It is a fact that people are living longer and healthier lives. Planning for your future post-employment, therefore, is of utmost importance. Indeed, according to research, you can spend as much as a third of your life in retirement. Whilst this may seem appealing, it is vital that you understand how to financially support yourself in lieu of a regular income.
Most people who have contributed regularly to their national insurance payments throughout their working lives will receive a state pension. However, since this currently only amounts to £4,953 per year, you would be hard pressed to survive on this alone. What, then, can you do to make sure you have enough money to retire with?
One of the best ways, say the experts, is to join a pension plan. Not only will you be working towards ensuring you have a comfortable retirement, but having a pension is one of the most tax efficient ways of saving cash for the future. But, with so many different schemes around, how do you know which the best option for you is?
Generally speaking, there are two types of pension plan you can contribute to: an individual pension, and a company pension. Within these, there are then a number of sub-categories.
An individual or private pension is basically one that you set up independently of any employer or third person. It can be an effective option, since you can hold onto it and keep paying into it, regardless of your employment status. If you opt for this type of scheme, you must then decide whether to take out a personal, stakeholder or self-invested pension. There is a vast amount of information regarding these, which is available both through the internet and also from different financial institutions.
A company pension, on the other hand, is often felt to be more desirable as there are a number of related benefits and advantages to be had. For example, a money purchase plan will be set up by your employer and sees both them and you contribute monthly payments. These are then invested into a range of different assets.
This type of pension plan also offers the user a huge amount of flexibility, such as being able to make one-off payments, or to increase or decrease your monthly input without being penalised. It is also possible to transfer the pension to another company if you switch employers. Before you do this however, it is advisable to consult with a financial advisor.
Final salary pension schemes are also a popular choice, and can offer the retiree many benefits. Based on the amount of money contributed to the plan, as well as how long you worked with the company, you are guaranteed to receive a percentage of your final salary for the duration of your retirement.
So, if you want to ensure the financial well being of your retirement, it definitely pays to find yourself a pension plan
. Just remember to do your homework and find one that suits your individual circumstances.