Half of Brits unaware of how pensions work – 9 in 10 fear basic state pension isn't enough


An astounding 56 per cent of Britons aren’t sure how pensions work in terms of when they access their money and how, according to research conducted by www.MoneySavingHeroes.co.uk. Almost 2,500 Britons were polled, all of whom said they were aged 18 or older, and working in full time employment. Furthermore, when asked about what it was that confused them, 68 per cent of these respondents said that they didn’t know at what age they would be able to access their pension pot. Meanwhile, 51 per cent of people said they weren’t sure if it acted as a separate bank account, or whether it would get paid into their current account.

The results also saw that 24 per cent of respondents say they thought they would be paid their workplace pension in one lump sum.

Just over a fifth of people (22 per cent) thought they’d receive the money monthly, while 20 per cent said weekly.

Meanwhile 19 per cent of participants said they thought it would be paid as and when they needed it, while 10 per cent thought the amount is paid every fortnight.

The remaining five per cent of people asked said that they wouldn’t be able to confidently guess when they would be able to access their pension pot.

Respondents were also asked if they felt that the full basic UK state pension amount of £129.20 per week was enough to live off.

Almost nine in 10 people (89 per cent) said they didn’t think it was sufficient, with 46 per cent saying they felt it wouldn’t be enough to cover their monthly outgoings.

One in five (19 per cent) felt that it wouldn’t be enough to cover their rent or mortgage, never mind other costs.

While some people can claim the basic state pension and Additional State Pension, others will now follow the new state pension rules.

The full amount that a person gets will depend on the type of state pension they qualify for, as well as their National Insurance record.

George Charles, spokesperson for www.MoneySavingHeroes.co.uk said: “When it comes to a workplace pension, you contribute and your employer contributes and then the government contributes with a separate state pension.

“No matter what your financial commitments are, or how comfortable you are financially right now, a workplace pension will be beneficial later on in life, and it’s now mandatory for all UK businesses to offer this to employees that are eligible for automatic enrolment.

READ MORE: Pension contributions: How much do you need to save to have a £450,000 pension fund at 65?

“It might not sound like a lot – especially when the average UK salary is £29,009 (just over £2,400 a month or £600 a week) before tax, of course, but hopefully by the time Britons reach pension age they will be far more comfortable with their financial outgoings.

“It never hurts to create a private pension though and ensure you have as much money saved as possible.”

Elsewhere in pension news, a personal finance blogger has sat down with Express.co.uk in order to document her workplace pension journey.

Lynn James, 42, is the founder and managing director of Mrs Mummypenny.

She currently has a pension pot of around £50,000, but aims to boost this to around £500,000 by making significant pension contributions.


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