Pensions are important at all stages of your life. Look and see what you should be thinking about as your life changes.
I am starting work
Even though you’ve just started working, retirement can seem like a long way off, but you should start planning as early as you can.
Small regular amounts add up over time
You’ve got a new job, a new salary and routine so it’s understandable that saving for retirement might not be first of the list of priorities.
Joining the Local Government Pension Scheme (LGPS) is an advantage, helping you on your way to a comfortable level of income when you stop working. However, the pension you eventually receive and any other pensions you have elsewhere might not be enough to retire on.
If it’s affordable, it might be worth putting a bit extra into your pension each month when you get paid. It doesn’t need to be much, but your future self will thank you.
The decision to join a pension scheme or pay in extra is a significant one and if you need an extra helping hand, you should seek independent financial advice from adviser before making any decisions. To find one, visit register.fca.org.uk and note that you will be responsible for arranging and paying for any advice you receive.
Keep track of your pension
You should monitor your pension savings closely during your career. The younger you are, the harder it is to plan for what you might need but have a go at working it out and keep reviewing it.
As you get older, you’ll get a better idea of what your outgoings are, and it’ll be easier to plan how much money you might need. If you plan well, it’ll be easier to reach your goal.
Moving to a new job
If you move jobs, you’ll be able to join another company pension scheme, and you may well be entered automatically. Make sure you ask about this during the recruitment process.
You’ll also need to decide if you want to keep your money in the LGPS or transfer them to the new pension scheme. Changing jobs is also a good time to monitor your progress of saving for retirement. If you’re thinking of transferring, make sure you get some independent financial advice.
I’m supporting my family
Having a family is great, fun and rewarding but don’t let that pension slip away!
Make sure your family’s covered
Your pension gives security for you and your family. If you were to die whilst you were still working, a lump sum and pension could be paid to your family.
You may also be able to pay more so your family receives a bigger lump sum of pension if you die whilst working or after you retire.
Contribute more if you can
With children or caring for elderly parents, it’s hard to find time to have a quiet cup of tea, let alone check on how your pension is doing! You might not have a lot of spare cash, but don’t forget that a little bit extra will go a long way.
Get it sorted
Keep track of all your pension savings during your career and take five minutes every now and then to plan how much monthly income you think you’ll need in retirement. The younger you are, the harder it’ll be to plan what you might need but try to work it out and review it. As you get older, you’ll get a better idea of how much money you think you’ll need and if you have planned well it’ll be easier to reach your goal.