Your life, your pension

Pensions are important at all stages of your life. You can use the links below to see what you should be thinking about as your circumstances change.

I am entering the workforce

When you first start working your retirement will seem like it's a long way off.

Small regular amounts add up over time

You may not have much spare money when you're just starting out in the workforce, and saving for your retirement might not be high on your list of priorities.

Being able to join a scheme like the LGPS can be an advantage, helping you on your way to a reasonable level of income when you retire. But the pension you eventually receive and any other pensions you might have built up may not be enough for you to retire comfortably on.

If you can afford it, it may be worth putting away a bit of extra into your pension each pay day. It doesn't even need to be much, but whatever you put in will build up over time and, you could be thanking yourself later on.

Any decision to join a pension scheme or to pay extra in is an important one and you should make sure you receive independent financial advice before making any decisions.

Get your pension together

You should keep track of all your pension savings during your career and take time every now and then to plan how much monthly income you think you will need in retirement. The younger you are the harder it will be to plan what you might need, but try to work it out and keep it under review. As you get older you will get a better idea of how much pension you think you will need and if you have planned well it will be easier to reach your goal.

Moving to a new job

If you're moving into a new job you will have important decisions to make.

You will probably have the opportunity to join another company pension scheme with your new employer and may well be entered into that scheme automatically. Make sure you ask about it when you are going through the recruitment process.

You will also need to decide if you want to keep your benefits in the LGPS or transfer them to your new employer's pension scheme. Changing jobs is also a good time to make sure your pension is still on track for a healthy retirement.

When you move to a new job you may want to reconsider how much you contribute to your pension. If you are earning more you may be able to afford to contribute more.

Whatever decisions you take about joining your new employer's pension scheme or transferring what you have in the LGPS, you should make sure you get independent financial advice.

I am supporting my family

It can be a busy time having a family. But it's important not to let your pension slip away.

Make sure you've got your family covered

Your pension gives you security for you and your family. If you were to die whilst you were still working a lump sum and pension may be paid to your family.

You may also be able to pay more so your family receives a bigger lump sum or pension if you die while still working or after you retire. These are valuable benefits which give you and your family some security if the worst were to happen.

Make extra contributions - every little bit counts

With children running around it's hard to find time to tie your own shoes, let alone make sure your pension's ok. You may not have a lot of spare money, but don't forget the difference a small amount each week will make to your final retirement benefits.

I am planning to retire

Consider your retirement options

You need to make some important decisions about how you want to take your benefits. You may have the option to choose whether your pension increases in payment, to give up some of your pension for a cash sum or to increase any benefits payable to your loved ones following your death. The options available to you will depend on the rules surrounding your specific pension scheme.

Get it sorted!

You should keep track of all your pension savings during your career and take time every now and then to plan how much monthly income you think you will need in retirement. The younger you are the harder it will be to plan what you might need, but try to work it out and keep it under review. As you get older you will get a better idea of how much pension you think you will need and if you have planned well it will be easier to reach your goal.