Pensions – getting started

You can make a real difference to your future by starting and maintaining a pension. Find out how they work, what your choices are, and how much you might want to save.

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Before you begin

  • Start
  • Target
  • Existing
  • Results
  • Adjust
  • Summary

What this tool will do

This tool shows you how saving a regular amount each month into a pension will help you have the money you will need in retirement. It will show you how the state pension, tax benefits and increasing the amount you save all contribute to a better retirement income.

You will need

About 5 minutes of free time. To know how much you earn and how much you might have in existing pensions. That’s it!

You've already provided us with these details…  Change these

Current age
Retirement age
Gender
Current salary
£
Your contribution
£100 each month
Taxman adds
£25 each month
Total contribution
£125 each month

Pension Calculator

  • Start
  • Target
  • Existing
  • Results
  • Adjust
  • Summary

Current age (From 16)

Retirement age (55 – 74)

Your gender

Your current annual salary before tax
Use your most recent salary if you are not currently employed
£ 
You pay in
£-+ each month
Taxman adds ?
£25 each month
The total contribution is
£125 each month
Your income could be
£0 per year (gross)
£0 each month (net)

What pension income do you need?

  • Start
  • Target
  • Existing
  • Results
  • Adjust
  • Summary
You told us your current annual salary is
£
When you retire, we suggest you might need
Our calculations are largely based on findings from the last published research from the Pension Commission.
£ each year

Do you think you will need more or less than £ each year when you retire? ?

  • More limited lifestyle
    £
    % of
    final salary
  • More modest lifestyle
    £
    % of
    final salary
  • Current lifestyle

    £
    % of
    final salary
  • Lifestyle with more options
    £
    % of
    final salary
  • More prosperous lifestyle
    £
    % of
    final salary

Do you have any existing pensions?

Existing pensions

Do you have any contribution based pensions? ?

Answer yes even if you no longer pay into them. Not sure what kind of pension you have?

What is the current value of all your existing pension funds?
An estimate is fine. Your most recent annual statement will give a more accurate figure
£
If you are still contributing (paying in) to your
pensions, how much are you paying in?
If you are NOT still paying in just leave this blank
£ each month
Or % of your monthly salary
If your employer contributes (pays in) to your
pension, how much are they paying?
If your employer does NOT pay in, just leave this blank
£ each month
Or % of your monthly salary

Existing pensions

Do you have any salary based pensions? ?

Not sure what kind of pension you have?

How much income each year could this pension provide at retirement?
This information is generally shown on your pension statement, it is normally given in today’s terms
£ each year
What age does this income start?
years old

See the results

Your payments

You told us that you could save £100 each month to a pension. On top of this, the taxman will add £25 each month.

Automatic contribution increases

If we assume you increase your payments by 4% each year, your pension income could rise to £ each year.

Your existing pensions

You have told us about some existing pension arrangements. These could boost your pension income even further to £ each year

What this means

Your plans mean you could meet or exceed the income you will need for retirement. Congratulations.

What this means

Well done. You've created a starting point towards your target pension income. “The difference” could be addressed by changing your contributions and/or investments. On the next page you can play with the figures to see the impact.

£
Pension income
£
Pension income
£
The difference
£
Target pension
income
£
Excess
£
The difference

Your results

You’re almost done

Now play with the figures below to see how the changes you make can get you closer to the retirement lifestyle you would like.

?
?
?
£
Pension income
(£ each month)
£
The difference
£
Target pension
income
(£ each month)
£
Excess
£
The difference

Play with the figures

You pay a regular contribution to a pension
£-+
Taxman adds
£25 each month
The total contribution is
£125 each month
You pay a Single payment of
£-+
Taxman adds
£0 
The total payment is
£0 
Retirement age
-+
Target income
£-+

Automatic contribution increases

Your pension contribution could include an optional automatic increase each year of up to 10%. We’ve assumed a 4% increase here.

What about the State Pension? ?

You will be eligible for the state pension when you are at least . Would you like us to include this in your calculations?

You won't be eligible for BSP until at least age .

Your results

You’ve finished

Here is a summary of the results that may help you get closer to the retirement lifestyle that you would like.

?
?
?
£
Pension income
(£ each month)
£
The difference
£
Target pension
income
(£ each month)
£
Excess
£
The difference

What you plan to do

  • I will need £ each year when I retire at age .
  • I will start by investing £100 each month.
  • The taxman will add £25 each month so Standard Life will invest a total of £125 each month on my behalf. In this calculation, it is assumed that Standard Life will increase the monthly payment by 4% each year to help keep on top of inflation.
  • I will add a single payment of £ before I retire.
  • The tax man will add £ to my single payment so that Standard Life will invest a total of £ on your behalf.
  • My existing pension will add £.
  • I will have a pension shortfall of £ (£ each month)
  • The difference could be addressed through changing my contributions and/or investments.

