Nearly half of working adults ‘can’t imagine’ ever being able to fully stop working – but six in ten have already started putting away monthly savings for retirement
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One in seven adults are planning to retire in their 50s – but a fifth expect to be working well into their 70s, according to a study.
Researchers, who polled 2,000 working adults, found 34% think early retirement is achievable.
And 62% of those who feel this way are putting money aside each month in pursuit of this goal.
Meanwhile, a third are making overpayments on their mortgage in a bid to be free of any financial obligations.
And another one in five (21%) intend to downsize, so they can quit their jobs sooner rather than later and reap the rewards of retirement.
But the research by Timeline, makers of financial planning software and providers of an evidence-based investment advice service for financial advisers, found half “can’t imagine” ever being able to fully stop working.
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Getting advice from a financial adviser might help – but just 27% have sought counsel from such experts about their retirement plans.
A spokesman for Timeline said: “Retirement may seem unobtainable for some but it shouldn’t be – indeed, once you start to look into it, it’s more realistic than you might think.
“It’s never too early to create, or too late to improve, your retirement plan.
“The subject matter – pensions, retirement plans, national insurance – can seem quite overwhelming, so that in itself could be a barrier to someone believing early retirement is possible.
“But millions of people in the UK do retire early – and live very comfortably too, so it certainly doesn’t need to be a pipedream.
“For many, receiving the right financial advice from a qualified financial adviser makes a huge difference in understanding their own situation.”
The study also found those polled think they would need more than £380,000 to retire early – this includes state pension, any other pensions they may have, and personal savings.
So perhaps it’s no surprise that over a third of adults (39%) think early retirement is becoming less common.
Another factor behind this perception might be people not planning ahead – as over half (52%) admitted they haven’t even thought about putting money aside for when they retire.
Further to this, 17% don’t know if they currently contribute more than the standard pension contribution amount each month – while 43% are “certain” they don’t.
And six in ten aren’t even sure what the minimum workplace pension contribution is.
It’s estimated there’s £20 billion in lost pensions in the UK, from pension contributions received, or made in past jobs, which haven’t been transferred over when starting a new job.
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But 75% have never checked to see if they have any missing pensions – with more than half (53%) admitting they wouldn’t know how to.
The study found six in ten have also never checked their state pension contributions, and 46% said they have no idea how to get this information.
Another 61% have yet to see what their National Insurance contributions amount to, and 49% are unsure how to find this out.
But four in ten are planning to get expert advice about their retirement plan from a financial adviser to rectify this.
The study, carried out through OnePoll, found 55% fear it’s too late for them to do anything to make early retirement a possibility, or simply make it financially comfortable.
And this isn’t just a concern among older adults – more than half (52%) of those aged 18 to 34 have these worries.
Timeline’s spokesman added: “This research suggests nervousness among many adults about retirement planning and getting to grips with related financial considerations, like pensions.
“But you can take action right now to start getting things in order. There is a wealth of information and expertise out there – financial advisers can eradicate the need for any head scratching.
“As well as our financial planning software and evidence-based model portfolios that empower financial planners, we have just launched The Investing Show.
“This is a free service to help people make sensible investment decisions, and better understand some of these issues.”