Did you know that this month the minimum workplace contributions increase from 5% to 8% meaning that if the total that you, your employer and the taxman currently contribute to your pension is less than 8% then you’ll all put in a little more when this change comes into effect.
I started out my work life after leaving school at 16, thankfully my work experience venue during the last year of school took me on full time as I would have hated the whole interview anxiety etc. I worked with them for 3 years before meeting my then to be husband and leaving full time work to take care of the children. To be honest retirement seemed so far off that it wasn’t something I even contemplated.
After a few years I started working for Barclays Bank and it was only then that the option of automatically enrolling in a pension scheme came as part of the employment package. Of course at the time i didn’t read the paperwork etc and just ticked the box to go ahead with what I thought someone else would sort out for me. I only worked there a year before I was pregnant again and left to look after my 4 boys.
Last year I was invited along to the Scottish Widows tour bus which took to the road, hitting towns trying to get the message across that its actually not that scary and really is something that needs to be sorted, sooner rather than later. The lovely people who were there helped me realise that it isn’t complicated at all and even though I am now self employed there is no reason why I shouldn’t have my pension in order.
What did shock me is that only 1 in 3 women under 30 are saving to their pension compared to 46% of men! It really is amazing how much difference there is in attitude towards saving towards something that is so important. Although women have different obstacles to overcome, maternity leave, fewer working days etc it is just as essential that we contribute too. For example this new increase in the contribution percentage could make a £21000 difference to someone who is 45 years old and wanting to retire at 65… yes, that is twenty one THOUSAND pound!
Do you know how your pensions stands right now? Is it something that you have kept track of or do you leave it to others to sort out?
This is a collaborative post with Mumsnet and Scottish Widows, I have been compensated for my time. All views are my own and genuine.