A raft of recent news stories about people with inadequate pension savings warn of the tough futures they could face. But is it worth getting a pension? And how do you get started if you fear you’ve left it too late?
Pension stories are a regular fixture on the front pages. In the past few weeks alone it’s been claimed that half of UK women don’t have savings for retirement, and there’s been news that annuity rates have fallen to an all-time low.
It doesn’t feel like an exaggeration to say that there’s a general sense of alarm surrounding the issue. People worry that they haven’t saved enough, and are concerned that they’ll have a poor income in retirement, despite their efforts to save.
What’s the point of a pension?
Others have so little faith in the system that they don’t see the point of a pension at all, and would rather put their spare cash into property or Isas.
Which? Money experts argue that it’s crucial to start saving for retirement as early as possible. This way your pension pot has longer to grow, and the power of compound interest should mean your monthly contributions multiply in value many times over. But what if student debts mean you can’t afford a mortgage, let alone a pension plan?
And what if you’ve already hit middle age and are yet to start retirement planning? Is it too late to start a pension at 40, and – if not – just how much cash will you need to put by each month in order to make saving worthwhile?
Tell us your pension questions
We’ll be talking about pensions on next Wednesday’s Which? Money podcast – and we’d like to hear from you. Pensions expert Ian Robinson will be responding to Which? Conversation comments and questions in the podcast, so please tell us your thoughts and concerns about pensions and planning for a comfortable retirement.