Chamber Chat – Damien Sissons

May 04, 2017 - 9:00am

Chamber Chat – Damien Sissons

Many businesses are currently setting up auto enrolment pension schemes or have done so over the last couple of years as required by the government. Employees up and down the country are therefore considering whether to stay in their scheme or opt out.

Notwithstanding the increased costs and red tape burden placed on businesses, this has had the benefit of focusing the minds of employers and employees and hopefully nudging both towards planning for their retirement.

I am often surprised when talking to new clients about pensions and retirement planning to see they have not seriously thought about it before. Many clients work closely with ourselves or some of the excellent financial planners we have in the area (many of whom are chamber members) and are implementing a sensible and controlled plan. But it is not unusual to hear more concerning responses such as:

“Why bother, I could get hit by a bus tomorrow” (you might, but you probably won’t)

“I can’t afford to save” (can you afford not to heat your house properly when you retire?)

“I’m going to inherit some money” (10 years of care home fees can put a big hole in many an expected inheritance)

“My business is my pension” (what is your business truly worth – particularly with you not in it?)

“Something will turn up” (hmmm then again……)

The message with retirement planning is clear: an ostrich approach won’t work. The advice is also the same whether you are in business or employed. You should implement a realistic plan as soon as possible and stick to it. Taking professional advice is also recommended!