This will make a start to reaching my target income of £ each year

The benefit of starting now

By starting to save for my pension today my income in retirement could be £ more than if I put off saving for another year.

View Important information and Assumptions

Important Information

  • These figures are only illustrative.
  • You may also have other sources of income which you are considering using for your retirement.
  • This illustration shows, in today’s prices, the pension that might be payable on retirement. This means that we have allowed for future inflation to give an indication of how much someone might be able to buy with a pension if it were payable today.
  • Your State Pension Age currently depends on when you were born and whether you are a male or female. Please see https://www.gov.uk/calculate-state-pension for calculating State Pension Ages. State Pension Ages are in a transition period where the State Pension Age is gradually increasing towards age 68 and the Tool currently reflects these transitions. The Government has recently announced proposals to link the future State Pension Age to longevity expectations with a review to be carried out every 5 years, and notification of a change to be given 10 years in advance.
  • If retirement is earlier than the assumed State Pension Age, your projected income on retiral will not include Basic State Pension.
  • If retirement is earlier than the age the pension income entered on the Pension Income page starts then your projected income on retiral will not include that pension income.
  • The value of investments can vary from this illustration. As such, these figures are not guaranteed.
  • These figures do not take into account any tax that might be incurred if the fund(s) in the pension plan(s) exceeds the Lifetime Allowance. More information can be found in the Tax section below.
  • All firms use the same rates to show how funds may be converted into pension income.
  • The minimum required to be paid towards a pension may be determined by the product rules of that pension, or by your employer for company pensions. There is generally no maximum payment, however there are tax implications as described below of paying more than an amount set by HM Revenue & Customs in a tax year or accumulating more than the Lifetime Allowance in total across all your pension funds.

Tax

For information regarding the Pension Annual Allowance and the Lifetime Allowance please click here.. Tax rules and legislation may change. The value of tax relief may change and will depend on your financial circumstances. The information we have given is based on our understanding of law and HM Revenue & Customs practice at the start of this tax year.

Assumptions

  • When determining values in today’s terms, the illustrations assume an annual growth rate of 2.5% after allowing for inflation of 2.5%, and an annual management charge of 1%. A higher (or lower) annual management charge may apply depending on the actual funds your pension is invested in. In addition there may be other product charges, adviser charges or fund discounts. If the total level of charges after allowing for any discounts is higher (or lower) than 1% then your projected income would be lower (or higher) than the figure shown here.
  • Payments into this plan are assumed to increase at 4% each year. Salary escalation is assumed to take place 12 months from today and therefore the pension projection may be underestimated if there is a salary increase before the end of this 12 month period.
  • The first pension payment will be paid on the birthday during the year of retirement and will be paid every month from this date until death.
  • The pension will alter in line with the Retail Prices Index each year from the time it starts. We have assumed the Retail Prices Index will increase by 2.5% each year.
  • We have assumed you are currently exactly six months older than the age entered. This may overstate the pension projection by assuming more monthly payments than actually made and more growth.
  • On retirement, you’ll be married (if you are in a civil partnership or single the projected income is likely to be different) to someone three years younger than you (if you are male) or to someone three years older than you (if you are female).
  • Your spouse will get half your pension after you die.
  • We have assumed a single person’s allowance for the Basic State Pension on the basis that your spouse is entitled to a full Basic State Pension in their own right. If this is not the case and you are entitled to the full married couple’s Basic State Pension, your State Pension would be higher than the figure used.
  • Where Basic State Pension is included, we have assumed you have 30 qualifying years for a full Basic State Pension. We have assumed that the Basic State Pension is altered in line with the Retail Prices Index in each future year.

State Pension

It should be noted that the Government are considering proposals that would make significant changes to the State Pension.

  • We have assumed that:
    • you have no taxable income at retirement other than the total projected income;
    • you are eligible for the standard single person’s personal allowance for your retirement age, but not eligible for any other income tax allowances;
    • tax rate thresholds increase each tax year in line with inflation in the Retail Prices Index.
    • any Defined Benefit pension income changes once in payment are in line with the Retail Prices Index.
    • Retirement Planner does not take account of the current differences in personal allowance levels and assumes all ages have the same personal allowance (£10,000 for the 2014/15 tax year, assumed to increase each tax year in line with the Retail Prices Index).
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    Choosing Standard Life

    Flexible products, secure online access and the right help at the right time are just some of the reasons why it makes sense to choose Standard Life for your pension.

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