Remember to shop around
AS I write this I am sitting at my desk looking out at the sunshine, wondering if summer is finally with us and of course, if so, how long will it last.
This is the time of year when a lot of people who are coming up to retirement age begin to think about the “big day”, the day when they will finally cast off the shackles of the nine to five routine and the 20 days annual holiday entitlement.
They think about how nice it would be just to be able to spend that extra few days with the grandchildren they may only see for a few weeks every year, or how nice it would be to tag an extra week on to their holiday as they have enjoyed it so much. And, how nice would it be to not have to take a week of that precious holiday entitlement to decorate the sitting room or paint the outside of the house.
But of course, all these dreams depend on one common factor, how much income is your pension pot going to generate for you.
The money that is sitting in your pension pot is quite possibly going to be the largest amount of cash you will have other than what is locked in your house if you are a home owner, and please, make no mistake, the money that is in your pension pot is every bit your money as if you had saved it in the building society.
So, and I know that my regular readers know what I am going to say, you must make sure that either you or your financial adviser endeavours to get you the best deal possible for your annuity by shopping around. You are going to be in retirement for a long time, make sure it is the best time for you.
You can research the market yourself by going to any of the registered retirement income brokers or by finding yourself a registered IFA in your area.
Retirement income is a specialised subject and not all IFAs are fully conversant in this field and do not have the expertise or facilities to research the whole of market to ensure that they get the product that is right for their client, especially if their client has a small fund. However, that is all set to change as IFAs now have the facility, via the Annuity Clearing House (ACH), to achieve a better deal for their clients, no matter what the size of their pension fund. All they will have to do is just spend a few minutes either on the website or telephone and through the wonders of modern technology, complete a search against some of the UK’s leading annuity providers in just a few moments and produce a single application form.
We, here at Rockingham, launched the ACH service to IFAs earlier this month as a further step in our campaign to ensure all individuals have the chance to achieve the highest amount possible for their retirement income. The IFA need no longer worry that he may not be securing the best deal for his client, you.
So, go back outside and enjoy the sunshine, continue to dream of the extended holidays and the caravan or apartment in the sun that you will buy with your tax-free cash and all those extra hours with your grandchildren, because help is out there for all of you. Just remember to shop around.