Tuesday, 18 June 2013

Retirement and long-term planning

You need a plan for what you are going to live off when you get to 65 or 70+. I have given more thought to this recently as I approach my 50s. From 0 – 20 if you are lucky, you are leaning into your parents, from 20 – 50 you get started in life and support yourself - but from 50 onwards you need to think about what you are going to live on from 70 through to 95 (possibly!) as we are tending to live longer these days! Ideally you may want to be putting money aside in your 20s and 30s so that by the time you are 50 you have an amount building up.

The government want us all to get to the situation where everyone makes provision for their retirement through a pension. People talk about pensions a great deal but aren’t so hot on doing something about it! On the whole, less and less people are in a company pension now but if you are in a government pension they come out well in comparison to those in the private sector. I would suggest that in this area it would be good to talk to a professional pension advisor, someone who is trained and competent.

If your family has handled money well in previous generations then it could well be that you will inherit money from them in due course. If you are likely to inherit money then I would suggest that you would need a long-term financial plan - like my 25-year plan. In my family my Dad has always been open about money – he has told me how much he is earning and how much he has in the bank. This is not a common approach for British people of that generation - but it is one of the reasons that I am open about money in the church!

Think ahead! I would repeat - please make a will. It will cost you about £100 to set up a basic will with a qualified legal person but you can go to W H Smith and get a basic form if you can’t afford £100. You will need a witness for your signature to make sure that it will stand up legally. It is better, for the peace of mind of both you and your family, to have something rather than nothing at all.

This series of blogs is based on the annual Stewardship seminar from King's Church London