Pensions gap is a gender issue...
Last week, I spent time with a friend and professional – now retired. When asking her about her travel plans, she admitted that while she would like to go abroad, she no longer had the money – her pension simply wasn’t enough for the life she’d envisioned for herself. She is not alone.
Recent research by the insurer Aegon found that British women typically have pension savings of just £24,900 - far less than the the average of £73,600 which men accumulate. This is one of the largest gaps in Europe. Certainly the requirement since 2012 for employers to provide a pensions scheme has been a boon. Currently, some 69% of women in full-time employment have a pension, nearing the 70% rate of men. But women have to do more to ensure they'll have enough savings for the longer lives they lead on average. It's not surprising a greater number of women live out their retirement in poverty than men - especially when they've prioritised their children and others first.
Aegon also found 42% of women had never reviewed or changed their plans, and 27% said they didn’t understand the information when it was given to them. One in ten even said they avoided looking at their numbers as they feared they were saving too little. I empathise with that as it was only the government’s push for pensions that made me take my own seriously, but denial and lack of knowledge ultimately undermine the protection for families and homes that most women want to safeguard.
The autumn is coming up – use one of those cold and wet weekends on its way to review the data you have and make better provisions for the future.