Avoiding Retirement Mistakes

It sounds incongruous that mistakes can be made at a time synonymous with relaxation and not worrying. We’re always told to ‘slow down’ or else mistakes will happen. The truth of the matter is that mistakes can happen at all stages of life. So, we’ve compiled this list of ‘retirement mistakes’ to help you avoid the pitfalls while enjoying yours.

  • Retirement Mistake 1: Paying tax when you don’t necessarily need to

No one likes to talk about tax… (other than our tax advisers!). There is though a conversation to be had about making the most of your pension and Investments. For example If you spend any other cash and/or investments you have first, you could keep your money safe from the taxman. An added bonus of doing this is that you may well be helping beneficiaries of your estate avoid a large inheritance tax bill. So, it’s always worth looking into the tax implications – handling them correctly can make a huge difference.

  • Retirement Mistake 2: Not getting your estate in order

It can be reassuring to know that you’re providing for your loved ones when you pass away. So, I’m fairly sure most of us would like to see as little as possible go to the tax man. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways to protect against inheritance tax. Measures can be taken such as making gifts, leaving assets to spouses and investing in tax-efficient assets (to name just a few). It’s always worth keeping inheritance tax in the back of your mind and seeking advice upon how best to mitigate this.

  • Retirement Mistake 3: Not having a plan

It’s not unusual for people to have many different streams of income to provide for them during retirement. However, making the most of these streams is critical if you want a hassle-free retirement. Poor planning and unwise investment choices only ever lead to stress and worry. Obviously we always recommend you seek out a good financial planner to ensure you’re as well aligned as can be to enjoy your well-earned retirement.

If you wondering what to look for in a good adviser, please do see the ‘Choosing an adviser‘ section on our website.

  • Retirement Mistake 4: If you dont ask…

There are many, many opportunities for discounts and price cuts for retirees over a certain age. These include discounts on train fares, reduced price cinema tickets, and cheaper fish and chips! Always look out for pensioner deals and take full advantage of them! If you’re in any doubt, ask the question – most places do have something in place by way of a concession. Every penny counts when it comes to nurturing your financial security.

  • Retirement Mistake 5: Assuming property is the only asset worth having

While property can be an extremely valuable source of income for your retirement, you do need to weigh up the pros and the cons. You can incur large maintenance expenses, high tax charges and its not very liquid should you need any lump sums. You could well also find yourself spending valuable time resolving issues for tenants when you could be enjoying your retirement. If ‘property’ is not for you, there are other less stressful, ways of taking an income. So it’s important not to be in the mindset where you think property is the only asset worth having.

  • Retirement Mistake 6: Falling for Scams

This is a tough one to call out but the sad reality is that the world is littered with scams. We have helped people time and again who have been sold a ‘great’ investment or been a victim of identity theft. Often the tactics employed come unexpectedly – a phone call out of the blue, or a letter designed to make you worry into signing something that you don’t actually need. We would advise you to always be wary of promises of ‘high’ and/or ‘guaranteed’ returns. Similarly, alarm bells should ring if you’re being pressured to act quickly.

The pensions regulator has a comprehensive pensions scam guide that you can refer to. Alternatively, you are always welcome to give us a call to seek clarity or advice. We can even set up an initial meeting face-to-face (at our expense!) where we’ll happily talk you through your options over a cup of tea and a decent biscuit. So if you need us, you know where we are – and until then, avoid these retirement mistakes and make the most of it!

If you would like some financial advice, please do call us on 01243 767469. Alternatively you are welcome to email us via our Contact Page. We’d be happy to hear from you!