When we think about pensions, the temptation can be to switch off, ignore it completely or promise that we’ll “look at it” but it goes waaaaay down the priority list and never gets looked at. The issue is though, we CAN’T ignore this. The longer we leave doing anything about it, the more difficult it is to correct. According to Age UK – 2 million pensions live in poverty, and the figure is worsening, not improving.
I DO NOT want this to happen to you. So now is a GREAT time to think about it.
I don’t know why people are put off by pensions. Perhaps it’s how complex they seem, or perhaps the word “pension” needs to change? I like to think of it as the big pot of money that is going to pay our “wages” when we stop working for it. A pension is stored up money for the future.
Perhaps we should call it our “future fund” or our “future play pot”. What would you call it? Drop me a comment!
So when I was thinking about writing an e-book on what someone could do to fund their retirement, I wanted to make pensions feel more accessible and fun. This is where the pension bar-top analogy came from!!
The Pension Bartop
I think of retirement planning as a very long drinks order, and each “drink” is an element of a potential retirement plan.
The “tonic water” is the first thing I talk about, and I liken this to the state pension. It’s there, but drinking it on it’s own isn’t much fun, and nor is the state pension. The current full pension is £175.20 per week. I don’t know about you, but they definitely wouldn’t be enough for me!!
The other thing I don’t like about it is that the government can mess around with the pension however they like. I talk about the WASPI campaign and how the women caught up in pension changes lost out in a BIG way.
So my goal is for women NEVER to rely on the state pension, and include a few other drinks in their order to top it up.
Variety Is The Spice Of Life
The other drinks that I refer to include “The Gin and Tonic”, “The Pina Colada” and “The Pornstar Martini”. These are the next elements of your planning – workplace pensions, LISAs and Stocks and Shares ISAs. This is ESPECIALLY important if you are self-employed. You don’t have the luxury of a workplace pension, so a self-invested personal pension is your equivalent. There are tax benefits to being in one, and you get full control of how you manage it if you want to.
So variety is what makes retirement planning so interesting. You can have pots of money for your future fund in all sorts of places, and each one has their pros and cons. It comes down to personal preference, but the more options you have, the more comfortable (in theory) your retirement will be.
The Whole Bar
Once you have a handle on the pension bar top, you can then spread your wings and start looking at other things like property. Now this is a WHOLE other ball game and definitely needs education, but the world is literally your oyster (and champagne!).
The point of the e-book is to help you visualise how the different things you can do for your retirement fit together, and start to look at ways to action them in your life. Once you set it up you only need review it once a year – life is for living after all.
So if you want to get your hands on the e-book, you can do so here:
Happy Planning – the best bit is that you can “drink” as much as you want without getting a hangover. When it comes to retirement, you can never be too prepared. Go out and get “pension”-drunk!!
If you would like to read more, try this: