The value in thinking ahead

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Retirement is something most of us look forward to − particularly on a Monday morning.  However, those thoughts are often little more than a whimsical cocktail of not having to work and prolonged holidays.

The reality could be rather different, particularly if your retirement date is some way off.  For a start, retirement is now often not the sudden change from work to enforced idleness that it used to be.

Retirement planning is complicated and has been made even more so by constant changes to the rules.

If you were to wait for a time when pension rules remain constant, your retirement date would be likely to arrive first.  Governments of all hues have regularly revised the tax and other rules surrounding pensions.  Often the motivation has been to save money, either by reducing the tax relief cost (estimated at £39.9 billion in 2019/20) or by cutting expenditure on the state pension.

Government changes to pension taxation have meant that, for some people, there is no longer any financial sense in making pension contributions, a reminder of how important reviews can be.  For others, reforms have transformed pensions into a key estate planning tool.

We make it our business to stay up to date with the latest developments, and to help clients take full advantage of the available tax breaks.  In particular, we can:

● Assess your financial priorities and choose suitable ways of saving for retirement.
● Integrate any auto-enrolment pension provision from your employer with your own private provision.
● Maximise pension contributions, using carry forward where appropriate.
● Advise whether salary sacrifice could increase the amount invested in your pension, at no extra cost to you or your employer.
● Consider the appropriateness of a SIPP, and the right investment strategy.
● Deal with pension arrangements from previous employments.
● Manage the move from saving to withdrawing from your pension.
● Keep you informed on how any new government legislation could affect your retirement planning.

Given the frequency of government reforms to pensions, plus your own changing circumstances, it is important to build a plan and incorporate regular reviews into your planning.

For more information, read our guide below:

Saving for retirement

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