Choosing the right pension

Which pension is right for you?

With so many different types of pension available it’s hard to know where to start. We can help you find one that’s right for you.

Think about how much money you’ll need to fund the retirement you’d like and work out how much you can afford to invest in your pension until then. Use our Risk Questionnaire to see what your attitude to risk is. And if you’re likely to retire early, have you considered how flexible it is?

Types of pensions and how to apply

UK State Pension

In the 2013/14 tax year, the basic UK State Pension for a single person is just £5,727.80. You may also be entitled to an additional State Pension, depending on your income, and Pension Credit may also be available. But for most people, the state allowances alone don't provide enough money to live on.

The State Pension age will start to increase from December 2018 to reach 66 in October 2020.

Personal pensions

Personal pensions are flexible and offer real tax benefits. We offer 3 types:

  • A Self Invested Personal Pension (SIPP) offers different investment options which you control. They may result in a higher risk to the money you put in, but can be a tax-efficient and flexible way of investing in a pension.
  • Stakeholder pensions are simple, low cost personal pensions, designed for both individuals and employers. They can be started from £16 a month and offer tax benefits.

Company pensions

Company pension schemes vary depending on your employer. Before you join a company pension scheme you need to check how much you’ll have to pay and what contribution your employer will make. Read more about company pensions.


We charge variable fees depending on which pension you invest in. These pay for things like administration, specialist investment advice and ongoing management.

Before you decide

Before applying for a pension you may want to view our Pensions Comparison Table. Alternatively, you could speak to a Financial Adviser, or contact Standard Life on 0845 272 8810.

Standard Life Direct is provided by Standard Life Client Management which advises on, and sells products from, subsidiaries of Standard Life plc and some external providers. Lines are open Monday -Thursday from 09:00 (UK time) - 19:00 (UK time), Friday 09:00 (UK time) - 18:00 (UK time) and Saturday 10:00 (UK time) - 13:00 (UK time). Call charges will vary.

Important information

With all pensions, your money is locked away until you reach the age of 55. The value of any investments can go down as well as up and may be worth less than you put in. Laws and tax rules may change in the future. The information here is based on our understanding in November 2012. Your personal circumstances also have an impact on tax treatment.

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Friday 09:00 - 18:00

Saturday 10:00 - 13:00

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