It’s easy to push saving for your retirement to the back of your mind. Future events have a habit of feeling very distant, until they arrive. It can be a difficult thing to keep track of too – with nobody helping you along the way or checking up on your savings, putting a retirement plan in place can be a lonely experience.
The fact is, most of us are simply not saving enough to enjoy a similar lifestyle to our working days in retirement. A ‘retirement reality’ report from insurer Aviva shows that nearly 1 in 4 employees believe that retirement will be a financial struggle.
There are plenty of legitimate reasons why we don’t save enough – more immediate financial concerns will naturally take priority. You can’t save for tomorrow, for example, if it means forgoing your mortgage payments today. A lack of financial education also plays a big role. 85% of young adults, when surveyed, revealed that they wish they had been taught more about finance management through their school and university careers.
The Government’s auto-enrolment workers’ pension initiative has helped and there are around 1 million people saving for their retirement for the first time ever, as a result, but how do the numbers add up? The minimum auto-enrolment contribution rate is 5% of qualifying earnings (currently earnings between £6,032 and £46,350) (increasing to 8% from 6 April 2019) and despite more than half of workers believing this is the recommended rate of saving, it’s far from it. The generally accepted figure among experts, if you wish to maintain a similar lifestyle in retirement, is a contribution equal to 13% of your annual income.
This is a wide gulf between actual savings and those that are required. There are steps you can take to bolster your pension pot. It’s down to you to take responsibility for your finances, and even small steps like using tax friendly Savings Accounts can be helpful. If you receive a pay increase, why not allocate half of it to your savings or investments and enjoy the other half now. As tempting as it can be, it’s important to foster self-control to turn down opportunities for frivolous spending – think about tomorrow and give yourself more options in your golden years.
Investment house, Fidelity, has devised a system it calls the ‘Power of Seven’, consisting of a number of savings goals. Ultimately, it suggests that to comfortably retire at 68, you should have saved the equivalent of 7 times your annual household income. So if you were to retire with a household income of £50,000, you’d want a pension pot saved of £350,000. Clearly the exact figures will depend on individual circumstances, so we recommend you speak to your Brunsdon Financial Adviser who will be able to help you calculate the amount of income you are likely to need in retirement.
Please note that this information is for guidance only and does not constitute personal advice. Brunsdon is not responsible for the content of third party websites.