Review your plans regularly

Things like health checks, trips to the optician or car MOTs are done regularly to make sure everything is on track, and regularly reviewing the health of your retirement plan is a great way to make sure that it’s working for you.   

This could be an annual review on a set date each year (pop a reminder in your calendar), or prompted by a change in circumstances, such as if you change jobs, including getting a promotion or increasing / decreasing your hours, if you move house, get married or anything else that could have a significant impact on your finances. In short, if your circumstances change, make sure you update your retirement plans too.  

If you are in a defined contribution pension scheme, you will receive a pension statement once a year. This could be a handy prompt to consider your retirement plans more fully 

You should always make sure your personal information is up to date on any pension pots you have too, and that you have nominated a beneficiary for your pensions in event of your death.  

Work through the MoneyHelper retirement planning worksheet to check the progress of your pension and retirement savings.  

Try to save more when you can

Whether it’s paying more in to your workplace pension or other long-term savings, the more you put in now, the better prepared you’ll be for the retirement you want. Through compound interest, you can earn ‘interest-on-interest’ on your savings – this can make a big difference to how much your savings are worth longer term.  

You can use the pension calculator from MoneyHelper to get an estimate of your total pension pot, and how much it might pay you when you retire.

Take a mid-life MOT

Looking at your money, job and health together can mean you stay healthy, get the most from work and save to get the retirement you want. 

It makes sense to take control of your future and having a mid-life MOT is a good place to start. 

Consider when you want to retire

As you start planning for your future, it’s important to consider your options and ask yourself ‘what do I want from life as I get older?’ You may want to think about flexible working. Sometimes this could include early or phased retirement, or speaking with your employer about the alternative working patterns they may be able to offer you. Whatever your choice, there’s an option for you. 

Find out more about working in later life.

Decide when you want to take your State Pension

The State Pension is a regular payment from the government when you reach State Pension age. You have the option to defer your State Pension for as long as you like. In turn, this may increase your State Pension payments when you eventually claim it.

There could be several reasons to defer your State Pension, whether you have a part time job providing income, you have money from other savings and pension pots, or just to get more money before you claim.  

If you would like more information on whether deferring your State Pension could be right for you, Money Helper Chat provides free impartial advice.