Most of us will switch jobs several times during our working lives. With any luck, we’ll have had a pension with each of those roles. But do you know where those all-important retirement pots are now?
Research by Aegon suggests that one in five people with multiple pension pots have lost track of some of their retirement savings! Nearly two-thirds of savers (64%) have more than one pension pot, but 22% of those said they have lost track of one or all of these accounts, an increase from 21% in 2016. Another 30% said they do not know the value of their pensions.
The results come from a survey, commissioned by Aegon, of 909 adults earlier this month, and could mean around seven million people have misplaced some of their retirement savings, once the figures are extrapolated to the general population.
A separate survey by financial planners Tilney found that lack of interest (27%), losing paperwork (26%) and moving house but forgetting to tell the pension provider (26%) are the most common reasons for losing touch with a pension.
Aegon’s Head of Pensions Kate Smith said the figures were concerning. "It's very hard to plan for retirement without a full view of your savings and an understanding of what your state pension entitlement is likely to be," she said. "So it's concerning that the number of people who have lost track of their pensions has increased slightly.
"Without the bigger picture, people might be setting themselves up for a retirement fall without a clear idea of what their savings are worth. Nowadays the vast majority of jobs come with a pension and, as people frequently change jobs, it's all too easy to lose track of your pensions, especially if they are small."
The government, pensions industry and the Association for British Insurers are in the process of developing a pensions dashboard which will help people keep track of the different pensions they’ve built up over a lifetime – but that won’t launch until 2019. And, even if you do know where all your pensions are, making sure they aren’t languishing in potentially poorly performing funds or with unnecessarily high fees is a vital part of building the biggest possible retirement savings pot.
The government’s Pension Tracing Service (https://www.gov.uk/find-pension-contact-details ) can be a good place to start when tracking down details of lost pensions.
And of course, if you need advice on what to do with those pensions once you’ve found them, please talk to your Brunsdon Financial Adviser who will be able to help you make the most of them.
Please note that this information is for guidance only and does not constitute personal advice. Brunsdon is not responsible for the content of external web sites.