors, such as life expectancy.
When you reach your State Pension age, you are entitled to claim for your State Pension. However, this will not be automatically paid to you. Instead, you will have the option to either claim your pension or defer it, in order to receive higher payments at a later age.
The value of your investments can go down as well as up, so you could get back less than you invested.
The actual amount you should contribute will depend on your individual circumstances and objectives. You should always seek advice before taking action in respect of your pensions.
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You can obtain a forecast of what you may receive from the Government as a State Pension at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/application-for-a-state-pension-statement